It started in the Summer of 2011 when a small group of friends started to get together regularly to shoot an old game known as “Crazy Quail” at a local gun club in the Chicago suburbs. The target would fly out of a hole in the ground in any direction in a 360 degree circle. It was truly once of the best ways to simulate live bird shooting…but…
Crazy Quail required a puller to go down into the hole and manually load each target and pull a lever to throw it. Our puller was a local high school girl who would throw and shoot with us, but when she went off to college, we knew we had to figure out a better way. That was when the “NEW” Crazy Quail was born. Our goal? An automated clay target thrower that spun 360 degrees and would throw a target at the push of a button.
We got an automatic thrower from Apex Traps and our friend Sparky started welding up some metal in his garage. We attached a car battery and a remote car starter (to throw the target) and it wasn’t long before we had it working! It was so much fun to shoot!
It wasn’t long after we started using this new invention that we knew we had to make it mobile, so we integrated a trailer into the design and now it could be easily brought out into a field with an ATV. Never before could you have an instant target throwing machine with such variability in a nice mobile package. It was truly unique!
We then added 2 more throwers and eventually redesigned the unit to be smoother, more polished and even more fun to shoot. We now were also using a 3rd party wireless remote to control each of the 4 throwers. This configuration allowed for unlimited presentations and challenges. We traveled the country doing events, helping charities and it wasn’t long till a good portion of the shooting community knew the name “Crazy Quail”.
The quad was great, but it wasn’t for everyone. We needed a smaller, more compact and lower cost unit that anyone with a little bit of property could setup in their backyard and have some fun with. So we introduced “The Mini”. A single thrower unit with 2 wheels and a hitch to attach to your ATV. The earliest models were only controlled by a joystick, but it wasn’t long before we “made an app for that”. You could then control it with your iPhone!
You couldn’t stop us from improving our design and adding features, almost to our detriment. We added “positioning” to The Mini, meaning that we could make the thrower go to any position in a 360 degree circle along with a specific elevation and pitch and repeat that exact target. We added 4 legs so that it would be more stable on uneven ground. We ended up developing our own printed circuit board and eventually changed our machine from a bright orange to black. It took longer than we expected to develop, but it was truly unlike anything else currently on the market.
Eventually someone wanted more than one Mini, and they wanted it built directly into a trailer that was road ready. That became The Duo. What more do we need to say then a 12ft 7,000 pound trailer with 2 throwers and room for plenty clays and a boat load of ammo. It was the ultimate shotgun shooter’s dream setup!