Archery | Plungers – What’s the Difference?
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Archery | Plungers – What’s the Difference?

August 13, 2019


This is a plunger. In case you are wondering why you need a plunger for your bow, this will need some explanation. Traditional bows had no arrow rest or other fancy gadgets. The arrow was placed on the side of the bow. Consequently, the arrow had to flex
around the bow in order to go straight. The “archer’s paradox” describes this
phenomenon. To shoot straight you have to aim off to the side. Modern
bows are designed with a window cut into the riser, allowing the arrow to be
place closer to the center line. This, in turn, removes the need to aim off
and allows the arrow the fly straighter. However, arrows still flex, and that can
cause clearance issues with your bow. Having the shaft smack into the riser
will cause an obvious accuracy problem. While it’s possible to shoot without a plunger button, it is essential for getting your bow into tune and maximizing accuracy. The plunger is the spring that basically acts as a shock absorber. As the arrow
clears the bow the plunger counteracts the pressure of the arrow’s inward motion,
gently nudging it away from the riser. The tension of the spring can be adjusted. Too soft, and the arrow wont clear properly.
Too stiff, and it deflects to the side. Generally speaking, the plunger should be
on the stiffer side, but getting it right is part of the trial and error of bow tuning. Once you get it right it doesn’t really need to be touched again. Now that that’s out of the way, which plunger should you get, and should you even get one? You actually don’t need to get a plunger, and most bows you use at introductory level don’t have one. Many arrow rests have a flap that acts as a crude button, which is better than nothing, but it’s obviously not adjustable. If you’re using one of these with a plunger, it’s not a bad idea to slice the flap
off to improve clearance. If you’re getting equipment for the purpose of shooting higher scores, you must get a plunger. A plunger can cost anywhere between AU$15 and AU$150, That’s a lot of money for a spring. I’ve got three plunger buttons, a AU$15 Cartel triple cushion, a AU$50 Win&Win, and a AU$140 Beiter. All three do the same thing, so
differences are more subtle. Generally speaking, the differences
between cheap plungers and expensive plungers are durability, sensitivity, and micro adjustment. Cheaper plunges wear out much quicker. The tips can get worn out from lots of
shooting, and the cheaper models don’t have replacements, forcing you to buy another. High-end models are made from more resilient material and have separate replacement tips for sale. Additionally, the spring lasts longer without losing tension, and the vibrations won’t loosen the screws as often. I’ve actually lost screws on both of these plungers, and I’ve replace them with these ugly ones from the kettle. They still come loose after a few shots and require constant tightening. Cheaper plungers aren’t as finely manufactured, resulting in a rougher spring action, whereas more expensive models are much smoother. It’s a small difference, but it may plague you if you are struggling to get tight groupings. The ability to micro-adjust your plunger is a definitive factor in tuning your bow. The cheaper Cartel plunger can be tightened or loosened, but without a real reference point. The Win&WIn has click intervals which is
slightly better. The Beiter stands out in having even
finer intervals and numerical references to help tune. It’s worth noting that at its hefty price, the Beiter comes in a 19 piece kit, including tools,
springs of various tensions, and other spare parts. And get this, the Beiter plunger actually comes with spare grub screws and a hex wrench. For you aesthetic athletes, it also comes in a wide range of colors. It is by far the best plunger in the market, and most Olympians use it, but does that mean you should get one too? If you’re an entry-level archer, it’s probably safe to cut corners and
get a cheaper plunger, as you probably won’t be able to make
the most of an expensive plunger until you get consistent enough to do some
fine-tuning, and by the time you do that your plunger probably will have worn out anyway. A more expensive plunger is likely to last you a lifetime, and fully eliminates a potential constant problem with your bow. Anyway, as usual, I hope you found this
useful, and I’ll see you next time.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. There's nothing really out there that's catching my eye. The hoodies are all the same now and there isn't much AC4 stuff out other than a few belts. I'm more or less done with Ubiworkshop merchandise for now.

  2. Okay 🙂 why don't you try making your own cool stuff based off of video games like a ac themed bow or a skyrim themed bow?

  3. That's way beyond my abilities — you're looking at some rather advanced woodworking or metalworking. I'm just an archer.

  4. You're more than just an archer 🙂 don't be so hard on yourself also you could just decorate a bow or something I've made my own bows and I'm 12 I also have the attention span of a 7 year old XD so I bet you could do it 🙂 also you could try PVC bows like backyardbowyer.

  5. Hey mate, Thanks for this video it's just what i was after – Appreciate it.

    Also going of what Iain Thornton said, I doubt bow crafting is beyond your ability, I was curious about it and met a guy who is now teaching me to make my own traditional flat bow out of spotted gum, whiles its hard to get the hang of, its not too difficult. Cheers.

  6. Never even heard of an archery plunger…and I've been to two archery ranges where I've taken basic instruction!
    Thanks though 🙂

  7. Your videos will help me look less of a noob when I go to the range for the first time.  Very informative.  Thanks! 

  8. Excellent video on cushion plungers. I'll be checking out more of your channel.
    I shoot fingers, however on a compound, (Martin Scepter V, & a Mathews Apex 8)
    after watching this, I've discovered my NAP low profile cushion plunger was sticking, the tube was bent. I have narrowed my search to the mid- range plungers for now 
    A Spigarelli click button, Cartel Midas plus, X-Spot Deluxe, Cartel Midas MX, and a Cartel NX.. I'm leaning towards the X-spot, only because I've seen bad reviews about the Cartels. what sort of arrow rest ( support arm) would be most effective with a compound? ( center cut ). centershot for me is about 11/16th to 3/4 out from the inside of the riser. thank you

  9. I have about 1/4 of an inch of plastic left on the tip pf my plunger. Would it effect my groupings and will I need to purchase a new one?

  10. Thanks for the helpful video. Just got my first bow, and was wondering what the plunger was used for, and now I know! 

  11. Brilliant. I didn't know what this was for. now I am off to buy one with a good idea of what one is right for me. THANKS! subbed

  12. I am still having to shoot disabled and need my Hoyt Target Compound Bow but I still have and shoot my Hoyt Formula Recurve and I use only the best and I can say if your going to be competing just save like he said and get the best you can buy these plungers do make a different's

  13. Your videos are awesome!
    I do have kind of a general question though. For a beginner (6 months in) who is planning the future step up from beginners barebow to olympic recurve, would there be any point in skiping the "upgrading in steps" and just going for the high end stuff? I'm thinking accessories like sights, plunger and so on?

  14. Excellent video! Thank you for posting! My 30+ year old Berry Button finally broke, and now I'm in the market for a plunger. Question for you, do you see any issues with using NON permanent Loc-Tite on the set screws to keep them in place?

  15. Every time I need to understand something about archery for my kids this is now the go-to place. Perfectly explained. Very grateful for all your effort.

  16. have you ever heard of Debut? I have seen there equipment lately and thinking of getting a plunger from them. they are cheap in price, but not sure about how good they are.

  17. I often get conflicting answers on how to set up the centershot of a plunger. It's either 'arrow completely center' or 'arrow slightly pointing left'. Would you explain this for me please?

    Thanks.

  18. would Love to see you making a video about All those arrowrest.
    from the Small that sticks on… to the One you Put in s
    with a screw. 😀

  19. With my new bow, I received a complementary plunger button. But it also came with this metal bulb looking thing that has a screw on the other end. I have no idea what it is and I can't find any information on it online. I can't seem to screw it into the plunger. My best guess as that it's supposed to screw somewhere into the riser but I don't know where. Do you have any idea of what I'm talking about, what it is, and where it should go?

  20. I just ordered a beiter and am waiting for it in the post. I've heard that it comes with three springs with varying tensions. How will I know which spring to use?

  21. If i have bow without plunger and in my group i have arrows 2inch far from each other and i will shoot perfectli same with plunger, will be there some differece in the grouping?

  22. Could u do a video on how to put on a new arrow rest properly and configure with the pressure button

  23. You often talk about vibration causing screws to fall off. Have you tried Loctite 222 (purple)? The blue and red will keep it from ever moving but purple is for this kind of thing.

  24. Are plungers some kind of magnetic to hold the Arrow in place? Or does the Arrow just fall off if you hold the bow sideways?
    I would like to know because I am thinking of changing my Arrow rest. Atm I am using a compound bow Arrow rest because it holds the Arrow in place but I think it causes accuracy issues.

  25. i've just been recommended by my club to get my plunger fitted along with a new arrow rest, we noticed the plastic rest was cutting into the fletchings as the arrow left the bow. we have tried to tune the bow but now this is the next stage on eliminating the issue.

  26. First I would like to say how much I enjoy your videos! This video would be more useful if you showed how to fine tune the plunger: 1) how far out should it be and 2) how do you adjust stiffness.

  27. This stuff kills me, you don't need a frickin plunger!! I've shot archery for a number of years and have been extremely consistent. In fact it's more satisfying to be accurate and consistent without all of the junk hanging off my bow. Seems like someone somewhere decided more money needed to be made on accessories so they come up with all of that crap. Instead of a person putting in the time and practice needed to be accurate and consistent. Every one wants good results ASAP, result of the lazy man's world. I bet if you took an English Archer from 1500 years ago and put that guy up against that fancy plungerised bow I bet he'd put that to shame and be just as accurate. Why, because his life depended on it, depended on practice, dedication and time.

  28. i still dont really understand, what is the point of this object when an arrow rest serves as the same thing right?

  29. Man I hate to say it but this is the third video where you said you lost a nut or screw,,,,you should look into threadlocker I use the Loctite blue dont get the red,,,,

  30. I personally prefer a button with an all metal tip…those rubber head ones come off and you can't replace the tip once you lose it meaning if you make a mistake and the fletching hits the cushion not only to you shred the fletching but good luck finding the tip on the grass.

    So yeah bit of free advice for beginners go for the one with an all metal head unless you like buying more buttons or at least thats my opinion.

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