The problem with storing guns/ammo at a range
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28-04-2014, 06:19 PM
The problem with storing guns/ammo at a range
This is an argument I hear occasionally, mainly from people outside the US with little experience with guns, as a proposed gun control measure. Basically they want people to store all of their guns and ammunition at the shooting range, rather than keep them at home, so that gun owners can keep their guns, but there won't be any guns "on the street" so to speak.

While it's well-intentioned and the effort toward a compromise of sorts is appreciated, the idea fails on many levels.


A particular gun range, depending on the location and population density, may serve a community of gun owners anywhere from a couple hundred people in size, to several thousand. The business model that the majority off ranges operate on is that people bring their own guns and ammo (and possibly targets) and they pay to rent a booth or private range. The range then sells targets, ammunition (in case you don't have any), soda, brass, bumper stickers, etc. Some ranges will have guns available for rent. Some indoor ranges require people to purchase ammo at the range; these ranges are generally less popular except in dense urban areas where they may be the only choice.

For safety and security the range will have paid or volunteer "Range Officers" with years of experience who have been a member of the range for a long time and are trusted and respected among the local community. They patrol the firing line observing to make sure everyone is safe and following the range rules, helping new shooters or people who are having malfunctions with their gun, and acting as first responders in event of an accident.

Ammunition will generally be kept behind the counter in the main office, possibly behind a locked cage. Guns for rent are usually kept in a safe in the back someplace and only authorized people have the key/code.




So let's say you want everyone to store their guns at the range. Well, we immediately run into some problems. A range's safe is probably only sized for one or two dozen guns. You get a community of 200 people, the average gun owner will have two or three guns, and some may have dozens... For instance my father who owns near a hundred firearms. Suddenly you need safe and secure storage for five hundred firearms. It has to be secure against thieves, thieving employees, fire, earthquake, plus there has to be a system identifying which gun belongs to whom, and a system for locating a gun quickly on request when someone wants to shoot it. It's bad enough for five hundred guns. Imagine the most popular ranges in highly populated areas, with a thousand regular members and several thousand occasional shooters. Suddenly you need storage for ten thousand guns. Every shooting range suddenly has to be come Fort Knox.

The smaller ranges would not be able to bear the cost, and would immediately go bankrupt. The members of those ranges would then have to feed over into the larger ranges, exacerbating the issue. It's simply not safe, sustainable, or rational; putting the entire civilian firepower of an entire US city into a few centralized spots.


Then we get into storing ammo. Ranges will usually carry a few hundred to a few thousand rounds of the most popular calibres: .22LR, 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, .223, 7.62x39, .308, .30-06, 12ga buckshot and/or slugs. Maybe a few more. The problem is that this ammunition is normally meant only for the minority of shooters who didn't bring enough. No one buys it unless they have to, because it's usually grossly overpriced. If everyone needs to get ammo from the range, then the range will need to store tens of thousands of rounds of every popular type. At the point you might as well merge the gun store into the shooting range, make it one venue... no other business model would make sense.

But it's still a problem. What happens when you have a gun which fires some obscure or rare cartridge? Like .577/450 for the Martini-Henry? Or .577 NE for big bore hunting rifles? Or what about the M1 Garand, which fires the popular .30-06 cartridge, but has to use ammunition loaded to 1940s military specs or risk damage to the gun? Or what about compact semi-automatic pistols which are very picky about the ammunition they fire and have to have enough/not too much power or they malfunction? What about people who load their own ammunition to achieve maximum accuracy? For instance most people who shoot .300 Win Mag load their own ammo to tune the performance to their tastes.

And I haven't even mentioned the nightmare of giving people enough space and supplies to clean their firearms safely before they go into the range/store/fortress' vault. The whole setup would basically be the perfect environment for guns to be lost, damaged, or stolen.



Basically the entire thing turns into a logistical nightmare the size of a million bloated blue whales. It's such an impractical and nonsensical suggestion, with so little to recommend it, that for many people it comes across not as an attempt at compromise, but as a deliberate insult. That may not be the case, but it's the way many would perceive it.


It's just not a good plan.

E 2 = (mc 2)2 + (pc )2
614C → 714N + e + ̅νe
2 K(s) + 2 H2O(l) → 2 KOH(aq) + H2 (g) + 196 kJ/mol
It works, bitches.
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28-04-2014, 06:24 PM
RE: The problem with storing guns/ammo at a range
(28-04-2014 06:19 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:  This is an argument I hear occasionally, mainly from people outside the US with little experience with guns, as a proposed gun control measure. Basically they want people to store all of their guns and ammunition at the shooting range, rather than keep them at home, so that gun owners can keep their guns, but there won't be any guns "on the street" so to speak.

While it's well-intentioned and the effort toward a compromise of sorts is appreciated, the idea fails on many levels.


A particular gun range, depending on the location and population density, may serve a community of gun owners anywhere from a couple hundred people in size, to several thousand. The business model that the majority off ranges operate on is that people bring their own guns and ammo (and possibly targets) and they pay to rent a booth or private range. The range then sells targets, ammunition (in case you don't have any), soda, brass, bumper stickers, etc. Some ranges will have guns available for rent. Some indoor ranges require people to purchase ammo at the range; these ranges are generally less popular except in dense urban areas where they may be the only choice.

For safety and security the range will have paid or volunteer "Range Officers" with years of experience who have been a member of the range for a long time and are trusted and respected among the local community. They patrol the firing line observing to make sure everyone is safe and following the range rules, helping new shooters or people who are having malfunctions with their gun, and acting as first responders in event of an accident.

Ammunition will generally be kept behind the counter in the main office, possibly behind a locked cage. Guns for rent are usually kept in a safe in the back someplace and only authorized people have the key/code.




So let's say you want everyone to store their guns at the range. Well, we immediately run into some problems. A range's safe is probably only sized for one or two dozen guns. You get a community of 200 people, the average gun owner will have two or three guns, and some may have dozens... For instance my father who owns near a hundred firearms. Suddenly you need safe and secure storage for five hundred firearms. It has to be secure against thieves, thieving employees, fire, earthquake, plus there has to be a system identifying which gun belongs to whom, and a system for locating a gun quickly on request when someone wants to shoot it. It's bad enough for five hundred guns. Imagine the most popular ranges in highly populated areas, with a thousand regular members and several thousand occasional shooters. Suddenly you need storage for ten thousand guns. Every shooting range suddenly has to be come Fort Knox.

The smaller ranges would not be able to bear the cost, and would immediately go bankrupt. The members of those ranges would then have to feed over into the larger ranges, exacerbating the issue. It's simply not safe, sustainable, or rational; putting the entire civilian firepower of an entire US city into a few centralized spots.


Then we get into storing ammo. Ranges will usually carry a few hundred to a few thousand rounds of the most popular calibres: .22LR, 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, .223, 7.62x39, .308, .30-06, 12ga buckshot and/or slugs. Maybe a few more. The problem is that this ammunition is normally meant only for the minority of shooters who didn't bring enough. No one buys it unless they have to, because it's usually grossly overpriced. If everyone needs to get ammo from the range, then the range will need to store tens of thousands of rounds of every popular type. At the point you might as well merge the gun store into the shooting range, make it one venue... no other business model would make sense.

But it's still a problem. What happens when you have a gun which fires some obscure or rare cartridge? Like .577/450 for the Martini-Henry? Or .577 NE for big bore hunting rifles? Or what about the M1 Garand, which fires the popular .30-06 cartridge, but has to use ammunition loaded to 1940s military specs or risk damage to the gun? Or what about compact semi-automatic pistols which are very picky about the ammunition they fire and have to have enough/not too much power or they malfunction? What about people who load their own ammunition to achieve maximum accuracy? For instance most people who shoot .300 Win Mag load their own ammo to tune the performance to their tastes.

And I haven't even mentioned the nightmare of giving people enough space and supplies to clean their firearms safely before they go into the range/store/fortress' vault. The whole setup would basically be the perfect environment for guns to be lost, damaged, or stolen.



Basically the entire thing turns into a logistical nightmare the size of a million bloated blue whales. It's such an impractical and nonsensical suggestion, with so little to recommend it, that for many people it comes across not as an attempt at compromise, but as a deliberate insult. That may not be the case, but it's the way many would perceive it.


It's just not a good plan.

And many people shoot at multiple ranges and/or are members at multiple sportsman's clubs.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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28-04-2014, 06:25 PM
RE: The problem with storing guns/ammo at a range
(28-04-2014 06:24 PM)Chas Wrote:  And many people shoot at multiple ranges and/or are members at multiple sportsman's clubs.

Exactly. I go to one range to shoot rimfire, and another to shoot my Garand. And that's not even mentioning the issue of transporting the guns if you move.

E 2 = (mc 2)2 + (pc )2
614C → 714N + e + ̅νe
2 K(s) + 2 H2O(l) → 2 KOH(aq) + H2 (g) + 196 kJ/mol
It works, bitches.
Find all posts by this user
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