Every year here in Northern California we have a big novelty Archery Tournament called Rancho Neblina. This tournament is happening this weekend. One of the big attractions of this event is that they have enough open space to run an Archery Golf course along with the regular 3D course.
Archery Golf is very much like it sounds and is like the regular Golf we’re all familiar with. Targets are placed anywhere from 100 to over 300 yards apart. It usually takes several shots to get from the shooting stake up to where you actually have a chance of hitting the target. Just like normal Golf, you keep track of how many shots it takes to get to each target, and the winner is whoever finishes with the least shots.
Annette and I weren’t able to make it this year, but our good friend Aaron was there, and unbeknownst to us at the time, he did some informal “testing” for us. We now have some pictures and some actual numbers that he sent us.
Here’s one picture where he shot an arrow fitted with our Aero-flight vanes against what he normally shoots. Same bow, same arrow and arrow weight. From this perspective the closer orange colored arrow in this picture is the one with Aero-Flights and is further down range from the shooting stake. The green one in the background is his usual arrow. (I added a color filter to this picture to make it easier to see the arrow in the background, which didn’t make it as far.)
Here is one more photo showing a comparison. This perspective has the arrow with Aero-Flight vanes further down range and showing up in the background.
From the numbers that Aaron has sent me, it turns out that the Aero-Flights are giving him an average of just over 11 yards greater distance over approximately 150 – 160 yards of flight. There is more to this story though, as Archery Golf isn’t the only game in town, is it?
Now one can always improve cast by using tiny vanes, and thereby reducing air drag. Conversely one can help themselves achieve greater accuracy by using larger vanes, but at the cost of higher drag. In both of these photos you can see for yourself faint lines in the dry grass where a truck drove from target to target while setting up the course. The arrows with the Aero-Flight vanes kept true to that line laid down by the truck just as well as Aaron’s normal arrows. The Aero-Flight vanes kept good flight stability yet did so with lower losses to air drag. Good flight characteristics and accuracy were not sacrificed just for the sake of better cast.
So, the upshot of all this is that our friend Aaron wound up giving us some outside confirmation to the idea behind our Aero-Flight vanes. Better cast by lowering air drag but, doing it while assisting the shooter in maintaining accuracy. And this will even translate over to shooting at significantly shorter distances. Less drag equals a flatter arrow trajectory, but with good flight stability which will help the shooter aim and stay accurate regardless of how they do it, with or without a sight.
Aero-Flight vanes are available in multiple colors, here on our online store: https://www.fenderarchery.com/collections/aero-flight-vanes/products/arrow-vanes
Now for those who are interested, I do have some hard data compiled that I generated during the proof of concept and prototyping phase of developing Aero-Flight vanes. Want more information? Post a question to our Facebook page: Fender Archery Supply and Equipment or send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.