How to Adjust Bow Sights [Infographic]

Before you carry out any adjustment on your bow sight, you need to put the following in place:

  • Make sure your sight is properly installed
  • Let the sight pins align with the arrow and bow string
  • Your vertical adjustment must be at zero or at where it can be adjusted down or up
  • Ensure that you are shooting the right arrow and tune your equipment

If you want to sight in, the first thing you need do is to start shooting at 10 yards with your top pin. If you find out that your bow is off by a great margin, your arrow will still hit the wall of the target or the target at 10 yards.

Apply your common sense and examine the trajectory to ensure the arrow is not going to contact the sight housing and will not miss the target. To take your first shot, all you need do is to draw, aim, and fire and find out where the arrowheads too.

Adjust Your Pin

Anywhere your arrow goes, you need to follow or trace the arrow with your pin. In case the arrow hit low and to the left, you need to shift your pin low and to the left. Make sure you repeat the process until you’re hitting the bullseye is consistent. As soon as you hit the bullseye at 10 yards, move back to 20 yards and re-align so that your top pin is sighted in for a 20-yard shot.  Your top pin will be your 20-yard pin.

Keep on sighting in your sight by applying this method to the rest of your pins. With the speeds of your current bows, it is advisable to use a pin for every 10 yards beginning at 20 yards. A five pin sight will contain pins for 20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 yards. As soon as all the pins are dialed in, record their positions on a piece of paper with a pencil. This will allow you make a good reference anytime you want to do work on the current site or install new sight in the nearest future.

Helpful Tips for Competitive Shooters/Archers

The helpful tip is to apply the frame of your sight for an additional pin. In this manner, you have to adjust the first sight in the housing of our sight for a yardage you desire, for instance, 80 yards. As soon as the wire/bubble intersection is set for your desired yardage, you can adjust the other pins manually. All you need do is just turn a five pin sight into a six pin sight. That is all!

Adjustment of the 2nd Axis of a Bow Sight

The 2nd axis of your bow sight is the clockwise or anticlockwise position of the sight housing. If you find out that your archery sight has a second axis adjustment, you might want to adjust your sight until your pins are plumb with your bow string or bow.

Let us assume that the flat side of the riser of your compound bow is plumb or parallel with the bow string:

  • To make the adjustment of the archery sight easier, mount a 2 or 4 foot level vertically in a vise, adjust the level to let the bubble be between the plumb or lines
  • Pick a secondary level and examine to find out that your level is not pitched to the front or back but plumb.
  • Immediately your main level is plumb on every side, take your sight and put the mounting plate to oppose the side of the level. As you are holding the sight flat to oppose the level, bring the sight arm level or horizontal. Find out if the sight is reading level, otherwise, adjust the 2nd However, if it is showing level, move to the 3rd axis adjustment.
  • Adjust the 2nd Different sights could adjust in a different way thereby refer to the manual documentation for instruction. If your sight does not provide adjustment and not plumb as well, you will have to shim one of the mounting screws with any material or washers you see.

For instance, Spot Hogg Hogg-It. If you want to adjust this type of bow sight, it is very important to adjust the 2nd axis screws until you get a level reading.

After adjusted the clockwise or anticlockwise adjustment until you can read the level while the sight arm is horizontal, then the adjustment is completed.

Adjustment of 3rd Axis of a Bow Sight

This axis of your bow sight is the perpendicular orientation of your bow sight when referring to the center line of your bow. When adjusting the 3rd axis of your bow sight, the head of the bow sights is a swing in and away from the archer as if it were on a hinge.

In case the 3rd axis is not adjusted, when an archer tilts the bow up or down for a shot, the level of the bow sight will not read correctly and the shot will be off its mark.

But if the 3rd axis is adjusted perfectly, the compound bow will be in perfect vertical alignment when it is at level shots, downhill and uphill. Here is the step to take:

  • Put your sight beside the level and tilt the sight upwards and downwards. Read the level of the sights built-in at the two positions. If it is off, then the 3rd axis required adjustment.
  • Adjust the sight out and in until the sight is able to read level at the upward and downward position. If it reads level in all the possible positions, the 3rd axis of your bow sight is set and ready for shooting.

Check your range and shoot downhill and uphill. Observe where you are hitting, in case your arrows are off, then your sight could require little fine tuning because of the bow torque at full draw.


How to Adjust Bow Sights