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Thread: Best bow for target shooting

  1. #1
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    Best bow for target shooting

    I had my first go at shooting a bow this past weekend and it was AWESOME! I am not sure about the bow's brand, weight... ect. I think it was called a Diamond. I shot the bulls-eye on my first and the consecutive 3 shots after that, at about 30m (33 yards).



    I am very excited about the sport - I used to have my national colours in sharp shooting (.22). I know that once hooked, I will continue with the sport (just target, no hunting). I am therefore not too worried about the cost of higher quality brands.

    That brings me to my question: Which type and model bow would you recommend for accuracy and precision shooting? (I am a woman, 27 years old, 1.68m (5 foot and 6 inches), and weigh 62kg (136 pounds)).


  2. #2
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    I would recomend the New breed cyborg, I would have to say it is the best target bow out today, It is smooth drawing and very fast.

  3. #3
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    I forgot, welcom to archery talk

  4. #4
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    Hi BK, welcome to the sport, it is addictive.
    I just bought my first target bow. A PSE Moneymaker. Great value for money, and a very forgiving bow which has performed well at the top levels this year. Not sure how much you know about bows, but target bows tend to have a longer ATA (axle to axle) length compared to hunting &3D bows, something to keep in mind when you start looking. I have the NI single cam model in 40-50lb limbs and adjustable draw length from 27" from memory. You really need to know your draw length before buying a bow as not all will be in your range. I am a similar height to you but have an unusually long draw length for a woman (28") so my options were limited. If you are more "normal" you will have plenty to choose from. Hoyt is a very popular and well respected brand for target bows. You will find many good quality used bows for sale on this site. Happy shopping. Nat.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the tip! However, I did a bit of research and cannot find a New Breed dealer in South Africa. (Sorry! I forgot to mention this). Dealers in my area include brands like Bowtech, Hoyt and Mathews.

  6. #6
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    Out of those brands I would check out the hoyt alpha elit, Hoyt makes some real nice target boys also.

  7. #7
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    Hi Morganna, thank you for the good advice. I do not know a lot yet, but I am sure my dealer will also be able to assist me on this. Therefore it sounds like the first step would be to determine my draw length. I am glad to hear that Hoyt might be a good brand to look at, since certain models of this brand is available from a dealer in my country.

    How much does the weight of the bow influence the ease of handling? What would be a good draw weight range to look at for a first bow? (I assume that the weight you are able to draw increases rather quickly for beginners, and flattens off with time and practice).

  8. #8
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    Thanks SD, this model is available at my local dealer. I cannot wait to try it out!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Beatrix Kiddo View Post
    I had my first go at shooting a bow this past weekend and it was AWESOME! I am not sure about the bow's brand, weight... ect. I think it was called a Diamond. I shot the bulls-eye on my first and the consecutive 3 shots after that, at about 30m (33 yards).

    I am very excited about the sport - I used to have my national colours in sharp shooting (.22). I know that once hooked, I will continue with the sport (just target, no hunting). I am therefore not too worried about the cost of higher quality brands.

    That brings me to my question: Which type and model bow would you recommend for accuracy and precision shooting? (I am a woman, 27 years old, 1.68m (5 foot and 6 inches), and weigh 62kg (136 pounds)).
    Welcome to the archery sorority!

    Many bows made in USA can not be mailed order, because they are for the so-called "pro-shop" only. So unless you have a pro-shop near your location in South Africa. Perhaps it is not a good idea to even planning on getting one.

    On the mail orderable bows:

    The Bowtech Diamond Razor Edge is a great bow, it can be difficult to tune sometimes. There are two versions, one with 15-29lb draw weight (7Kg-10.3Kg), and the other with 30-60lb draw (10.4Kg-21Kg).

    Unless you have some prior bicep work-out, most beginning female archers may not be able to pull 30lb-60lb draw right away. Those who can draw may not be able to hit the 10-rings over and over again.

    Bear Archery makes a very nice female bow called Bear Apprentice, that is, if you are a righthanded archer, because they don't make lefthanded version of this bow. The draw is from 20lb-50lb (9Kg-22.5Kg), perfect for female archers from beginning to intermediate level. The weigh is only 2.8lb (1.3Kg!!)
    but is everybit a speed bow for that draw length and draw weight, it is also available to be mail-ordered.

    Bear Apprentice in Pink Camo, as shot by my daughter.

    The best female competition/hunting bow, in my opinion, is the Bowtech Equalizer. It gives the shorter draw archers (read most of the women) an unfair advantage. Since you have a bowtech/diamond dealer (where you shot the diamond bow), you may want to consider getting the Equalizer.

    There are also the Parker Sidekick, Mathews Passion, Mathews Ignition, Hoyt Vixcen, Hoyt Trykon, but unless you have a Parker, or Mathews, or Hoyt dealer near where you live, they are pretty much useless, because you have to keep in mind that the bows do need to get serviced from time to time, and the customer would be left hanging if there is no dealer or the dealer has no spare parts.

  10. #10
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    she said she has dealers in her area, i would go to the dealer and shoot a few bows and get the one that feels best to you.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beatrix Kiddo View Post
    Hi Morganna, thank you for the good advice. I do not know a lot yet, but I am sure my dealer will also be able to assist me on this. Therefore it sounds like the first step would be to determine my draw length. I am glad to hear that Hoyt might be a good brand to look at, since certain models of this brand is available from a dealer in my country.

    How much does the weight of the bow influence the ease of handling? What would be a good draw weight range to look at for a first bow? (I assume that the weight you are able to draw increases rather quickly for beginners, and flattens off with time and practice).
    You won't go wrong with a Hoyt. When researching for my own bow the general consensus is that there is no such thing as a bad Hoyt, a very safe choice and used widely in target circles. There was just something about the moneymaker that grabbed me, my head said buy Hoyt but my heart said I want the Moneymaker lol. They are in the upper price range, but if money is not an issue it would get my vote. As to draw weight, that is really hard to estimate for someone else, you really need to try for yourself. My bow has 40-50lb limbs and we actually wound it down to about 35 to start with, I have only been shooting for a couple of months and the bow is up to around 40 now and every couple of weeks I wind it up another turn and hardly notice the difference until I shoot about 50 arrows, then I notice it's heavier. As I mentioned before, target bows tend to be longer. Hunting bows need to be shorter and lighter to take through the bush and into trees etc. I believe that the longer ATA bows are more stable in the hand and more suited to target accuracy. I bought both my bow and my Husbands Hoyt Vantage her on AT. They were both immaculate and hardly used, but at about a third of the price I would have had to pay to get a new one in Australia, even taking into consideration the exchange rate and postage.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by silentdeathtx4 View Post
    she said she has dealers in her area, i would go to the dealer and shoot a few bows and get the one that feels best to you.
    I totally second that, just want to make a list for her though, because dealer I know of often would want to dump the not-so-easy-to-sell bow on a total-beginner. By providing her a list, at the least she can check with the dealer if the bows on the list are available, instead of getting a bow nobody wants.

  13. #13
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    Thanks for all your input on this! I will go to my dealer on Saturday to try out a few. Our current national champion Seppie Cilliers is a member of the club which stocks Hoyt and Mathews bows - I therefore assume they will be able to service and provide spare parts.

    I was able to draw my friend's 45lb pound bow - but found it quite challenging... I would probably start off on something slightly lower.

    What is your take on the Hoyt Vantage Elite?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beatrix Kiddo View Post
    Thanks for all your input on this! I will go to my dealer on Saturday to try out a few. Our current national champion Seppie Cilliers is a member of the club which stocks Hoyt and Mathews bows - I therefore assume they will be able to service and provide spare parts.

    I was able to draw my friend's 45lb pound bow - but found it quite challenging... I would probably start off on something slightly lower.

    What is your take on the Hoyt Vantage Elite?
    Excellent idea, let us know how you get on.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Beatrix Kiddo View Post
    Thanks for all your input on this! I will go to my dealer on Saturday to try out a few. Our current national champion Seppie Cilliers is a member of the club which stocks Hoyt and Mathews bows - I therefore assume they will be able to service and provide spare parts.

    I was able to draw my friend's 45lb pound bow - but found it quite challenging... I would probably start off on something slightly lower.

    What is your take on the Hoyt Vantage Elite?
    Vantage Elite is an excellent bow. The only concern is that, at 41" ATA and the starting weight of 4.8lb, it is not the easiest bow to aim, even if you build up your muscle dexterity. Again, this has nothing to do with your draw weight, but your ability to be able to hold something 6-7lb (bow+stabilizer+sight and all) in the air and be able to aim, shoot, and hit the X-ring.



    Another concern is adjustability. Since you are starting, you might want to experiment different forms and find out which is best fitted to you and you only. That means your draw length can change, not because you have suddenly grown or (God forbid) shrunk, but you might ended up changing form, such as anchor location, and therefore change your draw length. Hoyt is not the most adjustable bow out there.

    The Diamond bow (Razor Edge, for example) you have shot can probably change the draw length by using an Allen key to move two screws on each cams to different locations. This can be done right at home. The Hoyt would require you to take the bow to the dealer and have the bow adjusted for draw length.

    In that scenario, the dealer is going to charge you service fee. And the dealer may have to order new modules from US. The formal is a waste of money, the latter would be a waste of time.

    You mentioned that your dealer stocks Mathews, perhaps you should take a look at Mathews Passion or Ignition alongside of Vantage Elite for comparison.

    Let us know how things turned out!

  16. #16
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    The dealer stocks Mathews Ignition, I will definitely try it out as well. Thanks PW!

  17. #17
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    The one that feels the best to YOU. Blindfold your self and pick up and pull several different "options" and see which feels the best.

  18. #18
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    Well said

  19. #19
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    Determine your price range as well. The bows everyone has been listing on here for you range from ~$300 to over $1000. That is often a sticking point for most people considering you are then looking at $600 - $1200 in accessories.

  20. #20
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    I really like my BowTech and my daughter likes her Diamond.
    Oak Ridge Archery, Dead Center Archery Products, Gold Tip, Vapor Trail

  21. #21
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    Welcome to Archery Talk!!!

    Like you, I’m also just a target shooter (NFAA field and FITA). When I first started shooting I could only repeatedly pull back about 35 pounds, but currently easily shoot between 42-45 pounds. I I could shoot 50+ pounds, but don’t need to shoot any more weight to get the arrow to the target and it’s easier on my body overall. I’ve competed with a Diamond Rapture Lite, a Mathews Q2, a Hoyt Pro Elite, and a Hoyt Ultra Elite and for me, found the Ultra Elite to be everything I wanted and needed in a target bow. I do have a 28” DL though, so this gave me a few more choices that someone with a shorter draw may not have.

    It would be good if you could go to your dealer, get properly measured and shoot several bows to get a good feel of what feels goon in your hands—you may like the grip of one, but not like its draw cycle; on another, the draw might be smooth as silk, but it feels like you’re holding a tree. When you find the bow that you make the least amount of compromises with and fits you, you will know.

    The Vantage Elite is a very good bow as are many others out there, but the Vantage may be too long for you at 41” A- to-A. You just have to go out and shoot as many as you can to find the one that’s best suited for you.
    "...The challenge is NOT to put an arrow in the bullseye. The challenge is to take control of yourself." ~Kstigall
    '11 Hoyt Alpha Elite (Z5)--Field/FITA....'11 Hoyt Alpha Elite (GTX)--Spots
    Member: NFAA....USA Archery....LOFT Archery Team....
    Gail Peterson

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by montigre View Post
    Welcome to Archery Talk!!!

    Like you, I’m also just a target shooter (NFAA field and FITA). When I first started shooting I could only repeatedly pull back about 35 pounds, but currently easily shoot between 42-45 pounds. I I could shoot 50+ pounds, but don’t need to shoot any more weight to get the arrow to the target and it’s easier on my body overall. I’ve competed with a Diamond Rapture Lite, a Mathews Q2, a Hoyt Pro Elite, and a Hoyt Ultra Elite and for me, found the Ultra Elite to be everything I wanted and needed in a target bow. I do have a 28” DL though, so this gave me a few more choices that someone with a shorter draw may not have.

    It would be good if you could go to your dealer, get properly measured and shoot several bows to get a good feel of what feels goon in your hands—you may like the grip of one, but not like its draw cycle; on another, the draw might be smooth as silk, but it feels like you’re holding a tree. When you find the bow that you make the least amount of compromises with and fits you, you will know.

    The Vantage Elite is a very good bow as are many others out there, but the Vantage may be too long for you at 41” A- to-A. You just have to go out and shoot as many as you can to find the one that’s best suited for you.

    Hi Montigre,

    Thanks for the comprehensive reply. I suspect that you will be correct regarding my draw length, this will probably influence the models available to me. At my length of 1.68m (66 inches) my draw length would probably measure around 24.5 - 25", although I have not actually had it measured. From the specifications available on the internet, the Hoyt Contender might be a slightly better fit.

    I agree that to find the best bow, the individual will need to try it out. This seems to be the one thing everyone has consensus on .

    One quick question: I have seen people mentioning the amount of deflex and reflex. What does this mean/ entail and should this influence my choice?

  23. #23
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    target bow

    I am 5'4" with a 24 inch DL. I shoot the Mathews Prestige. I am a target only shooter too. I really like the prestige. The small grip and speed for the short draw archer are great. Hope this helps.
    2013 Mathews Jewel
    24.5 DL, 45 DW,, Sure-Loc site, Viper scope, Carter Solution 2 release, ACC arrows, B-Stinger XL Premier and side bar, Britesite Pro-Tuner rest

  24. #24
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    I have finally decided on the Hoyt Contender I already ordered mine with XT 2000 limbs and Cam & 1/2 plus specs. Probably shot 7 other different bows before I settled on this one. I am super excited, but unfortunately it is going to take 6-8 weeks to get here

    Does anyone else have this bow?

  25. #25
    Check out the Mission bows as well. My fiancee picked up an Eliminator 2 & loves it! We just ordered a Mission Venture for myself. The Mission Craze has an amazing range of adjustability!

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