PSE Summit Review


LengthBow WeightDraw WeightTakedown?
PSE Summit Recurve Bow

PSE Summit Recurve Bow

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66"~2.6 lbs

How to: choose arrows, draw weight, and tune your recurve
28, 32 and 36 lbs.Yes

Package Contents

Hey there, and welcome to our review of the PSE Summit. The PSE Summit, marketed by PSE as a competition recurve bow, is a step up from PSE’s Optima, and is a takedown recurve bow available with a blue or red riser. The bow features International Limb Fit (ILF) limb pockets for changing out the limbs with aftermarket bow limbs. Each package delivered by PSE includes the following items:

  • The PSE Summit Bow, including Limbs and Riser
  • Assembly tools and hardware
  • Dacron endless loop bow string
  • Owner’s Manual
  • Warranty Card

Assembling The Bow

To assemble the PSE Summit, you attach the limbs to the riser using the included hardware and tools. Then you string the bow, and install your arrow rest (not included). I found the process quick, easy, and painless: I was out the door to start shooting within less than half an hour.

How Powerful and Accurate is the Bow?

PSE SummitThe power of the PSE Summit depends on the draw weight. PSE sells the Summit in draw weights from 20# to 36#, in 4# increments. If none of those draw weights fit your needs, though, the ILF limb pockets allow for installing limbs from other bow manufacturer onto the Summit riser.

My 36# Summit is not powerful enough for hunting big game, since state law requires at least a 40# draw weight for deer and large birds, but the power behind the arrow is plenty for long-range target practice.

In my tests, I was able to hold 2” groupings with the Summit at 30 yards, 3” groupings at 50 yards, and 6” groupings at 75 yards. Yes, the accuracy really let off after 50 yards, but that might be a factor of the archer, not the bow itself: I do not usually shoot that far out.

Is The Bow Suitable For Hunting?

In theory, I suppose it would be possible to use the Summit for hunting small game. It definitely has the potential accuracy, since I could hold 3” groupings from 50 yards. However, the brightly colored aluminum riser would stand out in the bush like nothing else, and would be seen from miles around by just about every game animal you might be looking for.

I would not recommend this bow for hunting. It has the accuracy and the power for small game, but it simply isn’t camouflaged enough for that purpose. The primary purpose of the PSE Summit is an intermediate competition bow.

Is The Bow Suitable For Beginners?

The PSE Summit is definitely suitable for beginning archers. Since it has interchangeable limbs, the bow can grow with the archer, allowing the new archer to start out with a lower draw weight and simply change limbs as strength and ability improved.navigational help

Also, the bow is tapped for a sight, stabilizer, and plunger, which means a beginning archer could use those accessories to help make up for problems in form and technique. Finally, the bow has a forgiving brace height, which can help an archer learn the skills without being discouraged by accuracy problems caused by an unforgiving bow.

The drawback for a beginning archer would be the fact that the elevated arrow rest required for this bow does not come packaged with the bow. An experienced archer or bow technician would have to make sure the new archer had everything needed for a successful introduction to archery.

Does This Recurve Accept Accessories?

As mentioned above, the holes are pre-drilled and threaded to allow for the installation of any of the most common bow accessories, such as a sight, plunger, stabilizer, or quiver.

Arrows For The PSE Summit

Selecting arrows for any bow is mostly a matter of personal preference, but the draw length of the bow has to be taken into account. See our guide on arrow selection for more help.

Is This Bow Comfortable To Hold?

I will be honest, here, and tell you that I do not prefer aluminum risers with plastic grips. I much prefer the feel of a nice hardwood riser, but the PSE Summit does have a nice grip. The plastic grip is removable, and seems to be very durable and long lasting. I found the bow relatively comfortable to hold, and more comfortable than most of the other recurves I’ve handled that had aluminum risers.

Materials And Durability (Riser, Limbs)

The PSE Summit’s riser is cast aluminum, painted either red or blue depending on the model purchased. The limbs are made from wood core lamination with black fiberglass back and belly. The ILF limb pockets are well-machined and fit after-market limbs as perfectly as they’re supposed to.

The riser is very durable, and so are the limbs. I have been using my Summit for target practice for three years, and have yet to run into any of the limb twist problems that the Summit’s sibling, the Optima, is known for.

What String Fits The PSE Summit?

PSE recommends a 62” string for the Summit. The included Dacron string is nice, but the reinforced limb tips make it possible to use a FastFlight string instead.

Is The PSE Summit a Heavy Bow?

Since the PSE Summit has an aluminum riser, it is a very lightweight bow. I was amazed, though, at just how light the bow felt in my hand. After several hours of shooting, I felt little to no fatigue from holding the bow up.

How Loud Is The PSE Summit?

The PSE Summit is about average as far as loudness goes. I have heard much louder bows, but the Summit can still benefit from the installation of string silencers if noise is a concern for you.

PSE Summit Bow Review – Summary

Thanks for reading our bow review. The PSE Summit is a good bow for the price, and will serve any archer well for years to come. Its ILF limb pockets make for a very nice way to upgrade your bow without purchasing a new bow. If you’re a beginner or intermediate archer shopping on a budget, the PSE Summit is the way to go. Take a look at Today's price if you’re interested.

1 Comment

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  1. Appreciate the review. Your accuracy isn’t really as bad as you might think. A 2.4 inch group at 30 yards is virtually the same as a 6″ group at 75. Your 50 yard group was the best – markedly better than the 30 yard, given the relative perceived size of the targets at distance…. Distance makes a very big difference in relative target size. The same 4 foot sized target at 30 yards appears very close to 2.5 times bigger than it does at 75 yards. So you have to be 2.5 times better at 75 yards to get the same grouping! And that doesn’t even take into account the faster drop at distance and more time for wind interference. The deck is really stacked against you as you go further out.

    It’s easy to get disillusioned when the groups get much bigger, but it is going to happen when you shoot that far out. It seems much worse than it is, because when you walk out there or zoom in, the target looks the same size. It can psych you out. That is why hunters really need to practice at the longer distances in order to be able to confidently make long shots that don’t just disable or hurt the animals. Those long shots are a LOT more difficult.

    Given that info, the bow and your shooting were pretty consistent I think at all distances.

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