1. Attention: We have put together a thread with tips and a tutorial video to help with using the new software. Please take a moment to check out the thread here: Trapshooters.com Tutorial & Help Video.
    Dismiss Notice

in-door gun range

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by kgp, Apr 5, 2007.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. kgp

    kgp TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    68
    I'm in the process of designing a barn/garage, which will be 36x60, two story. I would like to shoot handguns upstairs, and I'm having a hard time figuring out appropriate and affordable backstops. Most of the info I've found on the web is geared toward commercial ranges, and I really don't want to spend thousands for something that is just for my own use. I know air circulation is important, and plan to put in some power roof vents to get sufficient air exchange. Also, since this is upstairs, the weight of the system is important. Any ideas, or am I wasting my time even thinking about it?

    Ken
     
  2. hawk57

    hawk57 TS Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2006
    Messages:
    142
    Plate steel is the only way to go on a second floor. Yes its heavy, but not as heavy as sandbags or dirt. If you set up a bullet trap to accommodate just one shooter you should be good to go. How thick the plate is depends on what type of cartridge your planning on catching. Maybe someone on this sight can direct you to the spec's required and an appropriate design to meet your needs.

    Hawk,
     
  3. Bawana

    Bawana TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    729
    Go to Ebay and or internet and find an indoor range for sale. I know of some clubs that found them at a low price and bought them. For all safety reasons and for all insurance reason don't cut corners its not worth the savings or the trouble. You only need one shot to put you in hot water.
     
  4. Johnny

    Johnny Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,800
    neighbors?
     
  5. hawk57

    hawk57 TS Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2006
    Messages:
    142
    I ran accross this site: http://www.letargets.com/html/traps.html


    Hawk,
     
  6. kgp

    kgp TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    68
    Neighbors shouldn't be an issue. I live in Maine (very gun friendly)on 13 acres. Neighbors on either side, but none behind me for at least a mile. The building will be insulated, so the sound shouldn't be more than a muffled pop if they are outside. It would only be .22's and .45's, low velocity, unjacketed. I'll shoot outdoors some in good weather, but this would primarily be something to do in the winter. By the way, "winter" is a relative term. We had 15 inches of snow last night.

    Ken
     
  7. Big Jack

    Big Jack Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    1,735
    Location:
    Erie, Pa
    I once used a cross cut of log, about twenty inch in diameter. for a backstop for .22. It was about 16 inches long and served its purpose well for about three years before I moved. My range was only 30 feet or so, I felt confident I could keep them on the log but in any case, the wall behind it was a cement block.

    Big Jack
     
  8. Johnny

    Johnny Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,800
    Ken, you need a steel bullet trap. I have two and it would be a job to get one
    up to a second story. You'll need a backstop, then there is the fumes. Build a lean-to roof on the side of your building with a wind block and shoot under it. Get a kerosene space heater and you're all set.
     
  9. lumper

    lumper TS Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    Messages:
    3,586
    Have you thought about asking the county building department on exactly what they would require or are you going to circumvent them and not let them know?
     
  10. K-80 Jim

    K-80 Jim TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    109
    Unfortunately, you might as well dress warm and shoot outside! I use to shoot at an indoor range and knew the owner well so I'm very familiar with the problems. He used infrared heaters directly above the shooting positions. If the ventilation is appropriate it will suck out any and all heat making it extremely difficult to heat or afford.

    Second floor has many issues not the least of which are accidental discharges through the floor, roof, and unprotected walls. They will occur! I remember a guy and respected shooter who had just fine tuned his target 45.auto. On his first shot emptied the clip with most rounds going through the roof. At least on the first floor you might be able to use an earth embankment to protect from fliers.


    I don't know how much or what calibers you'll be shooting but lead dust / residue will be everywhere and it's a serious concern. One of my friends employees got lead poisoning probably from cleaning / sweeping the range. All I'll say is it was ugly and he suffered greatly.


    I don't mean to discourage you and I hope you can make it work. You'll have to decide if the benefit is worth the risk.

    Shoot well,

    Jim
     
  11. kgp

    kgp TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    68
    You guys are starting to confirm my suspicions that it may not be worth the hassle. Maybe a little .22 plinking, but nothing heavier. I know the issues of errant shots, and it scares me to think of shooting my dog, wife, or neighbor (not necessarily in that order, Dear.) Maybe a bowling alley would be a better option, or taking up archery. Then again, I've always wanted space for that dream model railroad layout.

    Thanks for the input.

    Ken
     
  12. lumper

    lumper TS Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    Messages:
    3,586
    Have you thought about an single lane underground range?

    Did one large hole and one smaller hole and a trench inbetween. Now in the large hole make a large concrete bunker and in the small hole make a smaller concrete bunker and connect the 2 bunkers with 24" or maybe larger concrete culvert drain pipe. Now call the larger bunker the shooting pit and the smaller bunker the target pit. In the target pit put yourself a big old roof vent fan to suck out the air and if it is done right it will suck all the air down threw the tunnel and keep the lead out of your face. Install a pulley and lighting system in the tunnel and to move the target back and forth and to illuminate the tunnel on the other end ... yeah there basic plans but they would work. I am sure there are more detailed plans on the web but you get the idea.

    It all depends on how important it is to shoot at home whether or not your willing to spend the money to do it.
     
  13. Gold E

    Gold E TS Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    Messages:
    481
    Lumper's suggestion of using a pipe would work indoors also. Turn the exhaust fan to blow out a window or other opening.

    The pipe and an attached shielded shooting box could be designed to eliminate the potential of strays.

    This is a project that I have been thinking of doing myself. I have a 30' x 40' shop and I was thinking of runnung the tube down one wall to shoot .45 on rainy days.


    Let us know how it turns out.
     
  14. K-80 Jim

    K-80 Jim TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    109
    Those are great ideas! You might get by with a shorter pipe as well. Maybe a 10' section because you have the round trapped. Which also means a smaller backstop. You could use a small blower piped into the entrance and another cut in the top of the exit for exhaust. You could pull air in from the outside an exhaust it back out and maybe if balance properly in wouldn't pull out much heat from the room. I think this could work and be less expensive than a traditional range.


    We'll need pictures of this one :)

    Shoot well,

    Jim
     
  15. Bob_K

    Bob_K Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    1,478
    Location:
    Afton, Virginia
    I have three large bullet traps, capable of stopping .44 mag lead pistol bullets. I'd be more than happy to sell them since I'm not shooting pistol competitively anymore, but they would be expensive to ship. I'm in Virginia near Fredericksburg. Anyone interested?
     
  16. pedagogue

    pedagogue Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Messages:
    234
    I designed a 100 yard underground 2 port rifle range for our club located in a suburban setting. We used 30 inch reinforced concrete pipe 100 yards long with a pit at the impact area. A bullet can not leave the property and the noise sounds like a "wump". We did retrofit an exhaust system to one directly in front of the muzzle area to exhaust the smoke and gases.
    Jack Melitsky
     
  17. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    15,639
    Location:
    Green Bay Wisconsin
    The house across the street from my daughter was built by a champion rimfire shooter.

    He buried some 3 foot culvert pipe, 50 feet I believe, in the back yard and butted it up to the basement walls. He ran a cable out for a light, and had a pulley system to shuttle targets back and forth.

    In the basement he just had a gray painted piece of plywood that he pulled back when he shot.

    There was a passive vent on the far end and a wee fan he used at the shooting position.

    The gentleman is gone now, but did use the system all the years he lived.

    HM
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.