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Thread: ACS Bows - Performance fact or fiction?

  1. #1

    Default ACS Bows - Performance fact or fiction?

    Like many before me, I'm 'not as good as I once was', so I sold off my traditional archery gear I could no longer shoot due to a shoulder injury. I've continued to hunt over the years but the archery bug is still with me strong as ever. I recently bought a new Hoyt from Full Curl Archery and while I enjoy shooting it, I miss the feel and challenge of traditional archery gear.

    After reading this thread I felt compelled to learn more about ACS archery and their bow's. Does anyone have an ACS bow or recently shot one? How do they shoot? Is the hype reality?

    I'd like some personal reviews - if possible, because I find ACS's website is an interesting yet uncanny read. They state, for example, an archer shooting a straight-limb longbow drawing 60# @ 28" can have the same performance by shooting their ACS hybrid longbow set at 41 lbs. In another example an archer shooting a top-of-the-line recurve at 60# could match their performance by shooting a 51# ACS longbow!

    I hate to say it, but ACS's numbers sound to good to be true, but if they are, they just went on my 'wish list' for 2011. Hopefully someone can provide more information on this bow line.

    Thanks!
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

  2. #2
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    I know a guy who shoots an ACS longbow and he swears by his, watched him shoot and it seemed to be smooth fast and quiet, I dont see him much since he is getting ready to deploy and I am retired, but it is definitely a nice bow

  3. #3

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    AlaskaOutdoorsman,

    I'm in your camp. I've read the threads and checked out the site. I know some folks that shoot Adcock's bows. No doubt he has something going but... as the old saying goes. "Wood is wood". He may have a secret recipe and process but he get's his wood lams, glass, and glue from the same place everyone else does. I don't doubt that his bows outperform the old classics. I bought a Black Widow two years ago because I ruined my shooting form by shooting to many "too heavy" selfbows. I went with a Widow for the same reasons you stated. I moved here from Missouri and have seen hundreds of Widows in action. The modern design and materials including string do make a difference. I can say from experience that my 58# Widow shoots much faster that my old 63# Asbell Bighorn and requires a substantially stiffer spine. Both bows are center shot. My 64# Jefferys is slower than the Bighorn. The older bows shoot Dacron and the Widow shoots the new stuff. Some of the performance is in the string.

    Will an ACS outperform a Widow? Maybe. Will a 51# hybrid outperform a 60# Widow? I raise the BS flag here. My 58# Widow will bend a 30" 2219 with 125grains up front "weak" on a bare shaft test at 10 yards. That's why I went to carbons because I didn't want to shoot big fat 2317's. I shot a 640 grain carbon through the chrono at the Den in the 190 fps range. I can't see a 51# bow beating that without mystical powers.
    All this being said. If you want to shoot a stickbow again then now is the time. The materials and designs of today's bows outperform the old classics enough to get the performance you're looking for at a much lower weight.

    ... got to get a finish on my new sinew back osage bow now that the rattlesnake skins have fully dried... sometimes it's more about style than speed....

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    Lots of folks swear by the speed that Adcocks generate. Same with those who shoot the 3 Rivers Dalaa. Same of those who shoot Great Plains recurves. All these bows cost a pretty penny too...

    The fact is no trad bow shooting at least 10 grains per pound of darw weight generates outlandish speed, particularly if you are used to shooting a compound. All my recurves( both TD and one piece) draw 53 to 55 lbs at my 28.5" draw, shooting arrows of around 530 grains, shoot 180FPS to 188FPS. These are everything from a full custom Kota Prarie Swift to a full production Hoyt Dorado & a Chiron Volcano.

    My favorite hunting bow is a 60" 53#@28" Chek-Mate TD Hunter II (H2) as it's gorgeous, reasonably zippy, and quiet (fact of the matter is I own two H2s). There are times I also grab my 60" 55#@28" Hoyt Dorado as it is tough as a recurve bow can be built and shoots well for me, although it's asthetics leave something to be desired. Both shoot the above arrow in the mid-180s. Both are afordable, coming in around $400. I have shot clean through deer with both as well.

    It's not just speed, as Boud'Arc points out. Shootability, quietness, and style are of greater importance, IMO.

    If I were to recommend one recurve above all I've shot (and I haven't shot them all, but I'm trying!), I would have to advise to go with the semi-custom Chek-Mate H2, or if you want a one piece, my recommendation is a 60" Kota Prairie Swift (particularly if you are going to shoot feathers only as the Swift is optimized for shooting feathers off the shelf) or Bob Lee Wing Hunter.

  5. #5
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    Alot of great info I actually started shooting a 50lb Greatree deerslayer takedown recurve a few years ago and really enjoyed it total cost i believe just under 300, to include a dozen arrows and needed equipment to shoot. that bow shot real well in my opinion and as I learned more it seemed to shoot better and better. My wife surprised me when she bought and ordered my Blackwidow recurve take down.
    I am not to concerned with speed my carbon arrows are just about 12-13 grains an inch at approx 536 grains 125 grain broadhead with 100 grain brass insert, and I shoot 51 lbs at 28 inches, bare shafted at 20 yards and shoot like darts out of both bows.

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    Well I don't know how fast it is but I have been shooting a 55lb ACS for the last few years and it is by far the best I've had in my hand. Blew through a black bear this last spring with a near 700gr arrow tiped with a terminator 250grn three blade head. It all happened so fast he jumped straight up, looked around for what bit him, got confused and ran a few yards and died! Was great cause I got it on film.

    Anyway, about the bow. I have shot and owned many, bear hunter 2, Habu vyperkhan, great plains B model bamboo recurve, great plains plainsman longbow, black widow maII, black widow take down longbow, check mate II, and others I cant think of.
    Since I started shooting I have always been a pretty good shot. Once I bought the ACS I became a great shot. I don't know what it is about the bow but it just seems to shoot where I want it to.
    It is fast, but again I've never put it through a chrono.

    With all that said I wouldn't buy a bow because of the hype, unless you get your hands on one and love the feel. Most of those other bows I mentioned were bought and sold because of the hype.......and once I got them in my hands I didn't like one thing or another.
    Wish the habu woulda worked out because it was by far the most beautiful bow I have ever seen! Killed a moose with it too!

    Boud'arc I'ld like to see some pics of that bow you are finishing up. I killed my first nice whitetail buck with a sinew backed osage bow I made. Got rattle snake skins on it too! Was my greatest day hunting.

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    Hey Plenty, it is good to hear first hand about an ACS bow, I've had the same reservations as Boud'arc. I would love to shoot one some day, hopefully I will get outside some where that there is one (like one of those trad archery get togeathers). What model do you have, is it a 2 pc or a one pc? If you can post a picture of it that would be great.

    Thanks

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    I shoot an ACS #59 two piece. One of the smoothest bows you will ever shoot. The speed is nice but the smooth draw and very quiet release is also a plus. i have had shoulder surgery and this bow is very easy to shoot even with a less than perfect wing to draw it with. As mentioned in other posts, these bows really seem to shoot where you look, but they are not a miracle bow. Practice is a pleasure with one of these bows though.

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