Arrow Types 101 – Informative Guide and Top Picks

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Choosing the right equipment is just as important as having the right amount of training and experience. Selecting an arrow requires just as much research and attention as your bow. It is essential that the arrow is straight, stiff, and measures the right length.

However, due to the wide variety of arrows available today, it can be confusing and difficult for an inexperienced archer to choose the right one.

To ensure you make the right decision, the following are reviews of some of the best arrows available today. So, make sure you give them a read before making your next purchase!

Comparison Chart of the Best Arrows

PRODUCT
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Carbon Express Maxima RED Fletched Carbon Arrows, 6-Pack

  • The unit is constructed with patented hi-tech carbon material.
  • The arrows are laser checked for straightness up to an impressive 1/10,000 of an inch.
  • Launchpad Precision Nocks help deliver a controlled arrow release, making it the best overall unit.
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Carbon Express Maxima Hunter Arrow (Blazer Vanes), 6 Pack

  • Laser checked this model is straight to an impressive 1/10,000 of an inch.
  • This unit is designed with dual spine weight forward technology, allowing arrows to recover faster.
  • The units are coated with the BuffTuff camouflage, covering them from the front edge to the back end.
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Huntingdoor 6 PCS Turkey Feather Wooden Shaft Hunting Arrows

  • The product is designed for traditional recurve bows and longbows
  • The model is nocked and fletched with 3pcs pheasant feathers, measuring 5-inches
  • The units are crafted with wood, have a metal arrowhead, and are the best wood arrows available
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GPP28 Fiberglass Archery Target Arrows

  • Best fiberglass arrows available in the market today
  • They are high-quality target arrows, ideal for all bows
  • The units have a draw weight of up to 45lbs for recurve and traditional bows
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Easton XX75 Jazz Aluminum Arrows, 6-pack

  • Right-wing helical spins the shaft in flight
  • The units are constructed with high-quality aluminum and feature a hard-anodized black finish
  • The units are designed with replaceable plastic nocks and steel tips, making them the best aluminum arrows available today.
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How Fast Do Arrows Travel?

The speed of an arrow depends on the limb material, the draw length, the draw weight of the bow, bowstring material, type of fletching, weight of the arrow, and the prevailing wind conditions. Arrow flight can also be slowed down by rain and humidity. The higher the speed of the arrow, the flatter its flight trajectory and the less deviation it suffers from the wind.

Compound bow arrows are able to fly up to a speed of 300fps (feet per second), while recurve bow arrows can fly up to 225fps.  On the other hand, longbow arrows travel a bit slower due to their heavy weight.

What Are The Parts of an Arrow?

Arrows are comprised of four parts. These include:

Shaft

Simply put, the shaft is the length of an arrow.  It is crafted with different types of materials, including aluminum, wood, fiberglass, carbon, and an aluminum-carbon mix. Each material has its own positives and is used for a different purpose.

Arrowhead or Points

As the name suggests, the arrowhead is the sharp point situated at the end of the arrow.

Fletching

Crafted with feather or plastic, these are the three vanes located at the back of an arrow. Usually, two of the vanes are of a similar color, while the third one has a different color.

Nock

Usually designed with plastic, the nock is the slotted tip attached at the end of an arrow. It is fitted on the bowstring at the ‘nocking point.’

Types of Arrows

As mentioned above, selecting the right arrow for your shooting style and the bow is one of the most important steps in getting the perfect shot. If you’re planning on doing some simple target-practice, you’ll need an arrow that is different from the one needed for deer hunting. Following are some of the different types of arrows available today:

Wood Arrows

The cheapest and most cost-effective model available today, wood arrows are the perfect choice for beginners. They are most commonly used by traditional archers and people who prefer shooting with longbows. However, they are almost never used in competitions.

These models also do not last very long. They warp, splinter, snap and break, and because they’re crafted with organic material, they’re not uniform. This means that the arrows are inconsistent and differ greatly. As a result, each unit flies differently.

Wood arrows that are designed with compact cedar are generally stronger and more durable as compared to other wood models. They are also able to better hit and pierce the body of the target.

Aluminum Arrows

Another great option for beginners, aluminum arrows are also used by more experienced hunters and archers. These models are usually cheaper as compared to carbon arrows, but cost a bit more than wood units.

Easton XX75 Jazz Aluminum Arrows, 6-pack

Aluminum arrows are available in a variety of sizes and can be used for both hunting and target archery. Usually, these units come with screw-in tips, allowing you to switch between field points, broadheads, and bullet points.

Moreover, they can be fletched with plastic or feather vanes. They are also a bit sturdier as compared to carbon models, making them the perfect choice for target archers, as arrows knock against each other and are usually shot in groups.

Carbon Arrows

Due to their stiffness, carbon models are an ideal option for heavier bows, especially heavier compound bows which are used for hunting. And because they are particularly manufactured to be extremely thin, they are able to penetrate game better as compared to thick aluminum units.

However, they do splinter and break from time to time. If this happens, you’ll need to toss them away and purchase new ones. Carbon arrows are also one of the most expensive models available on the market today.

Fiberglass Arrows

Fiberglass units are much more reliable, uniform, and consistent as compared to wood models, making them ideal for backyard target-practice, informal uses, and hunting. They can also be fit into different draw lengths easily, so you don’t have to worry about the length!

On the other hand, fiberglass models tend to be brittle and fragile and can break easily. As a result, you’ll constantly need to replace them.

Our Favorite Arrows Per Type

Below are our top picks for each type of arrow:

Carbon Express Maxima RED Fletched Carbon Arrows with Dynamic Spine Control and Blazer Vanes, 6-Pack

PROS

  • Improved Wall Thickness Ensures Durability and Reliability
  • High-Quality Construction Make this the Best Unit on our List
  • New and Improved Carbon Materials Make the Product Last Longer
  • The Unit Ensures Better Shaft Alignment and Accurate, Precise Shots
  • Laser Checked Straightness Makes Sure that Your Arrow Always Finds its Mark

CONS

  • The Accuracy of the Arrows Might be Inconsistent
  • The Arrows Might Break and Chip After a Few Days of Use
  • The Price of this Unit is a Bit High as Compared to Other Models

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the recent buyers were very happy with their purchase, and they would not hesitate to spend money on it again. They were especially impressed with the accuracy that these units offer. Most hunters were also satisfied to find a consistent, quality weight arrow ideal for hunting.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The red zone is what makes this model stand out. The center of the arrow is designed with a less stiff material as compared to the ends of the arrows. As a result, the flex in the arrows is centered towards the middle, rather than the ends. This further reduces oscillation and dynamic spine, resulting in a more precise and accurate hit.

Who Will Use This Most

One of the best hunting arrows, the Maxima Red carbon is a great unit for hunting elk. These models are particularly designed for accuracy and speed, which is essential in hunting big game animals. If the right poundage is matched with these units, they will surely find their mark.

What Could Be Improved and Why

One thing that could be improved with this model is the quality control of Carbon Express. Some buyers reported receiving arrows with wrong diameters and products which were not up to the mark. If this problem was looked at, then this model would surely become everyone’s favorite!

Bottom Line

The Maxima Red is certainly the best model available for hunting big game animals. The patented hi-tech carbon material ensures durability and longevity, while the laser checked straightness make sure that the arrow flies fast and true.

Carbon Express Maxima Hunter Arrow (Blazer Vanes) 6 Pack

PROS

  • Nock Collar Ensures Durability, Reliability, and Longevity
  • BuffTuff Plus Carbon Ensures Consistent Spine Consistency
  • Launchpad Precision Nocks Ensure Better Shaft Alignment and a Controlled Arrow Release
  • The Units are Extremely Fast and Accurate, Making them the Best Carbon Arrows Available Today
  • The Dual Spine Weight Forward Technology Makes the Units Spin 20% Sooner and Delivers Tighter Tolerances

CONS

  • This Unit is a Bit Expensive as Compared to Other Models
  • The Color You Receive Might not be the One Shown by the Manufacturer
  • The Camouflage Pattern Might Make it Difficult to Find the Unit if it Lands on the Ground

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the people who invested in this product were extremely satisfied with their purchase. According to the reviews, this product is one of the best models designed by Carbon Express. Hunters were particularly impressed by its high-quality construction and the accuracy it delivers.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Dual Spine Weight Forward Technology is what makes the Maxima the best carbon model on our list. The front of the unit is designed to be heavier than the end, allowing quicker recovery from the oscillation experienced by the arrow upon launch. As a result, the unit is more accurately guided to the target, ensuring tighter groupings and accurate shots.

Who Will Use This Most

Being one of the most accurate and precise models available today, the Maxima Hunter is ideal for hunters and archers. The unit’s speed and accuracy allow hunters to shoot arrows with higher momentum, imparting more powerful impacts into their targets at longer distances.  In short, these models are great for target shooting and hunting at both short and long distances.

What Could Be Improved and Why

Although this product has received immensely positive reviews, there are some aspects which could be improved. The units could be a bit heavier, and Carbon Express should mention the color of the vanes. If these problems are resolved, then the Maxima Hunter will surely become everyone's go-to choice.

Bottom Line

All in all, the Maxima Hunter Arrows are one of the best carbon models available today. Their high-quality construction ensures durability and reliability, while the dual spine weight forward technology allows you to make precise and accurate shots. There are some aspects which could be improved, but you won’t be disappointed with your purchase!

Huntingdoor Wooden Arrows 31inch Archery Shaft 5' Turkey Feathers Fletching with Arrowhead 150 Grain for Traditional Recurve Bow or Longbows (Black)

PROS

  • The Model is Extremely Accurate and Consistent
  • High-Quality Construction Makes the Product Last Long
  • The Arrows are Hand-Spined to Match Flight Characteristics
  • The Product is Already Pre-Cut and does not Require Any Assembly
  • The Units are Beautifully Handmade, Ensuring Durability and Reliability

CONS

  • The Product Takes a Long Time to Arrive
  • The Units are a Bit Heavy Towards the Tip
  • The Heads Might Start to Loosen up After Repeated Firing

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the people who purchased this unit were surprised by how well it shoots. Buyers were particularly impressed by their sturdiness and durability and stated that they would certainly buy them again. However, some buyers received damaged products and were not happy with their purchase.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The customer service of Huntingdoor is what makes this product the best wood arrows available today. According to reviews, buyers were immediately contacted and offered a replacement or refund if they had received a defected product. So, even if there is a quality control problem, Huntingdoor has you covered!

Who Will Use This Most

The Huntingdoor Turkey Feather Arrows are one of the best units for turkey hunting. Nocked with bullet-style field points, the model is also a great option for target practice. The units are already pre-cut and do not require any assembly, making them perfect for target practice and bow hunting.

What Could Be Improved and Why

One aspect which could be improved is the weight of the arrowhead and the straightness of the shaft. If these problems are fixed, the model will allow hunters and archers to make more accurate and precise shots. Furthermore, the delivery time could also be improved, so that buyers receive the product only within a few days.

Bottom Line

The Huntingdoor Turkey Feather Arrows are certainly the best wooden arrows available today. The hand spined arrows match flight characteristics, while their high-quality construction ensures durability and reliability. However, the product is a bit heavy towards the tip and might take some time to arrive.

GPP 28' Fiberglass Archery Target Arrows - Practice Arrows or Youth Arrows for Recurve Bow- 12 Pack

PROS

  • The Product Offers Great Value for the Money
  • The Units are Comfortable and Easy to Use
  • Reliable and High-Quality Construction Ensures Durability and Reliability
  • The Fletches do not get Damaged when the Arrow is Pulled from the Target
  • This Model is Ideal for Beginners and for Use in Places Where You Could Easily Lose an Arrow

CONS

  • The Model Might Break After Only a Few Days of Use
  • The Units are a Bit Heavier Compared to Other Models
  • The Fins Might be Misaligned, and the Arrow Might not Fly Straight

What Recent Buyers Report

Most buyers were impressed by the low price offered by this product. They particularly like the durability and reliability of the arrows and reported that they would purchase them again. However, some buyers were unsatisfied with the low quality and stated that the units broke only after a few days of use.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The units’ affordability is what makes it worthy of a mention on our list. Even with the low price, they are extremely durable and reliable as compared to other low-priced models. Their high-quality construction and ease of use make them the best fiberglass arrows available today.

Who Will Use This Most

As mentioned above, the GPP28 Fiberglass Target Arrows are ideal for beginners and youth shooters. Due to the low price, you won’t feel bad even if you lose a couple of arrows. If you need an easy-to-use, cheap product for backyard target practice or children, then this model is a perfect choice!

What Could Be Improved and Why

The size of the nocks of the GPP could certainly be improved. The nocks could be increased in size to allow for smoother string release. Furthermore, the alignment of the fins could also be improved to achieve better precision and accuracy. If all these problems are looked at, then the quality of the product will significantly improve.

Bottom Line

To put it simply, the GPP28 Arrows are the best and one of the most affordable fiberglass units available today. Their ease-of-use makes them the perfect choice for beginners, while their high-quality construction makes the product last longer. However, the fins might be misaligned, and the arrow might not shoot straight.

Feather Fletched Easton XX75 Jazz Aluminum Arrows 6-Pack

PROS

  • They are Available in a Variety of Different Lengths
  • High-Quality Construction Ensures Durability and Reliability
  • The Units do not Require Any Assembly and are Shipped Ready to Shoot
  • Helical Feathers Provide Extra Flight Stability, Ensuring More Accurate and Precise Shots
  • This Model is Ideal for Bows with Different Poundages, Ranging from a Draw Weight of 15 lbs to 50 lbs

CONS

  • The Tips Might Break After Only a Few Uses
  • The Arrow Nocks Tend to Fall Off After Only a Few Uses
  • You Might not Receive the Color Advertised by the Manufacturer

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the people who purchased this model found it to be an absolute hit! Users were particularly impressed by its durability and accuracy. They were also satisfied by its color as it made it easier to find the arrow if it landed on the grass. However, some users were not satisfied with their purchase as they did not receive the color which was advertised by the seller.

Why it Stands Out to Us

For us, the helical feathers or parabolic feathers is what makes this unit the best aluminum model on the market. Rather than being attached straight up and down, the feathers are glued at a slight angle. Thus, when the arrow flies through the air, the feather is hit by the wind, causing the arrow to spin. This provides extra flight stability, accuracy, and precision, further ensuring that the arrow always finds its mark.

Who Will Use This Most

The Easton Jazz Arrows are a great option for beginners. Their ease of use, low weight, and durability make them good enough to use even as you move past the beginner stage and start shooting more accurate and precise shots. These models are also ideal for casual backyard target shooters.

What Could Be Improved and Why

Although this product has mostly received positive reviews, there are some aspects which could be improved. A stronger glue could be used to attach the nocks, so they don’t fall off after every few uses. Moreover, the color of the model should also be mentioned so that buyers know exactly what they’re paying for.

Bottom Line

The best aluminum arrows available today, the Easton XX75 certainly deserve a place on our list. Their high quality construction makes the product last long, while the helical feathers ensure accuracy and precision, making them the perfect choice for beginners. However, the nocks might fall off after a few shots, and you might not receive the color advertised by the manufacturer.

Conclusion

All in all, choosing the right arrow is an extremely important decision. You can have the best bow available on the market and you would still be unable to hit your target if you don’t have the right arrow. For us, the best model is the Carbon Express Maxima RED. But, make sure you go through all of our top picks and find the model which best suits your needs!

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