Trouble-Shooting – Broadhead Accuracy

Posted on September 5, 2012

The recipe for tight broadhead groups starts by paper tuning your bow. This is done by shooting an arrow through a taut piece of paper from 6 feet away (using a field point). The goal is a clean, pencil-like tear with neat fletching slits that are essentially the footprint of the arrow. A large tear, up or down or side to side, identifies erratic arrow flight, which must be fixed.


bow shooting

Broadhead accuracy is necessary in boosting a hunter’s confidence when the chips are down. (Joe Bell photos)

To do this, simply make adjustments to your nock height and/or arrow rest until you achieve a clean, almost-perfect tear. If poor tears persist, spray the rear of the arrow with foot powder to verify vane clearance with the rest. A slight smear in the white dust reveals contact—a deal-breaker for straight, accurate arrow flight.

Once arrow flight is tuned, the next step is shooting arrow groups downrange, using three broadheads and three field points. Shoot well downrange (at a range you feel comfortable, of course), say 40 or 50 yards.

If broadheads fail to group into tight clusters similar to your field points, consider a different broadhead or one that is more compact in shape. If broadheads happen to group well but hit in a different spot than field points, try these adjustments to the arrow’s nock height and/or the arrow rest in hopes of bringing the two groups together:

• For low broadhead impact, lower your nock height.
• For high impact, raise the height.
• For left impact, move the arrow rest to the right.
• For right impact, move the arrow rest to the left.
• Be sure to make very small adjustments at a time (about 1/32 inch) before shooting another group and verifying the results.

If adjustments fail to improve things, then simply consider sighting-in with broadheads. If this doesn’t satisfy you, continue trouble-shooting by doing the following:

• Have the bow’s cam system and limb alignment inspected at full draw. Sometimes, improved wheel synchronization and limb tip load will eliminate poor broadhead impact.
• Experiment with different arrow vanes—ones that create more drag and better arrow steerage.
• You can also play with a slightly different arrow FOC (front of center). More FOC often results in better broadhead impact. This is done easily by using heavier inserts or broadheads or by choosing lighter fletching.




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