I wrote a post a few months ago about how much someone should spend on a bow. Once you buy a bow there are a lot of expenses that hunters don’t see coming: arrows, broadheads, a quiver, a case and a sight to name a few. In this blog I’ll dive into rests, and which rest fits which hunter. Your rest won’t cross your mind until something goes wrong. That’s why I believe hunters should focus on reliability when buying a rest. In this blog I have listed three levels, and, while some are nicer than others, I would trust any product mentioned to handle the demands of a hunt.
I recommend the Kill Shot whisker biscuit from Trophy Ridge for most beginners. Avoid the Quick Shot as it doesn’t have the same up and down adjustability. As a beginner you may accidentally knock an arrow differently from time to time. A whisker biscuit minimizes the impact of that mistake because the whiskers contact the vanes the same way no matter what. A rest like the NAP Quiktune 360, which has only three points of contact, would seriously torque the arrow if not knocked properly. Whisker biscuits also work great for kids as the complete enclosure ensures that the arrow will not fall off the rest if they draw erratically.
Taking a step up from a whisker biscuit, the QAD HDX ultra-rest adds accuracy while remaining dependable. The HDX is a cable-driven rest with a launcher that can be clicked into the upright position easily while hunting. QAD also sells the QAD Ultra-rest hunter for $60, but it doesn’t have up and down adjustment, and I have had them come back into the shop repeatedly for repairs. Ripcord also makes a quality rest, but as far as durability QAD’s HDX wins by a mile. I highly recommend it to anyone looking to get their first drop-away rest.
I believe the Vapor Trail Gen 7 limb driven rest is one of the best rests on the market. I have a lot of bow tech buddies that shoot the Vapor Trail and love it. It’s simple and dependable. Personally, I shoot a Hamskea Hybrid Hunter Pro, The micro adjustments work great and the cord can attach to either the top or bottom limb. Micro-adjustments on a rest matter much less than on a sight where you’re constantly tinkering, but they’re still nice to have. The Hamskea does have an exposed spring, which the Vapor Trail does not, but at this point I’ve hunted three seasons in four states and never had an issue. You can’t go wrong either way.
As a bow tech I set up and sell rests on a daily basis. I see which rests stand up to the beating that western hunting puts on a bow and those that do not. In my opinion reliability matters more than any other factor. If I feel something might fail in the woods, I stay away. Each of these rests will deliver in crunch time. It’s now a question of how much money you feel comfortable spending and how much time you’re willing to invest. Thank you for reading, Stu.