In my previous post, Are You Mentoring a Junior Woodsman, I mentioned that my children have been shooting Bear Archery Brave III bows. One of my favorite bloggers, Homestead Dad commented asking me my opinion of these bows. Never to let a fellow blogger down, here’s my take.
According to Bear’s website:
The Brave III Bow Set
- 26 in. Axle-to-Axle
- 15-20 in. Draw Length
- 15-20 lb. Draw Weight
- Durable Composite Limbs and Riser
- 6 in. Brace Height
- 65% Let Off
- Suggested Age Range: 8 & Up
- (2) Safetyglass Arrows
- 2-Piece Arrow Quiver
- Finger Tab
- Whisker Biscuit Arrow Rest
- 1-Pin Sight
- Temporary Tattoo
- Right Hand Only
Overall, the Brave III has served my three children well. I’ve lowered the draw weight for my 6 and 7 year old but my 9 year old daughter has hers at the maximum weight and it works perfectly for her. We actually purchased these bows because of the draw weight and reputation of Bear Archery. Most other bows available with this low of a draw weight are basically toys where this is a semi-high quality compound bow. Most of the other higher quality bows were considerably higher draw weights which would exclude our younger children from shooting. Additionally, these bows were listed at around 70 dollars and we purchased them on sale for around 60 dollars each. However, I have found that the price fluctuates and will vary depending on where purchased.
The Brave III’s accuracy is tolerable. The 6 and 7 year olds have struggled with putting arrows in the target but my 9 year old managed to get better than 50% on target. They all three shoot at 10 yards. The bow works well at this range but would perform poorly beyond that distance. With a trigger, I manage to put 100% on target but that doesn’t mean center of target.
The two arrows supplied function properly but the bow would be served better with at least two more. It becomes a pain making target runs after every second shot. We’ve collected all of our arrows so that each child can shoot five (we lost one) before retrieving the arrows and moving to the next shooter.
The Whisker Biscuit Arrow Rest works perfectly. I’ve wanted a Whisker Biscuit or some other capturing arrow rest for my adult bow so this was a nice treat for me to use. It is simple and reliable making it perfect for children.
I was not impressed with the finger tab and at this point, none of the children are using them to shoot.
An additional note – the arrow nocking guides move easily allowing for improper arrow placement on the string. I aligned the guides as best as I could and secured them by wrapping electrical tape around the string just under the bottom guide and over the top guide. It seems to work but will likely need redone periodically.
- Simple to Use
- Reasonable Price
- Accuracy is questionable
- Suggested age is too high. Children 10 or over will outgrow it quickly.
If you are looking for an easy to use children’s bow for ages 6 through maybe 10, 11 at best, this is a quality inexpensive bow. Children will enjoy shooting it and can learn archery fundamentals with it. However, if you are looking for a youth bow that is incredibly accurate or is capable of growing with your children, you should consider other bows as children will outgrow the Bear Archery Brave III within roughly a two-year period.