The G.P.S. Barrel Buddy and Battenfeld Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rests
By Dr. Jim Clary and Chuck Hawks
The G.P.S. Barrel Buddy and Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest are among those ideas that are so simple and useful that you have to wonder why no one thought of it sooner. They are different takes on portable, magnetic barrel rests.
G.P.S. Barrel Buddy
The Barrel Buddy is constructed with a hard foam base with two very strong magnets and a softer foam insert configured to accept three barrels. Like most folks, when we go to the range or hunting, we usually wind up laying our rifles across the hood of the truck or on the ground as we unload our gear. With the barrel buddy, we just put it on a fender, prop our guns up for safety and we avoid the damage that can occur should they fall over. Just about every shooter that I have asked has had their favorite rifle or shotgun fall to the ground after being propped up against a truck or tree. Those potential accidents are a thing of the past with the Barrel Buddy. A friend of mine used the Buddy at the skeet range and forgot to remove it from his fender after the match. It was still firmly attached after he drove home at 75mph on the Interstate. That unplanned ďtestĒ verified the strength of the magnets.
I get tired of laying my rifles on the work bench in my shop until I am ready to clean them, especially when I have more than one to service. Since my benches are wood, I installed a couple of metal strips along the edges at strategic locations and put several Barrel Buddys in place. Now I can stack my rifles/shotguns until I am ready for each. When Iím finished, I remove the Barrel Buddys and put them on a shelf until next time. I am sure that those of you reading this will come up with a lot of other applications for this handy little device.
We did encounter a minor problem with this item. Because of our dry climate in New Mexico, the glue holding the two pieces of foam together tends to dry out. The gray foam insert then comes loose from the black base. You may not experience this problem in your location. However, if you do, it is easily remedied with a bit of J-B Weld. In my opinion, this problem does not detract from the benefits gained by having and using the Barrel Buddy.
G.P.S. products can be found, nationwide, at your local sporting goods store. If your local store does not have them yet, they can contact G-Outdoors for a wholesale distributor in your area. The Barrel Buddy has an MSRP of $12.95, but you can find them at most stores for $9.95. I picked up five for personal use, thatís how useful they are.
Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest
Similar in concept to the G.P.S. offering, but constructed of one-piece, rigid plastic with completely rubber covered notches to protect firearms, is the Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest from our friends at Battenfeld Technologies. The Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest is internally well braced for rigidity and can be attached to any ferrous metal surface by its two strong, built-in magnets. It will clamp to the sheet metal of a vehicle, refrigerator, or the side of a gun safe (where I use mine). Accessing a gun in the back of a gun safe can be a hassle, as you must first remove the guns in front. Rather than prop them against the wall, where they might slip, use a Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest.
The center notch is wide enough to accept a double-barreled shotgun, while the two side notches are scaled for single barreled guns. Of course, a single barreled gun can also be safely supported in the center notch.
The Lockdown's rubber surface is overmolded and will not come loose. The barrel notches are ridged to prevent shifting and slippage, a thoughtful touch. The magnets are rubber covered to protect the surface of whatever you stick the Lockdown onto, another nice detail. As befits its rigid construction, the Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest is about $5.00 more expensive than the Barrel Buddy, with a 2011 MSRP of $17.99.
After Jim's inadvertent "road test" of a Barrel Buddy, I stuck the Lockdown on the back of my car and took a ride on the freeway. It was still there when I got home.
We experienced no difficulties with the Lockdown Magnetic Barrel Rest; it works exactly as intended. You can get yours online or from any local Battenfeld dealer, which includes most of the sporting goods stores in North America, as well from international distributors. You will find the Battenfeld Technologies website at www.battenfeldtechnologies.com
Copyright 2011, 2016 by Dr. Jim Clary and/or chuckhawks.com. All rights reserved.