How to Tune your Compound Bow’s String Stop


Have you ever had a bow you just couldn’t tune to save your life? Most of us have. The truth is that sometimes we are at the mercy of the engineers who designed the bow. In this article, I’m going to disclose what may be a significant finding in bow tuning and a possible solution. We are going to look at how the string stop can impact arrow flight.

String Stop Surprise

While tuning a bow for a friend, I was experiencing a pretty nasty incurable left nock bare shaft impact.

left nock bare shaft

While checking out some slow motion video, something caught my eye. Have a look and don’t mind the dirty clothes!! 🙂

I decided to zoom in on the issue in this video.

While at rest, the string is centered on the string stop but during the shot, it was impacting the right side of the stop and pushing the string to the right all while the arrow was still on the string. As you could imagine, this affected the arrow flight.

To verify this, I removed the string stop.

archery string stop

Next I shot the bare shaft arrow into the target again. As you can see, the trajectory of the bare shaft improved greatly.

bare shaft impact

How to tune your String Stop

Now, with this particular bow there is a cam lean issue that I am still dealing with, but by tuning the string stop, I did manage to improve the arrow’s flight. How can someone check their own equipment? Not everyone has access to a high speed camera. The answer is with a simple TP or Toilet paper test.

To find out where your string is impacting your string stop during a shot, follow these steps.

  1. Divide some toilet paper into single plys and tape a piece around your string test
  2. Now, take your shot.
  3. Study the results. You should see an impact line that will let you know where the string hit the stop during the test impact
  4. Now adjust the string stop so that the impact will be centered.realigned stop
  5. Verify if you wish with another TP test.corrected stop location

Conclusion on Adjusting a Bow’s String Stop

By adjusting this particular bow’s string stop, we did manage to improve our arrow’s flight. Like we stated, cam lean issues may have a big influence on where the string hits the stop, but we think it may be something to check while troubleshooting arrow flight problems. We actually ran this test on two of the same bows (Elite Energy 35) and discovered the same impact point on the string stop.

We hope this article will give you another tool in your bow tuning arsenal to help you in your quest for a properly tuned bow! Thanks for reading!



About Author

Corey is an avid bowhunter, archer and outdoor writer. He has been hunting since 1982 and started his passion with bowhunting in 1991. His focus is to help others involved in the sport of archery and to compete professionally in indoor, 3D and field archery.


  1. Actually Corey I would think you just cured a result of some missallignment from something else. Maybe a turned over D-loop to allign the peep sight when it wasn’t quite as straight as it should, wrong arrow spine value, arrow rest setup, maybe something else. It could be anything!
    If everything checked out the bowstring shouldn’t shift to the side like that. Putting other parts on the bow out of line doesn’t cure the cause in my opinion.
    Maybe the arrow is straight in the target at this distance, but does it on every distances?
    I can’t believe in this way the bow shoot’s true.

    Best regards from Holland

    • There were additional factors off with this bow but this did improve arrow flight and overall accuracy. In the case of a bow that doesn’t leave many options for tuning (lack of a yoke/shims) the POI on the string stop can be a factor to eliminate. Take the case of the early Mathews Chill R bows…. many of them have an uncurable right tear which leaves an elliptical power stroke which cause a non linear impact on the string stop. A little bit off center can result in what you saw in the slow motion videos. That being said, this article just leaves people with another tool for fine tuning.