By Jerry Long, January 24, 2011
I examine the products that struck me most from the Archery Trade Association show.
Just like People Pictures From The Archery Trade Association these products may not be the expected line up, but they are the things that I think are the most valuable from the show.
1. Norway Industries Duravanes Zeon Fusion vanes: These vanes are designed to make your fletching more visible. The side ridges resemble little fiber pins from the back. Within 1-5 feet they appear to glow like a light. However, at distances longer than that and in flight from 242-279 fps I could tell no visible difference by eye, by video or slow motion video. I’m thinking their true value may be when you place that shot on an animal and you are looking for the exact impact location at the moment it happens. Based on a little background discussion I checked their flexibility in cold, 20 degree, weather compared to Bohning Blazers. The Zeon Fusion vanes were stiffer in the cold, but nearly the same at room temperature, 67-68 degrees. I’m considering using these this year. Approximately $12 per package of 36.
The Zeon Fusion Duravane.
A dustyvarmint Product Spotlight Video – Zeon Fusion Duravanes.
2. Lone Wolf Treestands Re-designed Bow Holder: I am, unashamedly, a Lone Wolf Treestands fan. I liked the handy convenience of the molded-in bow holder for use with non-parallel limb bows. This year’s lineup includes a re-designed bow holder to support the newer parallel limb bows. I haven’t gotten to try it out, but am anxious to see how it works and what it’ll cost me to upgrade. Complete treestands with production moving back to the US in 2011 are estimated to be $30-40 more than last year’s prices.
Lone Wolf’s re-designed bow holder.
3. Gerbing Electric Heated Vests: I need to step up my cold weather clothing arsenal and am having a hard time deciding between electric clothing and a body suit. The prices on these two battery-operated vests sure seem reasonable. In reply to my questions the guy at the booth told me they could be crushed and wadded like normal clothing. There are various heat levels with corresponding durations of battery life. Batteries can be recharged via computer USB, car DC charger or AC outlet. The fleece vest in black is $159 and the basic model is $100. A camouflage fleece model is available, but since they are made for inside layers it really isn’t necessary.
Gerbing’s electric heated fleece vest.
Gerbing’s regular heated vest.
4. Vantage Point Archery Terminator Broadheads: A one-piece, machined, cut-on-contact broadhead. These things look awesome and should be tougher than anything. Retail is $39.95 for 85-125 grain heads with the 160 grain and up heads selling for $41.95. Contact VPA directly for 100-125 grain models.
Vantage Point Archery’s Terminator broadhead.
5) Quality Archery Designs Ultrarest Pro Series HDX Rest: I converted to the QAD Ultrarest Pro Series HD rest last year and I will state unequivocally that it is the BEST rest I have EVER used, period. Once cocked it is always ready; sideways on my lap, on the stalk or upside down when I fall from my tree… My concern about forgetting to cock it (I’ve seen it on the 3D range) went totally unfounded – I’ve never forgotten. The HDX series has a re-designed vertical adjustment feature which should fit more risers, a re-designed upper capture bar for more clearance and is available in a wide variety of “bubble gum” colors. I did not have retail pricing at the time of this post.
Ultrarest Pro Series HDX rest.
6) Magnus Snuffer SS Broadhead: Available in 85, 100 and 125 grain configurations Magnus has made improvements to the head for 2011. Made from Teflon coated stainless steel and spin tested for accuracy I’m looking forward to seeing the new price point (I hear it should be near the same at approximately $31-33 per three). Combine Magnus quality with their outstanding lifetime replacement guarantee and you’ve got a winner. This has a strong contention for being my big game broadhead this year.
The Magnus Snuffer SS, left and third from left.
7) Red Feather Archery Talon Small Game Head and Phoenix Broadhead: Red Feather co-owner Stan Mercer harvests a lot of small game, 7-800 nutria in the last 3-4 years, with a bow. In response to a lot of busted judo point prongs he designed the Talon small game head. Undamaged after shots into cinder blocks and steel plates, see below, it is devastating on small game. They are available from Red Feather Archery at $13.95 per two in 100, 125 and 150 grain versions. He also sells the Phoenix broadhead; another one-piece, machined, cut-on-contact broadhead similar to the VPA Terminator. However, this one is single-bladed. Some tests on big game rib bones and scapulas in the past have shown that single-bevel broadheads, when matched with the proper fletching, may penetrate better than dual-bevel broadheads. This is another head that looks very effective and very tough. They are available in 100, 125 and 150 grain weights for $39.95 per 3 at Red Feather Archery. I have to mention that Stan was one of the absolute nicest people I talked to at ATA and I’m wondering if someday I might get in on a little of that nutria action…
The Red Feather Archery Talon Small Game Head. The middle one was shot into a cinder block while the one the left was shot into a steel plate.
Red Feather Archery’s Phoenix Broadhead – a single bevel broadhead.
8) Leverage Treestands: Cast aluminum treestand platforms are superior to any other fabrication in my opinion. Leverage is a new entrant to this market with 3 versions of a hang-on stand, a set of climbing sticks and a ladder stand. My focus is on the basic hang on stand and the climbing sticks. With a roomy platform and 23.5” seat height the 5100 hang-on model weighs just fourteen pounds. It has a built in leveling system, comes with shoulder straps and includes a unique and clever stand hanging hook/tree hook and is priced at $199.00. Also available is a newly designed climbing stick that features double-steps. They weigh 2.5 pounds each or 7.5 pounds for the standard pack of three at $99.99.
Leverage Treestand’s 5100 model hang-on stand.
Leverage Treestand’s climbing stick.
That’s all for this week. Please join me again next week for Part II.
happy hunting, dv
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Copyright © Jerry E Long, 2009-2011