U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- It’s three days until Christmas, and you still haven’t bought a gift for your favorite gun nut. You could panic and run to the local pharmacy and buy a card and shove 50 bucks in it and call it a day, but there are definitely better options available. Never fear, as a life-long procrastinator, I’ve been in your shoes before and I know the perfect gifts for your freedom-loving loved ones.
5. – Old Trapper Beef Sticks
There’s something about gun-nuts and beef jerky that just works. When you’re out hunting all day, or you just finished a two-hour-long training session at the range and you’re hungry, accept no substitute. Especially when you’re just taking a short break, you don’t want to eat something super heavy and feel bloated or tired, you just want to get a bit of protein and get back in the action.
While I personally enjoy traditional dried jerky, meat sticks – AKA human snausages – have a few advantages over their tougher alternatives. Namely, they don’t dry out your mouth and require you to guzzle a whole water bottle. Plus, every grocery store or gas station has some you can grab in a pinch. It’s no filet mignon, but after working hard in the sun for three hours, it sure tastes like one.
4. – Lancer L5 AWM Mags
It’s no secret, that I’m a die-hard fanboy of Lancer’s steel-reinforced polymer mags. Offering the perfect combination of strength and lightweight construction, Lancer magazines are in my professional opinion the finest AR-15 magazine on the market today. Don’t get me wrong, PMAGs are great too, but they lack steel feed lips which means they’ll wear out over time.
My end of the world setup has four Lancer magazines and four Okay Industries SureFeed mags, just in case I have to pass on my kit to my great-grandkids when they’re fighting super mutants in the Capitol Wasteland – metal doesn’t degrade as quickly as polymer over time.
Other great features of the AWM magazines include both opaque and translucent polymer bodies with molded capacity marks so shooters know how many rounds remain, the aforementioned steel feed lips, and an oversized baseplate. That last feature in particular is great for protecting the magazine from damage when dropped and making disassembly for cleaning a breeze.
Plus Lancer magazines are only a little more expensive than PMAGs or aluminum USGI mags, and they’re worth every single penny.
3. – Streamlight Weapon Lights
Recently, I posted a video review of the Streamlight TLR RM 2, so it’s no surprise that I’m a fan of the company. But I can’t stop recommending them to shooters on a tight budget. In particular, the TLR-7 and the TLR RM 2 make excellent gifts for shooters who have a dedicated home defense handgun or AR-15. Both run on CR123 batteries (they include some, but buy an extra pair to be a top-notch gifter!) and both fit basically any firearm with an accessory rail.
If you’re not sure which to get, the TLR RM 1 and 2 are ideal for shooters with an AR-15 or a shotgun as their go-to home defense weapon, and the TLR-7/8 are better suited to pistol-shooters. Either way, both can be found for under $200, and will really have your recipient impressed with your selection.
2. – Primary Arms ACSS Prism Scope
Optics go with AR-15s like peanut butter goes with chocolate – they’re just objectively better together. Problem is, most prismatic scopes are priced in the stratosphere – but not those from Primary Arms.
In particular, their ACSS 5x Prismatic scope is a great affordable alternative to the Trijicon ACOG. Not to downplay the ACOG, it’s one hell of an optic. But it is well beyond most folks’ budget with a street price north of a grande. Thankfully, the Primary Arms ACSS 5x is less than a third of that price (~$330), yet still includes many great features.
Because it’s a prismatic scope, the ACSS is very compact, yet crystal clear. Plus, it utilizes the world-class award-winning ACSS reticle that allows shooters to quickly and effortlessly visually range targets and even get proper windage holdover for moving targets.
Sure, it’s not as cheap as your no-name optics on Wish or from questionable Amazon sellers, but with the added cost shooters are getting quality backed by a lifetime warranty. And right there is the big point. Yes, the ACSS is a relatively inexpensive optic, but it is by no means a cheap scope.
1. – Ammunition!
Unless you’ve been sleeping under a rock for the last nine months, you’ve no doubt noticed that ammunition is both scare and crazy-expensive. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t deals to be had – you just need to look. If you’re stumped on what calibers to pick up stick to 9mm Parabellum (9x19mm) and 5.56mm/.223 Remington. Both are so ubiquitous that if your loved one doesn’t have a gun chambered in these calibers, they can easily resell it on Craigslist or ArmsList for enough cash to buy a caliber they do want.
So if you live in the South and see any yard sale signs at older homes, it never hurts to ask if Grandpa liked to hunt or shoot. You might be able to get your hands on some fine old guns or ammo for a reasonable price. And don’t worry about the ammo being, “too old” ammo is good for more than 100 years if made properly. So if you see an old-timer with ammo cans full of .308 at 20 cents a round, hit the ATM and buy them out! You’ll be the favorite gift-giver that year for sure!
About Jim Grant
Jim is a freelance writer, editor, and videographer for dozens of publications who loves anything and everything guns. While partial to modern military firearms and their civilian counterparts, he holds a special place in his heart for the greatest battle implement ever devised and other WW2 rifles. When he’s not reviewing guns or shooting for fun and competition, Jim can be found hiking and hunting with his wife Kimberly, and their dog Peanut in the South Carolina low country.