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I think it's like the difference between a 28" and 26" barrel on a shotgun. People generally find that the longer barrel is easier to point accurately. Of course, if you don't use the arrow to aim with, then it really doesn't matter.
Another advantage of a longer arrow is that it will lower your point on and therefore all your gaps at distances less than your point on will be smaller.
Another advantage, for target shooting, is that a longer arrow allows you to use a lighter weight point to get the same spine, meaning your arrow will have a flatter trajectory.
Of course, this could be a disadvantage for hunting, where you might want a shorter arrow that requires a heavier point to get the same spine. Howard Hill once said that any arrow sticking out in front of the bow at full draw was a waste.
For bows where my bowhand forefinger is close to the shelf, I prefer an arrow cut such that the back of the broadhead or the ridge at the back of the field point will touch my forefinger when I come to full draw, as a draw check. I believe Howard Hill also did this, which is probably why he preferred arrows that didn't extend much past the shelf at full draw.
I wish all my bow grips were like that, as I miss having a draw check on bows where my forefinger is considerably lower than the shelf, but the awkwardness of reaching my forefinger up to get a draw check seems to offset any good having the drawcheck might be doing for me.
So, as you can see, there are pros and cons.
-------------------- TGMM Family of the Bow
I'm a man, and I can change, if I have to, I guess. Posts: 4378 | From: Sacramento, CA | Registered: Oct 2006
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IDK about lining up easier....but I do it pretty often without a hitch. I like them as short as I can, considering tuning... but I don't really mind them being somewhat longer. If too long go to the next spine down for a shorter arrow.
Posts: 1061 | From: Kansas | Registered: Jan 2016
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I draw 27 and have mostly shot 28" arrows. last year I bought some shafts and had them cut to 30 just to see if I liked it. It made me much more consistent on the first shot(the only one that counts) I guess i'm a subconscious gap shooter.
Posts: 196 | From: georgetown, texas | Registered: Nov 2006
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One should always shoot full length arrows, that way you are using more of what you paid for. Kidding of course, I like my broadhead draw check device. sometimes because of this or that I come a tad short of benefiting from my nonmechanical clicker and I always wonder how short I came or did I tag it and just not realize that I did. That quite often happens when I am right on the money when hitting an animal. I am have heard that before, about heavy heads on short arrows affecting flight, even though both long and short arrows are identical. A number of years ago we did some flight shoots with the same shafts with the same fletching from the same bow, the same shooter and marked the arrows at his draw length. He had shafts and points and broadheads that someone gave and wanted to use them. I was trying to get him to not use Wasp screw in broadheads out of the over spined arrows. The argument came up that 160 grain heads on a long adapter would make the arrows fall from the sky like a lead balloon. There was no difference in the length of flight with long arrows with light heads to shorter arrows with heavy heads as long the the total arrow weight was about the same.
On my recurves, I shoot full length stiff carbon arrows with heavy heads & inserts to weaken them up. As McDave mentioned, small gaps are the result & I like those. Plus, I just have to install the inserts without bothering to cut them.
On my selfbows, where I shoot woodies & the shaft is right next to my hand, I cut them to be 28" to the back of the point. Like McDave & Pavan, I use the back of the point as a draw check.
I group the same with short woodies and long carbons. So I don't think one is any easier to line up. I had read somewhere that long arrows might be less sensitive to spine. There were some observations of tribal folks using long arrows. Maybe the Ashby study? Don't recall. But it had something to do with spine, not sight picture.
-------------------- "A good hunter...that's somebody the animals COME to." "Every animal knows way more than you do." -- by a Koyukon hunter, as quoted by R. Nelson. Posts: 770 | From: CA | Registered: Sep 2016
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I am shooting arrows 2" longer than my draw weight, only because that is what I bare shafted them to... I don't even need feathers now and they group well at 20 yrds...
Before, I always had my arrows a little longer than draw length and now I am shooting better with these longer arrows. However, I don't know if its because its easier to "aim" with longer arrows or simply they fit my bow better now..