Getting started in Archery

Discussion in 'Hobbies' started by SarahFair, Nov 17, 2009.

  1. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    This christmas my dads just going to give me cash. Ive always wanted to hunt but the recoil of a gun is just a lot on my small self.
    Ive always wanted a bow.

    How do you know what size and kind to get?

    Does height and weight and being left or right handed have anything to do with it?

    How much should I expect to pay?
  2. QuailQT

    QuailQT Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 23, 2009
    NW PA
    DOOOO it!

    I'm petite too, only 5' / 113# and my fiance bought me two diamonds last year. One for my finger, but my favorite Diamond is made by Bow Tech, sounding oddly like a commercial a little, eh?

    Seriously though, I love it! It is perfect for me as it is a youth bow. We found it on ebay last year when I really just wanted one that I could use for the 3D shoots that we went to. My bow was hardly used at all, which (IMO) is the best kind to get. Let someone else throw their extra money away. We got mine with lots of extra parts that the dad had bought for his son (after paying for the brand new bow). I have the 2007 version of "The Edge" and I do just love it. My fiance is so impressed with it and loves the look of it and wishes that he could find something similar with a longer draw length. He has a Matthews bow and loves mine!
    It is so easy to carry and lightweight too. The poundage goes up to 50, though mine is set at 45.
    I didn't hunt last year with it, but I did this year and got some backstraps in the freezer! Yummy! It was sooooo exciting and much more exciting than rifle season. It's the time of year with so much activity going on in the woods. I saw a mink, tons of squirrels a nice 7 point that I couldn't get a shot at and a doe which I shot on the last day all alone in my stand. I would have loved to have gotten that buck, but he snuck in on me at a fast pace from behind a tree and went right under by tree stand. I had the time of my life, though I only got to go three times this year between getting sick and watching my niece during prime hunting hours. I don't particularly like shooting does, but I love the meat in the freezer and it's better than them being hit by a car or being hungry all winter.

    Think of it as an exciting investment in yourself and that's the best investment that a person can make. It's character building and it's time in the great outdoors that God has given us to thoroughly enjoy. The time alone is so peaceful and I find myself reflecting on things that I wouldn't have otherwise sitting in the house in front of my computer.

    Yes, it does make a difference if you are right or left handed.
    This bow has been extremeley consistent for me with nice grouping. I can't recommend it highly enough. Go get yourself one! Here's a 2008 model on ebay asking $390 plus shipping, but you can also make an offer. Item number: 280421958379
    Check it out!

    Have fun and PM me if you have any more questions. I'm new to this too, but I can try to help and I have two experienced archery hunters in the house who may be able to help too.
  3. HLAC

    HLAC Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 24, 2009
    Central Utah
    Left or right handed should really depend on your eye dominance. If you're left-eye dominant, shoot a left-handed bow. Right eye dominant, get a right handed bow.
    Since you haven't started shoot a bow yet, it won't matter if you're left or right handed for everything else.

    When picking a bow, draw length is very important. Go to a good bow shop to get measured for this. I'm 5'4" and have a 26" draw length. But another woman, the same height might only have a 24" draw length.

    Like QuailQT wrote, the Diamond line of bows are very good. I recommend a Diamond Razor's edge for those starting out. It's a very good quality bow with a good range of draw weights. (so you can start out pulling lower poundage and then work your way up when you get stronger). I use a Bowtech Equalizer.
  4. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    Im 5'2/100# so I was thinking Im going to need a youth bow.
    Im left hand and left eye dom

    I figure if Im not buying new Im going to have a hard time finding one.. [​IMG]

    Dimonds.. Ill look into them! Thanks [​IMG]

    Does any place that specializes in hunting and rifles (and probly sells bows) measure length?
    Im afraid of going to Bass Pro and getting measured and then hounded to buy one..
  5. rodriguezpoultry

    rodriguezpoultry Langshan Lover

    Jan 4, 2009
    Claremore, OK
    I always seem to shoot the bow instead of the arrow away from me... [​IMG]
  6. The Chicken People

    The Chicken People Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2009
    Smithville, Mo
    Go to Bass pro and get it done! You wont regret it and they cant make you buy it![​IMG]
    Hubby got mine second hand from a friend last year for Christmas! I need more practice from a tree stand not the ground! And a buck to shoot at! LOL
  7. QuailQT

    QuailQT Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 23, 2009
    NW PA
    Yes, there is a really huge difference between shooting on the ground and shooting from a stand and unfortunately there really aren't that many 3D shoots that offer that kind of practice either. You may find some that offer a target where you climb stairs and then shoot at a target, but not very many and maybe only 1 target per shoot. The 3D shoots are very good for learning yardage (how far your target is from you, because that is definitely a skill that must be learned. Sure you can use a rangefinder, but then it's just something else to fumble around with and possibly drop (giving you away), and it is just too hard IMO when you're in the stand.
    I would recommend using one when you're setting your stand. Point at different shrubs/trees and have someone on the ground mark a few branches with flourescent marker tape that matches the yardage pin on your sights (yellow for a 20 yard shot if that's the color of your 20 pin, etc). I'm going to try this for myself for a quick visual. I still have trouble judging yardage sometimes and I don't always sit in the same stand.
    When a deer comes through, your heart starts racing and you think it's going to burst out of your chest. Surely they can hear it! :eek:)
  8. seismic wonder2

    seismic wonder2 I got mad ninja skills

    Feb 3, 2007
    san diego ca
    Go to an honest to goodness archery shop and get fitted for the proper bow, draw length, arrow weight etc. it ALL has to match in order to hit what you're aiming at, ESPECIALLY when drawing down on an 8pt buck. .

    You don't want to have to estimate or compensate for anything. Just draw, aim release.

    Get fitted. it's well worth the extra money.
  9. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    Height doesn't matter, but your draw length does. They are somewhat related, since most people measure about the same from fingertip to fingertip as they do in height; if you are shorter, you'll have a shorter draw.

    It's best to be measured and get your bow fitted.

    Bows typically have a sticker on them indicating the bow's draw length, but the stickers are not always accurate. It's best to buy from someone who can fit you to the bow.

    Get the bow's draw adjusted until you are comfortable with it before getting your arrows cut to draw length.

    I'd also suggest getting only a few arrows at first, and making sure you are comfortable with your draw before spending a lot on arrows. A lot of people start with too long of a draw, which undermines accuracy and can lead to getting your forearm slapped with the string on release. I'd suggest getting some shooting in to make sure you're happy with the draw length before making a big investment in arrows, as your arrows should be measured to your draw length.

    You'll also need to decide what draw weight you want. Check what the game regulations are for your state for the game you want to hunt, as most states have minimum draw weight requirements for larger game, such as deer. The draw weight will determine how hard it is to pull back the bow string, but also how much force the arrow will carry when released (a generalization).

    You don't use the muscles used in drawing a bow for much else, so must beginning archers will be less comfortable with draw weight than people who have been at it for some time. Modern compound bows are somewhat adjustable for draw weight, however, so if you get a bow that is a fit at the lower end of it's draw weight, you've got some room to grow. If you're a very small woman and just starting out, you probably need to start in the 25-35 lbs range. Some of this depends on how the cams on the bow are made, though. Round / soft draw cams will give you an easier / smoother draw, and are therefore easier for beginners to develop accuracy. Bows with "hard cams" have a sharper power curve, but are harder to learn to shoot accurately, and might not be as good a beginner's choice.

    I'd suggest getting a bow that you are very comfortable with shooting, and work to develop accuracy. Don't start with too heavy a draw and/or a hard cam bow that makes you work too hard to practice, because you'll find learning a lot less enjoyable.

    Edit: If you want to measure your own draw length:

    - Fingertip to fingertip divded by 2.5 (example: You're 5'6", so 66" / 2.5 = 26.4" draw)
    - Fingertip to fingertip less 15 inches, then divide by 2 (example, you're 5'6", so (66" - 15") / 2 = 25.5 draw)
    - Place a yardstick at the top of your sternum at the "v" in the base of your neck, and with both arms striaght out and relaxed, measure.

    As you can see, you can get slightly different results with each method. This should get you within an inch or so, and you might then want to make small adjustments from there. I'd take the above measurements even if you pay to be measured with a "fitting bow" for comparison's sake.

    Edit: Right or Left handed matter, because this determines how the arrow rest is oriented, so that will matter.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2009
  10. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    Here's some models to look at for ideas. If you're 5'2" and 100 lbs, you probably need somewhere in the range of 23.5"-25" draw length. You'd probably be most comfortable with 25-35 lbs of draw weight starting out, but could probably handle 45 lbs with a bit of practice. A bow that allows you to start at a lower draw weight would be a help in not developing bad habits as you work up to a "hunting" draw weight.

    Since there are a lot here that are easily adjusted, you could try some out for feel at a store, get what you want, and then just get it adjusted. That might avoid issues with pushy sales people.

    I'd still recommend getting the length adjusted by a good technician before you spend a lot on arrows. Make sure you are happy with your draw length first!

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