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Brass in the grass, what do you do?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Sommerled, Mar 29, 2008.

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  1. Sommerled

    Sommerled Member

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    Seems pretty elementary but maybe there may be some unique solutions amongst the folks on this forum.

    I hate loosing brass in the grass. It is no fun just to always stand in one spot and shoot so all the brass lands on a blanket.

    I'm very colorblind and unless the brass is very shiney it is hard for me to find.

    Some of my solutions:

    1. Mow the grass real short. (i live on a farm with a range out back)
    2. Large blanket with weights on the corners.
    3. Thought about putting gravel in the shooting area but then one has to control weeds with chemicals that I don't want to use.
    4. Someone to run alongside and catch the brass in a bucket:D
    5. An attatchment on the gun seems cumbersome.
    6. I'll use a rake and listen for clinking sounds
    7. Maybe with the cost of copper we'll all start using steel cases-(magnets)

    Any other ideas or experience?
     
  2. Grandpa Shooter

    Grandpa Shooter Member

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    Been there too!

    Inexpensive metal detector. That's your best bet. You can find 'em anywhere with that.
     
  3. pruav

    pruav Member

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    I don't have to worry about grass where I shoot. Cactus, dirt, rocks, and some bushes. I usually can find my brass.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. sparkyguy

    sparkyguy member

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    I bring a huge tarp to the range with me. Makes it alot easier.
     
  5. dmftoy1

    dmftoy1 Member

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    +1 on the tarp. (12' x 16' heavy duty). I also bring along a few "bean bags" filled with lead shot to keep the tarp in place. Nothing worse than having a nice pile of brass on your tarp and one big gust of wind shucks then into the grass. :)

    Have a good one,
    Dave
     
  6. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    I shoot a Broomhandle Mauser in Black Powder cartridge matches at the local club (18 or 20 rounds per match for score). Obviously, I reload for BP in this caliber and reloadable 7.63 Mauser brass is worth finding. I paint my brass with a bright red Sharpie laundry marker. Makes the brass easy to spot in the grass.
     
  7. evan price

    evan price Member

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    I just sweep the grassy area, draggin my feet. I can feel a case in the grass that way.
     
  8. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Black powder in a broomhandle?
    Do tell us more, Carl.
     
  9. PotatoJudge

    PotatoJudge Member

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    Depends on the gun. With a 1911, I like having the bed of a truck just behind and to the right of me. For the CZ-52, my wife and I take turns standing back and to the right about 20 feet and catching the brass for each other. If I'm alone, I may find a tree and shoot so that the brass ejects into the tree and bounces off in a pile just in front of me. If I don't feel like chasing brass, I shoot a revolver or a rimfire.
     
  10. 357mag357

    357mag357 Member

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  11. Clark

    Clark Member

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    If I want to look at the brass in a work up with a semi auto, I wrap a towel around the gun to catch the brass.

    My hand inside the towel may get slightly burned, but then we have all been burned by a "hot piece of brass".
     
  12. birdshot8's

    birdshot8's Member

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    i had a labrador which i trained to search for guns, one day i was shooting in tall grass, i lost a piece of brass. with a little encouragement he stuck his head in the grass and came up with my brass. i also used him to find missing arrows.
     
  13. RustyFN

    RustyFN Member

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    I don't shoot in grass, our range is gravel. I like my brass to spread out because that gives me an excuse to look around for more brass than mine.:D I always come home with a lot more brass than I went with.
    Rusty
     
  14. Geno
    • Contributing Member

    Geno Member

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    Wow that would be uncomfortable with a 1911! A rifle or carbine may not be as bad, but a pistol?!
     
  15. Mal H

    Mal H Administrator

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    Laying down a big tarp is the best method, but when you can't do that, a metal detector works well.

    Someone here on THR suggested a kiddie metal detector sold at Target under the National Geographic brand name. Since I don't have a metal detector, I decided to give it a try. It cost around $15, so I figured if it didn't work, I'm not out all that much. It worked like a champ!

    I shoot down in my woods, so finding brass if I'm too lazy to schlep a tarp down there is hit and miss, so to speak. A few weeks ago, I was shooting a 10mm and lost about half of the 50 cases I had shot in the leaves. I broke out my new metal detector and gave it a try. (I had to stoop over a bit since the handle is sized for children.) I found all but 1 of the lost brass. In fact I also found a few .380 cases I had lost more than a year ago in the same area.
     
  16. ilbob

    ilbob Member

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    most of my outdoor shooting is on ranges that either have short or no grass, although one club I used to belong to had pretty nice grass on the pistol range. they had several large tarps you could set out to catch the brass if you wanted. I never liked walking on the tarps while shooting though.
     
  17. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    Black powder in a broomhandle? do tell us more, Carl.

    Slightly off topic of the thread, but my broomhandle has seen 95 years of use, so the barrel is about .311 to .312 with rifling that looks like polygonal rifling (a ghostly hint of a swirl). It will not stabilize any 7.63 Mauser or 7.62x25 Tokarev factory rounds worth a darn at 25 yds.

    I recalled that old time ML shooters would have their bullet molds re-cherried as their barrels wore, eventually having the rifling freshened (recut) and the bullet mold recherried to the new boresize. You can sometimes get good accuracy from a "shot out" barrel if the bullet fits the bore.

    I have used .312 jacketed 90 grain bullets intended for the .32 H&R Magnum with 1.0cc Triple 7 or PyrodexP. I have also used .312 cast bullets lead 73 grain intended for .32ACP with 1.0cc Goex FFFg black powder. Casings are 7.62x25 S&B once fired in my CZ52 (empties caught in a large, weighted cardboard box on the range bench). The 1.0cc Lee measure fills the case to the base of the bullet.

    Our black powder matches are off hand and open to any gun, old or new, as long as the cartridges are loaded with BP or accepted BP substitute like Pyrodex or Triple 7.

    The key to shooting a relic that requires handloaded ammo is finding the brass for reloading, and red laundry marker does make the brass stand out against green or brown grass. Since I only have fire 20 rounds in the current match, painting the cases with a red, broad tip laundry marker is not time consuming but does aid brass retrieval.
     
  18. scrat

    scrat Member

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    take your boys like i do. then they pick up the brass.
     
  19. Hiaboo

    Hiaboo Member

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    If you want a nice area, you can just get some pressure treated 4x4's and outline an area say, 8x5 or whatever and bolt 'em together.. Before you acutally put this down on the ground in the spot, get some landscaping cloth this black stuff they have. Put that down, put the frame over it and fill it up with gravel, all set, very nice spot..! Always dry too. No weeds will grow up through the cloth.
     
  20. kd7nqb

    kd7nqb Member

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    Tarp works, one of my shooting buddies swears by a brass catcher that straps on her hand. But for me it ALWAYS gets in the way of my sights.

    So I stick with the tarp.
     
  21. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    To kill weeds, use salt instead of expensive and toxic weed killers. For small areas (cracks in sidewalks), use regular table salt. For large areas, get rock salt at a farm supply store.

    You guys need to read your Bible more. They figured this out 2,500 years ago.
     
  22. gaowlpoop

    gaowlpoop Member

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  23. Barr

    Barr Member

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    Similar to above, but what about a boxed in area and a sandbox type arrangement. When you are not using it, the kids can play in it and bring their favorite uncle (or dad as appropriate) whatever brass he misses. Every 2-3 trips you could even sift the sand with a shovel and strainer type arrangement to find the extra pieces that are mixed.
     
  24. Idano

    Idano Member

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    gaowlpoop,

    Outstanding project you have there, it's definitely #1 on my priority list. The only change I am going to make is to use nylon screen material because of the wind factor here.
     
  25. Barr

    Barr Member

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    If you do decide to build the brass catching net, try using swimsuit mesh that you find at Hancock's for $5 a yard. A quilting needle and a thin cord works well for attaching it to the frame. I built mine using a sliding fit with a 1 inch PVC pipe and a 1/2 inch PVC pipe. I drilled a series of holes in the 1/2 inch pipe to allow height adjustment using a cotter pin. The frame then divides into 3 pieces for easy transportation. PM me if you want a picture or two.
     
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