Mastering Your Shot: The Simple Art of Bow Tuning

Are you an archery enthusiast looking to up your game? Whether you are a weekend warrior at the local range or gearing up for a hunting expedition, understanding the basics of bow tuning can make all the difference in your accuracy and overall performance in making that perfect shot. 


Why Bother Bow Tuning?

Picture this: You line up your shot, release the arrow, and watch it veer off course. Frustrating, right? Everything felt correct. The execution was perfect. What went wrong? That is where bow tuning comes in. By tuning your bow properly, you will ensure that your setup performs to its utmost potential. 

Bow Tuning Steps:

  1. Picking the Correct Arrow Spine: Confirm you have the correct arrow spine or stiffness for your draw weight. All arrow brands will have a chart directing you to the correct spine based on draw length and weight. 
  2. Rest Alignment: Start by checking your arrow’s rest alignment. The arrow should run parallel to the inside of the riser and to the shelf. This can be checked by holding another arrow flush to these surfaces and comparing.  
  3. Cam Timing: Compound bows will operate at their peak level when the cam timing is set properly. Most bows today utilize a variation of a 2-cam system that requires the cams to rotate at the same time and rate to provide level nock travel. Ensure that your Elite bow’s stops are contacting at the same time, top and bottom. 
  4. Head to the Paper Tuner: Shooting an arrow through paper will show you any imperfections in your setup. When presented with a nock left or nock right tear you can easily adjust S.E.T. Technology to create straight arrow flight. If the tear is nock high or nock low, move your rest in the corresponding direction. See below. 
    • For a Right Tear (Tail Right) Adjust TOP and BOTTOM S.E.T. drive screws clockwise and move arrow rest away from riser (increase center shot.)  
    • For a Left Tear (Tail Left) Adjust TOP and BOTTOM S.E.T. drive screws counterclockwise and move arrow rest toward riser (decrease center shot.) 
5. Level Your Sight: It is important to make sure your sight is level with the bow. Using a bubble on your bow string and a vise, level the bow and then by adjusting the 1st and 2nd axis features, match the bubble in the sight to the one on the bow. To achieve consistent accurate results, leveling the sight is just as critical as adjusting your arrow rest.
6. Fine-Tuning for Broadheads: Prepping for a hunting expedition? Fine-tune your bow for broadheads to guarantee your arrows fly true when it counts the most. Shooting a larger broadhead may cause your arrows to fly different than they would with field points. Moving the rest in or out can help fix this issue. Also, you can revisit paper tuning but with the broadheads instead of field points. A slight adjustment to the S.E.T. Technology could be all that is needed to get your arrows flying true and allow you the confidence needed when standing on the line or arrowing a trophy animal.
Bow tuning does not have to be rocket science; but is critical to a bow's overall performance. Whether you are hitting targets for fun or prepping for a big hunt, spending some time bow tuning is the best way to achieve a smoother, more precise archery experience. So, grab your gear, hit the range, and get ready to impress with every shot! Need further assistance? Check out our Tuning and Set Up Guide, or if you would like to have an in-person experience with tuning, find your Elite Archery Dealer with our Local Retailer Locator!