Can someone explain to me about archery arrows?

October 12, 2010 by Bowhunter  
Filed under Blog

Jacob W asked:

I am starting archery and I am trying to get a 50-55 lbs compound bow. I have had some experience with bows and am REALLY interested in them. I know alot about the bows but not much at all about the arrows. Could someone please explain to me and basics and what parts of the arrow are important-any anything else you can explain to me.

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What are some safety aspects that need to be stressed in archery?

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6 Responses to “Can someone explain to me about archery arrows?”
  1. Make Beer


  2. Sterling Silver Boxes

    carbon is the standard now and accept nothing less. I do not like to get crazy about super expensive arrows because they break and get lost when you shoot them at 300 fps. I prefer 4” plastic fletchings and g5 broad heads because they hold up to use. Have them cut to size at a pro shop and practice with the tips you will hunt with.

  3. Silver Cigarette Cases

    Carbon arrows are the best. Any plastic vanes and grim reaper broad heads for hunting and field tips for practice. Go to a Hunting store and most places have the arrows already made up, all you need is the field tips. Talk to a sales person in the archery and they will help you.

  4. Garden Pond Liner

    arrows are the sticks with a pointy thing on the end and feathers on the other end.

  5. Garden Ponds Supply

    Carbon is good, but cheap carbon is almost an oxymoron. If you see a set of $50 carbon shafts brand new be wary.

    For a compound if you’re shooting with release, you have the convenience of selecting shaft sizes from a wider range of spines compared to when you’re shooting fingers. A release is way more forgiving of spine matching, so get a set of arrows rated somewhere near your poundage and you’ll be fine.

    Carbon is nice and all, but make sure you get a set that is durable, not all carbon shafts are durable. I’ve seen Gold Tip shafts take a beating and keep flying, they’re good. I use Carbon Express, these arrows are also built like tanks. But they do cost considerably more than aluminum. Aluminum shafts are also very well built, assuming you select a size that is not super lite. When you look at aluminum shafts you see a 4 digit number for sizing. Usually something like 1716, the first two digits, 17 in this case, represents the outside diameter of the shaft in 64th of an inch. The last two digits, 16 here, represents the wall thickness in 1000th of an inch. So the bigger the last two digit is the more durable the arrow. For Easton X7′s I like the 14/1000″ thickness, for XX78′s and others I like 16/1000″ or above.

    If you have to spend money on archery though, spend it on the arrows. You can have the best bow on the planet but if you have crappy arrows you won’t hit a thing. A mediocre bow with good perfectly tuned arrows will get you great groupings. You can shoot me an email about arrows, cause I can go on and on about drag, FOC, more about spine, etc.

  6. Home Theater says:

    Ear Ringing

    So, in a modern arrow you have a couple of parts:
    1) Nock
    2) Shaft
    3) Insert (for the head)
    4) head (this is the point)
    5) Fletchings (feather)/vanes (plastic)

    Many people assemble their own arrows, it is a bit cheaper, it gives you the equipment to repair your arrows if you break them and you can try some different stuff, like different length fletchings.

    The most important thing for an arrow – particularly if it is something like wood or carbon – is to have the correct spine. This is in reference to the stiffness of the arrow. If the arrow is too far underspined it can explode in your bow. However, at 50 – 55 pounds, this isn’t going to be a problem for you.

    So, aluminum shafts are much cheaper than carbon. However, aluminum doesn’t flex as much as carbon and still return to true. So, if you are punching paper at fixed distances so you are not likely to be whacking you arrows against the ground or rocks or other sorts of stuff, then aluminum will be fine. If you are field shooting you may want to move to a good quality carbon, as they can be more durable. Further, they are lighter for the same spine, so they are faster and therefore have more KE than aluminum. Again, none of that matters just for target shooting, but for hunting it may matter to you. However, I will say, thousands of animals are harvested every year by people shooting aluminum shafts, so it certainly isn’t a requirement.

    Since you are just beginning, I would definately start with aluminum arrows until you know what you are about in the sport. Even half a dozen is plenty to start with. Eventually, you will probably need more, but for a start this is fine.

    Aluminum arrows are defined by 4 numbers – like 2312. The first two numbers are a reference to the diameter of the arrow, and the second two numbers are referring to the wall thickness of the aluminum. So a 2312 arrow vs. a 2117 is larger in diameter, but with thinner walls. Assuming something around a 28″ draw length, and 125 grain field target heads, you can run 2312, 2117, 2215, 2020 pretty much about anything you can get your hands on. By the time you are good enough to have bent or creased these arrows by shooting really tight groups, you’ll know enough and be ready to spend the money on carbons.

    Regarding the other stuff?
    Nocks – you want snap ons (the most common kind) that fit you string. Since strings are largely standard by weight if it snaps onto any 50 – 55 lb bow string it will snap on to yours.

    Heads – I’m not going to talk about hunting broadheads, because that is a who subject unto itself. Rather for a 50 – 55 pound bow you want 100 – 125 grain heads to start with.

    Inserts are standard and will come with an assembled arrow.

    Fletchings vs. Vanes – Doesn’t really matter. Vanes tend to last longer, again, with an assembled arrow it will come with these already attached.

    Last point. If you are shooting a “pronghorn” arrow rest, you should have your nocks rotated so that the guide feather on a 3 fletch arrow is pointing DOWN, between the two prongs. Normally it is pointing out away from the bow. If you are shooting a fall away rest, or a springy or some other kind of more conventional rest, then you can leave them as normal. If you are shooting 4 fletch then it doesn’t make that much difference.

    Have fun,


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