Going to the range = PITA. Am I the only one?


February 10, 2003, 01:29 PM
This may be heresy, but every time I go to the range it's a big ordeal. Get the gun(s) out of the safe, find case(s) for them, dig through the box of holsters and mag carriers for the right ones (all black Kydex, all nearly identical in appearance), load up the ammo box with the right type and quantity of ammo, pack the range bag with ears, eyes, stapler, magazines, etc., load all that up, then realize target board is too shot up to use again, cut another piece of cardboard, dig out the stapler (naturally at the bottom of the bag), staple new carboard and white target paper, repack stapler, load target board & stand, find and load target anchor & hammer. Mentally go over checklist to make sure everything is there, and still forget spotting scope (on the bright side, less junk to pack).

On the way to range, have white target backer tear out staples and blow away. Make U-turn to retrieve it and run over it :fire: while pulling onto the shoulder. On the way home, forget the target is in the back, go through car wash, soak target stand with new cardboard.

Etc. :banghead:

Does anybody else go through this? Have you developed ways to streamline the process?

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February 10, 2003, 01:41 PM
Eh, part of the game. It's what weeds out the gun owners from the gun enthusiasts. Can't stay in shape without exercising. Can't drink a beer without walking to the fridge, getting the bottle/can, and opening it.

February 10, 2003, 01:42 PM
Yea. Get in truck, drive to dump shoot at rats, tin cans , bottles and other junk. Get back in truck drive home. Guns and ammo stay in truck. It's the simple life.:D

February 10, 2003, 01:49 PM
Chris Rhines, Justin, and I have gotten ready for the range in less than half an hour. Setup time for targets is neglible. I've found that the key is to train and not plink. This means bring only the guns you want to train with and not everything you own. This cuts down on your ammo and accessories load as well. Also, preload your accessories bag beforehand.

Still Learning
February 10, 2003, 01:51 PM
1) Move to the country.

2) Set up permanent range approximately 75 yards behind back door.

3) Consolidate shooting equipment in specific range bags or shooter's boxes.

4) Mount said bags and boxes on Honda ATV when I want to shoot.

5) If I DO forget something I either call wife on radio and ask her to bring it to me or putter back to the house on Honda--dang, I'm getting lazy.


Pappy John
February 10, 2003, 01:57 PM
Gee, sounds like an awful lot of trouble. Maybe you should take up another hobbie and sell all your PITA guns, at a loss, to MEEEEEEE!!:D :D :D

Seriously, sometimes I get frustrated finding all the various stuff for a range trip too. I can't remember all the times I got to the range only to find that I've left something crucial at home. Luckily I'm only four miles away.

February 10, 2003, 02:11 PM
Heh, heh...

I shoot benchrest.

3/4 ton van.

And I've been thinking of either trading it for a small RV or buying a trailer.

February 10, 2003, 02:35 PM
I do hate the packing up, etc. for a range trip...and the putting-away afterwards...but I just went shooting Sunday for the first time in almost three months...and bouncing plastic bottles around the backstop at 100 yards with the SAR-1 made it all worthwhile! :)

Now to just keep those happy thoughts during the gun-cleaning process hahaha...

February 10, 2003, 02:38 PM
My range bag already has hearing & eye protection in there, as well as a host of other useful small stuff. Targets, markers, etc.
Guns are stored in rugs with appropriate magazines. Just grab and go. Other magazines are lying around, but the gunrug itself contains enough .
Kydex and mag carriers I only worry about for competion and CCW guns. Those are always near if not on the gun.
Replacing staples and cardboard is done when cleaning guns, so it is ready to go.

February 10, 2003, 02:47 PM
Here's how I spent three days last week:

Out of bed 07:10.
Shower, shave etc. - leave bathroom 07:28.
Get dressed. Open safe 07:36, throw guns, ammo, muffs etc. in bag.
Lock front door 07:42, catch bus.
Work. Log off 16:00. Have dinner in company cafeteria.
Catch subway, go to range, spend four hours.
Catch bus home 23:06, in bed past midnight.

During twelve hours at the range, I think I fired a total of 15 (fifteen) rounds. The rest of the time was spent coaching newbies. For free.

PITA? Nah, shooting is fun, why else are we doing it? :D

February 10, 2003, 03:14 PM
For me, going to the range is a hassle for two reasons

1) cost - $10/hr/person is high, in my opinion. I would buy a membership, but...

2) location - nearest range is 30 miles, and 45-50 minutes, away from where I live. This makes going there something of an ordeal.

All that being said, I still make sure to go at least once a month.

My favorite way to shoot is to head out to my mom's place in Houston - after a two mile hike through swampy forest I can shoot to my heart's content, for free, at my own targets.

I really need to find a swampy forest nearer to where I live, though...

Dave R
February 10, 2003, 03:15 PM
I keep two range "bags". Actually locking briefcases. I must look like a yuppie shooter. ;) But it cuts down on the PITA factor.

One briefcase is for pistol shooting. Has all necessary ammo, favorite targets, hearing protection, spare mags for most-often-used pistols, etc.

'Tother briefcase is for rifle shooting. Has all necessary ammo, favorite targets, hearing protection, spare mags, etc. Also CLP and bore snakes in favorite calibers. That way, if WWIII breaks out on the way home, at leasst my bore is clean :D

I still forget something now and then, but its generally when I'm shooting something unusual. Now the routine is...

1) Grab the firerarm(s)
2) Grab the appropriate briefcase
3) Leave.
4) Replenish supplies upon return.

Dave P
February 10, 2003, 03:22 PM
If you just leave all your gear in the back of your pick-em-up all the time, then you just need to bring along the firearms!

February 10, 2003, 03:25 PM
Yeah, I hear ya! I usually pre pack my 22 pistol, but also take house gun. In the few minutes before I leave, I load up ammo and another gun. I pick up targets at the range...they're cheap & I never have to remember to bring'em...

February 10, 2003, 03:46 PM
I guess I'm lucky in that I live about a 20 minute drive from my outdoors gunclub...$50.00/year and you get a key to the gate(s)!
It's really "spartan", but for $50.00, I'm not complaining.
There are separate pistol and rifle ranges. Pistol lanes have steel-plates that you reset with a rope & you bring your own stand & cardboard/targets if you want. After months of stuffing everything into a range bag(BIG one)and schlepping to and from the doublewide to the truck(sounds like White Trash, eh?), I realized, "why don't I just leave everything but the guns & ammo in the truck? With a locking camper shell and storage areas, I merely pick a gun(or two)with appropriate ammo and off I go.
A couple of my aquaintences refer to me as the Jewish Redneck. :rolleyes: Shalom, Y'all!

February 10, 2003, 03:53 PM
I keep a packed bag too. I also keep mags and holsters near their perspective guns. All I have to do is grab the guns of the week, appropriate ammo, a bottle of water from the fridge and I'm off. I can have my gear ready for any range session in less time that it takes to find my keys, shoes and jacket.

When I come home, I store all unexpended ammo, repack the bag with targets and anything else depleted during the session then clean and store the guns.

February 10, 2003, 03:53 PM
I live in the sticks, but due to jerks who post their land, I have to drive about 20 miles to go shooting. Used to only be about half a mile.
My main gripes are as follows.
1) It is cold, and I don't like cold at all. It is hard to shoot decent groups when your forearm keeps freezing to the sandbags.
2) my range membership only costs $10 a year, and I get a key to the rifle range included in that, but the range is only 100 yds. It is safe and doesn't bother anyone, but I would still like to try the rifles out at longer ranges.

haven't been out in about three weeks, so I am gonna have to go again pretty soon.

February 10, 2003, 06:16 PM
Some folks are just lazy and want everything easy.

I can grab some gear, gun and ammo, put it in the car, drive to the range in about 30 minutes and be shooting in less than an hour.

Because I don't want to find myself fat and lazy I make getting to the range more challenging sometimes. I have, a number of times, packed a gun, some ammo and ear pro into my CamelBak and ridden my Specialized StumpJumper Pro to the range and back. The ride is 41 miles round trip with an average wieght of 30 pounds in the CamelBak including gear and water. My range has targets and stands available, but I'd pull a trailer if I needed to.

It's a hobby, if you don't enjoy it find something else. Or stop whining about it.

February 10, 2003, 07:05 PM
we usually just grab the guns that we're planning on shooting that day (most of the time just one handgun and 1-2 rifles), toss then in the car along with "the bag" that has all the gear in it along with one ammo can with the ammo for the guns we're shooting that day.

February 11, 2003, 10:31 AM
Some folks are just lazy and want everything easy.

You mean like hurling insults from the safety and anonymity of the internet?

Or did you mean "name-dropping" so everyone kows how much you spent on your bicycle?

Do this: get cancer, beat it, then win 4 Tours de France, then talk about what a tough customer you are. :rolleyes:

February 11, 2003, 01:09 PM
The Nearest official range is just shy of 100 miles away, and my tired old engine doesn't like that pass (can you say lots of time in 1st gear?)

needless to say, I usually just go into the woods


February 11, 2003, 01:46 PM
I've got a cap on my truck, targets, stands, sandbags stay in the back. Usually just my Wife and I with 2 guns (our Primary IDPA pistoles). One gun case, guns on one side..speedloaders tools and the like on the other. One toolbox with ammo, pasters, staple gun.

One gun case and one small toolbox, load up and go.

April 29, 2003, 09:30 AM
does anybody use a range checklist?

maybe,one of the more computer literate

could help us with a printable checklist.

it seems i'm always forgetting a thing or two

on my trips:(

[]-spotting scope

might help w\PITA factor

at least for this clown anyway:neener:


April 29, 2003, 10:15 AM
I have quite a few mags for each semi auto. The revolvers aren`t any problem. I keep targets and the rifle rest in the truck. Range bag is packed and I load the magazines the night before.

The biggest PITA is the range itself. It`s only a few miles but it`s a state range. 6 rounds for pistol, 3 for rifle, don`t shoot cans or other articles. The pistol range is 25 yards but I like to work close in. You can`t do that with other shooters around, usually rifle shooters trying out their scopes. At least it`s free.

April 29, 2003, 10:31 AM
I keep the number of guns and items down...

I take a 22LR to warm up with..
then whatever I will want to really practice with
Some targets,
A spotting scope,
And then my Range bag which has my Ammo, cleaning supplies, eye and ear protection as well as some target "patches", and a staple gun.

Thats about it.

After I warm up..I use an extra bench to let cleaning solvents soak in the barrel of my 22 while I am shooting my main rifle.

April 29, 2003, 11:09 AM
I keep my hand guns, ammo, eyes and ears, stapler, push pins, targets, hand cleaner etc. in three black, Nylon, not interesting travel bags. Grab them and go! No the guns are not locked down, only my immediate home security gun is kept loaded. I live in a fairly crowded suburban area so the rifles draw attention, so be it!

April 29, 2003, 11:15 AM
Hello all,

I just signed up on THR a few days ago but I was on TFL but didn't post much.

I enjoy the trips to the ranges so those arn't really a big deal to me. I try my best to have all items prepacked prior to the range day wether indoor or outdoor. However, the most frustrating thing fro me is the target isseue. I have found and now use the most wonderfull product from Walmart. It's posterboard with foam backing. We (cslinger,sheslinger,and I) use the black color and tape paper plates to it. We can usually fit four plates on it. Put an colored sticker in the middle and presto you have reusable targets. We've had about 4 range sessions so far.

just my two cents.


April 29, 2003, 12:06 PM
I've found that I usually take fewer guns to the range, ( 20 minutes away), and that makes it a bit easier. Lately I spend more time shooting, than working out there, which is a plus! Keeping just about all the stuff, ammo, staple gun, magazines, in the range bag, and we have targets, and cardboard already at the range. I still find other stuff to play with!
Everything but guns and ammo there. Makes it a lot easier to go out there.

April 29, 2003, 01:30 PM
This is a "typical" benchrest shooting list, for when you're going to a match that'll be a bit of a distance from your home. It was composed by Bart Sauter, of Bart's Bullets. I haul a similar list of stuff to matches. My 3/4 ton van helps.


My check list!
Guys for what its worth I drag 4 boxes to the range and have bunch of "seperate items" that I also take. Below is the check list that I use. It has saved me from leaving equipment behind a time or two, when throwing stuff into the motorhome or back of the truck for a shoot! You can copy and paste and modify for your own use.

 Bullet Puller Hood
 Bullet Seater
 Small base Die
 Calipers with Bullet Attachment
 Case Trimmer Sinclair
 Cases for each Barrel
 Davis Bullet puller
 Neck Cleaner/Crazy Cloth
 Powder Container x 2
 Powder Throw
 Primer Pocket Cleaner
 Primers & Holder
 Priming Tool
 Sizing Buttons
 Steel Wool
 Case cleaning rags x 2
 Allen Wrenches
 Hand Held Radios
 Bolt lube

 Arbor Press
 Harrell Press
 Butches- containers x 2
 Leather Stock Cover
 JB Bore Cleaner
 Patches 1000
 Slick 50 (Small Can)
 2 x C Clamp
 Extra Brass
 Gun Tarp
 Cartridge Box

Flag Box
 5 Flag Poles
 5 Flags
 6 x Squeeze Clamps
 Barrel Vise
 Action Wrenches
 Large Towel

 Bag Stabilizer leather
 Front Rest
 Hammer Rubber Mallet
 Rear Bag
 Suave Deodorant
 Surveyors Ribbon
 Non-skid mats

Separate Items
 Rest box.
 Cleaning rods
 Shooting stool
 Loading chair
 Shooting glasses
 Digital Scales
 Rifles and bolts
 Loading table
 Bore guides
 Scope Extra
 Tripod Spotting scope
 Spotting Scope

April 29, 2003, 01:59 PM
Learn from the golfers(:barf: ).

Keep in car:
Gun Rests
Target stands
Range bag (targets, frequently used mags (usually .22 caliber), stapler, Leatherman, Otis cleaning kit, CLP, Rem Oil, rags(s), hex wrenches, scope/binos.)

Keep ammo in ammo cans by caliber and drop in the mags you need on top.

Buy cases that fit more than one gun.

Then take your ammo cans and guns and get in the car and drive.

April 29, 2003, 09:32 PM
I just walk out on my back porch to shoot my spinner target


April 29, 2003, 10:56 PM
Like some of the others I keep a cardboard backer, staple gun (and staples), targets, spare eyes and ears in the truck. A bag is always packed with range badge, muffs, glasses and some misc. supplies (pen, screwdrivers, patches etc.). So all I have to do is pack the guns and ammo. I do sometimes forget the spotting scope. For me, packing and unpacking is not a problem. The 40 minute drive is actually pleasant.

Clenaing them is another matter.

April 29, 2003, 10:57 PM
A range cart might just be the answer to your problems. I'm building my own right now so I can customize it to fit my needs.

Cal-Graf (http://www.cal-graf.com/) has some great looking gun carts and accessories. I've used their site and others to get some ideas for what I want to build.

You could organize your supplies into different boxes then build your cart to carry several boxes. It would help keep your different gun stuff organized too.

April 30, 2003, 12:51 AM
Can't drink a beer without walking to the fridge, getting the bottle/can, and opening it. I know, it sucks. When you figure it out, though, please share!:D

April 30, 2003, 01:13 AM
A solution to walking to the fridge:


The best chair in the house for a marathon of TV sports or hours in front of the DVD: this leather rocker recliner from Catnapper. This fine piece of furniture is equipped with a mini fridge in one arm, a speakerphone in the other and -- for the 7th inning stretch -- a massage mechanism to soothe your muscles. What potato would want the couch?

April 30, 2003, 06:19 AM
You`ve forgotten the old adage, "You cannot buy beer, only rent it.":D Unfortunately, though I rarely drink beer, (one of my favorite beverages BTW) coffee has the same effect :banghead:

April 30, 2003, 06:59 AM
Yeah; oh, and BTW; Still Learning and zahc - I HATE YOU!!!!! ;) ;)

April 30, 2003, 07:27 AM
I don't have as many guns as a lot of you guys, but when my collection was at it's largest, I rarely brought EVERYTHING.

Back in the day, we'd grab the guns, the ammo, and pop bottles and milk jugs to shoot at and head to the quarry.

Now, I have a backpack that I stuff with all of the magazines and ammo I'll use. I generally don't spend all day at the range, so about 100 rounds for the FAL, and maybe 100 for the handgun will usually get me by. (But then, my range is only a few minutes away, so I can go every day should I want to.)

*shrug* Don't have a spotting scope, and I use Army rubber earplugs instead of bulky muffs. I carry a roll of duct tape in the car, so that solves my target mounting troubles.

If I wanted to carry more ammo, I guess I'd get a larger bag. But you can stuff a lot of boxes of ammo and FAL mags into that one little backpack.

Dave R
April 30, 2003, 05:54 PM
I have a new routine that is very easy and soothing these days.

1. Grab the rifle
2. Grab the (locked) briefcase with ammo, ears, etc. in it.
3. Throw in car
4. Drive half-hour
5. Get out of the car, grab rifle, ears and start walking.
6. Every few hundred yards, stop and shoot at available sel-propelled targets (i.e. Prarie Dogs)
7. When tired of walking or ammo runs low, return to car.
8. Drive home.
9. Clean rifle (5 min)
10. Life is good.

Will have to alter that routine when summer heats up.

When fall comes, routine will change as follows:

1. Substitute shotgun for rifle.
2. Substitute flying targets for earthbound targets.

That's why I like Idaho.

April 30, 2003, 07:23 PM

I've enjoyed this thread.

And I've realized that I don't have to stuff everything into one range bag. Buying 2 more will help me get organized and make things a lot easier.

And Hansolo: Shalom y'all to you, too.

Matis (the OTHER Jewish redneck)

April 30, 2003, 09:52 PM
I take no more than 2 pistols to the range at any time. I Usually rotate them based on caliber and mood. After a range session I re pack the range bag with the next rotation, new targets and ammo.
UNLESS my sister & Brother in law are in town, in which case its EVERYTHING thats not nailed down and we dont finish until we run out of ammo.

April 30, 2003, 10:02 PM
My biggest complaint is the drive to the range. Nothing close for me, that ive found atleast....nashvillians where ya go????

I usualy keep everything but the gun in a big bag as i dont have a safe. Grab the gun and go. Usualy others bring targets, or i keep a packet or two in the trunk. having to use my car for work means i cant keep too much in the car which sucks...

April 30, 2003, 11:41 PM
I don't share your opinion. The anticipatory charge I get from preparing to go to the range is some I enjoy. BTW, the range I go to is 40 miles from my home, but 90% of that distance is on the Interstate, so it's not so bad.

My idea of Nirvana is to hit the lotto and become a range rat. I'd visit it 3-4 times a week.

Kenneth Lew
May 1, 2003, 12:57 AM
I only bring my guns to the range. Everything else is in a locker over there. Full auto allowed there.:neener:

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