October 28, 2010
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Hoyt has become one of the most respected and well-known bow manufacturers on the planet thanks to solid engineering and a bow line that consistently performs at high levels. They continue to invest heavily in research and development, as evidenced by their new carbon riser bow.
The Carbon Matrix features Hoyt's O-Tech Technology tubular TEC riser, Fuse custom string & cables, Pro Fit Grip, XTS ARC limbs, XTR cam system and Pro-Lock Limb Pockets.
The Carbon Matrix riser embodies thinking "outside the box" and breaks away from most things familiar when considering construction and design. Hoyt uses a proprietary process they call O-Tech Technology to construct the hollow carbon tubes and twist them into the shapes needed to form the familiar TEC Riser design. Two tubes support the front part of the limb pocket fixture and one tube is situated to support the back of the pocket. The tube that forms the TEC strut runs from the front of one pocket all the way to the front of the opposite pocket and does not map through the handle like the other two tubes. Those tubes emerge from the handle and sight window areas, cross over each other and then split between the front and back of each pocket. Tube ends fit into fixtures that interface with, and create a platform for, the limb pockets.
So, why go with this type of material and construction? A simple carbon material that has been constructed through a basic weave process has a higher stiffness to weight ratio than steel and aluminum. Custom carbon manufacturing processes, like the one used to create the Carbon Matrix riser, have even greater strength and stiffness performance in relation to their weight. The downside of this custom process is cost, as it requires an intricate processes, specialized tooling and highly skilled operators. Hoyt has a series of short videos on their home page showing the Carbon Matrix being run over repeatedly, ground into pavement and dragged before the bow is drawn and fired with no signs of breaking or deformation.
Additional riser-based features include their one-piece wood Pro Fit Grip, stainless steel stabilizer-mounting insert and StealthShot String Suppressor. The rubber end of the Suppressor protrudes rearward, opposite the stainless steel stabilizer insert, to meet the string. Hoyt advertises that the StealthShot reduces string oscillation by more than 70 percent.
Easy Does It
The Carbon Matrix produces a smooth draw and good speed with its XTR Cam & 1/2 cam system. IBO speeds are advertised at 318 fps on a 7€‰1„4-inch brace height. Hoyt engineers the XTR for optimum performance with their beyond parallel limb bows. Letoff is 75 percent and draw length adjustments from 27-31 inches are available in half-inch increments through interchangeable modules.
Past Parallel ARC
Hoyt limbs interface with the riser through the pivoting Pro-Lock Pockets, which are designed to clamp the limbs into place creating a zero tolerance fit. The ARC Limbs are made with a five-layer fiberglass construction and demonstrate a defined curl at rest, which takes them to near parallel before the bow is ever drawn. Once drawn, the ARC limbs reach well beyond parallel. Each of the four XTS limbs are pre-loaded, and each set is matched based on deflection values for consistency. Limbs are available in 50-, 60-, 70- and 80-pound peak draw weight options.
Measuring 35 inches axle-to-axle and weighing 3.8 pounds, the Carbon Matrix is super lightweight and easy to handle. I was not surprised by the smooth draw cycle, as I have come to expect that from Hoyt. The grip is well formed and comfortable in both size and material. If I were to change anything it would be the cable guard. I like Hoyt's new roller guard and think it would make a nice addition. Another noticeable plus is the balance this rig demonstrates at full draw.