Deciding on a new bow can be overwhelming and confusing. Particularly, it is difficult to choose an all-new compound bow can be a challenge. There are a variety of aspects and options to consider. Check out the following information so you can make an informed decision about the next purchase.

Compound Bow Features

Eye Dominance

What is it: Of course, you’re aware you’ve got dominant hands and, if you’re lucky, you have dominant feet. It’s not a surprise, then the fact that you’ve got the dominating eye. Most people’s dominant eye is similar to the hand they hold. Right-handed, right-eyed. This isn’t always the case but you must verify.

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Make your hands into an equilateral triangle that is centered on a distant object. Close one eye, then the opposite. If closing your primary eye the object will shift and will be partially hidden by the fingers. For instance, if your dominant eye is on your right side when you close your left eye, the object will remain in place. If closing your left eye, it will move.

What is the significance of this:

The eye that you have the most dominant has a significant impact on the way you aim and, consequently, can affect whether you’d like to purchase a left- or right-handed bow. If you’re a majority of us that has your eye dominant and the dominant hand alike and it’s not a big deal. If they’re not, however you’re left with a decision to make.

What to Consider:

The aim of a compound bow isn’t an exact science. However, you generally look towards the arrow’s shaft towards the desired target. It’s much easier when your eye’s dominant point is located on the inside. If not, your focus is off.

A simple solution is to shut one eye. A lot of archers, particularly shooters with a target preference prefer shooting using one eye shut. If you’re using a bow that’s right-handed, however, you’re left-eye dominant shut your left eye. The left eye is compensated, and your aim will be properly calibrated.

Unfortunately, this won’t work for all. If you can’t draw with both eyes closed then you may need to switch hands of the bow. Even though you normally draw using your dominant hand, and use the bow using your non-dominant hand, most people don’t have any issues switching. This is why it’s essential to keep your dominant eye in consideration.

Draw Weight

What is it:



Draw weight is the measurement of the force needed to draw the bowstring back to its original position it was before firing. For example, a draw weight of 50lbs instance means it will require the same force to pull the bow back as it does to lift 50lbs above the earth.

Why it is important:

Draw weight is among the most simple bow specifications, but it is also among the most crucial. A heavier draw weight means more power. More energy is saved in the bowstring, which means increased speed and energy when firing. You can guess that the heavier drawing weight you have, the more difficult it will be for you to pull the bow, and the more strong you’ll need to be.

What to Consider:

It’s not all about muscle. It’s possible to show that you’re strong enough to find the most powerful draw weight you can find. While it’s the case that one of the most important factors when choosing a drawing weight is individual strength, that’s not the only thing to consider. You’ll also use it to calculate the appropriate range. Look at this graph.

Construction of Archer

the weight of an archer (lbs)

Draw Weight Range (lbs)

Small Child

70-100

15-25

Small Girl/Large Child

100-130

25-35

Average Woman

130-160

30-40

Large Woman

160+

45-55

Small Man

120-150

45-55

Average Man

150-180

55-65

Big Man

180+

65-75

What to Consider:

Once you’ve figured out the different draw weights that you can choose from depending on your height There are additional things to think about.

The first thing to consider is what kind of knowledge are you at? If you’re only starting, you’ll want to go with draw weight at the lower part of the range. If you’re just beginning your journey shooting, think about changing the weight class from the chart. Weights that are heavier on the draw mean more power, but they can also make the bow more difficult to manage. If you are a beginner learn to improve your technique and aim before you start. Once you’ve got that down then you can build up the weight of your draw.

What do you plan on making use of the bow? If you’re a target shooter you don’t need the heaviest draw weight. You might even need something lighter as you’re still learning your craft.

Hunting is an entirely different animal. To begin, most states have laws that require bows to have an appropriate draw weight to hunt. The reason for this is that drawing weight is the basis for strength. For ethical hunting, the bow must have sufficient power to kill the animal you are hunting. Simply injuring can cause unnecessary pain for the beast, which means ultimately you’ll lose your hunt. The minimum draw weight is likely to be in the range of 40lbs which means that as you see, many bows made that are designed for smaller archers don’t get through the test.

However, there’s a chance that you will not be able to carry such a heavy draw weight while hunting as you are shooting at the range. It’s because target shooting is a rapid draw. You pull the string back or aim for a few seconds before firing.

If you’re standing in a tree or hunting, however, you could find yourself waiting with your bow in a bow for a while in anticipation of your hunter being in the ideal position. It is essential to remain still throughout this period as movements can make noise. The greater the weight of the draw, the quicker your arm is going to become tired of pulling the bowstring.

For a hunter, you need to find the perfect middle between the draw weight you’ll need to work against the game you want to hunt, not to mention legal, but not too heavy that it compromises your endurance. For whitetail deer, you’ll require to be able to carry a minimum weight of 40 pounds, and larger game such as bear, elk, and moose require a minimum of 50. The higher the weight, the better the chances of success, however, be open with yourself about the amount you’re able to handle.

Then, you should consider the adjustability that the weight on the bow’s pull. Most bows offer a range of draw weights to adjust, however, the amount of these ranges is different. Some bows may offer large ranges of 15 to 75 pounds, and others have only a limited range of 50-65. Large ranges are beneficial for those who are just beginning because they can improve their technique while gradually increasing their weight. In the same way, it’s ideal for hunters who are new since they can begin with low weight and gradually build their endurance.

Draw Length

What is it:

Draw length is the measurement of the length of time you can extend the bowstring. For compound bows in particular there’s an upper limit to the draw length that cams can allow. Drawing lengths that are longer translate to greater speed expressed in FPS. For most compound bows, one inch in draw length is equivalent to 10 FPS firing. If you are familiar with science you will realize that more speed and acceleration means more force and strength. The string will push the bow longer time.

Why it is important:

With this in mind, you could be tempted to purchase the longest bow you locate. However, the length of your bow is determined by the size of your body. Because you draw your bow using an arm. The wider arms you have, the greater draw length you’ll have to manage. You might be able to bend your body to squeeze out some more inches but you’ll make it difficult to aim and maintain control.

What to Consider:

The common wisdom is that you should select the length of your draw according to your height. However, this is just an estimation. The ideal draw length is determined by the length of an arm or wingspan, not the height. For most people it’s identical. If you’re a tall man like me it’s a good idea to spend a few minutes and determine your wingspan. My height is 6-foot-3″ (75 inches) in height, which could translate to a draw length. My arms that hang from my body, however, have wingspans of around 80 inches which means I need to have a bow that has a 32-in draw length.

If you purchase a bow that’s too small for your needs can cause frustration. It’s likely to appear as if you’re not getting all the power you could get from the bow. It’s possible that you subconsciously attempt to draw the string to a certain extent, and although the best compound bows will prevent this from happening, doing it over and over can cause wear and tear on the cams. However, the bow that’s too big will be difficult to control and aim properly.

To determine your ideal draw length measure your wingspan in inches. It’s the distance between the point of the middle finger towards the other when you stretch your arms straight and parallel with the ground. Find that number, subtract 15 and then divide it by two. Voila, your ideal draw length.

For instance, if I’m wingspan measures 79 inches long, I subtract 15 to arrive at 64. Then, I divide it by two to yield 32. If you’re lazy to figure it out.

Axle-to-Axle Length

What is it:

If you’re looking to purchase a compound bow you’ll find a figure called ATA. It refers to an “axle-to-axle” duration that the bow. Every limb in the compound bow is equipped with an axle or a pulley mechanism that keeps the string. The pulleys are fitted with axles that connect these to the bow’s limbs. They are called ATA. ATA represents the length between the two axles.

What is the significance of this:

ATA is a major factor in compound bows. In general shorter, ATAs that are less than around 31 inches, will have greater firing speed. However, larger ATAs above 34 inches slow down but are more manageable. They’re more smooth to draw, which makes them much more precise in aiming. The ATAs range from 31 to 34 inches? Then, you’ll have a bit of both, but of neither.

What to Consider:

Short ATAs are very popular among hunters due to their smaller size. Larger bows are more difficult to maneuver through dense brush and more likely to generate noise. This could affect the outcome of the hunt. Long ATAs as well as their better control and precision are ideal than adequate for shooting targets.

If you’re not looking to get the extreme option, then a middle-range ATA is probably a good choice for you if you’re not in a very dense area and you want to improve the accuracy of your hunt. It’s also an ideal option for those who are just beginning. Once you are more confident shooting and you figure out your preferred shooting style, you may choose a more advanced ATA.

Let-Off

What’s the Difference:

Compound bows utilize simple devices including pulleys to gain greater power and lower effort. This system can store kinetic energy, so your arm isn’t required to. Although a recurve bow or a longbow that has a draw weight of 50 lbs requires you to carry an entire 50 pounds using your shoulders A compound bow considerably reduces the strain.

The amount that a compound bow can reduce the draw weight is referred to as”let-off. “let-off,” and it’s expressed in percent. If, for instance, your bow can draw weight of 50lbs and a let-off rate of 80 percent, the bow’s cam system can reduce the draw weight to just 10 pounds. To accomplish this, however, you need to draw the string towards “the wall.” This is when the cams are engaged fully and the pulley system is reducing the draw weight as far as is possible.

If you don’t extend the bowstring back towards the wall you’ll never achieve full let-off. The slightest amount of draw could significantly reduce the let-off, and thus increase the weight of the draw. Also when you begin to loosen your draw, and also the bowstring is stretched, it will become much harder to hold when you pull the bowstring closer to the bow.

The rate at which the let-off drops when you get farther away from the wall. It is referred to by the name of “the valley.” A narrow valley means that you can relax the string a little before it becomes heftier. A deeper valley means that you can relax your draw just a little bit, but your draw’s weight is likely to rapidly increase.

Why it is important:

Since let-off can reduce the weight of your draw, having a greater let-off makes it much more comfortable to draw and hold, as well as manage. Low let-off valleys also indicate that bows are tolerant when drawing, whereas a deep valley implies that your drawing has to be precise to avoid abrupt slips.

What to Consider:

In general, there’s nothing to lose from being let off. The higher the amount, the more. However, when you have extremely high let-offs, like those that exceed 75%, many archers complain of the draw being too light. In this situation, it may be difficult to feel the bow and to activate the muscles that are involved in drawing. If you’re shooting for target or even millimeters it can affect the way you shoot.

Hunters however ought to probably take as big an exhilarating experience as they can. There’s no way to think about the day you’ll need to draw for hours on end as you sit and wait for your quarry to arrive at a suitable distance.

Brace Height

What is it:

In essence, the brace’s height refers relation to the space between the bowstring and the bow. It is measured at the deepest portion of the bow’s curvature, often referred to by the name of the throat. It’s usually in the same location where the arrow rest is located.

Why it is important:

The height of the bow affects firing speed like draw length. Imagine you own an arrow with 30 inches of draw length. If it also has a height of 7 inches for the brace which means that you’re realizing that you’re moving the bowstring back by 23 inches since the string and thus the arrow was only seven inches away from the bow in the point of rest.

What to Consider:

If you are familiar with the concepts from our section on draw length and you can guess the implications. A lower brace height means the arrow will be faster since you can effectively utilize the entire length of your draw. Beware, though. The shorter draw lengths, which are are less than six inches, are extremely difficult to correct errors. They require greater precision for accuracy.

We recommend brace sizes of over six inches for those who are just starting. This is for those who are brand who are brand new to compound bows or people who have previously shot but are entering a new realm like bow hunting for the very first time.

“Foot per Second (FPS)

What is it:

The speed of firing for the compound bow can be measured as feet/second. If you’re looking for an archery bow, you’ll see this figure listed alongside the primary specifications. Most likely, you’ll see the range of 250-440 FPS. This is followed by IBO and sometimes ATA.

IBO is abbreviated as the International Bowhunting Organization and refers to the standard used by the organization to gauge the firing speed. In particular, to determine the FPS measurement for a particular bow, they employ an equivalent version with 70-pound draw weight, a 30-inch draw length, and a 350-grain arrow. The speed of the arrow when it is taken out of the bow is the official FPS.

ATA is the abbreviation for Archery Trade Association, and they utilize a slightly different method to calculate FPS. It’s not as commonly used by bow makers, however, it’s important to know that when trying to compare bows, the format is IPO or IPO or ATA in comparison to ATA.

What’s the point?

FPS is an important spec to be aware of. If you go back to the basics of physics, a faster speed implies more energy kinetic when your arrow hits the desired target. It allows your broadheads to go much further, particularly into larger games. It is possible to take down a big game with very low FPS. For instance, people hunt down massive Alaskan moose by bowing long at less than 200 FPS every day. A higher FPS may be more lenient to an occasional error in aim however, it could cut through a bone or tendon that it would not otherwise.

Furthermore, it is true that high FPS bows are easier to shoot with precision and can target targets further away. The faster the arrow is, the less likely it is to be subject to external forces such as gravity and wind. It will fly in straight lines for a long time after it has left the bow.

What to Consider:

High FPS doesn’t have any real negatives by itself however, for higher FPS you require higher specifications in areas such as the draw weight and duration. These aren’t easy for novices to manage. Advice? Do not just focus on FPS, but instead find the most efficient bow that you can. Also, look at the other specifications too.

Sound Quality and Noise

What’s the Difference:

All machines are likely to generate a little sound, particularly those that shoot arrows at up to 400 feet per second. Contrary to their recurve-type and longbow counterparts they have many moving components. In particular, the cams rattle or squeak when they move through, the risers and bowstrings, and they may vibrate after shooting.

Why it is important:

Noise is a major issue for hunters. Noise that is not wanted can scare the game and make it flee or prevent it from appearing initially. Along with the smell, the sound is among the primary ways that animals, such as deer, detect predators. Their hearing is extremely fine-tuned, and something that you may not notice may give the impression of an animal that is away from your view.

What to Consider:

When trying to choose the best compound bow There are two areas to look at. One is the bow and the second one is the accessories the manufacturer provides along with it.

For the bow itself, More moving parts make more noise. This means that the more joints that are welded instead of nuts and bolts the more efficient. Also, check the level of noise that the cams produce. The noise of the cams can be reduced by tuning them to work perfectly in sync However, it is recommended that they should be from a manufacturer already doing this. A bow that isn’t synced cams isn’t a good sign to the bow’s long-term future.

A variety of accessories are available to reduce the sound produced from your bow compound. Limb dampeners are small blocks of rubber that are attached to your bow and absorb vibrating limbs which reduces noise. Similar to rubber string dampeners, they absorb the vibrations of the string. Then, the string is stopped the moment the bow is removed which prevents it from creating noise. When selecting your bow, make sure you check what accessories are included with it.

Cam Type

What’s the Difference:

The cams make the compound bow a compound bow. The bows our predecessors used were usually larger than human beings. They had to be equipped with a string that was long enough to generate sufficient power. Compound bows can be made from the same length of string or longer, however, they compress the power to make a compact and user-friendly weapon using the pulley mechanism.

Why it is important:

Nowadays compound bows are made of cams that are becoming more technologically modern. There are numerous types of compound bows that each have their benefits and drawbacks. The one you select can make an enormous difference to the archery experience. It could affect things like the speed of firing, draw cycle, and maintenance.

What to Consider:

The first thing you should focus on is the kind of cam that can be described as “softer” or “harder” in a range. Soft cams tend to be more circular while hard ones are more circular.

Because of the consequences of calculus and physics because of the implications of calculus and physics of a greater proportion of the bow’s power and result in more power and greater firing speed. Soft cams however offer much more smooth draw cycles and are much easier to feel. This is why soft cams are usually the ideal choice for novice archers. They can gradually progress to more powerful cams as they get more experience.

Also, it is important to keep track of the type of camera system. There are four kinds of cams: single-cam twin-cam, dual cam, the cam, as well as binary cam.

Single-cam bows are most basic, and possibly an ideal choice for those who are just beginning out. They have only one real cam, while the second limb is just an idle wheel. This could have some minor impacts on the accuracy and draw cycle however, it’s a far more simple system to maintain. It’s great for hunters. typically quieter.

Binary, hybrid, and twin cam systems, all of which are classified as “dual camera” systems each of them is a variation of the same idea of a cam that has both legs. Each one is more advanced than the previous one and utilizes different combinations of control and buss cables to ensure that the two cams are in sync. Buss cables carry energy to and off the limbs and control cables help keep the cams in sync. 

Two control cables, and no dependence on the bow’s limbs in any way Binary cam systems are becoming well-known due to their ease of use, speed, and the absence of timing problems. They’re not new, but they just came out in 2005, and patent issues make them difficult to come across and costly whenever you can.

Overall Bow Weight

What is it:

Naturally, the different compound bows come with different weights. At first look, it may appear as if there’s not any variation, but it’s not the case. The largest of them weighs around six pounds while the tiniest generally weigh in at least three pounds.

What is the significance of this:

But, even this small amount of just three pounds could be significant, particularly for bow hunters. It’s because they’re not carrying only the bow. When you’re packing your backpack with food, gear, and safety gear for a hunting trip that lasts several days each one of those ounces is important.

It’s not just about the comfort of walking through the forest, However, it is a necessity. Bowhunters are often required to hold their bow in place for a long time to wait for their target to get into the perfect place. Anyone who has worked shoulder to shoulder in the weight room before can confirm that even the slightest amount of weight can have a significant impact for a long time.

What to Consider:

In general, the lighter bow is superior. The only drawback is that lighter bows are generally more costly. They’re constructed from superior quality materials. Carbon fiber for example is the most effective combination of strength and lightweight. However, it also comes at the most expensive price.

Appearance: Colors/Print/Camo

What is it:

For the majority of their existence compound bows have been offered in basic colors such as brown or black. Recently, however, bow makers have begun to make their bows with a wide assortment of colors, unique prints, and of course camo for hunters.

Why it is important:

Bows are an ideal way to display your style. Most of the time it’s up to you to choose your preferences. Perhaps you are a fan of peacocks with neon green and blue or perhaps you’re more of a traditional variety and want an all-black appearance.

For those who hunt bows but you’ll need to be more practical. It’s obvious to use the camo print however, even there it’s not enough to be aware of.

What to Consider:

In the beginning, you must understand a bit more about what game species you’re seeking. For instance, Deer, Elk, and even other mammalian animals such as bears, are colorblind. This doesn’t mean that they only can’t see only in black or white. They simply can’t tell between green and red. If you’re a person, that blaze of pink or orange stands out for a buck, however, to him it appears to be the same as all other plants. This is why bows are available that have orange, pink, and blue camo designs.

In these kinds of big game patterns are much more significant than the hue when it comes to camo. The pattern can make a huge difference. Particularly, lively, energetic patterns can stand out in the deciduous forest in winter, when leaves are gone and the landscape is devoid and grey. Similar to snow-white winter camo, white winter camo could be prominent in an evergreen forest.

If you’re hunting turkey but the color is crucial significantly. Turkeys have more vision than deer and can see colors such as orange, red, and pink. Turkey hunters should stick with traditional camo designs and stay clear of bright colors or unusual patterns.

In the end, vision isn’t the main sense used by prey animals. The way your bow appears is not as important as the sound it produces or the scent it emits. Simple colors such as brown and black are efficient when hunting.

Bare vs. Ready-to-Shoot

What’s the Difference:

We’ve spoken a bit about specific accessories before, such as limb dampeners and string stops. The complete list, however, is much more extensive. Compound bows are made to be used with a variety of accessories that have their purpose.

The two most popular tools are sights and quivers. They come in a variety of styles, and all can be used to accurately aim at different distances. Quivers permit you to connect additional arrows to your bow to make it easier to access. Additionally, there is drop-away archery rests as well as bow release levers and numerous others.

Ready-to-shoot bows are delivered from the box with all the necessary accessories and usually include a variety of extras too. A bow that is not fully loaded is, it’s an ordinary bow. It is necessary to purchase the accessories on your own. It may seem as if it’s obvious however there are numerous aspects to take into consideration.

Why it is important:

In the beginning, accessories are much more important to hunters than for target shooters. For instance, an attached quiver could be useful for shooters who target however it could make an enormous difference to those who hunt and need to find another arrow as swiftly as is possible.

Then, think about the specificity and the quality of accessories. On one hand, the accessories provided by the manufacturer are guaranteed to be extremely suitable for bows. That way it’s not necessary to do any research. In contrast, the chances are that they’ll be generic.

What to Consider:

If you think about it, a ready-to-shoot bow is a great choice for a novice who is still learning how to use all the accessories. A seasoned archer, however, might have the knowledge to choose the right equipment for their specific needs. Perhaps they like the caliper bow release as well as pin sights, for instance. It’s not possible to make these kinds of options if the manufacturer is doing the work for you.

In the end, it is important to think about costs. When you purchase a bow without a bow you are aware of how much you’ll be paying. In the case of bows that are ready to shoot even if the maker claims that they’re “free,” you’re still likely to pay for at least a portion of the price. The bow itself could be less expensive than you think and, to reduce overall costs, they’re of lower quality.

Bow Packages

What’s the Difference:

Bow packages go beyond bows that are ready to shoot. Along with all the necessary accessories the package also includes additional accessories such as broadheads and arrows the case, arm guard, and even targets. In some instances, professionals will set up, test, and tune the bow to allow you to take it out the moment you leave the shop. Additionally, the top bows allow you to select the accessories you want to use.

Why it is important:

The main benefit of bows is their ease of use. However, sometimes they could provide more practical benefits. For instance, tuning compound bows so that they stay in sync with the bow is crucial for accuracy, and professional tuning can save the day. Furthermore, you’ll know that you’re getting broadheads and arrows that perform the task as well as a case to protect your bow secure for years to be. The armguards as well as the targets allow you to practice at home before when you venture to the woods.

What to Consider:

Bows with elaborate bows are perfect for archers with experience and bowhunters who are aware of what they’d like to achieve. For beginners, have a bow that they can begin using right away. But, you need to be certain that archery is a passion for you. You shouldn’t spend the price for professional services and high-end equipment if it’s likely to be tossed in the closet in the back after a single season.

How to Select the Best Compound Bow to Hunt

If you talk to any experienced hunter and they’ll inform you that every detail that you wash with to the squeak of your shoes can make an impact. The bow isn’t an exception so manufacturers of compound bows create products that have incredibly specific features designed specifically for hunters.

The first step is to ensure that your bow can take on the game you’re hoping to win. This includes checking the draw weight as well as the let-off speed and FPS. You can be sure that every compound bow available on the market will be strong enough to take the quarry down. But, you must research local laws to make sure the draw weight you choose to use is compatible with the specifications. In addition, if you’re to hunt big game such as moose or elk greater power could be the more efficient and ethical option.

The cost of strength is always accuracy but you must be aware of that. In particular, you must choose the correct-sized bow and a draw length that’s not uncomfortable. In addition, you should maintain the weight of the bow to a minimum and the let-off at a high level so you can hold it in place.

Once you’ve found that perfect balance of power and precision You can then get into the finer points. This is a result of an appearance that keeps you from being noticed by your surroundings. It is also an unobtrusive bow. To minimize noise make sure you are aware of the cam system. A single-camera is quiet and ideal for novices.

There are also various accessories available. String stops and dampeners are vital to keeping your hunting at a distance. If you are a hunter it is also necessary to have:

A view that’s precise at different distances

A quiver ideal connected to one

A bowstring release tool

An arrow that is drop-away rests

Don’t ignore the cost. As with everything else you pay for what you get when it is a compound bow. You don’t need to buy the highest-priced bow on the market, however, cheap bows aren’t always of the highest quality. However, a cheap ready-to-shoot or full package is a good method to begin learning. Be sure to check that it is in the specifications to work on the field.

How to Choose a Compound Bow for Target Shooting/Recreational Use

Shooting for targets is a completely different kind of animal. The smallest details such as sound or appearance aren’t as important. It’s all about precision. When looking over the features and specifications of a bow be sure to keep this in your mind all the time. Larger drawing weights, as well as firing rates, are great since more powerful arrows are straighter but they shouldn’t compromise the control. Before you decide to go to a higher power, be sure you’ve got an arrow that’s of a size you can control with an easy draw cycle. Be aware of the draw length as well as ATA.

Similar to when choosing accessories, you need to concentrate on items that improve control and reduce the effects of the arrow. Naturally, you’ll require an arrow launch and sight. Arrow rests are also essential. A drop-away rest that is good like this one lets the arrow go straight from the bow without any other thing affecting its course. A device is known as a “bow stabilizer” or “bow stabilizer” can help you to keep your bow in control.

Like hunting bows, the bow that is ready to shoot can be an effective option to start. Make sure you don’t buy an assortment of hunting equipment that you won’t need. The purchase of a bow without accessories is also a great alternative. Then, you can choose the accessories that you love best and will make you feel more comfortable with your bow.

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