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backstop construction

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Old 06-18-2013, 04:03 PM   #1
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Default backstop construction

If we were to construct a backstop for for any caliber rifle up to .50 BMG, on a 200 yard max range, what do you think or know would be the appropriate height and width of the berm needed to guarantee no rounds would pass thru and all be stopped. The berm would be constructed of nearby dug up earth and topsoil with steepest sustainable slope ratio's.

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Old 06-18-2013, 04:11 PM   #2
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Used railroad ties make great back stops when stacked and earth filled in behind. 8x8 feet with dirt behind and on the sides. Should stop anything us puny humans are allowed to shoot.

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Old 06-18-2013, 04:14 PM   #3
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First thing is to know what is behind the berm.
A 10' x 6' x 4' berm constructed of railroad ties and filled with sand works well for our range but we also have a large hill to back it up and new shooters still occasionally manage to send rounds off into the woods.
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Old 06-19-2013, 01:02 PM   #4
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If you take the time and work to do it the use of old tires filled with dirt in staggered rows is VERY hard to beat. The tires are nearly impossible to 'shot' apart, thus they outlast other backstop material 10+ to 1!!!
I know this from experience.
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Old 06-19-2013, 01:31 PM   #5
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Make it as tall as a mountain and as thick,but install barrel limiting elevation gigs,so if a big boy goes off by a fool it doesn't kill someone six miles away,with an arch elevation shot.,
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Old 07-08-2013, 12:41 AM   #6
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I put in a new range last year at my place, and my solution to the backstop problem was to build 10" deep 42"wide by 48" tall sand boxes , hang them on 6X6 posts with railroad ties stacked 16' wide and 10' high behind the posts, with sand filled semi truck tires behind the railroad ties.
The boxes allow me to reclaim the lead for recasting and I only have to replace 16" square chunks of plywood in the center when it gets completely shot out.I am sure that somewhere down the road I will have to replace the rest of the ply, but not for years yet.I put truck mudflaps behind the plywood as a gasket to keep the sand in, and they have worked great so far.I replace the plywood centers when 8" or so are completely missing, and have done this 3 times on the middle box and the original mudflap is still doing it's job.I have yet to see anything penetrate to the back of the boxes, everything stops or disintegrates in the first 6" or so including tungsten tipped 5.56,.243 win, .300 win mag and 7.62.The 9MM and the .40SW with the exception of the rifling almost look good enough to reload, the rifle bullets are in small fragments.
Here are some pics to give you the idea, though a few of these are reposts from another thread.


I had to put up a protective panel to keep the bullet splatter from chewing up the barn siding when shooting the clanger plates.
Nothing will get through this.( I still had 2 more tiers of tires to go at this point)
A new patch and the removed piece.
From 75 yds and the following is from 250 yds.
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Old 07-08-2013, 01:44 AM   #7
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That is an awesome setup! I wish I had some property to do this! I will copy this if I ever retire on some acreage! Thanks for sharing!
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Old 07-08-2013, 01:56 AM   #8
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Great idea and job!
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Old 07-08-2013, 01:59 AM   #9
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+1 I like it

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