Bow Styles

Field Archery Bow Styles: –

http://www.nfas.net/downloads/rules/Rules-ShootingStylesRules2011.pdf

The rules below are current from 1st April 2011 and may be subsequently changed following
the procedures set out in NFAS’ Constitution.
Unless explicitly forbidden in the rules below, any equipment is permissible.
As per rule 14 of the NFAS ‘Shooting Rules’, the arrow speed of any bow should not exceed
300 feet per second (fps). Bows may be randomly tested at any open or national event using
a chronograph. The person carrying out the testing will select three or more of the archer’s
arrows to be tested and an average taken as the bow speed. No arrow should exceed a
speed of 300 fps, (plus 3% tolerance for chronograph error). If the speed of any arrow is
found to be over this legal speed, the archer has the right to shoot the same arrow again. If
arrow speeds are found to be below 270 fps only two arrows need to be shot.
American Flatbow, Bowhunter, Compound Limited, Hunting Tackle and Longbow require the
use of a ‘Mediterranean loose’. It is optional in other bow styles. A Mediterranean loose
means one finger above and the middle and ring fingers below the nock.
Archers using facewalking or stringwalking must shoot in Unlimited or Freestyle depending on
whether a compound or non-compound bow is used.
American Flatbow (AFB)
A one-piece bow, of any draw-weight, may be used where the braced limbs curve in one
direction only from the handle riser to the string nock. When braced the string must not come
into contact with the face of either limb except at the nock grooves. The limb cross-section
may vary from oval to rectangular.
The handle may incorporate a cut-away of less than centre-cut to provide an arrow-shelf and
the shelf may have a protective cover.
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour. One
nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and below
the arrow).
Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments (in addition to the
sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are allowed. No additional
vibration dampeners are allowed on or in the handle section or limbs of the bow.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. The “Mediterranean” loose only
is permitted. No draw-checks of any kind are permitted.
No internal or external stabilisers are allowed.
No form of release aid is permitted.
No deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used for aiming.
Arrows shafts must be of wood, fletched with natural feather.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his or her score.

Barebow (BB)

A bow of any draw-weight, but not a compound bow, may be used.
No sight of any description can be used. 2
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour. One
nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and below
the arrow).
Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments (in addition to the
sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are allowed.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot and the index finger must touch
the nock at full draw. No face or string walking is allowed. No draw-checks of any kind are
permitted.
A single stabiliser of any length is permitted.
Any arrow rest used cannot have an over-draw of more than 5cm (2 inches) behind the throat
of the hand-grip. This is measured along the length of a nocked arrow from the point where
the arrow touches the rest to the point vertically above the throat of the hand-grip.
No form of release aid is permitted.
No deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used for aiming.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his/her score.

Bowhunter (BH)

A compound bow of any draw-weight may be used.
No sight of any description can be used.
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour. One
nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and below
the arrow).
Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments (in addition to the
sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are allowed.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot and no face or string walking is
allowed. No additional draw-checks can be added to the bow above the manufacturer’s
specification and any such draw-check must not be able to be used as a sighting aid.
Any arrow rest used cannot have an over-draw of more than 5cm (2 inches) behind the throat
of the hand-grip. This is measured along the length of a nocked arrow from the point where
the arrow touches the rest to the point vertically above the throat of the hand-grip.
A single stabiliser of any length is permitted.
No form of release aid is permitted. The ‘Mediterranean’ loose only is permitted.
No deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used for aiming.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his/her score.

Compound Limited (CL)
A compound bow of any draw-weight may be used.
A multi-pin sight with up to five fixed pins may be used. None of the pins or sight block can be
adjusted on the course unless the archer suffers from equipment failure. No spirit level of any
kind is permitted. No additional deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used
for aiming. Pinguards are permitted.
A peep-sight or kisser button is permitted but not both. 3
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. No additional draw-checks can be
added to the bow above the manufacturer’s specification and any such draw-check must not
be able to be used as a sighting aid.
Any arrow rest used cannot have an over-draw of more than 5cm (2 inches) behind the throat
of the hand-grip. This is measured along the length of a nocked arrow from the point where
the arrow touches the rest to the point vertically above the throat of the hand-grip.
Any stabiliser(s) or stabiliser system and/or dampeners are permitted.
No form of release aid is permitted. The ‘Mediterranean’ loose only is permitted.

Freestyle (FS) (Olympic, Classic)
A bow of any draw-weight, but not a compound bow or crossbow, may be used.
Subject to the ‘NFAS Rules of Shooting’, archers shooting in this class have complete
freedom of choice of equipment, with the exception that no form of release aid is allowed and
no electrically powered or electronic equipment can be used (eg laser sights, lights on sights).
The sight may be moved at will during shooting.
Attachments, knots or bands of any size or design (including a peep sight) may be used on
the string irrespective of whether the use is for aiding the sighting or shooting technique.
Any draw-length checking mechanism may be used.

 

Hunting Tackle (HT)
A bow of any draw-weight, but not a compound bow or crossbow, may be used.
No sight of any description can be used. 4
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour. One
nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and below
the arrow).
Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments (in addition to the
sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are allowed.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. The ‘Mediterranean’ loose only is
permitted. No draw-checks of any kind are permitted.
Any arrow rest used cannot have an over-draw of more than 5cm (2 inches) behind the throat
of the hand-grip. This is measured along the length of a nocked arrow from the point where
the arrow touches the rest to the point vertically above the throat of the hand-grip.
No external stabilisers are allowed.
No form of mechanical or electronic release aid is permitted.
No deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used for aiming.
Arrows shafts must be of wood, fletched with natural feather.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his/her score.

 

Longbow (LB)
The bow must be of wood only (although partial bamboo construction is permitted), straightlimbed and of “D” section with nocks of self nature or made of horn and must be free of
stabilisers, sights, arrow-rests or cut-aways for the arrow to rest on. No form of arrow-rest
may be attached to the side of the bow. No fibreglass, carbon or similar synthetic fibre is
permitted in the construction of the bow.
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour. One
nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and below
the arrow).
Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments (in addition to the
sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are allowed. No additional
vibration dampeners are allowed on the handle section or limbs of the bow.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. The “Mediterranean” loose only is
permitted. No draw-checks of any kind are permitted.
No external stabilisers are allowed.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. The “Mediterranean” loose only is
permitted. No draw-checks of any kind are permitted.
No form of release aid is permitted.
No deliberate marks can be added to the bow that can be used for aiming.
Arrows shafts must be of wood, fletched with natural feather.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his/her score.

 

Primitive (PV)
A Primitive bow is a bow made using natural materials only, although synthetic glues, finishes
and string may be used in its construction. A cable-backed bow may include a natural or
synthetic tensioning cable running along the back.
A bow that conforms to the NFAS Longbow class definition may not be used in Primitive class. 5
Crossbows may not be used in Primitive class.
The bow must be free of stabilisers, sights, or other features which could be used as a sight,
such as deliberate marks, bindings, or decoration.
A primitive bow may not include a cut away arrow pass or arrow shelf. No form of arrow rest
may be added to the side of the bow. Arrows must be shot off the hand.
The bowstring may be of different colours as long as the coloured strands run continuously
and evenly throughout the string’s length, but the centre serving must be of one colour.
Synthetic and natural string materials may be used.
One nocking position is permitted (which may be indicated by nocking points both above and
below the arrow). Brush buttons and silencers are permitted but no other knots or attachments
(in addition to the sting serving) that could be used for sighting or location purposes are
allowed.
No additional vibration dampeners are allowed on the handle section or limbs of the bow.
One anchor point must be maintained throughout the shoot. Any form of hand loose may be
used including Mediterranean, two finger, pinch, thumb ring etc. No draw-checks of any kind
are permitted on the bow.
No form of release aid is permitted.
Arrows shafts must be of natural material, fletched with feather. Nocks to be self nocks or
reinforced with natural material. Plastic taper nocks may not be used.
No archer may refer to any memoranda which could in any manner be a means of improving
his/her score.”

 

Unlimited (UL)
A hand-bow, which can be a compound bow, of any draw-weight may be used.
Subject to the General Rules, archers shooting in this class have complete freedom of choice
of equipment, with the exception that no electrically powered or electronic equipment can be
used (eg electronic release aids, laser sights).
Any release aid used must be safe and not prone to premature release from any cause.

Crossbow (XB)
A bow of any draw weight may be used, but not of compound design.
The crossbow prod can be made from any materials except aluminium alloy.
The minimum bolt length is to be 14″.
The bow must have a full trigger guard.
A manual or automatic safety mechanism must be fitted to the crossbow and be fully
functional.
The crossbow must be fitted with a bolt retaining clip.
No cocking aid, other than a foot stirrup is permitted.
A telescopic sight with adjustable focus is not permitted. A fixed focus magnifying sight
is permitted, including mill-dot markings on the lens. The archer must allow scrutiny of the
sight by any other archer or NFAS official, including shoot organisers and marshals.
A crossbow archer may only cock his/her bow at the shooting peg. Once loaded the crossbow
shall only be pointed in the direction of the target.
The archer must not use a rest of any description, which provides an additional point of
support for the bow whilst shooting. This does not include the archer’s own body.
It is an offence for a person under 18 years of age to have in their possession:
a) A crossbow which is capable of discharging a missile, or
b) Parts of a crossbow which together (and without any other parts) can be assembled to
form a crossbow capable of discharging a missile.
Unless the person is under the supervision of someone who is 21 years of age or older.