Samick Sage Saga

Sage sigI began building bows because I didn’t want to spend $400 or $500 on a bow until I was sure archery would hold my interest.

So I built one. And got hooked. Especially on the building. I like shooting them, too. A lot. But building, making something wonderful, natural, and dangerous, and that functions properly: that thrill just gets better.

I plan to build more. But…

On a recent Saturday, I traveled an hour and a half in the rain to Lancaster Archery* and bought a Samick Sage. I’d heard good things about this $140 takedown recurve. So I took a chance. Laid down plastic. And brought the bow home.

By way of review, I have nothing reliable to offer. My experience is limited to the bows I’ve made and my marksmanship is nowhere near proficient enough to judge a bow’s “accuracy” relative to other bows. In fact my current opinion is that barring fundamental engineering flaws, a bow’s a bow and an arrow is pretty much an arrow. So ask yourself, “do you really want an assessment from my well of ignorance and inexperience?”

Of course not.

So I’ll spare you … except to say that I like my new Samick Sage. It’s a good bow and a great bargain. Don’t take my word for it, Google Samick Sage and check out the Youtube vids. There’s consensus out there. And I’m down with it.

The Sage sports no blandishments beyond the rock-bottom basics. But its price, utility, and reputation were enough to lure me to the check-out line.

It sends arrows down range. That much is obvious even to me. The grip feels OK. It’s bushings accept quiver, stabilizer and sights if you’re into that. And the Sage is beautiful, in a rugged, boxy sort of way … if you squint.

Visual appeal was way down the list of reasons I sought this particular bow. Price mattered; frankly, I’m not yet worthy of a more expensive bow. Quality (based on reviews and comments of owners) mattered. But most important, it gives me curves I can put to work in my own bow making. I will not be the first to have done that. Mike at Boarrior Bows used the Sage limbs as template for a recurve form.*

I’m going to copy its curves and incorporate them into at least one of my bow designs. The Samick Sage will give me something to work off — a starting point. I do not intend to do a Sage knockoff.

I’ll measure its limb thickness, taper, width, curves. Apply those findings to my own work. See what happens.

For my takedown design (I hope to progress to that before the end of my building season this year) I’ll study the Sage’s riser angles and limb connections and what have you. Might even emulate the grip and shelf on a couple bows just to see what I think.

Along with what it teaches me about design and construction, the Samick Sage offers inspiration. My first store-bought bow. First recurve. First takedown. It’s also fun to say: Samick Sage! Samick Sage!

In upcoming posts, I’ll talk about my Lancaster Archery experience, the results of my first few Sage shooting sessions, limb weight and arrow spine.

More pix to come.

* Note: I tried to add links but WP’s automagic link thing is not functioning. True, I could code the links. But I’d rather whine to the host help desk. Got a feeling it might be a bug on my PC. Which, if true, I’m getting a Mac.

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