Caring For Your Bow

We’ve all been guilty of it: spending a lot of money on something you simply couldn’t live without, and then forgetting to take proper care of it, resulting in your prized possession having to be repaired or trashed. It leaves quite the bitter taste in the mouth. Yes, I speak from personal experience. Avoiding this habit is exceptionally important in this sport, because ill-kept bows can become faulty, and most importantly, dangerous.

There are several different types of bows, but we’re going to focus on the main two:

Re-Curve Bow

Named for the distinct shape, this is the best bow for a beginner. It has only the simplest outfitting, and is built for power, but needs less strength from the archer. Maintenance is fairly simple on these, but here are some reminders.

You need to wax your strings before they start to look frayed or worn.

You should also wax the body of your bow, to re-seal the finish and lock out moisture.

If your bow gets wet, it should be dried immediately.

Unstring your bow when it is not in use, and change the string annually, using a bowstringer.

Compound Bow

Though it takes some strength for the initial draw, these bows enlist the help of pulleys, cables, and cams to assist the archer in holding the draw for long periods, which reduces muscle fatigue. It also has its own set of rules for care.

You really should buy a case for your bow, either with a hard or soft side.

As with the re-curve bow, the strings must be waxed regularly to prevent wear-and-tear.

Inspect your strings and cables; this should become a habit each time you finish using your bow.

Check for cracks, dents, and wear. These should be covered by your warranty.

Tighten any loose limb bolts with an Allen wrench set, and wipe off any grime or dirt.