When you start looking for the best recurve bow for beginners, you are guaranteed to come across one bow in particular

The samick sage..

It’s the best selling takedown recurve bow on the market.

But, do you want to know the truth about the Samick Sage?

It’s not the best recurve bow for beginners.

The best recurve bow for beginners is the Southwest Archery Spyder.

You can check out the Southwest Archery Spyder on Amazon.

The Best Recurve Bow Showdownbest recurve bow for beginners

Here’s the deal…

This article is actually a review of 2 top selling entry level recurve bows on the market. The Samick Sage and Southwest Archery Spyder. I didn’t actually buy these two bows to compare them. I  purchased the Sage first because of it’s popularity.

When it arrived, there where some things I liked and some things I didn’t like, but ultimately the decision would be made after shooting it.

My review of these two bows is all in this post but you can also check out the video

Before getting into the review, I’ll cover some of the basic aspects of recurve bows.

Different Types of Recurve Bowsone piece recurve bow

The modern recurve bow comes in two styles

  • One Piece Recurve Bows
  • Take-Down Recurve Bows

Take-down recurve bows are also referred to as “three piece takedowns” which describes the differences in these two bows. The one piece recurve is constructed from one piece of wood, though it may use other materials such as fiberglass as outer layers on the limbs. The picture on the right shows two very nice all wood one-piece recurves made by Schafer Silvertip.

The take down recurve, is made up of 3 pieces, the riser and a top and bottom limb which are removable.When discussing entry level bows, we are looking at take-down recurve bows primarily because of the price difference.

A recurve constructed of a single piece of wood is MUCH more labor intensive to make and that is reflected in the price which is anywhere from 2-8 times the price of your average take-down.

The way I look at this, especially for beginners is, start with an affordable entry level take-down and work your way up.


Different Styles of Take-Down Recurve Bows

There are additional categories for take-down recurve bows that you should know just to avoid confusion.

  • Traditional Take-Down Recurve
  • Olympic Style Take-Down Recurve
  • ILF Olympic Take-Down

The take-down recurve bow is the only style of bow used in the Olympics. So, as you might imagine there is a large market of very expensive Olympic style take-down recurves. This type of recurve bow will be labeled ILF which stands for International Limb Fitting. This designation is for risers designed to fit ILF limbs. Of course the limbs are also made to this specification for attachment. This is so archers can combine any ILF riser with any ILF limbs that best suit their shooting needs.

Recurve Bow Cost

ILF bows are some of the most expensive bows of any type (compound included) costing upward of $2,000. Both ILF risers and limbs are made from lightweight metals and composites. I wouldn’t recommend these bows for beginners.

Additionally, there are Olympic style take-down recurves. These bows are designed in Olympic style but made from much more affordable materials. Risers are still usually metal but these are usually combined with

The samick sage is definitely the most popular entry level recurve bow on the market today. While I think it is actually a well made, affordable take down, I had to send mine back. Instead, for me the better choice is Southwest Archerys Spider XL.

I’m going to quickly go over some specs and tell how these bows are similar and how they are different. The differences are why the not keeping the sage


Samick Sage and Southwest Archery Spyder XL Review

First Off let me say this review is not as ominous as it sounds. The title makes