Part 1 of our annual report from archery’s biggest show.
The ATA is the Archery Trade Association, based very firmly in the USA, and it’s also the given name of the trade show every year in January, kicking off the US ‘season’ of the ATA, Lancaster and Vegas that the archery world floats between.
In 2019 it was held in Louisville, Kentucky, but this year returned to its ‘spiritual home’ of Indianapolis. Many, but not all major archery manufacturers attend the event, which remains closed to the general public (even if some people think it should be open to them on at least one day). As usual, the Bow team was there for a nose around.
Steve ‘Big Cat’ Anderson was luckily on hand at one of the busiest stalls of the fair, to talk about the Superdrive 19, designed as a 3D arrow for people who wanted a smaller diameter all-carbon arrow with better wind cutting ability, all the more important for the list of notoriously windy USA tournaments, although it is good for field and outdoor target too.
It’s available in three spines: 330, 380, 460, with adjustable interchangeable point system, at around £160 a dozen, completing a larger Superdrive family.
Easton also had a new handy bow case tool called the OmniTool, containing all manner of useful drive bits in metric, imperial and torx, which will be available for around £35.
Steve also also wanted to talk Easton’s new Bowtruk, but someone had walked off with it. So we only have their PR image of it to hand. This is a hybrid hard/soft case designed with international archery travellers in mind, covered with Cordura ballistic nylon and with a special woven-in zipper designed to be more durable that the usual stitched-in type.
It can take two bows up to 47 inches in length, with six interior pockets and oversized skate wheels, and an external access pocket too. The weight tolerance was designed to accommodate, as Steve says, “all of my stuff”, i.e. two full setups.
It looks fantastic – from the picture at least. The Bowtruk has a recommended retail price of $419 and will be available in May; no UK price yet.
More at: easton-archery.com
Win & Win
The WIAWIS recurve line keeps rolling on, and once again, Danny Kim was there to tell us about their newest risers. The Radical Pro has drawn comparisons to the APECS riser of a decade or so ago.
This newest one uses reinforced graphene carbon, with a front bar (referred to as a centre suspension) to add strength and anti-torquing, and also to add a little feedback to the shot.
It also includes a non-traditional clicker plate which is designed to be distinctive and louder; to Bow’s ears, it’s a little more metallic and snappy – and you certainly wouldn’t mistake it on the line for somebody else’s. (Danny says the frequencies sit between 3000 and 6000 hz, for those who want to dive a little deeper.)
The newest MXT-GF and MXT-GW limbs are kind of a side-branch of the line; still top line, but aimed perhaps at serious amateurs rather than pros; they are designed to maximise smoothness at the critical five-inches-from-full-draw stage.
The graphene involved gives the limbs a curious quality; you can *almost* see through them when on their side. Win & Win have no plans to replace the NS and NS-G lines, which will continue as their top end lines, as well as the TFT-G.
For the pros, many of whom prefer Win & Win’s full-feedback aluminium riser designs, the ATF-X is a 1300g update on the ATF. Slightly stiffer, and rebalanced, it also has bushings in the rear of the limb pockets. Win & Win also showed off their extensive range of intermediate and novice gear in increasingly nice designs and finishes, such as the Vantage CX.
More at: www.wiawis.com
The T.R.U.Ball / Axcel family’s long-awaited move into stabilisation has been a year and a half in the making. Finally, it was given full flower at the ATA, with Brandon Reyes in full flow.
As is usual these days, the Axcel family uses ultra high-modulus carbon, but now mixed with natural flax fibre to create what they call ‘carboflax’ in two flavours: 500 and 650, depending on the diameter required.
The 650 is slightly stiffer, designed specifically for recurves, or compounds who want those heavy, heavy weights. The full family includes a V-bar, three sizes of extender and siderod, and four lengths of long rod, plus the adjustable Kryptos Pro dampener. Not only that, they also have ball weights in groovy colours too.
Axcel also have a new TriLock adjustable offset mount which includes their quick disconnect, designed for compounds.
More at truball.com
Play Action Sportswear
As far as Bow is concerned, not nearly enough manufacturers are paying attention to clothing; an area that can definitely score you more points. It was refreshing to see PAS, from Atlanta, GA, and their stall addressing this with some style.
The TemperGuard jersey comes in boys and girls designs and incorporates removable chest and wristguard panels. They promise that they are designed ‘by archers for archers’. Good show.
More at www.playactionsportswear.com
Last Chance Archery
Last Chance are best known for their bow presses, which were all out on display. They also produce a top-end arrow cutter (featured in Bow 139). This year’s new kit included an updated HS3 bowscale, with peak hold and some improved ergonomics.
They also showed off one of the more eye-catching products at this year’s ATA; the Reserve Pro, a heavyweight “re-serving” jig which allows you to apply up to 250lbs of pressure for a very tight serving – and beautifully engineered, to boot. Does someone who makes strings in your life need a present?
More at lastchancearchery.com
TopHat were extremely complimentary about the magazine as soon as we walked into their booth, which was a good start. Thanks guys! They had a new pin point combo for small-diameter Easton arrows, designed with detachable soft break-off stainless steel segments, with a narrower and much tougher point for straighter entry.
They also have an even harder tool-steel version, among an increasingly wide range of best-of-the-best points and accessories. TopHat have a much expanded top-end client list these days, with Kris Schaff and Reo Wilde choosing – not being sponsored – to shoot them this year.
They are also offering translation services for archery manufacturers who want to get into Europe: get in touch at arc-and-us.com
More at TopHatArchery.com
The venerable and innovative release manufacturer, still popular across the world, had a new finger release available; the Xtinction 2, with a self-resting open hook and independently adjustable trigger travel and tension adjustments. They specifically promise it “won’t tangle in your beard”. In soft and hard connect versions.
More at www.ishootastan.com
Accubow are well known for their adjustable indoor trainer bow, which they are still selling. The 2.0 version includes a smartphone mount which allows you to access an app with 21 archery games (although bear in mind, a lot of them are rather hunting-oriented).
The quality is impressive and the gameplay was pretty good. Indoor training has never been as much fun. It’s also quieter and features a D-loop for proper compounding (recurves can just chop it off). Living room archery has never been as much fun.
More at accubow.com
Look out for part 2 of the ATA next month featuring new stuff from AAE, Beiter, PSE, Cinnebar, Shibuya, and many more!