Gun Range Business

Discussion in 'General Handgun Discussion' started by Magnum27, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. Magnum27

    Magnum27 New Member

    263
    0
    0
    I have been to ranges lately and seen how crowded they are. Saturday I was at a range witha 2 hour wait and they told me that is standard Fri, Sat and Sun and the weekday nights are packed.

    I have been looking to start my own business and this seems an excellent climate and business opp. Does anyone know how hard it is to start a new range?

    FYI - I am in the crap state of IL so I am sure I will have more of an uphill climb than other places.
     
  2. JD1969

    JD1969 New Member

    748
    0
    0
    Sounds like you were at Rink's lol. There is always a wait there, but it is priced right and I like the folks that own and run the place.
     

  3. Magnum27

    Magnum27 New Member

    263
    0
    0
    Actually I was at Article II in Lombard. I also have been at GAT Guns in Dundee with those huge waits. Where is Rinks?
     
  4. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

    2,992
    2
    0
    It's not impossible but it is expensive. I wanted to do a range myself in my area however if you are looking a converting an existing building you are looking at 1-2 million needed. And the insurance is no joke either.
     
  5. wjnfirearms

    wjnfirearms New Member

    336
    0
    0
    I personally know someone that did try near here. Unfortunately, due to BS from one person at a final municipal permit hearing, it went sideways and never transpired in the end. Major shame.

    From what he told me, and I'm assuming you want to do an indoor one, you need to find property, get an environmental study for EPA due to lead exposure, look into air filtering systems, insurance, building issues from architect to construction, permitting which may be your hardest nut to crack, from EPA to local and state permits, local zoning issues must be satisfied, etc., etc., etc.

    There's mucho involved, more so or less so based on state and locale. You also need to have the financial backing, which will need to be considerable to cover building, cost overruns, and expenses to cover several months after opening up until the business makes a profit to start. It would be likely necessary to have someone involved, a principal in the business, with an FFL as you'll need to sell ammo and might want to branch out to make things more potentially profitable.

    Yeah, it's not as simple as just finding a building, setting up target stands and a backstop, getting some insurance, stocking ammo and opening the doors any more. It's a regulated industry.
     
  6. JD1969

    JD1969 New Member

    748
    0
    0
    Yea it can busy at Article II. I've waited an hour or two there as well. Rink's is on Archer in Lockport, right off 355. It is an older place, and the range is no where near as nice as Article II, but it's only $9 to shoot and no time limit. I go to Article II when I want to shoot black powder. The guy working the range told me they spent $80,000 on the ventilation system there.
     
  7. gollygee

    gollygee New Member

    1,019
    0
    0
    As already stated, I'm sure there are a lot of hoops to jump through to get a gun range started. One thing that may help is to get out away from the city, especially if you live in one of the "liberal meccas' because they are going to fight you & stall all they can, even though you may live in a gun friendly state. The further away, the better, but take into consideration how far people may want to drive to get there.

    Another thing might be to check into the possibility of an NRA sponsored range. I don't know anything about how involved they get as far as the financial part or legal help, but wouldn't hurt to ask.
     
  8. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

    2,294
    0
    0
    Insurance and EPA regs are enough to keep most people from taking on a project like that. I hope it works out for you of you decide to do it though. Can't have too many gun ranges!
     
  9. bogcjg

    bogcjg New Member

    101
    0
    0
    thank god i live in CO lol
     
  10. mcb

    mcb New Member

    534
    0
    0
    Guess I'm lucky I can shoot in the back yard.

    I also belong to a private sportsmen's club. This is a good safe place to shoot with lots of great amenities.
     
  11. Magnum27

    Magnum27 New Member

    263
    0
    0
    Thanks for the info everyone. It gives me a lot to think about - I didn't consider the EPS stuff. That probable be the biggest challenge. Libtards!
     
  12. Paladin201

    Paladin201 New Member

    442
    0
    0
    A local gun store decided to move to a new location a couple of years ago, as they had outgrown their present location. In doing so, the owners decided that as long as they were expanding, they wanted to obtain enough space to start an indoor range, for the the reasons already mentioned here. They obtained an existing building large enough to contain both the range and their retail business. They submitted building permits to the city and went through all the studies and other things they needed. They ordered all the range equipment and prepared to begin construction. Then one day, it seems that the local community in the area went to the city and posted objections to having a shooting range in the area. In addition to the usual safety concerns, the locals felt that a shooting range would attract an "undesirable element" to the area. The city then attempted to revoke the building permit on the grounds that "We didn't really understand what you wanted to build here". After a long and painful fight, they eventually did open the range. Almost 2 years and many dollars later.
     
  13. alxltd1

    alxltd1 New Member

    136
    3
    0
    Reminds me of what occurred in Tampa years ago. I may not have all of the story totally (memory is the first to go), but Tampa used to have an outdoor range the “Tampa Police Pistol Range” in fact it was the only thing on this particular piece of property and they named the road “Pistol Range Road” (it is still named that). It was there for decades. I shot there for decades. They held the mid-winter National Pistol Championship there. Then someone complained that a “stray” bullet had hit their house some distance away. The range spent thousands in putting up new baffles to avoid any further alleged stray bullets from leaving the range. Then some developers bought the land behind the burm and baffles. They built medium to low priced housing on it and it sold almost overnight. Now you would have to be deaf, blind, and stupid not to realize that there was a shooting range next door to the house you were buying but that is exactly what seemed to occur. The residents complained that a range next to their houses was a safety risk, that they did not realize it was there or they would not have bought there. Long story short, the range closed after years of service to the public and the police because they could not afford the changes that would be mandated to satisfy the county officials (all elected politicians) or the constant costs of lawyers to defend their existence that far preceded the home owners.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012
  14. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

    2,992
    2
    0
    What a shame. I'll be in Tampa next month; where is a good range in the area? I'll actually be up north in Lutz, but I'm looking to do a little shooting while I'm in town.
     
  15. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

    21,461
    615
    113
    To anyone looking to develop/ open a shooting range- contact the NRA. They have a section that deals with nothing but firing ranges, and can help guide you thru the pitfalls.

    Ummm.......... you ARE a member, right?:p
     
  16. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

    9,678
    391
    83
    I know a developer that had a project ready to build (not a range) when a local HOA voiced objections and tried to get his permits revoked. He sued the HOA naming all members for costs and damages due to the delay. The HOA dropped their opposition. His position was counter attack and hit their wallets hard.
     
  17. alxltd1

    alxltd1 New Member

    136
    3
    0
    There are a number of indoor ranges (Shoot Straight of Tampa on HWY 301 close to the Fairgrounds, Shooting Sports of Tampa on North Dale Mabry, and others) some more expensive than others. All have Web sites with prices and hours. There is still an outdoor range in St.Petersburg, Wyoming Antelope Club, but I have not been there in a couple of years.