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4 or 5 inch vanes

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4 or 5 inch vanes

Old 06-03-2004, 02:32 PM
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Default 4 or 5 inch vanes

I know that 4 inch vanes are standard, but is there an advantage in using 5 inch vanes?
Do any of you guys use 5 in. vanes?
Will you get a noticably better spin or stabilization?
I don't think that there would be a big weight issue.
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Old 06-03-2004, 03:05 PM
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Default RE: 4 or 5 inch vanes


I know that 4" vanes/feathers are common, but I do not know if they (4") can be considered standard.

5" used to be the recommended length for the best recovery, stability, and accuracy for broadhead mounted shafts. However, changes in broadheads, rests, etc, may make the necessity of a 5" unecessary for some shooters.

I would say, if a person uses 4" and his or her arrows fly good and consistently group well out to 30-40 yards, leave the setup be.

Having used both sizes, I found (personally) that 5" meets the criteria for me, and seemd to perform better in windy conditions.
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Old 06-03-2004, 09:23 PM
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Default RE: 4 or 5 inch vanes

5" is better when using extremely heavy arrows and when using larger than normal broadheads or above average 2 blade heads but in general with most of todays setups,4" is preferred and most likely better given the arrow and broadhead selections of most,or the average hunter.

I myself have gone to 3" but I only use them when using mechanicals.I can shoot fixed really well in the yard with them but don't trust 3" and fixed in the field under all hunting conditions.
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Old 06-04-2004, 05:32 AM
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Default RE: 4 or 5 inch vanes

For most of the hunting setups today 5 inch vanes are not needed in my opinion. Unless you are trying to compensate for tuning issues....you have problems with shaft alignment...or you are shooting fixed blade/replacement blade broadheads with a large surface area then any fletching larger than 4 inches is generally not needed.

Four inch vanes are somewhat of the standard used for today's compound bows. Longer, helical fletching was generally used in the past to produce a more accurate arrow when manufacturing tolerances on bows and arrows were not generally up to the standard that they are today. Some folks still tend to use them on occasion with certain setups but if you have or are going to use a setup that is typical of what is being used today then you will probably not need the extra level of "forgiveness" that a five inch vane does provide.

Lastly, you must also consider the issue of tuning them. With a longer fletch, especially one with a hard helical, you need to pay extra attention to launcher arm clearance as the fletching takes up more space on the circumference of the shaft. Ofcourse with the influx of drop away rests this is not always an issue.

To summarize, if you feel that you need a little more forgiveness then by all means try a 5 inch fletch but you definitely do not need to have it to shoot accurately.
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Old 06-04-2004, 06:18 AM
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Default RE: 4 or 5 inch vanes

I pretty much agree with the other posters that 4" helical should be sufficient for most archers, if their release shooters. If your shooting with your fingers you may find that 5" is a better option.
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Old 06-04-2004, 07:02 AM
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Default RE: 4 or 5 inch vanes

4" helical should be sufficient for most archers
Helical vanes are a bit hard to make. Most shops around here anyway won't even do them. I have made them in the past using quick set glue, but because of the memory of the vane, you really have to let the glue set up before removing them from the jig.

But anyway, when I shoot fixed blade broadheads, if I am using a vane (which isn't often anymore), I use a 5" offset setup. I prefer feathers now however.

If you are just shooting field points, you can definetely get away with using less then a 5" vane.
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