After absorbing more than 1,000 close range shots, this buck was still on its feet.
Pound a few dozen broadheads into most life-size 3-D archery targets and they start blowing foam chunks. In our search for the perfect target, we put a Rinehart Broadhead Buck through the wringer, pummeling it with more than 1,000 shots at 10 yards. We used a PSE Axe (342 fps, 97.42 ft.-lb. of kinetic energy) to deliver arrows tipped with scary-sharp Tru-Fire T1-100 fixed-blade broadheads. We limited our shooting to just one side of the vitals. Shooting a foam target at 10 yards with an arrow delivering 97.42 ft.-lb. of kinetic energy would not be considered “normal use.” But, hey–this is a torture test.
After the first 250 shots, it was difficult to tell the target had been shot even once, as the self-healing foam closed around the blade incisions when we removed the arrows. As we poured more shots into it, and the broadhead slices began to intersect each other, small chunks of foam sloughed off, but not to a degree that would render the target unusable. At the 500-shot mark, we had done as much damage as we were going to do. The target looked much the same throughout the second half of the test. Angled shots test the mettle of foam targets. If the foam is too rigid (i.e., cheap) the arrow will glance off. The Broadhead Buck absorbed shots at varying angles without a whimper.
Most experts agree that it takes about 35 ft.-lb. of kinetic energy to harvest a thin-skinned whitetail with a bow. With that in mind, we adjusted a BowTech Heartbreaker to deliver 35.18 ft.-lb. of kinetic energy (275-grain arrow at 240 fps) with a Steel Force Premium 2 Blade (100 grains) cut-on-contact broadhead. If the foam density were not pliable enough, arrows wouldn’t penetrate, but the Rinehart performed perfectly when hit by a couple dozen “slow” arrows from varying angles.
To complete our cruel and unusual evaluation, we shot our target 25 times with a Barnett Ghost 400 crossbow, delivering 400-grain arrows with a whopping 142.15 ft.-lb. of kinetic energy. At a distance of 20 yards, the target stopped all 25 arrows we sent its way without a pass-through. Amazing stuff.
Dimensions: 28 in. tall x 9 in. deep x 45 in. long
Weight: 25 pounds
-Made of proprietary self-heating foam
-Anatomically correct vitals
-Replaceable core insert ($52)
-Two anchors included
From the May issue of Outdoor Life magazine.