I just completed my new arrows to replace my old aluminium ones. After three years they were knackered beyond usefulness. These new arrows were an opportunity for me to put some of my creative skills into designing my archery equipment with style, colour and character.
When I first shopped for my archery gear I went looking for a basic design of arrows with just the shaft, nocks, points and vanes. The design looked simple and easy for a beginner and I put off buying new arrows until I had increased my draw weight. I went from 24 pounds to 28 pounds in 2014 and then up to 36 pounds in 2016.
By the time I had reached 36 pounds I had decided it was now time to invest in new arrows. Using a high poundage on arrows meant for a low poundage isn’t right for the arrows. By firing weak arrows on a strong bow you are firing arrows that can collapse in mid flight or stray off target. It is imperative to have your arrows in tune with your bow’s draw strength so that it can fly straight without suffering from contortion upon release.
This problem is also experienced by rocket engineers who have to deal with firing these massive projectiles that are susceptible to aerodynamic drag. This can damage the structure of the rocket causing it to twist and bend in mid air and eventually destroy it.
Apart from the technical specifications of the arrows there is also an eye catching design to consider. In case you’ve even wondered why modern sports arrows are made to look so fanciful it’s because of an archer’s need to make them look stylish and identical to them. When you are shooting with several other archers giving your own arrows a design makes them distinct from your target partners. That way you can identify where your arrows hit the target.
For my new arrows I decided to try carbon arrows. Since I was new to this I went for the Easton Apollo 560 arrows. These looked pretty nice and with the target graphic on the shaft I decided to make a nice design out of the components. I came with a colour combination inspired by the design of the Irn Bru drink using blue, orange and white.
I went for a paint splatter pattern for the arrow wraps, which make it look like as if it had struck into an Irn Bru can with the orange soda colour splashing through it against a sky blue background. This wrap also has my name on it as well. Last year a rule was amended to the Archery GB shooting rulebook where all archers participating in competitions must have their names on them. This is a good idea, particularly if you happen to be shooting with other archers happen to have the same colour of arrows as you.
For the vanes I went with a blue and white combination. White for the index vane and blue for the others. A majority of archers use a different colour of vane for an odd one on the arrow. So that they can instantly pick the arrow out of their quiver and find out which one should be facing them on the arrow rest. The royal blue colour vanes works well on the sky blue of the wrap with the white vane looking like a wing of a plane flying across the background in a 3D style.
This is the first time I am using a pin nock system. On my previous arrows I had insert nocks against a bushing. This isn’t good if you happen to be a very active shooter and you need to replace your nocks from damaged ones. A pin nock is a lot easier to manage. You can take it off and fit a new one on easy.
I would encourage anyone with a bright imagination to be stylish and creative in their choice of kit, especially their equipment. I think sports equipment should reflect an athlete’s character in appearance and style of design. What better way to do it through the countless choice of archery gear designs.