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I have a black widow ma3 takedown 56# @ 28in and 60in long. I'm pretty new to bows without cams. I'm shooting aluminum xx75 with 125gr tips. I have some people that tell me arrow weight isn't a big deal then others that recommend weighted inserts and know the exact grains of each arrow. Is this something to worry about or is it majoring in the minors?
 

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If you truely want to get the best consistent performance out of your recurve then yes arrow weight is very important. It is not so much the total arrow weight, but more so grains per inch and spine. You are on the right track with 125 heads and could even go heavier (either weighted inserts or 150-175 heads.

First question would be what size arrows are you shooting? 2016's are a great start, and you might even like 2018 shooting 56#. Also what length are you arrows cut to?

I shoot XX75 2016 cut to 29" with 125 heads. Total weight is 490 grains. These shoot great, but I always love experimenting with different weights/spines/heads. Aluminum gives you a lot of options
 

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2117 at that length should be pretty nice for you at 56#, just a bit stiffer spine than 2016/2018. At 12 gpi with 125 gr head and fletching/nock you should be just over 500 gr, which is plenty for hunting.

Don't hesitate to try adding some weight up front though. They might fly even nicer and hit harder.
 

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Heavier arrows increase penetration every time vs lighter arrows. More penetration cuts up more lethal tissue than less penetration, AND leaves a better blood trail w/ and exit wound. Guys who say this and that probably haven't studied it much. Read up on Dr. Ashby's studies on penetration. He's spent years laying scientific trials and analysis to his arrow penetration studies. Be forewarned, he goes at it from a scientific viewpoint, and there is TONS of his data and analysis out there - youtube and written format all over the net. It can take days to go thru everything he's done on the subject, and digest it. Most guys won't want to bother themselves with true details only to arrive at an answer that doesn't meet their latest acquisition of whack 'em and stack 'em equipment.

Basically, he is a heavy arrow fan, with cut-on-contact heads, and a big fan of extreme forward-of-center balance on the arrow.....AND true arrow to bow tuning. If an arrow/head combo isn't perfectly tuned to your bow, your style of shooting, your draw length, etc., it won't do as well as it could on penetration. Paper tuning is the only way to go on true tuning IMHO. Bare shaft is probably best to start. Ashby has found that a minimum total arrow weight of 650 grains or more increases penetration very noticeably and consistently, and says his data shows that to be true from at least 40# draw weight on up to at least 100#, and in stickbows, compounds, whatever. Speed is much less relevant than arrow weight on penetration.

Read up on Ashby's stuff if you haven't - it's very interesting, and nobody's disputing it after years.
 

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I'm a fan of heavy arrow weight, within reason though. I prefer to load up the front of my arrows. I use a 125 grain head on a 75 grain adapter screwed into a 50 grain brass insert. My total arrow weight is 494 grains with 250 of that up front. I think you'll find out for yourself what your bow likes and or doesn't like is part of the whole stickbow experience. You'll know it when you find the right combination, your bow will let you know.
 

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I have no intention of high jacking the thread, but could someone recommend arrow spine & weight for a 40-45 pound center shot long bow?

I've been shooting for two years with carbon and want to switch over to wood. I don't ever plan on shooting much past 15 yards. I just want an arrow that is as consistent ans forgiving as possible for a deer size vital zone. Thanks.
 

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Agree with all of Tuna's comments . . . .

Just to add a little more info - note that to prevent limb damage on a recurve, manufacturers usually recommend a minimum arrow weight. Looking at the frequently asked questions on Black Widow's webpage, they state the warranty won't be honored if limb damage occurs using an arrow less than 8 grains per pound of draw weight and recommend 9 to 11. Following this you need at least 448 grains total, with their recommendation being 504 to 616. As Tuna mentions, your 2117 is 12 grains per inch of length, before adding insert, head, fletching, etc..

When considering additional insert weight, do a web search on arrow Front of Center balance (FOC) and be aware of it.

IMO arrow weight should be consistent to give repeatable trajectory, just like when fine tuning a rifle. My bows usually shoot best and have good arrow penetration in the 11.5 to 12 grains per pound weight and 11% FOC.

Good Luck.
 
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