World’s best pellet trap

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Today’s report is a guest blog from reader Rod about an economical and yet very effective pellet trap he created.

If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me.

Over to you, Rod.

This report covers:

  • Humble beginnings
  • Silent running, Gen 1
  • A better way
  • Maintenance
  • What will it stop?

If you shoot indoors or need a backyard-friendly way to shoot your airgun, then you’ve probably pondered the best way to stop a pellet. Well, I think I’ve found the cheapest, safest and quietest way to do just that, hands down. Don’t believe me? Read on.

Editor’s note:

  1. Do not shoot a firearm into the trap described in this report. While Rod has tested it with some powerful firearms, I would not recommend it at this time. I believe a lot of additional testing needs to be done before it can be pronounced ready for firearms.
  2. Rod shot directly into the center of the trap. Shooting at an angle may have the unexpected consequence of fully penetrating the box and coming out the other side.
  3. Do not shoot arrows or bolts into the trap. They could deflect and unexpectedly come out the side of the box, and you won’t know how much further they’ll travel.
  4. Lower-powered projectiles may not actually penetrate the box and could bounce back.
  5. Always wear safety glasses and stand at sufficient distances to avoid rebounds.
  6. BBs — both airsoft and steel — may not penetrate the box and could easily bounce back a considerable distance.

target box
What do you get when you fill a cardboard box with a towel and some rubber mulch?

Humble beginnings

In the beginning…there was a brick wall. I have a 30-yard run down the side of my house that ends at my backyard. It’s a nice place to shoot, but no one wants to shoot into a wall. You’ll mess up the wall! Oh, and BBs bounce back. Ouch! Still, always remember — “Know your target, and what’s behind it.”

My first trap was made from a 4′ x 6′ x 1” sheet of plywood. It was a simple lean-to backstop. This makes a much better backstop than the wall. BBs and pellets deflect safely down into the grass. But this approach is messy. I’d have to clean the area often. The larger-caliber pellets made a distinctive “Thwack!” when they hit the wood. And it doesn’t take too long to start drilling out the center out of the wood. So, this makes a decent way to catch the strays, but it’s not a good solution for your main trap.

My next upgrade was to add a commercial steel rimfire trap like this one. [Editor’s note: This trap is very similar to the Champion heavy-duty metal trap sold by Pyramyd Air.]

commercial bullet trap
This commercial bullet trap will stop all pellets, but it’s loud!

This worked great! But if I hit it with a powerful PCP, like a .25 Marauder, there was an annoying “Clang!” of pellet on metal. After 30 minutes of this racket on an otherwise peaceful Saturday, my friendly neighbor, Jay, would remind me in a not-so-friendly tone just how unneighborly I was being. Clearly, If I wanted to continue shooting at home, I’d need a quieter approach. The smoked ribs I cooked and took over to Jay’s house smoothed our relationship.

Silent running, Gen 1

It was time for my first silent trap.

first trap
See the paint balls? That was my kids’ idea. It’s very messy, but the kids loved it.

Ain’t she a beauty? I made this out of 1″ plywood. I cut grooves on the front edges so a clipboard would fit in the front. I filled the trap with duct seal to make it quiet. The last time I bought duct seal, it was around $5 per lb. at my local home improvement center. I believe it took 6 lbs. to cover the back of this trap. [Editor’s note: Pyramyd Air sells Impact putty, which is duct seal, for $2 a pound.]

duct seal
You can find this for about $5 per lb.

This approach worked great. It was quiet and stops a .25-caliber pellet with no issues. [Editor’s note: Check the back of the pellet trap before, during and after each shooting session to ensure that your shots aren’t slowly ripping thru the back of the trap.] The only trouble I had was that the box was heavy. After a while, the putty would shoot out in the center. If you are like me, you send a lot of pellets into the EXACT SAME PLACE!  At least that’s what I’m trying to do. After a tin of pellets has gone into the trap, the putty is filled with lead, and starts to push to the sides. Before you know it, you are adding more putty. It didn’t take long before this trap weighed 30 lbs.

A better way

About this time, I stumbled onto THE WAY!  Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the world’s best pellet trap.

best trap
Here is the world’s best pellet trap, in my opinion.

This is a pellet trap I made out of a cardboard box, some rubber mulch and a towel. Why a towel? Because you should never go anywhere without your towel (see Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy if you don’t get the reference). Kidding aside, the towel is to seal the seams at the back of the box, to keep the lead and mulch inside. Here’s a quick rundown of how to build it.

Start with a cardboard box. The size of the box is up to you, but I find that 10″ x 12″ x 12″ works best. Not only will it let you staple a standard 8×11 sheet of paper on the side, but this size (along with your towel) is just the right size to hold the contents of a 0.8 cubic-foot bag of rubber mulch. And — if that’s not enough, it will stop a .223 55-grain bullet moving at 3,000 fps (1,000 lbs at the muzzle) from a distance of 50 yards. If you don’t believe me, see my test case below. [Editor’s note: Regularly check the box before, during and after each shooting session. Make no assumptions!]

Start by putting your box with the seams down and insert your towel on the bottom over the seams.

towel in box
Once the towel is in position, fill the box with rubber mulch.

Next, add your rubber mulch. [Editor’s note: Rubber mulch is made from old tires that have been ground into small chunks. They can either be dyed colors or they can be left as they were.] I get this from the local home improvement store. Any brand will do, but make sure it’s rubber mulch and not wood. A 0.80 cubic-foot bag runs around $6.

rubber mulch
Rubber mulch is ground-up tires and is often dyed colors. This bag is mocha brown.

Fill the box up and pack it tight. I find that this size box will hold all of the contents of a 0.80 cubic-foot bag. To finish off, tape your box flaps with packing tape or duct tape and staple your target over the flaps. It takes about 5 minutes to do everything, and you’ll have spent under $10. I stole the towel from my kids’ bathroom. They rarely bathe, so they’ll never notice!


Once you shoot out the center of the box, tape it back up and staple on a new target. It works best when the mulch is tightly packed. I have yet to add mulch to my trap, and I’ve been shooting it for 6 months or so. I have put thousands of .177, .22, and .25 pellets into it.

When we go turkey hunting, we take the box with us to sight in with. On a return from the field, if there’s a round in the chamber, I just clear it by shooting into this trap at point blank range. I’ve done this with a .22-caliber Benjamin Discovery and a .25 Marauder. Sadly, most turkey hunts end up with us returning with a round in the chamber. Quail, however, is a different story.

What will it stop?

Glad you asked. My cardboard box was looking a little tired, and I needed to transplant the mulch to a new box. But before I did, I took my little trap to the gun range along with a few rifles. I wanted to know exactly what it would stop.

First up, the Ruger 10/22. In the photo, it’s difficult to make out, but the little box is 50 yards out, just right of the larger target. The targets are set up 25 yards, then 50, then 100. If you look close, you’ll notice that this range has steel at the 200-, 300-, 400-, 500- and 600-yard marks.

range 1
I couldn’t talk the range master into letting me put the trap any closer than 50 yards. He was skeptical that a cardboard box would stop a .22 LR.

I know what you’re thinking, “That’s no Ruger 10/22!” But you’d be wrong. It’s dressed up in an Archangel stock with a Kidd bull barrel. It’s just about as far from stock as Mr. Ruger could ever imagine; but, I assure you, it’s a 10/22 at heart. I put my little trap out at the 50-yard line and then fired 10 rounds into it, dead center. At the next line break, I walked out and looked at the back to see if any of them had shot through. None did.

shot box
After 10 rounds from a .22 LR, the box is still holding up.

So far, so good. With nothing poking out the back, we can safely assume that it will stop a .22 long rifle 40-grain bullet moving at 1,080 feet per second, with a little over 100 foot-lbs. of energy. But will it stop a .223 Remington with a 55-grain bullet moving at 3,000 feet per second? Okay, that wasn’t really my idea. When I wasn’t looking, my good friend Doug emptied a 5-round magazine from his AR-15 into it.

Doug, why are you aiming at my target?

Thanks, Doug! I really didn’t want to do that at the public range because I figured 1,000 foot-lbs. or so would blow out the back, and I’d be picking up little rubber bits and trying to make nice with the unhappy range master. To my surprise, the box stopped all 5 rounds, with only 1 round poking through the cardboard a bit in the back. So, I was really glad Doug decided to try to blow it up in the end. I did draw the line when he pointed his 30-06 at it, however. I have a good idea what will happen, and that will have to wait for a private range day.

box back
This one .223 bullet almost got through.

Now we know it will stop a .22 long rifle and a .223 Remington. But I also wanted to know how far the lead penetrated in the mulch. Also, I kinda thought one of the rounds from the .223 might have gone out a small area in the upper corner of the box; so when I got home, I cut the box open to inspect the insides and see just what was going on.

box open
I cut a side off the box to see how far the bullets had penetrated.

I easily found the .223 round that was poking out the back. It looks like the first layer of towel stopped it. To be fair, the mulch in the box is loose and Doug was shooting for the top, where the mulch is loosest. If I had more mulch, and if it was packed tighter, I bet the round would not have made it to the back of the box.

If you look close, you can see the bullet poking through the first towel layer.

For those unfamiliar with the characteristics of .223 ammo, the job of a .223 FMJ is to travel really fast and fall apart when it hits its target. It’s designed to do the most damage by tumbling and fracturing along its path. It makes a mess of things, and of itself, as it travels through the target, just as it’s designed to. That being the case, I didn’t expect to find complete bullets from the .223 FMJ rounds. As you would expect, I found only 5 bits that I’m pretty sure were from the .223 rounds. The best I can figure is that they all stopped somewhere just before the towel, with the exception of the one that planted itself in the towel and tried to push out the back. I’m pretty confident none of them made it out of the box.

The .22 rounds are another story. I found all of them. They all stopped around the same distance where I find pellets from a .22 Discovery and a .25 Marauder when I shoot from 30 yards (about 3 inches in).

bullet in box
Notice that the .22 LR only made it 3.5 inches into the box. The box is 12″ deep so there’s lots of wiggle room here.

Here’s all the lead I found in the box from the gun range. Notice Doug’s .223 rounds at the bottom. They really do fall apart. By the way, I found 12, not 10 .22 rounds in there. Someone else was taking shots at my target (Doug!).

lead in box
There are twelve .22 LR 40-grain bullets at the top. The bottom five are what’s left of the 55-grain. .223 rounds.

I figure this trap will stop anything that a pellet gun can dish out. The most powerful air gun that I know of is the .45 cal Texan by AirForce Air Guns. That one boasts 500 ft. lbs. [Editor’s note: There are by far more powerful air rifles made by boutique shops like Dennis Quackenbush, Gary Barnes and others. Some have developed as much as 1,000 ft-lbs.] This cheap, lightweight, silent, cardboard box pellet trap took on a .223 at 1,000 ft-lbs. and held its own just fine. The rubber absorbs the energy so well that the box hardly moved when Doug was shooting it.

Left to right: 14.30-grain .22-caliber pellet, 40-grain bullet in a .22 LR cartridge and 55-grain bullet in a .223 Remington cartridge.

For its low cost, low maintenance, light weight, silent operation and all-around awesomeness — when it comes to stopping lead, I dub this the world’s best pellet trap.

Editor’s note: I want to thank blog reader Rob for sharing this with us. Other readers have mentioned using rubber mulch to trap pellets, but this is the first article I have seen that both shows how to build the trap and also tests it.

Regarding Rob’s prediction that the .458 Texan won’t make it through the box — I think that needs to be tested. I believe the .458 Texan with a 405-grain lead bullet will out-penetrate a .223 FMJ slug. I think it might make it all the way through the box, but it would be nice to know for sure. Also, that might help me better explain the difference between a big bore airgun and a centerfire rifle.

127 thoughts on “World’s best pellet trap”

  1. I have two very similar target boxes that I have made with rubber mulch filling. The first is made from a box for a notebook computer and is about 3 inches thick. I use it for my Crosman 1377 and my Crosman 1077 and have never shot through it. If I’m shooting for groups, I shake the box every time I replace the target to prevent drilling through the box. Most of the time I use a target with 40 circles of about 3/4 inches and shoot 5 shots per circle with a goal of keeping all 5 within the circle.

    The other is made from a much thicker box, about 8 inches, that I use with my magnum springer. I have never shot through it.

    The only maintenance is to tape a new cardboard face on every once in awhile. I have several thousand rounds into each box.


    • I’ve found that truck mudflaps work just fine for me, just angle them down in your trap at about 20 degrees or so. They’re large enough and heavy enough to do the duty…

      • Why isn’t anyone responding to Mr. Schaub’s comment about the truck flap? That sound’s like a terrific idea. Mounted at a 45º angle, a new truck flap might deflect all kind of projectiles into the ground with perhaps no penetration whatsoever. I’m at least extremely curious.

        • Mt Father used to drive trucks, theres a dozen flaps or so at his place. Great idea. I like making traps & targets,its part of the fun for me. I use PA boxes alot, that they ship pellets in w/ some old t-shirts/ inside. Pretty soft catch, You can check the skirts & rifling grooves this way. The ever useful cardboard box.

    • I’ve been making my traps from a 5 or 10 ream copy paper box since 1980. I use old phone book suspended from the top of the box by a piece of wire coat hanger. The wire is poked through the box about 1 inch from the top on both sides and about 1/3 of the distance from the rear of the box. the phone book is then opened in the middle of the book and draped over the wire. I then take old newspapers and crumble up pages and fill the void in front of the phone book. I have used a Crossman 1377 and various CO2 based pistols. None have ever penetrated the phone book or bounced back out of the box. The phone books are around 1 1/2″ to 2″ thick. If you have smaller books, just suspend 2 of them spacing them about 1″ apart from each other. Cost? Zip, nada, zero. Phone books are free, I now use newsprint delivered to me free in my mailbox (junk mail), usually grocery store ads, the copy paper boxes can be found everywhere, just ask for them (Office Depot, OfficeMax). Wire coat hangers come from the dry cleaners. I buy my targets in bulk so they are cheaper. I tape the target to the front of the box and shoot. When I get a big hole in the box, I repair it with a new piece of cardboard, cereal boxes work great too.

      • When I was a kid, my father used to buy shop rags — which were simply laundered cotton garment pieces stuffed in a cardboard box. We used them for every kind of cleanup job that came along, but it wasn’t until I grew up that I remembered that there was a target printed on one side of the box. I wasn’t a shooter when I was growing up so I never realized that some people bought that box of rags to use as a target.
        But back to the present, I get so many catalogs that I used to toss in the recycling bin but now I save them until I have a stack of 8″ x 11″ catalogs tall enough to fit tightly in a cardboard box, tape up the box and I can’t shoot thru that box with a .22 cal pellet rifle. And if I keep moving the targets around on the surface of the box I can keep that trap viable long enough that I’ve saved up enough catalogs for a new one.

  2. Great DIY project. I will find suitable box and do the same thing. In the meantime, for my bb and pellet pistols, continue shooting my Winchester target cube. I have it placed also in a cardboard box. Occassionaly I have to give it a foam transplant using one of those spray foam bottles you get at a hardware store, The stuff is messy, but does work. I also occasionally have to tape a new cardboard face on the box. Use little thumb tacks to hold the targets in place. That target cube must wieigh a couple more pounds with a winter’s worth of shooting into it. Have fun and shoot safe.

  3. Very Good! Very NICE! I have seen many traps and practiced on most of them! I will try to build one for myself for indoors? I have one myself that is very similar! Except? I use plastics bags form the local big box store! Oh! And I use the Rand McNally Large Scale Road Atlas instead of the a bath towel! My target’s are mounted in a separate box that set’s inside the big box! Great for BB’s with no bounce back etc., BB’s/ammo/pellets 177. 22. close to 800 plus fps! I may take time to see how it may hold up with powder burners? Semper fi!

  4. Interesting idea and it obviously works and looks like it would be quick and inexpensive to build. I’ve never had a problem with my home made copy of the Archer style duct seal trap design though so I’ll be sticking with it. The duct seal on mine is about 4 1/2 inches deep and vertical. Maybe that explains it.

      • Should have added that in addition to using a really thick layup of duct seal I’m also not shooting any high power let alone “magnum” or big-bore airguns and I only use wadcutter pellets which probably helps avoid the shoot through problem. The deepest the pellets ever got was about two inches in. I usually clean out the spent pellets and smooth out the duct seal and compress it down every 500 shots or so too.

      • Or you could just buy a 5 gallon bucket with a lid, fill it with rubber mulch. Tape your target to the lid, lay the 5 gallon bucket on its side and start shooting.

        Want something bigger? Buy a small plastic garbage can with a lid.


        • I use a rectangular food service bucket I recycle from where I work. It actually was used to contain pickled Ginger, so a Japanese restaurant, sushi bar, or specialty fish market may have them. You may ask to save them for you with the lid.
          There is no need to use a towel and if you start to shoot out the center, just use strapping tape to cover the hole (I just replace them since I get them for free). Not good for BBs or low velocity pellets because of ricochets.

  5. Very nice! I have 2 traps (homemade) and both are needing re-done. This may be a good option. Swinging mats of rubber works well. Suspend it/them in the middle of the box. They absorb a lot of energy and pellets drop to the bottom. Old phone books too. 1/2″ plywood and steel plates at the back are nice as well. Again, nice job on silent design.

    • Chris, USA

      I made a trap very similar to yours around forty years ago, except it was for bullets, I wasn’t into AG’s then. I made the box from lumber with an open top and front. It was 2′ deep and probably 16″ wide and 16″ high, inside dimension. At that time I had unlimited access to free cured rubber disks, which were waste products from molding “stripper rubber gaskets’ for the rotary control heads used in deep hole drilling for the gas and oil industry. I still have several truckloads of them at home and access to more! If you would like some let me know.

      The discs themselves are 15″ in diameter of various thickness and have two staggered rows of tit’s which are 1″ high and cover a ring approximately 5″ ID X 7.5” OD diameter which acts as an automatic stand-off. The box would hold between 16 to 20 disks and would stop anything, up to and including 30-06 AP at 50 yards! The disks were suspended from a metal rod which rested at 12 o’clock on the top of the box. Of course this is a heavy duty model and would not be suitable for BB or low power air rifles which would merely bounce off the first disk. The upside of it was no lead dust, however with high velocity rounds, you had distinct odor of burning rubber!

      What type of rubber mats did you use in your version?


        • Edith
          This certainly is not be the best pellet trap in the world, but it worked well for me and you can leave it out in the weather. In regards to the rubber discs, unfortunately, only the company’s that actually manufacture the the stripper rubber gaskets will likely have them. To the best of my knowledge, they are not normally recycled and end up in a landfill, at least in this part of the country, what a waste!

          I don’t know how closely you follow the replies to Toms blogs, but go back to the H&N Hornet Pellet: part 1 and read my two replies to StevenG on April 8, 2015 at 0955 and 1117 respectively. I will extend the same offer to Tom, if he would be interested, all I need is a physical address to send it to. Think about it.
          Briefly, what I have is a material which is self healing and one sheet will stop a.177 wadcutter around 750 FPS (estimated) dead in its tracks with no splatter. They penetrate the material about 1/2 the length of the pellet and most then just bounce out (not very far). Now a hunting pellet will shoot through 1 sheet and It is very difficult to see this, I had to put a piece of paper behind the target to confirm it. The rifle used was a QB58FC and the pellets were 7.4 grain Crosman, competition and hunting ammo. I also tried it with my granddaughters IZH61 with both pellets, there was no penetration with either! The range was around 17′. I believe that this material is the cat’s derriere! I really thought that it would be ideal for BB’s, but I was wrong, big time! Just finished trying it with my CO2 Colt Defender, it wouldn’t even penetrate at point blank range!

          Please reply to my personal email address if this interests you.


          • Bugbuster,

            I’ll leave this up to Tom since he does most of the shooting. All blog comments hit my inbox, but I don’t always have time to read all of them. I do scan all of them, though.

            Thanks for the offer!


            • Tom
              I Know exactly what you mean about “irons in the fire”, and mine are getting cold!
              FYI, this material is not a fabric, I am not aware of any self healing fabric, but then again, there are many new things and products that I am totally ignorant of!

              I’m sure you know what happened to the dinosaurs, it wasn’t pretty!


            • B.B.,

              Sorry to say I will not be making the Findlay Show. My parent(s) are in their mid~late 70’s and have quite the gardens and yard. Good weather, no Sat. work means they get priority…and plenty of “chores” to do.

              Maybe the P.A. Cup ? and get to shoot some PCP’s? Oh yeah…… 😉

              Only about 1 1/2 hrs. from either locations.


      • Bugbuster,

        Thanks for the offer. I have a good supply of 1/8″ rubber sheets, black, fairly hard. I also have access to 1/4″ reinforced belting, as would be used in an industrial application, very hard to slice and better cut with a saw.

        I do not think duct seal is good for a trap in that you can not recover and recycle the lead easily. It is nice for expansion test, as I did recently with the Pred. Metal Mags.

        If people keep their eyes open, there is all kinds of things to use. Rubber mulch would be good in that will absorb the impact, deflect the pellet into more rubber, loosing velocity very quickly. Plus, it will (settle back onto itself), closing the shooting “channel”, over and over. Lead recovery seems like it would be a pain though. Back it up with steel or wood.

        As for “other” cardboard box targets, take a Shop Vac and hold the nozzle about 1~2″ over the lead and cardboard debri. The cardboard “fluff” will be sucked up, leaving behind the lead, which can then be saved.

        Just some ideas,….Chris

        • Chris, USA
          There are many different ways to “skin a cat” (sorry Edith), if you are content with yours, by all means, stick with it. I agree that duct seal, cardboard and even rubber mulch are all quite effective in stopping projectiles,especially pellets, just a little messy when it comes to recovering them.

          Due to the texture of the rubber mulch, (shredded tires) I do not believe that it will readily settle back into the pellet channel without help unless you would use a multiple bulls eye target similar to the NRA 50′ small bore rifle target. Start at the bottom row of targets, shoot across and work your way up. This theory could be easily proven or disproven.

          I hadn’t even considered mine belting until you mentioned it, that gives me some new ideas. I never had any that thin before, usually it was at least 1/2″ or 3/4″, and very tough! The 3/4″ in fact would stop many handgun bullets at 50′.


          • Bugbuster,

            I agree with your above statement. I have not checked out the rubber mulch yet, but I would think that it might have the tendancy to “lock” together, and not settle. A good shake of the box would fix that, I suspect.

            A local farm store sells belting, but it is pretty pricey, if memory serves me correctly. Local gravel pits and grain mills might be a source for (used belting). No “mines” around here. And yes, it is some really tough stuff. ANY .22 pellet and your looking at a ricochet, for sure.

            • Chris,USA
              After you refreshed my aging memory about the toughness of mine belting, I came up with this idea. Build a wooden box with an inside dimension of around 16″ wide, 20″ high and 8.5″ deep. Solid back, open top. Use a piece of 1/2″ mine belting, more or less, or even metal in the rear for safety. This will leave you approximately 8″ depth for the rubber mulch and a cardboard face, the plastic, corrugated variety works really well since it is waterproof and very durable. Place a concrete block on the top of the mulch to put a constant pressure on it which will compress it, increasing its density. I personally believe this would work quite well, just not as portable as the original design, but more durable and efficient.


  6. Very nicely done, Rod. Thanks for sharing! I’ve been using a box packed with sheets of corrugated cardboard cut to fit. It works well enough but I’m constantly replacing the first few inches of layered cardboard. And I’m pretty sure mine would not stop a .22 LR.

  7. Nice pellet trap. What I did and would help your design is find a large box that has boxes inside it. Mine has 6 little boxes within the larger box, place the rubber mulch inside the little boxes(it will not settle as much). So a pellet would have to travel through 8 layers of cardboard box, the inside and outside of the larger box and the inside and outside of each of the smaller boxes, plus three layers of rubber mulch. For added safety, I have a 1/4″ aluminium plate between the second and third box. Most rounds do not even make it to the aluminium plate!
    How do you dispose of all the spent lead? What is the approved method of doing this?
    Thanks for the report,


      • Herb,

        Right! Here’s a thought. Anyone who empties his trap and doesn’t cast his own bullets should find someone locally who does. Maybe someone on this blog should start a trading site where people with lead can search by zip code for shooters who need lead for casting. There are trading sites for just about everything else, so why not lead?


        • Edith
          That is a fantastic idea you have thrown out here. I have about 20 lbs of relatively clean used pellet lead of all brands and 3 calibers. I keep them in 3 empty almond containers originally purchased from Costco, so you know they are large enough to hold at least 10 lbs of lead each. I have inquired at 2 local gun shops if any black powder shooters want free lead, and where they may pick it up. It seems there are a few takers, but no one wants to make the effort to pick them up. One guy wanted me to drive 100 klm (60 miles) to take the used pellet lead off my hands. I spend a lot of my shooting time collecting the used pellets from my indoor trap, and outdoor range grounds, vacuuming off most of the dirt and debrea, and storing them in containers in my shed. I do this because I refuse to be party to further contaminating our landfill with so much lead. Your idea of getting the two parties together, supply and demand, sure has a nice ring to me. My wife would also love it if I finally got rid of my lead supply.

          • Titus,

            Tom’s in Ohio for the airgun show, but I spoke to him this afternoon and mentioned the lead trading site. He liked the idea and said I should create such a facility on his Godfather of Airguns website. Yeah, right. I’m still laughing 🙂 I think this is beyond my abilities.

            If there’s someone on the blog who can do something like this, I think it would be very well received because most people do not cast bullets and many airgunners are not firearm shooters and are not connected to the world of reloading.


            • Edith,

              While maybe not going to a re-loader/caster,…any scrap yard would be glad to get lead. And, you may even get a $ or 2 for it. At least it will not go into a land fill.


          • Titus Groan,

            I recycle also. The only thing I burn, which I can, living in the country, is paper plates and paper towels and addresses from mail. What is left, is plastic wrappers and such that I take to work every 2 weeks, that when compressed, is the size of a soccer ball.

            Maybe not the “best”,…but WAY better than most.


    • Most recycle places will take lead at least here in Hawaii. . U.S. is short on lead because of our F.E.D. regulations closing down the mills. Or..give it to someone that fishes and makes their own lead weights!! I have a friend that just bends is over his line and smashes it with a pair of pliers. Lots of great comments and ideas on this blog!!
      ALOHA ! ….RatGetter Hawaii !

  8. Mine is better, by virtue of the fact that when you shoot big holes in the cardboard, it can be replaced easily rather than trying to tape it up our having to redo the entire thing.

    Mine was born of the desire to shoot in my backyard. I have chickens who will readily consume lead pellets, poisoning themselves and leading to contamination of the eggs. I wanted to contain all pellets.

    I took a cheap plastic bin and filled it with dirt. Rubber mulch would be good too, especially if I was using it inside.

    I took the top and cut a hole a little bit larger than the size of a piece of paper. Cut a cardboard target backer a few inches larger, place cardboard on top of dirt, put the lid back on. Stand it upright. Shoot. When cardboard is shot out to where dirt/rubber mulch can come out, tip it back down, take off the lid and replace cardboard. replace lid. Resume shooting.

    I could do a better write-up if bb wants, with pictures, but it’s a simple concept.

    • Michael in Georgia

      I wouldn’t try to use this type of backstop for arrows or bolts. Arrows and bolts have better penetration characteristics than bullets because of their weight and that they have a sharp point. For example, bullet-proof glass and a bullet-proof vest will not stop a hunting arrow from even a moderate weight bow.

      The best/cheapest target arrow target/back-stop can be made from a couple of burlap bags TIGHTLY stuffed with compressed polyethylene bags. Thin plastic garbage bags, grocery bags, and bags that come from the dry-cleaners work well. Don’t use stiff/heavy plastic. The target is light weight and weather-proof.

      Arrows don’t penetrate very deep and can easily be removed. The loose weave burlap tolerates the field-points well – if it starts to get frayed just shove the whole thing into another burlap bag. I hang mine from a tree so it doesn’t fall over onto the arrows and damage them.


  9. Thanks for sharing!!

    Interesting target design. I am going to make one up for indoor use as a replacement for my silent-trap which is not adequate to handle the power of my new rifle.

    I have a 50 yard target range and am setting up a roving Field Target course on my property so I needed quite a few durable, weather-proof backstops to safely collect pellets so they could easily be disposed of later.

    I found that large diameter logs (14 to 20 inches in diameter and about 12 inches long) cut from a dead white-pine do an excellent job as target butts. The end grain of the log absorbs pellets very well – I do make sure to cut the log such that the target face is free from any hard knots that could cause pellets to bounce back. Be aware that these target butts may not be suitable for lower power rifles that can’t drive a pellet into the wood.

    I for the FT course place log directly on the ground or on a log “pedicle” as a backstop behind the target. A small flat area cut on to the log will stop it from rolling off the pedicle.

    For the target range I make a tripod stand by cutting the back of the log at 45 degrees and cutting two angled, forward facing notches on the side of the log to act as mounting surfaces for the legs. Five minutes and a couple of 3-inch nails later you have a stable backstop to pin the target to.


  10. Greetings all. Been a little while I know, but I’m going to do my best to make it up to Findlay tomorrow for the show. Still reading the blog nearly daily just been holding off on posting much until I get my finances straightened out so I can jump back into airguns with both feet instead of one. Luckily I knew this “skinny” period was coming and planned ahead so I still have a reasonable little arsenal and plenty of pellets for this spring/summer, but anyone really into any hobby still lusts after the latest newest and greatest as I’m sure you all know. Anyhow hope ya’ll are well, hopefully I’ll meet a couple of you tomorrow if I can make it.

    • Mitchell in Dayton,

      I know about the “skinny” periods. Been there, done that, ain’t fun. Doing good,..for now.

      What you into? Pistols, rifles, pcps? What’s your “Dream gun” ?

      “Stop in” more,…..


  11. This would be a great setup for those of us with a CCW. Do all the loading/unloading pointing into this box. I know whos going to Lowes after work !! I currently have a small steel trap for handgun calibers that I do my admin handling with, this is much safer no worry of jacket/lead splashback.I was suprised that the 223 was stopped. For gunsmiths / tinkerers a great way to test your work, just put the chrony in front of it for airgunners.

  12. It seems everyone has their own pellet trap, so I guess I will share mine.

    It’s simple and about as quiet as I imagine you could get. I do not know if it could stop a .22 from a firearm, but it might.

    I take either a kitty litter plastic case or a cardboard box (the box can be deeper), and STUFF them with old clothes and rags. Next, I cut a hole a tiny bit smaller than a target and tape my target to the front.

    Pellets hit the paper target and pass through some of the clothing and then stop without much fragmentation.

    With a Magnum Springer, I’ve never had anything come close to penetrating either the cardboard or kitty litter box, and the only real sound is from the pellet hitting the paper. A bonus is that it is relatively light.

  13. I first made a target backstop using old foam pillows that we were going to discard stuffed into a cardboard box and taped up. This worked very well. I then tried the steel .22 trap and found duct seal was mandatory to quiet it down plus I didn’t like the “splat” and spectre of lead dust from my pellets hitting the target in my basement. The duct seal, however will fall off the back of the target requiring me to re-position it everytime I wanted to shoot so it was back to the foam pillows. However, this idea of using rubber mulch is much cheaper than a pillow if none are ready for the garbage and perhaps using a liquor carton with the cardboard separator still inside, as Yogi said, would be better yet.

    Fred DPRoNJ

  14. Off subject, but for anyone needing a receiver sight to fit the 3/8″/11mm dovetail when the dovetail does not allow sliding the sight on from the rear of the action, the Williams Diopter Sight (5D-AG part # 70809) works great. I can use it on my BSA Mercury and my Sears 126-1930 (Crosman 140). Works fine on the Sears/Crosman 140 with the front sight. I didn’t have a front sight on the BSA when I got it so just used a tall Williams ramp and bead on the BSA.

    • Lionel:

      Will this sight fit a Crosman 1377 with a steel breech? Can the peep be replaced with a blade?



      PS: If this is a double post, my apologies. The first try didn’t seem to post.

      • I don’t have a 1377, but my 2240 uses the same steel breech. I took the Williams sight off of the Sears/Crosman 140 and mounted it on my 2240. Works fine. The 5d uses a peep sight, but I seem to recall that an open notch is available for it but don’t remember where I saw that. However, Williams WGRS has both notch and peep available (I have both). I have that sight for my 2240 and it works great. Midway #121-512, Brownells # 962-100-054. PyramydAir may also have the WGRS sight, but don’t quote me on that. The steel breech has the dovetail running all the way to the rear of the breech so the sight can be slid on from the rear. Hope this helps.

  15. Thanks, Rod; I’ve bought a lot of rubber mulch for the wife for the area around her flower beds, but I never thought of trying it as a backstop…until now! Thank you for the idea; living in the suburbs, this will make the neighbors happy.

  16. Very interesting, and thanks for your work. You may be interested in a book that B.B. has mentioned called The Bullet’s Flight from Powder to Target by a Frank Mann. A very unusual guy who devoted himself to questions like yours almost beyond all reason. And you should note the introduction about how he had these amazing feet with high arches on which he could run all day without tiring. That’s what I remember most about the book. Incidentally, the author was apparently quite disappointed by the book’s lack of commercial success…

    I think it is a significant achievement to put together soft materials that will stop high-caliber projectiles. What I don’t see demonstrated is how this assembly will hold up over time. There is a story that during testing of the M1 carbine during WWII, workers would fire off the guns at a mound of sand against a brick wall. Then someone happened to notice that over time the impact of the rounds had almost chewed its way through the wall. I’m not optimistic that rubber mulch and towels will stop high-powered pellets for any length of time.

    Why not combine the best of both worlds? Just load your champion pellet trip with duct seal or impact putty. You deaden the noise while retaining the armor plating. It goes back to basic principles of Tai Chi: Cotton within steel! That’s what I do and have had no problems. The only difficulty is that the duct seal starts to sag and the top part of the metal backing might get exposed. But maintaining that is easier than maintaining a whole cardboard box with a variety of materials.

    Incidentally, if the story above about the M1 carbine and the sand mound sounds implausible, I experienced a version of that in person. Based on blog posts about duct seal, I loaded up one of the Crosman pellet traps with it. The trap was not for more than 600 fps at 10 yards, I believe, outside of my 5 yard range. But after stories about how a TX200 pellet would only penetrate its own diameter into the medium at point-blank range, I figured I had nothing to worry about. The assembly certainly dampened the sound. But I happened to check one day and found that the metal plate on the back had been torn loose from repeated impact and forced an inch back and was only attached to the mass of duct seal by friction. My conclusion is that duct seal is amazing stuff, but there will always be a trade off between malleability and armor plate.

    Mike, yes, for the M1 Garand, I understand that the salty Marine gunnys would drop loaded clips into the sand and succeeded in jamming the rifles. As Clint Eastwood says in the movie Heartbreak Ridge: “Infantry must improvise to get the job done.” That’s what they found themselves doing later trying to steal the M1s off of army replacements on Guadalcanal who responded by tying their rifles to themselves at night. But I don’t think the sabotaged clips were the whole story. By luck or intent, there was an elaborate test involving sand and seawater designed to simulate amphibious assaults that was pitched exactly to demonstrate the difference between bolt-action reliability and a semi-auto. The Garand failed and was deemed unsuitable for the Marines. But in combat it proved to be equal to the Springfield in both reliability and practical accuracy.


    • Based on blog posts about duct seal, I loaded up one of the Crosman pellet traps with it. The trap was not for more than 600 fps at 10 yards, I believe, outside of my 5 yard range. But after stories about how a TX200 pellet would only penetrate its own diameter into the medium at point-blank range, I figured I had nothing to worry about. The assembly certainly dampened the sound. But I happened to check one day and found that the metal plate on the back had been torn loose from repeated impact and forced an inch back and was only attached to the mass of duct seal by friction.

      When chronographing my Marauder I was using the duct-seal “quiet trap” sold by Pyramyd… 15 feet or so (open front door to hallway closet of my 1BR apartment).

      I discovered three shots, close enough to overlap, were sufficient to penetrate the duct-seal, the rear wood laminate, and bury a pellet in the closet door. I subsequently put a left over piece of moderately thick sheet steel behind the trap.

  17. Interesting topic…

    Where and how do you guys shoot anyway?

    I sit in a room under the roof of our house which has a “storage room” next to it. I sit in the corner of the room and my targets are in the attic. At the most extreme possible angle I have almost exactly 10 meters of distance and maybe 9 meters at other angles.

    My targets are on an old table that I put against the back wall of the attic. I use heavy concrete slabs as a back stop and so far, I have no problems with penetration or lead pieces returning to me. However, I have found that lead fragments tend to rip through my paper targets which is annoying. Putting some leatherette pieces in front of the stone and plugging the holes with hot melt glue from time to time seems to work ok so far 🙂

    I use a metal rail and magnets to hold the targets. I have also mounted a couple of bright red LED strips so they can’t be struck by pellets but illuminate the targets from the back, making hits instantly visible from the shooting position.

    I have found that empty CO² powerlets make good plinking targets if you flatten the bottom with a hammer. They make a nice…well.. “plink” sound and you can make them jump around in different ways, depending on where you hit them (I need to shoot a rifle from a rest to be that accurate).

    This probably sounds more organized than it is. At the moment this is all jury-rigged together from old furniture, computer parts, tools and other stuff I had lying around. It works ok though 🙂

    • CptKlotz,

      “Interesting” shooting you are doing…Your comment on Co2 pellets as targets reminded me of old cartoons that showed a character testing artillery rounds, with a hammer, on a rolling assembly line. 😉


    • CptKlotz
      I have a 7+1/2 meter range in a room that used to be my music studio where I did amateur recording and taught classical guitar. Arthritis in three fingers and thumb of my left hand forced me to retire, and I took up airguns as my primary hobby. I shoot into a heavy steel Bullet Trap rated for .22 and .17 cal rim-fire cartridges. To lessen the noise of a pellet hitting steel, I duck tape old phone books to the back, wrapping the phone book with three layers of tape. One Vancouver phone book lasts me all winter, until I am able to access my 25 meter outdoor range. The one drawback of my outdoor range, is that it faces due south. When the sun is low here in southern B.C. Canada, such as March-April, shooting between noon and 2pm is all but impossible with the sun streaming directly into the guns scope. I use this time to exercise our 3 year old German Shepard or work at my second favourite passion, gardening. A big bonus to my back yard range is the 15 acre field beyond my fence. Usually planted in alfalfa, having a safety zone like this gives one piece of mind when or if a shot goes awry, or ricochets for any reason. Living on the edge of a city also requires the occasional elimination of small pests, especially starlings destroying my cherries and apples. Robins will also enjoy a cherry or two, and I’m happy to share and let him be, but I can’t abide a horde of 50+ starlings in a feeding rampage that can strip a tree of fruit in 15 minutes. My neighbours on either side also own pellet guns for this reason, so there are no paranoid complaints when we hold an impromptu back yard shooting competition.
      What caught my eye was your idea of mounting LED lights in the back targets. How have you mounted them so they can’t be destroyed? When I read about ideas such as yours, I realize how valuable a resource Edith, and BB’s airgun blog truly is. As much as I enjoy learning about newest airguns, etc, its also about new ideas such as yours, and others comments as well.

      • Titus,

        nice outdoor range. I live in the Ruhr Area in Germany in a fairly densely populated part of town. While maybe not impossible, shooting my airguns in the garden might provoke strange looks from the neighbours.

        I mounted the LED strips on the back of the metal rail that holds my targets. This way they can’t be struck directly. They have a fairly solid plastic shell so they should be able to withstand occasional pellet fragments.


  18. Great Article. For the past few years I have been using a similar trap for shooting air guns in the basement and in the backyard. I fill a cardboard box with cardboard cut to fit inside the box. It works great and does not cost anything to make. If I ever get to where I can’t get anymore free cardboard I will try the Rubber Mulch. Thanks for the article, Rod.

    • Steve W.,

      Recycling centers have tons of it. Go on a Sunday and get all you want,…someone puts it in,…and you take some out. Plus, the discount grocery stores,…they WANT you to take their boxes!

  19. For BB

    Just received an Airforce Talon and am overjoyed. New Scope 6 shots zeroed in and placing .22 cal pellets within 1/8 inch of where I want them. Thanks for the presentation on the dvd that explains everything very well. Is there a third market place to buy accessories? Again thanks. Very happy camper

        • B.B.,

          “Experiments on your dime”,…not sure how you can expound on that comment, but it would be a good topic for an article. Specifics? In general?

          I have always been the type to, “wait and see” or, “wait a couple of years and the price will come down”, which they always do. ( TV’s, computers, cameras, etc.)

          It would seem that PCP’s and related gear are still on there way (up) regarding cost. Also, it seems there is alot of development and new and improved products every day.

          Anyways,…just an idea for an article. Chris

  20. Rod,

    An excellent report!

    I would like to repeat Yogi’s question above. Have you attempted to separate the lead pellets in the trap from the rubber mulch? If so, what techniques have you tried, and what worked?

    Thanks for this great report,


    • The top of my box is taped shut. I turn the box up side down and shake vigorously for a while. The pellets being heavier will settle settle to the taped shut end. I then lay the box on its side and open it. Most of the pellets will be easy to separate out. I’ve only tried this with me smaller box. The bigger one is too heave the shake for any length of time.


      • Jim,

        I do not know the material exactly, but most rubber types float. Washing will probably separate the lead quite efficiently. Will be quite a wash though,


        • August:

          Great suggestion. I’ll try a sample of the mulch to see if it floats.

          I believe it is about time to change out the big box. It is mostly layers of packing tape now and tends to bulge badly in the middle. If the rubber will float, I can dump the box into a number 3 washtub, scoop out the rubber mulch off the top, and toss it onto a tarp to dry. I can strain the water through an old colander to catch the pellets. The lead can go to a friend who casts his own lead balls for his muzzleloaders.

          Thanks for the suggestion,


  21. Thanks a lot for this great article, BB! Indeed, this is the best pellet trap I’ve ever seen. What I like most about it is the possibility to sieve out the lead pellets and give them to proper recycling.

  22. I’m just guessing, but rubber is very abrasive and I suspect it shaves of alot of led from the pellets landing it it, producing lead dust?! This iss very harmful to breathe in. I would not use this design indoors.

    Lead dust adheres to other dust and become airborne, keep indoor shooting ranges well dusted and ventilated. And wash pellets b4 using them indoors. Even good quality pellets have lots of lead dust on them!

  23. bb and everyone else,
    A few quick questions
    1.Is the diana 54 essentially the same gun ase compared to the older models?
    2.How do i cut a spring coil( btw a knife left just a scratch ).
    3.I recently acquired a haenel mod 3 drp but the back end of the barrel ( the part that’s flattened in to a rectangle to slot in between the arms of the main cylinder) is a bit loose .It jerks both sideways ( nearly negligible) and vertically( the front sight jumps quite an incredible distance while taking a shot). Your opinion?

    • #1
      Doesn’t really make sense… What “older models”? A higher model number doesn’t necessarily mean a “newer model”.

      So far I as know, the 48, 52, and 54 are basically triplets — all three using the same basic side-lever action. I’m not sure what the 52 has — fancier wood stock maybe? The 54’s main feature is the sliding action in the stock, meant to reduce hold sensitivity (at the cost of killing scopes).

      My m54 is old enough to have a T01 trigger. At the time I found this forum the standard m54 trigger was the T05, and the T06 came out a few years ago. They are all m54 starting back in the mid-90s at least.

      {Looked at an old Blue Book: the 52 has a Monte Carlo stock where the 48 is straight comb; and it appears a power plant change took place in 2008 increasing velocity of the later versions — no mention of production dates}

      I suspect, if you examine the knife, the spring left a blunt edge on the knife.

      I’d probably use a Dremel tool (or equivalent) fitted with a “cut-off wheel” (essentially a thin, easily fractured, disk of abrasive). Make short strokes and dip the spring in cold water to between them to avoid the heat travelling too far up the rest of the spring. Losing some of the temper at the end coil won’t be too significant, but losing the temper past the first coil will result in a spring that bends and doesn’t recover.

      The cut-off wheel can also be used to smooth and parallelize (you want the cut edge to be flat against the surface, not perpendicular) the cut end.

      Side to side might, if you can’t tighten a bolt to squeeze it, require adding shims to each side (flat disks of hobby plastic might do it, though teflon plastic would be nicer).

      Up/down however indicates (to me) that the lock-up is not strong enough to hold the barrel in one position. No idea how to correct that.

      UNLESS you really mean the pivot shaft itself is under size, such that the barrel is moving around on the shaft. Only solution for that may require either fitting a larger pivot shaft, or some how fitting a bushing that is tight on both the pivot pin and the opening of the barrel block.

  24. UtkarshGupta,

    While I have not done it, the hard brown fiber saw blades that cut metal is what you want. Use it in a chop saw and do it VERY slowly and even cool the spring frequently off and on as you cut.

    The rest I can not help you with. It sounds like you have a “project” gun?


  25. A quick question,….can a PCP rifle be filled (directly) from a “Shoebox” or other “higher end” electric pump?

    And,…if I remember correctly, the electric pumps must be “fed” with a oil-less shop compressor?

    I am trying to avoid the cost of a 700$ tank, should I go the PCP route.

    Thanks, Chris

        • Chris, USA
          Go to the ShoeBox website. There is a lot of info about how long it takes to fill things depending on the model of ShoeBox you get.

          I’m not going to a quote times here. But the best I can say is the ShoeBox will save you time and energy. I can be doing something else like getting my home made pellet stop ready/reguvinated while the ShoeBox is doing the work.

          I will say its much nicer letting the ShoeBox fill my 90 cu. inch Benjamin buddy bottle or topping of a gun verses a hand pump.

          And I just shoot my spring guns if I want to keep shooting while my pcp stuff is charging.

          • Gunfun1,

            Thank you for that advice. I spent about an hour on the site, made a few notes and saved it to the “favorites” for future reference.

            Really, they look quite simple. It almost looks like you put one together from a McMaster Carr catalog.

            As for homemade, the first thing that comes to mind is the use of modified hydraulic cylinders, (log splitters, porta-powers, etc.) Much biggers cylinders with a lot more pushing them. ???

            Anyways, thanks again. Hope your getting settled into your new place and can get back soon.


            • Chris, USA
              Things are getting back to normal here after the move. Whatever normal may be. 🙂

              And have been getting some shooting in finally. Definatly different to shoot here compared to old house. The old house was shielded from the wind pretty much all the time. It was actually very calm there compared to the new house. The new house will only block the wind from one direction. So I always have a slight wind blowing. And some days the wind is blowing pretty good.

              I ended up butting a ribbon attached to a 1/8″ metal rod out by the target so I can at least see what the wind is doing at the target.

              And been getting to stretch out the .25 caliber Marauder out in the open field. Definatly having fun with mildot holds and also now windage mildot holds. Already killed a few dirt clods and old corn cobs laying out in the field.

              And shot my air gun with the farmers son that I talked to the other day. Him and his dad have airguns so they told me. Guess what they got. Benjamin .22 caliber nitro piston XL’s. I had my .25 caliber Marauder and buddy bottle over there and they where amazed at how it shot out at a150 yards. After about 3 or 4 shots they were hitting the corn cobs out in the field. And they thought it was cool as can be that I was able to refill the Marauder about 9 times while we was out shooting all day. And they was amazed with the power it was making.

              I think after that they are now in the market for a pcp. And yes I showed them the Pyramyd Air website with my phone while I was there.

              And yes I’m going to like this new house. 🙂

              • Gunfun1,

                Glad to hear you are likeing your new place.

                My neighbor is….shall we say….less than receptive to suggestions on air gun usage. He’s a “been there, done that” type. So,..I play dumb, ask questions and lead him in an inch at a time. One or two basic tips and he is baffled, but tries real hard not to let on.

                Glad you can show your neighbors a thing or two, and they are receptive to learning.

                Check out the post to Vana2 below for an update. Got to “stretch ‘er legs” as you like to say. 😉


                • Chris, USA
                  First I will say they are very emotionless people. I think they are still weary of me. But they will get to know me soon enough. You know what I mean. 😉

                  But the dad was leaving and he walked up to me and patted me on the back and said you know you got a hell of a air gun there don’t you. I said yes I do. And he smiled as he walked away.

    • Hi Chris,

      I see that the temptations for the dark side are affecting you – LOL! Have to tell you, PCPs are VERY nice to shoot. If you do go for one I recommend that you do the same as you did with your springer – get a top quality rifle.

      If the rifle you chose has a decent amounts of shots per fill a hand pump is doable – if you are over 180 pounds and take your time. I throttled back my HW100 to 950 fps and get an easy 70 shots (5 magazines) per fill so pumping is not a big chore.

      I have a HILL pump and highly recommend it. I like that seal-kits are readily available so that you can fix rather than replace the pump.

      I purchased a 140 CF capacity 3442 psi steel scuba tank which is pretty heavy (I am currently modifying a golf-bag caddy to be tank/gun carrier). I decided on that approach because I live quite a distance from a dive-shop and the outfit that I bought the tank from included 80 free fills with the purchase – essentially, the tank was free.

      A good solution is to contact a dive shop and ask about used tanks or older tanks that are often sold at a good price. I could have got an 80 CF aluminum tank for $150. You will need a tank even if you buy a compressor.

      Check out Best Fittings in the UK. I bought my fill-kit and a couple of quick-disconnect fittings from them. Top quality, well designed and reasonably priced… had the stuff within a week of ordering.

      The Shoebox is ok but I think the newer high end pumps will be a better solution once the prices come down. I am waiting until the new compressors have been around a while and all the bugs have been worked out.

      Hope this helps.


      • Vana2,

        Thanks for that advice,..notes will be made. No dive shops here that I am aware of,…a nice weld supply shop though that has all size tanks and gasses.

        “Thump” at target is what I’m looking for, but would like to stay .22 pellet for cost, target, sighting, practice, etc. Pushing the fps with heavy-(er) pellets is the basic idea.

        I tend to move slow and take my time with a purchase of this $ amount. Check out options, ask questions, process that info,.. repeat as needed. A repeater would be nice as well.

        I’m not sure about the Hatsans and Sam Yangs or Evanix or Benjamins. Air Force seems to be solid as well as Air Arms.

        Supposed to be real nice today, so shopping and back home to get the TX sighted in at 25~30 yards. 🙂

        “Darkside”…… 😉


        • Hi Chris,

          I have just gone through this selection process and would be glad to share/compare notes but we should probably do that off line rather than commandeer BB blog.

          I can be reached at HANKdotVANDERAAatGMAILdotCOM.

          Nice here as well, off to do chores.


          • Vana2,

            Last post to you got lost on a “cloud” somewhere. Quite odd, as it has been sunny here all day…. ;(

            At any rate, note made of address and (will do) in future. Might even send you a test so you got mine. I don’t e mail often at all.

            Got to “stretch the TX’s leg’s” today,.. as Gunfun1 likes to say. 25yds. with 8 pellets. All domed and all different weights. 110 shots.

            Also played with mag. level and moved the scope all the way forward in the 3 stop holes. Started at rear 1000+ shots ago, moved to middle around 500,..and all forward today. I’ll leave it here.

            All in all,..a VERY good day ! Today was all about finding the best “grouper” of the 8. Confirmation and hold over/under test to follow along with turret fine tuning.

            Odd too, I did not need to remove the .009″ shim in the rear ring,..as the groups were close enough not to have to fool with it. If any thing, I will need to go down a little which is good,..as oppossed to the “dreaded” max. up.

            Thank you again,…Chris

            • Hi Chris,

              Interesting that you are moving the scope forward.

              My rifle shooting stance comes from archery where you keep your head/neck straight (the way you would normally stand or walk) and draw the arrow back to your anchor point. I use that same stance and (once stock is “tuned”) when I shoulder the rifle I end up with a clear view through the scope with the crosshairs on target.

              Glad that you got in some shooting. It takes a while to get everything sorted out and find the best pellets – fun stuff!

              Did a little bit of shooting myself, kinda windy here so I just beat on the spinners a couple of times. First decent weather so I was busy with putting away winter stuff and getting boat and BBQ in order.

              I have had a couple of posts disappear into the vapors somewhere so now I write my post in a word processor and copy/paste it in to the “comment” area of the message – gives me a second chance if something goes wrong.



  26. Hi BB,
    Off topic.
    This FX that shoots cross bolts as well as pellets must be nearly as effective as +0.450 calibres on larger game. Have you ever tested one or are you likely to? Method of death is haemorrhage in both cases.
    Cheers Bob

    • Bob,

      I am interested in bolt-firing airguns. They’ve been around for several decades and I did shoot one back in the 1990s. It was made by Swivel Machine Corp and was more successful than their airgun.

      I don’t know whose model I will test when I do test one.


      • B.B.,

        Very interesting on the cross-bolt airguns. I did not that they existed. Thanks to the “BlueBook”, I was quickly able to look the Airrow/Swivel brand.

        The “cross-bolt” threw me at first,…they fire (arrows), feather fins and all. Duh! Very cool !


        • Chris,

          As you learn more about airguns you will discover they are closely related to crossbows. Crossbows historically do not normally shoot arrows.They shoot bolts that are shorter and fatter.

          Today’s crossbows are smaller and lighter than the crossbows of history and they do shoot short arrows, but someone who is familiar with them will refer to their projectiles as bolts. Hence cross-bolt.


  27. I used a pizza box, which is extremely thin and filled it with several layers of fabric scraps from an upholstery shop. I was using a 600fps match rifle in .177 at 10 meters and it held up just fine. I enjoyed the article. Thanks!

  28. This was sent to the wrong address, so I am posting it here:

    Hi, I have a question or two about air guns, pellet guns. My home is being shot at almost daily (usually at night). It started nearly five years ago. There is a neighbor and his wife that apparently have never grown up. Or, one could say, they are thugs. My question: could they be shooting some kind of dirt clods (homemade ammo). There are round raised dirt type clods all over my brick, mainly in the back of my home. To achieve weight (and velocity) could they be using something that would leave round raised (reddish, dime to nickel size) places on brick? Thank you for your help!!


    • propertyops1,

      Welcome to the blog.

      The most likely thing is they are using a slingshot to launch dirt wads towards your property. Airguns don’t work very well with dirt clods over long distances. They break up within a few feet.

      A slingshot would also be quiet while an airgun would not. And thew dime-sized patches are exactly what a slingshot would leave.

      That’s my guess.


    • propertyops1,

      Best of luck on that situation. That is one type of “Urban Warfare” I have yet to hear of.

      Better clay balls than lead. Wayyyy too much of the “flying lead” thing going on these days.

      And yes, some adults never do grow up. In fact, I think there is some “reversal” of the species going on.


  29. Edith/BB,

    I just wrote a rather lengthy reply to Vana2, but it did not post. In fact, after being denied, it showed that I never signed in for a reply at all. (handle and e mail did not reappear)

    At any rate, if you find it, please post it and delete this one.

    Thank you, Chris

  30. Good article. I’ve seen these before. I happen to live in the regeon of a large Nascar Super Speedway and have happened on 5 or 6 4’x4’x2′ blocks of the styrofoam safer barrier. Best light weight pellet traps I ever shot at. My targets get pinned right to then by way of barbed wire fence staples. If I fear a particular gun might penetrate one then I put another one behind it. The blocks swallow up the pellets never to be seen again.

  31. I am sure this works really well. Most indoor ranges use the exact same stuff to stop bullets of almost all calibers. Of course they use a much greater volume and have angled steel to back it up, but it the exact same principle. Most of theirs just relies on a couple of feet of rubber product to stop everything and it is usually not packed tightly at all. The best thing about it is as it is shot into the rubber settles a little more each time and repacks itself, just avoid the very top of the trap and you should be fine for a long time !!

  32. Great article.
    My pellet trap is built from old damaged steel mudguards from vehicle tray bodies. Mount them at a 45 degree. Drill mud flaps into it for the sides & hang two mud flaps as the back stop at an angle. Bulldog clip targets onto the front. Used air rifles & 22 rimfire with no strays penetrating. When I hear a clang I replace the shot through mudflap.

  33. Mine is a cardboard box with a section of soft pine 2×12 at the back wedged in place by lots and lots of tightly-wadded newspaper. Tape target to front of box. The wood stops the pellets and the newspaper prevents ricochets and deadens the thunk. All materials can be gotten for free. No holes in the back of mine from multi pump and springer .177 and .22 air guns.

  34. I have been using a similar pellet stop for a couple of years now, First I used the rubber mulch and then tried the less expensive cypress mulch. Both of these products stop a pellet at 25 feet or so. The rubber mulch has also stopped a .22 R, .380 , 9mm parabellum and .50 muzzle loader (to 25 grains of BP substitute.

  35. I would like to add a suggestion to this post.

    For .22 and .177 (break barrel NP2 rifle)

    I have been using the rubber mulch, but for the box to contain the mulch, I have been using large shipping boxes (from FedEx, USPS and UPS). They are roughly 15x12x3.
    I have shot 1000s of round and only 1 has gone through. The 1 that got through was after about 30 shots in 1 inch area, and I assume the pellets “drilled” through. I had a piece of 1/4 plywood behind cardboard box, so the pellet hit the wood, leaving a small dimple.
    The solution to this drilling is to flip box 180° (every 20-30 shots) to keep mulch compact.
    The boxes last a long time and are cheap (free) to replace.
    I have been using indoors with both .22 and .177 pellets.
    Since it is winter, I haven’t been able to check with higher calibers. I will check in spring.

  36. Hi there!
    New to the site and new to this post, and I haven’t read all comments yet. But I just can’t wait to ask my question.
    I own a Gunpower (sorry. In the US that‘s AirForce) Texan SS as well as an Evanix Rex-P pistol. Both weapons .45 caliber.
    Unfortunately, where I live in Europe, it is not easy to find places to shoot these weapons. And as private circumstances have changed a bit recently, I’m even more limited to shooting these guns.
    Now, I could shoot a lot more often, if I could find a way to make it safe to shoot these guns indoors. But that means shooting on a very limited range of only 35 feet!
    Im very impressed with what I’ve seen in this post and so here’s the question.
    If I would take a somewhat larger box, like maybe 30“ x 30“ x 30“ filled with rubber mulch, and for final security have a backstop 1/2“ steel plate, do you think it would be safe to shoot either the Evanix or the Texan on this short distance?
    I know that neither of these weapons were made for short range shooting, and I do have a .177 Walther Rotex RM8 Verminator (German Standard, only 5,5 fpe) and two .177 CO2 pistols which I use indoors all he time. But I just love shooting with that brutal power of the Texan and the Rex-P and I don’t want to miss it.
    Any thoughts?
    Thanks a lot.

  37. I’ve built one of these rubber tire mulch traps about four years ago when I discovered this blog about them. My wife had just started shooting air rifles. I had a Condor in 177 and she had a 22s and we are having a hard time stopping those pellets. We were only shooting was CO2 at that time but a quiet reliable trap was really necessary. After reading this blog I endeavored to build a trap would last in the outdoor. The first trap I built lasted at least three years and being cheap I kind of sifted out the pellets and used the what seemed to be undamaged tire mulch for the new trap I have now. I actually use a two box system with the inner box to add some structure to the build and the outside built thought of plastic cardboard. At stuff is amazing, it’s waterproof, the sun doesn’t bother it in the high temperatures here in Arizona does not seem to have any effect. Now this plastic cardboard can be a bit pricey but after local political elections many groups are either slow or nonexistent removing the plastic cardboard signs and picking them up is a civic duty. This time I built a considerably better trap so back to the Home Depot for some more rubber mulch. I find when my accuracy has cut a hole into the front of the trap I just take another piece of plastic cardboard can save it to the front and start all over again. There are extremely quiet and mine is about 18 deep and I have never and anything to through including some hypersonic pellets powered by the Air Force rifles, truly the most powerful air rifle built in the US. If I put more 2000 PSI in the tank and 18 grain pellet pushes 1300 ft./s it sounds like a 22 rifle. I would like to test some more but I’m sure the neighbors will be calling the gendarmes were right to continue. The point being the boxed tire mulch is a great idea and an excellent silent pellet trap. Thanks Tom and I think I’ll save this comment so I can just cut and paste it on Facebook the next time someone’s asking about pellet traps.

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