Precision Rifle – Hawk Hill Custom Data Card Holders

In fast-paced precision rifle competitions, the match directors love to throw in a curveball or two in the form of multiple targets that have to be engaged under time. To do well you have to have a good handle on the fundamentals of marksmanship but also an efficient means of data management. Unless you have an eidetic memory you’re going to have to have a way to reference your data during the stage. I’ve used a lot of different methods but the best way that I’ve found so far is the Rifle Mounted Data Holder from Hawk Hill Custom. It’s actually a quite simple description of an incredibly engineered product.  

Data Management Woes

Back when I started shooting precision rifle competitions, there was nothing like this data holder around. I was either trying to remember the holds that I needed or using a bit of masking tape inside my rear scope cap to have some basic data written down. The problems that I encountered though were that sometimes my memory was crap or I had to break my position to read the inside of my flip cap.

Having some data inside your flip cap sounds great in theory…

A quarterback arm board solved those two issues for a time, allowing me to keep my data in my peripheral vision while I was shooting.  It was revolutionary, to me, but I didn’t really like wearing it because it got hot and would end up slipping around my forearm.   

Better but not quite there yet.

Of course, one way around that is to have something attached to the rifle and I ended up making my own rifle mounted dope holder from some hardware store bits. It worked until it didn’t, I had to rebuild it once, and I longed for something more sturdy and refined.

Seeing The Light

Made from 7075 aluminum, hard coat anodized, and using stainless steel hardware the Hawk Hill data holder is easily the most refined and high-quality data holder of its kind on the market.  

The 3M Dual Lock is an excellent mounting option since it’s very strong and easy to clean out if it gets dirty.

The unit articulates so that the Kydex panel can be positioned in three ways within your line of sight or folded out of the way for transport or storage. The movements are smooth and heavy detents keep the panel in place at any position. 

If I need to see beyond the rifle, I’ll go panel down but if I need to clear a front bag or barricade, I’ll run the panel up or straight out.

In the package with the dope holder came a blank “credit card”, grease pencil, alcohol wipes, and some 3M Dual Lock fastener material. There are two versions of the data holder, a Picatinny mount version like the one that I have and a direct mount version for Sphur mounts.   

Folded out of the way the data holder doesn’t extend much past the parallax knob on my Nightforce 5-25X56 ATACR F1.

In Use

The Picatinny mount version is low profile enough to mount underneath most of the optics that I have. More often than not I run it forward of the front scope ring since this keeps it out of the way of the parallax knob.

The thumbscrew clamps down securely onto every Picatinny rail I’ve tried it on and it hasn’t come loose from recoil.

I use my data holder in one of two ways, with the credit card and painter’s tape or by directly mounting my Kestrel 5700 Elite. 

I don’t run my data holder with my Kestrel all the time but there are situations where it’s simply more efficient to read the data from the screen and shoot.

I prefer to use the painter’s tape instead of the grease pencil because it’s easier for me to write neatly on the tape and I feel I can fit more data on it. Also, if I need a clean writing surface I don’t need to have a cloth to wipe it off, I just stack another section on the one I just wrote on. If there is concern about the data holder blocking your field of view and reducing your situational awareness found that running it in the “panel down” position works best. This keeps the data still well visible but also lets you see beyond the rifle with your non-dominant eye.  

Closing Thoughts

Straight up, the $120 cost is salty and it’s going to turn some people away from it. It took me a while to come to terms with the cost of this thing but I don’t regret it now that I have it and have been using it for the past year. Beyond the precision rifle competition origins of this product, it does have applications for hunting, law enforcement, and military use. Anywhere you’ll need long-range data within eyeshot and a product that’s basically bombproof.

For more information visit Hawk Hill Custom website.

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About the author: Ian Kenney Ian is a lifelong firearms enthusiast and veteran of the Global War on Terror. For over a decade, he has been actively competing in precision rifle and action shooting competitions. Ian has also contributed to multiple online publications, covering general firearms topics, precision rifles, and helping to improve the skills of shooters.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • jack genna November 28, 2019, 8:14 pm

    Ha Ha, that is a ridiculous price…
    A scope ring, a hand drill, and a piece of plastic or aluminum, and some stick on Velcro straps and screws would accomplish the same thing for 20 dollars or less, and if you already have a scope ring to file down, less than 10 dollars… Everyday I look at the rediculous prices of sporting equipment, and wonder where it will end, which is probably by pricing everyone except the rich out of the market… This is just a plain rip off, because a mass produced item like this should sell for 20 dollars or less…

  • Porty November 18, 2019, 6:25 pm

    A small piece of paper and ink pen and some scotch tape will install all needed info on the inside or your scope cover or on the side of your scope or stock and it is free courtesy of you kitchen drawer. Come on be real.

  • Boss November 18, 2019, 9:29 am

    For $120 I think I can make one.

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