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First time this has happened to me

Discussion in 'Gun Club/Range Talk' started by Tanis143, Jul 24, 2018.

  1. Tanis143

    Tanis143 Sharpshooter

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    Ok, anyone who has gone to a range has heard shrapnel ricochet overhead or have gotten a bit of lead come down on them, this is totally different. Was finishing up on a 50 yard range at USSA and putting my rifle in its case on the ground when I heard a small thunk about 2 ft away from me. Thinking it was a damaged round that rolled of the table I thought nothing of it. After putting a few more thing in my bag I turned and noticed the damaged round was still on the table. So I bent down to see what made the noise and I found this:

    45acpfmj.jpg

    Yep, that is a 45 acp fmj. When I picked it up it was still pretty hot. The only thing I can think of is the range behind me is a 25 yard pistol range with a plate rack and a round must of hit the edge of a plate and went straight up and came down right next to me. New one on me for sure. I was going to switch over to their .22 bay and I asked the fellas in the next bay if they were shooting 45's. They said yep, so I told them I found one of their missing bullets lol. They were just as astounded as I was.
     
  2. dennishoddy

    dennishoddy Sharpshooter

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    Unfortunately when you have steel on a bay, there is always the chance of a ricochet. Wood target frames can also deflect a bullet.
    That's the reason for the tall berms. The projectile must travel way up to go over and basically just falls back to the ground.
    Looking at the bullet though, it impacted nothing unless there is some damage on the other side we can't see.
    It's imperative to keep the steel and targets against the berm and not move them back away.
    We are combating that issue at our range in Ponca as we speak. Folks in the summer like to move the targets toward them so they can remain under the shade cover. In reality, they need to move up to the targets to shoot that are next to the berm.
    We actually did some recent extensive testing with cardboard surrounding the steel to demonstrate what actually happened to the bullets.
    99.99% splatter and disintegrate. That one or two that don't are the ones that are problematic to a gun range.
     
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  3. Tanis143

    Tanis143 Sharpshooter

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    Yep, same here. Last week I took the pistol bay these guys were at and the target stands were moved to about 10 yards from the shaded table. I moved them back when I was there but I heard this is an ongoing issue. These guys today though didn't do that. And yes, there was a dark scratch on one side, so I think it hit the very edge of the steel plate and got deflected up and either hit the top of the berm and bounced off and then landed by me or went straight up and came back down and landed beside me. Either way, was a bit freaky when I found out what it was and how close it was.
     
  4. dennishoddy

    dennishoddy Sharpshooter

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    If you spend any time at a gun range, there will be some issues. Almost all can be resolved with proper target placement against the berm.
    I spend many hours each month repairing the target stands that people use for targets instead of getting the free lathes and paper targets we provide for free. Yes, free.
    I've incorporated a new design on the stands to make them bullet proof, but we have over a hundred, so it takes awhile to repair and retrofit. That money spent on materials and supplies could be spent on range improvements, but some folks, and I'm sure it's a tiny minority just don't follow the range rules for an unmanned range where everything is on the honor system.
     
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  5. Tanis143

    Tanis143 Sharpshooter

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    Man, free paper targets? That must be nice. Granted the ones at USSA are not expensive (largest target is $1.00, the rest are either 50 or 25 cents). My problem though is they are stapled to a cardboard backer that is attached to two wooden stakes put in a steel stand. Several times I get to a bay and the wooden stakes are shot up. And the only ranges to have steel targets are the pistol ranges, they got tired of people using high powered rifles on the steel and ruining them. Kinda sucks when that minority you're talking about screw it up for everyone else.
     
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  6. jstaylor62

    jstaylor62 Sharpshooter

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    This is an excellent example to be discussed during any Range Officer class ...
     
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  7. Annie

    Annie Sharpshooter

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    I've had it happen to me a few times. Caught a few pieces here and there with body parts, too. ALWAYS wear eye protection. There was a fella who used to post here who's brother lost the sight in an eye because he took his glasses off while they were loading up to leave and caught a fragment with his eye. Damn, wish I would remember his screen name. He always rode a motorcycle.
     
  8. Perplexed

    Perplexed Sharpshooter

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    Sometimes I’ll see other shooters at the plinking range at Red Castle put out targets on the ground halfway between the firing line and the berm, and start shooting at those at a downward angle from about 5-10 yards. They’ve been pretty good about moving the targets to the berm when requested, but there were these two guys one time who got huffy and ignored my request even after I explained why. I and a fourth guy who was there immediately started packing up to leave when one of the two huffy guys started shooting. He was the only one shooting, so when a puff of dust kicked up at the very top of the berm, we stopped to look at him. Including his buddy. As I was walking out, the two guys were moving their targets to the berm.
     
  9. SMS

    SMS Sharpshooter

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    Was it fired from a smoothbore?
     
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  10. Jwryan84

    Jwryan84 Sharpshooter

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    No wonder they missed the target, hard to keep it straight coming out of a musket... I see no rifling so that can't be what you heard hot the ground. If so those guys need to have their barrels checked
     

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