I have been waiting for a Modern Inline Muzzleloading Pistol for a long time now. I even considered making one of my Sidekicks into a custom "Hand Cannon" for several years, but with all the gray areas and talking to the ATF that don't know any more than the book tells them, I decided I didn't want the "Men In Black" stopping by and putting me in one of those nice white jackets that buckle in the back. I even went so far as to have a concept done up, but that is as far as it has ever gotten. Sidekick II Concept. Yeah, it's ugly. Fast forward to a couple weeks ago when I ordered one of these new elusive Optima Pistols. They told me it was in stock and I should receive it in a week to 10 days. Then I get an e-mail update on the process on around the 9th day, and it said the same thing the day i ordered it. So I called them, and they tell me it is now on back order! Needless to say, I wasn't very happy and told them they could cancel my order. I found a local dealer that said they would order one for me, but I made them call to make sure whoever they order from actually had them in front of them. Most all of these online dealers never even stock the inventory, they list what their distributor has in stock (or says they have in stock) as their stock, then order from the distributor AFTER you place your order. That is why it takes 7 to 10 days for something they list as being in stock. Enough of that! I placed my order on Tuesday of this week with a local sporting good store, and was guaranteed that it would be in on Friday (yesterday). Finally, someone was able to keep their word, but I did have to pay retail for it. Sometimes it is worth it. It came in a nice little box, that they neglected to put the serial number on the outside, but packaged satisfactorily enough to survive the Postal Gorillas. It is listed as having a 14" barrel, but take away 1-5/8" for the breech plug, and another 3/8" for the BGM (Bullet Guiding Muzzle, CVA's version of the QLA), you have just 12" of working barrel left. It also states that it comes with sling swivel studs, it does but just not installed. The one in the pistol grip is a littl tough to get started but I prevailed. The one in the forestock actually replaces the forestock screw and belly button. The fluting on the right side of the barrel seems well done, however the left side leaves a lot to be desired. Wanna kill these ads? We can help!