How to install a compound bow sight – a beginner’s Guide

So, you’ve got a fresh sight bar and sight out of the box and you’re wondering what you do with all these parts. It seems straight forward but there’s always one or two things that’s tricky. Well I’m here to reassure you that where I got caught out setting up my sights you won’t be.

How to install a compound sight on a bow is as follows:

  • Assemble sight bar parts
  • Install sight bar onto bow
  • Install sight onto bow
  • Level 1st 2nd 3rd axis on bow

This is all easy stuff but I’ll walk you through it to make it even easier.

Assemble sight bar Parts

Whether it’s a second hand sight or brand new out of the box you may have some building to do. The way the sight initially goes together is important as if you want to be consistent you’re going to want everything in the correct place.

Truly there isn’t much assembly needed. You’re going to have to attach the sight bar to the sight rail. The sight bar is the long horizontal bar and the sight rail is the vertical rail with number engravings on it. To put this together there are two screws that will go in the top and bottom of the rail. On your sight rail there might be multiple holes for the screws to go in. For now choose for your sight rail to be in the middle of your sight bar. You can tweak and tune it later.

After that you’ll have a sight block that’s going to attach to the sight rail. This will be spring release activated so if you push that button all the way in you’ll be able to slide it right on.

Installation of Sight Bar

The last step to assembling the sight bar is to actually mount it to the bow. Take your mounting bracket and the two screws in comes with and mount it onto the bow. Your bow may have multiple sight holes for the mounting bracket to go into. Again for now just place it into the middle and tighten the screws in. When threading in the screws thread them both in by hand and then tighten them fully down with an alan wrench, don’t fully tighten one down and then start the other. Your mounting bracket will spin and to get it back you’ll push the mounting bracket back which will loosen the screw you just tightened. All little things to keep in mind when doing this.

Sight Set Up

Depending on what brand of sight bar you’re using you’ll mount your sight onto your sight bar a little differently. Typically most shybia sight bars will let you mount the sight straight onto the sight bar. Other brands like Axcel you need a scope rod to attach it. In either case I’ll walk you through it here.

For most Shibuya sights there will be a hexagonal head on the end of the sight block, and with most scopes there is a hexagonal cut out on the side of the scope. Take the threaded bar that you got with your scope and put it through your scope and thread it into the sight block directly. There may be one or two nuts on the threaded bar. If your scope has a hexagonal cut out there is no need for those nuts. Once you’ve almost fully threaded the bar into the sight block you’ll then seat the scope into the hexagonal cut out and then tighten down the threaded bar. Now you’ve successfully mounted the scope!

Now if you’re using something like a 10 zone scope then your scope might not have a hexagonal cut out that’s where those nuts will come in handy. To set up a scope without a hexagonal cut out you’ll out the threaded bar through the scope, and thread the two nuts on and spin them down to your scope but keep them nice and loose for now and then start threading the bar into the sight block. Once you have it far down enough that the bar is almost fully threaded in you’ll then tighten one of the nuts up to the sight as tight as you can. With the other nut you will tighten up against the sight block. However when doing the second nut you must also ensure that your sight is staying level. Once you’ve made sure your sight is level go ahead and tighten down on that second nut. To get the most strength out of this method you’ll want to get those nuts as close together as you possibly can. For more strength personally when I used to shoot a sight like this I would put Loctite on the nuts to really secure them. If I am being totally honest this method is okay for the beginning but if you ever happen to come across a sight with a hexagonal cut out I would switch in a heart beat.

For axcel sight bars it’s a little bit different again. There is two types of ways to connect a sight depending on which sight you have. If you are using an axcel scope with an axcel sight bar then it will be easy to install. But some other scopes with a hexagonal cut again will require a little more work.

For axcel scopes onto an axcel sight bar it is as simple as two alan screws. You’ll get a mounting bar with your sight and on axecl scopes there will be two holes for these alan screws to directly mount onto the bar. Once those screws are on then it’s only a matter if connecting the mounting bar to the sight, which is just another alan screw. Loosen it up and slide your mounting bar in. My only problem with this is that you again have to make sure if your sight is level by hand and eye, unlike shibuya where mounting it straight onto the cut out means it has to be level.

The other method for mounting scopes onto axcel sight bars is with the other mounting bar. Like the Shibuya design the end of the mounting bar has a hexagonal cut out which can be mounted straight onto the sight. So take the threaded bar and put it through the scope and thread it into the mounting bar. Once the mounting bar is close to the side of the scope place the hexagonal end of the mounting bar into the hexagonal cut out in the scope and then tighten the threaded bar all the way in. Then simply same as before there will be a ring to hold the mounting bar in place held by a alan screw. Loosen it up and place your bar inside and tighten it back up same as before you will need to level it by hand while you’re tightening it.

If same as before you have a sight that doesn’t have a hexagonal cut out then you’ll do the same method as before with the two nuts.

And that’s it your sight is on your bow all that’s left to do now is level your 1st 2nd and 3rd axis but don’t worry I have an article to walk you through that right here.

Rogan Cunningham

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

Recent Posts