Monday, June 3, 2013

That's MR. Lazy and cheap, thank you very much....


Spend money where it buys value, save money otherwise.....  and targets are usually something I'm going to shoot holes in and then throw away.  Therefore, NOT something I want to spend a lot on.

Now, I've got a full case of rifle sight-in targets, and another of anatomy silhouette targets as well.  These serve a purpose, and are worth the money they cost.  That said, most backyard target practice doesn't require a fancy target, nor does the majority of range shooting I do.

Back to being Lazy And Cheap™.....

For years now, my favorite 'cheap' targets have been paper plates.  They come in a stupidly large pack for very small money, are a known size, and are dead easy to staple/nail/stick to the target frames.   For rapid fire pistol, just the plain 6" or 8" plate works fine.  It approximates the 'bad guy target zone', and doesn't need embellishment.

For finer shooting, especially rifles off the bench, I've been using a large sharpy marker and simply drawing a big black dot (or three) on the plate before I hang it.  Works like a charm, although it had some drawbacks.  The target dots were inconsistent in size, and frankly..... sometimes I'm too lazy to draw dots on paper plates.  Yes....  I know...... that is a special kind of lazy right there.

Recently, The Fat Man discovered a way to be even lazier still, while exercising his 'cheap' gland, and also solve the inconsistent dot issue.   1" round stickers

I found these while browsing on-line for labels to suit a project, and right away they reached out and said 'Shoot me!'.   Costing only $6.95 per thousand with free shipping, they actually work out to be cheaper than using the Sharpy marker.  That's well under one penny per target dot, and adding a few to a cheap paper plate gives me a total target cost of around 5 cents.  That's cheaper than a single round of .22 these days!

The 1" dot at 25 yards represents 4" at 100 yards, a rifleman's offhand target.  Using the dots at 25 yards gives a known target size, and makes for excellent match practice.

By the same token, judging group size from the bench is a snap, requiring fewer trips down range (Lazy.... remember?).

While load testing, I'll take the time to scrounge a piece of cardboard, usually a shipping box turned inside out (Cheap, you recall), and I'll paste on a dot about every 6 inches or so.  This gives up to 20 perfect 1" targets to hang all at once, and I can go right down the line trying groups on each while testing loads, without trotting down range every cease fire (Lazy).

I've also taken to pasting the stickers to my backyard steel swingers, giving me a smaller aiming point to zero in on.  The label-dots are easier than painting the swingers every week or so, and cheaper than spray paint as well.

Okay...... I've shared my Lazy And Cheap™ target trick...... now go have some Lazy And Cheap fun!




6 comments:

Bubblehead Les. said...

Awesome! We could have used those at last weekend's Kidshoot in No. Va. I will DEFINITELY add those to the Range Bag! Thank You very much!

Sherm said...

Maybe if a few more people read this I won't have to always be the only one stapling paper plates to the target backing.

drjim said...

This is one of those "D'OH" moments for me.

I've got several rolls of these things from some other project, and they're easier to apply (and a known size, too!) than simply globbing on some masking tape to cover the holes I've already made in my very own 'cheaper than cheap' targets...

.45ACP+P said...

The paper plate IS the official target for the NRA Basic Pistol/ First Steps Pistol courses. I can be even cheaper though, I save the unused "pasters" from the shoot-n-see targets. That makes them seem like "free".

GreyLocke said...

HEY!! I do the paper plate target as well. I staple them to a wood shim and then stick them in the ground. Sometimes I use a sharpie or a grease pencil to mark the center too.

The sticker trick is something I think I'll give a try.

Anonymous said...

Even cheaper than paper plates is 8.5x11 paper. The cheapest stuff at Wally-Woild is under $3 a ream.