Traditional Archery Talk Trad-bows here!

Beginner's Questions

Old 12-30-2004, 09:05 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 2
Default Beginner's Questions

Hi all! I'm a 19 year old female in southern Indiana looking into traditional bowhunting. I come from a hunting family, but am not myself all that interested in it. However, I've always been fascinated by bows and cannot think of a better time to begin to learn to shoot them than now. I'm sort of drifting in this area, so if I'm in the wrong forum (or at the wrong site! ) please let me know.

I have absolutely no experience in this sort of thing, so I've got about a million questions. Firstly, I'm assuming that I'll have to decide between a longbow and a recurve. I was really leaning toward recurve, but this is purely superficial, so any direction in that area would be appreciated. What do I need to get started, and what do I need to look for when purchasing a beginning bow? I'm a college freshman, 19-year-old dance teacher (which is latin for poor ) so I don't have a ton to spend. Also, I haven't heard anything about instruction in traditional bow hunting around here, and southern Indiana is pretty hunting-heavy. Is the a shortage of teachers, or am I not looking hard enough? I've seen the videos, but I'd guess that there's nothing like personal instruction...any helps here?

I've got a ton more questions--what draw weight, how long, arrows--but I'll kindly overload you with only these tonight. Also, if it's easier and someone is feeling generous, I wouldn't be above trading emails so as not to clutter the board with my novice questions.

[email protected]
ThePastIsPrologue is offline  
Old 12-30-2004, 10:03 PM
Boone & Crockett
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Mississippi USA
Posts: 15,296
Default RE: Beginner's Questions

Ashley, welcome to our addiction! It's great to have a lady posting here! Please don't let that intimidate you--there are lots of women in the sport, and it seems more are coming to it all the time. I'm working with my girlfriend and her good friend now, and I think women usually catch on quicker than men.

Do you live anywhere near Greencastle? If you do, I can get you some contact information for the Cloverdale Conservation Club. I know a fellow there that could probably be a LOT of help--nothing like personal instruction. Also, one of the biggest traditional shoots in the US is held there in June. If you would like to attend, just holler and I'll get you the information. It is a competition, but you are not required to compete, and there is a ton of vendors there to check out with practically anything you will ever need as far as traditional archery is concerned. I will be there, along with the two ladies, and there is lots of other female shooters that come as well.

For equipment, it's been my experience that a good recurve is easier to find at a bargain than a good longbow. More money does not mean you will get a better bow. Trad archers, in general, are a pretty opinionated group, so be prepared and don't let it get to you if someone says you just got to get this or that bow if you want the best.

As for bow length, poundage, etc., you will need to get your hands on a few bows and see just what you can handle. Don't get discouraged if you cannot control a hunting weight bow right off the bat. You will probably need to get a lighter weight bow to start with to develop your form and accuracy, then if you decide to hunt with a bow move on to a heavier weight after you get the basics established.

Looking forward to your questions!

LBR is offline  
Old 12-30-2004, 10:34 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 2
Default RE: Beginner's Questions

I'm over by Vincennes. Either way, I don't think Greencastle would work. I'm not familiar with the area, but it seems like quite a haul for lessons. The competition sounds great though...send me all the info you can get your hands on. Thanks for the prompt reply.
ThePastIsPrologue is offline  
Old 12-30-2004, 11:04 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Troutdale Oregon
Posts: 569
Default RE: Beginner's Questions

First off, Welcome, I can't tell you much but I can tell you listen to Chad He's a great guy and knows his stuff. He also sell some great bows that wont break the bank at I just bought a falcon from him. I have been soaking up as much as I can . I came from the wheel bow world and am very new to . Cheers Rich
Rich Baker is offline  
Old 12-31-2004, 04:23 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 493
Default RE: Beginner's Questions

Hi Ashley,
I ditto that - Welcome!

I'd suggest you get a copy of G. Fred Asbell's first book "Instinctive Shooting." Its a GREAT book as starters as is THIS forum as well! Asbell even has video's if you lack a 'in person' mentor for traditional / instinctive shooting. I have shot ALL kinds of bows - be they compounds, recurves or longbows. I personally like a recurve and suggest that to start. I personally find shooting traditional a lot more fun than modern gear and a lot more fun. Its simple, nothing to break, fairly low cost to get started and allows much more 'personal' involvement in shooting. It has a 'warm feel' to wood bows that the hi tech compounds of today lack. And trust me, traditional gear can be (and is) every bit as accurate and effective as modern gear. I feel its much easier to master and you'll just have more fun in general shooting trad gear! With THAT said, lets 'dig in!'

You can set up a backyard range (if your living conditions allow) for little money and practice daily or as often as you like. You'll immediately find shooting a recurve or long bow to be LOTS of fun and you'll grow more proficient daily! Just keep at it! Whether you decide to hunt or not is entirely up to you - but the main thing is just to enjoy shooting and have fun!

I have been a bowhunter/archery enthusiast for 30 yrs so feel somewhat qualified to speak. eBay is loaded with many nice used bows. I'd suggest you look around and have someone from this forum 'mentor' up with you and assist in your selection. Bows are like cars - everyone has their personal favorites. Bear, Martin and others make fine factory-made stock bows. Many private bowyers make fine bows as well if money allows.

I would suggest some of these great used, 'classic' perfectly-serviceable bows to start that wont' break your bank:

Bear Kodiak Hunter recurve - used in very good condition on eBay for around $150 or less!
Bear Kodiak Magnum recurve - used in very good condition on eBay for around $150 or less as well!

Depending on your size/strength I'd probably not go higher than 35-40# of draw weight to start. Nothing is worse than being 'over bowed' and your technique and accuracy will suffer for it and you won't enjoy shooting as well. I shoot only 50# myself after all these years and sometimes even a 45# bow at that. Right now you are concerned with learning correctly! Your strength and coordination will improve as you shoot.

I'd start with Easton Gamegetter or XX75 aluminum arrows, full 5" helical feather fletches, and a nice shooting glove or tab to start. For less than $300 you can outfit yourself with a bow, arrows, shooting glove or tab, field (target) points for your arrows, a book, and perhaps a backyard target or some bales of hay. If you decide in time to go to cedar arrows for their traditional appeal or 'warm' look - I'd add them later on AFTER you have mastered some of the basics. Try not to add TOO many 'variables' to the pot while your are learning. Concentrate on shooting form and skills and accuracy and confidence will follow in order.

Welcome and plse feel free to ASK for help! Many of us are more than willing to help a new archer get started right!

Just remember there are more ways to get from Point A to Point B - meaning, everyone has opinions and setups THEY prefer over others. Nothing is gospel - take what you need or like from others' suggestions and jump in!

You can't go wrong with a nice used bow! I have purchased MANY fine used 1970's Bear recurves off of eBay and have some fine bows in my collection to boot because of eBay.

Best of luck and welcome to Traditional Archery!

PS Something like this would be perfect for a beginner. You can find them for less $ as well and in beautiful green stained wood or brown stain as you prefer:
Scoobiedoo is offline  
Old 01-01-2005, 02:24 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 493
Default RE: Beginner's Questions

I took a look at Chad's bows. $365 is alot of money for a beginner to drop esp when they aren't sure about draw weight yet and may 'grow into' a heavier weight bow as they progress - in My Opinion (MO).

Personally I'm not that keen on his riser shape - but hey, thats MY tastes.

A nice used $150 eBay bow if perfect for this lady's requirements!
Scoobiedoo is offline  
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