Headed to the Archery Range? Don’t Forget Your Essential Tool Kit.
Pro archers carry spares for everything, which usually includes an extra bow with every accessory, and a dozen arrows or more. You don’t need to go that far, but let’s discuss a few items you should store in your bow case to keep you shooting all season.
1. Hex Keys
All bows are held together with six-sided hex bolts, so you need a set of hex keys (Allen wrenches) to adjust nearly everything.
The set you’ll need depends on your bow and which manufacturer made your equipment. Therefore, you might need imperial and/or metric sizes. Archery shops sell multi-tools for the most popular sizes.
Hex-key sets don’t cost much, and you can usually find them in dollar stores, so it’s easy to keep spares. To save a little weight and space in your bow case, keep the ones that fit your setup and put them on a key ring. You can even mark individual keys with paint or sticky labels to indicate the right size key for each bolt on your bow. That can save you valuable seconds during tournaments.
Examine your bow before each shooting session and quickly check the bolts to ensure they’re tight (but not too tight), and that all stabilizer weights are firmly screwed in. Also examine your sight, and your finger tab or release aid. Things can work loose when you least expect it!
2. Fletching Glue and Spare Vanes
One guarantee in archery is that arrows shed vanes. It’s the first repair you’ll get used to making. Eventually you’ll want to get a fletching jig, a tool that aligns fletching on the arrow shaft. If you’re a beginning archer, you’ll need a tube or two of fletching glue. Visit an archery retailer and ask what to buy and how to apply it. To keep things handy, store your glues and spare vanes together.
3. Small Pliers and Spare Nocks
Archery’s second guarantee is that you’ll damage your nocks, usually with your own arrows! Nocks attach to the arrow’s back end and clip onto the bowstring. They’re easily changed and come in many colors.
Whenever buying arrows, seek guidance from an archery retailer to ensure they match your draw and setup, and buy extra nocks in the same color. Small pliers are ideal for installing and removing nocks, and they’re handy for other jobs, too.
4. Surgical Tape
This is archery’s duct tape. Sometimes called “medical tape,” microporous self-adhesive tape is great for protecting blisters and sore hands. Keep a small roll in your bow case.
5. Wet Wipes
Most recurves and compound bows are made of materials that need little care and only occasional wipe-downs with a clean cloth. Don’t forget to wipe down your arrows, too. If you’re outdoors and things get muddy or dusty, a small pack of wet wipes comes in handy. They have many other uses, too.
6. String Wax
String wax is essential for recurves and compounds, and keeps your bowstring in good condition a long time. Applying string wax is simple. It comes in a tube, like chapstick. Rub the wax all over the string, not just the serving. Rub the wax into the strands with a cloth. When you buy wax from an archery store, ask someone to show you how to apply it.
7. A Great Case
Bow cases aren’t really a tool, but they’re essential for keeping gear in first-class condition. Bow cases range from simple bags to airline-approved hard-shell cases with spaces for multiple bows. Ask your archery retailer to show you what they stock or what they can order. Bow cases often have an insert or pockets to hold smaller items, so get into the habit of putting everything in the same place every time so you can find it when you need it. Good archers are organized.
Now that you have all of the necessary gear, head to a nearby archery range to hone your skills and make memories that’ll last a lifetime.
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April 17, 2017 at 06:24AM