Horse Bow from Mandarin Duck
My first bow was made from a PVC pipe and fiberglass rods. It was in every single way, a bad bow. Sure it was fun and it gave me the bug for archery. I will always love it as it was the start of my archery journey- but it was still a bad bow.
The second bow and the first bow that I bought, was a Chines Horse bow. Because of this, I have a massive soft spot in my heart for horse bows. It really doesn’t take much for me to love a horse bow. That being said, there are some horse bows that I love and adore so much more than others.
When we look at bows the purpose of the bow is very important. Are you going to hunt with it? Are you going to shoot a target on a field or in the woods? Or is this bow just to put a smile on your face?
At this point in my archery life, the latter is the most important. And while a balance of all these things are important, I definitely want a bow that puts a smile on my face rather than anything else.
The Thorn from Mandarin Duck definitely does just that. It is a lite weight bow that won’t do much for hunting, but will always put a smile on your face.
It is a fiberglass light-weight bow that gives a springy and exciting shot every time.
I’ve shot this bow in fields and in heavy woodlands. I personally love to go stumping. I love to take a bow into the woodlands and shoot at tree stumps, mounds and setting up targets to shoot in different positions and angels. For me, that is where I have the most fun.
So my bows have to feel good in the hand when I walk through the woods, hit my mark, and feel fun.
The Thorn ticks all of my boxes and then some. While a bow with a shelf or arrow rest largely determines how you shoot, a horse bow doesn’t.
A bow like the Thorn allows you to shoot how you are most comfortable but also allows you to practice with other styles.
As I keep saying, the Thorn is a lite-weight bow. This means that as you are learning a new style, you are developing muscles and growing your practical archery knowledge.
Going from a Mediterranean draw to some form of thumb draw is not a simple thing to just switch to, but the Thorn gives you that option.
Being able to have one bow that I can learn different styles with is always something that I am going to love. Regardless of what style I am using, the bow, simply put, is just so much fun to use.
But it’s not all good. I am not a fan of the leather patch that currently comes with it and I hope they change that soon. I understand that a zipped-leather wrap around the riser is a simple and effective design. However, the zip itself is bulky and uncomfortable. I was not able to keep that leather on there for very long and I replaced it on the first day.
Being a take-down bow, that leather wrap is important to the aesthetic of the bow, and for me, it just isn’t right.
That being said, that really is the only negative I have for the bow. Sure I may want a stronger bow, but if the bow were a higher weight, I probably wouldn’t be able to practice the different styles.
Balance is important in archery. A lot of the time archers - especially new archers will be shooting bows that are just too powerful for what they need at the time. I used to shoot war bows but now I am very happy to keep my bows at 30lbs. The Thorn is lighter than that but is a bow that is simply fun to shoot.
And that is what I want from my archery. Fun
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