PSE Kingfisher Review – a Recurve Bow Inspection


LengthBow WeightDraw WeightTakedown?
PSE Kingfisher

PSE Kingfisher

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60 inches5 lbs

How to: choose arrows, draw weight, and tune your recurve
40 to 50 lbs.Yes

- Includes everything you need to bowfish except bow stringer
- Attractive all-season camo finish
- Pro 3
- Warranty only valid for 2 years
- Rather heavy
- No bow stringer included
- Available in right-hand only
Also recommended: Best PSE BowsCompare prices across top hunting gear sellers

Package Contents

Welcome to my review of the PSE Kingfisher, a takedown recurve bow designed specifically with bow fishing in mind. Each package delivered by PSE includes the following items:

  • The PSE Kingfisher Bow
  • Assembly hardware and tools
  • Dacron B500 bow string
  • Front-mounting reel
  • 50’ of 80 lb. test line
  • 31” solid fiberglass arrow
  • Bow fishing arrow with point
  • Snap Shot rest
  • Owner’s Manual
  • Warranty card

Assembling The Bow

ps1This is a takedown recurve, so it is pretty easy to assemble. You get everything you need to attach the limbs to the riser, but there is no bow stringer included with the bow. This is a common oversight among bows, but it is a personal pet peeve of mine; you void your warranty by stringing the bow without a stringer, but few bows come with a bow stringer. It is also dangerous, both to your physical self and the bow, to string the bow without the aid of a bow stringer.

Okay, rant over. I have a number of bow stringers on hand, and assembling this bow took me less than 10 minutes. Then I was ready to check the bow’s accuracy and power.

How Powerful and Accurate is the Bow?

The Kingfisher is available in right-hand only, in draw weights of 40#, 45#, and 50#. The bow lacks much power if you choose the 40# or 45# weights, however; reviews I’ve read stated that the lower weight bows provide almost no penetration into the fish, resulting in maimed fish that you can’t retrieve because they wriggle their ways off the arrows. I chose the 50# draw weight for almost this exact reason, and found that it was plenty powerful enough for bow fishing and even some light hunting.

The accuracy of this bow is quite good, because the bow is very well made. I noticed no limb twist at all during my testing of this bow, and I was able to shoot half-inch groupings with ease from 20 yards. 30 yards out, I was still shooting half-inch groupings, and my 40 yard shots fell within the 1-1/2 inch range. The included Snap Shot rest helps you quickly attain your target and hit accurately.

Is The Bow Suitable For Hunting?

The Kingfisher is designed for bow fishing, and it excels at that sport if you have the right draw weight. The bow comes with a front-mounting reel and 50’ of 80 lb. test line, and I’ve brought in some excellent trout and salmon using this setup. Just for giggles, I also tested it out for some small game hunting, and was able to successfully bring home several rabbits and squirrels. The bow is probably powerful enough to take down a small deer, but I would not go for much larger game than that.

There is also one other problem with this bow, when it comes to hunting. It is heavy, at nearly 5 pounds. I would not want to lug this bow around in the woods with me. In the boat, it’s not so bad; I don’t have to carry it except from the truck to the boat and back, but I would not want to have to trek to the deer stand with this particular monster.

Is The Bow Suitable For Beginners?

pse2This is a pretty heavy bow, so beginners will have a steep learning curve and an uncomfortable experience shooting it. With that said, the bow is solid and very forgiving of poor stance and technique, so it’s pretty good for beginners in that respect.

Does This Recurve Accept Accessories?

The PSE Kingfisher is predrilled and has bushings for a stabilizer bar, quiver, and plunger. It is also set up for a front-mounted reel, of course, using the stabilizer bar bushing. The bow comes with a Snap Shot arrow rest, which is only good for feather vanes (not plastic).

Arrows For The PSE Kingfisher

The Kingfisher comes with one 31” bow-fishing arrow, but you can certainly practice with any good quality arrow of your choosing. Which arrows you choose depends greatly on your own shooting and hunting preferences, so be sure to check out our guide on arrow selection for more help in this area.

Is This Bow Comfortable To Hold?

No, it really isn’t. The Kingfisher is quite heavy, at nearly 5 pounds, and the grip is too narrow. I ended up wrapping paracord around the grip to make it more comfortable to hold, and this helped out quite a bit.

Materials And Durability (Riser, Limbs)

pse3The Kingfisher is durable and forgiving, but it could be a bit more durable. I went through several iterations of this bow, getting bows with warped limbs from transport in the heat, before I finally got one that was as close to manufacturer-perfect as it could be. The bow is made from a fiberglass riser and limbs.

What String Fits The ?

The PSE Kingfisher comes with a B500 Dacron string, but the limb tips are reinforced for use with FastFlight strings. The included string is very noisy and slap-happy, so be sure to install some monkey tails or other string silencers on yours to avoid having a lot of noise.

Is The PSE Kingfisher a Heavy Bow?

As I’ve mentioned in a couple of places, the Kingfisher is quite heavy at nearly 5 pounds. It’s a solid bow, though, that can take a beating.

How Loud Is The ?

The Kingfisher is pretty loud unless you install string silencers, which help. Even with monkey tails installed, though, the Kingfisher is louder than most of my other bows. I wouldn’t really trust this bow for deer hunting, because of the loudness factor.

Recurve Bow Review – Summary

Thanks for reading our bow review. The PSE Kingfisher, at its heaviest draw weights, is perfect for what it is designed for—bow-fishing. For other purposes, it might be adequate, but you are better off using this niche bow for the niche it is designed for, and leaving the hunting to other bows. Take a look at Today's price on the PSE Kingfisher if you’re interested.

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