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IN DEPTH: Our Precision Long Range Shooting Mat

Posted by Bret on

Our Precision Long Range Shooting Mat has much more built into it than meets the eye.  We love getting questions about the details that go into it because those details are what make this mat special.

For starters, our mat is intended for heavy field use and precision long range work. We abuse ours heavily, and it holds up relentlessly, but only because of the following features talked about below and... If you get a chance to read our blog article you will see the basis of why I designed this mat, and the frustrations I had with existing gear on the market.  click here to read the blog

This mat fills a niche and isn't a "me too" type of product. That is what Crosstac is all about, filling needs where gear was 'designed' by people that either don't shoot at all, don't shoot in the volume or style we do, or don't shoot in the weather extremes we are privileged to enjoy here in Montana... therefore not understanding what is truly needed in a piece of gear. As we write this it is 9 degrees F outside. Our winter testing season is in full swing already. That also explains why we have so many SF teams coming here for training and it's been nicknamed "Montanastan."

On to the details of our premium, Precision Long Range Tactical Shooting Mat:

It is 100% USA made, which means the fabric, the foam, the thread, and the labor all comes from right here in our country. That is more than a feel-good comment, by keeping it manufactured in our plant here, we can quality control everything down to the thread type and size. (I've seen cotton thread used on gear made offshore, a cardinal sin as it rots out.) So we eliminate the worry, at the expense of keeping it made here, which simply costs more to produce when labor + burden is about $25 an hour vs. the offshore rates. Want to talk to who made your mat? Call us.

For the construction details:

Interior
For the interior, the USA-made foam is rated to a cold crack temperature of -20F. Far as we know, we are the only mat on the planet putting that much money into the foam but it has a purpose. We shoot in variable weather here, and other foams can actually crack or become very brittle at extreme low temps. We pay dearly for this, but it is so our customers never have to worry about performance. Import gear and other brands don't even spec what they have inside. We've never seen it.

It is 3/8” foam, and it is the density I (Bret) personally picked out. The reason we use a 3/8” thickness is that I'm a long range shooter, and found that I squished around too much on thicker foam. The 3/8” is the perfect thickness for solid ground contact, but still absorbing the rocks and sharp objects for shooting comfort.

Exterior
For the exterior, we use real cordura, 1000-denier, which is then both solid polyurethane backed and water resistant coated. It is the definition of bomb proof. (note: There is a huge difference between that and "ballistic" nylon which generally doesn't have any kind of treatment applied to it, and is a name used for fabric made anywhere, including China. Cordura is actually a USA fabric trademark name, and is made in the USA, only. You will not find Cordura on import goods as it is not made offshore but it is copied illegally. You may find other manufacturers claiming that name on imported goods, which is not correct.)

No grip panel - you won't find rubberized fabrics on this mat since that becomes insanely hot during the summer. That is my personal choice as I often shoot in a t-shirt and the rubber fabric must get to 160F - it just isn't comfortable in the summer sun as it absorbs too much heat.

Next, the bipod rail. This is important to me as a long range competitor to obtain fast follow up shots, and spot my own impact splash by preloading the bipod to keep the muzzle down. Our mat gives you a great way to do that, with extreme consistency. Just like the SAW gunners are trained to do, the technique works great for the long range bolt guns and is really starting to catch on.

We use tubular foam, double up the fabric layers and quad stitch the entire affair down, so it won't rip out.

Larger Size
I'm 6'2" so the mat is 36” wide and 79” long. The other mats on the market were too skinny. So skinny, that I would end up partway in the dirt while shooting. Want to know why they are skinny? Because they are cheap to produce that way. Roll width of fabrics is 59" so they just fold it in half, stuff the foam, and stitch around it. This results in a finished mat around 27" wide. Ours is not made that way since I wanted it wider. It is two major cells, one is 60" wide and holds three 36" panels, the other holds the front 36" panel and bipod rail. This costs us more since it is significantly more work to pull off, and uses 33% more fabric than a typical mat, and much more than a drag bag.

Why would we do this? Bottom line is we are shooters. This mat is like shooting off your living room carpet. It is truly a joy to shoot from. I am sure you will like it if you give it a chance, you will see there is a night and day difference. Lay on this mat, put your rifle on one side of it (lefty or righty) and still be fully on the mat, with room to put your dope, rangefinder, etc. in front of you! One can actually work on shooting vs. laying in the cactus and rocks.

Summary
In summary, there is a ton of cost to produce this mat. Could we make it cheaper? Definitely. But only by sacrificing the quality control and possibly our reputation, which I am not willing to do. We don't cater to what I call the "Wal-Mart shopper mentality" but we do cater to customers tired of badly made, cheaply done gear clearly designed by someone behind a desk and not in the field. Members of our design team design gear and consult directly with MARSOC. There is a reason and we've learned a lot about building gear in the process too.

Order Yours Today In Our Store:  The Crosstac Precision Long Range Shooting Mat