Excerpt from the article Good Furniture for Shooters - I’m not going to write about Chippendale cabinetry; this is a post for manly men and women. The subjects are a portable benchrest that is quite unusual and a reloading bench that is of the first order.
All the portable benchrests I’ve seen and used make at least some effort to be lightweight, compact, and adjustable. This is nice, but the price you pay for these features is tremors, shakes, wobbles, palpitations, gyrations, and vibrations. This stuff does not help you shoot good. On the other hand, there is the bench made by Stukeys Sturdy Shooting Benches in Powell, WY (pictured above). It is not light. The combined weight of the top and the three legs is close to 70 pounds. (I knew it had arrived at my house because I heard a tremendous crash in my garage. When I got there, I found the box and a note from the UPS driver that said: “If you ever do this to me again I’ll pull your brains out through your nose.” Not to worry; Stukey does a beautiful job of packing; you might pause to admire it before you take the box apart.) The SSSB does not adjust.
There is nothing that can loosen, wobble, flex, or quake. If you would like something to compare it to, I suggest the Hoba meteorite in Namibia, which weighs 60 tons.
The legs will handle any kind of reasonably flat surface, but if you wish to shoot on the slopes of Mt. Everest you will do well to look for something else. The SSSB does set up and taken down quickly because it’s extremely simple. And then it is as inert as Congress, no matter what you or your rifle do. It is as steady as any permanent concrete bench I have shot off. I fired a .375 H&H; from it and the SSSB did not budge an iota. The bench comes with an optional leg caddy which I highly recommend, since it keeps the massive legs in a tidy bundle. It ain’t cheap, but boy is it solid.
Field & Stream: July 2013 by David E. Petzal