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How to Do Paper Tuning a Bow – 8 Simple Steps

Paper Tuning a Bow

Paper tuning a bow occurs when an archer tries to shoot an arrow through the piece of paper to understand the rip (usually a snapshot of the arrow’s flight) it creates. Once we receive the snapshots of the arrow’s flight, we need to tune it perfectly so that it goes past the paper like a bullet. 

The arrow rest, grip, nocking point, and arrow spine need to be appropriately aligned for a perfect paper tear. We apply this paper tuning technique when we are running low on budget and need more money to buy a slomo camera. 

This tuning technique helps you in finding loopholes in your arrow flight. Luckily, the paper tuning of a bow is not a difficult process to do, if you have a fair knowledge of how to do it, then you can easily do this task without any trouble.

Paper Tuning a Bow

Various tuning methods are available and followed by many famous archers, but we recommend a paper tuning method. We will share four paper tears and their remedies before moving further. 

Paper TearsRemedies
Noch HighMove your rest up or nocking point down
Nock LowMove your rest down or nocking point up
Nock RightIn a right-handed bow, move a rest away from the riser.
Nock LeftMove rest toward the riser for a rightyMove rest away from the riser for lefty

Now we will share a few steps to paper tune a bow properly.

1- Build Frame:

Before you do the tuning process, you need something to hold your paper. What else is a better option than a frame to hold your paper? All you need to do for the frame-building purpose is buy furring strips or trex from any hardware shop. 

Things required in frame building:

  • 2 eight-foot-long furring strips
  • A Sawzall for cutting strips
  • A drill
  • Few 1-inch screws

Other than this, we can sharpen the legs of our strip (frame) and put them in the ground, and you will see it will stand firm. 

2- Stretch and Prepare Paper

Once you have built your frame successfully, use any wax paper to place it on your frame. Use a staple gun to attach one end of your wax paper at the top and the other at the bottom. 

Make sure that you have tightly attached the paper across the frame and that no area on the frame has loose paper on it. As your basic adjustments are made, add more staples to the area where you think it needs to be tight enough. Remember, if your paper is loose, you won’t be able to do perfect paper tuning of a bow. 

3- Establish Goals

As your paper is tightened well enough across your frame, now pace this tuning frame on your desired distance. In the beginning, this distance has to be around 10 ft roughly, and you can increase or decrease it later. This paper tuning frame will directly receive the arrows once they pass through the paper. 

4- Shoot the Target

After completing all processes successfully:

  1. Stand 5 to 10 feet away from your paper holding frame, which is placed right in front of you.
  2. Align yourself and bow in a way that your arrows can easily fly through the paper and capture accurately by the frame so that you can figure out your errors.
  3. After making a few shots, start observing your arrows’ behavior once they leave the arrow’s rest.

The tears produced once the arrow is released can give you points on adjusting your arrow rest or nocking point. Besides this, this observation will allow you to make any changes for better point or arrow selection.

5- Analyze the shot

An analysis is the best way of understanding your mistakes to make future changes to stay on track. Analyzing the tears generated by your arrows will let you know which tuning strategy is best for you. Mostly everyone shares the strategies for right-handers as most shooters are right-handers. 

But don’t worry if you are a left-hand shooter; reverse all the instructions, and you are good to go. Suppose if a right-hander holds a bow in their left hand, then a left-hander will hold it in their right hand and vice versa. 

6- Assess the Impact of Holes

This exercise aims to produce a fine hole with more than two cuts to verify the route of arrows through hanging paper. It has been noticed that there are no or little cuts when you aim to shoot feather fletching. 

We suggest reading the arrow manufacturer’s chart to familiarize yourself with a proper spine for everything included or affecting, such as arrow weight, draw length and point weight. 

For Right-handers

A lower-right tear is also called a right-hand tear, which shows that a specific arrow is strong enough with a small point weight. If you are not shooting with the required draw weight, then an arrow rest is placed close to the sight window of your riser to help you out. 

Furthermore, if you are still facing the issue, we suggest you select an arrow with a lighter deflect (around 400) and cut that longer arrow. Now use a heavier point of 125 grains and adjust the arrow rest so that it is away from the riser, or increase the draw weight by tightening the limbs of your bolts properly. 

For Left-handers

A lower-left tear, also called a left-hand tear, shows that a specific arrow is not strong enough with a heavy point weight. If you are not shooting with the required draw weight, then an arrow rest is placed far away from the sight window of your riser to help you out. Furthermore, shortening your arrow will help you out if you are still facing this issue, but cut it a little so that your broadhead will start making contact with the rest arms of your bow. 

Now use a weak point of 100 grains and adjust the arrow rest so that it gets closer to the riser, or increase the draw weight by tightening the limbs of your bolts properly. On the contrary, if your arrow is leaving your bow tail high, it clearly indicates that your nocking points are situated on a high tear. 

In this scenario, the best practice is to move the nocking point down in steps or small intervals until or unless your arrow starts passing through the paper. For a lower tear, reverse the process. There is another type of tear, a combination of high and low tears, which always stay high and to the right. To overcome this, make elevation instead of windage correction on the first attempt. 

7- Make a Few Proper Adjustments

If there is a large tear, then there is a lot of adjustment that needs to be done. Use an arrow rest on smaller tears first and make windage adjustments with 1/14-inch increments before you try more shots for testing purposes. 

Another thing to focus on is point weight and arrow flex, which is much easier if you follow the arrow picker chart properly. Adjustments are all about trial and error, finding and fixing work, so it requires time and patience.

Finalize your Paper Tuning Of A Bow:

Once everything is done properly and in line with all the instructions. Then your bow is ready to use for shooting purposes. You will surely observe that your bow is now shooting tighter groups by hunting both broad head and target tips.

Follow all the steps mentioned, and you will quickly learn how to paper tuning a bow. Implementation of everything requires time and patience, so never give up at any point. If you still have any questions or confusion, then write us back.

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