Arrow Tip Types

Arrow Tip Types – Point- and Blade-Type Arrow Tips for Archery

We’re willing to bet that you don’t think about hunting often in your everyday life. After all, we have supermarkets that offer same-day delivery, and refrigerators that keep our food edible for weeks, if not months at a time. Our early ancestors didn’t have this luxury, and as a result, were forced to hunt nearly every day to ensure their survival. Besides spears, the bow and arrow were the weapon of choice for most hunters, as they allowed them to kill large game from a distance, with no risk to them or the rest of the hunting party. The type of arrow tip implemented then, often meant the difference between a hearty meal and a night without supper, so let’s have a look at the different types of arrow tips available today, what they’re used for, and what sets them apart from one another.




Arrow Tip Types

In modern archery, there are loads of different arrow tip types for you to choose from, each one being designed for a particular application. Unlike arrow target tips from the Middle Ages or the days homo sapiens (70,000 years ago) which were made by hand, modern arrow target tips are mass-produced to fulfill the needs of the bow for new and experienced archers alike.

This being said, let’s have a look at some of the target tips for arrows you could come across on your archery journey, what some of their key characteristics are, as well as their intended applications.


Bullet-Point Arrow Tips

One of the most common arrow tips you’ll come across, especially in your early days of archery will be the bullet-point arrow tip. These have been appropriately named considering that the shape and head of the arrow tip are broad and rounded, looking like a 45-caliber round straight out of a revolver at first glance. These arrow tips are nicely weighted and easy to use for most archers.

Bullet-Point Arrow Type

What are bullet points used for, you ask? These target tips for arrows are used almost exclusively for practice purposes due to the fact that they don’t produce an excessive amount of impact once they’ve hit the target. This reduction in impact force means that it’s highly unlikely that bullet-arrow tips will damage on contact with the target material.

Now, you might be asking yourself, what’s with the shape? After all, arrows are meant to penetrate their target, right? Well, bullet arrow tips have their rounded design not only to carry their momentum further but to ensure that they are easy to remove from the target once you’ve emptied your quiver.

Bullet Tips in 3D Archery Target

Bullet-point tips are available in different weights, colors, and sizes, which makes them pretty popular in virtually every discipline. They are also reasonably priced, which means you can pick up a bunch of them on a budget. When you’re done practicing and think you’re ready to hunt some game, you can purchase broadhead arrows in the exact same weight as bullet tips, so you don’t have to make any adjustments to your bow. Bullet-point arrow tips can be used for:

  • Field archery practice
  • 3D archery practice
  • Indoor archery practice
  • Hunting practice


Target-Point Arrow Tips

Target-point arrow tips can be thought of as a different take on the practice arrow. They serve the same purpose as bullet tip arrows; they just have a different way of going about these. Target-tip arrows are visually distinct from their bullet point counterparts thanks to their tapered, pointy heads, which look futuristic by comparison.

Arrow Points for Target Shooting

Thanks to their shape, target-point arrow tips are inherently more aerodynamic compared to their bullet-tip counterparts, allowing them to reach their target faster due to the way in which they travel through the air. Now, you might be asking yourself, which is better to practice with?

The truth is that the only difference in performance between these two heads is that while target points travel faster, bullet points are easier to remove from their targets.

The price and availability of target-point arrows can vary considerably depending on where you live, but they can be ordered online too, which means they’re fairly accessible. Just like with bullet-point arrow tips, you can purchase broadhead and other hunting arrows in the same weight, so there’s no need to adjust your bowstring or sights. Target-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Field archery practice
  • 3D archery practice
  • Indoor archery practice
  • Hunting practice


Field-Point Arrow Tips

Field-point arrow tips are what you’d graduate to once you’ve gotten the hang of using your bow and hitting a target. They too are easy to distinguish from the target point and bullet point arrow tips as they have a tip that begins at a narrow taper from the shaft of the arrow, tapers outward at the middle of the arrow tip, and then tapers inward again to form the point of the tip.

How to Choose Arrow Tip Type

These are arguably some of the most versatile arrow types you’ll come across on your archery journey, as they can be used for practice in virtually any archery discipline and they can be used to hunt small game too. If you enjoy the option of hunting with the same arrow you practice with, then this might be the arrow tip you’re looking for.

Besides being dual-purpose, these arrows are also user-friendly as they aren’t particularly difficult to remove from targets or games once they’ve hit their mark. This is due to the admittedly odd taper in the arrow tip, which is designed to penetrate strongly while limiting impact enough to make the arrow easy to retrieve. Field-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Field archery practice
  • 3D archery practice
  • Indoor archery practice
  • Hunting practice
  • Hunting small game


Combo-Point Arrow Tips

Combo-point arrow tips are reminiscent of bullet point arrows in color and shape. They can be distinguished by their broad, round shape, which tapers in from the shaft of the arrow, gently tapers out toward the middle of the arrow tip, and then gently tapers in again to form the point of the arrow tip.

Arrow Tip Types for Archery

These are primarily used as target arrows in practice, but they can be used to hunt small game too if need be.

They are very much an alternative choice to field point arrow tips which can seem a bit excessive in some applications. This type of arrow tip can be used for pretty much anything aside from hunting big game but is most popular in 3D archery thanks to the speed and accuracy they provide. Combo-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Field archery practice
  • 3D archery practice
  • Hunting practice
  • Hunting small game


Pin-Point Arrow Tips

Moving on from some of the entry-level arrow tips, we now have the pin-point arrow tip. These are different from some of the tips we’ve covered so far as they are typically used in competition scenarios by experienced, professional archers. They are characterized as having a long shaft that tapers gradually to a single point.

Pin-Point Arrow Tip Type

Outside of archery competitions, these arrow tips can also be used for hunting game.

In fact, there are more than a few sources online detailing how to use these arrow tips to hunt elk and other large game. These arrows are designed for harsh penetration and to give you the most speed and accuracy in any shooting scenario. Pin-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting
  • High-end professional archery competitions


Bludgeon-Point Arrow Tips

The name pretty much says it all when it comes to this type of arrow tip. Bludgeon-tip arrowheads seem to be counterproductive to what we have come to expect arrows to do, which is penetrate their target. Bludgeon-point tips start off narrow at the shaft of the arrow and taper outwards, often having serrated edges on their business end.

Bludgeon-point arrow tips are designed to inflict blunt force trauma on your target, and as a result, they’re used to stun, incapacitate, and/or kill small game. This is where the “bludgeon” part comes in, and they’re even available in different sizes and shapes that can be slipped over practice field arrows to get a good feel for shooting with them.

Bludgeon Point Arrows for Small Game

Another variation of bludgeon arrow tips is blunt-tip arrowheads. These are pretty much the same thing as bludgeon-tip heads, but they don’t have any serrated edges or the same sharp tapering that the bludgeon tips do. Bludgeon-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting small game
  • Hunting practice


Bulge-Point Arrow Tips

We’re back to practice arrows. If you like the overall weight of your arrow to be heavy and carry the most momentum possible, then this might be just what you’re looking for. Bulge-point arrow tips tend to be larger in diameter than the shaft of the arrow, which makes them easier to line up, albeit a bit bulkier than your average arrow tip.

Because they tend to be bulkier than your average arrow tip, they carry more momentum and therefore have more stopping power.

Unfortunately, the tips of these arrows aren’t nearly as sharp as some of the ones we mentioned previously, but on the other hand, much like the bludgeon-point arrows, they carry loads of stopping power. Bulge-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Field archery practice
  • 3D archery practice
  • Indoor archery practice
  • Hunting practice


Judo-Point Arrow Tips

While we’re discussing arrow tips that can be used for hunting small game, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention judo-point arrow tips. This arrow tip is shaped in much the same way as a pinpoint, with the only difference being a smaller diameter and a few arms surrounding the arrow tip, which allow the tip to both penetrate and trap your target.

Arrow Tips for Game Bird Hunting

Thus, you can imagine then, this type of arrow tip is used to hunt small game as it works quite well to trap them upon penetration.

These little arms also ensure that they aren’t easy to lose once they’ve been shot, and considering that these can get pretty pricey, that’s probably a good thing. Besides, what’s worse than losing an arrowhead while on a hunt? Judo-point arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting small game


Fixed-Blade Broadhead Arrow Tips

If you’re an avid hunter or are thinking about getting into hunting, then the fixed broadhead arrow tip is pretty much exactly what you’re looking for. This style of broadhead bow is typically used by longbow archers as they’re as simple and effective as the bow itself.

Broadhead arrows have no moving parts, which makes them simple and reliable as any good hunting instrument should be.

Broadhead Arrow Tips for Archery

Fixed-blade broadhead tips come in a wide variety of sizes from two to six blades, and, depending on what you prefer and what type of game you’re hunting, you can choose pretty much any one of them. There is one notable disadvantage to using these arrow tips, however being that when fired at high speeds they tend to be less accurate, which is why they’re usually used with a longbow. Fixed-blade broadhead arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting small game
  • Hunting large game


Removable-Blade Broadhead Arrow Tips

There are loads of types of arrow tips for you to choose from, but by far one of the best ones for hunting has to be the removable-blade broadhead. These arrow tips are typically used for hunting both small and large game, making them functionally the same as conventional broadhead tips with a slight twist.

Types of Broadhead Arrow Tips

Even though broadhead arrows are tough and accurate, when the blades become dull, the head needs to be replaced.

Removable-blade broadheads, on the other hand (as the name suggests), have blades that can be attached and replaced as need be. This allows you to customize your arrowhead instead of replacing it and allows you to carry fewer arrows when you’re on the move. Removable-blade broadhead arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting large game
  • Hunting small game


Mechanical Broadhead Arrow Tips

Mechanical broadhead arrow tips are the latest innovation in the broadhead hunting arrow lineup. They are a bit more complex than conventional broadhead arrows and require loads of power to be used effectively, but it’s very much worth it.

These are best characterized as having additional blades that are retracted during flight and expand on impact.

Mechanical Broadhead Arrow Tip

It’s extremely unlikely that you would see these arrows being shot from anything but a compound bow. This is because even though they are pretty fast, in order for the additional blades to expand on impact, you will need to shoot them with a considerable amount of force. These arrow tips are used only for hunting. Mechanical broadhead arrow tips are used for:

  • Hunting large game


Now that you know what an arrow tip is, how they work, how long they have been around, and some of the arrow tip types you’ll encounter on your archery journey, it’s time for you to get out there and put your newfound knowledge to the test! Remember to practice safety when firing an arrow, and to ensure your bow is in good working order beforehand.



Frequently Asked Questions


Are Arrowheads Worth Anything?

If you’re ever out in the field or simply messing around in your backyard and find an ancient arrowhead, you should take it for appraisal as soon as possible. Arrowheads can be worth tens of thousands of dollars to collectors and universities alike!


How Old Are Most Native American Arrowheads?

Native Americans have been using arrowheads for as long as their people have been hunting. Old arrowheads can be traced back to the beginning of human civilization, but those belonging to Native American tribes can be as old as 14,000 years.


Where Are Most Arrowheads Found?

The best way to think about this is to think about where arrows would be used. Hunters hunt their prey when they are at their most vulnerable. Therefore, arrowheads can often be found at water sources such as lakes, ponds, rivers, and even creeks.

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