How Long Does A Compound Bow Last?

Despite having lots of other choices, why do you use a compound bow? Why do you want to go through such an expense?

It’s because the compound bow gives much more flexibility than the other bows from drawing to accurate shooting. In fact, the draw weight of the compound bow is 50% lower than other bows.

But the price of the compound bow is higher than any other traditional bow. Which tends its user to ask the question about how long does a compound last.

To answer how long does a compound bow last, I’ve considered two metrics back in mind while writing about it. One is science back data, and another one is real user statistics.

So, how long does a compound bow last? Backed by science and real user experience, a compound bow last for about 15 to 18 years. This can be increased by 263% by changing different parts of the compound bow.

Don’t worry, I will tell you about the nitty and gritty of science-backed data and what real users are saying about this. First, let’s get to know what science has to say about this. Then we would know about the actual user statistics, and lastly, I’ll tell you exactly how you can increase its lifespan.

So, let’s dive in.

Table of Contents

The Components Of Compound Bow: The Designer’s Backend

How long does a modern compound bow last inherently? Inherently how long a compound bow last is solely determined by its design, structure, and components.

So, if you ask, the answer might fluctuate. I can’t accurately answer this question even the producer company itself can’t. That’s why when you buy guaranteed electronics, often got damaged far before the promised deadline. What the company can do at best they estimate the specific components of life expectancy using the data they found after years of analysis, experiments, and experience.

So, we’ve got the point. All we need to know for getting an accurate answer to the question is to see the architecture and structural components of a compound bow.

Interested to know?

Let’s get to know about the most significant parts of the compound bow.

Bow Limbs

Do you know what exactly a bow limb is and how bow limbs work?

Don’t bother to understand complexity!

To know how a bow limb works, you just need to know the objective of bow limbs.

Bow limbs store potential energy by flexing themselves upon drawing. Between limits, the potential energy is proportional to the drawing of the bowstring. So, the more the drawing of the bowstring, the more the storing of energy in bow limbs. And you know if the bow limbs flex more and save more energy, it will release an arrow with more speed.

Now don’t ask me what I will do with that speed!

Okay, we’ve got an overview of bow limbs. Now, we know how it works and what’s its advantages or objectives.

But we don’t know the detail of its technical mechanism. We needn’t so.

But in this, we were come to get different conclusions. We need to know inherently how long a bow limb can survive.

To answer this question, we’ve to indulge ourselves in the nuts and bolts of the material used in bow limbs.

Compound bow limbs are constructed of composite materials. Often this composite material is fiberglass. Some manufacturer uses fiberglass and carbon as a blend.

Bow limbs are made of different layers. Each layer is constructed with different materials. But most often, the core element is fiberglass, as fiberglass can tolerate high tensile and compressive forces. Most importantly, it has a property of stiffness, which helps itself to flex upon drawing of the bowstring.

Most of the other traditional bow does not use it. This difference clearly makes a big difference in the overall construction and lifespan.

Generally, the tendency of breaking in fiberglass is way lesser than the others. When blended with carbon, this property enhances more. So, naturally, it won’t break in several decades other than becoming weaker.

In addition to this modern compound bow uses a camshaft mechanism, which helps in pulling the bowstring using lower forces, which pin the last pin into the coffin of breaking.

So, we can conclude that bow limbs can last decades after decades without any degradation other than becoming weaker end up losing speed, releasing an arrow.

Note: Limbs might be weaker over time, which ends up losing the speed of the arrow.


What the heck are cams?

The full form of cams is the camshaft. Well, what the hell camshaft does and what business does it have with my precious compound bow.

Its camshaft replaced the horse and got you back on the engine-driven modern vehicles. Yes! Without a camshaft, the engine would remain as nothing but a piece of abandoned material.

Seems unknown?

Your compound runs on the cam mechanism. It is a camshaft thanks to which compound bow has become a super-powerful shooting machine. If your bow wouldn’t have any cams, then you would have to draw your bow using much effort. Not only this, the absence of cams in the compound would limit the target shooting range but also affect the accuracy of shooting.

That’s disappointing. Right?

Now that you know an overview, what’s a camshaft mainly do. If now I start to explain its technical mechanism, it might make you annoyed because that has much complexity.

Our main objective here is to know how long the camshaft survives inherently.

From research back data, the camshaft can run approximately 250,000 km without any kind of overhaul. And from our calculation, a camshaft of a compound bow can run smoothly over 35.11 years.

In our calculation we considered-

  • Running the length of the camshaft in its lifespan is 250.000 km.]
  • The pulling off a draw in a day as 200m.
  • The active drawing day is 365 days.


Do you know what bow riser is? The riser is an essential structural part of a compound bow. The Riser is the middle part of a bow mountain shaft and arrow shelf. Most importantly, it is a riser where we hold the grip while aiming.

Usually, the riser is made of Aluminum. But, what Aluminum does is increase the weight of the bow. That’s why in the modern compound bow, carbon fiber is used instead. It not only makes the bow lighter but also increases its lifespan. Because both Aluminum and carbon fiber has long-surviving power.

That said, a riser can last more than a decade when proper care is taken.


I’m sure you won’t like it if I start telling you what a bowstring is? If I start so, you would like to slap me on the first meet saying hey, are you kidding me?

I don’t dare to!

Unlike other bowstrings, the bowstring of the compound bow is different. So, it won’t be fair if I say the bowstring of a compound bow lasts for 3 years. I had written an article about it, where I discussed the lifespan of the bowstring in general. You can check how long does a bowstring last here.

As I said, the compound bow is unlike others. So, it is worth mentioning specifically how long a compound bowstring last.

In short, compound bowstrings perform better than the other bowstring. Why?

A compound bow uses an additional cord over the bowstring. Also, the compound bow uses a camshaft, which dramatically reduces the direct stress on limbs as well as on the bowstring. Besides, the strings of a modern compound bow are constituted of blended synthetic materials which are much more durable than the others.

Since the bowstrings are the least durable components in a bow, it’s implausible to expect a long lifespan.

Regardless of the short lifespan of the bows, the compound bow’s lifespan is comparatively higher thanks to its construction and material used.

So, there you have it! We can expect the compound bow to survive for 3-5 years.


As the name suggests, the compound bow is complicated. So, you can guess the compound bow will have lots of parts joined. Simply they join together through screws.

If the screws somehow break, the whole mechanical system of the compound bow will be damaged. So, the more the screws will survive, the more the overall lifespan of the compound bow will enhance.

Now, to know how long a screw can last, firstly must see the structure of it as always.

What’s a compound bow screw made of?

Now a day’s screws are made of stainless steel. Sometimes brass, titanium, and bronze are also laminated.

So, the screw of the bow can last decade after decade without much degradation. Though Sometimes, the patch of the screw might be damaged, I’m not taking that into count.

Mechanical Release

I think this is another top significant component of a compound bow. Because this component plays a vital role in distinguishing compound bows from the others with its unique feature. If the compound bow wouldn’t have a mechanical release, then it would be nothing special but a traditional bow.

Basically, from cam to cords, every component exists in a compound bow to facilitate the mechanical release process.

So, you have sensed the importance of these components. What the bow release is made of, and what elements are used?


What does the cable do in a compound bow?

The role played by cables in a compound bow is very significant. Cables connect the cams with each other. When you pull a string, the cams rotate and store potential energy. And exactly where in this process cables helps cams. After pulling off the string until release, cables hold the newer position of cams.

Other than connecting cables organizing this mechanism in a compound bow might be difficult.

Now let’s talk about the materials used to make a compound bow. The cables of compound bows are made of high modulus polythene. It’s high modulus polythene, which can last for a long time.

But it totally depends on how frequent you shoot, how well you use it, and how you care. If you neglect these things, then it’s very likely not to have the cables last that long.

Apart from that and from a fundamental perspective, cables can last for years after years without any problem.

What About Other Components?

Honestly speaking, the other components in the compound bow may not last that much, but quickly, they can be replaced. So, we are not taking them into count for this calculation.

How Long Does A Compound Bow Last: Here’s What Users Are Saying

I’ve asked the same question in different forums and on Reddit about how long a compound bow lasts actually?

Here’s what the response was.

Raider said. “I’ve seen my dad using a compound bow for nearly 20 years.”

Robin said, “I’m using a compound bow almost for 2 decades, and it’s still working fine.”

Williams said, “I can personally attest that compound bow lasts for 13 years. But surely, I can say that the modern compound bow will last more than this.”

Results: How Long Does A Compound Bow Last

First, I said about the materials of the significant parts of a compound bow, and its life expectancy using scientific data. But we found that each component has a different life expectancy. So, it’s better to average the values.

After taking the average, I found that from the significant materials perspective, a compound bow can last for 15.22 years.

It’s not a real user experience metric. So, to know that I’ve asked in different forums and on Reddit. At the top of this section, I mentioned what the three users are saying.

As they also come up with different metrics, so I’ll take an average of that. Surprisingly the average value of compound bows lasting from users is 17.66 years.

No more words. I want to conclude the results between 15-18 years.

How To Increase The lifespan Of Compound Bow?

Earlier I said that you can increase the chance of lasting a compound bow by 263%.

How can you accomplish that?

In a word, you have to take proper care of your bow.

“Everyone says so, and I know that I should take care of .”

Yes. But you may not know precisely how to take proper care.

So, tell me that.

Fine. Here’s this simple thing to do.

  • Keep an eye open on the string. Strings are susceptible. Wax regularly on the string.
  • Don’t draw over to its limits. That will be harmful.
  • Never take your bow to heat contacts.
  • Store properly. Look here, how to store a bow.[hyperlink]
  • Inspect and repair regularly.

Over To You

Hey, I have got a simple question for you!

If you are already using a compound bow, how long has it worked smoothly without any significant error? Let the whole world know about it.

The comment box is yours 😀.


How Many Shots Will Compound Bow Last?

It mostly depends on the strings of the compound bow. The string of the compound bow lasts for 3-5 years. So, effortlessly you can shoot more than 5000 times keeping shooting standards intact.

Do Compound Bow Limbs Wear Out?

Yes. Overusing the compound bow may result in weaker and lousy limbs which in some cases break or splinter. Thus, limbs can wear out and affect release, speed, and accuracy.

How often do compound bow strings need to be replaced?

Traditional bowstring needs to be replaced in between 3 years. But for having some technical advantages, a compound bow can last more than 3 years. So, the strings of the compound bow are worth changing between 3 to 5 years of use.

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