Field Evaluation - Goat Tuff Opti-Vane™ By Keith Dunlap - Field Evaluator
Jun 1, 2010 - 11:54:51 AM
Opti-Vane™ from Goat Tuff Products
Goat Tuff Products provides archery enthusiasts with perhaps the strongest adhesive on the market for vanes, feathers, nocks and inserts…and now they offer the new Opti-Vane.
In this evaluation, I'll be taking a closer look at what the Opti-Vane offers and how they measure up for accuracy and toughness.
Goat Tuff Opti-Vanes are manufactured with a Fusion™ technology from Norway Industries, which is a patented process that combines two different proprietary materials into a single vane that is advertised to optimize adhesion, durability and arrow flight. The following is excerpted from Goat Tuff's website and will provide the standards to which I will measure the Opti-Vanes in this evaluation. (To see the full line of Goat Tuff products, visit their website: GOAT TUFF
ADHESION: The softer base material possesses optimum adhesive properties so every vane is easier to glue and secures with greater strength to the arrow shaft regardless of impact or weather conditions. Black colored base allows for easy glue visibility.
DURABILITY: The stiffer blade material provides optimum reliability and durability. Is unaffected by extreme shooting conditions and holds up to Shoot-Thru Arrow Rests.
ARROW FLIGHT: The stiff blade with high profile tapered design; modified parabolic profile (curve) and consistent light weight are optimized to allow for rapid arrow stabilization, increased arrow speed and dependable flight consistency for greater accuracy.
OPTI-VANE - Easy to fletch, more secure bonding and greater durability for optimal performance every shot.
The new Opti-Vane from Goat Tuff Products.
I received three packages of 36 Opti-Vanes (green, white, orange) from Goat Tuff for my evaluation. All vanes were secured in their packages and in perfect condition. The packages included the Opti-Vanes, specs, and instructions for fletching them. The black base of the vanes immediately caught my eye, as this was something unique for arrow vanes. I noticed that the black suction fit base (see figure 3) of the Opti-Vanes is made of a softer material than the vane itself. This should help with adhesion to the arrow shaft.
The Opti-Vane blade material is stiffer than other vanes I have used, and this should translate into improved arrow flight and increased vane durability. The Opti-Vane dimensions are 2" long x 0.58" high, and each vane weighs 6.5 grains, which is average for this size vane. Next up…time to fletch some arrows.
Before fletching the arrows with Opti-Vanes, I added new EZE-CREST solid white arrow wraps (from Easy-Eye Archery Products) to three new Gold Tip XT Hunter 5575 arrow shafts. This gives the arrow a cleaner look and improves the visibility of the arrow from release to target. Arrow wraps also make for easy re-fletching, which can also prevent damage to your arrow shaft when it's time to scrape off the old vanes.
I used my right helical EZ-Fletch Mini jig from Arizona Rim Country to fletch the Opti-Vanes onto the arrows. Arizona's EZ Fletch tool fletches all three vanes at the same time, and the "mini" is perfect for fletching vanes up to 2 ¼ inches long. As mentioned earlier, Opti-Vanes have a black, softer "suction fit" base that improves adhesion to the arrow shaft (see figure 3). This suction fit makes a nice channel for the glue and it fits much tighter against the arrow shaft. I also noticed that the black base on the Opti-Vane makes it much easier to see the amount of Goat Tuff glue you are applying to the base prior to fletching the arrow. I like this feature as it prevents me from using too much glue to fletch the vanes, giving me a cleaner fletching. Vanes that are all one color can be more difficult to see just how much glue you are applying to the base. Once I had three arrows fletched, I was ready to put the Opti-Vanes to the test.
Compact design, at 2" long x 0.58" high.
I evaluated the Goat Tuff Opti-Vanes for adhesion, durability, and arrow accuracy. To do this, I repeatedly shot the three arrows fletched with Opti-Vanes from various distances into a Block 4x4 target. I used my Elite Judge compound bowhunting rig (330+ fps), outfitted with a DropZone fall away rest. I shot three arrow sets from distances of 15, 20, and 30 yards. I repeated this test until I had shot 30 arrows from each distance. My groupings with the Opti-Vanes were impressive as compared to my groupings with other vanes I have used.
It is difficult for me to verify whether a vane provides increased accuracy other than to provide the average grouping results as compared to average grouping results using other vanes on the market. Suffice it to say that I was pleased with the results using Opti-Vanes. My groupings were an average of ¼" smaller than my typical groupings.
As I shot the arrows, the Opti-Vanes held up very well. In the 90 shots I took, I experienced only one damaged vane when two of my arrows were nested so tightly together in the Block target, anything closer would have been a "Robin Hood" shot. I give these vanes an A++ for adhesion and durability. I've seen vanes on the market that don't last for 30 shots before tearing…let alone 90 shots. I think the suction fit base on the Opti-Vane really does improve adhesion and makes it much easier to fletch your arrows. In addition, the stiffer blades on the Opti-Vanes seem to improve accuracy and arrow flight down range. The Opti-Vanes get two thumbs up!
Soft "suction fit" base helps vane to adhere to arrow shaft.
The Opti-Vane from Goat Tuff performed very well in all areas of testing. The soft fitted base improves adhesion and fit, and the stiff blades provide accurate arrow flight and better than average vane durability.
Opti-Vanes on EZE-CREST solid white arrow wraps
from Easy-Eye Archery Products.
Specifications as Tested:
Weight: 6.5 grains per vane
Vane material: proprietary Fusion™ Technology by Norway Industries