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5 archery equipment to invest in

5 archery equipment to invest in

So you’re new to archery, or perhaps you’ve been trying it out for a while using borrowed equipment and are ready to get your own but aren’t sure what to choose. You’ve probably heard of recommendations from different people, thought about the cost involved and wondered to yourself how long you’ll be shooting for. It can be pretty daunting the first (or even hundredth time) you walk into an archery store or browse through an online shop’s website, with the hundreds of different items on display. “How is this different from that? What would be best for me? Why is this one so cheap and that one so expensive?” or even “What is this even for???” you may ask. Well hopefully after reading this little guide, you’ll be a wee bit more well informed on what parts of your bow set are worthy of your investment!

Bow parts are interchangeable. You’ll switch some parts out as you become better, while others can remain quite permanently on your bow. We’ll try to recommend the 5 equipment to invest in, balancing between the uncertainty of how much money I should put in and how long will I stay in for.

First off, let’s give you a rundown of what equipment you’ll need right away to start you on your archery journey, and what can wait till later for you to purchase.

What you’ll need immediately What can wait
Bow partsArrow partsPersonal
($120 – $1200)
Arrow Shafts
($75-$590)/ dozen
Chest Guard
Long stabilizer
($18-$365)/ dozen
Arm Guard
Short stabilizer
($18-$32 / 50 pcs)
Finger Tab
($6-$24)/ dozen
Finger Sling
(just use a shoelace)
Arrow Rest
($12-$16)/ dozen
Bow String
Bow bag
Bow Stand

*Prices indicated are just a guide

#1: Riser

What some (or just I) would call the heart of the bow, the riser is literally what holds everything together. Risers generally fall into two broad categories and three price ranges. The two categories are split by the materials the risers are made of, the first being aluminium and the second being carbon. You’ll find that both types affects your shooting feeling, giving different dampening abilities and arrow speed. Ultimately it is up to your shooting style and personal preference.

One good mid-range riser we can recommend would be the Fivics Vellator or the Winex. The Vellator is an aluminium riser that’s light and suitable for children and adults alike, and also one that’ll last you a good duration before thinking about upgrading. It has also proven results in the Korean archery scene by children.

If you’d like to invest in a more expensive risers that are used by archers at the Olympic level, the Win & Win TFT, CXT and Fivics Titan are some great choices with some differences in build material and mass. One thing to take note of is that not all risers will work with all limbs. There are 2 main types, the International Limb Fit (ILF) limbs (all brands) and Formula limbs (exclusive to Hoyt). The majority of risers you come across will be using the ILF limb system, but if you choose one made by Hoyt, do check to make sure that the riser will work with the limbs that you or your club have. At least in Singapore, ILF systems are much more common and easier to buy and sell second-hand, so that’s one important consideration to keep in mind.

ModelSanlida Miracle or Myth X10

(TAC Recomends for the budget friendly)
Fivics Vellator
Fivics Titan X2 / Titan EX
Win & Win TFT / TFT-G

(TAC Recommends)
Win & Win CXT
(TAC Recommends)
Additional InfoCNC Full aluminium, heavy riser (>1250g)Full Aluminium light riser (1100g) Full Aluminium CNC, heavy riser (>1315g)Carbon construction
Carbon construction, track record on international stage

#2 Sight

Olympic Recurve archers use a sight mounted on their riser as a reference point of where to aim when shooting their targets. As such, the sight is an essential part of your bow, and while you could technically do well enough with a simple model, getting a good one will be a pretty good investment if you plan to continue archery for a while. One main difference between different sights would be the level of fine-tuning they provide. The ability to make micro-adjustments becomes more useful as one becomes more experienced and shoots longer distances, so how long you intend to stay in the sport for would be one consideration you should keep in mind when choosing your sight. The life span of the equipment also varies. Some will last a year and start to make some sounds, some 10 and still going strong.

If you’re relatively unsure about how long or far you’d like to go in archery, then the Krossen Xenia would be a good choice that can always be upgraded later as it is relatively inexpensive compared to the rest. However, if you’re willing to invest in a well-built sight that’ll last you a decade or so and provides better micro-adjustability options, the WS600, WS700 and Shibuya Ultima II RC sights would definitely be the way to go. Even at second hand, they’ll work well.

ModelKrossen XeniaWin & Win WS600 / WS700

Shibuya Ultima II RC

(TAC Recommends)
Axcel Sights
Additional Info– Easy enough to adjust
– Made with only aluminium
– May not last as long as the others
– 4 colour options
– Easy enough to set up and adjust
– Good micro adjustment capability
(more important for long distances)
– Will last 10~ years
– Olympic level
– 4 colour options
– Easiest to set up and adjust
– Best micro adjustment capabilities
– Will last 10~ years
– Olympic level
– 8 colour options
– Easy enough to set up and adjust
– Good micro adjustment capabilities
– Keeping and setting up may take a bit more work
– Olympic level
– 8 colour options

#3 Finger tab

Basically a form of hand protection for archers, finger tabs allow archers to get a good hook around the string, and shoot arrows all day without injuring their fingers from the pressure and friction it creates when released. Usually made with an aluminium plate and different kinds of leather, finger tabs will also get seasoned/ worn in overtime, causing them to soften up and fit your hand better. Finger tabs are pretty personal items, and accordingly, are one piece of equipment that you won’t often find being sold second hand (nor should you buy a used finger tab).

One thing to note is that it’s really important to choose a finger tab size that fits you right! If it doesn’t fit you like a glove, it’ll make shooting a little uncomfortable and may even cause you to develop bad habits and techniques. A good finger tab is an important investment, as it’ll help make your shots literally feel that much more comfortable and you’ll probably not have to change or upgrade it for quite a long time, except to change the leather backing when it eventually gets too worn out.

The Win & Win 360 Cordovan and Fivics Saker are all good finger tabs that’ll likely last you a long time, while being situated comfortably around the middle price range of finger tabs.

Try not to be too influenced by the “many features and adjustability” tabs with a super high price range, or cheaper tabs that don’t even have a metal plate. Simplicity is key, minimally with the palm plate, leather and spacer between the 2 fingers. TAC recommends all new archers to start with no additional accessories first and only add them in when necessary.

ModelKrossen XeniaWin & Win 360 Cordovan

(TAC Recommends)
Fivics Saker

(TAC Recommends)
Win & Win WIAWIS EZR / Axcel Contour
Pro / Chung Tae kim tab

Price$30$45$60$110 – $190
Additional Info– Similar to Fivics Saker, but with slightly inferior leather to the rest– Very simple tab with maximum comfort.
– Thin palm plate to promote clean and easy release
– Sufficient adjustability and features, used by many top archers
– Comes in different variations
– Highly adjustable with lots of features
– Can be heavy

#4 Arrow Rest

The arrow rest is what supports your arrow as you get ready to take your shot. There are two common forms of arrow rest, the first being a simple plastic one like the Hoyt Super Rest, and the second being a more adjustable, metal one like the Shibuya Ultima rest.

The Hoyt Super Rest is probably one of the cheapest arrow rests that you can find. Despite its simplicity though, it can sometimes be seen on bows used by Olympic archers. One issue that will emerge is that the plastic will get worn out over time. This would require you to find a replacement every few hundred to a thousand arrows.

The Shibuya Ultima rest is roughly ten times the price of the Hoyt Super Rest but is well worth the money due to the fine-tuning capabilities it comes with as well as its excellent build quality.

One option to consider if you’re still experimenting with archery is to get the Hoyt Super Rest first, and then upgrade to the Shibuya one at a later date. The Shibuya will be a better investment in the long run, once you realise that arrow tuning affects your shots.

ModelHoyt Super Rest
Shibuya Ultima Rest

(TAC Recommends)
Additional Info– Made of plastic
– Not adjustable or reusable (though you’d probably just get a new one instead of reusing)
– Not as durable, has to be replaced every few hundred to thousand shots
– Hook on the end of the arm helps keep arrows on
– Used by Olympic archers
– White colour only
– Arrow rest arm allows for fine tune adjustment
– Replacement arm available
– Replacement 3M sticker available so the rest can be reused on another riser if need be
– Used by Olympic archers
– 8 colour options

#5 Plunger

The plunger is a piece of equipment whose purpose may not be immediately clear to most beginner archers. Those who know of the archer’s paradox would know that arrows don’t usually fly straight out of a bow, and instead flex a little bit to the left and right (go look up slo-mo videos of arrows in flight if you’ve never done so!). A simple explanation of the plunger would be that it allows you to tune your bow such that the arrow flies straighter without bending around the riser at the beginning.

Plungers come in a variety of prices, from relatively cheap to quite expensive. Though it can be painful to shell out close to or more than a hundred dollars for one small piece of equipment, a decent plunger will last you many years, and you won’t have to worry about parts of it getting worn out like they will on those on the cheaper end of the spectrum. Mid-range to expensive plungers have the added benefit of having interchangeable parts, so parts that do eventually get worn out can be easily replaced, unlike on cheaper plungers which don’t have that option, forcing you to buy whole new plungers as replacements.

The Angel Plunger, Fivics SM740 or SM540 are mid-range plungers of about similar price. They would be a good choice for a beginner archer as it provides a good price-performance ratio that should be good enough for you for quite a while. The Beiter plunger, on the other hand, is definitely more expensive but delivers excellent quality, and can be seen on almost every competitive archers’ bow. If you’re willing to take the plunge (heh) and get this, you likely won’t regret it.

3 things to look out for in a plunger

  1. Smooth action when the plunger moves in and out. Not scratchy
  2. Button itself has little or no deflection to the sides of the barrel
  3. Spring tension should be smooth and should not exponentially increase
ModelCartel / Krossen / Shibuya DX plungersAngel Pressure Button

(TAC Recommends)
Fivics SM 740, SM 540
Beiter Plunger

Price$18-$30$82$88$110 – $190
Additional Info– Try it for smoothness– Comparable for high level olympic shooting
– Micro adjustment available
– Comparable for high level olympic shooting
– Micro adjustment available
– Comparable for high level olympic shooting
– Micro adjustment available

Ultimately, you won’t have to buy the best of the best equipment in order to do well or enjoy archery. For a start, focus on developing a good shooting technique. High-end equipment provide a greater boost only after 2-3 years of shooting. However, too low-end equipment may not last long either. Go for something you’re comfortable spending a little money to invest on, especially in the parts that do not require changing so often, or in things that affect your shooting technique the most.

Give a thumbs up to let me know what to write about!

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2 thoughts on “5 archery equipment to invest in

  1. Plunger is very necessary equipment for archery. I just bought this and stock in my hunting gear. Really good share!! Thanks

    1. Thanks for your kind words! Hope to see you on the shooting line!

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