Archery 101: How to put points in arrows
Whether you are replacing lost or damaged points, or building arrows from the beginning, knowing how to maintain your own equipment is a vital skill for any archer. Points can be lost in targets or when your arrows break – so if you need to swap them in or out, it’s important that you’re able to, and safely.
Gone are the traditional arrowheads of historical archery in competition disciplines, replaced by sleek points manufactured to precise measurements – and that come in a range of shapes, sizes and weights.
It’s important to note that the weight of the point will have an impact on how your arrow flies as it affects the weight distribution of the shaft, and the effective stiffness of the spine – so make sure you choose a point that fits, and that works with your equipment.
To fit points, you will need:
- Blow torch (or gas stove)
- Hotmelt glue
Make sure the arrows are cut to the correct length. It’s better to use lower-melting point hotmelt glue to prevent damage to your arrows, particularly if you use a carbon shaft. Prepare a clean, heat-resistant surface on which to work – and be careful!
Light the blow torch and, gripping the point with the pliers, heat the insert end of the point using the hottest part of the flame. Do this for only a few seconds.
Apply hotmelt glue liberally to the point in the area that you have heated, all the way around. The glue should melt on contact with the point. If this doesn’t happen, heat the point for a little longer.
Push the point gently into the arrow, trying not to twist the point too much as this will rub the glue away. It’s okay to wait a few moments for the point to cool down before pushing it in, as long as the glue is still melted, before inserting it into the arrow. (Overheating arrows can lead to some warping.)
Wipe away the excess glue then put the arrow to one side to let it cool. The arrows are then ready to shoot!
For screw in points, use exactly the same method, just gluing the insert only. Once the arrow has cooled and the excess glue is removed, the main body of the point should screw right in. (Use a low-strength adhesive or screw the point in through plastic wrap from the kitchen to keep it tight.)
To remove a point, heat the tip very gently until the glue around it melts – and you can pull it out with a pair of pliers.