The Daily

Is A Tricked-Out Bow Necessary?

I learned long ago there are several things in life that a hunter should never do. They should never criticize another man’s bird dog … even if the pooch can’t hunt up his food dish or a hot meal.

We should never criticize another man’s ability to shoot birds, and they never insult a man’s wife. We should never discipline someone else’s kid or give ’em a swat on the butt, even if they deserve it. So, barring further discussions about politics or religion, almost anything goes if handled in a tasteful manner.

So tonight I plan to touch on what can be a sore point for some bow hunters. I sometimes think too many bow hunters put too much stuff on their bow. There! How’s that for opening a big can of worms?

Use a clean or tricked-out bow?

Granted, bow hunters are gadget conscious. That’s OK as far as it goes, but how much is too much? Who knows, but when I see a new bow all tricked out with a peep sight, kisser button, a bow sight with six pins of different colors, big, fluffy pompoms to quiet the bow,  a spare finger to hold an arrow on the rest and an eight-arrow quiver, it makes me wonder what’s up with all that stuff.

I’ve off on a bit of a tangent tonight, and I’m not trying to step on anyone’s tender toes. I just think the fewer gadgets, the better, but if someone can shoot accurately all the time with all that stuff, good for them.

My bow has an internal red-dot sight, a removable bow quiver and a Game Tracker. I normally take the quiver off while hunting, and it works for me while some hunters always prefer  shooting with the quiver in place on the bow. That just seems to be one more thing that can get tangled up with small or large limbs while hunting from a tree

The red-dot sight, bow quiver and string tracking device is it. Some hunters have a little windage string or feather hanging down to give an indication of wind direction. The kisser button works for some people but not for me, and the peep sight is a waste of time, in my humble but subjective opinion.

This hunter prefers leaving his quiver on while hunting.

I’ve heard so many sad tales of people who lose track of which sight pin of the six on the bow to use, and spend too much time trying to remember as they draw their bow. Others tell me they have a tough time centering their eye through a peep sight and on the proper pin as the sun goes down. Well, peep sights come in several sizes. I’ve got bad eyes, and the red-dot sight works well for me when I’m not hunting for the record books.

The result often is a missed shot or a wounded deer. I’m not saying everyone should use my red-dot system, but for me, it offers one consistent aiming point. A multi-pin set-up may have as many as six pins. Under the pressure of drawing on a nice buck or other big game, who needs the distraction of trying to remember which pin is for 15, 20, 25 or 30 yards?

The choice of bow sights also is personal among bow hunters.

Not me. If my red-dot sight is dead-on at 20 yards, I know where the arrow will hit at 25 or 30 yards with this sight. The difference in where I hold at 20 to 25 yards is minute, but becomes a bit more significant at 30, 35 or 40 yards. However, with the previously mentioned eye problem, I shoot all of my deer at 10-15 yards. I have no need of shooting at longer distances.

I believe in the KISS principle: Keep It Simple, Sonny. The simpler a bow is, the fewer things there are to go wrong. Sight pin brackets can get bumped when lowering or raising a bow up or down a tree. Any twig ticking against the sight can knock it out of alignment, and an easy shot can becomes a terrible miss.

Peep sights may work OK for young people with keen vision, but many of them I’ve seen have much too small a hole to look through. The eye has a difficult time picking up a target as the light dims, and trying to line up a lighted pin on a deer at dusk with the peep sight on a deer becomes very difficult.

This man likes to leave his quiver on while I prefer to take my quiver off my bow. It’s a matter of person preference.

Those who are happy with all of their gadgets are welcome to use them. I find them difficult, and you’d be surprised how many people try the peep sight system for a week or two, and take it off their bow.

Bow quivers were always a problem for me, even back in the days when I always hunted on the ground. It can become an even big problem when hunting from a tree. The lower  or upper limb can contact a tree branch, and not only do you miss the deer but often the bow has to be put back together. Some compound bows, especially those with recurve limbs, can raise a nasty lump on your legs if it is not moved out of the way. A twig or small branch can hang up in the quiver or the bracket, and make it nearly impossible to move the bow to take a shot. I find it much easier to take the quiver off my bow. Doing so can also remove a tiny bit of weight and prevent canting the bow.

Sometimes, the less we have to clutter up our life and our bow, the better we are. I like to keep everything simple, and it makes shooting a buck with a bow much easier.

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