Sunday, February 24, 2013

Grizzly Target Field Review

This past weekend our shooting group converged on the range for a weekend of camping, work and shooting. There were seven of us among whom were Stephen and Senior. After a morning of work we set out our array of firearms everything from modern day weapons to WWII, handguns and rifles. I had been anticipating this because I wanted to do a extensive field review on my new Grizzly Target. I had done a preliminary review a few days ago and was eager to test it with a variety of weapons.

First up I set the target out at the 15 range and we tested it with a variety of handguns which included 22, 9mm, 45 ACP, 38 Special, 7.62x25 and even a 32-20 revolver and one of my newest carry guns a Charter Arms 44 Special.
There was really no surprise with this test, with a good solid hit the target would fold down and pop right back up. The 22 would not fold it completely down (maybe half way back) but still enough to tell it was hit. After at least 50 hits from handgun ammo and a careful examination there was no damage to the target and apart from a few smudges of lead no sign of being hit.

Next I moved the target out to 50 yards and grabbed my newest build a 300 ACC Blackout on a AR frame. I shot it 3 times (.308, 150gr bullet) and with each hit it would flatten down and spring back up with a clang but again after inspection I could not find any damage.
Next up Jim (shown at right) put a solid hit on it with a 303 Enfield at 50 yds....it hit hard, the target folded down harshly and sprang right back up. Everyone of us walked up to the target and looked down, we were all shocked, there was not even a dent. I run my fingers across the surface, front and back....no mark. the only telltale sign was the heavy galvanizing was chipped. As we walked back Jim said "mind if I hit it with my 7.5 X 54 French" I said "go for it" again it hit hard and after a repeat inspection....no damage.

Senior had been shooting his AR-15 with the 22 conversion bolt and had switched back to 5.56 to blow the carbon and crud out of the gas tube so with the target still being at 50 yards he put five good hits on the target.
With each hit the Grizzly Target would fold down with a clang and spring right back into position. We all inspected the target again, this time the surface us slightly deformed, you could see the hit marks (proof below) each impact point was about 1/16 of an inch deep but still no danger of total penetration.
Steve had been sighting in a Mosin Nagant with a scope (at right) so I moved the Target out to 100 yards and he landed a good solid hit with a 147 gr bullet. This time we were all surprised, for those who don't know the 7.62 X 54 Russian round is a beast but after inspection of the target there was less sign of impact than that of the little 5.56.
I decided to bring the target back to the 50 yard mark and test it again with the Nagant just to make the range equal and give a fair comparison. Stephen decided to try his hand at destruction, At 50 yards the target was slammed hard with the mighty Russian round, I thought the target might destruct....  you could hear the clang of the target as it was shot even over the blast of the muzzle then Steve (different Steve) shot it again with a 147 grain bullet and again with a 182 grain machine gun round.
After inspection there was a slight indent but noticeably less than the 5.56. This was a total surprise, each of us would have bet money that the big Russian round would do more than the 5.56 but the proof is here.
I know from experience what rounds will do to mild steel, this is not made from mild steel it is AR500 (3/8" plate) it is the same steel used in some body armor and is laser cut to shape and it makes a superior target (I just wish we had a supply of this steel in the early days of the Iraq War for hardening vehicles but that's a different story for another day)
To sum it up we were all impressed with the target, while there was slight impressions left in the target from the 5.56 and 7.62 X 54 rounds it was in no way damaged and still functioned flawless.
 I have spent countless hours in the past building targets and welding plate only to have it needing extensive repair because some goon blasted it apart with a high power rifle and to be honest I thought this test might be a repeat that is why we worked up to higher powered rounds but to my amazement it held up.... and very well at that.
 Steel targets are so much more fun to shoot than paper targets, especially any moving (or in this case) auto-reset type targets, they give you a visual and audible response which is especially nice if you don't have a spotter scope which means you don't have to walk miles a day back and forth repairing and replacing targets which makes this target a winner in my book. 
This Grizzly Target is quality, American style. Many thanks to these good folks for the chance 'test drive' this target, they have every right to be proud of it. We would be in so much better shape is Congress worked a fraction this well.
Read another Grizzly target review Here.

20 comments:

  1. I'll say it again, I was very impressed. Wish the good folks would send another (to me) because I'm betting we'll dent it the second time around....just wait and see. All joking aside, the good folks at Grizzly Target should be very proud.

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    1. Stephen, it was fun. Thanks for the help in testing It would have been harder testing by myself.

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  2. Duke, what kind of 5.56 was that??? 855 or 109??? That sure looks like penetrator hits... Just sayin

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    1. Old NFO, see Senior's comment below.

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  3. Duke...I have a "girl" question. I would like to get one of these for Papa Bear's birthday. Right now we target practice on the back side of our property by setting up 2 liter coke bottles filled with water. There is acres of thick swamp behind our property so we don't have to worry about hitting anyone when we shoot. I am concerned about bullets ricocheting with one of these things. Could you elaborate?

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    1. Mamma Bear, I was not concerned with ricochets at all, and we shot it as close as 15 yards with some handguns. I'm guessing you are concerned about people to the side of the target.....I'm not saying it is impossible but I would not be worried about it. I guess with any steel target you could hit a mounting surface and it ricochet up but if that was a concern I would use a good berm or backstop close behind the target which is always good regardless of what you are shooting at. Interestingly enough, we found most of our bullets a few feet behind the target, all deformed of course. Hope this helps.

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    2. Thanks Duke...I will be ordering one for Papa Bear. I asked about the ricocheting because the man who owns the property across from us was using some kind of metal for target practice and it ricocheted and the bullet hit him in either the arm or leg. I can't remember..he's also been walking through the woods with a firearm and shot himself in the leg.

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  4. It sure was fun to put that pop-up through the torture test. Thanks for allowing us to tear it up with no regrets. I'm sold on the target, very well made and would highly recommend it. It is TOUGH! and they did their research prior to making and marketing it. NFO, I used 55 grain factory Winchester Hollow Points on it. I also used 55 grain Hornaday V-Max at 100yds, not the same result though.

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    1. Senior, we tried it and it held up well, thanks for all the help.

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    2. That's interesting... I've shot AR500 with 855 (green tip) and seen the same thing... Theoretically, hollow points shouldn't even leave a mark...

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    3. It was at 50 yards, a range you would not normally be shooting an AR at.

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    4. Those rounds were the ones I had buried in our buckets for 2 years. I have been using them to clear the .22 crap out the gas tube when I convert over, so Duke had the target out there and said why not. Look real close you can see the seams of the hollow points in the steel. I was surprised myself that they did that damage. I never thought that they would do that. Hell, I think we were all surprised. Maybe it was the shooter, lol.

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  5. That thing is harder than Japanese Trigonometry written in braille.

    Thanks for the update! I want one.

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    1. Good assessment, it is pretty tough. Thanks.

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  6. Thanks for the test and write up Duke and company. I bookmarked the company and will be taking a good look at this target and the rest of their offerings. Good steel is such a joy to shoot.

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    1. Six, you can't go to far wrong on a good quality target.

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  7. Duke...The Grizzly web site wasn't working for a couple of days to order one for Papa Bear. I called the number from the web site and talked to (I think his name was Jason) who is a very nice fellow. He got the paypal button working again so I was able to place my order. I can't wait for Papa Bear to get this so we can play! His birthday is the 27th if I can hold out that long.

    PS....I saw your post on another blog for a give-away. That was so very nice of you!

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    1. Mamma Bear, I think Papa Bear will enjoy it, I hope he has a good birthday.

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  8. I own the Grizzly popper and the IPSC torso style targets. Our group has put thousands of rounds at the targets from 223/556, AKs, 308s including green tips (not recommended due to ricochet). The target show very little wear. The torso target is mounted at an angle which directs ricochet down. Everything about these targets are extra heavy duty. Great review.

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    1. Anon, thanks for the update, good info.

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