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Need advice on what type of wood to use for target

Discussion in 'Throwing Knives & Knife Throwing' started by Peanut413, Nov 23, 2018.

  1. Peanut413


    Nov 23, 2018
    I have an old room that I'm taking the whole wall and using it for throwing knives. It will have 2 targets (approx 4ft by 4ft maybe a little bigger) but I'm not sure what the best wood is to use for this. I'm taking the old paneling completely out and redoing the whole wall just in case I miss or someone else misses and it doesnt mess up the rest of the wall. I'm new to this for the most part. Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.
  2. Matt The Rat

    Matt The Rat

    Mar 20, 2018
    When I made one many years ago I used Green Pine (unseasoned). The board was made up of 3 pieces 3" x 10" x around 1m high. This worked really well and lasted for years. When you start throwing decent weighted knives at it the chips will start flying if it isn't green wood! The first board I made was with tounge and grove floor boards and that didn't last long! Ended up with big holes in it real quick.
    Peanut413 likes this.
  3. zzyzzogeton


    Feb 17, 2013
    End grain works better than vertical grain boards, with respect to sticking.

    If you intend to go vertical grain planks and you have a whole wall, then run 3 or 4 cross boards all the way across the wall and then put up X number of planks edge to edge from one side to the other.

    Negatives of this method - unless you intend to make the wall moveable so that you can access it from the rear, the planks will only be attachable via screws from the front, which would make for exposed screw heads to be hit with your knives/hawks/hatchets.

    If you intend to put in an end grain target wall, you could go whole hog and make the whole wall a target - fixed boards on each side and a pair in the middle, stacked cross cut sections of 2x4, 4x4, 6x6, etc sections compressed from top to bottom with very long all-thread rod on each end and a couple of runs in the middle.

    The negatives here is ensuring that you get proper compress all around and it will take a whole bunch of cross cut pieces - example - every 2 ft x 2 ft area segment would require about 114 pieces of 2 x 4s or about 58 4 x 4 pieces. It's also a bitch to change out chewed blocks.

    A smaller end grain version would be to build a couple of 3 ft x 3 ft or 4 ft x 4 ft IKTHOF-like end grain targets and mount them on the wall, with plywood as a back, a couple of support boards screwed in through the plywood into wall studs for a shelf for the the targets to sit on, and then mount a couple of boards across the tops of the targets, screwed into the wall studs. Then drive a couple of screws vertically up and down through the cross boards above and below the targets.

    Or do something similar with 3 24" x 24" IKTHOF end grain targets mounted in the IKTHOF V pattern. Advantage, much lighter weight than a 3 ft or 4 ft target.

    Negatives - still a lot blocks involved, but a lot fewer than a whole wall's worth.
    Peanut413 likes this.
  4. RAT Pack

    RAT Pack

    Aug 4, 2018
    We use Poplar for our targets, indoor and outdoor. In the past, we used Pine, but we found that it didn't hold up as well for outdoor targets as Poplar does. Long ago, I had an indoor target using 4" long pieces of Pine pressed together to form a 24" x 24" end grain target. It was a mess, chunks were all over the place. Now I have a 24" piece of Poplar inside as well. Also, my original indoor target weighed 45 lbs, but my Poplar target weighs 28 lbs. I mention this because I will occasionally remove the target and hose it down outside--closes the knife holes quite well.
    Peanut413 likes this.
  5. vish


    Nov 23, 2018
    My friend have a similar kind wall made of Black Walnut wood.
    Peanut413 likes this.
  6. Peanut413


    Nov 23, 2018
    I had someone make a wall (and they went overboard with the design) using treated pine (I'll try to post a pic) and it's not working at all. All I wanted was a small target I found they did the whole wall. Seems I have better luck with card board. I'm at my wits end with trying to get something that works. Im going to review the comments shortly and try something else. Thanks again guys.
  7. Ote


    Mar 4, 2012
    Throw every week, we use multiple sizes of tree rounds mounted to a pallet, pallet is fastened to a sheet of ply, ply is fastened to wall studs. could even eliminate the pallet. Tree rounds should be 3-5 inchs thick minimum, if your throwing axes/hatchets rounds should be at least 4-6 inchs thick to prevent splitting.
  8. RAT Pack

    RAT Pack

    Aug 4, 2018
    I'm probably a bit late on this, but I finally found untreated 4 x 4 pine at Home Depot last week. Before that, all of their 4 x 4 pine was pressure treated. I checked two stores--both had it!
  9. Peanut413


    Nov 23, 2018

    Thanks for the info. Much appreciated
  10. Frozen Bear Trading

    Frozen Bear Trading KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 22, 2019
    I like those foam archery targets at cabelas.

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