Black Gold Sights - Pure Gold
Broadhead Failure
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
Tdvorak 05-Nov-19
JL 05-Nov-19
Ucsdryder 05-Nov-19
Franklin 05-Nov-19
bumpinblaze4x4 05-Nov-19
Jaquomo 05-Nov-19
GF 05-Nov-19
Franklin 06-Nov-19
TooManyBowsBob 06-Nov-19
midwest 06-Nov-19
Tonybear61 06-Nov-19
Grubby 06-Nov-19
spike78 06-Nov-19
wyobullshooter 06-Nov-19
Matt 06-Nov-19
yooper89 06-Nov-19
TD 06-Nov-19
Bou'bound 06-Nov-19
wioutdoors74 06-Nov-19
WapitiBob 06-Nov-19
Grey Ghost 06-Nov-19
ND String Puller 06-Nov-19
ND String Puller 06-Nov-19
ben h 06-Nov-19
Trophyhill 06-Nov-19
Mpdh 06-Nov-19
Ucsdryder 06-Nov-19
sbschindler 07-Nov-19
Feedjake 07-Nov-19
Russ Koon 07-Nov-19
Matt 07-Nov-19
Greg S 08-Nov-19
Trophyhill 08-Nov-19
GF 08-Nov-19
Trophyhill 08-Nov-19
GF 08-Nov-19
fubar racin 08-Nov-19
BullBuster 09-Nov-19
DanaC 09-Nov-19
GF 09-Nov-19
Matt 09-Nov-19
WapitiBob 09-Nov-19
GF 09-Nov-19
carcus 09-Nov-19
weekender21 09-Nov-19
GF 09-Nov-19
Jack Harris 09-Nov-19
DonVathome 12-Nov-19
wyelkhunter 12-Nov-19
From: Tdvorak
05-Nov-19
I’ve seen many mechanical broad heads fail too many times to count but have never seen a fixed blade fail until last week. The hunter hit a monster mule deer in the shoulder and the fixed blade STINGER broadhead broke in half. The arrow fell out right there with the broadhead split right down the middle. Just thought some guys might want to know it. The buck was carrying a 5x5 rack with SIX drop tine points. what a heart breaking moment for the hunter! I’m not saying all of the Stinger broadheads are bad but it costs this guy the buck of a lifetime. Disappointing. I’m just saying..,

From: JL
05-Nov-19
I've had a G5 blade break off before. Interestingly, in all the years I've hitting deer with the 2-blade Rage....never had one break. I had nicks in the blades and the tip blunted, but never metal parts/pieces falling off.

From: Ucsdryder
05-Nov-19
Crazy, do you have a picture?

From: Franklin
05-Nov-19
Maybe he hit a broadhead someone shot into the shoulder last year...lol Not sure how that is possible but stranger things have happened.

05-Nov-19
Broke a G5 montec blade on a small doe a few years ago; anything can happen.

From: Jaquomo
05-Nov-19
Happened to a buddy with a Stinger on the rib of a cow elk. He ended up tracking her to a bed and killing her with a second shot so he recovered the damaged broadhead.

From: GF
05-Nov-19
I’d like to learn to track from somebody like that! (Unless there was snow. I’m pretty OK in snow ;) )

Doesn’t the Stinger mount into the ferrule with a single screw? That would put a lot of stress on a single point.

Lot of classic 2- blades are brazed so as to distribute stress along a lot of contact area.

Probably helps.

From: Franklin
06-Nov-19
At this point in time I would suggest everyone buy their heads directly from the manufacturer. Just about every popular broadhead has a knock off on Amazon or Ebay….not even sure I would trust some archery shops.

06-Nov-19
Well, I shot a deer with a Rage last week and hit the shoulder blade. Got very little penetration and never found the deer. Now if I would have put it in the right place....

But I'm sure that if I would have been using my old Stinger Buzz Cuts, I would have gotten enough penetration to mortally wound that deer. I'm going back to my Stingers. Besides, Rage won't send me a new one if I do break them, Stinger will.

TMBB

From: midwest
06-Nov-19
At the very least, if you hit one in the shoulder with a Stinger and it breaks in half, you get a free replacement....lol.

From: Tonybear61
06-Nov-19
I have two shoulder blades and a leg bone at home with holes from Zwickey head. Yeah they went right through. But I was shooting well over 70# back then. The leg bone broke in to a bunch of spiraled pieces. Still better to hit them in the right spot.

I also have a Zwickey head in my collection that was shot through a small tree and just touched the deer on the other side., Last day of season 1994 colder than blazes then this huge deer steps out. Fixed on the small tree, open shot soon as it passes that tree, which it did, then I drilled the tree. Weld seam is split but broad head still intact. Still recall seeing the deer jump and watch the tree wiggle with the arrow sticking through it...

Too many negative stories from others on limited Rage penetration on bone.

From: Grubby
06-Nov-19
Back in the late 80s I had a satellite aero Broadhead shed its blades on impact, it was a surprisingly poorly constructed Broadhead but I didn’t know any better. I’d say that today failure of any Broadhead is very very rare.

From: spike78
06-Nov-19
I guess it’s ok to lose a nice buck as long as you get a free broadhead! Probably better off using a solid head like a Cutthroat if you want all blade COC heads.

06-Nov-19
Way back in the day, had an antelope turn inside out at my 30yd shot. Instead of hitting him where I wanted, I hit him in the spine at the base of the neck. My 125gr Thunderhead lost every blade, but that buck dropped on the spot. I guess you could say the BH “failed”, but only after it accomplished the job for which it was intended.

From: Matt
06-Nov-19
So much for the notion that fixed blade BH cannot fail that some BSers hold onto so steadfastly.

I had an issue with Stingers back in the day too, but they merely bent badly and maintained the main blade. Mike Sohm explained that they received a batch made of the wrong alloy which was too soft.

I had a similar thing happen with overhardened ferrules on a MBH, killed everything I shot them with but they grenaded when they hit rock on the far side.

I've never had a MBH fail due to actuation.

From: yooper89
06-Nov-19
Sounds like propaganda to me

From: TD
06-Nov-19
I don't think there is a head out there I haven't made to "fail" with the right hit.... or miss....

What Franklin said. Cheap knockoffs are everywhere, that's a strong possibility if a person thought it might have held up better . Stinger is not exactly a new untried or untested product. They have one of the better reputations out there. Also, I'll take a wild guess and bet it was a 100 grain and not a 125. Hold em up side by side, a good bit more metal in most 125s as a rule. Yet you'll see some manufacturers put glorified weighted washers on 100s and calling them 125s.... good grief.... concept is lost on them. Weight is not just some kinetic line in a formula.....

The "shoulder" is not created equally. I've put a stinger though both scaps on a young bull elk and watched him go down. You hit the socket and it's like hitting a rock. Good luck with what one might think have gotten through unscathed. Even hits to regular bones it can matter how head/blades hits to the "grain". Angles, animal movement, lots of factors. Woody.... where the 'ell are ya? Miss ya man.....

It's not like stingers have no track record. Not many heads can match it. And for the price point.... none I'm aware of. Shot a bunch of heads and often slide right back into my stinger rut..... =D

From: Bou'bound
06-Nov-19
stingers are wonderful heads. anything can happen to any piece of equipment. that is most certainly not a normal outcome. Shoulder blade is not normally where people are aiming so it sounds like there was a bit of shared responsibility for the outcome on this one.

From: wioutdoors74
06-Nov-19
BEFORE "I’ve seen many mechanical broad heads fail too many times to count but have never seen a fixed blade fail until last week. The hunter hit a monster mule deer in the shoulder and the fixed blade STINGER broadhead broke in half. The arrow fell out right there with the broadhead split right down the middle. Just thought some guys might want to know it. The buck was carrying a 5x5 rack with SIX drop tine points. what a heart breaking moment for the hunter! I’m not saying all of the Stinger broadheads are bad but it costs this guy the buck of a lifetime. Disappointing. I’m just saying..,"

AFTER "I’ve seen many mechanical broad heads fail too many times to count but have never seen a fixed blade fail until last week. The hunter hit a monster mule deer in the shoulder and the fixed blade STINGER broadhead broke in half. The arrow fell out right there with the broadhead split right down the middle. Just thought some guys might want to know it. The buck was carrying a 5x5 rack with SIX drop tine points. what a heart breaking moment for the hunter! I’m not saying all his shots are bad but it costs this guy the buck of a lifetime. Disappointing. I’m just saying..,"

Fixed it for you

From: WapitiBob
06-Nov-19
It’s always easier to blame the Broadhead for a poor shot.

From: Grey Ghost
06-Nov-19
I was thinking the same thing, Bob.

Matt

06-Nov-19

ND String Puller's embedded Photo
Slick Trick Mag 125
ND String Puller's embedded Photo
Slick Trick Mag 125
ND String Puller's embedded Photo
ND String Puller's embedded Photo
This is the aftermath of a 30 yard follow up shot. My first shot was low through the shoulder. When I caught up to him just over a small rise I drew and carefully aimed... wack! WTH ! Lights out! He had dropped and turned at the shot. Not proud, but glad to end it quickly. The head held up really well. 525gr FMJ from an 83lb Hoyt.

06-Nov-19

ND String Puller's embedded Photo
ND String Puller's embedded Photo

From: ben h
06-Nov-19
Grubby, a buddy of mine in the 80's had that exact thing happen with Satellites on a small deer. Went and found blood and right by there were 3 blades that fell off on impact and did not recover the deer. Man the 80's had crappy gear.

From: Trophyhill
06-Nov-19
Sounds like it's isolated to Stingers. Glad I won't have to worry about my Tricks failing. Then I'd have to switch to a Rage or something

From: Mpdh
06-Nov-19
The broadhead was not what caused him to lose the buck. It was his shot placement.

From: Ucsdryder
06-Nov-19
Still waiting for the picture...

From: sbschindler
07-Nov-19
The broadhead was not what caused him to lose the buck. It was his shot placement. X2 not good that the broadhead did break but that wasn't the problem

From: Feedjake
07-Nov-19
VPA

From: Russ Koon
07-Nov-19
Yeah, we mere mortal bowhunters do occasionally make poor shots, and that's when the BH's durability comes into play.

My personal favorite head after trying many during 57 years of bowhunting and lots of practice using BH's during the summers, is still the old original style 125 grain NAP THunderhead.

I've managed to stick them into many trees and glance them off a good number of rocks imbedded in clay soil, with minimal damage to blades or ferrules. The blades have held up better than most other brands I have tried in practice or in BH shoots at the ranges.

The case that convinced me the most that they were the right choice was when I messed up what should have been an easy 15 yard shot and rushed it like a rookie, hitting my sleeve with the string and pulling it way left and drilling the small buck in the hip joint. I immediately felt miserable for stupidly wounding an animal and dreaded a difficult tracking job, but the buck just trotted a short ways and laid down about fifty yards away!

I watched him a few minutes and could soon see his head was down and there was no visible sign of breathing. He was very much dead when I sneaked in close and verified it.

When I processed him a few hours later, I found the TH had penetrated completely through the near side of the pelvic girdle at its thickest part, and buried to the back edge of the blades into the opposite side in solid bone. It had also clipped the femoral artery as it crossed from one side to the other, bleeding him out quickly without a drop hitting the ground.

Definitely a case of a tough BH holding up above and beyond any reasonable expectation and saving the day for a bowhunter who maybe didn't deserve it, but sure appreciated it.

I've always found them to shoot well when my bow was properly tuned and to group with my field points very reliably. The tips are extremely hard and I've never had one curl upon impact with anything except one that found a large rock buried very lightly in a clay bank some years back.

The blades are stainless ( don't know how one poster above found his to "rust easily"...maybe he had some chinese imposters? ) . I,ve always found them to be quite sharp out of the box, but I'm a stickler for all the sharpness I can get on my blades so I take the time to strop them on some rubbing compound to give them that last edge. I like the way the blades are so easy to disassemble from the ferrules and clamp into the holders of my Smith sharpening system for that step and for resharpening with the stones after having been used.

The TH's do require just a little more care when assembling than some other heads but nothing tricky, just make sure they are assembled as designed and seated properly into the ferrules while tightening, and make it a habit to check them for tightness before each hunt starts, to catch any problem before it becomes a disaster. And, like other BH's that use the insert threads to retain the blades, never use them with fletching that rotates the arrow in a left-hand rotation in flight, as that can loosen the assembly on impact.

From: Matt
07-Nov-19
"Sounds like it's isolated to Stingers. Glad I won't have to worry about my Tricks failing. Then I'd have to switch to a Rage or something."

I hate to break it to toy, but the search function can provide you with instances where each of those BH's have failed structurally on game.

From: Greg S
08-Nov-19
I broke two Solid Legend 100’s on elk the same year. One hit the low shoulder on the scapula ridge and the arrow bounced backwards. About 2/3 of the ferrule was all that was left. Got the blades back when my friend got the bull during rifle season. Second one I hit perfect but arrow angled forward and up and hit the off scapula and shattered. Bull took 3 steps and fell over. If you push them too hard and fast I think virtually and head can fail when it hits something hard.

From: Trophyhill
08-Nov-19
The search function sucks on this forum Matt, so I won't even go there. I also won't switch to a Rage. I will keep shooting Tricks, and keep killing. If I make a bad shot, I'm not blaming the broadhead. I used a G5 mechanical on the elk I killed in 2012. Only 1 blade opened up. But because of a great shot thru both lungs, the bull piled up 40 yards later. Not because of the broadhead, but in spite of it because of placement ;)

From: GF
08-Nov-19
“If you push them too hard and fast I think virtually and head can fail when it hits something hard.”

And therein lies the irony - that guys with imprrfectly tuned speedbows will turn to mechs while po-dunky tradshooters favor solidly brazed 2-blades.....

From: Trophyhill
08-Nov-19
I think that's only partially true GF. I know some guys who are anal about tuning and shoot speed bows and mechanicals. However I think you are right in that many can't tune fine enough to shoot a fixed head. Personally, I take it a little further than most. Not only do I make sure I'm shooting bullet holes when I leave the shop, but all my arrows are fletched cock vane up with the spine of the arrow up. I also square both ends with the G5 squaring tool. I also use the G5 on the insert if necessary. Then the spin test on each arrow with a broadhead. If the broadhead or arrow does not pass the spin test at this point, it's a practice arrow. Then I shoot each arrow with a sacrifice broadhead that spins true. Then I'll mark in numerical order which arrows fly the best. This requires shooting each arrow multiple times. I shoot the fixed heads from 30 yards. Your form is critical with a fixed head as well. I think the form is what gets most in the end. The bow technician can only do so much. The rest is up to the shooter.

I will also say that my bow likes certain broadhead over others. For the guys who don't want to take the time to tune everything including yourself, the yes, it's easy to screw a mechanical on and go hunting. But if something's not right with the bow, the arrow, or the shooter, that arrow could enter at an awkward angle which is when guys start blaming the broadhead when things go bad.....

From: GF
08-Nov-19
I have a great deal of respect for those who can tune a very fast bow well enough to shoot a fixed blade head; can’t be easy (I say that as one who was able to make a few adjustments and got Stingers and FPs grouping as well as o could shoot out to 45 yards, but that bow was not particularly fast by current standards).

The problem is all that KE being applied to those long lever arms and small pivot points....

Just seems like a wreck waiting to happen.

Since most Compound Shooters are using rangefinders these days, though, it just seems to me that a lot of them would be better off with a heavier arrow and a solid, fixed-blade head that flies true. Taking shorter shots would be smart, too, but I’m not in a mood to argue this evening....

From: fubar racin
08-Nov-19
I agree shooting a fixed blade like a stinger fast is tough on tuning and form flaws, that’s why I shoot logs they don’t make a bow that will shoot my arrows fast. My compound probably only has 40-50 FPS on most recurves.

From: BullBuster
09-Nov-19
I shoot single piece fixed blades and I agree about commentary regarding advantage over mechanicals for shoulder hits. However, on the other hand, the wider profile of many mechanicals is better for gut shots. More tissue damage.

From: DanaC
09-Nov-19
Russ Koon, thought I was the last person on earth to even remember Thunderheads. ;-) Here's a tip - get a ten year old archery catalog and look at the heads in it. Compare to what's for sale today. A lot of goofy stuff is long gone. Quality stands the test of time. Yeah, individual heads may fail. But that can be due to poor arrow tuning, bad shot placement etc. (An arrow that is going sideways on impact can twist a head.)

From: GF
09-Nov-19
“on the other hand, the wider profile of many mechanicals is better for gut shots. ”

I’m still in the camp that says if you hit all the wrong stuff, hitting twice as much of it isn’t going to help you much....

And FWIW, there are 2-blades available that are at least as wide as some of the mechanicals. They do weigh more, but I am not offended by this....

From: Matt
09-Nov-19
"I’m still in the camp that says if you hit all the wrong stuff, hitting twice as much of it isn’t going to help you much.... "

Actual experience says otherwise, but I realize that doesn't count for much on the internet.

From: WapitiBob
09-Nov-19
“on the other hand, the wider profile of many mechanicals is better for lung shots. ”

fixed it

From: GF
09-Nov-19
But Bob - if you hit ‘em square in the lungs, does the size of the broadhead really matter???

Moot point for me because my bows don’t produce the kind of KE that you need I’m order for a mechanical to make any sense at all, but that doesn’t mean that I’m expecting a bigger head to bail me out if I screw the pooch.

I’m probably reading too much into posts like Matt’s, but it just reminds me too much of the magnum rifle “doesn’t matter where you hit ‘em” mindset.

You might get lucky with that wider head, and you might not. Seems like a bad idea to bank on anything but slam-dunk range and a favorable shot angle.

But that’s just me.

From: carcus
09-Nov-19
Size matters, the more tissue you take out the better off you are, I love both fixed and mechs, they both have their place. For me I wouldn't even consider fixed for deer or bear, and I love a good fixed for elk and moose but different conditions and different animals

From: weekender21
09-Nov-19
Could always just buy a few packs of Bishop scientific methods (or a new bow) and not worry about BH failure ever again. But seriously, the $349 for 3 has been tempting me.

From: GF
09-Nov-19
Seriously??

What are you hunting, up-armored Humvees??

For $350, I could buy 5 dozen good broadheads or a nice, used bow. LOL. Spend your money as you see fit....

From: Jack Harris
09-Nov-19
My initial reaction was operator error more than BH failure - don't be shooting them deers in the shoulders... Also don't hit them too far back. Don't hit them too high, and don't hit them too low. These tenets work for me 100% of the time regardless of BH, when I follow them of course.

From: DonVathome
12-Nov-19
I have taken over 100 deer with a bow. Most with mech BH's. Only fail was a fixed blade.

From: wyelkhunter
12-Nov-19
As everyone knows, all broadheads will fail, fixed and mechanical. I became a mechanical blade shooter over 20 years ago and have taken over 100 animals with them, including lots of elk, deer and moose with no complaints. I have the utmost confidence in them performing, if I hit where I am aiming. I shot a fixed two blade magnus head a few years ago and I hit the shoulder of a whitetail and got 2" of penetration because the tip folded over like a blunt tip. I lost confidence in them and will never shoot them again.

There are some great broadheads on the market and in my opinion it comes down to confidence in your equipment, bow, sight, release and broadhead. If you have doubts in any of them, you need to change.

Good luck to everyone and I hope your equipment works great and you have great success now and in the future.

  • Sitka Gear