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Throwing Knife Target Built By Ken Gary, Inspired by Harry K. McEvoy and Blackie Collins

Throwing Knife Target built by Ken Gary
Throwing Knife Target built by Ken Gary

I finished building this throwing knife target on January 31, 2009, the day before the Super Bowl. It was inspired by pictures I saw in throwing knife books by Harry K. McEvoy and also by Blackie Collins (see photos below).

I got the logs for the targets from Gary Davis at Franktown Firewood so if you’re in that area look him up and he’ll cut logs for you in any diameter and thickness you need.

When I went to bed on Friday night I told myself, “No matter what, before I go to bed tomorrow I’m going to throw a knife at my new target!” So on Saturday I worked all day building it in my garage and with the help of my two sons I hauled it from the driveway to the backyard, rigged it with the first two logs and even though it was getting dark, I THREW SOME KNIVES! It felt great after 20 years away from throwing knives!

You might notice in the video I’ve got the target sitting on a sloped yard. My back yard is not flat except at the very bottom by the fence. I am afraid to put it there because I’m sure knives will bounce off the target and go flying into my neighbors yard. So I leveled the target at the least sloped part of the yard that still gave me a stretch of grass to walk back-and-forth on that was long enough to be able to get in 3 spins when I want to.

Throwing Knife Target by Blackie Collins (page 8 of Knife Throwing Sport...Survival..Defense)
Throwing Knife Target by Blackie Collins (page 8 of Knife Throwing Sport...Survival..Defense)

I had some 4″x6″ landscape timbers left over from a landscape project so that’s why the knife target in Blackie Collins book caught my eye. I was inspired by his target but I tried to give it a little more aesthetic beauty with some extra cuts and some joinery that involved some dadoes I chiseled out by hand. Watch the video in the upper right corner of this page to see the details a little better.

I had a lot of fun making this target.

Knife Throwing Target by Harry K. McEvoy (page 40 of Knife Throwing A Practical Guide)
Knife Throwing Target by Harry K. McEvoy (page 40 of Knife Throwing A Practical Guide)

If I didn’t have the lumber already hanging around and if I didn’t want to build a target that I could move if I have to, then I think I would have built one like Harry McEvoy’s hanging target. He used three pieces of 2″ pipe and two 90 degree elbows that he set in concrete in the middle of his back yard. You can’t get much simpler and easier than this. He can hang logs if he wants to or he can hang some slabs of boards like you see in this picture.

His back yard in Michigan reminds me of my grandfather’s back yard in Michigan.

Rear view of Harry's hanging knife throwing target (page 41 of Knife Throwing A Practical Guide)
Rear view of Harry's hanging knife throwing target (page 41 of Knife Throwing A Practical Guide)

2 thoughts on “Throwing Knife Target Built By Ken Gary, Inspired by Harry K. McEvoy and Blackie Collins

  1. Ken, very cool target ! I do think a backer board on it would be a wise safety idea. I dont think you would really want to ruin your neighbors backyard BBQ with an stray #79 ! The video was cool too. Keep up the great work.

  2. Hey John!

    I agree with you. I’ve reconfigured it with a backer board and no chains. Much better to use now!

    Ken

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