It’s about That Time again: the trick-or-treaters came and went, the clocks have fallen back by an hour and it’s getting colder than a witch’s teat after the sun goes down. When you hear Bruce Springsteen belting out “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town” yet again, you know that the Winter Solstice Celebration Of Your Choice™ season is upon us once more. What are you going to get the shooters on your Christmas list? I’ve got a few suggestions . . .
AR500 Steel Targets
Nothing rings in the holidays better than a carillon of bullets hitting hardened steel targets. Depending on your friends’ shooting habits, you can spend $40 for a set of knock-down pistol targets or about $200 for a rifle-proof gong that resets itself after you nail it from 600 yards. (Hint: that will save your buddies a sh**load of time checking their targets…)
Steel targets ain’t exactly cheap, but you don’t have to spend Old King Cole’s ransom to equip your shooting buddies with targets they can use for decades.
Rechargeable LED Flashlights
Every home-defense gun should have a high-intensity light near it. But those lights can eat CR-123 lithium batteries like Mentos. CR-123s are remarkable for their energy density and long shelf life, but they’re also notorious for their short run times in the brightest torches — and for being stupidly expensive if you have to buy them at your LGS or hardware store.
LED torches that use 18650 batteries are gifts that keep on
giving saving, because those lithium cells have nearly the same energy density as CR-123s, and can be reused hundreds of times. Search eBay for ‘18650 Cree’ and you’ll be overwhelmed with deals that typically include the light, some 18650 batteries, and a charger. And all for about the same price as a pack of disposable CR-123s.
Make sure your selection has a 1″ body diameter, so it can fit in standard weapon mounts, if desired.
Stripped AR Lower Receivers
Now that Black Rifle Friday has come and gone, many retailers’ shelves have been stripped bare of stripped AR lowers. If you can still find them for less than $100, they make slightly pricey (and rather lumpy) stocking stuffers for the Modern Sporting Rifle crowd.
Stripped lower receivers are considered ‘firearms’ by the ATFE, so remember to comply with state and federal laws governing firearms transfers. And they might not make the best gifts for the starving college students on your list, because they’ll have to spend $400 (and upwards) to turn your Yuletide bit of cheer into an actual working rifle.