Whenever bows are being discussed, speed will probably be mentioned.
Speed can give you an advantage when you are hunting, especially when a large target wanders into view.
Since you probably won’t have time to consider distance or angles, being able to instantly let off a fast and powerful shot is often all you need to make a humane killing shot. Since the arrow is traveling at a high rate of speed it will follow a straight line, instead of arcing down due to the gravitational pull that can affect slower moving bolts.
While the fastest compound bow can bring down large game, it is important to remember that speed can also have its disadvantages. A smooth draw and inconsistent shooting can be a tradeoff with a fast compound bow, but there are ways you can still have speed, along with an accurate and reliable performance.
One of the ways a compound bow can be made faster is to have a shorter brace height. This affects the draw stroke, and longer ones will increase the stored energy that will be released with the shot. The increased amount of energy will put more power and speed behind the arrow so it can easily penetrate through thick hides, and reach the target before it moves out of range. This is also referred to as the “power stroke”.
The distance from the grip’s throat to the bowstring, when it is not draw is the brace height and it is generally measured in inches. For every inch the brace height is reduced, the bow will gain an estimated arrow speed of 10 feet per second. This allows the arrow to travel farther faster, without losing any of its initial trajectory.
There is a downside to using a compound bow with a shorter brace height. These bows are often more difficult to use, which can make it a poor choice for beginners. This is due to the increased amount of time the arrow is nocked on the string, which often results in a wobbly release which will affect speed, aim and accuracy. If you want the advantages of speed, without sacrificing performance most experts recommend choosing a compound bow with a brace height slightly taller than 6 inches.
Some of the most powerful compound bows that are also capable of shooting arrows at a high rate of speed come with an aggressive cam system. This allows the energy to be stored in the limbs of the bow so you can still enjoy a consistent performance with the speed and power you need to make sudden shots.
The design of a cam system is classified by the draw-force curve which is generally mild in less aggressive models. This helps to ensure that the draw is smooth and even from the initial pull to the release. When you are looking for speed and power the cam system should have a noticeably abrupt draw curve, which will results in a faster buildup of energy so your arrow can fly faster with the power it needs to penetrate the thick skin of your target. The disadvantage to a more powerful cam system is that it is harder to draw, which can result in painful muscle fatigue overtime.
Advantages of a Fast Compound Bow
While there are disadvantages associated with some faster compound bows that include the possibility of sacrificing consistency, there will be times when you are out in the field when it can also give you a slight advantage. You never know when the perfect 10 point buck or large bull will wander into your field of view, and chances are you only have a second before it is out of range. Since you don’t have time to calculate distance and the best trajectory being able to quickly fire an arrow that has plenty of speed and power can help you bag the trophy worthy specimen.
A faster compound bow will also fire flatter arrows, which are designed to fly farther without being as quickly affected by gravity. Not only can these arrows cover greater distances, but can also reach the target faster. When a flat arrow is fired from a fast compound bow you will also have the energy needed to bring the target down.
Even though there are advantages and disadvantages associated with fast and powerful compound bows, most hunters prefer to have one that is capable of generating the energy needed for their arrows to fly faster. This helps to ensure that they are always ready to take a shot anytime a potential target wanders into view. Thanks to advances in technology and design, the pros of owning a fast compound bow are quickly outweighing the cons.
Tips on Choosing a Fast Compound Bow
If you want a bow that is accurate, fast and powerful there are a few aspects to consider. Compound bows that measure 6 inches or taller are easy to control, and still capable of releasing the energy you need for faster arrow speeds. Most cam systems are also designed to provide you with a smooth draw, so you have the advantage of speed and accuracy. You also want to consider the balance of the bow. If the bow is off balance it will be almost impossible to make an accurate shot, no matter how much speed and power is behind the arrow.
The draw length and string angle should also be considered, but this can be difficult to judge since many fast compound bows come with large cams and a shorter brace. The best way to see what works best for you is to try drawing back several models until you find one that is comfortable to use.
A fast compound bow can also be accurate and provide you with a reliable performance, as long as you know what you are looking for. Once you have chosen a bow that is comfortable to handle, you also want to consider the type arrows you are using. When you have the right equipment, almost any hunting trip can be a success.