Because of cost or ignorance there are steel targets out there made of inferior steel and are often poorly designed. Local to large manufacturers can be the cause, but because these targets are subject to craters, pits, and other deformations they can be very dangerous and should be avoided for safety reasons. Any steel with a rating under 400 (Brinell rating) including the popular T-1 steel.
Choosing the proper steel is only half of the equation. A good design is just as important as the right steel. Some manufacturers use brackets, clamps, or bolts in trying to hold their target together. Remember, anything that can be hit, will be hit eventually. Why is this an issue? Because you can do a reasonable job of predicting and protecting against a bullet's splatter pattern when it hits a flat, uniform surface. If the steel is damaged or if anything else is in the way, then you cannot know where the bullet is going. Bullet fragmentation and ricochet are inherent and acknowledged issues when shooting on steel targets. Proper target design helps you address those issues with the highest degree of safety possible. Our targets present a target at a 90 degree angle, and have a calculated ricochet angle of 20 degrees, ensuring that you have a safe as well as enjoyable experience using our targets.
All of our targets are made with these facts in mind, and all are AR 500 steel targets. In short --they're meant to last!