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View Full Version : arrow straightness...does it matter? or is it marketing hype



Brem
02-13-2011, 08:52 AM
Hey all,
We can all agree that spine does matter for both safety and performance but does arrow straightness really matter that much. Most of the major manufacturers produce .006,.003, and .001 versions of their arrows. prices are exponetially more for the more "straight" an arrow shaft is.
For example:
Gold Tip has the Velocity Line that I find shoot nice out of my bow
The Velocity Hunter = .006 = $70/dz
The Velocity XT = .003 = $90/dz
The Velocity Pro = .001 = $130/dz

Is a straighter arrow worth the extra money?

Hutch~n~Son Archery
02-13-2011, 09:00 AM
Not for hunting. Maybe for target. But my .003 and .006 shoot no different than the .001. So many will argue about this but let them. And yes spine makes the most difference it shooting. Just my 2cents.

Hutch:cool:

SonnyThomas
02-13-2011, 12:26 PM
Virtually all my target arrows are in .003" for straightness realm. I may have a dozen that are .001" - Victory and still in the box. I have a dozen coming for Harvest Time Archery.

Hunting arrows I like to have straighter than a dog's hind leg, so .006" gets it done.

ElkSlayer
02-13-2011, 02:28 PM
.003 and .006 shoot no different than the .001. So many will argue about this but let them.


Hunting arrows I like to have straighter than a dog's hind leg, so .006" gets it done.

that's just the way it is we as a human can not shoot well enough to see a differance so take it for what it is ..a way for the arrow Co. to sort out the best, good and the yea that will work... so you pay for the best if that waht you beleave it takes for you to get it done...knowing this all mine are .0025 or less of corse :D

archerx7
02-13-2011, 03:48 PM
All mine are .003's. I knowI would never be able to tell the difference with a .001.:D

Ehunter
02-13-2011, 04:24 PM
I have shot all 3 versions in the same arrow. I could never tell a difference in any of the 3, other than cost. For someone that worries about it, if you have to trim any off your arrows, take it from both ends. Usually, the slight bend is at the ends, rather than the middle. At least that's what an arrow manufacturer told me a few years ago. He said you could easily make a "6" into a "3" that way, or a "3" into a "1".

bfisher
02-13-2011, 05:54 PM
I do have to say that it wasn't too many years ago I could shoot well enough to tell the difference between .006" and .003", but not any more. Of course it really doesn't matter as I have about all the arrows or anything else I'm going to need for the rest of my shooting career.

I do have to say that I do check my arrows and most often take enough off the nock end first then cut to length from the point end. Say as you will but this can improve a .006" arrow down to .003 or even less. Even so, it's not near as important as spine deviation around a shaft or from shaft to shaft within a bundle. This might be what makes the straighter arrow shine. Not so much that they are straighter, but that their specs in general are tighter, including spine.

Although I don't shoot them much any more I still think ACC's are the cream of the crop when it comes to anything less than $150 a dozen Especially when it comes to spine deviation. I checked all my 3-18 and 3-28 shafts with a spine tester and the worse deviation I recorded was .0025". By comparison I checked my GT Entrada 600's and they were all over the place. I recorded as much as .015" deviation around one shaft---totally unacceptable in my book.

RLW
02-14-2011, 08:46 AM
......I still think ACC's are the cream of the crop when it comes to anything less than $150 a dozen........
That's the money making choice for a friend of mine that shoots for the four letter "H" bow company.

elkslayer4x5
02-15-2011, 12:05 PM
Getting older, don't think I can outshoot a .006 shaft any more. :(

bfisher
02-15-2011, 12:19 PM
Some people always ask if the average Joe could tell the difference. Without getting extremely expensive I often comment that "Maybe shooting cheap arrows is what keeps the "average joe" average."

If you want to remain average then so be it, but if my desire were to be just average I would still be using a Bear Kodiak Hunter recurve that I started with in 1972 and shooting the banana shaped wooden arrows from that era.

Another analogy I use is that people will spend $700 to $900 on a bow and then go cheap on arrows. The bow is just a launch pad, gentlemen. It launches an arrow at a given velocity. What the arrow does after it leaves the bow is what's important. In general an arrow with better specs is going to shoot better.

MLN1963
02-15-2011, 02:13 PM
I wonder if anyone here has a super shooter that could put this to the test and take out human error? Hmmm... :D:);):cool:

bucknuts17
02-15-2011, 05:58 PM
bfisher that was pretty profound never looked at archery quite that way, you are the Master we are your students, thank you

MLN1963
03-21-2011, 11:09 AM
I wonder if anyone here has a super shooter that could put this to the test and take out human error? Hmmm... :D:);):cool:

Hutch

You have any .001, .003, and .006 arrows you could test in the Super Shooter to see if there is a noticable difference?

cyclepath
03-21-2011, 11:56 AM
I have tryed some pretty expensive arrows that were .006 that worked good. But after braking a few of them I decided to go with a cheeper arrow. My beman ics hunters are .003 and are about $40 for 1/2 dozen. Cheeper on AT sometimes.

MLN1963
08-21-2011, 01:00 PM
Here is my question. We all know that arrows flex and bend on release, this is called archer's paradox. So anyway, you watch a video of an arrow bending like crazy and flexing for a good while after release and it makes me wonder just how important arrow straightness really is? At least it makes me wonder?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WzWrcpzuAp8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CO102jz8sFM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI_17jgEdAI

Stéphane
08-21-2011, 03:03 PM
I went through this headache last June. I wanted to buy new arrows that would fit my needs. Man, it took me for ever to make a decision.
My first set of carbon arrows were GT Hunter Expedition .006. I wanted to try something better just for the sake of it. Sooooo, I bought a dozen of Hunter XT .003 with blazer vanes total of 349gr. Paid $96 shipped. I could have saved $20 to get Expedition, but I wanted to try it for myself.

Verdict? Well, I have 12 similar arrows and I'm happy with the price I paid for them. I do shoot better, but I think it is me improving my skills rather than the arrows making a difference.

You know, sometimes it is better to pay more and know it is you and not the arrow. If they would have been twice the price, I don't think I would have done it. For $20, what the . . . .

Destroyer
08-21-2011, 03:28 PM
it makes me wonder just how important arrow straightness really is?

Very important, just imagine how it affects the flexing. Slightly bent and it flexes more one way.

MLN1963
08-21-2011, 05:18 PM
Yeah but we are talking .006" of an inch variance. not bent.

Destroyer
08-21-2011, 07:18 PM
.006" of an inch variance

Actually its + or - .006" so up to .012". Will it make a huge difference for a hunter when the accuracy is good enough with the cheaper shafts? Probably not. Will it make a difference to paper shooters? Yep and seen it.

Now if the prices were the same, which shaft would you pick? ;)

MLN1963
08-21-2011, 07:25 PM
I would get the straighter only because they are supposed to be better. I would love to see a set of each arrows built exactly the same and then shot thru a super shooter to see if there is any real value added or if it just makes a person feel superior.

MLN1963
08-21-2011, 07:26 PM
Also at what distance can you see this improvement, 20 yards, 50 yards, 100 yards?

Destroyer
08-21-2011, 07:33 PM
if it just makes a person feel superior.

Doesn't make people feel superior that I'm aware of. Do you think it makes a person feel unhappy to have lower quality gear? I know that is the point of advertising sometimes.


Also at what distance can you see this improvement, 20 yards, 50 yards, 100 yards?

I can see a difference shooting in my back yard range of 18 yards going from Ultralight Pro's to Velocity Hunters. We aren't just talking straightness but spine and weight as well. Better consistency for me for sure.

MLN1963
08-21-2011, 07:44 PM
To be fair wouldn't it need to be the GT velocity hunters against the GT Velocity pros?

Destroyer
08-21-2011, 07:53 PM
Same specs I think.

peace
08-21-2011, 08:32 PM
How a bow is setup is going to make a lot of difference. The bare bow is only a base from which the shooting implement is created. The bare shaft is also only a base from which an arrow is created. The meticulous creation of the arrow from its various components will determine how true of a projectile is produced. Knowing the work ethnic prevalent in the world today, I don't trust an arrow that was completed by someone else. What good is a straightness tolerance if you don't square your cut ends or your inserts, or check if you have consistent spine and weight tolerances?

Value and quality are not a direct function of price unless the price is indeed justified by Craftsmanship and Integrity. Bows and Arrows, Houses or Cars. An old adage comes to mind here, "If you want something done right, do it yourself."

A good arrow takes time, a better one takes more. Straightness tolerances are a beginning point. If I was a tournament archer I would want the best I could afford. I would want to insure every step of the process. Even my targets would have to be of a material that would do the least harm to my arrow upon impact and extraction. I am not going to shoot an excellent arrow into crap.

Easton A/C/C's are only .0025 and the FatBoys are only .005 but they are both chosen by many top competitors. For many reasons I will stick with the Eastons...I own some Carbon Express and some Satellite Archery arrows along with my Eastons. The Satellites in the various series [Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze] were some great target arrows at low cost. My Eastons are .001 my Carbon Express are .003 and my Satellites are .006 tolerances. I think the perfect spine and grns per inch along with FOC are more important than the straightness tolerance with today's production arrows. JMHO

Just trying to be a better Cherokee than I was yesterday...


Smarten Up and Martin Up

MLN1963
08-22-2011, 04:39 AM
Same specs I think.

Construction techniques and tolerances could differ between brands. I think the only true and fair test would be to have arrows within the same brand built by the same person using the same methods. In other words all else equal only one set of arrows are .006" and one set .001" tolerance. Then shoot them from a machine to take out as much human error human as possible.

"Doesn't make people feel superior that I'm aware of. Do you think it makes a person feel unhappy to have lower quality gear? I know that is the point of advertising sometimes."

Sorry, I didn't mean it come out as making the owner feel superior. I meant it as it makes the owner feel he has a superior product.

I don't have any of the answers so these are just my thoughts. I've never seen any empirical data on this subject but as you know I am a green horn don't have a lot of archery knowledge.

Ford
08-22-2011, 05:01 AM
I cant shoot well enough to tell the difference. So if it kills my deer at 30yds and under I'm happy. If I was a serious target shooter I'm sure it would matter, but that would probably be more in I have confidence in the arrow so I shoot that arrow better. I'm new with bows but I see the same thing with rifles. You shoot a rifle your confident with and you do well, if that rifle is $200 or $2000. Its about confidence and practice. I think .006 is the width of a human hair or something like that, so for where I'm at in archery it makes no difference whatsoever. Other guys may think different, and to each his own.

Arrow Splitter
08-22-2011, 08:17 AM
I cant shoot well enough to tell the difference. This right here.:cool:
Yes, I'm sure that a .001 arrow shot from a shooting machine will shoot a LITTLE better than a .006 arrow shot from the same bow and machine, because, after all, it is straighter.

boobowbender
08-22-2011, 01:41 PM
And the faster your arrow goes the more important it is that its straighter. any flaws or imperfections will multiply as velocity increases.

MLN1963
08-22-2011, 02:43 PM
Has anyone ever seen a real study on this subject, real test data and all that? You would think if such material existed the arrow manufactures would be all over that like Barry on a spammer.

Destroyer
08-22-2011, 02:58 PM
I meant it as it makes the owner feel he has a superior product.

Understood.


And the faster your arrow goes the more important it is that its straighter. any flaws or imperfections will multiply as velocity increases.

Exactly, add lighter into the mix as well. Less weight means any influences have a greater effect.


Has anyone ever seen a real study on this subject, real test data and all that?

No need for a study because archery is all about consistency, the archers and the gear.

Arrow Splitter
08-22-2011, 02:59 PM
http://forums.bowsite.com/tf/bgforums/thread-print.cfm?threadid=393471&forum=2
http://forums.bowsite.com/tf/bgforums/thread-print.cfm?threadid=334209&forum=2

MLN1963
08-22-2011, 03:32 PM
A.S.

I don't see anything on those links that show scientific data? That appears to be just like here, people discussing it. I was serious, if there was empirical data out there don't you think all the arrow manufactures would be citing it to help sell their product?

Again, I mean everything the same, the arrows have the same spine consistency, build and all that. Machine shot so the archer can't have a psychological edge with one arrow or the other.

I did find this humorous. "The worst shooting shafts I ever had were .001 - the straightest I ever shot. Go figure."

Arrow Splitter
08-22-2011, 03:45 PM
We might have to try with our shooting machine sometime.:cool:

peace
08-23-2011, 02:54 AM
Here is an arrow used in the 3D tournament posted in a thread here, the arrow has a distinct kink in it yet shoots just fine, wonder what its straightness tolerance is...

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-iSkbGfmejGw/TkDgWvwHCXI/AAAAAAAAw7s/05sXGeQEHNs/s512/elm-99.JPG

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-y_HBuf9Q_a8/TkDgRiu7QLI/AAAAAAAAw7k/0g_Ebph8t2w/s640/elm-98.JPG

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-GyxAZsLoX_0/TkDgbTF2SnI/AAAAAAAAw70/Bu-XKnmDh8Q/s640/elm-100.JPG

Sharxfan
08-23-2011, 04:51 AM
I read some where that the arrows are created in one long tube and then cut to size. Once they are cut then they are sorted according to straightness. So if this is true then the arrows are built the same they are just graded after the fact.

blindk9
08-23-2011, 01:16 PM
I really don't believe the tolerances are enough to make results worth the extra $. Better results could be obtained by "the average archer" practicing more. Not only that the drift or other adverse effects are not what they would be on say the ballistics that govern firearms. Their effects are multiplied greatly because of extreme distances of the bullet flight path.

Scott

RLW
08-23-2011, 01:39 PM
A.S.

I don't see anything on those links that show scientific data?............I was serious, if there was empirical data out there don't you think all the arrow manufactures would be citing it to help sell their product?

Again, I mean everything the same, the arrows have the same spine consistency, build and all that. Machine shot so the archer can't have a psychological edge with one arrow or the other. ............

You can bet arrow manufacturers have indeed done very serious testing of straightness, spine and all aspects of their arrow. However it could be that they do not want to disclose their specific detailed data for all to see, especially competitors.
Or, "maybe" they wouldn't want to disclose that something like the straightness of .006 vs .003 vs .001, is so minor that they prefer the consumer decide for themselves if it's really working better for them.

I personally would "assume" that all things will not be the precisely the same, with only straightness that an arrow being different. I would expect arrows having .001 straightness would probably, more importantly so, also have a tighter matched spine and consistant weight than the lower end .006 arrows

Destroyer
08-23-2011, 02:57 PM
I would expect arrows having .001 straightness would probably, more importantly so, also have a tighter matched spine and consistant weight than the lower end .006 arrows

Same here otherwise you would be seeing extra grading. Overall I guess you have to make the decision whether to pay the extra $$ for the better graded shafts. For hunting my Velocity Hunters are good enough even at +- .006" max but I would buy the better shafts if I didn't loose the f'ing things so easy. ;)

Hutch~n~Son Archery
08-23-2011, 03:23 PM
I not being a wise guy but crooked doesn't matter. What matters is the roundness of the arrow tube. If the arrow tube is oval (which they are because carbon can't be made prefect) the will not spin correctly. That is why there is a straightness factored in.

Hutch:cool:

Arrow Splitter
08-23-2011, 05:24 PM
You can bet arrow manufacturers have indeed done very serious testing of straightness, spine and all aspects of their arrow. However it could be that they do not want to disclose their specific detailed data for all to see, especially competitors.
Or, "maybe" they wouldn't want to disclose that something like the straightness of .006 vs .003 vs .001, is so minor that they prefer the consumer decide for themselves if it's really working better for them.

I personally would "assume" that all things will not be the precisely the same, with only straightness that an arrow being different. I would expect arrows having .001 straightness would probably, more importantly so, also have a tighter matched spine and consistant weight than the lower end .006 arrowsx3 Well said.

cyclepath
08-24-2011, 08:37 PM
Man, another one of these threads that just will not die.
Alot has changed since my first post several months ago.
I gave up the ics hunters I was using, cheep arrow but when you are buying a dozen every other month somethin aint right, me.
I tryed a friends easton st axis arrows and liked them alot, built like a tank. These are not the full metal jackets.
More than the ics for sure but I guess a better arrow will cost you more.
I believe they are both .003 straightness but they sure don't shoot the same.
A smaller diameter and thicker wall seem to make a world of difference, they are only 4/10 of a gpi difference in weight.
I would like to know why all this talk about straightness and nothing about how they are fletched making any difference.
You can't tell me that it makes a difference in .1 or .2 or .3000's straightness and the fletching have .00000000000000000000000000 so that every arrow will fly as good as the straightness of the arrow.
A bent vane will make an arrow fly different than one that is not bent.
A helical fletched arrow will fly different than a straight fletched arrow and there is no disputing that fact.
How many have accually checked your vanes to see if they are perfectly straight?
Are you telling me that a 1000 of an inch on an arrow is more crucial than what guides the thing?
I would like to see the difference an arrow shoots with bent vanes, different straightness arrows.
I don't think it would make any difference at all as to how straight an arrow is unless you have a perfect fletching on it.
Whatever that might be and how it would be attached so that it had zero effect on the arrow. NOT happening !!
I guess people that can afford whatever bow and arrows they want won't care about spending 200 or more for a dozen arrows.
The one thing they won't know is that their 200 dollar arrows will have the same 2 dollar blazers that mine have !!

bfisher
08-25-2011, 04:29 AM
Cyclepath, there is some credance to what you say and that is why a lot of us fletch our own arrows. Unlike mass produced ones we can weigh each component individually. There is a reason I don't use vanes any more. I took a pack of 50 4" vanes once and weighed each one on a digital scale. I forget the brand, but suffice it to say they weren't top quality ones. I was astounded at the results. Although most weighed around 8.8 grains there were several that were 8.4 and several that were around 12 grains. There was one that was about 15 grains.

Now, with mass produced arrows you don't think the person fletching weighs each and every one do you? Get two 12's and an 8 and what does this do to the balance of the arrow as it's spinning? I think you get my drift. So your point does have some merit.

What Sonny mentioned also is good. For 3D I shoot 2" feathers, usually Trueflight set to a pretty hard helical. Feathers weigh so little that I have shot at a 3D shoot with feathers falling off the arrow like raindrops (poor shaft prep on my part). I shot a couple of arrows with two feathers and even one with only one feather and they all hit the same place as an arrow with three fletch, at least out to 40 yards or so. Some of this was due to the fact that my bow was tuned very well. It would shoot bare shafts like they were laser guided. In fact, I finished the last 5 targets shooting bare shafts (27 yard avg).
There's a good story to end this. A guy in the group behind me saw how my bow shot and asked if I would be willing to sell it. I told him to make me an offer I couldn't refuse. Soon after he wrote me a check and I came home without the bow. The bow was a 1999 Golden Eagle Lightspeed.

bfisher
08-25-2011, 08:08 AM
Golden Eagle, one of the fine bow companies that didn't survive the Bear/Jennings merger. I really don't understand why they killed it off. Golden Eagle was a bow just about anyone could pick up and shoot and shoot well. My 1999 Evolution is still killing deer. I sold it to my neighbor right after I went with Hoyt. His wife bought it from me for his birthday. Still says it's one of the best birthday presents he's ever had.

I'm still working on B.B. for that super barn burner that GE didn't get out to the market before it went down the tube.

Not only was it a bow that almost anbody could shoot it was also a bow that almost anybody could afford. Not top quality finish or anything, but just a good ole bread and butter, reliable, hunting bow. I was shooting for GE at the time (1999)and Bear buying them out negated my contract or I might still be shooting them. For 2000 I moved to Pearson/McPherson, another underrated company. Oh well, that's ancient history.