If you’re a compound bow shooter, you’re more than likely going to be on the hunt for the best arrow rest for your arrows. There are many different arrow rests on the market to choose from, and some of them are better than others. It is important to be sure to choose an arrow rest that suits you and your bow and shooting style best, so that you can capture the best amount of potential and make that shot every time!
There are five different types of arrow rests, and each type has its own pros and cons. Before choosing an arrow rest, it is important to first think about what you plan on using your bow for. Do you plan on taking the bow hunting with you, or is it going to be used mainly for target archery? The way you plan on using your bow and arrow rest makes a difference for which type would be best for you.
- 1 1. Types of Arrow Rests
- 2 2. Best Arrow Rest Reviews 2017
- 2.1 2.1. Quality Archery Designs Ultra Rest Hunter Arrow Rest Drop Away (Right Hand) – Great for beginners.
- 2.2 2.2. Trophy Ridge Whisker Biscuit Kill Shot Arrow Rest, Medium – Great for hunting, sturdy.
- 2.3 2.3. Ripcord Fall Away Arrow Rest – Plenty of features for experienced archers, quiet shooting perfect for hunting.
- 2.4 2.4. Quality Archery Products HDX Arrow Rest – High end arrow rest, plenty of adjustment options, great for both hunting and target archery, stainless steel construction.
- 2.5 2.5. Truglo Downdraft Drop-Away Arrow Rest RT Xtra – Easy installation, great for hunters due to increased sound dampening, great for beginners.
- 2.6 2.6. Ripcord Camo Arrow Rest RH – High end arrow rest, great for target archery, easy to use.
- 2.7 2.7. Vapor Trail LimbDriver Pro V Rest, RH – Innovative limb driven design, great for target archery, lightweight, easy to install, high end design great for experienced archers.
- 2.8 2.8. Octane RST Hostage Max Arrow Rest, Black, Right Hand – Easy to use, great for beginners, lightweight design, plenty of adjustment options.
- 3 3. How to Choose the Right Arrow Rest for Your Compound Bow
- 4 4. Conclusion
1. Types of Arrow Rests
1.1. Drop Away Arrow Rests
Drop away arrow rests are a new type of rest on the market, and works exactly as you would expect: before the fletching on your arrow touches the rest, it drops away so that no contact is ever actually made. This happens using the cord that is attached to your bow. These arrow rests can be difficult for novices, since they require mastery to keep in place and use correctly in order to be sure that they stay in place and allow your arrow to remain stable in the air after shooting. However, since these rests give you the ability to completely max out your bow’s FPS, as there is no contact with the arrow, they are definitely worth learning.
1.2. Containment Arrow Rests
Containment arrow rests, such as whisker biscuit rests and three-point rests, are also known as full containment arrow rests. These rests are great for the beginning archers and hunters, as no matter what, you can be sure the arrow will be there when you go to shoot. However, since there is a lot of contact between the arrow’s fletching and the arrow rest, any little false move on your part can hinder your performance. These rests usually look like a small disk with stiff bristles inside, which come in contact with the arrow, keeping it in place while you are shooting.
1.3. Shoot-Thru Arrow Rests
When the shoot-thru arrow rest was invented, it took over the top of the list as the most popular type of arrow rests due to its easy to use nature – it was great for beginners, easy to install, and very reliable. With two adjustable prongs, spring loaded, this arrow rest is a favorite as it is easy to fit on a good deal of bows. The arrow, which rests in the cradle, is then fired, and the rest allows it to shoot through the rest and tilt downward. The downside to this type of arrow rest is that sometimes the fletching can come into contact with the rest, while the second is that it can be difficult to keep an arrow in place while shooting.
1.4. Shelf Arrow Rest
Unlike other rests for compound bows, the shelf arrow rest is designed to fit nicely on a recurve bow. Many recurve bows already come with a shelf, and others can have one installed. The shelf, unlike some of the other arrow rests on this list, are quite simple in nature, as all they do is provide a straight, solid place for you to rest your arrow when shooting. These “rests” allow you to simply place your arrow, draw back, and fire. Nothing special is done to keep your arrow from flying in a particular direction – it simply helps to keep it straight while firing.
1.5. Capture Arrow Rest
A capture arrow rest is an arrow rest that will surround the arrow in your bow and hold it in place using stiff bristles, foam, or other sturdy materials. These rests will hold the arrow in place no matter what is going on, helping you to get an accurate hit each time. Since there are no moving parts to worry about breaking, and since it offers a higher accuracy than other rests and is very easy to use, especially for beginners, this type of arrow rest is rather popular among those who are looking for something to help them get the shot every time!
1.6. Which Arrow Rest is Best for You?
Which arrow rest is best for you depends on what you plan on doing with your bow – are you planning on using it for target archery, or are you taking it hunting? Arrows such as the whisker biscuit and the capture arrow rests are great when taking your bow hunting, as they use materials to keep your arrows more firmly in place. This allows you to take the shot with minimal worry of missing your game. If you are planning on using the bow for target archery, rests such as the drop away and the shoot-thru rests are great choices, as little contact with the fletching and rest occur, maximizing your FPS ratio.
2. Best Arrow Rest Reviews 2017
2.1. Quality Archery Designs Ultra Rest Hunter Arrow Rest Drop Away (Right Hand) – Great for beginners.
If you are looking for a great drop away arrow rest for hunting or target archery, this seems to be a solid choice. With basic features that most archers look for, and easy adjustment options, this arrow rest can be a staple in your hunting supplies. The arrow rest is made using velocity draw technology, and offers total arrow containment. It is great for beginners or those who aren’t familiar with drop away arrow rests. This is an ideal arrow rest for your money, as it is affordable and has plenty to offer.
The Quality Archery Designs Ultra Rest Hunter Arrow Rest Drop Away (Right Hand) does not feature a lock down feature, causing it to hit your arrow often, since after a few shots it has a tendency to pop off of your bow. It also does not have as long of a life span as some of the more pricey competitors.
- Pros: Easy to use, Great beginner arrow rest, Easily adjustable, Has horizontal, vertical, and overdraw adjusters, Easy to use thumbwheel
- Cons : Does not last as long as competitors, Pops off bow, hitting arrow
2.2. Trophy Ridge Whisker Biscuit Kill Shot Arrow Rest, Medium – Great for hunting, sturdy.
This whisker biscuit arrow rest is made by a popular company – Trophy Ridge, which allows you to have peace of mind. This whisker biscuit rest is one of the most popular available to bow hunters. This affordable and highly recommended rest is perfect for both beginners and experts. It is made for both left and right handed bows, and is easily adjustable for wind and elevation. The rest is encased in composite, and allows for silent arrow loading, making it ideal for hunting.
The affordable price makes this choice an ideal pick, although many of the parts are not of as high quality as some of the competitors. The parts of this rest wear out over time, and it can cause the arrows to end up shooting at random as opposed to shooting straight like they do in the beginning.
- Pros: Great for beginners, Reversible for both right and left hand bows, Elevation and windage adjustments, Silent arrow loading
- Cons : Not as high quality as competitors, Whisker biscuit rests can damage arrow fletching, Parts wear down or break more easily than others
2.3. Ripcord Fall Away Arrow Rest – Plenty of features for experienced archers, quiet shooting perfect for hunting.
The Ripcord Fall Away Arrow Rest is available in both left and right hand versions, and the adjustments make it great for experienced users and beginners alike. The rest allows for the launcher to be locked into position manually. A 360 degree containment arm makes it easy to keep your arrow where you want it. Features internal dampeners that allow the shot to be as quiet as possible. Has less of a failure rate than other drop away arrow rests, so can be thought of as a reliable piece of equipment.
The rest can be difficult to install unless you are handy with putting things together, and know how to take things on your bow apart and put back together. Unless you aren’t good at these points, it might be best to take the bow and the rest of a bow shop or major retailer and have them install the arrow rest for you.
- Pros: Left hand and right hand versions available, Plenty of adjustments, 360 degree containment arm, Internal dampeners make it quieter, Less fail rates than other types of arrow rests, High quality construction makes it long lasting
- Cons : Higher learning curve, Difficult installation for some
2.4. Quality Archery Products HDX Arrow Rest – High end arrow rest, plenty of adjustment options, great for both hunting and target archery, stainless steel construction.
The Quality Archery Products HDX Arrow Rest from Quality Archer Products offers a stainless steel construction that is sure to hold up even though the toughest of use. This arrow rest is a top of the line model that combines a sleek appearance with the proper function you would expect from an arrow rest. Stainless steel makes this ideal for all shooting conditions, and the rubber parts allow for a quieter shot. This drop away arrow rest features high velocity shooting and accuracy that is spot on. The complete arrow containment makes it safer and easier to use, and is a great choice for the serious hunter or archery target shooter.
While the rest claims to be easy to install, it seems that it does have the potential to cause difficulty on some bows. For some, the screws over tighten or the rest just never feels secure enough. Others can’t seem to get it tuned quite right once they do mount it to their bow. The best solution to this issue? Take the bow and the rest to an archery shop for a professional installation.
- Pros: Sleek design, Available in two colors, Available in right or left hand models, Stainless steel construction, Rubber allows for quieter shooting, Spot on accuracy
- Cons : Can be difficult to install on bow, Hard to properly “fine tune”
2.5. Truglo Downdraft Drop-Away Arrow Rest RT Xtra – Easy installation, great for hunters due to increased sound dampening, great for beginners.
The Truglo Downdraft Drop-Away Arrow Rest RT Xtra is a high performance arrow rest that is reversible for a left handed or right handed bow. With a great camouflage color that blends in well in the woods, this rest will keep you out of the limelight. The internal dampeners will help you to stay quiet while loading the arrow and firing. The rest features sealed bushings which will help increase your speed when launching your arrow as well. This is an ideal arrow rest for both beginners and experts.
The main problem being seen with this arrow rest occurs on bows that have a higher FPS ratio. The faster the bow, the rest simply is having a difficult time keeping up, not allowing the arrow to clear all the way through because it is dropping away too fast, causing marks on the fletching. Slower bows don’t seem to have a problem so much as bows that fire at a higher speed.
- Pros: Reversible left and right hand design, High accuracy, Easy to install, Easy to adjust, Quiet
- Cons : Doesn’t work as well on faster bows, Sometimes drops away too quickly
2.6. Ripcord Camo Arrow Rest RH – High end arrow rest, great for target archery, easy to use.
The Ripcord Camo Arrow Rest RH is a drop-away arrow rest created for right hand bows. It features high accuracy, total arrow containment, and a fast drop away so that it never comes in contact with your arrows, causing issues with the fletching. Locking arms will allow you to keep your arrow into position until firing, at which time they fall away, allowing your arrow to zoom off at great speeds. This arrow rest features a internal braking system to allow for zero bounce back.
Although advertised to fit every bow, that might not be the case. Some bows are simply not compatible with the rest, so it would be in your best interest to make sure that it is one hundred percent compatible with yours before making your purchase.
- Pros: Allows for tighter grouping, Easy to install, Allows for maximum arrow speed, Locking arms allow rest to stay in position, Zero bounce back
- Cons : Has fitting issues with some bows, Lack of adjustment options
2.7. Vapor Trail LimbDriver Pro V Rest, RH – Innovative limb driven design, great for target archery, lightweight, easy to install, high end design great for experienced archers.
The Vapor Trail LimbDriver Pro V Rest, RH is a right handed drop away rest that features a limb driven technology. The easy to set up arrow rest is made from aluminum and is therefore quite lightweight. The rest supports the arrow for seventy percent of the shot before falling away, helping to get the accuracy you want at speeds you desire. The rubber dampeners on the rest allow for quiet shooting. This is a great arrow rest for experienced target archers.
The string that is on the arrow rest to allow it to catch when it drops away can tend to get in the way when shooting, or even get stuck on other components of your bow. This can be solved by making sure that the string is completely out of the way of other parts of your bow before using.
- Pros: First ever limb driven arrow rest, Easy set up, Plenty of adjustment options, Close groupings
- Cons : String tends to get in the way, Parts aren’t as sturdy as other models
2.8. Octane RST Hostage Max Arrow Rest, Black, Right Hand – Easy to use, great for beginners, lightweight design, plenty of adjustment options.
The Octane RST Hostage Max Arrow Rest, Black, Right Hand is a right handed rest that has straightforward and easy to use features. This is the perfect arrow rest for those who are either looking for something simple or who are just getting started with archery. The arrow rest is an all metal construction. The adjustable brushes hold the arrow in place, and you can move them as you see fit to adjust for elevation and windage.
Currently, this arrow rest is only a right handed rest. If you are looking for a left handed rest, you might have to check out other products or contact the company directly for more information.
- Pros: Lightweight, Fully adjustable, Easy to use, Easy to install, Great for beginners and experts alike
- Cons : Only listed as a right handed rest
3. How to Choose the Right Arrow Rest for Your Compound Bow
Choosing the right arrow rest for your compound bow really has a lot to do with what you plan on using it for. Do you want to use your bow for target archery, or are you planning on taking it hunting with you? The answer will tell you what kind of rest you should be on the lookout for.
If you are looking for a rest that works best for hunting, you might want to look into a containment arrow rest, such as the whisker biscuit. These help hold the arrow in place longer amounts of time until you fire, giving you an accurate of a hit as possible. If you are looking for a rest for target archery, you might decide on a drop away arrow rest, as that is the best arrow rest for this purpose.
Before purchasing your new arrow rest, it is important to check out which release aid will work well with what you want to purchase. For the most part, any release aid will work with pretty much any arrow rest, although if you have your mind set on anything in particular, you might want to double check to make sure the two are compatible. It really can be a trial and error issue at first.
When choosing your preferred arrow rest, make sure to take into consideration whether you are looking for rests that offer adjustments, such as those for wind and elevation. These can be handy, especially when you are you hunting, as you can work against the weather to make the shot.
If you are looking for something that would be best for target archery, be sure to look at rests such as a drop away rest, as they are quick to move out of the way after shooting, preventing any contact with arrows or fletching. This also allows the arrow to fly without worrying about touching the rest, therefore, it increases the amount the arrow can fly and how fast it can go.
Since all arrow rests have different traits and qualities, it is important to figure out which one will work best for you. Even after doing your research and you aren’t sure, than you should experiment – you will be able to figure out what will work out best for you and your style of shooting if you are able to check out different varieties of rests to see which one best suits your shooting style.
In conclusion, choosing a archery rest can make the difference between making the shot and missing it. There are several types of archery rests, including drop away rests, containment arrow rests, and capture arrow rests – all rests that work a different way, and that can help you with your archery goals – whether they be target archery related or hunting related. Since they all have different features, they can all be used for different things. It is important to do the proper research to figure out which archery rests are the best for you and work best with your shooting style.