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After shooting at literally dozens of shooting quarries, designated shooting areas, public ranges and the occasional snooty private range, I thought I’d seen every stupid rule and regulation out there.  Bans on ‘rapid fire’ (‘rapid fire’ meaning firing faster than a speeding Brown Bess musket)?  Check. Bans on prone/kneeling/offhand firing?  Take your pick, I’ve been there.  Bans on loading more than three rounds in your magazine?  More common than I once believed.  One unnamed private shooting range (just south of Portland, Oregon, cough cough) even prohibits you from setting down your closed and locked gun case in the wrong direction.

But threatening felony prosecution for scrounging brass?  I guess I hadn‘t seen it all.

The English Pit is a small shooting range at the northeast fringe of the greater Portland, Oregon suburbopolis.  I’ve done most of my TTAG accuracy testing there, but my patronage ended when I read the fine print of their ‘No Brass Picking’ policy.

I understand that most ranges sort and sell the brass that shooters leave there, and I get as annoyed as anyone by the brass scroungers that hold up the firing line every time the range goes cold.  But brass-picking is a part of the hobby and the sport of shooting, and most shooters have at least a small collection of rare or unusual brass like .41 AE, .460 Weatherby, 9mm Nambu or .455 Webley somewhere near their gun safe.  I even found a Martini-Henry case at a shooting range once, although I’ve since lost it.

Most of these souvenirs were scrounged from shooting ranges, and none of us would have them if every range were as obnoxious as The English Pit has become.

Here’s an excerpt from their brass collection policy:

Removing cartridge case from the range that was not shot by yourself amounts to shoplifting and will be treated as such. Since someone ‘stealing’ empty cases will likely have firearms in their possession, what is generally treated as a misdemeanor becomes a more serious offense. Those caught doing so could face far more aggressive apprehension techniques by the Vancouver Police Department and if convicted, the resulting charges could be severe to the point of seeing someone’s right to ever legally own, shoot or even hold a firearm forever denied.

This policy is deeply offensive, and it also suffers from poor grammar and invalid legal reasoning.  I don’t recommend that anyone test this theory themselves, but under Washington law the mere presence of a firearm does not automatically turn every nonviolent misdemeanor into a felony robbery or burglary.

It is the use of force (or threat of force) that turns a shoplifting into a robbery, and not the presence of an unloaded pistol on a gun rug at the firing line.  By the same logic, it’s not a felony to have a gun under your jacket (with a CCW permit) and an iPod with a few ‘borrowed’ songs on it in your pocket.  It’s also not a felony to legally CCW while driving a car when your drivers license happens to be suspended because of a parking ticket that your brother got and forgot to tell you about.

Many ranges sort and sell their used brass, and I understand they’ve got a valid economic reason for shutting down the most voracious brass hounds because they cost them a lot of money. Ranges can prevent this by posting their policies, warning egregious offenders, and then throwing them off the range.

But brass-picking is still part of the sport, and threatening shooters with highly questionable felony prosecution for a violation of range etiquette is like putting armed guards at either side of a self-serve soda fountain to enforce a ‘No Refills’ policy.

I’ve been visiting the English Pit for almost twenty years, but I’ll take my money and my guns elsewhere as long as this policy is in place.


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  1. Yes….range operators are often as carmudgeony as musty gun shop owners.

    Customer service and quality has escaped most of them and for some reason they seem to still exist. Not sure why customers are not willing to complain, why the owners are not willing to listen, and why the people paying the bills haven’t moved on to something better.

    • I’ve only been to two ranges (the rest of my shooting has been done on private property) and the one doesn’t really have any stupid rules – for legal reasons they have some on the books (no rapid firing) but they don’t even pretend to enforce them. The other one is run by a bunch of old guys who apparently are in the “I’m old so I’m going to be a jerk to everyone” stage of life and harass people firing more than once per second – even if all shots are on paper.

  2. The ranges at MCB Quantico ban the following calibers from every range on base for civilian shooters:

    7.62 Nagant

    See a pattern here? Yep, by order of the Marine Corps, no commie ammunition is allowed on base. For civilians, at least.

    The Corps says it’s because they don’t know the surface danger zone for those rounds, but as they’ve been banned for 20 years I think they’ve had time to find a calculator. My guess is it’s the base commander’s way of keeping the “riff raff” off base.

    • The indoor Weapons Range at Marine Corps Community Services Camp Allen limits ammo to: 3600 FPS, No birdshot, No tracers, No armor piercing, No fully automatic firing. Anything else is fair game. The avg civilian doen’t have access but they can come as a guest and there are no restrictions based on being a civilian.

    • Sounds like the commander’s upset that commie’s build better guns. They may not be pretty and they may not cost a lot to brag about how much you spent, but damn are they effective and reliable.

  3. A local indoor range mandates…

    – No Double Taps
    – You must use targets purchased on the premises
    – You must use ammo purchased on the premises
    – One person per lane

    Shockingly, the range is almost always deserted, as they’re the only local range with such measures.

  4. I feel two ways about the “collecting brass is a felony” thing. What worries me about this rule is the potential for someone who just likes to sweep up and help keep the place clean be accused of keeping it for themselves. Or that you could be picking up your own brass and be accused of trying to scoop up someone else’s.
    But the “felony” thing is a bit misleading. The range apparently makes it clear that brass other than yours is technically their property, and taking it for yourself is a misdmeanor, like shoplifting would be. Problem is that since you have a gun with you, it’s now “committing a crime while possessing a firearm” which is a felony.
    I think the range shouldn’t hang this sword of Damocles over its members.

    A County owned range near me disallows offhand shooting, putting more than one round in the firearm at one time, and you WILL be scrutinized for stuff that violates the NYS “Assault Weapon ban”

  5. Other silly rules I’ve seen:

    No headshots, even on B-series silhouette targets.
    No targets that even resemble a person, even B-series silhouettes.

    • I was just about to say this as being a stupid rule for the range that i frequent. any ideas as to why this is a policy?

      • The no anthropomorphic targets rule is silly, IMO. It’s akin to the violence of video games argument: “You’re shooting at representations of people! That means you wanna kill people!!” Uh-huh. Whatever.

        The no head shots rule may have legitimate purpose at some indoor ranges, as at closer shooting distances heads shots can put your shooting angle too high placing your rounds in the ceiling baffles rather than the backstop.


    • That was going to be my input. Shot at a range once that prohibited ANY target that represented the human form whether “B” Series or a picture.

      When I finally got an answer about why not, the range felt that it was too representative of shooting people and that wasn’t something they wanted to “actively” promote.

      Yea big eye roll on my part at the time. Granted there are a lot of reasons for practicing, evidentially some of the reasons were lost on this group.

  6. “I’ve been visiting the English Pit for almost twenty years, but I’ll take my money and my guns elsewhere as long as this policy is in place.”Bingo. Best way to deal with it. Plus, tell all of your friends and acquaintances about the policy. AND tell the range owners why you are no longer patronizing their business.

  7. There’s a range in VA that has always been good to me and other TTAG writers, but they don’t let you rapid fire or shoot a rifle while standing. Makes it kind of hard to do anything, but slow accuracy testing. That always drove me crazy when I shot there.

    • Our local indoor range (Center Target Sports, Post Falls, Idaho) has no stupid or obnoxious rules that I or anyone can think of. They were named one of the best ranges in the country in 2010 and Ed Santos & his folks have a well run, safe operation. About the only restrictions are on rapid fire & maximum calibers you can shoot, but otherwise it’s entirely customer friendly and you’re allowed to pick up your own brass, no questions/no hassle.

  8. As to the question of why ranges can get away with arbitrary or iditoic rules, it’s a simple case of supply and demand you can damn well bet the range operators know that.

    Add to this the fact that many gun range operators seem to be a bit lacking in interpersonal communications skills (nice way of saying “crazier than a shithouse rat”) and it’s not hard to see why the rules just keep on while the savvy shooters either suck it up and accept it as the price of having a place to shoot or move on to another range. We have an indoor range here in CO that has undergone numerous openings, closings and changes of ownership because they can’t seem to find anyone sane or normal to run one (this is the same one where I demo’d my newly built AR to our own RF. Three months later the range was out of business. Again.)

    What’s worse is that often these arbitrarily-run ranges are a non-shooters first introduction to the world of firearms. Given that, it’s astonishing that the non-gun-owner’s perception of gun owners isn’t worse than it already is.

  9. To: [email protected]

    Subject: Please review your brass collection policy


    I’ve been shooting at the English Pit since 1994 (except for the years the range was closed) but I recently noticed the threatening language of your brass collection policy. Regardless of your self-imposed range policies, picking up some brass is and always has been part of the sport and hobby of shooting. I’ve got a small collection of odd cases which I’ve picked up over the years, and I’d never have had that opportunity if all ranges had policies as inflexible and overbearing as yours. I was initially glad that you were able to re-open the English Pit range, because I go shooting one to three times a month, both recreationally and while testing manufacturer’s samples for our blog. Your policy is so overbearing and misguided, however, that I will take my money and my shooting friends elsewhere as long as its in place.

    I have *a lot* of shooting friends, because I write for a national gun blog which gathers more than 1.2 million hits a month. It appears that many of my readers agree with me. Here’s a link to the article:

    I know that your justification for this rule is that you collect and sell the brass yourself. I have asked repeatedly about purchasing brass from the range, and I’ve been repeatedly told that ‘liability’ prevents you from selling it. Either you can sell brass (as your policy states) or you cannot (as your staff have told me in person), but I do not appreciate being misled in either case.

    I hope you will amend your policy to state that policing brass is encouraged, and that looking for souvenir brass is acceptable. I encourage you to specify that large-scale brass harvesting is prohibited, however, and that violators could be asked to leave and repeat violators could even be trespassed off the premises. If you revise your policy, please let me know about it and I promise I’ll tell my readers; I like to blog the good as well as the bad and the ugly.


    Chris Dumm

    • Oh noes! hey are scared of your worthless little blog. Everyone fears bloggers. Because bloggers are never desperately lonely suicidally virgins or anything.

      Chris..what I think I am trying to say to you is, you are a little bitch and nobody HAS ever, or WILL ever change their ways because of anything you say or do.. There is nobody on the planet who will ever give a f*** about your feelings. Because nobody will ever care that you are alive. Nobody wANTs you alive, including yourself.

      I mean…holy f***…did you actually try to use the fact that you write for a BLOG to HELP your cause? Did you honestly think that gave you MORE power? Wow..when you left the real world because it was so lonely, you REALLY left it far behind. Which is fine, except when you try to communicate with people who ARE still in the real world.

      • The majority of people know the power of alt media and viral marketing. Bad news is said to travel faster than the speed of light. Writing for a large blog does give your words and opinion more power because you control both money and information.

        I vote with my wallet daily and several retailers, brands, states, and countries have permanently lost my business due to ‘stuff I read on the internet’.

  10. Both of the ranges I frequent have pretty much the same rules as each other (the one where I live is less strict though as compared to the one in south Florida). No rapid fire, no bleeding, exploding, or human shaped targets, no firearms on the back bench, etc etc. The one down south makes you use these little breech flags when the line is cold and make everyone stop shooting at the same time. The one by me gives the shooters a heads up and lets them finish their magazines and doesn’t require the flags. They also aren’t on you like a hawk when you do something they don’t like like the south Florida one (it’s mostly hunters and OFWG who shoot there, I live in a small town, so less asshats who can’t follow rules). Oh and you can’t fire from the hip or conceal carry at either one. No tracers or incendiary rounds either at either one

      • Actually, they allow dragon’s breath…surprisingly. I’m just kidding….I don’t know of anyone that allows that. Unless you’re on your own (or a friend/family member’s) land that is

  11. I haven’t seen many over the top range rules in the six or so public ranges I frequent, and the one outdoor club I belong to. I think the only one that ever rubbed me wrong was a public range that charged you an immediate 20 bucks if you hit the metal target frame. I get you don’t want people destroying your frames, but occasional flyers do happen; at least issue a warning for a first offense. Such a policy can make new shooters nervous and increase their chances of shooting a stray.

    • Yeah no one will like that, i busted a few when I started shooting. My local range just requires a $2 refundable deposit for target hangers.

  12. Except for the threat of felony conviction, I don’t see the problem.

    Why are you complaining about thieves being prosecuted anyway? Do you enjoy thieving?

      • And apparently if you’re concealed carrying while getting a refill at McDonald’s, that’s armed robbery.

      • No…that is by your kindergarten educated level of logic. Places that offer free refills (which most McDonalds DON’T, by the way) are allowing it. You pay to shoot guns at the range…NOT to pick up brass that others have abandoned on THEIR property. And yes…taking what you didn’t pay for is a crime.

        I really don’t get people like you. Before the internet, people desperately tried to HIDE the fact that they were uneducated and worthless to society. But here you are embracing it and telling the ENTIRE WORLD so willingly.

    • The issue is that, theoretically the person who fired the cartridges abandoned them, and the range then claims ownership. That is NOT the same thing as owning them.

  13. Each range near me has a different quirk. One is a DNR run range that has government hours (9 to 5), no rapid fire, 6 rounds in a mag, 15 minute fire sessions before everyone goes downrange, etc. One is a school-run facility for firearms training and education and only allows .22 and under. One has fewer rules but higher fees. The one I go to is membership only with only a no incendiary ammo rule. Most of them have a no humans rule too.

  14. My range (near Seattle) doesn’t allow rapid fire, bird shot, steel-cased ammo, aluminum-cased ammo, unjacketed lead ammo, or necked-down ammo.

    A range that I visited in Connecticut this year doesn’t allow certain magnum calibers. (I specifically remember seeing .41 and .44 on the list.) It also requires a minimum target distance of 25 feet.

  15. their sandbox…..their rules….that’s the way i see it …if i don’t like it i take my bussiness eleswhere….simple

  16. Wow! I’m blown away by some of the rules I’ve seen here. The only range I ever go to is Ben Avery here in Phoenix (20+ years now). Although they do poo-poo the act of scrounging brass that isn’t yours I’ve never heard or seen posted anything about arrest or prosecution.

    After reading this article I have a whole new appreciation for Ben Avery. In my experience the staff are friendly and on the ball. Full auto is allowed. Prone, standing and offhand are allowed. They quit selling anthropomorphic targets but its fine to bring your own and shoot the head out all day long. There’s even a 1,000 yard range for the big boys.

  17. No Ak47 Varient Rifles Period.
    No non scoped Rifles on the 100 yard range.
    No FMJ ammo besides pistol. Then again, thats pretty much every range in DFW.

  18. From Missouri I’ve got two for you…

    – An indoor range in St. Louis that requires you to put the target upside down for headshots even at 7 yards.

    – All MO conservation ranges require 3 seconds (no rapid fire) between shots…can’t stand that one!

    • Wow, I had no idea about the three-second rule at MO conservation ranges. I’m very guily of breaking that at the Scrivner Range. But, who on earth is going to be there to enforce it?

    • The upside-down target rule is almost certainly to ensure that bullets end up in the backstop, not the ceiling.

  19. If it’s a “shoplifting” for a shooter to pick up the ammo of another shooter after he leaves, then it is no less a crime for the range to do so.
    While I’m not an attorney, I’d bet that brass on the ground (after the shooter leaves) has the same ownership status as trash in a dumpster- “abandoned”.

    • You don’t have to point out you are not an attorney. You only needed to post that RIDICULOUSLY ignorant comment for everyone to know that you are a worthless 12 year old who has no education on ANY topic yet wants to act like an expert.

      Just so you know, you self cutting, suicidally lonely failure of a lifelong virgin…if someone leaves (abandons) something on YOUR property, it is fine for you to take it…but NOT fine for someone else to take it without your permission.. LITERALLY even a 5 year old should have enough common sense to know this.

  20. well the Indoor Pistol range I go to in Norther VA only has one silly rule which I understand why it was created but doesn’t mean its not silly. the rule is you must case your firearms on the firing line. when the rule change happened it was a nice surprise.

  21. Local range wont let you rent a gun unless you bring a friend, even if you have your own guns and are trying to rent a .22, they’ve had a problem with suicides and rentals.

    • There is a local range in my town that has a similar policy – no rentals unless you bring your own gun.

        • Because unless you already own one of everything, there may be some guns on the wall that you would like to try out.

        • They’re trying to prevent someone from coming to their range to rent one to commit suicide at the range. Sad, but it happens. If the person attempting suicide already has a firearm, then they wouldn’t be coming to the range to get their hands on one. Thus, the “must own one before you rent one” or the “must bring a friend”.

  22. Have you been here? –
    ‘The range is limited to the shooting of lead or lead alloy projectiles only. The use of solid copper or semi jacketed projectiles is prohibited. A maximum velocity of 1000 feet per second is required.’

    I was a guest there once. Two shooters and the dust was so thick I had to leave…

  23. I never understood the policy of no FMJs on an outdoor rifle range shooting in to a 10 yrd thick dirt berm.

    I might understand if the berm was thin or shooting .5o bmg but 223?

    And asshole range officers who yell at you for having sealed boxes of FMJs in your ammo box with your HP and SP rounds. I think that I have the mental faculties to notice that I would open a box of brass jacketed FMJs instead of my cheap russian steel cased SPs.

      • true, but it also isn’t his job to go digging through my personal possessions while i’m having to cart sealed boxes out to my vehicle. And I know he was because I saw him doing it.

  24. 1. “Only one round allowed in your gun at any time” at my local trap range. So only one shot per clay, period.

    2. No steel ammo (bullets, cases, etc.).

    3. No rapid fire. There is simply no valid safety reason for this at all. If you have 20 people shooting 1 round per second, how is that any different than one person shooting 20 rounds per second. Just dumb. (Here’s a tip to you range owners: You should be encouraging this simply because we will run out of ammo faster and then will have to go buy more of your overpriced ammo.)

    4. One range I went to even had the nerve to require that I “must not shoot at animals or people on the range”. How boring! (okay, yes, that was sarcasm)

  25. No staples to be used on targets. Yes, the range near me believes a staple is going to cause a bullet to fly back the other direction.
    The three round max rule is the rule at the state park range, 50 dollar fine per bullet if you’re caught.
    No Winchester value pack ammo, IE loose rounds in a box. They claim they fly wildly out of control (same range BTW)
    .480, .454 and .500 may only be loaded one round at a time due to damage to our equipment. Again, same range and no real explanation about the damage.
    No targets in the shape or any likeness of a person. I was shooting at Sponge Bob plates left over from my kids party and they said he was considered a person.
    You must buy ammo from us for use in rental guns, even if what you bought elsewhere is still factory sealed. This rule obviously is more economic than anything else.
    No clear magazines. My ,22 mags for the 10/22 were banned for life.
    I found it a waste of time to question these rules, preferring to shoot at a family farm.

      • Not a rule thing but generally the RO is a dick and they harrass everyone for having gun cases too close to a line, adjusting a scope gets a hairy eyeball from them, handloads make them bitch and most of the time they BS with their buddies instead of watching newbies like they should.
        I go there maybe once a year if that.


    So forget practicing with your carry loads. And no $#@^%$ commie ammo!

      • True, but I also have 2k+ rounds of Buffalo Bore, Cor-Bon, Golden Saber, and Gold Dot that I’d like to frigging use up (and stick to my “shoot a box of my carry ammo once a month” policy) someday. I have plenty of lead ammo to shoot, but I hate buying more when I have so much on hand already. And I’m more comfortable using factory ammo for carry, just from a potential liability standpoint.

      • Problem being, that lawyers will do their level best to get YOU locked up if you ever need to defend yourself with ammo you loaded yourself.

        Factory loaded ammo only for self-defense, that’s the legal standard. (don’t ask me, it does not make sense to me eaither)

        • It only becomes a legal standard if people like you accept it as such, thats how the courts have upheld gun registration as being constitutional.

          Wether your prosecuted or not has nothing to do with the ammo, but the circumstances of the incident and local politics. I live in Cook County and I reload, I dont have any worries about it.

  27. I know BassPro in South Florida has a “No picking up brass” rule that is rarely enforced, but still pisses me off since as far as I am concerned I PAID FOR THE AMMO. I asked one of the employees why this was a rule and he flat out told me the truth that BassPro sells the brass.

    • They didn’t say anything to me at all…..I swept up all of my brass when I was there because it’s what I’m used to doing at the outdoor ranges I go to. And yes, it was in South Florida. I imagine you’re talking about the one in Dania. They just wouldn’t let me shoot my rifle…so i was limited to the pistol range. I prefer outdoor anyways. Plus, I don’t have to pay by the hour at them like I have to do at an indoor range. $10 gets me the whole day…not an hour.

    • Ralph: How dare you insult our California gun range rules by calling them dumb. We don’t like guns at our gun ranges. They’re just dangerous objects that go off all by themselves. We have ourselves a nice little crime infested comunity here and we don’t need your silly opinions about our “gun-free” gun ranges messin’ it all up. Next thing you know, people will want to start defending themselves. Sorry Ralph, we just don’t do that here.

      • As a resident of the people’s republic of California, I somewhat resent that remark. Somewhat.

        No holsters or holster drills are the only real rules at my local range, and I can understand where they are coming from. Otherwise, rapid fire to your wallet’s content and take as much brass as you can get your hands on. There are even scavengers of indigenous origin at the range on early Saturday morning doing their recycling.

    • I can think of a dumber rule than no guns. Bring all the guns you want, but you can’t have any bullets.

  28. Going back to ” Removing cartridge cases from the range that were not shot by yourself amounts to shoplifting” maybe they should also add that shooting at targets and hitting them amounts to vandalism! lmao….

  29. A very close range to me has the no pick up brass rule but it is an indoor range. So its not like I am stopping anyone when picking up brass in my lane which I rent by the hour. They also have the can’t shoot reloads rule. I have spoken with the owners before about the no reloads policy and they say it is because of insurance. Yet someone not long ago took steel core factory ammo inside with an AK47 and set the back stop on fire. I figured no big deal other places for me to go but it is a nice range and I wanted the experience once. I took only revolvers with me and was leaving all of my brass on my lane bench. I notice the range master really watching me. As I finished and started to pack up he politely brushed me aside while I am still in my lane and walked over and knocked all my brass to the floor. When I asked what he was doing he said we have a policy no brass leaves the range, I said your policy clearly states no picking up of brass I am not picking up. I went out and spoke with the owners it was obvious the wife wears the pants her being a former Sheriff which I knew I thought not a problem. She took an attitude with me right away and said your always free to take your business else where. I said in a calm voice using her name said wait I am not picking up as I was shooting revolvers you know home much I love revolvers. We debated for a while until I gave up and left leaving S&W 460, 500, 454 Casull and 45 Autorim brass behind. This is some of the most expensive brass you can buy which I did buy this was factory ammo — this was not range pickup brass, or reloads remember the no reloads policy. It bothered me so bad I went back a week later to speak with her husband who I thought I can reason with before walking in I see a big sign on the door “All Brass Shot on This Range stays in the Range and Becomes Property of the Range” I just turned around. A friend of mine who is a member there told me they changed the policy because of some smart ass who came in shooting revolvers trying to keep his brass. At least they didn’t use my name but they probably didn’t with him because we all knew each other being in the same profession. What is really poor about this range is the fact that they do not resell the brass they take it and send it here which reloads it for them, remember the no reloads policy? This ammo is used when renting any of their firearms as well as the first thing given out if you just come in and ask for some ammo. Those patrons that do not know any better just takes it and moves on. The sad thing is they reuse the boxes from this company as well some of them are so beat up, I have been in there and heard people ask was it “new” because of the condition of the box and heard many of them behind the counter say yes, with excuses like oh UPS beat it up badly giving them a horrible name. I have since stop going in there because it pains me that a former LEO which I knew treated me this way as well as demonstrate such poor integrity. I guess I wouldn’t have posted this long winded story if it still didn’t bother me, its time I let go and move on I guess LOL.

      • What a bunch of tools. I’m surprised they can even stay in business. When I’m the customer, the customer is always right. Pull any of that BS with me and I’m not coming back. Plus i’m gonna tell all my friends that a bunch of asswipes run the establishment.

      • +1
        The internet has the power to make or break businesses.
        I shoot .44mag and I keep all my brass because at 40 dollars a box these are expensive to shoot. What a bunch of brass hound assholes.

  30. Used to live in Vancouver. I had forgotten what dicks these guys were. Instead, joined Clark County Rifles, which was a great range in a great location with a bunch of terrific members. The two were only a few miles apart geographically, but light years apart experience-wise.

    • 2savage: Clark Rifles has a waiting list so long, they’re not even taking names any more. I’ve been there once, during Hunter Sight-In Days, and I thought it was a great facility. If you’re still a member, would you put in a good word for me? (Considering we’ve never met, that is…)

      • Sorry, moved away in 1997. But, I’m glad to hear they’re still around. Was afraid urban creep may have consumed them. A lot of great memories.

        Just one of them. There were several “older guys” ( don’t seem so old now) who were World Champion muzzleloader shooters. Watching one of them shoot his original Brown Bess, I noticed that he rolled the round balls across the concrete shooting bench with a bastard mill file. I asked him why and he said “It makes ’em shoot better, maybe like dimples on a golf ball.”

        Just last year I saw that the Army had just discovered the same thing with their small arms projectiles at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds!

  31. My regular range has the following:

    1. No rapid fire (unless you ask first to notify the officials) as new shooters are easily spooked or so I’m told.
    2. No reloads
    3. No steel or aluminum ammunition components.
    4. No reloads (though they sell commercial ones)
    5. You must use store ammo in rented guns (commercial reloads are allowed despite them demanding it so we don’t blow the guns up with reloads we didn’t bring in to begin with)
    6. Only slugs in shotguns, shot richochets too much.
    7. Rifles and shotguns are only allowed to be fired from the maximum range of 50 feet and the target must be hung very low.

    They discount the lane if you buy ammo in store but at $37 per 100 of reloaded 9mm you suffer for nothing. Also, they inspect your ammo before they let you back if it isn’t busy. But…my alternative is further away, more expensive and run by bigger buttheads so…I have little choice.

  32. Chris Dumm, I am considering a trip to English Pit. I live in PDX, and it’s hard to find a place to shoot, especially rifles at 100+ yds. Douglas Ridge (who you didn’t mention by name), is nice, but uptight and expensive for the occasional shooter. I went to Douglas Ridge for hunter sight-in, and they were awesome, they bore sighted my new scope, and then put me at 25 yards for initial adjustment, then I had my own personal spotter at 100 yards. The various National Forest gravel pits can be a little frightening, safety-wise (I usually take my three kids shooting). At the pit up the Memaloose road outside of Estacada, I’ve seen some scary stuff – a guy shooting a big revolver up into a tree, with another popular shooting area right over the hill, beer-swilling frat boys waving pistols around, etc. Went to that pit in the Tillamook Forest outside of Banks once, never again – you can’t ever walk down range, because some idiot always keeps shooting. So what is one to do in this area? English Pit is the only place in the area where you can pay for a day of rifle shooting with some sort of safety controls. Ideally, I’d like a place that will let me shoot in a position I might actually use while hunting, usually sitting on the ground with my arm braced on my knee.

    I guess if you know some great secret spot, you’re not going to tell me about it.

    This leads me to my general leftist complaint about gun culture. It tends to be unfriendly, especially toward those of us that are not a card carrying right winger, but even toward you, a noted gun blogger. I mean, how much would it cost English pit to be friendly about the whole deal – no mass harvesting, but if you pick up a couple for interesting cartridges, no biggie. I hope they’re reading this.

    Ever walk into the Gun Room on Foster? They make my point about unfriendly gun businesses. I live in walking distance, and I’ll never go in that place again. And believe me, my skin is not thin.

    • @NCG:

      Joe Grine and I know some places. I’m always happy to help a brother out, so I’ll contact you offline. I don’t want to risk a defamation suit by saying anything intemperate, but it is no coicidence that I haven’t been to The Gun Room in nearly 15 years. My favorite dealer is Angelito who runs the Gun Zone; it’s a longer drive but he’s always taken good care of Joe and myself.

      • Ah, the infamous Memaloose pit! Nothing like going out there and seeing a bunch of young kids shooting guns while drinking a 12 pack of PBR. Just a matter of time before something bad happens out there.

        • Yeah, if I can get up there on a weekday and no one’s around, it’s not too bad, and you can get a safe angle for a fairly long shot (I haven’t measured, maybe 75 yards. But you’re right, it is just a matter of time. More than once, I’ve just driven on by and found another place to plink at shorter range.

      • Thanks! Would love to find some new spots. Handguns are easy, but a flatish 100 yards with a safe backstop is another matter.

  33. This is why I like having land outside of city limits. I get a solid backdrop and all those other things that make for a safe shooting range and have a ball without having to pay for range ammo or worry about a lack of safety on other people’s counts. I have my own rules for shooting on my range……..but they’re pretty reasonable stuff: Your gun isn’t a f***ing toy, so don’t treat it like one. Keep your muzzle pointed away from people/unsafe directions. Don’t put your finger on the trigger until your sights are on the target. Don’t be a douche. Lastly, if you accidentally shoot me then I’m going to break my own rule and pay you back……That last part was sarcastic humor if you didn’t catch that, I’d rather not end up as the IGOTD.

  34. No loaded firearms come into or leave the range except for law enforcement.

    This is an a shall issue & open carry state.
    And this is why I never go to this range despited it being only 5 miles from my home, instead preferring the range 40 minutes from my home which encourages carry – open or concealed.

    • Guns have to be unloaded when entering and leaving the range at the ranges I go to….it doesn’t really bother me though since they don’t care what you shoot. Just as long as it’s not full auto, illegally modded, or firing incendiary or tracer rounds

  35. Garland Public Shooting Range, Garland, TX: No paper plates as targets. Why? Quote — Because we don’t know what they’re made of — Unquote. Seriously.
    But computer printed targets are okie dokie. So cutout copies of paper plates oughta be really confusing.

    • No, fumb f***…it is because they are not going to inspect each worthless idiot like you who brings in your own plates that may or may not be simple paper/cardboard. (Which MANY plates are not.)

  36. Over bearing RO’s. I live in a “high minority” area – Memphis- and the local outdoor range is a club that is very, very white. You would think we are all used to having blacks and other “people of color” in our presence here but this is not the case. These people act very odd when I sign in a guest who is not an adult, American, white guy. Then the RO camps on us (brings a chair) until we leave. I am a middle aged, overweight, white dude who has been a long time member and never had any negligent discharges or other incidents. I do some instructing and I am also a Boy Scout leader (Wood Badge). I introduce shooting to a lot of youth and adults who are new to shooting sports. Many of my students are adult men from India. These guys are professionals who come from a country where gun ownership is discouraged but was common for their grandparents. These people like to shoot! But the club assumes that they are “middle eastern Muslim terrorists who are there training for Jihad. Their reaction is even more severe when I bring young (16 – 18 years old) shooters.

    The RO’s job is important but it should be limited to making sure the shooters are following the rules and keeping the operation safe. This can be accomplished by standing twenty feet behind and observing quietly then leaving when it is obvious the people are not a safety problem. These people are inexperienced but ultra careful. And of course their great coach is right beside them. They are very concerned about safety and doing everything correctly. The RO who sets his folding chair five feet behind and calls out every conceivable imperfection to the guest who is already nervous and then smiles when you finally pack up and leave is not helping the cause.

    In many ways it is a great club and it has avoided many of the faults mentioned in this thread but it would be nice if the people running it would not assume they can predict how people behave by looking at their skin.

    • I think you’re getting at the heart of the problem with our gun culture, especially gun business culture, in this country. I think too many gun enthusiasts actually enjoy seeing themselves as an oppressed white male conservative minority. They’ll deny it all day long, but racism is a given with a lot of the gun demographic. It is getting better, and it will continue to get better. If the pro gun, 2A movement can shed it’s right-wing, red neck (sorry) image, it will win.

      • Instead of seeking to unite us upon our common ground, you want to divide us on race just like da Prez, DNC, et al.

        I’ll take “White male, right-wing, red neck” Christian over the media hyped ‘minority’ (black, hispanic, some Asian) gun culture forced down our throats daily, forcing law abiders to bear the burden of law breakers, in the form of “gang banging, drug running, welfare state parasite, homeless, DNC voting bloc minorities” amongst America’s violent urban section 8 projects and barrios ANY day of the week. You should see my once serene city: decimated by gangs and gangland warfare from Kalipornia.

        No, the heart of the problem is hoplophobic Liberals who drive gun and ammo prices up, sanction a rogue ATF, close ranges, jail gun owners who go through NJ for 5 to 7 years, have attack dogs at the highest levels of gov’t who spend decades dogging us, give us states like CA, MA, MD, NJ, IL, OH and other cesspools of humanity, berate the 2A and gun owners in every MSM article, full time anti gun legislatures, give us Mayors that force a city gun ban case to the SCOTUS, infinitum…

        • jd, you make my point quite well. I do seek to unite us on our common ground. You blame non-white people (most of whom, apparently, are criminals) and Democrats, Liberals, etc. for everything. For me, it’s “us.” For you, it’s “us and them.”

          Ultimately, inequality and economic unfairness in society breed violence – in fact, they are the main predictors of violence and social unrest. A lot of people on the left think that if we could just get rid of the guns, there would be no violence. You and I know that’s bogus.

          The difference is, you assume that your relative success is due to some sort of innate cultural superiority, and those other (again, mostly not white) people just need to get with the program. I see a systemic failure of our democracy (sorry, Republic).

          I hope we can agree that the government tends to seize any damn excuse to further curtail our rights.

    • What you’re reporting sounds like “minority allergy,” as you note. However, I’ve seen similar reactions at ranges where the operators thought anyone needing instruction should take it from their pet instructors.

      OTOH if I’m professionally teaching (IOW charging a fee) at someone else’s range I have no problem if they want to check my credentials.


    Just white cowards with a gun range, thats all. Nothing to them otherwise.

    A Popular Range here will NOT let u bring in anyone under 21 unless ur their DIRECT PARENT (Legal Guardians not even acceptable!) but has no prob selling them a rifle/shotgun (if over 18). I asked them “So they can buy the .223 here, but cant go right behind us there & shoot it?” They walk away from me…

  38. The school where I go for training will regularly call a halt to let people scrounge the brass, particularly us .45 shooters. At my home gun club (outdoor ranges only), brass scrounging is also encouraged. Of course, there’s a lot of non-reloadable stuff on the ground at the gun club. It’s almost as thick as gravel.

  39. I’ve seen that before as well. “If you use this range it is implied that any brass on the ground is the express property of the range and the collection of brass will be considered shoplifting”. How about ” long guns and shotguns with pistol grips/adjustable stocks are strictly forbidden on this range”. Really.

    The best “All weapons will be roded prior to clearing the range”. steel cleaning rod is shoved down the barrel from muzzle to breech. How’s that target crown working out for you!?

  40. I’ve heard of some ranges that will try to stop you from picking up your own brass, let alone other people’s brass on the floor. I wonder what they would do if you used one of those brass catchers to collect all of your spent cases.

  41. E. Zach Lee-Wright + NCG
    I have been following TTAG for about a year and have come to appreciate that you touch on topics such as racism. I have found other readers of your blog to be thoughtful, not the vapid inanity I have seen on other blogs.
    I am Latino, liberal, voted for Obama and Reagan (!!!!), 15 years in the Army & Reserves (QM, MP, MI and 12 years in PSYOP), Ist Gulf War, service connected disability. Castle doctrine all the way. 2nd Amendment rights, CCW. Though a pain I agree with some some of the federal requirements.
    I have seen some really disturbing people at the range in all colors but mostly white (it is mostly white people at the range). Due to this I finally realized what I can say to my liberal friends who are anti-gun. Liberals should own weapons because there is a minority of disturbed people out there who hide behind the flag and 2nd amendment. They own guns, and I dare say if given the opportunity they would be the “might is right types”.

      • That’s my attitude, though being as well armed could get spendy. I’ll settle for adequately armed. Not that I’m planning a shootout (I don’t speak for the Vast Liberal/Islamist/Commie/Facist Conspiracy to Destroy America).

        More seriously, guns and race is always a huge elephant-in-the-livingroom issue in this country (please correct my grammar). I know TTAG has touched on this, to your credit. I’ve been in a local gun store where racism was rampant (suggestions that this was just the gun to shoot a bunch of Mexicans), but I’d like to think this is not the norm. I doubt there are many, if any, non-white members of local ranges. Also, non-white people are far more likely to have non-violent drug convictions or other minor beefs that strip their gun rights, even though all evidence suggests that whites commit these crimes at the same rate. Pervasive racism in our society affects the 2A rights of a lot of people.

      • Nope. That’s hypocrisy: hypocritical of a liberal hypocrite who’s party’s official stated platform is gun control. He should never own a gun (by choice), touch or look at a gun, be taught a safety class, not allowed to hire armed security, not be allowed to handle or purchase ammo, and should be totally vulnerable sticking with the ‘sex, drugs and rocknroll’ mantra or ‘peace and love’, whatever, and let karma and Mother Gaia be their guide…liberals are never violent, never hate, are never racist, never “carry guns at a rally to threaten and intimidate” (Tea Party), etc….they have no business with the 2A whatsoever.

        “I live in a “high minority” area – Memphis”

        there’s a term for that….”Majority Minority”, what an oxymoron

        re: Democrat platform gun control

        literally the first hit:
        “Strengthen gun control to reduce violence.”

        the 2nd hit
        (right after foreign policy, literally the 2nd most important):

        “Democratic Platform for America (click a picture above for … Foreign Policy, Gun Control, Budget & Economy, Education. Homeland Security …”

        • jd, you don’t know Jack about me and my views, nor which political party I might belong to. However, it sounds like you’re perfectly willing to disarm me, or anyone else you think you might disagree with. I am not demonizing conservatives, I am disagreeing with them on certain issues (the Second Amendment is not among those issues upon which I disagree with you). I wish you would grant me the same courtesy. Sheesh.

  42. Those caught doing so could face far more aggressive apprehension techniques by the Vancouver Police Department

    I presume that’s “3:00-AM flashbang kill-your-dog SWAT raid” code. How could anyone remotely rational do that to someone?

    • You know, I bet the the police up in ‘Couve have better things to do than conduct SWAT raids on people who maybe filched a little brass from English Pit. Listening to the local news, it sounds like they have plenty of actual crime to deal with. We can only hope.

  43. In my lifetime, it’s not only getting much harder to own guns, but now it’s much harder to KEEP them, to SHOOT them, and to TEACH others to shoot. Scumbags can kill a solo shooter at the range and take his guns. Shooters can be prosecuted if their behaviour is 1milimeter off the norm. Kids can be handcuffed and taken to jail for burping in class. Elderly women can be strip searched in airports. It’s enough to make one almost want to give up everything, stay home in his warm computer room, and only grocery shop to stay alive in broad daylight. Talk about Oppression! Police State! Constant monitoring and observation! The time for spilling blood appears to be near.

    • Oh are one of those Police State bitches. You know the great thing about this country? You are free to leave. And even better for you is that you have absolutely NOTHING to keep you here. No friends. No loved ones. Nothing to live for at all. So go ahead and leave to whatever utopia you want. Because no one here gives a f*** that you exist at all. EVERY day you are alive, your mother dies a little bit in side knowing she is responsible for your worthless existence.

  44. This nonsense has gotten progressively worse in Indiana. At state ranges they stopped allowing brass scrounging 2 years ago. I went to shoot last month and noticed two new ones. You are now not allowed to carry concealed on the range, and you are not allowed to practice drawing and shooting from a holster. There are private ranges in the area that do not stand for this horseshit. Up to now, I didn’t think I needed to pay the money for membership at a private range. Now I understand why I do.

  45. Wow..those are some REALLY bad analogies. Neither one is a criminal act…downloading songs illegally is a CIVIL matter…not a criminal one. So no weapons laws would apply. Nor is a driving infraction. a criminal offense.

    Yes…just CARRYING a gun while shoplifting can very well get you a felony. Whether it WILL it another thing…but it absolutely can, and absolute HAS to some people..even ones who never pointed it at anyone.

  46. I have a simple solution to this crap, bring a weapon chambered in whatever caliber you want to collect up, even if you didn’t shoot it. Unless someone is actively sitting there watching over you, they will never know.

    If staff is watching over my shoulder aside from a PSO, Id take my business elsewhere

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