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Tweaked to perfection: the 2004 hunting bow buyer's guide.

Compound bow design has evolved at a meteoric rate. It's difficult to remain abreast of the high-tech materials that today's bows are fashioned from, not to mention designs. Competition is stiff and engineers are kept busier than ever cooking up new concepts that make bows ultimately better. This tweaking has resulted in more from less: lighter mass, less parts, providing more speed, accuracy, forgiveness and hunting silence.

Get Serious, Get Parallel--Hoyt

The ViperTec has a long, reflexed riser combined with short XT 1000 limbs, Hoyt's most parallel-limbed design. A 7.5-inch brace height helps propel arrows to 300 feet per second (fps) IBO. Combined with Cam & 1/2, factory-installed Sims Limb Savers and String Leeches, this compact package provides ultimate silence, smoothness and recoil-free shooting. Hunting models come in draw weights from 40 to 80 pounds, allowing 24- to 30-inch draw lengths and 65 or 75 percent letoff.

Short & Sweet, Mate!--Mathews

Mathews unleashed its arsenal on the compact Outback. It includes an InLine Grip, HP Cam, V-Lock Zero Tolerance Limb Cup, String Suppressors, Roller Guard, Harmonic Damping System and a machined AeroRiser. The maneuverable bow produces sizzling arrows downrange at up to 310-fps IBO. It does this with a forgiving 7 5/8-inch brace height. Draw lengths from 26 to 30 inches are available in draw weights from 40 to 70 pounds, and 65 or 80 percent letoff.

A Speed Burner--PSE

This Mach 12 is ready for stand hunting or all-day mountain hunting, and quick via an 6 3/8-inch brace height. The new MRG Cam provides super-smooth draw, with sealed ball bearing idler for added silkiness. Vibracheck VibraSorb Harmonic Disruptors behind machined limb pockets, and factory-installed Sims String Leeches, combine to make this high performance bow virtually free of recoil and noise. The bow comes in draw lengths from 25 to 30 inches, draw weights from 50 to 70 pounds, 65 or 80 percent letoff, and produces IBO speeds up to 305-fps. It's covered in Mossy Oak Obsession camo.

Give Me Liberty!--Bowtech

The Liberty takes parallel-limb design to new extremes. Combined with a larger cam/wheel, the FreedomCam and 7.5-inch brace height, this bow is forgiving, but launches arrows at 308-fps IBO. The Freedom-Cam allows draw-length fine-tuning. Cable slides include a small tab to hold drop-away rest cords. Besides VFT quietness, the Liberty includes a factory Hush Kit. Draw lengths include 25 to 30 inches, draw weights 50 to 80 pounds, with 65 or 80 percent letoff.

Cutting Edge Machine--Martin

This hard core hunting bow balances 295-fps speed with a forgiving 8 7/8-inch brace height. The Thermal Grip, Vibration Escape Chamber and SE Limb System allows parallel limb geometry for further vibration control. RazorX options include Dyna-Cam solo-cam with Speed Ball Bearings, in 26- to 31-inch draw, or Tru-Arc "cam-and-a-half" design in 27 to 31 inches. Either are available 40 to 70 pounds.

A Storm Of Innovation--Darton

You get it all in this fast, forgiving, accurate bow. Darton's new forged, machined aluminum riser adds ruggedness, with a speed-enhancing seven-inch brace height, and provisions for the VSS integral dampening system. Short, highly efficient limbs and the C/P/S "Extreme" Hybrid Cam System power the Typhoon Extreme and includes engraved tuning marks on the cam. Expect 308-fps IBO speeds from this stable bow.

The C/P/S System is adjustable through 26.75 to 31.25 inches in draw weights from 50 to 70 pounds. Effective letoff is 70 or 80 percent, with 65 percent modules available.

Stabbing For Perfection--Ben Pearson

The new Dagger features a "frequency-ridged" machined aluminum riser directing vibration away from the shooting hand. Lightweight Quadra-Flex Limbs are anchored in lockable, pivoting limb pockets, creating a rock solid and consistent fit. The riser carries Vib-X Vibracheck polymer gel chamber machined into the riser, plus new Rosewood low-profile grip.

The maneuverable Dagger blasts arrows to 312-fps using a 75 percent letoff KinetiCam and Accu-Trac Idler, and 7.5-inch forgiving brace height. The Dagger accommodates draw lengths from 25 to 30 inches, and draw weights from 50 to 70 pounds.

Fatal Attraction--Alpine

The Fatal Impact is one of Alpine's most stable and vibration-free models. With parallel limb design and a long reflexed riser, it provides forgiveness and speed. The rigged VX Series riser carries Bi-Polar Dampening over Inter-Loc Limb Mounting System; split-limb "vises" lined in noise-squelching nylon, both features making this bow extremely quiet.

A 7.25-inch brace height ensures speed, with 8.5-inch, clear-view single-plane window. It comes in an 80 or 65 percent letoff One Cam, as well as a newer 65 percent letoff Twin Force Cam, the latter allowing 27- to 30-inch draw lengths, the former up to 31 inches, in 50 to 70 pounds.

The Little Bow That Can--Archery Research

The AR-31's machined riser guides vibration away from the hand on release. The AR-31 features a recoil-absorbing parallel limb design, and forgiving 8.5-inch brace height. The Ram Cam, a smooth system, produces 309-fps IBO. The new Ram And A Half offers "cam-and-a-half" qualities, with incredibly level nock travel and comparable speeds. Ram Cam models are offered in 25- to 30-inch draw lengths, 60 and 70 pounds, Ram And A Half 26 to 30 inches and like draw weights.

Hotter Than Blazes--Parker

The Phoenix uses recoil-dampening Parallel Limb Technology, the Phoenix Cam, and 6.75-inch brace height to zip arrows to 315-fps IBO. The new In-Line Riser provides perfect vertical alignment between riser, rest and sights, for more precise tuning. Draw lengths 25 through 30 inches are accommodated, in 65 or 80 percent letoff, and draw weights of 40/50, 50/60 and 60/70.

Fastest Bow On Earth?--High Country

The new Per-FX features patented E-Z Draw Perf-X-Cam with 3.5-inch performance-matched Idler, Quad-Loc Pockets with Vibra Damp liners and pivoting alignment system, L.E.T. Limb Equalization Timing with elastomer vibration dampener, new 15-inch Vibra Flex Armor V-Split Limbs, featherweight "Carbon Tough" carbon riser, and an expanded sight window. These are just some of the exciting features of HCA's hottest bow for 2004. All this comes with HCA's Total Shooting System package, all the accessories you'll need to be bow-hunt ready.

PerFX Cam allows adjustment for 26- to 31-inch draw lengths, 65 or 80 percent letoff, 35 pounds of draw weight, and 12 dead-stop positions. A 6 7/8-inch brace height creates blistering speeds in excess of 350-fps using HCA Speed Pro arrows. The bow is covered by lifetime warranty, and Realtree Hardwoods Green HD camouflage.

Extreme Favorite--Bear

This maneuverable Team Realtree Extreme TRX allows draw length adjustment over seven inches within its modular Perimeter One Cam, with letoff options of 65 or 75 percent. With a 7.5-inch brace height this bow rockets arrows to 305-fps IBO. Carbon Quad Recurve limbs, Vibration Suppressing Grip (VSG) and exclusive Shock Stop cable-guard tame its power. Added ruggedness comes from uncompromising machined limb pockets with shock-absorbing liners and an aluminum-titanium machined riser. Draw lengths cover 24 to 31 inches, in 40-to 70-pound draw weights.

Maximum Tech--Jennings

Reengineered for 2004, the CK 3.5 offers dependability and raw speed. It includes rugged machined aluminum limb cups lined in polyurethane, aluminum-titanium riser. It also includes Carbon Kinetic Energy Chambers within tough-as-nails compression-molded limbs highly resistant to torque. Combined with 75 percent (or 65 percent) letoff Perimeter One Cam, this bow boasts IBO speeds of 308-fps. Bowhunting silence is derived through adjustable SwingArm Cable Guard holding. Shock Stop string arrestor, and Limb Saver vibration suppressors are under each limb pocket. The bow is available in draw lengths from 24 to 31 inches, and draw weights from 40 to 70.

Right Stuff--Buckmasters

New for 2004, the G2SL promises to take the brand higher--and shorter. It's extremely compact, the shortest in this lineup. A Modular Perimeter One Cam and idler wheel with sealed bearings, plus 7.5-inch brace height, give this little bow 300-fps hitting power. The modular cam system allows draw lengths from 24 to 31 inches, and draw weights from 40 to 70 pounds, plus 65 or 75 percent letoff. Stealth Limb Savers are factory installed, with Buckmasters NAVCOM material under each limb, and cable-guard-mounted Shock Stop string dampener.

Obsessed--Mossy Oak

The new riser design of the Obsession is machined of aircraft aluminum, with stout, machined limb pockets and all tolerances held under .001 inches. The mid-length bow centers on complete shootability, with 7 5/8-inch brace height, and super-smooth Gold Dot Perimeter Weighted SpeedCam producing manageable 294-fps IBO speeds. This cam allows 65 or 75 percent letoff options, draw weights from 40 to 70 pounds, and draw lengths from 27 to 31 inches.

Super Sizzling--Renegade

The TR-4 continues Renegade's mission of rock solid bows designed for rugged reliability, easy accuracy and total hunting silence. The TR-4 is Renegade's most advanced design yet. This mid-length bow features an all-new riser weighing as little as a bow much shorter. New CPT Lasermatch limbs are perfectly matched for added accuracy. The TR-4 is powered by the snazzy RAC FlameThrower Cam and Idler, made of 6061 aircraft-grade aluminum, in 65 or 80 percent letoff, providing superior speed, performance and great looks to match. The TR-4 is offered in draw weights from 50 to 80 pounds, and 24- to 31-inch draw lengths. One- or two-piece grips are also offered.

Get Your Buck!--Reflex

The smooth Buckskin provides a Cam & 1/2 Performance System in a lower-priced package. Don't let that price tag fool you, these are the same rock solid, serious hunting bows used by none other than Chuck Adams. The Buckskin includes handsome deer tracks machined right through the aircraft aluminum riser. Machined limb pockets carry 15-inch Split Limb Technology. Add in a 7.5-inch brace height and you will receive a burning 306-fps IBO arrow speed. With a 25- to 30-inch draw range, 40- to 70-pound peak weight range, and an optional 65 or 80 percent letoff you will be ready for any bowhunting challenge.

To The Edge--McPherson

New frequency-ridge riser directs shooting vibration away from the shooting hand. Pivoting, locking limb pockets, and the new 75 percent letoff Magneto Cam System (cam and a half-type system), makes the Edge a fast, silent and stable launch pad. A mid-line length and 7 5/8-inch brace height make it forgiving and accurate, while also producing 310-fps arrow speeds. Let's not forget Vibracheck Vib-X vibration and noise reduction chambers. Draw lengths are available from 28 to 30 inches, and draw weights from 50 to 70 pounds.

All The Rage--Browning

With precision machined aluminum riser, Ignitor 6 ED solo cam providing six inches of draw length adjustment without a bow press, Contour XP limbs and a one-piece polymer grip the Rage One is not to be out done. The bow is also offered in package form with all the accessories you'll need, save arrows, to hit the field or range.

Draw lengths between 25 and 31 inches are handled by a single bow, with draw weights offered from 40 to 70 pounds. This is a solid, mid-length bow with 70 percent letoff and manageable arrow speeds in the mid-280s.

In The Details--Champion

The Diablo is Champion's fastest bow. The Energy Transfer System (ETS) CamPlus System, reflexed riser and 7.25-inch brace height create hopped up 318-fps IBO speeds. This is also a solid, forgiving shooter, with redesigned limb pockets holding Reverse Curve (RC) multi-layer carbon/Kevlar limbs, adjustable carbon cable rod, laminated wood grip, no-stretch string, in a superbly balanced configuration. The bow features a 26- to 30.5-inch draw-length, and 50- to 70-pound draw weight range.

Integrated Components--KO

The BowLogic Package combines the great shooting BL 32 with an advanced, completely integrated shooting system. Included are Integrated Quik Clik Sight and Rest, C4 Stabilizer, plus Winner's Choice string with Sims String Leeches. The bow's sight and rest require no adjustment tools. This bow features the new Quik Draw S-Cam, a smooth-drawing system producing 300-fps IBO speeds, adjustable over five inches of draw length. You get all this in addition to L2R limb mounting, and GLS Quadra Lateral Stabilization shock-absorbing technology at riser ends. Draw lengths span 26 to 30 inches and draw weights 60 to 70.

Eagle Eye Accurate--Oneida

Oneida bows have always been a bit different. That difference includes Engineered Structural Composite (ESC) limbs. The process combines carbon-reinforced resin molded to within .001-inch tolerances. This boosts accuracy and increases durability under extreme conditions. The Pro Eagle is the company's competition answer, with a no-torque "bridge" style riser, accurate Black Eagle Cams, and a forgiving 7.75-inch brace height, together creating manageable 289-fps arrow speeds. This bow has draw weights of 35/55 or 50/70 pounds, draw lengths from 27 to 32 inches, and letoff from 40 to 80 percent.

Adaptable--Forge

With exclusive easy-pull Forge Cam and Idler and modular draw length adjustment, this is a bow that everyone in the family can shoot. The CW33 handles draw weights from 35 to 63 pounds, draw lengths from 25 to 30.5 inches, all with 65 or 80 percent letoff options. It's also easy to shoot, with 8.25-inch brace height. Other features include "anti-vib" one-piece comfort grip for virtually no hand shock, Winner's Choice string option, PG fiberglass limbs, inline draw-stop option-all at a very affordable price and spitting arrows out at a respectable 290-fps.

Freedom Of Choice--CSS

The 37-inch Challenger can be had in 36-, 38-, 40- and 42-inch lengths. No matter which you choose, this is an exceptionally fast bow. The machined aluminum riser holds Gordon Thermal Composite limbs, and your choice of wood or rubber grip. Choose either P1 or P3 single cam systems, the former the fastest in the line, to receive draw lengths between 23 and 33 inches, and draw weights from 40 to 70 pounds. A 6.75-inch brace height blasts arrows to 310-fps IBO speeds.

All Aces--Proline

The Proline ACE uses PLX-Treme post-fed single cam, and 7 3/8-inch brace height, to send arrows downrange at 300-fps IBO. The bow's performance is enhanced by signature tapered limb cups, providing zero-movement limb interface. The balanced riser design, with two-piece wood side-plate handle, allows the bow to sit comfortably, adding to its easy accuracy and forgiving character. The PLX-Treme cam has a wide range of draw-length and draw-weight adjustments in a single bow, with 65 or 80 percent letoff modules.

Feline Appeal--Diamond

A 2.9-inch Wide Track Serving Saver Idler with dual ball bearing mechanics, and 80-percent letoff Saber Tooth Post-Feed MP Cam power the Gladiator. A reflexed machined aluminum riser and parallel 14-inch composite limbs creating a forgiving seven-inch brace height to help push arrows to incredible 328-fps IBO speeds. Draw lengths from 25 to 30 inches, and draw weights from 50 to 70 pounds can be chosen.

Smooth Operator--Wheeler

The Arcodus uses a long riser and a forgiving, silent parallel-limb geometry and forgiving seven-inch brace height. Vibra-Sorb Limb Technology surrounds limbs and limb bolts with anti-vibration material for added quietness. Accuracy and speed are enhanced by limbs machined to within .001-inch tolerances, digitally matched for flex, plus Center Line Riser Technology vertically centering the arrows between axles. The bow's fueled by ultra-smooth M2 Dual Cam system, for 316-fps IBO ratings. Draw lengths span 24 to 30 inches at 40 to 70 pounds, with 65 percent letoff.

Speed Demon--Archery Pro

With an aggressive 6.75-inch brace height and Archery Pro's own 70-percent letoff TDC Cam single-cam the SB1 is one of the fastest bows in this lineup at 325-fps IBO. New S.A.T. Hybrid Twin Cam option is also available, providing super-smooth draw, near-zero nock point travel, and only slightly slower arrow speeds of 315-fps. Modular adjustment allows draw length options from 23 to 30 inches with no bow press, with maximum draw weights available in 50, 60, and 70 pounds. The bow wears 14-inch Carbon Tough Limbs and comes with a free hard case.

BEN PEARSON

DAGGER

LENGTH: 32 3/8 INCHES

MASS: 3.5 POUNDS

BENPEARSON.COM

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MARTIN

RAZORX SE

LENGTH: 35 INCHES

MASS: 4.0 POUNDS

MARTINARCHERY.COM

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BROWNING

RAGE ONE

LENGTH: 36.5 INCHES

MASS: 3.9 POUNDS

BROWNINGARCHERY.COM

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JENNINGS

CK 3.5

LENGTH: 35.375 INCHES

MASS: 3.9 POUNDS

FREDBEAROUTDOORS.COM

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HOYT USA

VIPERTEC

LENGTH: 32 INCHES

MASS: 3.8 POUNDS

HOYTUSA.COM

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MATHEWS

OUTBACK

LENGTH: 31.5 INCHES

MASS: 4.3 POUNDS

MATHEWSINC.COM

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BOWTECH

LIBERTY VFT

LENGTH: 33.25 INCHES

MASS: 3.8 POUNDS

BOWTECHARCHERY.COM

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BUCKMASTERS

G2SL

LENGTH: 30 INCHES

MASS: 3.0 POUNDS

FREDBEAROUTDOORS.COM

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KODIAK OUTDOORS

BOWLOGIC 32

LENGTH: 32 INCHES

MASS: 4.1 POUNDS

KODIAKOUTDOORS.COM

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ALPINE

FATAL IMPACT

LENGTH: 34 INCHES

MASS: 4.3 POUNDS

ALPINEARCHERY.COM

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REFLEX

BUCKSKIN

LENGTH: 34 INCHES

MASS: 3.6 POUNDS

REFLEXBOW.COM

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ARCHERY RESEARCH

AR-31

LENGTH: 31 INCHES

MASS: 3.7 POUNDS

ARCHERYRESEARCH.COM

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CSS/RICHWOOD

CHALLENGER

LENGTH: 37 INCHES

MASS: 3.7 POUNDS

CUSTOMSHOOTINGSYSTEMS.COM

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PSE

MACH 12

LENGTH: 38 INCHES

MASS: 4.1 POUNDS

PSE-ARCHERY.COM

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HIGH COUNTRY

PER-FX

LENGTH: 34.5 INCHES

MASS: 2.5 POUNDS

HIGHCOUNTRYARCHERY.COM

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DARTON

TYPHOON EXTREME

LENGTH: 37 INCHES

MASS: 4.16 POUNDS

DARTONARCHERY.COM

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FRED BEAR

TRX 32

LENGTH: 32 INCHES

MASS: 3.9 POUNDS

FREDBEAROUTDOORS.COM

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RENEGADE

TR-4

LENGTH: 35 5/8 INCHES

MASS: 3.6 POUNDS

RENEGADEBOWS.COM

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CHAMPION

DIABLO

LENGTH: 35.6 INCHES

MASS: 4.2 POUNDS

CHAMPIONBOW.COM

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FORGE

CW33

LENGTH: 32.25 INCHES

MASS: 3.33 POUNDS

FORGEBOW.COM

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MOSSY OAK OBSESSION

FRED BEAR

LENGTH: 34 INCHES

MASS: 4.3 POUNDS

FREDBEAROUTDOORS.COM

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McPHERSON

EDGE

LENGTH: 34 INCHES

MASS: 3.7 POUNDS

BENPEARSON.COM

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C.P.ONEIDA

PRO EAGLE

LENGTH: 44.5 INCHES

MASS: 4.5 POUNDS

ONEIDAEAGLEBOWS.COM

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

DIAMOND

GLADIATOR

LENGTH: 34 INCHES

MASS: 3.6 POUNDS

DIAMONDARCHERY.COM

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

ARCHERY PRO

SB1

LENGTH: 34.5 INCHES

MASS: 3.6 POUNDS

ARCHERYPROLLC.COM

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COPYRIGHT 2004 InterMedia Outdoors, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2004 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Meitin, Patrick
Publication:Petersen's Bowhunting
Date:Oct 1, 2004
Words:2997
Previous Article:Laser ranging: pros and cons; Knowledge is nothing without good judgement.
Next Article:Keeping stands fresh: a hunter's actions in and around stand sites definitely affects success.


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