July 17, 2018
By Jon E. Silks
The Quest Bowhunting team and those who founded it, the Grace Family, are all about building bows that demonstrate quality and innovation in design and manufacturing at a great price. That's their mission — provide an excellent product that will be easy on your wallet. Simple and to the point — I like it! Let's take a look at their 2018 Thrive and see how it fits into their aim to produce a great bow at a great price.
This rig is outfitted with Quest's Flux cams, a binary eccentric system, designed to produce a smooth draw and work with the solid composite limbs to crank out arrow speeds at an advertised IBO speed of 328 fps. To keep vibration and noise to a minimum, the company added a String Stopper, Broadband Solid Limbsavers, Speed Studs and a special dampener on their Flexis-AR cable containment system.
Quest advertises the material of their riser, 82X aluminum, as a differentiator in riser performance. It is said to be equal in strength to 7000 series aluminum but is actually stiffer, creating a more stable and rigid platform. To get to the Thrive's final form, which is a reflex configuration, the 82X is first forged and then machined. A reflex riser is one that places the pivot point of the pocket in front of (farther away from the shooter) the deepest part of the grip. With all else being equal, a reflex riser allows for a longer power stroke than that of a deflex riser. Additional power stroke means increased speed.
Attached to the riser is Quest's Flexis-AR cable containment system that consists of a roller guard fixture attached to an arm that flexible. Functionally, the arm flexes toward the arrow as the bow is drawn to reduce torque on the system and in turn increase efficiency while also improving consistency for the archer. When the arrow is released, the flexible arm springs back into its resting position and away from the passing fletching/vanes.
Thrive's Ghost grip is a combination of a machined/contoured handle and rubber-like side plates. It is sized, shaped and angled to improve both function and comfort while producing a neutral wrist position.
Killing Shock, Vibration and Noise
Quest outfits the Thrive with a riser-mounted String Stopper that uses a rubber attachment to quickly deaden string oscillation after the shot. Limbs are home to a set of Broadband Solid Limb Limbsavers, which are well-known for their vibration and noise reducing qualities. A specially designed damper complete with suspended weights is attached to the Flexis-AR. Quest puts their string based Speed Studs in the vibration reduction category as well.
Quest outfits their new Thrive with a set of Flux Binary cams, which use a two-track configuration to handle the string and both cables. The system consists of two identical eccentrics (cams) that are CNC machined from a piece of 6000-series aluminum. A key feature in this cam system is how they are linked together through the cables, which are anchored only to the cams and not the limbs as seen in other styles. In this way, the cams are locked together in their rotation and function as a single unit thereby automatically compensating for small system changes for a more hassle-free operation. Another notable aspect of the Flux Cam is its two-track structure. As compared to a three-track cam system the Flux is lighter and narrower, which forces the applied load from the cables closer to the center. This has been advertised to reduce cam lean and increase efficiency in similar systems. Cams are black anodized.
Draw length, which ranges from 26 to 31 inches, is adjusted through a series of modules. The adjustable draw stops serve two functions â€“ first, they change the letoff and second, they customize the feel at full draw by lengthening or reducing the valley. This, of course, also slightly changes draw length. A bow press and 3/32 Hex head key is all you need to change modules. Every bow comes with all modules needed to cover the entire draw length range. Quest makes their strings and cables in-house using BCY 452X material.
The Thrive uses a set of solid composite glass limbs (not split) that are manufactured with a water-jet cutting system and measure 13 inches in length. Limbs are matched into sets based on deflection values. Deflection values are a measure of the degree to which a structural element is displaced under a load. This is important in creating a balanced mechanical system. Limbs are available in peak draw weights of 50, 60 and 70 pounds and are finished in either Realtree Edge, tan, black, Elevate 2 or Sub-Alpine. Limb pockets are black anodized, pivot during the draw weight adjustment process and include a lock-down screw.
Test Bow Specifications
Quest's Thrive is a solid performing rig with characteristics many bowhunters are looking for. In particular, this rig demonstrated barely detectable shock in the handle at the shot and vibration was low level, although it did last. After adding a quality stabilizer, there was little report back at the shot to speak of. Noise followed suit with no harsh twang, buzz or whipping sounds — it was notably quiet. The draw as set from the factory had no valley and was difficult to relax into, however, a tweak to the draw stops made a significant difference in comfort and upped the fun factor. The grip was functional and of average comfort. After the shot, the Thrive was mostly still with a slight backward tip of the top. I was also impressed with the Thrive's efficiency numbers. Quest accomplished their goal, as this bow performs well above its mid-range price tag.