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Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting #8483609 12/22/21 02:11 PM
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I've notice recently there is almost this antipathy towards shooting heavy poundage bows in trad archery. My current bow pulls about 54 pounds and I can aim and hold it steady for minutes. I'd like to upgrade at least 15 more pounds. I read recently that Howard Hill shot a 90 pound bow and his wife a 75 pound bow.

Any of you trad guys shoot a heavy bow? Does it increase your effective kill distance?

This is my first year with my trad bow and its been one of my best: 4 deer and 7 pigs and its really made me a better hunter. However, my effective range is a measly 15 yards. After 15 my trajectory gets really wonky with my heavy and high FOC arrow. Hoping maybe a heavier poundage bow would cure that.

So what poundage do you shoot?




Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8484629 12/23/21 12:44 PM
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I had a custom takedown longbow made years ago and I believe it is 62# and it is still comfortable to shoot but each year it feels a little more stout because i don't shoot too much anymore. I had a 90# Greevy (sp) that I bought from a bow shop back in my prime when I could lift a house up by the corner and it took me 2 days to get it strung and then it destroyed my back trying to shoot it. (Later I asked why they sold it to me so cheap ($200) they said because nobody could string it) I gave it to my brother who was quite a bit smaller than me but he did sheet metal work and raced motocross and I guess he had the right back muscles for it and he shot that bow for years. As a matter of fact he just took 1st place in his moto in Colorado at age 62 and is in great shape but he can no longer shoot it. I tried buying it from him but he won't sell it too me. haha.


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Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8484690 12/23/21 01:55 PM
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My first year shooting Trad as well, but your having a much better season than I am, I’m on my 4th miss and only 1 kill.

Here is what I’ve picked up mixed with some opinion:

People as a whole are getting softer. You can see this all across the hunting world. The 6.5cm is the new .30-06, 60 lb compounds are the new 70’s and so on and so forth. Fred Bear shot 65# bow his entire life I believe. Now people will tel you anything over 40# is un necessary.

I shoot a 55# Grizzly which at my draw length is about 48#. I recently picked up a 60# Kodiak which should be around 53-54# at my length. The Kodiak is much snappier and the trajectory much flatter than the Grizzly, which to be honest is quite slow. On the animals I’ve shot at I’ve either been under or over them, at short distance ( my max is about 17-18 yards)

From a 53# bow I wouldn’t suggest adding 15# but maybe 5 or 10# max, but a 60 or 65# bow was the norm a few generations ago.

What grain arrow are you shooting? I do believe that the archery world has gotten caught up in this extreme weight and FOC fad and that there are certainly some negatives to it.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8484931 12/23/21 05:22 PM
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I have 3 longbows for hunting, each a slightly different design. One is a Hill style or D bow, one has some R/D and the other is somewhere in between. I have had all of them made to the most I could pull and hold back comfortably for a whole minute. With wrist and shoulder injury considered, somewhere in the low 50# range is all I can manage. I figured out an arrow and anchor point that puts me right on at 20-yards and I can shoot a deer sized animal to 25-yards but that would be max under ideal conditions. Draw weight doesn't always mean a better trajectory. My bows are within 6 pounds DW but the actual velocity varies 27 feet per second. I'm no bowyer, but the energy stored and returned due to the limb design and brace height has a lot to do with the velocity. Consider all this before you jump to a higher DW with little return. Ask an experienced bowyer what style might give you the gain you are looking for.

Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8484967 12/23/21 05:56 PM
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It’s been my experience that most trad bows need 8-12 grains of arrow per pound of draw, and they tend to shoot 180-200 fps.


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Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8485593 12/24/21 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Matagorda Mud Pig
I've notice recently there is almost this antipathy towards shooting heavy poundage bows in trad archery. My current bow pulls about 54 pounds and I can aim and hold it steady for minutes. I'd like to upgrade at least 15 more pounds. I read recently that Howard Hill shot a 90 pound bow and his wife a 75 pound bow.

Any of you trad guys shoot a heavy bow? Does it increase your effective kill distance?

This is my first year with my trad bow and its been one of my best: 4 deer and 7 pigs and its really made me a better hunter. However, my effective range is a measly 15 yards. After 15 my trajectory gets really wonky with my heavy and high FOC arrow. Hoping maybe a heavier poundage bow would cure that.

So what poundage do you shoot?

Way to many variables for us to just give you a clear cut answer. But generally, two bows with approximately the same efficiency and shooting arrows the same weight in grains per pound you should get approximately the same trajectory.
That said your range limit is only limited to the bows efficiency, your ability and the animal still being there when the arrow gets there. For the vast majority of us the traditional hunting game is limited to 20 yards and under. Personally I'm happy keeping my hunting shots at 15 yards or less. If I need a longer range weapon I can use my compound or a rifle.
Some of the most deadly traditional bowhunters I know don't take any 20 plus yard shots.


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Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: txtrophy85] #8487895 12/27/21 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85


What grain arrow are you shooting? I do believe that the archery world has gotten caught up in this extreme weight and FOC fad and that there are certainly some negatives to it.


I'm shooting a 715 grain arrow, and I could drop the weight of the arrow and look for better trajectory, but I would like an arrow that can kill all big game and be done with arrow tuning. However, it seems I may need to formulate some lighter arrows for white tail and heavier arrows for moose, bear, etc.

I didn't think trad shooting would be so complicated! lol.




Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8487919 12/27/21 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Matagorda Mud Pig
Originally Posted by txtrophy85


What grain arrow are you shooting? I do believe that the archery world has gotten caught up in this extreme weight and FOC fad and that there are certainly some negatives to it.


I'm shooting a 715 grain arrow, and I could drop the weight of the arrow and look for better trajectory, but I would like an arrow that can kill all big game and be done with arrow tuning. However, it seems I may need to formulate some lighter arrows for white tail and heavier arrows for moose, bear, etc.

I didn't think trad shooting would be so complicated! lol.



10 gpp is really the rule of thumb for arrow weight....11-12 gpp is ok as well but getting heavier. You are at 13 gpp and basically throwing a log at them.

I'm not experanced enough with trad equipment yet to have alot of in the field knowledge, but as far as compound hunting goes, i killed deer with no issues shooting a 390 grain arrow at 275 fps. Blew right thru every one. Everyone is on the Ashby fad of shooting ultra heavy arrows with single bevel heads that weigh a ton, for African game that may be the ticket, but thats not needed or even recommended for whitetail. Alot of guys i know who shoot trad have gotten away from the Single Bevel heads due to poor blood trails and went back to a 3 or 4 blade head.

If you are looking for a do-all arrow you may have found it, but you are going to sacrifice distance. i would build a lighter arrow in the 10 gpp range with a 150 or 175 grain tip and use that for whitetails and pigs.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8488528 12/28/21 12:56 PM
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I shoot 540 gr arrows from my bow that at my draw length pulls 52lbs and shoot it to 30 yards but keep hunting shots to around 20 and in. Prefer shots in the 10 to 15 yard range. Still puts me in that 10-11 grains per pound and seems to work fine.


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Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: kmon11] #8488642 12/28/21 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by kmon11
I shoot 540 gr arrows from my bow that at my draw length pulls 52lbs and shoot it to 30 yards but keep hunting shots to around 20 and in. Prefer shots in the 10 to 15 yard range. Still puts me in that 10-11 grains per pound and seems to work fine.



on our small hill country deer 20 yards is a ways out there. i prefer 12-15 yards myself


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: txtrophy85] #8488687 12/28/21 04:11 PM
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[/quote]

on our small hill country deer 20 yards is a ways out there. i prefer 12-15 yards myself[/quote]

I have been really surprised how close we can get to the deer when the wind is right with elevated concealment. I think for the size of them, pigs vitals are pretty tiny as well. I want to use less holdover at 15-20 if at all possible.




Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8488710 12/28/21 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Matagorda Mud Pig


on our small hill country deer 20 yards is a ways out there. i prefer 12-15 yards myself[/quote]

I have been really surprised how close we can get to the deer when the wind is right with elevated concealment. I think for the size of them, pigs vitals are pretty tiny as well. I want to use less holdover at 15-20 if at all possible. [/quote]


I would try an arrow in the 550 grain range total overall weight


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8493225 01/02/22 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Matagorda Mud Pig
Originally Posted by txtrophy85


What grain arrow are you shooting? I do believe that the archery world has gotten caught up in this extreme weight and FOC fad and that there are certainly some negatives to it.


I'm shooting a 715 grain arrow, and I could drop the weight of the arrow and look for better trajectory, but I would like an arrow that can kill all big game and be done with arrow tuning. However, it seems I may need to formulate some lighter arrows for white tail and heavier arrows for moose, bear, etc.

I didn't think trad shooting would be so complicated! lol.

A 550 gr arrow will take elk, and moose. Actually a little lighter weight arrow will take shiras moose, I have taken one.
My spouse shoots a 55# bow and about 550-575 gr arrows. His arrow flight is great out to 21 yds in our backyard, not a lot of arch to it.
Lightened up your arrows somewhat, try a 125 gr broadhead too.
If you shot woodies I would so go to a tapered shaft.

Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8493251 01/02/22 04:23 PM
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I hadn’t read this thread until today but I started reading a little about traditional on archery talk and seriously every one was recommending starting out with a 20# bow. One dude said to shoot like 6 months then upgrade 4lbs at a time until you get up to where you want to hunt with. Wth? This dude was talking about like 9 years of shooting. Hell Boy Scouts learn on more than 20# bows. If It took everyone years and years of shooting starting with a 20# bow just to finally hunt whitetail, no one would do It. Another guy said he’d been shooting 20# for about 5 months just to learn but was still only shooting at the target from 5’. Can you imagine the monotonous torture that must be? Bunch of pansies.

On another note, wytex is female? Lol

Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: cbump] #8493349 01/02/22 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by cbump
I hadn’t read this thread until today but I started reading a little about traditional on archery talk and seriously every one was recommending starting out with a 20# bow. One dude said to shoot like 6 months then upgrade 4lbs at a time until you get up to where you want to hunt with. Wth? This dude was talking about like 9 years of shooting. Hell Boy Scouts learn on more than 20# bows. If It took everyone years and years of shooting starting with a 20# bow just to finally hunt whitetail, no one would do It. Another guy said he’d been shooting 20# for about 5 months just to learn but was still only shooting at the target from 5’. Can you imagine the monotonous torture that must be? Bunch of pansies.

On another note, wytex is female? Lol



yes......alot of guys who are into traditional archery seem to be a little light in the loafers. I was at the archery shop the other day and there was a kid in there shooting, probably early 20's. He was actually shooting very well and we started talking and he told me he got interested in archery after playing some video game and thought it would be a cool thing to pick up. From what I've seen alot of guys who shoot are like this....nerds who are looking for another hobby.


IMO, and this is just my opinion, any grown man should be able to handle a 35# bow. my daughter who is 8 shoots a 25# compound.

Like shooting a rifle, there is a balance you have to achieve with both shootability and being accurate/having good form, but you need to have some level of power. That said, my 60# is around 53-54# at my draw length and is a hell of a lot stouter than my 47-48# bow. That bow is like shooting butter.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: Matagorda Mud Pig] #8493424 01/02/22 08:27 PM
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I was thinking about a 50# bow but I have a 26” dl so I think that would be more like 40-42. Maybe even a 55#.

Re: Bias against heavy bows in Trad shooting [Re: cbump] #8493452 01/02/22 09:39 PM
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Originally Posted by cbump
I was thinking about a 50# bow but I have a 26” dl so I think that would be more like 40-42. Maybe even a 55#.


We have the same DL. I started with a 50# bow. It’s perfectly capable of taking game, I just didn’t like the bow. Next one was a 55# so it was a bit of an improvement but not much. The 60# I just got is more my style as it’s much faster than the 55#. The trajectory is quite a bit flatter.

You can go with an ILF setup to have the ability to swap limbs with extreme ease.


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