The 2019 Rifle Shooter’s Holiday Gift Guide
Christmas gift ideas for the target shooter on your shopping list
Looking for the perfect gift for that rifle shooter on your list who has everything? The truth is, they don’t have everything, and here are some ideas for you that just about any serious shooter will appreciate.
Leica CRF Rangemaster 2800.com $899
Leica CRF Rangemaster 2800.COM Leica
Stretching things out on the rifle range requires a good rangefinder and an accurate ballistics table. This new-for-2019 rangefinder has it’s own internal ballistics calculator, and is also Bluetooth compatible with your phone and the kestrel elite weather meter. Sync them together, zap a range out to 2800 yards, and get an instant shooting solution.
Mega Boom Shooting Target System $43
MegaBOOM Shooting Target System MegaBOOM
We all like to shoot things that go boom, but reactive targets get expensive fast. This little setup uses air pressure to help you to make your own booming targets using old plastic bottles. You can even put powder inside for visual confirmation. Just remember to pick up your trash (you can still recycle the bottles).
SPONSORED: Aimpoint Micro H-2 $820
Aimpoint Micro H-2 Aimpoint
If you want proof that big things come in small packages this Christmas, look no further than Aimpoint’s new Micro H-2 red dot sight. This lightweight sight is packed with features that make it versatile for a variety of guns. Just a few of the features include: a 2-MOA red dot for accuracy at extended range, a dozen intensity settings for use in daylight and low light conditions, integral Weaver mount for different mounting options, and more than five years of battery life (and that’s if you never actually turn the thing off). Another awesome feature is that this sight is compatible with Aimpoint’s 3X-C or 6XMAG-1 magnifying modules. This gives you 3x or 6x magnification through a quality red-dot scope. You might want to pick up two: one for the shooter on your list, and one for yourself.
Wheeler Scope Mounting Kit Combo $98
Wheeler Scope Mounting Kit Combo Wheeler
Every shooter needs to be able to correctly mount a scope, and this kit will help big time. From proper alignment to reticle leveling you have all you need. When it’s all done, you can torque each screw to the proper specification as well. A must-have for any serious shooter.
Caldwell Dead Shots Front and Rear Shooting Bag (unfilled) $21
Caldwell DeadShot Boxed Combo Front and Rear Bag Caldwell
Here’s an ideal stocking stuffer that you can, well, stuff. Even if your shooter is just sighting in their deer rifle before the season, everyone needs a set of sand bags for the bench (and diehard shooters can’t get enough of them). These will go a long way. Order the unfilled ones, so your shooter can fill them with sand, cob media, or whatever else they want.
Walkers Razor Slim Electronic Muff $57
Walker’s Razor Slim Electronic Muff Walker’s Game Ear
Hearing protection is no joke, especially with the muzzle brakes that many shooters are using these days. One shot without hearing protection is too many, so the more options the better. This slim, electronically enhanced set of muffs won’t impede cheek weld on the rifle as much as many thicker models, but will ensure that your loved one’s hearing is protected.
Drymate Gun Cleaning Pad $10
Drymate Gun Cleaning Pad Drymate
As simple as it sounds, every shooter needs a good surface to clean guns on. Solvents and oils can stain and damage bench and countertops, and even if it’s an old work bench, a good cleaning mat will help prevent the loss of small parts. It’s absorbent, yet will keep chemicals from getting where they don’t need to be.
Magneto Speed T1000 Gen 2 Target Hit Indicator $150
MagnetoSpeed T1000 Gen 2 Target Hit Indicator MagnetoSpeed
If you’ve shot steel at long range, you know it can be difficult to spot hits sometimes, and if you’re shooting a muzzle brake, your ear protection can prevent you from hearing hits. These handy hit indicators flash red on the edge of the target for hits and yellow for misses. They attach to the back of the steel, and the replaceable rubber prism that channels the indicator light can withstand many shot impacts.
Chamber Chiller Rifle Barrel Cooler $38
Chamber Chiller OMEGA-60 Chamber Chiller
Anyone who has worked on load development or shot high volumes can understand the long process of waiting on barrels to cool. This little device blows air down the chamber and barrel to greatly speed up the cooling process and get you back to sending rounds downrange.
Brass Deflector Brake Kit $17
Deflector Brake Kit Deflector Brake
If your shooter frequently uses a larger AR10 style rifle, this piece can come in handy. Some of the more powerful rifles eject brass with such force that the aluminum brass deflector damages case necks, making the brass more difficult to reload. This small piece will soften that impact, and even on smaller rifles will prevent the brass spotting and finish erosion on the brass deflector if you want to keep it pristine.
This isn’t the 1950’s anymore, and it’s universally agreed upon that every shooter should be using quality hearing protection. These percussive filters bridge the gap between throw-away foamies and super expensive electronic filtering sets. They feature a rubbery earpiece that you can custom mold to fit your ear perfectly. The filters themselves are removeable, so you can clean them, or replace the moldable ear piece. They allow you to hear at normal levels, but cut out at gunshots, protecting your hearing without the need for batteries.
This scope is a great tool for a shooter who wants to start getting serious about long range target practice, take the guesswork out of hunting shots, or both. It is available in a few magnification and reticle variations, but most importantly, it is a well thought-out and user-friendly scope. It has a large elevation turret that is easy to read, track, adjust, and has a positive zero stop. The windage turret includes a thread protector for running exposed, and a cap if you want to keep it covered. For the price, this is a great scope. I have used one to shoot out to a mile.
One thing that every shooter should have in his or her pack is a rear-support squeeze bag. Any experienced long-range shooter will tell you that having a good rear support on your rifle makes a huge difference in accuracy and consistency. Rather than a rigid support, the squeeze bag is held in the non-shooting hand, underneath the rifle stock. It is then squeezed or relaxed to hold the crosshairs perfectly still on the target. Whether it’s banging steel off a bipod, or sighting in on the bench, you need one, and they don’t get much better than this option from Grey Ghost.
AR500 Silhouette Steel Target
AR500 12’x20’x3/8′ Silhouette Steel Target and Stand System • $145 AR500 Target Solutions
Steel targets have become the rage, and for good reason. A quality, AR500 Steel target will withstand a lifetime of abuse. When used as recommended, it is perfectly safe and you will literally never wear it out. Steel gives you instant audible and visible feedback on your hits, even at very long range. This target package uses a 2 x 4 to set up, and takes down for transport very quickly.
Kestrel Elite Weather Meter with Applied Ballistics
Kestrel Elite Weather Meter with Applied Ballistics • $700 Kestrel
Kestrel has been the go-to name for serious shooters for some time now, and their Applied Ballistics models are top of the line. Shooters shouldn’t rely solely on a wind meter, but they are an extremely valuable tool for learning, practicing, and putting more first shots on steel that resides in another zip code. The wind speed is just one factor, but their applied ballistics helps take the guess-work out, and can generate complete compensation solutions for your shots.
For the shooter who likes to apply his skills in the hunting realm, a good bipod is a must. However, most precision shooting bipods are heavy, and in the backcountry, that’s not a good thing. The javelin bipod is relatively new, but has taken the hunting crowd by storm. It’s a carbon fiber bipod that is extremely light, but strong, with adjustable legs, carbide cleats on the feet, and attaches to the rifle instantly via a magnetic adapter. It gives up some features of the range bipods, but it’s a fantastic lightweight option for hunting.
All shooters need a good gun cleaning system. For anyone in “the know,” that doesn’t mean a cheap cleaning kit. One tool that everyone should use is a bore guide. It keeps your cleaning rod from damaging your chamber and throat of the bore by aligning it perfectly. They also keep solvents out of your action. If the shooter on your list doesn’t have one, an adjustable one like this is a great bet.
If you ever have a screw come loose, need to adjust a scope turret, or other simple mishaps that can ruin a day at the range or a hunt, you will wish you had this kit. It includes driver handles and the common bits that are needed for rifle and scope parts. It’s small and compact, and can be stashed in your daypack or range bag. I’ve had one of these kits for a couple years, and it always goes to the range or field with me.
If you have someone on your gift list that is looking to get serious about precision shooting, they need a data book. It seems like adding paperwork to a hobby is a kill-joy, but a well-maintained data book will improve your shooting. And, accuracy is fun. Each rifle should have its own book, that tracks every single every single round fired. A data book helps you track barrel life, learn the intricacies of your rifle, and correct your mistakes as you see patterns develop.
For more gift ideas, see our Holiday Gift Guide.
These P.I.G. (professionally instructed gunman) or H.O.G. (Hunter of gunmen) shooting saddles have really taken off since their inception, and for good reason. Often, a shooter isn’t offered a prone shot, and must shoot kneeling or standing. These saddles mount on a tripod and clamp onto the stock or chassis of your rifle, offering a very stable rest. You can even use your rifle sling with it to further lock the crosshairs on target. One of these is extremely useful for both the recreational target shooter, and a hunter that is likely to have to shoot from unconventional positions.