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Old April 5, 2000, 12:38 PM   #1
Buckeye61
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I apologize if this topic has been tossed around before and if the questions seem very dumb/remedial.

Recently purchased my first shotgun and was hoping to get some information from some folks in or around Columbus, O.

There were a few things I wanted to find out.
#1- what is this best place to go and shoot? I know of the Powder Room and New Albany Shooting Range, and a range at Deer Creek. However I don't know if these are the best places to go, if there are some better places, or if various restrictions will actually limit where I can go.

#2- Ammo. Could someone please suggest a good 2.75" or 3" shell to use on the range? Between websites and local shops finding ammo shouldn't be an issue, it just comes down to a question what's the best one to use.

#3- I've heard the PRO, New Albany, and Powder Room all offer safety classes. Are there any others of mention? And what's the best one as far as teaching me what I need to know?

I greatly appreciate any help that can be offered.
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Old April 5, 2000, 10:53 PM   #2
Coronach
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Hey. I'm from your government and I'm here to help you.

Really.

1. I'm local to central Ohio, but I'm a recent transplant. The trouble with this area is too much city, not enough countryside...and the little countryside that exists is populated by soccer moms, so finding outdoor ranges is hard to do.

You pretty much mentioned the gun clubs that I know of. If you hear of any more, lemme know.

2. As to ammo...asking 'whats the best ammo' on here could start a holy war. If you're new to shooting, I'd do this: find some good cheap ammo...something you can buy a lot of. Go out and shoot. Shoot a lot. Convert $$$ to noise with abandon. After you get the basics down, THEN worry about selecting the right ammo for the task at hand. If you're not-so-new to shooting, uhm...well...figure out what you'll be using the gun for, and resubmit the question. And be prepared for the jihad

3. I'd imagine that any of the 3 classes you just named would teach you the basics and teach them well. As to other safety/basic courses, I dunno. I'll check around and see what I can come up with.

Mike


------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old April 6, 2000, 01:11 AM   #3
Buckeye61
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Thanks a ton for responding.

"1. I'm local to central Ohio, but I'm a recent transplant. The trouble with this area is too much city, not enough countryside...and the little countryside that exists is populated by soccer moms, so finding outdoor ranges is hard to do."

This is quite true...can't say I am a big fan of soccer though I was a darn good rec-league goalie....oh well that's not important right now.

"You pretty much mentioned the gun clubs that I know of. If you hear of any more, lemme know."

Will do....I can't think of any other local spots off the top of my head though I heard there was supposed to be a decent one not too far from town. Will look into that....I had heard Deer Creek was unrestricted as far as what you could shoot....New Albany was the same aside from a few limitations on the ammo you use....don't know too much about the Powder Room, though I had heard being in a residential area there are more limits as far as what can be shot there....anything more you can tell me here?

"2. As to ammo...asking 'whats the best ammo' on here could start a holy war. If you're new to shooting, I'd do this: find some good cheap ammo...something you can buy a lot of. Go out and shoot. Shoot a lot. Convert $$$ to noise with abandon. After you get the basics down, THEN worry about selecting the right ammo for the task at hand. If you're not-so-new to shooting, uhm...well...figure out what you'll be using the gun for, and resubmit the question. And be prepared for the jihad "

That's exactly what I was thinking. I'm fairly new to shooting, and very new as far as buying my own gear. The few times I have gone in the past, my friend provided the guns and the ammo, I just gave him some money for it...but I was pretty much looking for what you had suggested....cheap ammo I could use like crazy on the range while I'm
getting the basics down as you said....the guy at Vance's (I'm sure you know it now being local) where I bought the weapon sold me some shells which he said are just fine for home defense purposes (the main purpose at least till I get very comfortable with the weapon)so I should be okay there for now....I guess all I need to know now is do you have any suggestions as to what brand I could look into for mass range time (and would not be restricted at one range or another)? I know buying in bulk is the best move...but what to buy?

"3. I'd imagine that any of the 3 classes you just named would teach you the basics and teach them well. As to other safety/basic courses, I dunno. I'll check around and see what I can come up with."

I'm likely gonna take one of the courses offered at New Albany...they offer two of them, and the one is geared specifically toward using shotguns as a defense weapon which is perfect for right now....maybe on down the road when I finally buy a handgun I will take the other class, but I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Thanks again for your help and any other help you may be able to offer.

kevin


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Old April 6, 2000, 09:27 AM   #4
TomMarker
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Mike/Kevin,

Ever play six degrees of separation? This is eerie

BTW, here's a thread where I essentially asked the same thing with regards to handguns:

http://www.thefiringline.com/NonCGI/...ML/001193.html
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Old April 6, 2000, 11:05 AM   #5
Coronach
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Heh. Indeed.

Mike



------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old April 6, 2000, 01:48 PM   #6
Matt VDW
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Buckeye61,

If you just want to get familiar with your shotgun, go to WalMart and get one of their cheap multi-packs of Federal shotshells. I strongly advise that you avoid the 3" shells until you either need to shoot a goose or want to impress your buddies with how much shoulder pain you can handle.

There aren't many places that you can go to shoot birdshot at ground targets. The Powder Room doesn't allow any shotgunning and the New Albany Shooting Range is slugs only. So, until you find a friend with rural land where you can shoot, you might want to shoot some skeet just to get comfortable with your gun.

There's a nice skeet and trap range called JMS Shooting Center outside of Delaware. You should be able to get directions from someone at Vance's or one of the other local gun shops.
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Old April 6, 2000, 05:39 PM   #7
Buckeye61
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"If you just want to get familiar with your shotgun, go to WalMart and get one of their cheap multi-packs of Federal shotshells. I strongly advise that you avoid the 3" shells until you either need to shoot a goose or want to impress your buddies with how much shoulder pain you can handle."

That's exactly what I needed to know....I figured going to WalMart or Meijer would be a good place to pick up some cheap ammo I wouldn't mind wasting on the range while I got more comfortablt shooting a shotgun...also there is a bulk ammo website that seems to offer decent prices from what I am told (Federal 2.75" shotshells were $57 for 250 shells) this would be a good beginning range choice correct?...based on your advice I'll will stick to the 2.75" shells as I already have one messed up shoulder and don't care to test the other at this point ....especially if I am trying to get in massive range time.

"There aren't many places that you can go to shoot birdshot at ground targets. The Powder Room doesn't allow any shotgunning and the New Albany Shooting Range is slugs only. So, until you find a friend with rural land where you can shoot, you might want to shoot some skeet just to get comfortable with your gun."

Just to make sure...the cheap shotshells would or would not be okay at a place like New Albany? Here is what I got on New Albany from the string of posts Tom gave us to refer to: The New Albany range doesn't limit calibers, but they do have some ammunition restrictions: "no plain lead bullets, no mil-surp ammo, no birdshot or buckshot, and no steel core ammo." So where does that leave us? Sorry if the questions seem quite dumb or remedial...but I wanna do this right, and more importantly safe. Also are there any restrictions at the place in Delaware you mentioned? My friend told me about the place at Deer Creek and I think he said there aren't any restrictions there. Is he correct in what he told me?

"There's a nice skeet and trap range called JMS Shooting Center outside of Delaware. You should be able to get directions from someone at Vance's or one of the other local gun shops."

I'll have to look into the different spots around Columbus and see which one works out the best. How many of the places require you to be a member in order to shoot? and along with that...do you have to know someone already in the club to get in or is it simply a case of signing up and paying a membership fee?

thanks again to all for all the help/tips you have offered....greatly appreciated


kevin

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Old April 7, 2000, 01:35 PM   #8
Matt VDW
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Kevin,

Different ranges have different restrictions. Let me try to sort them out:

As far as memberships go, the commercial ranges (NASR and the Powder Room) both sell memberships which convey certain benefits but they aren't required to shoot there. Range time is available to the general public. At either range, you can walk in, do a little paperwork, and shoot there for a fee. JMS works the same way (more or less).

The state-run public outdoor ranges at Deer Creek (south of Columbus) and Delaware State Park (north of Columbus) are also open to the general public, although they operate a little differently. You have to buy a permit (daily or annual) to use the range, but you can't buy the permit at the range. The permits are sold at private gun shops nearby.

There are also a few private shooting clubs (such as the Hilltop Club) in the Columbus area. To shoot at one of these places, you either have to be a member or be a member's guest. I'm not a member so that's all I can tell you about them. They keep a low profile.

Regarding what types of shotgun projectiles can be shot where:

If you're shooting at aerial targets (at Deer Creek, Delaware, or JMS), there's usually a restriction on the maximum shot size you can use. The reason is that bigger pellets travel farther than smaller pellets and what goes up must come down. Use #6, #7.5, #8 or #9 birdshot and you shouldn't have any problems.

If you're shooting at ground targets, the problem is ricochets. The New Albany Shooting Range doesn't allow anything but slugs because they don't want dozens of tiny shot pellets bouncing around their range. Even a small aiming (or pointing) error can put part of the shot pattern on the hard surfaces of the target holder. I don't know what the policy is at Deer Creek and Delaware regarding shotshells at ground level; you'd have to ask one of the rangers working there.

So, the short answer is no, you can't shoot any sort of birdshot at NASR. But the best thing to do would be to call them up and discuss what is and isn't OK. The number is (614) 939-0112.

I realize that it's a difficult situation. I've been shooting in the Columbus area for seven years and I still don't feel like I know all the ins and outs!
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Old April 8, 2000, 06:17 AM   #9
Buckeye61
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Matt,

thanks for the number, but I did one better yesterday afternoon. I drove up there to NASR to sign up for their shotgun defense class. In addition to doing that I was able to check the place out, learn of the member benefits, and talk with one of the people working there about what I can and can't shoot.

Despite what we previously thought, yesterday I was told the shotgun ammo restrictions aren't as tight as previously thought. They frown upon steel shot, 00 buckshot, high power loads, and things of that nature. In addition if you are shooting a shotgun they REQUIRE you to use a body target and keep your shots above the belt line and below the neck. If you are dead set on using the smaller targets, you still can, taping them on the body target within the prefered "strike zone" I mentioned. This allows you to shoot, but also protects their carriages from being shot up in addition to taking away most any chance of a deflection causing issues.

As for the ammo, I purchased a case of Remington Game Load yesterday (12g, 2.75", 1oz., #7.5) which the guy at Vance's said was a more than acceptable target/practice shell. Price wasn't bad either. Even more importantly was what the guy at NASR told me. There was box of Remington shells on the shelf nearly identical to what I had (only differences being they were 16g and I believe #8)and the guy told me those were cool to shoot there, so mine would be too. Major victory there I think.

By the looks of it NASR is a nice range and has a very nice overall setup/operation going. It is very clean as someone previously noted, the pro shop has a great selection of weapons, ammo, and accessories, and the members I met seem to be pretty cool. If anyone is interested (who hasn't been there) I can post the membership info for ya in case you might want to check it out. Seems like a good deal there.

Can you Matt, or anyone else, provide directions to the other places like JMS or Deer Creek?

thanks again for your help...maybe we could meet sometime at one of the ranges and do some shooting....

kevin
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Old April 10, 2000, 11:56 AM   #10
Matt VDW
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Kevin,

Thanks for the info on allowable shotgun ammo at NASR. I'm already a member there.

For directions to Deer Creek, you could try calling the Ohio Division of Wildlife at (614) 644-3925. There's a sign at the exit from I-71 but getting to the range from the exit is trickier than I can remember or describe.
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Old April 11, 2000, 02:01 AM   #11
Buckeye61
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Thanks for the info on allowable shotgun ammo at NASR. I'm already a member there.

Whoops...well you never mentioned that part.

I think I am gonna kick in the dough and join NASR myself. Seems like a pretty good deal. Use that one free guest rule, take a friend (when it isn't crowded of course)and have him pay half of the $10 member's range fee...you both get to shoot and you make back the membership dues in no time. Not to mention it seems like a pretty nice place.

For directions to Deer Creek, you could try calling the Ohio Division of Wildlife at (614) 644-3925. There's a sign at the exit from I-71 but getting to the range from the exit is trickier than I can remember or describe.

The guys over at Vance's tried to explain the directions to me last week...but they weren't sure either and I wasn't gonna waste the gas to drive out there and have no clue at all where I was going. We'll figure it out at some point I suppose. I wanna invest in a handgun at some point too...mainly as another shooting and defense option...but also so I can get into those bowling pin contests some night...don't think they will allow me to play in that game with my current weapon of choice

Maybe I'll run into ya up a NA sometime....

kevin

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Old April 12, 2000, 03:14 AM   #12
Hal
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www.dnr.state.oh.us/odnr/wildlife/hunting/specials/granges.html

Here's Deer Creek:
www.dnr.state.oh.us/odnr/wildlife/publications/wildlifeareas/central/deercrk.gif




[This message has been edited by RAE (edited April 12, 2000).]
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