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Recurve, Compound or Crossbow and Why?


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Zkight89


 The boys have gotten into archery hard. Shooting in the backyard several times a week.  In order to spend time together, I’m thinking of getting myself a bow and weighing the options.

 

  I’ve hunted with a compound in the past and never got very excited about it. I prefer to hunt deer from the ground and a compound never worked well for that use. Could find a set up left hander for a decent price. Would work well for shooting with the boys.

 

 My Wife hunts with a recurve style crossbow and I’ve shot it some. I like the platform for hunting though it isn’t that much fun to target shoot with. Prices and styles are all over the place with them....

 

I have no experience with traditional archery, but the cheaper costs, portability ( take down) and simplicity appeal to me. Would definitely be fun to shoot in the yard though much harder to hunt with. 
 

 What say you UJ big game hunters? Which is your favorite and why? Equipment suggestions encouraged...

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FWIW, I prescribe to the "Uncle Ted Methodology" of using low weight bows and aiming small and missing small.     In Maine the minimum legal weight for a hunting bow is 35 pounds and my trad

Here’s my approach to practice with heavy ( for me ) traditional bows   first thing to recognize is being exceptional at traditional shooting with no sights require a lot of focus  

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gundogpa

I do both.

 

Cheap bow to shoot with the family in the back yard. I shoot a recurve with no sights and just have fun with it. Getting the kids some archery skill is always a good thing and fun. If they are decked out and I'm shooting bare bow and I outshoot them its bragging rights. LOL

 

When I want to kill a deer I use a crossbow. It's hard to beat. A crossbow is not for plinking in the back yard, in fact you don't want to shoot it all the time like your bow. Now my daughter has a crossbow as well for hunting but we still break out the vertical bows to shoot for who does the dishes.

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I have a crossbow, never hunted with it, shot it all of 10 times maybe and got board with it so its say in a closet for 5 years. It was a cheap one and heavy, I am sure some high end models are nice. I bought a hoyt carbon matrix compound the first year they were out so its been awhile. Nice bow, served me well mostly hunting from the ground spot and stalk, if I were buying today I would likely be looking at a shorter ata length for thick cover. 

 

I got into making bows for awhile and made long bows and recurves in various native and foreign patterns, some shot well, others not, perfectly capable and taking a deer though I never did. If I decided to bow hunt this year it would be with a store bought recurve I have, or who knows maybe the hoyt, likely would practice with both and choose what I felt like that day. 

 

Recurves and instinctive shooting are the most fun in the yard. 

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Clueless1

Recurve is really fun.  Wish I had a longbow.  I don't put in the time to feel good about taking it after a deer though. 

I shoot compound mostly because that's what I've done for 40 years.  It's to the point where it's pretty much instinctive now. 

Took a crossbow out a few times when my daughter would go.  It's a cheap model that I got given to me just to get her in the woods.  There are much better crossbows out there now, but to me they just aren't fun to shoot.  (Not to mention that thing was just bulky and a pain in a treestand.) 

I grab my compound or recurve throughout the year and will throw a few arrows downrange in the driveway.  Go to a 3D shoot a couple times a year.  The crossbow just isn't that type of instrument (at least to me).  It's kinda boring.  I'd rather go to the rifle range. 

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I am fairly new to traditional bowhunting but I have hunted with a compound for close to 30 years.   

 

I bought my own little plot of land to hunt on 5 years ago, and in particular I bought the land to hand down to my kids but also, to bow hunt on. It's a long sordid story but my old hunting area is now a National Monument....and my ancestral hunting camp (on leased land), was taken from me and destroyed in that process.

 

About 3 years ago I started to think about trying traditional bowhunting and back when I was kid I had a Ben Pearson recurve so I was kinda sorta into trad archery anyway, I mean I wasn't a complete neophyte.

 

But, what pushed me over the edge to go "all in on Trad" was that a local bowyer was retiring from building bows (something about not wanting to breathe fiberglass dust and epoxy fumes anymore) and he actually lived, just up the street from me, I mean literally less than a quarter of mile up the road.

 

So I purchased one his last bows that he made.  What he made were "reflex deflex longbows", so that is what I use for trad hunting.  

 

I would look for a long bow of that design.... they are sort of hybrid design between a recurve and a longbow.

 

FWIW, I recently bought a 20 year old Bear recurve that was new and unfired but it was without the original packaging and IMHO it was a reasonable price. I haven't even played with it yet because I am hunting with the longbow.

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WPG Gizmo

If I am in a blind or tree stand then a Crossbow is what I use they have come a long way in 10 years and even more in the past 5 years a good XBow will get you speeds in the low 400's without spending a lot of money.  If I was stalk hunting then I would go with a recurve which is more for snap shooting.

 

Plenty of very good XBows out there in the 400-600 range there is no need to spend over that.

 

Just look on Cabelas and you will see plenty of choices

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Brad Eden

I’m more into practicality especially when trying to kill a large portion of protein like deer. We’ve come to depend on it. First choice for archery is a compound bow. In my case a 16 year old Mathews Outback. Since my right shoulder started going south and my dominant eye got damaged I struggle some with a peep sight and drawing a bow. So when I need to hang up the vertical bow I bought a mid range XBow (kit) after taking the course a couple years back. Wicked Ridge Invader 4 made by Ten Point. A very efficient hunting tool…I think…the rules and regs for using a XBow kept it cased mostly so I have yet to kill a deer with it…but opportunities have opened up now in Maine so I am carrying it about half the time when bow hunting. I have nothing against Trad hunting tools, but have zero interest in getting involved in that so will stay in my lane. I hope to kill a deer with the XBow this fall. We will see. 

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1 hour ago, Zkight89 said:


 The boys have gotten into archery hard. Shooting in the backyard several times a week.  In order to spend time together, I’m thinking of getting myself a bow and weighing the options.

 

  I’ve hunted with a compound in the past and never got very excited about it. I prefer to hunt deer from the ground and a compound never worked well for that use. Could find a set up left hander for a decent price. Would work well for shooting with the boys.

 

 My Wife hunts with a recurve style crossbow and I’ve shot it some. I like the platform for hunting though it isn’t that much fun to target shoot with. Prices and styles are all over the place with them....

 

I have no experience with traditional archery, but the cheaper costs, portability ( take down) and simplicity appeal to me. Would definitely be fun to shoot in the yard though much harder to hunt with. 
 

 What say you UJ big game hunters? Which is your favorite and why? Equipment suggestions encouraged...

A recurve or long bow everytime.  After all. It's archery.  

Simplicity rules for me.  

 

 

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4 minutes ago, BrentD said:

A recurve or long bow everytime.  After all. It's archery.  

Simplicity rules for me.  

 

 

 

IMG_20211006_162418353_HDR.jpg

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It's a River Raisin, a friend of mine. He makes some great bows.

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Treerooster

Crossbow for the simple reason it is more accurate and easier to be accurate with. I am a bird hunter that likes venison a dabbles in big game, prefer it over beef or pork. 

 

I do think traditional archery is cool and shooting a longbow instinctively, with skill, is a joy. I just don't have the time to dedicate to being efficient with a longbow and prefer not to have to practice all that much with a compound either. I'd rather be hunting doves, or grouse, or quail...or fishing or gardening...etc.

 

Getting my rifle or crossbow or turkey gun sighted in is more like a chore to me. Just don't enjoy it. I think it is important tho and a long or compound bow is just a lot more "work" for me. 

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OldSarge

If archery is just for fun then I think traditional gear is the way to go. If they really like it and decide to hunt deer or other game then they and you owe it to the animal to be proficient and confident in your ability to make an accurate shot for a swift kill. 
I enjoy archery in all forms. I have a takedown recurve, a self long bow that I made with Glenn St. Charles in Seattle, and three Mathews compound bows. I don’t currently have a crossbow, but want one and will probably get one soon, for fun and for hunting with my grandsons. I killed my first archery deer at age 10 and have enjoyed it ever since. I make my own arrows, do all my own tuning and repairs. If I were starting over with some young children I would go traditional gear for the sake of learning Archery, and would probably teach them how to hunt with a crossbow. A compound requires a fair amount of practice and strength to hunt with, therefore the crossbow. Many kids don’t seem to have the time or attention span to dedicate to practice, with so many other activities and distractions now. 

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In my experience once you get proficient at traditional archery it takes very little time to maintain or even regain proficiency 

 

So if it interests you give it a try the initial learning curve takes some effort  like most things worthwhile.

 

Most of the time and effort for me is maintaining the strength to comfortably shoot hunting weight bows. Weightlifting helps but you do have to shoot as well.

 

it’s a lot of fun and made out to be much more difficult than it is to learn.

 

give it a try

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4 hours ago, bobman said:

the strength to comfortably shoot hunting weight bows

FWIW, I prescribe to the "Uncle Ted Methodology" of using low weight bows and aiming small and missing small.  

 

In Maine the minimum legal weight for a hunting bow is 35 pounds and my trad bow is just a tad above that but still under 40 pounds.

 

My compound is set under 60 pounds...between 50 and 55...

 

You just have to get closer, but that is what I think is the fun part of bow hunting.  

 

The western practice of shooting across canyons at mountain goats or antelope 300 plus yards away with a rifle is a very skillful way to hunt, I ain't knocking it in the least but I have this weird desire to get really close to animals..... 

 

I have actually touched a moose and several deer...... 

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