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eyepatrol

Bow Hunting - What Does It Take?

49 posts in this topic

Reading a lot of posts/stories and seeing a lot of nice bow hunt buck pictures, I feel like I'm really missing out on something here. With the way I hunt with my relatives, it is likely I'll never have a chance at a big buck. I want to change that! And there seems to be something about bow hunting....tranquility and all that I'm missing out on.

So, when it comes to equipment, what would be a good bow, good arrows, etc. to buy for someone like myself who has never bow hunted before? How much would a good bow cost? How many arrows should one get and what do they cost?

I also assume that practice is key, and lots of it. Do you buy practice arrows or use the ones you plan to hunt with?

There is probably a lot more involved than the questions I'm asking, but generally speaking I'm wondering what equipment it takes to get started. I also know from reading posts that it takes time and effort to scout out some areas, plan the placement of the deer stand, etc. And I'm sure I'll have questions sometime in the future about that too. But one step at a time for now. smirk.gif

With my kids getting older and more independent, year after year I'll have more time to spend towards bow hunting. Obviously I won't be bow hunting until next year, and I'd be willing to bet it takes a good year to practice and be ready. As for hunting land, I think I can line up a couple decent places for that. wink.gif

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Eric

The first thing I might do is go to a good archery shop and ask them alot of questions in regards to equipment,new and used.As far as arrows,I usually by them by the dozen and the ones I use will run approx 140.00.Then you have the broadheads and depending on what you buy it will run you from 20-40 dollars for 3.

As far as brand names of bows you will get as many different brands as answers.Any good pro-shop will be able to steer you in the right direction.

One shop you could call would be Cabin Fever Sporting Goods and talk with Jeff.He will steer you in the right direction.

Many times people have started to get into archery and have ended up with arrows fletched wrong,bows that didnt fit the hunter and such,and a good shop will prevent that from happenning.

You will also need a target and numerous other assc. for the bow such as sights,arrow rest,quiver and sight.These items can also run into some money.

I would say that you might want to try some very good equipment to start with and find out if this is what you want to do.Then again,if you buy to cheap of stuff and you dont shoot well you wont have any fun either.

I cannot put a dollar amount on how much to get started as I dont know just how good of stuff you are thinking about or what your budget is.

Like I said above,give Jeff a call and he can lead you in the right direction after you explain what you would like.

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we would love to help you here, but like Harv says, in person is so much better. Archery can get expensive, but you cna go the affordable way as well. The most important thing is to have the bow fit you. A lot of companies out there make a great product. Hoty, Martin, Bowtec, Mathews, PSE are probably the top brands, but not nessisarily in that order.

Arrows, rests, sights,ect can be cheep or expensive! I think the arrows I shoot are about $140 a doz like Harv says as well.

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Eric

Just to give you a little idea of new stuff,Here is what I paid a few years back.

The bow was approx 600.00 and the extras about the same.

So the total package was 1200.00 for the bow,assc.,and the arrows.Know,that is a Mathews bow with pretty good extras,but not the best.My son spent 1600 for all his new stuff 2 years ago.

I started my son out with a 300 dollar set up and some of my arrows to get him going cheap to see if he liked it.Now he is a gung ho archer and could care less about gun hunting.

The prices I gave you can still vary greatly both ways depending alot on the assc, and the carbo arrows or the cheaper Alum. arrows.

If you want to talk in person Eric,give me a call and we can go over everything in regards to getting you started right without buying the wrong stuff and yet not breaking the bank.

507-964-2773-home

320-510-1650-cell

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I was in the same boat as you are now last year. But, you are asking the right people. I have talked to Harvey a couple times and have given me good advise. Practice, practice and more practice is a very huge key to your success. I purchased a used MQ1 off one of the sites and upgraded the sight, arrows, trigger, 2 ladder stands and a few other odds and ends and I think I have $800.00 or so into it but the big picture is not about the money, its time in the woods and enjoying nature. I agree with Havey on Cabin Fever but living in Waconia, it was a pretty easy pick on going with them and Jeff is a very nice guy!! Good luck and ask away, these guys all offer something that you can use down the road and if you have not done this, go back to when they started posting the tips and read them over the winter and when the 2007 season you will be ready!!

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I just got into bowhunting this year. I bought a bowtec tomkat package. The bow package, arrows(about 150/doz), broadheads, target, release, case, a couple tree stands and a couple of ground blinds. The total for all was about 1800. If you already have a couple stands you can take that cost off the price.

I would definetly suggest going to a shop and shooting a few bows. Make sure they adjust the draw length to fit you and shoot a couple of different brands to see if one feels better in your hand. If you ever get up around the Minnewaska area there is a dealer by Glenwood that I would definetly stop and check out. That is where I bought mine from and he was very helpful and knowledgable about bows and bowhunting.

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Thanks for all the helpful insight folks. This is going to be a completely new experience for me so I'm very much in the dark about all of it. I'm sure I'll have plenty of "dumb" questions to ask along with some better ones. smirk.gif

Tom, thanks for the offer...I'll probably give you a ring or e-mail from time to time on some things. This guy Jeff and the place he's at, sounds like it might be in Waconia? I'm thinking of starting off the way you started your son off...get a bow in the $300 - $400 range (new or used) and set myself up with some better equipment such as arrows, sites, what have you. Heck, I don't even know what goes on a bow! blush.gif I'll have to get some targets too and start practicing. The shooting range just 1/2mi from me will be very convenient and will come in handy. I don't have $800 - $1200 to dish out all at once, but over the course of the upcoming months I'll be able to get what it takes. I just hope someone makes a stand that can hold a hefty guy like myself! smirk.gif

Thanks everyone again for starting things off. I'm very busy through Thanksgiving, but after that I'll head to the sports store and start testing things out.

In the meantime, if anyone else has info to share I'd appreciate it. I'm taking notes already! grin.gif

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Once you get into a proshop, they can tell you what your draw length is... There are guys that get a new bow every year, and sell there 1 year old stuff off at 1/2 price. You can get a pretty decent bow in your price range that way.

again, feel free to ask questions.. To be honest, there are a ton of people in your position that are reading this and thinking the same questions you are asking.. so we are helping you and many others with each question!

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With this being my first year as well I am not sure of this but I would think that as bowhunting season comes to a close you might be able to find some good deals on bowhunting equipment as stores are trying to unload it vs. storing it for a year.

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Definitely a possibility I'll look into.

Okay, dumb question number one....are bows made with a certain draw poundage? i.e. - 40lb bow, 50lb bow, etc? If so, what would be the best to use for a greeny like myself?

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Eric they come in all types of weight and can be changed on each bow.I like to shoot around 50 pounds as when it gets cold and you have been sitting in a tree for a extended period of time,it is hard to pull back.

Now,when I went to Montana to hunt Elk,I shot around 70 pounds to get a longer flatter shot.Each hunting situation calls for a different weight.The majority of the time I shoot 50 pounds.

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Most bows are adjustable. Mine goes up to 60lbs but right now is set around 53-55lbs. Minimum lbs in MN is 40 to hunt deer. I was told as long as it is 50+ you shouldn't have a problem dropping deer. Mine is pretty easy to draw back, I was going to get it turned up some but haven't made it up to the store lately.

You should ask someone with more experience for what you should get, but most people I know have bows with a max in the 60-70lbs range.

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Good to know. Years back I had a friend that bow hunted and I believe you had to buy a bow at a certain poundage. Obviously the technology has come a long way since then. smirk.gif

Do you guys put those "fuzzy" things (for lack of the correct term) on the string of your bow? I think they're things that help silence the sound of the bow when shot? Also, do you use those clips or grips to clamp onto the bow to pull back?

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Eric

The fuzzy things are silencers and today they do make better ones but some still do use the ones you are talking about.

The clips or grips you are talking about I believe is what they call release aids.It helps you get a perfect release or a more uniform release every shot.I know many who use them and then some that also dont.

Personally I love my release and have been using one for 10-12 years.

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Thanks Tom. And for the sights, are there a number of sights on a bow that are different colors, for shooting range/distance variations? Just trying to get an understanding of the equipment here. smirk.gif

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There are a ton of sights and makers.I have shot many different ones and next year I am going back to a pendelum sight.

Some sights come with 3-5 distance pins so you can sight your bow in for say 20,30 AND 40 yards.I really like the 1 pin sights.

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I'll have to look into that a bit. Not ever bow hunting before, I'm not sure what I'd prefer. I have shot a bow before, but that was part of my college phy-ed course. smirk.gif Beyond that, I've really never shot a bow.

I'm pretty excited about this whole thing of bow hunting. I think it would be fun to be out there and watch nature in it's natural setting, plus have the chance to take a deer with a bow! Just a bonus IMO. I gotta talk to my brother's brother-in-law about hunting his piece of land. My brother saw a couple of nice 8 - 10 pointers out there Saturday just roaming around. If they make it through the season, they should be real nice size next year. There's a couple other places I need to look into also, one of which is my co-worker's dad's place east of Grand Rapids. Sounds like they've had some 10 - 12 pointers roaming around their woods this year. Would be awesome to get one or both of those places worked out. wink.gif

One thing is for certain....I'm asking for cash for Christmas this year. grin.gif

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Starting out cheap isn't a bad idea either. I have not read if anyone touched on this yet. If you start out cheap you will learn to appreciate the equipment and feel of higher grade bows, and heaven forbid if bow hunting isn't for you, ( this does happen), you will not have blown your recreational budget. I started a couple years ago with some no name long bow from the 50's, and a set of arrows almost as old. I had a blast practicing, and hunting. This year I got a newer, but used take down recurve for about as much as a lot of guys spend on arrows alone, and it is great. A lot of people spend alot of money on these things, in my opinion much more than they are worth, and if you have the money that is great, but a 50$ pawnshop bow and 60$ in arrows and broadheads can do the job. So just keep your budget and expectations in mind.

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i would go onto the cabelas web page and have them send u there archary catalog (free) and just skim through it to get an idea of prices and whats all involved as for sights,rests, arrows, bows,releases, and pretty much everything else u might need, also look into the redhead (bassproshops) catalog those two should give u a fair amount of info as to what u need and compare brands

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Basscatcher- It looks like Harvey Lee did a good job of keeping up with your questions last night. Keep em coming as you think of them. One off our fine memebers will get to it for sure.

I can tell just by your posts you are going to be hooked on bowhunting. Everything about it can be a ton of fun, from the long hours of practice, to buying all the new toys, to the cammo(one of my fave).

Theres been a lot of good advise on this thread so far.

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Eric, congrats on your desire to become an archer. I have been bow hunting for 15 to 20 years now and over those years I have lost nearly all desire for hunting deer by firearms because the challenges of bow hunting are so rewarding in the end. As you can see by these post the cost can be extremely high depending on what you buy. When I first started and not know whether or not I would enjoy the sport, I took the cheaper route in buying a starter package from Cabelas. Most of the products marketed under the Cabelas name are the same as you buy elsewhere with a brand name. My first from Cabelas was actually made by Browning and some of the Cabelas carbon arrows are made by Beman. They have a shooting range at the Owatona store so I'm sure they would be happy to show you some options. Good luck in your purchase and your hunting experience.

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Camo camo camo!!! I need a big shopping spree for camo, not just for bow hunting but for waterfowl too. wink.gif

Although....by taking up bow hunting, will I even be waterfowl hunting anymore??? shocked.gif

To bow hunt or to waterfowl hunt....that is the question.

The answer....BOTH! grin.gif

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Thanks eagle. Although I'm not going to start off with a $600 or $800 bow and gold plated arrows from Fort Knox, I will get something decent to get me going. smirk.gif For me there are three trains of thought: 1) Start out cheap in case I don't like it and 2) Get the best equipment because poor equipment might shun me away from enjoying the sport. I'm going with Option 3 which is right down the middle. wink.gif

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As far as camo you dont have to buy the best scent lock our there.Just alwaysd play the wind right and that will help you out more than anything.Rubber boots and other cheap items like that go a long ways in scent control.

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Quote:

As far as camo you dont have to buy the best scent lock our there.Just alwaysd play the wind right and that will help you out more than anything


Well said brother harv- to be honest, you can be the most safe dude out there, but you can never cover up your breath and you cant cover your entire body. Play the wind and do your best, and HAVE FUN while doing it.

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