Re: Rage broadheads... i've always heard the horror stories!
If your fixed blades don't fly the same as your field points, then it's 99% a tuning issue with your bow (bow, arrow, rest, nock, shooting form, age of string or limbs, stabilizer etc). A fixed blade can fly the same as a field point. The difference between the field point and fixed blade is because you now basically put a "vane" on the front of the arrow (the blade). So the arrow needs to leave the bow true and use consistent shooting mechanics, when shooting to have the same point of impact. You would be shocked how all these little things add up.
Tuning a bow can drive you crazy depending on the issue. So the Rage if often preferred because the blades are minimized on the front of the arrow. i.e. less "vane" up front to influence the arrows path. So they are very forgiving. I like them. Shot 6 big bucks so far, with 5 of the 6 being complete pass throughs (lucky). One hit a LOT of bone, but still got it done. Just a long tracking job. When I inspected the meat, I'm not sure a fixed head would have made any difference. Bone is bone.
I like 2 blade vs 3 blade. It's more for engineering design reasons, but they are a simple design with less points of failure and more streamlined design. In my opinion this means there's a higher chance the blades will deploy correctly. I don't really need more than two blades in order to get it done. Two will give you better penetration (reasons further below).
If you hit bone, really with any broadhead, and you'll have issues. No two shots are the same, so its hard to compare. The first Rage broad heads seems to use soft flex steel for blades, so if a blade hit bone and the rest didn't, then it would bend the blade but the head would keep going. I had this happen. Still killed the deer. Even one blade on a rage gives a very large cutting diameter. Fixed broad head wouldn't bend. It would bounce around the bone, potentially slow down more or maybe break the bone under ideal circumstances. Still debatable. I used the Rage hyperbonics this year and the blades appear to be a harder steel and less likely to bend.
Last year I tested a bunch of fixed broad heads since a state I drew a tag for didn't allow expandables. I got the Slick Tricks to fly the best. There was a decent amount of difference between broad heads. I think the Slick Tricks flew the best because they have a relatively short head. Wide cutting diameter, but short in length. So again, less "vane" up front to influence the arrows path. More forgiving. They didn't shoot quite as good as Rage at long range (50+ yards), but damn close. Maybe 2-3 inch difference at 60 yards. I still prefer Rage as I favor precision over other factors.
Something to think about... Surface area of a blade (cutting diameter) is generally a tradeoff with penetration. More cutting surface means more resistance. The rage has an exceptionally large cutting diameter. So they can create more resistance. This influence gets exaggerated if shooting a light arrow or lower poundage, especially if hitting harder tissue. Hence, I'm not surprised people talk about not seeing pass throughs. A wide cutting fixed blade will have the same outcome. Don't get me wrong, I love pass throughs, but I'm happy as long as it gets 2/3 of the way. Job done as long as I did my part with placement. I think folks overlook cutting diameter (fixed and expandable) for understanding what it does to arrow flight (accuracy) and penetration.
As with everything in shooting guns or bows, there's tradeoffs. Find your sweet spot, match your equipment with the task at hand, know your capabilities and stick within them. Be selective in your shots. Crap will still happen, but you'll greatly reduce the probability of having issues if you. 95% of the time it's not the equipment anyway. LOL