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Evaluations : Dave Conrad
Last Updated: Feb 22nd, 2007 - 18:37:03

Easton AC SuperSlim Field Evaluation
By Dave Conrad
Aug 8, 2005, 00:00

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Dave Conrad

Easton AC Superslim Arrow Shaft by Dave Conrad

 

Arrows are an intricate part of hunting and probably the most diverse.  Think about this, the arrow basically has not changed in appearance since its inception.  What has changed are the materials of which it is made of.  Within the last decade great strides have been accomplished in the manufacturing process.  Arrows are within thousandths of an inch of being straight over the overall length as well as uniform spine.  They are not perfect yet but Easton is an industry leader striving each year producing new ideas that hit the mark.

New for 2005 is an arrow based upon last years newly introduced and successful Axis.  As you recall I had the pleasure of evaluating the Axis, which was a small diameter carbon arrow that utilized Easton Hidden Insert Technology (HIT).  The new AC Superslim is also a small diameter shaft modeled after the highly successful ACC shaft, yet incorporates the HIT features.  Four new sizes are available and are labeled depending on the spine stiffness, 300, 340, 400 and 500.

The idea behind the Superslim is the bows energy is concentrated into a smaller diameter therefore maximizing kinetic energy.  Testing has confirmed this as penetration on layered targets clearly shows deeper penetration when compared to other larger wall arrows. 

Unlike a regular carbon the AC has an aluminum core which is bonded to the high-strength carbon fiber.  The aluminum core insures the shafts straightness as well as adding strength.  Easton guarantees the straightness of this arrow to be within .002 over its length as well as the weight tolerance to fall within half a grain.  Looking over the black non-glare micro-smooth finish of the shaft reveals no blemishes.  The shaft pulls fairly quietly over a bare metal TM hunter style rest and whisper quiet when fleece (recommended) is added.

Preparing an AC Superslim shaft is simple and the most time consuming part is probably getting the shafts cut to your desired length, unless you have your own cutoff saw.  Easton supplies all the necessary components and tools with each dozen shafts.  After having the shafts cut to length a Chamfer Stone is used to make sure that the cut is square and properly sized.  Press the just cut end of the shaft over the center hub of the Chamfer Stone and twist back a forth.  The Chamfer Stone is just like a miniature grinding wheel and should remove all blemishes and insures a flat surface with just a few twists.  Next I recommend cleaning and preparing the arrow for the insert.  Using a Q-tip, clean the inside as well as outside edge of the shaft with household Isopropyl Alcohol.  Let dry for a few minutes while you prepare the insert adhesive.  The agent consists of two different epoxies, that when mixed together form a tough bonding agent.   After mixing the bonding agent take an insert and apply a liberal amount to the back end.  Once applied push the insert into the shaft and rotate while inserting.  This ensures that the entire surface of the insert is covered.  Next take the supplied HIT installation tool and push the insert into the shaft until flush with back wall of the installation tool.  This final step seats the insert at the correct depth for proper broadhead alignment. Finishing up each shaft requires inserting the internal fitting X nock.

Now some of you hopefully read my evaluation on the all carbon Axis arrows, which was the debut shaft for the HIT technology.  I mentioned how I was able to install the HIT inserts using hot melt instead of the epoxy.  The advantage of the hot melt is that you are able to shoot the arrow immediately rather than waiting the 24 hours necessary for the epoxy to harden.  Here is the excerpt from that evaluation.

I have been experimenting with different methods of installing the insert and for those who like to use Hot Melt this method works well.  This method is of my own choosing and is not recommended by Easton.  The nice thing about hot melt is that the insert can actually be removed if desired.  It requires being a little more careful as to not damage the end of the arrow.  After chamfering the end take an insert and screw on an old broadhead ferrule, without the blades, firmly into the insert.  Next heat the insert and then apply hot melt to back end of it.  Push the insert into the shaft, rotating to make sure the entire insert is covered.  You may not be able to get the insert all the way into the shaft, which is common.  This is where the being careful comes into play.  Take a pair of pliers and grasp the broadhead at the back most part of the ferrule just before it tapers down to the threads.  Now carefully heat the tip of the broadhead.  The pliers will keep the flames from getting too close to the end of the shaft.  The heat will transfer down the ferrule and to the insert.  As you apply heat the hot melt will begin to soften.  While heating, continue to push the insert into the shaft using the pliers. 

When the insert begins to move, remove the heat from the end of the broadhead and continue pushing until the ferrule sets firmly against the shaft.  With this method you can immediately begin shooting the arrow.  If for some reason you need to remove the insert, screw a bladeless broadhead about two revolutions into the insert.  Grasp the broadhead with pliers and heat the tip of the broadhead while pulling with the pliers.  As the hot melt softens the insert will be removed.  Once again, Easton may not  agree.

I really liked this new concept of smaller diameter arrow, strengthened and heavier thanks to the aluminum core.  This gives hunters that like a small diameter shaft the weight that they have been missing in the past. 

Design 4.5 of 5

The new expansion to last years Axis arrows is sure to be a hit with hunters who would prefer a smaller diameter, yet still a heavier weight.  The HIT design is a plus as it aids in broadhead alignment.  The carbon wrapped aluminum core is a great advantage to assuring straightness. Four sizes enable archers of all lengths and weight ranges. 

Durability 3.5 of 5

The superslims have the advantages of a carbon arrow combined with the strength and straightness of the aluminum core.  They will take the abuse of everyday target practice but I recommend checking them after a shot on game or a passthrough.  The 3.5 is an above average score and just to put it in perspective I have yet to find an arrow that will top 4.0.

Specifications

  • Straightness: .002" Guaranteed max.
  •  High-strength carbon fiber bonded to a
    precision 7075 aerospace alloy core tube
  • Weight tolerance: 0.5 grains
  • Black, micro-smooth finish
  • Sizes 300, 340, 400, 500

 For More Information: Easton Archery

 

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