A question about arrow breaking and crafting in Pathfinder 1e.

Assuming when your arrow breaks from normal use you recover the arrowhead, how much time would it take to craft and arrow if:

1- You already have some arrow shafts ready and you affix the arrowhead to it.

2- You need only to craft the arrow shaft and affix the arrowhead to hit.

3- What would be the cost and time required to craft some arrow shaft in advance?

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Have you read the rules of the Crafting skill? Is there something there that isn't clear? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Apr 21 at 3:29
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Is your DM really this stingy? Or is this a thought experiment? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Apr 21 at 3:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ Well my line of tought is that since you would already have all the components it would take a lot less time to craft arrows if you recover the arrowheads and already have arrowshaft crafted . But how would you determine the time it takes to do this ? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Apr 21 at 3:50

1 Answer 1


This is up to your GM

The rules for ammunition merely state

Generally speaking, ammunition that hits its target is destroyed or rendered useless, while ammunition that misses has a 50% chance of being destroyed or lost.

There is no elaboration in what way the ammunition is destroyed. It just is. As the rule is written, there is nothing to be reused.

Thus, if you want to deviate from this, this requires rulings. Are the heads bent, or is the shaft broken? How long does it take to pry out the arrows? How much effort is it to get the old shaft out of the head? Can it be done without damaging the head? And so on. The rules have nothing on this.

Neither do the rules go to the granularity what the contribution of head, shaft, feathers is to the overall value of the arrow. They merely say:

Pay 1/3 of the item’s price for the raw material cost.

You can do research on historic data for this, but again, that are not game rules and thus will be up to the GM to rule on.

On arrows that missed, note that the arrow may be "lost". It may have gone off into the undergrowth or whatnot. As per the rules it is gone and cannot be retrieved, like a destroyed arrow.

This rule is an abstraction that does not hold up to close inspection. For example, why can't you find the arrows in a small dungeon chamber or why are they destroyed upon hitting? It is an abstraction to avoid the equally hard to swallow endless reuse of arrows. Because of that, like with other such abstractions, it is hard to mix with detailed simulationist approaches.

Arrows are not that expensive, so outside of a special situation where you cannot buy any, this will hardly ever matter, and the savings to be gained from it are likely not worth the hassle even if the GM agrees to it. You'd do it mostly for roleplaying reasons, if you portray your character as a scrappy one.


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