Built myself a brass catcher

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by The Wiry Irishman, Nov 6, 2009.

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  1. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    A while back I got frustrated about the amount of .380 brass I was losing, so I started bringing a large tarp with me to the range. That solved my .380 problem, but my rifle and my 1911 huck brass into low earth orbit and even my giant tarp wasn't collecting all the brass. I was still losing 15% or more of my .45 and 30% of my .308. One night when I was laying in bed trying to sleep, I came up with this idea:

    [​IMG]

    The central post is 1" PVC, the net frames are 1/2" PVC, and its all attached to a 5 gallon bucket half full of cement that serves as both a stable base and a brass collector. The net is $1.29 per yard at Wal-Mart. The tubing is stuck together with Plumber's Goop, and the nets are attached to the frames the same way. Where necessary, the net is stuck to itself with Loctite fabric adhesive. Total cost was less than $40.

    It also breaks down into four pieces so I can fit it in my trunk:

    [​IMG]

    The height is adjustable just by swapping out the central post with one of a different length.

    I went to the range today to try it out. My goal was 100% brass retention with both my .45 and my rifle.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    It was incredibly windy, and I although my bucket o' cement stayed put just fine, there was an awful lot of flex in the PVC. I think another PVC support running down from the upper small net ring down to the bucket is in order. Also, I need more netting. The piece running from the top of the big ring down to the small was is almost stretched taut, and it bounced almost as much brass back out as it caught. I'm going to splice some more in to produce some slack, and make a small frame out of coathanger to hold it out a little. I also need to make a taller central post for use with my 1911. The current setup works great with my rifle, since it ejects at a slightly downward angle half the time, but the 1911 still launches to occasional shell over the top of the catcher.

    Total recovery count:
    .45 ACP: 174/200, not much better or worse than the tarp.
    .308: 20/20, the heavier brass doesn't bounce off the net as much.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2009
  2. ThomasT

    ThomasT Member

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    I like it. you could cut you top horizintal bar near the verticles and add tees and then make a "U" at the back to hold the net open a little more.

    You might have to change your name to "The Wily Irishman".
     
  3. dec41971

    dec41971 Member

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    No, what you need is a snorkel going from your guns extractor opening into the bucket and you'll be good.:D
     
  4. wrs840

    wrs840 Member

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    I just back my pickup into the "right" spot at the outdoor FOP range I go to (plenty of room at separated, individual pistol-pits). Handy brass catcher.

    Les
     
  5. shotgunjoel

    shotgunjoel Member

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    Looks great, I think that as long as you stand close to it, and the net is held open, it should be golden. I may have to make one.
     
  6. eagle45

    eagle45 Member

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    Neat idea Wiry!

    I appreciate your ingenuity.

    If the net being too taut causes a problem - could you fashion a more solid back at the top, and angle it at about 45 degrees to direct the brass down? Picture the back of a pellet trap and you'll see what I mean. Something lightweight, even a piece of cardboard might work.

    Interesting contraption.
     
  7. y.old.ndn

    y.old.ndn Member

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    Try hanging a small rag down.
     
  8. nwilliams

    nwilliams Member

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    Very clever setup you have there:cool:
     
  9. Noveldoc

    Noveldoc Member

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    Did my Garand with a piece of cardboard box we put beside it on the bench. Brass just sort of bounces off and slides down.

    Tom
     
  10. Wilson2

    Wilson2 Member

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    Thanks for sharing Wiry!
     
  11. 21bubba

    21bubba Member

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    Should work well on Monarch ammo.
     
  12. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    That's what I do prone or benched with a rifle, but I enjoy shooting standing more.
     
  13. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    I find that half the fun getting to the end result is the trial and error. Looks like a winner. let us know how the finished one works out. BTW I would put a "T" just inside the top sides with a 18" stub coming out the back side to hold the netting back. Make it able to swivel for transport with a couple of pins in the pipe/fitting joint or make the stubs removable.
     
  14. spartywrx

    spartywrx Member

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    Neat invention! I would suggest a post coming off the top and extending away from you horizontally to hold the net back so that brass won't bounce off of it.
    Kinda like my Q&D diagram below with the front on the left and the extension off the right (the dashed line) with the net held open by it.

    l------
    l
    l
     
  15. ironhead

    ironhead Member

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    Awesome idea Wiry. I agree with Ratshooter on the tee's or even just straight pieces coming off of the top rail to stop the bouncing out problem. I have the stuff here at the house to make one and will post it soon. I'm gonna use some thin camo mesh that I have left over from a blind that I'll use only cuz I don't have to buy netting and the PVC I have is 3/4 which might help with the flex from wind.

    Oh and your my hero. thinking of guns to fall asleep.
     
  16. John Wayne

    John Wayne Member

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    I have seen a similar setup for sale at local gunshows, labeled as the "Best Universal Brass Catch-All" or "BUBCA."

    How about a coat hanger to hold it open?
     
  17. MinnMooney

    MinnMooney Member

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    A work in progress.

    That's the way all great inventors do it. Build a rough draft then keep revising it until it works.
     
  18. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    I'm probably going to do a semi-circular coathanger frame at the top to push the net back. I'm also going to have to find some better net. Took it to the range this weekend, and found that the heavy/fast moving .308 blast combined with the blast from my muzzle break tears giant holes in the net.
     
  19. David E

    David E Member

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    I like the idea, but often, my practice involves moving to various shooting positions....maybe put that thing on wheels !
     
  20. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    My roomate is an electrical engineer - we've floated around the idea of making an R/C one that could follow you around for action pistol stuff.
     
  21. KarenTOC

    KarenTOC Member

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    That made me spit coffee on my keyboard. Thanks for the first belly laugh of the day :)
     
  22. chuck520

    chuck520 Member

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    Good Job!
    I bought a smartpond fish net at Lowes for twenty dollars.
    I clamp a pair of vice grips to the metal table and then use electrical tape to tape the net to the vice grips. The net is telescoping so I can raise it or lower it.
     
  23. HOUSTONTX

    HOUSTONTX Member

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    Dude that invention is kick-azz.
     
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