In my trips to the range, I have only dabbled in shooting steel. Everyone’s gateway metal target is rimfire spinners or resetting targets and those are really enjoyable. Can shooting a big AR500 silhouette really be any better? I’ll let you know below in my review of the Caldwell 66% IPSC Silhouette Target. Let’s dive right in!
Caldwell @ TFB:
Specifications: Caldwell 66% IPSC AR500 Silhouette Target
The Caldwell 66% AR500 IPSC Sihouette was shipped to me in a cardboard box with sufficient packing. In other words, I am saying it did not have its own box with a picture of it and manual and all the other normal stuff you would assume comes with a product. My guess is this is standard practice given the item is self-explanatory and also a lot of information is on a sticker on the rear of the target. Other than that, included in my box was another box housing the T-Post attachment I asked to use in conjunction.
- Style: Silhouette IPSC Size: 66%
- Steel: AR500
- Steel Thickness: 3/8″
- Steel Coating: Powder Coat
- Length: 20″
- Width: 12″
- Depth: 0.4”
- Weight: 21 lbs
- FPS Rating: Up to 3000 FPS Impact Velocity
- FT LBS Rating: Up to 3500 Foot Pounds of Impact Energy
- Not Rated for 50 BMG
The MSRP of the Caldwell 66% AR500 Silhouette target hangs at $104.99. At first glance, this is somewhat spendy for a chunk of steel but you have to look at it more in-depth. Caldwell lists off some good point on their website which I have inserted in the blockquote below:
Caldwell’s new bright, easy-to-see targets come in all shapes and sizes for competition, training, and recreational use. Made of AR500 hardened steel, these targets can withstand thousands of rounds. Rated up to a 3000 fps impact velocity and a 3500 ft-lb impact energy, these targets come in seven various sizes with three hanging solutions.
- 3/8” THROUGH HARDENED AR500 STEEL
- RATED UP TO 3,000 FPS IMPACT VELOCITY
- RATED UP TO 3,500 FT LBS IMPACT ENERGY
- 7 SIZES WITH 3 HANGING SOLUTIONS
- FULL DISPLAY OPTIONS FOR RETAILERS
First Look: Caldwell 66% IPSC AR500 Silhouette Target
My first impression of the target was well it was dense and heavy which is to be expected. Aside from that, it looked like really good quality. There weren’t any chips or scratches and it looked and felt very professional out of the box. The T-Post Plate Hanger (MSRP of $18.99) came in a small quaint box and was easy to figure out by simply looking at the picture. It uses a 1/2” carriage bolt with a 3/4” nut. The hanger is tightened to a T-post (not included) via two included 5/8” tightening bolts. The decelerator spring is also included. Quick quote on the T-Post Plate Hanger below.
Steel plate hanger accessory that enables you to hang your favorite Caldwell AR500 steel on any T-post you’re using on the range. Easily attaches to top of T-post with included hardware for hanging any of the AR500 steel targets. Easily attaches to top of T-post with included hardware for hanging any of our Caldwell AR500 steel targets.
Range Time: Caldwell 66% IPSC AR500 Silhouette Target
As far as range time goes, let us start off with portability. The target is heavy but easy to hang onto and move around. I was able to loosen the T-Post Hanger from the post itself and keep it attached to the target. From there I could put that target anywhere in my car and find a separate spot for the post itself.
I started off using a few handguns. I shot a 36 caliber Pietta black powder revolver, a Ruger MkIV, and a few 9mm handguns. This was at a recommended distance and the target was easy to see and gave very positive visual and audible feedback.
Moving onto shooting rifles at the target I shot my AR15 with some regular ball ammo and a PSA 300AAC Blackout Pistol which I absolutely loved. The 5.56 surprised me because at 50-75 yards I was getting small pockmarks. That’s no big deal to me because they were not huge craters or dents. I was only surprised because I have never had a metal target like this and assumed they were invincible but also understand how these work and how to be safe.
The 300AAC Blackout was a blast with this target because I had it suppressed and the positive reinforcement of hitting that target made me smile. It held up plenty fine against the 300AAC Blackout, even better than the 5.56. After most of the powder coating was gone where I was consistently hitting it was hard to see where exactly I was making contact. That is not a big deal since you can obviously hear your hits but also you can just spray paint over the exposed metal.
Final Thoughts: Caldwell 66% IPSC AR500 Silhouette Target
So that was all one very long-range trip and it messed up this target’s paint job. That’s it. For $100+ this is a heck of a buy, in my opinion, because it will last me years. I was super happy with how easy it all was to set up, with how well the target held up, and with how easy it was to see and hear contact. I highly recommend any of Caldwell’s metal targets and especially their T-Post Hanger.
In closing, I want to say thank you to Caldwell for making such a durable and fun target and for granting TFB and myself the opportunity of fun and excitement! That is greatly appreciated. Also, we would like to know what all of you guys and gals think? Do you believe that this metal silhouette target is something worth spending your money on? Would you run to the range with this amazing AR500 target? Would this be your go-to fun at the range? Let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below! We always appreciate your feedback.
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Caldwell 66% IPSC AR500 Silhouette TargetThe Firearm Blog is written by Sam.S for www.thefirearmblog.com