Lately we’ve had a lot of requests about what is the best compound bow for beginners? So, we thought we’d set out to try and answer that question.
For the average beginner looking to get into a lil’ bit of archery you can often be confronted with an overwhelming list of choices, adding to the headache of trying to pick out whats right for you. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 4 of the best compound bows for beginners to keep things easy and hassle free. On the contrary there is a lot you need to know before making a final decision as to what suits you best, but you can check out our article to get you up to speed on some of those deciding factors.
- 1. Leader Compound Bow
- 2. Predator Archery Raptor Compound Bow
- 3. SAS Rage
- 4. Bear Species
- Wrapping thing’s up…
1. Leader Compound Bow
Because your a beginner the chances are that your entry into the world of archery are going to be low cost. The Leader compound bow is a great choice for beginners because it offers just that. One thing that I recommend for the beginner is to buy a bow that has an adjustable draw length without having to purchase extra cams. The Leader offers a 25″ – 31″ fully adjustable draw length. Adjusting the draw length is simple on these bad boys and only requires an Allen wrench.
The poundage on this bow is perfect as well, with an adjustable 50-70 lbs the bow is better suited to the beginner adult due to the heavier pull weight.
The riser its self is made from composite alloy materials to add strength but cut weight.
The bow has a let off of 75 – 80%. Which is damn good news for all you little chicken arms out there. Reason being is at its peak draw weight of 70 lbs, having a 80% let off means when you reach your draw length you will only be holding 14 lbs. As I stated earlier this is great for the beginner adult. The reason being that when you hit your peak draw length your holding minimum pull weight giving you an opportunity to focus more on shot placement rather then on holding weight.
This bow is capable of hurling arrows up to 310 fps which is more then enough to make any game deader then most dead things.
The leader is available as the stand alone bow or it can be bought with it’s factory accessories. Even with the full kit ready to shoot out of the box the bow is still inexpensive for the first time shooter.
So, you’ve read me rave on about this bow, but what are some bad points. Well, for the price of the bow, you are getting what you pay for. What I do mean by that? If you decide to buy the kit with all it’s accessories, the accessories can be a little average. Not only that, but although the riser has been made from composite alloys, it is still on the average side weighing in at 4.4 lbs. Personally these things aren’t a huge game changer though, more so just things to be aware of.
Final thoughts on the Leader Compound
Overall for the price you pay this is one hell of a bow for the first time archer. With a smooth draw, fully adjustable draw length & weight, 75 – 80% let off, and a beginner friendly price that wont break the bank you wont get much better then that. If you opt for the full kit ready to shoot out of the box you may have to change over some of the accessories, but with the price you save you can easily add some goochy kit to your bow and get a setup that will rival other brand name bows at the fraction of the cost.
- Quick & easy adjustable draw weight of 50 – 70 lbs
- Quick & easy adjustable draw length of 25″ – 31″
- 75 – 80% let off depending on settings
- Axle to axle length is 31″
- Weight is 4.4 lbs
- Riser is made from composite alloy materials
- Budget friendly for the beginner
- Very smooth draw for a budget bow
- Only requires an allen wrench to adjust draw lengths and weight
- Good for an entry level bow
- Weights on the average side of the scale of compound bows
- Only has an adjustable pull weight range of 20#. Better suited towards the adult beginner
- If buying the kit, some accessories can be on the average side
2. Predator Archery Raptor Compound Bow
Keeping with the theme of low cost budget friendly bows, I bring you he raptor. Another exceptional bow at a quality price, AND part of the bow is manufactured right here in the USA.
So what are the highlights of this bow. Well for starters if your feeling strong, this bow has an adjustable 30-70 lbs draw weight. That’s good news for you, because as opposed to other Compound Bows where the may have as little as 15 – 20 lbs range of adjustable draw weight, the raptors range of draw weight means you’ll probably never out grow the bow. This makes it very capable of being a good teenager bow as well. The raptor also has an adjustable draw length of 24.5″ – 31″, which unless your a Giraffe with long lanky arms, or a T-Rex with short stubby arms, your going to have more then enough draw length to suit most average archers.
The Raptor has a 75% let off, so if your drawing 70# then your only holding 17.5#. Not only that but when the bow is tuned to max settings it is spitting out a 350gr arrow at 315 fps.
Final thoughts on the Raptor
All in all this is quiet a impressive little budget bow. It’s low cost and part of the bow is manufactured in the US. It’s also great that it has such a large range of adjustable draw weight making it a great choice for chicks and teenagers alike. At a max draw weight of 70# the bow is more then capable of taking any game in the US.
- Adjustable draw weight of 30 – 70 lbs
- Quick & easy adjustable draw length of 24.5″ – 31″
- 75% let off
- Axle to axle length is 30″
- Weight is 3.6 lbs
- Cams are fully machined and made from aluminum
- Hurls a 350gr arrow at 315 fps when at max settings
- Limbs are made in the USA
- Great entry bow at a budget friendly price
- Light weight. Will suit great in the field.
- It’s short axle to axle length also lends its self well to being in the thick scrub
- Perfect for the beginner with 50 lbs range of free adjustable draw weight
- If buying the complete kit the accessories may not be as high quality as the bow
3. SAS Rage
Another dirt cheap bow to put the first time Archer in the game. South land Archery supply have put together one hell of a bow. A bow that allows the beginner the opportunity to build a solid shooting foundation while still keeping in line with a beginner budget.
From axle to axle the bow measures in at 35″. A little on the longer side if you ask me, but hey, none the less if your not going through the thick scrub then the extra few inches wont be a drama. The bow is said to be spitting out arrows at a nice pace of 270 fps. Nothing wrong with that, plenty of pace to stop anything dead in it’s tracks. In line with the other bows on this page the Rage offers 26″ – 30″ user friendly adjustable draw length. As I keep saying this is always a huge plus for the average beginner, because you want to spend less time setting up and tuning your bow, and more time shooting the damn thing so you can focus on forming a solid foundation of technique.
The Rage comes in at average weight for most compounds sitting at 4.4 lbs. To most people thats not really a bad thing. Weight starts to play more of a part if you plan to hike hunt for days on end. The user friendly adjustable pull weight of 55 – 70 lbs is a good plus, however keep in mind that you only have a free range of 15# of adjustable draw weight to play with.
Let off sits at 70% which is an average figure for most bows in this price range.
Final thoughts on Southlands Rage Compound
Southland have really hit the nail on the head when it comes to putting together a cost effective bow for the novice archer who is keen to start hurling arrows down range. Most of the specs are on the average side for this bow, but the thing that really makes this bow attractive is it’s a budget friendly cost. If you are to purchase the whole kit the price does seem to jump a fair bit, but with good reason. They’ve managed to put together a kit that’s perfect for the first timer and offer some quality accessories that a lot of out of the box kits don’t usually come with. A good example of that would be the lockable hard case for the bow. Most companies might chuck in a bag, but Southlands have gone the whole hog and instead chucked in a hard case that will last beyond a lifetime, and that’s only one of the many good accessories the bow can be purchased with.
All in all, mighty fine job Southlands.
- Adjustable draw weight of 55 – 70 lbs
- Adjustable draw length of 26″ – 30″
- 70% let off
- Axle to axle length is 35″
- Weight is 4.4 lbs
- Hurling arrows at 270 fps
- Budget and beginner friendly
- When purchased in the kit, the kit offers some quality out of the box accessories which a lot of manufactures will skimp out on
- All specs are on the average side of most compounds in this price range
4. Bear Species
I can say two words. Sex appeal. Then again, would you really expect anything less from Bear. I mean one glance at this bad boy and it’s like instant love.
Man, Bear is taking the cake with the Species. The Species is a what you see is what you get bow. Straight out of the box ready to shoot. They’ve really outdone themselves on this one. Im still scratching my head trying to figure out how such a reputable brand in the Archery world has come out with such low cost ready to shoot out of the box bow. Beginners, jump on this while you can.
Ok, that’s enough of me confessing my Redneck crush about the Bear Species to the whole internet.
Time to get into the nitty gritty. What are you getting for $399?
Well, unlike the other budget friendly bows, you’ll notice that the Species is a completely unique bow both in aesthetics and operating mechanisms. Your getting some high end technology on a low cost bow. The Species is available in two limb options, 45 – 60 lbs or 55 – 70 lbs. There’s not a great range of free draw weight to offer but even at it’s heaviest settings of 70 lbs the draw cycle is amazingly smooth giving the illusion of the draw weight being lighter then what it actually is. That brings me to my next point. 80% let off. Yes, you read right. At 80% let off when the archer is at full draw at 70 lbs your only holding 14 lbs, couple that with the extremely smooth draw cycle and you’ve got a match made in heaven.
The axle to axle length comes in at 31″. Putting it at a nice length for the average archer looking to get out into the field.
The Species weight comes in at 4.3 lbs, putting it at an average weight but still a suitable choice for out in the woods.
Because the bow is a ready to shoot out of the box package it obviously comes with a whole heap of accessories. So, what are those accessories. Well, Bear have not skimped out. They’ve pimped out the bow with a Trophy ridge sight, whisker biscuit, & 5 arrow quiver. The bow also comes installed with a peep sight and a D loop. While the accessories aren’t top of the line, there definatley miles above the rest compared to most ready to shoot packages in the same price range. The accessories will definatley get the first timer into the game, and help them to understand and appreciate their equipment prior to blowing money on accessories they don’t fully understand.
Final thoughts on Bear’s Species Compound
Man oh man, it’s going to be hard to find some cons on this bow.
I’ll keep this short.
Bear archery has long been a favorite among many bow hunters. They’ve always been well renowned for quality, but as I said earlier, I have no idea how they bought out such a beautiful bow at such a low cost and didn’t compromise on quality. I mean when you start looking around the $200 – $400 mark you start looking at your lesser known more generic bow brands. That’s not to say the lesser known brands are bad, because they aren’t, it’s just seldom that you will see reputable brands such as Bear playing down this end of the field.
All I can say young Beginner Redneck Archers, is jump on this, cause this is one hell of damn bargain.
- Two different limb options with a Adjustable draw weight of 55 – 70 lbs or 45 – 60 lbs
- User friendly adjustable draw length of 23″ – 30″
- 80% let off
- Axle to axle length is 31″
- Weight is 4.3 lbs
- Hurling arrows at a WHOPPING 320 fps
- Extremely high quality
- Well renowned brand
- Ready to shoot out of the box package
- Very smooth draw cycle
- Faster then most bows in its category
- Decent let off at 80%
- Eventually beginners may look at upgrading their accessories.
Wrapping thing’s up…
So there you have it folks. That’s a list of four of the best bows that I would recommend for the first time archer. I’ve purposely kept the list short as there’s already so many choices out there in the world of archery that you can end up getting analysis paralysis and in the end you don’t end up choosing anything. The truth is you dont need to spend your life savings to get a good compound outfit that will do everything the beginner requires. This list is more then affordable and everything we’ve reviewed is less then $500. This should fit well with-in the first time archers budget.
If you are a beginner and all ready have a bow in mind that wasn’t on this list try keep the following things in mind when you buy it.
- Is the draw length user adjustable
- Is the draw weight user adjustable
- Will the draw weight provide enough energy for what I want to shoot with it
- Will I outgrow the bow or will it last me a lifetime
- Is the bow ready to shoot, or do I need to buy extra accessories
- Is the bow light enough for me to carry around for a couple of days hunting
- Is the bow short enough that it wont be a hindrance when hunting in thick scrub
- Will the bow suit the type of shooting I want to do
If you keep these things in mind you should have pleasant buying experience.
My advice is make a choice, stick to it, and learn learn learn. The only way to get at good at archery or bow hunting is to have a bow to do it in the first place, and practice until your perfect.
‘Till next time
Have fun and keep on Redneckin’.