4 basic Compound Bow Cam Technologies

4 basic Compound Bow Cam Technologies

Last but not least to consider is the description on four basic Compound Bow cam technologies when you buy a bow. The cam shapes are listed as following:

Twin-cam systems 

Twin Cam System

image source: compoundbows.com

A Twin Cam system is also described as a Two Cam or Dual Cam. This design features two round wheels or pulley cams perfectly symmetrical on each tip of the bow. When properly tuned, this design offers excellent accuracy, nock travel, and overall bow speed. However, Twin Cams technology requires more service and maintenance to stay in top condition. Many target league shooters are quite loyal to the twin cam design. Compared to typical single and hybrid cams, beside from maintenance issues, the only true disadvantage of twin cams technology is the increased noise. Other than that, Twin Cam is still a design of choice for many serious shooters.


Single Cam Single Compound Bow Cam

The single cam is still a favourite choice on compound bows today. It often described as a One Cam or Solo-cam. This design features a round wheel on one tip of the bow and an elliptical shaped pulley-cam on the bottom. It is easier to maintain and is quieter than twin cam design, since there is no need for cam synchronization. Yet, single cam technology generally do not create a straight and level nock travel, this can cause troublesome for some single-cam bows to tune. Overall, the reliability and smoothness of the single cam bows is well respected.

Hybrid Cam

The hybrid cam technology features two elliptical shaped cams asymmetrically. A control cam on the top, and a power cam on the bottom. This design is tuned with a control cable, a single split-harness, and a main string. Like a properly synchronized twin-cam bow, Hybrid cams offer the advantages of level nock travel and straight without the synchronization issues and timing. Hybrid cams require less maintenance than traditional twin cams.


Binary Cam

Binary CamBinary cam technology is a modified system with 3-groove twin-cam introduced by Bowtech Archery as a new concept in 2005. Rather than to the bow’s limbs, this system slaves the top and bottom cams to each other. There is no split-harness on a binary system, only two cam-to-cam control cables. So the cams pulled only on the opposing cams, they didn’t pull on the opposing limbs. This offers the cam system a self-correcting ability which would achieve perfectly straight and level nock travel at all times and has no synchronization or timing issues.

Final Thoughts

As far as choosing a suitable Compound Bow cam design, Twin cam bows produce noises and required more maintenance, but it offers excellent accuracy and overall speed once it is tuned properly. Single cam is reliable, quieter and smooth but it slightly difficult to tune. Hybrid cams required less maintenance but need to be properly oriented (timed) for best efficiency. Binary cams allowed the cams self-correcting to automatically equalize any imbalances in the limb deflections to achieve straight and level nock travel at all times with no timing issues.