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Choosing the Right Broadhead: A Quick Guide to Finding the Right Fit

DSCN0374 Man, that was a bad hit. If you’ve archery hunted before, chances are this thought has raced through your mind after a shot. It’s a place hunters don’t want to be; in fact it’s about the worst feeling a hunter can feel. Despair, uncertainty, and doubt all can twist the heart of a hunter after a bad hit. Choosing the right broadhead is one decision you can’t take lightly if you want to avoid that situation. The first major choice when buying broadheads lies with deciding to purchase fixed-blade broadheads, or mechanical broadheads. Here is a quick guide for understanding the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Fixed Blades: KISS

A fixed broadhead is any broadhead in which the blades do not move. These broadheads follow the KISS method; Keep It Super Simple. Manufacturers offer a variety of 4-blade, 3-blade, and 2-blade designs. Each design offers different advantages; with each blade you increase the cutting surface of the broad head, but more blades means more friction equaling less penetration. Depending on the species you hunt you’ll need to decide what option is best. Fixed blades offer the advantage of simplicity and dependability. They are 100% reliable and work every time. On the down side, fixed blades tend to offer smaller cutting diameters than mechanicals. For accuracy issues, a fixed blade can’t speed through the air with a 2” cutting diameter. Cutting diameters on fixed blade broadheads generally hang around 1”.

Mechanicals: Blood Trails for the Blind

For the record I am partially colorblind and blood trailing presents some serious challenges to me. That being said, even I can follow the saturating blood trails caused by today’s mechanical broadheads. A mechanical broadhead is any broadhead that has movable parts. Mechanical broadheads come in 2 popular designs; the original 2-blade system with new 3-blade designs also hitting the market. Mechanical broadheads are generally viewed as more accurate, and share flight similarities with field points. Additionally, because the blades remained tucked away in flight they can house much larger cutting blades than a fixed blade. With cutting diameters of around 2”, these broadheads can cause serious damage slicing through a body cavity. On the other hand, some archers hold doubts about the reliability of mechanical broadheads. Will they deploy on impact? Will they deploy too early? What if a blade snaps off? All these questions can raise doubts for hunters, so some shy away from their uncertainty. In the end each hunter must choose a broadhead they are comfortable with. The one thing you definitely don’t want to pack with you into the woods is doubt in your equipment. By understanding the pros and cons of both styles you can make the right choice for your upcoming hunt. Looking for the right broadhead? carries a wide variety of quality broadheads to fit your needs.
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