Caldwell DeadShot FieldPod Premium Accessory Kit
Since the Caldwell DeadShot FieldPod exceeded our expectations in a previous review, we decided to order the Premium Accessory kit that included the mounting hardware for spotting scopes, digital cameras and cell phones. The Optics Adapter with its tripod head attachment was superb. The accessory plates come with a standard ¼ 20 threaded hole for mounting scopes and digital cameras. These plates, similar to those on conventional tripod mounts, can be quickly attached or detached and, in case you want to mount a flashlight, they included a Picatinny rail that screws onto the plate.
We mounted our spotting scope on the tripod head and were able to position it such that we could take a shot and quickly check the target for impact. It sure beats having to put the gun down and lean over to a different spot and check the target. We wouldn't recommend this for hard-kicking calibers, but for .223s, .22-250s and similar cartridges with recoil of under five pounds, it works just fine. When you are finished, simply remove the scope and the Optics Adapter rotates to remain on the FieldPod when it is collapsed for storage. I'm left handed, hence the position of the scope on the left side of the gun. Of course, if you are shooting from sandbags or some other rest, the FieldPod with the Optics Adapter functions as a regular tripod for your spotting scope.
The Digiscoping Bracket is designed to clamp onto the barrel of spotting scopes with eyepiece diameters between 27mm and 58mm. Caldwell literature states that the bracket does not attach to all scopes, due to the eyepiece diameter. It will also not work if the eyepiece barrel must be free to adjust magnification and focus, as with our Leopold Mk4 Tactical scope. We had to use an older Bushnell spotting scope in order to test the Digiscoping Bracket. It was then easy to mount our digital camera to the platform with the ¼ 20 threaded bolt included with the camera bracket.
After you visually line up the camera lens with the eyepiece of the spotting scope, turn on the camera and make any fine adjustments (vertical/horizontal) with the platform to obtain a clear view through the scope. You are now ready to take photos. If the bracket fits your scope, this is a useful add-on. It is well made, being constructed from cast aluminum. With the included Smart Phone Cradle, you have the option of capturing photos directly into your phone.
The Optics Adapter Kit with its tripod head attachment is well worth the money. We will put it to good use on the range and in the field over the coming years. Its 2013 MSRP is $52.99.
With respect to the Digiscoping Bracket, we recommend that you make sure that your spotting scope is compatible before ordering it or the Premium Accessory Kit. It is a great way to obtain telephoto pictures downrange, with either a digital still or video camera. The Digiscoping Bracket Kit with Smart Phone Cradle has a 2013 MSRP of $52.99.
The DeadShot Premium Accessory Kit, which includes the Digiscoping Bracket, Smart Phone Cradle and Optics Adapter, has an 2013 MSRP of $89.95. It is a good deal if the bracket fits your spotting scope.
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