Long range arrows???

Discussion in 'Bowhunting' started by shortpants, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    What makes a good long range arrow? I know ACC's are awesome but I'm thinking for the money I might be better off getting more arrows for the money. I want to try pushing my limits to see how far I can reach accurately. I figure I might burn through a few arrows while pushing those limits so would I be better off getting cheaper arrows or do you give up accuracy by doing that. Is a shorter arrow stiffer and more accurate than a longer one. I know shorter equals more speed but would there be any benefit to making my shafts any longer than needed. I have an archery antelope tag so I'm trying to prepare the best I can. My idea is to practice farther than I will be hunting at.
     
  2. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Writers Guild

    Messages:
    5,085
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    I do not know the answers to any of the questions you asked so I will instead tell you the answers to the questions you did not ask.

    Total weight is good at long range to ensure adequate penetration.

    Fletching is a trade off situation where you need stability and you need to retain speed. A marginally stable arrow becomes erratic in winds. So you have get enough stability at the cost of losing speed to get accuracy in windy conditions.

    As both Len and I found out changes in atmospheric density will affect your arrow flight so if you have all your pins zeroed and set while practicing at sea level you will have to reset them at elevation.

    Make sure you have a good FOC.

    To reach long range you need to carefully select your sight so you can get a lot of pins in it.

    As far as extra length I would believe you are negating the effect of high spine so I would just use the length that you need in a high spine arrow.
     

  3. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Thanks for the reply, I guess I left a lot out. I already have chosen to go with a 4'' RH helicle and will dive into the broadhead debate later. This post was more directed at the shafts themselves and if I should get the most expensive and only get a dozen or get 2 dozen cheaper arrows. I'll make sure to have a 12%-15% FOC but just wondering if someone could explain the science behind the shafts. I have heard some prefer alluminum shafts for long range. Anyone care to elaborate?
     
  4. zuba

    zuba Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    601
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    I'm no eggspurt, but recently I switched from cabon express arrows to easton fmj arrows and I am loving the performance. I got a killer deal on 2 dozen raw shafts and picked up a dozen of those FOB's to try side by side with traditional fletching. I've been lazy and only using the FOB's right now, but with the heavier arrow I'm definately putting arrows deeper into my block style target at 50 and 60. I am hoping to get my other dozen fletched and find a windy day to see if there are really any wind bennifits to the different fletching. I have been practicing with my magnus bullheads and feel confident out to 50 with them so the turkeys better lookout in May :)
     
  5. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Writers Guild

    Messages:
    5,085
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    The thing I found with arrows is that at long range I don't break or damage very many but the loss rate is very high because of the speed of the new bows and heavy arrows just keep on going after deflecting. Elk hunting up on the Manti when I was practicing at ranges of 80 yards, if I missed the target an arrow could go 100 yards and then you spend lots of time trying to find a $10-15 arrow.
     
  6. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

    Messages:
    3,033
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2007
    Join the NFAA and start attending shoots and learn how to shoot correctly. Archery is no different than firearm hunting, as far as figuring out what equipment combinations are correct. There is no blanket answer. Draw weight, draw length, cam type, and on and on.

    Anybody spending time hunting for arrows on the practice range needs to significantly shorten their perceived hunting distance.

    Arrows and bones do not get along. The margin for error is significantly less than it is with a rifle. Just because a person can hit a target does not mean they are within effective hunting range.

    It's a stick with a sharp point on it, don't forget the fact that it is a primitive weapon. No matter how technically advanced they get.

    All I am saying is that a person needs to be careful for the sake of the game that is being hunted.

    Steve
     
  7. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    I couldn't agree more. I deeply respect the animals I hunt. I would like to push my range on the practice field to make me more consistant in the hunting field. It may take loosing a few arrows to learn something but the animals will benefit from it as will I.
     
  8. Scot E

    Scot E Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,312
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    Sounds like you are fairly new the the archery gig, at least the technical side of it anyway. I would strongly encourage you to join a club or find a good pro shop. They will be able to help you find the right setup.

    The right setup means a properly spined arrow for your bow and draw weight. If you plan to shoot long range having your bow/arrow combo tuned correctly is paramount.

    I would not go with a 4 inch helical vane like you mentioned. Too much drag. I would look at the short, high profile vanes like the the blazer. If you want to go techie and you shoot a drop away rest then look very hard at the FOB's by Starrflight. They are the best long range shooting fletch I have used. No traditional look but very effective.

    A heavier arrow will typically drop less than a lighter arrow if shooting at long range which i consider to be 60+ yards. At closer ranges you may see the lighter arrows drop less but a lot of that depends on your setup. Retained velocity is key as is a proper FOC.

    Too my way of thinking you want very tough arrows so I would personally buy quality first even if it gets you fewer arrows. you can always shoot different spots to keep your arrows from ruining another if you are concerned with that issue. I personally really like the Easton FMJ's. I am on year 4 with my practice set and they still spin true. The ACC's are nice too.

    HTH,

    Scot
     
  9. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    I am new to the equipment side but not archery hunting. Been doing it for 17 years but have always just taken the words of the guys at the shop and some friends who have shot competitively. I am going to go to the shop I trust but for a change would like to go in with some ideas so that I know I'm getting whats best for me. I was thinking of fletching a few with 4'', a few fobs, and a few blazers to see what works best. When it comes to selecting a shaft I just don't know what makes one so much better and more expensive than another. Somebody explained the spline thing to me years ago but my memory is short so could you explain it to me again. I sure appreciate the education!
    Jason
    P.S. My bow is set up for elk with 3-60/340 Superlite ACC's with a 28'' knock to insert length weighing just over 400gr. right now. I was thinking I should go lighter for antelope but you say heavier is better. I consider my current setup being neither heavy or light but somewhere in between. I think they are shooting around 270fps. if I remember right. I used to shoot Redline 410's @ 302fps and was trying to get back to somewhere around there or better. I shoot a Hoyt Xtec at 70lbs. Do you think I should go lighter to try and gain some speed or would I be better off staying with my current setup? My pins are bottomed out at 73 yards and I can shoot that far accurately but want to push my limits farther. I am going to a single pin adjustable sight.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2011
  10. Scot E

    Scot E Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,312
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    Spine in simple terms is the stiffness of the shaft. One can buy varying spine stiffness in economy or high end shafts so that shouldn't be much of an issue.

    Tolerances add to the cost of an arrow. Straightness and variance in weight are the 2 main ones. I shoot fixed blade heads as mechanicals are illegal in Idaho so straightness is likely more important to me than others. I also think the system used for nock and insert is important. You must have a system that allows for the entire arrow, nock, insert and head, to maintain their true tolerances to the shaft over repeated use. This is one of the reasons I like the inline or HIT system. I think it does the best job of this over time. I have hundreds and hundreds of shots on my practice arrows and they still spin perfectly true even with broadheads.

    Work diligently on getting the right spined arrow and a properly tuned bow first. These 2 things are musts before you go any further toward fine tuning for long range performance.
     
  11. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    I added to my earlier post with some more questions for you Scot. Thanks for taking the time to help me!
    Jason
     
  12. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Writers Guild

    Messages:
    5,085
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    I am shooting ACC 3=71s with a 300 spine on a draw lenght of 31 inches and nock to end length of 32.5 inches and a 125 fixed blade. This is out of a Xforce set at 70#. At 40 yards the arrow cleared a calf elk.

    I also have some Beeman ICS hunters in 300 spine and they are just as good. For arrows as long as mine you want to keep the spine high. I have some old arrows for my old bow and they are all 340 spine and shoot well enough and that is what all of the arrow charts recommend but for elk the extra weight of the heavier arrows is really good. However I ahve only killed the one small elk with a bow so my experience is somehwat lacking.

    I found a straight 3 fletch with Blazers to not be stable and have tried a straight four fletch 75-105 to be much better and to give better cable clearance. I have fletched some more arrows with Arizona Archery vanes that I have not yet shot.

    I videoed my arrows in flight but they are too fast to show up well until they get way on out.
     
  13. Scot E

    Scot E Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,312
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    Your elk setup is similar to mine. I think I am 425 grains at about 275 fps with FMJ 340's. A few years ago I bought some CE Maximas in 250 and 350 to gain some speed over the FMJ's for an upcoming mule deer hunt. What I found was that past about 55 yards both of the CE's arrows shot with more drop than my heavy arrows did. My pins were tighter from 20-50 but were wider at 50+ yards. 50+ yards is where I really wanted the benefit so I switched back to my elk setup and haven't looked back. I shoot Montana's 7 pin and can get to 85 yards with my 7th pin.

    There is a lot of talk on the chat forums about the really light weight arrows shooting very flat. I guess to be fair I haven't tried the really light weight arrows, Maximas are more middle of the road, but I have a hard time believing they will be flatter past 50 yards or so and that is where I would want to see the benefit.

    HTH,
     
  14. shortpants

    shortpants Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    You have inspired me to get my old Redlines out and test them against my ACC's so I will know. Thanks,Jason