Gear Review – Harvest Time Archery HT-2 ‘Harvester’ Arrows

I started shooting Harvest Time’s HT-2 “Harvester” arrows this past summer.  I met the VP of Harvest Time Archery in the small world that is the Internet, and Harvest Time decided to send me some of their HT-2 arrows for my broadhead reviews.  I was pretty content with my arrow setup at the time and had no intentions of changing, but I am always interested in trying new products when the opportunity arises.

Harvest Time ArcheryThe short version of the story is this – I did a lot of shooting with the HT-2s for my broadhead reviews and I absolutely fell in love with the arrows.  I concluded my shooting for the broadhead reviews a couple of months ago, but I still remained very interested in the HT-2 arrows.  A couple of weeks ago I had a great opportunity to extend my relationship with Harvest Time…

I am happy to announce that I have joined Harvest Time Archery’s Advisory Shooting Staff.

It is no coincidence that this announcement comes on the heels of my last post, which set the record straight on my philosophy about such partnerships.  And if that post isn’t clear enough, let me just clarify a couple of things: this review was written before I joined their shooting staff, and I was not asked to write a review.  Cool?  OK, let’s move on…

Harvest Time Logo on Arrow

Before I dive into my experience with Harvest Time’s HT-2 ‘Harvester’ arrow, let me get some specs out of the way.  The HT-2 is an all carbon shaft that works well for both hunting and target applications.  With a medium diameter of 19/64″, and a GPI of 6.5-9.1 (depending on spine), the HT-2 is a great choice for many archers looking for a tough and consistent arrow.  The HT-2 comes in a variety of spines (500, 400, 350, 300) and straightness tolerances (.001″, .003″, .006″)  One thing that I appreciate about Harvest Time’s approach to the different specs of arrows is that they don’t “name” each specification like some other manufacturers do.  For example Gold Tip has many named variations such as the Expedition Hunter, the XT Hunter, and the Pro Hunter.  In all actuality these arrows are the same model with different tolerances.  I like Harvest Time’s approach: chose an arrow, and chose your own specification and tolerances.  There is no need to remember some goofy name.

What I Like

Durability – As I mentioned in the introduction the first time I used the HT-2 was for my broadhead testing.  The testing consisted of putting 9 sets of different broadheads through their paces, including shooting through plywood and bone.  To test the toughness and durability of the HT-2 I decided that I would use the same arrow for all of the penetration tests.  Honestly, I didn’t expect this arrow to make it through all rounds of testing.  Not only did the arrow make it through repeated shots into plywood and bone, but it come out looking new and still flying true.  I have this same arrow in my hunting quiver today and I wouldn’t hesitate to use it in the field.  Actually, this same arrow was also accidentally shot into the steel support of a 3D target and come out unharmed.  I have had other all carbon arrows shatter on similar shots.  Is the HT-2 tough?  You bet!

HT-2 Spine Detail

Consistency – The HT-2 is an amazingly consistent arrow.  I used the .001″ arrows for my broadhead testing and I was getting a true spin on each and every one, as well as great fixed-blade flight out to 60 and 70 yards.  Trust me, if your arrow isn’t true it will not fly well with a fixed-blade broadhead at even half of that distance.  I also have shot the .003″ arrows and I am getting great flight out of those as well.  (In fact, my personal opinion is that paying the premium for .001″ tolerances is not worth it in most situations.)

Obviously straightness tolerances are important, but something that is often overlooked by archers is weight tolerances.  To truly get the best flight out of your arrows, they should all weigh in as close to one another as possible.  This is one area where the HT-2 has blown me away.  I didn’t get a chance to weight my initial set of .001″ HT-2s, but I recently received a dozen .003″ HTs and I was able to put them to the scale.  What did I find?  There was less than one grain of difference between all 12 arrows.  When you can get a dozen arrows that spin well, fly true, and weigh in with less than one grain of difference across the dozen – you have found a consistent arrow.

Harvest Time Box DetailService – I typically like to build my own arrows from raw shafts.  I like to cut, square, and fletch them myself so that I know it is done right.  I decided to take a chance and put Harvest Time’s services to the test and I can’t say I was disappointed in the least.  By ordering directly from Harvest Time you can have your arrows arrive at your door ready to shoot.  The arrows are cut by hand, squared on an arrow squaring device, and then fletched with Blazer vanes.  I found the cut to be exactly what I ordered, the square to be true, and the fletching job to be more than adequate.  Kudos to Harvest Time for not only producing a great shaft, but also building a great arrow.  Harvest Time also weighs your built arrow and notes the total arrow weight (obviously without the point/tip of your choice) on the box so that you can easily know your total weight by just adding your field tip or broadhead.

Price – The price on the HT-2s in extremely competitive, especially for the quality of arrow that you are getting.  I have paid more money for less of an arrow and I can assure you I won’t be doing that again.  Harvest Time arrows can be found at local shops, through several online retailers, or purchased through Harvest Time directly.

You can save 15% off your order directly from Harvest Time by using the code “harvesttimearchery“.

What I Don’t Like

Overall, I am really happy with the HT-2s, but there is always room for improvements.

As someone who uses a whisker biscuit rest I always have to consider how the finish of an arrow may create noise during the draw.  The finish of the HT-2 isn’t silent when being drawn through a whisker biscuit rest, but it certainly isn’t as loud as other arrows I have tried.  Quite honestly that is the only thing keeping me from labeling the HT-2 as my perfect arrow.

Harvest Time "Harvester"I would also love to see Harvest Time expand their arrow building services to offer additional vane and fletching options.  Currently Blazer vanes are the only option, and as popular as Blazer’s may be, I would think that offering other options would increase their sales.  That said, I understand that Harvest Time is primarily in the business of building great shafts and not necessarily custom building finished arrows to meet every person’s need.

In Conclusion

I really like the HT-2!  I had no intentions of switching arrows, and I certainly had no intentions of signing on to shoot Harvest Time arrow exclusively.  All I can say is this – I tried them and I am sold.  My 29″ HT-2s weight in right at 375 grains when armed with my G5 Montecs, which is an ideal weight for my bow in the whitetail woods.  I look forward to making a harvest with them.

The Author

Mark Huelsing is a regular guy with an irregular passion for bowhunting and the outdoors. Learn more about Sole Adventure or get in touch with Mark...

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  • http://socalbowhunter.blogspot.com The SoCal Bowhunter

    Another excellent review, Mark. Definitely well thought out and congrats on being selected to their shooting staff! Kudos! (Maybe I can convince HTA to get rid of that overused Bleeding Cowboys font they use and stick with the other logo. Looks so much stronger!) LOL – maybe I’ll ask to be on their advisory marketing staff. All kidding aside, it’s great to see and this is one of the best arrow reviews I have seen.
    SCB

    • http://soleadventure.com/ Mark

      Thanks, Al! I think your average consumer would probably like their design, but as a graphic design I know that you see that style as overused. I do agree that their regular logo/mark is really strong!

  • Mark

    Congrats, Mark! IMO, the best part of this post is the fact that you were honest enough to include what you DIDN’T like. Solid move.

  • http://www.foremosthunting.com Chris

    Very nice review… AWESOME PHOTOS!

    • http://soleadventure.com/ Mark

      Thanks, Chris! Taking the photos is actually one of my favorite parts of doing product reviews.

  • http://www.huntersdiversions.blogspot.com Mike VanLoon

    Mark, I absolutely love coming to your site to read your newest posts. Your desire for others to appreciate the hunt is really commendable. I appreciate that you honestly review the products to provide information to hunters. Keep up the good work.

    • http://soleadventure.com/ Mark

      Thanks, Mike! I really do appreciate it.

  • http://www.billhowardoutdoors.com Bill Howard

    Great job Mark. I have no problem with someone signing on with something they believe in. I hope to hear more about how they stand up in the long run as well. I currently shoot another brand, but I certainly would like to try these out, as I use the G5 Montec as well.

  • Steve

    Very nice review and well written. However while I agree arrow weight and straightness play a role in benefits to an archer, you left out the single most important factor when evaluating a good arrow from moderate one.(Spine consistency arrow-arrow and diameter of a single shaft)While you can have two of the straightest weight matched arrows on the planet if the spine is NOT consistent I guarantee your POI will be effected. So while the “average” archer will not see a benefit from a .003 to a .001 straightness, I 100% guarantee if that same archer has a matched spine that is consistent across a dozen arrows with nocks indexed to the backbone they will see the groups tighten up. And no I am not a guy who promotes another brand or brands of arrow. I am just an arrow nut case who loves testing and matching arrows for spine consistency and debunking claims of “dual spine”, “weight forward”, and “matched”. I would love to see data on this for the HT2 since the ProShop I have a relationship with does not carry Harvest Time.

    • http://soleadventure.com/ Mark

      Steve,

      Thanks for your comment! I agree that spine consistency is a critical factor for great arrow flight. The reason that I didn’t mention this in my review is simple – I didn’t have a way to test/verify it. As far as some data on this, I would take a look at this post from a major arrow builder (not affiliated with Harvest Time): http://www.archerytalk.com/vb/showthread.php?t=1518218&p=1061250171#post1061250171

      Take care,
      Mark

  • Steve

    Mark,

    thanks for pointing that out, I speak to Jerry fairly regular to compare findings. I have already reached out to him, and have some arrows coming for myself so I can evaluate them. thanks again for the review.

    Steve