How to Fix a Twisted Bow Limb On a Recurve and Traditional Bows?

Last night, I got this question from a friend: “How to fix a twisted bow limb?”. I thought this question might interest you as well, so I’ll discuss about twisted bow limb in this post.

What is The Most Common Cause of Twisted Bow Limb?

Limb twist is a natural phenomenon that often happens in recurve and traditional bows as the bows get older. In most cases, a twisted limb happens because of improper stringing technique.

When you string your bow without a stringer, the riser (or handle) of the bow could be twisted while it is being pulled up vertically during the stringing process, this can cause a slight twist in your bow limbs and tips.

Generally, you don’t need to worry too much about a twisted limb since the limbs are very resilient, it will not result in any damage to the limb.

However, contrary to the popular opinion, I do believe that a twisted limb can hurt your performance. A twisted limb could make you lean a lot while you shoot, thus making your shoots to be off the target.

The good news is that most limb twists are easy to fix.

Before we can fix the twisted limb, we need to check first if the limb is really twisted or not.

How to Check for Bow Limb Twist?

It is easy to check a limb twist, take your bow and with your bow strung, view it from either end of the bow. When viewed from each side, the string should run along the centerline of the limbs.

Take a look at the video below for more explanation:

The Quick and Easy Way to Fix a Twisted Limb on a Recurve and Traditional Bows

A slight limb twist can be fixed using this method:

With your bow strung, hold the bow by the handle or the riser with your dominant hand. Use your other hand to grip the twisted limb tip and then slowly over twist the limb in the opposite direction, hold it for a moment, and then quickly release the limb.

You may have to do this a few times until the twisted limb is straight.

Also read: Best Recurve Bow

Other Methods to Fix a Twisted Limb

Warm Wet Submerge Technique

This technique is used if there are too many glues in on your bow lamination.

First, you need to warm the water to around 105 degrees Fahrenheit. Then submerge the twisted limb in that water to loosen the glues. Remove the limb then slowly twist the limb with sufficient force in the required direction. Release the limb and repeat the twisting again several times until the limb is level.

Low Heat Method

If your bow limb is too stiff to twist, you can use this technique.

This technique requires you to ask someone to help you. Take your bow and twist the offending limb in the direction opposite the twist and hold it in place. Ask your friend to heat the limb using a hair dryer at a distance of 6 to 10 inches from the limb.

Slowly move the hair dryer up and down the length of the limb for 2 to 3 minutes. Then release the hold and examine the limb. Repeat the procedure as many as it takes until the limb is straight.

If the limb is twisted too severely, you should seek help from the local archery shop.

Twisted Limb on Compound Bows

A limb twist rarely happens in compound bows on their own. What happens most often is the limb being twisted because the cam lean. To validate this, you can remove the cable from the slide and see if the cam straightens out or not.

To fix this issue, take your bow and find cable yoke attached to the top limb, then twist it to straighten out the top cam.