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You’ve Got a Bow, Now How Do You Choose Arrows?

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Need to know how to choose arrows to go along with that new bow?

After months of shopping around online and in stores, speaking with friends and store clerks, asking for recommendations and testing out products that caught your eye, you have at last settled on the perfect bow to add to your hunting arsenal.

You may have even splurged on a top-market, high-performance bow, in which case you are probably itching to set up some targets and get to work. And you should be: a new bow is a big deal for a hunter.

Still, your shopping process isn’t over yet. While the bow itself is obviously the biggest part of your purchase, you also have a lot of considerations to take into account before buying the arrows that you are going to shoot with it.

And while some beginning bowhunters shrug off arrows with some dismissive statement about their similarities, shopping for them can easily become a huge headache if you don’t do the proper research.

As you begin shopping for the perfect arrow, be aware that a successful bowhunter is a person who understands the nuances of archery beyond the simple stats of their bow.

For example, while you may have been swayed by a bow with an advertised shooting speed of 328 feet per second, the bow won’t exert that level of speed on every arrow it fires. Different arrows have different designs, shaft lengths, weights, and price tags, and yes, they can be quite different.

That means that almost all bowhunters should steer clear of poorly-manufactured arrows. You’ve spent a lot of money on your bow, so make sure to buy well-made arrows as well. Otherwise, you won’t be getting the full performance out of the bow that you paid for.

It is better to spend a few more bucks on arrows than to consistently be disappointed in the bow that you spent so many months shopping for. Take the time to shop for arrows as well and make sure you have the right fit.

Another issue is that many beginner shooters are so obsessed with speed that they bypass the other characteristics of their bow in order to max out its rapid-fire intensity. While lightweight arrows are generally cheaper and will get more speed out of your bow – an attractive option for a 330 fps model – they will also be more difficult to aim and more unforgiving to a beginner’s skill set .

The most forgiving arrows – and therefore the best for a beginning bowhunter – will be weightier items with slightly more bend. Lighter arrows tend to sacrifice some of their flexibility in an effort to keep the weight down, and while stiffer arrows are great for speed, they are significantly harder to shoot with.

If you are just getting started with the bowhunting sport, opt for a heavier arrow that you can manage more easily. After all, your goal is to hit the target, not to set airspeed records. Then again, the game you are hunting will also impact which kind of arrow you choose. Heavier arrows are generally better for big game like elk or deer, while lighter arrows are perfect for turkey or other small game.

The shape, size and features of your ideal arrow will differ from just about everyone else’s, so practicing on a range with varying models can be a big help. Try to make friends with fellow bowhunters, and arrange training sessions while swapping arrows.

Above all else, garnering experience and know-how with both the bow and arrow(s) are of utmost importance once you reach the field, so don’t let your first shot from a particular arrow be toward an animal for the first time.

Do you have any more advice for choosing the right arrows? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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You’ve Got a Bow, Now How Do You Choose Arrows?