BLACKHAWK!® SPORSTER™ Shooters Bag Review
The other day I was browsing through one of gun stores in the Atlanta area and came across a product that I quickly became amazed at because of its quality and value. The product was a Blackhawk! Sportster Shooters Bag. The bag was customized with the stores name "Adventure Outdoors" and I kept thinking that this bag must be some type of promotional bag for it to be selling for $29.99. Everything about the bag (material, webbing, zippers, etc.) seemed to indicate the quality and durability you would expect from a Blackhawk product, but the price seemed too good to be true. I'm always on the lookout for items that fall in this high quality & value category and this find was a big plus considering I have also been looking for small multi handgun bag. While I was in the store, I must have picked the bag up and examined it on three different occasions. Now the truth comes out. I have a sickness. I can't make an impulse buy, so I walked out of the store regretting not making the purchase. That night I got on the internet and took my time comparing prices and examining photos of other bags and realized that this bag was a great buy. The next day I went back to Adventure Outdoors and made the purchase. When the bag rang up at the register for $23.99, I was even more amazed at this deal. I was so excited about the deal I got on the Blackhawk Sportster Shooters Bag, that I had to take it into work and let some friends check it out. I was also wishing I had purchased two. OK, I have more than one sickness.
Unfortunately the Blackhawk website only gives you one photo and they may be selling this product short of its potential. This review should show you the details of the bag and let you decide for yourself on the quality and value. You can find the bag competitively priced online at several locations by searching on the product number "73SB00BK".
During my reviews I like to compare my results to the manufacturer's claims where possible so the following text in colored italics was taken directly from the BLACKHAWK!® website on 10/27/12 and gives an Overview and Specifications for the Blackhawk Sportster Shooters Bag. The , and are my way to keep up with details that I have covered in this review with either photos, commentary or both.
As you can see in the photo below, the bag is made from black 600 denier polyester and comes with a shoulder strap. The 600 denier polyester material has PVC laminated on the inside which gives the bag a stiff feel and the impression of water resistance. The shoulder strap is made from 1.5" webbing and the attachment hardware is made from some type of polymer material and seems to be sturdy and durable.
The front of the bag comes with a patch showing BLACKHAWK!® SPORTSTER™. Normally you will not have any other stitching on the front of the bag unless it was done as some type of promotional effort similar to the bag shown. The front pocket is big and allows you to put three boxes of handgun ammunition plus some room for other items if needed. Access into this pocked is through a dual zipper arrangement.
The back of the bag has a flat single zippered pocket that would allow you to store thinner items like owner's manuals or other paperwork. The pocket is covered with three rows of MOLLE webbing to allow adding other pouches if needed.
The handles of the bag are made from a single length of 2" webbing that wraps around the entire bag on each side. There is no doubt that the handle can support whatever you plan to carry. The top of the handles have a pad to hold the handles together and offers a little more support if you have the bag loaded down.
These next two photos show the top and bottom of the bag and give you an idea on the quality and sturdiness of the bag.
When you unzip the main compartment, the bag will partially open as shown. The bag doesn't like to lay flat when opened because the foam and stitching in the bottom of the bag makes the bag want to close back up. Each side of the bag has a large pocket for a handgun and four pockets for magazines. There is a thick foam (~5/8") on the outsides and bottom of the bag and on the inside the foam is thinner (~3/16"). The main pockets on each side are about 12" in length and 7" in depth which will handle large sized handguns. I could easily see two compact pistols on each side of the case. If I do this (and most likely I will), I will put one pistol in another soft case or cloth to keep them apart. Depending on how you pack your case, I can also see dropping another handgun in the center of the two sides as you zip the case up which gives you the opportunity to carry many handguns if needed.
The next two photos show the bag loaded with a handguns representative of a potential trip to the range. In my mind, the bag is not over stuffed and I'm sure I could have gotten some more items inside if needed.
The bag easily held three full size handguns, some extra magazines and four boxes of cartridges. I actually placed the SR1911 inside the small bag and then put it in the center compartment sandwiched between the two sides of the bag which worked great.
After getting the Blackhawk Sportster Shooting Bag home and studying it in detail, I'm extremely pleased with this product and believe I will put it to many years of good use. Since I typically carry several handguns to the range each time I go, this bag configuration was just what I wanted. Most likely I will also still carry my normal shooting bag to hold items like tools, ear muffs, safety glasses and some more nick-knacks, but this new bag allows me the ability to segregate my handguns and magazines from the clutter of my other bag. If you are in the market for a small-to-mid size shooters bag, then you need to look closely at the Blackhawk Sportster products.