Lancaster Archery Academy October-November Newsletter

Fall is here, which means it’s time for indoor archery season!

You thought I was going to say it’s hunting season. Well, it is hunting season, but it’s also time to shake the rust off your indoor archery game.

Come on out  and get started! At Lancaster Archery Academy, we look forward to spending time with archers of all ages and skill levels.


Check out the list of activities we’ve got on tap for October and November.


We’ve got multiple, 6-week classes starting soon in our Experience ArcheryIntermediate Archery and Introduction to Competitive Archery courses. Listed below are the start dates and class times. Unless specified, classes are open to all archers age 6 and older. Call (717) 556-1379 for information on any of the activities listed below.

EXPERIENCE ARCHERY – ALL AGES:  Oct. 6 and Nov. 24, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; Oct. 31, 5-6 p.m.

INTERMEDIATE ARCHERY: Sept. 19 and Oct. 8; 5-6 p.m.; Oct. 31, 6:30-7:30 p.m.; Oct. 6 and Nov. 24, 10-11 a.m.



FALL HARVEST ARCHERY TOURNAMENT: Come to our first indoor Star/FITA tournament of the season; 60 arrows; World Archery/USA Archery rules apply. Register here.

DICK TONE AND JAY BARRS RECURVE SEMINAR: Nov. 9-11. Come for three days of advanced instruction from an Olympic gold medalist – Jay Barrs – and his coach – Dick Tone. This is for intermediate and advanced recurve archers, age 11 and up. Register here.

WILDE SHOTS COMPOUND SEMINAR: Dec. 7-9. Brothers Reo and Logan Wilde are two of the best compound archers in the U.S., with many titles and records to their names. Archers age 11 and up can come for three days of advanced instruction from these brothers – and have a good time doing it! Register here.

COFFEE CLUB: Join us every Friday morning at 9 a.m. to eat donuts, drink coffee and shoot your bow.

The 2019 Lancaster Archery Classic Registration is Open

Registration is now open for the 2019 Lancaster Archery Classic, scheduled for Jan. 25-27 at the Spooky Nook Sports Complex in Manheim, Pa.


And while it might not seem possible for the East Coast’s largest indoor archery tournament to get even bigger, the 2019 event promises just that. The 2017 Classic was the first at the massive Spooky Nook complex, which features 17 acres under roof, and it drew a record 1,100 archers from 13 countries. But there’s plenty of room for many more archers.

The 1,600-plus archers expected to enter the 2019 Classic will compete in 15 divisions for over $300,000 in prize and contingency money, including the top payout of $20,000 for the Open Pro champion. That’s a $5,000 increase over last year’s top prize.

You’ll also notice the division is now called “Open Pro,” rather than “Men’s Open Pro.” That’s because the Open Pro class is open to both men and women.

Payouts for the 2019 Classic are being increased in several other divisions as well. Following substantial increases last year, prize money in some recurve divisions is being hiked again. The Barebow and Men’s Recurve champions each will take home tournament checks for $6,000 – up from $5,000 last year. That’s almost unheard of in competitive recurve archery. The Women’s Recurve champion will earn $3,000 – up from $2,500.


The other top finishers in these three recurve divisions also will see increases in cash awards. In Men’s Recurve and Barebow, second- third- and fourth-place archers will be awarded $2,500, $1,500 and $750 respectively. For fifth-eighth place in Men’s Recurve, the payout is $350 per archer, while ninth-16th place finishers each will win $250.

In Women’s Recurve, the runner up will receive $1,500; third-place finisher, $1,000; fourth-place finisher, $500; and $250 will be paid to each of the fifth-eighth-place finishers.


Besides the prize money, the first-through-third-place Barebow archers also will receive special barebow trophies, following a practice that was started at the 2018 Classic. Similarly, the top-three female barebow finishers – who compete against the men in the combined division – will again receive $750, $250 and $150, respectively, plus special trophies.

Fifth-eighth-place Barebow division archers each will win $300, while ninth-16th will earn $200 apiece, and 17th-32nd will each take home $15o. That’s’ a deeper payout than Barebow archers ever have received before at the Classic. It’s a recognition of their enthusiasm for, and commitment to, recurve barebow archery, which Lancaster Archery Supply avidly supports.

The number of Barebow division archers in 2018 – 125 – was basically double the number that competed the year before. And, as has been the case the past two years, the video of the Barebow Division Finals at the 2018 Classic has by far been the most viewed of all the division finals videos on the LAS YouTube Channel. The Barebow video has been viewed over 175,000 times since it was posted in late January – more than three times the number of views garnered by the Men’s Open Pro and Women’s Open Pro finals videos combined.

Other increased payouts for 2019 are as follows:

Open Pro: second place – $7,500; third place – $5,000; fourth – $2,500.

Women’s Open Pro and Masters Open Pro: first – $4,000; second – $2,000; third – $1,250; fourth – $1,000.


Youth Male Open: first – $2,000; second – $1,000; third – $600; fourth – $350; fifth-eighth – $250; and ninth-16th – $150.

All other payouts that were in place for the 2018 Classic, remain the same for 2019.

To accommodate the increased Open Pro payouts, the registration fee for that class is being raised a bit for 2019. The discounted, early-registration fee is $350 for Open Pro archers who register before Dec. 30. After Dec. 30, that fee rises to $400. All other registration fees for 2019 will mirror 2018.

A wildly successful addition to the 2018 Classic that will return in 2019 is the Easton Youth Trophy Tournament. This is a special, one-day competition for archers under the age of 21, that affords the opportunity to experience a world-class tournament, such as the Classic, but for a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the time commitment.


The Easton Youth Trophy Tournament will be a 60-arrow competition scheduled for 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 26. We’ve expanded the shooting area, so there will be room for 540 archers this year – nearly double last year’s field.

Archers will be separated into four age divisions for competition – Bowman, age 12 and under; Cub, age 13 and 14; Cadet, age 15-17; and Junior, age 18-20. Archers should register in the appropriate division based on their ages as of Jan. 25, 2019. There will be both male and female classes for each division. Champions in each division – determined by score in the 60-arrow round – will receive trophies, with medals going to each of the top three finishers.

Easton Youth Trophy Tournament archers are not excluded from the Classic. They can shoot in both tournaments if they want. Just be aware, the Classic finals might overlap with the Easton Youth Trophy Tournament – especially the Classic’s Youth Male Recurve finals, which are scheduled to begin at 3:40 p.m. on Saturday.

Due to growth in the competition fields, more archers in both the Women’s Open and Bowhunter divisions will have the chance to shoot their way into the 2019 Classic finals. While the eliminations field for these two divisions used to consist of the top 16 archers, the top 32 will qualify at the 2019 Classic.


That’s critical under the Classic format. If you can make it to the elimination rounds, you’ve got a real chance to win your division. That’s one of the things archers love most about the Classic.

Imperfection does not necessarily mean you’re out of the Classic. All you have to do is shoot well enough in the 60-arrow qualifying round to make the cut to advance to eliminations. In that part of the competition, you’ll shoot a 12-arrow, head-to-head match against another qualifier. Win, and you advance.

If you can win enough matches to make it past the finals cut-off for your division, you can shoot your way to victory. Let’s say you finish the qualification round and elimination matches ranked eighth in your division. And let’s say that division takes the top eight archers for the finals shoot ups.


As the No. 8 archer, you would start the finals by shooting a head-to-head match against the No. 7 archer. The winner of that match takes on the No. 6 archer. This process continues until someone shoots a match against the No. 1 archer for the division championship title, lots of cash and a well-deserved place in LAS Classic history. So in a division that advances 64 archers to elimination matches, it is entirely possible for the archer that shot the 64th best qualification score to win his or her division.

Aside from these changes, improvements and additions, archers can count on the usual, world-renowned, top-shelf Classic experience at the 2019 event. You’ll be treated like royalty from the moment you walk through the front doors of Spooky Nook. The entire LAS crew on site is there to serve you.

We’ve got an on-site practice facility, which will be available for an additional fee of $10, if purchased before the event, or $15 on site. Or, you can practice for free at the LAS Pro Shop, which is 15 minutes away from Spooky Nook. A shuttle will ferry people from Spooky Nook to the Pro Shop regularly during the tournament.


When you’re shooting your qualification round, you’ll be shoulder to shoulder with the best archers in the world. Archers and archery fans can meet a selection of the top pros and Olympians for photos and autographs during a “meet and greet” event scheduled for Saturday. Our sponsoring equipment manufacturers will have over 40 booths set up to show you the latest and greatest target archery gear.

Sign up now. We hope to see you at Spooky Nook in January!

Competitive Barebow Archery Continues to Expand

A push to promote recurve barebow archery at the 2018 Lancaster Archery Classic seems to be spreading across the globe.

World Archery, National Field Archery Association and Archery Shooters Association all recently announced new opportunities for recurve barebow archers at 2018-19 tournaments.


World Archery on Sept. 15 opened entries for its 2018 Indoor Archery World Series events. This is a series of six indoor, 18-meter tournaments held in different locations around the world in late 2018 and early 2019.

Formerly known as World Cup tournaments, these competitions previously required archers to be part of a national team in order to enter. World Archery has changed that rule this year to allow any archer to enter, and at least one of the competitions will feature recurve barebow classes. None of the events previously had barebow divisions.

The Roma Trophy tournament, scheduled for Dec. 14-16 in Rome, has competition classes for recurve barebow archers. Barebow archers are hoping the same classes will be added to the World Series event attached to The Vegas Shoot, though they had not as of late September.


Run by NFAA, The Vegas Shoot Feb. 8-10 in Las Vegas will feature for the first time Recurve Barebow Flights. Rules for that division will mirror World Archery’s barebow guidelines.

NFAA has always had Championship Barebow at The Vegas Shoot, but that barebow division differs from World Archery barebow in that the bows that are allowed can be recurve or compound, and the use of stabilizers and draw checks are permitted. A draw check is a device that allows an archer to know exactly how far they have drawn their bow in order to release arrows from a consistent point in the draw cycle.

World Archery barebow is limited to recurve bows that must fit through a narrow ring, which basically eliminates the use of stabilizers, but does allow for additional weights to be added to the riser. Draw checks cannot be used in World Archery barebow competitions.


Neither organization allows the use of sights in its barebow divisions.

ASA has added two new classes to its slate of competition divisions – Barebow Recurve and Olympic Recurve. Both follow the USA Archery rules for these classes – which mirror World Archery’s – to support the participation of USA Archery college teams in 3-D tournaments. The move also facilitates the International 3-D Championship qualifying event that will be part of the ASA Kentucky Pro/AM scheduled for June 20-23, 2019.

All of these new recurve barebow opportunities follow changes made to the barebow division at the 2018 Lancaster Archery Classic. After noticing an exciting growth in interest in recurve barebow archery, Classic organizers increased the prize money and added new trophies awarded to archers competing in the barebow division at the 2018 event. They also changed the equipment rules so that the Classic barebow rules mirror World Archery’s.

With the tournament changes in place, registration among barebow archers doubled from the 2017 Classic to 2018.


TradTech brings home the Hardware at 2018 World Archery Field Championships

TradTech Archery had a great showing recently at the 2018 World Archery Field Championships in Cortina, Italy, with the Tradtech RC Carbon Wood limbs helping archers bring home two silver medals.


The World Archery Field Championships is a prestigious tournament that’s only held every two years, and is only open to a limited number of the best field archers in the world.

Competing in her first international field archery tournament, American Fawn Girard won the silver medal in Women’s Barebow, using her RC Carbon Wood limbs.


Fawn Girard with her silver medal

Girard was the top-ranked American woman heading into the competition. Her qualification score at the championships also was tops among American women, and seeded her sixth overall for the elimination matches.

As the No. 6 seed, Girard automatically advanced to the fourth round, where she won in a shoot off against Italian Eleonore Strobbe – a four-time medalist and 2010 World Field champion. She then beat Stine Asell from Sweden in the quarterfinals, followed by Italian Cinzia Noziglia in the semifinals, which earned Girard a spot in the gold medal match.


Fawn Girard, left, competes in Cortina, Italy.

In that final match, Girard and Lina Bjorklund – the 2012 and 2014 champion and 2016 bronze medalist – finished in a tie, before Bjorklund won the gold medal in a shoot off, earning Girard the silver medal.

Jenifer Stoner was the second-highest finishing American woman in Cortina, and she also competed with TradTech RC Extreme limbs.

John Demmer III entered the championships as the top-ranked American in Men’s Barebow. After qualifications using his RC Carbon Wood limbs, he was the top-seeded American and was seeded third overall. That seeding earned him an automatic advance to the fourth round of elimination matches, where he defeated fellow American John Dillinger. Demmer then was knocked out of the competition in the quarterfinals by Sweden’s Lundmark Fredrik, who eventually won the bronze medal.

Demmer won a silver medal, however, as a member of the American Men’s Team. The Team round features the top compound, Olympic recurve and barebow archers from each nation. Demmer was the American barebow archer teamed with compound archer Steve Anderson and recurve archer Brady Ellison.


John Demmer competes in the team round

The American team beat Slovenia in the first round and Italy in the semifinals, before losing to Germany in the gold medal match, which earned the team members silver medals.

A division of Lancaster Archery Supply, TradTech Archery produces a series of traditional archery products for bowhunting, competitive shooting and recreation.

Lancaster Archery Academy September-October Newsletter

The fall bowhunting seasons are upon us.

Many archers have traded field points for broadheads and shooter jerseys for camo.

But not all of us. Some of us never really get out of the target mode, and so we need to find others like us.

At Lancaster Archery Academy, you can always find some paper punchers hanging around.


Check out the list of activities we’ve got on tap for September and October.


We’ve got multiple, 6-week classes starting soon in our Experience ArcheryIntermediate Archery and Introduction to Competitive Archery courses. Listed below are the start dates and class times. Unless specified, classes are open to all archers age 6 and older. Call (717) 556-1379 for information on any of the activities listed below.

EXPERIENCE ARCHERY – ALL AGES:  Sept. 19 and Oct. 8, 6:30-7:30 p.m.; Oct. 6, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; Oct. 31, 5-6 p.m.

INTERMEDIATE ARCHERY: Sept. 19 and Oct. 8, 5-6 p.m.; Oct. 6, 10-11 a.m.;  Oct. 31, 6:30-7:30 p.m.

FALL INDOOR TARGET LEAGUE: 10-week league begins Sept. 26. LAS-Classic style scoring; 30 arrows per week. Register here.

FALL HARVEST TOURNAMENT:  Oct. 20-21. World Archery/USA Archery rules apply for this 60-arrow Star FITA competition. Register here.


USA ARCHERY JUDGES COURSE: Sept. 29-30. Earn your Certified Judge and National Judge certifications so you can judge USA Archery competitions. Registration and other details can be found here.

LEVEL 2 COACH CERTIFICATION COURSE: Oct. 26-27. Earn your Level 2 certification to work with programs including JOAD, NASP and collegiate and local clubs. Register here.

COFFEE CLUB: Join us every Friday morning at 9 a.m. to eat donuts, drink coffee and shoot your bow.

Lancaster Archery Academy August Newsletter

It’s the dog days of summer, and the weather is perfect for slinging arrows.

If you’ve never shot a bow before, come by and see us.

If you’ve been shooting your whole life, come by and see us.

At Lancaster Archery Academy, we look forward to spending time with archers of all ages and skill levels.


Check out the list of activities we’ve got on tap for August.


We’ve got multiple, 6-week classes starting soon in our Experience ArcheryIntermediate Archery and Introduction to Competitive Archery courses. Listed below are the start dates and class times. Unless specified, classes are open to all archers age 6 and older. Call (717) 556-1379 for information on any of the activities listed below.

EXPERIENCE ARCHERY – ALL AGES:  Aug. 8 and Aug. 20, 5-6 p.m.; Aug. 25, 8:30-9:30 a.m.

INTERMEDIATE ARCHERY: Aug. 8 and Aug. 20, 6:30-7:30 p.m.; Aug. 25, 10-11 a.m.


LEVEL 3 NTS COACH CERTIFICATION: July 27-29. This is for USA Archery-certified coaches looking to advance to Level 3 under the National Training System. Register here.

LEVEL 2 NTS COACH CERTIFICATION:  Aug. 3-4. This is for USA Archery-certified coaches looking to advance to Level 2 under the National Training System. Register here.



BOWHUNTER’S EXTRAVAGANZA: Aug. 17-18. This is our biggest Pro Shop sales event of the year, with deals on just about everything in stock. Don’t miss it! Special store hours are 9 a.m.-9 p.m. on Aug. 17, and 8 a.m.-5 p.m. on Aug. 18.

COFFEE CLUB: Join us every Friday morning at 9 a.m. to eat donuts, drink coffee and shoot your bow.

Using a verifier to bring fuzzy archery sight pins into focus

A verifier could be the cure for your fuzzy sight pins.

What’s a verifier?


It’s a tiny lens that goes into your peep sight, and is intended to help people who have difficulty primarily seeing their sight pins. The target typically isn’t a problem. It’s the pins. In other words, people who have trouble focusing on close objects.


Shown here is a threaded peep at top, a verifier lens in the middle and the tool for screwing the verifier into the peep at bottom.

If you have trouble seeing the target using a lens in your scope housing, then you might opt for a clarifier.

Archers often confuse the two lenses, and so the easy way to remember them is that clarifiers help clear up your sight picture, while verifiers help clear up your sight pins. A clarifier is typically used in conjunction with a scope lens, while a verifier is not.

Specialty Archery is the primary manufacturer of verifiers. They offer six, which are numbered from 4-9. The lower the number, the weaker the verifier.


Verifiers are made as inserts for 1/8, ¼ and 5/16 inch, threaded peep housings. You simply screw the appropriate size verifier into the matching peep.

When trying to pick a verifier, try several different ones so you get a sense of what looks right and what looks wrong. The most common ones used are 4, 5 and 6.


Generally, if the pins look good, but the target gets blurry, the verifier is too strong. If the target is clear, but the pins are blurry, the verifier is likely too weak.



If you wear reading glasses, one way to find a starting point is to follow this chart:

No.4 verifier = 1.0 reading glasses or weaker

No. 5 verifier = 1.25 reading glasses

No. 6 verifier = 1.27-1.75 reading glasses

No. 7 verifier = 1.75-2.0 reading glasses

No. 8 verifier = 2.0-2.5 reading glasses

No. 9 verifier = 2.5 reading glasses or higher

The perfect scenario is to have clear pins and a clear target.

Understand that increasing and shrinking your peep size can affect the clarity of a given verifier. Shrinking the aperture reduces the stream of light that reaches your eye, increasing your depth of field, which brings objects into focus.

So it’s possible the No. 4 verifier doesn’t quite work for you in a ¼-inch peep, but shrink the aperture to 1/8 inches and things might clear up.

If you’re not sure what you need, go to your local pro shop and try different verifiers to figure out which works for you.

Field Archery: What You Need to Know

Field archery is considered by many archers to be one of the most challenging and enjoyable archery formats out there.

It’s been dubbed “archery golf,” because it requires an archer to navigate an outdoor course, featuring shots at targets set at varying distances.

field 1

The target sizes also vary, with smaller target faces being shot at shorter distances and larger ones at longer distances.

Since the course is outside, archers have to deal with weather, changing light conditions if the course moves from open fields to woods, and potentially uphill and downhill shot angles, depending on the course terrain.

Field archers shoot a lot of arrows during a typical round. Where a 28-target 3-D course would require 28 shots, a 28-target field round might require shooting 112 arrows – four per target – depending on the format.

field 2

Speaking of format, there are two basic types of field archery in the U.S. – World Archery and National Field Archery Association (NFAA).

The World Archery format, which is employed at all USA Archery field events, consists of shooting 48 targets over two days – 24 per day. On one day, the target distances are unknown, requiring barebow archers to shoot from 5-45 meters, and compound and Olympic recurve archers to shoot 10-55 meters. Target faces are either 20, 40, 60 or 80 cm. Scoring rings are worth 1-6 points.

field 4

Here are the 20cm, 40cm and 60cm World Archery field faces.

The second day of competition involves shooting at targets set at marked distances anywhere from 5-50 meters or 10-60 meters for the three respective classes of archers, which are broken up into several age categories.

For the USA Archery National Field Championships, the top three, two-day scores are rewarded with medals. In even years, when there’s a World Archery Field Championship, USA Archery picks the top eight archers after two days of scoring. Those archers shoot an additional 12 targets, and the top three finishers are selected to represent the U.S. at the world championships.

Under the NFAA format, archers shoot a 14-target course twice. Two types of NFAA rounds require shooting four arrows at each target face, which vary in size among 20, 35, 50 and 65 cm. Scoring rings are worth 3-5 points. The third type requires a varying number of shots at 2-D animal targets of varying sizes. Shot distances to targets in all three types of rounds are known.

The field round requires archers to shoot at distances ending in either 0 or 5, from 20 feet to 80 yards for adults and young adults – 50 yards max for youth archers and 30 yards max for cubs. The field target faces feature a black center, surrounded by two white scoring rings and then two outer black scoring rings.

The hunter round requires archers to shoot at odd-number distances from 11-70 yards. Hunter target faces feature a white center, surrounded by black scoring rings.

field 5

A selection of NFAA field and hunter target faces.

NFAA sometimes holds field events, where archers shoot two, 14-target field rounds; hunter events, where archers shoot two, 14-target hunter rounds; or field/hunter events, where archers shoot one 14-target round of each type.

In the NFAA animal round, a course of 14 paper animal targets is set, with archers shooting 10-60 yards. Archers shoot up to three arrows at each target until they hit a scoring ring. If the first arrow hits a scoring ring, then the archer shoots no more.

field 8

Here’s a selection of NFAA animal round targets.

Each target features a center bonus dot worth the most points, a large scoring ring surrounding the dot that’s worth the second-most points, and a larger ring surrounding that one that’s worth the least points. Scoring per target varies from 10-21 points depending on where the arrow hits, and how many arrows it takes to hit a scoring ring.

NFAA has many competition classes for archers using compound bows, recurves and longbows. And each of those classes is broken down further by age, so that archers of similar age, shooting similar equipment, compete against one another.

At the annual NFAA Outdoor Field National Championships, competitors shoot one field round, one hunter round and one animal round. The archers with the top cumulative scores in each respective division and age class are declared the winners.

USA Archery typically holds its national championship field archery tournament in early June, while NFAA has its in late July.

Field archery events held through the spring and summer at the club level across the U.S. typically follow either the World Archery or NFAA formats.

field 6

Top Archery Gift Ideas for Dad on Father’s Day

Father’s Day is coming up fast, and you’re scrambling to find something you know Dad will love. Assuming Dad’s an archer, we’ve got you covered.

Here are nine fool-proof Father’s Day gifts for the top archer in your family.

1. OUTDOOR EDGE LAS KNIFE – Every archer needs a knife. We don’t need to go through the myriad uses here. But this one screams “archery,” with the laser-etched Lancaster Archery Supply logo in the middle of the blade. It’s got a 3.3-inch, stainless steel blade, rubberized handle and a belt clip for easy storage. Check it out here.


2. EASTON 12-PIECE PRO SHOP TOOL KIT – The name of this item says it all. It’s basically a pro shop in a pouch – wrenches, pliers, D-loop material and on and on. Dad’s probably the family bow tech as it is. Now he can have the right tools for the job. Check it out here.


3. SAGE BOW – The Sage bow is the most popular recurve bow on the market today. It’s simple, yet well built; easy to assemble, and versatile, in that there are limbs of varying weights that can be interchanged on a single riser. It’s a dream for the die-hard traditional archer or the backyard enthusiast. Check it out here.


4. QALO CLASSIC BLACK MEN’S RING – Metal wedding bands are a thing of the past for dads who love the outdoors. The Qalo is a silicone ring that can take a beating, but won’t give one back to your finger. Check it out here.


5. QALO MEN’S STEP EDGE RING – Here’s another silicone ring, but this one’s got some flare. It’s got a raised center and it’s camo, so you know Dad will stand out in a crowd with it. Check it out here.


6. VORTEX DIAMONDBACK 10×42 BINOCULARS – Trust us on this – Dad wants a pair of quality hunting optics. The Vortex Diamondback will never let him down as he’s glassing through 10-power binos, with 42mm objectives that will carry plenty of light to his eyes. Waterproof, fogproof and coated with a rubberized armor, these binoculars are built to take a beating. Check them out here.


7. SPIDER SHOT 3D TOURNAMENT SEAT – When the crowds are out, it can take a long time to shoot a 3D course. Dad’s knees and back will be aching for a break. This is the seat he’ll be glad to have with him. Not only is it incredibly comfortable, but it will hold all his gear, and it’s handy to carry. Check it out here.


8. BIG SHOT 450 X BAG TARGET – Every backyard archer needs something to shoot into. Here’s a big bag that’s built to handle high-power crossbows and compounds. With this target, Dad can shoot anywhere. Check it out here.


9. MOULTRIE A-40i PRO GAME CAMERA – Dad will never miss a buck with this camera set up in his favorite hunting spot. It’s got invisible infrared LEDs, an easy-to-use setup system, and it takes 14MP photos day and night. Check it out here.


What’s the difference between a target bow and a hunting bow?

What’s the difference between a hunting bow and a target bow?

Maybe you’ve wondered this on a recent trip to your local archery pro shop when you eyed up the selection of hunting recurve and compound bows in one area and those labeled for target archery in another.


Except for the muted colors or camo that dominates the hunting selection, versus the bright colors of the target bows, they sure look the same, right?

They are, to a certain extent. But there also are some very calculated differences. Let’s start with compound bows.

Target compounds are going to be longer than hunting compounds. Target bows commonly measure 38-40 inches from axle to axle, while hunting bows usually fall in the 28-34-inch range.


This target compound bow measures 38 inches long.

The longer bows offer an archer a better chance at precision shooting, because the string angle at full draw is not as severe as it is on a shorter bow, brace heights are often bigger 7-8 inches – and the bows tend to be very “forgiving.” A forgiving bow is one that allows an archer to make tiny mistakes in form, but keeps the arrow going where the archer wants it.

Hunting bows are built shorter so bowhunters can navigate through thick brush or hunt in the tight quarters of a ground blind or tree stand. Maneuverability and portability are the main features of hunting bows. Also, short brace heights of 5-6 inches – which are not very forgiving – help generate lots of arrow speed. Fast-shooting bows can minimize poor hits caused by animals moving before an arrow gets to them.


Hunting compound bows need to be maneuverable.

Though not always, most target compounds offer the archer the option to reduce the amount of let-off – to 60-75 percent – which increases holding weight at full draw. Many target archers like that increased holding weight because it gives them more control of their bows and it makes it easier for them to activate their release aids.

Bowhunters, on the other hand, often prefer a lot of let-off – 80-90 percent – to minimize the holding weight. A bowhunter might have to hold a bow at full draw for an extended period waiting for a game animal to offer the perfect shot opportunity. The less weight they’re holding for that period, the longer they can hold it and stay still.


Target compound bows are built for precision accuracy.

With recurve bows, you’re also likely to see target bows generally being longer than hunting models. Full target recurve bows used by adult men tend to run 66-72 inches long; women will shoot target bows 64-70 inches. Hunting recurves usually are anywhere from 50-64 inches.


A recurve bow built for target archery is long and forgiving.

Again, the difference is precision accuracy versus mobility and arrow speed. The target archer wants a long, forgiving bow with an open string angle. For recurve archers, the open string angle is more conducive to a clean release of the string drawn with fingers. The sharper string angle of a hunting recurve makes it more difficult to get a clean release, because the drawing fingers can get squeezed by the string.

But the hunter only needs to hit an area the size of a pie plate from 20 yards away or less to score a quick killing shot. The target archer might be trying to hit a 10-ring the size of a coffee can lid at 70 meters.


A recurve bow built for hunting is short, maneuverable and is very powerful.

Adult men shooting target recurves generally have bows with draw weights in the 35-50-pound range, although top competition archers will pull a little bit more. Competitive women general draw 30-45 pounds. Their sole purpose is precision accuracy in shooting at paper or 3-D targets.

Bowhunters typically use bows with 45-55 pound draw weights. Depending on the game, some states require bowhunters to use bows that draw no less than 45 pounds. The hunter’s goal is to shoot a heavy arrow with enough force to pierce hides and break bones.