Reusable vs. Disposable Targets: A Pros and Cons Guide

Posted by Peter Bunnell on March 20, 2012 0 Comments

What are the benefits and downfalls of both reusable and disposable targets? This article will help point out the pros and cons of both, helping you as the consumer decide which type of shooting targets best meet your needs.

·         Reusable Steel Targets

When a shooter fires at steel targets, typically he/she is met with both visual and auditory replies. Steel targets offer immediate feedback, as the shooter can tell through visual confirmation if the target is hit. The shooter can hear if the bullet meets the steel, making his/her time on the shooting range even more productive. Metal targets that reset, known as jumping targets, allow shooters to spend more time on the range instead of reconfiguring targets. Offering advanced durability and environmental friendliness, these targets offer years of use.

While steel targets are typically more expensive than disposable paper targets, they offer distinct advantages. They are however more difficult to carry if you are looking for a portable shooting range on your next camping excursion.

·         Disposable Paper Targets

Disposable targets are typically lightweight, making them easier to carrying into the backcountry for target practice.

In order for the shooter to know if he/she hit the target, it requires a physical visual check of the paper target or using an advanced high-magnification scope. This can be especially daunting if practicing long-distance shooting techniques. While metal targets typically move when hit with the force of a bullet, paper targets do not. Disposable targets require visual checks to confirm accuracy and thereby require more time since they lack instant feedback.

Another inconvenience with paper targets is the initial setup. Whether you tack it to a tree or a box, you need to make sure the bullets deflect in a safe direction. Steel targets offer an advantageous benefit here. For example, the moving steel targets at JumpingTargets.com are designed at 90-degree angles, ricocheting bullets at angles of 20 degrees. This ensures that the targets are always safe.

Overall, it depends how much of an avid shooter you are. Are you shooting long-range targets? Are you simply looking for a semi-annual shooting experience? If you go out every weekend to practice shooting your rifle, handgun or shotgun, you may find that while steel targets cost more up front, with extended use, they may be ultimately less expensive in the end.

Always remember that gun safety should be the highest priority!

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