diy archery targetThere are a few things that I won’t go cheap on, but for the most part if I can save a bunch of money making something myself then why the heck not?!  Now that I have my new bow, I want a target.  I really don’t want to spend the money for a target because the good ones get quite expensive.  A DIY archery target is definitely the answer, and here I will show you what I did to make it.

DIY Archery Target – Supplies

This is a fairly inexpensive project if you do it right.  I took a trip to Lowe’s, and did some research and spent right around $25 for everything.  For your DIY archery target, you’ll need the following supplies:

  • (1) 2 X 12 – This comes in a 10′ board.  They cut it at Lowe’s into two 4′ pieces and one 2′ piece.  You only need the two 4′ boards – ($15)
  • (4) Threaded rods – 1/2 in diameter, 36 inches long – ($8)
  • (8) Nuts/(8) Washers for the threaded rods – ($2)
  • Cardboard – Lots of cardboard!

DIY Archery Target – Assembly

Putting together the archery target is fairly simple.  Once I bought everything from Lowe’s, I needed to find boxes to cut up.  I found a bunch of people that had moved and were getting rid of their boxes so I kindly took them off their hands.  I also visited recycling bins, and checked out people giving away boxes on Craigslist.

  1. Drill 4 holes in each 2X12 – This will be where your metal rods will go.  You could get away with only using two rods, one on each side, but I wanted to evenly distribute the pressure so I chose to drill four holes.
  2. Start Cutting Cardboard – I cut the pieces 2.5′ wide by 12 inches deep.  I plan on stacking them about 30 inches high compressed, which is why I say you’ll need a ton of boxes.  Also, I don’t know if it matters but I chose to alternate how I cut the boxes.  Since it’s corrugated, when I cut them I would have the first piece with the channels going side to side, then the next piece going front to back, and so on (see the photo at the top of the page for an example).  I like the consistency of doing it that way but I can’t say whether or not it’s going to make a difference.
  3. Tighten the Bolts – Once you’ve stacked all of the cardboard you need, tighten the bolts down.  You’re going to need to play around with it to get it right.  Set it up in a safe place incase you have a passthrough, tighten them down and take a shot from 20 yards.  If they stick, you’re good.  If you get a passthrough, tighten the bolts a little more and take another shot.

TIP – before you start tightening down the bolts, lay the target on its face.  This will make sure that the front of the target is as flat as you can get it.  Then tighten everything down.  You’ll know it’s tight enough, or close to it, if you pick up the target and the cardboard doesn’t fall out!

DIY Archery Target – Maintenance

diy archery target What’s nice about this DIY archery target is that you don’t need to replace the entire thing when you shoot out a section.  All you need to do is loosen the bolts, remove the damaged section and replace it with new cardboard.  Tighten the bolts back down and you’re good to go. Below is a video of me shooting the DIY archery target for the first time.  A couple of the arrows traveled up to the vanes so I decided to tighten it down substantially more, about an inch on each bolt to be exact.  Now it’s tight and I don’t really need to be concerned with passthroughs.

DIY Archery Target – First Shots Video

DIY Archery Target – Final Thoughts


  • Much less expensive than other targets
  • Easy to make
  • Long lasting/durable


  • Heavy/not as easy to transport
  • Field tip use only!  Although I’m sure you can shoot broadheads at it, I’m also sure you will tear that cardboard to shreds with them

Let me know what you think.  If you’ve built this and have other tips for us we would be happy to hear it.  Just leave a comment below. Also, if you have other ideas for DIY hunting projects we would love to hear them.  Definitely share it below.

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