Steel rifle target

This is a discussion on Steel rifle target within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I'm looking at getting a steel torso target. I was looking at an IPSC style torso made of AR500 steel 3/8". Will that hold up ...

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Thread: Steel rifle target

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    Steel rifle target

    I'm looking at getting a steel torso target. I was looking at an IPSC style torso made of AR500 steel 3/8". Will that hold up to my AR at 50 yards? No steel core stuff obviously, just ball and cheap Russian stuff.
    It is surely true that you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. Nor can you make them grateful for your efforts.

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    Senior Member Array yz9890's Avatar
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    My friend's AR500 torso has held up repeatedly to 5.56, 308, 7mm, 300WM, 300Ultra, and a Barrett M82A1 50BMG. The 50BMG and steel core are the only bullets I've seen even dent it. I'm not sure how thick his is though. I'll check next time I go out there.
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    AR500 Steel
    The steel plate should last a bit . It does depend on how often you will use it. All steel plate with impact ,wear , abrasion has a life to it.
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    Steel rifle target

    Quote Originally Posted by yz9890 View Post
    My friend's AR500 torso has held up repeatedly to 5.56, 308, 7mm, 300WM, 300Ultra, and a Barrett M82A1 50BMG. The 50BMG and steel core are the only bullets I've seen even dent it. I'm not sure how thick his is though. I'll check next time I go out there.
    I bet they're 1/2" if you guys are using larger calibers. I could be wrong though.
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

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    Check the YouTube video on the guy getting hit by the .50 cal ricochet off a steel target. You might want to make sure there's some angle involved.

    Guy hit in head with .50 caliber ricochet - YouTube
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    A quick search of some markets' websites is giving minimum ranges for rifles greater than 50 yards (most are saying 100 is the minimum), and to use rounds under 3,000fps.

    Interestingly most just seem to mention that velocity, and say nothing about bullet weights.
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    VIP Member Array Badey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    Check the YouTube video on the guy getting hit by the .50 cal ricochet off a steel target. You might want to make sure there's some angle involved.

    Guy hit in head with .50 caliber ricochet - YouTube
    I listened to an interview with him. He claimed there was an angle, however he wouldn't likely want to admit it if there wasn't, and I don't see how it would come straight back if the steel was angled.
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    3/8" AR500 seems to be the "standard" for gongs and poppers. From what I've read and the little bit that I've seen first hand, this will handle "vanilla" rifle ammo at ranges of 100 yards or more. If you want to shoot closer than that maybe look at a 1/2" gong?

    How are you planning to mount it?

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    Torso on a post.
    It is surely true that you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. Nor can you make them grateful for your efforts.

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    Member Array wsquared's Avatar
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    I assume that you're going to do it at a downward angle?

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    I've been shooting steel for years and have always stuck to 25 yards for 5.56 and 308 and 10 yards for handguns. Targets are always set at a downward angle and in the tens of thousands of rounds over the years, we've never had a ricochet other than pieces of a jacket getting tossed back due to little craters in the steel after a lot of use.
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

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    Member Array wsquared's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonconsiglio View Post
    Targets are always set at a downward angle
    I think that you just identified the key item....

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    Id go if possible.

    Ive got a 2/3rds IDPA silhouette in AR500 3/8s inch that a friend of mind shot with .223 55grain FMJ at about 75 yards (it was angled down). The steel held up, but was dimpled so I now use it as my 300-500 yard target. Once your steel gets dimpled, youll get splash black when shooting it closer with pistols etc. IF its going to be solely a 50 yard + target, I think it will hold up for quite a long time as long as you rotate it once in a while. I've also mounted some of my fixed targets using springs to absorb some of the energy, a little "give" saves some wear.

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    VIP Member Array jonconsiglio's Avatar
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    Steel rifle target

    Yep, downward angle is a must. Moving the target farther back or disposing of it is also a must once dimpling occurs.

    I like anything reactive. Steel obvious gives. Solid ping, but I also like them to move a bit. Whether that's falling down, working steps where it takes an undetermined number of rounds to drop the target to the bottom of the stepper, or just on springs, as mentioned above, enough that it moves a tiny bit. This is good for both the shooter and the target.

    I'd also certainly go 1/2" AR500.
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

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    Like others have said, go for ar500 1/2" thick. I recently got some steel plates from a place called big dog steel in Ohio and it has held up fine to my shooting.

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