Semi Permanently Mounting ShotMarker or Solo Sensor Cables to Frames

Discussion in 'Competition Forum (All Calibers)' started by GSS, May 2, 2019.

  1. GSS

    GSS

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    I currently have 10 ShotMarkers for my club but as we refine our target frames this year (our 1st full year with any ET's) we will be developing a way to mount the wires to the target frames.

    This will make set up and take down faster, just as fast as the old days when you put the target frame in the carrier and wallpaper pasted a paper target on it. Should also save any wear and tear on the cables because they won't be removed and coiled up to be stored in the handy cases the sensors go in each time they are set up or put away.

    The way we built our frames they are light enough that one person can easily grab them out of the target shed by themselves, put it in the carrier, pop the 4 sensors on and connect the 4 wires to the sensor hub in about 3- 4 minutes per target. ( I would imagine about the same for Solo users )

    Our initial thought is to secure the cables to the frames in a way that they can stay on the frames and go in and out of the target shed when not in use without getting damaged. Some sort of J channel like this maybe https://www.electriduct.com/J-Channel.html

    Our target shed is a little tight for storage with 16 of the old foam board targets for paper targets that will still be used from time to time to the left and the 10 wood ShotMarker frames to the right so we have to be a little careful to not beat up the sensor brackets when sliding the frames in and out of the storage shed when not in use. ( See pic )

    Has anyone semi permanently mounted their cables ( Solo or ShotMarker Systems ) that could share methods, pictures or info?

    I'm thinking this would be good info for clubs or individual users of these awesome new systems.

    Thanks All,
    George
     

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    Last edited: May 2, 2019
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  2. rardoin

    rardoin Silver $$ Contributor

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    George, I used 2" strips of industrial Velcro stapled every 18" or so along target face periphery (stapled onto frame through Coroplast) and routed the wired along the frame secured by Velcro. It keeps them taut and secure. Of course you will have a 'male' and 'female' piece. I secured the piece attached to the frame with the adhesive applied to the Coroplast and two staples and then single stapled the joining piece so it could be peeled away but still retained to prevent loss. Keeping the wires on the face helps prevent damage in transport/storage in the container or allows easy removal/reattachment if there is a desire to store separately.

    robin
     
  3. powderbrake

    powderbrake Gold $$ Contributor

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    I used phone wire clips (from hardware store) to retain the cables. They are a nail with a plastic head that has a relief for the wire.
    here is a pic.

    DSCN1714_Medium.JPG
     
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  4. GSS

    GSS

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    Nice, Thanks
    That is the pic I saw somewhere before ( probably here ) that gave me the idea.

    Ours go in old military style carriers in the pits.
    We mount our sensor hub down low and left just below the berm wall so it can't get hit.
    We mount it sideways as well (90 deg from target face) so only the side end of it faces uprange so there is less chance of it getting hit even if a minor deflection from people with poor zero's or skill hitting the top edge of the sandbags at the top of the pit wall.

    This means we need to use the coupler for the top right cable so it is long enough to reach the sensor hub. This makes another added connection joint that could potentially get tugged loose so supporting the cables better somehow is a good next step in our evolution into E targets.

    We only had two at the beginning of last year when we were testing to see how good or bad they were going to perform. We got the next batch of 4 late last year and 4 more early this year that I am just finishing up the basic frames for and setting up tomorrow. We barely had time to do anything with them last year so we were pretty crude in how we were hanging the cables.

    The picture I attached to this post was when we had temporary cardboard centers in the targets ( all coroplast now ) but it shows where / how we mount the sensor hub to our target carrier wood frames, not on the actual E target frame.

    Another thing it looks like you learned that we learned late last season is it is a good idea to provide some support to where the cables plug into the sensors for a strain relief. The sensor / hub / cable connection on the ShotMarker targets are very good quality and hold together well but if a wire gets tugged when we go down between yardline changes to put a 200 ,300 or 600 yard centers in you may not realize you knocked a connection loos until you get back to the firing line. Hassle for the person / people running down to do the face swaps and needless delay to those that came to shoot a nice match with no pit duty.

    I'm thinking the J channel I put a link to in the opening post would pretty much go from sensor to sensor holding the cables in place more securely with less drooping and less chance of getting caught on things and tugged on going into and out of the target shed.

    We made our frames kinda big so less chance of sensors / cables getting hit.
    Sensor bases are 62" apart on center for width and 64.5" on center apart for height.

    Anyone else got pics of what they did for Shotmarker or Solo Systems for cables protection / routing?

    G-
     

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    Last edited: May 2, 2019
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  5. Colnagotex

    Colnagotex Team Texas F-TR Silver $$ Contributor

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    7545EC5F-F9C0-4C81-A215-878EF35FCF46.jpeg CD8CA1AD-00D0-4A43-AA87-722D49CC3E17.jpeg Smaller target but I leave them on the frame as well.
     
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  6. TheSGM

    TheSGM

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    I routed the cables around the front using screw in eyes and wire ties to keep them from flopping around. Sensor hub mounted on back side of upper right corner. Labeled the plug ends that go into the sensor hub to make set up fool proof and quick.
     

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  7. MislMan

    MislMan Silver $$ Contributor

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    Just some thoughts ... I like the channel-type mounting options you show in your OP. With your storage area I think you need to protect the wires from being snagged when inserting/removing frames from storage. Home Depot has various wiring conduit options located in their wiring section that you should look at for ideas. Keeping in mind that not all users exercise the same amount of care when handling/storing the target frames and snagging wires can become a real issue on match days.
     
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  8. Dave Marshall

    Dave Marshall

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    George,

    Keep in mind anything downrange will eventually get shot. Don’t make it too difficult to replace in a hurry.

    Also, Connex containers aren’t terribly expensive. Maybe you can convince the board to add one to protect their investment.

    It also might be a good idea to have someone on the firing line double check all the targets for connectivity before leaving the pits.

    Dave
     
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  9. vahena

    vahena Bob Schultz Gold $$ Contributor

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  10. GSS

    GSS

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    I will definitely check my local Home Depot.
    The tight but open on one side J channel that fully encloses the wire for the full run I posted a link to in the opening post was considered 1st exactly the reasons you state of people that are rough on targets taking them out and putting them back in the target carriers and the storage shed..

    You know those are the people that come pay their $20 and leave.
    The ones that spend the hours of their spare time building the targets are much more careful...

    As Dave said,
    Anything down range can and will get shot.
    That was another reason for the open on one end J Channel. The cables would be very well supported but could still be easily replaced when needed.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2019
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  11. GSS

    GSS

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    The shipping container we have in the pits parking area outside of the pits is cluttered right now with all the lumber to replace the wood on all 16 of my carriers that hold the target frames. Once those are installed I plan on moving the container into the pits next to the existing targets shed for easier access. Eventually all the ET frames will go in there.

    I have 16 of the 1" foam 600 yard targets in the existing shed now along with the 10 ET frames and as you can see in the opening post thread picture it is tight.
    We only need around 10 of the 1" foam ones for paper targets for the Thursday morning 600 practices so I may move 6 of them out to make some room for now.

    All,
    Please keep the ideas coming for how you secured your Solo or SM cables.
    I'll post pics when done with whatever my next attempt at continuous improvement results in.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2019
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  12. jkl

    jkl Gold $$ Contributor

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    I have a SMT 5 Sensor G2 and have been shooting it for 3 years. At Ben Avery all of the targets are individually owned so there are many thoughts on cables and attachments to the frames.
    First off the G2 has bnc connectors that push and twist.
    • Once you got people that were willing to help with setting up the target to understand bnc is push and twist to lock and unlock it was much easier.
    • Helpers pulled the wires out of the connectors.
    • Sometimes your assistants would not tell you and just push the wire back into the bnc it caused plenty of connection issues. Got by that issue.
    • Connecting the cables to the frames. Some built chases behind the outer edges. Velcro attachments. Wire molding. Then about everything that you can think of.
    Due to the twist lock of the bnc I just let mine hang as I felt if the target got shot at the edge of the frame the wire would just move out of the way. I can't prove that except in my mind. In three years I have 1 upper sensor cable that has a nick in the outer covering it did not break the shield, still works fine. Am I right with my thinking or not?

    I know most shooters shoot X's and 10's but my frame has been shot just about everywhere. Some cross fires, some from guest shooters and even by me when I am behind on the wind. I can't tell you how many thousands of shots have been shot on E targets at Ben Avery but I only know of 2 sensors being shot and a hand full of cables. There are over 25 E targets on the range now.

    Experiment with how you want to attach them to the frame I know Shot Marker has a push style phone jack and I think Solo has a cat 5 connector to lock them in place. I have seen bnc, Cat 5 and phone jacks all with a bad connection that were mostly caused by the person that put the target electronics together. The manufacture can't be expected to fix operator problems.

    John
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2019
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  13. markgrabowski

    markgrabowski

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    John, if you don’t mind could you take a few photos of the various setups you’ve seen and share them with us?
    Thanks in advance!
     
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  14. GSS

    GSS

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    I'm on travel for work next week but now that the Service Rifle clinic we do each spring (45 attendees this year on 4/27) is behind me and the range readiness work to get the season started is mostly behind me I should be able to get to figuring a way to mount the cables to the frames. My 1st attempt will be using a product like the J channel I linked to in the opening post of this thread.

    Pic below is where we are at now with premade inserts that can quickly slid into the pockets of each frame during yard line changes.

    The coroplast attached to the frames all have a 1/4" hole drilled thru the acoustical center of the sensors.
    The slide in inserts we use for the centers also have a 1/4" hole drilled in the centers to line up with the center of the X on all the targets.

    This is considered more work than is actually needed by many regarding indexing acoustical centers but I see this as a one time effort on each frame / insert to keep the acoustical center as close as reasonably possible with a reasonable amount of effort.

    Please keep the pictures coming from others that keep their E target wires permanently mounted to the frames for the reasons I listed in the opening post.

    All the pictures in this thread so far are Shotmarker.
    I'm interested in how the people that invested in Silver Mountain SOLO systems are doing it as well.

    EZ ET.JPG


    Thanks All,
    George
    www.nfga.org
     

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