There are certain things that you must be aware of before you venture out and purchase arrow/bolts for your crossbow. For starters, you should know that if you deviate at all from what the manufacturer recommends, you are running the risk of sacrificing your accuracy and you could damage the crossbow. You can get different arrows, than the ones that were included in your package, just make sure that they are built to the same specifications wicked ridge invader g3.
One of the first things that you need to know is that you will require an arrow that can produce 30 ft./pounds of kinetic energy to completely penetrate that sought after buck. You will need 50 ft./pounds for anything that has a thicker hide, such as a moose or bear. The industry standard for ratings speed (and hence determining kinetic energy) is the use of a 420 grain bolt during tests, so you should always keep that in the back of your mind.
If you are on the outside looking in, then it would seem like common sense to assume that lighter bolts fly faster than their heavier counterpart. This is true, but there are so many other factors that will affect your arrows flight, below you will find these broken down in detail.
The first concept that you should take into consideration is the crossbow arrow spine. This is in essence, the backbone of the arrow. It should provide the person shooting with the perfect balance of stiffness and flexibility. Since an arrow flexes when it is shot from a weapon, you would need to know its spine. How you plan on using the arrow will greatly push your decision one way or the other. Luckily for us, crossbow arrows are short enough to where they wouldn’t necessarily require a particular arrow spine. Since the arrow does not have to flex around a riser, but rather it glides along the rail, you should be fine. The factor that you should be more concerned with is the diameter (inside and outside). You should also make sure to choose the correct total arrow weight (with the tip attached)
Crossbow Arrow Bolts will typically always have a larger diameter. This is because the larger diameter helps with the spine. They also have a much heavier load to bear given the draw weight on even the most standard of crossbows. If you are using Aluminum Arrows the most popular at the moment are .013, .016, .019 for shaft wall thickness. In recent times the carbon arrow has taken over due to its consistency. The most popular diameters in this category are 21/64” and 22/64”
When you are looking for arrows you have to make sure that you follow the instructions that are provided from your manufacturer. The unit of measurement for arrows is in grains. Depending on the draw weight of your bow, you will have a certain minimum arrow weight. For the most common crossbows that are on the market I have not seen recommended grains below 350. They usually hover around the industry standard of 420 grains. I have a preference for a heavier arrow, because it helps to cut down on the noise and vibration a bit as well. It should also be noted that the heavier arrows will tend to make the crossbows slightly more efficient, while the lighter arrows will make them less efficient.
Arrow Shaft Length
You should also be aware that the length of your bolts will affect the dynamic arrow spine. Think about it this way. When you shoot an arrow from your crossbow, it is actually being compressed. The string is pushing up against the arrow and putting force behind it. If you have an arrow that is longer, it will inherently be easier to bend. Again, we are lucky because you will typically only need 20” Crossbow Arrows or 22” Crossbow Arrows given the industry standards for crossbows today.
The fletching are the small pieces of material that you will typically find at the back of your arrows. Many people consider them to be the wings of the arrow because they help to guide it along its flight path. The fletching helps to stabilize the arrow by causing the arrow to spin during its flight. You will commonly hear the term vanes when people refer to the fletching on their crossbow arrows. Almost all of the vanes for crossbow bolts will be made from some form of durable plastic. There is no standard for what type of arrow vanes you should use, but it is a general rule that the longer your arrows are, the larger your vanes should be. 2”, 2.5”, and 3” are the most common that you will find for crossbow arrows.