Tricking out the MEC 100E ATA Target Thrower

Every time I pull out the MEC 100E ATA to shoot clays I think to myself: “I’ve got to do this more often!”. And now that I’ve gotten the 100E ATA all tricked-out and fine tuned, I can do that a lot more easily! Let me share with you the upgrades that I’ve performed, and the process to make all of the appropriate adjustments.

In case you missed it, here are my other stories covering the MEC 100E ATA:

Now, on to the tweaks, upgrades, and some shooting!

Gavin’s Upgrades

After assembling the 100E ATA, I decided to add some things: I’m compulsive when it comes to this “dialing-in process”. The first round of additions and upgrades is centered around the front panel and hitch area:

Above we have:

  • 2″ hitch coupler for use with mowers / ATVs
  • Lawn and garden battery with bungee cord hold-down
  • Alligator clip connections for battery (for quick swap, and quick power connect/disconnect)

And here are some things I plan to add eventually:

  • Flip down leg for storing machine at hitch coupler (so that coupler doesn’t get buried in dirt, etc)
  • Custom hold-down strap for battery (rubber, or velcro strap)

I also added the MEC Foot Switch Pull Cord, a great add-on for this thrower! (a lot better than the extension cord hack I put together last year 🙂 ).

MEC 100E ATA Adjustments

The MEC 100E ATA is a fully adjustable target throwing machine. The adjustments can all be made with the following tools:

  • 3/4″ wrench and socket/ratchet
  • 3/8″ allen key (preferably 3/8″ drive with ratchet)

Launch Speed

The MEC 100E ATA can be set to launch clay pigeons at speeds ranging from 35 MPH up to about 65 MPH. With ATA specifying 40-42 MPH for competition, that falls somewhere in the middle!

Setting the speed is as easy as loosening the two nuts that secure the spring screw, and then adjusting spring extension:

I decided to conduct a quick experiment to measure the factory setting for launch speed (as seen in the video):

Here’s what I did:

  • Capture a still frame from video (shutter speed =  1/60th second)
  • Measure blur subtracting the width of a clay pigeon
  • Calculate speed

Here’s the math:

My MEC 100E ATA came set from the factory at 41 MPH, that’s right in the middle of the ATA’s spec of 40-42 MPH! Impressive.

Rotation Angle

Setting the rotation angle is super easy:

You just loosen the Allen bolt (using a 3/8″ Allen key/tool), slide the linkage side to side in the slot, and tighten. In the picture above, towards me would be lessening rotation angle, and moving away from me would be increasing rotation angle.

Inclination Angle

You can literally adjust the inclination angle in about 1 minute! A 3/4″ socket or wrench is all you need. Loosening the two nuts shown above will allow you to tilt the entire carousel up (steep angle) or down (shallow). Tighten the two nuts, and you’re ready to go!

You can also adjust side to side tilt, but I haven’t found that necessary.

Shooting with the MEC 100E ATA

Busting clays is so much fun, and a great way to hone your shotgunning skills! I like the increased rotation angle that I applied as a part of these adjustments. You literally don’t know where the clay will go flying, just like when you spook a grouse in the forest. Now that I have this machine setup and fine-tuned, I am thinking about going to some local club shoots. I have no excuse now!

If you want to know more about the MEC 100E ATA, check out the MEC product page. I’m off to bust more clays!

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