One of my most reliable and well-built possessions is something that I rarely talk about: my MidwayUSA Competition Range Bag.
Full disclosure: I was NOT compensated by MidwayUSA for this article in any way. I just enjoy the product and think all the YouTube ads about Larry Potterfield and his Nitro Express shipping system are just as annoying as you do.
Moving right along…the bag comes two ways. Either as the bag itself ($50) or as a “system” along with a removable ammo carrier, two pistol bags and a brass carrier ($60 or $70, depending on color).
I own the system.
Pros: For $50 for the item only, it’s a great range bag with lots of little compartments that make it built for someone serious about going to the range with lots of gear. I can get three or four pistols in there along with half a case of ammo and mags for all of them. Plus there’s a spot for my brass container, as well as ear and eye pro with room to spare.
Con (but not really): My bag has had a lot of hard use over the years and regularly totes around 40+ pounds of gear. As a result, my shoulder strap broke.
I fixed it with some zip ties that I keep in my range bag and MidwayUSA offered to swap it out if I sent it back in no questions asked. However, that would involve unloading my range bag. I said to hell with it and will live with the zip tie.
I can stuff a full-size 5-inch 1911 in there and still have a lot of extra space for targets, tools, cleaning gear and the like.
I prefer to back it with a dedicated small/medium/large pistol rug for each gun for the most efficient use of space. They can be purchased separately for 5-10 bucks each.
Although the bag is 100% polyester and made in China, as much as I would prefer a USA-made bag, I haven’t seen anything come to market that matches the quality/features/etc. of this one.
One thing that sets this bag apart is that it holds more magazines than a dentist’s waiting room. That’s come in handy when you’re bringing three or four different pistols and want to organize magazines.
5.11 makes other range bags for more money that hold less gear and are similar in terms of material and setup.
It’s a good bag at a good price. If you’re serious about going to the range and hauling a bunch of guns with plenty of ammo, this is a great way to do it.
What Midway needs to do is bring back the Range Box.
This is where the reviewer needs to compare the bag directly with other bags the reviewer has direct experience. Not just the price of the competition.
Black polyester Chinese made bags are a dime a dozen. Does this one have YKK zippers? In my deep and vast experience, only things with YKK zippers don’t suck.
I’ve been using my Al Mar range bag since the early ‘90’s.
It would be tough to beat, this looks close.
Huh. Love their knives (I have the Hawk Ultralight). Didn’t know they made a range bag.
Back in the Day, Al was heavily involved with the shooting sports. He was my sponsor when I was shooting full time, (so I’ve got a “few” AMK’s). He even had a line of clothing geared towards concealed carry.
The range bag was well thought out.
Good times. Enjoy your hawk!
Nice bag! And nice review too.
Now for something that does suck: the NRA range bag. That flimsy piece of chinesium ripped next to the seam along the whole side on its first trip to the range.
Since then I’m using a discarded bowling bag. It’s incredible how much you can fit in a space meant for two bowls and one pair of shoes. It’s so sturdy that it would hold more than I can lift. Extending handle and wheels make it still possible to roll it if that happens. (I don’t know if you noticed, but lead is damn heavy!)
If I ever feel like I need something more fancy and purpose built, I will definitely look at Midwayusa’s offerings.
Coffee. Right out my nose.
Heh. Well, it’s right there in the name…
That NRA free gift “range bag” is amazingly flimsy. It’s okay as an overnight bag for a change of clothes and a shaving kit, but no way would I try packing either pistols or ammo in it.
Bowling+ball=bowl, right? This whole English thing is so confusing. 😄
Hell, I just blame the autocorrect. That’s my story and I stick with it.
I just ordered it
I have been using the Midway bag for 8 years, very happy with it and it is bargain compared to competition
Range bags are like safes. Figure out what size you think you need, then get the biggest one they make because you are wrong. Speaking from experience. Had this bag for over 6yrs and love it.
I have been a customer of midwayusa for any many years. I have only had to return one item and it was not becouse of the quality but did not work for me and it was hassel free. Many years ago they were ranked the 4th largest online retail in the U.S.. They have good online sales, advertisements and competive pricing. Their customer service has gotten better over the years. I’m also a big fan of Brownells. I use them both equally depending on price point and shipping options at time of need. MIDWAY USA brand items usually compair close if not equally to name brand items and pricing is better. Their AR Stoner AR parts are descent and reliable products. They run free shipping on 49$ and over quite often. You’ll surf hard to find better deals on many of their products. My only grip or con point with any or many of these buisnesses is i don’t like to pay for hats with their logo on it. I really never liked paying to openly advertise for any company that I’m spending my hard earned dollors for the other products they sell. A matter of principle. And after spending several hundred bucks a company should be glad to give a little free advertisement out to promote themselves.
Heh. I feel the same way as you regarding logo hats for retailers. I’ll wear your nice hat if its free, but I’m not paying to advertise for you.
Guess what? LaRue gets their hat worn a lot by me. Part of the ‘random swag’ that you might find in your LaRue shipment box. They get it. That hat has definitely generated business for LaRue from range trips. Folks ask, I tell. Some order. I see them at the range with LaRue stuff at some later point.
And, on the topic of the Midway bag (it came with all the stuff back then, no ‘system’ involved). I’ve a few of them. The older competition range bag which has been going strong since Sept. 2009, without issue. Large enough inside to fit my spotting scope, mini front rest, and rear bag, along with two pairs of muffs, enough targets to reach the end of days, tools, more tools, range finder, field cleaning kit, stuff, things, water bottle, and more. Heavy as hell when fully loaded for a rifle day. No problems at all with seams, zippers, handles, straps, etc. Great bag.
Also have the “Compact Competition Range Bag” (discontinued) which was about 2/3 the size of the standard size comp bag. I usually use this for just ‘pistol’ days. Use the rugs from the full-size bag and it fits a few pistons, muffs, tools, mags, and more. Not as abused as the full size bag, but happy with it.
Have a slightly smaller version as well. Doesn’t look like they sell that any longer either. About the size of their bigger pistol bag. Gave it to one of my boys years ago for his first pistol.
Now do Midway shooting mats. Spoiler: they’re great.
This was my first range bag.
I have a closet with 4-5 other range bags I tried over the years, but didn’t wind up working as well.
Still going strong after 10 years’ use.
I use two bags per range visit (as a firearms instructor). Both are loaded fully (heavy), and toted in & out, back & forth… a lot. Firearms bag is a Cabala’s I bought at Bass Pro Shops after they merged. The other bag is an AWP tool bag I bought at Lowe’s. It is very deep, very heavy duty, and has tons of top open sewn pockets for shoving items down into. It carries an excellent My Medic trauma kit (I can suture someone on the spot if needed; great kit!) plus a lot of ammo, tools, targets, paint cans (for steel targets), and whatever other range crap I need to tote on a given day. Each bag probably weighs 20-25lbs. They both are wearing fine.
And if I get another bag I am considering a tactical diaper bag. Don’t laugh. Those things are built to mom standards: rugged, have tons of pockets, and some have a really nice baby diaper changing mat that is the perfect size firearms work mat. (And of course the mat is water proof and, um, er, poo proof. Gun oil and dirt ain’t gonna phase it!)
I have the compact version of this bag (sadly discontinued), and it’s one of my oldest pieces of gun kit. It was the first thing I ever bought from MidwayUSA six years ago, and it’s still going strong. I never go to the range without it, and I even used it on a few flights before fear of leaving an empty hull inside getting flagged by TSA got the better of me.
My wife and I both have one. Great bags. The stage bag feature is good too. Mike
I picked one up for $40 at my LGS. It was previously owned but unused, and has the ammo carrier and extra gun pouches. Great design and quality, been using it for matches for a year now.
Another fan here. Was given one as a Xmas gift a few years ago. It’s in the old six color chocolate chip camo pattern (back when they sold their gear in a over a dozen colors and patterns) rock solid and I found myself buying more stuff to fill it up with….
For those of you who bought this bag from Midway a few years ago don’t be fooled. The new range bags are of lesser quality. I have one I bought two years ago and it’s a tank. Taken a beating and held up beautifully. Bought one this week and when it arrived it was clear that the material, zippers and features had all been reduced. I paid more for the new bag and got an inferior product. Incredibly disappointed.
I have one from a few years back. It’s excellent, and has stood up to a fair bit of use. The only problem with it is that it’s a little too big for quick range trips; I usually only wind up using it when I’m bringing a friend to the range (and thus need to have their eyepro/earpro) or when I’m going to a multi-gun competition. 90% of the time, I’m using the smaller Gunmate bag (which is roughly analogous to the MidwayUSA two pistol bag).
Competition Range Bag? Oh MY! I’ll only buy it if it says Tactical or Turbo.
OK I lied. Actually I have one and I just went and looked to see what it was because I had no idea cuz it’s a bag.
It’s Bulldog, I put gun type crap in it. It works.
Midway sources some good nylon gear. You cant beat it for the price. Ive got 5.11 and LAPG nylon gear as well. I did have a small Midway hunting “back pack” (more like a book bag) come apart at the seams after one season. I wrote a negative review on it. They read it and sent me another one that has held up much better. It’s all about the seams if the nylon is the same weight. Competitive Edge Dynamics sources good nylon gear too. I have 3 of their range bags and a few pistol rugs.
This bag was one of the first things I bought after I bought my first handgun. They were on sale at a very reasonable price. It’s just about the perfect size. Any bigger, and it would be too easy to fill up with extra ammo and make it too heavy to carry.
Mine has not been that good. The zip ties have all come off. A side zipper came un-stitched. I thought it was junk. I threw it away. I kept the ammo bag and the pistol cases and bought an SOE Large tool bag. That thing could tow a car. The set up is going strong after 2 years.
I don抰 even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great. I don’t know who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you are not already 😉 Cheers!