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I am new to bow hunting and I am getting my stuff set up and I was wondering what factors are important to consider when purchasing a bow trigger release system?"

  • Based on what you read or on your shooting? Always base the equipment on your shooting, and match the arrow to the bow before deciding what you should or not do. – Erik vanDoren Mar 9 '16 at 14:29
  • All I am looking for is a trigger release that's all, I already have the other equipment. – Andy D Mar 9 '16 at 15:46
  • Just a clarification, when you say, "trigger release", are you referring to any release aid or just the ones you need to manually trigger (usually using the thumb)? – Desorder Mar 9 '16 at 23:59
  • Can't help you this time =) I don't use a trigger system with my recurve... – OddDeer Mar 10 '16 at 7:05
  • Yes the one you use your thumb to release it. – Andy D Mar 10 '16 at 13:31
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As other aspects of Archery, there is no rule of the thumb to choose release aids.

I don't use trigger release but a back tension one. If we compare all types of release aids, you would have a few different options to try and choose from but narrowing down to thumb/trigger releases, I'd say the best you can do is to try a few different ones from friends that use them. Archery shops could also have a few to try.

Personally, I'd go for the cheapest to start. :)

  • +1 for picking the cheapest option. When you have used your cheap one and eventually realize why it sucks, or what else would be more practical to you, then go for the expensive stuff. – fgysin Mar 16 '16 at 10:37
  • Thanks for the comments!! I'm looking into a not too cheap and not too expensive one. – Andy D Mar 16 '16 at 21:21
  • I use one of those, lancasterarchery.com/stan-blackice-release.html but it's a back tension one. I really like it. You can find thumb trigger versions as well. :) – Desorder Mar 16 '16 at 21:43
  • I don't think that this answer addresses the question: "what factors are important to consider when purchasing a bow trigger release system?" You actually don't mention a single rational factor. – OddDeer Jul 29 '16 at 5:22
  • @OddDeer Could you give one point for when you choose your arrows? or when you choose your bow? Stretch that to 5 points and you will probably still have more than one option (and very likely a hand full of options) to choose from. After all those years, I truly believe that, in archery, personal preference comes more than everything else. Release aids comes with a very wide range and they can work slightly differently from one to another. As I said, I like the back tension style. Some fellow archers hate them and use thumb triggered ones. – Desorder Jul 31 '16 at 6:44
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Since you are interested in bowhunting, I would recommend a thumb or a trigger release.

Most people acquire an index trigger release when they are just starting out because they can be had for as little as $25. Archery shops sell tons of these. They allow you to find a good form, rhythm, and release cadence.

While I have had good experiences from index trigger releases from the couple of manufacturers I have tried (Tru-fire, Easton), I saw the following problems:

While hunting you may find that the index finger release feels awkward attached to your hand. It might make you itch and scratch, or simply a clumsiness factor you don't need in the tree stand. On the positive note however, there's little way it can break or fail, and it's strapped onto your arm so you won't drop it.

Enter the thumb release. The thumb release, counter to the finger release, is not strapped to your hand. You hold it in your hand or you can hang it from a D-Loop knock in your bow. I prefer to let it hang from my string where it will be ready to go, and my hands are unobstructed for grabbing a snack or reading a book.

I definitely find the thumb release to be more accurate since moving the thumb contributes to less of a steadier shot than the index finger. Try both a finger and thumb release, and see if you notice a difference in your follow-through after loosing the arrow..

If you decided to bowhunt with a traditional or recurve bow (which some might not recommend due to the lack of poundage and let off of a compound bow) You might research some kind of a leather arrangement, but I wouldn't know much about these within the sport of hunting that you would consider. You may want to consult a community of traditional/recurve bow hunters who can share their experiences, or find out for yourself.

Keep in mind you will want to consult a bowtech to establish that you have a fitting and safe bow and arrow combination before establishing your preference for release. Some people shoot compounds with no release at all, but this is less common in bowhunting, generally speaking.

Side note: I'm sure there are some purists that believe that shooting with a release is an unnecessary addition, further mechanizing the compound bow. If it has a trigger, does it become a gun? I think the answer is obviously not, and many would agree. The use of a release, glove, or guard is a prevailing choice in archery now and I would assume throughout most of history. Have fun trying out different releases. I'm sure you will find what feels and shoots the best.

  • I guess purists wouldn't have much to argue if the archer has already taken compound :) – Desorder Apr 3 '16 at 23:55

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