Choosing a 3D archery target should be another of those enjoyable trips to your local Sportsman’s Warehouse. But, one of the questions many archers ask this time of the year is, “which target do I choose and why”? Well, I’ve had the opportunity to shoot many 3D targets in my archery career and I think Rinehart Targets are one of the best on the market. Go to any 3D archery shooting tournament and you will most likely be shooting daggers at their targets. John Rinehart was the first to design “self-healing” foam, giving longer life to their targets. Rinehart also has a vast line-up of all kinds of 3D targets to choose from.

Our test model was the Giant Mule Deer. Why buy a 3D target for your practice session? First off, how many 2-ft. square block animals have you killed on a hunt recently? By shooting at a 3D, life-sized target, you develop necessary skills that are carried into the field. Getting used to arrow placement can absolutely get you a hero picture vs. long stories of a missed shot. I recently shot at a 3D event in Ely, Nevada. It was unmarked yardages, an event that can frustrate even the most seasoned archer. Having that opportunity to guess and be comfortable with an animal-sized target can no doubt help your skill when actually hunting and I could have never done it without my practice on full bodied targets.

One piece of advice that I would pass on when shooting 3D targets is the choice of practice tips. Use a bullet tip that is slightly larger than the shaft of your arrow and you will experience less teeth gritting when pulling arrows out. The Giant Mule Deer target has a replaceable core that is basically a rough dimension of vital organs. Being able to see where the arrow must be placed time and time again will be beneficial when sizing up your target. Because of this, the repetition will be more natural when you draw back on a trophy buck in the fall. The target did not allow deep penetration and pulled nicely for a new set to be shot. As your hunt nears, you can also sight in your broad heads with this target either with fixed or expendable’s.

Our other test target was a Rinehart 18-1. This target promises to be the longest lasting that Rinehart has ever offered. If you can manage to shoot out all 18 sides of the target, you can bring it back to your local authorized dealer for a no-hassle replacement from date-of-sale. This target is extremely mobile and can be set-up for practice in a matter of a few seconds. It’s size and weight make it ideal for transporting to hunting camp for a few shots before setting out on your hunt. The bright green dots and the black foam show-up brightly in a noon-day sun. It also is easy to pull arrows out and after almost two months of daily shooting, the target still shows minimal wear.