What Are You Shooting At? Airgun Targets For All Of Us.
Today we have a guest post about airgun targets from well-known airgunner RidgeRunner. It’s in his own words. Take it way RR…
WARNING: The following is my opinion. You may disagree with it as you wish…
I guess the answer to the question “What Are You Shooting At?” depends on what kind of shooter you are.
Are you a competition shooter, a hunter, a plinker…?
I used to be a hunter, but it has been a long time since I had to do such to feed my family so I went away from that. I still like to shoot though, so I try to keep my hand in with plinking. I am not just a plinker though. I am a very serious plinker. My favorite spinner is ¾-Inch diameter. I am getting ahead of myself here though…
There are a plethora of paper targets for sale. They range from competition airgun targets to zombie rats and everything in between. There are also a bunch of targets you can download and print off. I do not have the time, energy or space to even touch on all the offerings in this category.
If you shoot, you know what I am talking about. There are times I could use such, but my wallet says I would do better to buy more pellets than targets.
So what do I do? I improvise. For quite some time now, Mrs. RR and I have become somewhat reclusive. We are big fans of doing as much of our shopping on line as is possible. With the outbreak of the Chinese Plague, everybody else has also. Well, all of this stuff we order usually shows up in cardboard boxes.
When I need to zero in an airgun or become familiar with its shooting characteristics, I break out a piece of cardboard as I seem to have an unending supply of it and since I have already paid for it, why not use it? I grab an old steel realtor’s sign frame that I have, take a piece of cardboard and a few clothespins and away we go.
Since a good number of my air rifles are antique and cannot be fitted with a scope, I needed a target that would work real well with open sights.
Reading and experience has taught me that a round bullseye seems to work best when using open sights, but I am lousy at drawing. Then I had this bright idea of using price dots. The ones I use are ¾” diameter, making them large enough to see at sproinger ranges and small enough for small game kill zones.
The problem with these is some of the colors do not show up well on certain color backgrounds, straining these old, tired eyes. Then the light came on again. Why not color them with a Sharpie?
This created a sharp contrast on almost any background and became my go to target for open sights. You can buy a gazillion of them for almost nothing and stick them all over a piece of cardboard for hours of shooting.
That is great for open sights, but what about a scope? A ¾-Inch dot may be fine for some, but not for me. Aim small, miss small. When I am using a scope, I take the Sharpie and make an X.
I shoot at the intersection of the crossed lines. Not only does that give me a fantastically small point to aim at, but if I happen to shoot it out I can use the four converging lines to find the point. If you put each line in a quadrant, it will point to the center point.
By placing each line in the “corner”, you align the reticle with your original aim point. Try it.
Once I am zeroed and am somewhat familiar with how the particular airgun is shooting, I like to break out the reactive targets. I have a set of spinners that range in size from humongous down to reasonable, but my favorite spinner is the ¾-Inch I acquired a few years back. Aim small, miss small.
This was OK fine for a good bit, but then I started teaching my grandson to shoot and he wanted more things to shoot at. The light came on again…
I grabbed up a couple of empty CO2 cartridges, a couple of screws, some cord and orange spray paint and the rest is history.
The truth is I remember this from a GTA Fun Shoot I attended in Kentucky a few years back. We used an eighty-eight gram CO2 cartridge at 100 yards for the big bores.
The problem with the CO2 cartridge is though it is cheap, durable and fun to flip around, it is a pretty big airgun target. Guess what, the light came on yet again!
I had been studying up on mini-sniping and knew the “traditional” target was a 9mm shell casing. The problem with that is when you hit those little buggas they tend to go flipping off, never to be seen again. Fortunately, the light had not gone off yet.
Now, there are times when even I do not want to be too serious about my plinking. At those times I will go hunting feral soda cans and the occasional wild water bottle.
So, what airgun targets are you shooting at?
Thanks RR. That’s great inspiration for all of us! If you want more ideas for reactive airgun targets, check out this other story in HAM from some time back.