Extra 75 gr or a few more FPS Buffalo arrow?

Frank Cavallo

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I’ve built and tuned an arrow, but as all y’all have probably experienced- after the perfect tune you look down and see a broken strand by the peep. So while I await a new set of strings and since I’m gonna need to probably retune I thought I’d ask.

Currently- Sirius 200, 250 gr Cutthroat, 200 gr half sleeve & 75 gr HIT for TAW of 911 gr @ 27% FOC

Cut and prepped more shafts. Just asking if that 75 gr HIT is worth keeping or not. Not using that 75 gr HIT behind the half sleeve would make it 836 gr TAW @ 25% FOC. Calculators say go from (911) 135 -> 160 FPS jump respectively.

So is that extra 75 gr worth it? I know I can tune the 836 gr arrow to slap BH/BS/fletched at 30 y like I did the 911.

PS Haven’t noticed any flight difference between 3 or 4 fletch TAC vanes.
 

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Personally, I would not be using a 1/2 sleeve insert. If anything I would be double shafting about 1 1/2'-2" on the front end. I would also continue to use the 75 gr. insert. A 911gr. arrow should give you more MO than an 836 gr. arrow. You've got about 95% chance of having to break a rib bone on entry and then deep penetration is required.

Best of luck on your hunt !
 

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@Bowhuntr64 is the resident expert, maybe John will offer up an opinion.

Found his video about his arrow build for cape buffalo

 

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If you have your bow already sighted in at the necessary distances with the 911, I would stick with that.
 

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I didn't notice the FPS of your arrow and so I cannot calculate the K.E. and momentum of your arrow.

When I shot my cape buffalo, I used a 150 grain Silver flame broadhead from a Mathews Monster Safari @ 81lbs and a 28.5" draw length and I recall my TAW being 844 grains but that was almost 6 years ago. I did get a pass through and hit a rib in and out.

I have since switched to the 975 grain (TAW) Grizzlystik arrows with the tapered shaft and a 315 grain BH for cape buffalo, giraffe and wildebeest and my safari bow is pulling 90lbs. I am using a 1,252 grain arrow for rhino, elephant and hippo, although I have not been able to get a permit on any of those yet - hoping to change that in about 7 weeks.

I have opted for more weight and never regretted making that move aside from trying to shoot my flying rebar at 3D archery events where they stick targets out at 100 yards. On the hunting side, my sight still ranges out farther than I would feel comfortable taking a shot at an animal. I don't think the benefits of a few FPS is going to outweigh the extra momentum of some additional weight.
 

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So is that extra 75 gr worth it?

The simple answer is yes sir it is.

The combination of total arrow weight of at least 900 grains and an FOC in excess of 25% is the key to achieving the penetration that will be necessary to kill a Cape buffalo with a bow and arrow. Arrow speed is the least important part of the equation.

Over the years, we have successfully hunted hundreds of Cape buffalo with our archery hunters and those who follow the required formula of a heavy total weight arrow in excess of 900 grains with a 25% or greater FOC topped off with a heavy duty, 2-blade, single bevel, broadhead achieve the best results time and again. The results of using this build are consistently impressive leaving shot placement as the only variable.
 

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I’ve built and tuned an arrow, but as all y’all have probably experienced- after the perfect tune you look down and see a broken strand by the peep. So while I await a new set of strings and since I’m gonna need to probably retune I thought I’d ask.

Currently- Sirius 200, 250 gr Cutthroat, 200 gr half sleeve & 75 gr HIT for TAW of 911 gr @ 27% FOC

Cut and prepped more shafts. Just asking if that 75 gr HIT is worth keeping or not. Not using that 75 gr HIT behind the half sleeve would make it 836 gr TAW @ 25% FOC. Calculators say go from (911) 135 -> 160 FPS jump respectively.

So is that extra 75 gr worth it? I know I can tune the 836 gr arrow to slap BH/BS/fletched at 30 y like I did the 911.

PS Haven’t noticed any flight difference between 3 or 4 fletch TAC vanes.

I also agree that a heavy arrow with a significant front-of-center weight distribution is a critical factor in maximizing the penetration of any arrow build.. This is a winning formula for all hunting applications and not just dangerous African game..

In regard to the general topic, while I think it's a good idea to get feedback from individual hunters who have successfully (or perhaps unsuccessfully) hunted cape buffalo with archery equipment, I also recommend relying most heavily on the advice of the outfitter/PH who will presumably have vast experience pursuing dangerous game with a bow. Following their recommendations when hunting these dangerous animals via their first-hand experiences not only dictates a successful hunt but the safety of all who are involved.. Build as heavy of an arrow as you can that will fly true from your set-up and good luck on your hunt!
 

Mtn_Infantry

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I’ve built and tuned an arrow, but as all y’all have probably experienced- after the perfect tune you look down and see a broken strand by the peep. So while I await a new set of strings and since I’m gonna need to probably retune I thought I’d ask.

Currently- Sirius 200, 250 gr Cutthroat, 200 gr half sleeve & 75 gr HIT for TAW of 911 gr @ 27% FOC

Cut and prepped more shafts. Just asking if that 75 gr HIT is worth keeping or not. Not using that 75 gr HIT behind the half sleeve would make it 836 gr TAW @ 25% FOC. Calculators say go from (911) 135 -> 160 FPS jump respectively.

So is that extra 75 gr worth it? I know I can tune the 836 gr arrow to slap BH/BS/fletched at 30 y like I did the 911.

PS Haven’t noticed any flight difference between 3 or 4 fletch TAC vanes.
I see you're in Texas, you might think about giving Scott over at Leading Edge a shout and picking his brain about the pros and cons.

Personally I'd go the extra 75gr route
 

rookhawk

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I’ve built and tuned an arrow, but as all y’all have probably experienced- after the perfect tune you look down and see a broken strand by the peep. So while I await a new set of strings and since I’m gonna need to probably retune I thought I’d ask.

Currently- Sirius 200, 250 gr Cutthroat, 200 gr half sleeve & 75 gr HIT for TAW of 911 gr @ 27% FOC

Cut and prepped more shafts. Just asking if that 75 gr HIT is worth keeping or not. Not using that 75 gr HIT behind the half sleeve would make it 836 gr TAW @ 25% FOC. Calculators say go from (911) 135 -> 160 FPS jump respectively.

So is that extra 75 gr worth it? I know I can tune the 836 gr arrow to slap BH/BS/fletched at 30 y like I did the 911.

PS Haven’t noticed any flight difference between 3 or 4 fletch TAC vanes.

I like your setup quite a bit, Frank. If your HIT is the lousy Easton ones, I’d lose them. Are you using the sirius insert/collar setup provided by them and made by ethics archery?

If yes, and since you’ve got perfect flight anyway, I’d be thinking about maximum arrow integrity above all else. So if you were using a SS insert and cutting it, I‘d prefer a full-length aluminum insert. If You’re using an aluminum collar and you don’t mind a bit more weight, the SS collar will be a bit stronger.

One thing I did notice is I got better performance out of 5mm shafts over 4mm. I asked a world champion why and he had a great explanation. The smaller shafts have a faster oscillation rate by virtue of their smaller walls. What this means is acquisition of stable flight is generally faster on the 5mm and when you hit the animal, the burrowing without the “wobble” is recovering faster on the larger walled shaft too.

I struggled with this as I thought the tiniest arrow was going to have the least drag in tissue yielding the best penetration, but found this was not true. Both the 4-5-6mm arrows are smaller than the blade and collar so they are all “along for the ride” and are providing minimum drag in the wound channel. But the 5mm shafts did seem to have flex-recovery time upon impact so they get back to drilling through the animal faster.

A bit of a religious debate of course, but they were easier to tune the 5mm. My son Has had best luck with 5mm too. In any case, your setup up front seems damned good to my eyes and all we’re talking about now is that extra 1-2% better tweaking scenarios.

3 vanes have less resistance than 4. If you’re getting good flight with 3, don’t shove a 4th vane through the buffalo!

A buffalo is a huge animal and you’re going to range before you shoot. Pin gap is a completely irrelevant worry, just get yourself setup with the arrow you have the most confidence and kill the buffalo!
 

rookhawk

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The simple answer is yes sir it is.

The combination of total arrow weight of at least 900 grains and an FOC in excess of 25% is the key to achieving the penetration that will be necessary to kill a Cape buffalo with a bow and arrow. Arrow speed is the least important part of the equation.

Over the years, we have successfully hunted hundreds of Cape buffalo with our archery hunters and those who follow the required formula of a heavy total weight arrow in excess of 900 grains with a 25% or greater FOC topped off with a heavy duty, 2-blade, single bevel, broadhead achieve the best results time and again. The results of using this build are consistently impressive leaving shot placement as the only variable.

I really appreciate Limcroma’s comments. There’s a lot of bad archery safari advice stirring in Africa but bad advice never comes from his posts. Always answer how to effectively kill really big animals with really small bows!
 

Frank Cavallo

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Yes. The Sirius (new) 200 gr steel half sleeve/insert and the brass 75 gr Easton HIT inserts. I'm not a fan of the really skinny arrows- I do like the 5 mm quite a bit.

Using an Option 4 sight which means I can barely fit 10-50 y in the scope @ 911 gr, which is perfect.
 

rookhawk

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Yes. The Sirius (new) 200 gr steel half sleeve/insert and the brass 75 gr Easton HIT inserts. I'm not a fan of the really skinny arrows- I do like the 5 mm quite a bit.

Using an Option 4 sight which means I can barely fit 10-50 y in the scope @ 911 gr, which is perfect.
I’d prefer the ethics insert to the Easton HIT that can bounce loose. I just view it as another material, another junction, and unnecessary. (Inferior)
 

mrpoindexter

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Using an Option 4 sight which means I can barely fit 10-50 y in the scope @ 911 gr, which is perfect.
I used those on my bows for a while then went to the Garmin. I chose the Option 8, however, as it has a taller sight window that allowed me to get more distance ranged in. Like me, you might not want to take a first shot at over 50 yards, but a follow up shot at 60-70 yards is sometimes the best you get.
 

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I really appreciate Limcroma’s comments. There’s a lot of bad archery safari advice stirring in Africa but bad advice never comes from his posts. Always answer how to effectively kill really big animals with really small bows!

We appreciate your comments as well sir!

We believe that our bow hunting success comes not only from experience but our passion for bowhunting. The majority of our PHs as well as myself are all avid bowhunters. We try not to get caught up in the hyper-marketing of the latest products and gimmicks, but rather rely on practical applications of the best techniques and equipment that have proven themselves to be the most effective according to the physics and true results that we see in the real-world field applications on actual game.

We are not trying to sell anyone's product (although we will occasionally recommend specific types of equipment that have proven to be successful). We are in this to put animals in the salt for our hunters! We have learned just as much from our failures as our successes, and we try to pass those lessons on to other bowhunters as best as we can. We want to see all bowhunters succeed regardless of where and what they are hunting or who the outfitter happens to be!
 

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