D.I.Y. Shotgun Patterning Targets

Do It Yourself (D.I.Y.)
Shotgun Patterning Targets are extremely large, cumbersome and difficult to obtain.

Commercial Shotgun Patterning Targets are usually incorrectly sized, expensive, sold in insufficient quantities and heavily creased after being folded small for retail packaging and shipping.

To produce your own correctly sized targets in sufficient quantity, simply purchase a roll of “Builder’s Paper” from a hardware store.

Attach (tape) the paper to a utility surface.

Trim the paper.

Find the center of the paper and draw a 30 inch circle using a permanent marker and a “compass” made from a Furring Strip and a nail.

(Shooting plain, unmarked paper and later drawing a circle around the densest part of the shot pattern creates an invalid, illogical sample)

Paste a “Post-It” note in the center as a Bull’s-Eye.

After a few target making sessions, I had a sufficient quantity of targets in a big roll. This roll was heavy and would be too expensive to ship.

Now you are ready to test the accuracy, shot pattern, shot density and range of your shotgun, choke and ammunition. You will need a lot of targets for this. These targets are very big and should be rolled up and secured with rubber bands.

You will need to find an outdoor rifle range to test nontoxic and steel hunting ammunition. Indoor shooting ranges do not allow homemade targets and only allow soft lead to be fired from shotguns. This is because indoor ranges believe nontoxic and steel hunting ammunition ricochet.

Unfortunately, Gun Clubs that do not have outdoor rifle ranges, cannot accommodate the testing of hunting ammunition at this time, because these types of clubs are not designed for the hardness of nontoxic shot. For patterning, these Clubs usually have an impenetrable board that is painted after each shot and can only be used with soft or low energy pellets to prevent ricocheting or damage to the board. If a non-rifle Gun Club offers cardboard for patterning, they will still forbid the use of hunting ammunition.


tugboatdude said...

Great idea!So true about where you can actually pattern a waterfowl shotgun.I have never correctly patterned a gun because of the lack of somewhere to do it.another great ,informative post

The Reverend Fowl ™ said...

You might be satisfied just checking for accuracy or "point of impact" at an indoor range. You will have to buy their single targets. Choose their largest Bull-Eye or Rapid Fire type target. Buy the largest target load you can find beforehand. This has to be lead according to indoor range rules. I use Federal Field & Range Shotshells 6shot/1oz/3-1/4 Dram/2-3/4in/1290 FPS. If your point of impact is off, you may have to raise your comb or install adjustable sights. Don’t drink allot of coffee or eat a lot of candy when you do this. Stay mellow; take your time to figure this out. It’s a great feeling and confidence booster to get your accuracy optimized.

Anonymous said...

thank you