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#6183771 - 02/14/16 10:49 PM Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one?
jorge Offline
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Registered: 02/01/11
Posts: 3944
Loc: Lake Jackson, TX
Im gonna miss some info im on the rd talking to the wife at the same time.

So ive thought of taking some family land starting a public range. This wouldnt be a hobby, and i wouldnt forget that. It currently has a personal rifle range out to 500 yds that is bench shooting. Its roughly 700yds x 65yds. I also plan to build the pistol range this summer or spring break which would be 50yds x 50yds. Lastly, i want to add a tac course 200yds x 50 yds. So here is some important metrics.

Mcallen MSA population- roughly 900k ppl. Median age is 30yrs old and about a 50/50 split men and women.

5 ranges in the county exist. 4 are outdoor. Max distance is 300yds. One specializes in shotgun, one is geared for rifle 300yds and the rest are standard 100/200yd rifle about 10 lanes and pistol about 10 lanes.

There are 15+ gunshops in area.

Land is owned free and clear. Located in county not city, but 15min from downtown mcallen.

A building that is 60% finished out for classroom/store front.

I have a good idea of capital costs, and worked at a range for a couple years in college.


Edited by jorge (02/14/16 11:24 PM)
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#6183787 - 02/14/16 11:17 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
dogcatcher Online   content
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#6184734 - 02/15/16 05:13 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
JESmith Online   content


Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 453
Loc: Allen, TX
1. Check county zoning laws AND political climate. A county DA that doesn't like ranges can make your life miserable.
2. Insurance is going to be costly and they are going to insist on certain criteria. Find out before your build.
3. Do your market research personally.
Visit the other ranges at all times during the week. How full are they? At what times? How do the patrons like the range? Chat up the owners. (don't tell them you plan on being a competitor) Talk to the local gun clubs. When and where do they shoot?
4 Calculate your profit and loss. This is going to have to be your full time job. Is there enough income to support you?

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#6184827 - 02/15/16 06:05 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
hetman Offline
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Registered: 02/15/15
Posts: 1667
Loc: Addison Tx
think about a indoor pistol range to go with it for year round shooting ,people get bored during the winter. Teaching new shooters / chl classes / women's night league / some kind of monthly or weekly competition .
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#6185138 - 02/15/16 08:10 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
WileyCoyote Offline
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Registered: 09/01/04
Posts: 4526
Loc: The Dogwood Capital of Texas
Get ahold of someone who is in the NRA's Nat'l HQ dept that provides this kind of info, they got all the info you need and will help you, and even design and layout the whole deal for you, work with the various political subdivisons in State/County/and even municipal regulators.

I'm ALWAYS looking for a good shooting range it seems and not enough of them to go around.

Ron cheers
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#6185269 - 02/15/16 09:12 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: hetman]
blackcoal Offline
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Registered: 01/19/12
Posts: 7564
Loc: 60 Mi North of DFW
Originally Posted By: hetman
think about a indoor pistol range to go with it for year round shooting ,people get bored during the winter. Teaching new shooters / chl classes / women's night league / some kind of monthly or weekly competition .


Good advice EXCEPT there isn't much winter in McAllen. cheers
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#6185273 - 02/15/16 09:14 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: JESmith]
Hancock Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 01/30/14
Posts: 5323
Loc: Fort Spunky, TX
Originally Posted By: JESmith
1. Check county zoning laws AND political climate. A county DA that doesn't like ranges can make your life miserable.
2. Insurance is going to be costly and they are going to insist on certain criteria. Find out before your build.
3. Do your market research personally.
Visit the other ranges at all times during the week. How full are they? At what times? How do the patrons like the range? Chat up the owners. (don't tell them you plan on being a competitor) Talk to the local gun clubs. When and where do they shoot?
4 Calculate your profit and loss. This is going to have to be your full time job. Is there enough income to support you?


Good advice. Check out neighbors too. Do you have a public road or right of way for access?

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#6185307 - 02/15/16 09:39 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
jorge Offline
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Registered: 02/01/11
Posts: 3944
Loc: Lake Jackson, TX
Thanks for yalls replies. Yes this would be my full time job. Im at a cross roads i was an engineer in the oil field and have been applying for months outside O&G and am wanting to be the master of my own fate from here on out.

Ive reached out to NRA but they werent very interested in helping me. Ive talked to them several times in the past month. My main reason for using them is insurance.

Im in the process of zoning and laws for our ranch. Its a very unique piece of land a pic will soon be attached.

Market research is in progress. My selling point is i am offering what each range caters too all in one place centrally located. Plus the long range thing. I also am hoping the tactical training i can offer will be the other game changer. My cousin who is in Marsoc is getting out and several of his buddies are interested in working with me. Also, several leo friends who are swat are wanting in. Its the border so im hoping with all the bs that goes down on a daily basis this will be attractive to the populus.

So with the local politicians and it being a border town, i just have to be on the right side of the politics. I think i have that covered.

Winters are mild and i dont think organically growing will allow indoor for 1st 5 years.
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Contact #: 210-837-6742
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#6185355 - 02/15/16 10:26 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
jorge Offline
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Registered: 02/01/11
Posts: 3944
Loc: Lake Jackson, TX





here is the layout and the arrows represent what direction we are shooting. one thing i have to figure out how to work around is the usfws wildlife refuge that borders us to the west. as you can see its all rural county land to north and west. mexico is out property line to the south. Closest housing is miles to the north.

Orange lines are property lines. Static range is a few acres and tac course is a few acres and pistol range is 3/4 acre


Edited by jorge (02/15/16 10:30 PM)
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Jorge Sakai
South Texas Trophy Outfitters

Contact #: 210-837-6742
GEORGE.SAKAI@YAHOO.COM

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#6185384 - 02/15/16 10:47 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
HillbillyDeluxe Online   content
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Registered: 12/23/07
Posts: 7208
Loc: North Texas
If it's in an unincorporated area, that will make things easier, zoning, permits, etc. Insurance will be a big cost. I know the range I mainly go to (indoor and pistol only or AR up to 223) only allows factory loads and no hand loads whatsoever. I don't hand load, but when I asked the owner why one time, he said it was for insurance purposes.

We already had one public and one private near me. And there have been two new ones (including the one I mentioned) that have opened up within 10 miles of me in the last few years and they are always full, especially on weekends. Of course we have a sizeable population center here too. I try to go during the weekday mid mornings when I get the chance because that's the slowest time.

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#6185401 - 02/15/16 11:17 PM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
2Beez Online   happy
Pro Tracker

Registered: 07/17/15
Posts: 1826
Loc: Lake Texoma, TX
Make sure the bullet doesn't cross property lines and you may have something rifle

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#6185720 - 02/16/16 09:10 AM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
Judd Offline


Registered: 01/22/09
Posts: 10748
Loc: Sachse, TX
I wouldn't like being at the rifle range and basically being down range of the pistol. Put them side by side and place a huge mount of dirt between them so you still can have indenpendent cease fires. Also, looks like you might consider putting a 5 stand range on the other side of the road.

Great idea, I wish you the best! NRA does have some "ideal" range layouts and berm heights. They are conservative for obvious reasons but should be able to help.
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#6185871 - 02/16/16 10:51 AM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
jorge Offline
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 02/01/11
Posts: 3944
Loc: Lake Jackson, TX
Being down range has been brought to my attention. Let me clarify and see if layout still would be issue for yourseld. i have pistols shooting west and there is about 100yd to 150yd gap between them and rifles shooting south. I ask because anyones and everyones insight is important. This is info for my market study
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Jorge Sakai
South Texas Trophy Outfitters

Contact #: 210-837-6742
GEORGE.SAKAI@YAHOO.COM

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#6185875 - 02/16/16 10:53 AM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
Tactical Cowboy Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 08/23/11
Posts: 2844
Loc: Abilene
Don't do it. There are waaaay too many startup costs and insurance is very expensive. If you do decide to do it, make it a nonprofit club and it'll help your insurance costs.

Believe me, I've done it.
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#6185916 - 02/16/16 11:20 AM Re: Need some insight on starting a shooting range anyone ever start one? [Re: jorge]
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