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Archery is a popular form of sports. It is also great for people passionate about hunting. No matter what they do, it does require practice to get better at archery. And if you are someone who is thinking of starting archery, then this article might help you in a way. 

Being a complete beginner, the first thing you will need to know is how to sight-in your bow. No matter what you are using a bow for, it is obviously fun to use whether it is for archery as sports or for bow hunting. 

Before you begin archery, one thing you must know is aiming a bow is no child’s play. You just can not hope to hit a target out of the blue. For that, you will need a lot of practice in archery. 

Sighting-in is the first thing to aim a bow at your target. Without sighting, you will just aim for those targets blindly. When you start hitting those targets, you will surely enjoy archery a lot. 

So, if you are facing issues with aiming the targets, then go through this article to learn the sight-in tactics. There are some necessary preparations you have to go through before you sight-in your bow.  

Preparation of Bow and Range

Anything you want to do requires some necessary qualifications. You will need to do that for sighting-in as well. Without those preparations, you would not be able to sight-in properly. 

The steps involved in preparing your bow are as follows- 

  1. Take some days to prepare: Your sighting in will require proper precision. Because fatigue can be really useful in your accuracy. So, you should try to make a schedule for your sighting sessions. Make sure the sessions are spread out throughout the days with proper intervals. This will significantly help you in avoiding exhaustion. And this will eventually result in better accuracy and power. Which is the whole point of sighting in?
  2. Buying the sight: Sighting gravely depends on the kind of view you are using. So, when you are going to buy one, you have to be careful about choosing the right one for you. There are many different types of sights to go through. You should know which one meets your needs as an archer. Depending on your needs, they might vary in costs as well. The usual sights may cost you about $40, and competition sights can cost $200. 
  3. Mounting the sight: Next up is installing the view to your bow. Bows mostly come with holes that are done beforehand. These holes are there for tightening the sights to your bow using screws. Be careful when you tighten the screws. Over tightening the screws will damage the bow. You should make sure the bow sight pins and the bowstring line up vertically. And also see that the sights are at a right angle in relation to the bow.
  4. Setting the sighting pins: You should make sure that you set the pin adjustments in a mid-point. This enables you to have room for adjustment whenever you need it. You can make any kind of changes with an Allen wrench. Having the pin in the mid-point will help you with easy and precise adjustments. 
  5. Marking ranges and setting up targets: When you are using your bow for the practice, you will need to do it in various ranges. Try having a mark every 10 yards from the target. You will need to do it at 40 yards, at least. Mark all these beforehand to avoid inconveniences. You can use a rangefinder for better accuracy. When you are practicing targets, use durable targets because sighting in maybe a long-haul process.

After all these basic preparations, now you are ready for action. Now you can begin with the sight-in process and then get on with archery. Let’s go through that process.

Sight-in Your Bow Correctly 

There are basically two types of bow sights used for hunting. One is known as fixed pin bow sight, and another one is single pin bow sight. And there is a whole other sight used for the competition which is known as competition sight.

Here we will be talking about sighting in with the bow sights used for hunting. First of all, let’s go through the sight in the process of a fixed pin bow sight.

With a Fixed Pin Bow Sight

  1. Firstly stand 10 yards away from your target. Use a T-shape in your target to define accuracy in your shots. Try aiming the target on the vertical part. Start off with a horizontal axis. Fire off 3 to 5 arrows in a line.
  2. Observe where the arrow gets positioned in relation to the vertical line of the target as you are not far away from the target; it is always better to aim for the dead center. When the distance increases, you should try to fine-tune your adjustments.
  3. You should make adjustments according to the deviation your arrow provides. If you see the arrows going left of the T target, make adjustments towards the right and vice versa.
  4. Try doing this as long as the target gets on the dead center of the vertical line of your target.
  5. After that, try moving the top pin a bit high up in the top direction of the housing. Remember to leave out enough room for making adjustments for the rest of the pins on sights with 5-7 pins. Then again fire off 3 to 5 arrows in a line. Use the top pin for aiming the horizontal part of your target. Then begin adjusting in the up-down axis.
  6. Just like you did for the vertical line, repeat the process of examining for the horizontal line as well. Make your adjustments in the up and down direction of the horizontal line of the T target. You will need to get the sight lower if your arrows are above the line. Get your site higher if the arrows get below the line. You will need to make an adjustment only when the deviation is 6 inches or more. 
  7. Follow along the process until the arrow gets in within the 6 inches range of the horizontal line.
  8. When you are done with this, then trying getting further away from the target, follow the marks you made in the preparations. Now set the first pin for 20 yards distance. Move the entire sight housing to set up the top pin.
  9. Follow those previous steps until you hit the dead center of the target. So, once you hit the center with a 20-yard pin, you can get further ahead. Try setting the pins for 30 and 40 yards. Repeat the same processes for making adjustments along the way.

While using a bow sight with a fixed pin, you can follow along with these steps to sight in your bow.

Single Pin Sight In

Single pin sighting-in varies from manufacturer and model of each sight. They all come with instructions from the manufacturers. It is recommended that you follow those instructions for getting the most out of your sight.

Although there are some steps that are common to every single pin bow sight, the beginning steps are just like the fixed pin bow sight so you can follow along those from above. To be a specific number, 1-4 steps from above are similar for any sight. 

Now let’s take a look at the steps you should follow only in the case of a single pin bow sight. Those are-

  1. A difference that can be made with a single pin is the calibration tape that the manufacturers provide. Use the tape and stick it on the bar. Then try taking the wheel to the top by turning the wheel.
  2. Once you are done doing that, then get further away at 20 yards. And start repeating those steps all over again until you hit the dead center of your target.
  3. If the arrow goes low, try turning the wheel in small increments towards the downward direction. Do these until the arrows get on the center of the horizontal line.
  4. While using a calibration tape, keep track of the number lined up with the indicator. Or else you can use a marker to mark the distance marks.

5. Then move 10 yards away from your current place every time you hit the center of the target whenever you move back to turn the wheel down.

6. Always keep matching the calibration tape markings with your shots. Use the tapes to maintain the consistency of your shots on the target.

These are some steps that you will need to follow specifically for the single pin bow sight along with the other steps discussed for the fixed pin bow sights.


Now you know how to sight-in your bow in a proper way. Do not just get demotivated because you cannot hit those targets in the center. Just pick up your bow and start aiming for those accurate center shots. Practice hard, and then put those into some work. 

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