When it come to certain things, I’m as frugal as they come. Take targets for example. Rather than go to a big box store and pick up a pack of targets for a few dollars, I’ll print my own. I know that in the long run it is actually more cost effective to purchase rather than print, but it just bugs me to have an instant out of pocket cost for something that I’m going to blow holes into.
To avoid that instant hit to the wallet, I like to turn to the internet and my laserjet printer. Through various websites, I’ve collected about a dozen letter size targets that can easily be printed and taken to the range. On occasion, I even take it a step further and print large format targets at the office. I like to think that I’m putting the last bit of paper on 150′ rolls to good use instead of throwing it out.
To take my frugalness to the next level, I decided to make my own IDPA Targets. The nice thing about these targets is that they require no paper or ink, just scrap cardboard (Which as a father and homeowner, I seem to get on a regular basis). To create these very simple targets, I needed to make a template. I would then use this template to trace a shape and mark scoring zones.
The hard part was finding a full scale IDPA Target that I could turn into a template. The easiest thing to do would have been to purchase an IDPA Target but the closest gun shop with them in stock was a thirty minute drive. What I did instead was find a one-third scale version meant to be printed on letter size paper. I dropped this image into AutoCAD (I’m a draftsman) and traced over it. Once my target was created, I scaled it up to proper size. Once scaled, I played around with the lines until dimensions seemed logical.
With my IDPA Target now drawn up in AutoCAD, I transfered it into a CNC Program so that it could be cut out of a piece of quarter inch masonite. The image at the head of this post is my finished template. I simply drop it onto a piece of scrap cardboard, trace it with a permanent marker, then mark the scoring zones with a pen or pencil.
If you would like to make a template of your own, I have included a dimensioned target that you are free to download. With it you can lay out your template on a piece of cardboard. For a more durable template, lay it out on a piece of paneling from a home improvement store. The easiest thing to do, however, would be to pick up an IDPA target and use it to create future targets.
- Full Scale IDPA Target (24×36 Sheet Size)
- 1/3 Scale IDPA Target (8.5×11 Sheet Size)
- IDPA Target Template (8.5×11 Sheet Size)
- IDPA Target DXF File (AutoCAD 2013)
Ask The Readers
When it comes time to head to the range,
do you take home made or store bought targets?
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