Who makes the "Fastest Recurve bows?"


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  1. #1

    Who makes the "Fastest Recurve bows?"

    I was interested in finding out who makes some of the fastest bows in traditional archery. I own a beautiful Zipper Bow and am looking to further my collection. Let me know what you think my next purchase should be!!!!!!

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Raleigh NC
    A super fast trad bow will shoot an arrow weighing 9 grains per pound of drawn weight at a speed of 190+ fps. Morrison makes a recurve called the Arapaho in a one piece or takedown that will shoot over 190. Also check out the DAS Kenetics takedown. It will accept the super performance olympic recurve limbs, but on a shorter 17" riser....perfect for hunting. Here are the links:


    Last edited by Abel; October 30th, 2005 at 08:35 AM.

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  5. #3
    The Black Douglas w/Hex IV limbs (from Border Bows in Scotland) has tested to be a most efficient design & is rated among the very fastest of traditional bows. Now I much prefer a wooden riser (metal gets COLD during winter hunts) & so am happy that the Black Douglas equals or betters most of the metal risered 'target' bows in performance.

    Border Bows

    PS; Tell Sid I said HI.


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  7. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Spring Grove,Pa
    Another one for the Border Black Douglas w/ the HexIV limbs.My brother has one and this bow is screamingly fast!

  8. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    LI. NY
    Swiper -

    David A Sosa (DAS Bows). Number 2 would be Bob Gordon aka WARF. You can check both out at www.tradtalk.com.

    Both bows use ILF (Olympic) limbs; Warf uses old Compound risers, reconfigured to accept the Oly limbs, and Dave built a short riser from scratch, based on the Hoyt riser geometry. Both bows are dead in the hand and exceptionally fast. Be warned, the DAS with top flight limbs doesn't come cheap, but your getting an Olympic quality bow specially designed for hunting. The Warf bows, are a lot less expensive, and are no slouches. The Warfer I have is one of his slower bows and easily shoot over 200 fps. Not bad for a #53 bow.

    Of course, you realize that speed, by itself, is totally useless. Both these bows are great pointers, and extreamely forgiving to shooter error.

    Viper1 out.

  9. #6


    "Speed thrills accuracy kills!!"

    That being said the DAS or Warf bows are probably your best bet for accurate controlable speed in a recurve.

  10. #7
    Join Date
    May 2002
    In a Tarpon boat.
    The Soverign Ballistik and Palmer are known as fast recurves.

    Mathews Monster Wake, Bowman Accu-Riser I and II, OK Renegade 8, Hamskea Versa Rest , Hogg Father Sight , AEP Snyper Stabilizers, AEP QDs, Easton Axis and Easton Hexx arrows, Carter Insatiable, TruBall HBX, Carter Brass Insatiable, Carter Brass Just-B Cuz
    Scorpyd Crossbows... nothing else compares Hidden Content Zeiss Victory HT 10x42 binocular...simply superb Hidden Content

  11. #8


    The Morrison bow Abel was referring to is the Shawnee with Arapaho limbs.(recurve limbs). I've been shooting one for two years now. Very fast and smooth drawing with no hand shock!

  12. The Black Swan Hybrid is one of the fastest "styk" bows on earth... period. And like some of the other fine weapons mentioned already, it does so as part of a total performance package (i.e. smooth, sweet, stable, quiet... ACCURATE).


    Whatever your choice, ENJOY!

    As Always;


  13. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    there's quite a few fast recurves. the top of the heap are the DAS, Border, Morrison arapaho, and when you change strings to equal the speedster strings those come with is perhaps the fastest of the lot, the horne's ridgerunner. i've tested many of the above and the hornes is my pick. the DAS is the most forgiving, but metal if that bugs you. it doesn't bug me. the border is fast but expensive in the DAS range, the horne's can be had for anywhere from roughly half the others up to around $900 bucks.

  14. #11
    Hmmm...well if we're including longbows we'll certainly have to include Adcocks ACS CX too.


  15. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Sweet Home Alabama
    Rivers Edge

  16. #13
    Fedora makes a longbow thats been independently measured at 211fps
    I should know i got one and it is awesome

  17. #14

    arrow speed

    The problem with speed claims is that it is SO easy to "cook the books". In order to believe and compare speeds, bows would have to be tested according a strict protocol that included noise level on hunting bows. There would also have to be a truly independent testing laboratory to conduct the tests. Neither exists. Anyone who has done speed development knows that you can gain or lose 5fps with the bat of an eyelash. I have clocked speeds on my bows over 250 fps within the accepted operating envelope of the bow, and using a shooting machine. Does that mean you will see that speed?? NO! There is no way anyone would get that speed shooting fingers.
    The other issue is stability. It is easy to push the limits of a bow to get a high chrono reading and have conditions that are unusable in the real world.
    My best advise for anyone looking the fastest bow is to get the bows side by side and shoot them with YOUR fingers over a chronograph, listen with YOUR ears, and measure the groups YOU shoot.

    The truly "fastest bow" is the one that delivers the highest speed, at a high level of stability, and hunting level noise. That narrows the field real quick!

    The reason you will never see industry wide testing is because none of the manufactures want it. There is only room for one number 1, and that would leave everyone else being something less. It's much easier to cook up a sweet sounding number and then try to convince you it is true.

    That, my friends, is the naked truth!

  18. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Warsaw, Poland
    Hi guys
    Check out those bows. Really fast!!!


  19. #16
    fastest recurve? thats like saying the prettyest fat chick in the trailer park. yall need to get some good bows if your gonna bust a critter. if tanto was alive today hed hunt with a matthews.

  20. DAS,

    Your post kinda surprises me.

    The "naked truth" as to why there aren't any "independant testing labs" for conducting such comprehensive "standardized" speed/stability/db tests (speaking ONLY for the styk crowd now...) is because it's not a paying proposition... FOR ANY LAB. And such tests would be diminished in their overall relevance to the 'real-world' hunter because of the UNSTANDARDIZED myriad of personal choices each hunter brings to his rig... string and serving type style/silencer type and amount/arrow/fletch/nock/release aid (i.e. glove, tab, finger,etc.) and release style.

    Do some "cook the books"? You bet yursweetbippy they do! Does their "chatter" stay on the air long?


    DAS, I have nothin' but respect for the fine machines you produce (a cursory search of any/every post I've ever put forth will show I've never once badmouthed ANY man's work), and I'm proud for you on those numbers... we've gotten similar speeds from the Black Swan Hybrid, with

    * T/D limbs
    * On FITA riser (complete with elevated rest, plunger, etc.)
    * Shooting FITA reg'd 6.5 gr./lb. from a 38# bow
    * Shot at 30 inches AMO
    * Shot from shooting machine w/ release mechanism
    * Actual average speed... 253fps

    You'll notice, we never waved any flags about it... and you're correct, NO ONE should expect THOSE numbers in a workable hunting configuration.

    ______________________________ ______________

    "...The truly "fastest bow" is the one that delivers the highest speed, at a high level of stability, and hunting level noise. That narrows the field real quick!..."

    That, my friend... IS the "naked truth".

    In the T/D world, your fine weapons are definitely in contention for top honors in the OVERALL catagory. I congratulate you on pushing the envelope in your arena with such dedication to class, quality and total performance. Good luck with it in the future!

    As Always;


  21. #18


    Yea, there wouldn't be enough business to keep a lab in business, but there are many independent labs that do all sorts of testing for industry. Underwriters Laboratory is perhaps the best known.

    I also agree that the test results are only for comparison, and not the only factor in picking a bow. Just like gas mileage is to cars.

    One thing is for sure. There are a lot of good choices out there! I've never shot a Black Swann, but I 've never heard anything but good things about them too. There are also some pretty good vintage bows and limbs around. I got a hold of a set of old Hoyt carbon wood GM limbs awhile back. I thought they would make a good knockaround set of limbs, until I ran them through the chrono. Big surprise! They rank right up there with the best modern limbs.

    Hopefully I'll be able to get to some of the big shoots this year and we can meet up. I'd love to see your work!


  22. The honor will be mine, my friend!

    BTW, I am looking forward to adding one of your top-of-the-line screamers to my personal stable next Spring (I've heard that much good about yours, as well...).

    Until Then;


  23. #20
    I suppose the closest thing we have to an "independent testing lab" would be Mr. Norb Mullany & the testing he does. But then, he does seem pretty credible, doesn't he?


  24. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    The only problem with norb's tests is that he doesn't standardize use of strings and that can have a huge impact on performance.

  25. #22
    Norb has a sterling reputation, but as I understand it, he tests the bows exactly as delivered. If a bowyer sorts through 20 bows to find the fastest one, then puts a light string on it with a 5" brace height, you could easily get "certified" results that are no where near what the average customer is likely to get. Norb also doesn't do any sound testing and stability or vibration tests in conjunction with the speed tests. You could have a bow that tests out wicked fast, and sounds like a .22 going off. By the time you silence it down to hunting level, the results could be much different. On the other hand, another bow that was a bit slower, might need only minor silencing, and in the end come out faster.

    On the face of it, it seems like the bows should all be tested with the same string, but that is not actually true. If you did that, the string could favor a bow that is slower, and make a very fast bow seem so so. This is because the interaction between the bow and string is a dynamic one. The bows should be tested with the string that the manufacturer specifies as correct, but NOT a ringer string designed for a chrono queen. If stability, vibration, and noise are taken into account, you will get the most accurate assessment of a bows true performance.

  26. The standardization of Norb's tests come from the AMO standards for testing speed performance (as DAS mentioned, nothing about db or harmonic "afterplay" in the bow/limbs).

    While it is true that Norb tests each bow with the string the bowyer sends with the weapon, keep in mind... THAT string and THAT "recommended" brace height are the bowyer's prerogative. Every test is done

    * On the same shooting machine
    * Drawn to the same 30 inch AMO draw length
    * Utilizing 9gr./lb arrows
    * Shot enough to give a 5-arrow average (I believe that's the number...)

    While it is true that there can be some measure of variance in the speeds achieved between two bows set up differently, 2 things remain...

    * Each bowyer had every opportunity to setup and send the bow "best" suited from his stable for such a test (Norb's tests are basically about SPEED POTENTIAL...) BEFORE Norb touches it.

    * Using a word O.L. is fond of, "horsepower"... is horsepower. I.E.... if Dodge, Chevy and Ford agree to a "Pike's Peak" pulling challenge, where each one hooks up to the same 2-ton sled and runs to the top of Pike's Peak in a clocked event... after the fact is a little late to be complaining about, "Oh yeah, well SURE! If I'd had THOSE tires or THAT paintjob... well, well... I'da done thus-n-such!!!".

    Sending a 9gr./lb. arrow across the lights at (XXXfps) is far more about the marriage between design, materials AND craftsmanship... than about a string, or serving, or what color shorts a man was wearing that day... PERIOD.

    It's been said to the point of adnausium (I've said it myself), that there's a hell of a lot more to "PERFORMANCE" than just speed.

    But it DO come into play!

    Have A Grand Evenin' All;


  27. #24
    Hmmm...maybe one reason we don't have 'standardized testing' is that ppl can't [wholeheartedly] agree on what constitutes 'standardized testing'?


  28. #25
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Ottawa ont canada

    Talking cronie tested

    Lots said but figures really tell the story . I have a hoyt gamemaster 50lb, with a carbon light speed arrow at 29" draw it shot 6 arrows through the cronie at an amazing 247 fps . Again this is a metal riser, glass limbed bow, this is a sweet shooting bow which can be shot off the shelf . Just a thought I like this bow so much I have 2 of these, one 45lber as well as the 50lb. These bows sit on the wall with the other 20 or so trad bows I own and love to shoot as well. Again we should quote facts or test result articles from magazines as answers to a good question put out to the rest of the forum.

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