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Bow Review: Bowtech Reckoning

In a treestand or on the target range, Bowtech has produced a rig that'll quite simply get the job done.

Bow Review: Bowtech Reckoning
Bowtech’s Reckoning is the first bow to feature the company’s DeadLock technology, featuring DeadLock Pockets, DeadLock Cable-Containment system and DeadLock Cams. The modular Clutch grip is offered in two wrist positions — a low-profile version and a control version, both of which are contoured for enhanced comfort. Rotating modules are used to span the draw-length range, while draw stops produce a solid back wall. A series of vibration-dampening accessories, including Bowtech’s Orbit Dampener, interact with the riser, string and cable-containment system to tame the shot.

Bowtech’s new Reckoning is a true crossover rig. This bow is equally at home in a treestand and on the target range. Its performance excels in many areas, and it is the first bow to feature Bowtech’s DeadLock Cams, home to the truly innovative CamDrive system. Other highlights include the DeadLock cable-containment system, DeadLock limb pockets, Clutch grip, FlipDisc technology, multiple vibration-dampening accessories and more.


Bowtech introduces its all-new DeadLock technology on the Reckoning. In keeping with the company’s primary focus on accuracy, DeadLock features three components that control, align and precisely customize the rig to the shooter. DeadLock limb pockets utilize an elongated tab seated between the walls of the flared riser for increased control and alignment at this ultra-critical interface. A sight portal on either side of the limb bolt offers a quick and easy reference so the user knows when the limbs have been backed out too far.

Bowtech’s cable-containment system is the second DeadLock component. The flexible mini-limb is outfitted with a block fixture and two rollers that work together to manage cable position and containment. The system flexes toward the centerline of the rig when the bow is drawn, which reduces torque at full draw for increased consistency and accuracy. When the arrow is released, the system springs back into position and out of the way of passing vanes.

The heart of Bowtech’s DeadLock technology is the company’s Binary cam system with CamDrive. A component on the end of one upper limb and one lower limb engages the axle and moves the cam left or right along the axle inside the limb spacing. This adjusts the string path to put the force directly behind, and in line with, the arrow and its flight path. If you experience a left or right paper tear while tuning, you can “walk” the tear right into a perfect bullet hole by simply turning the tuning screws on both cams — it really is that easy! Rotating modules can be adjusted in half-inch increments through the 26-31-inch draw-length range. Bowtech also outfits this cam system with its FlipDisc technology, which offers two settings — Performance and Comfort, the former giving you more speed and the latter a smoother draw cycle.

Deflex Difference

Bowtech outfits this new rig with a relatively long riser that is advertised to be deflexed in configuration. A deflex riser is one that places the throat of the grip in front of the pivot point of the limbs. Such a structure is often used in competitive archery and is said to be more forgiving and, ultimately, more stable and accurate. Bowtech designed this rig to be a crossover product, meaning it is right at home in the woods and on the 3-D course.

Bowtech’s standard Clutch grip is a thin, molded-polymer plate that snaps onto the back of the handle for a neutral wrist position. The Clutch Control grip, sold separately, produces a high-wrist position. Both are available in four colors.

A stainless-steel stabilizer mount and a series of vibration-dampening accessories, including Bowtech’s Orbit Dampener, and the choice of seven hunting finishes and four target finishes round out the package.

Solid to the Core

Bowtech went back to its proven, solid-carbon-core limbs for the Reckoning. Now that the company has brought the manufacturing of its limbs in-house, it controls the manufacturing processes, quality and tolerances. Bowtech’s limb designs areextensively tested for durability, as they are subjected to more than 100,000 shot cycles. Limbs are matched into sets based on deflection values and are offered in peak draw weights of 50, 60 and 70 pounds.


When I first handled the Reckoning, I doubted it was a bow I would take hunting. However, after thoroughly testing the rig, I have no doubt it will get the job done and get it done well. The Reckoning is super quiet, easy to draw, stable on target, produces good arrow speeds and is easily tuned to perfection. Right out of the box, I had a perfect bullet hole with my standard testing setup — I actually had a hard time getting a bad tear! DeadLock technology is simple to use and walks you right into a great tune.

The Reckoning’s longer axle-to-axle length, while responsible for some of its stability, will take some getting used to for those who have been shooting sub-32-inch rigs for years. There was little shock or vibration at the shot and even less after I added a stabilizer to keep the bow from rolling back toward me after the shot. In short, the Reckoning will hunt and pound the X-ring!

The Specs

  • Manufacturer: Bowtech, 877-901-1934;
  • Model: Reckoning
  • Riser: Aluminum, deflex
  • Grip: Clutch, modular
  • Limbs: Split, solid-carbon-core
  • Draw Weights: 50, 60 and 70 pounds peak
  • Cam System: DeadLock
  • Letoff: 82 percent (adjustable with draw stops); 85.2 percent (as tested)
  • Draw Lengths: 26-31 inches, in half-inch increments; rotating module
  • String: 452X, 62.31 inches
  • Cables (x2): 452X, 39.42 inches
  • Brace Height: 7 inches
  • Axle-to-Axle Length: 35 inches
  • Weight: 4.5 pounds (advertised); 4.6 pounds (as tested)
  • Finish: Mossy Oak Break-Up Country, red and many more
  • Advertised IBO Speed: 335 fps
  • Suggested Retail Price: $1,499
  • Comments: At home whether you’re on the 3-D range or in the woods!

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