Best Broadheads: Mechanical, Fixed-Blade or Expandable Broadhead?

Broadheads are the probably the next thing you should take time deciding on after you choose the best compound bow to use.

Since the broadhead of an arrow is one of the deciding tools on how efficient you are as a hunter, it is a must for you to be meticulous about what works for you and to the prey and what would not. Read this article to know more about the best broadheads.

Broadheads are continuously developed and innovated by manufacturers to suit to the hunter’s tastes.

Let’s face it: aside from the accuracy the hunter has, if he hits the prey with a half-hearted arrow without intending for an ethical kill, the prey will inevitably suffer a slow death once he manages to escape.

Overall, broadheads could affect your performance as a hunter who uses a bow for hunting.

Function of a Broadhead

First and foremost, we define a broadhead as a sharp metal at the tip of an arrow, opposite to the cock fletch. It is simply called arrowhead.

A broadhead is the first part that penetrates the target and in the business of hunting, one shot should be enough to take the animal down.

Depending on the shape of the broadhead, factors like the cutting efficiency, impact, penetration, and flight travel varies. Choices are widely available, and most hunters opt for what’s best from their colleagues and what would be the best for him.

The broadheads are distributed into two main types namely: fixed and mechanical blades which will be discussed later on.

Regular Broadhead vs. Crossbow Broadhead

There isn’t much difference between a broadhead for a crossbow and a broadhead for a compound bow. They have the same features like the same type and same function.

However, the best way to discern between the two is the weight.

Crossbow Broadhead

For best crossbow broadheads, they are technically heavier than the regular ones starting at more than 120 grains.

It is necessary to be heavy because if it’s otherwise, like lighter than the officially recommended weight for a crossbow broadhead, one could suffer from injuries. It may even damage the crossbow to a point that it would be irreparable.

If you’re wondering what broadhead an archer should use for his shots, check the manufacturer’s manual on what arrow weight is ideal to use.

If not available, contact them via email or just weigh an arrowhead yourself. What result you get in lbs. or grams, convert it to be compatible with grains.

Types of Broadheads

Broadheads found on the market are classified into three, and they are the following:

1. Fixed Blade Broadhead

Fixed Blade Broadhead

This type of arrowhead is the simplest and most commonly used.

Its blades are razor-sharp and settled in one position next to arrow shaft, hence the name fixed blade.

All broadheads of this type have cut-on-contact sharp tips that are better in penetration than the other two arrowhead types.

The blades range from the two traditional side by side forming a triangle or more than that number (three to four configuration).

Key advantages to using an arrowhead that is fixed with glue or screw to the shaft are the following:

  • Superior durability
  • Cheaper than other broadheads
  • Less to risk of early damaging
  • Better penetration because of smaller diameter

As a fixed blade broadhead, the tip is what comes first in contact with an animal hide. With the small cutting diameter most at 1.5 inches, the penetration is deeper, and the fixed blade can even punch through the bone of an animal.

Considering that the bones are the hardest anatomical part of any animal, it’s a feat that this type of broadhead can achieve this.

Replaceable blades:

This subtype is recently popular among the archers as they don’t to sharpen the blades often, making replaceable blades more convenient. When the blades become dull, simply replace them with detachable new ones.

The broadhead you should find must have a lock down mechanism for the blade inserts to make it more durable and so that the blade won’t fall when they fly.

The disadvantages of this type are that it’s more expensive than fixed blades and less durable when it comes to the lifespan and penetration level.

2. Mechanical Broadheads

Also called as expandable and retractable broadheads, mechanical broadheads are more modern than their fixed blade counterpart. Why is it so?

The simple mechanism for this kind of broadhead is that when the chiseled tip makes contact with the animal hide, the blades open at the impact thus the entrance and the exit holes are larger (as large as three inches).

Mechanical Broadheads

They may be lesser in penetration compared with fixed blade broadheads, but they are relatively easier to shoot aerodynamically.

The arrow flies faster and with more accuracy when using mechanical broadhead because the unexpanded blades that stay close to the tip help little to no wind resistance.

In this way, arrows fly like field points and then open by rubber o-ring or steel clip systems.

The mechanical broadhead is strategically divided into two categories: the front deploying and rear deploying broadheads.

The first one is also known as over-the-top broadhead, and they are known to open at the front at contact. The broadhead cuts through the vitals as it usually expands inside the flesh of the animal.

The entrance hole is then smaller than the exit hole, but this is not the case with the rear deploying broadheads. The latter type both have large entrance and exit holes as they punch through the skin because blades open outward from the rear.

Mechanical broadheads aren’t always applicable to all games. It’s preferable to shot at thin-skinned animals due to lesser penetration.

Also, hunters experience problems when using these broadheads when the moving parts are jammed or damaged.

There are instances that the blades won’t even open, leaving only the chiseled tip to do the penetrating which isn’t much without the blades. Some models of this type are made of weaker metals and tend to bend or break easily.

3. Hybrid Broadheads

Hybrid Broadheads

This type is the combination of fixed blade and mechanical blade broadheads.

Simply put, the tip is cut-on-contact like fixed blade while the rear part is the expandable blade.

The cutting power and penetration are more enhanced with this broadhead leaving the prey with severe blood trail.

There are disadvantages with using the broadhead as it the flight pattern is inconsistent. And also it would need constant maintenance to ensure that the two types of blades are functioning.

Best Broadheads

Top 6 Best Broadheads - Compare Table

We’ve compiled the best broadheads from the types discussed previously. They are featured here for their overall quality.

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 19:14 PST - Details

Best Fixed Blades Broadheads

G 5 Outdoors Montec 100 Grain 1-1/16

G 5 Outdoors Montec 100 Grain 1-1/16

This broadhead is made of stainless steel and doesn’t subject easily to rust.

It is razor sharp and what you will need to subdue your prey. Its cutting diameter is 100 grain at 1-1/16 inches.

Its cut-on-contact tip will surely reach your target accurately because accuracy is Montec’s game.

As being a fixed blade, it is bound to be very durable resilient when it comes to resharpening the 60-degree angle tapered blade.

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 21:41 PST - Details

Wasp Drone Broadhead 100 Grain Fixed Blade

Wasp Drone Broadhead 100 Grain Fixed Blade

Wasp is a trusted brand when it comes to broadheads, and you can’t go wrong with their Drone.

The reduced surface area promises supreme accuracy, penetration, and durability.

This broadhead is made of stainless steel and stays sharp longer than other metals. The tip can puncture through the bone of the animal leaving it helpless allowing for a fast kill.

The cutting diameter is at 1-1/8 inches and weighs only 100 grains.

After the tip makes contact, the blades that are on the rear side begins to cut through flesh and leave a blood trail. Blades can be replaced.​

Drone Broadhead by Wasp Archery
Sportsman Supply Inc. - Sports
$29.99 - $1.00 $28.99

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 19:13 PST - Details

Best Mechanical Broadheads

Grim Reaper Razorcut SS Expandable Broadhead

Grim Reaper Razorcut SS Expandable Broadhead

Razorcut by Grim Reaper Broadheads are devastating regarding the blood trail. It travels fast and can cut through as large as 1-3/4 inches.

Being made of stainless steel and weighing 100 grains, there is no problem of hitting as accuracy is one of the strengths of a mechanical broadhead.

The cut-on-contact tip promises razor sharpness, and the blade has Maxx-Edge SS technology that deploys 0.35-inch blades for a good flesh penetration.

Blades are replaceable, so you just insert new blades if the old blades become dull.

Grim Reaper Razorcut SS Whitetail Spec 2" Cut 3 Bld 100gr
Grim Reaper - Sports
$35.99 - $3.55 $32.44

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 19:13 PST - Details

G5 Outdoors T3 Crossbow Broadhead

G5 Outdoors T3 Crossbow Broadhead

This broadhead for crossbow has field point accuracy that is devastating when it hits the target.

The material used is steel, and the durability of this one is sealed.

It has three blades that expand with the help of spider clips. These clips allow for pre-tune blade development.

Also, its cutting diameter is large at 1-1/2”, the hole is surely going to be large.

The difference of this crossbow broadhead between a compound bow broadhead of the same model is that the latter has silver clips. Crossbow broadhead instead has red clips and kind of stiffer.

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 18:04 PST - Details

Best Expandable / Hybrid Broadheads

Swhacker 100 Grain 3 Pack Cut

Swhacker 100 Grain 3 Pack Cut

This one flies like a field tip and distinguished for two separate cutting edges. The ferrule of green color is made of anodized aircraft aluminum.

The tip is made of high-carbon steel while the expandable blades are of stainless steel.

The mechanical broadhead is a devastating weapon to use as it can punch through 2 inches after penetration.

It only weighs 100 grains. The wing blades don’t open upon entry until they do inside of the body.

Swhacker Set of 3-100 Grain 2 Inch Cut Broadheads
Swhacker - Sports
$34.95 - $13.95 $21.00

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 18:04 PST - Details

G 5 Outdoors T3 100 Grain Broadhead

G 5 Outdoors T3 100 Grain Broadhead

This product is proud to claim that their broadhead is 100 percent made of stainless steel.

The blades expand upon contact with skin with the help of spider clips. So the cutting diameter is as big as 1-1/2 inches while weighing 100 grains.

It is said that this broadhead is 320% stronger than its competitor made of aluminum.

G 5 Outdoors T3 100 Grain Broadhead (3 Pack)
Sportsman Supply - Sports
$42.99 - $11.07 $31.92

Last Updated: 2018-04-21 at 19:14 PST - Details

Best Broadhead Buying Guide

Best Broadhead

In this section, we will present how to choose the perfect broadhead to use with your arrows.

1. Weight of Prey

The type of broadhead to use depend on what prey will you hunt on. As for fixed blade broadheads, they perform best when used to fire at prey under 50 lbs. The mechanical broadhead, on the other hand, is for prey above 50 lbs.

When hunting big game, penetration is the key but what ends the hunt is the accuracy of your arrows.

Such that in this case, mechanical broadheads are OK as they can cut largely through leaving the game with a big hole where the blood flows out.

With larger holes mean larger volume of blood in a short time so, the prey can’t be that far when it dies.

2. Blade Count

It’s already established that the more the blades, the greater is the cutting diameter. With a blade count of three or four, the chances of hitting tissue are greater and the blood volume gushing out will be several times larger.

Blood trail is important after you fire your arrow and hits the animal.

As the prey’s instinct is to run away, having an endless flow of blood trail is great to track the animal down. And of course, because of this, the animal won’t be suffering longer, leading to a fast and ethical kill.

3. Weight of Broadhead

Once you’ve chosen the broadhead type you find suitable; next is to check out if the combined broadhead and arrow shaft weight is suitable for your compound bow or crossbow.

Most manufacturers include the recommended arrow weights with the purchased bows and it’s best to follow so as not to risk damage to your equipment.

4. Material

Of course, the material that the broadhead is made of is important. They need to be tough, durable, and won’t easily dull. Most broadheads are made of carbon steel or aluminum.

For broadheads made of carbon, they are either coated or stainless steel. Carbon steel has always been known for their sharpness and durability though they are also infamous to be often sharpened to retain their razor blades.

Aluminum metal is lightweight and would make a great broadhead because it travels fast.

5. Price

For every tool, the price of it is always the final factor to decide to push through in purchasing it or not. It’s a fact that the higher the price, the better the quality it possesses.

But there are medium-priced broadheads that can guarantee the desired user experience it can give. Be more aware of your preferences and follow what it tells you to buy.


As learned by reading this article, best broadheads are necessary to achieve a fast and ethical kill with those who we hunt. Hunting is a sport and the best broadhead amo0ng with a best compound bow or crossbow are a great combination.