Tight Spot Quivers
Shooting trad: How to start?
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
crankn101 20-Jan-19
Panther Bone 20-Jan-19
Panther Bone 20-Jan-19
3under 20-Jan-19
wooddamon1 20-Jan-19
1boonr 20-Jan-19
Thornton 20-Jan-19
tradmt 20-Jan-19
Dale06 20-Jan-19
Ambush 20-Jan-19
Treeline 20-Jan-19
wifishkiller 20-Jan-19
Scrappy 20-Jan-19
Ambush 20-Jan-19
DarrinG 20-Jan-19
Treeline 20-Jan-19
Nick Muche 20-Jan-19
Treeline 20-Jan-19
DanaC 20-Jan-19
jdbbowhunter 20-Jan-19
Fields 20-Jan-19
crankn101 20-Jan-19
Woods Walker 20-Jan-19
oldgoat 20-Jan-19
Milhouse 20-Jan-19
PECO 20-Jan-19
SixLomaz 20-Jan-19
Tilzbow 20-Jan-19
jjs 20-Jan-19
Franklin 20-Jan-19
WV Mountaineer 20-Jan-19
APauls 20-Jan-19
WV Mountaineer 20-Jan-19
crankn101 20-Jan-19
oldgoat 20-Jan-19
Treeline 20-Jan-19
crankn101 20-Jan-19
EmbryOklahoma 20-Jan-19
Woods Walker 20-Jan-19
Treeline 20-Jan-19
Old School 20-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
DanaC 21-Jan-19
rooni79 21-Jan-19
skipmaster1 21-Jan-19
WV Mountaineer 21-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 21-Jan-19
Paul@thefort 21-Jan-19
M.Pauls 21-Jan-19
md5252 21-Jan-19
ESP 21-Jan-19
elkstabber 21-Jan-19
lawdy 21-Jan-19
ground hunter 21-Jan-19
crankn101 21-Jan-19
SDHNTR(home) 21-Jan-19
Treeline 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
crankn101 21-Jan-19
elkstabber 21-Jan-19
Rock 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
David A. 21-Jan-19
skipmaster1 21-Jan-19
Kevin Dill 21-Jan-19
JAbbott 21-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
SixLomaz 21-Jan-19
DanaC 21-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
Kodiak 21-Jan-19
Ambush 21-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
Kodiak 21-Jan-19
Highlife 21-Jan-19
Shawn 21-Jan-19
GF 21-Jan-19
ground hunter 21-Jan-19
lawdy 21-Jan-19
Tilzbow 21-Jan-19
ground hunter 21-Jan-19
lawdy 21-Jan-19
yooper89 21-Jan-19
Kevin Dill 22-Jan-19
WV Mountaineer 22-Jan-19
David A. 22-Jan-19
Ambush 22-Jan-19
Jeff Holchin 22-Jan-19
GF 22-Jan-19
David A. 22-Jan-19
GF 22-Jan-19
David A. 23-Jan-19
David A. 23-Jan-19
GF 23-Jan-19
lamb 24-Jan-19
lawdy 24-Jan-19
GF 25-Jan-19
GF 25-Jan-19
Nick Muche 26-Jan-19
David A. 26-Jan-19
Ironbow 26-Jan-19
SBH 26-Jan-19
Treeline 26-Jan-19
GF 26-Jan-19
Arrowflinger 26-Jan-19
GLB 27-Jan-19
Sarge 28-Jan-19
Thornton 28-Jan-19
Shug 28-Jan-19
GF 29-Jan-19
From: crankn101
20-Jan-19
Thinking about switching over to a recurve at least part time and need some general info. This will be for deer and turkey hunting primarily.

What poundage to start with?

What spine arrow for whatever poundage and arrow weight you recommend at 28"?

Instinctive, gap or other for aiming?

Shoot off the shelf?

Any info in general is appreciated.

Dont tell me to go here or there for the info, I want some real world opinions from actual hunters right here in their own words.

Thanks

20-Jan-19
Forget a part-time relationship with the recurve. Consider it full-time. You can pick up a compound and be accurate in a few rounds. Stickbows require more time put into them to get “there.”

Poundage depends on you, and spine depends on poundage and spine. I like a 60-65# bow. Many nowadays say that is heavy though. Go figure!

Very few that shoot “instinctive” are driving tacks. The more consistent shooters gap to some degree. I’ve been to trad shoots, shot trad bows for years, killed with trad bows...so, I’m over the naievity of praising “instinctive.”

I’d definitely shoot off of a shelf. More consistent nock alignment is one of several advantages.

At one time I could hit a pie plate at 80 yds 5 out of 6 shots. I was shooting caps off 20oz bottles at 20 yds. Out to 30, I was deadly on game. I’ve lost it though, with two careers, family, and working in the community here taking so much of my time.

You gotta commit to it. You can do it, but commit to it.

20-Jan-19
Sorry...meant to say “spine depends on poundage and draw length”

From: 3under
20-Jan-19
After wanting to do it for over 20 yrs finally hunted with the recurve only this year. All I can say is it is so rewarding and actually brought the fun back into archery for me as far as the tunning and finding what works and doesn't. As far as poundage I used a 53 @28 and harvested a black bear in the spring and just took a small 8 point this fall with a 55 @ 28 both were recurves. More important I think is proper broadhead choice. I'll probably get some disagreement from the two blade guys but I used Wensel Woodman Elites both animals went less than 40 yds and were dead within less than a minute. My draw length is 27" so what I was actually shooting was about 3 lbs less than above weights. You loose or gain 2-3 lbs for every inch over or under 28". Start looking on the leatherwall almost all questions have already been asked in past posts and if not they are all great guys, willing to help.. I'm actually going lighter to 45 lbs ... 40 lbs and less will kill deer,check local laws on bow weight. Most guys go to heavy and can't effectively perfect their form. One last thing if you ever look for lessons Rick Welch in Arkansas is awesome I spent 2 days with him and was worth every dime!!! Good luck and enjoy!!

From: wooddamon1
20-Jan-19
Most guys start out over-bowed when switching over. No matter what poundage you shoot with a c-bow, you'll have to drop weight to ingrain form (which is the most important part of shooting a traditional bow). As to how you "aim", you'll figure out which style works for you over time. Most guys use some form of gap, even if they just use the arrow tip for a reference in the sight picture. Also, your draw length will be shorter. There's a few choices around nowadays in inexpensive take-down recurves that you can purchase limbs for as you work your way up to whatever your hunting weight goal is. 35# isn't a bad starting weight even though you might get the occasional "girly bow" comment. I wouldn't worry about matching arrow spines too close while working on form, as you build up to your final weight and are getting more accurate then precise arrow flight will come into play (before hunting of course). Unless you have a wide selection of spines to choose from already, it could get expensive.

From: 1boonr
20-Jan-19
Learn to get under 10 yards and you can be real effective pretty quick. When you start to get past 20 is when your gonna need a full time relationship. I started in 1975 with a 45# grizzly and a couple of semi straight aluminum Easton gamegetters and was killing rabbits in no time. I shoot off the shelf although some guys have been using the weatherrest by bear or flipper rests by NAP. Getting close will increase your kill %. I still keep my shots under 10 and a real long shot for me at an undisturbed deer is 20

From: Thornton
20-Jan-19
You will just have to give it a try using several methods. You can shoot instinctive but I've found most can't do it consistently, if at all. I've seen guys use a release and pin sights and do ok but they aren't driving tacks. You can shoot three fingers under the knock and look down the arrow which many do. I shoot trad bows off the shelf instinctively with real feathers. Some of my recurves take me 6-12 arrows to be really accurate. I do have a Bear Montana longbow that I hit about anything with from the first arrow out to 25 yards, and 30 yards on a good day. Too much draw weight will often make you inaccurate. I've found I'm most accurate using bare fingers and 45#-50#. Anytime I'm in an archery shop and they have heavy, aluminum arrows on sale with real feathers, I try to buy all I can. I can shoot them much more accurately than carbon.

From: tradmt
20-Jan-19
Honestly, I wouldn’t pay any attention to about 9/10 of the ‘advice’ you will get.

Get a bow that’s about 40-45 pounds at YOUR draw length. If you have been shooting compounds you should have an idea of arrow spine but figure 600 or 500 most likely, depending on the bow and your draw length.

That’s all I’m going to say. I can’t tell you how to shoot it, what style, off the shelf etc etc etc......practice proper form and enjoy, make your own way.

From: Dale06
20-Jan-19
Don’t start with too much pull weight.

From: Ambush
20-Jan-19
I've been shooting compounds for years and I'm down to 65# now. I have a one piece recurve and a warf recurve and they are both about 43# at my draw length. That's plenty of weight to pull, for me, as I don't shoot them regularly.

From: Treeline
20-Jan-19
Been shooting and hunting with traditional bows for over 40 years. Tried shooting compounds for a few years and decided there were too many things that could go wrong with them and went to the simplicity of longbows.

Have hunted and killed critters from Argentina to Alaska with a longbow and critters up to moose and buffalo with bows from 57# to 60# draw weights. Killed a lot of deer, turkeys and pigs with a 40# bow when I was a kid.

Finding a traditional bow that fits you makes a huge difference in how you well you will do with it.

You will want to start at a reasonable draw weight and definitely lower than your compound. Hard to say what that will be and it can vary a lot from bow to bow.

I would recommend a minimum of at least 40# and not more than 55#. A good rule of thumb is to drop 10-15 pounds off what you are shooting with a compound.

Your best bet is to go to a good traditional bow shop and shoot a bunch of different bows before you decide which bow fits you best.

If you shoot 28” with a compound, expect to lose a little draw length going to a recurve and certainly lose draw length to a longbow. You will need to get an arrow that spines out with a point weight to tune to your bow. That will change some over time as you get more consistent.

I have a lot of different arrow shafts that I can tune to my bows by adjusting point weight. It is super easy today with screw in points off the shelf from under 100 grains to over 300 grains and weighted inserts for arrows. I have arrow setups from 400 to over 800 grains that all tune to the same bow.

You will want to shoot an arrow that is tuned to your bow with good FOC and enough mass for good penetration with a good broadhead. I prefer 3- or 4- blade broadheads but also will use 2-blade broadheads for heavier animals.

You will have to figure out what works for you for aiming method. It will help a lot to get some coaching to get started out. I just started out pulling a bow back and letting go of the string. Didn’t have the internet back in those days to get information and didn’t even know about archery clubs or shooting ranges until I was in college.

You are in Colorado. Do yourself a favor and go to Rocky Mountain Specialty Gear in Denver. Probably the best traditional bow shop in the country, if not the world. Let them get you started right. They have more traditional bows from different makers, new and used, hanging up on racks than any one else. They have all the equipment to get you set up right and will spend time helping you get started on the right foot.

From: wifishkiller
20-Jan-19
^^^ best advice

From: Scrappy
20-Jan-19
"You will need to get an arrow that spines out with a point weight to tune to your bow. That will change some over time as you get more consistent.

I have a lot of different arrow shafts that I can tune to my bows by adjusting point weight. It is super easy today with screw in points off the shelf from under 100 grains to over 300 grains and weighted inserts for arrows. I have arrow setups from 400 to over 800 grains that all tune to the same bow."

I quoted Treeline in the above paragraph. Please don't take this the wrong way but that paragraph is the exact reason I haven't switched to traditional. I don't have the money to go out and buy 40 different arrows trying to figure out the right combo especially when I don't have a clue what I'm supposed to be looking for.

Crankn101 ask that specific question about what spine arrows to get and so far it's just like the other thousand post I've read over the years on this topic. No one ever gives an answer. Is it some kinda special club secret that you have to be invited in to be given the secrets?

Please forgive my ignorance.

From: Ambush
20-Jan-19
Scrappy, I’m somewhat with you on spine problem. My buddy and I bought a dozen “ball park” shafts and then just kept adding point weight to bare shafts until we were happy with flight. We shot identical fletched and bare in combined groups. Our only criteria was to end up with over 450 grain finished arrows.

From: DarrinG
20-Jan-19
Scrappy, there's no "secret". Shooting traditional and gaining the knowledge to know what will "possibly" work with a given bow/arrow combo takes time. So many variables in trad bows to say in concrete "this arrow shaft will work with your bow" is near impossible without knowing specifics. The OP asked "What spine arrow for whatever poundage and arrow weight you recommend at 28"? ". "Whatever" poundage for whatever bow at whatever draw and whatever string....that's an impossible question to answer. B-50 or modern string material, amount of center shot cut into the riser, how clean is your release, do you really draw 28" with a trad bow? What broadhead weight do you prefer? See, all these variables come into play. That's why 90% of experienced traditional bowhunters will suggest a new guy to stickbows go to a speciality shop that KNOWS trad bows or get together with an experienced traditional bowhunter and get first-hand lessons and knowledge. Most guys are more than willing to share their knowledge and help a new guy get his rig set up right. I've got a bunch of different shafts, point weights and such and so does most traditional guys, and could readily help a new guy find what his bow combo needs to shoot well. But for me to sit here and say this arrow will work with whatever poundage and whatever bow is not gonna happen...and if someone does, they are full of it. Hope this sheds some light on why its so difficult to answer such a question and not that trad guys are being secretive or snobs....

From: Treeline
20-Jan-19
I shoot arrows from .250 to .500 off the same bow.

Just vary the point weight to get them to tune off my bow.

You can probably use the same arrow you are using for your compound, if you want to.

Shave off the plastic stuff on the back end that passes for compound bow fletching.

Then start working up in point weight till they fly straight off your traditional bow. Your compound arrow will probably be too stiff off the trad bow and you will need to go up in point weight.

Standard screw-in point weights are available at 125, 150, 175, 200, 250, and 300 grains. There are other weights available if you look around a little bit.

Once you get your bare shaft flying straight, put some real feathers on the back (I prefer 5 1/2” shield cut left helical, 3-fletch) and shoot it again. Should fly really well.

Strip off the rest of the plastic stuff off the other arrows and put feathers on them. Match up point weights and go give em hell!

Usually, I will adjust my brace height by twisting the string until the bow gets quieter and hand shock is minimal. Measure with a bow square and twist the string to make 1/4” adjustments in brace height till you hit the sweet spot. Most of my bows like 7 1/4” to 7 3/4” but every bow is different and will be different for different shooters.

You will also want to tune your nock point so you are getting good straight arrow flight. Use your bow square to set your nock point at 3/4” high then adjust down till your arrow hits the target straight.

From: Nick Muche
20-Jan-19
I get the spine arrow I think I need. Then shoot them full length, bare shaft at about 8 yards. Then I cut 1/4” off at a time until I get them hitting the target straight (this is assuming they are under spined). Once you get them hitting the target straight on, I can shoot them out to 20 or so with no fletch to fine tune them. Not sure if that makes sense but it’s how I was taught and it works well for me.

I shoot 340 spines out of a 56# recurve. 150 grain head. Keep my brace height at 8 3/4 so always checking it. Still learning, but lots of very good guys on here to help you out

From: Treeline
20-Jan-19
Tuning a trad bow is harder to describe than to do. If you are with somebody that knows what they are doing, they will have you shooting well in minutes.

Without any formal training, I was doing a lot of things wrong for a lot of years and didn’t even know it. With the right direction starting out, you can avoid a lot of headaches and be successful much faster than us poor slobs that had to learn on our own.

By the way, the Colorado Traditional Archery Society annual banquet is coming up February 8th and and 9th in Lakewood.

You can look it up at the CTAS website or shoot me a PM.

Great get-together with a bunch of guys and gals that love traditional archery.

Heck, you might even get lucky and win a top-end new bow to get started on!

There are always several up for auction or raffle.

From: DanaC
20-Jan-19
I'd start with Jimmy's video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZ91NVugKgE

Jimmy sometimes posts over on the 'Leatherwall' section of Bowsite. Fine shooter and very good at explaining from the ground up.

From: jdbbowhunter
20-Jan-19
Only recommendation I can make is be consistent in what you do. Don't know you physical ability so cant recommend bow weight. Maybe go to a trad shop to shoot a few bows to see what feels good in your hand. Youll figure it out, don't overthink it and have fun with it. Its not that difficult.

From: Fields
20-Jan-19
A lot of good advice above.... IMO... Unless you decide to dedicate yourself to it full time, don't. There will be way more failures then successes, especially in the beginning.

From: crankn101
20-Jan-19
Thanks for all the replies.

I really do appreciate it.

From: Woods Walker
20-Jan-19
My .02.............

Assuming that your bow fits you and is tuned correctly, then the 10 most important things about shooting a stickbow are.....in order of importance........

Form, Form, Form, Form, Form, Form, Form, Form, Form, and Form.

Part of the beauty of stickbow shooting is that 95% of the time if you aren't shooting right it's YOU, not the equipment. Essentially YOU are the "equipment", especially if you shoot instinctive. If you have to think about your form when you shoot, then you need to work on your form more. When I made the switch I figure it took me about 10,000 arrows or so before I was that solid. After that you still have to keep up with it, for muscle tone as much as anything, but once you're at that point you don't have to shoot that much unless you change your form.....or you become addicted...!!!

And I know, as I haven't even looked at my compounds now for over 10 years.

From: oldgoat
20-Jan-19
Your profile says you live in Colorado, make the pilgramidge to Rmsgear.com and give yourself a whole day, you need to start out with a 35 or 40lb bow, the bow your choose and how you shoot will dictate the arrows. Two bows of different design but the same draw weight could take drastically different arrows. You can get an intro lesson at rmsgear and shoot bows till your arms fall off for the price of a range fee or get a lesson from a high end instructor for a nominal fee but you might have to schedule the real lesson. This will probably save you a lot of wasted money in the long term! But cost you a lot of unwasted money because this stuff is addicting! I caution you that this isn't something you can do part time and be good at it!

From: Milhouse
20-Jan-19
Trad is hard....don't try to go about it halfway.... it's pretty much an all or nothing proposition. I did it for a few years. Loved it...and hated it. Killed a few deer, made a few great shots. I will always say my best shot ever with a bow was a truly instinctive shot I m as de on a big old nanny doe at approximately 7 yards. She was moving through a very small window....I instinctively drew, and shot in one motion....hit her exactly where i was looking, and it was a short blood trail. Loved being able to carry a 12 ounce bow with me. I missed the same little buck FIVE TIMES. Yes, five times....probably c ok old have missed him a few more ti.es, but my quiver only held 5. Not saying any of this to discourage anyone.... it's a labor of love. You need to fully commit to it though, otherwise, you'll go back to your compound when it gets tough, and you get discouraged. That's ok too....it's not for everyone. I still have trad bows... I still dream about killing a big whitetail with one. I'm not ready to give up my compounds....maybe I never will be.

From: PECO
20-Jan-19
If you are near Westcliffe shoot me a PM. Take the advice above and get to RMSG.

From: SixLomaz
20-Jan-19
Visit RMSG and spend few days there as they will help you avoid having 50+ bows in your house. There are many well build affordable bows available, some as old as 50 years. Find the one that fits and speaks to you. To make this better, look for a takedown bow which allows you to change the limbs to heavier # as you progress. Start with 35# - 40# and work on your technique until close to perfection. When you are ready move up to 50# - 60# range. It is a long journey which require you to obsess to perfection daily. Do not discourage and never give up. It is fun.

From: Tilzbow
20-Jan-19
Shoot no more than 50# for your first bow. 40 - 45 would be even better. I speak from experience. 30 years ago I was shooting 80# + compounds with fingers and bought a 65# recurve to start. starting light and working up in weight one I was proficient would saved me years of frustration.

Learn to gap shoot and don’t read Fred Asbell’s books on instinctive shooting. Again speaking from 30 years experience and doing it wrong, ignoring the good advice and listening to the wrong. There’s nothing worth knowing in those books and lots of bad advice on form and “aiming”. Good form is good form, whether your shooting receive or compound. I’ve been shooting trad for a long time and I can’t tell you one person in that time who was consistently good who shot instinctively or with the poor, hunched over form Asbell promotes.

From: jjs
20-Jan-19
Like Treeline It is all that I know, the only tip I can give is to be dedicated and find your form, using your back muscles and all you need is a 40#> bow and have some fun, it is not like shooting a compound and finding your limitation is the key. Plenty of information on tuning arrows, ecte. You will learn that hunting game is not in long shots but getting close and putting it to it. Game have been killed for eons with the stick bow before the industrial hunting methods, enjoy the journey.

From: Franklin
20-Jan-19
I am "in transition" myself....but damn, I thought I was going back to simpler. The recurve/longbow is a complicated deal. # of string twists....tiller....type of string...head weight....spine....arrow length....center cut riser etc etc. It`s work.

20-Jan-19
If the bow is cut to center or beyond, it will accept many arrow point/weight combinations. That is what Tavis is saying. So, don't be afraid of spending a bunch of money. A center cut or beyond bow makes things really easy. There are charts out there by many arrow makers that will get you in the ball park real close. Arrow length, brace height, and point weight should give those advised choices perfect tune once you get to tuning them.

I used to do as Nick does but, I've done it so much on so many bows now, I can pick what I need after seeing the bow and, knowing the string material. But, I 'd recommend you do this until you get some experience.

So, let me compress this into a little better explanation. Three things will affect your tune besides your draw weight. Draw length and arrow length, shelf cut, and string material. If your bow is center cut and, you draw over 28 with a skinny string, bump the aluminum and wood recommendations 5 pounds at your draw. Carbon will shoot fine with no regards to string material.

I could type 20 pages just like many of these guys on how they do things. The rest from here is up to you. Get you a cheapo bow off ebay that is cut to center. Which is usually any recurve or modern deflex/reflex longbow. Then, get some arrows and start. You can move on to the romantic longbows cut short of center after you have developed your tuning skills. They tend to be a lot more finiky.

My last piece of advice is to order your point weights from braveheart archery. Cheap prices and they charge an actual shipping charge. Not some outlandish $7 kind of thing for $5 worth of field points.

From: APauls
20-Jan-19
Can’t add anything more than what Treeline says for advice.

I will say this though. The way guys talk about shooting trad you’d think you need to quit your job to make it work. Not necessarily. I’m not trying to be pompous but for myself and the only couple others guys I know that took it up recently, al three of us could shoot accurately to 30 yards or so very quickly. Maybe for some people it has to be “full time” but definitely not all. I can pick it up after months of sitting on the shelf and shoot pie plates in a week to 30-40-maybe 50 yards. 50 might be two weeks. And honestly it was like that the first time I started. Don’t get me wrong pie plate isn’t “hunt ready” for me but getting decently accurate happens pretty quick. My brother is the same way, and so are others I’ve talked to so I’m not some wonderchild. I did start by watching a video on shooting and didn’t start overbowed, which for sure is key.

20-Jan-19
^^^^^This^^^^^

From: crankn101
20-Jan-19
APauls, whats your aiming method?

From: oldgoat
20-Jan-19
Just because you can do that Apauls doesn't mean a damn thing for the vast majority of people! I can do it too and with a bow I haven't shot before, but I've been doing it a while. And a lot of that revolves around form and some people's natural ability! Crankin might be a natural he might not!

From: Treeline
20-Jan-19
Most people would be surprised at how fast they can get very good with a traditional bow with the right start up to get technique and a tuned arrow and bow.

Been shooting these things a long time and it is funny but I can pick up about any trad bow and shoot it pretty damn good even if I haven’t shot in a long time.

From: crankn101
20-Jan-19
Treeline

What aiming method do you use?

20-Jan-19
Getting right with an arrow target and a live animal are two different worlds. Keep your shots close, be picky, be consistent, shoot a ton. Not saying it's hard, but shooting a lot makes it like riding a bicycle. That bicycle ride will be easier if you're dedicated. Keep yourself in good physical shape too, it helps.

Once you find that bow and arrow combo and it's throwing darts, try not to deviate from where your success comes from.

By the way, if you have bad days on the foam, keep pushing... get back out the next day and smash some more. That's where you'll learn your form flaws and you'll fix them innately.

I shoot three under and aim with somewhat of a gun barrel. But, 15 and under, it's all instinctive. I rarely hold more than 1-1/2 seconds. For what it's worth, I've been shooting traditional since 1997 off and on. After killing numerous does and pigs, I killed my first and one of my best bucks with my recurve this year by 100% dedicating to it.

Best of luck!

BTW.. I've also got a 2005 bowtech tomkat for sale... :)

From: Woods Walker
20-Jan-19
"And a lot of that revolves around form......"

DEFINITELY! Form is important for ANY method of archery, but for a stickbow, and a stickbow shot instinctively especially, it's pretty much all you have if the set up is right.

From: Treeline
20-Jan-19
I guess I would call it instinctive but there is a process. I focus on what I want to hit, draw, anchor and release. Pretty sure I am seeing the point of the arrow in my peripheral vision, but I don’t notice it.

From: Old School
20-Jan-19
I would recommend like many others - don’t overbow. 45# bow and go to a local archery shop and shoot with the trad guys. Go to a trad shoot and shoot as many different brands of bows that you can. What some love you may hate. Buy the bow that you shoot best, regardless of the brand.

-Mitch

From: GF
21-Jan-19
“Dont tell me to go here or there for the info, I want some real world opinions from actual hunters right here in their own words.”

You may as well say “Don’t confuse me with Facts from actual Professionals - I want to believe some guaranteed BULLSCHITT!!””

Of course, that DOES seem to be in the fashion these days…

Too busy SMH to ROFL, I guess....

“Please don't take this the wrong way but that paragraph is the exact reason I haven't switched to traditional. I don't have the money to go out and buy 40 different arrows trying to figure out the right combo especially when I don't have a clue what I'm supposed to be looking for.”

Well, not having a Clue IS CURABLE, you know....

At this rate, I’m gonna shake my head clean off and IT will be rolling around the damn floor...

REALITY CHECK, fellas....

You really don’t have to worry all that much about spine as you are getting started, because having the spine Just Exactly Right is nowhere near as important as having a release that is Good Enough that bare-shaft testing will be able to tr you something more useful than that your form needed work.

So first things first...

Just about everybody who wants to end up hunting will start off at too much poundage and will eventually either quit or wish they had started off lighter. I knew one guy who used to shoot an awful lot of deer with an #80 compound, and when he picked up a recurve, he told me #35 kicked his ass.

Your mileage may vary, but don’t be a Moron; you might be able to manage #40-#45, but no professional coach is going to be happy to see you try it.

If you’re not willing to seek out qualified instruction, at least go to RMSGear and let them help you some. They’ll let you find out how much weight you can actually learn from (less IS more!) and they will set you up with arrows that will get you more than close enough to send one exactly where you pointed it.

At that rate, you just need to learn how to point them where you’re looking, and sights are not a bad option. Next best is gun-barreling the arrow so you know that you’re anchored with the nock plumb under your eyeball and you know that the point of the arrow is centered under the target. A tall target with a bold line running vertically down the middle is your best friend. Don’t worry about elevation errors - just learn to hit the line.

How long it’ll take you to learn to shoot depends on how stupid you’re willing to be. “Instinctive” shooting is an END, NOT the means. If you check your aim & anchor every time you come to full draw, you’ll EVENTUALLY stop needing to adjust much to be on target. At THAT point, you can just anchor and release, and you’ll be fairly accurate “instinctively”.

We have a guy at the club who just switched from compound/sights to 3-Under recurve. He was shooting better than most “Instinctive” shooters I’ve seen in about 2 months, but that’s what can happen when you can calmly and confidently hold the weight at your anchor while you settle your arrow into the correct plane.

If you want a few good books to read, try Shooting the Stickbow by Tony Camera (posts as Viper on LW), along with Guitar Zero and The Talent Code.

DO NOT screw yourself up reading Asbell. Just.... Don’t. Tilz ain’t kiddin’. What Asbell promoted in his first book is akin to adjusting the crosshairs in a rifle scope based on the impacts of shots fired from the hip.

From: DanaC
21-Jan-19
Attend some area 3D shoots, and see who is shooting well. Ask them. I know 'real world' guys who spend more time behind the targets than in front of them ;-)

From: rooni79
21-Jan-19

rooni79's Link
I know it's probably not what you want to hear but buy Solid Archery Mechanics from the link. Tom Clum Sr is awesome. and will get you well on the way to a fantastic shot.

From: skipmaster1
21-Jan-19
Like the others have said get to RMS Gear. Tom and his guys are amazing. I’m flying from NY to Tx next month just to work with Tom Sr again at a clinic. For the guys saying it’s an all or nothing thing, I disagree. I shoot both trad and compounds. I have since 2005 when I picked up a recurve. I hunt back and forth all season, sometimes even in the same day. Proper alignment and back tension are the same. Just the “aiming” is really different. Trad takes a lot longer to get proficient with but once you get it, it’s not bad. This year is a prime example for me. 6 deer with the compound, 2 with the longbow and 2 with the recurve.

21-Jan-19
Got enough info now?

21-Jan-19
Spine is not all that important if your bow is center shot, just make sure you have enough of it. If not center shot, reduce the spine a bit. It is all very simple.

From: Paul@thefort
21-Jan-19
Lots of good info here but since you live in Colorado, as others have stated, go see Tom Clum at Rocky Mt Speciality Gear in the Denver area. Look him up on Google also. He can put your mind at rest and give you great info and insight concerning the recurve or long bow.

my best, Paul

From: M.Pauls
21-Jan-19
Crankn101, I see my brother hasn’t responded yet so I’ll answer for him, as we both shoot instinctive, I’m 3 under and I can’t remember if he still is. So glad I stuck with “instinctive” as it makes things so simple once it clicked.

I don’t want to muddy the waters with more opinions and advice from a fairly recent “convert”. Pay attention to Treeline’s advice, he’s a hunter that has proven to be a straight up killer with his weapon of choice.

I would just also like to encourage you in that, if it gets frustrating maybe put it down for a bit and enjoy your compound. First time I tried to “switch”, I did just that. I made it up in my mind that I wouldn’t shoot a compound again, and then got really frustrated when it wasn’t working as I felt trapped. I put it away for a year, bought another compound and took the pressure off. A year later it clicked, and I haven’t hunted with a compound for the last few years until I was forced to this fall with a torn rotator cuff. Point is, I do this because I enjoy it not because I have certified myself “TRAD” LOL

From: md5252
21-Jan-19
Start light, start close, and have fun

In my opinion all trad shooting is instinctive, (regardless of aiming method) and anyone who can point to a spit on the wall can do it.

From: ESP
21-Jan-19
Go to Rocky Mountain specialty gear.

From: elkstabber
21-Jan-19
Treeline gave you the best advice. Tom at RMSG will start you off right.

Tom is not a fan of Fred Asbell, who promotes "instinctive aiming". Tom will get your form and equipment set up right.

There are many dependable ways to shoot a traditional bow. Personally, I learned a lot from Fred Asbell's books. I've killed plenty of critters shooting with the method that he teaches. But not everybody will pick it quickly so Tom is your best bet.

From: lawdy
21-Jan-19
I have hunted with a Hill style longbow for about 60 years now. Never shot a compound. My advice, don’t overbow. I have exclusively shot my Meigs #46 since 1985. Others on this site know more than me on spine, form, etc, so I will defer to them. Practice, practice, and have fun. Welcome to the family.

21-Jan-19
go to the indoor archery range,,,,, stand away at 20 steps,,,,, can you hit the target with a baseball,,,, of course you can,,,, there you go, you can shoot,,,,,,, I shoot at 28 my full draw, but I only shoot 41lbs, with 1916 aluminums, and a 2 blade coc head

I limit my shooting to 20 and under, and shoot all the time, and I also shoot my compound,,,, I love it all

go to a trad shoots , and stuff, shoot some bows, have some fun,,,,, its not that hard, and as said, above, not all bows are created equal,,,, you need to find the one, that pulls smooth.....

I shoot 3 fingers under, off the shelf,,,,,, I have gone to smaller feather fletching,,,,,,

From: crankn101
21-Jan-19
Thnks guys, Ill probably head to RMSG at some point. Its only 45 minutes or so away.

As for my part time comment, Im not looking to make the switch over to trad only for hunting. Ill start with a few of my doe spots where I know I can get them within 10 yards and go from there if I feel the need.

From: SDHNTR(home)
21-Jan-19
First, bang your head against a brick wall multiple times. You will need to get used to this feeling! Then pick up the bow and start flinging arrows every day. Somewhere around year 15-20, it’ll all come together.

From: Treeline
21-Jan-19
Come on, it’s not that tough to get going and to become very efficient with traditional archery equipment!

With the good information available today, you can leap over a lot of the pitfalls that some of us older guys fell into and get started right.

Tom is probably one of the absolute best instructors anywhere. He has gone through the head banging, target panic, and other struggles and then went through the courses for Olympic archery instructor coming at it from a bowhunter’s perspective.

Heck, I never could get the hang of compound bows - had a hell of a time trying to kill anything with one and finally just gave up. When I was trying to kill stuff with a compound, it hurt my trad bow confidence, but could still pull out a recurve or longbow and kill critters better with those than with the compound.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
The site I recommended in my post has Tom Clum's course plus John Demmer's course plus Joe Turner's course. I would at least get Clum's course and then go visit him for personal instruction and equipment recommendations. You'll be off to a fantastic start. I have zero connection to any of these (video) courses.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
This film should be enjoyable to all: https://youtu.be/1E1vKkSSoNs

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
I just read “Dont tell me to go here or there for the info, I want some real world opinions from actual hunters right here in their own words.” Guess some of us wasted our time. It sounds like you are hell bent on a shortcut. The majority of trad. bowhunters aren't that effective, IMO. Arguably, the majority of compound hunters aren't either. It's an interesting topic...I do believe the difference between success and failure is often very small.

From: crankn101
21-Jan-19
David A

I just didnt want EVERYONE to say go here or there, I wanted to see how real people went about it so I could get a feel for whats "right or wrong" in the real world.

From: elkstabber
21-Jan-19

elkstabber's embedded Photo
elkstabber's embedded Photo
Keep in mind that there are lots of different ways to shoot a traditional bow effectively. Ishi, who is shown in the photo, taught Pope and Young how to shoot. He is doing it all wrong by today's conventions. Obviously it worked for him.

Don't let anybody tell you that there is only one way to shoot and hunt effectively.

From: Rock
21-Jan-19
It is extremely addicting or at least it was for close to 40 years ago.

What poundage to start with? At least 15 lbs less than your compound draw weight

What spine arrow for whatever poundage and arrow weight you recommend at 28"? Needs to be matched to the Bow and your shooting style.

Instinctive, gap or other for aiming? Which ever is most comfortable and accurate for you. Try finding some local Trad shooters to help you get started and see how they shoot but be open to figure out what works best for you.

Shoot off the shelf? I would recommend this but again it is up to you. Try finding some local Trad shooters to help you get started and see how they shoot but be open to figure out what works best for you.

Any info in general is appreciated. Try finding some local Trad shooters to help you get started and see how they shoot but be open to figure out what works best for you.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
Well the links I gave are arguably some of the best of the best individuals around. I'm sure when you visit Tom Clum he will get you on good footing.

Elkstabber, ya' there is more than one way obviously, but most guys fail to achieve anywhere near their potential. I've been shooting trad bows for half a century and I can count on one hand the number of guys who really had it together. A very high percent of wannabes...but it's not their fault really. Same thing in golf and many other sports/endeavors. GIGO (garbage in garbage out). Heck the vast majority of trad. archers/bowhunters can't even get great arrow flight out of their bows and don't know how to tune. Literally a hit and miss proposition from the get go.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
"Try finding some local Trad shooters"...NO! Why? Well, why not learn from the best to get started off right? Going to some/any local trad. shooter and the odds are extremely high of mediocrity. And "trying to figure out what works best for you" is again hit and miss and is an invitation to years and years of dead ends. Excellence can be modeled and really the number of true masters in this sport are uncommon.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
Same thing in golf. I would never advise someone wanting to learn the golf swing to go visit some local golfers and/or try to figure out what works best for you. Almost a guarantee for golfing mediocrity/frustration.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
I wouldn't even advise someone to go to their local PGA instructor other than for some very basic instruction. The vast majority of these instructors aren't really masters of the golf swing. As amazing as it sounds, the number of true masters is extremely small. This is one reason why so many golfers are hacks. It all seems so intuitive, but the golf swing is anything but intuitive and similarly for archery, which is the point I wish to make.

From: GF
21-Jan-19
And just FWIW.....

I’m not new at this. Some days I even shoot pretty good. I recently acquired a used bow from RMSG and even though o have been pretty damn successful bare-shafting with my low #50s and lighter bows, this baby is on the plus side of around #60, and I’m not even bothering with bare-shafts now, because o need to get used to the weight so I can have the stable bow arm and consistent release that will make bare-shafting worthwhile.

From: David A.
21-Jan-19
I would estimate the number of archers who can dominate a 60# recurve/longbow to be maybe 1% at best. You need to be able to hold dead steady or close to it if you want to achieve consistent accuracy. Most cannot even dominate a 50# bow...that's the truth. I'm an ex-athelete (pole-vaulter) and I couldn't dominate a 60# bow without significant training even when I was younger although at times I shot even much heavier bows. By dead steady, I refer to this level (watch the arrow tip just before release): https://youtu.be/DNT0RiirXSc

From: skipmaster1
21-Jan-19
I agree with David A. Most archers aren’t that good. There are ways to get into proper alignment and shoot incredibly well. Everything else makes it harder. As far as weight, my compounds are usually 80#s. My trad bows are low to mid 50’s and that’s about all I can shoot perfectly for any length of time.

From: Kevin Dill
21-Jan-19
Okay let's go back to your original post and dispense with the pontificating.

.

First recurve or longbow would be minimum 40 pounds to maximum 50 pounds.

Guessing a .400 spine should be close. I like Easton Axis shafts.

3 fletch with feathers, helical, 5" shield or parabolic.

Shoot off the shelf.

I would suggest shooting 3-under and using double nock sets to bracket the nocked arrow.

Get strong and master the bow completely.

Practice at 5 yards until you can put 5 arrows in a 5" circle....then move back to 10.

Learn to forgive yourself and keep the pressure off. Let the arrow teach you what it needs.

From: JAbbott
21-Jan-19
Go to RMS Gear, I repeat GO To RMS Gear, Tom will save you a lot of frustration and money....

From: GF
21-Jan-19
I’m gonna guess David is talking to/about me and the #60...

I don’t know how long it’ll take me to completely Own the new bow; my first trip to the range with it, I was grouping at about 8” wide at 65-80 yards, but I wasn’t happy on Saturday - doubtless has a lot to do with being sick as a dog for the past 3 weeks.

Was shooting under 6” wide at 40 today in a stiff crosswind, but wind or not, I seem to be pulling t my shots to the right, so I’m not going to mess with bare shafts ‘til I know the fletched arrows are running down the middle.

But I’ve been shooting low #50s for over 30 years now, and I’m pulling with technique, rather than just horsing it.

From: SixLomaz
21-Jan-19
RMS Gear to the rescue ...

From: DanaC
21-Jan-19
Kevin Dill, wadr, I'd suggest 35-40 pounds and 600 spine arrows, max. Unless you plan to front load the bejaysus out of those 400's they're too stiff. I've used 600's to 50'@27.5", but that was for 3D.

From: GF
21-Jan-19
“Ishi, who is shown in the photo, taught Pope and Young how to shoot. He is doing it all wrong by today's conventions. Obviously it worked for him.”

Well enough that he was brought in sick & starved near to death ;)

But +1 on 400s being overkill. Full length 500s are probably too stiff, but with 4” or 5” feathers out back, you can get away with them and 125-145 grain points.

From: Kodiak
21-Jan-19
"DO NOT screw yourself up reading Asbell. Just.... Don’t. Tilz ain’t kiddin’. What Asbell promoted in his first book is akin to adjusting the crosshairs in a rifle scope based on the impacts of shots fired from the hip."

Fred can outshoot you I'd wager.

From: Ambush
21-Jan-19
Crap!! Looks like I have to start over again (again!) to be ready for spring bear again! The only good things are I'm on the level ground with the bears and there's just oodles of targets.

From: GF
21-Jan-19
Wouldn’t surprise me. But I’d be willing to bet that I could teach a newbie faster and better than he could.

Being extraordinarily proficient in a given discipline does NOT make a person qualified to teach it.

Asbell’s first book attempts to teach people to shoot using a set of skills which they haven’t got at their disposal. He just appears to have forgotten how he got to what he is recommending as a starting point.

And if I were just starting out and I had a choice between listening to the newest and best Brain Science or a book that was written 30 years ago by a guy who knew nothing about it way back then...

From: Kodiak
21-Jan-19
Spoken like a dedicated gapper that lacks the skill set to use Asbell's method, so then proceeds the mock,ridicule and disrespect the man.

Why not just slap a good sight on your bow? Why insist on using the arrow as a half assed sight?

From: Highlife
21-Jan-19
Why limit yourself get a crossbow

From: Shawn
21-Jan-19
tradmt has it right!! 45#s or so at your draw. Shoot a .600 or .500 spine depending on draw length and point weight and what bow you are shooting. Practice a lot and don't think you have to shoot softball size groups to hunt with it at 20 Yards. Just go out and hunt and keep your shots close. Best way to learn is to start killing stuff and ya cant kill stuff if ya don't shoot at stuff! Shawn

From: GF
21-Jan-19
“Spoken like a dedicated gapper that lacks the skill set to use Asbell's method, so then proceeds the mock,ridicule and disrespect the man.”

I don’t disrespect the man - I just think he provided & promoted a very poor method for learning how to shoot in the style that he was endorsing.

I can shoot pretty well “Instinctively” - bouncing tennis balls, running deer, etc. - BUT (assuming that we are both talking about subconsciously mediated hand-eye coordinated shooting by means of a fully-integrated neuromuscular circuit) there are VASTLY SUPERIOR techniques for growing out that circuit better, stronger nand faster than the technique Asbell described.

“Spoken like a dedicated gapper that lacks the skill set to use Asbell's method, so then proceeds the mock,ridicule and disrespect the man.”

Spoken like a NeoTrad True Believer who needs to feel like God loves him extra special and gave him a Gift that Some Got & Some Not.

Besides - doesn’t matter if I can outshoot Fred. All that matters is that I can shoot better (and or teach others to shoot better) by reading up on the science being done on the reality vs. blond allegiance to the leader of the Cult I’ve chosen.

But that is where this thread started - “Don’t distract me with facts from people who’ve made a thoughtful study of the subject matter - I just want to hear anecdotal opinions from people with no actual expertise and absolutely no skin in the game.”

21-Jan-19
one more thing,,,, don't get hung up on the jerks, of the trad world, who God Forbid, you shoot gap, use a sight, etc,,, they are all over you..... most are great people but their is a lot of elitism with that world in the last 20 years, why I have no idea.....

shoot the way, you like,,,, who cares,,,,, as long as you put the arrow where it needs to go,,,,,, really it is not that hard...... most are shooting bows, poorly fitted for them, way too much poundage, etc

I see a lot of great shooters at the trad shoots, and one thing they all have in common is there having fun.......

like I said before, you can throw a baseball, you can shoot a bow

From: lawdy
21-Jan-19
Fred is really getting bashed on this thread. Too bad. His book on ground hunting is great. I have never read any others. I have talked with him on the phone a few times and would love to hunt with him as groundhunting is all I do. The shooting part doesn’t concern me as for 60 years I have been a pick a spot shooter and see no need to change or debate it. Hell, I don’t even know what gap shooting is. Getting real close is what I strive for, real close.

From: Tilzbow
21-Jan-19
Since no one has mentioned back tension, I will. It’s the single most important item to shoot great with a trad bow and is the only thing that will give you a smooth and consistent release. The only way you can get and maintain back tension consistently is to not over bow yourself. Start with 40 and work your way up.

Also, did I mention not to pay attention to Asbell’s books? I’m 100% confident he can’t the guys I shoot with who all gap shoot and I’m pretty confident I could beat him. BTW - I’m not a gap shooter but I do have really good archery form after getting sideways for 10 years after reading the crap he wrote on shooting. That hunched over, snap shooting crap won me a couple of 3D tournaments but it all fell apart when the competition got better and the ranges got past 35 yards. That said I really enjoy his writing style and I really like his other books. Tell me how many world class shooters with any type of bow hunch over, swing their bow arm up and release as soon as they hit the corner of their mouth? That’s right, zero!

21-Jan-19
lawdy yes I enjoyed his writings on ground hunting also,,,,, not bashing Fred, he writes some nice stuff,,,,, just pointing out, on others, who get too caught up with themselves

I have no idea on how I shoot,,, I really do not, and consider myself pretty good.. grew up as a woodcock hunter,,, can not explain how I shoot my double, just do,,, same with my bow.....

however lots of good instructors out there,,,,

From: lawdy
21-Jan-19
Thanks groundhunter, sounds like you shoot like I do. Getting back to the OP, I feel the best advice is getting as close as possible. I hear guys talking about 40, 50, 60 yard shots. Anyone going trad should be striving for 5-15 yards unless you are one hell of a shot, in my opinion. One thing he has learned from this thread is that we are an opinioned, individualistic bunch. In some ways that is a good thing if we don’t ignore tried and true advice. I am sure the OP will develop his own style, stealing a little from all of us.

From: yooper89
21-Jan-19
Instead of making a new thread I’ll jump in quick. Hopefully get an answer. If I PM somebody on leatherwall, will their response come to this username?

From: Kevin Dill
22-Jan-19
From Dana C: "Kevin Dill, wadr, I'd suggest 35-40 pounds and 600 spine arrows, max. Unless you plan to front load the bejaysus out of those 400's they're too stiff. I've used 600's to 50'@27.5", but that was for 3D."

No argument with that. I just happen to prefer a too-stiff, small-diameter shaft out of a modern recurve with window cut past center. And I do admittedly favor a rather heavy head. I'm far from a carbon shaft expert, but when I do use them I use a .340 from a 55-60 pound bow combined with at least 200 grains of head weight. I extrapolated that to believe a .400 from a 50 pound bow would be okay...depending on draw length and shaft length. My personal preference (assuming a guy's in good physical shape) would be to start at 45 pounds in a hunting bow. Thanks.

22-Jan-19
Kevin, you are dead on if the bows cut to or past center.

From: David A.
22-Jan-19
" was grouping at about 8” wide at 65-80 yards". Well, you're already better than the IBO world champions! Here's what the best in the world are doing with 68-72" low draw wt. tournament bows at 20 yds: https://youtu.be/39ppQpTQcz4

From: Ambush
22-Jan-19
So, I watched the entire two hours and seventeen minutes of the video David linked, called "The Push"

Anyone with experience watch it and care to comment on it's value? Particularly for those with not so much experience.

22-Jan-19
I second Kevin Dill's advice. I shoot off the self, use 3 fingers under to get the arrow nock under my eye, and anchor so that I can look down the arrow to aim, THEN focus on the spot I want to hit. This works great for me out to about 20-25 yards, which is far enough for me.

One thing to experiment with is how much to cant your bow. I don't like shooting a vertical bow, but find that beyond about 10-15 degrees, the point of impact changes, pretty significantly as I approach horizontal.

From: GF
22-Jan-19
David -

#1, I never said I could do that all day long, every damn day.... which is what it takes to be a Champion, and I am not.

Besides, my groups were still on the order of 6’ - 8’ TALL (and yes, I DO mean to say FEET and not inches).

But not bad for the shakedown shoot right out of the box.

And @Jeff - Chances are that you have a tuning issue - probably your nocking point height - which is throwing your shot high/low when the bow is vertical, but more & more right/left with increased cant. Either that or the cant is moving your nock off of the line below your eyeball.

Neither issue is insurmountable, but when I decided to learn to shoot prone, I had to be very conscious and deliberate about the fact that my anchor was moving from my cheekbone to under my chin.

It’s a 15-yard trick shot and I’m still having issues with elevation, but I’ve been caught out prone in hunting situations a few times when I could have used that trick to good effect....

From: David A.
22-Jan-19
GF, what it takes to shoot as good as the best is to eliminate variation and that's hard to do shooting the way most do. The whole thing is analogous to shooting a rifle well. A lot of talent is not required, regardless of all the claims.

From: GF
22-Jan-19

GF's embedded Photo
First session with the new bow - 3 @ 40
GF's embedded Photo
First session with the new bow - 3 @ 40
GF's embedded Photo
And 3 from 65. Brace height was set to about 6 1/4" and the group was inside of that Image needs to be rotated 90 degrees clockwise. Hard to make out the 3rd arrow, but it's the same height as the top one and a couple inches left of the bottom one.
GF's embedded Photo
And 3 from 65. Brace height was set to about 6 1/4" and the group was inside of that Image needs to be rotated 90 degrees clockwise. Hard to make out the 3rd arrow, but it's the same height as the top one and a couple inches left of the bottom one.
That's why I don't recommend trying to learn to shoot the way that most do. I don't enjoy being lousy at anything...

Not really that hard to group somewhat decently at long range if you have a small, distinct spot to line up on; I use the leg of a 3D ram that's up the hill from the 80-yard NFAA butt....

From: David A.
23-Jan-19
CF, it's a beautiful bow. So many trad. bows are beautiful...this is the allure...but there is a problem. It is a heavy draw wt. and the mass is not what is required if you want to hold as steady and shoot as well as the top trad. shots such as in this video: https://youtu.be/XOmcjDlGxtA

These guys are amongst the world's best and they are shooting 6" groups at 20 yds. That's what we aspire to, and many claim much better, but the reality is hardly anyone can do it under pressure and with consistency arrow after arrow any day of the week. And these top archers cannot do it with a bow such as yours. Too heavy a draw wt, and insufficient mass. IN MY OPINION, these are two of the key reasons why almost every trad. archer will FAIL in obtaining consistent accuracy. Of course there are other reasons...poor form, lack of precise aiming method and on.

I'm sorry, but this is REALITY. Rather than blaming trad. archers, no no...it's not the fault of the archer talent or lack of...it is the fault of the method and equipment choice.

Now obviously, we don't want to hunt with tournament bows...a dilemma! Is there a solution? IMO, yes, but it involves compromises and of course, many will disagree with me. The whole thing is a beautiful mess...and it takes courage to tell the truth because so many people won't want to hear it. However, many will agree the vast majority of trad. archers are lousy shots. My opinion is it's not because of their innate deficiencies, however. We all have enough ability, actually.

Regardless, many people want trad. archery to be hard! You cannot make everyone happy!

From: David A.
23-Jan-19
GF, that's my last post here. Too easy to get drawn into controversy and really I'm not that...everyone has their opinions and few will change them. Just the nature of things. Good shooting.

From: GF
23-Jan-19
So your point is that what I just did cannot actually be done, but since I already dunnit, you’re not going to continue the conversation.

Guess I should probably not get into the fact that there’s a significant chance that my third shot EVER with that bow came within a whisker of being a Robin Hood.... At 20.

Blind hogs and acorns being what they are, of course... but there it is.

I have am aiming system; you have an aiming system. Both seem to work well for each of us. Difference is that I don’t insist that mine is Guaranteed Magic for Everyone... and I’m not selling anything... and I’m not even promising to THINK about selling anything when I finally get around to it.

LOL

From: lamb
24-Jan-19
gf love your style lol right on brother

From: lawdy
24-Jan-19
Shooting a traditional bow with no sights is pure athleticism in my opinion. While there may be an exact way to do it, we are all individuals physically and mentally. We adapt according to our individual strengths. GF is dead on.

From: GF
25-Jan-19
I guess we could all cast a fly much farther and more accurately with a Surf rod and an adjusta-bubble, too, but that’s not what floats a fly-fisherman’s boat, if you get my DRIFT....

Seems to me that the most enlightened and experienced con pound cheaters that I’ve spoken to all tend to agree that bow hunting is an activity best conducted at 20 yards and i seems to me that the most enlightened and experienced compound cheaters that I’ve spoken to all tend to agree that bow hunting is an activity best conducted at 20 yards and in. Full Stop.

You don’t have to be 1/2 Cougar to get within modest bow range of a big game animal. And you don’t have to be a Genius with a longbow or a recurve to be able to plunk a small melon consistently at that kind of range.

I seem to have pissed of about half of the Leatherwall by suggesting that some folks might want to while away the off-season by improving their tune, but not even I would suggest that nock-splitting precision is a necessity for consistent, ethical success in the field.

So I’m not sure why you’re on a mission to sell bench-rest rifles to Skeet shooters here. We’re not using the “Wrong” equipment - we’re using the equipment that we LIKE and which adds joy to our time afield.

And we’re not shooting 300 round, where a single line-cutter can cost you the championship; we’re shooting animals that are all pretty much bigger than I am and on which the scoring is pretty much 1/0. In or out. You’re either responsible for getting it out of the woods in palatable condition or you missed clean.

The problem with Trad archery hunting accuracy is NOT among the guys who are picking up an 8-ring big or two on every other end; it’s with the guys who refuse to use the very most basic feedback mechanism to improve their accuracy when it is not only immediately available but UNAVOIDABLY and quite literally) right under their damn noses.

From: GF
25-Jan-19
I’m sure that David has a great system. I don’t doubt that it works for him, and I don’t doubt that he can teach others to use it to good advantage.

I just don’t happen to believe that “his” way is the only way to skin this cat.

And not-for-nothin’, but for a lot of Trad Converts, rigid Posture, releases and sights are three of the Top 5 Things they were trying to get away from in the first place.

Some of us kinda LIKE being able to shoot Standing, Sitting, Kneeling, Prone, or from whatever contorted position might prove necessary in the course of a hunt.

It’s a trade-off of Flexibility for Precision; some are happy to make it and some aren’t. David’s technique - depending on your perspective - offers either the Best Of Both Worlds or (more likely, IMO) sentences you to the worst.

But that’s why I practice target-form Point-On shooting from 50 to 80 yards, Gapping from 20 to 50, Instinctive from 0 to 20, and Stupid Bow Tricks from 0 to as far as I can get away with it.

Drilling itty-bitty groups with the compound is gratifying in its own way, but the Truth is that under hunting conditions, I’m just plain deadlier with a String Bow. If that costs me 10 yards vs what I might be able to do if I had time to use a rangefinder, I’m pretty OK with that.

From: Nick Muche
26-Jan-19

Nick Muche's embedded Photo
Nick Muche's embedded Photo
Poor David isn’t willing to share his STAR method. Bummer...

From: David A.
26-Jan-19
Great pic, Nick!

From: Ironbow
26-Jan-19
I just read a long article where the author was claiming Howard Hill's method of shooting a bow isn't adaptable for hunting off the ground! That is the only way Hill ever hunted!

Great shooting there GF.

From: SBH
26-Jan-19
FWIW....I'm in the process of switching to a trad bow now. I plan on shooting it until I am confident enough to hunt with it. That may take 6 months or it may take 2 years, I don't have a time table. I do have a hunting buddy/mentor that is helping me out as far as understanding the equipment and some basics to getting started but he has been really stand off ish in terms of "how" I shoot and aim. Basically saying that many guys shoot many different ways, there's isn't a right or wrong. He gave me a few general pointers and then said, just shoot, shoot, shoot. Don't worry about where you're hitting, just try to get the same draw and release everytime, we'll worry about where the arrows are going later. Have fun! One thing I've noticed is my compound shooting has gotten better even though I'm spending half my time shooting my long bow. Who woulda thought?

From: Treeline
26-Jan-19
Love that picture, Nick!

Congratulations again! Heck of a critter to take with trad gear!

Pretty sure the hook got set deep there;-)

Damnit I need to move to Alaska...

From: GF
26-Jan-19
“One thing I've noticed is my compound shooting has gotten better even though I'm spending half my time shooting my long bow. Who woulda thought?”

Honestly, I would have EXPECTED it.

If you can hold #45 steady with good back tension and full expansion, a high let-off compound becomes something of a toy.

What I did NOT expect, after 20 years of recurve shooting, was that shooting a compound would improve my Stickbow accuracy. Maybe it was just the mind-set?? But when I started getting irritated by my lousy shooting when I was getting 40-yard Compound groups that were half the size of what I had been really happy with at under 20 yards with the recurve..... That was when I decided that maybe my standards just SUCKED...

And not for nothin’, but if you just check real quickly (on EVERY shot!) to make sure that your nock is directly below your eyeball and your point is directly below your target, it won’t be that long until you’re not “checking” (and correcting) but just CONFIRMING that you’ve done it the same every time...

At THAT point, you will have grown out the neuromotor circuit that enables “Instinctive” shooting to actually WORK (and it does work very well, at modest range, if you have built out the circuit carefully and thoughtfully).

Like the old saying... Practice does not make Perfect; Practice makes PERMANENT. Only PERFECT Practice makes Perfect.

So JMO, rather than building out a Shooting circuit without knowing where you’re aiming, try anchoring (and settling the entire length of your arrow in line with your eyeball and the mark), then close your eyes, settle really solidly into what that feels like, and release without opening your eyes until you hear the arrow strike.

Then when you develop a consistent miss that way, shift your feet until you start hitting down the middle.

From: Arrowflinger
26-Jan-19
That is a beautiful bear Nick! Congrats!

From: GLB
27-Jan-19
Lots of good advice here. I will reintegrate what has been said. 1.Don’t over bow yourself.(40lbs is a good place to start.) 2. Learn good form. 3. Dedicate to practice.

From: Sarge
28-Jan-19
Get a Level 3 or higher Coach first or go to Rod Jenkins clinic. DO NOT listen to snapshooters and grip it and rip it shooters. Learning a proper well-executed shot sequence is the thing you learn first. MBB series three DVD and watch Jenkins and Larry Yien. Learn their style, or Demmer and watch the Lancasters Classic and watch everything they do.

From: Thornton
28-Jan-19
I wish we could have a good old fashioned traditional shoot out. I bet we could all learn something new. Some are naturals, some have to turn it into a science to figure it out.

From: Shug
28-Jan-19
GF... curious do you Bowhunt for turkeys?

From: GF
29-Jan-19
Haven’t given that a go apart from one year when I bought a fall turkey tag and almost talked myself into a shot at a Jake from Up in my tree..

But I often practice shooting at a bamboo garden stake, so best case for me would be one standing up tall so I could centerline him and get spine.

I’d love to get out and give it a shot, though...

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