Recurve advice for elk.

SWhunter

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Mar 13, 2019
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Roswell, NM
Hey fellow hunters. I am wanting to try my hand at recurve hunting for elk. I am looking for advice on a good brand and model of recurve. I don't mind paying more to get a bow that will withstand the test of time and I can pass down to my son one day. Where I hunt elk here in NM, my average shots are 25-30 yards historically with my compound. Thanks for sharing what you know and I hope everyone has a safe and productive season.
 

wytex

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May 17, 2016
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If it's a bow you want to hand down then go with a custom recurve. I'm betting some good bowyers in NM and West Texas, or Colorado ,for a visit and to order.
I switched to a longbow with 3 carbon lams in the limbs, nice easy drawing and good speed. Like night and day from my older longbow made by the same guy and same style without the carbon lams.
A good trad shop will have some used bows to shoot.
Keep in mind a custom will take time to make. Maybe you can find a bowyer with a couple in stock.
A traditional shoot would also be a good place to talk and shoot some bows. Inquire with a local trad club or organization.
 

Greyman

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Jan 14, 2019
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South Texas
I really like my Bear Super Kodiak. I have 2 actually, one SK Black Beauty 60# and another SK wood 55# from the 1970's. I usually hunt with the wood one. I haven't hunted elk with it but I have no problems getting through the shoulder sheild of a big ol'hog. I'm using aluminum 2219's full length with a 125 grain fixed broadhead.
 

ZBB

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Pueblo, Co
I have a custom Palmer that I bought when I was in high school. It’s an awesome bow. Quick and smooth, but it does take time to even get the bow. I’ve heard good things about predator bows, https://www.3riversarchery.com/predator-takedown-recurve-bow.html
I switched to a longbow that I made this year, but I’ve been eyeing the predators for awhile. I would suggest a takedown that way you could get different weight limbs. A light set to build form and a heavier set for hunting. I didn’t do that with my Palmer and it took me a LONG time to get over some bad form from being over bowed when I started. Good luck
Zach
 

Gerald Martin

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Jul 3, 2009
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You want two bows. The first one a cheap 50 lb. mass produced bow to build muscle and good shooting form. Buy used from someone who realized it takes more commitment than they can give. For your second bow, sell the first and buy a custom stick that fits your idea of a dream bow. Don’t go too heavy. 60lbs was the sweet spot for me to be able to stay in shape and shoot well.
 

Gerald Martin

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M. Trent Wengard is a local bowyer who is building some sweet bow. Google Wengard archery for his contact info.
 

SWhunter

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Mar 13, 2019
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Roswell, NM
Thanks Greyman. If that arrow punches through the shoulder of a hog then I imagine it would do the same on an elk!
 

SWhunter

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Mar 13, 2019
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Roswell, NM
I have a custom Palmer that I bought when I was in high school. It’s an awesome bow. Quick and smooth, but it does take time to even get the bow. I’ve heard good things about predator bows, https://www.3riversarchery.com/predator-takedown-recurve-bow.html
I switched to a longbow that I made this year, but I’ve been eyeing the predators for awhile. I would suggest a takedown that way you could get different weight limbs. A light set to build form and a heavier set for hunting. I didn’t do that with my Palmer and it took me a LONG time to get over some bad form from being over bowed when I started. Good luck
Zach
Thanks Zach!
 

wytex

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Wyoming
If you're up for a road trip, Rocky Mountain Specialty Gear near Denver has many recurves and longbows on the shelf you can shoot. https://rmsgear.com/
If you go with a take down you can possibly get a second set of limbs for the riser made by the bowyer.
I would start at about 40-45 lbs draw weight and look to move up to 50-55lbs for elk hunting, 60# is great of you can pull it smoothly. As you get older you may have to move back down in weight.
 

gouch

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Jan 29, 2019
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SW Oregon
As you get older you may have to move back down in weight.
I resemble that remark. I got a 65# Martin Mamba about 25 years ago. Then 5 years ago a medical issue set me back a bit so that I couldn't even draw it half way back. Had to barrow a 50# Browning from my nephew that I have used the last four years. Then last January I decided to try and build myself back up to hunt with the Martin again. I will be using it this year but I don't know how many more years I will be able to keep it up
 

BrentD

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I really like my Bear Super Kodiak. I have 2 actually, one SK Black Beauty 60# and another SK wood 55# from the 1970's. I usually hunt with the wood one. I haven't hunted elk with it but I have no problems getting through the shoulder sheild of a big ol'hog. I'm using aluminum 2219's full length with a 125 grain fixed broadhead.
If you have a longer pull, a Kodiak Hunter is pretty nice. 50# should get it done. Old bows rock.
 

shadowtracker

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Jun 17, 2015
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I would try and get my hands on as many bows as possible tho shoot. Bows are like boots. Some will love a certain brand. Some won’t. Once you decide on the bow I’d suggest find a good coach that can help you learn proper form.
 

Ajax2744

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Feb 8, 2018
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Northern Colorado
I would try and get my hands on as many bows as possible tho shoot. Bows are like boots. Some will love a certain brand. Some won’t. Once you decide on the bow I’d suggest find a good coach that can help you learn proper form.
I agree. Every traditional bow has it's own feel and "soul" if you will. If price be damned shoot as many as possible. And once you find your bow you'll know.
Also my advice for hunting elk with traditional gear is learn to stalk and...get close. When you think you are close enough then cut it in half and then you might be good lol
 

recurveman

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Jun 27, 2018
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Gilbert, Arizona
Well there are a bunch of ways to go on this topic. I have a few recurves that I've shot over the years. I'm a huge fan of Earl Hoyt and the bows he made. Used to hang out with Ann and Earl back in the day. Great people for sure. Spent a few days at his factory watching his guys make limbs. Kind of interesting.

Since you want to use a recurve I would find one that you like where you can change out limbs. I've got a Sky bow that Earl made that I have 4 sets of limbs and 2 risers. I have 2 sets of light limbs and 2 sets of heavy limbs. I would suggest starting out really light (45# if you are new to longbows and recurves) and building up your form (fingers) and strength with the lighter weight and then add weight as needed. You can add weight fairly fast once you get everything else correct and strong. My lighter bow is at about 55# at my draw. Heavier is 65#. I've always shot 2317's out of it and they fly great. I've killed 3 elk with a recurve and 2317's. I would really consider using a carbon arrow if I was going to do it again. One of the keys to shooting good with a recurve is to do it often. You probably won't be able to shoot a bunch of shots in one day but it would be good if you could shoot 4-6 days a week for at least the prior 12 months if you want to be effective. It takes some time to get to the point where you are comfortable with a recurve. Once you are there then it gets pretty easy.

Finding someone that is proficient with a recurve that is willing to help you learn might be a good thing too. I learned from some really good archers and it has helped a ton.
 

cbang65

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Jul 24, 2017
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Blissfield, Michigan
Many a man have killed elk and deer with a 50lb-60lb Bear Grizzly... not the prettiest bow but as far as nice recurves go, they're hard to beat for the price. Especially if you buy newer ones that allow for use of a Fast Flight string...
 
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