The variety of sights for archery hunting is really generous these days and hunters have never been luckier. The downside? With all of those possibilities, how do you know how to choose your archery hunting sights?
Single Pint Sight or Multi-Pin Sight?
We’re not going to get too much over the details (that’s the subject for another story).
- Fixed pin bow sights- you want to use them from 60 to 180 ft.
- Single ping movable slider type- you may adjust the ping to the exact distance. You may set up as a single or multiple pins and a “floater” pin variable that allow you to set for yardages past the bottom pin.
Suffice to say, every type comes with ups and downs for different situations. Nowadays, most are using fixed pin sights. The main reason for that is the hunter simply like using this specific style of sight a lot better.
Sight Picture Clutter- The Main Problem
Fixed-pin sights come in multiple variations and you may find models with pins in a vertical line from the top or bottom or a horizontal line from the left/right side of the scope housing. No matter the type, clutter is one thing that they all have in common.
If you’re raising the number of pins, you’re also creating blind spots as the pins are going to block the view. For instance, a 5-7 pin sight is going to block at least 40 to 45% of your sight picture. The obstruction may raise the amount of time you need to focus on a kill. This can also cause missing you a shot.
On the other hand, a single pin is going to allow you to maintain the sight picture really clear.
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Why is Clutter A Problem?
If you’re using 7 or 9 pins, it’s going to be more difficult for you to decide which pin to use. A vertical stack of pins or a single pin would be the best choice, but that’s from a clarity point of view. You may also find it tricky when you’re also looking for the fourth pin from the top. Numbering the pins with some small pieces of paper isn’t going to help you much; it simply adds to cluttering the sight window.
Eliminate the guesswork on pin gap
Pins are typically set for 30ft. increments on a fixed pin sight. Did you ever see a deer stop or even stalk close down at 60, 90 or 120ft for a shot? Any experienced bow hunter knows that shooting an easy number of feet doesn’t really happen. You need to practice at different distances. You should be able to adjust the moveable sight to any distance and handle the setup for every location.
Selecting the right pin in the middle of the action is one big downside of the multi-pin bow sights, as compared to the single-pin slider type.
In the case of odd distances when you don’t know how to fit the pins, it’s easier than you hold it over or under the 120 or 150ft. a stack of pins when the deer appears at 132ft. (give or take). In reality, choosing the right ping and knowing precisely which one to hold is a lot more difficult (especially since you’re all shaky). Chances are that you’re going to forget about the 120ft. pin high enough, shooting under the deer. You can also choose the wrong pin- which is never a good thing for your hunting experience.
What About The Pin Gap in Increased Distances?
Let’s say that you’re 195ft. away from your buck. Bedded parallel to your location, the buck is facing away from you and there’s no wind. You’ve been practicing the 240ft. shot all summer and you don’t worry about the 195ft. one. The pin gap is, however, raising. Can you really maintain it between the 180 and 210ft? pins, getting the right distance for the shot? If you’re using a slower bow, the pin gap is going to be even bigger.
Is the Moveable Sight Too Slow for Hunting?
Many consider that the single pin slider sights aren’t fast enough for hunting, costing a shot. It’s pretty common for bow hunters to misbelieve that they only have a couple of seconds to draw back and release the arrow.
However, if you have enough time to range an animal, you’re also going to have enough time to adjust the sight to the right distance. Practice makes perfect so don’t stop until you master the ranging and adjusting your sight. And you don’t really need to move much for doing it.
What’s The Main Downside of Moveable Single Pin Sights?
Let’s say you have a buck at 90ft. you’re trying to draw the bow back, but the buck catches you. He spooks and runs out to 120ft. He stops once again and turns back, giving you another possibility at a quartering away shot.
If you’re using a multiple pin sight, you may simply lift your bow to the 120ft pin and release. In the case of a single pin adjustable sight, you need to guess on the 120ft. shot. You also need to let down and make the adjustments you need on the pin. Obviously enough, this spooks your buck and you no longer have a chance for a shot.
Should you ever find yourself in the situations where you cannot move the sight on the buck that gets closer to you and you use a single pin adjustable, setting the sight is the solution. The speed of your bow counts a lot as well. The distance mark is supposed to improve your high and low marks for several distances. You may want to use computer software for marking you need to do. It’s important to identify the best pin setting so that you’re only a few inches high at the low mark and a couple of inches low at the high mark. This is going to allow you to have a shot off when the buck comes in fast (this happens when elk hunting). It may also be useful when you’re at full draw and your buck suddenly stops at a fair distance away.
Side note: It’s best that you don’t hold the pin at a specific distance, thinking that you’re high/low in the kill zone. A speed bow cannot have one pin to 120. There is a high risk for error, blindly holding too high/low. The best single pin setting is when a single pin is going to work as a fixed pin as you’re holding it under/over for in-between distances.
You should practice at each distance, even if you’re using a computer program for calculating the arrow drop. You need to check to see where you should hold the pin in order to make a clean shot if you need to act fast. Nevertheless, if you have the time, you can always move the pin.