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Biodegradable targets

Discussion in 'Outdoor Shooting Areas' started by JackD, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. JackD

    JackD Elmira, OR Active Member

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    My sons and I recently took to the hills for some target shooting. The place we ended up was so trashy that it was disgraceful. We took out much more than we took in, but didn't make a dent in the trash. Someone took the time to pack up some of it, but left the bags there and the bags were disintegrating leaving a big pile of plastic, glass and tin cans.

    A few days later we went back to the same place, but this time we took along rounds of various sizes, from tree trimmings for targets. Placed on old stumps, they made great plinking targets and they are natural. No need to remove after shooting. Those that don't break-up can be used by others following us.

    I'd like to clean-up the area, but can't do it alone.....nor can I afford the disposal fees. I do have a trailer and a good pair of arms.
     
    PDXSparky and (deleted member) like this.
  2. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    I have shot potatoes and pumpkins before. Recently it occurred to me tortillas would work as well for targets if I wanted something that would easily dissolve away.
     
  3. billyinfinity

    billyinfinity Portland All pie, all the time. 2015 Volunteer

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    make targets out of ice. bring em in a cooler. you can add food coloring to make them more visible. they sort of explode when you hit them. it's cheap, easy and there's no cleanup.
     
  4. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    Cheap is good, free is better when it comes to targets but all things considered clays still remain one of the best values for a Biodegradable target. Better yet if you can find a spot frequented by shotgunners you can usually pick up a few 'armloads' of unbroken misses. I have a few spots near my house that always seem to have a fresh supply.
     
  5. sandman1212

    sandman1212 NW Oregon Active Member

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    We use hard boiled eggs, cheap, easy and dramatic exit with a hit. well worth the $7 for 5 dozen!
     
    Burt Gummer and (deleted member) like this.
  6. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    Ha - great idea - I never thought about it. Heck you could even spray paint them blaze orange but I suspect the white shows up well enough at a distance.
     
  7. JackD

    JackD Elmira, OR Active Member

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    Personally, I'm not comfortable with shooting food. Just seems like there is a better use for it. I make an exception to zucchini and believe it makes an excellant target.
     
  8. djgaloot

    djgaloot Oregon City Member

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    I like to use pinecones
     
  9. djgaloot

    djgaloot Oregon City Member

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    Other cheap targets I use are small wood blocks. If you have access to a table saw, rip and cross cut some cheap 2x4s into 1-1/2 inch or 1 inch cubes. It only takes a few minutes to make up a box full of targets. Use some paint or peel and stick dots on a face for visibility. perfect for 50-100 yard plinking with a 10/22.
     
  10. branchbuster

    branchbuster Albany Active Member

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    Try ritz crackers or nilla waffers.
     
  11. NWMoss

    NWMoss Lost, permanently... Member

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    Got one better from biodegradable: Reusable!

    I've been useing steel pop-up targets for a few years now, and there's nothing like the metal "ping!" to know you've hit the target and seeing it react. I personally re-paint them after using them at the range. Makes policing up easier as well; no wooded target holders or pieces of junk to pick up, just the targets and brass.

    I started with some of the spinners from Cabellas and since upgraded to popups from Salute Products - they're locally made and amazing quality.


    Gotta run
     
  12. JackD

    JackD Elmira, OR Active Member

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    We just used three cartons of biodegradable clays for shotgunning where there were already lots of orange on the ground before us. After starting this thread and reading your post, I did a little research into biodegradable clays. What I found is not encouraging. The best biodegradable clay I found (as far as degrading goes) is two years. Two years to breakdown. With more being added to the mess on a weekly basis, the area will never be clean until two years after everyone stops shooting there. And that bright orange really stands out and looks like what it is.......a mess. I had assumed that a biodegradable clay would quickly desolve, but not so. Paper and cardboard is also biodegradable, but paper and cardboard laying all over the hillsides is also just a mess. I would prefer to see "natural" targets and if they are painted in bright colors a water paint that washes away would be best, like that used in paintballs.
     
    daoism and (deleted member) like this.
  13. duane black

    duane black Washington Well-Known Member

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    I bought a couple of those spinning targets from Walmart. They are on thin metal rods, found in the sporting goods isle by the gun cleaner. Keep them in the back of my jeep and can setup a couple things to shoot at in a few minutes, then take them out with me after policing my brass.

    Works for me, leaves virtually no trace other than the lead I pump into the soil.
     
  14. cpy911

    cpy911 Newberg Active Member

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    JackD, what area are you shooting at? Interested in doing a clean up?
     
  15. FordPrefect

    FordPrefect Woodburn, Oregon Active Member 2016 Volunteer

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    I picked up some bowling pins from Wilsonville Lanes for $2.00 a piece and so far they seem pretty indestructible. I've hit them with 12ga magnum slugs, 5.56, 7.62x54r, and all they have are the indications they have been hit. Nothing has penetrated them at all.
     
  16. JackD

    JackD Elmira, OR Active Member

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    Be happy to help. I have a trailer and can haul. I shoot at an area on Fisk Road off of Poodle Creek. I can furnish gas and trailer to haul, but since I'm on fixed income (SS) I would need someone to pick up dump fees.
     
  17. Glass

    Glass Oregon city Member

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    Hi all we did a clean up at Memaloose we were able to burn alot of the garbage would that
    Be possible their? I would be up for a clean up if some one sets it up I will show up to help!
    And bring bags and tools. Let me know. Thanks
     
  18. Glass

    Glass Oregon city Member

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    I was just reading the rules for shooting at browns camp they say no shooting at any targets not commercial made you might get in trouble for littering if you left the food you were shooting. Just a thought.
     
  19. Papa Jon

    Papa Jon outer N.E. Portland Member

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    I lay down a large tarp in the area I shoot from. When I'm done I use it collect any brass, shotgun hulls or whatever falls to the ground.
    I was wondering about the biodegradable clays. Thanks for the post.

    Great thread by the way, lots of good ideas for earth friendly targets
     
  20. pease

    pease Stayton Member

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    Charcoal painted orange works well for targets.