Compound bows can be adjusted to fit your specific body type and shooting style. The bow’s draw length and draw weight are both adjustable. This means you can adjust the archery bow based on your style by altering it accordingly.
However, getting an already adjusted archery bow is essential if you are a beginner.
You may not know what your ideal draw length or weight is yet. You can change these things with an adjustable bow as you learn more about what works best for you.
- Draw Length
- Draw Weight
The draw length of your bow is the distance from the bowstring to the grip when holding the bow at full draw. It’s adjusted by moving the cam system on the bow. Most archery bows have an adjustable draw length, but you should check your specific bow to make sure.
To adjust the draw length, find the screws that hold the cam system in place. There should be two screws on each side of the cam system. Some bows have a draw length indicator, a small mark on the cam system showing how far to pull the bowstring.
The draw weight is the weight you have to pull back to draw the bowstring. It’s adjusted by changing the size of the bowstring loop. The smaller it is, the more weight you have to pull back. The larger, the less you have to pull back.
Find the screws that hold the bowstring loop in place to adjust the draw weight. There should be two screws on each side. Some bows have a draw weight indicator. A small mark on the bowstring loop shows you how much weight to put on.
When adjusting the compound bow, you have to be very careful. Improper adjustment can cause the bow to be unsafe to shoot. Be sure to read the owner’s manual carefully before making any adjustments.
If you’re not confident in making the necessary adjustments yourself, it’s always a good idea to take your bow to a qualified archery technician for assistance. With a little bit of know-how and the right tools, you can have your compound bow adjusted to perfection.
Does changing draw weight also change draw length?
Generally, increasing the draw weight will also increase the draw length. This is because you need to apply more force to pull the bowstring back when you increase the draw weight, which results in a longer draw length.
These are a few things that happen when you adjust the draw weight on your bow.
- You can shoot further and more accurately. You will put more power into your shots when you have a higher draw weight.
- You can also shoot with more speed. So, you can cover more ground when hunting or take down your target more quickly.
However, it is essential to note that increasing the draw weight will also require greater strength and stamina. So be sure to increase the weight gradually to build up your strength and avoid injury.
The choice of accessories will also affect your results; for instance, if you choose longer or heavier arrows, they require more power to shoot and achieve the same results.
When testing bow for adjustments on the draw weight, always practice in a safe and controlled environment, such as an archery range. This will help build up your strength and skills while avoiding accidents.
It is also essential to consider your physical characteristics. For example, if your arm length is not proportional to the size of your upper body, you may need to adjust the draw weight to achieve a longer draw length.
Some models are sensitive about the correct draw weight adjustment, so it pays off to be familiar with the proper drawing techniques before taking any measures. Most importantly, make sure you buy a crossbow with the right draw weight for your body frame.
What is a good draw weight for a compound bow?
Generally, a good draw weight for a compound bow can be anything over 60 pounds would be suitable. However, there are several factors to consider: body weight, gender, or the arrow you are using.
Good draw weight should not be too much to handle but enough to deliver a clean shot. Additionally, you have to note that too much strain on your body can cause severe damage or injury, so you might want to switch to a lighter weight once you start feeling the pressure.
In terms of physics, the potential energy of a bow increases with the square of the length. This means that doubling the draw length will create four times more force on release. It all comes down to what you are comfortable wielding and what you can handle.
One factor in determining proper draw weight should be your gender and body weight. For example, smaller people should go for lower draw weights, and larger-bodied individuals with more upper body strength will want higher draw weights.
A good rule of thumb is the bow’s draw weight should measure about 70% of your body’s weight if you are an adult male and about 50% for a woman or a pre-teen.
- For men, you should consider your draw length and body weight. Your bow’s draw weight is between 40 and 60 pounds at around 28 to 32 inches.
- For women, a general rule is to subtract 10 pounds from the normal range for men. So then, you need a draw weight of 30 to 50 pounds at 22 to 26 inches for women.
- For young adults that fall into an average height and weight range, most experts recommend 50-60 pounds of draw weight, with anything beyond that being considered exceptional. However, if you have a draw length over 29 inches, 70-80 pounds is average.
- For older adults, the usual recommended range is 40 to 50 pounds. Still, if you have a slow speed of let-off or an exceptionally long draw length, that should be considered when choosing your proper pull weight.
When selecting the proper draw weight for a compound bow, it’s important to remember that the bow’s weight is only one part of the equation.
This also depends on how much let-off you have and your speed. A faster or lower let-off will require less pull weight.
Another factor you must consider when determining the draw weight is the type of arrow you shoot.
For example, an adult can use a lighter-weight bow to hunt animals such as deer with a 26-inch arrow because those arrows have very high kinetic energy to kill the animal from long distances.
However, arrows with lower kinetic energy, such as those used for target shooting, should use a lighter-weight bow and arrow to reduce the chance of injury.
How do I know if my draw length is too long?
The average draw length is between 27 and 30 inches, and children are 4-5 inches shorter.
However, draw lengths can also vary slightly from one person to the next, making it essential for archers to measure their draw length rather than assume it is the same as the standard.
An individual’s optimal draw length is the distance between the rear of the grip, where you place your first two fingers, and the back of their jawline when holding a bow at full draw.
A longer draw length will result in more power behind an arrow, which is necessary for hunters who want to take down a big game with a single shot. Conversely, a shorter draw will result in more control at the cost of power, ideal for target practice or hunting smaller game animals.
Things to remember in determining your draw length:
- Most bows have markings that indicate where an archer should place their first two fingers.
- The markings are often half an inch apart.
- Markings on a bow would correspond with an individual’s draw length.
- You should measure the draw length while standing upright and drawing the bow at eye level.
Although an individual’s optimal draw length can vary significantly depending on body type and posture, some basic guidelines can help determine if your current draw length is appropriate for your physical stature.
- If you are taller than 5’8″, it is likely that your draw length is too long for the standard.
- If you can easily place your first two fingers at the edge of the grip without bending your elbow or leaning over too far, then it’s likely that your draw length is also too long for you to be comfortable.
How do you determine your draw length for a compound bow?
In determining your draw length, measure from the back of your ear lobe to the base of your extended fingers when you are in a standing shooting position, also known as chin level.
Steps in determining the draw length:
- Hold the bow, with an arrow knocked and your fingers around the string.
- Relaxed, allow the bow arm to be straight but not locked back.
- Then drop your chin onto your chest.
- While holding the ends of the bow, turn your head towards the sky.
- Your extended fingers should now be at the base of your chin.
- Ask someone to measure from one end of the bow to the other
- With a tape measure, determine how far from your chin to the string.
- Add 1-2 inches, and the result should be your draw length.
Remember that your bow’s brace height is also significant. The upper portion of the bow that helps hold it together, or in other words, not including the limbs, is called the brace height.
This number should never exceed 7/8-inch for a new shooter. Anything smaller can cause strain to your skeletal system, leading to injury or poor shooting.
The 7/8 inches brace height rule is a minimum, and new shooters should only use it. However, once you become comfortable with your form and less strain on your skeletal system, increasing this number little by little is good.
An excellent place to start would be adding 1/4 inch a week.
Effects of inappropriate draw length
A common mistake for archers involved in traditional, recreational, or competitive shooting is to adjust their draw length based on what feels comfortable to them rather than changing it based on what their body measurements tell them.
Here are the possible effects of inappropriate draw length:
- Decreased accuracy and difficulty holding a stable anchor point for the release.
- It can cause a bowhunter to have trouble maintaining a proper vertical alignment. You can achieve this alignment when there is an equal distance from the ground to the arrow’s nock. And from the nock to the aiming eye of the archer.
- Higher chance for injury, especially if you are not using proper safety equipment.
- Lack of energy transfer from the muscles through the bow and into the string. This results in a loss of kinetic energy at release.
How much does it cost to get a compound bow adjusted?
Archery shops may vary the prices depending on the extent of work required, but an adjustment to a compound bow will generally cost around $40 to $70 per bow.
Bowyers designed the bows for specific draw lengths, so tuning them is necessary to achieve an optimal draw. So, when purchasing a new one, an archery technician should adjust the bow first before handing it over to you.
Four basic adjustments should be made for a compound bow: brace height, peep sight location, nocking point, and draw length. In addition, you should also consider adjustments to the grip at this time because it will affect the shooter’s comfort while maintaining an appropriate level of control.
Archery experts recommend that a compound bow is re-adjusted every year or two to ensure that it continues to fit well and provide its full benefits.
Bow maintenance should also involve the following:
- You must remove any dirt or debris from the bow or string.
- You should check monthly if the screws are tight, which only takes minutes with the right tools. If you don’t do this, the bow may become loose, resulting in less accurate shots.
- You may also consider getting your bows checked by an archery technician if it is not shooting straight. This allows checking the bow for damage and ensuring everything is working correctly.