Carving money out of your AR budget and devoting some to an AR shell catcher might seem like a tough decision to make. It sure can be – why would you want to buy a new brass catcher when you might have one? More importantly, why get a brass catcher when you can use that money for a new sight or WML?
It all comes down to what you need most. To determine that, settle the following questions.
1. What cartridge is my AR chambered in?
Probably the most important question here is because you don’t want to buy a brass catcher that’s incompatible with your cartridge even if it does fit your rifle.
Many brass catchers are built around the 5.56 NATO as a standard, but not all of them. Moreover, many that are can still catch and hold oddball cartridges like .50 Beowulf and .35 Viper without jamming or running out of space too soon.
2. Do I need this for the purposes of reloading?
In today’s current climate, probably everyone who shoots (for any reason, think hunters, target shooters, and competitive shooters) should probably reload. We just don’t know where the next truckload of brass will come from.
But even in this era you can still at the very least hold onto your spent cartridges. Sure, you might not be able to find powder, bullets, or primers either, but once you do, a quarter of the battle will be in the rearview.
Case in point, an AR shell catcher is an invaluable tool for reloaders not only because it’s convenient but because it keeps fired brass out of the dirt.
3. Does your range require the use of brass catchers?
This is an easy one to answer. If your range requires you to use a brass catcher, well then that problem is settled. Either you don’t have one yet and you need it, or your current mesh bag catcher is on its last legs and you need a replacement in short order.
4. Do you need to save your rail space?
Many – most, probably – brass catchers attach to some section of Picatinny rail, costing you that space. Some of them mount over the top of the receiver and extend down over the ejection port; others attach to some section of the quad rail and swing back over the port to cover it.
In any event, nearly all of them take away from some of your rail space, taking up some utility. Admittedly, it’s a minor infraction on overall expandability, but it’s still something to consider. It might be a better use of your time and money to choose a brass catcher that needs no rail space.
5. Have you had trouble with jamming, emptying, melting, or burning in the past?
Finally, if you already have a brass catcher but need something better, don’t be afraid to check out some alternatives. Some brass catchers, notably the mesh ones with loop webbing and wireframes, are notorious for melting and burning in response to hot brass. They can also jam and become difficult to empty.
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Looking for something to solve these woes while also preventing hot brass from scattering all around your shooting area?
Check out the Brass Goat at BrassGoat.com. Made from a piece of molded ABS resin, it will not melt, burn, or jam when used properly. It is compatible with a detachable hopper that empties easily; instead of a zipper on the bottom of a bag, it can be detached, emptied, and replaced in seconds.
The Brass Goat also quickly attaches to the magwells of mil-spec AR-15 lower receivers, with no need for tools at all. This keeps your rail space completely clear at the same time.
Want to learn more about an AR shell catcher that is better by design? Check out Brass Goat at BrassGoat.com or get in touch with them at [email protected] today.
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