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Mathews has long been considered one of the world's top bow manufacturers. They have led the way in shock, vibration and noise reduction and have benefited the entire bowhunting community by pushing that envelope. As a community, we seem to go through phases in which we desire certain bow characteristics, the latest being speed. Building on a string of successes, and armed with a wealth of engineering know-how, Mathews has jumped into the speed arena.
New for Mathews in 2009 are a handful of rigs that will represent the company well among the speedsters in the industry. With a 325 fps speed rating and a mass weight of 3.45 pounds, the new Hyperlite will undoubtedly be a big seller. The Monster Series features dual cams and has two bows that reach 350 and 360 fps IBO. Another big story will be the Reezen 6.5 and Reezen 7.0 -- single-cam bows advertised to smoke arrows down range at 340 and 335 fps IBO, respectively. Let's take a closer look at the Reezen 6.5, which is a 32-inch axle-to-axle bow loaded with Mathews' signature shock and vibration dampening features along with wicked past parallel limbs.
Innovation In Action
Most initial conversations concerning the Reezen 6.5 will likely center around speed. A single-cam bow that generates IBO speeds reaching 340 fps with a 6.5-inch brace height is going to stir up some interest. As with many innovative products, the Reezen is the result of engineering developments and breakthroughs that have evolved over years -- not months. The Reezen Cam pushes the efficiency envelope to the next level and takes advantage of every draw cycle inch up for grabs. I was impressed with the relatively smooth draw. I say relatively smooth because while the draw cycle transitions are consistent and smooth, the overall feel is aggressive.
The single cam rides on stainless steel double ball bearings and has a letoff of 80 percent. Models are available offering draw lengths from 24.5-30 inches in half-inch increments. These options are all "cam specific," meaning that for each draw length a new cam is needed (non modular). Understanding that a non-modular design requires more effort to change draw lengths, Mathews designed a unique, all-new Quick Change Axle (QCA) feature. The QCA does away with the typical e-clip design with a simple plastic capture fixture on one side and a pull-knob on the other -- axle removal is extremely simple with this system.
The fully machined aluminum Reezen riser is significantly reflexed and has the typical structural features you find in other Mathews rigs, including many cutouts, flowing lines, beveled edges and accessory mounting holes. A one-piece walnut In-Line Grip is set into a shallow pocket on the riser, and the metal front portion of the grip has been rounded for 2009. Also featured on the Reezen are a CNC machined aluminum Roller Guard, threaded brass stabilizer mounting inserts both front and back, two large harmonic dampers on each end of the riser and Mathews' own film dipped Lost Camo pattern.
Mathews' super slender SE4 Composite Limbs move significantly past parallel at full draw, causing them to move in equal and opposite directions upon release. Limbs are attached to the riser with Mathews' minimalist SphereLock Pivoting Limb Lock System, which consists of a Limb Turret and a small cup that partially surrounds the limb end and limb bolt.
In testing, the Reezen 6.5 generated a small "jump" in the handle when fired, but the lack of noise for a bow this fast was remarkable. With a 29-inch draw length and 65-pound pull, the Reezen 6.5 recorded average speeds of 305 fps with a 375-grain arrow and 288 fps with a 425-grain arrow.
Editor's Note: Petersen's Bowhunting standardized testing includes the use of the same equipment and test methods. For more detailed information on the testing parameters, go to www.bowhuntingmag.com and look for the "bow testing" link.