Why spend money on your archery equipment without spending proper money on protecting your investment? Having a proper case to store your archery equipment in is an essential tool in an archer’s toolbox and serves you several key needs in the sport. The best bow case does not only offer protection for your bow but serves as a tool for storage and organization. With a whole variety of options out there to protect your bow with, it can be easy to rush the decision. Take a moment to figure out just what you need and what is out there on the market.
Why a Bow Case is Necessary
The purpose of a bow case is not only a place to store your bow and associated equipment but to provide vital protection to your high-performance equipment. Here are some reasons why a bow case is an absolutely necessary tool for any archer.
A bow case serves a few vital purposes. First off, it serves as a storage space for your bow and all the small pieces of associated gear. This is essential to proper gear organization. Otherwise, it is difficult to transport all the accessories such as arrows, release device, string wax, allen wrenches, extra tools, etc. Having a bow case keeps your bow and all the necessary equipment in one safe place.
At some point, your accessory equipment may exceed the space limits of your bow case. At this point, you may need to upgrade to an archery box or tackle box. However, your bow case should remain the place for all the must have important pieces of archery equipment.
Protection in Storage and Transport
Most importantly of all though, a bow case provide protection. With so much invested into your archery equipment, you certainly want to offer it the best level protection as possible. A compound bow, while a durable piece of equipment, is also subject to damage like anything else. Damage while hunting is one thing, but careless damage in storage or transport due to improper protection is flat out irresponsible. A bow case offers essential protection to your valuable equipment.
Bow cases come in several different levels of protection and storage space for your bow and equipment. Take a look at some of the cases available for your equipment on the market.
Bow Case Styles and Recommendations
The type of bow case you ultimately decide on will depend on how you will be using your case. First, let’s take a look at the types of cases available for your selection on the market. Then we can figure out what you will need.
Best Soft Bow Cases
A soft case for your compound bow is pretty much exactly how it sounds, soft. They are made out of padded fabric designed to give your bow a fair level of protection. Soft cases are generally designed with a full-length zipper and have varying levels of storage options. These offer sufficient degrees of protection for light use. This could be considered taking your bow to the range and back. If your bow is generally riding in the cab of a vehicle and has a safe storage spot, a soft case may suit your needs.
– My Recommendations –
This soft compound bow case by Allen offers excellent protection for your bow in lighter use scenarios. On top of that, it comes with lots of external storage pouches for your arrows and other necessary equipment. It has a nice contoured shape to your bow and can fit bows with a maximum axle-to-axle length of 35 inches. It is a budget-friendly case as well.
This Primos soft bow case offers an excellent level of protection in a soft case. With sufficient padding all around, it was designed by Primos to offer protection in some of the toughest environments. The case also has an external arrow pouch that once again offers excellent protection in a soft case. At a price a slightly higher price than the Allen case, it may provide slightly more protection at the cost of storage features.
Best Hard BowCases
Hard cases offer next-level protection for your archery equipment. Though soft cases are good for toting your equipment around your yard, around town, and to the range; they aren’t good for all applications. When you need to be loading your bow in the bed of your truck, or storing it vertically in a closet where it risks falling, you need to be looking for a hard case.
Storage space in hard cases is often better than that of a soft case, particularly for arrows. Many hard cases come with an internal arrow carrier for you to snap your arrow shafts into. Personally, I much prefer storing my arrows in a hard case than a soft case.
Hard cases come in a variety of durability, mostly dependent on the plastic thickness. As such, price varies a bit between them. Check out below for one of our picks for a hard compound bow case.
– My Recommendations –
Offering a good balance between price and protection, this Plano Case is more designed for modern parallel limb bows, but can also house other types of bows so long as they are less than 35 inch axle-to-axle length.
This Plano case is built with industrial-strength exterior plastic and offers the user a generous amount of space inside. With this amount of space, the user can customize the storage options. At a mid range price point below one hundred dollars, it offers great value for its features and protection.
On the lighter end of protection for a hard case, is this model by Flambeau. The plastic on this model is not as durable as some higher end models. This bow case comes complete with arrow clips inside and pillars to help hold your bow in place. This is a budget minded case at a price similar to some of the soft cases on the market.
Best Airline approved bow case
For maximum protection and durability, the kind required for airline cargo travel, there are cases with unsurpassed durability. Several companies exist who make ultra tough plastic and composite cases designed to take a beating. However, there are only a few who make them designed to fit the specific dimensions of compound bows.
If you want the maximum protection for your bow, look into these types of cases. They can handle being dropped, crushed, and just about everything in between. With high-density foam to absorb the shock internally, your components will be safe in nearly all scenarios. However, for this protection, the trade-off may be a lesser amount of storage and storage features.
– My Recommendations-
A well-known name in heavy-duty storage cases; from musical instruments to lab equipment, SKB is a reputable brand. Their iSeries 4214 bow cases is designed to fit dimensions of most parallel limb bows. The case comes with cut to fit foam for a custom and snug fit for your bow. Spots for your arrows can also be cut into the foam on the lid of the case. However, there may not be room for your bow quiver in this case.
With protection comes weight, at over 20 pounds this is much heavier than other cases, though integrated wheels and two handles make for easier transport. At a much heftier price than previous cases, it can be a worthwhile long-term investment for ultimate protection.
Another trusted name in extreme-duty and highly durable cases is Pelican. This company is no stranger to building cases that are meant to last, which is why the U.S. Military often uses these for shipping guns, equipment, and electronics overseas. The Pelican 1700 case is apart of the several sizes in the series and is likely the most versatile size for bows. However, being a highly durable case, storage space is at a premium in this case. Cut-to-fit foam inside allows for a fully customizable and sure-fit. At a price point similar to the SKB case, this case comes top of the line when it comes to protecting your equipment.
Choosing a Case for your Bow
Now that you have a general idea of the types of bow cases on the market, you need to ask yourself some questions. These will help decide the type of bow case you ought to potentially invest in. With a variety of options on the market, you can likely find a case that should cater to your specific needs.
How will I you use the case?
A big question you need to ask yourself is the durability you will require. How will your case be used? Will it be used to tote your bow to the range and back? Does your bow generally ride in the cab of your truck and have a safe storage location at home? If so, a soft case might be necessary.
What if your bow is going to need to be stored in the bed of a truck for long rides? Or maybe you are just looking for a little protection that a soft case, then a hard plastic case may suit your needs. I like the ability to store arrows more safely in a hard plastic case personally.
Well, what if you need maximum durability? If your bow case truly will be subject to the extremes of the outdoors. Or if you just want a solid insurance policy on your bow, then maybe the heavy-duty airline approved cases are the best choice for you. However, these cases are bulky, heavy, and not suited easy transport.
These are all factors you need to consider when choosing a bow case. Balancing the options between durability, storage, and price.
How much storage space do you need?
If you will be relying on your bow case as an essential storage area for your other archery gear, this needs to be taken into consideration. I like having all of my stuff in one place. It is nice to be able to grab the bow case and know everything I need is in there.
With a heavy-duty airline case, space is often at a premium. More often than not, there are no other storage features other than cut-to-fit foam on the inside. However, the regular plastic bow cases often offer excellent storage space and options inside of the case.
Will you be flying with your bow?
This question is sort of a make it or break it. If you will be flying with your bow, you will need an airline-approved case for it. If not, you are placing the safety of your bow in the hands of others. When you are flying for a big hunting trip, this kind of risk can’t be taken.
If you don’t anticipate airline travel with your bow, these cases aren’t always necessary. Due to their high level of protection, they come at a heavy and bulky size. This makes everyday casual transport of the case a somewhat cumbersome task. Unless you demand airline level protection, other hard plastic cases offer excellent compromises in size, durability, and cost.
Protect Your Equipment for Long-Term Use
From general use soft cases to heavy-duty crush proof molded plastic cases, you can provide your bow with varying levels of protection. Hopefully, now you have an idea of the value in the proper protection of your archery equipment. There is a wide variety of bow cases on the market and now you should have an idea what kind of features you need. This will help in determining what bow case best suits your needs. Have fun out there and safe shooting.
For certain users, a soft case will provide ever-lasting protection for their precious equipment. For other archers, they may require a heavy duty airline approved hard case to allow their bow to live up to their heavy wear lifestyle. Whatever your need may be, there is a perfect case for your situation if you just do a little bit of research.