The Best String For Your Recurve Bow | Buyer’s Guide

The Best String For Your Recurve Bow | Buyer’s Guide

For a long time, recurve bows have remained popular with both traditional and modern archers. I would attribute their popularity to two main features, effectiveness and performance. All great archers must learn how to create the perfect balance between the string and the bow.

It is nearly impossible to experience the full joys of archery without considering which bowstring to use on your bow. Without the right recurve bowstring, even the most experienced of arches will have a difficult time unlocking the potential of their bow, whether you’re hunting or shooting for fun.

So, what is the best recurve bowstring? Well, I think the answer is a bit more nuanced than just picking one. Sure, you might go for the most expensive or the highly-rated one, but in my experience, there’s no guarantee that this will land you the perfect recurve bowstring.

However, to help answer the question concussively, I have embarked on a journey to check countless recurve-bow strings. My research focused on practical use, typically what any archer would like to know -whether you’re just a beginner or a seasoned veteran.

Throughout this journey, I have found a few products that rival the top spot to claim the best recurve bowstring. Read on to learn more about my findings and to eventually unearth the top player. I will attempt to break down each product to help you identify the correct string for you, even if you won’t agree with my overall conclusion and review.

What is the best recurve bowstring?

1. Southwest Archery Samick Sage and Polaris

Initially produced as a replacement for Samick Sage bows, these strings (link to Amazon) are arguably some of the most durable and qualitative strings available today. The strings can be used on Polaris and Samick bows, increasing their diversity factor.

These bowstrings are unmatched in quality and strength as they are manufactured from 100% polyester and black Dacron B-55. Additionally, the production materials and style keep them from stretching unnecessarily, thereby increasing their lifespan.

Investing in this bowstring means you don’t have to keep replacing it every other week. However, for the best results, and especially if you’re using heavier bows, I will encourage you to invest in additional strands. This will prevent the strands from overly stretching.

You can find the strands in Archery Manufacturer’s Organization length ranging from 122 cm to 168 cm (44 to 68 inches), with 12, 14, and 16 strand options. Moreover, because of the Dacron B-55, you can comfortably adjust and fit the brace height and twist and untwist the strings.

Additionally, installing the bowstrings is convenient and easy as they have the loops on both ends and pre-served center serving. This means you can easily install them straight from the package, although you should use a stringer tool for the best results and safety while installing them.

Pros and cons of the Southwest Archery Samick Sage and Polaris

These bowstrings are durable, even when comparing them to standard Dacron strings. They are also easy to install and come with ready-to-use and pre-served functionalities. Finally, you can adjust the brace height, which I think is a big plus.

The only downside I can think of is the regular need to wax to preserve the quality. Though I suspect this won’t be a dealbreaker for you.

2. Premium Gear B-50 Dacron

The Premium Gear B-50 Dracon with Archery Manufacturer’s Organization (AMO) (link to Amazon is a continuous type of loop string. What this simply means is it is easy to adjust to slightly varying lengths. As such, you can easily fit it by twisting or untwisting the string.

These slight length variations add to the string’s flexibility on your bow. However, on the serving machine, the Archery Manufacturer’s Organization measurement is around 100lbs (45kgs) tension. This means it simply does not represent the actual measurement of the string.

For example, when searching for a 52-inch bowstring, you’ll need to get 56 inches instead. All AMO-measured lengths you get for your bow will be about 4 inches lesser than what is originally stated.

The bowstring measurements are available from 122 cm to 167 cm (48 to about 66 inches) lengthwise. But since these are ideally the aforementioned AMO sizes, you should remember to trim off 4 inches in order to end up with the perfect measurements for the bow you’re using.

Additionally, subject to the string strands, it will ideally support varying tensions or weight. For instance, a string or 12 strands can handle up to 18kgs or 40lbs. Likewise, 14 strand strings can bear up to 25kgs or 55lbs, and 16 strand strings can max out at 30kgs or 65lbs.

The strands generally depend on the string’s length, meaning you get to choose the strand numbers depending on your need or preference. This also helps ensure you protect the limb tips and nocking point.

Advantages and disadvantages of the Premium Gear B-50 Dacron

This string is measured using AMO for consistency, and it does offer a variety of strands for different kinds of users. Moreover, it comes in wide measurements from 48 to 66 inches, protects the nocking point and limb tips, and is the ideal string for replacing modern recurve bowstring. In truth, I found it hard to find fault with this string, but some archers claim to experience some issues with serving.

3. Southland Archery Supply SAS Courage

One of the lessons I learned early in my archery journey is the need to always have a backup bowstring. That is why I just have to include the SAS courage string (link to Amazon) on my list of best recurve bowstrings. I’m sure you’ll agree there’s nothing worse than a broken or damaged string, especially if you’re out hunting in the middle of nowhere.

This string was originally made a replacement for Southland Archery 60-inch recurve bows. In the recent past, it has become one of the favorite bowstrings for most professional archers. This may be because of the single-length string that is almost consolidated strands, making it way cheaper.

The bowstring comes in the standard 60-inch AMO length, which, if you use the calculations used earlier, is about 56 inches in reality. Another reason why the string is preferred by most is it comes pre-waxed, so all you need to do is attach it, and you’re good to go. Because it is cheap and durable, it’s great for beginners and also makes the perfect replacement bowstring.

Advantages and disadvantages of the Southland Archery Supply SAS Courage

Benefits of the string include its pre-waxed condition, budget-friendliness, and durability. The only disadvantage I can think of is the string might feel thick when in contact with the arrow.

4. SAS Flemish Fast Fight Plus

This string best suits the traditional archer and is tailored for a low-performing bow that may not handle too much stretching. However, the SAS Flemish Fast Fight Plus (link to Amazon) provides superior execution to your bow compared to previous versions.

These strings are not AMO measured, meaning you’ll need to identify the required length to perfectly fit your equipment correctly. The strings are also quieter and have more speed, features that work great for hunters.

Moreover, the attaching string silencers are convenient and compatible, which makes them the best recurve bowstring for traditional hunting bows. The strings are available from 44 to 66 inches lengthwise.

The Flemish has a three-bundle type construction that contains a total of 18 strands. This makes the string faster and boosts the draw strength to about 31kgs or 70lbs.

Benefits and drawbacks of the Flemish Fast Fight Plus

This bowstring is the perfect high-performance bow with relatively reduced stretching acceptance. It also gives you more speed, is quieter than other bows on this list, and is ideal for both hunting and archery. It is also straightforward to install and compatible with most silences, which is a big advantage in my books.

On the other hand, drawbacks include its limiting compatibility with many bows, and many consider the area of serving to be a little too thin.

5. I-Spot Archery Hunting Braided Replacement

Similar to the previous entry, I feel it would be unfair not to include this bowstring. Since it is also a single-string pack, it is mostly used as a backup option, although it is sturdier. The I-spot Archery Hunting Braided String (link to Amazon) is made from nylon material and a Flemish braid.

The string is 56 inches lengthwise without any AMO measurements. The base materials make it ideal for any weather, and it can bear up to 22kgs or 50lbs. Since it also comes pre-waxed, all you need to do is apply it and shoot, although you might need to wax it if it stays for long without use.

Pros and cons of the I-Spot Archery Hunting Braided Replacement

The benefits of the string include its high quality and durability status. It is also ideal for practicing, can support relatively good weights, works in any weather and environment, and is already waxed for you. The disadvantage with the bowstring is that it isn’t ideal for speed shooting, and you still need to wax it if you don’t use it for some time.

Factors to consider when buying bowstrings

Okay, so you now have an idea of the best recurve bowstring for you. However, before you just walk into any store and ask for a string, there are certain factors you need to think about. These factors could mean the difference between getting a quality bowstring and being strung along.

While these factors will help you identify the perfect bowstring, as you build your skills in archery, you’ll know more about what to look for. And while I will try my best to give you the best tips, I must admit there’s no substitute for experience. Anyway, let’s get right to it; these are the factors to consider the next time you’re about to buy a bowstring;

1.   The general stuff to look out for

Quality bowstrings contain these qualities as the bare minimum;

  • The string should be lightweight
  • It should be strong
  • It must be highly resistant to abrasions
  • It should be moisture-resistant

You might need some help to identify these features and qualities at first. However, the more you interact with bowstrings, you will become a pro, and these will be second nature.

2.   What material is the bowstring made of?

Modern strings are manufactured using different materials. Knowing what the bowstring is made can improve how you use it and care for it. The common materials are;

  • Dacron – This is a strong and flexible polyester material. It is compatible with any bow (although results and effectiveness may vary), and it lasts for long.
  • Kevlar and Vectran – These are strong fiber materials made from polymers. They don’t stretch as much but compensate for that with increased speed compared to Dacron. Kevlar, however, can break without warning, and the strings last for about 1000 shots.
  • High-modulus-polyethylene (HMPE) – This fiber is made using a blend of Dyneema and Spectra. It is faster and lighter than both of the above materials. It is also widely used as it is durable and strong.

3.   What kind of wax should you use?

Regardless of the quality of your bowstring, you’ll likely need to wax it at some point; otherwise, it will get frayed with time. However, you shouldn’t wax too often either, as it can lead to further damage.

There are two main types of wax, which are;

  • Beeswax – This is commonly used for traditional bowstrings, usually made of plant fibers and animal material.
  • Silicone-based wax – As mentioned above, many bowstrings today are bought while already waxed. However, the wax will run out, and the string may feel dryer than usual. When this happens, it’s time to apply silicone wax. This wax penetrates to the insides and lubricates the interior of the bowstring for maximum efficacy and results.

What is the best recurve-bow string for you?

So, what is the best recurve bowstring? Well, like mentioned earlier, it all depends. As seen above, there are different strings for different occasions, and each has its unique features and functionalities. Depending on what you need the string for, you’ll have an easier time choosing one that fits your needs.

Hopefully, this guide will also help you care for your bowstring and give you more enthusiasm for archery. And remember, whether you’re looking for a competition bowstring, a hunting, or even a backup one, the options above will help you get the right one all the time. Also, feel free to ask around, experiment, and step out of your comfort zone.

The Best Recurve Bows I’ve Reviewed

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Southwest Archery Spyder

This entry to intermediate level, traditional looking takedown recurve bow is one of these bows you can grow with. As a mid-sized, 60″ tall bow, with draw weight between 20-60 lbs and draw length between 22″ to 29″, it’s perfect for beginners.

Check what it’s going for in Amazon.

Bear Archery Grizzly

This high-end alternative is, in my opinion, the best option for more experienced archers. As a shorter bow 58″ tall, lightweight recurve bow, it’s very mobile. Its draw weight between 40-60 lbs, which is perfect for most experienced archers. The beautiful maple wood the riser is made of is also very durable, and generally, it’s made of high-quality material.

Like most other things, you can find it in Amazon.

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You can also read more in the full recurve bow buyer’s guide.