December 12, 2019
By Christian Berg
In the business world, it is often said that climbing to the top is hard, but staying on top is harder. After all, being a market leader puts a target on your back, and even the most successful organizations must constantly adapt to stay ahead of the competition.
Few companies in the bowhunting industry can boast a track record of success that rivals Rage, a brand that has dominated the mechanical broadhead market for more than a decade. Based on the devastating results my friend and I enjoyed while using the all-new Rage Hypodermic NC (No Collar) on our recent Montana pronghorn hunt, I feel confident the brand’s popularity will continue for the foreseeable future.
In many ways, the Hypodermic NC represents the culmination of several design enhancements Rage has made related to blade retention and deployment over the past decade. For that reason, I think it’s important to take a quick look back before we dive into the particulars of the Hypodermic NC.
Rage introduced its original broadhead design — featuring the revolutionary, rear-deploying, SlipCam technology — in 2006. Bowhunters had never seen anything like it, and it wasn’t long before the archery community was buzzing about the massive entry and exit wounds the broadhead created, along with blood trails so heavy even a blind man could follow them. Within a couple of seasons, Rage enjoyed one of the most devoted brand followings in archery, and the name Rage quickly morphed from a noun into a verb that permeates bowhunting vernacular to this day, as in, Oh man, you Raged him!
Despite its initial success, however, the original Rage design suffered from one consistent criticism — inadequate tension from the rubber O-ring holding the blades in place sometimes allowed them to open when bumped during a stalk or prematurely in flight, causing arrows to sail off course.
In 2012, Rage addressed consumers’ request for added blade security when it introduced the Shock Collar on the original Rage X-Treme. Then, in 2013, Rage utilized the Shock Collar on its 2-blade Hypodermic, which the company says went on to become the best-selling broadhead of all time.
In 2016, Rage followed up with a High-Energy Shock Collar for crossbow heads, and in 2017, Rage enhanced blade security even further with the introduction of the 2-blade Trypan, featuring a keyed, two-petal Shock Collar that mates to the ferrule for foolproof installation and operation.
That brings us back to 2019 and the all-new Hypodermic NC, the company’s first design to eliminate the need for an O-ring or Shock Collar. The key to the No Collar design is an internal sear machined into the blades that securely locks the blades in place when closed but also allows them to freely deploy on impact. As a bowhunter, I really appreciate the No Collar design innovation because it allows me to set and reset the broadhead into the closed position simply by pinching the blades shut. And unlike previous models, this can be done without loosening the broadhead or removing it from the arrow.
Like all Rage heads, the Hypodermic NC features SlipCam technology, which allows the two, .035-inch-thick blades to instantly deploy upon impact to their full, 2-inch cutting diameter for maximum devastation upon entry. Other highlights of the Hypodermic NC include a solid, stainless-steel ferrule, swept-back blade angle for maximum penetration and a very small profile in flight for fieldpoint accuracy.
I’ve certainly found Rage’s accuracy claims to be true with several models over the years, and the Hypodermic NC flies right with my fieldpoints out to at least 80 yards on the practice range. The range on my Montana pronghorn was 53 yards, and the arrow hit exactly where I was aiming — the antelope never made it out of sight. The following morning, my friend made a great shot on his buck from an even longer distance, with the Hypodermic NC putting the animal down in seconds.
As I write this, opening day of deer season is just around the corner. Given our experience in Montana, I can’t wait to screw some Hypodermic NCs onto my arrows again and head out to “Rage” a big whitetail!
MSRP: $49.99 per 3