Tips on Silencing Your Bow January 09 2018
Every avid hunter knows that silence is the secret when it comes to nabbing the big one. No matter what form of hunting you prefer, noise is not your friend when you’re out in the great outdoors looking to bring home a prize. If your chosen method is bow hunting, then you’re in luck. Here are some ways to help silence your bow.
- Begin with the bow’s foundation. Since this hunting weapon is placed under extreme pressure at all times when in use, components of the bow can shift throughout the draw cycle and while shooting. Cams and dry limb pockets tend to creak after hunting season is over, most likely due to being dragged through the woods and being placed in the dirt. If this is the problem, the bow will need to be placed in a press where tension is set free from the limbs. You’ll also want to apply grease to the limb rockers and cam bearings. Do not under any circumstances apply aerosol lubricants to your bow – these will form dirt traps and leave behind the scent of the spray, which, you guessed it, the buck will notice. Bow screws can also be problematic, as they can loosen and rattle. Check your cams, the string stops, limb pockets, cable rods/roller guards, and any other accessories for vibration.
- Check your limbs. Although parallel limb bows are great for reduced noise, there’s still a chance of sound being present. Look into purchasing rubber limb dampeners to eliminate the noises being produced. These also help reduce the chances of vibration transfer between the strings and riser.
- Check your strings. Nine times out of ten, this is the main cause of sound coming from your bow. Therefore, these should be the main focus when it comes to reducing sound. When the string is released, energy from the limbs and cams is transferred to the strings, and then the arrow is released. Leftover energy goes back to the string in the form of sound. Rubber string dampeners or cat whiskers can help reduce sound and help reduce the length of time the sound lasts. Additional weight added to the string will cause the speed of the arrow to slow down, but typically at only 1 to 2 feet per second. You can also place string dampeners on the cables; this won’t greatly reduce sound, but it also won’t affect the speed of your arrow.
- Consider purchasing string stops. These are installed on most models made after 2010. String stops provide an absolute stopping point on bowstrings in a given area at a consistent point. This allows forgiveness for short brace height bows and reduces movement in the strings after the shot is made. String stops are typically made of soft, durable rubber and don’t affect arrow speed. If your bow doesn’t have a string stop, don’t worry – plenty of stores carry universal stoppers to fit all sorts of models.
- Check your accessories. Oftentimes, it’s the accessories on a bow that are producing sound. Check the screws of each accessory to make sure they’re tight, as this is the main cause a majority of the time. If not, remove your accessories one at a time, shooting after each is removed to see which one is the culprit. Hunting experts suggest the application of mole skin and other silencing materials to the places your arrow makes contact. Pay attention to how your arrow makes contact with the riser, arrow shelf, and sight – apply silencers as needed. Stay alert of arrows that come in contact with the bow and your accessories as you shift the arrow from the quiver to the string. Be mindful of your rest too, especially is the launcher arm is made of metal. Carbon arrows are known for producing loud sounds when dragged across metal launchers. Pull your bow into full draw; you’ll notice that aluminum and carbon bows experience riser flex from the rise in pressure. This can cause your accessories to shift on the bow, creating clicks and popping sounds. Inspects the areas of the bow where metal contacts metal, and then apply a thin layer of athletic tape to the location (this includes areas such as the sight, rest, quiver mount and stabilizers).
- Check your arrows. Keep an open mind about heavy arrows, as these absorb more energy during the shot and reduce the chances of sound being produced. Arrows above the six grain per pound range (420 grains at 70 lbs) usually produces a quieter shot without affecting speed and performance.
- Tune your bow. When bows are out of tunes, especially two cam bows, the two cams begin to travel at different speeds on the shot and stop at different times as well. This shift can cause sound. Keep your bow tuned year-round to receive the best performance from your bow.
Of course, if you’re looking for a brand new bow that was made specifically to be quieter, feel free to come by the store and check out our newest product – the 2018 TRIAX vibration-free bow. You may find that checking it out just might be worth the shot!