Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Shooting Rest Review

NRA and Boy Scout Shooting Instructor Bob reviews the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest at the range after helping a Boy Scout complete the Rifle Shooting Merit badge. […]

NRA and Boy Scout Shooting Instructor Bob reviews the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest at the range after helping a Boy Scout complete the Rifle Shooting Merit badge.

Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest - newProduct


General purpose rifle shooting rest for Sighting and precision rifle shooting.

How acquired?

Caldwell shooting restSent by Ammunition Supply Company for our use in upcoming ammunition and rifle reviews

Manufacturers key features

  • Securely holds long gun on target
  • Nearly eliminates felt recoil
  • Fingertip elevation adjustment
  • Padded rifle rests at both ends
  • Non-marring rubber feet provide traction and protect table
  • Adjustable height rear rubber foot
  • Tray accommodates barbell weights, sandbags or lead shot bags to add stability

Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest - unboxingBuild quality

Very good fit & finish. Solid construction that feels like it will last.

Gear Report assessment


  • The Caldwell Lead Sled Plus held every rifle we tried securely.
  • Weighs only 15 pounds; easily unloaded and moved.
  • Allowed testers to easily and effectively put scope on target and hold it there.
  • Allowed us to easily installing additional weight which it held securely.  Perfect for 25-37 pound barbell weights.

Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest - girl at heavy shooting benchStrength: Easily held every long gun we tried, including ten pound WW II era military rifle.  No build or quality problems with it.

Durability: So far, it appears to be durable. However, we have only had it 2 months. Time will tell.


  • The tray on the Caldwell shooting rest accommodated a 25-pound iron barbell weight, held it securely preventing it from shifting.  This helped with recoil and kept the rest in place after shots.
  • Easily adjusted for height using the rear elevation screw and the fingertip fine adjustment at front.
  • The Lead Sled Plus rifle rest worked easily even when used by neophytes.

Only one gripe: Width of rear pocket allowed butt of most rifles to lean left and right. This threw shots off though scope picture looked aligned on target. Once we learned to hold the rifle against one side or the other of the rear pocket, problem was solved. A towel or piece of foam wedged beside the butt stock would work well to hold the butt vertical.

Caldwell Lead Sled Plus Recoil Reducing Rifle Rest - boy scoutOverall: Bob led the testing of the Caldwell shooting rest. He works with Boy Scouts who must shoot small groups to earn the Rifle Shooting merit badge and took this rest to the range for the scouts to use during qualifying. This rest allowed them to do so easily and effectively. The scouts liked using it. They quickly learned to use the adjustments to zero in on the target. The Caldwell shooting rest allowed the shooters to concentrate on trigger control to good effect.

Bob also used the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus with AR-15 rifles and AR-15 pistols in recent trigger test and found that it held all rifles securely, including AR-15 pistol lowers, which allowed him to effectively and repeatably hold rifle on target.

One issue was noted: AR-15s with standard 30-round magazine cannot be held properly vertically in the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus. The 30-round magazines hang low enough to interfere with the rest’s central tube.  This requires canting each rifle enough to allow the magazine to lie next to the central tube. This workaround was inconvenient, but usable.

Gear Rating:

Gear Score
We think the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus is a well made shooting rest. However, incompatibility with the most popular rifle in America, the AR15, cost it a half a point.

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GearReport logo Round AR15Where’d you get that ammo, bro?

We are fortunate to have an arrangement with Ammunition Supply Company where they provide most of the ammunition for our reviews. In return, we share our videos and reviews with ASC for them to use on their website.

Huge thanks to Ammunition Supply Company, who supplied the Caldwell Lead Sled Plus for this test.


About Jeff

Jeff is the Editor in Chief of Gear Report and a National Shooting Sports Foundation Media member. He reports on the outdoor industry, reviews gear for camping, hiking, shooting, hunting, paddling, backpacking and other active pursuits. A USAF veteran, Jeff earned a MBA in Marketing and Health Services. He specializes in consultative selling and internet marketing. As the VP of BD & Marketing, Jeff provides sales and marketing leadership to MGECOM, Inc. and helps acquire new clients in need of solutions for online merchants in need of Affiliate Marketing program management. Jeff founded and manages Cress Sales & Marketing LLC, offering online sales and marketing consulting and services to online merchants and service providers.