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Posted: 1/1/2006 3:48:16 PM EDT
any of you or your depts have regular moving target drills? was wondering what type of equipment might be available that is fairly economical for getting folks off the square range...

TIA...
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 6:00:01 PM EDT
The simplest. most portable and least expensive thing I've used is surprisingly effective but requires a little sweat equity. All of the parts can be had from Home Depot. It takes longer to describe than to set up!

The most difficult thing is to come up with four stout posts, poles or other anchor points on the range. Some 4x4's buried in some post holes works well, one at each corner of a pit, say. Or four large portable barricades with big bases that won't tip over.

Between the two downrange posts stretch a guy wire (cable). Use whatever hardware you find convenient to attach it to the posts. A turnbuckle or come-along can be used to tighten it as required, but it doesn't need to be super-tight. Place a couple of pulleys or sheaves to ride on the cable (the kind that won't fall off) prior to securing the second end. Attach a a pulley to each post with a short length of rope (just loop it around the post/cable junction) so that each these pulleys hangs about 6" or so below the cable (the short rope will allow these pulleys to have some freedom of movement--this is very important).

Build a simple rectangular target carrier out of 1x2 strapping. Hang it from the pulleys that ride on the cable.

At the uprange posts or anchor points attach pulleys in a manner similar to that done at the downrange posts. Again, attaching these pulleys in a manner that leaves them free to twist, e.g. on a short length of rope, so that the operating rope has a fair lead through them is very important for smooth operation.

Finally, get a very long piece of rope. Route it in a big loop: attach one end to the left target carrier pulley, then route it through the left downrange anchor pulley, then the left uprange anchor pulley, then the right uprange anchor pulley, the right downrange anchor pulley, and finally attach the other end to the right target carrier pulley. If you have extra rope coil it neatly at the center of the uprange end of the rope and tie the coil off there, or just cut it off to obtain the custom length loop for that range.

Use good quality rope, pulleys and hardware so that operation is smooth.

Operation is simplicity itself. The target operator grabs the rope at the uprange end and runs back and forth behind the shooter to animate the target laterally in whatever manner is desired. A bit tiring, but complex motions and target behaviors in response to shooter actions can be easily accomplished. Cover and concealment can be set up in front of the moving target plane to add complexity.

This system is super simple, flexible and can be engineered to be completely portable. Downsides are the human power factor, lack of repeatability (but this is training, not competition) and target motion can be telegraphed by sensing operator motion or motion of the apparatus. Still, all-in-all very challenging.

aa
Link Posted: 1/2/2006 7:15:12 AM EDT
thanks aa - very descriptive there, and the system sounds like that would work for our needs. if you happen to have pictures of any set-ups you can post that would be cool. i'll get started on something like that and post pics later if anybody is interested...

Link Posted: 1/2/2006 9:33:43 AM EDT
Sorry, no pic's, and everything's stored away for the Winter.

Our specific set-up is competely portable, at least around the range. For downrange anchors we use a couple of 8' tall barricades with 4' bases. They are "L" shaped and set downrange with the L's facing each other, this keeps them from being pulled inward and over. We have a bunch of these. The L shape lets them easily nest together in a stack for storage and leaves one side completely free of tripping hazards. There is some tripping hazard around the bases on the reverse side so the RO cadre needs to be mindful of this. When we set them upright either as barricades, walls or whatever we weight them down with tires inside the 4' base area.

For uprange anchors we use a couple of large tires filled with dirt.

A couple of guys can carry the barricades (1/2" plywood over 2x4 frame) from pit to pit as required (actually, we should get around to putting some wheels on them), and the tires are easily rolled to where you want them. The cable rolls up and is stored in a bag with the rope, pulleys and hardware. We leave the rope long and just coil it in the middle of the uprange side as required.

While we're on the subject of training facilities, we also set up a 40'x32' (approx.) pit with 4x4 posts buried in holes in an 8' grid. With a little 1x2 strapping screwed up across the tops, a staple gun and a roll of black plastic sheeting you can set up interesting "rooms" and "hallways", etc. It's not a shoothouse in that the walls aren't bulletproof so for safety reasons it's one shooter at a time and the RO staff MUST have the skills to keep shooters from getting disoriented or falling into the trap of thinking it's more than a 180 deg. shooting environment (you can't just be "timer holder"!). For more elaborate scenarios it's little additional work to put up an actual working door or window. It's the next best thing to a shoothouse, though, and easy and cheap to construct (except for digging those *&^%$#! holes!)

Pop-up/out targets are easily constructed--think old-fashioned mouse-trap just built large. These can be screwed (a portable electric drill is your best friend) to the backs of barricades, etc. Operate them by pulling on hidden strings as the shooter runs through the scenario.

Black plastic sheeting or large tarps hung across a cable in front of a pit is also a good way to create "unknown" scenarios, if the previous shooters can keep their mouths shut

aa
Link Posted: 1/3/2006 6:19:26 PM EDT
2x4's, a pepper popper, and some string. knock over pepper popper, pp pulls out a pin and away the mover goes



Link Posted: 1/4/2006 12:37:12 PM EDT
nizzzzzzeeeee......i like it....
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