LimbSaver Proton Bow Review
The number of new bow manufacturers in the market has grown substantially over the last decade and an archer today has more bow choices than ever before. One of the new manufacturers in the market is LimbSaver, produced by Sims Vibration Laboratory (SVL). LimbSaver has been producing a few bows over the last few years and their new Proton has been getting more interest in the last year. We decided to take a closer look at the Proton and see what LimbSaver is up to.
SVL is well known in hunting circles, from bow stabilizers to recoil pads for rifles, LimbSaver produces a long line of quality products that help reduce recoil and silence bows. LimbSaver dominates the market for bow silencing products from S-coil stabilizers to limb and string inserts. SVL decided to start producing bows from the ground up with the goal of nearly silent shooting and smooth operation.
The Proton is LimbSaver's current flagship bow and weighs in at a light 3.8 pounds. All Proton bows are thirty-two inches axle-to-axle with a brace height of seven inches, putting it in the same profile of many other release only compound bows on the market today. The dual cam setup comes in two cam sizes: small and large. Small (H1C) can be adjusted from 25.5 inches to 27.5 inches in half inch increments, while the Large (H2C) cam is adjustable from 28 inches to 30.5" inches in half inch increments. Draw length adjustments must be done by changing out modules on the cam and are not included with the bow.
Overall view of the LimbSaver Proton.
Up close view of the Proton grip.
Perhaps the most innovative feature of the new Proton is the limb adjustable fulcrum system. Each limb of the split pair is bolted to the front of the riser while at the back of the riser the limb lays across an adjustable fulcrum point. Turning the fulcrum knobs with the supplied wrench, adjusts the draw weight of the bow without changing the axle-to-axle distance. The fulcrum point adjustment simply puts more or less tension on the limb, raising or lowering the draw weight. The Proton is available in 50, 60, and 70 pound peak draw weights. Each fulcrum adjustment increases or decreases the draw weight by 2 pounds on the 60 and 70 pound peaks and 1.5 pounds on the 50 pound peak bow.
Lower limb system with view of fulcrum knob.
Front view of the limb system. The limbs are directly bolted to the front of the riser.
Upper riser limb system.
So adjusting the draw weight doesn't require a large allen wrench that is common on other bows. However if you lose the fulcrum wrench it will be difficult to replace and can only be obtained from a dealer or by calling SVL. When purchasing the Proton, make sure to store the wrench in a place where it won't get lost.
Fulcrum knob adjustment wrench. Don't lose it!
The wrench installed on the knob. All four knobs correspond to each limb must be set to the same number.
Closer view of the upper fulcrum knob.
The Proton has a 335 IBO speed at 70 pounds due to the dual "HEAT" cam setup. This puts the speed squarely in the middle of premium bows on today's market; not the fastest but not the slowest either. The draw is smooth and hits a relatively hard wall with 80% let off.
Closer view of the HEAT Cam.
SVL includes a variety of bow silencers with the Proton. Six string leeches are placed at various locations throughout the string and cable. Each limb has a Super Quad silencer and at the top of both sides of the riser, between the split limbs, has what looks like a mini-super-quad specifically for the Proton. Each of the two cable guide has a dampener and finally the Proton has one string stop dampeners. All the dampeners help to make for a quiet and nearly vibration free bow. Finally, the Proton ships with a Winner's Choice string and cable and the grip is wood.
The upper cable guide has a dampener.
The lower cable guide has a string stop and another dampener.
Closer view of the string dampener.
A "mini" Super Quad dampener that is stuck to the top of the riser between the limbs.
Lower limb showing the split limb design with LimbSaver Super Quad installed.
When pressing the Proton, be sure to use a modern press such as the X-Press or similar that puts the press force nearest the cams. Like other modern bows the limbs can be easily damaged from not using the correct press.
Our only real complaint with the Proton is the lack of camo options. Currently the Proton is only available in Next G-1 Original which is good for hardwoods but is a dark pattern. For those hunting in areas that have more green or lighter colors the darker G-1 stands out.
In conclusion LimbSaver has a solid offering with the Proton that adds some clever new ways to tune a bow. Its smooth, quiet, and with a street price around $699, it puts the cost well below the flagship offerings of other vendors. LimbSaver's fulcrum based draw weight adjustment is a true innovation that makes draw weight adjustment fast and simple. Time will tell if fulcrum based draw weight adjustment will become more popular with other bow designs.
The lower cam is marked with scribe lines to show the cams are in adjustment.
The riser has an arrow impact pad as well as a rubberized pad for use with drop away rests.
For more information visit www.limbsaver.com.