Christmas time is here again! Many of you have been thinking about what to get the hunter or shooter in your life (or maybe what YOU’D like to get). We’ve put together some of our favorite picks of the year. We’ve tested some form of each item and personally think it would be great to get them in our stockings or under the tree. So take a look. You will find inexpensive but practical items and over the top amazing choices that everyone dreams of. Whatever you get for your loved ones, we at SHWAT™ wish you a Merry Christmas and hope the season will be full of blessings and the smell of gun powder!
1. CROSSBREED HOLSTERS GIFT CERTIFICATE – As much as you want to spend.
We love our CrossBreed® holsters here at SHWAT™! SuperTuck®, MiniTuck®, SnapSlide, Ankle…we’ve used CrossBreed’s products longer than we’ve hunted hogs. That said, buying someone a super comfortable holster with a lifetime warranty can be complicated. What kind of leather? What pistol are they carrying right now that you didn’t even know they had? Combat Cut or regular? For the first time this Christmas, CrossBreed® Holsters is selling gift cards online! Spend what you want, and leave the details to the recipient!
2. DRT AMMO – Price varies
A gun without ammunition is arguably useless. And when you do need your gun, you need ammo that you are confident in. DRT meets that requirement. We’ve shot multiple calibers into gel and animals. Whether you are hunting hogs, deer, elk, or bear, DRT Ammo is one thing that you can count on to do its job when you do yours. It is also a great choice for self-defense.
3. BATTLE ARMS DEVELOPMANT ENHANCED PIN SET | EPS | ETP | EPP – MSRP $30
Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference. This is one of those times. Battle Arms Development (BAD, yeah – that’s cool to say…) got on the map with their Ambidextrous Safety Selector. Sure, the OEM selector on your rifle works fine, but the one from Battle Arms works better. I think every AR should have one, preferably of the short throw variety. They’ve done it again with their Enhanced Pin Set (EPS). The EPS is the combination of the Enhanced Pivot Pin (EPP) and Enhanced Takedown Pin (ETP), and for 30 bucks and the world’s easiest installation, there’s no reason not to upgrade your AR15. The difficulty is this – until you actually handle a rifle with these installed, it’s honestly hard to appreciate their value. It’s kind of a see-it-to-believe-it thing. There are some things you won’t buy for yourself, but you’d love to get as a gift. This may be one of those things for someone you know.
4. SKD PIG FULL DEXTERITY (FDT) GLOVE ALPHA TOUCH – MSRP $35.95
It’s not what you think. The “PIG” name has nothing to do with hog hunting. In this case, it stands for Patrol Incident Gear. But in reality, when you look at the glove and see what it’s made for, it’s a match made in heaven for the pig hunter. There is even an image of what looks like a wild hog on the strap. Maybe an officer hit a pig on a two lane late one night, creating a “patrol incident” and landing the hog head on the glove. No matter, these are a dramatic departure from most gloves on the market. Designed by a Rogers Shooting School “Advanced” graduate with more than a decade of experience in instructing Military and Law Enforcement personnel, these gloves were made specifically for shooters. If, like me, you are much more likely to give someone a pig sandwich than a knuckle sandwich, but you still want real protection for the inevitable bumps and scrapes that come with shooting and hunting, you will love the SKD PIG Full Dexterity (FDT) Glove Alpha Touch.
5. INHAWGNITO – MSRP $99
A lot of people find that using feeders to bait hogs is the best way to use their limited hunting time. The problem is that in many places, the hogs are grocery shopping at night, and as much as we love night vision and thermal, it’s expensive. The patent pending InHawgNito is a compact remote control light system that mounts to feeders and uses their 6 or 12 volt feed systems for power. Built in high output red or green LEDs both work well with the Christmas gift scene and the whole night hunt experience. $99 bucks at AllSeasonsFeeders.com.
6. HOGUE KNIFE – Starting at $219.95
Yes, the same company you know for a virtually endless selection of grips, Hogue has some seriously cool knives! One reason we only put items on this list that we’ve vetted in house is that pictures can look cool, but unless you handle something like these knives, you might not be able to appreciate the quality. Rest assured, these are solid! And, go figure, the grips are fantastic. These look sexy, too! Want to give a folder? Check out the EX-01. Shown here is a 4” drop point bladed model with G-Mascus green frame. It uses a lock button, and is one of the smoothest knives we own. Starts at $219.95. http://www.hogueinc.com/store/categories/ex-01-folding-knife/700
Looking instead for a big burly fixed blade? I spotted this at SHOT Show a few years ago. Pictured is the EX-F01 with a drop point tool steel 5.5” blade. G-Mascus Dark Earth is just one of the color choices. The balance on this is great for chopping thanks to the extra thickness on the top side 2/3 of the way to the blade point. Starts at $239.95. http://www.hogueinc.com/store/categories/ex-f01-fixed-blade-knife/701
7. WARTHOG LOWER RECEIVER FROM SPIKES TACTICAL – MSRP $299.95
For the dedicated wild boar hunter who already has a generic AR-15 (or two, or three…), how about giving the only one that screams “I AM HOG SLAYER!”? This billet aluminum Warthog lower from Spikes Tactical is a one-of –a-kind design from Sharps Bros. Imagine the possibilities for a build with this! Imagine the stories that could be told from the hunts! And if you give this as a Christmas 2014 gift, the recipient can enjoy getting it twice – once when they open the card you’ll give them telling them of their great fortune, and once when it shows up after Christmas! These are in high demand and there’s a limited supply. $299.95 at Spike’s Tactical. http://www.spikestactical.com/warthog-billet-lower-p-1250.html
8. AIMPOINT ACO – MSRP $393
Predictable and Exciting married and had a baby. Predictable’s DNA contributed the red dot, familiar controls and mount. Exciting naturally delivered the surprises – the price point and availability. I’m not writing this off a press release, I’ve used this baby, and I think the parents must both be proud. It’s the ACO from Aimpoint. ACO is short for Aimpoint Carbine Optic. A true Aimpoint optic priced a little lower than their previous entry level sight, but with unprecedented availability in local big box retailers. That’s a win for first time buyers, and could easily be the gateway to subsequent purchases of higher end Aimpoint optics like the T2 down the road.
9. THE SMITH AND BRADLEY LTD SANS 13 – MSRP $395
No, it doesn’t have night vision, a breaching device or a micro folding knife, but the Smith and Bradley Sans 13 tactical watch features more purpose driven design than half of what we might call “tactical” today. Besides, it’s National Tactical Officers Association (NOTA) tested and recommended. This isn’t a watch designed by some New York, Hong Kong or European fashionista. Many of the design priorities for the Sans 13 watch come from founder Jerommie Smith’s 17 years in law enforcement. During that time he developed a passion for working on watches, everything from 1930’s vintage mechanical watches to Omegas and Rolex. The Smith and Bradley Ltd Sans 13 feels solid, looks great and does what it was intended to do. If you like the quality and features, you’ll find the $395 price point reasonable, and can throw your Trijicon ACOG in the waterproof case the watch came in. Discounts are available to military and law enforcement personnel.
10. HK VP9 – MSRP $719
The unicorn has arrived! True, a striker fired modern Heckler and Koch pistol was hoped for and dreamt of by many of us for years. Yet every year brought only disappointment. Every year until now, that is! HK kept its secret remarkably well during development, and when it released the VP9, they didn’t disappoint. I’ve wanted an HK P30 for years. Its ergonomics make it seem like it melts to the contours of my hand, making handing and shooting a dream. And HK reliability brings a lot of peace of mind to the defensive handgun user. But like countless others, striker fired was mandatory, if only for the simplicity of it. And the trigger is amazing for an out of the box striker fired gun. Prices vary, but they can be found online for less than six hundred bucks. http://hk-usa.com/hk-models/vp9/
11. SILENCERCO CONQUEST KIT – MSRP $20,000
What could be better than a silencer from SilencerCo? That’s easy. A custom Pelican case with everything SilencerCo makes inside. That’s right, every silencer for every caliber and every muzzle device they make. This isn’t for the shallow pocket type, but if you have the money, it is still a frugal way to get the whole set. SilencerCo will pay the standard ATF fees associated with the purchase saving you as much as $3,500! When your kit arrives, you will have what you need to make most any gun quieter and pleasant to shoot.
12. HELI HOG HUNT
What could be more “Special Hog Weapons and Tactics” than a helicopter hog hunt? To find out, I hit the road for Rule, Texas, population 637. Hogs outnumber people around there most of the time. Porkchoppers Aviation has two R22 helicopters standing by to bring you a one of a kind high speed low drag adventure. Hanging out the door, scanning below for pigs is a visceral experience, heightened only when the hog is spotted and shot at. Prices start at $1000 an hour with a two hour minimum. This should really be on a bucket list. To book a hunt or learn more, go to http://www.porkchoppersaviation.com/
There you have it. 12 gifts for someone special in your life no matter what your budget it. Already done with your Christmas shopping? Great. Go get yourself something awesome.
Merry Christmas from the SHWAT™ Team!