I’ve long enjoyed Afflictor broadheads, whether it’s the Hybrids or the fixed-blade heads. I’ve used all of them in many hunting situations and they’ve always performed really well.
In this review, I’m going to be testing some of the the fixed-blade heads in the Afflictor lineup.
Afflictor Fixed-Blade Broadheads
There are a lot of good companies in the archery business, and Afflictor is certainly one of them. Afflictor has a passion for testing, they are ethical and they are faith-based.
Now, before testing the fixed blade heads from Afflictor, I was already a big fan of the Afflictor Hybrids. I’ve taken deer, turkey, and hogs with them. They’ve always performed really well. They flight great. They penetrate deep, they hold up well and they inflict a lot of damage in animals.
So, when Afflictor sent me the fixed blade heads, I thought, “Well, I really like the hybrids.” But, then when I started shooting the fixed blade heads, I thought, “Man, I really like these too!”
I first tested the K2 and the EXT models. They’re similar in design, but obviously, they have different specs. (Further down in this review, I also tested the Heavyweight versions of these heads).
An overview of the fixed heads
When I first looked at the fixed blade heads, I thought, “Okay, they’re just like normal 4-blade fixed blade heads.”
And yes, they are, but there are some unique things about them.
First of all, the K2 has a super short, low profile design. That’s why it flies so extremely well.
I would put the K2 up there with any fixed blade head as being the very best flying. There are several that I put in that category that just are top of the food chain in terms of long distance flight. This one is one of those.
The EXT also flies very well, but at super long ranges, it’s not quite as good as the K2, and that’s just because there’s more surface area.
You can see the total length is greater on the EXT heads, and therefore more surface area. That’s why the K2, with less surface area tends to fly better at long distances.
Another unique feature of the K2 is that the blades themselves are extremely thick. They are 420 stainless steel, so they are a decent stainless steel. But beyond that, they are really thick.
The standard for many fixed blade heads is 0.030 or 0.035 inches thick. I have always liked how the QAD Exodus blades are 0.040 inches of thick. Well, the K2 blades are 0.059 inches thick. That’s impressive! (All four of the blades on both the K2 and EXT are 0.059 inches thick).
K2 and EXT tips
This tips of the K2 and EXT are also very unique. It’s not like a chiseled tip on other broadheads. It’s not like a true “cut on contact tip” though it does cut on contact. But it’s really thick. It’s actually double the thickness of the blades themselves. It’s 0.125 inches thick!
With that thickness, what that translates into is two things. First of all, durability. But, secondly, it’s going to make a really thick cut through the deer or animal. And, I found that with all things being equal with penetration, the thicker the blades, the harder it is for that wound channel to close up.
This results in better blood trails.
That’s why these Afflictor fixed blades perform so well for me in the field and have created such good blood trails; it’s the blade thickness.
A Horizontal blade cross? Yes, and here’s why
Another thing that is unique about these fixed heads is if you look really closely, the top of the cross blades are actually horizontal for a little bit and then at an angle.
This feature is not by accident.
Now, you might look at that and say, “Well, that’s going to impede penetration.”
Actually, what Afflictor found is just the opposite.
In all their testing, the folks at Afflictor weree surprised to see it that sometimes what really happens during penetration seems like it defies the laws of physics.
They found that the penetration through bone has actually improved by having a little bit of horizontal cut because the head is able to breach the bone. It pushes the bone out of the way more effectively with that angle as well.
I was interested to see how it does this in my own testing.
With the extra thick tip and with the cross blades being moved up on both the K2 and the EXT, it allows for a greater FOC. So, compared to other heads that have similar dimensions, these are going to have more weight toward the front end. That’s going to aid in forgiveness in flight and it’s also going to aid in penetration.
The ferrules on the K2 and EXT are aluminum. Now, I’m not typically a big fan of aluminum… unless it’s this kind of aluminum. The aluminum ferrules on these heads are made of 7075 T6 grade aluminum.
So, this aluminum is stronger than many steels. I haven’t had any problems with it in the field. Let’s see how it did in the testing.
For each of my tests, I used my Bowtech SR6 on the comfort setting, set at 72 pounds, 27-inch draw. I used Bishop FOC King Arrows (460 grains), Nockturnal Nocks and FOBs.
What I tested for
Because of the weather at the time of these tests (we were in the middle of a blizzard here in Iowa), I did not go outside to test long range flight.
I’ve already shot the K2 at longer ranges in the field and I know it is absolutely fantastic, the best of the best at longer ranges. I would give it a 10. It flies like at ATAC, Iron Will original, or a Bishop Holy Trinity… very, very good flight.
I would give the EXT a 9. It does really well out to about 60 yards. But, it’s a little more touchy beyond that. I can still pop balloons at 80 yards but I have to really focus on it.
I did, however test for penetration, durability, and edge retention.
Penetration testing of Afflictor fixed blade broadheads
I tested penetration by using a 1/2-inch inch layer of MDF, surrounded by 1/3-inch layers of rubber foam matting. On the back side of that medium is ballistic gel, made by Clear Ballistics. The clear gel allows you to see exactly what the broadhead is doing inside the gel.
I also measured the penetration, so that it can be compared to how other heads penetrate the same medium.
Durability and edge retention testing
I shot these heads through a 22-gauge steel plate. In this test, I will shoot through the steel plate as many times as possible (up to 5 times), until the blades really start to get damaged. When the blades start to get significant damage, I stop.
For the purposes of scoring, each time I shoot without them getting significant damage, I give the head 2 points. The maximum a head can receive is 10 points. The maximum is 5 shots.
As for the blades themselves, I shot both the K2 and EXT into the steel plate and examined them after each time. Both heads made it 3 times into the steel plate before the blades began to get pretty mangled.
The blades were not bent way out of shape, but they were definitely getting nicked up enough to stop shooting. So, three shots through the steel plate at that range is pretty impressive. The blades are replaceable and would need to be replaced. But, they will get a score of 6 because they made it three times into the steel plate.
Both the K2 and EXT are really good heads. For flight, for total cut size, and for damage being inflicted, I go with the K2 but both of them are really good heads.
Actually, in the field, I would say the K2 does even better on animals than it showsin the testing.
The Afflictor K2 and EXT heavyweight fixed heads
In addition to the K2 and EXT, I also tested the Heavyweight versions of these broadheads. All of the heavier Afflictor fixed blade broadheads are stainless steel and they vary in weights from 155 to 200 grains. In my tests on the heavier fixed blade heads, I specifically be testing the 200-grain models.
How the heavier fixed blade heads are different
The heavier versions of the Afflictor EXT and K2 differ from each other, as well as their lighter counterparts…
The tips and ferrules of the heavyweights
One main difference between the EXT heads and the K2 heads is the tip (The EXT tip is also used on the EXT Hybrids and the K2 tip is also used on the K2 Hybrids).
The biggest difference in the heavyweight heads over the 100 and 125-grain models is that the heavyweight versions are all stainless steel. The ferrules are no longer 7075 aluminum as they are in the lighter weight models. Now, they are stainless steel.
For example, the 155-grain model is basically the exact same head as the 125-grain model but with stainless steel ferrule, which adds the extra weight.
The tips on both of these heads are extra thick. By my measurement, it came out to 0.14 inch thick in that leading tip of both.
Now, some people note that the tip on these heads is not super sharp. And, that’s right, it’s not.
But don’t let that fool you in terms of its performance. It’s really about edge-integrity.
The tips on these heads promotes edge straightness, (the lack of chips and dings and bending that affects penetration) and they are really tough, holding a straight edge all the way into an animal. Then, the blades behind them do the cutting.
Blades, bleeders and cutting diameter
I really like the way Afflictor increased the weights of these heavyweight broadheads by beefing up the blades themselves. Very well done.
Some other things you’ll note about the different models is the EXT has a cutting diameter on the main blades of 1-1/4 inches and then the bleeders are 11/16 of an inch.
And then on the K2, the maximum cut 1-1/8 inches and then the bleeders are 1 inch. So, it’s kind of cool that you have different dimensions to choose from based on your setup and what kind of a hole you want to put in the animal.
Some other things that are noteworthy are the main blades on both the EXT and the K2 are both 0.053 inch thick. That’s a thick main blade!
Typically, bleeders are thinner and weaker, but not on these heads. These bleeders are 0.059 inch thick. So really thick bleeders right there.
I’ve taken a number of animals with the 125-grain fixed versions and they all performed really well.
So, as you can see, for many reasons, I was eager to put these heavier weight broadheads to the test.
Heavyweight Afflictor fixed-head penetreation test
I didn’t test the heavyweight heads for all the things that I tested the 125-grain model with, like flight. They are basically the same dimensions (just differing weights), so they’re going to fly the same.
I’ve also already tested them for edge sharpness and edge retention and they did very well.
But, I did test them for penetration and durability. And for that, I’m used the 200-grain version, just because I was curious to see how that heavier weight makes a difference in terms of the penetration and the durability.
So, let’s see how this heavyweight lineup of the EXT and the K2 Fixed-Blade Afflictors performed.
For the penetration test, I shot into a foam mat, backed by ½” MDF and a block of ballistic gel.
Check out the penetration results below:
Durability testing of K2 and EXT
I shot both heads into a .22 gauge steel plate. Both the EXT and the K2 heads really punch a hole, as opposed to “slits” like some other heads make. That’s what I look for in a fixed-blade head. I want something that punches a big hole, because it’s going to be a lot harder to close up that wound channel.
Both heads were impressive in this test, but I give a slight edge (in the way the hole looks) to the K2.
Now, as for the durability of the heads themselves, they both held up fairly well. Of course, the tips and the ferrules are all in perfect condition. The tip is really durable. You can’t even tell it has been shot into anything, let alone steel.
But, the blades got really nicked up, and that started on the second shot. You could see them start to get nicked up on the first shot and then a little more with each subsequent shot.
Now, they are replaceable blades. Their gradual bevel makes them really sharp, but it also makes them a little prone to a bit of edge bending and nicking when shot into a super hard medium like steel.
Final thoughts on the Afflictor heavyweight fixed heads
So what do you think of the Afflictor Heavyweight K2 and EXT broadheads?
I’ve used them in hunting situations and they perform really well. I’ve been impressed with how beefy these fixed blades are (I especially love the Hybrids).
Like a few other broadhead companies out there, I’ve been so impressed with the Afflictor lineup,
So, check out the score sheets below and see how these things performed, and consider them.
If you’re looking for a little more “oomph” and more FOC, they might be the broadheads for you.