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D.I.Y. Shooting Range???

This is a discussion on D.I.Y. Shooting Range??? within the XDTalk Chatter Box forums, part of the XD Talk category; I'm very blessed to live in an area of Middle Tennessee, on the edge of town, where I have plenty of open land, and no ...


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Old 02-19-2008, 08:31 PM   #1
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D.I.Y. Shooting Range???

I'm very blessed to live in an area of Middle Tennessee, on the edge of town, where I have plenty of open land, and no city limits. I have 13 acres, mostly lying behind my house, and mostly open field. Nothing but woods and farmlands all around. The weirdest thing is... my closest neighbors are all professionals...I'm surrounded on 3 sides by dentists, pharmacists, hospital administrators, an attorney, a high school librarian and teacher, and a 75 year old widow. The widow is my closest neighbor, and when she hears me blazing away, she calls and asks my wife "did he get another coyote?" She loves to hear me shooting because she knows I'm home, and I'm armed! We really watch out for her. Even the above mentioned men are ALL hunters and gunowners. Some are even that... and democrats!! Strange world...

Anyway, I can walk out my door and blaze away and nobody will ever say a word. With that in mind, I would love to consider setting up some kind of range, where I could have my covered benchrest, a backdrop, a target retriever, etc. I know I could throw something together that would be functional, but without taking a tape measure to the local gun shop range (35 miles away) I don't know what to do to maximize convenience, safety, etc. Right now I shoot down into my field into a safe dirt bank, resting on a fence post, shooting at a cardboard box. My wife is getting interested in shooting, as well as my 5 year old son. It would be great to have a good comfortable place for them to shoot pistols, bb guns, shotguns/clays, etc. right outside my door. No need for a long range rifle range...this is just for the 25-30 yd. max.

This probably makes no sense... but what I'm searching for is how you guys built your own range at home. I would love to see photos, especially. Like I said, I have the space. I just like to get ideas from photos, etc. before I go building.

Thanks.
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Old 02-19-2008, 08:37 PM   #2
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http://www.nrahq.org/shootingrange/sourcebook.asp
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Old 02-19-2008, 08:40 PM   #3
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Getting warm...

Really it's a good link, thanks.
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Old 02-19-2008, 08:42 PM   #4
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I don't have the property to build my own, but if I were to do it, I've heard that using stacked old tires filled (and then covered) with fill dirt is a great backstop. The tires give the thing some stability and the dirt will provide stopping material plus allow grass to grow for erosion control. Just something to think about.
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Old 02-19-2008, 08:50 PM   #5
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Dan, that's a great idea. My good friend owns a very busy tire shop less than 2 miles from me. My bro-in-law owns another.

Keep the expertise coming.
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:02 PM   #6
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One indoor range I go to has some loose material that the bullet goes into. I dont know whats behind it but they allow rifle calibers there. I just thought it was wierd.
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:04 PM   #7
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One indoor range I go to has some loose material that the bullet goes into. I dont know whats behind it but they allow rifle calibers there. I just thought it was wierd.
The one I frequent has shredded tire rubber in front of the actual backstop. The steel plating (or whatever it is) actually redirects and stops the slug, while the shredded rubber pieces contain any bits of jacketing or bullet material that might try to ricochet. It works well indoors, but outdoors not so much.
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:23 PM   #8
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Dan, that's a great idea. My good friend owns a very busy tire shop less than 2 miles from me. My bro-in-law owns another.

Keep the expertise coming.
Be really careful with tires. If you hit them at the right angle with the right round, it can actually zip around the inside and come back at you. Same is true for plastic barrels. We use the plastic barrels at our IDPA range, and we've had it happen a few times.

The one I built at home was out of cut up lengths of telephone pole. A tornado knocked down 250+ of them on our road and the crews were happy for us to get them out of their way. I drove some old scrap metal pipe in at the four corners to hold them in a kind of staggered stack.
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Old 02-20-2008, 07:00 PM   #9
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Be really careful with tires. If you hit them at the right angle with the right round, it can actually zip around the inside and come back at you. Same is true for plastic barrels. We use the plastic barrels at our IDPA range, and we've had it happen a few times.
Interesting....I'd never heard that before. Something else to factor into the design process.
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Old 02-20-2008, 10:50 PM   #10
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One thing I have noticed at my local range is that over time the grass gets wore out in a path between the bench and the target. Then when it rains it stays really muddy for a few days. Maybe a gravel path, at least to the closer targets, would be nice. Just a couple of feet wide would work.
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