Black Gold Sights - Pure Gold
45# Really?
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
Ironbow 12-Mar-19
PistolPete 12-Mar-19
PoudreCanyon 12-Mar-19
dallsheepstkr 12-Mar-19
Ironbow 12-Mar-19
WV Mountaineer 12-Mar-19
WV Mountaineer 12-Mar-19
Glunt@work 12-Mar-19
Ironbow-cell 12-Mar-19
Franklin 12-Mar-19
Treeline 12-Mar-19
Zbone 12-Mar-19
jsgold 12-Mar-19
Dale06 13-Mar-19
Glunt@work 13-Mar-19
WV Mountaineer 13-Mar-19
PistolPete 13-Mar-19
PistolPete 13-Mar-19
Scott Alaniz 13-Mar-19
Tdvorak 13-Mar-19
Kodiak 13-Mar-19
duvall 13-Mar-19
Tlhbow 13-Mar-19
Tdvorak 13-Mar-19
Arrowflinger 13-Mar-19
timex 13-Mar-19
lawdy 13-Mar-19
Ironbow-cell 13-Mar-19
SBH 13-Mar-19
Ollie 13-Mar-19
Shawn 13-Mar-19
M.Pauls 13-Mar-19
Nick Muche 13-Mar-19
Ziek 13-Mar-19
M.Pauls 13-Mar-19
Nick Muche 13-Mar-19
JRW 13-Mar-19
South Farm 13-Mar-19
spike78 13-Mar-19
Tradmike 13-Mar-19
Surfbow 13-Mar-19
stickbow21 13-Mar-19
Ironbow 13-Mar-19
Steve H. 13-Mar-19
APauls 13-Mar-19
Arrowhead 13-Mar-19
bowonly 13-Mar-19
LBshooter 13-Mar-19
JLeMieux 13-Mar-19
Zbone 13-Mar-19
bowonly 13-Mar-19
Bou'bound 13-Mar-19
Huntcell 13-Mar-19
fisherick 13-Mar-19
Lost Arra 13-Mar-19
Jaquomo 13-Mar-19
rallison 13-Mar-19
Ironbow-cell 13-Mar-19
ahunter76 13-Mar-19
Salagi 14-Mar-19
Smokedinpa 14-Mar-19
ButchMo 14-Mar-19
Zbone 14-Mar-19
fisherick 14-Mar-19
Ironbow-cell 14-Mar-19
APauls 15-Mar-19
timex 15-Mar-19
BOHUNTER09 15-Mar-19
timex 16-Mar-19
MarkU 16-Mar-19
stealthycat 16-Mar-19
Shawn 16-Mar-19
lawdy 17-Mar-19
Kevin Dill 17-Mar-19
Pat Lefemine 17-Mar-19
Kodiak 17-Mar-19
N-idaho 17-Mar-19
WV Mountaineer 17-Mar-19
Beendare 17-Mar-19
tradmt 17-Mar-19
Shawn 17-Mar-19
tradmt 17-Mar-19
HH1 17-Mar-19
IdyllwildArcher 17-Mar-19
Surfbow 18-Mar-19
Ollie 18-Mar-19
walks with a gimp 18-Mar-19
From: Ironbow
12-Mar-19
Whenever the topic of bow weight comes up, someone pops up and says you can kill anything in North America with a 45# recurve. I have shot recurves for years, although I hunt with my compounds a great deal more. I was shooting my 60# Bear TD the other day thinking about that comment and looking at the penetration I get with my Bear vs my compounds and I am thinking no way are you going to tackle the big bears, moose, musk ox or buffalo with a 45# recurve. You MIGHT get enough penetration, but I can't imagine a brown bear taking kindly to getting poked a couple of inches with one.

So, can anyone out there verify that any of these critters have been shot with a 45# recurve? And I don't mean a recurve that is 45# at 28" and the shooter draws 30". That ain't 45#. For those that say it can be done (with a true 45# recurve) I would love to hear the story and see the pictures.

From: PistolPete
12-Mar-19
Ashby repeatedly got complete penetration on cape buffalo with a 40@27 recurve with the right arrows and broadheads.

From: PoudreCanyon
12-Mar-19
Not sure about recurves, but several prominent archers who have killed piles of game, including some of the big stuff, were noted for shooting low poundage compounds. Both Dwight Schuh and Ted Nugent use(d) compounds right at 50 pounds. Of course, this is apples to oranges from your original question, but the point is, with good shot placement and sharp broadheads, the lighter draw weights are surprisingly effective.

12-Mar-19
Go to leatherwall archives plenty of pictures with moose, elk, and buffalo killed with #45 pound recurves and longbows. If you shoot 500 grain arrows with sharp broadheads 25 yards or closer you can kill about anything.

From: Ironbow
12-Mar-19
If you have a link to something you can show me on Ashby, I would like to read it or see photos. Until then, I am a non-believer. Pretty sure Ken Moody won't let someone hunt cape buffs with a 45# bow!

Don't care about compounds. I knew Dwight, and he had a long draw which added extra umph to his lighter weights with compounds. My daughter got a pass through with her 38# Diamond Edge on a good sized doe in December. That bow shoots much harder than my 45# recurve when I started bowhunting. I want to know about 45# recurve or longbow at the shooters draw length.

12-Mar-19
Head over to the Leatherwall. They have one of these threads every time people find themselves in your position and, post about it.

Here is what I know. I’ve never shot any of those animals with a recurve. But, I’ve shot deer with as little as 40 pounds at 28. And, I was likely drawing it about 26. Great performance.

I’ve shot deer with nearly 70 pounds of draw weight on a trad bow too. With a 600 grain arrow, itd shoot through a truck door. After completely going through a deer.

Speed is important in generating energy at the bow. At the bow is the important thing to remember in that. Because light arrows shed energy much quicker then heavy ones. Which is why KE means nothing in arrow performance on animals. It’s theory that proves energy. Where it fails hunters is figuring what that energy is down range. Since it’s only neasured at the bow.

Best way of summarizing is, I wouldn’t shoot any of those animals with a 45 pound trad bow. Because I can comfortably pull and shoot a 75 or 80 pound trad bow. So, why would I? But, if forced too, I would. And I KNOW from personal experience, I’d get enough penetration to cleanly kill them.

There is so much to arrow penetration besides speed. Arrow Weight, the release, tuning, etc..... if you pull through with your back, you can visually see a huge increase versus a static release on a trad bow. If your arrow is tuned, it will poke right through the ribs of any animal. Except a hog with a huge shield. If you use a high performance string, you get noticeable gains. Etc....

Go shoot a few things with that recurve and see for yourself. A good arrow weight, out of a tuned setup with a great string, with a good clean release, will surprise you on what it can do. Good luck and God Bless

12-Mar-19
And, by goid arrow weight, I mean common sense. Diminishing returns applies to all things in life.

From: Glunt@work
12-Mar-19
My friend in his late 70s and with a bad shoulder killed a moose with a trad bow in the low 40#s. Entrance, exit and short recovery with a 4 blade head through the boiler room.

I wouldn't recommend hunting big stuff with light bows but if that's all I could pull it wouldn't stop me.

From: Ironbow-cell
12-Mar-19
No offense, but all I am getting is theory. I want first hand kill reports. Someone that has done it or has witnessed it or can link me to someone that has. Guess I will try the Leatherwall.

From: Franklin
12-Mar-19
Bears....even the really big ones are fairly easy to kill with an arrow. Black bears are right up there with Pronghorn in the "hard to kill" category :)

The proper arrow weight and most importantly the correct broadhead can kill just about anything in N. America out of a 45 lb. bow.

From: Treeline
12-Mar-19
Go to P&Y and look up Dr. Ashby.

Sat with him for over an hour in Denver at P&Y.

He will get you lined out with the absolute best first hand knowledge on the subject.

Amazing amount of knowledge right there.

From: Zbone
12-Mar-19
Yep, lostz of info about light bows over on the LeatherWall…

Would be willing to bet with a COC broadhead, a 25# bow will kill deer size game... If we didn't have a minimum bow weight here, I'd prove it... The bow doesn't do the killing, the arrow does...

From: jsgold
12-Mar-19
I know it's not exactly the same, but I've shot three times at animals with my recurve--two shots at a whitetail doe and one at a buck--and all three shots have been EASY pass throughs, including an extreme quartering-away shot.

My bow is 50# @ 28", but I'm lucky if I'm getting it to 27" most of the time (my arrow shafts are only 27-1/2" long), so actual draw weight is 47ish pounds at best. My arrows fly perfectly, are heavy, and have a high FOC, so I know all of those things help, but the arrows from my recurve seem to zip through deer just as easily as ones shot from my 60# Hoyt Nitrum Turbo.

With the right placement, I sure wouldn't be surprised to see my recurve shoot though something bigger....

From: Dale06
13-Mar-19
Ashby got complete penetration on Cape buffalo with 40# and the right BH? I shot one with the supposed right BH, and Ashby 315 grain, 75#, 950 grain arrow, 220 FPS. And got about 20” penetration.

I don’t “buy” all of his theory’s.

From: Glunt@work
13-Mar-19
My report about the moose wasn't first hand. I didn't see the shot. I did however arrive shortly after and helped pack the moose out :^) It was dead...really dead.

13-Mar-19
No offense but, you’ve been given theory at all. GO TO the LEATHERWALL, type into the search function 45 pound bows, push return and read until your little heart can’t do it anymore.

If you expect something in return, do a little work for yourself.

From: PistolPete
13-Mar-19
Dale, he said it takes the right arrow too, not just broadhead. Without that, his tests with 80+# bows show similar penetration to your experience.

Hey, believe he made stuff up if you want, but I’ll take documented science before some dude on an Internet forum. Until someone publishes research of similar quality, this is all we have to answer these questions other than a few people’s tiny sample size of 2 or even 10 repetitions. That doesn’t make good science or prove a thing.

From: PistolPete
13-Mar-19
Dale, he said it takes the right arrow too, not just broadhead. Without that, his tests with 80+# bows show similar penetration to your experience.

Hey, believe he made stuff up if you want, but I’ll take documented science before some dude on an Internet forum. Until someone publishes research of similar quality, this is all we have to answer these questions other than a few people’s tiny sample size of 2 or even 10 repetitions. That doesn’t make good science or prove a thing.

From: Scott Alaniz
13-Mar-19
Ironbow, It's not anyone's job to look everything up and spoon feed info to you. Wow. Lazy. Entitled. You've been instructed on how to find the answer to the question you are asking. Show a little initiative and do some work yourself. Oh, and if you were appreciative and thankful to those that have responded, you would be surprised at how much more assistance you would receive.

From: Tdvorak
13-Mar-19
I think the reason you aren’t getting many kill reports w 45 pounds is that almost nobody uses it anymore. Salesmen sell “bigger is better” and that makes a lot of sense as long as you don’t think about it. We’ve been trained by the media and then by people who read and watch TV a lot that bigger is better. People are selling us our gear based on shooting the animal at extreme distances in the eleventh hour, et cetera. I have yet to meet the man that can shoot a heavy weight bow as well as they can shoot a lighter bow. There is a lot of “theory” in some of these posts because often times the hunter has only killed one moose for example and then is all of the sudden an expert. Your request for 45# kill shot story is even more likey to get a one-time-expert. With shot placement being the most important I think your best option is to think lighter is better. It is a bit non-tradition but I’ve seen exactly zero hunters fail to kill animals (up to the size of moose but not including bison) due to too little bow draw weight. Zero is a hard number to argue with. I think 45 pounds will serve you EXCELLENT. Keep us posted if you get a shot opportunity.

From: Kodiak
13-Mar-19
Fred Eichler shoots a 50# @ 30" recurve, but his 30" draw generates quite abit more power stroke than the typical 27-28".

If you ask this on the Leatherwall you'll have guys saying 30# is more than enough. It gets ridiculous.

From: duvall
13-Mar-19
actually Tdvorak, its the exact opposite. The vast majority of trad shooters are going lighter and lighter. one reason is the advances of trad bow design are enabling lower poundage bows to perform with the heavy weights of yesteryear. That and people are realizing that you don't need #70 to shoot an animal. I built these bows for a few years and I think I had just one order for a bow over #60. Most were #45-50 with some being less than that. Heavy bows are thought to be in the #55 range now.

From: Tlhbow
13-Mar-19
I would take someone with special talent and very disciplined to accomplish this . Not sure if many have or will but no doubt it can be done.

From: Tdvorak
13-Mar-19
Duvall, that is interesting. The hunters I rub elbows with are definitely not going lighter. They are constantly going bigger and better...same with salesmen at the sport shops. I would not have guessed that your pals are going lighter, which is cool. Do you think it is in the whole bowhunting circle or just traditional shooters or just the guys that are your customers? Do you think your guys OR my guys are the rule? I’m interested in your point of view.

From: Arrowflinger
13-Mar-19
I shot a wild boar a couple of weeks ago with my recurve 46@ my 27 inch draw shooting a Thunderhead 125 and a carbon arrow that weighs @ 480 grains. Didn't get a pass thru but good penetration and a short blood trail to the hog. I have shot at least 2 other mature boars with the same set up with the same results. One of those hogs had a very thick shield I was using a 2 bladed magnus stinger, In my opinion there is no big game animal in north america that is harder to penetrate then a mature boar hog. Also, if you will go to the leather wall there is a fellow that calls himself Tucker, who has killed several moose and elk with a 44 pound recurve and 2 blade heads. Lots of information there.

From: timex
13-Mar-19
im shooting a 35 year old Hoyt spectra riser that's been converted to ilf with Morrison max 1 limbs. it's 64" roughly 35@25 & I have full intentions of killing a few deer with it this fall & would probably shoot pigs & an up close black bear but absolutely nothing larger than that. and my compound is an old bowtec 101st @ 65 & I shoot fixed 2 blade from it so I know what your saying about penetration

From: lawdy
13-Mar-19
I have hunted with a #46@28 Meigs longbow exclusively for 34 years now. Before that, a 40 pound lemonwood longbow. I have shot both deer and black bear with no penetration issues except one buck where a cedar arrow literally bounced of the shoulder blade. For the past 20 years I have shot ash with a Zwickey Eskimo or Delta and those hit hard. I don’t even own a cell phone or carry a camera, so no pictures. I drag them out of the woods, cut them up and eat them. My theory is what good is a heavy bow if you shake so much pulling it back that you rupture your face and hit the animal in the ass. I have shot low poundage Hill style longbows for over 60 years and never had a shoulder or elbow problem. If I went after Brown bear, I would use my 62 caliber Tulle de Chasse flinter. That thing hits like a ton of bricks with a .60 round ball.

From: Ironbow-cell
13-Mar-19
Scott Alaniz,

I have looked but not exhaustive. I get the same arguments it CAN be done, and on occasion I find one picture of someone having done it. That is why I asked. So many claim it can be done but I am yet to see any pictures of the big bears, a buffalo or musk ox taken with a 45# recurve. Only ONE moose so far. I asked for pictures or first hand info and I have been given one report and it was a moose, so that makes two.

Seriously doubt Ken Moody is going to let anyone hunt Cape Buff with 45#.

I have been watching a number of Videos of late of traditional harvests and while no mention of draw weight is given, there are very few pass throughs on even deer.

I will keep looking.

From: SBH
13-Mar-19
Question...How much more energy are you getting with a 50#@28" bow vs 45#@28"? I know this would vary with arrow set up but what's the general consensus?

From: Ollie
13-Mar-19
I don't know of anyone stupid enough to advocate trying to kill a Cape buffalo with a 45# bow. I also don't know of any outfitters in Africa with a death wish that would accept a client shooting such a bow. That said, plenty of deer, bear, and elk have been killed with bows in the 40-50# draw weight range. In my opinion these bows are a bit light for elk and moose as we don't always hit the animal in the sweet spot, do we? Just because someone doesn't post a picture for you does not mean it did not happen.

From: Shawn
13-Mar-19
Lots of folks killing moose and big bears with 45 pound recurves. I have killed close to 20 deer in the last 4 or 5 years with a 42# recurve at my 27.5" draw. Ken Beck the old owner of Black Widow bows killed a huge moose shooting 46# recurve and his draw I believe was around 27"s. If the arrow is perfectly tuned to the bow and you shoot 8 to 10 grains per pound of arrow weight, keep the shots fairly close and stay off bone 45#s is plenty! Shawn

From: M.Pauls
13-Mar-19
I shoot 3 stickbows at 48#, 50# and 53# and I’m a 28” draw. They all shoot so darn close in speed with the 50 being a longbow and the others recurves. I play with arrows from 500-650 gr. I wouldn’t hesitate to take any of them for moose if I’m shooting the bow well, and the hunt is successful in getting him into my comfortable moose range. I’ve killed a moose with the 53# but not the 48# although it’s zipped arrows through deer. At approx 15 FPS difference though, I don’t think it’ll matter a lick, especially with a well tuned arrow and 2 blade

From: Nick Muche
13-Mar-19
I have no doubt a 45# recurve would do the trick, but one reason you may not be hearing about a 45# bow being used for big bears or moose is that Alaska law states the following: .

• Hunt big game with a bow, UNLESS: -- the bow is at least: - 40 pounds peak draw weight when hunting caribou, wolf, wolverine, black bear, Dall sheep, and deer; - 50 pounds peak draw weight when hunting mountain goat, moose, elk, brown bear, muskox, and bison;

From: Ziek
13-Mar-19
And a .22 LR will also kill anything in North America. Not many hunting bears with one though.

From: M.Pauls
13-Mar-19
Nick, interesting they require more poundage for goats than sheep? I also didn’t realize AK had a huntable population of Elk, had to google it

From: Nick Muche
13-Mar-19
IMO, goats are much hardier animals than sheep, certainly much stockier in almost all cases. Elk, yes, we have both Rocky's and Roosevelt's here in Alaska.

From: JRW
13-Mar-19
Can and should are not the same thing.

From: South Farm
13-Mar-19
You seem really adamant about getting this first-hand information, Iron. You writing a book on the subject or something?

From: spike78
13-Mar-19
You have to realize that shooting at a block target and an animal are two different things. Just imagine yourself getting shot broadside with a 45 pound bow, will it kill you?

From: Tradmike
13-Mar-19
I shot a brown bear with a 51# Schafer, FMJ arrow and an Bowyer brown bear head. Pass thru at 14 yards. Total arrow weight 600 grains. I have a 27" draw draw weight was around 47#.

From: Surfbow
13-Mar-19
We could just let the OP continue to be a non-believer and ignore this silly thread...

From: stickbow21
13-Mar-19
Go over to the leatherwall and search handle "Prairedrifter". Message him if you like. He has enough pics to satisfy you.

From: Ironbow
13-Mar-19
Tradmike, thank you! That is all I have been asking for, someone that has done it and listed the equipment used.

Nick makes an interesting point that AK law doesn't let you hunt with less than 50#. Obviously there is a reason.

The classic Fred Bear film of shooting his brown bear on the beach at mere feet and only getting 1/2 his arrow penetrating out of a 65# bow. Chuck Adams killed his huge brownie with a 87# round wheel bow, 650 grain arrow and Zwicky Eskimo, and got less than 15" penetration at 12 yds. When heavy bows like these don't get pass throughs, it makes me question how a 45# recurve can get enough penetration on big animals to do the trick. But it gets said over and over and over it can. I just want to hear from people that have truly done it, not just repeated the mantra. Really not sure why that bothers people.

Years ago Steve Gorr wrote an article for Bowhunter advocating heavier bows when 45# was the norm. For those that don't know, Steve made some really sweet trad bows back then. He gave multiple examples of not getting enough arrow penetration and moving to heavier bows, 55-62# did the trick.

From: Steve H.
13-Mar-19

Steve H.'s embedded Photo
Steve H.'s embedded Photo
I shot thru this brown bear with a 50# Howard Hill longbow, maybe a bit less than all 50#--probably equivalent to a 45# recurve.

From: APauls
13-Mar-19
I know after my brother killed his moose with what was it a 550gr arrow? and a 53# recurve we swore we wouldn't be doing that again - using a heavier arrow next time. His arrow was well tuned, shot placement was perfect and the bull died quickly. That being said it hardly touched any bone, and did not puncture the far side rib cage in any way we could see. We removed the ribs and inspected them. SO under a basically 100% perfect scenario with more poundage than the OP is talking about it barely worked. Oh yes, that moose was dead as dead can be. But as others have said, can and should are two different things. If I was pulling 45# I'd prob use a compound.

From: Arrowhead
13-Mar-19
Heck, Tim Wells killed a black bear with a blow gun.

From: bowonly
13-Mar-19
I watched a hunting partner shoot a broadside elk with a 60# recurve and get only a couple inches of penetration into the lungs on a bull. It ran by my other partner and I watched him get a diagonal pass through on that same elk with a 1967 Redwing Hunter at 50# at 28 inches with Zwickey 2 blades and about 500 grain arrows. Never found that arrow. The bull died within sight. We found out the first guy had never tuned his set-up worth crap and his arrows flew like it. The second had his set-up fined tuned and was the most conscientious bow hunter I have ever known. And he had never even seen an elk up close before that moment. And I watched him get another pass through on another bull a couple of years later with the same set up. I got the last moments of that bull on video somewhere. I had the video out right away, but It died within seconds.

I

From: LBshooter
13-Mar-19
I had a fifties style recurve at 45# and it was one of the hardest hitting bows I've had. I would not hesitate to shoot any NA animal with it, if I still had it. A properly tuned arrow and a razor sharp two bladed head,,no problem.

From: JLeMieux
13-Mar-19

JLeMieux's Link
Maybe this link will help. Plenty of deer, hog, and black bear with a moose, a couple caribou, and a couple elk thrown in. No brown bear or cape buffalo though.

From: Zbone
13-Mar-19
Back in the day when I was a teenager and young man 45# recurves were the norm, and any higher poundage bows were hard to find... That's all big department stores and the likes of Western Auto only sold 45 pounders...

From: bowonly
13-Mar-19
I will add to my post above. The first shooter claimed he had a well tuned bow and sharp broadheads. He had been bow hunting probably 30 years at that time. Claimed he came to full draw on that bull, too. He hit the ribs broadside from under 20 yards. I am not convinced of his claims or prowess on any level after I watched his "well tuned" arrows fly and checked his "sharp" broadheads. There are so many variables on shooting ANY kind of bow well. Add to all that the perspective of the people telling (and listening to) the tale and you have a lot of variables …..

From: Bou'bound
13-Mar-19
Being capable of and being best for are different standards. 45 can. More for some game should.

From: Huntcell
13-Mar-19
I wonder what the draw weight was of the 6,000 year old bow when it was new, that was found with the Iceman Otis .

It was enough to kill Ibex as he had some ibex meat in his stomach. Of course his adversary that shot Otis in the back didn’t get much penetration as the broahead was still lodged in the back of Otis shoulder.

From: fisherick
13-Mar-19
Ironbow the fact that you may shoot a recurve bow but only hunt with a compound bow shows you have zero confidence in traditional bows. People that always use traditional bows have the confidence that the bow will do the task at hand within reason. The person that has used traditional bows for all hunting over many seasons and animals shall wait for the correct angle, distance and altitude of the animal to ensure a quick ethical kill. There are many that have taken larger game with lower weight bows. There is a active post on Trad Gang showing harvests with bows less than 45#. Also check Pope & Young or search functions.

From: Lost Arra
13-Mar-19
Good post fisherick

I would be surprised if it's legal to hunt brown bears, muskox or bison anywhere with 45# which could be the reason there are no stories. Cape buffalo aren't N American.

From: Jaquomo
13-Mar-19
I helped a 5', 100 pound gal on Shiras moose hunt. She used a 45# RD longbow (at her draw length). She shot a big old "elephant" cow with a 450 grain arrow and a 2 blade COC head, killed it as dead and as quickly as if she'd been shooting a 200# Super Compound of some sort. Or a 460 Rigby, for that matter...

From: rallison
13-Mar-19
I shoot recurves and RD longbows at 53lbs. This is down from my youth when I shot 65 to 76lbs...ravages of time, eh? :^) Anyway, no trouble with a matched, heavy arrow.

My wife shoots an RD longbow that pulls 36lb at her draw length...it shoots 41 at mine with a 1916 aluminum arrow and has some serious pop to it! While I wouldn't consider elk with it, I wouldn't hesitate to shoot a whitetail with a sharp, 2 blade coc head. I've got some serious arthritis in my left shoulder, and push comes to shove...if I had to drop down weight to continue hunting, I'd use it.

From: Ironbow-cell
13-Mar-19
Fisher,

I have bowhunted for 43 years and didn't pick up a compound until my recurves failed me. It was only in the last 20 years I haven't hunted with one. Three custom bows and two factory bows broke on me. While waiting for replacements I took up the compound. You don't have to try and tell me how to hunt with one. Waiting for the right angles and shot applies to all of bow hunting.

I never said you can't kill deer, black bears, elk or similar critters with a 45# recurve and yet that is what I keep be referred to by most posters. I am wanting to know about the big stuff and only wanted proof someone had actually done it and two folks posted pics of their bears . I applaud them for their accomplishments. Since I have never killed anything with less than a 57# bow and most of my bows were a lot heavier it amazes me lighter bows get the job done.

From: ahunter76
13-Mar-19

ahunter76's embedded Photo
ahunter76's embedded Photo
b/4 compounds I shot 38 biggame animals with recurves. Elk @ 35 yds pass thru, double lungs 53#s 3 blade, 2117 Aluminum arrow. Deer 45#s @ 35 yds thru, double lungs 3 blade 11/32 wood shaft. Buck 40#s @ 20 yds pass thru 3 blade on 2117 Aluminum. Black Bear @ 20 yds 53#s 3 blade 2117 Aluminum (out other side but not complete pass thru. Other Deer various sizes & Hog with 55#s thru 59#s. Guessing average total arrow weight over 500 grns.. I have seen 1st hand many Deer killed with 30#s & 40#s in those early years (I had a shop/lanes from 64 thru 82). I was setting up for a Grizzly Bear hunt in the mid 60s & my bow was going to be 60#s with a 3 blade & 2117 Aluminum but it never got finalized. I currently have besides my compounds a 50# Longbow. I have would no problem hunting Black Bear, Deer, elk with it, maybe even a Buffalo (Not Cape or Water). I would just make sure I had a heavy arrow in the over 550gr weight.

From: Salagi
14-Mar-19
I went to a compound for a couple of years in the early 80's before I went back to a recurve, (more fun and shoot it better). Anyway, shooting a 70 pound compound, I failed to get a complete pass through twice, once on a little button buck and the other time on a fox squirrel. I guess based on those experiences, you should shoot a heavier compound, at least on little game. ;)

From: Smokedinpa
14-Mar-19
Ironbow- there is this topic being talked about right now on the leatherwall. Pictures also. And yes not only is it possible but more the normal. Even guys shooting bows marked heavier are all drawing 28. Lots of pass throughs even on big animals.

From: ButchMo
14-Mar-19
Ironbow did start a thread asking about this subject. Tucker posted 4 pics of moose he killed with a 44lb. bow. He has never responded to the thread he started. If you don't want to hunt with a stickbow don't. Just don't try to tell others they don't work.

From: Zbone
14-Mar-19
"Three custom bows and two factory bows broke on me."

Wow, never heard of such a thing, unless they were dry fired...

From: fisherick
14-Mar-19
Zbone x2, "Three custom bows and two factory bows broke on me." Were they selfbows or laminated recurves that broke? Were you using ultra light arrows? You would have penetration issues with that. Only seen one laminated bow break and that was a ladies recurve bow that was overdrawn by a big guy.

From: Ironbow-cell
14-Mar-19
Butchmo, better look again. I posted on the LW thread earlier. Thanked the posters for the pics.

As far as the bows, the first was a Browning Explorer ll. Bottom limb blew. Killed my first deer with that bow shooting 57# with 2219's. I believe that arrow was heavy enough. The replacement broke too, but a buddy of mine was shooting it on his elk hunt. Then my Bear TD broke. So I switched to Bighorn custom bows. One split limb and two separated handles later (68-78# with 2219's) months waiting on replacements I started shooting compounds. Never left them in hot cars, kept them in cases and used bowstringers. Never dry fired. Took really good care of them. Call me unlucky.

For the life of me I can't figure out why this was such a sensitive subject. Have a great spring everyone.

From: APauls
15-Mar-19
Well Ironbow if you can't get offended by it nowadays it's not worth talking about ;)

From: timex
15-Mar-19
you guys are humorous my old bowtec 101st airborne shooting 150 fixed 2 edge will shoot clean through a whitetail any way it's standing. & I'm 100% confident my 35-37# ilf rig shooting 200grain zwickeys is going to kill some does this fall

From: BOHUNTER09
15-Mar-19
Iron bow. That was known as the Browning exploder by several of my friends Blew up regularly

From: timex
16-Mar-19
because you told them that you felt there equipment is marginal or even inadequate

From: MarkU
16-Mar-19
Salagi, did you take a frontal shot on that fox skwerl? Gotta wait for a broadside on them varmints.

From: stealthycat
16-Mar-19
" big bears, moose, musk ox or buffalo with a 45# recurve"

You could ask how many people use 45# compounds on the same and you would get no answers. Its like also asking how many use a .223 on the above animals ... again, you will not get many replies.

why ? because while they WILL work, isn't it best to shoot the heaviest bow you can handle accurately? most men can do more than 45# and so, they do

From: Shawn
16-Mar-19
Ok this is actually become funny and say that becasue folks who have not shot longbows and recurves that much have no idea what they are capable of. I have shot them for 42 years now. Here is an example of not big game but there ability to take game. I played tackle football in one form or another for close to 30 years. My shoulders have gone through a lot. At one point I had to shoot left handed because of a badly torn labrum. I was shooting a 42# recurve with a 320 grain arrow. It was tuned perfectly. I took 7 deer with that bow, not big deal they were whitetailed deer. I also took a huge coyote 54#s on certified scale. I shot him facing me and hit just under his chin the arrow went alll the way through and stuck so deep in the bottom of a pine tree I had to unscrew the arrow to get it out. The shot was 22 yards and it broke his hind leg in two upon exit. I tell you what I would not want someone shooting 25# recurve or long bow at me at 40 yards with a sharp broadhead and a well tuned set up as I believe if they were a very good shot they would kill me everytime! Shawn

From: lawdy
17-Mar-19
If one has doubts about the effectiveness of a 45 pound recurve or longbow, you will have no confidence in it. That is not conducive to good shooting. Stick with your compound or work up to a higher poundage if you can. Compounds were invented to attract more hunters into bowhunting with higher poundage using let-off and a short learning curve. You don’t go to an archery shop, buy a trad bow, take a few shots and hit the woods. It takes practice and conditioning, even with 45 pounds. For a lot of us trad guys, it’s a way of life and pretty much all we do.

From: Kevin Dill
17-Mar-19
I'm always interested to watch a 'can you?' thread turn into a 'should you?' thread. I'm pretty sure I can ride a Moped to Alaska and hunt moose with a 45 pound bow when I get there. I'm just not sure I should try it...

From: Pat Lefemine
17-Mar-19

Pat Lefemine's embedded Photo
45lb trad bow on a living Cape buffalo? You can’t be serious.
Pat Lefemine's embedded Photo
45lb trad bow on a living Cape buffalo? You can’t be serious.
I imagine just about any NA animal can be killed with a 45lb trad bow if all the stars align and you hit perfect placement with a broadside shot perfectly centered between the ribs. Except Cape buffalo. I call BS on that. And anyone advocating for such a thing is trying to sell you something. I killed a Cape buffalo and then performed a Broadhead penetration test on it with a 90lb compound and 1100 gr. Arrows. You won’t find a PH in Africa that would do anything other than laugh at someone for suggesting it.

From: Kodiak
17-Mar-19

Kodiak  's embedded Photo
Kodiak  's embedded Photo
Kevin, quit knocking mopeds...

From: N-idaho
17-Mar-19
I kind of agree with op. I don’t disagree about it can be done but most people’s experience is based on deer and bear. I’m sure the occasional elk or moose gets killed with a light rig but how many time has a light rig hit a rib on a big critter and failed to pentetrate.if I was able I would not hunt the large game with light bows. I too have seen many videos of deer shot with traditional bows and not pass thru. My only trad kill was a bull elk with a 58 pound widow shooting 525ish grain arrow, it had no problems, penetration was good. I also wounded one on a hard quartering away shot hit him about third rib and only got 15 inches of penetration ran off never to be found. Shoot what you will I’ll stick to 55 plus for elk and moose.

17-Mar-19
I’m the biggest advocate in the world for shooting as much weight as you can possibly shoot accurately. Not a bigger supporter out there of that ideaology then me. However, I’ve killed enough stuff with compounds and Trad bows to understand what a good bit of you are missing about these horror stories of poor performance. Albeit none of it was Kodak bear,, cape buffalo’s, or moose, when you stick arrows through things with both setups, you start getting a good idea of things.

For nearly every single video, first hand experience, or knowledge of a buddies mishap with a trad bows performance, there was an explanation responsible other then the bow weight. Go to a traditional shoot and watch everyone shoot. You will always have a few exceptional archers and a huge pool of medocracy. The one thing you’ll notice with the exceptional shooters is their consistency and the fact they actually hit FULL DRAW every single time.

When your arrows energy requires time on the string, those short drawing snap shooters that have 7 inches over hanging the riser of their bows when they release a full length 30 inch shaft, are only drawing the bow 22-23 inches. Tops. That turns a 55 pound bow at 28 into a 35-36 pound bow at 22-23 inches. Because a trad bow develops its energy later in the draw cycle.

Second, while sone of these guys can and do stand with decent form while tuning a bow, their under pressure draw length is something different unless they truly are in the elite category of trad archers. Which means their setup is way out of tune when they get excited and don’t execute correctly. Which is no doubt the biggest variable with poor penetration concerning trad archery. No bow made will get decent penetration if the arrow it launches is flying out of kilter upon impact. None. And the state of the newer trad hunter today says they haven’t enough experience with what makes their weapon efficient. I’m not being mean either. But, there is a reason that when you meet an experienced trad bow hunter, he is usually older and rarely will he be shooting over mid 50!s in weight.

It takes one heck of a specimen to truly control a trad bow over 60 pounds. I mean a brute of a man. Controlling and yanking back and shooting are two different things. I’ve spent a lifetime in the gym and shooting all bows to know that maybe 1% of all bow hunters today are capable of that. Maybe 1%. No matter what they look like or their conditioning. It takes strong tendons, bone, muscles, and the right MINDSET to tie it all together.

As far as shooting Cape buffalo with 45 pound trad bows, that scenario was so outlandish it dorsnt deserve an answer. No one here was advocating that. And, I’d think the OP knows that if he’s hunted that long with a trad bow. So, why that was even thrown in there is beyond me.

You can dismiss what I’ve said. Say I’m a blowhard. But, just ask yourself why so many of the experienced trad bow hunters of today and yesteryear are not shooting insanely heavy weights. That in itself is all the proof you need of what aproperly tuned and shot trad bow is capable of. Develop that ability or buy an 80 pound bow so when you short draw it your launch weight might be 45 pounds.

From: Beendare
17-Mar-19
Well if Ashby says it...it must be true!? /grin [just like^ Bernie Madoff and Elizabeth Holmes]

A 45# recurve with a fairly heavy arrow and COC BH is very effective, IME. I haven't shot brown bears...but I have shot a pretty heavy shielded hog and I think those are tougher than bears.

There are so many shot factors including distance, shot location, animal reaction, etc

Then the bow/arrow system factors of arrow and bow weight, arrow flight/tuning, Efficient BH, etc. The right combo in a 45# bow is dang effective...but just stupid to attempt something like that on a cape or water buff.

Case in point; My buddy shot a water buff with a 60# BW and a 560gr arrow and Zwicky head.....he got about 11" of penetration...and when following up on that wounded bull he just about killed our assistant guide....trampled the crap out of him. The only thing that saved him was the soft brush he was driving him in to.

From: tradmt
17-Mar-19
Ashby shot asiatic buffalo carcasses, not Cape, with I believe a 40ish# recurve. It was just for testing purposes, no one is going too, or even suggest, or have suggested, or recommended using such a bow on a Cape buffalo hunt.

I guess when enough stupid gets thrown around it sticks to a few.

From: Shawn
17-Mar-19
Since when are Cape Buffalo in NA. ??? Shawn

From: tradmt
17-Mar-19
Since Texas probably.

From: HH1
17-Mar-19
The original post was "45# Really?" Im a lefty that grew up in Colorado. Many many years ago Blue Cloud Archery had a sale on lefty bows, 3 for $45. My dad, a bowhunter purchased a 35#, 45# and 55# bow for me and gave them to me for Christmases throughout my youth. I was unaware of any charts or recommend practices, I just knew what worked to harvest deer, elk and and antelope. Rest assured that a 45# recurve in the correct hands can harvest enough animals to keep a freezer full for years!!!!

17-Mar-19
"For the life of me I can't figure out why this was such a sensitive subject."

Ironbow, I don't have a dog in this fight as I hunt exclusively with a compound, but since you're wondering, this is a slightly touchy subject. Much more importantly though, as it pertains to the reactions you got as it pertains to the line I quoted above, is the fact that your posts come off as very adversarial and how do I put it, "not polite" or "respectful" of your audience. Text often times distorts what an author's intent was and I think that's what happened here. I can see why many people spit back at you rudely because they took your posts as slightly arrogant and disrespectful and so they replied in the tone that was set. You may not have meant it and may not be able to see it, but that's how you came off.

From: Surfbow
18-Mar-19
^^^^^

From: Ollie
18-Mar-19
A man has to know his limitations. That applies to bowhunters as well. If 45# is all you can shoot accurately, it is going to limit what animals you can or should pursue. I would love to hunt Asiatic or Cape Buffalo but I cannot shoot a heavy enough bow weight to have a realistic chance of being successful. I would never try to hunt one with my 50+# bows and "hope for the best." I will just enjoy reading stories from those who can.

18-Mar-19
This reminds me of the old 9mm verses 45acp argument, same question applies here. Would you want to get shot with a 45 pound bow or a 70 pound bow? It's even less irrelevant and K.E. has little to do with a very sharp 2 blade broad head and a good shaft to push it.

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