Fabric With Function

We all know how popular AR rifles are. Their popularity is exceeded only by the array of accessories available for these rifles. However, one accessory rarely discussed is the availability of clothing designed for AR shooters. Yes, it exists.

After all, if golfers, runners and hikers can have clothes designed for their lifestyle, shooters can have clothing suited to their daily life, too. I'm not talking about hunting clothes here—that's different. This is about daily wear or range wear.

While there are a number of manufacturers that make "AR clothing," I tend to gravitate toward the 5.11 brand. Part of the reason is the great local dealers I have nearby, but I've also found 5.11 products to be uniformly functional, sturdy and good-looking.

A great example is their Range Vest. It has four pockets across the lower front specifically sized to accommodate 30-round AR magazines. Beyond that feature, there are internal pockets designed for concealed handgun carry, a wire-guarded media pocket and the entire vest is treated with Teflon for stain resistance.

Another piece of my favorite AR clothing is the 5.11 Tactical Vest. This one comes in two versions: one made of cotton, and the Taclite Pro version made with a lightweight synthetic. The design is the same, but the difference is weight and warmth, with the cotton product better-suited for cool weather. This garment has two purpose-built AR magazine pockets on the front left and 15 other pockets to carry pretty much anything an AR shooter might need.

The 5.11 TDU pant is a third example of a garment made with AR shooters in mind. The thigh-mounted cargo pockets of these pants have secondary internal pockets designed again for AR magazines. Lift the pocket flap and there are two spots for 30-round magazines. With a double seat, elastic waistband and the ability to insert knee pads, these pants are made with the flexibility and protection a shooter needs.

The bottom line: If you're an AR shooter, give clothing designed specifically for you and your rifle a try.

It's about time we caught up with the golfers.


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