A modification of a post I made in the Lefora Blowgun forum:
Yep I found a variation of the "standard" archery target on Youtube a while ago as I looked for target types for my BG. This archer used strips of carpet compressed together, stored it outside, it had years of use and hardly looked any worse for wear.
I didn't have any carpet handy but I did have an almost unlimited supply of newspaper and my need was for an indoor target. So I substituted strips of carpet with strips of newspaper 3.25" wide X 9.25" long. I now have well over a 1000 shots of wire and nail darts fired into this target and I'm please with how it is holding up so far.
This thing has about 1,900 pieces of cut newspaper in it and it must have taken me about 5-6 hours of cutting time over a period of several weeks to get it done, a tedious process but I would get the urge to cut more while watching TV or listening to the radio. Thin cheap carpet would work as well i'm sure and be MUCH faster to construct. Another consideration is a stack of large books Image 4c,
see below (maybe even phonebooks) clamped together.
I used a wine box 10" X 10.5" X 3.5" wide (outside dimensions) as the container with 2 pieces of 1"x3" x 13 " pine board used as a base and top. I then drilled out some holes near the ends of the boards to take 5/16" dia threaded rod. The rods are used to clamp the wood in place, compress the strips of newspaper and hold them in place. I used fender washers to spread the load of the clamping as wide a possible on the pine boards.
shows the back of the cardboard box cut open in two places almost the entire length. This was done after it was firmly clamped and tighten several times. I then "painted" the exposed newspaper strips with a 50/50 mix of PVA ( white glue) and water, allowed it to dry and repeated that 2 more times. I then used that same mix to paste a strip of newspaper from top to bottom and applied more glue mix. This was done to prevent any shifting of the individual sheets of newspaper.
shows the front of the box with about an 8.5" X 8" rectangle cut out of it, this is the target end that accepts the darts.
shows a close up of the stacked newspapers from an area approximately where the yellow square is located in Image 4b
. I counted how many sheets of paper in a 1/4" of stacked sheets times the length of the stack and came up with the ~1,900 sheet number.
shows my "regular" dart target which is another wine box filled with just folded newspaper and crunched up plastic grocery bags. It is reversible and had been reversed 3 times. The last time I had to glue on another piece of cardboard to cover all the holes from shooting etc.
shows the new compressed paper target with about 200 shoots on it looking good. (The picture was taken shortly after I made it)
shows what might be the easiest way to make one of these robust compressed paper dart targets, old used thick books. My wife tells me they are available for a dollar each locally. They need to be clamped like the newspaper constructed target so they can be rotated 90º making their pages vertical too, thus the required clamping. These books as stacked measure about 10" x 9" with no compression and together have a staggering 5009 pages! If books like this are used for a target the hard covers should be removed.
The reason the box has been rotated 90º now so the original top and bottom are now the sides is to allow the pages to be oriented vertically thus allowing the darts a chance to slip between the layers of paper minimizing the damage as the dart lands following its normal trajectory. If oriented horizontally the darts must penetrate the paper sheets most of the time causing more damage with each shot. Difficult to see here but just a few shots into the books (Image 4c)
with pages horizontal shows damage with only approximately 20 shots.