As Christmas morning comes ever closer, I thought a few suggestions for stocking stuffers might be appropriate. Over the years some of the best gifts I have ever received have been the inexpensive ones given to me with the warm thoughts and love of the givers. Here are a few suggestions for your favorite shooter.
A multi-tool such as a Leatherman. These wildly handy and compact units are useful for solving a myriad of problems. I keep one in each of my range bags and my hunting back packs. They can be used for adjusting scopes, removing stuck cartridges, punching pins from firearms, tightening loose screws and recoil pads. These little tools can salvage a trip to the range or the field just by having simple tools such as pliers or a screwdriver at hand. There are lots of models available for not much money.
As our world becomes more urbanized, finding safe and accessible places to shoot is becoming more difficult. A membership to a local shotgun, rifle, or pistol club is a great gift. These memberships usually cost anywhere from $20.00 to $50.00 a year. Here’s a short list of organizations and their websites where you can find ranges in your area:
Amateur Trapshooting Association: www.shootata.com
National Skeet Shooting Association: www.Nssa-Nsca.org
United States Practical Shooting Association: www.uspsa.org
In addition to these national organizations, you can search for state and local associations; finding a place to shoot is really quite easy and inexpensive.
Another great range item is a BoreSnake. This is a really handy cleaning tool that has often saved me having to cut short my range time. The BoreSnake is a caliber or gauge specific cleaning tool that looks somewhat like a rope but has a bristled end that helps break up fouling in the firearm bore. One pass and your gun will be ready to go. They also come in a compact cleaning kit that includes solvent and oil. Great for competitions when down time might mean losing.
Some other cleaning items might include caliber or gauge specific bronze cleaning brushes and flannel cleaning patches. A one piece cleaning rod, preferably made of brass or carbon fiber; I suggest you stay away from plastic coated rods as the plastic will peel off and foul the bore. A cleaning mat and a gun vice make the chore much easier. MTM makes a great, yet inexpensive long gun holder; I know, I have one.
Targets, shooters need targets! I recommend those that make spotting hits quite easy. Shoot’N’C, Dirty Bird, and other reactive brands work really well, especially for us old guys with bad eyes. The Click-N-Shoot CD has thousands of targets that can be inexpensively printed on your home computer system. I’ve used mine for years, it’s a great stocking stuffer; find out more at: www.click-n-shoot.com.
We are in the middle of the Holiday Season. I urge all of you to slow down, enjoy your family and friends. This is truly a special time of year. To you and yours, my wife and I wish you a very Merry Christmas, and good health and happiness in the New Year.
Be safe and good shooting.