08 May. 2009|
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During the testing of pistol rounds, several larger fragments were found; sometimes sitting inside the cardboard tube and other times in the grass immediately in front of the test stand. Shotgun testing was done at 10 yards for the pellet load and 15 yards for the buckshoot and slug.
The thought process behind shooting a few multi-round targets was to see if the hardened steel targets produced the same splatter pattern time-after-time. Just out of curiosity I shot the steel target at about 45 degrees with a .308 round with the following results. I wanted to check the results so I loaded up the test stand and shot another .223 Sierra 55g round.
I was surprised by how tightly the fragments did exit when the target was the proper steel and in good shape. The biggest learning point for me was to see quite graphically how random and unpredictible the splatter pattern was off of softer steel and irregular surfaces. I encourage all shooters to evaluate the steel targets they are using and urge them to toss those old pieces of treadplate, railroad fixtures, and other targets made of soft steel or any made of harder steel that have a damaged surface.
Talk to Kimball at Bobcat Steel or any reputable steel target supplier and they can help you choose the right targets for your shooting needs. Had an instructor once take a backsplatter hit from a soft steel target (owner thought it was hardened).
An unprotected hit to the eye would have been a disaster, as would a shooter that was closer to the target. Therefore, if a fragment penetrates the gel an inch, it would do something of that magnitude to you if your body was near the steel target.
I check ammo people are going to use when shooting at my Bobcat Steel targets (shameless promo ).