The twelve sharps seen in this photo have an overall length of 36 1/4 inches.  This makes them equivalent in length to the famous clothyard shaft loosed by the medieval English longbowmen.  Of course, at an average weight of  521 grams ,  +/-  1/2 gram, they are about 10 times heavier than those worthy projectiles my ancestors were flinging at the French nobility back at Agincourt and Crecy, and could be cast over three times farther.  That is 80o plus yards for Firefly vs. perhaps 275 yards for a stout yeoman with his trusty yew warbow.  Apples and oranges to be sure,  but sharp pointy things driven by archaic stringed devices hold enough commonality to at least coexist in the same sentence for a while.  Beyond that, there is not much comparison.

In other popular units of measure, these bolts each weigh:  8,040 grains (+/- 7.7 grains), or 1.148 pounds (+/- .00088 lbs.)  It should be noted that  the low deviation in their weight was achieved by adding small amounts of lead shot into the socket of the steel head before gluing the shaft in place.

Our intent here is to explore the maximum potentiality for precision at Firefly’s longest range,  and for that a closely matched set of bolts is imperative.   The balance of the bolts has also been carefully controlled to 12.41 % FOC.  This number represents the “forward of center” balance point of the projectile and indicates how far the center of gravity is beyond the dimensional center of the bolt.  In this case the balance point is 4 1/2 inches forward of the 18 1/8 inch center of the 36 1/4 inch long bolt.  (That is: 4.5″ divided by 36.25″, to yield  .1241,  or 12.41 %)    This FOC  number puts our bolts smack in the favored range of  9% to 15% for optimum stability and range.

And as to how well that all works out, we should very soon discover.

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