I attended the ATA show all three days and tired to see it and touch it all! There's just not a enough hours in the day to see it all! So many bows so little time! I use to say so many women, so little time,... but I digress!

I started the show off with a 7:00 a.m. Monday seminar on release aid techniques hosted by Scott Archery with pros Eric Griggs, Darrin Christenberry, Chance Beaubouef, Nathan Brooks, and Levi Morgan! The seminar lasted about an hour and there was a lot of solid fundamental information to be had. Incidentally, Randy Ulmer was in the audience and asked a couple of questions and received a hearty round applause!

Hoyt continues to further refine their bows and with each year they are smoother and better! Their fit and finish is second to none! ​This years Hoyt models from the Faktor to the Carbon bows to the target bows are outstanding! They shoot super smooth, quiet, with no hand shock, and are balanced perfectly. Unlike so many of the bows on the market none of the Hoyt models are top heavy! With the Hoyts you can see and feel the quality in this handcrafted product. Their target bows have the best grip of any bow on the market. Pick one, they're all great! Yeah I am a Hoyt guy!

On to the PSE booth to shoot the Full Throttle. The Full Throttle (FT) draws fairly smooth with typical little PSE type valley. The FT feels and looks fast, and with just a little buzz and feedback at the shot. The FT is fitted and finished very nicely, but like most PSE bows they feel a cheap in my hands. PSE continues to build the big thin cams with shallow string track grooves that have always concerned me. I shot both models of the Dominator and I really like the the Dominator PRO! I could see myself shooting a Dominator as my target bow and it's easy to see why this bow growing in popularity and winning!

I talked to Bobby Vargas, PSE's lead technical guy for about 20 mins about tuning techniques for their bows. It's nothing quite like going right to the source for the best information!!! Just awesome!

Elite Archery? The strongest, up and coming 2nd tier bow company out there! By now everyone knows that several big name pros have moved to Elite Archery, which is owned by the Outdoor Group, which is the parent company of Scott Archery, and CBE. Their new Energy 32 and 35 models are clear market winners! With the E35 there is a lot to like about this bow, with it's smooth draw cycle, high let-off, and dead in your paw at the shot! If Levi Morgan has a good year on the tournament trail this year Elite will zoom up in market share. Should Levi bomb and have a bad year (which is unthinkable) we'll all be saying, "Elite Who?" Never has a bow company had so much on the line and so much to gain or lose. When we talked to Levi he said that the E35 is going to be his do all bow for this year! The 35 and E32 are the real deal.

CBE, has a new Tournament sight called the Vertek, and it appears robustly built . This new sight has some significant upgrades, such as the the scope housing block is now re-movable and that vis a very nice feature! The sight will also ship with an assortment of Laser Engraved sight tapes that will make for a waterproof system!

If you are in the market for a new hunting bow, or do it all hunting 3d bow I strongly recommend that you drop in on a Prime dealer and shoot the IMPACT model! All I can say is WOW! Double WOW! This bow is top heavy, but so what? Put a back bar on it with your front bar and shut up! The bow perhaps, impressed me as much or more than anything I shot at the show. ZERO HAND SHOCK at the shot! NO twisty torquing at the shot! It's plenty fast with an IBO 340 fps! The fit and finish is superb, no cam lean, great warranty, and free strings every 2 years! The Impact has an ideal ATA of 35" which is great for foam or flesh! This bow is on my list of must have goodies. It comes with a removable grip that would I take off and wrap the handle with bat wrap!

After shooting the Prime series of bows on Monday, we stopped in again on Tuesday and spent about 45 mins talking to Pro Archer Dave Cousins. Dave was really great and informative. Dave has had a lot of input in how the Prime bows are designed and engineered.

Ok Archery? Who dat, you ask? They are the most expensive and unique German made bows that are most likely not coming to a dealer near you! I spent a lot of time shooting their bows and in a word these bows are AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Smooth, stable, AND EXPENSIVE best describe this line of bows! IF you every get a chance to shoot one, by all means take it!

Obsession bows? Ugly! Looks like many of the other dozen Strother clones at the show...but it shot GREAT!!!! They may be on to something, stay tuned!

New Breed? They are getting better, they're ugly, they still suffer from the Strother clone disease.

Strother? Are you kidding me? Is this the best you could bring to the ATA? Don't bother unless you want to shoot another ugly Kevin Strother inspired clone, weird draw curve that feels as you fell off a cliff!
Check out the Medusa drop-away rest made by Bowfinger in Kingston Springs, TN. It is a very clever and robust design that has been cycled over a millions without a failure! They have some killer stabilizer designs too!

Scott Archery has some new hand held releases that deserve a look! The Exxus, Exxus core are thumb fired releases. The Backspin is new hinge design that is on my very short list of must absolutely have goodies!

Shrewd Archery is a great company that offers a lot of products from stabilizers to tournament sights! Shrewd archery is also one of the companies that does a really good job supporting their shooters at the Pro/Ams! Good company and great people!

Tru-Ball/Axcel Sights is a family owned and family run business that always great products to showcase. I spent close to an hour talking with Tru Ball's owner Greg Summers at the company booth. After talking with Greg I literally was in awe of this man's dedication and passion to building the very best archery products for his customers! Imagine the the type of personality that would be at home in a "think tank" environment, then add a friendly engaging personality to the mix and you have Greg Summers!

Tru-Ball will have a new single/multi-pin slider out the first part of the summer and Greg said "...this sight will be unlike anything else on the market!" He wouldn't tell me the name or much in the way of details because if the patenting process that the product is undergoing. Tru-Ball is also debuting a carbon sight bar that will be a must have upgrade for their tournament sights!

Tru-Ball has awesome customer service based upon my own first hand experiences and at the ASA Pro/Ams they support the archery community better than any other company out there from what I have seen! Got a problem with a piece of their equipment? Walk over to their trailer and hand it to them and they will either repair, replace, or loan you an item to get you through the tournament. Tru-Ball is great company with great people at the helm and on the crew!

Bowtech? I didn't spend a lot of time at their booth because I have a hard time tolerating their lousy customer service! Their carbon bows are a bit of a joke, and yes the bow is light and vibrates like tuning fork! Last year's Experience feels better in my hand than the new RPM 360. As you may have guessed I am not a huge fan of short, shorter, and shortest ATA bows! Bowtech continues to build paper thin easily bent cams with shallow string grooves! Bowtech has a lot of great technology built into their products but, buyer beware!

I stopped buy the huge SIM's booth and just happened to bump into Gary Sims. I asked about a couple of their new products and he asked what color and goes and gets them off the hook and tells me that their on the house! That will make me feel better the next time I pay those high prices for their products! \:\) Gary was a class act!

Stopped by the Tight Spot booth and asked about the new quiver hood inside material and he tossed me a new insert! I like it a lot!

At the ATA show there is so much to see and take in all the while you are own sensory overload! There's so much coming at you that it's like trying to drink out of a firehose! Got to meet lots of great people! Lee and Tiffany are definitely a class act and grow big better than anyone! The one personality that stands out as a truly exemplary ambassador to all of archery is Levi Morgan and of course his wife Samantha! Last Tuesday, at the end of the days show, just outside the exhibit hall doors stood Levi and Samantha.

As we walked out I urged my little buddy to go over and introduce himself. I thought I was going to have to drag him over there, finally I said, "Levi shoots Elite and you are an Elite dealer!" That's when the light bulb went off! Here it is at the end of the day and you know that these two industry personalities that have achieved rock star status have to be tired and hungry! What do they do? They showed why they are where they are and treated us like old friends and talked shop, and posed for pictures! These two = pure class!

Edited by DixieCrafter (01/14/14 08:25 AM)
If it goes BANG or Twang I'm into it! Fishing is something I do while waiting to go hunting! Predator by design, Southern by the Grace of God!