Contributors to this thread:
Starting to shoot 3D competitively
I want to start shooting in 3D shoots in my area - I bought another bow so that I can have two distinct set ups (nothing fancy, just a used bow that matches my current hunting bow) and I am looking for advice; types of sights/stabilizers/releases I should use, other tips I should know.
In terms of gear, I'm not looking to spend a ton of money at first since I want to make sure I actually compete on a regular basis and do well before I really invest. Any tips help!! Thanks in advance!
Hinge style release is what most guys are successful with. Ideally you’d spend months working on strictly shot execution and then move back to farther distances. I use a Stan blackjack release, though there are hundreds of choices. I bought mine used off of archery talk.
Fat shaft arrow to maximize the points when you miss slightly.
Sight with third axis adjustment. Slider or fixed pin based on which class you want to shoot.
Hunter class let’s you use a 12” stabilizer at most shoots, any longer and you’ll be in the open class. Same goes for shooting with a lens in your sight or with a slider sight.
IMO I shoot my hunting setup that way I’m super confident in it come hunting season. Up until a couple years ago I was a shitty archer at best. Always slapping the trigger wether it be a thumb release or a wrist strap release. That really showed in 3D. After working hard on form and shot execution with the Stan release I’m now competitive at local 3D shoots. I spent all winter shooting in my basement at 12 yards just focusing on pulling through the shot and getting a surprise release. I guess what I’m saying is that you don’t need tricked out bow and gear to be good. Just have to have a solid setup that’s tuned and then execute consistent shots.
Another thing to consider is how well you can guess that range, unless you’re shooting a known range class. Definitely helps to just do it a lot and over time you get better at judging the range. You can’t make great shots if you’re off by a lot on your distance estimation.
A good place to start is Nockon podcast that John Dudley does. Lots of tips and info to be found on there.
It really depends on what your goals are. If you want to go for the highest scores possible, shoot freestyle. You'll have two completely different set-ups though. If you want to focus on improving shooting your hunting bow to the max, shoot your hunting bow. I think there is an advantage to having only one set-up really dialed in. I shoot my hunting bow, with the quiver on, minus one arrow. With that I have often scored higher that most freestylers. Being stuck behind a group of freestylers, using calculators and taking all day to make a shot can be really frustrating; It might be a good idea to take along some good reading:-) Learning to be proficient guessing yardages, with your hunting set-up, makes you a better hunter. For that reason, I prefer unmarked 3-Ds . Have fun.
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If you're going to shoot 'competitively' - as opposed to 'fun' shoots - you'll need to determine which shooting class you and your bow set-up fit into. For example, fixed or movable sights, short or long stabilizers etc. Get a copy of the IBO and ASA rules (I believe they're both on line.) Be aware that your equipment choice are part of what determine how far back you'll be from the target ;-)
That said, enjoy!