Range side berm construction ideas

Posted this on P&S Off Topic FB Group. I want to post it here as a better place to store the info.

Our range is wanting to expand. Unfortunately most of the people have no vision or the ability to think outside the box. Since we have such a huge crowd here what I am looking for is ideals for side berms and such besides dirt.
Ideally pics of your local ranges that you go to would be nice. off the top of my head I'm thinking Hesco barriers (if we can get them), large concrete eco blocks 2x2x6 or I think they make some 3x3x6 ones etc.
 

275RLTW

Regular Member
Hescos are dirt and leave a gap in between unless you go multiple layer thick. Bricks degrade over time and do not guarantee ballistic protection.

Not the answer you wanted to hear but dirt is preferred medium.
 
These right here are pretty cool. I sent them an email asking for specs and pricing. But I think shipping will be a deal breaker. I'll have to investigate if any of the local guys make anything like this.

rangeberm.jpg


http://www.hansonsilo.com/precast-shooting-walls.php
 

PatMcG

Member
I don't know if they use special materials in those cement walls but the look just like bunker silo walls that livestock farmers have been using forever.


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TacMed

Amateur
We have used wood chips. We have dozens of acres of trees, and we chip our own when we're clearing. They degrade and shrink over time, but we have a lot of trees that come down.
 

H-Minus

Newbie
The concrete is supposed to be shock-absorbant. Keep in mind, you will have to account for ammuntion type, and targets with a gun-target line that ends in the wall probably will need to have a durabloc backer (Durabloc is shredded, compressed tires ) to prevent through-shots or excessive damage to the concrete. Especially if the other side of the wall is hot.
 
Posted this on P&S Off Topic FB Group. I want to post it here as a better place to store the info.

Our range is wanting to expand. Unfortunately most of the people have no vision or the ability to think outside the box. Since we have such a huge crowd here what I am looking for is ideals for side berms and such besides dirt.
Ideally pics of your local ranges that you go to would be nice. off the top of my head I'm thinking Hesco barriers (if we can get them), large concrete eco blocks 2x2x6 or I think they make some 3x3x6 ones etc.
If build time doesn't concern you (or the extra labor cost of your employees), contact a local scrap yard, junkyard, tire shop, tire recycler etc... These places usually have an extremely large inventory of waste tires that they'd rather not pay a disposal fee on.

Minimum tire diameter should be 28". So... family sedan or larger. You can used dirt for fill, but my recommendation is getting a pallet of stucco mix, a few 2K# bags of turf infill (that shredded rubber pellet stuff) and mixing them all together DRY. Fill two walls of tires with such a mix, and over a few rains, you'll have a recycled, flexible, sound deadening, low cost, and EFFECTIVE ballistic barrier that you, your customers, and employees will appreciate for years.

You'll also be able to paint company logos onto the wall if you feel so inclined.

If you need a design plan, or a contractor assist, message.

Depending on the state or locale, you may even get a tax break/write-off for utilizing recycled resources.

I've helped design this before, and it has been very efficient. For the skeptics out there, you can also backfill on the exterior of these walls with plain old dirt.

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H-Minus

Newbie
One of the major concerns that should address your side wall construction is whether it is a stand-alone bay, or if there will be a bay to the left or right. If the wall is going to be potentially 'hot' (as in people on the other side of it) then you need to be aware of the need for monitoring that wall or berm more frequently.

The DoE guidlines I posted above are a good rule of thumb to follow for your sidewall thickness for range construction. This all depends upon what the maximum caliber you plan on having fired in that particular range. The guidelinea also gives some good suggestions for overall maintenance.

Think about the planned usage of your range. Is it going to be pistol caliber only? Do you want to use it for three-gun matches? The wall thickness requirements differ for both range types.

If you're doing a dirt berm, make sure you add in seeding or sod costs. Grass will help prevent erosion of the berm, and will ensure it maintains its thickness over a longer period of time.
 

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H-Minus

Newbie
Just for carification: The values listed in the above attached picture are for new construction materials. Re-used material may need to be thicker than these minimums, depending upon what your caliber restrictions are.

Moreover, those were the suggested quantities for standard government ammunition (e.g. M855, M80). Hand-loads or +p may require a thicker backstop.

So If I know in my range planning that I am going to be dealing with 5.56-6.5mm in hot loads or armor-piercing projectiles. I would use the 7.62 minimum thickness for side walls.
 
@H-Minus Think of tire use at a range as underlayment for laminate flooring.

Replacement time frame for tires is rare. 10+ years easily. But the internal fill will settle over time and will need maintenance.

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