Action Target's double-decker bullet trap for Lotus Gunworks in Jensen Beach Florida (courtesy ammoland.com)

Action Target engineers are doing more on the beaches of Florida this spring than just surfing or getting a tan: they are designing the biggest bullet trap ever built.” So says the press release posted over at ammoland.com. Which leads me to believe that someone at the range-building company is trying to justify the fact that they’re surfing and getting a tan in Jensen Beach, Florida while their corporate compadres are freezing their collective asses off in Provo, Utah. Not a crime, surely (and yes I’m calling you Shirley). Anyway, Lotus Gunworks is set to unveil their new Action Target-crafted double-decker shooting range next month, complete with a two-story steel funnel bullet trap . . .

“Nicknamed the Lotus 8/11 for the number of steel panels used to create it (eight panels on the bottom slope and 11 panels on the top slope), this version of Action Target’s Total Containment Trap is the first of its kind.”

And the first time the company has attempted to name anything for marketing purposes, clearly. Uh, I think I’ll let the press release take it from here, lest I become an action target for Action Target.

“No one has ever seen a range like this before,” Lotus Gunworks’ Director of Operations Robbie Abell said. “We’re truly making industry history.”

Abell stumbled into the gun industry a few years back when he and a family member decided to go in on a gun store. It seemed like a crazy idea, he said, but with a little bit of luck and ingenuity, they just might be able to make it work.

“We spent about eight months riding around different areas and looking at gun ranges,” Abell said. “After some research, we ran into Action Target and were introduced to the local shooting range consultant Robb Anderson. After that it was a no-brainer, so we freight trained forward.”

They found an existing building in Jensen Beach that met their needs but quickly ran into issues when it became apparent there would not be enough room for two adjacent ranges and a gun store. Abell did not want to cut back on the number of ranges, so the only option was to make a double-decker range where both levels shot into the same bullet trap.

“It hasn’t ever been done before, and at first, the answer was that it couldn’t be done,” Abell said. “I believed there had to be a way, and after three weeks of pushing, I got a call from Robb at Action Target saying, ‘We think we might be able to do this.’”

The answer was to extend the Total Containment Trap (usually just 8 feet tall) to a whopping 19 feet and to mount steel cross beams to support the Mancom Touch ‘N’ Go target retriever system.

With the equipment issues resolved, the next hurdle was proper ventilation to prevent customers and employees from being exposed to hazardous lead dust. The sheer size of the room presented a unique challenge, so Lotus Gunworks enlisted the help of industry ventilation specialists Carey’s Small Arms Range Ventilation.

Despite doubts that a range that tall could be ventilated at all, Carey’s managed to create a system that not only met environmental standards, but exceeded ventilation standards for even federal shooting ranges.

“The air flow in the upper level was the best I have seen on any range, and the airflow on the bottom was also very good,” Carey’s controls and commissioning tech Mark Hanson said. “This was one of the easiest range ventilation systems we’ve installed.”

Aside from being environmentally safe by completely replacing range air every 80 seconds, all of the filtered air pumped into the range is refrigerated, which, according to Abell, is a pretty big deal in Florida.

“We want this to be the most comfortable range possible,” Abell said, “and we’re doing that with refrigerated air, great lighting, great service and friendly employees. We want people to come and stay. We want this to be a destination point where you hang out for the day.”

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16 Responses to Lotus Gunworks Boasts World’s Biggest Bullet Trap

  1. I’ve been to this store; it’s close to where I grew up. They didn’t have the range open last time I was there, but it was clearly under construction, and looked bigger than retail side that it was adjacent to. I’m really interested to check this out now; I had no idea it was going to be two story.

    • If and when you get out there, please write a review. 2 hours ride north for me. Pic looks sweet.

  2. Reminds me of big driving ranges with an upper deck. If these guys were to add a few moving (or even reactionary) targets to take the place of the golf ball cart we’d really be on to something.

    • holograms man. like that 3d hologram 2pac concert. well, maybe in a couple of years it’ll be cheap enough technology.

  3. I’m just waiting for my local indoor range to finally open. They’ve been “in process” for about two years now, and manage to crawl just enough along to retain interest. Damn thing is only a few miles from my house, I’d be there twice a week if they would finish building it!

  4. Fees are kind of expensive but maybe it will be worth it.
    Range Fees
    $19.99 per hour if purchasing Ammunition from Lotus Gun Range
    $24.99 per hour if bringing own Ammunition

    • Hmm. I might try it once, then. I’m not a fan of paying 50% more for an hour than I pay for “all day, leave and return” at at least two of my local ranges here in Orlando.

    • With those prices I did see many people using it as a “destination point where you hang out for the day.”

  5. I am going to try their range it would be worth it if the range is as comfortable as they claim and if the rules aren’t as restrictive as some of the others. I stopped going to one of my local ranges because I was tired of being told that I was firing too fast even though all of my rounds were hitting exactly where I was aiming and their range ammo would not feed reliably in any of my family’s handguns and at the other range the air system is terrible, I guess you get what you pay for. Lotus’s range rules look reasonable, they even let you pick up your brass after you are done shooting.

    • The time I went there, they swept the brass away AS SOON as it hit the ground. So if you plan on reloading that brass, this isn’t the range to visit.

      They also don’t allow the use of full-size silhouettes within 50 feet (due to the cross beams, and the chance of it hitting them). Their claim is that full-size targets are for rifle.

      Like most ranges, they don’t allow any use of a holster, which vastly limits my training ability as a USPSA competitive shooter.

      However, it is as comfortable as they claim. The air is constantly at around 70-73 degrees, and the ventilation works as advertised. I honestly started to miss that smell, though.

      I will still continue to buy from them when they have products I’m interested in (which is often. They have a great selection). However, I’m going to stick with St Lucie Shooting Center for my range time. They are aware I’m a competitive shooter and need a range to practice at, have watched me shoot many times, and have given me the ok to do what I need to do at that the range.

  6. It’s around the corner from me also, make it a all day event then walk across the street to the Jensen Ale house sounds like a great day!!

    • The range is fantastic! The rules aren’t restrictive, but certainly keep inexperienced shooters safe and the other people shooting safe. The rangers are informative and the staff is awesome. It isn’t a huge difference (if any?) in price from the other local ranges. However the cleanliness and technology of the range is SUPERIOR. Glad to have such a nice range so close.

  7. Had the chance to stop by Lotus Gunworks in Jensen Beach. I took my girlfriend and her mother. It was ‘ladies night’ so the girls shot free. It was clean, comfortable, and welcoming. It was her mother’s first time shooting and the range officer was nice to offer some free instruction for her before we went in. We shot my firearm and the range officer recommended two more for the girls, for a fair rental price. The range ammo was also very fair given the current prices. We spent an hour, got a free t-shirt and some basic instructions for the girls. We will be going back. I’ve shot in New England, and much of the South and I would say for new shooters or experienced, this is where to shoot.

  8. The prices posted here are currently inacurate.. its 14.99 for the 1st person and around $8 for the 2nd for an hour.. or 7.99 for 1/2 hour.. and 5.99 for 2nd person.. may be off by a dollar but its pretty close.. also buy a bag of ammo and get the firearm rental free. Everything works as described, and much cheaper than described although im posring this in a completely different year

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