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Archery Arrow Shaft Types

Archery hunting arrow shafts are typically made from various materials, each with its own set of characteristics that affect factors like durability, weight, speed, and accuracy. Here are some common materials used for archery hunting arrow shafts:

Wood: Traditional wooden arrow shafts are often made from woods like cedar, spruce, or pine. Wood shafts provide a classic look and feel but can vary in consistency due to natural variations in the wood. They tend to be heavier and may require more maintenance than modern materials. Traditionalists that like to hunt with wood recurve bows will tend to use wood arrows, sometimes even carving there own bow and arrow shafts. They should not be used in compound bows or crossbows.

Tubular Aluminum: Aluminum arrow shafts are popular for their durability, consistent weight, and relatively affordable cost. They are available in various diameters and wall thicknesses, allowing archers to choose arrows with specific characteristics for their hunting needs. Aluminum was the material of choice until Carbon arrows shafts came on the scene.

Tubular Carbon: Carbon arrow shafts are lightweight, strong, and offer consistent performance. They are widely used by hunters due to their excellent durability and ability to maintain straightness. Carbon arrows come in various spine (stiffness) options, which affects how the arrow reacts to the bow’s energy. Carbon arrow shafts are the most popular choice in hunting arrows today.

Carbon Composite: These arrows combine carbon fibers with other materials to enhance specific properties. For example, some carbon composite arrows incorporate a layer of aluminum around the carbon core to provide additional strength and resilience.

Fiberglass: While not as common as they once were, fiberglass arrow shafts are still used for certain applications like beginning archery, schools and low-pound usage. They are often chosen for their affordability, but they tend to be heavier and less consistent compared to other materials. Solid Fiberglass arrow shafts are used in Bow-Fishing applications.

Hybrid Materials: Some arrow manufacturers offer hybrid shafts that combine different materials to achieve a balance of characteristics. For instance, a carbon core might be wrapped with an outer layer of aluminum or fiberglass to provide a unique combination of weight, strength, and performance.


When choosing arrow shaft materials for hunting, consider factors such as the type of game you’ll be hunting, the draw weight of your bow, your shooting style, and your personal preferences. It’s important to select arrows that match your bow’s specifications and your shooting abilities to ensure safety and optimal performance. Consulting with experienced archers or bowhunting experts can help you make an informed decision based on your specific needs.

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