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Bow question?

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by Sobel, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. Sobel

    Sobel Well-Known Member

    How do you pick a bow maker? I don't know much about bows but I find them to be quite interesting. What do draw lengths , draw weight , and length have to do with its effectiveness? How do you determine what weight projectile to use with them?
  2. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    Regarding manufacturers, there are "entry-level" brands, high-end brands, and brands in between (or brands that make entry-level and high-end bows), just like with guns, cars, etc. Do a bit of research on Bear, Bowtech, PSE, Mathews, and Hoyt. There are others of course, but thats plenty to get started on.

    As far as draw weight/length, bow length, etc (there are other measurements, such as brace height), the best thing you can probably do is go to an archery-specific pro shop and talk to an employee. For now, know that draw length is based entirely on the measure of your body, fingertip to fingertip when standing with arms perpendicular to your body. Draw weight depends on what you can comfortably manage to pull, but generally, the higher the weight, the faster the bow. Bow length and design of the limbs also factor into bow speed, and possibly other things I don't know of.

    Your arrow is cut to length based on your draw length, and the strength/flexibility of the shaft is based on your draw weight. This is for carbon arrows (those are all I've used), and may be different if you opt for aluminum arrows, but IDK for sure.

    TLDR Version: You'll learn everything you want in a couple hours at a pro shop dedicated to archery.
  3. Sobel

    Sobel Well-Known Member

    Thank you , one thing I worry about in a sporting shop is if they'll push a fancy doodad filled bow. I kinda want a traditional bow, I got the pleasure of taking archery class in highschool and the compound bow I used felt flimsy and I was afraid it would break.
  4. Zeke/PA

    Zeke/PA Well-Known Member

    An archery shop is your best bet of course but pick a dedicated shop rather than an "archery" shop in a big ticket store.
    The local shops hereabouts, since hunting is winding down, are able to devote quality time to customers.
  5. R H Clark

    R H Clark Well-Known Member

    Your best bet is to educate yourself before a purchase.Try to find some local trad archery clubs.The traditional 3d season is about to start.You can go to some events.They will have lots of vendors with both new and used bows for sale,that you can even shoot before buying.There will be a lot of guys that will let you handle their bows and give you a hand.

    Try to locate some local help with google and you might try tradgang or leatherwall forums.
  6. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    If you want to go traditional (recurve or longbow), that's great; but don't make that decision based on your experience with a compound that felt flimsy. It was likely a children's or early-teen's model. Even the most inexpensive compounds (that are made for adults) that I've handled feel extremely solid.

    Like I said though, if you want a traditional bow, I'm sure you'll enjoy it. It will likely be less expensive to get started, though it will take a bit more time for you to become proficient with it.

    I suggest you read through this recent thread, which focuses on the differences between traditional bows and compound bows.
  7. Sobel

    Sobel Well-Known Member

    Thank for the link, you guys really know your stuff.
  8. Browning Guy

    Browning Guy Well-Known Member

    Another vote for an archery pro shop. Too many people at a sporting goods store know how to run the cash register and nothing about helping you for proper set up. Now is a good time to go to a shop. A friend who started this fall with a "hand me down" bow went to a local shop with me. They showed him a wide variety of bows and even let him shoot a variety of the used ones. He found a used one he liked and they made him a very good deal even knocking off the sticker price so he can take it now. They know hunting season is done, christmas buying is over and the new models are on the way for spring. They didn't need more used bows around. They helped him find just what he needed and liked and worked with him so HE is happy thus getting a repeat customer which is what their livlihood is all about. a Win/win.
  9. R H Clark

    R H Clark Well-Known Member

    If you want a good traditional bow stay away from the pro shop.They will only have the latest offering from whatever compound brands they deal with and have no idea of the quality or shootability.

    Some of these compound manufacturer's have just taken the old longer compound risers and slapped some recurve limbs on them.They do not make the most forgiving design for traditional finger shooters.
  10. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    So where should he be looking, then?
  11. R H Clark

    R H Clark Well-Known Member


    No offence intended.The pro shop is great if OP decides to go compound but his local traditional club will be a lot more help with a longbow or recurve.

    There is also tradgang and leatherwall forum classifieds for trad bows only.A local club would just give the advantage of trying a lot of different bows to decide what he likes best.
  12. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    I wasn't offended, and didn't mean to come across as though I were. I've only been into archery for about a year, and my knowledge related to it is equally limited. I didn't know pro shops are subpar places to get info on traditional archery, and I was curious where a person ought to go instead.

    Thanks for your input, man.
  13. R H Clark

    R H Clark Well-Known Member

    I didn't really think you were offended.Just wanted to let you know my attitude also.

    I've just seen several of the compound manufacturers use a riser design that puts the limb pockets out in front of the handle.It doesn't make for a stable and accurate design in a finger released trad bow.It panders to the speed crowd.Take a look at the design of any olympic target recurve and the handle is forward or at least even with the limb pockets.

    The best thing for anyone getting into traditional archery is to shoot as many different bows as possible and then choose.Even then,it's best not to spend a bundle on your first bow because it will take time to find out what kind of bows you prefer.If you can get hooked up with a local trad club or attend some trad only 3D's,you will be exposed to more bows that if you visited every pro shop in the state.

    When I started I thought I wanted a light (physical weight) one piece recurve.Then after a couple years and several bows,I learned I shoot a heavy riser takedown much better.Even then,I found that I couldn't shoot bows not cut to center very well.Then there is the grip,length,draw weight....you get the idea.

    Then you get addicted to bows and need a short bow for the blind,a light one for hiking hunts,a target bow for 3D's etc.Just like anything you can invest as little or as much as you want.I've got a few thousand dollars in trad bows but might also take along a selfbow that only cost me time and string material.
  14. Sobel

    Sobel Well-Known Member

    I've had trouble finding shops in Orlando I drove to Gander mountain only found modern bows nobody even working in the department to send me in the right direction. I've found a pawn shop that deals with bows and even has a level 2 instructor. But, I fear they wont have any traditional bows :/ feels like everybody has moved onto fiberglass and metal. Tho even with a chance to test the draw weights and draw lengths it could be a good learning experience.

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