July 26, 2017
By Jon E. Silks
Mathews Archery is dependable — the kind of company you can trust. Their people are quality-driven, and their products have been proven by thousands of customers and millions upon millions of shots fired. If you want to jump into the Mathews camp, you can do so with confidence and settle in for the long haul. Those facts alone are a great reason to see what they have to offer this year. Let's dive into the details!
With just a few tweaks to the popular HALON platform, Mathews introduces the 2017 HALON 32. The new rig is available in 5-, 6- or 7-inch brace height models. We will be looking at the 6. It is powered by their CROSSCENTRIC Cam, which was inspired by the NO CAM, and a set of wide-stance Gordon material limbs. The Dual Bridged Riser is designed to provide a strong platform, while the FlatBack grip is intended to offer both comfort and performance. There's more — read on.
Stretch and Stability
Mathews stretched out the riser on the HALON 32 to make the overall rig 32 inches axle to axle, compared to last year's 30-inch version. It is a commonly held belief that longer bows are more stable at full draw and more forgiving at the shot. The added length offers a shallower string angle, which is less critical with decreased nock pinch.
Named for the two flared sections, one above the sight window and one below the stabilizer mounting insert, the Dual Bridged Riser creates a torsionally stiff platform on which the remainder of the rig is built. Stiffness in the riser promotes consistency with less variance and, in turn, ultimately results in greater overall accuracy.
Further stability is found in the wide stance of the HALON 32's split limbs, which are short in length and combine to span nearly three inches side-to-side. Reaching well beyond parallel at full draw, the Gordon Composite limbs take advantage of all the inherent characteristics of such positioning — namely less shock, vibration and noise.
Mathews uses its closed limb pockets with a unique and patented limb-retention system to position and control each limb for precision alignment to the riser at this critical interface. Limb sets are sorted into sets of 40, 50, 60 or 70 pounds peak draw weights based on robotically controlled
deflection force matching.
Sticking with what works, Mathews outfits the HALON 32 with the CROSSCENTRIC Cam system, which gained quick popularity in 2016 for its comfortable draw and excellent speeds. The 2017 speeds are right there with last year's. The AVS system uses two small discs mounted in an offset position on the axle. Both ends of each harness are anchored to the AVS discs, which rotate non-concentrically from one side of the cam's axle to the other as the bow is drawn, moving the force vector.
Stored energy is increased on the front end and letoff on the back end, offering enhanced power and comfort for the shooter. This system also terminates the ends of each cable to the opposite cam, forcing the cams to work together and thereby automatically correcting for imbalances resulting in increased dependability. The test bow offers draw lengths from 25€‰½-31€‰½ inches, in half-inch increments, and letoffs of either 75 or 85 percent through a set of RockMod modules.
This rig wouldn't be what it is without the support of all the other players. The FlatBack Grip's shape and contour is designed to promote stability and repeatable hand positioning, which is critical to consistent, accurate shooting. Another unique Mathews technology can be found in their Reverse Assist Roller Guard that flips the normal cable tracks to the opposite side of the rollers to cleverly reduce torque and friction for a smoother draw and greater efficiency.
A Dead End String Stop and Monkey Tails on the string join the signature Mathews Harmonic Stabilizer Lite and Harmonic Damper to put the clamps on vibration and noise.
The HALON 32 proved exceptionally quiet at the shot and reported only a small jump in the handle along with some low, lasting vibration. A quality stabilizer completely killed the vibration and reduced the already small jump. The draw cycle caught my attention right away, as it was notably smooth. The grip is comfortable and functional. A top-quality, high-performance shooter!