Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
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Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

First I wish to say this IS NOT a bash fest I desire to start. I am simply wanting to share some information in which I have learned through experience of 40 years of bowhunting, and shooting all types of bows.
I have always been a fixed blade guy, and have used many heads, and have been using Slick Trick 125 magnums out of my Excalibur Matrix 380. They are also my head of choice out of my compound--NO issues at all.
Well--last year I experimented, and used the Rage 125 crossbow extreme heads. I encountered no issues, and was able to take several deer using them out of my Matrix 380.
NOW--onto August 2016. As always I enjoy shooting all of my bows through out the years--not just hunting. As usual I had my Matrix out, and using the Rage practice head I fired two arrows/bolts into my Rinehart target aiming at two different dots. I was bench shooting, and at 20, 30, 40 yards--bullseyes.
I had it in my mind I was going to use the Rage heads again this year-UNTIL I had some surprises happen.
As I always do--I shoot the real broadheads to make very sure they will hit exactly where I want them to. So--off comes the Rage practice heads, and on go some brand new Rage 125 grain crossbow extreme heads. The first shoot-bam-dead center bullseye--great right-thats what one would want. I cocked, and loaded up again, and upon firing the arrow/bolt planed wildly-missing the target by at least four feet. I know this as I watched the leaves, and branches behind my target in the brush. I spent about 30 minutes until I located the bolt, and inspected it VERY carefully. I noted two sets of tabs broke off the shock collars instead of just one. I know full well how to align, and use the Rage products. SO--I continued shooting using stock factory bolts, and also several other bolts I made from 2219 aluminum at 20" to continue my shooting. I had several great shots hitting where I wanted, but I also had a total of THREE(3) more occurrences where the arrow planed wildly with the same noted shock collar issue.
What is happening is that the shock collars are breaking at the shot allowing the blades to no longer be retained--BAD--VERY BAD.
I have also experimented with other shock collars I have--same results. Last year I encountered NO--not one single issue like this.
What this has done to me is totally destroy my confidence in the Rage head. I am so thankful I did this prior to using them again this year to hunt. WELL--just this morning I tuned the Matrix 380, and am eating up the target at 20, 30, 40 yards using the trusted Slick Trick 125 grain magnum heads. These will be in the quiver this year once more.
It is VERY important for me to say--I am NOT here to bash the Rage product. It simply was, and is the wrong head out of, or shot from my Excalibur Matrix 380. In doing research I am not alone in my findings. Last year I had GREAT success using the Rage heads--thought I had found a head I loved. I admit--they definitely did their job on the deer I shot. Thankfully I did not encounter any issues, and I am VERY glad I did not. However in having the issues rear their ugly head while shooting in my back yard range I cannot in good faith continue to use the Rage 125 grain crossbow extreme head being shot from my Excalibur Matrix 380.
For me--the experiment is over. I will not be deviating from a proven fixed blade design in my equipment. I have never lost a deer using the Slick Tricks, and I do not intend to take chances. I mean NO offense, I am NOT bashing the Rage product in any way. It simply isn't for me. I am simply sharing information in which I feel would be valuable to others in the hope I prevent any grief, and disappointment with others using similar equipment as myself.
All my best to all, and may you take the buck of a life time this year.
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post #2 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 05:22 PM
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

I tried the Rage Hyperdermic and shot a buck with them, it looked like it was hit with an axe. I never had any issues but now after reading your post it kinda makes me wonder. I don't know if the collars are the same between the hypodermics and the extreme crossbow heads but it does make me wonder. Could you have recieved some bad collars or do you think this could be a problem with all the Rage heads they manufacture?

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post #3 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 06:50 PM
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

The narrow Excaliburs will test broadheads for sure since they have a very abrupt and violent acceleration dynamic. The heavy draw weights and no cam turnover leads to huge forces applied to the mechanical parts of broadheads the moment the arrow moves.

If mechanical broadheads are gonna fail during the shot, the Matrix and Micros from Excalibur will bring it out.

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post #4 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

I believe the issue is the fact that with a high poundage recurve style bow--all of that immediate energy being transferred into the arrow shaft causes the shock collars to do what they do--break, or shear off as they normally would given I had less energy reacting on the arrow/bolt shaft.
I have tried the blue/purple collars labeled "Crossbow 'X", and the black shock collars labeled "X-Treme".
I have been told that I should try their "Hypo" crossbow 125 heads as the issue I have found has--and I quote--"Been eliminated" with the Hypo head. I do NOT plan on going this route. I have had great luck with flight, and accuracy with the Slick Tricks out of any bow I have shot them in. I have also had great results on deer with them.
The more I experimented with the Crossbow Extreme 125's-(they are orange in color)-the angrier I got. I absolutely love the concept of a slip-cam design. Ive seen what they can do on game, but feel I am really no further ahead as I have also witnessed what any decent fixed blade can do. One cannot re-invent dead.
The big thing was the fact I discovered this in shooting in my back yard. Lucky for me there is plenty of room so any down range danger does not exist beyond my target.
Let me say this--If you want to witness something VERY-VERY scary--An arrow/bolt planing wildly at a chrono'd speed of 378fps is nothing but a blur. All I could see was leaves, and branches on the brush behind my target area getting ripped up as the arrow/bolt contacted as it passed way over top, and left, and right of my intended target. For me--this goes WAY beyond a dangerous situation. I want to know full well where that shot is going to impact with in reason of course, but when I say 'wildly-planing"-I mean a literal blur of leaves, branches as the arrows/bolts were not even remotely close to their intended target. It is my opinion that it's what ever the shock collars are made of--they simply cannot take the stress when the crossbow is fired, and the stored energy is transferred from limbs, string, and into the arrow/bolt. In surfing the web I have found other instances of exactly what I have happening.
I DO NOT fault the broadhead, or it's design.
In one instance I had used a brand new shock collar. I had carefully aligned the collar--they have an arrow--You DO NOT put the blades in the slotted part-the tabs retain the blades by kind of hooking the little cut on the blade. It's a great concept as long as the tabs do not break prematurely.
Like I said though-I will NOT bash the Rage product. I am not that kind of guy who slings all kinds of negative comments just to be rude. I plan on sticking with my trusted fixed blades as I have used that style for many years with no failures. I simply tune the bow, shoot it in, and hunt.
I have always used the Montec ASD to true up my inserts, spin testing all arrows, and shooting them with real broadheads prior to hunting with them. I want to know my gear, and equipment are ready. My experiment with the Rage heads has been a little expensive--they are not cheap, and I have managed to ruin a few heads just shooting them. Also shooting broadheads into a nice Rinehart target really chews up the target FAST. It is however one of the few targets that will stop the bolts at 20 yards, and farther. Under 20 yards things get interesting.
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post #5 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 06:58 PM
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

Quote:
Originally Posted by curverbowruss
I believe the issue is the fact that with a high poundage recurve style bow--all of that immediate energy being transferred into the arrow shaft causes the shock collars to do what they do--break, or shear off as they normally would given I had less energy reacting on the arrow/bolt shaft.
Precisely the reason. We must have been typing at the same time. The narrow Excaliburs are a different animal.

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post #6 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 08:20 PM
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

Maybe Rage should put a disclaimer that they will not perform properly if shot out of a an Excalibur crossbow. If this is truly the case.
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post #7 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

DPMS:
We must have been thinking, and typing at the same time
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post #8 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 09:08 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

Heit:
I can honestly say it IS the case. I am not the kind of guy that would spend, or waste time typing crazy long posts like I did if I had not experienced such a thing first hand.
It is again VERY important that I state that I in NO way like bashing, or trashing products, or spewing negative comments. Lord knows there is enough of that going on especially with certain archery, and hunting related products. I can tell you that out of my own pocket--I have spent way too much money verifying what I typed above. At least TWO packs of broadheads plus two other ones for a total of eight heads shot over, and over not to mention what my Rinehart target has suffered from the pounding. I usually have another target I use for general bow shooting, but with the crossbow it requires a lot more to stop arrows/bolts.
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post #9 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

Also to be VERY sure--thats why I shot as many heads as I did in order to actually try, and see if I could repeat what I suspected after the first time. I wanted to be VERY sure I was correct in my findings prior to opening up my mouth, and actually making such a post like I did. If I even in the most remote way could point the finger back at myself--finding that it was shear user error on my part. I would fess up, and take full responsibility for my own short comings, and failure on my end.
However that isn't the case. I am 100% sure in my experiences, and findings.
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post #10 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2016, 09:58 PM
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Re: Rage 125 crossbow and a Matrix 380 Excalibur

Quote:
Originally Posted by curverbowruss
Heit:
I can honestly say it IS the case. I am not the kind of guy that would spend, or waste time typing crazy long posts like I did if I had not experienced such a thing first hand.
It is again VERY important that I state that I in NO way like bashing, or trashing products, or spewing negative comments. Lord knows there is enough of that going on especially with certain archery, and hunting related products. I can tell you that out of my own pocket--I have spent way too much money verifying what I typed above. At least TWO packs of broadheads plus two other ones for a total of eight heads shot over, and over not to mention what my Rinehart target has suffered from the pounding. I usually have another target I use for general bow shooting, but with the crossbow it requires a lot more to stop arrows/bolts.
Hey, I believe you brother....was not questioning that in any way. I am not looking to bash Rage either and agree that folks tend to get real negative on certain legal weapons here. I am serious about the thought of a disclaimer from Rage if shot from Excalibur bows.

Have you made your finding known to Rage? May be a good idea. Would be interested to know if they have had folks mention this to them in the past....or if they would even admit to it. Can't hurt to inquire with them.
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