Friday, March 19, 2021

Range Bag

Shooter with Remington Model 597 Rifle (ca 2019)
photograph by
Noah Wulf

Several years ago, Shotgun News had an article about what you need to carry in your range bag to have a successful time of shooting.

Now for folks that aren't familiar with shooting, a range bag is ... a bag to hold your stuff for going to the range.
The Bag
Almost any bag will work as a range bag, as long as it is big enough to carry your stuff.

Needless to say, a bag with internal and external pockets would make it easier to organize your stuff, and one with a strap easier to carry.

Next or maybe first, you need safety equipment, hearing and eye protection.

The article recommended carrying quality earplugs in a ziplock baggie, so you have some if you forget your dedicated ear muffs, and you can hand these out to friends, if needed.
Mr. David M. Fortier recommends getting ear muffs with the highest level of NRR , noise reduction rating. The author cautions some popular electronic ear muffs only have a NRR of 19 to 22 decibels, while a good set of ear muffs will have a NRR of over 30 dbs.

The author suggest everyone wear eye protection. For folks wearing glasses, he suggests having prescription safety glasses made to protect your eyes.

Be warned, about your sight and hearing, "Once you lose it, it's gone forever."
Third, is a bunch of stuff:
* stapler with staples, JT-21M by Arrow was recommended in the article,
* Small 3-foot tape measure or a flexible rule to measure your shot groups.
* Writing utensils like a pen, pencil, and a sharpie, to mark targets, record data, and ... sign autographs.
* Small notebook to record data

* Shot Timmer

and, ...

* Spotting Scope

Next on the list, from the article, is a small tool kit that has weapon specific tools, like a front sight tool or combination tool. Another set of recommended tools was a set of wrenches, Allen, Torx, and flat bits with a bit driver. The recommendation for wrenches also includes a small adjustable wrench or a set of individual wrenches in SAE and metric. Another recommendation for a small tool kit is a set of punches and a small hammer. The author had a warning about not getting a big hammer because it adds weight to your bag. The last two recommendations are a steel cleaning rood, if you shoot steel case ammunition through an AR-15 series rifle and spare batteries for your shot timer, optics, and anything else that requires batteries to function.
Personally, the author also suggests having a small bottle of lubricant and that's it for a cleaning kit. I personally think you should carry a sectioned cleaning rod with patches and a bore brush, in your range bag. The rod, brush, and patches will allow you to clean the firearm's barrel, if you happen to trip, plunging your firearm into the dirt, mud, or water.
Fifth, the author recommends carrying so-called snivel gear, like sunscreen and bug spray, water and a snack in your bag with a light rain jacket, hat and gloves in your vehicle. I would add a light jacket or hoodie to the list.
Next is a chronograph. This device measures the velocity of your bullets as you shoot. It is handy for handloaders and folks looking for more information about how their firearm and ammunition work together.

Seventh is medical supplies.The author suggested two kits, a booboo kit and a blow-out kit. A booboo kit has band-aids for skinned knuckles, triple antibiotic, and ... the everyday first-aid kit.

The blow-out kit is for those catastrophic injuries from being shot, having a firearm malfunction and blowup, ... You know, a touniquit, packing gauze, and all the other things that Soldiers carry to save a life.

Oooh, ...

The author also suggested a charged cellphone to call for help.

Almost lastly, the author suggest the self-evident for your range bag, ... That's right, Targets. Not any old target, but proper targets for your firearm.
Mr. Fortier suggest getting targets that are big enough and well defined for proper indexing, being able to see your sight on the target. He also warns against getting targets that are too big because your aiming point can shift around.

Lastly, the author suggest bring a friend and have fun.

Shotgun News - Building the Perfect Range Bag: Having the Right Gear can Save the Day by David M. Fortier

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