May 19th 2007
The Accu-Laser or to give it its full title, Accu-Laser, Calibrateable Laser Bow Tuning Tool made by The Bohning Company Ltd of Lake City, Michigan, USA is a specifically designed tool to help you set up a bow or to check your current bow set up. It comes with a laser pointer dovetail arm, sight block arm and a bridge mount in a hard plastic Plano carry case and a very informative instructional DVD on the set up and use of the Accu-Laser. (Hover your cursor over the image to read the photo caption).
The laser can be attached to your existing sight dovetail bracket, although I must assume it only fits specific sights as I tried three other brands and none of them suited the dovetail, or it can be attached to your standard sight holes with the sight bracket supplied, but this means removing your sights. Both these attachments fix the laser on the inside of the bow between the front of the bow and the buss cables.
Of the three mounts supplied, I found the bridge mount to be the most useful. It is attached to the inside of the sight window into the back of the sight attachment holes, still between the front of your bow and the buss cables. This allows free movement of the laser but enables you to set up all the other equipment on your bow without interfering with the laser. The one disadvantage here is of the 8 bows I tested, 3 did not have the sight holes extend through to the face of the sight window. None of these 3 bows had dovetail mounts that suited the Accu-Laser, so the existing sights had to be removed.
The Accu-Laser can be a little fiddly to set up - it would certainly be a lot easier if you could put your bow upright in a vise as demonstrated in the Bohning DVD. You will also need four different allen keys to do your adjustments to the laser. It would be much easier if they had used the same allen head for all the bolts. I know the larger allen keys give a stronger bite on the bolts, but you are not going to shoot with the Laser attached so I don't see the necessity to lock the bolts up rock hard. That said, once you have done it a couple of times, it would be quite a simple operation.
Before going any further, you have to calibrate the Laser. This is a relatively simple procedure. The DVD shows clearly how this should be done and in testing several bows I did not have to change anything after the initial calibration. The laser head is then moved from side to side until the red dot picks up the string at the nocking point, and then locked into place. The laser can be rotated 360 degrees, which will pick up the top and bottom cams of the bow and runs along the length of the arrow.
The rotation of the laser has the potential to show up canted cams or even twisted limbs and being able to run the laser dot down the length of the arrow, gives you somewhere to start when setting up your rest. This will work well on two cam bows but on the three solo cams I tested, the bottom cam was offset so I was unable to run the laser dot down the length of the string. I could still however line the laser up in the centre of the solo cam configuration.
The Bohning Accu-Laser is certainly a well made piece of equipment and it does what it is meant to do without a great deal of difficulty. Whether it would be a useful addition to every archers tool box would be debatable. If you were a one-bow person, after your initial set up, further use of the Accu-Laser would be limited unless you owned a pro shop, were a bow manufacturer or needed to test and evaluate bows, like journal writers. However if you like to tinker or you put a lot of bows together, then I could see some advantages in owning one. If nothing else, you would be popular at your local club.
Mark Burrows hails from country Victoria and has a list of target and bowhunting achievements that would make most archers pale. He has achieved Master Bowhunter at branch level 10 times; has numerous Best of Species awards; at a national level, he has achieved either Bowhunter or Trophy Bowhunter every year for the last 10 years; a Best of Species each year for the last 5 years; holds the current Australian record for Sambar deer bringing to 5 different Species in the Australian Bowhunters Association's (ABA's) top 10 list, being Sambar, Hog deer, Chital deer, Boar and Shark; he has been the Australian Champion Bowhunter for the last 2 years; he was the first ABA member to claim the then 14 claimable species of game and when this was extended to 19 species, Mark was the first to have all 19 claimable species of game; 1st at the 2007 National Safari in Bowhunter Unlimited and also won the 2007 Australian Champion Bowhunter which is understood to be the first time that both these titles have been won by the same person and in the same year. Mark has numerous awards (possibly in excess of 250 trophies) to his name and is active at branch and national level in his sport in ABA, IFAA and 3D. He has ventured onto the world stage with a 1st in his class at the 2002 World IFAA titles in Scotland. His eye for detail is a rare gift. His achievements go on and he does give gladly of his time with articles he writes, contributions to the ABA board and his work at branch level and amongst all these archery activities, he runs a busy commercial venture in his home town. We trust you will enjoy the article.
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