Shooting an arrow and being confident that it is going to end up where you want it to are two different things. It will be even more difficult to achieve if you don’t use a bow sight. There are many different types of bow sight options available to the archer, all of which will help to improve your chances of shooting accurately.
The difficult part of the process is working out what type of bow sight will suit your shooting. There are a number of features that are important but there are others that could be completely irrelevant to you. How do you know which is which?
Here are a few things to consider that might play a part in your decision making process:
- Compatibility with your bow
- Understanding the parts of a bow sight
- Number of pins and their sizes
- Illumination features
- Noise suppression
The first thing to work out is whether the bow sight is going to be compatible to your bow. Check that the mounting bracket will fit on your bow’s riser. With modern bows and sights that are being made today this should not be a huge issue. However, there are some types of bow sights, such as the Viper Diamondback Fixed Plate MicroTune sight that has been specifically designed to be compatible to the Mathews compound bows.
Learn the different parts of the bow sight so that you are familiar with the terminology. Know that the pins are the small metal pieces that hold the fiber optics within the sight aperture. They provide you with the means to line up your target.
Determine whether you are more comfortable with vertically or horizontally mounted pins. Some manufacturers specialise in making their sights with one method or the other.
The illumination of the sight can be achieved in a few different ways. The first is with the fiber optics themselves. Generally, the longer the fibers, the brighter the sights are going to be. Many bow sights also have a glo-ring installed around the perimeter of the pin housing. This helps define the field of vision and can increase clarity. An optional extra that can be installed is a rheostat light which will help whenever the natural light begins to fail.
Pin sizes vary from one sight to another. Indeed, within single models it is possible to choose the size yourself. It is usually best not to use pins that are overly thick because it will have a tendency to cover a small target.
Adjustability is a big feature that is being dealt with more and more by manufacturers. Even the so-called fixed-pin bow sights are being turned into adjustable sights thanks to the tool-less models that are being produced. Gang-adjustment is also being made available in many models and this means that you only have to dial in one of the pins, lock it down and then the other pins will fall into place at even distances. The fixed pin sights are virtually becoming quasi-movable sights thanks to the continued innovation and improvement by manufacturers.
In all of this, it pays to keep up with the latest sight releases and be aware of what new changes have been built into the new sights. The goal of the manufacturer is to provide a sight that improves the accuracy of the shooter. You then get to choose whether you need a single pin sight, 3 pins, 4 pins, 5 or more.
The price is going to play a part in how you choose your sight as well. The more features the sight has and the quality of the materials used in the construction will generally mean a higher cost. Tournament sights that are particularly precise are going to head the list in expense. Don’t be fooled though, there are some very good low-cost bow sights available, particularly if you work out that the whizz-bang features are not necessary.
The best archery sight is the one that you feel most comfortable using. Knowing the various features it offers you and being able to quickly and efficiently adjust it so that you are quickly lining up your target for an accurate, silent shot.