Complete Guide: How To Adjust A Compound Bow Sight

by | Nov 18, 2018

Compound bows are the bows with a pulley and cable mechanism. As they are modern bows, they are most commonly used by archers. Usually, the bow sights in a compound bow come with adjustable settings for elevation and distance, so it is really important to know how to adjust a compound bow sight. Here we will see all the mechanisms involved to adjust a compound bow sight.

But first, we’ll see the reasons why you should use a sight with a compound bow.

Why Do You Need Bow Sight on a Compound Bow?

There are many reasons why archers prefer to use bow sight on a compound bow. These reasons are explained below:

Improved Aim and Alignment

How To Adjust A Compound Bow Sight

This is the one prime reason why archers opt for a bow sight. The peep sight present in the bow isn’t that bad, it cannot be used to shoot targets at a distance. The peep sight works only at a shorter distance. Targets at a shorter distance might not need a bow sight but target at distance more than 15 feet might really need a bow sight.


The focus of a bow sight far exceeds that of a peep sight. If you’re only using a peep sight, the focus on the target diminishes. Even a large peep sight isn’t enough to properly focus on the target. When your focus isn’t what it could be then there are chances that you’ll miss a shot. Even though, that shot would have been easier to take with a bow sight. A smaller peep sight can also have drawbacks under low lighting environments as it restricts the amount of light that can enter your eyes. This will make you unable to even see the target. In such a scenario, getting a clean hit isn’t possible at all.


A bow sight, though it costs a bit, can actually save you money in the long run. As the bow sight is really there to make sure your shots land when you use them, the number of arrows that you’d ultimately need to hunt an animal would be less. We all know how expensive arrows can be. Even if there are some affordable arrows, they will quickly be worn out. And you have to purchase another batch of it. Using a good bow sight can extensively decrease your overall arrow usage, thus, saving you a hefty sum of money which you can then invest in other endeavors such as buying a new string for your bow or, even buying a new bow entirely.

Challenge and Fun

Let’s be honest, hunting with a sight is fun. There is something very satisfying about landing a clean hit. Also, mastering a bow sight can be quite a challenge. Once you’re completely familiar with the ins and outs of a bow sight, you can then accurately shoot a lot of targets in one hunting session. Clean kills are also very humane to the animals involved. You wouldn’t injure them. This makes their death sudden and clean. There is also no risk of losing the animal you’re shooting.

You Were Asking: How To Adjust A Compound Bow Sight?

Adjusting a compound bow sight can be quite a challenge. Here, we’ll show you the fastest and most relevant method to go about it.

The adjustment of a compound bow sight is given in the points below:


  • The process of this adjustment first starts from the installation. A general installation method requires you to line up the string of the bow with the sight’s pin in a vertical position. This way will leave with you some extra arrows when doing the actual sighting as the shots won’t be off by a lot of margins. So, even if you don’t hit the bull’s eyes, your arrows will be easier to find.
  • Now you need to line up everything by nocking an arrow in the sight. Line the string of the bow with the sight’s and the arrow’s center. You wouldn’t have to draw your bow for this.


  • The next thing that is equally important is the posture, the sight should be at 90 degrees to the bow. The screws to mount the sight shouldn’t be very tight. Overtightening the sight can damage the bow or the sight. Another thing that is crucial is that you set all the pin to the normal as this will make you able to adjust the sliders in both positive and negative settings. This will help you test out all the sight options in your bow.


  • The next thing to consider is your form. Although you should have a proper form before you even install the sight, the form can always be learned. The Stance, grip, anchor point, draw length and weight, these all should be kept in mind.
  • As far as shooting the arrow is concerned, shoot a combination of 4-5 arrows per session and be prepared for environmental factors such as wind.


  • The final thing is the practice. As the saying goes, It’s not the weapon, it’s the man. Yes, the bow sight itself won’t do you any good if you cannot give it your time. Hit the training grounds and start shooting hard to get the sights under your control. Once you have the sights in the palm of your hands, you’d be able to clean shoot a wide range of targets.
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Tips For Sighting in A Compound Bow Using A Bow Sight

Here are some useful tips that you can probably use while beginning to sight in a compound bow:

  1. We didn’t talk about the elevation earlier, so let’s talk about it now. You should set the elevation by adjusting the pin by 1/3rd of the distance from the sight’s top.
  2. Another thing that is very useful is to ensure that the area downrange is clear. You can position yourself 20 yards from the target. The arrow should hit the target unless something is really wrong.
  3. Most people increase the distance continuously and end up not even mastering the closest distance. You should avoid it. You can always make a subtle change to the distance settings and shoot farther targets. But you should remember to stick to your routine and master each of the distance properly.
  4. Observe your shots and adjust the settings accordingly. For instance; if your shot is moving a bit to the left and down, then you can adjust the sight to right and up. This makes sure that your arrows don’t divert much from the original path to the target. When you achieve the perfect precision, you wouldn’t want to adjust the sight in its entirety. After this, you can adjust only the pins and still obtain perfect shots.
  5. The final tip that we would like to give is to remind you of the importance of practicing and adjusting different setting till you achieve perfection.

Final Words

Bow sights definitely provide some sort of extra boost to your aim. The bow sights that can be used in a compound bow come with many types in accordance with the type and number of pins. They increase focus, aim, alignment and can actually decrease the price. They also provide a fun factor to the hunting experience. In addition, we saw how the adjustments are pretty straightforward. Finally, we gave you some tips on how you can increase the precision of your aim with the help of a bow sight.

  Last update on 2022-09-26 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.

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