EDITOR'S NOTE: Ralph Cianciarulo is a professional bowhunter and the host of the "Archer's Choice" TV show. Ralph and his wife, Vicki, have bowhunted all over the world and produce the Archer's Choice hunting videos.
QUESTION: What steps do you take to tune a bow?
ANSWER: Before you even think of tuning your bow, make sure it fits you and is comfortable. Don't get caught up in the stereotype that you have to go out and spend $900 for a good bow. Stay within your budget. Talk to a guy or girl at a shop who knows what they're selling. Don't go where they only sell one line of bows. Go somewhere that has a variety of equipment. Don't worry about the price. First grab the bow, and see which one fits your hand. You'll find out sometimes that a $250 bow may feel better to you than a $900 bow.
Next, check the rest on your bow. If you watch some of the drop-down rests in slow motion, you'll see that they don't actually drop away from the arrow. The arrow still contacts the rest. To find out where that arrow hits the rest, buy some foot-powder spray like Dr. Scholl's. Spray the powder on the fletch of your arrow and shoot it. When you shoot the arrow, it will leave some of the foot powder behind wherever it contacts the rest.
Some manufacturers make nocks you can turn. Keep turning the nock and shooting, and you'll get to a point where you'll eliminate any type of arrow-rest contact within the vein. One of the most critical factors involves getting your vein or your feather plumes off the arrow rest.
If you shoot fingers with a cam bow, you need to worry about whether or not the cam sits in the most efficient spot. Sometimes, you have to twist your cables or your string. If your string deviates either out or in, you need to readjust your string or cable so it sits perfectly straight up and down.