Back when I was a beginning archer my dad bought me a fiberglass recurve bow kit, you might remember them, the ones with the cotton string. I was allowed to shoot with him while he practiced with his custom black widow recurve.
The only recurve bow kits I remember seeing in those days were the cheap fiberglass bow with three wooden target arrows and a bull’s-eye target shrink wrapped in a cardboard box.
Baby, have we come a long way since those days.
Why Buy a Recurve Bow Kit or RTS Package?
So who should buy one of these packages? These packages are usually marketed for beginners who are looking to get into the sport of archery as easily as possible. They may also be of interest to a seasoned shooter who is looking for something different or one who is switching from, say, compound shooting.
They are good for those who are looking to get into target shooting or even to try their hand at hunting with a bow. Recurves are a good entry into the world of archery hunting since they are typically smooth shooters. This, in my experience, allows you to enjoy the experience more.
Most people buying compound bows for the first time buy a RTS (Ready To Shoot) package. This allows you to not worry too much about matching accessories with your bow and lets you just get to shooting. A recurve RTS package works the same way but only has a few basic items that you will need in addition to your bow.
Beginner Bow and Arrow Sets for Adults and Older Children
Samick Sage Package
The Samick Sage has an attractive wooden riser in either right hand or left hand models. It has laminated hard maple and flat black fiberglass limbs that range in weight from 25# - 60# in 5 pound increments. It is 62” AMO (this is an overall length of measurement).
The bow itself weighs in at 3.4 pounds, so you won’t get too tired lugging it around the woods all day. Draw length is approximately 29”.
The bow also features a tool free take down, so you don’t have to worry about losing your allen wrench if you want to change limbs at the range or in the field.
This bow has inserts preinstalled for sights, plunger type arrow rest, quiver, stabilizer and you can even add a bow fishing reel. However, none of these extras comes with the basic package, but they can be added later with no issues.
The basic kit has almost everything you will need to start putting arrows down range right away. This includes flipper type arrow rest, bow case, leather arm guard, leather finger tab, bow stringer, and paper target.
The only thing missing will be your arrows. Target shooters will usually want to add some carbon arrows (our top picks here). Hunters, the quirky lot they are, may want to use classic wooden arrows (our hunting arrow picks). If you are hunting, you may want to add string silencers and a quiver, either one mounted on your bow or one carried over your shoulder or on your belt.
You can read our full revoew on the Samick Sage here.
- One of the best selling starter and intermediate recurve bows of all time
- Includes a target
- Includes a stringer
- Includes a case
- No arrows included in the package
Southwest Archery Spyder and Spyder XL RTS Kit
The Spyder is a 62” AMO, while the Spyder XL uses a longer limb and is 64” AMO. Otherwise these bows are identical.
The Spyder is another attractive bow with a wooden riser in both right and left hand models. The limbs are laminated hard maple and flat black fiberglass. These limbs range from 20# - 60# in 5 pound increments. The XL limbs are limited to 30# - 55# in 5 pound increments.
This bow requires an allen wrench to change the limbs, so be sure to keep it handy if you have more than one set of limbs.
The basic kit includes: flipper type arrow rest, hard case, stringer, arm guard, and three premium carbon arrows.
This bow also has inserts preinstalled for sights, plunger type arrow rest, quiver, stabilizer and a bow fishing reel. However, none of these extras comes with the basic pack, but can be added later with no issues.
This bow weighs in at 2.3 pounds for a really light carry in the field. Draw length is approximately 29” with the XL, accommodating a longer 32”draw.
This kit has no finger protection included, so if you are buying this kit you will need to purchase finger tabs, or if you are buying the kit for hunting you may want to buy a three finger glove for finger protection. String silencers should also be added for hunting.
I like the XL option on this bow since I usually prefer a longer bow. It might just be me but I feel a longer bow draws smoother and for hunting I like the smoothest draw I can get. Our full review on the Spyder is here.
- Top alternative to the Samick Sage bow
- Comes with arrows
- Includes a case
- Includes stringer
- Includes arrows
- Kit is missing a finger tab / release aid
- No target!
Beginner Bow and Arrow Sets for Kids
If you're looking for a kit for a younger child or youth try this one.
Easton Youth Beginner Recurve Bow Kit
This bow kit is designed for the younger, smaller youth that a full sized bow, even with light weight limbs is just too big for.
This bow is just 52” AMO with a 26” max draw. The advanced polymer riser is designed to be ambidextrous and has a built in sight channel, while the limbs are made of polymer and fiberglass with a draw weight of 10-20 pounds.
The kit includes three arrow, hip quiver, arm guard and finger tab.
This kit is far better than the kits of my childhood, and should get your fledgling archer started on the right foot.
- Sight included
- Finger tab included
- Rest included (for either left or right handed shooter)
- Can be used by either Left or Right Hander
- Includes 3x aluminium arrows
- Includes Easton Hip Quiver
- Available in Pink or Black
- All that's missing is a target!
As you can see, recurve bow kits have come a long way and offer real value for the modern shooter regardless of whether you plan to hunt, target shoot or a bit of both. Buying a RTS kit is a smart investment for the beginning archer.