Gary Elliot

Next time you are hanging out at your local sportsman’s club and discussing, pistols, rifles, bows and arrows, tell your buddies about your new arrow nocks. Then watch them give you an odd look. It seems nocks are not so cool to talk about. So today, I am going to tell you about the importance of nocks and why it’s a good thing to talk about them.

First off, there are two parts to a nock. There is the throat and the groove. The throat is designed to be slightly larger than the groove so it can clip securely onto the string and have some room to move on the string serving.

Insert type nock.

A poorly connected nock can and will affect the accuracy of your shot. In some articles I have read it is suggested a good test to tell if you are using the correct nock is to nock your arrow then point your bow towards the ground allowing the arrow to hang. Then rotate your string back and forth and if your arrow moves left and right it may be too tight. If the serving spins freely then the nock is considered to be correct.

It is said some tournament shooters like a loose fitting nock where as a bow hunter would find it irritating to keep re-nocking arrows. So you want the arrow to stay securely on the string but not so tight it throws off your shot.

Another thing to check for is nock pinch. A way to test if you have too much nock pinch is to nock and arrow and draw back. If there is not enough space between nocking points it will cause your arrow to lift off your rest when at full draw.

Glue on style nock.

There are also 3 types of arrow nocks, glue on, insert and over-nocks. Glue on nocks are made of plastic and are normally for wooden arrows. They glue to the end of the arrow shaft and have been the standard type of nock used since the late 1940’s early 1950’s. They also come in 4 sizes, 1/8″, 1/4″, 5/16″ and 11/32″. Insert nocks fit into the arrow shaft, hence the name insert nocks. They are used for aluminum and carbon or carbon/aluminum composite arrows. Over-nocks, fit over the end of the shaft, these are especially popular on the all carbon arrows or the lower grade carbon/aluminum composite. Gold Tip has a pin nock that is designed for pure accuracy. They state it is perfect for any target application where accuracy means everything. But  not recommended for bows with an IBO rating over 320 fps or for draw weights over 65 pounds.

Note: Once you have your new shafts cut and ready for fletching you should  square off the nock end of the shaft. To do this I use my ‘FAST’ squaring tool from Lumenok and use a white or silver sharpie and cover the end of the shaft.  Put the shaft in the FAST squaring tool and rotate it back and forth till the sharpie mark is gone.  This allows for the nock to sit square in the shaft.

You should also tune your arrow nocks to minimize any problems. Tuning your nocks will allow the arrow to be properly released and the arrow will not hit the bow or arrow rest once it is released.

So, next you are having that manly conversation know that it’s ok to talk about your arrow nocks because they are worth talking about.