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April 18, 2008

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Useful? You Bet Your R.A.S.S.

Last year, one of the items of shooting equipment to receive a Best of the Best award was the Rapid Acquisition Shooting System, made by R.C.B.S (and who there among ye can tell me what that acronym stands for, and how it came to be?). We used it in our rifle tests, and the three of us who did the shooting loved it.

S7_228746_imageset_02Despite its somewhat overblown name, the R.A.S.S. is simply a portable shooting bench--a stand with four legs, a seat, and a rifle brace that supports the fore-end and the butt. The R.A.S.S. is heavy and hyper-engineered, but it is very quick to set up, can adapt to just about any uneven terrain, and is dead solid.

I've found it most useful at the rifle ranges I use, both of which have fixed backstops and benches. If you want to shoot at 25 yards or 50 or 100, you're fine, but if you want to shoot at 5 yards (getting a scope on paper) or 10 yards (air rifles) or 250 or 300, you're SOL. So what you to is take your R.A.S.S. to the range and your problems are solved.

Or you can take it groundhog shooting and you will not have to lie prone on a fresh meadow muffin in order to be steady. Prairie dog shooting? A natural.

The real-world price for the R.A.S.S. is around $350. It's worth it, and then some.


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Rock Chuck Bullet Swage because good old whats his name had to make his own bullets to hunt the rock chucks . Did I pass the Friday pop quiz?

Bernie Kuntz

Wow, how the hell did you know that, Eric? By "what's his name", you must be referring to Fred Huntington, who I believe was the founder of R.C.B.S.


Not to be confused with DP RCBS.


Jim in Mo.

At first thought, $350 sounds like alot of money, but not really. The closest 100yd. range for me is 20 miles and open 4 days a week (2 of which I'm busy). The closest 600 yard range is 40 miles away and its a private club who's yearly membership dues exceeds the RASS. But there are many farm fields around me where my backstop is a mile from the nearest road, and for those thinking they don't have access think again. Many farmers may not let you hunt on their land but most don't mind if you ask to target practice in the south 40. I may consider this cause I'm tired of getting bogged down in black stick dirt we have.

losy my zero

rock chuck bullet swage by fred huntingdon. Mr fred coached me by mail when I started reloading, in 1960, on midway island!not much of a typist, but sure did me right! I still have that press, and it works fine, as you might expect, most of my reloading gear is RCBS! well, I do have a dillon rl550b, for max production of handgun ammo.

Clay Cooper

If I can just figure out how to fit this in my backpack,
I might by one?

What’s next?
A tripod to carry afield
And who’s going to carry this
electric ignition
internal gyros to stable the rifle
laser integrated computer coupled with a wind sock on top of your cap for auto ballistic correcting

perhaps if you mount a toilet seat on it for more comfort


Well, seems someone always beats me to the few facts I know. But as much as I respect the memory of Mr. Huntington,that system of uaing .22 long rifle hulls for .224 bullet jackets was not original with him. He made the dies,and promoted the idea, and prospered, but I have, and still use, an original die set and it is not RCBS.
Since the advent of high velosity .22 LR ammo, one must anneal the hulls before forming them into jackets, and the whole process becomes very time consuming and tedious, maybe not worth the effort, in spite of the high cost of bullets. One thing, though before closing, those hand made bullets will hold their own with the best of the macth .224s, even today, I know because I've shot thousands of them since 1960.


Clay said it...my gillies would get caught up in this thing. Prone, offhand, or if you have a Gurkha handy, I guess this contraption would suit the affluent crowd.


Without being a jerk, I'll admit the bench assist technology has come a long way and this appears to have merits for that purpose...adjusting for the field.


throw a tent blind over the RASS and hunt your favorite bean field

Clay Cooper

Back in 91, Berger Bullets was located down town Phoenix Az. I went there one day to pick up a box of 308 match for the next High Power Match with the Air Force Team. At that time, they were made one at a time, basically just like you do Shaky. As I remember, those 22 cases, you cannot push them as fast as the name brand but it’s the thrill that you made them and there is always greater joy and self gratification of doing it yourself. It’s like being self sufficient enough you can do it your own entire hunting and fishing trip. There is no great thrill is when you bag that monster all by yourself!

Clay Cooper

TOM, you have a point there Sir, throw a tent blind over the RASS and hunt your favorite bean field!
If I had a handicap shooter, the RASS would make a wonderful choice I do have to admit!


I can't see paying that much for something I can make myself. Just another thing to make hunting and shooting that much more expensive.


Rock Chuck Busting Society with one of the main people being Fred Huntington who strated RCBS. I should remember the other people / persons. It was a group he shot rock chucks with out west.


james t

i remember the good ole days when people used to hunt with just a rifle. how much crap do we need to hunt these days. anyone who's that lazy needs to stay in his or her recliner and out of the way. if you cant shoot stay home!

Dr. Ralph

Another useless, overpriced, piece of shit you could make yourself but Dave is making his $ from advertising dollars so he will try to sell this one even though he knows better... Petzal, don't you feel a little too close to the Clintonista's when you sell your soul for cash? Just saying... Hey get your boys at F&S to draw up a picture of Chad Love for his byline now that he's reporting on drying up lakes. Does he have a radio face too?

Dr. Ralph

Plastic picnic chair...$15
Plastic picnic table...$20
Sandbags... free from DOT
Having a rock steady shooting platform with space for your choice of beverage and laughing at the fools who spent $300 more than you... priceless


Rock Chucker Ballistic Supplies= RCBS


RCBS---Real Cash Badly Spent


Hell, I'd plug it too-If they gave me one to use forever!

Dr. Ralph

Yeah and get that other Ralph who followed HST around for twenty years to do Chad like he does Heavey... a hallucinogenic version is probably prettier than the real thing. My apologies to Mr. Steadman.

Jim in Mo.

james t. & Dr.R, believe me, its not a piece of sh#t cause i've seen it in person and the only bad thing about it is, as dave stated, it is heavy. But thats because its durible. Also from my first impression of it I'd never use it for hunting, to uncomfortable for that long. I was thinking it would be a better short term investment to get an accurate idea of new handloads rather than pay 3-400 a year at a range. I know, a 100 yd ($8hr.) range should be good enough but further is funner and I can't shoot those further ranges cause I'm not affluent.


Damn, we've come a long way from a Sharps on pair of crossed sticks haven't we?

Clay Cooper

When I get home from work, every once in awhile, I’ll catch Ol’ Jim Zumbo show. I would think that this Great American Hunter would be showing pretty good marksmanship skills. Now why do you ask that I’m bringing this up? On one show, he forgot his rifle sling or didn’t he and on the others using shooting sticks. I have come to the conclusion, that hunting is getting to commercialized and over tech. Sure, I find that my iFINDER® Hunt™ C Handheld GPS was a absolute need today, because of what I was in and being by myself not knowing the terrain and not being able to properly use a compass for the dense cover, it’s a lot easier to navigate especially when you come off a mountain ridge with only 50 yards of visibility, it will drop you right on top of your vehicle instead on the back of some other ridge and getting right back on that spot for next season is priceless! What I’m really getting at is, where do we draw the line and I find if you don’t have a tail gate to shoot off, the RASS would do you a fine job provided you can get it in your BMW 318i Beamer, just kidding! I don’t know folks what happening to the Sportsmen now days. Are they getting to soft on learning to shoot and the lack of skilled trainers? I find that as you get older, if it’s not hurting, it’s not working and you start the day with two Ibuprofen. I guess it would be fun to set the RASS up in back up a truck bed and drive into a prairie dog town and start a busting away. But to me, that’s taking the challenge out of it.

Being a Crusty Ol’Sarge, I’ll continue to use my rifles with a Military 1 ¼ inch sling NRA High Power style and besides, it’s easier on the back than packing a shooting platform. If you can shoot a 1/4 angle of pie plate at 100 yards, you just might be able to pull off a shot 300-400 yards. Try shooting a ¼ of pie plate at 200 yards and you’ll be on your way for those 600-700 yard shots!

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