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Thread: Vanes or Feathers?

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  1. #1
    Member dugout's Avatar
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    Default Vanes or Feathers?

    Years ago I shot feathers on wood shafts; then Feathers on aluminum shafts; then vanes on aluminum and then vanes on carbon shafts.
    Recently I went back to feathers on carbon to compensate for the weight of Nocturnal nocks while maintaining same FOC balance.

    The rap for vanes has always been more durable and weather resistant.

    More durable? I have come to the conclusion vanes are less durable. Just touch one with another arrow and they are torn, nicked, or rippled. As such they fly like crap. Feathers take target/group crowding with no ill effects. Just fluff it back again. Even missing sections don't matter.

    Weather? A quick shot of G96 weatherproofing and that is a non issue, too, No smell, no worry. ATSKO weatherproofing is good. The powder works; it's the same thing as used for dry flys. Feathers are feather...
    Years ago we used paraffin dissolved in mineral spirits for both fletching and dry flys, just dip them and shake off the extra. The wax left on the feathers doesn't smell after the solvent evaporates off.

    I've dusted off the Bitz Jig mounting 4" and 3" feathers, right helical. These arrows fly GREAT! Better than any vane I have tried. It's very noticable!

    I was trying Gateway Rayzr's but I feel all the hype is BS. They are expensive and I feel they are no better than regular 3 or 4 inch parabolic feathers on a helical.
    The vanes I've used are Blazers, Vane-tec HP-2, AAE PM-20 and PM-23.

    Am I missing something? I'm finding it hard not to give up on vanes and just stick with 4" feathers.

    Anyone else using feathers because they feel they are better?
    Last edited by dugout; 04-27-2012 at 04:42 PM.

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    Senior Member droppixel's Avatar
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    AT INFILTRATION! FOBS! End thread! Oh and shoot Rage while you're at it.

    --

    I have no experience with feathers but am curious to see where this goes. I personally shoot Blazers right now and haven't had any real issues.
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    Senior Member wscywabbit's Avatar
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    I'll back you up on this one. DP is just flipping ya crap lol. I'm using the Gateway 2" Rayzr feathers and they fly great, manage my broadheads, and take a licking. I probably won't go back to vanes. Just like you said these feathers take all kinds of abuse and just keep flying!
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    Senior Member NuttyNative's Avatar
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    I recently bought some GT's with 4" feathers and they perform better than all my blazers put together.
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    Senior Member Ehunter's Avatar
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    I haven't shot feathers with anything other than traditional bows, but they do seem to fly as well or better than vanes. As far as durability, I think vanes are nearly equal, but not quite as good. I really have see discernable difference in my vanes if I have a hole shot through them, or a slight tear. Been known to just clip off a tear, and shoot arrows with one vane shorter. Doesn't really seem to effect flight. I use 2 inch Blazer and Predator vanes. I even have a few arrows that lose vanes, and I still shoot them with good accuracy out to 40 yards or so. Beyond that, they do drift away. I always wait until I have a half dozen or so to refletch before I do it. lol
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    Super Moderator bfisher's Avatar
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    dugout, you're not alone in your reasoning. I've been saying the same thing for years. I have the same opinion about Razyrs, too. I don't care how many people say they work with broaheads. A 2" feather is just that; a 2" feather, and expensive ones at that.

    Razyrs working well with broadheads is just a product of the bow/arrow combo being tuned well. Maybe that and guys shooting mechanical heads which have less tendency to plane in the first place.

    I'm in total agreement with your assertion that feathers are more durable, too. Sure they get ratty and torn up, but even at that they still work just as well as new ones with target or field points. For hunting it's not much problem to put new ones on the arrows to ensure their good flight. Even if a feather is missing or gets tore off the arrow will fly OK. Unlike vanes they just don't weigh enough to upset the balance.

    Personally I shoot 2" feathers for 3D. Most imes I'll shoot 4" feathers for indoor shooting. I don't hunt any more but 4" was the standard for that, too.

    And just like you I've spent decades shooting both vanes and feathers so can see the results in an objective manner, from experience and not just conjecture.
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    Senior Member wscywabbit's Avatar
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    I had Truflight send me a sample of their 2" shield cuts to try them out, and the difference between them and the blazers was immediately apparent; the arrows' recovery time was quicker after the shot, and my groups @ 40 yds tightened up (20 and 30 yd groups were already tight enough to warrant not shooting groups anymore). I usually had to re-fletch a vane or two every week (I shoot alot), but since I switched to feathers they have held up well enough that I have only had to re-fletch one in the last 2 months, and that's cause I shot 2 broadheads together and it got cut off!

    Now I haven't been shooting sticks for more than a few years, but I've tried lots of vanes in that time. This is the first set of feathers I've fletched, and have no experience with them otherwise... but man I love em!

    One side note, I did end up going with Gateway Rayzrs because they were more readily available. It seems that the 2" feathers run about 2X more than the Blazer vanes. But if they keep lasting the way they have, its well worth it!
    In God and guns we trust;
    • One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
    • A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.


    2011 Onza 3: 70#, 28.25 draw (AMO), 384 gr arrow, 288 fps
    2005 Saber: 70#, same arrow, 250 fps

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