How To Adjust The Draw Length On A PSE Compound Bow: 5 Easy Steps


I’m still growing, so I’m constantly adjusting my draw length. Lucky thing, it’s easy to do on a PSE bow. A bow press does make the job easier, but on the Phenom, it isn’t needed.

So, how do you adjust the draw length on a PSE compound bow? PSE bows are simple to adjust. Most models won’t even need a bow press. The main steps include:

  1. Remove all accessories
  2. Get the right tools
  3. Identify your new draw length setting
  4. Adjust the inner cam settings
  5. Check & Test your work

The draw length of your Bow is really important. Too long or too short will drastically affect accuracy and consistency.

In this post, I’ll cover how to adjust your draw length. The Bow I use is a PSE Phenom, your PSE settings might differ slightly, but the procedure is just the same.

Compound Archer Draw Length Too Short

You already know having the correct draw length is a big part of being a consistent and accurate archer. Leaning back or hunching into the shot or a bent bow arm are sure signs that your draw length is all wrong. So it’s time for an adjustment.

Compound Archer Draw Length Adjustment

You’ll know when your draw length is correct because:

  • Your T frame will be straight
  • Your position will be comfortable
  • Your bow arm will be straight
  • You’ll be shooting more consistently

It should be noted that changing your draw length will change your stance, and so you may find the new position a little strange and uncomfortable at first, but you’ll soon adjust to it.

1 Compound Bow Accessories

The first step is to remove all accessories. The last thing we want to do is damage the Bow or any of the attachments. Go ahead and remove the front and side stabilizers. I take both stabilizers off going to competitions, so my fasteners are easy to handle, but if you don’t take yours off very often, they might be a little tight.

Some compounders may only have a front stabilizer. I have a front and sidebar. It might be helpful to have a friend hold the Bow while you screw off stabilizers.

The sight bar is not difficult to remove but be sure to note the setting. Fitting the T bar on the wrong hole will leave your sight marks way off.

With the attachments removed, lay a blanket or some cardboard down on a flat surface, don’t want to scratch the riser or damage the limbs.

2 Compound Bow Tools

You won’t need many tools for this job, some Torx and some Allen keys and possibly a Philips (Star) screwdriver. The Torx on my Bow is measured in imperial, also known as standard, but my sight is measured in Metric, so I always need both size tools.

I also need to be mindful. Using the wrong size tool on a screw can cause major headaches, I know from experience!

The last time I adjusted, I found after a few ends, my Bow started to develop a rattle. On examination, I found one of the screws came loose. I tightened, and again it came loose.

I raided my father’s toolbox and used a small amount of medium strength mechanics thread lock, so you might want to recheck your screws after shooting.

3 Identifying Your New Draw Length

I have a draw length now of 27 inches, but I have to check it regularly. My coach usually checks it at the beginning of every month.

The PSE use lettering to identify the different predetermined draw length settings. The letter “A” is the longest setting, and each letter reduces by a 1/2 inch draw length.

(A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J), J being the shortest draw length setting.

I only adjust one position at a time until I find the sweet spot. (more on this below)

4 Adjusting The Cam Settings

Adjusting is simple, and once we stick to a few rules, all will work out just fine.

First off all, screw-identifying letters will need to match, don’t worry, this will make sense later. All bolts need to be tight and then rechecked before testing.

If you do use a bow press, be sure to check all strings are seated before releasing tension.

What I love about the PSE – it’s a gift to adjust, but I should say it depends on what adjustment you’re making. Some settings may require a bow press because the screws land right behind the limb. Don’t worry. This becomes clear shortly.

Not all PSE bows will have two cams. Some may only have one and an idler wheel. In that case, you have less work.

PSE compound bows will use two main types of inner cam adjusters:

  1. Discrete setting inner cams
  2. Posi lock inner cams

This guide shows the Posi-lock type, and it should be noted that the main difference between them – the Discrete type inner cam screws will need to be removed completely in order to adjust, the Posi-lock type generally only need loosening.

I generally say because some positions on the Posi-lock inner cam presets require the two screws to be repositioned in pre-drilled holes. It’s not difficult to do.

Begin by positioning the Bow so that the inner cam screws are facing you. Best to have the Bow on a secure surface. Adjusting both cams is a simple 8 step process, and we’ll begin adjusting the top cam first.

Step 1: Loosen by two turns, both Torx screws as per the above picture. No need to remove them.

You’ll notice that one of the Torx screws is partially hidden by the bow limb. In this case, I was able to turn the cam by hand enough to release the screw.

However, if you’re unable to or if adjusting the cam lands the adjusting screw under the limb, you’ll need a bow press to finish the job.

Step 2: Slide the cam to the desired preset letter position. The inner cam (red in pic) will slide to the next position pin window and seat. The cam may need encouragement or further lousing on both screws.

Step 3: Remove the Draw stop by removing the screw. Reposition it in the preset letter that corresponds to the letter of the positioning pin. For example, the positioning pin of the inner cam is in the letter E, and so the Draw stop is in the letter E.

Step 4: Tighten all three screws securely.

Lower Bow Cams

Now we move the lower cam, the process is identical, but the cam is a little different. Note: Both cams must use identical presets. If the top cam is set to the letter “E,” then so is the lower.

Step 5: Loosen both Torx screws two turns as before, and note how mine is again hidden by the limb.

Step 6: Slide the inner cam to the desired preset letter, and the positioning pin will seat. (Positioning Pin seen here at letter E).

Step 7: Remove the draw stop by removing the screw and repositioning it in the corresponding letter preset.

Step 8: Tighten all three screws securely.

5 Archers Target

Check your work carefully. Check all screws are present and tight. Check that the strings are in place, primarily if you used a bow press.

If all looks good, go ahead and draw up your Bow, of course being careful not to dry fire it. If the draw length still isn’t quite right, repeat the process. Excellent work, now that wasn’t so bad!

Related Question

How do I adjust the draw weight on a compound bow? Both upper and lower limbs will have an adjusting bolt, tightening the bolt will increase the draw weight, and loosening the bolt will reduce the draw weight. It’s important to adjust both top and bottom bolts equally.

You may find these posts helpful also:

Why does my D-loop keep moving?

Check cam lean

How to grip compound bow

How to fix peep rotation

Rogan Cunningham

Rogan Cunningham is an archer and writer for shootingcabin.com. He's a proud member of the National Archery Squad. He writes about his archery training, archery shooting, travelling with the national archery team, he also reviews all kinds of archery kit. He only writes about archery, what can I tell you?..... He's an Archer!

Recent Posts