Is an Arrow More Deadly than a Bullet?

I grew up shooting bows. Some people play golf, I do this – Brad Leone

While both were designed with a single purpose in mind, to kill whatever they were being fired at, the simple truth is that a bullet is, and always has been far more deadly than an arrow.

Bullets use far energy, are designed to spread after impact, and cause far more external and internal damage than an arrow wound does. As well as entry, and sometimes exit wounds, bullets also kill their targets using something called hydrostatic shock.

This occurs when a bullet hits its target and the resulting shockwave released by the energy of the impact pulverizes and damages organs which can, and does lead to secondary shock and massive internal bleeding. And if a bullet also strikes bone, it can shatter and splinter them and send bone fragments spiraling throughout the body of whoever, or whatever they’ve hit, and cause further catastrophic damage.

Editor’s Note: Shopping for a crossbow with 450 frames per second field bag target?  By comparison, when an arrow strikes its target, it creates a small puncture wound and usually kills its target through a combination of shock and blood loss, or by damaging a specific area of the physiology of the target.

As they strike with less energy and speed and don’t deform on impact or cause as much damage to their target, the only way that an arrow can effectively match the killing power of a bullet is if they are purposely treated with fast-acting poisons and toxins before they are fired at their target.Or if toxins and poisons aren’t used, the other way to maximize the damage that an arrow can do is by purposely re-shaping its head to cause penetrative damage. If this is done correctly when an arrow then strikes its target, it not only causes significantly more organic and tissue damage when it penetrates said target, it can also be impossible to remove without creating additional trauma. One of the oldest and most effective ways to increase the effectiveness of an arrow is by sawing serrations into its head, so the only way it can be removed from the body of its target is by pushing it through and effectively creating a secondary wound, which increases blood loss, trauma, and shock. But even if the effectiveness of an arrow is improved using either or both of the previously described methods, it still won’t be as deadly as a bullet. The energy, speed, and simplistic, yet brutal, way in which bullets are designed and used, will always make them far more deadly than arrows.

Are Arrows Faster than Bullets?

Comparing the speed of an arrow to that of a bullet is like comparing the Wright Brothers Flyer to an F-15 Tomcat. Even using the most advanced technology available, the fastest speeds an arrow can reach are four hundred and fifty feet per second, while the fastest bullets travel at around two thousand six hundred feet per second. The fastest arrows can’t even begin to match the velocity of the slowest bullet, which is still three times faster at around (depending on the weapon used to fire it), around thirteen hundred feet per second.

While the average arrow has around ten times the mass of an equivalent bullet, it isn’t the size that does the damage, it’s the speed at which they hit their target that makes bullets far more deadly than arrows.

Can an Arrow Break Glass?

Yes, arrows can break glass, and using them to do so is one of the most favored tricks in the arsenal of any accomplished archer. While some archers can make it look easy, being able to make an arrow break or shatter glass, isn’t quite as simple as it can be made to seem and is dependent on a combination of three factors. The most important is the draw weight, or the strength, of the bow being used. The higher the draw weight of the bow is, the more powerful it is and the more powerful a bow is, the more likely it is to break its glass target. The second of the three is the range at which an arrow is fired at the glass being used as a target. Obviously, and it goes without saying, the closer that an archer is to the glass that he or she is firing at, the more likely it is that the glass will break. And lastly, whether or not the glass breaks also depends on the angle that the arrow strikes it at. If the arrow being fired hits the glass head-on, all of the collective energy of the shot and the mass of the arrow is forced through the smallest part of the arrow’s head, which will drive it straight through the glass, shattering its target.

If the angle is slightly off, and the arrow hits the glass with the side of its head rather than the point, it can, and almost certainly will be deflected and “bounce off” the glass.

Can an Arrow Kill Instantly?

There’s a school of thought that will try to insist that an arrow can’t kill you instantly, but that school teaches a curriculum that no one should pay any heed to it. A well-placed shot that strikes its target in either the eye and drives onward into the brain or finds its mark in the heart, can easily kill your target immediately.Making those sorts of shots, especially at any kind of distance, is incredibly hard and takes a world-class level of skill. That’s why most archers will tell you that a well-placed shot that nicks or hits either the femoral or carotid artery will usually take around seven minutes to kill its target through a combination of shock and blood loss.

Can an Arrow Pierce a Skull?

An arrow is more than capable of piercing a human, or any other skull, and its ability to do so depends on two things. The power of the bow being used and the shape of the arrowhead. The higher that the draw pressure of the bow being used is, the more likely the arrow it shoots will be to pierce a skull.

Draw pressure is a measure of how powerful a bow is, and the higher it is, the faster that bow can shoot, and the faster the speed at which an arrow travels, the more energy it has and the more energy it has, the more powerful it is. In other words, the faster an arrow goes, the more likely it is to pierce any skull. The shape of an arrow can also determine its ability to pierce a human or any other skull. The smaller and sharper the tip of an arrow is, the more likely it is to pierce a skull if it strikes it head-on. Why? Because there is more mass and collective energy gathered behind a far smaller area.

And the more mass and energy the arrow has, the more likely it is to pierce a bone, or in this case a skull.

What is the Deadliest Broadhead?

This is another question that depends on three different factors – whether or not the broadhead in question is a fixed or mechanical blade, a cut-on-contact or chisel tip, and the weight and balance of the arrow being fired. While all three factors have their own set of advantages, one of the most reliable manufacturers of broadheads, who take all of those factors into account and in doing so have become beloved by bowhunters everywhere are Ramcat.

They have transformed the broadhead into an instrument of death that even the most inexperienced hunter can easily learn to use, and master. 

Ramcat Pivoting Broadheads

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