Ohio Brothers Elected to Trapshooting Hall of Fame

The Middletown Journal is reporting that two Troy Ohio brothers have been elected to the Trapshooting Hall of Fame for their invention of the Clyne Puller.

From the story:

    In its day the Clyne Puller was the most innovative piece of equipment related to trapshooting. It took the physical, human pulling of the trap machine out of the sport and put electricity into it forever.
    “It’s one of the things that changed trapshooting the most through the years,” said Dave Bohlender, a long-time shooter from Tipp City. “There are several reasons why scores have improved and it is one of them.”
    The Clyne Puller was invented in the mid-40s by the late Roger and Bob Clyne of Troy, who had a small machine shop and ran the Camp Troy Gun Club in the 1940s and 1950s. That’s where the electric puller was first used. It eventually was employed at the Grand American for a few years and all over the country, in Europe and South America.
    For their sport-altering invention, the Clyne brothers, Roger and Bob, who both died in the 1980s, have been elected to the Trapshooting Hall of Fame. They will be inducted in August in Illinois at the first ceremonies ever to be held out of the Dayton area.

Commentary by Larry S. Moore:
Trapshooting has changed significantly over the years. The sport has progressed from live bird shoots to the modern format. Along the line various other targets were employed including a variety of glass balls. These were used in the late 1800s. Glass balls were often filled with feathers to resemble the live bird targets. Other glass balls were filled with talcum powder to resemble smoke when broken. Trapshooters still refer to the term, "smoking the target" today. Captain A. H. Bogardus, using an LC Smith shotgun, was the first clay ball champion and developed a machine to throw the glass targets. About the same time the familiar shape of the clay target was being developed. Mechanical throwers were used for the Grand American trap shoot held in New Orleans in 1885. At this event, Captain Bogardus finished second to Dr. W. F. Carver.

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For trapshooting to grow there was a need for a reliable target and a reliable method to send those targets into flight. The shape and size of the trap target, commonly called a clay bird or clay pigeon, evolved until the current standard was accepted. Following that was the need to put that target into the air with speed and consistency.
The next major improvement was the methods used to launch the target. As home grounds for trapshooting settled into Dayton, a method of push/pull mechanical throwers were used. These were larger machines with long levers for setting or cocking the trap. Men, usually with strong shoulders and arms, operated the trap machines. When the shooter was ready, they would call "pull" for the trap operator to release the target. The mechanical device and heavy springs would send the target from the trap house. The operators were soon called pullers. Shooters today still use the word "pull" for the release of the target. However the pullers have been replaced by the electrical trap machines described in this article.
Throughout the history of the United States necessity and sport have combined to create wonderful inventions. This is the spirit that has made us great. Ohio has very often been at the forefront of inventions. Across our great state major contributions from the canal boat days, to the leading edge of automotive industry and assembly lines, to development of health care technology such as the heart stints developed at the Cleveland Clinic, Ohio inventors have paved the way. So it was in trapshooting when Roger Clyne of Troy applied electrical power to the trap machines. By combining the electric motor and the mechanical trap, Clyne enabled the targets to be thrown more quickly which speeded up the competition. The machine threw the targets more consistently. This certainly was a major contribution to the shooting sports that enabled trapshooting to grow and accommodate more shooters in better time.
Since I enjoy trapshooting as my primary shooting sports activity, I tip my hat to the late Roger Clyne and his family for this significant contribution to the shooting sports.

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