Finding the perfect arrow for your 3D set up is a fairly simple task. There are many factors involved but if you try and keep the fundamentals of shooting in the forefront of your mind then it becomes much easier.
Accuracy Always Wins
Oftentimes, 3D shooters choose the largest arrow available because of the theory that the larger arrow will touch more lines, therefore, giving them a higher score. But the reality is this. Accuracy always wins! Always choose the arrow that shoots the best. Don’t choose the largest diameter arrow just because its big! If a smaller shaft shoots tighter groups, misses less and boost your confidence in your ability then by all means shoot the smaller shaft.
At times, I have had struggles in the past attempting to tune the larger diameter stiffer arrow due to poor dynamic nock travel in cam design. I needed a smaller diameter weaker spine to correctly and efficiently tune my bow so that I could perform at a high level of shooting. All arrow manufacturers have guide charts to help you choose the best spine, weight and size for your bow setup.
Fletch for Control
Some of the biggest mistakes I see people make with 3D arrows is under sizing the fletching. Wind drag is a real concern but when shooting a large diameter shaft you’ll need to make sure you have adequate fletching surface area. Also, make sure that your arrow/fletching combination has enough clearance. A big arrow with tall fletching makes for easy contact on cables, rests and risers. Use foot powder spray on your arrow for detecting contact. This will ensure that you are getting the best results for accuracy.
Point it in the Right Direction
Lightweight points and large diameter shafts typically result in a not so good shooting arrow. There is the occasional exception to the rule but most often heavier is better. Not only does a heavy point help for guiding the arrow through the air to the target but it also helps in smashing other arrows in its way. Glancing off other arrows in the target is a far too common sight that can cost you a lot of points. I suggest using a long coned shaped point for best results when trying to minimize glancing. This works well with all size arrows.
Ultimately, the decision for choosing the perfect 3D arrow should be based more on shooting results rather than diameter. Remember, you are only as good as your worst shot. So make the most of your accuracy and your scores will reflect good decision making.