How To Properly Mount Your Steel Target

By March 4, 2019 Blog

So you’ve finally bought your first Ar500 steel shooting target. Now that it is here, you ask, how do I hang it up so I can shoot at it?  Steel target safety is a primary concern during setup.  In this article we will show you how to properly hang a target so it is safe, good for the target and also will give you the best “ring” when shot. Shooting steel can be fun and Ar500 targets will last forever when following a few steps. safety-guidelines

Target angle

Target angle is crucial when hanging a target so it is safe to shoot at. Ar500 targets should be hung at a 20 percent downward angle so it helps deflect shrapnel to the ground below the target. A target that is mounted parallel to the shooter without any downward angle, poses a threat of ricochet to the shooter. Bullets can travel backward toward the shooter and cause potential injury. Pictured below is a couple of different ways to hang Ar500 targets properly.

Hang Loose

Hanging Ar500 targets loosely so they can sway when shot will help with the longevity of the target by lessoning the impact of the bullet on the face of the target. One huge benefit of hanging ar500 targets loosely is the sound quality when shot. Loose hung targets ring much louder and longer than Ar500 targets that are hung tight to a stand or mount.

Safe Distance

Proper ar500 target distances are different for rifles and pistols. For Pistols, you can be a close as 12 yards. For rifles, you need to be 150 yards or more depending on what caliber you are shooting. Rifle ammunition muzzle velocities are much higher than pistols and must be kept under 3,000 feet per second. You should never shoot full metal jacket, steel core, armor piercing, shotgun slugs, birdshot or buckshot at ar500 steel targets. Never shoot at deformed steel target. All of these will possibly lead to damaging your target or injury. hang-by-chain

Hanging by chain

One hanging option is to hang them by chains that will allow the ar500 target to move freely. When using the chain method, make sure to use bolts that are 3 to 4 times longer than the depth of the target. Use one nut to tighten bolt to target and two nuts on each side of the chain as in the picture below. This will keep the target at an angle while still maintaining free movement of the ar500 target.


Hang by mounting bracket

If you are mounting Ar500 targets to a target mount bracket, find one that has a spring or allows target to hang freely on mount without a tight bolt. I recommend staying away from mounting brackets that require you to tighten the target mounting bolts until the target is mounted solidly without any flex or movement.


Shooters and spectators must always wear proper eye and hearing protection. Buyer assumes all responsibility for the use and misuse of the purchased steel targets.

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