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Equipment Failure During Cold Weather


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On Monday, the last day of the season, I had an equipment failure that cost me a bow kill. I've never heard of an arrow breaking due to cold temps, but it's making me wonder if the arrow may have been cracked already or if this was actually due to the cold and I should have gone fishing instead.

I know my arrows are not under-spined. I am shooting a .340 spine @ 29", 65# actual draw, 70# adjusted draw. The Hoyt is no speed demon, last time I chrono'd it I was at about 260 fps.

I sat all day long in the cold temps and passed up a few deer, including one shooter that already shed one side. About 2 pm I had a group of 4 antlerless deer come in perfectly and offered a 20 yd chip shot. I drew back and when I shot it sounded like the nock broke and the bow dry fired. The arrow sailed out slower than normal and the doe got out of the way. It appeared that it hit her hind quarter, but I was extremely happy to find no sign on the arrow or snow indicating a clean miss.

The arrow basically exploded in mid air from about 2/3 of the way up the shaft through the wrap and fletchings. I guess this is just bothering me because I don't know exactly what happened. The arrow may have been damaged during the season. I always re-fletch and spin test my arrows before the season and have separate arrows for practice during the season. Otherwise I was wondering if anyone has seen or heard of a carbon arrow or nock getting brittle in cold weather.

I'll try to post a pic, but it may have to wait until tomorrow when I get to work because I am on my phone and do not currently have internet access at home.

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Man that really stinks. I have never heard of this happening, but like vehicles, the cold weather brings out the weaker parts of your equipment. Buddy missed out on a trophy buck this past late season. He hunted one morning when it was snowing quite heavily. Left his bow in the truck overnight. Next morning, the shooter comes within 20 yards. He let's the arrow fly and is horrified to find out his arrow flip rest froze and never dropped. Big miss. He was sick about it for a week. Great learning lesson for myself. Late season is all about the details. BC

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Back in the day when I shot aluminum arrows I had a few nocks break when shooting out in the really cold. I think it was like 10 below and I went outside and shot at a haybale just for fun. I think I broke 3 before I finally quit.....

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I kind of figured it was due to a flaw in the arrow or nock. It is a long season and I am somewhat hard on my gear. I have a second set of matching arrows for practice during the season so the arrow could have been damaged for a while. I guess this is definitely a lesson learned on inspecting all components regularly. It has just been bothering me that I do not know the exact cause.

Here is a pic of the arrow...


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