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If you’re looking to avoid accidents and have a good time while bowhunting, the recurve bow sight is exactly the type of equipment you need. That’s why you’ll rarely find a hunter leaving home without it. However, it’s not easy figuring out which model or brand will best serve your needs, or suit your style.
The market is vast, and the options are unlimited. Without the right knowledge, you could end up investing in something that will totally disappoint you— an archer’s greatest fear. But fortunately for you, you’ve got us.
And because this is a supportive community, we thought we should draft a piece that would help different archers narrow their search. So, let’s get to it.
|Best Overall||TOPOINT ARCHERY 3 Pin Bow Sight||
|Best Value||ISPORT Archery Recurve Bow Sight||
|Premium Choice||Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight||
|Truglo TG3513B Rite-Site||
|DarkForest BS001 Full Metal Simplified Bow Sight||
We hate playing favorites. We’ll tell you like it is, and try not to sugarcoat anything. So, when we tell you that the TOPOINT ARCHERY 3 Pin Bow Sight is a one-of-a-kind sight, you don’t have to take our word for it. See it to believe it, starting with the 6061-T6 aluminum material used in its construction.
And for the record, we’re not talking about the 6061 aluminum. That “T6” part is very important, as it means the material has been artificially aged for maximum strength.
In addition to a solid housing, it’s also a fiber-optic sight. This is the type of sight that you’ll want to work within a shooting contest because it has the ability to enhance visibility in extremely bright light.
You’ll for sure fall in love with the 2-colorful pin feature. One of them is red, and the remaining two are green. They are all 0.029 inches in diameter, and usually offer an incredible glow in ambient light conditions.
“Why did Topoint incorporate a green bubble level with two vertical bars into its design instead of one?”
To increase accuracy. You’ll instantly feel the difference the minute you hold it up while trying to adjust your windage and elevation. The W/E adjustment has white markings that look pretty cool. Also, you can use it as a left- or right-handed shooter.
The only drawback is that some users complained that the green bubble level broke off from the sight.
Based on all the consumer reviews we’ve seen, the ISPORT Archery Recurve Bow Sight is the best recurve bow sight for the money, and frankly, we concur. The ISPORT made it to this list thanks to a couple of factors, but none more important than durability.
And you know we’re always so hung up on this one because nobody wants to keep buying sights every fortnight. Any optical sighting device that doesn’t come with a top-grade aluminum housing is a no-no for us.
The second factor is the effortless installation process. The sight allows for universal mounting, and this is what made the whole process feel like a breeze.
The other star feature that we can’t forget to talk about is the elevation and windage. They were not only smooth, but also fine, with reversible options for left- and right-handed users. So, to all the archers who have the left hand as the dominant hand, you’re sorted. The hand you use will never be a halting factor.
But there’s a drawback. Regrettably, it mostly suits beginners and intermediate archers. Kindly use a different bow recurve sight if you’re experienced and need something that would give you a competitive edge.
We desperately wanted to try out a sight that provided ultra-bright light because those sights just got into the market, and everybody wanted to get their hands on this new tech—the ultra-bright optic sight pin.
And we’re proud to say the ultra-bright light feature that comes with the Trophy Ridge did not disappoint at all. If we had to rate it on a visibility scorecard, we would give it a solid A.
The green hole meant to guarantee ultra-accuracy is also another awesome feature that impressed us.
The soft-touch ballistic coating is a feature that Trophy included for users looking to reduce the incessant vibrations that could sidetrack your focus, and thus, negatively affect your shooting.
The solid metal tightening adjustment screws made it easy to install, and sight in.
We opted for the one that comes with the 0.019-inch diameter 5 pin, but what many people don’t know is that there’s also the 3-pin option, which is great for short-range archers. This 5-pin sight is specifically designed for long-range archery.
We loved everything about it, including the laser-etched windage and elevation adjustments. The only thing that bummed us was realizing it didn’t come with an Allen wrench. Okay, maybe that and the fact that it’s not cost-effective.
The TG3513B Rite-Site is solid black in color, which left us confused because contrary to popular belief, black is actually not good for camouflage. Compared to gray, blue or even dark green, black will be very visible against any busy background.
The Truglo TG3513B Rite-Site only weighs 0.48 pounds, which means the company consumed less energy producing a single unit, and thus making it more environmentally friendly. Why’s that a consumer concern, you ask? Well, it’s a huge deal to “green” consumers who believe we have to do more so as to save the planet. And we agree.
The sight’s composite material has two primary components: resins and fibers. The work of the resins is to ensure weight is evenly distributed throughout the parts, and that of the fibers is to carry the load. Hence, making the product stronger than sights made of steel.
The inner diameter of that circular field of view is about 2 inches. That makes it larger than that of most sights in the market, which is great if you’re the type of user who’s constantly worried about how fast a sighting device can acquire a target.
The Truglo TG3513B Rite-Site also comes with the two-vertical-bar feature to boost accuracy and is CNC-machined. That’s the company’s way of telling you that their product’s quality is consistent, and safety is guaranteed. It can be used by both right- and left-handed archers, and an adjustable rheostats light is included in the package.
The light wasn’t as bright as we would have liked though. So, if illumination is a top factor in your list, you should go with a different sight.
The DarkForest BS001 Full Metal Simplified Bow Sight is an accuracy optic. The kind you go for when you’re trying to take your archery skill to the next level. It’s also very easy to install, unlike several other sights currently being offered in the market.
The sight’s design is also simple in nature, but aesthetically pleasing—in fact, identical to the product’s image on an e-commerce site. The metal used in construction felt solid, and that’s how we knew it was a durable product.
Is it useful to both right-handed and left-handed users? Absolutely. Like many other brands, DarkForest believes in inclusivity. Quite honestly, we would have been surprised if we found out otherwise.
Would we recommend this device for a tournament? No.
The reason being, making adjustments on the fly is kind of difficult. Assuming it’s a time-sensitive tournament where you have to make quick and precise adjustments, you’ll end up wasting a lot of your time trying to recalibrate it. We’re sorry to say this but the honest truth is, you only show up with this type of sight to a tournament if you’re looking to earn a participation trophy.
We again realized that it’s only compatible with a recurve bow.
Sometimes, the price of a product is not actually that bothersome. What’s really important is the finishing quality. Brands know this, and that’s why they’re working around the clock to find ways of ensuring their products achieve that high-class finishing quality.
Proof of this can be found in Sharrow’s aluminum recurve bow sight with 8/32 vision pins, which is one of the most durable, powerful, highly efficient products in the market.
In terms of color quality, you can choose the traditional red or switch on to blue. And in addition to the elevation and windage adjustment feature, they gave us a finger-adjustable knob.
“How much distance can it cover?” More than what you’d typically get from average-performing sights. By the way, you should know it’s 9 inches long—the industry standard for sights that deliver additional performance.
Is it compatible with different bows? Yes, it is. Sharrow gave us a product that supports universal mounting, and we appreciate that. In fact, because we loved it so much, we’re willing to forgive them for not including an instruction manual.
Just because it’s last on our list doesn’t mean that it’s the worst on the market. It’s actually far better than most of the recurve bow sights that we’ve used in the past. To begin with, it’s made using alloy steel. So, you know durability isn’t a factor that you’ll have to worry about.
Secondly, it offers precision shooting, and is easy to calibrate. Users always look for these types of traits in sights primed for competition. Of course, nobody would ever want to find themselves in a situation where most of their time is being spent calibrating, rather than shooting. And lastly, it can be used by both left-handed and right-handed users.
The mounting arm is a tad bit shorter than usual, but other than that, there’s no other issue to report.
Let’s look at some of the factors that buyers often take into account before purchasing a recurve bow sight. You need to pay attention if you’ve never bought a bow sight before. Ignore these things, and you’ll hate yourself for wasting a lot of money on a useless device.
This is self-explanatory. It’s just an open ring, tasked with lining up targets so that they may appear at the center of the ring. The open ring recurve bow sight is an ideal sight if you’re a frugal spender. They often come with a budget-friendly price tag, and can be relied on.
We would also recommend it to users who prefer working with sights designed for short-range archery. If you try to use an open-ring recurve bow sight on targets that are hundreds of yards away, everything will appear blurry.
Let’s explain it with the help of an illustration.
So, the first thing that we’d like you to do is make a circle using your thumb and index finger, about the size of a quarter.
Now, the next step is to move that circle away from your face. The distance should be the same as that of a person holding a bow. Finally, try to focus on an object that’s a few meters away, and then try one that’s farther away.
You’ll realize focusing on the one that’s closer to you is much easier than that which is farther away.
But then again, we do have open rings that come with advanced features that address this issue. However, there’s a catch. And the catch is, you’ve got to be okay with it being a distraction sometimes, or blending in with the shot background.
If you have a wooden bow, pin sights are not for you. The fact that sight pins designed for wooden bows are limited is something that nobody really tells you. You get to find out on your own—probably after purchasing a wooden bow—and that’s what sucks. Funny thing is, your woes won’t even stop there.
Assuming you find a pin sight for a wooden bow, the installation process will have you thinking you’re working on a rocket engine, or something close to that. You’ll have to drill and drill, and drill, before working on the inserts. Quite frankly, it’s not worth the hassle.
It’s also important to remember we do have two types of pin sights. There’s the single-pin and the multiple-pin. The former will be ideal in situations where the target is static and the yardage is fixed, while the latter is better suited for moving targets.
So, the single-pin is useful to users who’re still learning archery, while the multiple-pin is great for experienced archers. And we prefer working with a multiple-pin sight because they give you options. You’ll be allowed to choose a pin that you think will be able to deliver pinpoint accuracy on a predetermined distance.
How will you know how to calibrate it? A quality pin sight will have an instruction manual. So should you choose a multiple-pin recurve bow sight, the manual will tell you how to set the archer’s average distance, and then how to calibrate for shorter and longer shots.
Target sights are recurve bow sights designed for archers with deeper pockets. On that account, if you’re willing to invest in something that will definitely cost you an arm and leg, we say go for it. They are normally very expensive because of the advanced features incorporated into their designs. We’re talking about retina technology, windage and elevation micro-adjustments, etc.
That’s not even the best part. Many of you probably don’t know this, but the target recurve bow sight can offer the ultimate accuracy, if you combine it with other sights. Yup, combining two different sights with two very different designs is very much possible. But, only if one of them is a target sight.
Just don’t go for a target sight if you’re still at the beginner’s archery level. Operating such a sight requires considerable skill that only an experienced archer might have.
A hunter’s skill level is not the only thing that sets him or her apart. It’s also the set of conditions that they prefer to work in. Some love hunting under the cover of darkness, while others prefer going out in broad daylight. Taking that into consideration, you’ll need to do more homework before making a purchase.
A recurve bow sight’s light enhancement is basically a flashlight. It will definitely come in handy in the dead of night, but there are drawbacks. One, it’ll ruin your camouflage. So, you’ll never be able to mask your location, identity, or movement. And two, due to the fact that they often run on batteries, it’s not always wise to rely on them.
We cannot find you a solution to the camouflage problem, but something can be done about the battery issue. If you desperately need a device that can deliver in different lighting conditions, without running out of juice, go for fiber optics. They often work exceptionally well in different lighting conditions, and don’t require batteries.
Taking the tritium route is also an option, if you don’t fancy the first two. Tritium, for those of you who’ve never heard of it, is a radioactive element that has the ability to gather light. It’s actually the thing that makes glow-in-the-dark watches glow.
Quality doesn’t mean that you’ve got to splurge. There are so many affordable recurve bow sights that exude quality and sturdiness.
While looking at the product’s material description on the package, look for words such as composite or CNC-machined aircraft-grade aluminum. These are materials that brands use to ensure their products are durable and reliable.
Every sight needs some sort of adjusting every once in a while. Especially when you’re out in the field. Or why else do you think the windage and elevation adjustments features are part and parcel of every quality bow recurve sight?
But as much as that feature is important, it’s just bells and whistles without the lock-setting feature. The lock-setting has to be accessible and of substantial size—Large enough to resist interminable vibrations.
The pins are the other factor to consider here. Sight pins are mostly found in recurve bow sights that are designed to use fiber optics. Their primary function is to ensure the fiber optic is securely clenched in the device’s aperture.
Friendly Reminder: when it comes down to the sight pin, thin is better than thick. We don’t want to hunt with a gadget that constantly blurs smaller prey.
The last feature that makes a sight user-friendly is the glo-ring. The illumination will define your field of vision, and refine clarity.
Folks, let’s call it a day. We sincerely hope these recurve bow sights will help you come to a decision on what device will best complement your style, or cater to your needs. But if we were you, we would give the TOPOINT ARCHERY 3 Pin Bow Sight a shot. It’s our number one sight for a good reason. But if you’re looking for value for money, go with the ISPORT Archery Recurve Bow Sight. The Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight is also a dope sight but not cost-effective.
Featured Image Credit: Josep Suria, Shutterstock
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Robert’s obsession with all things optical started early in life, when his optician father would bring home prototypes for Robert to play with. Nowadays, Robert is dedicated to helping others find the right optics for their needs. His hobbies include astronomy, astrophysics, and model building. Originally from Newark, NJ, he resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the nighttime skies are filled with glittering stars.
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