Collecting-up Spent Brass Casings

Discussion in 'Disabled Hunters & Shooters Forum' started by GConn, Apr 25, 2011.

  1. GConn

    GConn Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Messages:
    129
    Location:
    VA~USA
    Simply a curiosity post.

    As I am blessed and fortunate-enough to be able to shoot at home (on Family property), I am wondering ...do any of you who have this opportunity, collect-up your ejected casings, and if so, what percentage of them would you say you recover, and do you have any sort of formula for retrieving them ALL, or at least a consistently high percentage of them, please?

    PS ~ I've never been to an actual range, so I am not really sure how it works there...?
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2011
  2. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2007
    Messages:
    11,412
    Location:
    NW Florida
    When shooting in the field - at a gravel pit or a dump or just an open area in the woods - it's quite easy to lose your brass. It just seems to disappear into the pine needles or the sand and rocks. Something that is helpful is to get one of them blue plastic tarps and put it down. The brass shows up pretty good on that.
  3. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Messages:
    4,953
    Location:
    SW Fort Worth
    2nd what Alpo stated, a 8 x 12 tarp works pretty darn well. Having someone that can spot the ejection path for you is helpful too; I once played a sick joke on my kids. I had 100rnds of 45 that I was going to shoot; I told them if they both found 50, that I'd give them $5 each. I managed to strip off a few unfired rounds out into my hand when loading a new magazine......They both came up short :eek::D:D I took'em both out to Sonic for icecream afterwards and still gave them the $5. ;)

    The range that I shoot at has a concrete pad. I usually have to sweep all the rocks and .22's outa the way, but most fired cases are readily spotted. I can usually get 98-100% if nobody else is around. I used to be able to get 110%+ of what I fired, but lately the range has been picked clean. I haven't scrounged any 45acp, 45LC or 44's in a long while. :( Darn reloaders..... ;)
  4. hunter29180

    hunter29180 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Messages:
    2,055
    Location:
    in a motorhome where ever we park!
    lol collect those .22 brass! crush it or mash it...it still sells at the scrap yards if its brass!!
  5. todd51

    todd51 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Messages:
    3,043
    Location:
    Central, Ohio
    I too shoot on my own property and try to keep the brass cleaned up. The larger centerfire cases I do pretty good, maybe +95%. Those .22 rimfires are masters at hiding though. I can scour the area and am sure I have them all only to turn around and find five more. I think they breed when I am not look at them. I spread gravel for about ten feet all around the shooting table and that helps. If I walk out into the grass toward the targets for some short range practice it is almost impossible sometimes to find those cases. A project for this summer is to set some target holders closer to the shooting position so I can stay on the gravel area but it is going have to stop this rain that we are getting every day.

    A friend brought a metal detector one day and that is the ticket but I won't put out the money for one just to recover brass.
  6. flintlock

    flintlock Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,099
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Like Alpo said, a blue tarp will help you find most of your brass when you're shooting in the field. At the range, at least at the bech, I have an old window screen thats on a couple of wooden blocks. I just set it on the edge of the bench and it keeps the brass from flying off.
  7. GConn

    GConn Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Messages:
    129
    Location:
    VA~USA
    Hey thank you all for the replies/responses (sorry for the delay in getting-back here, had a dear Friend who's ex-took his life on Easter Sunday, and which I was not informed of until after my original post here).

    You all gave me a really good idea with the blue tarp...I have a metal detector (rather inexpensive one I think) which I've never managed to figure-out how to work), and don't see myself pouring a concrete slab simply to retrieve brass (although...hmm. maybe I could....?).

    Would you all agree, that it's fairly correct to say, that about "90%+" ("ninety percent plus") of spent casings "fall" in an area ranging from approximately 2' to 10' to the right of shooting position, and, a-couple-three-or-four feet in the front right to 10-or-so feet to the right rear?
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  8. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2007
    Messages:
    11,412
    Location:
    NW Florida
    No. Depends, pretty much, on the gun. I've got a CZ52 that throws brass 30 feet or more to the right and about 15 feet back. I've got a 1911 that drops 'em on top of my head. Most guns are pretty consistent, as long as you stick with the same ammo. One brand of ammo might drop the cases in a 3-foot circle, 5 foot right and two foot forward, while changing to another brand might throw them 6 foot right, 10 foot forward, and put them in an eight-foot circle. Just need to figger out where your gun throws the brass, and then put your tarp in that area. This is where a spotter comes in handy.
  9. BETH

    BETH Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2009
    Messages:
    6,887
    Location:
    naugatuck,Ct.
    what do u guys get a pound for scrap brass?
  10. GConn

    GConn Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Messages:
    129
    Location:
    VA~USA
    Good question, however I've never attempted to scrap any brass here myself.

    How `bout any of you other folks, please?
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  11. Country101

    Country101 Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,171
    Location:
    Dardanelle, AR
    Beth, I think you can actually get more for it selling to these old farts around here for reloading rather than selling it for scrap. I'm sure the fellas would appreciate it if you did that as well. Everybody would come out better. Usually, I think, when selling for reloaders it comes by a count. ie 100, 500, etc.

    Just a quick internet search suggests that the price may be about $2-2.50/lb. That may be an old figure or something as well, so it may not be close to being accurate.
  12. American Leader

    American Leader Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,715
    Location:
    Iowa
    Gconn, I use a blue tarp like Alpo, really works well once you get it set in the right spot. When shooting semi-auto in the woods or range I still lose a few with the tarp, must be these old eye's! I would guess I recover 95-99%
  13. BETH

    BETH Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2009
    Messages:
    6,887
    Location:
    naugatuck,Ct.
    i would save my brass but i'm a .22 shooter. the guy at my gun club suggested putting down tar paper like on the roof not slippery and u can find your shells?
  14. Country101

    Country101 Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,171
    Location:
    Dardanelle, AR
    If you know you are going to be shooting in one place, a little spin on the tarp idea would be to have some poles or something holding up a tarp and making it funnel into a bucket. Wouldnt be practical if you were shooting at differant locations, more than likely, but if you are usually shooting in one spot, it would make collecting the brass a lot easier. You could make some poles and set them in concrete inside an old tire like they used to do our volleyball nets if you wanted them to be mobile.
  15. hunter29180

    hunter29180 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Messages:
    2,055
    Location:
    in a motorhome where ever we park!
    my son collects brass and copper for scrap, last bucket of .22 shells he took in he got $2.68 a pound. he flattens the shells with a hammer or they wont take them..seems someone pulled some lead out of a bunch without firing them, and it caused some commotion when they went to grind them up!

Share This Page