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 Post subject: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 11:24 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 10:53 am
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Hey everyone,
New guy here - both to the forum and to shooting clays. Looks like a wealth of excellent information here!! My apologies in advance if this question has been asked already. I searched and couldn't find anything.

Anyway, I'd like to start doing some backyard clay shooting and I want to know about how large of an area I would need to plan for. I live on 5 acres, and behind me is a 90 acre farm field which I don't own and would not want to intrude upon. I know the guy who owns it well enough to be able to ask permission, but I'd just like to keep everything on the land I own if possible.

My property is about 750 feet long and 300 feet wide, and the house sits on the back third portion of the lot.

Here's a link to an aerial shot of my house for better reference. My property is outlined in red.

How far are clays normally thrown on average? Is 70 yards about right, or am I way off?

Thanks in advance for any advice you guys can give. There really aren't any ranges nearby (closest one is about 50 minutes away) so backyard shooting is really the best option for me right now. I've always been interested in starting up, and now I finally have the means and (hopefully) the room to get started.

Thanks again!
griswold


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 11:53 am 
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The target isn't the problem.... it's the shotfall area that must be clear, and that's typically 250 to 300 yards from the shooter. I seem to recall ATA or NSCA or USSA or somebody requiring 400 yards clear for the shotfall.


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 12:12 pm 
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Welcome!

#9 shot will carry almost 1000 feet under optimum conditions. Larger shot (7.5, 8, 8.5) will carry farther. This WILL intrude on your neighbor's land and this is what you would want to clear with him. And if you really want to get into it, it may create some nasty environmental law issues you'll have to deal with. Keeping the targets in your yard probably won't be too tough. I doubt you're planning on buying a trap that would throw 70+ yd clays.

Besides, 50 minutes to the range is hardly a long ways away. That's about how far away I am from the nearest range and I'm there twice a week during the season (which is about to start back up for me). Hell, I drive that long each way just to school and back each day. It's just part of living "out West," I suppose....

:D

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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 12:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 10:53 am
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Thanks for the replies!

That makes sense about shotfall being more of a concern. As far as environmental issues go, I'm not talking about a lot of shooting here - occasionally on the weekends is all. Maybe a couple hundred shells every 2-3 months or so. I'd use steel shot too, not lead. Or are there other environmental concerns I should think about?

MRPOWER:
50 minutes may not be long for you, but for me that's a bit far. Especially when I compare it to the possibility of walking 50 feet out my door instead. :)

Thanks again guys!


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2007 9:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 1:52 pm
Posts: 30
Location: Central Ca Coast
I have 5 acres also and do do some shooting it is very handy to keep in practice when I am too busy to shoot at the range. I throw my clays into a hill side so shot travel is not a problem for me.
Here's the thing though, your average home thrower is just not powerful enough to equal what you get at the range. You also can't get the angles. It's good for some practice but you really need that range to get better.
Just my thoughts


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 3:51 am 
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First of all make sure that you can discharge a firearm on your property. Then make sure that your neighbors are ok with your shooting. Nothing like being awaken and kept awake by gun fire in the morning after working all night.

There are 2 types of targets being made. Those that are made with pitch and those that are made with sulfur. The pitch targets are poisonous to pigs and will not bio-degrade. The sulfur ones are bio-degradable, these will disintegrate with moisture. The high sulfur content will cause problems with the PH of the soil. So if you use these make sure all the pieces fall on your land and retrieve any that land outside your boundary.

From the lay out of your property it looks like you need to get the permission of the farm land to allow for the shot fallout. You may have to use steel shot because of the recent hype concerning lead poisoning. The normal recommended shot fall zone is 300 yards or 900 feet. This if using shot size no larger than 7 1/2, with velocity of 1260 f/s or less. Smaller shot and lower velocity would be preferred. These were figured with lead shot, I would think that steel would not travel as far.

After getting the ok of the neighbor's 3 or 4 lots both ways and the permission of the farmer to let the shot fall on his property; I would set the trap behind the house about half way to the adjacent property, as far forward without endangering your house, throwing the clay toward the farm land.

What you really need to do is get the farmer interested in shooting clay targets.

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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 1:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2007 2:25 pm
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Location: Wisconsin
I had a neighbor come down and thank me this year for shooting. It seems that his riding stock no longer are spooked by loud noises. There are a couple I wish would come down so I could tell them about their dog that barks all the time. I do shoot into a hill also and can get some pretty good targets in the air to practice on. I use the pro-matic eagle and it will throw a target 70+ yards. I do use 8 1/2 shot to keep the shot fall close and watch wind direction. I am also pretty much surrounded by woods.


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 2:54 pm 
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From the aerial shot it appears that most targets (unless hand launched) and 90% of your shotfall (figure out to about 300yds anyway) will be significantly on the neighbors property... but its more than my zero lot line provides :) Id go chat with the neighbor and see what you can work out.

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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2007 11:58 am 
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2007 1:39 am
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griswold - The 300 yard distance is a good minimum provided you are shooting nothing heavier than No. 8 shot, and even then, the wind can carry shot fall out beyond that. Wondered if there might be any interest on the part of the effected neighbor to join you in your backyard for some clays. If they have a son who is ready to learn about firearms shooting and safety, you could start off with a trip to a nearby shooting ground and then, some time later, offer to use your own back yard for joint sessions if they warm to the idea.

If, however, their first introduction to your shooting is the sound of a "bang" coming from your direction, followed by the pitter-patter of spent shot on the windows (or, much worse, on the head of someone mowing the grass) well then, chances are you will be experiencing some difficulties from a hysterical neighbor and a very unsympathetic sheriff.


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 Post subject: Re: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2007 3:28 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 10:53 am
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waverider wrote:
First of all make sure that you can discharge a firearm on your property.
From what I understand of the Ohio revised code, I am able to do so. I am going to call the sheriff's office first to confirm though.
waverider wrote:
Then make sure that your neighbors are ok with your shooting.
I suppose this would be the neighborly thing to do, but if I'm not breaking any laws, I don't see much point in me asking them. In my opinion, asking them and then doing it anyway despite their possible objections is worse than just doing it and then explaining the law to them if they ask me what I'm doing. Don't get me wrong - I'd be friendly about it and try to accommodate them as far as the time of day goes, but if I'm within the law then I don't see a problem with it. All I'm talking about is a few afternoons per month on the weekends - no early morning or late night hours or anything.
waverider wrote:
You may have to use steel shot because of the recent hype concerning lead poisoning.
I am planning on using No. 9 steel shot.
NuClayGuy wrote:
From the aerial shot it appears that most targets (unless hand launched) and 90% of your shotfall (figure out to about 300yds anyway) will be significantly on the neighbors property
Really? From what I understand I should expect the targets to travel between 50 and 70 yards - well within the limits of my property lines. Is this incorrect?

SidelockSxS:
The affected neighbor in this case is an empty farm field, not residential property. I will not be shooting toward land inhabited by a dwelling of any kind - just 90 acres of dirt.

Again, thanks all for the responses. If any of my comments in this post don't seem respectful, please forgive me for communicating my intentions poorly. My goal here is to learn, not to be a jerk about anything :)


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 Post subject: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 7:52 pm 
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Location: Pennsylvania
I would not take the chance of shooting the and go to a skeet range.

Claybuster :D

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 Post subject: Re: re: How much room needed for backyard shooting?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 8:02 pm 
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griswold wrote:
The affected neighbor in this case is an empty farm field, not residential property. I will not be shooting toward land inhabited by a dwelling of any kind - just 90 acres of dirt.


We've already established that you can't contain the shot on your property. It may be 90 acres of dirt, but it isn't YOUR dirt, so drop the idea.

Can I come dump things on your lot? I didn't think so.


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