At present time, there are at least 4 new gun ranges being built in Sin City. Each one of them is busy dealing with the ongoing headaches of licenses, permits, construction, and all the other hurdles that go along with opening up this sort of thing. It seems that everybody wants to be open by the time the 2012 SHOT Show rolls into town in late January and based on some of the things I’ve been hearing, that’s a pretty aggressive goal. While some ranges are keeping things quiet, Machine Guns Vegas has already starting promoting their new facility and they have offered to take us along for an inside look at their construction efforts. This is the first of a multi-part series where we will show you the progress of this brand new VIP Ultra Lounge Machine Gun experience!
Machine Guns Vegas started by signing a 10 year lease on an existing building just West of the 15 freeway off Spring Mountain Rd. The former home to the Bearing Belt Chain Company is conveniently located less than one mile from the heart of the Las Vegas strip making it within walking distance of Fashion Show Mall. When we stopped by, the paint crew was just getting started transforming the building’s exterior to a dark gun metal gray color.
The inside of the building has been almost completely gutted and the beginning phases of construction can be seen all around. What was once the front door for the previous business will become the VIP entrance. In order to provide a more exclusive level of service for those seeking an elite experience, the “Ultra Lounge” will be completely separate from the public side of things, although VIP patrons may also visit the retail store if they wish. When MGV officially opens, they will have 2 VIP shooting lanes as well as room to expand as the business grows. We’ll give you more info on the VIP amenities in the future articles.
As far as the public side goes, although it’s not huge, they’ve got some room here. A new hole will be knocked through the side wall of the building and this will become the primary entrance into the retail store. The store itself will have some pretty high end firearms available for purchase plus they will have personal customization options for those wanting to add some bling to their bang. I’ve heard rumors of gold plated pistols, diamond encrusted grips, and holsters by Louis Vuitton. Of course there will also be a lot of products for those of us who are not of Royal decent. ;)
Machine Guns Vegas will open with eight lanes on the public side and again there is space reserved for expansion. One thing I liked is that there is a 14 foot distance between the wall and the shooting line. Some of the other ranges in town are lucky if they have half that space and to be honest, it can get pretty crowded at times. Having more room to move around will not only give the range a more comfortable atmosphere but will also make things a little safer for the Range Officers when they are bringing guns in and out.
The shooting range itself is being constructed by Shooting Ranges International, which is based in North Las Vegas. SRI is currently building a state of the art HVAC system for the facility as well as the necessary steel plating and bullet traps. MGV arranged for us to take a ride out to SRI and see the bullet traps before they are installed. There we met up with Mike Halverson who gave us a tour of the business and a bit of info on how the bullet traps work.
The traps are set at the end of the range and additional steel plates are added to extend their height and width. They are built this way so that they can fit through a standard size door and then be fully assembled once inside a building. The traps line up side by side with a “knife edge” covering the seams between them. As rounds are fired, they enter into the trap and strike the walls which are angled at about 30 degrees creating a “V” like funnel. From there the bullets are directed to the rear of the trap and through a small slot then into a cylindrical helical where they spin around until they run out of energy and drop into a collection bucket. The top of the helical is designed to expel the lighter particles into the HVAC system.
As the walls go up and the bullet traps arrive on location, we will revisit Machine Guns Vegas and bring you an update showing the installation and progress of the rest of the build.