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How To Choose Archery Arrows

Updated on February 12, 2014

Which is More Important - Bow or Arrow?

Which is more Important equipment when you go for a hunting trip: bow or arrow? A lot of people consider the tip of the arrow as the most significant part for hunting. They say it is the first thing that penetrates the animal being hunted. So it is safe to say the arrows in its self are the most important as whole. To ensure a successful hinting experience, a lot of considerations have to be made. All tools used in hunting should be well chosen to achieve the best hunting results possible, not just the archery arrows

Archery Arrow
Archery Arrow

Things To Consider When Choosing Archery Arrows

You cannot shoot bows without arrows. There are so many types of bolts in the market, so how to choose the right archery arrows? What should we consider when choosing archery arrows? Here are the list:

  • Nocks: this is the portion that attaches to the bow string.

  • Fletching or Vanes: there are three fletches on each shaft and allow the aerodynamic stabilization of the bolt.

  • Shaft: they are made of different materials including wood, fiberglass, aluminum, carbon, or aluminum carbon mixed. They have different straightness tolerance ranging from +.001" to +.006" and different lengths ranging usually from 26" to 30".

  • The Insert: the small threaded hole where you can screw in either practice tips or broadheads

  • The Tip: these can be field point tips for practicing or broadheads for game hunting

Arrow Material: The First Thing You Should Look For


Carbon arrows are getting popular because they are proving to be a lighter alternative in the market. The lighter the arrow is the more speed that you can achieve and consequently the more penetration you are able to register. They are also a stronger, more durable alternative to the other options on the market. This means that they will last you longer with less of a chance of breaking. You will pay up to five times the cost of aluminum ones, but they will last you longer. Given these characteristics, they are a great choice that is preferred by hunters.


The aluminum falls in between carbon and fiberglass. Aluminum bolts are a great affordable alternative. They are known to be a bit more malleable than carbon, so you might need to get them straightened more often. Many hunters feel that the aluminum provide them with a better spine than the other options. Also, some competitions will not allow carbon on their shoots so these are the next best alternative. Take note that these will slightly flex when you hit your target. They are a great alternative for game hunting for those that are on a budget.


Fiberglass arrows are much cheaper than carbon and lighter than aluminum. They are exceptionally strong given their composition. They are durable and will last you through many shots. Fiberglass is a cost effective alternative to those who do not want to sacrifice durability. This is a main reason that fiberglass bolts have become a staple at ranges for target practice. They have also become very popular in the bow fishing world because of their sturdy nature.

Archery Arrows From Amazon

Wizard Archery 30" Fiberglass Target Practice Arrows (1 Dozen)
Wizard Archery 30" Fiberglass Target Practice Arrows (1 Dozen)

Fiberglass Arrows. Cheap and great for target practicing.


Other Factors to Consider


Straightness is one of the most sought after features on an arrow. They are typically set to a specific straightness tolerance that lies between .001" and .006". Most of the average or "standard-grade" carbon bolts have an advertised straightness of .005-.006" and are a prime choice for hunters. A step above that would be the .003''-.004'' grade that provides a little bit of extra straightness. Then you have the cream of the crop arrows that claim to achieve a straightness of .001''-.002''. (We want you to look at a single hair on the human head as a reference point, as the hair is typically around .005'')


The length should be at least 1" over arrow rest at full draw. The best length for your particular bow will depend on the draw length and type of bow that you have. Most manufacturers will tell you their preferred size for your bow in the instructions. If in doubt use your draw length as a guide. Put your hands out directly to the sides and measure the size (in inches) from middle finger to middle finger, divide that number by 2.5 and go from there.


In the competitive battle to gain the ultimate advantage, lighter means faster. This is especially true for arrows. The reason for this is because they get propelled much quicker and lose less on their trajectory. In this sport accuracy is crucial to your success. Having a lighter shaft typically gives your shot a flatter trajectory. With this being said there are other factors that you must take into account because not all bows were created equal.

You must make sure to check the IBO standards table that we've provided for you at the bottom for a reference. They set a 5 grain per pound standard that makes things fairly simple to calculate. It is not a fail-safe way to get the right arrows, but it is definitely a good start. You also have to check with the manufacturer of your bows because many companies will only recommend that you use their specific bolts. This can get tricky for warranty issues because if you fire a bolt that is too light, it will appear as though you've dry-fired the bow. This is frowned upon and will generally void your warranty.

The following chart will show you the IBO weight standard:

Check our more videos about archery arrows on Youtube

Here is a list of some available Archery Arrows to choose from

  1. Beman ICS Hunter Pro
  2. Cabela's Outfitter Arrows
  3. Carbon Express Pile Driver
  4. Easton Bloodline
  5. Gold Tip XT Hunter
  6. Allen Company 29 Inch Adult Carbon Arrows
  7. Delta Elite Carbon Arrows

New Guestbook Comments

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    • profile image


      4 weeks ago

      Some of this info is wrong or misleading in 2018. Penetration comes from a higher foc % and fiberglass arrows are used for fishing due to their ability to go through water much better than a hollow tube of air. Also why spearfishing Spears are glass.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      No info on arrow spine? Boo... Spine deflection is a major factor in arrow selection. Good info otherwise, but article is incomplete!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Great information, this came in handy! Thank you.

    • Sojournstar Media profile image

      Angela Hobbs 

      5 years ago from The TARDIS

      Thank you for your lens support on The recipe Source, I have given some back! ;)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Wow great info on archery, never knew there was so much to arrows!


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