Last Updated on September 9, 2022 by Dwayne Easton
Considering taking up archery as a sport? Purchasing new gear can be quite expensive, and what if you don’t even like the sport! For this reason, you might want to consider purchasing used compound bows instead – we take a look at the best ones. Imagine all the benefits of a top-of-the-range bow, minus the hefty price of a new one.
There are a few things you would have to look for when looking at a used compound bow. First and foremost: the strings! Check out their current condition. Would you need to replace them, and if so how soon? Secondly, inspect the limbs. If there are no obvious breaks, run your fingers through their length to feel any possible cracks. Thirdly, the cams/wheels. If misused, the cams tend to flatten or bend out. The holes on the cams also flare out if there has been a lot of stress on the bow. Most warranties are not manufacturer faults. The users cause damage to a bow by dry-firing it or putting too much pressure on the bow press.
The speed, efficacy, and smoothness of bows have exploded with the technological advancements post-2008. Archers have understood that a bow has to have different specifications to suit them. Except for all the aspects mentioned beforehand, you might also want to take into consideration the purpose of using the bow. Target shooting? Hunting? Etc.
10 Best Compound Bows you can Buy Used
Big manufacturing names of archery include PSE, Hoyt, Elite, Primes, Xpedition, etc. Below are listed top 10 best-used compound bow models which offer great value for money.
1. PSE Supra – This bow can be used for both competitive shooting and hunting. It is easily adjustable and it can pretty much suit anybody. It is also easy to tune in and has no noticeable vibration.
2. Hoyt PowerMax – A quite stylish bow. It offers a good mix of technology and performance. It also comes with cam modules which can be easily adjustable without the need to change them.
3. Hoyt carbon spyder Turbo – Another creation of Hoyt. The reviews consider this bow as light, yet durable. It offers a silent and free of shock release.
4. Xpedition Maco X – A super-fast bow, great physical weight, and very steady. It is easy to work on and tune.
5. Mathews switchback – It’s a fast and smooth single cam bow. The noise and vibration are minimal. It is very easy to be held at full draw. No other Mathews bow has received better reviews. The greatest advantage of buying a Mathews is that you can get replacement parts no matter how old the model is.
6. Elite Hunter – It is designed specifically for hunting, hence it is not the fastest bow. It can be easily adjustable to different lengths. The release is silent with no shock of the hand. The most special feature of this bow it’s that it comes with a Transferable Lifetime Warranty
7. Primes Rival – This is a unique primes model to come with two cams. It has a very solid back wall and it is easily adjustable. It has a longer ax factor which can be particularly preferred by taller archers.
8. Primes Centergy – The unique feature of this bow is the placement of the load shelf. The arrow loads and leaves the bow above the center. That gives the archer more weight below the bow and a good grip, which provides great stability, overall.
9. Darton DS3800 – An excellent bow for hunters who prefer a longer and heavier compound bow. It can be used for any type of game. Both the draw and release are smooth and it is highly accurate. The biggest drawback with Darton bows is that they have low re-sell value. In this case, this can be an advantage. You can find a very well-maintained bow with less money. Cheaper doesn’t always mean low quality.
10. Bear Cruzer G2 – Just as Darton, Bear bows also have low resell value. This bow not only comes with a reasonable price but it is totally worth it. It is a classic design and it weighs only 3 pounds (you won’t get tired hunting with it). It is a great choice for beginner bowhunters.
How Much Is a Compound Bow Worth?
Companies have been putting a price on the speed of a bow. The faster a bow is, the more expensive it is. Talking about new bows, a quite expensive bow would normally be in the range of $1500-$2200. At that price, you would get the latest model and technology. Hoyt is known to have such expensive models as Hoyt Alpha or Redwrx Carbon. However, the most expensive model of the new compound bows in most of the other companies is around $1000. What is considered as budget bows, but also good quality normally ranges between $500-$700.
Unlike a rifle, bows depreciate rather quickly. The rule of thumb when purchasing a second hand is getting it at its half price. However, if you purchase a bow model from 4-5 years ago, you can find the price off 70% to their original.
The tricky part is when you would have to do some replacements. New strings would cost $50-$150 depending on the type. New modules cost around $80 and one limb costs $100-$200. Keep in mind that the compound bow has 4 limbs. Moreover, parts of certain models can be very hard to find or take a long time to arrive from abroad.
Is Archery An Expensive Hobby?
Let’s look at aspects of archery one by one.
To start off, you would definitely need a bow. As a beginner, you might find a used bow for good value for money as low as $150-$200. An intermediate bow would cost $500- $700.
If you are a total beginner, you may want to consider taking a few archery lessons. The price of the lessons really varies on the state or area you live in. Nevertheless, you can find a better deal if you take the lesson in a group with a few friends rather than alone. After the lessons in the beginning you might choose to continue or not, depending on what your goals are. Other than that, you might have to pay annual fees if you join an archery club. Regardless, it is best to always exercise your muscle memory. With a simple target, even your backyard can be a place to shoot.
Compound archery itself costs more than recurve or longbow archery. Longbow is the most budget-friendly out of the three.
From there, you can always upgrade your gear and become a more ambitious archer. Archery’s not a high-maintenance sport. Keeping your bows and strings always lubricated will make them last longer. A more expensive bow is not going to make you a better shooter. The time and effort you invest will.
To sum up, traditional archery is considered inexpensive compared to other leisure sports. And generally, it is pretty affordable. At the end of the day, archery can be as expensive as you make it. The investment, though, can bring great rewards.
What’s The Best Bow For a Beginner?
Many sources have ranked DIAMOND ARCHERY INFINITE EDGE PRO as the best compound bow for a beginner. It is Diamond’s bestseller compound bow of all time. This version comes with an extended draw length and a smooth draw cycle. It is a durable bow and can be used for both hunting and shooting.