I hate Brass Rats,,,

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by aarondhgraham, Jul 8, 2013.

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  1. aarondhgraham

    aarondhgraham Member

    Sep 28, 2012
    Stillwater, Oklahoma
    That's what I call them anyways,,,
    The people who sit at my outdoor range and try to collect your brass.

    I got a small windfall of ammunition last week,,,
    A friend "found" six 50 round boxes of 9mm in his closet,,,
    Since he sold his 9mm he decided to give me the ammunition for $10-box.

    I decided to go to the range and dust off my trusty CZ-75B.

    So I walk to the table at the 25 yard range and start loading up,,,
    As I'm casually emptying the first 16 round magazine,,,
    This old codger (at least 70 years old) appears,,,
    And starts running a brass catcher.

    You know the thing I'm talking about,,,
    It looks like a kitchen whisk mounted on a wood rod,,,
    Anyways he's actually trying to get my brass while I'm shooting.

    So I stopped shooting and asked him what the heck he was doing,,,
    He told me that as soon as the brass hit the ground,,,
    It belonged to the first person to pick it up.

    I simply could not believe what I was hearing.
    He said it like he actually believed that,,,
    And was mad that I didn't agree.

    I don't reload myself but I do gather my brass for a friend who does,,,
    I told the old far,,, eer,,, codger to stop but he just snorted,,,
    "I have a right to pick up empties and you can't stop me."

    My range is operated by a private club,,,
    But it is located on a county owned and operated park,,,
    I'm in my 60's but am not about to get physical with a 70 some odd year old man.

    I stopped shooting and called the park ranger station,,,
    After I related the whole scenario to the ranger,,,
    He asked the man to leave the range.

    Where do people get the idea it is okay to steal your brass,,,
    while it's still hot!

    I guess I have to start going to the member meetings,,,
    To heck with the safety aspect of him collecting while I'm shooting,,,
    It's just down-right rude to do this and is essentially theft of my property.

    I'm just venting a bit,,,
    But when did this become acceptable behavior?


  2. Deltaboy1984

    Deltaboy1984 Member

    Nov 21, 2008
    Johnson County Texas
    I understand your being upset, the gentleman failed to follow common gun range edicate.:fire:
  3. guyfromohio

    guyfromohio Member

    Nov 23, 2011
    You're not out of line. Extremely rude.
  4. Hanzo581

    Hanzo581 Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    Chesapeake, Virginia
    You did the right thing getting him removed. I've had people ask if I was going to keep my brass, which I don't, but to just take it....no way.
  5. zeos

    zeos Member

    Jan 13, 2011
    waco, tx
    You have every right to be angry. I don't reload and when people ask I let them have my brass, but if I ran into someone so rude I would do the same thing on principle alone.
  6. Ryanxia

    Ryanxia Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Wow haha, that's way out of line. To me, once someone leaves the range it's free game (unless of course you just ask them). I'll usually let people have my brass depending on what caliber, if it's something my friends need or is in high demand that someone at my LGS will be able to use (9mm, 5.56, .45ACP, etc.) I'll pick it up myself.
  7. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

    Mar 18, 2009
    Central Arkansas
    Those people aren't brass rats. They're thieves.
    I consider myself a brass rat. I check the brass buckets as soon as I get to the range (that's what they're there for). I have been known to dig through the range trash cans (just paper targets, ammo boxes etc. Nothing gross).
    However, regarding brass on the ground, I only pick up the brass on the ground if I am the only one there and it is obvious that it was left there. If someone was trying to get my brass when I shot it, I would consider him a thief and respond accordingly.
  8. Newcatwalt

    Newcatwalt Member

    Dec 9, 2008
    Henderson, NV
    You were right in being upset with that guy. I can't believe he would think it was OK to pick up your brass while you're still there shooting without asking first. Also, I think it's very rude to pick up someone's brass while they're still shooting because it's too distracting for the shooter and probably very unsafe.
  9. akv3g4n

    akv3g4n Member

    Jan 8, 2013
    Hiram, OH
    The park rangers at the public range that I go to make it a point to say that you have every right to recover your brass and it's yours to keep. Once you put it in the brass bucket for the range, they recycle it and use the proceeds to better the range.

    I've had people ask for my brass, but I reload so I politely tell them that I will reuse it. Never had someone just start grabbing it. I think I'd be a little peeved too.
  10. skeptical_in_Ohio

    skeptical_in_Ohio Member

    Sep 4, 2011
    Slight change of topic, but a happy story...

    Hi all-

    I concur with the brass stealing concerns expressed here. The vast majority of people (at least those I see) at the range where I generally shoot (public State of Ohio range) not only won't touch others' brass without permission, but generally will try to be careful not to accidentally broom it away when they're cleaning up their stuff.

    To the slight topic change. I don't reload myself, but give it (that which isn't aluminum) to either my gunsmith (who once jeweled the bolt on a Marlin I needed blued because he knew my son would shoot it), or a nice guy who's been at the range and given me a lot of encouragement and advice. Over the past couple of years he's gotten a lot of revolver stuff from me (easy for me to police that) and the vast majority of my .45 and 9mm (that I can easily find with a broom when I take a minute between mags). I also hand him my unneeded empty trays.

    The other day, he (the range buddy) walked up with a box and handed it to me. I thought he just wanted me to see something, but then he informed me he was giving me a box (50 rounds) of .38 special target loads that he hand-loaded. :what:

    Since I don't reload, I'm very aware of what bullets cost, so I thanked him profusely (and the empties left from the box of .357 I shot out last week are definitely his). ;)

    Sometimes a happy story is nice to hear. :)
  11. 119er

    119er Member

    May 3, 2011
    That guy was way out of line! I have run into one or two old men that feel they are entitled to do whatever they like whether it be due to their age or possibly their status within the organization. Last I have checked our club has no rules regarding the issues of brass other than you are to pick your own to keep the grounds clean. It is left to adults to use common sense and courtesy to achieve this. It works for us but many people still leave .22LR and steel cases on the ground which I pick up as I come across them. I am a self proclaimed brass rat but I have limits. I only graze on empty ranges and I will not interrupt someone to ask about their brass. If they are still shooting when I leave I just leave it there for them to pick up or leave for the next guy. I am at a private club and most non-reloaders will notice those who are reloaders and will typically offer up their brass. If they do I insist that I will pick it up for them in return for their generosity. Some will just pick it up and bring it over.
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 20, 2006
    That's not a brass rat, that's a rude so and so...... *sigh*
  13. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    Taking your brass when you make it known you wish to keep it while it is hot and next to you is only slightly different than simply stealing the ammunition while it is still loaded sitting next to you.
    It does not cease to be your property upon being fired. You have indicated you wish to retain it.
    Being cycled through an action is not inherently different than unboxing it and setting them next to you on a bench.
    Proceeding to take it anyways is theft.
    If you were playing with a ball dropping it, throwing it, losing control of it, but clearly wishing to retain ownership of it, you would lose no right to its ownership each time it got away from you.

    Some people are just accustomed to most people abandoning brass.
    Until the economy had trouble 99% of shooters abandoned thier brass. In fact it was seen as waste, and considered littering to some. I remember people complaining about how some shooting areas were left covered in it. I myself never really saw metal brass as litter, though plastic shotgun hulls did seem like littering to me.
    Many informal established outdoor ranges had years of accumulated brass, that most were content leaving where it was. Informal outdoor ranges would have brass going back many years, and it could be interesting just to see how far back some appeared to go.
    Occasional reloaders would pick through it, but I never saw people collecting it for people other than themselves in small quantities.
    Even most reloaders didn't seem to consider it valuable as they were not hoarding it, just looking for oddball calibers they could use themselves.

    Then when the economy had trouble people realized it could be recycled for money, others realized they could sell some to reloaders for money, and the next thing you knew so many people were trying to take all the brass that ranges started creating rules against taking brass.
    Places with years of accumlated brass a foot deep were being shoveled clean.
    When those disappeared people were out scrounging and taking brass from more sparse areas.

    It is funny, something once seen entirely as a waste product by most shooters, and valued only by the small number of reloaders that could acquire almost all they wanted for free at any time is now a sparse commodity that ranges covet and shooters wish to retain ownership of, even when they have no intent to use it themselves. 9mm brass even, 9x19 brass was considered the most worthless of all, so common anyone had all they would ever need or want sitting free at ranges everywhere and reloading it was generally considered a waste of time since it was the most competitively priced inexpensive centerfire round out there.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2013
  14. j1

    j1 Member

    Oct 17, 2011
    Good that you did not argue with the old fool cause then it gets hard to tell who is the fool. Good move, sir. Thanks for the post too.

    I would not have believed it if you had not posted it either.
  15. mcdonl

    mcdonl Member

    Nov 24, 2008
    Southern Maine
    Geeze, make sure you never drop a gun or equipment near this guy... given his logic it is "fair game"....
  16. Furncliff

    Furncliff Member

    Dec 10, 2005
    Western Slope of Colorado
    The old fart is just trying to supplement his BS social security check and he may also be on the verge of dementia. Have some pity.
  17. jcwit

    jcwit member

    Oct 19, 2007
    Great state of Indiana
    I collect brass at the range I frequent. BUT, If others are there I always ask, never ever but in and start collecting.

    Actually I don't collect much anymore as I have way more than I'll ever need, and at times give some to friends who are in need.
  18. JSH1

    JSH1 Member

    Jun 12, 2013
    I shoot at a public range located in a wildlife management area. The rifle / pistol range is littered with brass from people who shoot and then just walk away leaving their mess for the next guy. The shotgun range is even worse with more empty hulls than gravel. As much as litterbugs bother me I would equally angry if some guy was trying to catch my brass in the air. That is equally out of line.
  19. Agsalaska

    Agsalaska Member

    Mar 11, 2012
    When I first saw your post, I expected it all to rhyme.

    That being said, that would really piss me off.
  20. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

    May 10, 2005
    Kingsport Tennessee
    I have never seen behavior like that at the club I belong to.

    I collect my brass. I collect cold brass abandoned by shooters who have left. In picking up my brass, finding brass of active shooters mixed in, I place their brass that I picked up on their bench as a courtesy.

    I feel it only ceases to be your property if you abandon it.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2013
  21. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

    Mar 9, 2013
    No doubt on the rhyming- nice indentions ! I thought it was a limerick, or a haiku :)
  22. Elm Creek Smith

    Elm Creek Smith Member

    Aug 22, 2007
    I'm 61, and I'd have asked him to stay right there and switched to my Mini-14 with steel-cased ammo....

    Some people...


    Sent from my little slice of Heaven.
  23. Deer_Freak

    Deer_Freak Member.

    Dec 20, 2012
    North Carolina
    I am not taking up for the brass rat. It just pisses me off that things are so tight for people on a fixed income they have to to pick up scrap to make ends meet. Brass pays pretty good right now. My wife took two coffee cans of centerfire brass to the scrap yard and got enough for two nice pizzas. They would have given her more if I had knocked the primers out of the brass.
  24. Potatohead

    Potatohead Member

    Mar 9, 2013
    Small hell. Thats more like hitting the lottery nowadays!
  25. Spade5

    Spade5 Member

    Dec 27, 2012
    Houston, TX
    It wasn't RC, was it?

    If it had been RC I would say you got off light. My gut feeling is it is better to stay on his good side.
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