Best Broadheads for a Crossbow – Your Options

Broadheads are used by archers who use a crossbow for hunting prey. Unlike field points, sometimes called target points, broadheads are extremely sharp so they can pierce through animal flesh with considerable ease. Practice points (field points) have rounded tips because less force and piercing action is necessary when shooting at a practice target. There are different style broadheads one can choose from, and the choice is based on personal preference as well as the laws within the area where one resides or is hunting at the time of use.

best broadhead bolt tips for a crossbowWhen you are buying arrowheads for your bolts, you want high quality heads that will suit your purposes. Thankfully, the market for arrowheads is quite large, so finding quality arrowheads at affordable prices is easy. Of course, with a huge selection of arrowheads to choose from, neophyte archers may become a bit confused as to what are the best arrows for use. Manufacturers are always looking to improve on existing selections in an effort to minimize any potential deviation on a projectile’s flight, to improve the efficiency of the blade penetration and cut, and to improve the stability of the arrow and broadhead upon impact.


Generally, for anyone using a crossbow with a low draw weight or a slower speed in terms of the shot, it’s best to invest in the fixed broadheads measuring about 1.25 inches or under as this will enhance the blade’s penetration. Additionally, for crossbows with slower speeds, the user of the bow may want to invest in blades called “cut on contact” arrowheads: This ensures the likelihood of a clean kill, ease of arrowhead penetration, and it minimizes any resistance that might result from shooting at slower speeds.

Archers will find that the faster the speed of the shot, the more diverse the shooting options are: When the kinetic energy of the traveling arrow is increased, it allows for the use of a fixed or mechanical blade with a larger diameter. What’s really nice about the broadhead’s with a larger diameter is that they cause the wounded prey to leave behind a more noticeable blood trail. Nevertheless, you’ll want this type of arrowhead if you are going for small game like turkey.

When buying broadheads you need to consider how many blades the arrowheads have: Some states demand a minimum blade count. What’s more, the number of blades on the arrowhead has a direct impact on the intensity of the animal’s blood trail, with more blades obviously forcing the injured animal to leave behind the biggest blood trail. With an arrowhead featuring at least three blades, two blades end up cutting the muscle tissue across the grain, while the fibers in the muscles that would seal the wound are with the grain. Three-bladed broadheads will minimize the likelihood of the cessation of the blood trail too soon, thereby giving you a chance to track the animal. Let’s examine some of the things to consider when you are readying yourself to buy broadheads for your crossbow, whether for practice or hunting.

Broadheads: The Different Blade Configurations

There are three primary types of broadheads you can work with, and you will need to check the laws in your state to find out which arrow heads the most appropriate for your needs. The types of broadheads you can choose from in include fixed-blade, removable, and mechanical, any of which will work in a crossbow.

Broadhead: Fixed-Blade

Broadheads with fixed blades are quite common because of their durability. They are also preferred by hunters who use compound bows. The fixed-blade is so called because the blades in the arrow head are rigid and non-removable. The arrow heads are created with the option to either glue them into the arrow shaft, or you can get those that allow for you to screw the arrowhead into the shaft ferrule. The classic fix-blade broadhead however, are all one piece with two, three, or even four blades.

Broadhead: Removable

Some broadhead options have a replaceable blade option so you can take them out to swap them for newer blades or sharpen the existing blades. There are even newer designs that allow you to replace the arrow points as well. These broadheads are easy to care for and equally easy to ensure they are always sharp and ready to deliver a clean kill.

Broadhead: Mechanical

Mechanical broadheads, sometimes called expandable broadheads, have several blades that are folded inward: This lends to greater speed when in flight. Once the arrowhead strikes the prey, upon impact the blades open up and allow for maximum penetration of the animal’s flesh. When the blades deploy, some of the arrow’s kinetic energy ends up being lost, thereby slowing the arrow’s speed down a bit. Therefore, it is best to rely on expandable broadheads with crossbows rated for a minimum of 50 pounds so you get the extra kinetic energy you are going to need due to the blade deployment on your arrows. Thankfully, the majority of crossbows have a load of 100 pounds or greater, so mechanical blades can work with a number of different crossbows. You can watch a slow motion video of mechanical broadheads in action at the bottom of this article.

Broadhead Legalities

In some locations, mechanical broadheads are not permitted. Mechanical broadheads are legal in all states with the exception of the state of Oregon. States like Alaska define what a mechanical broadhead can be used on as well, by limiting their use to caribou, Dall sheep, black bear, wolverine, wolf, and black-tailed deer. Alaska also puts some regulations on fixed broadheads with barbs and in what situations you can use them for when hunting.

Some states define the minimum number of sharpened edges the broadhead can have, and there may also be regulations regarding the minimum weight of the broadhead as well. State regulations may define the minimum cutting diameter and thickness for fixed and mechanical broadheads. Essentially, regulations are put into place to ensure hunter safety as well as ethical kills. It is your responsibility to learn the regulations of the state where you reside and/or hunt.

Additional Tips

  • Always verify with the crossbow manufacturer the weight of the broadheads recommended for use with the arrows that go with your crossbow. If you use arrowheads that are too light for the arrows you buy, you can end up damaging your arrows and bow or you might end up getting injured as a result.
  • It might be a good idea for you to invest in a wrench for use in screwing in the broadheads you buy. It can reduce the likelihood of injury when replacing broadheads.
  • Make sure your tips and your arrows are balanced. The balance point forward will ensure more consistency with your arrow flights and shots: This is because the crossbow arrows are shorter than other arrows, measuring about 20 inches in length. Shorter arrows are not as aerodynamic as others, so balance is even more important.
  • If you buy heavier aluminum bows, the correct weight is 125 grain for your broadheads. If you are buying carbon or light aluminum arrow shafts, your broadhead weight should be about 100 grain.

Recommended Products

Six Pack of Muzzy Broadheads

Muzzy Broadheads are reasonably priced and well-liked by many archers. The tips are 100 grain, and the blades are made of stainless steel. The broadheads screw into the arrow’s ferrule. The Trocar tips feature a hollow ground design to ensure maximum penetration power through bone and flesh. Muzzy Broadheads are made of aluminum and interlocking blades ensure greater support from the formed column of steel. These arrows measure .020 in thickness, and 1 3/16 inches in diameter.

100 Grain G 5 Montec CS Broadheads

The 100 Grain G 5 Montec CS Broadhead Pack comes with three arrowheads in the pack. Priced around $40.00, the arrows are reasonably priced. Each blade weighs 100 grams, and is 25 percent sharper than Montec’s original broadheads. The diameter for cutting on these broadheads is 1 1/16 inches. The arrows are made of carbon steel and have a single piece design. The edge of the blade has maximum sharpness as it honed with a diamond cut.