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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:09
pyro6999 View Drop Down
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So my father in law has this idea going on that we can build ourselves an underground indoor range with some of the normal products we work with quite often, ok, thats fine and dandy with me, the thing i need you engineer guys to tell me is this, will there be any strange pressure spikes to deal with?? i realize it will be louder than hell when you squeeze one off, but will being under ground shooting through a tunnel basically, create any funky pressure situations that could damage a rifle??
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:20
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Pyro, don't tell me your going to do this in corrigated/culvert pipe?  Though it just might work, and also serve as a make ship bunker or lieny's cellar.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:24
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actually we will use plastic culvert its a little cheaper but yeah we were thinking a 36" pipe 300ft long buried about 3ft down and have a light or two on the target end and run the targets down with a cable and a bicycle pedal setup and dig in a small room on one end with the bench and have a set of stairs and a door to keep it warm etc.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:33
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You know this is going to get real interesting?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:37
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well we thought if we do it right the neighbors will never hear a thing. we will have about $10000 in pipe though is the bad part.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 16:39
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No, shooting in an underground tunnel has no effect on the rifle whatsoever, and doesn't change the pressures from firing.  The only difference will be that the sound pressure (db) will be higher, but you will be wearing hearing protection anyway, and you can add sound baffling inside the room and the tube.  Are you really going to build this?  It will be very expensive!  Besides the long, powered overhead chain driven track to transport the target  frame downrange, the other things you will need to consider are:
 
1.  You may have to get some kind of environmental permit since you'll be depositing lead underground.
2.  You'll need to install some sort of active ventilation system so that you won't be ingesting lead and the gases from firing.
3.  You'll need to create a drainage system to keep water seeping through the soil from leaking into the tube and shooting room.
4.  The inside of the tube will require lighting at various distances in order to see the target.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 17:01
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ted: here is the plan, we will be using 36" pipe which will be connected so its water tight, we have sandy soil here so water wont be an issue, we will also spray foam the pipe for more sound proofing and also prevention of what little water would ever be around, we are thinking we will have doors on both ends of the tube for venting, we wont have a powered cable system, it will be manually opperated with the aid of some old bike parts, as far as the lead goes, good point there.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 17:30
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 Are you planning on using plastic pipe?
If you dont need to worry about a waterproof seal, you may wish to compare the cost of precast concrete sewer pipe, it comes in sections, push it together with backhoe.  I have no idea how it compares in cost, though.  Good luck with this project, I think it's a great idea, and seriously considered it myself a couple years ago.  It just wasn't in the budget,then.
 
 edited to add: I just re-read the part where you mentioned  plastic culvert.


Edited by RONK - April/06/2008 at 18:53
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 17:36
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Pyro, passive ventilation won't be good enough.  You will need a pretty substantial air handler system to circulate air in and out of the room and create negative pressure inside.  Otherwise, you will have toxic particulates in the air that you will be inhaling. 
 
If you are using plastic pipe, you'd better hope you never shoot the sides of the tube and/or get a deflection, because you will then have an instant leak.  All of the shooting tunnels I've seen had concrete or steel tubes.
 
How are you planning to mount your trolley for the target frame inside the pipe, and how will it be supported?
 
I would recommend you do a lot of research on the requirements for an enclosed shooting tunnel before you commit to the project.  No doubt it would be great to have, but you may find that it's more involved both in complexity and $ than you think.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 17:47
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I'd still want a french drain of some sort along the side.  I also think about some Ice and Water shield ran under and over the pipe to help should a round stray.  
 
What about condensation?  Back stop?  or how are you going to keep the thing from filling in at the target end? 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 18:01
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we will basically be making a small basement at each end like an 8x12 room with icf walls, the trolley will just be a cable and a couple of pulleys really, see this is why i need you engineer guys to speak up and tell me how to do this stuff, digging the pipe in and laying in the ground is cheap since we have the machines to do it, just figuring out the details is the hard part, we could easily get some ventilation fans and put them in the room and vent that way, electric fan is about $500 thats easy, if we dig the pipe in about 4ft or so down we wont have any water issues, frost would be the only concern, but with the sand we have around here even the frost wont be much of an issue. as far as the money goes its not mine to spend im just there for ideas and labor.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 19:08
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I would definitely ditch the bicycle pedal cranking idea and install an electric motor to power the trolley instead.  Do you realize how much hand cranking you'd have to do to move the target frame 100 yards?  Rigging up an electric motor with a belt pulley to a chain sprocket wouldn't be very expensive.  You can rig up a trip switch that turns on lights when the trolley reaches the 50 and 100 yard marks.
 
I don't think a simple fan arrangement will be sufficient to get the air movement you'll need.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 19:59
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i dont think you realize what a fire dept ventilation fan is capable of, i dont think we would be hanging a target frame from the cable, more like a close pin with a target hooked to it
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 21:38
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What about a 750 cfm power roof vent fan, 8x12x8=768?  You need to suck the stuff down the pipe.  Two of them would turn the air in the room and the tube in about three minutes.  You would also want some sort of air filter like a furnace filter, just to help keep the mess down. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/06/2008 at 21:42
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http://www.snailtraps.com  Something to think about.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 07:24
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And lay of the Mexican beans and boiled eggs the night before the shoot. A methane gas explosion is not a pretty sight.
 
Good luck with this project.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 10:28
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Tunnels have long been a standard for shooting tests, so the basic idea is sound.

I have to say that I am also a bit concerned about the idea of using plastic pipe for the structure.  A PVC pipe is going to end up with holes from missed shots over time. And as the pipe won't lay perfectly flat I would expect you will need holes along the bottom of the pipe for water to drain from once it leaks into the holes. If you are dead set on using plastic, I would make sure you have a good drain field under the pipe. Concrete pipe would seem the way to go, but I am not an expert on such things.

As for venting, that fan will move a hell of a lot of air (maybe too much), but the key is to make sure the air has only one path to follow. In other words, the fan has to pressurize the first room in order for the air to be forced down the pipe to the second room where said air will vent to the atmosphere.

Just my two cents.





Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 12:58
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Lex (owner of Rifle's Inc.) has built two underground shooting ranges and knows all about what to do and what not to do.  I've shot in his second one and it is very nice.  He does not use a cable or pulley system.  He has a large piece of white card board with a grid system on it that he can change out via an access port above ground.  He has a video camera hooked to a computer that is running some software that recognizes any new shots on the target.  It is tied to some ballistic software as is a chronograph.  As you shoot you can immediately see your group on the computer monitor and the software automatically measures the groups and gives you ballistic data.

The room is about 10x10 and houses all of his reloading equipment so he can work up loads very quickly and easily while testing them.  The actual tunnel is semi sealed off from the room and accessed via a sliding window much like a drive through restaurant.  The room has a built in bench along the wall that connects the tunnel so all you have to do is open the window, put the rifle in the rest (barrel sticks out into the tunnel) and shoot.  The tunnel has several tires suspended in it too but I forgot what their purpose was.
 
I've briefly discussed with him what all is involved as we are looking at doing a 100 yard underground range at our new location and he told me that it is pretty involved and pretty pricey to do it right.  One of the most important things he stressed was to have it properly ventilated because the gas is very toxic. 
 
I would give him a call and ask him some specifics.  He is very busy and a man of few words he also does not have much patience so if you do call him have your question ready and tell him up front you won't take much time.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 14:11
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This is an great idea. I have actually never heard of it. Food for thought.

 

For the pully system you can use a electric garage door opener that has the screw rod.

For the venalaton system about all you would need it 2 6foot by 6 foot vent fans blowing out at each end and a 4x4 venta loover in the middle for fresh air intake. But you would probably need something moving the air 24/7 to keep it from being so muggy all the time.

 

But that would be a awesome thing to have under the house is a private 100yd range

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 17:50
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Originally posted by Chris Farris Chris Farris wrote:

Lex (owner of Rifle's Inc.) has built two underground shooting ranges and knows all about what to do and what not to do.  I've shot in his second one and it is very nice.  He does not use a cable or pulley system.  He has a large piece of white card board with a grid system on it that he can change out via an access port above ground.  He has a video camera hooked to a computer that is running some software that recognizes any new shots on the target.  It is tied to some ballistic software as is a chronograph.  As you shoot you can immediately see your group on the computer monitor and the software automatically measures the groups and gives you ballistic data.

The room is about 10x10 and houses all of his reloading equipment so he can work up loads very quickly and easily while testing them.  The actual tunnel is semi sealed off from the room and accessed via a sliding window much like a drive through restaurant.  The room has a built in bench along the wall that connects the tunnel so all you have to do is open the window, put the rifle in the rest (barrel sticks out into the tunnel) and shoot.  The tunnel has several tires suspended in it too but I forgot what their purpose was.
 
I've briefly discussed with him what all is involved as we are looking at doing a 100 yard underground range at our new location and he told me that it is pretty involved and pretty pricey to do it right.  One of the most important things he stressed was to have it properly ventilated because the gas is very toxic. 
 
I would give him a call and ask him some specifics.  He is very busy and a man of few words he also does not have much patience so if you do call him have your question ready and tell him up front you won't take much time.
 
Good suggestion, Chris.  I've talked to Lex Webernick on several occasions and gathered the same thing -- he's a man of few words and seems to have little patience with idle chit-chat.
 
Pyro, see the "contact us" page at the following link for the phone #:
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 18:10
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thats the kind of stuff i need to hear fellars thanks for all that, i dont plan to shoot holes in the sides of the pipe, any new guns will be sited in at another location before hand, as far as the water goes i will once again stress that where i live we dont have ground water issues we have some of the most beautiful water absorbing sand you could ever want we put septic systems in this stuff every year and we never have problems with snow melting and flooding the systems so i am very confident that water will not be an issue, as far as the garage door opener goes i was thinking that myself last night i agree with it.
we would use concrete pipe but im pretty sure that 36" precast is more than $35 a ft like plastic pipe is.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 18:17
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You could use your original gear idea and instead of pedaling it, just hook a cordless drill up to it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 18:30
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hmm yeah that would work too, a grinder may be faster yet, or even a chainsaw or weedeater but then your introducing more fumes into the system, so an electric motor would be first choice i was talking to my brother in law and he said why not use a bunch of ballistic gel to catch the bullets, i said thats a thought.

Edited by pyro6999 - April/07/2008 at 18:31
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 18:44
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Chris still had the best idea of using a remote camera, truth be told it would probably be  less expensive and a whole lot less labor intensive to install.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/07/2008 at 18:55
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yeah they are actually cheap, less than $300
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