Hunting with shotguns and rifles is fun. But more and more hunters are looking for ancient ways of hunting like using a bow or crossbow. All hunters need to practice their aiming, and with guns this is easy, you just place few bottles on a tree and shoot. With bows and crossbows especially that is not the case. Arrow needs to be stopped, and because of that, you need to use specific targets.
There is also a considerable difference between bow and crossbow archery targets because for a crossbow you will need a more powerful target. You can also choose from several types of targets like 3D targets, bag targets, foam targets, homemade targets and crossbow targets. Each of archery targets has its own advantages and disadvantages. And in this best archery targets for bow hunting in 2018 guide, I have decided to list top 3 products for each archery type target.
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The Best Foam Block Targets
Foam blocks are easy to carry because they are light, but at the same time durable. Most archers love to shoot at foam block targets, and one of the reasons for that is the various target styles. You can get targets like simple bulls eyes or some other exciting forms with circles. The most prominent advantage of foam block archery targets is durability; it is hard to destroy them because at the impact, the power of the arrow is spread and not centered into the particular location. The biggest damage to the target you will do when you be pulling bolts. Because of that, it is best to use simple point arrowheads and not broadheads which will do more damage at pulling. Best way to use foam archery targets is to use low power bows because if you use a high powered bow or heavy crossbow the arrow might get stuck in the foams too deep and you could have problems pulling it out. And in the end, you will do more damage to the foam block. This foam block targets are best used for practice with a simple point heads, bow tuning, sighting bows, holding archery tournaments or just shooting from your backyard. Also read : Best Carbon Arrows for Hunting
Best 3 Archery Foam Block Targets
Rinehart is one hell of a good archery targets manufacturer and this model is one of the best foam block models on the market. RhinoBlock Target comes in a dimension of 16x16x13. This foam block is actually having 3 ways of practicing. Large target circles for aim practice and small targets for placing all arrows as close as possible and the third way is real life 3D hunting on a 3D animal. Basically you get 3 in 1 with this product. The biggest advantage of this foam target is the quality of the foam. Quality of the foam is in high density and the target will not wear off too fast. This foam block can last you for years. By stating the quality is high and foam density is good I still don’t suggest using a crossbow on this target because of the crossbow power and small size of the bolt you will have a hard time pulling those bolts outside and maybe you will even need to use arrow puller. To save you the hassle with this problem, I highly suggest to check special crossbow targets below in this archery targets guide. If you are using broadheads, do not worry this target can handle many broadhead shots.
Rinehart 18 – 1 is most popular foam target among archers because you can use broadheads on it without a problem and you can shoot arrow after arrow, and this target will serve you good for a whole year without a single question. If for some reason this product is not working correctly Reinhart has issued a full 1-year guarantee. The reason behind that guarantee must be in their popular self healing foam which heals the damage done by the arrow. Number 18 in the title states that this foam target has 18 different targets. With all that in combination, self-healing and 18 target points this is a long-lasting archery target. You can shoot at small or large green circles and because of that this is one of the best archery targets for practice. You can place this block everywhere you want, even in backyard and have fun from your home. But if you are in an archery club and you bring this piece of archery equipment to the archery club, you will receive welcome by all archers.
Field Logic is the manufacturer of this exciting foam block that is used for various target practices. Four-sided block means that once you wear off one side, you can still use other sides. That features provide a longer lifespan of the target block. You can shoot field tips, broadheads, and mechanicals into this target. For your needs you can choose 3 different sizes, 16-inch, 1-inch or 20-inch sizes and price is different for each size making the 20-inch the most expensive size. Block Invasion target is using layered design which stops arrows with friction and by that it means that the target will be usable for a longer time. This layered design also implies that bolts are coming out without a problem and you won’t need arrow puller even if you use a stronger bow. Multiple targets on each side make sure that arrows are not send in the same spot all the time which also contributes the lifespan of this foam block. Now if you have broadhead or field tip arrows you should use front and back target because polypropylene side is designed for field tips only, so make sure you don’t make a mistake by shooting another type of arrows to this target point because the damage from different kind of arrows may be unrepairable.
The Best Bag Targets
Bag targets are filled with stopping material like fiber, straw or other things that have stopping power. If you need more stopping power, you just add more material in the bag. These targets are ideal for multiple shots because the bag will not get damaged too fast and arrows get out easy without the chance to get damaged. But there is one small disadvantage of the bag targets and that is fabric. The fabric is not good material for broadhead tip because when you pull broadhead arrow you will most probably rip the bag and that will just result in destroyed target. Another problem with these bags is weather. It is not wise to leave these bags on open for a long time, the sun, rain, snow will do harm to the fabric and that will result in a short lifespan. Bags are more cumbersome than foam blocks, and that makes them harder to transport. The bag targets are ideal for beginners who likes to shoot many shots and practice aiming. Bag targets are simple targets that you can actually make at home if you have right material. But for the convenience let look at the best 3 bag targets on the market.
The Best 3 Bag Targets
If you are looking for a target that can withstand many shots then this is the right target for you. Yellow Jacket Supreme 3 Field Point bag archery target is made with durable material and the cover is replaceable which means that the lifespan of this bag target is longer than you would expect. This bag can withstand thousand of shots every day and because of that is ideal for beginners who need lots of practice. You can use compound bows on this target but the arrow needs to have field point only because if you use any other tip it will wear this bag off and you will need to pay extra money for new cover and probably for the material as well. The bag is ideal for advanced archers as well because it has grommets that allow you to hang the bag and while hanging the bag, it will take even less stress from the shots than if it is laying on the ground. Bag targets know to be heavy but you could carry this one without a problem because it has a carrying handle. Morrell created one of the best bag targets on the market and they even claim that this bag is 100% weather resistant. You can use it on rain, snow or hot days, but I still recommend you put it in a garage while you are not shooting at it. Easy arrow removal is another advantage of Morrells best selling bag. With just two fingers and little force you can pull arrows without significant damage to the bag.
Green Super Duper Field Point Target is as well another great product from Morrells factory of archery bag targets. If you don’t like the yellow color and prefer green for your practice, then with no means get Green Super Duper Field Point Target because after all it is made by same company and it has same quality. And on top of all that this bag target comes with 2 years warranty. Targets on the bag are spotted under all weather circumstances from a fair range, and that makes this green bag so unique. Another thing that puts this bag to the best selling bags list is price. Even tho the bag is made with same durable material and is 100% weather resistant the price for this bag is extremely affordable. The bag also has carrying hand for transport as well as grommets to hang the bag and make it more attractive target while it hangs. This bag can handle most of the bows including crossbows up to 350 FPS power. The design of the bag is exciting, and one side has circles while other have deer organs. Deer organs locations on the bag are extremely useful for hunters who need to practice precise shots that will kill an animal and not make her suffer.
There is not much difference between this bag target than other already mentioned Morrell bag targets. This one is also made with advanced premium material that guarantees durability and extended life of the target. Nucleus center of the bag has fantastic stopping power which allows usage of powerful bows up to 350 FPS or even crossbows. Multi-layered density design is the patent of Morrell company and that design makes the Morrell bags used by many archers. Outdoor Range is actually official target bag for I.B.O. And that just proves the quality of this target. Size of this bag is 29″ x 31″ x 14″ and it has 50 pounds. You can place it easy as well as carry it thanks to the grommets and carrying hand. Morrell claims that the bag is 100% weather resistant but like I already stated, please don’t leave it over the night outside because with time, material will lose its quality and life of the bag will be shorter. But for 2 years you should not worry about the bag because Morrell gives 2 years warranty on this bag.
The Best 3D Archery Targets
Bags and foam blocks are ideal for competition practice but if you are more of a hunter than the sportsman, you will need to practice on 3D archery targets. These targets are identical replicas of the animals you are hunting. The 3D archery targets can be big or small depending on the animal, for example, a whitetail deer is a massive target just like a bear, but if you are hunting turkeys then you need to practice on turkeys. Good news is that you can pick whatever animal you like and practice on it. Difference between 3D targets and competitive targets is that on 3D targets you are practicing aiming into a vital spots of the animal that will cause a kill. This practices cannot be done with competitive targets because you will not get the real feel of the aiming. By practicing on 3D targets you can simulate various situations and shooting at the target from different angles. You can do practices from multiple positions, from bushes, from a tree stand and by that get a real feel that will await you when you face the animal in a real hunt. 3D targets may be big like already stated but the weight is not high, and you will quickly move it and place it in a right spot. The size of the 3D targets is big, but mostly you will be shooting at same spot to train a kill shot, that means that target area will be wear off fast. Good news is that most of the 3D targets have replaceable vital points of the animal and as soon as you wear them off, you can replace them with the new one. On the hunt you will probably use broadheads but on practice don’t do that because that will make 3D target wear off extremely fast.
The Best 3 3D Archery Targets
Hunting boars with a bow are extreme sports. Boars are dangerous and what is worse than a wounded boar. Hunters love this 3D Woodland Boar target which allows them to train perfect shots that will lead to the instant kill. Reinhart 3D target can take shots from a crossbow and compound bows. But you should use field tips and not broadheads because that will prolong the usage of the 3D target. Reinhart uses their best FX foam which heals after the arrow is pulled, but if you use broadheads, then there is a high chance of tearing the foam apart. The boar is 24″ long and 39″ tall, and it is perfect target practice. 75 LBS is simulated to give a real feel when an arrow hits the target. I can recommend any hunter who is going to hunt boars to practice on this 3D boar target because with practice you can make clear shots that will lead to easy hunting and avoid chances of being attacked by a boar.
If you live in the USA, then you have at least hear of a turkey hunting. It is an entirely favorite type of hunting over here and mostly it is done with shotguns. But some advanced hunters like to go on extreme hunting with bows. I call it extreme hunting because it is really hard to hit such a small target that is only 25″ tall and size from beak to tail is just 30″. And not to mention that these little animals move fast, so you need to be patient and have a fast bow to kill a turkey. There are no target zones on the 3D turkey target because wherever you hit the turkey, it will die. This 3D target can also be used as a decoy because it has colors, size, and feather just like a real turkey and if you are in the woods and you see this target in the bushes, you would think it is a real turkey. If you are going on a turkey hunt, I can highly recommend practicing on this 3D turkey target.
Field Logic makes this large 3D target that is ideal for practice and real hunt simulation. This 3D target is large with 56 inches in height and body size of a 200-pound deer. But the real weight of the 3D target is small, and you will only spend like three minutes to unbox the target and set it up for shooting. Arrows are easily removed from the target, and you can even use bolts on the target zone. But I can not recommend using broadheads because broadheads do lots of damage, not when they penetrate the target, but as soon as you pull them out of the target broadheads will tear foam and create more damage than field tip heads. Insert core that is the main target of every hunter that goes for a kill is replaceable and has four sides. This allows over 1000 shots at the target. And once you destroy insert core, you can order a new one and just replace it. This way you are saving money, and that is the main reason why you should not use broadheads because if you miss a target, you might do massive damage to the legs or head of the buck deer.
Best Targets for Crossbows
Bolts need more stopping power than arrows, and because of that, you need to use specially made targets for crossbows. These crossbow targets are made for fast crossbows that are getting more and more popular among hunters. At the same time, crossbow targets are not good for regular bows because speed and power of ordinary bow may be too low and the arrow may not even penetrate the target. Crossbow targets are used for two things, for the practice to get better at aiming or merely to discharge loaded bolt because there is no other way of unloading bolt than to shoot it at something.
Best 3 Targets for Crossbows
Morrell targets are made by experienced hunters and give amazing performance in all fields. Morrell YJ-350 is an ideal practice target which can also take broadhead bolts. The main purpose of this target is to practice with powerful and fast crossbows. The box has four shooting sides and you can use various types of tips. It doesn’t matter how fast bow you use the target block is made in a such way that will stop any bolt from deep penetration. That means that removing bolts is easy. Like all Morrell products this one is also resistant on all weather situations. But for a longer lifespan I suggest you keep this box in a garage while you are not shooting.
Block makes great targets and this crossbow target block is made with high density which means that it can stop even the shots from the fastest crossbows. It has four sides for shooting and each side is designed differently which provides variation at shooting. Technology used for stopping bolts is using friction not force and that allows easy arrow removal. On this block you can even use broadheads if you want. The Block is made in two sizes, 16″ and 20″ target blocks. This crossbow target box is ideal for advanced crossbow hunters as well as beginners, but if you are using a simple bow on this target, it is possible that your shots will not be penetrating the target. This target box is made only for crossbows.
Every crossbow hunter needs to have discharge target because if you load a bolt and you did not shoot, then you need to unload that bolt somewhere. And honestly there is no better way to unload the bolt than to shoot it in discharge bag. Discharge bags are made with same material and same technology as crossbow practice targets but in a smaller size. You can put this small bag in any truck and it will be no problem carrying the bag with you. Once the situation calls for unloading the bolt, you will be ready. If you like you can use this small bag for target practice as well but remember that the main purpose of discharging bags is to discharge bolts.
DIY Targets and Life of a Archery Target
You can make your own archery targets if you have proper material but I highly recommend not to do that because if you make a mistake then the consequences can be hazardous. Bolts or arrows may be broken or even deflected, and such deflections can be dangerous to people around. Because of that if you are not experienced archer who knows how to make proper archery target, I suggest you go and buy one. Archery targets can be used for a full year if you will be shooting every day. If you are amateur and you shoot just for fun here, and there one archery target may serve you for years.
Picking a right archery target is not simple, there are many different types of targets, and each of them has its own advantage and disadvantage. Self-healing foam is ideal for beginners who want to shoot a lot and every day. Bags are ideal for cheap target practice, and if you are a real hunter that goes after animals, then you will need to practice on 3D animal targets. In each category, I have given three best products, and if you pick one of those three products, I am positive you will not make a mistake. Just make sure if you use a crossbow to buy crossbow targets and not regular targets and the same thing can be said for bow users, not to shoot at crossbow targets. With lots of practice, you can become the best hunter that will shot to kill and not miss.