Compound Bow Sights – The Essentials to Know And The Steps To Take For Sighting

There are many things in life where precision isn’t fundamental, but archery isn’t one of them. No matter if you’re on a bow hunting adventure or a tournament setting, hitting the mark is the only thing that counts at the end of the day.

Compound bows bring many things to the table, and allowing us to mount a bow sight is one of them. How you select and use the bow sight is another story, though, and you’ll have to keep reading for the details.

Why would you consider getting a bow sight anyway?

You don’t just go ahead and buy the very first bow sight you see on the shelf. Do you need to ask yourself why are you into archery? Do you bow hunt, shoot for fun, or you go on tournament shooting as well? Even if you’re only bow hunting, you still need to give the selection process great importance.

Do you plan only to shoot whitetails at close ranges, or are you also interested in other species at unknown rangers?

Moreover, you have to know how much time you will practice. Some sights will require a lot of practice, whereas others are going to be easier to master.

The budget you have for the bow sights is also a factor to consider. It’s easier to go shopping when you know exactly how much money you’re going to spend.

When you know the answers to these questions, you’re one-stop closer to choosing the best compound bow sights for your archery.

What’s to say about compound bow sights briefly?

Should you use a traditional bow, the “natural aim” is going to be fundamental. You simply draw the string and arrow while you anchor the nock of the arrow to your mouth’s corner. It’s under your eye, and you check down the shaft of the arrow at a target.

In the case of fundamental aim, you orientate the arrow to the target instead with your instincts. For short distances, you have to aim a bit below where the arrow is supposed to hit. Keep in mind that the shaft is anchored to the mouth, only 3-4 in under your eye. For a medium distance, you will have to cover the center ring of the circular target with the arrow’s tip. You need to raise the tip above the bull’s eye for a long distance.

Aiming with sights is similar to shooting a rifle with the help of a peep sight. You will look through the circular disk that is connected to the string, right at your’s level eye. There are one or more pins right at the front, while you can adjust the distance and windage.

Every pin will be oriented to a specific distance, which eases out your efforts. When you’re at 30 yards, you select the 30-yard pin, drawing and anchoring the arrow to the mouth’s corner. You place the 30-yard pin in the circular rear sight’s center in line with the rounded end of the pin. You breathe out and let go of the string.

Practice will make perfect, and you should do your bits and bobs about all the things you need for mastering compound bow sights.

Is the selection process easy?

There are several types of bow sights, and every one of them works in different situations:

  • Moveable pin sight- they come with one pin that you may quickly move up and down, for focusing on a target. Many present pre-labeled distances on the piece, whereas others allow you to have your group of numbers. They also allow you to have fast and straightforward adjustments while on the move.
  • Fixed pin sights –feature several pins that show distances at even increments. You obtain a fair approximation of the target. You may still make adjustments between shots, but it’s a lot more complicated.
  • Pendulum sights- Some call them “tree stand sights” and are great for aiming downhill or in elevated regions. They’re not the best option when aiming at the uneven or flat ground.
  • Competition sights- are the most expensive type since they provide many measurements, adjustments, and accuracy enhancers.

Is it challenging to install a bow sight?

Once you’re selected the compound bow sight, you also need to mount it to your bow. Even if it’s not a very complicated process, you still need to do it right so that you improve precision and to protect you and your bow.

Fine-tune the distance between the ring to the riser for start. Should you move it closer, it’s less complicated to maintain it locked onto the target, but you’ll lose on the precision.

It’s essential to identify a good point that balances both accuracy and ease of use. Fiddle with the second and third axes if the sight lets you to. The second axis will rotate the pins so that the line and the bow are parallel. The third axis needs to make the bow and the ring perpendicular. Once you have this setup, you can go ahead and begin sighting in the bow.

Are there any differences when sighting in the different types of compound bow sights?

It makes perfect sense that there are several processes when sighing in the bow sights since there is more than just one type. Sighting in is fundamental in learning how to use a compound bow sight, so it can take you a couple of days until you figure it all out. Don’t rush in the process and focus on consistency.

  • Fixed pin

You will use the top pin as a base for the other pins, so your attention will be focused on it. You should begin with standing five yards away from the target, shooting a couple of hours. When they land too low, you have to move the pin lower. When they fall high, you should move the pin higher.

When you start hitting the target consistently, you need to go back five yards and run some adjustments. Keep moving five more yards, and so on, only you’re twenty yards away, but you don’t lose precision.

Once the top pin is sighted in, you should move to the others. You need to sight the pins into the 30, 40, 50, and 60 yards for obtaining the accuracy and more comfortable shooting.

  • Moveable pin

Plenty of adjustable pin sights feature pre-marked distance, but you can also do it yourself with some tape on the distance strip. Choose a starting point (ten yards is the right choice), place the pin there, and don’t stop shooting and adjusting until you’re not getting accurate shots. Make a mark on the tape, moving back to the following distance. Go over the process again and again until you’re happy with the range.

  • Pendulum

They are a common choice shooting down from elevated areas, and you only have to concentrate in at twenty yards. While you’re on level ground, figure out a target and fire test arrows, while making adjustments until you hit dead all the time. You will have a fair approximation when you’re moving to the trees or high areas, with only slight alterations in case of elevation changes.

Sighting in the compound bow with multi-pin sight- 5 steps to make

With the multi-pin sights being the trickier to use, it’s apparent that you should do your bits and bobs about.

Here are the main steps to follow when sighting the multi-pin sight:

   1. Tune the bow

Even if you can shoot at 30 yards, it doesn’t mean that you also get the best arrow flight and performance from your bow.

Tuning the bow is fundamental, and there are several ways to do it. More often than not, tuning in before sighting is helpful. Some fine-tuning and re-sighting in should also be done.

You want to make the bow as precise as possible, and it’s going to take some time and patience to do it.

   2. Set the sight housing at 10 and 20 yards

The range you set the pins is a personal thing, taking both levels of skills and situation into consideration.

The standard three-pin setting is to have 20, 30, and 40-yard pints, but many hunters also use 50 and 60-yard pints. Some like to have the top pin set at 10 yards, so it’s a wash.

Pretty often, the top pin has to be dialed in at 20 yards, but it’s better to begin at 10 yards so that the bow is quite close to on target.

When you start at 20 yards, and the bow is too high or too low, the risks for sailing arrows away from target are quite high.

Use a tape measure or rangefinder for measuring ten yards, shooting a couple of arrows at the center of the target. You have to start with field points when sighting in and practicing, as the broadheads lead to cutting the fletchings or the vanes may cut the vanes. They’re not easy on the target either.

Check the display of the shot group, running vertical adjustments to the sight box, so that you get the group level with the bullseye.

It’s important to raise the sight box to a low point of impact for a high group. On the contrary, you need to lower the box for raising the point of impact if the group is low.

Don’t worry about making any alterations left or right, unless you anticipate that the arrow may be off-target when you get to 30 yards. You should move out to 20 yards, shooting the second set of arrows with the top pin. Make sure that the group isn’t far off on vertical from the 10-yard shot. A subtle adjustment to the sight box is needed for reaching the point of impact level with the bullseye.

   3. Dial-in at 30 yards

Go back to 30 yards, repeating the process of shooting a group and adjusting for vertical precision. Don’t forget that making several tiny adjustments to the sight will ease out the process. Right now, you have to set the sight box left or right, leaving the point of impact to the target’s center. “Chasing” the arrow is what you need to do.

Therefore, when your shots hit left, you have to move the sight box to the left, obtaining a point of impact to shift right.

Once you dial in the 30-yard pin, you’re not going to be moving the sight housing, so have it zeroed as much as you can.

   4. Take care of the other pins too

If the sight housing is dialed at 30yards, you need to go back to the top pin at 20 yards, drawing another group. If you still need to adjust it vertically, set only the pin and not the entire housing too.

You need to repeat the whole process, adjusting every pin, for every range that you want, the 40-yard pin included.

You don’t want to adjust the sight housing or the 30-yard pin after you zeroed it.

   5. Switch the broadheads

If you plan to hunt with the bow, but the mechanical broadheads aren’t a choice, the fixed-blade broadheads are reliable. Standard broadheads may present tuning challenges if you haven’t addressed them just yet.

Shoot a field-point arrow and a broadhead arrow, checking where each of them hits. When the broadhead shoots to the right, you need to move the rest to the left. Tiny adjustments always work.

If you move the arrow rest, you get the broadhead point of impact a bit nearer to the field point. Adjustments to left and right are necessary, while you get broadhead near the field point. Do the same for vertical adjustments..

Should you find it tricky to get the two into just one group, you need to go back to tuning the bow for achiever better groups.

For hunting, it’s essential to make this step, too, and even some practice afterward.

The conclusion

No matter the type of compound bow sight you’re using, the key is always to have patience while sighting. It’s the secret no matter if you’re in an archery competition or you go hunting- sighting the bow is still fundamental. Rushing the process will cost you significantly, and you don’t want to find out the wrong way.