How to Choose a Compound Bow and Set It Up

Bowhunters come from all walks of life and different backgrounds, but no matter what your case may be, there are a few things to consider and know before choosing a compound bow and setting it up. Once you have these few things figured out, the selection and shopping process will go much smoother and you will be shooting bullseyes in no time! 

Find Eye Dominance

The first step in getting any bow is to determine your dominant eye. You will want to pair your bow to your dominant eye instead of your dominant hand. If you are right-handed, that doesn’t necessarily mean a right-handed bow is ideal for you. Luckily there is a quick test that you can do to determine your dominant eye. 

With both of your eyes open, extend your arm and point with your index finger at an object that is 10 to 20 feet away. Now close your left eye, and if your finger is still pointing at the object then you are right eye dominant. Now try it again with the opposite eye. Your finger should now be pointing to the right of the object. The reverse will be true if you are left-eye dominant. Again, choose a bow that matches which eye you have as your dominant, as it will make shooting it much easier and more comfortable.

Find Draw Length

The next thing that you need to do is find your draw length. This is the length of the bow when it is drawn, and since everyone is different, bows are set up differently and at different lengths. The easiest way to find your own draw length is to have a professional measure you at the shop, but again there is a simple way of doing it at home as well. 

One simple way of finding a rough draw length is to take the wingspan of your arms when they are outstretched, then divide this number by 2.5. While this is not a perfect method, it will get you close enough to start looking for a bow. Most compound bows have the ability to have their draw length adjusted by a few inches up or down, allowing you to dial it in perfectly for yourself. 

Setting the Bow Up

After getting the right bow, you will now need to get it set up before starting to shoot. This means getting the draw weight adjusted to where you want (again, most compound bows are easily adjustable) as well as equipping it with the proper gear. For a traditional compound bow used for hunting, this usually means some sights, an arrow rest, stabilizer, arrows, and a release aid. 

Final Thoughts

Make sure you are getting the proper compound bow for you and then you can enjoy a much better shooting and hunting experience. For more great ideas on how to fish and hunt from the experts, check out the awesome articles on our Bradley Smoker Hunting & Fishing Blog for more great tips & tricks.