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MAKIN EM SCARY SHARP

Kurt

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Great topic Kurt,i watched the RF videos as well and am on my path to heavy arrows and single bevel heads. Last year i sharpened my g5 montecs and they were ok but not scary sharp. I am thinking about a strop as well and see where that gets me.
It's really amazing how much sharper it makes them. The video in post 10 shows a guy stropping with cardboard and a piece of denim.
 

AKMonkey

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Sorry, as I was saying coarse sharpener. If the broadhead is scalpel sharp, I believe the wound can close up easier and actually decrease hemorrhaging. I sharpen them shaving sharp with a coarse stone or diamond sharpener. It gives micro serrations
The debate/discussion about a sharp serrated or micro-serrated edge (like you get with a file) vs. a sharp smooth edge like a razor blade for broadhead effectiveness has been around since at least the 1970s, when I started bowhunting. I after reading quite a bit on the subject and observing my own results, I'm a believer in a razor smooth, scary sharp broadhead. The evidence from the medical community is really the clincher for me.

Here's a link to Dr. Ashby's reports on broadhead and arrow effectiveness. There's lots of great stuff here, but anyone interested in the question of broadhead sharpness, and especially anyone who believes that a serrated or micro-serrated blade is best really needs to listen to the audio report and read the written report on "The Clotting Cascade". There are a few technical concepts involved but the explanation is very good and I find it easy to follow.
 

Allegheny Tom

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The debate/discussion about a sharp serrated or micro-serrated edge (like you get with a file) vs. a sharp smooth edge like a razor blade for broadhead effectiveness has been around since at least the 1970s, when I started bowhunting. I after reading quite a bit on the subject and observing my own results, I'm a believer in a razor smooth, scary sharp broadhead. The evidence from the medical community is really the clincher for me.

Here's a link to Dr. Ashby's reports on broadhead and arrow effectiveness. There's lots of great stuff here, but anyone interested in the question of broadhead sharpness, and especially anyone who believes that a serrated or micro-serrated blade is best really needs to listen to the audio report and read the written report on "The Clotting Cascade". There are a few technical concepts involved but the explanation is very good and I find it easy to follow.
This^^^

Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
 

gameflogger

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The debate/discussion about a sharp serrated or micro-serrated edge (like you get with a file) vs. a sharp smooth edge like a razor blade for broadhead effectiveness has been around since at least the 1970s, when I started bowhunting. I after reading quite a bit on the subject and observing my own results, I'm a believer in a razor smooth, scary sharp broadhead. The evidence from the medical community is really the clincher for me.

Here's a link to Dr. Ashby's reports on broadhead and arrow effectiveness. There's lots of great stuff here, but anyone interested in the question of broadhead sharpness, and especially anyone who believes that a serrated or micro-serrated blade is best really needs to listen to the audio report and read the written report on "The Clotting Cascade". There are a few technical concepts involved but the explanation is very good and I find it easy to follow.
Awesome article thanks for sharing!
 

drew13

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The debate/discussion about a sharp serrated or micro-serrated edge (like you get with a file) vs. a sharp smooth edge like a razor blade for broadhead effectiveness has been around since at least the 1970s, when I started bowhunting. I after reading quite a bit on the subject and observing my own results, I'm a believer in a razor smooth, scary sharp broadhead. The evidence from the medical community is really the clincher for me.

Here's a link to Dr. Ashby's reports on broadhead and arrow effectiveness. There's lots of great stuff here, but anyone interested in the question of broadhead sharpness, and especially anyone who believes that a serrated or micro-serrated blade is best really needs to listen to the audio report and read the written report on "The Clotting Cascade". There are a few technical concepts involved but the explanation is very good and I find it easy to follow.
Super sharp straight blades make a lot of sense to me. I am having trouble reconciling this with RF and Big Mike’s love for the serrated Magnus Buzz Cuts. I emailed RF about it a couple of weeks ago and he said the serrations of the buzz cuts are sharpened and shred pulmonary tissue.

Seems like it would be easier to resharpen a straight blade, though.

What do you guys think? Pros and cons to each of them?
 

ricky racer

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As the manufacturer of the Li'l Shaver Broadhead Sharpener I've sharpened hundreds of broadheads at shoots and shows across the country. I've sharpened about every two blade broadhead out there. In my opinion, what kind of edge really doesn't matter as long as it's sharp. I'm amazed at the dull broadheads that I've seen guys use over the years. Most of the dull broadheads I've seen seem to be the pre-sharpened, replaceable blades. Some come nice and sharp but others are dull and most guys don't even check them when they take them out of the package. They just put them on their arrows and head to the field.

Fred Bear always said that a file sharpened edge was the best for bowhunting. I had an opportunity to become friends with Don Thomas Jr., Co-Editor of Traditional Bowhunter Magazine years ago when he offered to give me my first "Celebrity Endorsement" for my sharpeners. Don is a Medical Doctor and Surgeon. We discussed the sharpness of broadheads in the past and he agreed that a file sharpened edge was the best for bowhunting. He said a lot of guys like a scalpel edge but he said most people don't realize that when a surgeon makes an incision he uses a new scalpel for each layer of tissue he cuts through. Each scalpel only makes one cut through a layer of tissue then gets disposed of and another scalpel is used for the next layer of tissue. He said that a scalpel is really sharp but it the edge is delicate and dulls quickly. When a broadhead passes through hair, hide and ribs before it gets to the point of where it does its work, a filed edge holds up better than a delicate super sharp edge.

Below is a picture of a fixture I made back when I was doing shows. I've only got so much hair on my arms and needed to show the sharpness of broadheads sharpened on the Li'l Shaver so I made this fixture that uses a rubber band to test the sharpness. This might be something that you make want to make to test sharpness instead of shaving your arms. As an IBEP instructor we always taught that veins are similar to rubber bands and if a broadhead will slide past a rubber band without cutting it, it will slide past veins and arteries too.

20200227_183859_copy_651x460.jpg
 

denots

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Super sharp straight blades make a lot of sense to me. I am having trouble reconciling this with RF and Big Mike’s love for the serrated Magnus Buzz Cuts. I emailed RF about it a couple of weeks ago and he said the serrations of the buzz cuts are sharpened and shred pulmonary tissue.

Seems like it would be easier to resharpen a straight blade, though.

What do you guys think? Pros and cons to each of them?
In my opinion, I think the only knife blade that should ever have a serrated edge is a bread knife. Too hard to sharpen once they get dull. At least do it properly anyway. A good sharp knife, with no serrations is where it's at for me. I see absolutely zero reason to ever put a serrated edge on a Broadhead unless you're making it out of Flint.
 

ricky racer

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Super sharp straight blades make a lot of sense to me. I am having trouble reconciling this with RF and Big Mike’s love for the serrated Magnus Buzz Cuts. I emailed RF about it a couple of weeks ago and he said the serrations of the buzz cuts are sharpened and shred pulmonary tissue.

Seems like it would be easier to resharpen a straight blade, though.

What do you guys think? Pros and cons to each of them?
Serrated blades work like steak knives. With a steak knife the "points" slide on the surface of the dinner plate keeping the sharp valleys sharp since the only thing they should contact is the soft tissue. That is why you always see serrations on a steak knife.
 

denots

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Serrated blades work like steak knives. With a steak knife the "points" slide on the surface of the plate keeping the sharp valleys sharp since the only thing they should contact is the soft tissue. That is why you always see serrations on a steak knife.
I do understand the point of a serrated knife. I just don't like them because once they get dull they are a major pain-in-the-ass to sharpen.
 

BTaylor

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As the manufacturer of the Li'l Shaver Broadhead Sharpener I've sharpened hundreds of broadheads at shoots and shows across the country. I've sharpened about every two blade broadhead out there. In my opinion, what kind of edge really doesn't matter as long as it's sharp. I'm amazed at the dull broadheads that I've seen guys use over the years. Most of the dull broadheads I've seen seem to be the pre-sharpened, replaceable blades. Some come nice and sharp but others are dull and most guys don't even check them when they take them out of the package. They just put them on their arrows and head to the field.

Fred Bear always said that a file sharpened edge was the best for bowhunting. I had an opportunity to become friends with Don Thomas Jr., Co-Editor of Traditional Bowhunter Magazine years ago when he offered to give me my first "Celebrity Endorsement" for my sharpeners. Don is a Medical Doctor and Surgeon. We discussed the sharpness of broadheads in the past and he agreed that a file sharpened edge was the best for bowhunting. He said a lot of guys like a scalpel edge but he said most people don't realize that when a surgeon makes an incision he uses a new scalpel for each layer of tissue he cuts through. Each scalpel only makes one cut through a layer of tissue then gets disposed of and another scalpel is used for the next layer of tissue. He said that a scalpel is really sharp but it the edge is delicate and dulls quickly. When a broadhead passes through hair, hide and ribs before it gets to the point of where it does its work, a filed edge holds up better than a delicate super sharp edge.

Below is a picture of a fixture I made back when I was doing shows. I've only got so much hair on my arms and needed to show the sharpness of broadheads sharpened on the Li'l Shaver so I made this fixture that uses a rubber band to test the sharpness. This might be something that you make want to make to test sharpness instead of shaving your arms. As an IBEP instructor we always taught that veins are similar to rubber bands and if a broadhead will slide past a rubber band without cutting it, it will slide past veins and arteries too.

View attachment 25670
Not disputing anything regarding DT's comments about scalpels but Papa Bear's comments and Don's comments stemmed from experience before there was a selection of fixed heads produced from high quality steel. I remember when I first got my Silver Flames from Markus and all the discussions I had read about the sharpness and how long those heads would stay sharp. So when mine arrived I screwed one on and proceeded to shoot it into a layered foam target to see how many shots it would take until the head would no longer shave. At 2 dozen shots it was still shaving just fine and I called it good. Obviously that does not take into consideration contact with bone and its effects but there is considerable difference between a well built head made from high quality steel and the heads we grew up on like the Bear Razorhead, Zwickey's, etc. For those heads a file and quick strop was and still is plenty to have a one shot sharp head. Cool tester by the way!!
 

ricky racer

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Not disputing anything regarding DT's comments about scalpels but Papa Bear's comments and Don's comments stemmed from experience before there was a selection of fixed heads produced from high quality steel. I remember when I first got my Silver Flames from Markus and all the discussions I had read about the sharpness and how long those heads would stay sharp. So when mine arrived I screwed one on and proceeded to shoot it into a layered foam target to see how many shots it would take until the head would no longer shave. At 2 dozen shots it was still shaving just fine and I called it good. Obviously that does not take into consideration contact with bone and its effects but there is considerable difference between a well built head made from high quality steel and the heads we grew up on like the Bear Razorhead, Zwickey's, etc. For those heads a file and quick strop was and still is plenty to have a one shot sharp head. Cool tester by the way!!
I agree with your assessment regarding Papa Bear but not with Don Thomas. Don's been around for a long time and is still around serving as the Co-Editor of TBM and writing books. At the time of our conversation, replaceable blade broadheads had been around for decades. Even expandables were out. I don't really care what broadheads a guy uses as long as they are sharp and robust enough to maintain their edge as it passes through an animal and not come apart due to a failure of the broadhead. Not that it matters but I remember shooting a Grizzly through the rib cage of a buck, passing through the animal and sticking about 6" in the dirt beyond where the buck was standing. When I pulled the arrow out of the ground I inspected the blade and found that I could still shave with it.
 

BTaylor

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I agree with your assessment regarding Papa Bear but not with Don Thomas. Don's been around for a long time and is still around serving as the Co-Editor of TBM and writing books. At the time of our conversation, replaceable blade broadheads had been around for decades. Even expandables were out. I don't really care what broadheads a guy uses as long as they are sharp and robust enough to maintain their edge as it passes through an animal and not come apart due to a failure of the broadhead. Not that it matters but I remember shooting a Grizzly through the rib cage of a buck, passing through the animal and sticking about 6" in the dirt beyond where the buck was standing. When I pulled the arrow out of the ground I inspected the blade and found that I could still shave with it.
You are correct about Don obviously and I know he is still with TBM. I could have done a better job of qualifying my comments re: Don. Your comment about sharp and robust made me chuckle a little thinking back to my first deer with a bow. Arrow was a microflight 8 with one of the green 4 blade glue on wasp mounted to a glue in adapter. Bow was a Polar Ltd. Chrono'd that setup with a sun dial but never shot a deer with it that the arrow wasnt buried in the dirt. Never saw one of those heads go through a deer without wrecking the blades and usually broke at least one.
 

Weldabeast

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I just know what I've seen and a blade right off the finest stone will be sharp but cutting paper you'll have tiny pieces stuck on the blade where the tiny scratches are. Cut myself with that and it'll hurt like hell but blood will be relatively easy to stop bleeding.
Strop that same blade and now the cut isn't tearing but slicing...the cut itself is less painful and much harder to stop the bleeding.
I enjoy sharpening things...so the added work to make the broadhead razor is a mute point to me.

Edit.... not sure which video it is but ranch fairy gives an example cutting bacon....the non strop blade had tiny peices of fat stuck on the blade while the strop blade was clean
 
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Allegheny Tom

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...... I had an opportunity to become friends with Don Thomas Jr., Co-Editor of Traditional Bowhunter Magazine years ago when he offered to give me my first "Celebrity Endorsement" for my sharpeners. Don is a Medical Doctor and Surgeon. We discussed the sharpness of broadheads in the past and he agreed that a file sharpened edge was the best for bowhunting. He said a lot of guys like a scalpel edge but he said most people don't realize that when a surgeon makes an incision he uses a new scalpel for each layer of tissue he cuts through. Each scalpel only makes one cut through a layer of tissue then gets disposed of and another scalpel is used for the next layer of tissue. He said that a scalpel is really sharp but it the edge is delicate and dulls quickly. When a broadhead passes through hair, hide and ribs before it gets to the point of where it does its work, a filed edge holds up better than a delicate super sharp edge......
I hate when this happens.
We have 2 highly respected, highly educated, experts with a wealth of experience of details pertinent to a subject on which they have opposite opinions.
I've followed both Don Thomas and Ed Ashby for over 20 years and I put a great deal of credence in what they say.
In this case of which type of edge is better for a broadhead, I think I will lean toward Ashby's recommendations simply because of the incredible number of animals the he has killed with an arrow, and he studies the wounds in great detail.

I'm not discounting Don's opinions in any way, but Ashby's angle on this more mirrors (slightly) a hunting perspective.
My extremely small, anecdotal sample numbers has been that I've had better results with a mirror edge, than I had with a filed edge, but there are other factors to consider. My experience level is a bit higher these days than when I used a (shaving sharp) filed edge.
My opinion FWIW, If both edges are shaving sharp, they will do the job. When both edges are sharp, then more important is the quality of the head.
 
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Weldabeast

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The blade material will directly correspond to the edge you'll get also... the cheap grizzly I have will get very sharp but the edge will dull and chip much easier than say a bishop or other head made with a quality steel.
 

PEEJAY

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I know this involves blades like single bevel or 2 blade heads, but can you use the same technique to sharpen a head like a montec? or specifically an Annihilator. The head will lay flat on a stone and sharpen 2 sides at once on all three blades like that but is there a way to get these scary sharp too. I just bought six of the 125 grains and want to get them as sharp as possible. for the money they seem like pretty awesome heads. tool steel and an intereesting shape.
 

Weldabeast

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I know this involves blades like single bevel or 2 blade heads, but can you use the same technique to sharpen a head like a montec? or specifically an Annihilator. The head will lay flat on a stone and sharpen 2 sides at once on all three blades like that but is there a way to get these scary sharp too. I just bought six of the 125 grains and want to get them as sharp as possible. for the money they seem like pretty awesome heads. tool steel and an intereesting shape.
I have a montec I found and I haven't had very much luck getting it super sharp. I don't know if it's an actual montec or one of the knock offs.
 

BTaylor

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I know this involves blades like single bevel or 2 blade heads, but can you use the same technique to sharpen a head like a montec? or specifically an Annihilator. The head will lay flat on a stone and sharpen 2 sides at once on all three blades like that but is there a way to get these scary sharp too. I just bought six of the 125 grains and want to get them as sharp as possible. for the money they seem like pretty awesome heads. tool steel and an intereesting shape.
I shoot woodsmans out of my trad bows and I have sharper butter knives than those things come in the package. Shot montecs a bit back when they first came out and they were bad dull too. In both cases, I start them on a file and aggressively run them about 10 strokes per side until I have a clean edge(no blade cupping when checked with a sharpie). Then I move to coarse, then medium, then fine stones reducing pressure as I move through the stones. Strop from there and you should be able to get a really sharp head.
 
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