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Old 20th May 2014, 09:25 AM
kieran turner's Avatar
kieran turner kieran turner is offline
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Default Faulty Targets.... discuss

Right lets get something straight, this thread is meant to be about discussion, at any point that it starts to turn sour I'll ask for it be removed, so play nice please.

Ok basically I find it very hard to believe that targets fail on a consistent basis, by that I mean nearly every shoot I go to a target is pulled, it is now the norm to shoot a course and have a target pulled. I have been on the positive receiving end of targets been pulled in the past.

Granted there are occasions where say target hasn't been fixed down sufficiently or at the correct angle (leaning forward) or even a linkage failing but what about all the other times, I just don't buy it. I'd also like to add there is a few occasions where targets are not in line with rules (correct distances for kill zones etc.) so understandably they have to be pulled which is fair enough.

But I genuinely don't understand how a simple knockover target can just go faulty, I've been involved in course setting and shooting for nearly 10 years now and there has been two occasions in that time where a target has genuinely been knackered or faulty, one was a 15mm sparrow target and the other was one at Kibworth that didn't even make it out on the course, that is it.

I'd also like to add there is the occasional time where I've gone to check a target and there has been a build up of lead deposit that needed clearing but after a quick dig out and re-test with a checker it was back up and running (it's usually 15mm kills that are guilty of this).

I'd also like to add that a few years ago there was literally no targets ever pulled, so what's changed, if anything knowledge of targets and target maintenance has increased, I do understand that our sport is getting far more competitive (which is a good thing in a lot of respects) and that can contribute to targets being called etc.

So in your experiences why do they fail? I do find it hard to believe that well maintained, well fixed, well angled targets will fail in the space of 200 shots, this isn't based on non hands on experience, like I mentioned before I've been doing this a while now so I'm very interested to see other views.

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Old 20th May 2014, 09:37 AM
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perhaps over your ten years...clubs just havent bought that many new targets , and they're all just showing their age ???? like you say it could just be lack of maintenance over the ten years you've set things up ??
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Old 20th May 2014, 09:48 AM
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I shot a target yesterday at our club that didn't go down ,it was a 45yd rat . If it was a comp I would of just thought I missed it but after shooting it again and still not going down I went out and checked it and it was stiff but it seemed to work intermittantly .this target like most of ours are out permanently so are exposed to the elements so is understandable that they will fail now and again.
You also get targets that fall down when hitting the faceplate ,funny enough they don't get pulled.
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Old 20th May 2014, 09:52 AM
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I said this at the weekend K. I shot the Classic at Emley which was 2 x 40 shot courses. Not a single target pulled and maybe 4 stoppages all weekend down to the odd broken string.

So, that's 100+ of the best FT shots in the country (and international) seeing pellet strikes at 55yards on high mag and not calling a target.

And yet we have HFT shooters on 10 mag, 45 yards, parallax at 25 yards (ish) saying they see the pellet strike the centre of the kill......really?????

I can understand if a target is at an incorrect range/kill size, for example a 15mm kill at 11 yards, then yes, it should be pulled but the domino effect we saw at Fort with the same target being called, even after being check by the chief marshal, was a joke.
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Old 20th May 2014, 09:52 AM
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After the weekend we had 2 targets pulled one was a distance issues which was fair enough the other was a 15 mil which in the first session was replaced as it had a hole in it the replaced target was then pulled in the afternoon for the same reason a hole in it , I know that on small kill size you are going to get a localised area of hits when looking at the targets they did not seem to be that old ,All I can think that over the last couple of years targets are being made with steel which is of a lower grade I am sure that I will be told by many that this is not so but it does make you think,
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Old 20th May 2014, 10:01 AM
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A target that is in good order and lubricated should function as intended for many years. I sometimes wonder whether a large kill struck at the extreme 3 or 9 oclock position could "twist" the paddle, applying all the force on one side which could jam the pivot. The pivot would of course need to be dry and probably also rusty for this to happen.
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Old 20th May 2014, 10:02 AM
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Our club has been running since 2003 and we have a 40 shot FT course and a 40 shot HFT course permanently laid out in all weathers, plus a substantial number of "fun" targets, knock down and reset with no strings.

About half the targets are Knockovers, another quarter maybe are Gamo, a very few Umarex, and 20 or more home made to our own design.

What failures have we had? One of the Umarex ones had a weld go completely. The Gamo ones fall over too far, so when the reset cord is pulled, most of the tension goes into pulling the target towards you rather than lifting the faceplate on its hinge. It's a very easy problem to fix and we have added limiters to all of them so they can't fall past 45 degrees. Now the strings don't break and the chain links don't open out.

We've also taken out the mild steel clevis pins on the Gamos and Umarexes and replaced them with A2 stainless screws and locknuts.

Personally I like the older design of Knockover the best, the one with the bent S link, not the parallel bars like the Gamos have.

Our home made targets are very rugged. We have had one weld go, where a bush broke away from the back of the faceplate. When we made them we didn't plan well enough for maintenance so they have been altered as time has gone on to make them easier to strip and overhaul.

Of course if the target is fixed to a dodgy post then it may tip or the entire post give way, and we have had a few occurrences like that, but that is hardly the fault of the target.

We tend to keep our animaloid shape targets with full size kills and use our plain round knockovers for close range mini kills. This has led to the minis getting a concentration of hits in the centre of the paddle and some of them are now distorted and will soon need new paddles, or a dressing with a big hammer. Not bad after ten or more years.

Our normal preventive maintenance is a thorough brushing with chassis grease on the moving parts, twice a year.
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Old 20th May 2014, 10:22 AM
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The only thing I've come across apart from obvious failures is the main pivot bolt being done up too tight... it can rotate on each reset and sometimes there's a tight point which can then find the target refusing to drop. Resetting up and down an few times can rotate the bolt and it's free, only to bind again when the bolt rotates to the tight spot.

Apart from that, snagged strings catching on the ground or foliage, are the only times i've seen a target 'fail' when positioned correctly.
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Old 20th May 2014, 10:40 AM
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Sometimes, and this happened to me at FORT over the weekend, you shoot a target and you feel that the shot was good but you do actually miss the kill zone, but you observe the paddle wobble or twitch. This I think is one of the reasons there are stoppages as people assume there is something wrong with the target.

I didn't ask for it to be checked, I just presume my shot wasn't good, especially as it was a fair way out and I can't often see where it hits, especially as it was at the edge of that hillside in a channel with those bizarre wind effects!!
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Old 20th May 2014, 10:41 AM
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Gary Martin Gary Martin is offline
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Default target fails

i have a Gamo target for practice. i have had 1fail. its brand new so i could see the paint removal on the paddle.
i suspect the fail is due to the clearance between the pivot pin/hole. as the next shot sent it down. there has to be clearance, and if the two parts were out of line and jammed against each other its possible it will not fall.
all i can say is the quality of the Gamo targets is ok for plinking/practice, but not to comp std. anything mechanical will fail but quality is seen as being fit for purpose. the better quality the minimum of fails. if left to weather, oxidation, frozen water lack of lubrication will take their toll. maintenance is required on a more frequent basis.
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