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I have a cheap recurve bow and I'm hoping to upgrade to a better one this Christmas. I will be using the bow for target, field, recreational shooting etc. and maybe some 3-D. I have my eye on the Martin Mamba recurve which is 58 inches. Would that be an ok bow length for what I plan to do with it? I've read that the shorter length bows work well for hunting (which I don't particularly plan on doing). Should I look for a longer bow or is 58" good?

I'm a teen with a 23-24 inch draw length. Height about 5'2 (but hopefully a little more in the yrs to come :D ). Thanks.
 

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M45 -

A lot really is personal preference.
If your draw lenght really is 23-24", a 58" bow probably isn't too bad. My general recommendation is to go for as long a bow that will still allow you utilize (uncoil) the recurve. My guess and, it's only a guess, would be to go around 62". For limited use, the shorter bows are fine, but for continuous shooting, the short bows due generate more finger pinch, and can have a tendency to stack. Neither of which should become an issue at you current draw length.

A teenager, huh ... , if you mean 13, yes, you'll probably be growing and in a few years you might indeed go to a longer limbed bow. If you're 19, (Still a teen-ager, to us old farts), ya probably don't have too much changing to worry about.

Viper1 out.
 

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Delvo -

It might and it might not, kinda depends on the draw lenght :D.

Seeing as you asked, I guess we have to start at the beginning:

If I take a 3' stick and put a 2'9" string on it, and pull the string back 28", the stcik will describe an arc with a given curvature. Now, assume I have a 6' stick and put a 5'9" string on it, and draw it back 28". It too will describe an arc, but the arc will be much shallower than the one from the 3' stick. Also the angle around my fingers will be more acute with the 3' stick than with the 6' stick.

See the difference? That's pretty much the case with a flat bow. With a recurve, it get a little more complicated. To get the efficiency out the the recurve limbs, the string has to be drawn back sufficiently to uncoil the working part of the recurve. If we go back to the flat bow analogy, you can see that the shorter bow will usually uncoil sooner (with a shorter draw length) than with the long bow.

Can a person with a 23" draw length shoot a 70" recurve? Of course he can, will he be getting full use out of the limbs, probably not. Conversly, a person with a 31" draw will find a 48" bow very uncomforatable to shoot, not only with the finger pinch be a problem, but more likely than not the limbs will be stacking, or more simply reach a point where the bow stops getting heavier linearly, and the increase becomes exponential.

Hope this helped.

Viper1 out.
 
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