Compound Bow – The compound bow was developed in the 1960s to improve the function of the recurve bow. Utilizing a system of cables and pulleys, cams, wheels and limbs, a compound bow can be held at full draw much easier than a long bow or recurve bow. Hunters are attracted to compound bows for its ability to hold at full draw for an extended time period along with the ability to shoot an accurate and fast arrow. A compound bow will typically measure between 33 and 48 inches.
A compound bow is simply a machine that stores energy, supplied by the shooter, then releases that energy into an arrow. However, you can’t get more energy out of the bow than you put in. No amount of high-tech engineering can change that fact. So if you choose a bow that takes a huge amount of effort to draw back, you may find that the bow is not very enjoyable to shoot in spite of the gains in arrow velocity.
When you pull the string of a compound bow, the limbs of the bow are squeezed inward. The energy you supplied to draw the bow is stored in the limbs, as potential energy, until you release the string. Upon release, the potential energy is transferred into the arrow as kinetic energy, as the limbs “spring” back into place returning the string to its original position. This process of storing and releasing energy is what gives a compound bow its performance characteristics, and it is something you should consider when selecting your new bow. There are two factors that determine how much “power” your bow will have: the amount of energy that can be stored in the limbs during the draw stroke and the amount of that potential energy that can be successfully transferred into the arrow upon release (efficiency).
There are several considerations in selecting a compound bow. The very critical considerations include: brace height and proper fit. Very important considerations include: axle-to-axle length, cam aggression, let-off choices and recoil (parallel limbs). Somewhat important consideration include: cam type and power/speed. Minor considerations include: brand name and limb type (split/solid). To get a bow with a certain set of characteristics, you’ll likely have to sacrifice some others. Ultimately, you’ll have to decide which characteristics are most important to you when selecting the best compound bow.
Here are some other compound bows to consider.