New UFC Cage Fighting Champion

HEAD3Sponsored by: Swhacker BroadheadsC’Mere Deer Products & Atsko Products

 

By: bowhunting biologist Wade Nolan
By: bowhunting biologist Wade Nolan

I thought Anderson Silva was unbeatable…then his leg broke like a 2-cent pretzel stick, plus he was losing the fight before the leg disaster. There is a lot involved in being the champion. In the UFC, you have to get through the gauntlet of amazing contestants to get to the top. In the broadhead world, you need to have blade integrity. Not all broadheads are championship material.

Last spring I set out to find out if there was an integrity champion among the broadheads we shoot. The testing we devised had never been done.  I decided to introduce broadheads to cage fighting. It was a gauntlet of steel wires. The test was fun to set up. We’d put the belt on a new champion.

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We chose a newly designed PSE crossbow for both accuracy and kinetic energy delivery. The slo-mo camera is capable of stopping a 7mm mag in mid flight so you can examine the spinning rifling stripes. Filming arrows was a breeze.
We chose a newly designed PSE crossbow for both accuracy and kinetic energy delivery. The slo-mo camera is capable of stopping a 7mm mag in mid flight so you can examine the spinning rifling stripes. Filming arrows was a breeze.

The broadhead team was working with me at PSE’s Tucson shooting lab. My friend Pete Shepley allowed me to use his shooting lab and his $70,000 digital slow motion camera to record the results. We chose to simulate the UFC cage with heavy galvanized wire panels layered into a stack of wire pancakes. We took this wire pad and cast it into military spec ballistic gelatin. It was awesome. It looked as if a .470 nitro express might blow through, but never a broadhead.

We chose to imbed the galvanized wire directly in ballistic gel. This would give the individual strands of wire backing during impact and allow a broadhead to cut through the cage without creating a pillow effect and absorbing the impact energy.
We chose to imbed the galvanized wire directly in ballistic gel. This would give the individual strands of wire backing during impact and allow a broadhead to cut through the cage without creating a pillow effect and absorbing the impact energy.

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We used a PSE Smoke crossbow to launch the arrows, which were delivering about 90 +ft/lb/e. Reed Nolan filmed and Candice Nolan operated the slow motion camera.
We used a PSE Smoke crossbow to launch the arrows, which were delivering about 90 +ft/lb/e. Reed Nolan filmed and Candice Nolan operated the slow motion camera.

I have conducted more broadhead slow motion testing than anyone in the bowhunting industry so I knew that I might be surprised at the result. I don’t always accurately predict the outcome of these tests. This cage test was so bizarre that we spent a lot of time addressing safety concerns associated with making a series of shots indoors. You’ll note that Candice is behind a 4X8 sheet of one inch Plexiglas.

 

We tested the broadhead you shoot.
We tested the broadhead you shoot.

We made over 20 test shots at the matrix of heavy wire and gelatin. One thing I learned quickly was that brittle blades lose footing in a cage fight. Note the blade sticking out of the ballistic gel in the pic below. That blade is from an (OOC) open-on-contact head that many bowhunters shoot.

Less is more. When you are asking a broadhead to perform fancy blade maneuvers upon impact you are asking for trouble. "Complicated" often results in blade failure.
Less is more. When you are asking a broadhead to perform fancy blade maneuvers upon impact you are asking for trouble. “Complicated” often results in blade failure.

 

Look at that matrix of .40 gauge galvanized wire. For a broadhead to make it through with blades intact, it would have to slice, snip and flex.
Look at that matrix of .40 gauge galvanized wire. For a broadhead to make it through with blades intact, it would have to slice, snip and flex.

The testing results were surprisingly uniform, smashed broadheads and broken blades.

 

Slow motion footage is viewed immediately after a shot. Candice triggers the camera and the frames roll at 4000-10,000 a second. We see it all in real-time.
Slow motion footage is viewed immediately after a shot. Candice triggers the camera and the frames roll at 4000-10,000 a second. We see it all in real-time.

The winning broadhead relied on cryogenically tempered steel used in battle ready swords. The steel is hard enough to hold a superior edge but it is extremely flexible. I have bent these broadhead blades into curlicues with pliers and they refuse to break. The chisel bone cutter blades are reverse chisel sharpened, which allowed them to snip the galvanized wire while deploying the big cutter blades.

This is what a bowhunter needs if he plans on shooting animals that are made of flesh and bones. Sometimes it is important for a blade to cut through rib bones, flex around  big bones and still keep on cutting. Winning the cage fight was a big championship event.

 

The science doesn't lie.
The science doesn’t lie.

 

Slow motion footage is viewed immediately after a shot. Candice triggers the camera and the frames roll at 4000-10,000 a second. We see it all in real-time.
Slow motion footage is viewed immediately after a shot. Candice triggers the camera and the frames roll at 4000-10,000 a second. We see it all in real-time.
Proof is in the pudding, or in this case the jello. We tore the ballistic gel open and made a discovery. The only broadhead to retain its blades after a cage fight was the Swhacker.
Proof is in the pudding, or in this case the jello. We tore the ballistic gel open and made a discovery. The only broadhead to retain its blades after a cage fight was the Swhacker.

 

Soon you will be trying the Swhacker. It is the only broadhead cage baptized in Blood Science.
Soon you will be trying the Swhacker. It is the only broadhead cage baptized in Blood Science.

Watch this 2-minute video and get educated on cage fighting broadheads.

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Check out more by going to: Swhacker Broadheads

For more please go to: Wade Nolan/Whitetail University

 

4 Responses to "New UFC Cage Fighting Champion"

  1. C.D. Hall   2014/02/25 at 7:37 am

    Was this a test including only o.o.c. broad heads? I’ve always shot zwickeys and magnus and I’ve never broken one.

    • Wade Nolan   2014/02/25 at 9:40 am

      CD,
      Good question. I did test some broadheads with removable blades. I did not test Zwickey or Magnus. They would not experience blade damage. Broadheads with removable, component blades did have a high blade failure rate because their blades are made with the cheap strip grinding method, which always yields a brittle blade. As you know, deer die because of blood loss. I suggest you look at Swhacker because the 125-gr. cuts a 2 1/4 inch path through tissue and your broadheads cut a 1-inch path. It’s all about tissue damage and blood loss. Have you watched the testing videos at http://www.swhacker.com Good luck in the whitetail woods. Wade

  2. Joe   2014/02/25 at 10:28 pm

    I might buy this story if it was not sponsored by shwacker. Nice try!

    • Wade Nolan   2014/02/26 at 7:52 am

      Very few broadhead companies invest in testing. They just invest in marketing, with TV “stars”…who get a big check to shoot whatever. Many bowhunters fall for it. My position with Swhacker was not influenced by the sponsor. In most cases they weren’t even present. I do the science. What you see is what happened in the lab.
      Here is a challenge. Duplicate it and see what you learn. If you take your critical goggles off you’ll notice that Swhacker didn’t always win in every test. But the broadhead won honestly the overall testing. Swhacker engineering is unparalleled.