Representing one of its most complex AR500 reactive targets, the Triple Tap by Spartan Armor Systems is designed to challenge both rifle and pistol shooters while pushing shooters to emphasize fundamentals on critical hit zones.
The Triple Tap is a three-way target system made to model a 2/3 scale IPSC silhouette target, with independent target paddles in three distinct hit zones. Made from the same lab-certified AR500 steel as the Spartan Armor protective plates, the Triple Tap comes with a head shot paddle (that rotates over and doubles as a hostage paddle), center mass paddle, and a gut shot paddle.
The Triple Tap is designed to be used in conjunction with a 46” angle iron measuring 1.5″x.25″ (sold separately or at any hardware store). While the target comes with pre-welded chokes on the rear of the target, they are also sold as part of a DIY builder’s package for cost savings.
When the Triple Tap is mounted on the throat (also sold separately), the Triple Tap has an enhanced forward angle that not only mitigates risk of ricochet, but angles spall downward to the ground and away from the shooter.
Sold separately, but best when used in conjunction with other Spartan Armor reactive targets, the Multi-Purpose Base (MPB) is designed to accommodate a variety of targets, be easily (dis)assembled, and compact enough to fit in any mid-sized trunk. While a majority of the MPB is made from 3/8” steel, the protector plate is made from AR500 and prevents errant shots from damaging the base. It also includes four 21” support legs that gives the Triple Tap a large base that prevents unnecessary movement.
The MPB has two slots for an associated angle iron; one slot for a vertical angle (best for reactive targets), and a second that gives a 22-degree cant (for dueling trees) and ensures paddle reset.
Triple Tap Target Specifications:
- Target height: 19.5″
- Target width: 12″
- Center hole of target diameter: 4.5
- Center hole reactive paddle diameter: 6″
- Gut Shot target hole: 9″ wide
- Hostage reactive paddle width: 5″
The Triple Tap comes unpainted, but can easily take any common spray or liquid paint.
Product Evaluation Scores:
- Cost – Good (4/5): As of this writing, the individual costs are $293 for the Triple Tap, (that comes with a pre-welded Throat), and $115 for the MPB, all of which are necessary for the system to work effectively (although the MPB is not necessary if you have an externally sourced mounting base). Not included, but recommended, is the necessary angle iron from your local hardware store that averages about $10. Considering the sheer volume of AR500 steel that comprises the Triple Tap reactive target, the cost for all components is comparable to other systems. However, those other reactive targets are dominantly a one or two-paddle system (i.e. center mass and hostage/head) in conjunction with a silhouette-type target, and cost approximately $200. Given the added functionality of the Triple Tap’s third additional paddle, and robust throat that protects the actual mounting system, then the price is very well placed.
- Comfort – Average (3/5): Aside from being heavy and somewhat awkward during assembly, the Triple Tap was assembled easily in stages thus not putting the total weight of the system on the user to move/adjust into place. It should be noted, avoid painting the MPB and angle iron black, as the color enhances sunlight and thus heats up the steel to very uncomfortable levels if left in the sun all day. If you do paint it black, be prepared to use heavy gloves when handling.
- Durability – Good (4/5): Amazingly durable. The included waiver documentation with the Triple Tap maintained liability for use was on the shooter, and that the recommended distance to engage the AR500 steel target(s) was 100 yards (or projectiles traveling less than 3,000fps) to avoid damage to the reactive target. Since we don’t have a 100-yard rifle range for this type of training, we first shot the Triple Tap with .223 at 30 yards, and the 20 yard. Zero damage (aside from that done to the paint) was done to the reactive target, with no pock-marking, spall, surface cratering, or penetration observed.
- Functionality – Excellent (5/5): You would be hard pressed to find a singular reactive target system with the functionality of the Triple Tap. With a gut shot target, center mass target, and a head target that also doubles as an additional hostage target, the Triple Tap ensures a wide array of training can be done on specific target zones, or by employing specific platforms. The added angled design of the throat ensured any bullet fragments were angled down at the base of the target and away from the shooter. As a result, the MPB did take a little surface damage to the paint from bullet fragments, but nothing damaged the legs or base. The one improvement I would suggest to Spartan Armor would be to use hitch pins rather than the cotter pins to secure the MPB’s legs, this way users can keep them all together on the associated ring rather than four loose pins when not in use.
- Weight – Average (3/5): The Triple Tap system components themselves all weighed a significant amount given they were made from AR500 steel. The main silhouette target (with three paddles) weighed in at 31.2 pounds, the throat was 5.13 pounds, and the MPB (assembled) weighed 17.8 pounds—giving the complete Triple Tap reactive target system (excluding angle iron) a total weight of just over 50 pounds fully assembled. Since the volume of steel is fixed (meaning we can’t change the atomic weight of steel), then the overall weight is fairly average for all components involved.
Overall Rating – Above Average (19/25)
I am reviewing this product as a courtesy to the manufacturer and via STL Shooting Enthusiasts, so that I can evaluate it and provide my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give positive reviews. All views are my own, and based off my personal experience with the product.
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