Best Recurve Bows For Hunting: 2017 Reviews

In today’s hunting world, compound hunting bow and modern crossbow are to archery what the metallic cartridge with smokeless powder and Berdan primers is to firearms.

With that being said, it’s somewhat surprising that there would still be such a large group of archers today who choose to use a recurve bow instead since the level of technology it employs is equivalent to that of muzzle loaders, black powder, and percussion caps.

However, the fact of the matter is that the modern, recurve, hunting bow is still very much alive and very popular among archers.

Consequently, several of the major manufacturers of compound bows also produce modern recurve bows of superior quality that are not only fine examples of the bowyers art, they are excellent tools for the hunting archer to pursue his chosen game species.

In addition, there are also many individual, professional, bowyers in the market today who produce both specialty bows and custom bows for their customers.

Therefore, when it comes to choosing a recurve bow, modern, traditional, archers have a wide range of makes and models to choose from in a wide range of prices.

So, for those of you who are considering giving traditional archery a try, below you will find a list of what we feel are the top ten recurve hunting bows for 2015.

Recurve Bow Comparison Guide:

User Reviews:Takedown:Rating:Price:
Samick Sage TakedownYes$$
Martin Jaguar Takedown BowYes$$
PSE Blackhawk BowNo$$$
Martin Archery HunterNo$$$
PSE Coyote BowYes$$$
Spirit 66 Recurve BowYes$
SAS Explorer BowYes$
Hoyt BuffaloNo$$$
Hoyt Recurve BowNo$$$
Bear Archery Super KodiakNo$$$

In the table above, you will find the Recurve Bows sorted by the following categories:

1.Recurve Bow brand and name/model: Click to view more details or to purchase.
2.Video Reviews: Video reviews from different users around the internet on youtube.
3.Rating: Greatoudooring.com’s Rating of each model.
4.Price: Approximate prices on Amazon.com. Generally Speaking: $ = under $125, $$ = $125 to $150, $$$ = $150+

Still haven’t decided on which model is right for you after looking at our detailed comparison guide?

We’ve got you covered.

Use the quick jump menu below to check out your favorite model and learn more about the nitty-gritty details before you buy.

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Buyer’s Guide & Advice:

When choosing a recurve hunting bow, the first thing you should be aware of is that they are divided into different classes depending on their construction. For instance, modern recurve bows are available with either wood risers or metal risers.

But, while wood risers are generally lighter in weight than metal risers and are often very aesthetically pleasing since they are commonly made from laminations of different colors of exotic hardwoods.

They are not as stiff as metal risers and thus, they are often slightly less accurate than recurve bows with metal risers.

However, in truth, the difference is often so minimal as to make no difference at all to the hunter who is commonly forced to shoot under less than optimal conditions while their heart is pounding from excitement and thus, super precise arrow placement is not critical.

Also, the risers themselves can be either deflexed or reflexed which simply means that on a deflexed riser, the point where the bow’s limbs meet the riser is located behind the grip whereas, on a reflexed riser, the point where the limbs meet the riser is located in front of the grip.

Consequently, deflexed risers tend to be more forgiving of minor flaws in the archers form while reflexed risers tend to exaggerate them.

But, on the other hand, bows with deflexed risers also tend to have a greater Brace Height (the distance from the back of the bow to the string when the bow is undrawn) which in turn, results in a shorter Power Stroke and thus, generates less arrow speed.

Conversely, bows with reflexed rises tend to have a lesser Brace Height which results in a longer Power Stroke (the distance over which the bow’s limbs push the arrow forward after releasing the sting) and thus, they generate greater arrow speed.

Furthermore, modern recurve bows are available with either fixed limbs such that the bow’s limbs are permanently attached to the riser or with removable limbs which are commonly known as “take-down” models and, there again, some archers feel that recurve bows with fixed limbs are more aesthetically pleasing and more accurate than recurve bows with removable limbs.

But, take-down recurve bows are definitely easier to transport than those with fixed limbs and thus, they are often the model of choice for modern bow hunters. In addition, while the draw weight of a fixed limb bow cannot be changed, recurve bows with take-down limbs can be fitted with limbs of different draw weights so that the bow can be used for either target shooting or hunting.

Last, it should be noted that while all recurve bows have a draw weight that is measured at a draw length of 28 inches (designated as ?# @ 28″), any given recurve bow’s draw weight will change over time and thus, a break-in period of approximately 100 to 200 shots is required before bow settles down to its final draw weight.

In addition, a recurve bow’s draw weight will also change approximately ±2½ pounds for every inch shorter or longer than 28 inches.

Therefore, a bow rated 45# @ 28″ is roughly equivalent to 42½# @ 27″ or 48½# @ 29″. Therefore, when choosing a recurve bow with fixed limbs, it is imperative that you purchase one with the correct draw weight for your intended purpose but, when purchasing a recurve bow with take-down limbs, you may want to consider purchasing an extra set of limbs of a different draw weight.

Top 10 Recurve Hunting Bows for 2017:

Although there are numerous individual manufacturers of modern, recurve, hunting bows on the market today, we have chosen both fixed limb and take-down bows from the five major manufacturers due to their extensive company history, their continued viability, and their long standing reputation for producing high quality recurve bows.

Samick Sage Takedown:

Samick SageEven though this bow is imported from China, it is nonetheless a beautiful and well crafted hunting bow that is the flagship model of the Samick take-down line and it features a beautiful, laminated, wood riser.

The riser is made from Walnut, Ironwood, Zebrawood, and Maple with removable limbs made from Zebrawood and Birdseye Maple faced and backed by clear fiberglass with phenolic reinforced limb tips to enable the use of Fast Flight bow strings.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60 lbs.
Brace Height:8 ? 8.5 in.
AMO Length:62 in.
Mass Weight:Unlisted

Martin Jaguar Takedown:

Martin JaguarThe Martin Jaguar Takedown recurve bow features a reflexed, machined aluminum, center-shot, riser with integral harmonic dampeners to help eliminate vibration and a plastic, target-style, no-torque, grip.

It combines with removable, Hard Maple, recurve limbs backed with black fiberglass for a beautiful, modern, recurve hunting bow.

The Martin Jaguar has been one of the top selections for beginners due to cost, reliability and efficiency since it was created.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:29, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55 lbs.
Brace Height:13.5 in.
AMO Length:60 in.
Mass Weight:2.5 lbs

PSE Blackhawk:

PSE BlackhawkThe Precision Shooting Equipment Heritage Series Blackhawk recurve bow is an entry level hunting bow that features a deflexed, laminated hardwood, center-shot, riser.

It also has fixed limbs made from Hard Maple backed and faced with white fiberglass and reinforced limb tips to enable the use of Fast Flight bow strings.

One of the better high end models, the PSE Blackhawk gets rave reviews from most that have the chance to purchase it.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:35, 40, 45, 50 lbs.
Brace Height:7 - 7.5 in.
AMO Length:60 in.
Mass Weight:Not Listed

Martin Hunter:

Martin HunterThe Martin Hunter recurve bow was designed by master bowyer Damon Howatt and has long been a favorite model among avid traditional bow hunters.

Featuring a deflexed, center-shot, laminated, wood riser made from a core of African Bubinga wood outlined with American Hard Maple and backed by African Zebra wood combined with fixed limbs made from Eastern Hard Maple laminations and black fiberglass.

With reinforced limb tips made from Bubinga and black fiberglass so that it can be used with modern Fast Flight bow strings, the Martin Hunter combines distinctive beauty with power and deadly accuracy.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:35-65 lbs.
Brace Height:6.75 - 7.75 in.
AMO Length:62 in.
Mass Weight:2 lbs. 3 oz.

PSE Coyote Recurve:

PSE Recurve CoyoteThe Precision Shooting Equipment Heritage Series Coyote take-down recurve bow is an entry level hunting bow.

It features a deflexed, machined aluminum, center-shot, riser with take down limbs made from Hard Maple backed and faced with white fiberglass and reinforced limb tips to enable the use of Fast Flight bow strings.

PSE is notorious for producing quality bows in just about every category and the Coyote is no different.  It’s a fan favorite and very good for beginners to learn with.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:40, 45, 50, 55 lbs.
Brace Height:6 3/8 in.
AMO Length:60 in.
Mass Weight:Not Listed

Spirit 66 Takedown:

Spirit 62 Recurve BowGreat for beginners under the height of 5’7, The Spirit 66 is a cheap way to get into the world of recurve bow hunting for beginners.

It’s made of Maple laminations and has a fiberglass limb.  The quality of the Spirit 66 is solid, but not quite as good as some of some of the others we’ve mentioned on this list.

This model made our list  because of affordability combined with a large amount of positive user reviews about the bow.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:26, 30, 32, 36 lbs.
Brace Height:8 - 8.5 in.
AMO Length:62 in.
Mass Weight:Not Listed

SAS Explorer:

SAS Explorer FinalThe SAS Explorer is another great beginner wooden recurve bow that has gotten great reviews by many archers across the board for it’s simplistic and reliable design.

It has a hard wooden riser with a fiberglass face.  It also has the advantage of being one of the few takedown models that you can score on a tight budget.

The SAS Courage is a great bow for those that are on a budget and can’t afford to spend a ton of money for a takedown model while still needing something with convenient portability.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:35 - 40 lbs.
Brace Height:7 in.
AMO Length:60 in.
Mass Weight:Not Listed

Hoyt Buffalo:

Hoyt BuffaloDesigned by master bowyer Fred Eichler, the Hoyt Buffalo Signature Series recurve bow features a black, deflexed, machined aluminum, center-shot, riser with a laminated wood grip.

It also comes equipped with Hoyt’s exclusive Paralever Limb System for a smooth draw as well as the ability to adjust both draw weight and the tiller!

In addition, the limbs are removable and are made from a Hard Maple core surrounded by carbon and are available with your choice of either black, white, wood grain, or camouflage faces and backs for a custom finish and they also feature reinforced limb tips to enable the use of Fast Flight bow strings.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65 lbs.
Brace Height:7 - 8 in.
AMO Length:58, 60, 62 in.
Mass Weight:3.2 lbs.

Hoyt Dorado:

Hoyt DoradoHoyt is well known for their target bows and they employ the same care and construction when producing their line of recurve hunting bows.

Thus, the Hoyt Dorado recurve bow features a black, deflexed, machined aluminum, center-shot, riser with a laminated wood grip and removable, Hoyt Custom Wood Core take-down limbs.

It’s backed and faced with your choice of either black, white, wood grain, or camouflage finishes and reinforced limb tips to enable the use of Fast Flight bow strings.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65 lbs.
Brace Height:7 - 8 in.
AMO Length:58, 60 in.
Mass Weight:2.6 lbs.

Bear Super Kodiak:

Bear Super KodiakFred Bear is often thought of as the father of modern traditional archery and, although this fine gentleman is no longer with us, the traditional bows that he designed are.

Consequently, the Bear Super Kodiak recurve bow is a long standing favorite of both Fred Bear and many other avid traditional bow hunters through the years.

Featuring either a deflexed, center-shot, 2-peice, FutureWood riser (resin impregnated natural wood) made from brown and black Hard-Rock Maple outlined with clear, hard Maple, accents or a deflexed, center-shot, 3-peice, FutureWood riser made from black, phenolic, plastic with a Bolivian Rosewood accent strip.

Combined with fixed limbs made from clear Hard Maple backed by black fiberglass and reinforced limb tips made from white or, black and white, fiberglass to enable the use of modern Fast Flight bow strings, the Bear Kodiak Magnum is one of the most popular recurve bows ever made.

Specifications:

Details:Specs:
Draw Weight:30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65 lbs.
Brace Height:Not Listed
AMO Length:60 in.
Mass Weight:Not Listed

Wrapping Up & Final Thoughts:

So, as you can see, the ten recurve hunting bows listed above represent a wide range of price points in both traditional fixed limb design as well as take-down design from well known manufacturers with a reputation for producing high quality hunting bows.

In addition, we have listed bows with both traditional, laminated, wood risers as well as machined aluminum risers which each have their advantages and disadvantages. Last, you can also see that they are available in a wide range of draw weights.

However, it should be noted that most states require a minimum draw weight of 45 lbs. in order for the bow to be legal for hunting.

In summary, when purchasing a recurve bow for hunting, you should choose the maximum draw weight that you can pull even though it may seem a bit stout to begin with because your body will quickly adjust as you practice with your new bow and thus, a draw weight that seems stout to begin with will quickly become progressively easier to draw.

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