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Lighted Nocks Debut in Oregon

By Jason Haley
09/09/16 -- The Oregon Hunters Association (OHA) carried the ball for archers from goal line to goal line on the issue of lighted arrow nocks. As such, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission approved the use of lighted nocks last October. This bow season will be the first under these new regulations.

Don’t expect miracles. It won’t necessarily increase the number of deer and elk taken during the bow seasons, but it could help recovery odds and reduce cripples. This is something for which we all strive.

Now that they are a legal tool for the ethical, sportsmanlike pursuit of big game, many Oregon bowhunters will be looking to give them a try for the first time. So what’s available and what’s best? The choices are a bit overwhelming, but retailers have helped narrow them down.

There are more than a dozen brands on the market with various triggering systems, installation requirements, and shut-off procedures. Colors, brightness, battery life, weight and prices also vary. Some have complicated internal electronic circuitry while others require external proximity magnetic triggers.

Lighted Nocks. (Photo courtesy of Nockturnal)
Oregon bowhunters should experiment to see which brand of lighted nocks is best for them. Photo courtesy of Nockturnal

The Burnt Coyote “Lumenok” came first. It uses the arrow shaft to connect the battery and the light. The nock is installed with a slight gap between the base of the nock and the end of the arrow shaft. When the string is released the force drives the nock slightly forward completing the circuit to light the nock. Lumenok claims to fit over 90 percent of arrow shafts, despite continuous introduction of new shaft sizes. Batteries provide 40 hours of life and are replaceable and arrows can be turned off with movement of thumb and forefinger slightly backward to break the connection. They weigh about 26 grains.

Nockturnal, by Rage Archery, boasts a bow string activated linear, piston-driven contact switch, a lithium battery with over 20 hours of life, bright LEDs, one-piece lightweight construction that eliminates prep/assembly, and water and weather proof design. They weigh 20 grains and come in red, blue, green, pink and yellow, but are within clear plastic, facilitating long distance visibility. The new Nockturnal “Helios” is a one-piece lighted nock/vane combo, with six vanes. It’s like a torch.

A lighted nock travels downrange. (Photo courtesy of Nockturnal)
A lighted nock travels downrange. Photo courtesy of Nockturnal

These are not endorsements. Firenock is probably the most technologically advanced. It has a tiny circuit board with titanium wires. A motion sensor activates an LED light at a certain amount of force. There are hunting and target versions with different shut-off procedures. You drop it on a hard surface to shut it off.

Then there’s Light ‘Em Up, Nock Out (by Clean-Shot Archery of Seattle), Archers Flame, Easton Tracers (switched on when passed by a magnet in the riser), G5 G-Force, and Carbon Express Launchpad (relatively light at 18.5 grains). This is an abbreviated list; it goes on.

A 3-pack will set you back anywhere from $19-$30, depending on brand and retailer. Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shops, and Sportsman’s Warehouse carry Nockturnal, as do the archery pro shops in Medford and Eugene/Springfield. Walmart sells Carbon Express Launchpad. They also carry Nockturnal and Lumenok at various prices and packages, including singles. Dick’s Sporting goods sells Carbon Express and Nockturnal.

Retailers are carrying Nockturnal nocks (Photo courtesy of Jason Haley)
Retailers are carrying Nockturnal preferentially, but trends change quickly in the archery industry. Photo courtesy of Jason Haley

With thinner, forward-weighted arrows all the rage right now, nock weight is a definite consideration, but so are shut off procedures, arrow flight, simplicity and many other factors. A quick review of the archery forums reveals a ton of different opinions. Everybody’s got one.

Problems experienced range from erratic arrow flight, to poor fit, to failure to light up or shut off. Those aren’t limited to one brand. So do your homework. It’s up to you to choose what’s best for your bow set-up, arrows and personal objectives. The most lethal archer I know, my friend Mike, has chosen not to hunt with them in his home state, but did point out how fun they are to target shoot at sundown. It’s great we have the choice. Have fun experimenting.

With increased arrow visibility, shooters should clearly see the point of impact to confirm a hit or miss and quickly locate arrows. Instant information should be good for hunters and animals. Best of luck this bow season and be sure to share your photos!

Archery News

Lighted Nocks Debut in Oregon
Lighted Nocks. (Photo courtesy of Nockturnal)
By Jason Haley 
09/09/16 -- The Oregon Hunters Association (OHA) carried the ball for archers from goal line to goal line on the issue of lighted arrow nocks. As such, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission approved the use of lighted nocks last...
Full Story
Mulies on the Big Muddy
Mulies on Big Muddy by Frank Biggs
By Frank Biggs
09/07/15 -- “Dave, you’re not going to believe it!” I said to my friend. “That fellow in the Bronco was right -- that buck has got to be 31-inches wide! I’m going back! He’s just feeding in a shallow basin on top of the knob!”...
Full Story
Boys’ Day Buck
an image of this great late-season Blacktail moments before the shot. Photo by Austin Glass
By Travis Glass
01/07/15 -- It had been a tough season! I’d seen plenty of deer and smaller bucks, but the big bucks were nowhere to be found. The season was getting late. With only a day-and-a-half left, my schedule, along with my son’s...
Full Story
​The Good, the Bad, and the Lucky
Bull elk,Jeff Ervin, archery, SLIP covers, Elk Mountain gear
Article, photos and video by Jeff Ervin 
09/28/14 -- This is the story of my 2014 solo archery elk hunt, in Colorado’s Flat Tops Wilderness. If you are a trophy hunter, you will not be impressed with my story; I have always been, and always will be a meat hunter... 
Full Story
Pigs Everywhere Pigs Everywhere, Francisco Garcia, MyOutdoorBuddy.com 12/27/12 -- Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together? I was bow hunting wild pigs with my good friend Steve Kensett and was sitting on what we call The Log when he came up with the perfect plan. The spot we were hunting was...Full Story
Anarchy introduces new 1.5-inch broadhead Anarchy, Jason Haley, MyOutdoorBuddy.com By Jason Haley
12/10/12 -- Anarchy Archery of Wilderville, Oregon recently released a 1.5-inch version of its popular hunting broadhead. The new 1.5 flies just as true as the original, even at distance, but contains a larger cutting surface...
Full Story
Tagged out in ten By Jason Haley
11/01/12 --It was dead silent. My heart rate was starting to slow and the sweat was starting to evaporate on the side of my face. The cooling felt good. I had an arrow nocked and it was still plenty dark as I began to settle into my stand...
Full Story

 

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