Be honest with me, I’m an adult

Discussion in 'Archery' started by Schmittie, Apr 2, 2019.

  1. Schmittie

    Schmittie Supporter Supporter

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    Howdy guys.

    I love hunting and really want to get into archery to extend my season and have more adventures. I’ve been trying, but maybe not hard enough.

    Maybe 10 years ago, I got my first bow. A bear compound that was from pre cam days (it’s old). I practiced for a while and the first time out had a few does come in. I took a shot and missed grossly. That’s when I discovered I’m lousy at judging distance. This really made me loose my nerve and I haven’t shot at a deer with a bow since. This year I finally bought a range finder.

    A few years ago, I did research and got this silly thought in my head that traditional archery would be a better fit. No sights, the whole “it’s like throwing a ball” illustration talked me into thinking this would be easier.

    Fast forward, I’m not enjoying traditional archery with my Samick at all. I’m realizing that I just don’t have the time to commit to putting in the hours of practice needed to be a successful trad archer. So now I’m considering selling it all to fund a decent compound bow.

    Opinions?
     
  2. Crusher0032

    Crusher0032 Appalachian Arthfael LB-42 Supporter

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    Go for it. If you have trouble judging distance, a range finder works wonders. I know the idea of slinging arrows like Fred Bear is a romantic one, but you may find using a rangefinder to practice from odd ranges will help you get better at judging them. This is sort of the debate over traditional vs inline muzzleloader debate- I say get both if you can and have a good time learning.
     
  3. Punisher

    Punisher Supporter Supporter

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    If they ever invent a range finder/wind direction/altimeter in a laser night vision scope life will be so much easier.
     
  4. woodsranger

    woodsranger Solitude Seeker

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    Honestly? Your primary obligation when hunting to is make a quick, clean kill. If you aren't willing to practice enough or devote the amount of time it takes to be able to do that, then I think you should just enjoy shooting targets instead of bow hunting. A compound isn't magically going to make you William Tell. You still need to practice to be able to consistently hit an 8" target with tight groups at 20-30 yards.

    Also, you shouldn't need a rangefinder to be able to judge distance out to 30 yards. I mean, it's not that far. ;)

    Sorry, but...you asked! This is just my opinion, of course. Your mileage may vary. :)
     
  5. injun51

    injun51 Guide

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    Use what works for you, because in the end, it's about putting meat on the table and making ethical kills.
     
  6. Oldguy59

    Oldguy59 Supporter Supporter

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    Any kind of bow takes practice, compounds have sights and that helps but if your form is bad you’ll miss. I’m lucky I can practice out to 50yrds in my yard. The wife hates it when I paint yardages in the grass. You must build muscle memory. Hunting with anything is a commitment to your game quick clean kills are your responsibility.
    Now as far as not being able to shoot well. I couldn’t hit anything when I started shooting with a right hand bow switched to a left hand bow. The dominant eye thing you know.
     
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  7. Ascham

    Ascham Guide

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    I have beed shooting traditional archery off and on for over 40 years, if ain't for you so be it. Shoot what's comfortable and works for you but get out and support hunting and archery.
     
  8. Terasec

    Terasec Guide

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    For distance
    When practicing count your steps to your target
    18 steps to 20 yd target etc
    When hunting count your steps to the distance you have been practicing at that will be your comfort zone
    Try to wait for shots within that zone
    Over time that zone will expand but for now stick to 20 yd range or so
     
  9. IAOutdoors

    IAOutdoors Supporter Supporter

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    If you don’t have the time to commit I would definitely go with a newer compound bow over traditional. The newer compound bows shoot flat and less likely to miss within 10-15 yards of your guesstimation. Get yourself a decent release too. Maybe look for a nice used compound that is a couple years old as the price should be a few hundred dollars less but still very fast and forgiving. Hoyt, PSE, and Mathews are all good choices.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2019
  10. central joe

    central joe Wait For Me!! Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    If you aren't sure your accuracy won't make for a quick kill, don't do it. If you are willing to put the time into practice then go for it. Plenty of game have been taken with both types of bows, with a lot of practice before the hunt. Just my thought. joe
     
  11. quietmike

    quietmike Hardwoodsman Supporter

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  12. mjh

    mjh Supporter Supporter

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    Shoot what your are competent with and have confidence in. I'll be shooting recurves and longbows until I can't shoot them any more. I'll hunt with them until I can't get a clean kill, I don't kill much as it is, but I don't wound either, I just haven't let loose any arrows at live animals in several years. I do a lot of paper punching and 3 D's as much as I can get. Shooting my bow is one thing I do for a lot of reasons. If your not having fun stop doing it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2019
  13. Punisher

    Punisher Supporter Supporter

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  14. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    I see you are from the midwest where most deer hunting is done from a tree stand. This is a tedious way to hunt (for me at least) but it's also the easiest way to make a pre planned shot at a pre planned distance. Put out markers at the known yardage FROM THE BASE OF THE TREE. Put them where you can likely compare them to the location of the deer and practice at those ranges. Keep it simple! The simpler the rig is the easier it is to use it under pressure and without too much moving around.

    Tell me about your Samick. I might be a buyer.
     
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  15. Jonah L. Archer

    Jonah L. Archer ~Roughian #21~ Supporter Bushclass II

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    I'd recommend a new, high quality compound if you really want to stick with archery. The new compounds shoot so flat and fast that you really only need one pin out to 30 or so yards. Takes a lot of guesswork out of it. You'll still need to practice a lot, but you can get away with less than you can with traditional.
     
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  16. riokid87

    riokid87 Scout

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    Do you have a coach?
    Read instinctive archery insights by Jay kidwell. Short book I got at library.
    Must read.
    What was the bow weight? You may need a 40 lb to hint, but you are definitely better off with a 25 lb to learn to shoot. You can get limbs only for the sage but the whole bow isn't much more.
    You don't need an expensive bow, the samick should be more than accurate enough unless its damaged.
    No reason a healthy person can't learn to hit at 25 paces.
    Really, read that book before you throw in the towel.
     
  17. WhisperInThePine

    WhisperInThePine Wubba lubba dub dub Supporter

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    I practice up to twice a week with my trad bows (recurve and self bow). Once the snow melts off, I plan on a lot of stump shooting.

    From conversations I've had with more experience archers, no bow makes you a good archer. It's still a learning process, requiring dedication. If you aren't willing to put in the time, then you are doing a disservice to your wallet and your prey.
     
  18. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    There's some good advice there. Compound or stick you should start off ( or go back and start over) with a bow that you can absolutely overpower. I hunt with a 45# stick bow but do a lot of practicing with a 20# bow. Archery is so much about consistent form and control that any mental or physical distraction will run you into the ditch. Until shooting becomes second nature and your brain and muscles are on autopilot it would be beneficial to go very light.
     
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  19. Oldguy59

    Oldguy59 Supporter Supporter

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    If your going to buy a bow do your homework. Some bows are not for beginners. Fast bows sound good and they are but they come with trade offs that make them hard to shoot, brace hight, aggressive cams, hard draws.
    Pick a draw weight that is comfortable for you and have the draw length adjusted to fit you.
     
  20. bluecow

    bluecow Scout

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    Schmittie, jmo but you and many of us have fallen into the advertising thinking. ie. if i just buy a 7mm stw i can hit deer at 1000 yards, or if i just get a S&W 500 then i to can be a handgun hunter, or that rod and real combo. in our soul we know that that is not true .............yet
     
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  21. Primordial

    Primordial MOA #40 Supporter

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    No matter what bow you choose you need more practice. 80% of archery is in between your ears. If you don't have the mental focus to pull off a shot well, then you'll never be successful. 99% of bow hunting success (the shooting part), is definitely a mind game. Shooting paper and foam targets and shooting at a live animal when the adrenaline kicks in are two very, very different things. Only lots of time behind the string launching arrows can build the confidence you need to keep a cool head and make an accurate shot on an animal IMO.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
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  22. JasonJ

    JasonJ Supporter Supporter

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    My opinion... maybe try your hand at a crossbow. More rifle like in its use. Some consider it barely archery, others call it cheating.. if what matters is a quick, clean and ethical kill putting meat in the freezer and food on the table (hint: that is what matters), who cares how you do it so long as it's done.

    It may bridge the gap for you for a bit and you can re-approach compound archery later.
     
  23. WhisperInThePine

    WhisperInThePine Wubba lubba dub dub Supporter

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    My fiance hinted enough she wanted a bow i bought her a southwest archery spyder, same designers as the samick sage. At 25#, it's a blast to shoot. My bows are 45# and 55#, so I will occasionally warm up with her bow.
     
  24. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    I think that's a good route to take. One of the older '90's era round wheel target bows would serve you well to learn on and to hunt with. They are fast enough are stable. They also lend themselves to simplicity. A springy rest, a kisser button and one sight pin on an easy to shoot bow in the 40 to 45 range will work for learning, target shooting and hunting.

    Try to avoid the equipment spiral. It's human nature to try to fix things the quick and easy way. That leads to ever more complicated equipment which may or may not help you. Like said above, archery is a mental game.

    There is a lot of good info here: http://www.kslinternationalarchery.com/Training/SPTs/SPTs.html
     
  25. Anthonysaudiojournal

    Anthonysaudiojournal Scout

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    I started off with a Pearson Compound bow years ago and got really damn good with it. I could consistently hit a pie plate out to 60 yards and I rarely shot under 25 because I kept breaking arrows. For hunting it was awesome 55-70 lb bow. I used to be a golfer so I was pretty good at estimating distances and I belonged to a local field archery club and shot at least a couple times a week.

    After a while I got bored and got a Martin take down recurve that I shot alot. I didn't have any sights and just took it to the field range for fun. To my surprise I shot it pretty good too after a while. I entered only one competetion and surprised myself with a second place finish. (Not alot of traditional shooters back then).

    I took my recurve deer hunting one time and happened upon a deer at about 35 yards. I was pretty sure I could get a quality hit so I let an arrow fly. I was using full sized 30" arrows with a traditional steel Zwicky broadhead and although it was heavy I was pretty accurate with it. As soon as the arrow left my bow the deer turned around at the sound of the twang... looked over my way... and casually side stepped my well placed arrow as it sailed past into the bushes.
    While they are fun to shoot the arrows travel WAY too slow for real hunting out west where longer shots are more common. My compound was fast... flat... and accurate and took many game animals, the recurve... not so much. but it was a blast to shoot. Maybe in thicker woods and at shorter distances it would have done better.

    Some friends tried the short light overdraw arrows that looked like drinking straws and used a release. I never did, it looked like too much work.
    Pearson Bushmaster.JPG
    My Pearson looked like this one
    MARTIN_HATFIELD recurve.jpg
    My Martin looked like this one
     
  26. Primordial

    Primordial MOA #40 Supporter

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    Native Americans west of the Mississippi only survived before European contact because they did all their real hunting out west with a compound. ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
  27. Kennebago

    Kennebago Scout

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    I was really blown away by this when I dipped back into archery a few years ago after doing it a lot in the early 90s as a kid.

    I remember 30 yard targets being, like, in-the-next-county far at 3D shoots with my dad.
     
  28. woodsranger

    woodsranger Solitude Seeker

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    "Hunting simple! Walk like cat. Smell like deer. Get close. Kill animal. Eat good." :4:
     
  29. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    How much you want for the Sammich? JK, mostly.

    On to the serious stuff... First rule of hunting is "kill it clean". If you can't do that, you can't ethically hunt. I also need to admit that I've bow hunted for about 5 seasons, and have never killed anything with a bow. I do it because I like being out, and it's a skill I want to master. My bow is a 70s era Bear Grizzly. fwiw, my self-declared 'range' is only about 12 yards. I can hit about a 6" circle, some days even smaller, at that range. I can almost always hit the 3'x3' target from about 25 yards, but that's not good enough. There are also days I can call the spots on my target and hit them within an inch. Sadly, I'm not consistent. But I get a few yards better every year.

    We live in an age of instant gratification. Good on you for recognizing you don't have the TIME to dedicate to it.... no shame there. Shame would be wounding an animal.

    But what is your purpose in hunting? As a young attendee of the Hunter Safety Course (1980), I learned there are 3 types of hunters/fishermen... the shooter, the trophy or limit hunter, and the true sportsman. The shooter just likes to shoot at things, and a successful hunt is measured in shots fired. The trophy hunter is after the largest trophy or filling his bag limit. The true sportsman is just happy to be outside.

    I like to think I'm one of the sportsmen... the Creator will send me a deer to kill IF I put in my time at the range (bow and gun), put in the field hours necessary (in all weather conditions), conduct my fieldcraft properly (scouting, scent control/siting, sitting still), and have the right frame of mind when i hunt... when it finally comes time to kill, all of those things line up, and I am offered a chance. Not all chances are there to be taken, especially with a bow. Other examples are when a deer is running, or the shot is through thick brush, or toward the unknown. That's right mind. But when it's time, the gun just goes off... all the training kicks in, and you see the deer, sit up, raise your gun, draw a bead, squeeze, and it's done. (I have only remembered ever hearing a shot in the last couple years. I don't know what it means, but I think about it sometimes.) Then comes the thank you... that is also 'right mind'.... when it's "right", you KNOW that deer came to you, asked to do so by the Creator, and it said "ok... I'm willing to die so he can eat, and if i have to die, that's a good guy to let kill me."

    That's why I bow hunt... for my Creator to tell me I'm good enough.

    If you are one of the sportsmen, and still want to bow hunt, can you live with limiting yourself to the short ranges you are capable of killing at, until you're good enough to shoot farther? If so, stick with it. Eventually, a deer will come to you.

    If not, and you need to kill an animal every year for whatever reason (food?), then the only way to meet that need AND extend your season is to use something easier, like a wheelie bow or crossbow. Your state might also have a nice primitive or black powder season, to extend your hunting time.

    Take up the wheel bow or crossbow? I can't make that call for you. But maybe I've given you some things to think about.
     
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  30. rustystove2017

    rustystove2017 Guide

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    This^^^^^
     
  31. JEB

    JEB Supporter Supporter

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    Do what you have to do what is right and what makes you happy. I would hang on to the recurve because one day down the road you are going to wish you still had it.
     
  32. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    A faster bow will be flatter shooting and is a bit more forgiving in range estimation. There is no rule that says you cannot step off distances in your shooting lanes, make marks on the ground, and then climb to your stand and get a feel for how far the distances appear from up there either. No one is born with calibrated eyeballs, it takes practice to judge distances. People who golf get pretty good at distance measurements, usually by airmailing the hole plenty of times :)
     
  33. Poeschel

    Poeschel Supporter Supporter

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    I’ll be honest. I dust off my compound 2 weeks before the season an make sure I’m good out to 30 yards. I can’t focus on a spot further than that so it’s 30 yards or less for me. Modern compounds are easy to shoot at those distances. Theyre also too fast to shoot at stumps, leaves, dandelions...etc without burying the arrow. If you want quick meat, compound or crossbow. If you to shoot arrows at random targets on the walk out to the stand, maybe let a couple rip at that leaf that keeps blowing in the wind making you think it’s a deer tail, enjoy a lightweight setup, and maybe, just maybe, get a kill that will be more rewarding than you can imagine because you know the work you put in, go trad.
     
  34. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    Funny you mention that... I was out on some public land, scouting, a few years back. Contrary to popular belief, sometimes there is only one 'best' solution to a tactical problem... like where to best site a stand given a certain set of conditions (terrain, vegetation, etc)... anyway, seems like another guy and i both decided that a certain tree was "the" spot for a stand... as I was wandering around it, looking for shooting lanes, i found a cotton ball about 25 yards out from the tree... weird... then another, and another. I came to the conclusion that that was probably how the guy was marking his distances. Might even have been dabbing a little doe pee on them. I know some guys use the orange hanging containers for distance markers, but I could never find cooperative trees or bushes exactly where i needed them, nor could i see the containers in low light conditions... i can understand why a guy would use a bright white cotton ball.
     
  35. JasonJ

    JasonJ Supporter Supporter

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    I was thinking the same thing... lol.. non-compound bows have done the job for oh... I don't know... like 64,000 years or so. Not everything was hunted and harvested at 10yds.

    There are ways to quiet down a trad bow for longer distance shots.. provided the bow is fast enough- and most any above 40# will be. Plenty of shots at 30 yards on 170-190fps bows have taken game.

    Always nice to be closer of course. But to each their own, do what works. A clean kill and enjoyment of the sport is more important than the gear used.
     
  36. Aknative

    Aknative Tracker

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    If you're not enjoying it there's something not right. I owned a compound for years, and it just didn't turn my crank. It was cool to get the arrow to go where I wanted, but my blood didn't get flowing until I found a crappy red fiberglass long bow on Craigslist and started shooting Lowe's dowels in it. Now my kids and I shoot almost every day, even in winter, and we've all upgraded some to half decent recurves and a couple cheap longbows.

    Regardless of compound/traditional, you NEED good form and consistency. If archery is something you'd like to keep up, look into anything involving Tom Clum and the Solid Archery Mechanics, and Joel Turner's Iron Mind. Tom Clum is great about the mechanics of safely drawing a bow to avoid injury and consistently getting the string back to the same spot, and Joel Turner is about getting your mind right to put the arrow where you want. Tom Clum has has taken Olympic style archery, the National Training System used by the greatest shooters in the Union, and bastardized (my term here, I like it) it for hunting. It's great stuff.

    I used a range finder a lot to help me find my gap (using the tip of the arrow to aim.) The further the target, the higher the tip of the arrow. Now I'm not even sure where my range finder is, I'd like it so I can range after the shot. Using your range finder could help you.

    How are you aiming? Instinctively? Gap? String walking? I tried instinctive, where I'd concentrate real hard on what I wanted to hit. Some days it was on, others I could miss a barn. I couldn't get happy enough over all, so I switched to gap aiming, and using a range finder to figure where I should hold the tip of the arrow until one day I decided I didn't want to use the range finder any more. But that has literally been THOUSANDS of shots at the target, snow clumps, stumps, rabbits, squirrels...have yet to take a squirrel, damn flinchy bushy tails. It takes time.

    There are things you can do cut down the learning curve. Below, I'll link a couple videos. The first is one by Clay Hayes, "Finding your Gap," it's great stuff. The next will be a video on what's called a fixed crawl. String walking is where you hold the tip of the arrow on your target, but move your hand up or down the string towards/away from the arrow based on distance from the target. A fixed crawl is where you knock the arrow a consistent distance from the top of your finger, with the top of the arrow being held on your target, and that distance between your finger and the arrow puts more of the trajectory of your arrow in the kill zone. The video will explain it better.

    The third video is a Tom Clum video, consistent form and safe mechanics to avoid shoulder injury are more important than any aiming, because if you're not consistent aiming doesn't mean anything.



    Minute 39 is where they start talking about aiming methods...they go deep into it. Minute 56 is where they start talking about a fixed crawl.


    Consistent form is MUCH MORE IMPORTANT than aiming. If you don't get this right, it skews everything. Do a YouTube search for Tom Clum archery, there's several there and they're all good.


    This should be fun. I had NEVER had fun missing before, and on the range it's still not great to miss, but hunting rabbits (they're actually snowshoe hares here) last fall I've never had so much fun not making a harvest.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2019
  37. Aknative

    Aknative Tracker

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    At an hour and 20 or so minutes into The Push film they get into consistent anchor. Very important stuff as well. It's a long film, but they've squeezed a lot of good stuff in there.
     
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  38. Derzis

    Derzis Scout

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    You want a honest opinion and I will give mine. Take it for what it is.
    1. Missing grossly is good when hunting. The last thing you want is to "barely missed" and lose an injured animal.
    2. If you are not confident in your skills, don't go in the woods to hunt.

    Based on what you said, the compound is the route to follow. BUT be sure the compound is for your DL - find your draw length first. Is important if you go the "vintage" compound route because there are not many with same cam module for different DLs. If you have a friend shooting compound the learning curve will shorten. When you train, always know the distance to the target. The old saying with "if you walk it, you know it", is true. Shoot just one pin, 20 yards for example, from 20 yards and move backward and forward 5yards shooting the same pin to learn the difference between the arrow positions in the target. This should bring your comfort level up. Buy a target that is the representation of the animal you want to hunt. It is much better training than shooting at dots.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2019
  39. Ken Delano

    Ken Delano Tracker

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    Traditional archery takes a lot of time and effort to stay good enough to be ethical. There's no shame in admitting you can't devote the time to it that it requires, or even to say you don't want to or aren't willing to do so. We all need to hunt ethically above all, not to prove something to ourselves or anyone else. I've been hunting with "traditional" equipment for 30 years, and started out with a recurve even before that (then went the compound route for a while). That's the choice I make, and I stick to my range limitations (25 yards for me, closer is better). Choose your weapon, then get good enough with it to make ethical kills at known distances, and limit yourself to that, regardless of the weapon.
     
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  40. CSM1970

    CSM1970 Guide

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    Had to sell my trebuchet too. Messed up the deer too bad.
     
  41. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    :18::18: too funny.
     
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  42. insector

    insector Supporter Supporter

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    20190417_113000.jpg 20190417_113022.jpg I have a Samick Sage with both 30 and 45 pound limbs. I like it a lot with those long limbs for my long draw length (31 inches). Also the PSE stinger with a 70 pound initial draw on it. In the pic that draw weight is down to about 50 pounds (it is an adjustable weight).

    I am left eye dominant. I shoot right handed bows and left handed bolt rifles. On the recurve I shoot both eyes open and instinctive. On the compound I use sights and my right eye and it works fine for me. But they are 2 different ways of sighting. The compound is more powerful (of course) and with the peep sight thing it is more accurate and I can shoot it accurately out to about 100 yards.

    The Sage I will shoot with confidence to about 50 or 60 yards. I dont practice much these last few years compared to years past. I have been shooting compounds since they first came out.......many years ago.

    I think one should start with a longbow or recurve and then go on to a compound. But if you mix the two up and try to use both interchangably- it confuses your instinct (if you know what I mean).

    So by hunting season I will have practiced with one or the other, depending on how and what I hunt. I usually start in spring with the sage and then switch to the compound for hunting big game. It is a huge jump in velocity and accuracy of the arrow for me.

    But I have been shooting both for well over 30 years now and always enjoyed it from the start- whether on the range or in the bush...........

    I started with an instructor in an archery class in high school phys ed. I took archery in college. I hunted bow before ever hunting gun and archery helped my gun hunting considerable.

    If you are getting frustrated with the Samick- back up a bit and relax first. Start with a low weight pull you are comfy with and shoot close targets (10 or 15 yards). Most archery shops have an indoor range and someone who can coach you and watch you shoot. This has helped me considerable.

    And never forget:

    NEVER dry fire your bow................yo best regards on this
     
  43. insector

    insector Supporter Supporter

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    P.S.- My 1st compound was a Jennings "model T". The first one I ever saw. It was about 1975 as I recall. Before the late 60s.............there were no compounds and I shot a browning 50 pound recurve.......

    times have changed a lot with compounds since then but I recall that model T as quite the hot item in its day for deer hunting...........it had a 70 pound initial draw weight with about a 70 percent letoff.

    That Jennings impressed the hell out of me for obvious reasons
     
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  44. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    I like the idea of starting with a recurve too. It teaches lessons that might be missed by starting with a compound.
     
  45. CaptCrunch

    CaptCrunch Scout

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    Agree on light stick bows and older round wheel compound being a pleasure to shoot and keeping you with it,still use an old pse laserflight and a damon howatt recurve that ive had since fourteen.Whatever makes it fun and them cams and glowing pins arent necessary .
     
  46. longcruise

    longcruise Scout

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    Love those Damon Howatts. I have three of them. Some of the finest bows ever made.
     
  47. Wil

    Wil Scout

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    To bad you don't live close to me cause I could fix you up really cheap,almost give-a-ways now that I am 72 and had shoulder surgery that ended my long bow and compound bow days.Had to move to a Ten Point Stealth crossbow and now my $1200 rig Mathews sits and collects dust.Got a nice long bow too but sorry to say I sold my self bow.That thing was really fun.My crossbow was a good investment.It is super accurate out to 50 yards and shoots tighter groups then some of my rifles.Took a wild turkey's head off at 40 yards with it.That's a bow I can pull out of the closet,shoot a few bolts with it to check sighting and go hunting.Bow shooting/hunting requires the utmost dedication and time to be good and a lot more time in practice to be better.
     
  48. outsyder

    outsyder Scout

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    Honestly.....as you asked for it!

    "Traditional" is immensely rewarding but it's effort=rewards and there are no short cuts. I committed, and now with a few critters, provincial titles, podium finishes in nationals and hopefully move onto the world stage later this year, I can say 100% that commitment, experience and work has done it. That and coaching right back at the start.

    I also started my journey pre-internet which helped.

    My advice is to forget the internet, maybe there's some knowledgeable and well intended types, but go to your nearest club or event and seek out those who are walking the walk in the real world. Most clubs have a coach, use them, the guys who are winning the tournaments will point you in a good direction if they won't help you themselves....... archery folks are good like that!
    I mostly avoid archery media, I like podcasts but not archery podcasts, there's only 2 Youtubers I like.....maybe 3, and the only decent resource to watch in my mind is "The Masters of the Barebow" series........but again, full of dudes with credentials.
    I recently worked with the best there is - Rod Jenkins and attended one of his clinics, along with 13 times Canadian champion (instinctive division in WA3D) and I'd do it again so would Mr 13timeschampion, there is much to learn from these people. After all, "traditional" (I hate the term) archery is 99% skill based and very little theory from our online sage friends helps much anyway without them actually being there.
    It's also a simple game and I have yet to meet a decent shot who over complicates things and never met anyone who overcomplicates things who is any good. Learn to shoot, learn what gear suits you and your needs (and your body mechanics), learn to tune and enjoy it.


    In short, find a coach or mentor, even if you have to drop some $$, it will be the best money you spend in the game. Even if you have to grab a FITA coach because good "form" is good form regardless of gear and any slight difference you encounter in techniques will be far outweighed by the good foundations laid. I'd give anything to have regular coaching now, in fact.
     
  49. Luke Dupont

    Luke Dupont Scout

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    Let me start by saying that I'm not a hunter, or even an archer, but I have mastered or at least become proficient in many similar skills deemed "difficult" or even "crazy " by most people.

    I think that you suffer from a modern mentality of wanting it all now; of wanting to replace skill development with your wallet. It's my observation that so many people feel that they "don't have time" to learn any skill at all, no matter how small (I'm not saying this describes you, by the way -- just using an "extreme" example).

    The truth is that it's just your mentality and expectations which are wrong. Some things take time, and the key to building skill is to enjoy that time.

    First, take all of the pressure off yourself. Forget about hunting, for now. Learn to enjoy shooting the bow, first. In fact, I wouldn't even be that concerned about accuracy to begin with. You need to get an intuitive feeling for shooting a bow, and for that, pick up the traditional bow and put down the ranger finder. Forget feet, yards, and anything else. Shoot at big targets which are hard to miss. Start at distances which you CAN hit the target and be successful. Then, challenge yourself from there little by little, until it's muscle memory.

    You don't need to practice for hours and hours or get frustrated at failure. Short periods of consistent, fun, relaxing practice should quickly get you on the path to proficiency and confidence.

    Skills are organic. So is muscle memory. A lot of modern people have a really difficult time learning traditional skills due to their utter obsession with precision, measurement, and numbers, and lack of experience (or value) for the imprecise; learning through play, and developing intuition and muscle memory.

    Again, I'm not an archer. But I have spent a ton of time learning things such as traditional martial arts, woodworking, cooking, foreign languages, and a whole host of other "soft sciences". I always find that modern people tend to focus on all the wrong things, and miss the big picture for all of the little, situationally dependent details, and artificially constructed notions, and/or their want to be "precise" about everything. Only experience and intuition, with a foundation in muscle memory, will do the job. Put aside the need to have it all now; all of the pressure and expectations, and just set aside a small bit of time a day to play or practice. Learn to enjoy that time, and you will absolutely improve.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
  50. gila_dog

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    Whatever bow you decide on, you still need to be able to judge distance. A compound bow will shoot a bit flatter than a recurve, but you still have to be able to estimate distance pretty well. That comes from practice, and the best practice is stump (or can, or clod, or cow pie, or pine cone, etc) shooting. Go walk around in the woods where you will be hunting and just shoot arrows at whatever targets you see that won't wreck or lose your arrows. Take a moment before each shot to really look at the target and everything that's between you and it, and if it's uphill or downhill, make a guess at the range, and then shoot. With sights you will probably be able to learn the skill easier.

    I'm sure that a range finder will work great, but it's just another piece of gear to carry and maintain. If you are sitting in a tree stand or a blind, then the range finder isn't such a hassle. But walking around carrying a bow and arrow, and having to mess with a range finder for shots isn't going to work very well unless you get one that attaches to your bow.
     

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