Help with my bow hunting setup for Plains Game

kathy

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Synergy, what I was saying about a mechanical broadhead is it has to open to do it's job correctly . with a fixed blade it is already open . you lose penetration with a mechanical.
if your bow is in tune it will shoot fixed blade broadheads same as a field point. any way each to their own, just make sure your broadhead is hair popping sharp . and practice , shot placement is everything. Forrest
 

Synergy

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Welcome, Synergy.

While I'm not nearly as experienced as many others, I have been fortunate enough to make 3 trips and collect a few critters. I have had passthrues on animals such as Kudu, Waterbuk, and Zebra with a lesser set-up than yours. In fact, the Zebra shot was with a bow at 56 pounds and a 425 grain arrow. Muzzy 3 blade 125 grain heads are the only heads I have used in Africa. The smaller game should not be a problem with any reasonable set-up.

All of my shots have been between 11 and 22 yards and all taken from blinds. I'd surely expect the shots taken by stalking could be further.

Just to be sure, I'd suggest that you discuss the mechanical heads with your outfitter, if you haven't already. One outfitter we hunted with would not allow their use. I don't take a stance on that, since I've never tried them.

The very best of luck to you.

Good advice, thanks!
 

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I also agree that if your bow is paper tuned to bullet hole at two different distances say 6 feet and 12 feet your broadheads will shoot in the same place as field points if they spin true. I demonstrated this by shooting 4 different makes some were replaceable three blade heads and one was a cut on contact 4 blade, all shot the same place!
 

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Do you think that i must use only cut on contact broadhead?

Synergy, what I was saying about a mechanical broadhead is it has to open to do it's job correctly . with a fixed blade it is already open . you lose penetration with a mechanical.
if your bow is in tune it will shoot fixed blade broadheads same as a field point. any way each to their own, just make sure your broadhead is hair popping sharp . and practice , shot placement is everything. Forrest

Snynergy,

To expand on Forrest's' point, mechanical broadheads exhaust a great deal of the arrow's kinetic energy in their attempt to deploy. The simple physics of it indisputably result in less penetration than that of a smaller, fixed blade broadhead fired from the identical application. This single fact is my biggest issue with using mechanical heads on plainsgame....A 2" wide gash in an animal doesn't do much good if the gash doesn't extend completely through to reach any of the vital organs.

Furthermore, mechanical, expandable broadheads are notorious for deflecting off of heavy bone. They either break or bend upon entry, and getting a full pass-through on some of the bigger animals is a rare event even with a heavy draw weight. I think mechanicals have their place in some applications, and if you want to bring some to shoot guineas or varmints they will work great. But, I would advise against using them for consistent success with the larger plainsgame animals.... African trackers are the best in the world, but I wouldn't recommend testing them if it can easily be avoided. Best of Luck to you!
 

Synergy

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Very clear Firehuntfish, Thanks :)
Probably i'll only use fixed blade broadheads (DRT and/or Slick Tricks)
 

firehuntfish

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Very clear Firehuntfish, Thanks :)
Probably i'll only use fixed blade broadheads (DRT and/or Slick Tricks)

Both brands are excellent choices! (y)

If you haven't purchased any yet, also look at the Muzzy MX-3.... They are also strong, compact, fly like a field point and best of all, pretty inexpensive...
 

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Hi friends, a long time lurker but first time poster here.

I've learned a lot from all of you.

I'll be in my first Safari in July 2016, trying to hunt some plains game (Limpopo area). Please, share with me your opinion of my setup:

Bow Elite Synergy 70#, 28,5 inches, arrow weight 545 grains, speed 230 fps, that means Momentum 056 and KE 64
I'll be using DRT broadheads (single bevels) and MAYBE a Grim Reaper mechanical broadhead for impala and warthog.

Do you think that I must use a lighter arrow to get some speed? I' m not going to take a shot longer than 30 yards. (I can get about 270 fps with a 416 grains arrow)*

Please, forgive the fact that I am not an native english speaker so there might be a lot inconsistencies in the above sentences or grammar.

* yeah, I know is not a speed bow :unsure:

Welcome! :)

Your setup is good.
I advice against using different broadheads for different animals.
Use one broadhead that works well for all.

While mechanical broadheads work well for many African critters, they can bring you into a situation of a wounded/lost animal on some if you happen to hit heavier bone on the impact.

Personally I am a big fan of Slick Trick when it comes to multiple bladed fixed broadheads, but DRT(owner(Tom) is a member here) and Exodus are also great choices that will do a good job.
I also like the 2-bladed single bevel Helix very much.
 

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@Synergy - just my 2 cents worth...

Impala and Warthog are exceptionally quick to react, 230fps sounds too slow for me, you are probably going to find them string jumping those shots if over 12-15 meters.

I have personally had them string jump me on my old Bowtech Guardian which was shooting at 290fps and they were between 20-30 meters.

Nothing wrong with your setup - just see if you can get that speed up some how.
 

kathy

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I would not be concerned about your bow speed, sure impala, warthog , all the little antelope will string jump. shoot relaxed animals ,looking away from you if possible ,( not always possible ) but they can't here the shot.
quiet bow is better than fast, draw quiet, shoot quiet .
I can't remember exactly speed of sound in feet per second about 780 feet per second ,so their is no bow set up that is going to be fast enough to avoid string jumping. Forrest
 
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.........
I can't remember exactly speed of sound in feet per second about 780 feet per second ,so their is no bow set up that is going to be fast enough to avoid string jumping. Forrest

Depending on temperature, humidity sound can move at 1125 FPS.

Being more sneaky always wins. :)
 

Synergy

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Depending on temperature, humidity sound can move at 1125 FPS.

Being more sneaky always wins. :)
yep!
I'll try to get a lot of stalking time and little blind time in my hunt (thats the way I like it).
This weekend i'm gping to test the DRT and the slickstricks, and choose the better for my bow.

Thanks again to all of you.
 

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Snynergy,

To expand on Forrest's' point, mechanical broadheads exhaust a great deal of the arrow's kinetic energy in their attempt to deploy. The simple physics of it indisputably result in less penetration than that of a smaller, fixed blade broadhead fired from the identical application. This single fact is my biggest issue with using mechanical heads on plainsgame....A 2" wide gash in an animal doesn't do much good if the gash doesn't extend completely through to reach any of the vital organs.

Furthermore, mechanical, expandable broadheads are notorious for deflecting off of heavy bone. They either break or bend upon entry, and getting a full pass-through on some of the bigger animals is a rare event even with a heavy draw weight. I think mechanicals have their place in some applications, and if you want to bring some to shoot guineas or varmints they will work great. But, I would advise against using them for consistent success with the larger plainsgame animals.... African trackers are the best in the world, but I wouldn't recommend testing them if it can easily be avoided. Best of Luck to you!
+1 I have never had good luck with mechanicals. The one and only bow shot animal I have ever lost was due to a mechanical breaking. Short of varmints I wouldn't use them. Stick with one good fixed blade head and practice practice practice. Your going to have a great trip and please write up a hunt report with lots of pictures.
 

gpelkhunter

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just finished my hunting trip in Namibia. I used a 430 grain arrow with the DRT broadheads. these heads did an awesome job on every animal, the large head with the extra bleeder blades made for quick kills with great blood trails. They fly like darts. Took an eland, wildebeest, hartebeest, and warthog with these heads and CE maxima red arrows. Your set up will work fine, just make sure you have the spot chosen, make a habit of lining up your other pins - "on that leg".
 

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The answer depends on what you're hunting.

Mechanicals use somewhere around 30% to 50% of the arrow's energy to open. Even if they open correctly, I feel that's unacceptable. Additionally, there's no support for the rear of the blade - this makes them prone to failure especially on contact with bone. Personally, I doubt I'll ever use anything but a Slick Trick on plains game ever again. My PH concurs. Put a Slick Trick in the right spot and you have a dead animal, end of story. I almost always find it laying in the dirt on the far side (complete penetration).

DT's look to be a possibility for larger animals, I never knew they existed until now. Must make a note to look into them. I took a cape buffalo a couple weeks ago with the similar Alaska Bowhunting Maasai 200 grainer with complete penetration (total weight 1014 gr; 24.98% F.O.C.), I wonder if there are any plans for a heavier, single bevel version?

At 230 fps, I think you're needlessly handicapping yourself especially on the smaller critters. The slower the arrow the more critical the range estimation and this is going to effect shot placement. Coupled with the fact that arrows in the 400 grain range have been more than adequate (with proper placement), I just don't personally feel the need anything more on plains animals.

Once you get into the bigger critters overall arrow weight and weight percentage front-of-center (F.O.C.) becomes very important. For an excellent discussion of that check out the Alaska Bowhunting web site. If one is interested in maximizing penetration your FOC rules.
 

sonnyn913

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I myself would not use a mechanical broad head. I have hit a bone before with one and the penetration left a lot to be desired. As bbjavelina stated, be sure to check with your outfitter. Many do not allow use on some animals due to this belief Good luck with your hunt.
 

David Middleton

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I have a local bow shop that has a video range and we shot plains game and it helped a huge amount. Listen to your PH they know what they are doing and don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions of them around the fire and in the blind when it's slow and the pigs and guinneas have scattered. Me and my buddy killed 20 animals all with rage broadheads.
 

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Haven't been to Africa yet but have hunted pretty much everything in Canada. I would stress over broadhead choice too much,most quality broadheads will do the job and I would focus more on accuracy and getting a smooth draw. I personally dislike mechanicals becouse I like every ounce of energy that arrow has to be cutting a big hole to the other side of the animal and not deploying mechanical blades,but that's my opinion. Your set up sounds just fine with bow hunting there is never the magic "do-all" setup and that's why shot placement and a cool head is the most important along with sharp blades.
 

firehuntfish

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Me and my buddy killed 20 animals all with rage broadheads.

Wow! holy crap! 20 for 20 is a pretty amazing stat for bowhunting.... Congrats!
That kind of success with a Rage, or any expandable is pretty atypical on African plainsgame....Just for my own knowledge, can you share your bow & arrow set-up? Also, how many of those shots were pass-throughs? Thanks.
 

David Middleton

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Wow! holy crap! 20 for 20 is a pretty amazing stat for bowhunting.... Congrats!
That kind of success with a Rage, or any expandable is pretty atypical on African plainsgame....Just for my own knowledge, can you share your bow & arrow set-up? Also, how many of those shots were pass-throughs? Thanks.
 

David Middleton

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I had a few big animals that arrow hit far side shoulder like Gemsbuck and Wildabeast but all others were pass throughs Kudu pigs impala . Nothing ran far and blood trails were crazy even in the red dirt. Must say I did go through the brush with a tracker and he humbled me more than I could have ever imagined. Those guys are incredible. I upgraded to a new Hoyt Xfactor. The new bows are super The PH Jaco has a lot of bowhunters and he has no problem with expandable blades. I researched as much as I could and probably got the best info from these forums. I did bring some Muzzys and ended up using them on Franklins. 100gr is what I shoot Rage Extreme I would recommend if you are stalking to be really good up to 60 yards most shots are closer but it is similar to elk when it comes to practice just different placement. We practiced alot and it did pay off.
 

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