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Old 05-03-2018, 07:26 AM
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I've never been involved with a shooting competition, and my schedule makes it difficult for me to do so, as I work Weekend Nights in a rural TN factory. Many of the fine Hill-Folk, I work with have said that they would be a part of a competition if someone put one together during the week. I think I can do that....

Thinking about a bullseye shoot with handguns and .22 rifles, using NRA targets and rules. Charging just enough to cover a trophy for 1st on both, and a plaque for 2nd and 3rd in each, and range use.

Safety will be STRICTLY enforced. Any suggestions would be appreciated. This is in the early planning stages. I have not even talked to a range yet, but I have one picked out.
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Old 05-03-2018, 10:40 AM
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It sounds like you're off to a good start!
First, charge more than just enough. It's amazing how fast the incidentals like targets, staples, unexpected expenses, etc. add up until you're paying for stuff out of your pocket to keep it going. You can always lower the price later once it's rolling and you have kept track of the accounting. That will make everyone happy.
Try raising the price if you come up short and there will be no end to the howling.

Get some range safety help. DO strictly enforce range safety! There is too much going on for one person to call the match and keep an eye on all the shooters. Get a liability waiver form drawn up that each shooter has to sign. Print course of fire and range rules and give every shooter a copy.

If the range has a gun shop, remind the owner of all the extra sales he will make from the competitors buying ammo, holsters, guns, etc.

It can be a fun time for all if done right.
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Old 05-03-2018, 11:10 AM
Thomas15 Thomas15 is offline
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I think it would be a very good idea for you to attend a match with a cof at least similar to what you have in mind, see how it is run. The issue about legalities and liability is these days is actually a big thing. It is one thing for you and a friend or two to have a friendly informal shoot off, another thing all together to have more than a couple shooters, different guns and charging even a modest entry fee.

I was shooting in a very local match a few weeks ago. One of the guys on my squad told me this was his first match but was interested in running them at his club, starting a new program. I didn't say anything except to mention that start up costs are more than he thinks. But all the while I was thinking the logistics of such an enterprise is more than he could ever imagine. It's the "if something goes wrong" aspect of shooting firearms that no one considers until it's too late. Here is an individual that has never been to a match, never acted as a match director, has no range safety officer training never mind the actual cert but he want to forge ahead and run matches.

OK I suppose you have to start somewhere.
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Old 05-03-2018, 11:22 AM
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Good advice here.
My club requires all match directors to be certified RSOs.
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Old 05-29-2018, 08:04 AM
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I'm very much interested in getting my RSO at some point. However, there is a RSO at the range that I intend to use, so I hope to be able to employ his skills for the match. As I stated in the original post, This entire crew works weekend nights, about 1:30 outside of Nashville, In Lincoln County, TN. We are actually probably closer to Huntsville, AL. This whole crew works "Fri/Sat/Sun - Graveyard shift" ; so going to a match isn't going to happen. That's what has created a need for this shoot. We have two Firemen and and EMS in the group, and a LEO. About half are ex military, we all have kids and most of us hunt. I've known most for about a decade. It's a good group of men to start something like this with. These possibly ten of us total, if everyone shows up. I hope this to be a "NRA-Postal Match"
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Old 05-29-2018, 09:39 AM
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(1) Don't bother trying to make it an official NRA match. You don't have what you need, and you've no idea what the cost and hassle would be like.

(2) We're not kidding about getting experience. Running a line is an entirely different animal that a bunch of guys sharing a range. What's more, everybody involved has to follow directions. Be prepared to throw one of your friends off the range and out of the league.

(3) Don't assume this range RSO knows what he's doing. The NRA RSO course is barely a sobriety test. There's a big difference between having the cert and not sucking at being an RSO. I don't have enough fingers and toes to count the RSOs I knowz that I wouldn't let anywhere near one of my matches.

(4) Presume that you will get zero help from your "friends".

(5) Forget trophies et al. Figure out what the range fees are, and figure out what targets are going to cost (don't order them, get them printed on card stock at a print shop). If you don't charge for the season up-front, figure that you're going to lose money.
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Old 05-29-2018, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Wise_A View Post
(1) Don't bother trying to make it an official NRA match. You don't have what you need, and you've no idea what the cost and hassle would be like.

(2) We're not kidding about getting experience. Running a line is an entirely different animal that a bunch of guys sharing a range. What's more, everybody involved has to follow directions. Be prepared to throw one of your friends off the range and out of the league.

(3) Don't assume this range RSO knows what he's doing. The NRA RSO course is barely a sobriety test. There's a big difference between having the cert and not sucking at being an RSO. I don't have enough fingers and toes to count the RSOs I knowz that I wouldn't let anywhere near one of my matches.

(4) Presume that you will get zero help from your "friends".

(5) Forget trophies et al. Figure out what the range fees are, and figure out what targets are going to cost (don't order them, get them printed on card stock at a print shop). If you don't charge for the season up-front, figure that you're going to lose money.
Thanks. I'll let this drop. Sounds like a pain.
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Old 05-29-2018, 02:11 PM
Wise_A Wise_A is offline
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Oh, I wouldn't drop it entirely--just keep it simple and informal. Try a 30-shot indoor bullseye match to start (the National Gallery Course), just pistols. Because it's indoor, the targets are reduced-size 50-foot, which makes them cheaper.

Start out with two or three shooters to a relay. A bit of research will get you the commands. If you've got a mix of rimfire and centerfire shooters, divide them.

The "official" NRA matches, though? Ugh. Between the pricing for official targets, and then having to deal with the NRA itself, it's a bunch of complication you don't need.
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Old 05-29-2018, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronco89 View Post
I've never been involved with a shooting competition, and my schedule makes it difficult for me to do so, as I work Weekend Nights in a rural TN factory. Many of the fine Hill-Folk, I work with have said that they would be a part of a competition if someone put one together during the week. I think I can do that....
No problem....just a few questions.

Quote:
Thinking about a bullseye shoot with handguns and .22 rifles, using NRA targets and rules.
OK, why "Bullseye"? Bullseye is 90 rnd, with ALOT of slow fire and some rapid fire, will the range let you do that? How about a turkey shoot? Those are fun.


Quote:
Charging just enough to cover a trophy for 1st on both, and a plaque for 2nd and 3rd in each, and range use.
Shouldn't be a problem, IMO, find out the total cost and double it. Better to have money left over( for anther shoot or catered lunch, etc)

Quote:
Safety will be STRICTLY enforced. Any suggestions would be appreciated. This is in the early planning stages. I have not even talked to a range yet, but I have one picked out.
I'd suggest talking with the guys you work with and ask for suggestions. If many are prior military and LEO, etc, they might have an idea of what they'd like to shoot. Best to get them involved all the way. If they tell you to "just handle it all", Don't do it.


(IDPA Saftey Officer here) Well, an IDPA course is ran like this: There are about 4-5 courses of fire (COF) , each with targets set up to imitate a real life "situations" and the shooters must negotiate obstacles and shoot the targets in a specific order and a specific number of times( shooting at a moving target, shooting while moving to cover, reloads), etc.

Will you have timers?

The 1st rules are the 180 rule (line between "down range and "back range"- NO drawn guns in the back range (or facing the back range) and the 90deg rule( 45 deg to your left and 45deg to your right{down range} is your area, do NOT point your weapon past that). Make it VERY clear that if anyone brakes those rules, they get a DQ and can't shoot.


2.) Unless you're shooting, your guns are NOT loaded( when the shooter steps up, the SO says,"Shooter, load and make ready" AT that time, the shooter will load a loaded mag into his pistol and holster( or lay it on the table). Then I'd say, " The firing line is hot, Shooter, fire at will." And the shooter will pick up the pistol and shoot that line of fire. After that, "you'll say, Cease fire, cease fire, unload and show clear" and the shooter does exactly that(while pointing down range). Then he steps off the line and the next shooter steps up. Everyone's guns are empty, unless they're shooting. NO exceptions.


As SO,I'm the one who stands there and gives the instructions( while the rest of the squad is scoring and pasting) I have the next shooter there, at the starting line and ask them to explain the COF to me, to make sure they have NO doubt what they're about to do. Having it clear in their mind is HUGE. I give the commands, hold the timer and then follow the shooter through the course, watching VERY carefully, every move, to make sure they stay safe. I have one command that everyone must obey immediately and that is "STOP!!", at that time the shooter will freeze and not move and CERTAINLY not shoot again. That means I've witnessed a SERIOUS safety issue with either the function of the gun or the shooter themself. I clear the issue and then we proceed.
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Old 05-29-2018, 02:59 PM
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I've been shooting matches since 1979. Just came back from the World Bianchi Cup and the National Bianchi Cup.

There is a lot of good advice in this thread. Go to some different matches and see what happens and how it goes. It can be a good time for all if done right. Keep it simple and cheap. The main thing to remember is to have a safe match and enjoy the fun times with friends. The good times and memories should be the main focus, not who "won" or "lost". When a group of friends do something they enjoy together, everyone wins.
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Old 05-29-2018, 09:24 PM
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Quote:
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I've been shooting matches since 1979. Just came back from the World Bianchi Cup and the National Bianchi Cup.

There is a lot of good advice in this thread. Go to some different matches and see what happens and how it goes. It can be a good time for all if done right. Keep it simple and cheap. The main thing to remember is to have a safe match and enjoy the fun times with friends. The good times and memories should be the main focus, not who "won" or "lost". When a group of friends do something they enjoy together, everyone wins.
Hope you enjoyed the shooting.
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Old 05-29-2018, 09:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wise_A View Post
(2) We're not kidding about getting experience. Running a line is an entirely different animal that a bunch of guys sharing a range. What's more, everybody involved has to follow directions. Be prepared to throw one of your friends off the range and out of the league.
And this is very important.

After several years running club matches in different disciplines I recently found myself as squad leader and unofficial R/O at a level II (multi club) IPSC match for the first time.

The RM was a local Member of the NROA and came past my squad part way during the first stage.

When we moved onto the second stage he had a very quiet word to me about my range commands, in particular adding a few “safety” command (Range in use and Range clear) plus R/Oing with my pistol in my holster (not a biggie at a Level II event but frowned upon at bigger ones).

I now have an official IPSC Range Commands crud in my wallet to refer to.
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:32 PM
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Be careful, this could be addictive, especially for older folks?
Steve
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