Hunting Gear Tips

Read these 8 Hunting Gear Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Hunting Scopes tips and hundreds of other topics.

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What kind of hunting gear is a charcoal suit?

Stay Aromatically Invisible

Getting closer to nature isn't always easy—especially when you're fixing to shoot it. A neat way to get closer to that big buck of your dreams is to put on a charcoal suit (no, not the one with the chalk stripe and lapel, that's for another kind of hunting.)

Activated charcoal acts like a sponge to absorb odor. A layer of finely ground charcoal traps your odor and prevents it from becoming airborne, where a buck can detect it. When combined with other scent-removal techniques you can make yourself invisible (aromatically speaking) to the species of your choice.

How can I protect my rifle scope lens?

Protect Your Hunting Gear

Obviously, the lens in your scope plays a major role in your shooting success. Without a lens, your scope would be another tube with no purpose in life. That's why making a lens cover part of your hunting gear is so important.

Lens covers keep dust, dirt and grime off your lens' surface and provide protection from scratching and breakage, when not in use.

What type rings give the best scope alignment?

Extruded Aluminum Rings

When it comes to mounting rings for your scope, you can't beat extruded aluminum. According to scope gurus, the best alignment results come from rings manufactured by extrusion processes. What is the extrusion process, you ask? Ever see the Play-Do Factory ™ little kids use? It's like that, except the ringmakers use aluminum instead of dough (which is a good thing).

The aluminum is pressed through a die and forms into a long scope-ring -shaped tube. Individual rings are then cut from this “extrusion”. Since everything comes from the same die, alignment from one ring to the next is identical! It's the same story for scope mounting bases.

Many people like steel scope mounts, because they think steel is better than aluminum (blatant metallism!). What these folks don't realize is that steel can't be extruded; it has to be molded or machined. These processes do not work as well as extrusion for alignment purposes. In the final analysis, extruded aluminum scope mounts hold scopes extremely well, they are very lightweight, and they offer more secure alignment because they are made by extrusion.

What is a honeycomb shade?

This Piece of Hunting Gear is a Real Honey

Back in the 80s, a now forgotten rock group told us that war was good for absolutely nothing. Well, it appears they were not entirely right. Military sniper technology has resulted in a piece of hunting equipment that is absolutely something—namely honey-comb inserts. These remarkable accessories give shading equivalent to a 6" tubular sunshade.

Honeycomb inserts install in a flip-open objective lens cover and mount to the objective lens of your rifle scope. The cool thing is that you don't even see the honeycomb (or bees) when you look through your scope. All you see is a crisp, clear, glare-free image. With a honeycomb insert you'll have it made in the shade.

Turkey huntin vest

Talking Turkey About Vests

If you like going after gobblers, you'll want to make sure that you have a well-designed turkey vest. Not that every turkey is crazy for a sharp-dressed hunter (though you never know). It's just that a well-designed turkey vest can help you keep your gear organized and accessible. This is no minor detail. Think of all the stuff you need to bring in a Big Tom. You need lots of pockets for:

• Calls
• Strikers
• Extra shells
• Face masks
• Gloves
• 2-way radios
• Binoculars
• Range finders
• Knives
• Snacks (in case you get hungry waiting for your dinner)

Some vests even have attachment systems that allow you to add more accessories to your vest. Those large pouch pockets in back are great for decoys, stakes, or a gargantuan gobbler.

Why would I need a cheek rest?

May your cheek Rest in Line

The fact of the matter is, you may not—unless you have a low buttstock (well, not you, your rifle). Many old iron-sight guns had buttstocks that were too low, so you couldn't get your cheek in the right position to align your eye to your new scope. To rectify this unfortunate situation, scope makers introduced an invention that you could stick on to your buttstock and raise your cheek level anywhere from from ¼ inch to 1-1/8th inch, or more.

*If you have an old iron-sight gun, it makes sense to put a cheek rest on your hunting gear supplies list.

How do I reactivate my charcoal suit

Restoring a Saturated Suit

Like everything else, and all of us, the activated charcoal hunting suit has its limits. After a few days tramping around the woods, the activated charcoal eventually gets saturated and can't absorb additional odor. Also, if you don't store your suit in an airtight container, saturation will occur, and the suit will only be good as a Halloween costume.

Fortunately, there is a way to restore your suit to full effectiveness. Just put your suit through a clothes dryer, on high, for at least 45 minutes. When charcoal is heated long enough, absorbed gases are expelled and your charcoal suit is ready for another foray into the wild.

What can I do to maximize charcoal suit?

De-scenting Opinion

Obviously, a nice charcoal suit alone will not help you get next to your prey unnoticed. You need to de-scent your own bad self. Be sure to bathe and launder with scent-free soaps, and make sure your gear is as scent-free as possible. Like it or not, you stank, buddy. No way! You say? Ever smell your pull rope? And, what about the sweat band in your hat or cap, or your socks? Not to put too fine a point on it, you should wash your gear often.

Rendering yourself aromatically invisible is a full-time job. As for your charcoal suit, remember that the charcoal in your suit will continue to absorb odor until it is saturated, even when you're not hunting. Therefore, you should reactivate it every three or four days, and store your suit in an air-tight plastic bag. One more thing: Lay off the chili con carne.

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Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.