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Bow Hunting - - - 31 messages. Showing 1 through 10. Go to page: 1   2  3  4 
nofishfisherman
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Daily Subscription Msg 1 Posted: 04:20 PM 09/10/15 (CST)
Well I'm finally starting to get ready to start bow hunting. Up until now its been only rifle for me. A buddy hooked me up with an old PSE Thunderbolt and I brought it into Bwana and got it all set up for me, well at least as best as it could since the draw length is still a touch short at 30.5 inches.

I've been out shooting several times over the last week or two. I'm wondering if you guys have any tips for someone who is relatively new to shooting a bow.

Right now I'm shooting maybe 6 inch groups at 20 yards but I still throw a stray arrow here or there. I'm looking to tighten the group and also build consistency.

I'm open to tips on proper form, practice drills, etc.

I'm not sure if I'll hit the woods with the bow this year or not, I kinda doubt it. I'll have to get more consistent to feel comfortable taking aim at an animal.


Domino Dave
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Daily Subscription Msg 2 Posted: 04:50 PM 09/10/15 (CST)
Sounds like you have some solid expectations. Nothing beats practice. So keep at it. When you 1st start shooting a lot, you will or should get sore muscles and feel pretty stiff. This will go away and your shots will improve. Just your shoulder muscles alone will get stronger and allow you to be more patient at full draw and make a better shot. After 3 weeks of good solid practice you'll notice this change. It takes that long for the real soreness to go away.

6" groups aren't that bad but keep striving for better. That one flyer every once in a while could be a "bad" arrow. So pull that one out the rotation when it happens and see if the others group better. I only hunt with my best 3.

If you gain some confidence and think you'd like to get out and actually hunt this year. 2 things...practice with broad heads a bunch before you hunt...and limit your distance of an acceptable shot. There is nothing wrong with watching a nice buck walk away because he is 35 yards away and not making it easy. They usually never do make it easy. But every once in a while they will walk right in to 10 yards and make you smile!

Good luck, and welcome to a new obsession!

nofishfisherman
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Joined 06/30/2005
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Daily Subscription Msg 3 Posted: 08:33 AM 09/11/15 (CST)
Thanks for the advice. I'm feeling that soreness and stiffness for sure. Some in my shoulder and some in my upper back. After the first week I've already noticed my strength improving and my ability to take more time at full draw improving. I've stopped shooting on back to back days to help with the soreness a little. Seems like my 2nd day in a row my shots are not nearly as good so I've gone down to shooting every other day.

The 6 inch groups really are my starting point. Thats about what I was shooting on day 1 with some minor improvement since then. I don't think I'd attempt a shot an a deer until I can cut that in half. I will also need to work on shooting at some different distances to see what my effective range is but for now that can wait.

Thats a good tip about one of the arrows being bad. The bow came with 6 nicer arrows but when I had the draw length adjusted I needed to have new arrows cut. I picked up a handful of the keep $6 carbon arrows to start with. The guy at Bwana Archery suggested that I use and abuse them to start with and then move up to better arrows at a later point.

If anyone is in need of a good archery shop I'd highly recommend Bwana after my experience with them. I brought in my old bow and told them where I was coming from and what my goals were. One of the guys spent over an hour with me getting the bow fit to me and working with me on their indoor range. In the end all they charged me for was a new peep sight and the 5 arrows I bought. For $45 I was all set up and got a lot of advice on how to get started.


nofishfisherman
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Daily Subscription Msg 4 Posted: 08:03 PM 09/11/15 (CST)
I was at the range this afternoon and was having the same problem I was experiencing on my last trip. Both times my groupings were inconsistent. I was still shooting ok groups but they were all over the target. On tuesday they were all high and right, today they started low and left and then moved to low center. Some of the 5 arrow groups were roughly 3-4 inch groups but just off target.

I can't imagine its the sights since the groups keep walking around the target. Something with my grip or anchor point possibly? Any thoughts?


Domino Dave
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Daily Subscription Msg 5 Posted: 07:39 PM 09/12/15 (CST)
I believe it's your anchor point. Here's why. You mentioned your draw length is a bit too short. This can make it impossible to duplicate a consistent anchor point every time. And that's the key to great shooting. Are you using a release?

You may need to get it restrung with the proper length string.
nofishfisherman
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Daily Subscription Msg 6 Posted: 08:45 PM 09/12/15 (CST)
I am using a release. I've been working on a consistent anchor point but like you said the short draw length doesn't leave me with many points of contact for reference.

The bow I'm using is a loaner bow to get me started so I'm hesitant to do too much work to the bow. I was hoping to get away with this bow for a season or two to see how I like bow hunting and then look to upgrade to something more well suited for me.

I'll keep plugging away on my anchor point to see if I can figure out some sort of consistency.


nofishfisherman
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Daily Subscription Msg 7 Posted: 11:51 AM 09/17/15 (CST)
I've done a lot more shooting in the last several days and have gotten my groups back on target and they are tightening up.

Shot at 20, 30, and 40 yards yesterday. At 20 and 30 I put 9 out of 10 arrows through the heart on a cardboard deer cut out with the 10th going just high into the lungs.

At 40 yards I was all over the place from left to right but that was likely due in part to the gusty winds. Either way 40 yards is still well out of my effective range. I'd limit shots to 30 yards if I were to be hunting this year.


Domino Dave
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Daily Subscription Msg 8 Posted: 03:05 PM 09/18/15 (CST)
Sounds like you are doing very well. I would guess that you have found a nice comfortable and repeatable anchor now. And don't be disappointed with your results at 40 yards. A few things can be the problem at that range. Mainly the size of your dot in you sites starts to appear so large at a 40 yard target it's difficult to really focus and aim properly. Practice will help eliminate this. But you may need better sites designed for longer range shooting if you want to get good out to 50,60,or even 70 yards.

But remember this, us bow hunters get addicted to our sport not usually by how far they can kill an animal in distance. The fun part is how close you can get to them with out them knowing that you are there! The shot becomes more of a formality at that point! Plus you get a much longer season in the woods and get to understand your quarry so much better. Along with many other animals!

Most deer hunters using rifles scout a weekend or so, hang stands or hunt in the same ones that have been there for years, and hunt only a few days of the rifle season. They can and do have success. But I find it very rewarding to be in the woods without so many people around to mess up the natural lives of the deer during this early season. This is when you really learn what the deer are doing! Which comes in handy later in the season! people that hunt the muzzle loading season find the lack of other people around rewarding too!

Now if you have plans to go west and hunt. You will need better equipment to allow for those shots up to 70 yards. It takes a great amount of shooting skill to perfect these kind of shots. And usually some luck to get that close out west. But it is done every day out there! Spot and stalk with a string and a stick is the ultimate challenge!

Keep after it. You are doing awesome in my opinion!
nofishfisherman
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Joined 06/30/2005
Posts:2437

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Daily Subscription Msg 9 Posted: 04:31 PM 09/18/15 (CST)
Thanks for the encouragement. I'm already getting addicted and I'll have done is target practice. I've really enjoyed just getting out to shoot and find myself trying to sneak in some shooting whenever I can. Lately that has been on my lunch break at work.

Here are todays results at 20 yards. At 30 yards I shot more for the upper heart and lower lungs. My groups were a touch wider but not bad and all were easy kill shots.



Right now 30 yards is for sure my max as far as comfort zone. 40 is just a fun distance to mess around with and its probably at the upper limits of my gear on my best day. The bow and sight are old and outdated so better equipment might provide better results. I'm also shoot the cheap carbon arrows ($6/arrow) so that might also play a part. For now though I think I could take my current gear out in the field and feel very confident at 20-30 yards. I still don't think I'll be getting out this year but I love the idea of extending my season.


nofishfisherman
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Joined 06/30/2005
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Daily Subscription Msg 10 Posted: 10:26 AM 10/22/15 (CST)
Another update after a lot more practice.

Right now at 20 yards I'm shooting consistent 3" groups. I'll shoot 20 arrows in a row and have nothing outside that 3" circle.

At 30 yards I'm probably closer to a 4" group.

At 40 yards I'm a bit more inconsistent but have done as well as shooting 4-5" groups but that's not every time. Right now 30 yards is my max range for the field.

I've also done some work shooting at different angles (quartering away, etc) and feel pretty comfortable. I've also done some work shooting at off distances and seem to have a good feel for them.

Right now the thing I am working on is having my first shot of the day being as good as my 10th or 15th. Right now it seems to take me some time to warm up and get dialed in. My first shot of the day seems to be a bit of a wild card. If I were to hunt right now I'd combat this by setting up a practice target and getting warmed up on it before hitting the field but I'd like to get more confident with that first shot without warming up.

Still no plans to hit the field this season but I have secured permission for a 10 acre property around Duluth for next season. I just have to jump through a few local hoops and get the city permit needed to hunt within in the city limits.


Bow Hunting - - - 31 messages. Showing 1 through 10. Go to page: 1   2  3  4 
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