May 30th, 2009

"Negative Image" Targets for Better Long-Range Viewing

At long range, small bullet holes are much easier to see in the white than in the black. When you’re practicing at long range on high power targets, one way to enhance your ability to see your bullet holes is to print a “negative” version of the regulation bullseye target. Forum member Watercam has a new Pentax PF-80ED. With the Pentax he can see 6mm bullet holes in the white at 600 yards, but holes in the black are only visible out to 400 yards or so. Accordingly, Watercam uses a modified “reversed” black-to-white target for 600-yard practice. Watercam writes:

“I just received my Pentax PF-80ED-A angled spotting scope the other day and it is awesome. Great quality. I traded a straight Kowa 77mm fluorite for it through Eye relief with the Pentax 10-60 power zoom is 18-22mm (much more than the Kowa zoom), so I can use glasses with no problem. The view through the Pentax is very sharp and contrasty with great color.

With my 6mm and limited mirage I’m seeing defined, 6mm holes in the white out to 600. In the black, I can see bullets holes at about 400 with my eyes. I am printing reverse-color targets for training without a pit partner at the 600-yard line.”

Pentax PF-80 ED scope

If you’re not concerned with official scoring rings, you can use an all-white target with a bright, fluorescent target dot in the middle. A 2″- or 3″-diameter stick-on target dot is highly visible at 600 yards. Birchwood Casey Target Spots® assortment #33928-TSA offers neon orange target dots in 1″, 2″, and 3″ diameters.

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