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Thread: Wife Interested in Archery, please advise

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    Default Wife Interested in Archery, please advise

    Ten years ago I bought a bow and enjoyed shooting it and even shot a couple of deer. I haven't shot it now in about seven years but would like to start up again. My renewed interest stems from a conversation with my wife about hunting. She enjoys going out with me but has no interest in ever pulling the trigger, or release. She did express an interest in learning to shoot a bow and target practice. I remember how much I enjoyed my target time years ago and think it would be a great way for us to spend time together. I expect she will school me in short order.

    Here is my problem, I don't really know where to start. I live in the bush, only getting into ANC about 4 times a year. All of my old gear is in storage down south. When I was shooting I shot with a PSE compound bow cranked up to 70 lb.

    I, like many of you are budget conscious but don't want to buy junk. I don't want to have to spend a lot of time learning to tune a bow and having to get a press. . . I just want to have something that I can hand to my wife and have her start shooting. I would also need to set myself up with a similar package.

    I really liked shooting a compound bow, but I don't know if the simplicity of a recurve would be better. I have never shot a recurve. My wife is about 5'8" and thin. She is not going to want to have to struggle to get to full draw and isn't interested in hunting so I am looking at something lighter for her. I would like to have the option of hunting with a bow again. I am 6'2".

    I will be in ANC in October but have never looked for bow shops. Any suggestions for online shops would be helpful too.

    Thanks,
    J

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    Checkout Archerytalk.com classifieds for bows...they also have a section for woman & youth bows. I recommend the Diamond Razor Edge for your wife...adjusts from 30-60s and a 10" draw adjustment out to 29' and can shoot 308fps maxed out which makes it a potential hunting bow. They also make the bow in a 15-29lb draw version but your wife should be able to start with 30lbs. These bows are always listed on ebay also. I just bought one for my 11 year old grandson with the factory sight, rest, quiver package used for $225 and if you are patient you could probably find one for about that price too. For yourself there are a tremendous number of good bows on the market...checkout Huntersfriend.com they have a decent section on bow selection. I always buy used equipment that's 3 or 4 year old technology for less than half the original cost and it works out fine. I currently shoot a 08 Bowtech Commander and a 06 Mathews Switchback both great bows.

  3. #3

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    The problem would be fitting your wife to the bow, if she will be in Anchorage with you take her to see Dave and Joni at Full Curl Archery on Old Seward Hy just south of the Huffman Rd roundabout. Great servce, full service, visist their website www.fullcurlarchery.com. Nice clean show, you would be able to shoot the bow you want to buy, not sure what they have in stock but they have quite a few bows on hand.

    Steve

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    Definitely no need to spend gazillions on a set up...for either of you. I posted pictures of the moose I got last year with a 1996 Jennings Gale Force ($100 on the close out rack in 97) and I got several comments of "kickin it old school" and "hey, 1985 called, they want their bow back!". Understood that it's all in jest but it wouldn't make the moose any deader to have a new $1000 bow. I'm far from old but I remember when 200 fps was a fast bow and lots of animals died then too. Bows rarely wear out, so used is a great way to go and as said, depreciation is steep.

    As far as fitting her up, definitely get into a shop, a poor fitting bow makes it hard to get your form and thus accuracy and enjoyment up to par. As far as presses go, I'm out in the bush too, and I use a travel style press (a bunch of cables and a tensioner) that works fine for many things (i.e. minor draw adjustments if you order something online).

    Welcome back to the game, I laid mine down for the first six years up here before getting practiced up again last year....looking through the sights at a moose at 15 yards was all it took to ensure I'll never put it down again. (grouse are a kick too), and would someday like to chase caribou (our local herd has been tanked since I came around)

  5. #5

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    FWIW, I have a different perspective. Sounds to me like you're complicating a simple situation. If the goal is target shooting together (nothing competitive and no hunting), then keep it simple. Forget about "the option of hunting with a bow again", you can always do that later (after visiting your storage down south for your old gear). Even forget about getting "a similar package" for yourself (for now). Just start with one bow, that fits her, some arrows and a target. Then take turns and have fun letting her "school you in short order"!

    Quote Originally Posted by Good1 View Post
    She enjoys going out with me but has no interest in ever pulling the trigger, or release. She did express an interest in learning to shoot a bow and target practice. I remember how much I enjoyed my target time years ago and think it would be a great way for us to spend time together.

    I just want to have something that I can hand to my wife and have her start shooting.

    She is not going to want to have to struggle to get to full draw and isn't interested in hunting so I am looking at something lighter for her.
    Of course her bow won't fit you, but that hardly matters if the goal is teaching her to shoot. Of course one bow instead of two means you'll have to take turns shooting, but th at hardly matters if the goal is "to spend time together". (Just view each time you take the bow, or hand it back to her, as another excuse to kiss her!) Understandable that you "don't want to buy junk" but I predict that if you make target shooting fun for her, pretty soon she'll be the one clamoring for new archery gear for both of you!

    Just my opinion, FWIW. Whatever approach you take, good luck and have fun!

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    Cptnron4, Thanks for the suggestions I'll look into the Razor Edge. I'll also start looking for a used bow for me.

    AKriverguy, I am going to have a hard time getting her to ANC before Christmas to be fitted for a bow. I have meeting I have to fly in for but she stays home with the Kids. Do you or others have a "fool proof" method that I could use to find her draw length. What else do I need to know to choose a good bow for her? I'll be checking out Full Curl's site.

    Catch It, I don't mind "kickin' it old school" I just worry that an older bow may have more issues than I want to deal with. Picking up a bow that is a couple of years old shouldn't be too bad. I don't think I'll be able to get my wife into a shop in the next several months, I am hoping that I can fit her here. Any suggestions? I hear you about the Caribou, I am just up the Nush from you.

    Seraphina, Thank you for your perspective. I do have a tendency to overcomplicate things. Do you have a few suggestions on bows to look at? The goal really is two fold: A) Spend time together having fun, B) provide an opportunity for her to develop a hobby that she can enjoy in the Bush.

    Thanks for the replies, Keep them coming.

    J

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    Default Sometimes a spark...

    ...is the start of something good. What an opportunity whenever a family member expresses an interest in any activities that can be shared.

    If my wife (or other family member) expressed an archery interest, I'd encourage her (them) while letting her see just HOW interested she is. Price and learning curve can go in different directions and interest... well, it can be sort of seasonal or short-lived. While encouraging her, I'd figure my budget and an entry point based on what seems to be her depth of interest. If she's curious, I'd think smaller - like getting into archery at the $100-$200 range, which would prob mean used, or maybe an entry-level recurve.

    On the other hand, if she'd been been very enthusiastic for months, say, talking... Stacee Frost (http://www.adn.com/2010/12/29/162457...ing-award.html) this and Stacee Frost that for 6 months, then maybe some sort of end-of-season compound bow for eventual hunting maybe... or a higher end recurve entry bow?

    I bought a used rifle (.243) to get my daughter shooting when she expressed an interest in hunting. She stuck with it, worked up to shoot her .270WSM well and took a Spring black bear... with one terrific shot . "Testing the waters" gives newbies a chance to explore their interest too.

    Good luck and congratulations either way.

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    Member MACMMJ's Avatar
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    I got my wife the Diamond Razor Edge this year for her first bow. It is a really good bow and easy to adjust the draw length, I have adjusted hers (shortened it) a couple of times since it was set up at the store. I have even adjusted it in the field so her sister could try it out. She is just interested in target shooting now, but may want to hunt later. I have a couple friends that have the same bow and have taken lots of game with it. It is also easy to adjust the draw weight so that she can start off at 30lbs and move up as needed.
    I also got my two older boys 5 & 8 the Diamond Nuclear Ice bows, now we all shoot together.

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    6XLeach and Mac, Thanks for the comments. The Diamond Razor Edge looks interesting, I am going to spend some time researching it.

  10. #10

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    I second what 6XLeech said. Letting her drive the decision not only improves your decision but also increases her involvement and knowledge of archery.

    Quote Originally Posted by Good1 View Post
    Do you or others have a "fool proof" method that I could use to find her draw length.
    Ain't nuthin' foolproof in this 'ol world! But (risking sacrilege here) not much wrong with a simple approximation based on a piece of willow and a string (bow) and a tape measure (arrow) to give you AMO Draw Length (from arrow nock to bow's riser). Not totally accurate, yet probably close enough, especially if you start off "kickin' it old school" until she can get to the shop for an "expert" fitting.

    Draw length only applies to compound bows, traditional bows can be drawn to any length. There are several ways to measure, the easiest are probably "relaxed arm span divided by 2.5" or else "relaxed arm span minus 15 divided by 2". There are also height charts which predict her draw at 27" and your draw at 29.5" but bodies vary so it seems better to measure. Most people tend to set their draw length too long.

    Seraphina, Thank you for your perspective. I do have a tendency to overcomplicate things. Do you have a few suggestions on bows to look at? The goal really is two fold: A) Spend time together having fun, B) provide an opportunity for her to develop a hobby that she can enjoy in the Bush.
    Maybe I'm too sentimental but it seems to me a simple wooden longbow or recurve is a great way to start out. It's cheap, relatively foolproof, and fun to shoot! A modern compound bow is an efficient tool, while an old wooden bow is a chance to play Robin Hood for an hour or two. IMHO most compound bows are grossly overengineered, with way too many "must-have" doodads attached. Wooden bows are simple, require more skill, provide more challenge, and making your own bow can become part of the fun. For me that's the difference between a tool and a hobby.

    These two photos from akjeff's recent thread are good reminders of how simple archery can be: http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...l=1#post992361 Also maybe good reminders that any starter equipment your wife outgrows probably won't be wasted as your kids grow. Hope some of that was helpful!

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    Member catamount's Avatar
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    Easiest route is go to Sportman's and buy a Diamond Razor. The bow is complete, all you need to add is arrows and a release. I bought my wife one for Christmas. They said bring her back and we will adjust it for her. We returned a bit after Christmas. I expected a twenty minute tune. They spent three hours with her from start to finish. The gentleman in the archery department said he wouldn't let us go until she shot a bullseye, which she did in short order. He taught her all the basics on the spot.

    We completed the state IBEP course this past week. I'd say 95% of the shooters were shooting Bowtechs and Diamonds (made by bowtech). I'm sold.

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    I just got my girlfriend a Martin Leopard it comes in Pink digital camo came complete with Pink release and sights and a whisker biscuit and 3 Breast Cancer awareness pink arrows its a pretty nice bow and was $499 and she loves the look and it easy to adjust the draw lenght.

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    I have been shooting a Mission (made by Mathews) Maniac for almost 2 years and really like it. It is very adjustable in draw length and draw weight. Mine has the 60 lb limbs. I started shooting it at 37 lbs and now am shooting it at 50 lbs. Never have had any problems with it.

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    Thanks everyone. I appreciate the responses. I am going to continue to do a little more research before I present some options to her. She continues to express interest in archery, and I look forward to shooting with her soon.

    Seraphina, thank you for your detailed responses. I think she would enjoy the simplicity of a stick and a string but I don't have any experience with traditional archery. I don't know if she will be able to pick it up quickly enough to not get frustrated. I think that with a compound bow like the diamond razor she will be able to quickly feel successful. If we were to get a recurve I wouldn't be able to give her any pointers and it could be frustrating getting the arrows to the target at first. If we lived in town and she could take a few lessons, I would be more inclined to go that route. Let me know what you think.

    Thanks,
    J

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    Quote Originally Posted by Good1 View Post
    I think she would enjoy the simplicity of a stick and a string
    Just to be clear, I assume "a stick and a string" means a traditional bow here. When I talked about using a willow stick and a string as a bow earlier, I was only talking about a crude way to measure draw length for a compound bow.

    I don't know if she will be able to pick it up quickly enough to not get frustrated. I think that with a compound bow like the diamond razor she will be able to quickly feel successful.
    Can't really respond to that because it totally depends on her and your personalities. For me, "frustrating getting the arrows to the target" is just a normal part of learning, but I have a rather high tolerance for frustration, and different people have different learning styles, so YMMV.

    Let me know what you think.
    As an analogy: I think that having learned to drive using a stick shift, later made me a better driver even with automatic transmission vehicles. I think that having driven at racing speeds while young, makes me a safer driver at 55 mph now. So similarly, I think that having learned archery using a crappy old longbow, made me a better archer once I could get my hands on decent equipment. I'm no expert but that's my experience.

    I haven't recommended a specific bow because I honestly just don't think it matters that much. I mean it's lots of fun to debate the merits of gear, and we all have our favorites, and not all bows are of equal quality, but the bottom line is that whatever you practice with often, you'll probably end up shooting pretty well. I absolutely love my old handmade wooden longbow, but I certainly get far greater speed and efficiency from a modern composite recurve or compound bow. Since you seem to be leaning towards a compound bow, I thought this link might be helpful to you: http://www.huntersfriend.com/bowselection.htm

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    I'm with Seraphina on this one. I've been shooting compounds for over 20 yrs and have given up my wheels for traditional gear. If your wife is new to the game, she may enjoy a light recurve as much as anything. Samick makes a line of takedown recurves (Sage) that are very good quality for the price. I picked up a 50# Sage at Bearpaw archery in Wasilla for around $140. They sell limbs of various weights for around $70 and the takedown ability is very nice for transport.

    My advice would be to pick up a 30-35# recurve, fit it with a simple flipper rest so she can shoot vanes, grab some correctly spined arrows and a three finger under tab and you are ready to go for around $200. She would be able to target shoot out to about 40 yds without much problem and there is no real fussing with tuning like a compound.

    Just my $.02.... Good luck!
    Last edited by AKmud; 08-23-2011 at 10:48.
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    Thanks for the replies. I'll talk to her about the possibility of traditional gear and see which route she likes best.

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    Keep in mind that traditional takes a bit more skill, where a compound once sights are set it is consistently accurate. I got my wife and two oldest boys (8 and 5) bows this year. My wife got the Razor Edge and the boys a couple of Nuclear Ice, within the first day they were hitting the target block I have. Now we use all kinds of stuff for targets, I stuff old feed bags with plastic and paint various targets on it. I take empty plastic milk jugs and stuff them full with plastic, draw pics of squirrels, rabbits and birds on them then go out into the woods throw them for each other and then get to estimate distance and shoot.

    I think that if I had gotten a traditional bow that took more skill we would still be standing in front of several bales of hay practicing just to hit the target.
    Also what resources will you have available to help learn to shoot traditional, is there anybody else around that can help instruct?
    I shoot a compound but I am going to start shooting a recurve, I also have friends that shoot traditional and will give me pointers. I also intend to continue to use my compound for hunting until I feel I am proficient enough on the recurve.

    If you get her the compound she will hit her target, she may decide that she wants to try traditional for more challenge. You still have the Razor Edge for you kids to use since it goes down to 30, my 13 year daughter has no problem pulling back 35lbs that the Razor is at now, she also shoots. (Only one more till all shoot here, he just turned 4 so next year)

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    Razor edge for sure priced right would replace rest but other then that its a great starter bow. I puchased my wife and son each a razor edge. Go to Sportsmans Warehouse they will show you how to adjust draw lenght videos online like bowtunningtips.com that will show you how to tie in the peep and how to adjust according to her needs


    one for sale on this forun heres link no its not one of mine but looks like sight and rest have been upgraded already its a package deal case and all

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...wn-to-the-case!

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    Shooting a Stick bow is lots of fun, but can get frustrating to some people and loose interest, especially a beginner. I personally think if you start off with something easier like a Sprocket Rocket, she will get more confident and have fun with it. Then, for more of a challenge, she can hit the stick bow and fine tune her skills. And if your gonna go with a Sprocket Rocket, I agree with Sportsmans and the Diamond Razor. Depending on if she shoots a release and or D-loop will depend on her set up. Once she is set up properly, she will have a blast with it. If the bow doesn't fit her and she is not comfortable, she might get agravated and loose interest. The thing with a stick bow, you have to shoot every day or at least several times a week all the time. If you let it go for a while, it takes a while to get instinctive again. With a Sprocket Rocket that is fit your you, you can go a year without shooting it, pick it back up, and within a few dozen arrows your on target again. My experience has been get the wife set up with what she feels good about and she will be happy and have fun. Happy Wife, Happy Life.

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