Game hunters are far more successful when they operate with stealth. If you really want to bag yourself a prize, you will need to ensure you stay well concealed and silent. There is no point finding yourself a great hiding place, for you to then spoil the surprise with a loud noise.
There are obvious ways to keep quiet, such as avoiding loud footsteps or not coughing as the animal comes near you. However there are other things to think about too, such as the noise the equipment you are using makes.
If you have ever practised target archery, you will know just how loud the twang of the bow string can be as the arrow leaves your bow. Can you imagine how this would affect your hunt?
What are bow string silencers (bow string dampeners)?
A bow string silencer, or bow string dampener, reduces the loud noise of the string snapping, as the arrow is released from the bow. This is important to a game hunter, as you don’t want the animal to startle and run away. A long and perhaps unethical chase could ensue and it is unlikely you will win.
String silencers are best for reducing the vibration to some extent, as well as dampening string and cable noise. The flexible material that silencers are made from allows the string to vibrate without any noise.
There are some drawbacks to using a string silencer, such as the impact it can have on the speed of your arrow. The heavier silencers tend to slow down your arrow speed the most, so a more lightweight one may be preferred depending on the sort of hunting you are doing.
Some of them are very synthetic looking too, which puts many of the more traditional archers off using them. Take care to use one that is designed for your bow and do not try to alter your bow’s strings if you are not comfortable doing so, get a professional to do it instead.
How do you choose the best bow string silencers?
Bow string silencers are selected according to your particular budget and expertise in archery. There are many different types of string silencers available but the choice largely depends on whether you want to use a simple or complex one.
Remember, a product’s cost can sometimes affect the quality and durability. So, it may be better to choose the slightly more expensive string silencer for the long term and a cheaper one in the beginning, as you practice your skills.
Bow String Silencer/Dampener Review
Mountain Man Beaver Balls String Silencer
This is a very popular string silencer, made from a small ball of beaver fur. It is a perfect match for recurve bows, for the more traditional archer prefers natural materials to complement their wooden bow.
It is a light-weight and durable silencer, which can be used in any type of the weather and with any kind of bow. They are incredibly easy to install and have such a lovely look about them. They outperform other types of fur silencers, such as otter or mink.
However, they are no better than the more modern silencers and are actually much heavier, meaning it will slow down the speed of the arrow, so it really is up to you if you prefer something more traditional. What this silencer does do remarkably well is decrease the noise made when the arrow is released, which after all is what it is intended to do.
Carbon Express 57509 Rubber Whisker String Silencer
In a way, this product is very similar to the Beaver Balls silencer. The design is a clump of rubber whiskers, which are placed around the bow string. These whiskers are long, thin pieces of rubber, designed to dampen vibration as well as reduce noise.
This silencer is made of carbon express and it performs very well. It is cheap, light and durable and perform well in all types of weather. They will not impact arrow speed in the same way as a heavier fur silencer and so are the most popular type of string silencer with modern archers.
Bowjax 1036 Ultra Bow Jax II Dampener
This ultra-modern bow string dampener is the result of technological advances in the market and is very popular among modern archers. It is the most effective model of spring silencers and it is perfect in every aspect. It really does make the string more efficient and reduce the noise.
You will need to remove the bow string in order to install it, so you may prefer to get a professional to do this for you. This product delivers a fantastic reduction in vibration, as the weight of the dampener slows the string movement by up to 50%.
Recurve Bow Bowstring Groove Silencers
This is another very popular silencer for traditional archers, as they fit very well with the rest of their equipment. These are made of real leather, so again a natural material. These differ from the Mountain Man Beaver Balls String Silencer, for they will only work with a recurve bow. Therefore, if you have a compound bow or a modern crossbow, these are not for you.
This silencer sticks to the bow rather than the string, so although the noise is decreased, the string vibration is not. However they are very easy to install and are very good at reducing what is known as limb slap. (This is the slap of the string on the bow.)
Bowrattler Standard String Silencer
This type of silencer is different to the previous ones, as it does not rely on adding weight onto the bow string. Instead, it presents a solid point where the bow string cannot travel past. This dampens the vibrations by forcing the string to stop.
This type of string stop is often used alongside a whisker stop or weight stop and it is not as easy to install as some of the others. You must have a hole professionally drilled into your bow, in order for the stop to be inserted into. It is highly recommended that you don’t do this yourself, as you risk damaging your bow.
Toparchery Otter Hide Bow String Silencer
This is a lovely looking string silencer, made from premium, lightweight otter hide. It can be used on any type of bow, so you are not limited in any way. This material lasts well in any kind of weather, so you can use it all year round.
You attach this silencer directly to the bow string, in order to dampen the vibrations and reduce the noise. It is easy to install; you must separate the bow string and then put one end of the silencer into the gap. You then wind the silencer onto the string, paying close attention to the direction you are winding it.
Take care to avoid clamping the fur, as this could damage it.
Wishbone String and Cable Dampener
This slightly peculiar looking product is designed to reduce noise and vibration, on both your bow’s string and cables. It is easy to install, wrapping around itself without the need for a bow press. It is made in the USA and comes in a variety of colours. You can use it on modern crossbows and vertical compound bows.
This is a small, cheap and ultra-quiet product that does not impact on arrow speed at all. It is incredibly durable and will keep you going all year round. Due to the low price and easy installation, these are a particularly good option for beginners.
Apex Gear Doubledown String Silencers
This is another synthetic type of silencer, which is quick and easy to install. You will not require a bow press and can do it without the help of a professional. The Doubledown dual arm design reduces noise considerably and you will not be disappointed with this great little product.
To install, you simply need to wrap it round itself and pull the arm through the hole. This will then secure it onto the string or cable, whichever you prefer.
They may not be as durable as some other models on the market but they are a great product nonetheless. Their convenience and low cost are what really make them so attractive.
LimbSaver SuperQuad Split Limb Dampener
This fantastic little product, made from Limbsaver’s proprietary NAVCOM material, reduces noise and vibration by up to an incredible 70%, meaning you really won’t be disappointed. It also fits 95% of all standard and wide split limb bows, meaning it will be suitable for many archers out there. There are two orientation choices available, for either wide or narrow spaced limbs.
This is such a quick and effective solution for rattle and vibration in compound bows, being very easy to install. It is designed to withstand even the harshest of weather conditions and is 100% manufactured in the USA.
Whichever bow string dampener you choose, be sure to use one. They really can make an incredible difference to your hunting experience, allowing you the silence to get that kill shot in the cleanest and most ethical way.
What is bow string wax?
Bow string wax is the best tool for optimizing the durability, as well as performance, of the bow strings. It enhances the bow strings efficiency and accuracy, as well as helping to keep the bowstring in its proper shape.
It reduces the damage caused by the frequent snapping of the string and it increases the life duration of the bow string as well. Wax lubricates the fibers and helps to keep the strands together, as well as helping to prevent water absorption.
The wax comes in different forms but the best bow string wax contains silicone, as this penetrates the string very well. This ensures that the bow string is well lubricated all the way though, both inside and out.
How often do you apply bow string wax?
It is important to apply bow string wax regularly, to keep the string in the best condition. It depends upon the weather to some extent, how humid it is, as well as how often you use the string. Your bow string should always have a slightly tacky feel to it, so if it feels dry then it definitely needs a wax. If you can see hairs sticking up from the bow string, then apply some wax, but if you can see actual strands sticking out then the string will need to be replaced.
You can apply the wax after finishing your archery session, for supporting the string more promptly in your next archery session. For regular archers, it is highly recommended to wax the string weekly. Be careful not to over-wax your bow string, as this can impede performance.
How do you apply the wax?
It is very important to remove all the debris from the string, by cleaning it from the string before waxing. Then wipe the bow string once again with a dry cloth. The majority of bow string waxes come in the form of a stick, which you simply rub up and down the string and then gently massage it in with your fingers. If you apply enough pressure, your fingers will warm the wax and melt it as you work it in.
Apply the wax over the naked area of the string and do not apply it on the cables or pulleys, as this can cause them to slide and separate. You should wax the center serving on a crossbow but there is no need on a recurve or compound bow center serving.
Bow String Wax Reviews
Allen Company Bow String Wax
This wax is amazing when applied to the strings, as it makes the string smoother and simpler than many other waxes. It is the best bow string wax for synthetic strings and extends the duration of your string’s life by preventing fraying.
It repels dust, dirt and moisture from the bow string too. As you work it into the string with your fingers, it melts very nicely and it is easy to wipe away the excess. It is made in the USA and is very popular with many archers, whether using a modern crossbow or a more traditional recurve bow.
Bohning Tex-Tite Bow String Wax
This wax is a great product for all type of bows but it was designed specifically for synthetic fiber bowstrings. It reduces the chance of the string tearing, as well as lubricating your string. It doesn’t matter what the weather conditions are like, if you use this bow string wax then your string will remain tack.
It is a natural based wax, which will please some of the more traditional archers out there, and comes in a very easy to use tube. You will need to use this one regularly to get the best results but it is a very handy little product to keep with you.
Excalibur Serving Wax
This is a wax made specifically for crossbows and will extend the string’s life considerably. With crossbows being more and more popular these days, Excalibur Crossbow really have thought of everything. It is made using state of the art materials, which are durable and highly effective.
It is easy to use and can fit it in your pocket, making it very easy to transport around with you. It comes in an easy to use tube and is a very popular choice with crossbow hunters.
Mossy Oak Bow String Wax
You could be forgiven for thinking this is a tube of lip balm! This fantastic little product is very easy to use, as the tube has a push-bottom. It prevents bow strings from fraying but it slightly harder than many of its competitors, due to the solid nature of the wax. It can be a little stiff in the cold weather.
A little tip: You can melt wax easier by using a lighter or a hairdryer on it first, before then rubbing it in with your fingers. This gives a much easier to work with texture.
Outdoors String Snot Bow String Wax
This rather unfortunately named product from G5 Outdoors is a great offering and not just with the more youthful archer, who perhaps enjoys the name! It comes from a very reputable manufacturer and prevents feathering of your bow string.
It is 100% weatherproof, meaning you can use your bow in all weathers and the wax will still be effective. It is odourless too, which many people prefer to the stronger smelling waxes. It is not a traditional bee’s wax but a very precise blend of wax, grease and oil.
This lovely little product is very lightweight and easy to apply. An added benefit is that it won’t freeze and is non-flammable.
Scorpion Venom Polymeric Bowstring Wax
We can’t choose the best bowstring wax without first considering this great product. It is a flexible formula, which won’t freeze or become brittle like some other more conventional waxes can. It is odorless and there is an easy to use applicator included.
This is incredibly popular with archers, especially those who prefer a more traditional dressing. It is made with optimized conditioning oils of Kokum, Shea and Mango to prevent premature aging of the product. Sounds like a moisturizer doesn’t it! That’s because it is. A moisturizer for your bow string.
Scorpion Venom Polymeric Bowstring Fluid
If you prefer to use a chapstick type wax, rather than that in a tin with a cloth applicator, you will love this product. It is an oderless polymeric based fluid, designed to enhance your bow string’s performance. It helps to prevent fraying and will prolong your string’s life.
It will retain its supple characteristics in all climates, so you can use it come rain or shine. It does not leave much excess on the string, making it not only easy to use but also very economical.
As with all waxes, do ensure that you remove any old wax and debris before applying a new coat.
Barnett Outdoors Crossbow Lube Wax
Another great product from a very reputable and popular manufacturer, Barnett Outdoors. Crossbow fans will love this little tube of wax, for it is small and easy to use. It has been specifically formulated to elongate the life of your crossbow string and can also be used to lubricate the barrel. Applied evenly, this will reduce friction and actually increase the velocity of your arrows or bolts.
It is easy to apply but will not last very long. Handy then that this is sold in packs of three. It is recommended that you wax your crossbow string with this particular wax every 5-10 shots.
OMP Hydro-Tex Watertight Wax
This is a lovely little wax, designed to be completely waterproof. This makes it absolutely ideal for bowfishing, which is a great way for hunters to extend their season and improve their hunting skills. People have hunted this way for food for years and these days it is a very popular sport, being a little more thrilling than sitting with a rod.
This wax will penetrate deep into the string fibres, as long as you work it in well, and offers UV protection for all types of bow string materials.
Make sure that whichever bow string wax you choose to use, you do it regularly and properly. It really is an essential part of maintaining your bow, as you don’t want to be constantly buying and fitting new string. These products are small, so make sure you don’t lose them as you hunt!
From the string silencer to the string wax, both the accessories are important for making every shot beyond the perfectionism. The string silencer can help you massively in hunting while the bow wax can maintain your bow string at its best condition.
It is important to know all those bow accessories because they are great amplifiers when it comes to the archery sports.