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Old June 2, 2018, 07:33 AM   #1
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Dallas area ranges that allow backstop mining?

Later this fall I'd like to do some backstop mining to pick up some lead.

Does anyone know of any ranges that allow backstop mining or even that sell lead to customers in the greater Dallas / Fort Worth area?

The in door ranges I have asked have contracts for both lead & brass and don't sell to customers.
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Old June 4, 2018, 03:51 PM   #2
the Black Spot
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Might try Garland Shooting Range
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Old June 6, 2018, 09:36 PM   #3
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I'd visit them or call around. The local indoor range I visit sells to someone who cast fishing sinkers and he pays $2 per pound. I've found numerous sellers at $1 per pound and can have stuff delivered to my door for less than $2 per pound. I've found most my lead on Craigslist.
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Old June 7, 2018, 04:08 PM   #4
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Unless you are part-owner of a private range, or very good friends with the owner(s), you'll probably not find a range that will "allow" backstop mining.

There are some ranges that look the other way if it is done (safely and responsibly); but actually getting permission and approval is highly unlikely as a stranger.
Don't even try it. It's even worse than the internet would lead you to believe.
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Old June 10, 2018, 05:27 PM   #5
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I spent my morning at Proactive in Argyle, TX this morning and they seemed amenable to me doing some backstop mining this winter.
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Old June 21, 2018, 04:22 PM   #6
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Check with some of the indoor shooting ranges. These have steel bullet traps , the baffles direct the bullets down into a trough....the bullets are scooped out. No digging.
Our local range sells the lead to the scrap yard but will sell it a reloader for the same price.
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Old June 21, 2018, 06:17 PM   #7
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The indoor range I frequent has a backstop of ground up aircraft tires ( no metal banding in those ) and they have a service contract for all their brass and lead and don't sell any to shooters. :-(

Should I some day set up a range of my own, I plan to have a thick steel plate hanging in a tractor tire as my backstop with a frame to hold paper targets. All the lead collects at the bottom of the tire.

I've also recently seen a steel target where the first 5 go back and lock when hit and the sixth releases the first 5 back down. - Put a metal trough under that to catch the rounds.
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Old June 21, 2018, 08:53 PM   #8
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an earthen berm would take so much damage from people digging through it that I can't imagine anyone allowing it.
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Old June 22, 2018, 01:20 PM   #9
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i can't imagine a range owner allowing the "mining" of lead from berms. It could be a liability issue if the "miner" came down with lead poisoning.

A much better source of lead is roofing contractors.
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Old June 22, 2018, 06:51 PM   #10
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I've mined a private berm and it is quite a bit of work. All the non-magnum pistol rounds and most of the 223 rifle rounds were in the first 5 to 6 inches.

As for lead poisoning - most people very much over-blow this threat. Don't smelt indoors, don't eat or drink while smelting or casting. Don't use any smelting gear for cooking later. Don't do any smelting or casting in your kitchen.

I've been casting lead for some 2 decades now and I've had my lead level tested and have been pronounced in good health with no elevated lead levels.

So mining a berm is not something I have a fear will give me lead poisoning.

In my experience, the biggest concern, besides deforming the berm, that range owners seem to have is what's done with the contaminated scrap - i.e. the copper jackets. Typical answer is to put that back into the berm.

If you have a smelting pot cooking over an open fire pit - flux it with saw-dust, and cast ingots there, you can put the jacket pieces back where you found them in the berm and you aren't materially changing anything except recycling the bulk of the lead. I make round ingots in small muffin tins picked up at goodwill.
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Old July 16, 2018, 07:25 PM   #11
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We’ve got two state ran gun ranges. Both outdoor. I bet there’s literally tons of lead there. I wonder if I could sift some dirt.
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Old June 19, 2019, 06:43 AM   #12
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Don't overlook surface mining while checking targets. No damage to berms and yields a good amount of lead. When i did this in Colorado I would pay my daily fee and take a 22 to just plink and when it was target checking time I would mine lead that was surface laid. After a while got to know most RSOs and it was definitely a breeze. Plastic Folgers can of cast projectiles adds up quick and actually easier than full on shovel and steel screen shifting process.

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Old June 20, 2019, 11:14 AM   #13
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Don't know Dallas, in Austin/SA area - they hire a firm that digs out dirt, takes lead and rebuilds the berms.
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Old June 23, 2019, 12:15 PM   #14
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I pick a ice cream pail of pistol bullets in about 45 minutes at my range when it's closed , yealds 22-24 pounds of smelted lead ingots. hdbiker
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Old June 26, 2019, 12:35 PM   #15
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most people very much over-blow this threat.

It reminds me of the Sargent's claiming they were immune to some STDs because they were Sargent's.

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Last edited by F. Guffey; June 27, 2019 at 11:40 AM. Reason: Correct/change to Sargent's as O'Heir suggested and then go back and make another change
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Old June 26, 2019, 01:27 PM   #16
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" to do some backstop mining..." Dig a lot of holes do you? You really should rethink the idea. Sifting bullets out of dirt is back breaking manual labour that requires some specialized equipment(DIY buildable though).
Kind of suspect every range/club will have a contractor anyway. Letting you dig would cause their liability insurance premium to sky rocket.
"...give me lead poisoning..." Takes a lot more exposure than digging a hole.
"...because they were Sergeants..." That'd be Captains, not Sergeants. snicker.
Spelling and grammar count!
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