How long to leave a recurve strung?


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  1. #1

    How long to leave a recurve strung?

    If you are shooting every day or every other day, do guys leave your bows strung? What is the maximun amount of time that it is ok to leave it strung?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    South Carolina

    Leaving a bow strung

    Taxidermy Bill,
    I have left my bows strung for as long as a month or maybe a little longer. Leaving them in a climate controlled house though. My bows are of modern laminated construction. I can tell you that neither of them has lost a pound of draw weight from what is on the bow and they are around twelve or thirteen years old. I have recently purchased a new bow and have decided to unstring all my bows each time I shoot them. The reason is because of a point Viper1 made here on this forum. It keeps someone who doesn't know any better from picking it up and dry firing it. I also thought that should someone or something clip my string (anything can happen in my house!) there would be no telling what sort of damage could come to one of my bows or some unsuspecting person.

    I'll also say this. My original intention was not to leave my bow strung for as long as a month, but only a week at the longest. Well, a week can turn into two weeks real quick and ended up being for as long as a month easily. I view it now as a potential problem that I can eliminate very easily.

    Good shooting,

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  5. #3
    I have an old Ben Pearson recurve that I've been hunting with this past year. I researched it a while back and I think it was made in either 1969 or 1970. Anyway, I've left it strung since last spring, with the exception of about a week to give it a facelift.

    When I got it, the fibers on the back of the bow were lifting. So, I just thought I'd punish it to see how long it would last. I hauled it on my ATV, to and from my hunting stand all last season. I also left it on my ATV for weeks at a time, only under a shed, and rain blowing in etc. No problems at all! And that's with a 35 year old bow, that was already trying to deteriate!

    Finally, I got mad at Ol' Ugly, and decided if it wasn't going to give up the ghost, I'd just give him a facelift. I epoxied a piece of canvas on the back of it to keep from getting glass fibers in my hands while handling Ol'Ugly, and put some polyurethane on it, and restrung it. Been that way ever since, and had no problems. No, I told you wrong, I unstrung it to put a new string on it the other day also.

    Recently my son bought a new Chek-Mate Longhorn. Chad Weaver of says in the care pack he sends that the bow can be stored strung or unstrung. We just leave all our bows strung anymore. Well, that is, the ones we shoot regularly.

    But I suggest checking the maker of your bow to find out for sure. You could possibly void your warranty.


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  7. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Lakeville, Minnesota
    I have seen this question asked many times before, but the answer is always the same.......unstring it when you are done. It takes all of 10 seconds and you will be doing your bow a great service in its longevity.

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

    I unstring my bows after every shooting session. You can check previous posts for why or PM me. Sorry, but the question comes up every few weeks.

    Viper1 out.

  9. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Port Orchard, Wa.
    Must be something about those old Pearson recurves..... I have an old Pearson Spectre (a 52"/45 lb recurve about the same age as the one 'highnoonhunter' was talking about). I've left that bow strung for the better part of a year - using it nearly everyday. I've measured the draw weight and there is no discernable change. Then again, the bow only cost me $35 - that was about 30,000 arrows ago!

    I unstring my more expensive bows......

    The underlying point is this: All material is subject to a process known as hysteresis. Translated this means that all material will, over time, sag or take-a-set. No exceptions. It's just that some materials (like wood) will react a whole lot quicker than others (like steel or carbon fiber or glass fiber reinforced plastic....). Truth is that many modern materials have been deliberately designed to resist hysteresis (among other things).

    Hysteresis is why old glass windows seem to have those ripples in them - glass sags. Fiberglass backed bows will too if you give them enough of a chance. Its just that most of us aren't willing to wait that long. You could greatly increase the chances that a fiberglass backed bow will take-a-set if you were to draw it to full draw and hold it there (at full draw) for a few weeks. It is all related to the fatigue limits of the material.

  10. #7


    I'm getting back into recurves after a shot 30 year layoff. I usually search before asking a question, but I must have use the wrong keywords.

  11. #8
    My bowyer told me to leave it strung unless it will be a hot vehicle. I unstring it only when I am transporting it. KD

  12. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    LI. NY
    Kildog -

    Find another bowyer. Seriously.

    A few bowyers are saying that these days. It really means one of two things: he either dosen't think you're smart enough to string and unstring a bow properly or he wants to sell you another bow. (You might want to ask him "why?".)

    Keeping a bow strung won't hurt the bow. But it's an open invitation to kids or friends (or pets) to "try it out" when you're not looking; basically along the same lines as leaving a loaded gun out in the open. Sure, you "know" that won't happen, but it only has to happen once. Doubt if your bowyer will take responsibility for the consequences.

    Remember, a strung bow is a weapon, an unstrung bow is a stick.

    Viper1 out.

  13. #10
    i have 2 pearson recurves that i unstring as soon as im done shooting for the same reason viper said a strung bow is a weapon and im not giving my daughter the chance to try it when im not looking or not home. i even keep my bows and arrows hung in a locked closet that no one has access to but me. i may unstring my bow but my broadheads are still razor sharp.

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