By Dr. Jim and Mary Clary

Illustration courtesy of BOG-POD.

There are almost as many shooting sticks, bipods and tripods on the market as there are riflescopes. As with riflescopes, you generally get what you pay for.

Over the years we have tried out a variety of shooting sticks and bipods, ranging in price from $25 to $75. They all worked, sort of. Unfortunately, most were so poorly constructed that they wobbled or bent at the joints. They were often constructed of such thin aluminum that they resembled the shock-corded supports on cheap dome tents. These were anything but stable.

As a result, we gave up on trying to find a solid, yet portable, shooting platform. That is, until we saw the Bog-Pod. After examining their tripod at a recent outdoors show, I knew we had to get one.

If you are looking for some kind of bargain basement platform under $100, then read no further. It is not possible in today's economy. However, if you value quality at a fair price that will last you a lifetime, keep reading.

The TAC-3 legs are constructed from high strength aluminum that is very resistant to bending (we tried), yet it is lightweight. Each three section leg can be adjusted independently and locked into position with their rapid-adjust level locks. The legs can be adjusted out to a 75-degree angle. That adjustment is very positive, due to the user's ability to set the tension with the allen wrench included with the TAC-3s.

Even when the legs are extended to their maximum height of 42 inches, there is no wobble or bending at the joints. The inch markers on the middle leg sections permit one to quickly set up the tripod to your preferred height.

The rubber feet screw up to expose a steel tip for better grip on ice or snow. That is a feature you can only appreciate if you have used other shooting sticks that did not have them.

As one might expect, the universal shooting rest swivels a full 360-degrees and is covered with rubber to prevent damage to the forend of a rifle. In case you wish to use the Bog-Pod for a camera or spotting scope, you can order their SCA (standard camera attachment), which replaces the shooting rest. Although the SCA isn't cheap (2015 MSRP $79.99), it is manufactured to the same high quality as the TAC-3.

Bog-Pod refers to the variety of the top mounts for their tripods/bipods, which they call the "Switcheroo Shooting System." You can even get a Bog-Pod cover to set up a portable blind in the field (TIPI-G). That attachment only costs $39.99 and is well worth the money.

We ordered the TAC-3 short version, which allows the legs to be adjusted from six inches for prone firing up to 42 inches for kneeling positions. I do not know of many hunters that would take the time to spread the legs out to a six inch height, but it is an excellent capability for tactical shooters. For the rest of us, the TAC-3 is perfect for sitting or kneeling positions.

Bog-Pod has two series of tripods/bipods. The CDL and TAC models, with the only difference being the finish on the legs (camo vs. black). See our companion review of the Bog-Pod CDL2 Bipod.

The TAC-3 comes with a carry bag equipped with a shoulder strap. The closed length is 22 inches and it weighs 32 ounces. With a 2015 MSRP of $159.99, it is not cheap, but quality products usually aren't. Because this unit will last a lifetime and maybe more, it is worth the investment.

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Copyright 2015 by Jim Clary and/or All rights reserved.