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New England Airgun

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Steelhead:
This is a topic that I have pondered (airgun-specific place to shoot) for a while, as I'm sure just about everyone has at one time or another. While I am blessed with a number of properties from my yard to within a 15 minute drive from which I can shoot, most aren't that fortunate.

Reading the comments above, it's apparent that WHERE you live is a huge factor from weather (requiring indoor) to legality, to available area with which to have a range.

Where I live in NorCal, it's farm land and dairy country surrounded by fairly large communities with metropolitan areas (San Francisco) within a 45 minute drive. As far as getting enough people to sign up, my opinion is if it can't be done here it can't be done anywhere. There are a few million people within an hour's drive of me. Here's what I've come up with as factors:

1) The range would have to be outdoor. Indoor is EPA nightmare nor is it cost effective given the commercial property value here.
2) The range would have to be private/members only. Liability would be a major factor and controlling who and when the range is used would be required.
3) Environmental issues. More than half of the farmland around my area is certified organic. A range where lead is deposited would never fly. You can't even used pressure-treated fence posts.
4) On a positive note, there are innumerable ranches/locations close by that would be perfect. All easily accessible from major freeways.
5) Membership covering the cost of leasing the space. Land is extremely valuable here and used for a variety of things. One thing is that I think is a positive is that a range is really easy on the land vs. farming, cattle, etc.  A land owner can basically make some $'s without a lot of the variables of agricultural use.
6) Liability. The biggest factor. How can a land owner be protected against a lawsuit and how could a club get insurance so that a landowner would even consider it?

I currently hunt and shoot in areas that could accommodate an airgun range. Armed with a game plan and my ducks in a row with costs, insurance, etc. I could probably make something happen if it was deemed possible. That being said, I would need a lot of help and backing by folks who are smarter than I at the legal/business end of things. If others in the area would be interested I would entertain the idea of searching and seeing what could be done.

Alan:
And that's the point, isn't it Kevin?

My research indicated, that only eight new "public" ranges were opened in 2017. All were outdoors, which speak volumes. The only "indoor" range I have any financial numbers on, was build in 1972. The cost then was just over $270,000 including the retail space built over the range. That's about $500,000 in today's dollars. However, with current building and EPA codes, the cost would exceed $1,000,000. That kind of investment is hard to amortize under today's anti-gun, legislative, sentiment.

And like you, Kevin, I have less than a 10 minute drive to fertile hunting grounds. The "range" is wherever you set up the target stand! We are blessed Kevin!

GungaDin:

--- Quote ---EPA rules make it darn difficult to build a public, indoor shooting range. Lead dust issues, don't you know?
--- End quote ---
Yup, the owner of New England Airgun ran in to that too hence

--- Quote ---Our range can handle .177 .22 and .25 calibers of lead-free ammunition. (this includes plastic bb's used in airsoft and metal bb's common in bb-guns.)
--- End quote ---

Dcorvino:
Thanks for posting about New England Airgun.
Great place to check out
John has a nice selection of Airguns to try and purchase
Definitely recommend them If your in the area

Dave

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