5 Best Targets For Precision Shooting
Have you ever been that guy that showed up to the range with no target? or poor targets for long-range shooting?
So in this guide, we gonna take a look at the 6 best targets for precision shooting at long ranges.
There are many types of targets out there. We got steel, paper and object, they are the most common targets for long range shooting.
In order to maximize accuracy up to 1000 yards or more, you need something that serves several important things:
- Establish zeroing
- Verify holdover
- Load development
- Scope calibration testing
- Scope cant correction
- Simulated long-range at indoor range
- Hear the impact to verify hit
There are ones you can download & print, you can buy or you can make your own.
At the end of this guide, we will also discuss what you should be looking for in a target for long range shooting.
Let's check them out
6 Best Targets For Precision Shooting
HORUS CATS - For Test Rifle, Scope & Ammo
HORUS VISION Is dedicated to proving the shooters the tools to yield the highest probability of a first round hit at extended ranges without any cant & test the trackability of the scope turrets.
If you have a high end first focal plane rifle scope, you can use this target to test the tracking.
The CATS Combination Accuracy Training System is a fairly large size calibration target designed to be shot at exactly 100 yards/meters to test the accuracy of your rifle and scope turret.
Each target in the series is designed for a specific purpose.
- Series 1 - For zeroing
- Series 2 - Validate adjustment accuracy & Cant validation
- Series 3 - Improve your individual shooting skills with instructional aid
- Series 4 - Increased the level of difficulty, the rifleman must rely on his anti-cant device.
The shooter's point of aim throughout the entirety of the test never changes, and as he / she adjust the elevation turret, the point of impact should track up and down the respective MOA / Mil lines on the target.
If the click adjustment doesn't line up the reticle and the target where it should be, then the shooter needs to either move the target closer or further until perfect match.
When using this super calibrated target, you need a large target backing to hold up the target that is perfectly leveled to prevent error, and at least 10 feet tall berm for safety reasons.
You can use this target for testing < 0.5 MOA accuracy ammo, rifle and other precision equipment you may have.
Scope Tracking Test Target - Similar to HORUS CAT, But Smaller
If you don't have the luxury to shoot a full size HORUS CAT target mention above due to its size, then you can try something smaller
The target is ideal for zeroing your scope at 100 yards, and then doing a “box” test to check tracking to see how precisely the scope actually adjusts the reticle for a given turret adjustment.
The grid on the target is useful for practicing “Kentucky Windage” at longer distances.
In addition, the USAF 1951 optical resolution chart helps test the clarity of your scope glass. The better your scope, the finer the lines it will resolve.
You can use this target to verify the accuracy of your scope turret, reticle, rifle and ammo.
Simulated Range Targets - For Indoor Use
Why you have to try this - If you want to practice long range shooting but you only have access to a short distance range, the simulated range targets is what you need.
Whether you're practicing holdover, range estimation or wind correction, these targets provide shooters with fun and immersive long range shooting experience as short range targets.
Every engagement labled with yardage has been scaled accurately to present that distance.
It works with red dot sight, iron and magnified optics.
If you shoot indoor just get this - These targets are available in 24" X 36", 18" X 24" and 13" X 19" sizes, and they are printed on high quality and bright white paper.
If you just want a target that you can set up inside your home to practice ranging, dialing and hold over, please also check out the NEW IDTS indoor long range dry firing target.
Standard 1" & 0.25" Grid Target - Most Standard
A good zeroing target should have 1" and 0.25" grid so the shooter can see exactly how many turret adjustment clicks they need to zero the scope.
They are very simple to use and it works well with first focal plane reticle at various ranges for:
- fast range estimation
- zeroing scope & boresight laser
- clean & cold bore shift mapping
You can buy them in bulk or you can draw the grid yourself with a sharpie pen with a rule.
Load Development Target - For Testing Ammo
For anyone developing a load or for testing, these targets are suitable for doing ladder tests or shooting multiple groups with different neck tensions or seating depths.
This types of target was developed by Ted Conway and provides precise aiming points and high contrast for bullet holes.
The last target features very precise target dots, with fine-line grids inside boxes.
There are many different targets like this on the market and you can check them out below by clicking on the button
Steel Targets - The Most Fun
Once your scope is dialed in, shooting a steel target down range is extremely fun and satisfying when you hear the metal impact from far away, and see the impact clearly through your scope.
Recommend full size IPDA 36" wide torso steel target or 12" - 24" steel gong, so they are big enough to see and hit.
The most common steel targets are rated AR500 and AR550. Both steel types can handle anything up to something like the 223, 308, 6.5 CM and other similar calibers if the thickness of the steel is about 3/8" with 500 Brinell steel rating.
For heavier long range calibers like 30-06, 300 Win Mag, 338 Lapua and others, try 1/2" thick AR550 steel that is built to last.
Safety Warning : For centerfire rifle shooting, please place steel targets at least 70 - 100 yards away. 200 yards away for any magnum type calibers such as 338 Lapua.
Do not place any steel target down range near any animals you don't intend to harm. Steel target ricochet and splash can do serious damage.
Learn more about outdoor range firearm safety here.
The best places to buy steel targets are:
These targets generally come with target stands when you buy the complete package
Most Important Things To Have On A Target For Long Range Shooting
The most important thing is to establish a good zero first, and these are the important elements to have on a target to help you verify scope, rifle and ammo accuracy
it's important to have a large size target to see where you're hitting and how much you're missing. Otherwise you can't verify your hits at long ranges.
- 1 inch square grids so that you can easier measure the adjustments in MOA or MIL as needed.
- 1, 2, and 3 inch circles around the center so that you can help judge group size at different distances
- Diamond aiming references (my favorite) to help you easier center your reticle without straining to look at the targets
- Different targets with different-size aiming points for various magnification scopes (and iron sights)
- MOA adjustments (up, down, left, and right) necessary for EVERY grid-line for 25, 50, and 100 yards
- Instructions to help you use the targets complete with a sample scenario as an explanation!
As the content creator of badassoptic.com, My background in the firearms industry and shooting sports gives me the experience to recommend tried and true products and keep away subpar ones.