These days there is an app for everything. Firearms are no exception. Some of the most popular firearm apps, based on number of downloads at least, are those virtual reality firearms apps. You know, you pick a gun and you can see a 3-D representation in slow motion of it firing, complete of course with sound effects. Not interested. First person shooters are also very popular. Not a fan. Especially on a portable device. The best apps to me are practical apps. Logs, calculators, data-bases, community marketplaces, etc. Below are the apps that I find the most valuable for my particular purposes. Sorry android users, the links below are for iTunes. I suspect some or possibly all of the apps below are available for android phones but I don’t know for sure.
Gun Log SPC – $1.99
Gun Log SPC is by far my favorite firearm app and the one I use more than any other.
I literally track everything related to the firearms I own with this app. Each individual firearm is logged from original purchase. It allows me to keep track of round counts, individual range sessions, cleaning schedules, even accessories. The interface is easy to use and intuitive and the information is easily backed up and accessed on your computer if your interested. Need to know how much 9mm ammo you have on hand? Need to know how many rounds you have fired out of your Glock 17? Want to look up a range session with the smallest grouping out of your precision rifle? This app lets you do it, quick and easy. You do of course have to log your range sessions, so some work is required. Well worth it and a no-brainer at $1.99.
Ballistic AE – $19.99
Ballistic AE is the most advanced app on this list and frankly I don’t utilize or even understand entirely every function that is available.
What I like best about it is the ability to create individual range reports for particular target groups and firearms. The user has the ability to input custom hand loads and the app can download weather conditions based of your current location. It also includes ballistic and trajectory charts as well as a mil-dot heads-up display. Ballistic AE isn’t cheap. For an advanced user its likely a steal. More mundane users will have to decide for themselves what the simpler features are worth.
GunBroker – Free
GunBroker is like the Amazon of firearms shopping.
Whenever I am interested in a particular firearm one of the first things I do is look it up on GunBroker. It gives me a sense of how rare a particular gun might be as well as a general market value. I have bought several firearms using GunBroker. I have never had a bad experience or been disappointed with my purchase. I am however particular and careful about what I buy and who I buy from. Prices can be very competitive but do make sure you pay close attention to shipping cost and of course transfer fees for your local FFL. Sometimes it is cheaper to buy direct from a dealer. I usually call the local shops I frequent when looking to make a new purchase and see what kind of price they can offer. If the price is competitive (even if slightly higher) I tend to go local because I like to support my local gun stores, otherwise I ask them if they will complete a transfer for me. The best advice I can give as far as using GunBroker is to make sure to read the fine print, use only reputable and highly rated sellers and ask questions of the seller before committing to a purchase. Some shops only do transfers from other FFL’s so make sure you ask your local shop if you plan on bidding or buying outright a firearm from a private seller.
AmmoSeek – Free
I use AmmoSeek as a starting point when I am looking to stock up on ammo.
It doesn’t necessarily get me to my final destination but it does serve as a good jumping off point. I almost exclusively buy my ammo online and I try to be as absolutely frugal as possible when it comes to buying ammo. It allows you to sort by types of ammo, caliber, brand, even grains. The app also allows you to search for reloading supplies as well as magazines and firearms. The biggest challenge of buying ammo online is the cost of shipping. It can take a fair amount of work to find the best deal when you factor in the cost of shipping. AmmoSeek is a good place to start though.
AmmoTracker – $2.99
AmmoTracker is a very simple database for tracking your handloads.
It allows you to log all the components of your handloads in a easy to read and manipulate interface. Bullet type, powder charge, primer, case, overall length, etc. It also provides ample room for notes relating to each batch of reloaded ammo as well as range reports for each batch. Ultimately its one of the easiest ways to stay on top of previous loads and plan for new ones.
Hand-Load – $0.99
Hand-Load is a database for storing information about all your purchased reloading components.
You can then see how much each component cost per round and of course ultimately how much it cost to manufacture each completed round. It also shows you the cost per round with successive loads using the same brass. Not an app that I use a lot but it does provide useful information when I am buying new components and trying to keep my cost per round in an economical range.
Categories: Firearm & Gear Reviews