Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

If Bowfishing is not your cup of tea, DO NOT ENTER! This section is for questions and reports
User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

I had it happen the other night, and still can't figure out what happened. First shot of the night, went to shoot at a flounder, and when I let the string go, the next thing I knew, something clocked me in the jaw, and the butt end of the arrow was actually lodged in my face about an inch or so. :shock: Just glad it was the plastic nock that went in my face, and not the other end with the gator point.

My only response was to say "WTF?!" and then pull the arrow out of my face. Fortunately I had someone on board, and he did a quick assessment. Since I wasn't gushing blood, and I wasn't spitting any out, I knew that it hadn't gone through my jaw, and hadn't hit anything vital. It hurt, probably about like being punched in the jaw, but I hadn't gone out there to just turn around and go home. So, I let 'er bleed, and kept on going, and got 4 flounder and 1 nice sheepshead. Did that with the gig, I was too gun-shy to shoot the bow anymore that night.

When it happened, I actually had it on video, because I was wearing my POV glasses. And considering how close that was to my eye, I can guarantee you I won't be shooting at any more fish without having on a pair of glasses. 2 inches lower, it could have been my neck, so, I think I'll also be wearing a turtleneck when I bowfish.

I've shot a bow and arrow thousands of times at fish and never had this happen. Even before I started using the saf-t-slide mechanism, just tying the string to the end of the arrow, it never happened. Still at a loss to figure out how it happened, but I'm just glad it wasn't more serious. Now I'm apprehensive to ever shoot the bow again, and even more apprehensive to shoot my crossbow. I want to continue bowfishing, but not at the risk of being blinded or killed.

Maybe it was bad karma, or maybe just a 1 in 1 million freak accident. I don't know.

Has anyone else ever had this happen? If I were to use a short piece of 14 or maybe 20 lb test mono between the saf-t-slide and my reel string, I think that would allow me to retrieve my arrow, even with a fish, but in the event of a snap-back, it might keep me from eating another arrow. Would that work?
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
vahunter
Posts: 538
Joined: 24 Aug 2011, 06:30
8
Location: Hampton Roads, VA

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by vahunter »

Wow! Pics, or it didn't happen

Haha I haven't been bow fishing (yet) so I can't help answer. Maybe the line didn't come out the spool free as it should? Kinda like braided line digs into itself. That had to suck
2011 Weldbilt 1548V with 1995 25hp 2-stroke Johnson
Fishing/Duck boat

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

vahunter » 8 minutes ago wrote:Wow! Pics, or it didn't happen
OK, here ya go:
100_0761.JPG
This injury is 4 days old, and the swelling has gone down. The nock went in at an angle, then stuck. Not sure how deep it really went, but I know the corner of my jawbone was sore for a couple of days, now starting to hurt less, so, it probably hit a nerve. Still, it could have been worse.



I haven't been bow fishing (yet) so I can't help answer. Maybe the line didn't come out the spool free as it should? Kinda like braided line digs into itself. That had to suck

Yeah, you could say that, LOL. Not only did I miss the flounder, the arrow hit me! Which really sucks, because I had my POV glasses, and had planned on doing a video of bowfishing for flounder. Immediately after the mishap, I did reload and shoot a second time (hoping it wouldn't repeat what had just happened) and it worked just fine. But after already having an arrow stuck in my face, like I say, I just used the gig for the rest of the night.

Will DEFINITELY be wearing safety glasses at all times when bowfishing from now on. Still trying to find a pair of clear polarized safety glasses. I figure the polarization might give me a little added clarity when looking in the water at night. Polarized sunglasses work great, but only in the daytime, they're kinda dark for gigging at night.

Think I may also experiment with making up a 'shock leader' to go between the arrow and the 200# line on my hand reel. Again, this will hopefully allow me to shoot and retreive my arrow and fish, but in the event of a quick shock, the line should part, letting the arrow go, instead of snapping back at me. I'd rather lose an arrow than an eye, or get hit in the neck and bleed to death.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
vahunter
Posts: 538
Joined: 24 Aug 2011, 06:30
8
Location: Hampton Roads, VA

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by vahunter »

No kidding. Good luck with the glasses. Maybe try the yellow shooting glasses?
2011 Weldbilt 1548V with 1995 25hp 2-stroke Johnson
Fishing/Duck boat

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

That's what I was thinking. The yellow/amber shooting glasses tend to make things appear brighter, which may be a big help out there gigging. Have not found any clear glasses that are polarized.
Last edited by PSG-1 on 02 Nov 2013, 11:14, edited 1 time in total.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

The Solution to Arrow Snap-Back...Shock Leader!!

Post by PSG-1 »

UPDATE:

This afternoon, I tried my 'shock leader' idea in the backyard. And it works!

Basically tied a short piece of 20# test to the saf-t-slide, then, made a loop on the end, to tie the 200# test line from the reel.

I shot several times at my target, the line uncoiled correctly, and the 20# test never broke.

OK, so, for the snap-back test, I put on my flak jacket, wrapped my neck with a towel, put on a pair of safety glasses and a safety shield, just to be safe. Then, I made sure to wrap the 200# test line a couple of times behind the spool, so it would be sure to hang up upon firing. When I shot, I held the bow off to my side, so if there was a snap-back, it would be off to the side, and not in line with my face.

Well, when I shot, the arrow kept going, and I heard the 20# line snap when it parted. Arrow still went to the target, and did not snap back.

That's exactly what I was hoping it would do!! Now I feel MUCH safer. As long as I use my setup in this configuration, no matter what happens, it's not going to snap back. I'll still wear safety glasses, but at least now when I shoot, I won't be flinching in anticipation of being hit with another arrow.


I highly recommend this type of rigging to keep you safe when bowfishing.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
RiverBottomOutdoors
Posts: 1740
Joined: 20 Aug 2010, 14:46
9
Location: Halifax, Virginia
Contact:

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by RiverBottomOutdoors »

You're a smart guy....so I'm not going to ask the obvious questions like the slide being in front of the rest and such.

I've seen snap back with safety slides when the shooter does not take up the line slack and use the crow's mouth on the AMS reel. The slack can loop around the AMS trigger or anything else and snap back.

User avatar
RiverBottomOutdoors
Posts: 1740
Joined: 20 Aug 2010, 14:46
9
Location: Halifax, Virginia
Contact:

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by RiverBottomOutdoors »

You're line can also twist and knot itself inside the AMS retriever. Recommend you check your line for excessive twist.

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

I'm using a plain old plastic reel, which isn't exactly a reel, it's just designed to hold the line. I'm thinking the line may have been incorrectly set in the groove that holds the line at the edge of the spool. And because of that one notch being where it was, the line wasn't long enough to be able to tie to the arrow, and completely take out slack, so, it may be possible that's what happened. Also, I did not wet the line before the first shot (I did read that you are supposed to do that, of course, I have never done it before, but never had a snap-back, either!)

Still at a loss to figure out exactly WTH happened, but my experimentation with the shock leader has proven that the theory works, and will prevent a snap-back from ever happening again. The saf-t-slide did do what it was supposed to do, but even at a greatly reduced degree of snap-back force, it was still enough to drive itself into my face. Not cool. The shock leader will prevent this altogether.

I'd much rather have the 20# line snap and lose an arrow, instead of having the 200# line hold on to the arrow and cause it to snap back, and lose an eye.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
RiverBottomOutdoors
Posts: 1740
Joined: 20 Aug 2010, 14:46
9
Location: Halifax, Virginia
Contact:

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by RiverBottomOutdoors »

Won't get away with shooting many gar fish with a 20# line. Not because of size but because of the scales slicing the line like a razor blade.

If you use an AMS.... Always feed all of your line out before shooting to check for knots. Wetting the line lubricates it to help with knots, also adds a little weight to the line to help with line feeding into the bottle.

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

This is what type of reel I've been using:
100_0762.JPG

Here's a video where I demonstrate the shock leader, and BTW, the accident is also on this same video:




For gar, you would want to use 30# or even #50, but probably not much above that, or it may not work.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

GaryBriggs
Posts: 15
Joined: 17 Nov 2013, 16:16
6

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by GaryBriggs »

Get rid of those retrievers and hand feels, rig up a muzzy spinner with 200lb fast flight. If the line tangles it will break in 2. Saftey slides don't work, I tie the fast flight right to the back of the arrow. There's a video online showing a guy shooting a kids bow at 15lbs or so purposely trying to get fast flight or carp cable to snap back, the line breaks every time!

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

The shock leader does the same thing. If the line gets snagged, the shock leader will break in half, preventing the arrow from snapping back. I plan on going bowfishing again here in a few days, now I won't have to worry about the possibility of eating an arrow.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

User avatar
RiverBottomOutdoors
Posts: 1740
Joined: 20 Aug 2010, 14:46
9
Location: Halifax, Virginia
Contact:

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by RiverBottomOutdoors »

Safety slides do work...they keep the line in front of the rest and away from cable and string! Don't be stupid and tie to the back of the arrow!

User avatar
PSG-1
Posts: 2248
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 08:48
8
Location: South Carolina (redneck riviera)

Has anyone ever had an arrow 'snap-back'?

Post by PSG-1 »

The saf-t-slide did work in my incident, it reduced the power of the snap-back to a less-than-lethal amount of force, but it still had enough energy to punch a hole in my face.

Shock leader, shock leader, and shock leader! ESPECIALLY if you're not using a saf-t-slide!

On a side note, one of my friends said back in the '70's they used pop tops from drink cans as saf-t-slides, put it on the arrow and tie a string to it.
ALUMA-JET project:
http://www.tinboats.net/forum/viewtopic ... 21&t=22023


Fishing, jet skiing, target shooting, jet-boating, and even a little oyster harvesting with Larry The Cable Guy.
Watch it all right here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/HKPSG1Shooter?feature=mhee

Post Reply