Like it or not, electronic technologies continue to “invade” the traditionally very mechanical firearms space. As consumers rely more and more on smart phones, rangefinders, smart scopes, night vision optics, rechargeable lights, smart targets, chronographs, GPS units, tablets, and lord knows what else while out on the range, the need for portable power grows and grows.
So much so that our man Leghorn did a gear review on a straight-up portable power bank. As in, not directly gun-related in the slightest. Except, of course, for powering the above [partial] list of powered doodads some of us rely on.
First, let me just state that this is only a prototype. It’s 3D-printed and uses an off-the-shelf, portable power bank. Wake Island’s production version is going to sport a sleeker design that looks more like a traditional buttstock and will house a form-fitting power bank.
Whether it’s a power-sucking, everything-enabled night vision optic (my review of a different ATN model noted “voracious battery appetite” as one of its big downsides) or a rechargeable light (LaserMax MANTA-RAY pictured) or your own cell phone that’s sucking down the juice searching for a signal out on the range, the Battery Buttstock’s 15,000 mAh of on-board capacity will keep you going.
Two USB ports are accessible at the front of the buttstock when the power bank is installed. A window in the stock provides access to the power bank’s screen for quick checks of charge state.
Simply pivot the recoil pad downwards to slide the power bank out the back. This allows it to be charged on the kitchen counter or at work or wherever else the entire rifle may not be welcome.
Functioning on a commercial buffer tube for now, simply pull down on the keychain ring to unlock the stock and move it between length of pull adjustment holes. Production versions of the Battery Buttstock will have a sleeker, more standard stock-like adjustment lever.
Out on the range, I shot a bunch of mags through this guy and if you didn’t know, you wouldn’t know. It feels like a normal stock on the shoulder and on the cheek.
In fact, the bit of extra weight from the battery pack balances out a rifle quite nicely, making it less muzzle-heavy than usual and moving the balance point back closer towards your strong hand. Which, in most cases, feels pretty good and makes that additional ~12 ounces much less noticeable than it would be if it were on the handguard or over the receiver, etc.
From the Battery Buttstock one can charge anything that’s USB-powered. Wake Island Sports also intends to release adapters for EOTech and other, popular products with unique inputs.
Whether you’re a survivalist looking for some bug out power backup or just a hobbyist tired of dead devices while out on the range or on hunts, Wake Island Sports’ idea of putting empty space inside a buttstock to good use is, well, useful.
As this is a prototype and there are substantial design tweaks pending before production, I won’t be officially rating it. However, it’s already pretty well-sorted and, functionally, it’s quite solid. A few refinements and I think Wake Island Sports is going to find a happy audience for the Battery Buttstock.
Specifications: Wake Island Sports Battery Buttstock
Fit: stock fits AR-15 commercial buffer tubes
Capacity: 15,000 mAh
Ports: two USB ports
Battery life indicator screen
Removable for charging (or for hot-swapping another power bank)