Mounting Broadheads to Glue-On and Screw-On Arrows

There are three methods of attaching broadheads to arrows. They are as follow “tie-on” glue-on and “screw-on”.


The “tie-on” method dates back to primitive time when natives tied their hunting tips on with sinew or rawhide. The glue-on and screw-on systems are both found on modern broadheads. The glue on system is mostly used on traditional broadheads.

TuffHead Ferrule End  Screw in Adapter for TuffHead  TuffHead with Screw In Adapter 

This discussion below applies to glue on broadheads and adapters.


There are two types of glue one can use when gluing broadheads to the arrow or screw on adapters to broadheads and that is hot and cold glues. Both systems work well and both have positive and negative attributes.

Hot glues have been used for decades with good results. They are convenient, relatively inexpensive and proven over time. They are easily melted at later date to remove the broadhead .The draw backs are that the broadhead has to be heated to melt the glue when the adapter and broadhead are joined or when the broadhead is glued directly to a wood arrow. Heating, if not done properly, that is with a low controlled heat, can ruin the temper of the broadhead. Excessive heat will also burn the finish off of most broadheads. TuffHead™ is coated with a ceramic finish which will with stand temperatures of 1200° Fahrenheit. Excess heat will not burn off the finish, but will change the temper of the broadhead. When heating any broadhead do not use a torch. For most people that is asking for trouble. We recommended that an alcohol burner be used. It will give off adequate heat, which is easily controlled without endangering the metallurgy of the broadhead.

Cold glues suitable to glue heads and adapters have arrived on the scène just in recent years. It seems like there has been an explosion in the quantity and variety of cold glues. Many archers have used cold glues such as two part epoxy and superglue with great success. They are strong, quick and most important do not require heat. They are quit convenient for field use. JB weld is used often by big game hunters as it makes quite a strong bond. However it is almost permanent limiting removal and has an extended curing time.

Cold glues do have draw backs. These draw backs raise questions and they should be taken in consideration when the archer makes their choice of cold glues.
1.How brittle is the glue after curing will it hold up under high impact?.
2 What is the procedure to soften the glue for broadhead removal? Some glues will react to heat others require a special chemical for removal.

We have no recommendations on the different cold glues.

The hot and cold glue methods both work well, it is a matter of choice. There are procedures or steps that should be taken regardless of which glue used. These steps are suggested to ensure that the glue will adhere and the broadhead is mounted true.

Mounting can be divided in three steps.     1. Preparation     2. Gluing      and     3. Aligning.

Preparation - Preparation includes inspection of parts to be glued, roughing the surfaces to be glued with fine sand paper , steel wool or a point brush and finally cleaning surfaces to remove oil residue. Oil residue can be removed with alcohol or acetone (finger nail polish) A handy item for this process is packaged alcohol wipes. Wood arrows, aluminum and carbon should all be cleaned on the gluing surfaces.

Gluing was discussed thoroughly in previous sections NOTE: When gluing either with hot or cold glues all safety precautions should be taken to protect the eyes and skin. It is obvious using hot glues one should guard against accidental fires and burns.

Aligning the Broadhead is probably one of the most important factors in the process. If the broad head is mounted on the arrow crooked the arrow will not fly right. The best way to check the broadhead alignment is to spin the arrow and the mounted broadhead before gluing, during gluing and after they are glued. There are commercial aligners on the market like the one pictured to the right. There are also ones that are homemade that are not as pretty but perform well.

To get a true alignment of a broadhead, use a broadhead aligning system as described above. Simply spinning the broadhead with the tip down on a smooth surface will not give you a true reading. The tanto tip of the TuffHead™ is a multiple faceted tip and does not create a defined point or axis to spin an arrow accurately.

This short Youtube video demonstrates the proper use of an alignment tool (in this case, the Dixon Aligner.)

A Homemade broadhead aligner can also do  - the same job as a commercial aligner, and can be cheap to make and supplies are readily available.

Pictured aligner made by Rick Stillman a/k/a Fletcher

“Here's a pic of the fancy hi tech jig I made years ago. There is a small dot on the target board where the tip goes with a 11/32 shaft, but the vertical alignment works with any dia shaft. I don't use it much now that I have learned to grind precise tapers, but once in a while I'll get a head with a sloppy ferrule or grind and this jig makes the alignment very quick and easy.” Posted on by Rick Stillman.

Our good friend Jim Brandenburg has contributed a good article and photos on
 Proper Mounting and Alignment Methods that we suggest you look over.

Arrow Footings - as part of your arrow design and building you may want to consider "footings. "

Arrow footings are used to add weight to the forward portion of your arrow while significantly increasing the structural integrity of the arrow. That is paramount when maximizing penetration or making it through a day of killing stumps.

The footings are also beneficial during the arrow tuning process. Depending on the arrow, the ArraFoot single footer, and the BigFoot double footer can have a stiffening affect on the shaft. This can allow for a heavier point weight without changing to a stiffer shaft.

We offer these footings for your carbon arrow shafts created by a dedicated TuffHead archer in our on-line shop. We like them, we use them and we recommend them. Check them Out!

To Purchase the Items on this page visit our ON-LINE STORE!


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