Broadheads 101: Gear Up for Bowhunting!
When fall arrives, it will be time to trade your practice points for broadheads. Practice tips are great for killing 3-D foam animals but to successfully harvest game, you’ll need something a little sharper.
Arrow points are the sharp end of the arrow that sticks into the target. A broadhead is a point with two or more blades; these blades create the necessary blood loss to harvest animals with a bow.
Just as there are different bows, sights and arrows, there are different broadhead types. You can choose from fixed-blade and mechanical broadheads, as well as options for small-game hunting.
Your local archery shop can give you good advice and ultimately help you choose the right broadhead for your bow, draw weight and prey. But let’s start by examining the primary types of broadheads and how they work.
Fixed-blade broadheads are a classic design that can harvest everything from deer to large game, such as Cape buffalo. They come in two-, three- and four-blade configurations. The blades do not move, hence the name. The broadhead looks like a small dagger on the end of your arrow.
Fixed-blade broadheads penetrate well, so they are an excellent choice when pursuing large game or when hunting with light poundage. These broadheads are also very durable; if they become dull, you can sharpen them.
A mechanical broadhead has closed blades that open upon impact. The folding blades create a low profile, improving arrow flight.
Mechanical broadheads also have a large cutting diameter, resulting in a bigger wound channel and a better blood trail.
Mechanical broadheads need extra energy to effectively penetrate an animal due to the energy used when the blades open and the drag caused by the larger cutting diameter. For that reason, a mechanical broadhead is a good choice for both crossbow hunters and archers who pull more than 50 pounds of draw weight.
Blunts, Judoes and Small-Game Points
If you’re hunting small game, you don’t need to use your broadheads. Small-game points, blunts or judos have smaller blades and are durable, less expensive options. A blunt point looks like your field or practice point, only flattened. A judo point is a blunt with wire claws; these claws catch grass and leaves to prevent the arrow from burying into the ground. They will save you from searching for arrows so you can spend more time hunting.
Am I Ready To Shoot Broadheads?
Any broadhead has the potential to change the impact of your arrow. The fletching on the rear of the arrow stabilizes it like tail fins on a rocket. When you add a broadhead, the blades compete with the fletching for control.
This effect is most evident on a large fixed-blade broadhead. The solution: Ask your archery shop professionals to tune your bow for excellent broadhead flight. Their adjustments will help the broadheads fly true and have the same impact as your field points.
How Do I Install Broadheads?
To install a broadhead, you’ll need a broadhead wrench, which prevents the blades from cutting your fingers. Unscrew your practice points from your arrow, and then install your broadheads by inserting them into the broadhead wrench and screwing them into the arrow. You can purchase a broadhead wrench and get help installing your broadheads at an archery shop.
Broadheads are just as important to your bowhunting success as the rest of your archery equipment. Talk to the experts at an archery shop near you to discover the perfect broadhead for your next hunt.