The Making Of The Gobbler Guillotine - Dreaming of Turkey Hunting History - Part One of Two
The following is part one of a two part series on the detailed account of the making and testing of the Gobbler Guillotine. If you’re not familiar with the Gobbler Guillotine you will be. It’s one of this year’s hottest archery products on the market and revolutionizing the way turkeys are hunted with a bow. The article was written by Matthew Futtere of Arrowdynamic Solutions the Inventor of the Gobbler Guillotine.
A shot,just another routine shot and another turkey taken with a bow and arrow? Nope, this was to be a historical shot. This was the shot that has played out in my mind for over seven years during many trials, setbacks and incremental success’ that added up to this day.
It began with our first hunt of the spring season here in Texas simply by opening the gate to the ranch. The hinges squeaked and groaned. The Rio Grande gobbler couldn’t stand the invasion to his domain and informed us repeatedly that he was the boss and it was far too early for such noise. With my ears still ringing from such loud gobbles, star filled skies, absolute calm and a comfortably cool morning, I couldn’t help but think that my dream was coming true today. Guessing the boss bird was less than fifty yards away, we quickly closed the gate, drove the truck a few hundred yards into the ranch and ran back to set up on him.
After getting the video camera and audio all set, the decoys out and the blind material just right. With an okay from my two friends, I gave a few scratches on the slate that came out sounding like a turkey with a very sore throat. In less than fifteen seconds, that contained much gobbling, we saw a fan over the cactus! This bird was forty yards away and ready for the ultimate test.
Let’s back up a moment though to explain why this turkey hunt with a bow and arrow was any different than those of millions of others throughout the ever expanding range of these magnificent birds. For years I have asked myself questions that I had no answers for. Such as why do we bow hunters shoot for the very small target of the turkey vitals that are hidden within that robust body that is covered in feathers? And why do we more often then not have to immediately jump up and run after it so it doesn’t get away? Why do the shotgun hunters get to aim for the head and neck? Shotgun hunters kill the bird quick, humanely and with no need to jump up and run after the bird ninety nine percent of the time. Why can’t we aim for the head and neck too if it is such a lethal shot placement? We all know the answer to that question. It’s because all but the most proficient of archers can’t hit that skinny neck with any broadhead! I know because I have tried and failed numerous times! That is why this hunt is so important.
We were using a prototype broadhead on a real live wild turkey. A broadhead that was specifically designed for birds; not deer, bear, elk or hogs...just birds. This broadhead is a fixed four blade type that has razor sharp blades spanning an incredible four inches! A 125 grain Gobbler Guillotine! Having demonstrated how lethal this new broadhead was on some domestic turkeys to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Law Enforcement Division, they had given me the thumbs up to chase some Rio Grande’s with it here in Texas and that’s what we had setup to do.
That’s right! I wanted to be able to start hitting turkeys in the head and neck region to kill them quickly, humanely, not wasting any meat and no more jumping up and running after them. After all, having somehow crawled over the forty year mark makes you prefer to walk, not run through the woods! A relaxing sport is what I was told turkey hunting was. You know how it goes. A leisurely stroll through the woods, an answer to your first hoot owl call, a simple setup kneeling on the ground and a large bearded gobbler hitting the dirt after a well placed shot from your bow and arrow.
Last time I looked running doesn’t seem to appear in my resume anywhere. In seeking a better answer to the business end of an arrow what became very apparent to me was that for thousands of years it turns out that all broadheads were made for big game animals, not birds. While searching the Texas region for arrowheads is hugely popular with some prized “Points” being termed “Bird Points”. They still are the same basic triangular shape and mandate a body shot. There are some modern big game broadheads that are modified slightly and sold as turkey broadheads but they maintain the same triangular shape that has been around since cavemen have been chipping stones to make bird points. Whether fixed blade or mechanical styles, they still have very narrow cutting widths during flight. And you’re supposed to be shooting for the same place in the body with them that leads to the same old problems. Thus started the quest to get a razor sharp fixed blade broadhead with a wide cutting width to be used in hitting the head and neck area of a turkey to kill them instantly.
Wait a minute, I think I hear a whole lot of people yelling that it’s impossible to get a four bladed fixed broadhead that spans up to four inches to fly accurately!! Well you are right....and you are wrong. If you allow the broadhead blades as they fly through air to act like airplane wings your arrow flight will not be accurate. If you don’t allow the broadhead blades as they fly through air to act like airplane wings then your arrow flight will be accurate. It is as simple as that. Flying like an airplane is not something we want a broadhead to do. So understanding how to get an airplane to fly should allow us to understand how to not get a broadhead to fly anywhere other than where we want it to go.
The following is a very basic description in attempts to pass on a simple explanation for a complex aerodynamic environment. The Wright brothers figured out that to get an airplane to fly. They needed to create lift with wings just like a bird. In very simple terms, what they discovered was that if they put their wings at an angle with respect to the direction in flow of air across them. They could generate enough lift to fly their airplane. This angle has since been termed “Angle of Attack”. This is a most critical performance factor of any airplane. A slight change in the angle of attack and you can generate exponentially more or less lift. In other words, you change the coefficient of lift exponentially as the angle of attack changes.
How does this equate to flying broadheads accurately? The goal was to eliminate them flying off their intended target path. So, knowing that we don’t want to create lift. How do we get four fixed blades that span up to four inches to not generate lift when we know that at moment of release an arrow oscillates? That those same oscillations are what cause the broadhead blades to immediately start changing their angles of attack and generate large and varying amounts of unwanted lift? It became apparent that we must control the flow of air across those flat blade surfaces in a manner that generates a minimal coefficient of lift. So if flat blades are not good, what shape is better when you have an arrow shaft that is oscillating?
Part two of the making of the Gobbler Guillotine will appear on Wednesday, February 25th on Hunting & Fishing Gear Review.
Written By: Matthew Futtere Arrowdynamic Solutions
To purchase the Gobbler Guillotine go the Arrow Dynamics website at the following address. http://www.arrow-dynamic-solutions.com
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