The ed­i­tor looks at some­thing re­ally new in air­gun tar­gets

Air Gunner - - Contents -

The ed­i­tor tries out a tar­get sys­tem so ro­bust that it will even take full-bore treat­ment

Over the years, I’ve had lots of phone calls about new tar­get sys­tems that ‘ were go­ing to rev­o­lu­tionise the shoot­ing world’, or so their in­ven­tors told me. Most have been gen­tly warmed- over ver­sions of old de­signs, whilst oth­ers have been un­nec­es­sar­ily com­pli­cated and gen­er­ally way too ex­pen­sive for any­body to be in­ter­ested. How­ever, I was re­cently con­tact by Tim Dowl­ing who wanted to show me his tar­get.

Tim lives near to my gun club at Bis­ley so I met him at the range and he set about assem­bling the ma­chine which is, in essence, all the con­trols, mo­tors and bat­ter­ies en­cased in a heavy steel hous­ing. Ev­ery­thing above this is de­signed to be ‘sac­ri­fi­cial’; in other words, when it gets shot to bits you re­place it with in­ex­pen­sive wood that’s eas­ily avail­able. Most peo­ple place a rail­way sleeper in front of the hous­ing for belt and braces pro­tec­tion.

Full-bore proof

Tim shoots .22 rim­fire and .357 Mag­num bul­lets at these tar­gets, so he has com­plete con­fi­dence that no air­gun pel­let will cause a prob­lem. As you can see from the pic­tures, there are four ver­ti­cally mounted dow­els that hold tar­gets. They can be made from any cheap ma­te­rial and he ones he had on that day were cut from Corex sheet, which is widely avail­able and very in­ex­pen­sive.

He showed us the first set-up; when an FT tar­get be­side the unit was hit, it vi­brated a sen­sor that started the se­quence, then the tar­gets were turned face- on for the du­ra­tion of your choice, and then turned side- on again. All four can turn at once or they can turn in­di­vid­u­ally in a ran­dom se­quence.

All of these pa­ram­e­ters can be set to al­low you to in­vent an un­lim­ited se­lec­tion of shoot­ing games to keep up the fun level. I say ‘fun’, but I soon no­ticed my club mates try­ing to get the best scores they could.


Another set-up op­tion in­volved a face card with small win­dows based around the McQueen shoot­ing com­pe­ti­tion that is very pop­u­lar with full-bore shoot­ers. At ran­dom, a tar­get ap­pears in a win­dow and you must shoot it be­fore it dis­ap­pears; again, the tim­ing can be ad­justed to suit your­self.

Although I have no in­ter­est in tar­get shoot­ing I found it very ad­dic­tive and wanted to shoot again and again. I used my Weihrauch HW110 and the multi-shot, side-lever action was ideally suited to this rapid-fire game.

At £ 850 I see this as some­thing a club might be more likely to buy than in­di­vid­u­als, and I se­cretly hope that our own com­mit­tee might chose to add one to our club’s shoot­ing op­tions. It’s well made and well thought through, and most im­por­tantly, very good fun. I wish Tim well with his busi­ness and if you’d like to know more about the sys­tem visit www. whit­ting­ton­tar­gets.com.

“Although I have no in­ter­est in tar­get shoot­ing I found it very ad­dic­tive and wanted to shoot again and again”

The tar­gets can turn at the time, pat­tern and du­ra­tion of your choos­ing

This set-up mim­ics the McQueen style used by full-bore shoot­ers

Just these four but­tons al­low you to select any pa­ram­e­ter

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