There are multiple choices when it comes to modern archery targets. In this article we will cover the pros and cons for three main styles of archery targets, 3D, block or foam, and bag style targets.
3D Archery Targets
3D targets give a shooter the ability to practice real world hunting scenarios before the moment of truth when your quarry presents you a shot. While shooting at 3D style targets you not only are able to see where you would have hit the animal but repetition of aiming at an animal target will help you to develop muscle memory of where you will bury your pin when your chance comes in real life. This type of shooting allows shooters to affirm what their comfortable maximum distance is on different sized animals. For someone from the Midwest or South who are going on their first Western hunting trip for antelope or elk, they can practice shooting different distances and might even help them judge distance on the fly while they are out on their hunt. Rather than having your very first shot at an elk in the field imagine how much confidence you can develop having thousands of arrows into an elk target before your hunt.
Maybe it’s your son or daughter’s first hunt, teaching them where to shoot on a 3D deer target can help them understand different shot angles helping them to harvest their first archery animal. Pricing on 3D targets will be based off of quality, size of shooting area, and overall size of the target.
Pros of 3D Archery Targets
- Confidence builders
- Muscle memory for real life shot placement
- Better field judging distance More fun to shoot
- Shot placement practice for different angles
- Most have replaceable vital or shooting cores
Cons of 3D Archery Targets
- Larger targets like elk and moose will bring a high price tag
- Larger targets are awkward to move or set up by yourself
- Cheaper targets usually wont get near as many shots
- Arrow removal can be extremely difficult
Block Archery Targets
Block targets are some of the most prevalent targets on the market. Prices will vary from $30-$900 dollars depending on size. Most of these style targets allow shooters to shoot a variety of tips into the target including field tips (practice tips) broadheads, and expandable broadheads. The cheapest of these targets are usually designed as youth targets, less dense material that will stop arrows shot out of bows at 40 pounds or lighter. Sizes are available from small (16” x 14”) up to large range style targets (48” x 48”). The smaller targets are great for maneuverability, the larger targets can take a small army to move! Larger sized targets will give a shooter more forgiveness for shooting longer distances and not worry about losing an arrow that might miss a smaller target. Our favorite ones are made by 365 Archery, they have a replaceable core that allows the shooter to just change the core when it’s shot up, instead of the entire target.
Pros of Block Archery Targets
- Easy to move by yourself
- Can take any kind of tip
- Many styles and brands to choose from Decent arrow removal
Cons of Block Archery Targets
- Cheaper targets can leave residue on your arrow
- Smaller sizes are harder to hit at farther distances
Bag Archery Targets
Bag archery targets are usually the most economical targets. Both smaller and larger sized targets are available from multiple companies. These targets take the cake when it comes to arrow removal and do a great job stopping arrows quickly. The larger ones can be a struggle to move in and out which is a necessity because the uv light and sunlight break these targets down faster than either block or 3D style targets. Bag targets only accept field tip point. Broadheads will wreck the target and will not pull back out.
Pros of Bag Archery Targets
- Easy arrow removal
- Stops arrows quickly
- Most affordable
Cons of Bag Archery Targets
- Field tips only, no broadheads
- Have to bring inside each time when done
- Short lifespan
Hopefully this will help you narrow your search! Stop into a local archery shop and see what target is best for you.
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