[shh-thunk] Hey guys, this is NUSensei, and today
we’re talking about bow packages! You may have noticed, if you’re buying your
first bow, that you can get entire bow packages. These have everything you need.
You can often find them on eBay, but I’m not talking about those. I’m talking
about the ones offered by archery stores. So before we get into details
let’s look at some of these packages. So, firstly, we’ll take a look at Lancaster
Archery Supply. Now there are four packages. These are new arrivals.
They offer the Samick Polaris package. The options are the four different sizes: 48″-66″.
If you take a look inside the 66 inch Polaris option, what you get in
this package is pretty standard for a beginner set up. The cost is US$170.
Now this is quite important because a lot of people might be sucked
into buying the Samick Sage which costs US$130. Now for another 40 bucks you get a
package which includes basically everything you need to get started in
archery. You get the recurve bow, you get a very simple sight, a plastic (Cartel Camper) sight.
You get a Saber arrow rest. You get the no-glove string attachment.
There’s no finger tab required. You get an arm guard, a basic case, a
bow stringer, a quiver, three fiberglass arrows, and two target faces.
The fiberglass arrows aren’t great. This is a huge cost cutter, but considering you’re paying only US$170, and it’s only forty dollars more than a stand alone
Samick Sage, this is quite an economical deal. The whole point of this is it gives
you everything you need to get started. It doesn’t need to be great. It gives you all the tools you need to shoot your bow. So that’s the Lancaster option. OK, now we’ll take a look at Merlin
Archery which is one of the bigger stores in the UK. They offer a few kits, and this is
the first one. This is the First Shot archery kit. It comes in ladies and teens and adults. It costs £122 which is US$160 It’s about the same price as the package at Lancaster Archery. What do you get? You get the takedown bow.
This used to be a Samick Polaris, i’m not sure what is now. It doesn’t say what it
is so it’s a pretty generic brand. It depends on what they have in stock. They’re all very similar. You get no loss in quality. You get a wooden takedown recurve
bow, five fiberglass arrows. That’s two more than Lancaster. You get a foam target… You get one of these!
That’s actually a pretty nice package. Not a great stand, but it’s quite good
for getting started. That’s actually quite worth the price. You also get 4 target pins, you get a
60 cm target face, you get an arm guard, a basic finger tab, bow stringer,
a bow case, and a quiver. That’s not a bad deal, looks pretty good. That’s a good value. Now, the shop also
offers a premium package. This is a £175, which is about US$250, and this is… a lot of shops have a package which is
built around a particular bow. This one is an SF Axiom. A very popular bow for beginners. A lot of
shops offer this. You also get a set of ILF target limbs, you get a dacron recurve
string, two brass nocking points, two super rests. That’s good, a spare. Very reliable rest.
You get a sight. It’s a pretty standard sight, nothing special. You get a bowstringer, you get a stabilizer. One long rod stabilizer.
You get six Easton Jazz arrows. Very good beginner arrows, aluminium.
They’re purple, as well. An arm guard, you get a finger tab, a fancier one than the normal stuff.
You get a quiver and a backpack. That’s actually a pretty nice deal
as well. That’s the backpack there. That’s not bad. $250 is a bit more
expensive, but you get everything you need to shoot. This is the more up-scale version of the first shot archery kit.
This is acceptable. It has a wooden recurve. This one is going to give you a slightly more
upscale start, especially if you’re looking at doing target archery,
Olympic-style, at the lowest possible entry price. Ok, now we turn over to Pat’s Archery in
Australia. They do offer a lot of packages, and the pricing may sound
a little funny to you. They offer four beginners packages, and this may seem bizarre,
because the prices range from AU$400 to nearly AU$1,400, but what Pat’s
Archery does is they give you different core components as entry-level. So we’ll go
through each one. The recurve beginners package is the cheapest one at AU$400 (~US$320) What you get is a Samick Polaris,
Dacron string, arrows…It doesn’t say how many arrows you get. That’s a little confusing,
but you get Easton Genesis arrows, you get a quiver. You get a sight which was
not included in the American package. [actually it is] get a leather arm guard, finger tab,
nocking points, and a Hoyt Super Rest or Hunter rest. That’s a pretty standard rest. The bows
are either a Fivics Blaze or the Samick Polaris, which is a pretty
standard offering. So that’s the first one. The second one is when you start
getting the Olympic style target recurve packages. This one is the SF Axiom+ riser —
a very good beginner riser. You get decent limbs, a dacron string, which
is a bit of a letdown. You should be using Fast Flight, but cutting costs here.
You get nine Jazz arrows or Beman Flash. A quiver, a Cartel K sight, plunger
button, stabilizer and so on. A bow stand, too. This is quite important. No bow case just a bow stand. You get an aluminium riser, which is the
standard for Olympic-style archery, and it has everything you basically need.
Not a complete package but enough to get you started. I actually bought one of these. It wasn’t
this particular package. I bought the Samick Agulla — my first bow from this shop.
It gives you everything you need for your first kit. You’re going to add
more stuff as you go along, but this is basically what I got for this price. So that’s
actually quite a good deal. The next level up is AU$1000 (~US$900) You get the Hoyt Horizon 25 inch
riser, good limbs, Fast Flight string, that’s a big difference there, nine
pretty good aluminum arrows, a bigger quiver, a better sight, Shibuya plunger, which is very good, you get a finger tab from Decut, a
Chinese brand, but they offer some good stuff. You get a bow stand, stringer, bow
square, stabilizer, a clicker(!), and Super Rest. So this is actually an even more
complete package for the target archer. Let’s look at the final package
for AU$1300 (~US$1200). The same Hoyt Horizon, again a pretty decent
mid-range riser, same limbs, an 8125 string, which is a fast flight
material, good arrows, a good quiver, same sight, same plunger, same arm guard, a very
good finger tab (Win&Win 360). This is a bit preferential, but I’ve used one of these. This is very nice. Bow stand, bow stringer, bow square,…a chest guard!
It comes with a backpack OK, so this what Pat’s offers, four different levels,
and the higher up you go the more stuff you get,
and this is something will see later on. You don’t necessarily get high-quality
stuff and most of these cases the bow itself isn’t that much of a difference, but we get more
stuff in a more expensive package. OK last one, we have Urban Archery in
Melbourne, Australia. They offer… I remember they used to offer an
intermediate Horizon base package for about a thousand dollars. They don’t offer it here anymore it seems. They have
plenty of compound packages, but they still offer a lot of Hoyt packages. They offer the
GMX, the GPX, and the Hoyt Prodigy which is the current top line Hoyt bow [changed in 2017].
We’ll take a look at the GMX that was a pretty old school bow a few years ago and the
Prodigy is the one I’m looking at. So these are very high priced.
AU$2000 (US$1800) for a starter package. So, if you look at what they
offer, let’s look at the cheaper one first. This is the Hoyt GMX [updated 2017 to Epik],
which is still a very good bow. What you get is a bow, the GMX riser, SF or Samick limbs, 12 Easton Apollo
arrows. These are one of the cheapest carbon arrows, but they do the job, that’s fine. The SF Velocity sight, actually quite a
decent sight, a clicker, Hoyt Super Rest, that’s pretty standard for most bows, plunger,
stabilizer, v-bar and side rods, the whole package. You get a pretty good
string, arm guard, sling, finger tab, bowstringer, quiver, bow bag, chest guard,
bow stand, and configuration as required. That’s a pretty good package. Again
the GMX is quite an expensive riser, especially down here. That’s AU$1750,
for two hundred dollars more you get the Hoyt Prodigy, the current top end Hoyt
riser. You get the same thing really: nine arrows, you get the
Hoyt Prodigy riser, Hoyt limbs, which is actually quite good, and the rest are
more of the same thing. Basically there are two kinds of packages. There’s the
basic beginner package and the advanced package. The beginner packages are similar to youth kits.
They are appropriate for people who are just getting into the sport.
They contain a basic wooden recurve bow, 3 to 6 arrows and an assortment of accessories. These are aimed at people who are just
getting in and need to start somewhere. The advanced packages normally feature a key item, such as the riser or the entire
compound bow, and all the accessories are built around it. It’s meant to get you to grow into your
bow as you progress rather than changing it out for a different one. You’ll get
decent quality limbs, you will get a dozen cheap but very good carbon arrows, and
you get an assortment of accessories like finger tabs and sights, and the actual
quality depends on the price you’re paying. Before we discuss the value of these packages let’s talk about what their purpose actually is. Many people have the impression that a
package deal will give you more value for money than buying the items separately.
The reality, however, is that the packages are designed for convenience
not value. You’re actually not saving that much money if you bought a package
instead of buying separately. What they save you is not in money, it’s in time and knowledge.
Because most people who buy their first bow don’t know what to get, the
packages are put together so that you have everything you need to shoot.
By the way, it’s worth pointing out that this bow package is not likely to be your final
set. Over the next few weeks or months you will be expected to buy more things as
you go along. You may need to replace your finger tab. You may need to replace your
limbs because they’re too heavy. You may need to change your arrows.
These things are only meant to start you off, but they’re not going to be your final
archery set. Let’s go through the basic beginner packages. Most stores will have
something like this. They will have a set which they will ship out to absolute beginners.
What you get is not this cheap fiberglass stuff. You get a real bow. You get a
real wooden take-down recurve. It functions. It looks and feels nice. Some
packages will actually upgrade you to an aluminium riser so you get a pretty good bow in your hands for a very low
price. If you’re not picky on what you are getting, then this is good value for
money to get you started and get you shooting safely. Where these beginner
packages are limited is if you are not an absolute beginner — if you are slightly
even beyond the absolute beginner stage. Let’s say you’ve completed an archery
course. What you are basically buying is what they are using in that course.
The same kind of bow. The same kind of accessories. So you’re basically going to buy
something you’re already using. If that’s what you want because, let’s say, you
don’t stay with the range or stay at the club. If you want something for yourself to
practice, then, yes, you can buy one of these packages, but you may already have
developed a preference for certain equipment. You may not want to use your
$5 leather finger tab. You want a $50 more advanced one.
You may want to actually go into shooting Olympic target recurve rather than
using a basic wooden recurve. So, in many senses, you can skip this package. This is
only meant for people who haven’t shot before who may want to do some shooting in the
backyard or on their farm. They’re not meant for people who are getting a first bow
but have already shot other bows. For the advanced packages, especially the target ones,
you are paying mostly for the feature item: just the compound bow or the riser.
Everything else is picked to complement it. You are not getting cheap beginner stuff, you’re getting
fairly decent intermediate equipment. You’re not getting the top end usually, but
you’re getting very good, functional, workable items. Remember, you are mostly paying for
convenience not value. If you are doing a blind buy, and you want to get a really good bow
and really good accessories without researching, without the effort of
customizing, this is worth it. You get good stuff. However, because you’re spending so much
money on what could be your professional shooting setup, you
may want to consider not buying from a package because the package picks things for you.
What you may prefer to use will be very specific to you. You may prefer a
particular finger tab more than another. You may prefer to use this sight more
than another, especially if you’re spending a lot of money on the sight you might want to pick
what sight it is. So, the more advanced you are, the more you need to customize
and personalize the choices you make. That means even though you can’t customize the
package, you don’t need to look for it. You might, instead, assemble your own
shopping list of items. You may want your Hoyt Prodigy or your Win&Win Wiawis Nano Max.
You might want a certain set of limbs. You may want a certain of
set of arrows. These things normally don’t come in the package because the
package isn’t meant for the advanced “professional” shooter. If I want X-10s or ACE arrows,
I wont get that in a package. These are very high-end, personalized buys, and if
the shop doesn’t give you a perfect match, then they wont give them to you.
That’s why they give you cheap arrows. It’s why they give you cheap limbs. The cheap arrows
are replaceable. They get you started shooting nicely, but you still have to
pick something later on. Limbs. You will progress through limbs.
You won’t start with your $700/50 pound limbs right away. You’ll be starting from
25-30 pounds and these are normally cheap wooden limbs, and the shops normally know this. They’ll give you an excellent core
package: good accessories, good riser, but everything else is replaceable because
they know you will grow through it. They know you will change. So, if you
actually want to get a final high-end bow then avoid the package. If you already
know what you’re getting, just buy what you want to buy. What is more likely to happen is
that you will get your kit in bits and pieces. Most people with that high-end Hoyt or Win&Win already have bought one or two
bows before that, and they’re progressing with their equipment. They might change their
riser, they might change their limbs, or the stabilizer or their sight, one piece
at a time. They don’t actually need to buy a complete kit because they have half the stuff,
they’re just adding on slowly. Now, if you’re buying from scratch, if you have no archery
equipment and you want a very good kit, then this is good value. The advanced packages
are good value because you get everything you need and it’s good quality, but, if you
already have archery equipment, you don’t need to buy a whole new
package for your new riser. Just get the rise or get the parts you need and upgrade as you
go along. Again, the question remains, are these packages worth it? Remember, the key is convenience not value for money.
For the beginner packages for the absolutely beginner who has no idea
what to get or how to research it, it’s a good deal. These kits are designed for you. Especially the
ones from the archery stores, not the eBay ones. The archery shops, the ones which are actually archery professionals because they would like you to return and buy more
things. They’re going to support you in your purchase. You’re supporting them.
They’ve done this many times for many hundreds of beginners. Its quite normal, they know what to do,
and they’re quite flexible. So, if you don’t know what to get, and you just want to
get a bow package, the beginner packages are fine. They’re a safe buy. You get
everything you need to shoot safely. For the advanced packages, the target (ha ha) audience
is different. Beginners can buy this, but they’re not really meant for the
absolute beginner. Even if you are a beginner, let’s say you have a lot of money you
want to spent and you’re happy spending that on a good bow which you won’t replace,
this gives you good value. Again, it’s good because you have everything you need.
But, this is my opinion, because you’re spending so much money on advanced equipment, I would seriously
suggest you research equipment more personally. The higher up you go, the more you want it personalized for you. You get good stuff
in this package, yes absolutely, but you are spending lots of money on things
that might not suit your preferences. That’s something to be very careful of. Again,
if you are starting from scratch, and you have nothing, sure this is a starting point.
It builds you up, but, I don’t know, I want to be comfortable spending AU$1,500 on a
bow which I might not like the look of, or the feel of. I might not like the quiver
that comes with it. I might not like the finger tab. I might want to spend 300 bucks on
a different sight. These are things which you’ve got to sort out, and you can only get this
by research and by handling the equipment yourself. I’d be very careful. I’m not saying stores will rip you off. Stores wont rip you off. They’ll give you a good package and a good deal,
but the saving is, again, a convenience. If you want to go to the effort of customizing a bow
that you want, you will have to do your own shopping list. You can customize your order
to a certain extent, but past a certain point, you may as well buy things separately. Have your
shopping list, have your list of items you need: your riser, your limbs, your string, your
plunger, your sight, and so on. Have that list. You have your package as a starting point.
If you don’t know what to get, and you want to make sure it’s the right sort of
inventory then look at the package, but if you want to get something which
matches your needs and your preferences, you don’t need a package. Buy things
separately. You’re not saving much money anyway. It’s all about the expertise and
experience and the knowledge of what you’re getting. If you can do it yourself,
then that’s completely fine. You get a much better kit that suits you. Otherwise, you’re not saving anything.
The main message in this video is the packages offer you convenience, but they
take away personalization. If you don’t need to personalize your
equipment, such as your beginner gear, then they’re completely fine, but if
you really need to personalize your choices, such as your advanced shooting gear, then that’s where the packages probably don’t
hit the mark for you. They’re meant for someone starting from
scratch. If you are already part way through you archery kit, then you don’t need
to get more packages. Anyway, I hope you found this helpful.
Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next time.