How To Balance A Bow With Stabilizers

by | Oct 8, 2018

Balancing a bow might not be a huge deal if all your shots are short but if you are trying to improve tournament shooting or searching for ways to maximize your range while hunting, you might want to control all the variables. A bow is perfect when it doesn’t move, tip or turns during or after the shot has been taken. In this article, we’ll discuss how to balance a bow with stabilizers.

An unbalanced bow may need to be forced into a stationary position and vertical position by inputting force on the handle. In addition, people with a relaxed grip could start to fall to the right soon after releasing the string. The bow should always be balanced in a perfect way for it to not have any “pre-load.” All throughout the launch cycle, the bow should stay at the same position and it shouldn’t be moved during the shot. The should also rest easily in hand and there shouldn’t be any up and down motion to it.

Let us get into the fun part now, but before that, let us first discuss what stabilizers are.

What Is A Stabilizer?

A stabilizer is something you mount to the riser back of the bow by screwing it into a threaded accessory hole which is located just below the grip. Almost every type of bow comes with an accessory hole. Stabilizers have many tasks. They absorb vibration in the bow at the shot. This reduces the shock that it felt on the bow grip. The Stabilizers keep the bow balanced by adding weight to the grip. That weight ensures that the bow stands up straight which is important for consistency. It also helps your vision when you aim at the target. They also work against the bow torque. The release of the bowstring increases the torque but with a stabilizer, the weight in the front of the bow resists the torque.

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Why Do You Need A Stabilizer?

Stability is important. It improves accuracy. When your aim is stable, you hit the target. The tighter you hold, the tighter your groups will be. Mentally, a stable aim will boost confidence and hence, your target practice will be more efficient.

The question of whether a stabilizer is needed can have a two-fold answer. Stabilizers are needed to add forward weight to the bow and the bow balances. Some people also say that the bow stabilizer also reduces noise. But this is not a fact though.

The best part about stabilizer is that they add weight to the bow. They’re like barrels for a rifle. More heavy barrel implies better shooting precision. This is why people who’ve left shooting for a while always pick up the full barreled rifles after going back to shoot. Even in the Olympics, archers shoot bows with really heavy and long stabilizers.

Therefore, to increase the overall quickness of your shot and hit the target quite easily, a stabilizer is a very important thing that you can purchase as a hunter.

Now let us see the ways with which we can balance a bow with a stabilizer.

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How To Balance A Bow With Stabilizers?

There are certain ways to balance a bow with a stabilizer. These are explained below in points:

  1. The weights on a stabilizer are separated from the rod with rubber or some other material which dampens the vibration. This makes it easier to carry the bow. Although, if the rubber in question is too soft then it can result in the movement of the system before the arrow can leave the bow. You are reducing the weight’s effectiveness. So, do not separate the weight from the rod with a flexible mount.
  2. Most of the stabilizers are generally heavy through their entire length. Some have pistons to dampen the vibration, bladders filled with oil etc. These vibration dampeners really make the bow feel sturdy as they cancel vibration out of the bow. However, they don’t increase the forgiveness factor, that is to say, bows today are already heavy before you add anything to them. So, the idea of adding more weight and making it heavier isn’t the best option. Weight alone doesn’t create accuracy, Mass and balance together will be most effective to do that. So, while setting up the stabilizer, keep this in mind too.
  3. There are many hints that you can pick up on while you are trying to find the balance that works for you. You can keep a close handle on the feel of the bow. Also, watch the shape, size, and speed of your sight on the target for valuable hints as well.
  4. The first step to get a perfect stabilization is to take a look at your current setup. Then, you can figure how much weight to add and get rid of.
  5. With that being said, there are many other factors to achieve the perfect balance. An archer’s body position, their capability, and their confidence level play a huge role in determining whether their bow is balanced or not.

Bow Stabilizer Shootout


Buying Guide for A Bow Stabilizer

There are many things that you should consider before buying a bow stabilizer. Not all bows need stabilizer and if they do there are certain factors that will help you while other factors would be unnecessary.

The things that you should consider before buying a bow stabilizer are given below.


Vibration and Dampening Material

The first thing to consider before buying a bow stabilizer is to consider the material that it’s made up on. Especially it’s dampening material. Most bow stabilizers have a type of rubber, gel or sand that serves as the dampening component. These materials have their own unique properties so, obviously, one material is better than the other.

Hence, Most companies use rubber to decrease the vibration, noise, and shock so, go for a rubber one. In addition, if the dampening material is placed away from the bow end then, it will maximize the effectiveness of your dampener. So, keep that in mind too.


Front End

The front end of the stabilizer must have weight. The weight of the material is the second item on the checklist after the material. Check for the ones having the heaviest rubber. The weight present in the stabilizer’s front acts as a counterbalance and this increases stability. The similar design can be witnessed on target rifles too where the gun’s stock is usually lightweight and the barrel is relatively heavy.

The lightweight body and a heavy front end is almost a universal design choice for stability. If you have a rubber dampener and a heavy front end then, the vibration cancellation that you get is really huge. Older models of stabilizers had the rubber attached to the bow which caused the vibration to move through the bow. This problem is rectified in modern stabilizers.

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Dampener? Check. Front end? Check. Now, the next thing that you should check is the length of the stabilizers. If you’re a target archer, go for a long stabilizer as it will give you greater stability. For you bowhunters out there, you don’t need a long stabilizer but you’ll still get the benefits from a long one. As far as modern bows are concerned, a longer stabilizer isn’t something that you’d need though.

But What is the correct length? You ask. Well, A stabilizer in the 4-10 inch range is what we recommend. If you add a 6-inch stabilizer to a bow will, it results in small arrow groups usually. Some other benefits of these medium-sized stabilizers include decreased noise, lower bow vibration etc.



Another thing that should be considered when deciding on the type of stabilizer that you should purchase is the customization option that it provides. Not everyone prefers the same design or the same mechanism. Different people have different needs so, if you get something custom depending on your needs then, it is far better than something ready made.



This is the final thing on the checklist. You need a stabilizer that has the best price to performance ratio. You need to find something that fits your budget properly and has all the above-mentioned features or characteristics included. The brand doesn’t matter, what matters is the quality and what you get for what you spend.

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In conclusion, buying a stabilizer is one of the most important decisions that you’ll make in your archery career. And we use the word career as in the duration of while you’re in the sport. Anyway, you should definitely make the most of it. Buying a poorly designed stabilizer that doesn’t fit your needs is equal to buying nothing at all. So, remember to get something that matters. Also, if you’re still in doubt whether you need a stabilizer or not, you can judge it yourself by your performance. If you’re unable to shoot something at a certain distance then, why not give a stabilizer a chance and see if you can improve. All in all, a stabilizer is a great investment for you and we recommend you to get one.

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

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