The best fixed blade broadheads are ones that have razor-sharp blades, fly like field points from your bow, and inflict maximum damage. We all want that short blood trail to the buck of our dreams.
In this article, we look at what we feel are the 9 best fixed-blade broadheads on the market in 2023. These are broadheads we have tried and tested and wouldn’t hesitate to screw onto the ends of our own arrows this fall.
I’ll give my usual caveat here: while we have our favorite broadheads for various game and situations, there is truly no one ‘best’ option. Also keep in mind that broadheads for crossbows often have different requirements, so we have a whole other article for those.
Which broadhead works best for you will depend on a variety of factors, including your bow setup, arrow selection, ability to tune your bow, and a little bit of personal preference.
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What are Fixed Blade Broadheads?
As the name implies, fixed blade broadheads have no moving parts. The blades are fixed in position. In some cases, fixed blade broadheads are machined from one piece of steel, so the blades and the ferrule are formed together. That is the case with the G5 Montec broadheads featured above.
Most fixed blade broadheads, however, have replaceable blades that attache to the ferrule in various ways. This is a great feature, because if a blade or blades become dull or damaged, you can simply replace the blade without having to try to sharpen it or replace the entire broadhead.
Pros and Cons of Fixed Blade Broadheads
Features to Consider
Most fixed blade broadheads are going to come in either 85, 100, 125 or 150 grains, with 100 grains being the most common. Any of these will work effectively. It’s really a matter of your overall arrow or bolt setup as to which weight you choose. If you’re just going with a standard mid-weight arrow setup, then I’d recommend sticking with a 100 grain broadhead because they are readily available and will get the job done. However, if you’re like me and prefer a heavier arrow setup with a little higher FOC, then a 125 or even a 150 grain may be your best bet.
The past two seasons I’ve shot 150 grain broadheads on my compound bow setup, and I’ve been extremely happy with the results. This year I may go with the 125 grain Slick Trick Magnum broadheads, which should still work fine. I can always add another 25 grain weight to my insert if I wanted to keep the overall weight the same, but I really don’t think that will be necessary.
Blade thickness is an important factor when choosing the best fixed blade broadhead for your setup. It’s going to determine how well your broadheads hold up when they make contact with an animal — especially if they come in contact with any bone. Blade thickness is especially important if you’re shooting a one-piece broadhead with blades that will require sharpening.
If you’re shooting a broadhead with replaceable blades, blade thickness isn’t quite as critical, but you still don’t want the broadhead coming apart as it passes through the chest cavity of a mature buck.
Number of Blades
In your quest to find the best fixed blade broadhead, you may wonder if you should you shoot a two, three, or four-blade broadhead? First off, let me say that any of those three options will get the job done. Like most things in life, there’s tradeoffs to each option. A two-blade broadhead is going to have less resistance, so it will be more likely to pass thru an animal. The tradeoff to that reduced resistance and increased penetration is less overall tissue damage and a smaller blood trail.
Three and four-blade broadheads, on the other hand, should produce a larger wound channel and better blood trail. And while they will have more resistance than a two-blade, as long as you’re shooting a heavy enough arrow setup, penetration shouldn’t be an issue.
Cutting diameter is another important factor when choosing a fixed blade broadhead. Similar to the discussion above about the number of blades a broadhead should have, cutting diameter will impact penetration and the subsequent blood trail. A smaller cutting diameter will have less resistance and will be more likely to pass through, but it will also create a smaller wound channel. That smaller hole will me less overall tissue damage and a smaller blood trail.
That leaves you having to strike a balance between getting a solid pass-thru shot and still inflicting as much damage as possible for a good, short blood trail. Other factors in that decision will be your bow setup and overall arrow setup. If you shoot a lower poundage, short draw length, or a light arrow setup, then you will want to err on the side of smaller cutting diameter to ensure a pass-thru shot.
My preference is a 1 1/4 to 1 1/2-inch cutting diameter from a fixed blade broadhead.
Replaceable Blades vs One-Piece Design
This is another personal preference decision you’ll need to make when choosing the best fixed blade broadhead for your setup. What it really boils down to is, are you comfortable sharpening your broadhead blades? If not, then you need a broadhead with replaceable blades. That way, after you’ve dulled a broadhead from practice shooting or in a hunting situation, you can simply toss the dull blades and install new, razor-sharp ones.
If you are comfortable sharpening your blades, then a one-piece design may be the way to go. A one-piece broadhead is typically going to be tougher and more durable than one with replaceable blades. There are certainly exceptions to that statement but as a rule, it’s true.
Solid vs Vented Blade Design
This is one I see debated at times, but in my mind is a non-issue. The biggest concern I’ve seen discussed with vented broadhead blades is the whistling noise they can make in flight. I’ve seen bowhunters concerned that the noise can alert deer and result in them “jumping the string.” I’ve shot plenty of vented blade broadheads and have never witnessed any issues that I felt were the result of broadhead noise.
The one valid argument for using a solid blade design over a vented blade is that the solid blade is going to be a little stronger and less likely to bend or break. The downside to a solid blade design is that it could result in increased planing in flight, which could result in erratic flight from bows that aren’t perfectly tuned.
Choosing the best fixed blade broadhead is not easy. There are tons of options on the market today, and all of them will kill a deer with proper shot placement. That’s not to say, however, that some options aren’t much better than others. To narrow down your choice, use the factors outlined above, and you should find one or more great options from our list above.
Ultimately, you won’t go wrong with any of the broadheads listed above, but hopefully this article will help you find the best fixed blade broadhead for your specific needs.