Lightning Review: North Salt Lake Welding’s Irish Plate Rack

You'll need the luck o' the Irish to clear this one in a hurry...

You'll need the luck o' the Irish to clear this one in a hurry...

Is clearing dueling trees easy as shooting the breeze?  Do the Texas Star, Whirly Gig, or drop turn targets seem a minor feat to you?  Perhaps you need a target that takes it to the next level in challenging your skills.  The Irish Plate Rack can certainly provide that challenge.

When that cylindrical weight slides off off, it gets really challenging.

When that cylindrical weight slides off off, it gets really challenging.

I pulled up to the range the other day and saw a new steel target just waiting to be shot.  The Irish Plate Rack, from North Salt Lake Welding, consists of eight 8″ steel plates that you must hit off their arms.  Here’s where it gets challenging:  Once the first plate is hit, not only does the spinner that the plate was attached to start to go around, but a weight falls off a rod behind the spinner.  That tilts the entire horizontal arm, and a slider weight in the center accelerates the movement.  The other spinner will start to rotate as well, and the other rod will release its weight.  It looks like some sort of crazy carnival ride, and is very challenging to shoot well.  The quickest and most accurately I was able to clear it with a pistol was 8.71 seconds with 9 rounds fired (at a distance of 21 feet).

When the weights are on each side, things stay level, but not for long...

When the weights are on each side, things stay level, but not for long…

The target itself seemed very well made, and all of the bolts and critical joints were shielded and did not seem to collect fragmented jackets and/or lead.  The target itself is fairly easy to reset.  The wire springs that held the plates onto the arms had a finger hole for leverage. Another nice touch was a pin that prevents the main drum from rotating as you are resetting the target, which is attached via a chain so as not to get lost.  Once everything is reset, pull the pin and the target is ready to go.  The target can also be staked down if used on a slope or in wind.  At $1450.00, it is on the expensive side as far as targets go, but is comparable to a double Texas Star or Whirly Gig.  The Irish Plate Rack proves to be quite a challenge for competitors who have not encountered one before.  If one is a competitive shooter, or just looking to hone one’s skills at hitting moving targets, it’d be an excellent addition to the range.

The pin captures the mechanism and keeps it from rotating during setup

The pin captures the mechanism and keeps it from rotating during setup

This Glacis plate provides an extra level of protection for the main axle

This Glacis plate provides an extra level of protection for the main axle

The ends of the wire springs are looped, making for easy plate replacement

The ends of the wire springs are looped, making for easy plate replacement

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Videos of the target below:

(This next guy smokes it)

Thanks to Aaron Hughston Shooting School for range time and target use



Rusty S.

Having always had a passion for firearms, Rusty S. has had experience in gunsmithing, firearms retail, hunting, competitive shooting, range construction, as an IDPA certified range safety officer and a certified instructor. He has received military, law enforcement, and private training in the use of firearms. He is fortunate enough to have access to class 3 weaponry as well.


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  • Richard

    I can imagine seeing this on inrange tv

    • Cade Rarick

      Does anyone else have a sadistic desire to see Ian clear one of these while single loading a Roth-Steyr?

    • Cade Rarick

      Does anyone else have a sadistic desire to see Ian shoot one of these while single loading a Roth-Steyr?

  • QuadGMoto

    Daw-gone. That’s a bit nuts. Looks like fun!

    Did anyone else notice that the second shooter is definitely using a compensated pistol?

    • hking

      First guy was shooting a limited division gun, second guy was shooting open (compensator + red dot optic)

  • Nate

    We have one of these at out local USPSA club in Norther Utah. It makes for an interesting stage, and is a lot of fun to shoot.