Sunday, October 25Aim for the target on the range and in life

Which Type of Quiver is Best for You?

Now that you’ve taken the quiz – let’s shoot for more accuracy.

Perhaps, you want to match your quiver to a certain historical period, or maybe to the style of clothing you like to wear, or even to the color and style of your bow. Selection of the quiver can be as personal as your selection of a bow. Then you may wonder about how many arrows should be in your quiver. Do you hunt or target shoot? Should you have more than one type of quiver? What to do?

I recommend starting inexpensively until you figure out what works best for your style. My first quiver was made of nylon, and I modified it myself often, from hip to side to back, attaching and detaching nylon straps. Once I knew what I liked as far as shooting style, I spent the big bucks on a nice leather quiver that performed the way I wanted.

I settled on a leather back quiver when I’m by myself, and a hip quiver when I’m at the range shooting fewer arrows at a time.

Female archer aiming at target
Photo of female archer with hip quiver used with permission by Bigstock Photo

In above picture, a tournament archer only needs to shoot a few arrows at a time from a hip quiver.

Think basics. The quiver is meant to hold the arrows while shooting. When worn on the back it is very practical while walking. At the target range, when you are standing in one place when you shoot, a side quiver on your hip or back of the waist is fine.

Some archers shoot three or four arrows at a time, numbered in some cases. The hip quiver is the right choice for this archer who can keep a log noting where each arrow falls in the target, meticulously measuring progress that way. The archer looks for consistency.

Personally, I prefer to shoot a set of twenty arrows at a time, fairly rapidly. Therefore, I like a quiver on my back, and packed full. A large cluster of arrows in the target helps me gauge my progress.

A thick cluster of arrows in the target indicates your trend

A back quiver allows one to shoot many arrows at a time, therefore the more arrows you shoot in one go, the fewer trips you will have to make in order to retrieve them. That saves time, in my opinion.

The purpose of a back quiver is to allow easy access to arrows from over the shoulder. This quiver has a simple strap, top to bottom, which goes over the shoulder and across the chest at an angle. To give the quiver some stability in its angled position, there is usually an additional strap that goes around the waist, or a small loop or lanyard which allows you to attach the bottom of the quiver to your belt. If that strap is absent, securing the quiver in place is easily done with a lace or strip of leather.

Ivano Gatti with longbow and back quiver
OLEGGIO, ITALY- MAY 19: Ivano Gatti with a traditional Longbow and back quiver in official fiarc archery competition on May 19 2013 Oleggio Castello Italy. Photo used with permission by Bigstock Photo

IMPORTANT: If you use a back quiver, and you shoot broadheads (arrows with razor sharp hunting points), you might want to buy special sheaths to protect you from each point. You don’t want to draw out an arrow and slice up the back of your head!

Broadhead Point
Broadhead Point photo used with permission by Bigstock Photo

Use a broadhead sheath if you keep these in your back quiver!

Okay, you are still not sure—side or back quiver? Switching often from side quiver to back quiver may affect your accuracy. While it is okay to try out both types of quivers, you will ultimately have to choose the type that suits you best. An inexpensive way to try out the possibilities is to make your own quiver.

Cloth Quiver
Cloth Quiver photo used with permission by Bigstock Photo

Cloth quiver in medieval style with handmade period arrows

Canvas quivers were seen in tapestries and discovered on board the shipwreck Mary Rose, King Henry VII’s warship of the 1500’s. Making your own cloth quiver would be a good way to try out a side quiver. It would be an easy sewing project.

If you decide upon a back quiver or side quiver of leather, you might wonder as well if you can make your own quiver. Keep in mind that making your own leather quiver will require a detailed template, a large piece of leather, and special tools. It is a complex project, however, there are templates and how-to videos available. You can start with simpler projects though, using different materials like vinyl, canvas, or heavy nylon.

Using a sewing machine, you can make a basic quiver of vinyl

If you want to try your hand at leather, on this website you’ll find lots of posts about basic leather work, showing you how to make simple must-have archery accessories. This may inspire you to go all out and make a leather quiver someday.

Another popular type of quiver is the bow quiver. Bow quivers attach to the side of the bow. The small size limits the number arrows it can hold, so most hold five or six arrows. For bows that do not have riser insert-bushings (screw-in holes in the riser), there are limb mounted bow quivers. These will work on single piece bows.

Bow Quiver
Bow Quiver photo used with permission by Bigstock Photo

This bow quiver attaches to a traditional bow or compound bow. The bow quiver gives you the advantage of packing light. You can quickly set up your target and get right to practice. If you are hiking or traveling, this may be good reason in favor of using a bow quiver.

Competition archers frequently use a bow quiver because they shoot fewer arrows in a competition. They often like to practice in the style they shoot in the actual event. In addition, the competition archer travels and the bow quiver takes up the least space when compared with other quivers.

There is an added safety advantage to a bow quiver when using broadhead points for hunting. You can access the arrow carefully, keeping the sharp point in view. That’s one of the reasons you will see this type of quiver most often attached to a hunter’s bow.

Besides safety, there is another reason you will see a bow quiver attached to the side of a hunter’s bow. The hunter carries only a few arrows. He just needs two or three shots at a game animal. The animal will run off after the first one or two missed shots, or if the hunter is successful within those few shots, then there is no need for more arrows.

For these reasons, you’ll often see a bow quiver attached to a compound bow which is used primarily for hunting due to its accuracy, speed, and extra power for the short size.

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