LONG RANGE SHOOTER’S CART


 


Unlike some matches where you’re able to keep all of your equipment either at or close to one fixed shooting line for the duration of the match (i.e. Black Powder Cartridge Silhouette), a Long Range match requires that each competitor move all of his or her gear 100 yards to the next shooting line after each distance is completed.

As a result, it’s highly recommended that you bring some type of fixed or folding garden cart, wagon, golf cart, or other wheeled device to transport all of your gear from the 1,000 yard firing line, to the 900 yard line, and then to the 800 yard firing line (or vice versa) as the match progresses.

Shooters have invented, modified, and cobbled-together just about every type of shooter's cart imaginable to move their gear between firing lines. It is important that you pay particular attention to this aspect of the match. Moving your equipment quickly and efficiently between firing lines will make things much less stressful and physically draining. I would also highly encourage you to thoroughly test your cart with all of gear on-board before you come to the match.

Cowboy Action Carts vs. Long Range Carts

There seems to be a booming business for cart makers as they cater to the needs of Cowboy Action Shooters and their specific equipment transportation requirements. Although a cart designed for Cowboy Action Shooting can be used when you attend a Long Range match, consider the differences listed below:

Cowboy Action Cart
 
  Long Range Cart
— Made to carry multiple long guns (rifle, shotgun, etc…)
 
  — Designed to carry one rifle (BPC rifle only)
— Made to carry several types of ammunition (rifle, shotgun, pistol)
 
  — One type of ammunition
— No need for cleaning capabilities
 
  — Needs a cleaning cradle of some type
— No need to carry extra gear
 
  — Must be able to carry a lot of gear (see list below)
 
— Has large wheels and tires for moving over rough or uneven
ground
 
  — Same

Equipment You’ll Have To Transport

As with any match, you will need to have a variety of items to successfully shoot the match. Listed below are some suggested items:

Minimum Items Needed:

— Black Powder Cartridge Rifle

— Ammunition
   
(Recommend at least 150 rounds for a two-day match)

— Shooting Mat

— Cross-sticks and soft pad / towel

— Hearing Protection

— Eye Protection

— Blow Tube

— Sight Inserts for the Front Sight

— Gun Cleaning Materials / Cleaning Kit including
Cleaning Rod

— Yellow Chamber Safety Flag


Optional Recommended Items:

— Spotting Scope and Stand
(Used when you are shooting and you want to see where your shots have impacted on the target and when you are spotting for another shooter.)

— Small Folding Chair or Stool
(Used when you are spotting.)

— Sun Screen / Lip Balm

— Hat
(Helps to keep sand off your head from bullets that fall short of the target and splash in the sand when you are in the pits.)

— Cooler with Lunch and Drinks
(No alcohol allowed. There may be no break for lunch. Most shooters eat whenever they have a spare moment.)

— Water
(It's important to stay hydrated throughout the day.)

— Rain Suit and / or Umbrella
(To keep the shooter dry)

— Rain Cover for Your Cart / Shooting Equipment
(To keep your shooting gear dry.)

— Insect Repellent

— Countdown Timer
(To track your time remaining when
shooting for score.)

— Wind Flag or Indicator

— Clipboard and Pencil / Pen
(For scoring the other shooters.)

— Elbow Pads
(To cushion your elbows when laying down.)

— Small Camera and Film

— Eye Drops

— Lens Cleaner for Shooting Glasses and Spotting Scope



Questions to Ask Yourself Before Designing Your Shooter’s Cart

1) How Am I Going To Transport My Cart To The Match?

If you own an SUV, truck, or mini-van, you’ll probably have plenty of room in your vehicle for a cart. If you drive a small compact car, a cart that folds-up or collapses for transport may be better suited to your situation.

2) What Is My Cart Going To Have To Carry?

Refer to my list of Minimum and Optional Items as a guide.

3) How Am I Going to Clean My Rifle Between Relays?

Some type of cleaning cradle will make life easier after you’ve completed your relay so you can quickly clean your rifle and have it ready for the next time you come to the firing line. I have an MTM RMC-1 plastic cleaning cradle bolted to the top of my cart and leave my gun velcroed in place when I move the cart between relays.

4) How Am I Going To Protect My Rifle and Equipment If It Rains?

Dealing with rain during a match is one of the most annoying aspects of shooting outdoors. Unless your range has covered shooting positions, you will need to use some type of tarp, drop cloth, or plastic sheeting to cover your gear if it rains. Also think about how you are going to keep that cover in place when you move your cart from one shooting line to another, and in the event of strong winds. Many people use bungee cords or plastic woodworking clamps for this purpose.

Go to the “Pictures” section of this web site and click on the tab marked “Shooting Carts”. The pictures displayed are just some of the carts that I have seen at the various matches I have attended. It’s fascinating to see how each shooter approaches and solves the problem of moving their equipment.


Web Sites For Gun Cart Manufacturers:

Listed below are a number of gun cart makers and sources for shooting cart plans. Although most of these carts are made specifically to meet the needs of Cowboy Action shooters, they offer some good ideas for a cart that is suitable for long range shooting.

Off the Wall Gun Carts:
http://www.guncarts.com

Cart-Right Gun Carts: http://cartrightcarts.com/cartright_guncarts.htm

Shootin' Carts:
http://shootincarts.com

Gun Cart Plans:
http://www.kansascas.com/gun_cart_plans.htm

Cal-Graf Simple Gun Cart:
http://www.curtrich.com/simpleguncart.html

Folding Gun Carts:
http://brushybranch.com/folding_gun_carts.htm

Gun Cart Creations:
http://www.kansascas.com/gun_carts.htm

Back Pocket Gun Cart:
http://www.backpocketguncart.com/carts.htm

Rugged Gear Gun Cart:
http://www.shootersoutlet.com/ruggedgear.htm

 

By Darryl Hedges
 

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