How to make a homemade rifle benchrest

Written by aaron kopf
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How to make a homemade rifle benchrest
Learn how to make a homemade rifle benchrest with sand. (sand ripples image by Greg Pickens from

Most firearms ranges feature tables and chairs positioned along the firing line so visitors don't need to fire their weapons standing up or sitting on the ground. Unfortunately, firing a gun on a hard surface can result in a false point of impact. Therefore, range visitors must bring rifle benchrests, which can cost a pocketful cash from retail outlets. Fortunately, you can make your own rifle benchrest with a few inexpensive materials and ever-reliable duct tape.

Things you need

  • builder's bags
  • coarse sand or peat gravel
  • duct tape
  • blanket (optional)

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  1. 1

    Find a flat working surface outside of your house. This will likely produce a mess or some sort, so working outside or in your garage is ideal.

  2. 2

    Open a builder's bag and fold down the edges along the rim for a secure opening. Place the bag on your flat working surface and run your hand along the bottom of the bag to create a flat foundation. A spill will most likely occur if you pour sand or peat gravel into an unbalanced, toppling contractor bag.

  3. 3

    Pour 9.07 to 13.6 kg (20 to 30 lb) of peat gravel or coarse sand into the contractor bag. You can pour more sand or gravel for a larger bag, but keep in mind how far you will need to carry your improvised shooting rest from the car to the table.

  4. 4

    Fold down and roll the top of the contractor bag all the way to the sand or gravel. Undo two rolls and then place a strip of duct tape across to hold the roll in place. If you roll the bag too tight, the sand or gravel won't give when you place your rifle on the shooting rest.

  5. 5

    Wrap the bag in at least two layers of duct tape, giving extra attention to the bag opening. Do not wrap the duct tape around the bag too tightly, or you will run into the same problem mentioned in Step 4.

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