The initial objective we had when making AeroBolt was to address the issue of the weak frontal end commonly found in high speed crossbow arrows. In 2010, we built Aerobolt I (AB1) using common off-the-shelf components and it performed well, but Firenock found that using such components had concentricity issues as well as fundamental design issues. Aerobolt I was good but we knew it wasn't great. With more time, research, testing, and the introduction of the Firenock AeroConcept System, Aerobolt II (AB2) was built to overcome not only the concentricity issue, but with a stronger front end stronger than ever before. Finally, in 2018, we designed AeroBolt III (AB3) using AeroWeave as its core to achieve the same results as AB2, but without the cost of a heavy front end.
Most people will find that many crossbow bolts perform well. But why is AeroBolt II better than the competitor’s crossbow arrows? Why is the price of AeroBolt II significantly higher? Why did Firenock build the AeroBolt the way we did?
To provide these answers, a short review of the development of AeroBolt is needed. Then, we will discuss the design approach and review the technologies that have been employed in the development of AeroBolts. With this information, we believe you will be convinced that AeroBolts are unique and the outstanding performance of the AeroBolt is worth the price. Also, with a better understanding of AeroBolt technologies, we hope that you will better grasp what you can expect and achieve from shooting AeroBolt.
If asked for the main reason why Aerobolt Technology is so superior in performance and accuracy when compared to any other crossbow arrows, our simple answer would be because of its capacity for harmonic dampening.
Harmonic dampening was observed when the first AeroBolt was shot in 2010. After only about five to ten feet, the oscillation of the AeroBolt stopped, which heavily contrasts with the other arrows that required 15-18 yards to cease oscillating. How could that be? The only difference between our AeroBolts and other crossbow arrows was our inclusion of a Carbon Inner Tube (CTI), which we initially included to stiffen and strengthen the front end of Aerobolt. At that moment, no archery experts could provide a definite answer. So we turned to material science and physics experts. The result of our consultations is now the basis of our patented AeroConcept System, the key to "harmonic dampening," to calmer, straighter, and more efficient flight. Click the link to discover more.
Preparing the Shafts
For every AeroBolt, the first thing we do is cut the main arrow shaft and its corresponding Carbon Inner Tube (CTI) according to pre-determined, calculated specifications. Next, we chamfer the front end of the main shaft (more on why in a mo') with our Arrow Chamfering Tool and a drill. With transport and handling, the shaft and CTI can become dirty. To start afresh, we ultrasound clean them. After, we square the CTI with our APS. Here is why we chamfer the main shaft and then square the CTI -- to take advantage of all the awesome design features of our AeroInsert-H. See, like most of products in the Firenock line up (including the AeroBolts themselves), each series has grown and evolved with time. In the instance of the AeroInsert Series, we have had three generations of inserts: AeroInsert-A (AIA), AeroInsert-D (AID), and AeroInsert-H (AIH) respectively. In short, AIA boasts Self-Concetric Technology while AID boasts Double Shoulder Technology. AIH, though, unites and takes advantage of both aforementioned technologies. And, due especially to that double shoulder, we can then mate the Carbon Inner Tube with our AeroInserts (AB2&3 use only AIH) perfectly using our two part epoxy AGUSSE. And that's the next and final step of our preparation process.
Building the Complete System
At the end of the standard preparation process, we have two* important components: the chamfered main shaft as well as the CTI & AeroInsert-H. The coming steps are where our production process truly shines: we join the CTI and AeroInsert-H pairing to the main shaft via vacuum pumping (to perfectly distribute AGUSSE). Although vacuum pumping is time consuming and high cost, we still do these steps to provide our customers the best quality products. As we know there is variance among the Aerobolts, we weigh and hand label each shaft.
Completing Your AeroBolt
Now with a weight-labeled, AeroConcept System equipped shaft, we begin the last step of building an AeroBolt: indexing. Though before we claimed that its most important feature is its capacity to harmonically dampen, an AeroBolt's index is also crucial. See, with the use of the PAPS, each AeroBolt is tested and marked (i.e. indexed) according to its first dynamic bend (FDB) or initial flexing point after launch. We then fletch every bolt with Aerovane following its unique FDB to ensure that every arrow will shoot the same. Finally, the nock end is squared.
AeroBolt II-200 ↑
AB2-200 crossbow arrow is engineered and designed for general purpose.
AB2-200 achieves maximum speed and flight stability with AeroPoints as well as any aerodynamic designed broadheads like the Dagger. AB2-200 is offered in lengths from 20-26 inches and is built with a 0.001" straightness shaft. The amazingly straight flight of AB2-200 is due to its variable spine design as a result of effect of AeroConcept System; AB2-200 has a spine in the front of 0.060" and a spine at the back of 0.200". The weight of AB2-200 with an AeroInsert, and the AeroConcept System is about 285 grain excluding vanes, a nock, and a point. As a quality mark for all AeroBolt, they are first dynamic bend indexed, hand-marked with complete shaft weight, overall length, and CTI length(s).
AeroBolt II-DragonSlayer ↑
The AeroBolt II-DragonSlayer crossbow arrow is the big brother of the AeroBolt II.
AB2-DS is engineered for maximum momentum and penetration power. Built for African big game, it is super heavy in weight as many African range game laws state that you must use an archery projectile of no less than a 1000 grain when hunting the African Big Five. AB2-DS is offered from 16-26 inches and, unlike any other crossbow arrows, has a 0.092" thickness of carbon throughout its entire length. Unlike AB2-200 which utilizes the AeroConcept System, AB2-DS has two inner shafts that sit nearly through the entire length of the main shaft. These two inner shafts are engineered to be super heavy and super stout. Additionally, AB2-DS comes standard with a stainless AeroInsert-H and ready for the Firenock lighted nock system (C, D, F, J, M, Q, or U) with an extreme shock end cap always pre-installed. A 26-inch AB2-DS's expected total weight (excluding vanes, a nock and a point) is about 726 grain. Also, from our field staff reports, AB2-DS has been found to be the best crossbow for the 700lbs+ wild boars hunted in southern US states such as Georgia and Texas. As a quality mark for all AeroBolt, they are first dynamic bend indexed, hand-marked with complete shaft weight, overall length, and CTI length.
AeroBolt II-G ↑
The AeroBolt II-G is the best of both worlds crossbow arrow.
AB2-G is a companion product for the Firenock Traumahawk broadhead for true instant knock-down via blunt force trauma. AB2-G is offered in lengths from 20-26 inches and is built with a 0.001" straightness shaft. Lighter than AB2-DS whilst heavier than AB2-200, AB2-G is specially designed to give maximum frontal end mass and to transfer the amount of kinetic energy in order to penetrate deep into big game animals. A-22 inch AB2-G (excluding vanes, a nock and the Traumahawk) weighs in at about 352 grain. As a quality mark for all AeroBolt, they are first dynamic bend indexed, hand-marked with complete shaft weight, overall length, and CTI length(s).
2019: AeroBolt III↑
Firenock Aerobolt III-200 (AB3-200) is the pinnacle of the design and approach of what Firenock had learned for the last nine years on crossbow arrow building. It is built for maximum flight stability and speed beyond what AeroBolt had achieved. AB3-200 is made to be better than AeroBolt-200 as it is built with AeroWeave Technology (please visit our website AeroWeave pages for more details). Similar to AB2-200, AB3-200 is equipped with AeroConcept System which makes AB3-200 having a variable spine design (i.e. the spine in the front is different than at the back; Front is about 0.050" and Back is about 0.200"). This proven and multi-patented variable spine design makes AB3-200 stops flexing soon after it is shot. Due to the non-torsion ability of AeroWeave shaft design, the crossbow arrow only flex in the vertical axis and thus the accuracy of the projectile is further enhanced. These features make AB3-200 flies even straighter and flatter trajectory than AB2-200.
All AeroBolt are optimized (unless requested otherwise) for the Firenock lighted nock system and are fletched with Aerovane II or Aerovane III vanes. The standard vane configuration for Aerobolt is 3 vanes (white, yellow and red). Custom vane color configuration, 2 vanes and 4 vanes are also available, but with extra charge. You can also order your AeroBolt without vanes. All Aerovanes on AeroBolt are fletched with Firenock Aerovane Jig and glued on with Aerovane Glue AG0600. For AeroBolt II, there is additionally an option of material for AeroInsert: aluminum (17 grain) or stainless (50 grain)**. Lastly, you can even order your AB2/3 in a specific weight and length.
*As of 2018, like seen in the diagrams for AB2-200 and AB2-G, there is another Carbon Inner Tube at the back of the arrow. This addition makes up the AeroConcept System 2.0 and will then cause there to be three raw components in the building of the standard AeroBolt (for clarification, Dragon Slayer does not use the original AeroConcept System and always has three raw components). See here for more information.