How to Choose the Best Shooting Range Targets and Set Them Up
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How to Choose the Best Shooting Range Targets and Set Them Up

The only thing that makes a good shooter better is practice. You need to be practicing all the time if you want to get better at shooting consistently.

And whether you are shooting out in the backyard, or inside at a local shooting range, you’re going to need a target. Shooting range targets can help you practice specific types of shots depending on your goals.

So whether you are a hunter, a sport shooter, or a recreational shooter just looking to maintain a basic level of proficiency, you’ll need to have a stock of targets ready to go.

But there are tons and tons of different targets to choose from. Is one better than the other? Aren’t they all paper? Keep reading to find out what to look for when buying targets to appease your trigger finger.

Consider Your Goals

Most people who shoot targets fall in one of two camps; hunters or recreational shooters. Hunters are looking to increase their accuracy so that they can hit small targets at long distances.

Targets can be purchased that show the animal they are planning to hunt. For example, paper squirrel targets are perfect if you plan to do some squirrel hunting this season.

With squirrel targets, the image of the squirrel can be life-size, giving you practice that will actually pay off.

Target Material

If you are looking for something simple and cheap, that does its job, then go with paper targets. These are the cheapest to stock up on in bulk.

While paper targets might be printed on high-quality paper, they don’t need to be. So instead of always buying targets, you could just print your own. They just don’t last very long at all, and they can flop around in the wind if not fully secured to a stand or backdrop.

Cardboard targets are a little more durable. They’ll handle a few more shots than a piece of paper wood. Plus, the heavier, thicker material means it won’t blow around in the wind nearly as much.

Metal targets are available as well and will last forever if you let them. While there are some safety precautions to take when shooting medal, in general, as you long as you follow the instructions, you’ll have very little to worry about. No ricochet needed.

Targets for Hunting

As mentioned before, the squirrel target is perfect if you plan to chase bushy tails this fall. Other small game animals make for excellent targets, as they can often fit to scale on a piece of printer paper.

So you can get rabbit targets, upland bird targets, and other small game or pest animals.

For larger animals, targets often just have a life-size body part of a big game animal like deer or elk. For example, the target might just show the vital area of a turkey, which is the head and neck, so you can see if you have what it takes to bring a turkey down.

Other targets might show, with detailed sizes, the heart and lungs of a deer or elk.

Sport and Target Shooting

Sport shooting targets don’t need to have any fancy animals on them to be effective. These generally just have a few rings with a bullseye in the middle, similar to a dartboard.

When you are a competition shooter, all you’re going to do is shoot targets anyway. So you might as well get started now.

Some targets may have multiple targets and bullseyes on one sheet of paper, while others might just have one larger target on it. More targets on a single paper give’s you more to shoot without constantly changing the target.

Competitive Shooting Match

Looking to have a pistol match with your buddy? Then make sure to get the exact same target for both of you. It can be very difficult to actually compare results if you’re using two different styles of the target.

If you are on your own property, it helps to set up multiple target stations at different points in the yard to make the competition more exciting. Place some near the shooter station, and some as far as the eye can see.

Choose Reliable Gear

When target shooting frequently, you’re going to need long-lasting gear. Yes, this means targets and accessories, but it also means your gun and its attachments. If you are looking to upgrade to a modern, timeless, durable gun, you can check out Wilson Combat.

How to Set Up Shooting Range Targets

If your target is paper or cardboard, it’s ready to take to the local shooting range. When you get there, you’ll be guided to your own little shooting lane.

If your local range is up to date, this means it has a target holder attached to an overhead rail. When you press a button, the target then moves downrange to the desired distance away, usually maxing out at 25 yards.

In order to set up your target, you just need to clip it onto the target mounted, either with laundry clips or something else. Then, just press the button to send the target downrange to a safe spot to shoot.

If you are shooting outdoors, you won’t have a machine that you can attach your target to. You’ll have to actually walk all the way over to your desired target location.

You can either buy a pre-made target stand or build your own. The simple construction only requires a few pieces of 2×4 to construct.

A proper stand will allow you to attach your target at all four corners, which will prevent it from blowing around in the wind.

If you have space outside, it’s convenient to have multiple stands at different distances. This could be 25, 50, and a 100 yards

Becoming a Better Shooter

Whatever you do this summer, make sure you have enough shooting range targets on hand so that you can practice at any time. The more you do, after all, the better you’ll be.

So don’t skimp on the targets, as they are vital to your success as a shooter.

Looking for more tips like this? Be sure to visit our blog today to keep reading.

Zaraki Kenpachi