Benifits of a longer bow?


New member
I am currently using a 30 lb 60" one piece recurve bare bow and enjoying the experience except for one thing: I am shoot the Gap system and getting pretty good at 20 yards and have moved onto 30 yards.
Problem is that the gap is huge - at both of those distances I have to aim 30 inches below the target.

One of the club coaches has suggested I would get better (smaller) gaps and a flatter trajectory if I used a longer bow (about 66 - 68 inches) and the bow would be smoother than the one that I am currently using.

I would very much appreciate some responses.


A flatter trajectory, comes with a faster bow and brings aiming points lower, so gaps get even bigger. One of the things that gets confused with barebow and gap shooting is the way we can feel as if we are shooting downwards when the arrow point is well below the gold. If you stand beside an archer shooting on level ground at any distance, the arrow will be pointing uphill. It is only the archer who imagines the arrow is pointing down.

A longer bow at the same draw weight might be a bit slower and give smaller gaps.
Some barebow archers hold the string with all three fingers below the arrow. If they use the same anchor point with their draw hand, the gaps are smaller. By holding the string further down below the arrow nock, they can get rid of the gap for one distance. They can then change the gap between their index finger and arrow for different distances.


New member
Thanks for the reply. I omitted to say that the coach suggested the longer bow should be about 35 lbs.
I currently shoot with three fingers below the arrow. If I hold the string lower than the arrow for different distances isn't that similar/same as string walking? I have read that string walking is not recommended for 1 piece bows.


My guess is that with 35lb the arrows would fly faster and the gaps would be bigger.
String walking is what I was suggesting,yes. I can appreciate not wanting to go much lower on the string with your current bow. A longer bow at the same weight would probably accept string walking.
Another option might be to anchor higher up your face, such as under the cheek bone; or corner of your mouth.


New member
Thanks again. I am a little confused: if the arrow flies faster, wouldn't the trajectory be straighter which in turn would reduce the gap size?

Del the Cat

Well-known member
Oh dear there is some misunderstanding here!
Draw yourself a picture showing anchor, eye, point of arrow, target and a curved arrow trajectory...
The reason you aim below the target is that the rear sight (your eye) is much higher than the nock of the arrow.
A faster bow/arrow will have to be aimed even lower!
The solution is to move to a higher anchor point... or get used to aiming low at short range!
e.g If you drew to the eye, as many indigenous people have done for millennia, you would find you would be aiming point on or slightly above the target.

There is nothing wrong with the bow or arrow... it is the anchor point, method of aim or understanding that isn't right.

The key is to understand the basic geometry of what "point blank" range is.... no, it's not zero range. It's the range at which the line of sight, eye, point of arrow and target all correspond and the arrow hits the target. At longer ranges you have to aim higher, at shorter ranges you aim lower.
One needs to find an anchor point that suits the ranges at which you commonly shoot, so, say for field archery you may want point on at 30 yards. For target archery I have no idea... as it's not my bag.:rotfl:
PS. Sounds like the club "coach" doesn't understand the question either!


Hi JackC41
When you shoot your arrows, they fly in a curve like a spout of water from a hose pipe, yes? To get the water to reach further, you tip up the end of the hose and the water spouts up higher, taking longer to come down under gravity so travels further forward before hitting the ground.
All distances are reached by shooting the arrow uphill and letting the arrow follow a curved path, onto the target. This is very obvious when you shoot 60 y and more, as the arrows climb higher than the target before dropping to the correct level for a gold. With a faster bow, the curve is less bent or flatter. So you aren't pointing the arrow uphill so much to reach a distance. This can be shown with a hose pipe by turning up the water at the tap. You can reach the same distance as before with a water spout that is much flatter. You can lower the end of the hosepipe so you don't over shoot.
In archery terms, lowering the hose pipe is like lowering the bow and the arrow so the arrow is not pointing so steeply uphill. The arrow point will now appear lower to the archer compared to the target; and lower than it was when using the slower bow at the same distance.


Yay, barebow :arc:

A number of observations:

  1. Figure out what association and which class you want to shoot in. This will limit your options. Some allow stringwalking, facewalking, gradually getting more restrictive all the way down to insisting on a Mediterranean loose with a fixed anchor on the face. Also find out what distances you will be shooting at.
  2. Stringwalking is 100% the most accurate barebow option. But I wouldn't do it on a one-piece or longbow as you can't fiddle with tiller; also you really want the longest bow possible to limit tuning variations. And some people regard the mechanics of it as being so slow and involved that you may as well be using a sight. Nontheless it's by far the most accurate barebow aiming strategy.
  3. A variation on stringwalking is to use only one gap on the string to get the arrow closer to the eye to allow sighting 'along the arrow'. Like three under but with a gap between the arrow and the index finger. This is a good way to get point on at short distances. Then you can gap from about 10-30yds easily. But again I wouldn't do it on a one-piece or longbow.
  4. Facewalking is a much less precise alternative to facewalking. If you are going to facewalk you may as well stringwalk. A better way to use it is to think of it as a way to adjust your anchor point to improve your gaps if your gaps are a bit sub-optimal. In other words, if your gaps are a bit awkward with your index finger on your eyetooth they may be a bit better with your middle finger on your eyetooth.
  5. The arrow point is a great reference point for gap shooting, but don't expect it to work at all distances. If you were to be able to arrange point on at 30yds, it will be hopeless at 60yds. The gold will be somewhere behind your hand. If you're gapping with a fixed loose and anchor then you need to look for other features on your riser to gap from. With a Mediterranean loose and index finger on the eyetooth the top of the sight window will probably be pretty near the gold. There will be other features on the riser to gap from too, especially with a wooden riser. Have a look at your bow.


New member
I'm sorry to have taken so long to respond to all the information given. I got called away to a family crisis.

I have tried longer arrows and a change of string nock with a slight reduction in the gap size in the last practice so there is hope for me yet.

I'll keep it going until I get the magic moment.

Thanks again,



New member
Have you tried these handles of morex release aids, sx3 release, ElementTL release? These handles are bits of help to accurate your target. These handles are flexible to bend your resistance of archery.