Sams Whitetail

As the sun set on my final days in the whitetail woods, I could only shake my head in disgust. After drawing and letting down the bow a couple dozen times, I couldn’t get it drawn one last most important time. This older bow had aggressive cams that pumped up the arrow speed, but the tradeoff was harsh when letting it down. On the walk out I vowed to be shooting a more forgiving setup by next season.

Sams Whitetail

The journey begins-

I have a long draw (32”) so the choices are limited. I’ve been using an older carbon bow and grew to love the non-metallic and warm feel of the material. My hunting partner was constantly touting the draw cycle of his Mach 1, after drawing it a few times I was in full agreement. Unfortunately, the Mach 1 maximum draw length was an inch and half short for me. Choice came down to the EC cams on a different aluminum bow or another brands carbon offering. First, I shot all the carbon bows, but none really stood out. The shop owner mentioned a new carbon bow release. It has a 32” draw length adjustment. At that very moment I ordered a Mach 34 and the wait began.

The day finally arrives-

As I hung up the phone, I couldn’t believe the Mach 34 was here. I raced to the shop only to find it was still in the box. When I unpacked it, I quickly noticed the box was heavier than the bare bow. WOW.

Mach34 wieght

The PSE Mach 34 weighs in at a measly 3.9lbs. Saving weight is important to me, and I’ve spent a bunch of money shedding ounces on gear whenever I can. For this bow it’s about shoot ability and weight savings is just a bonus.

Set it up-

One of the biggest pains of olden days was shimming the cams right or left with tiny washers. It was a very pleasant surprise that the PSE Mach 34 was released using an entirely new system. The 220 EZ shim system gets its name from the distance between the edge of the limbs minus the cam width. Basically, moving the cam requires moving to a larger shim on one side and a smaller one on the other, when added together the shim sizes will equal a total of 220. For example, my bow shipped with 100 and 120 shims installed.

When I shot it for the first time it had a very slight right nock tear. I pressed the bow slightly, relieving the pressure and popped the shims off the axle and swapped their positions side to side. Bullet holes! Please note that the complete shim kit would need to be purchased (by you or your dealer) if the distance needed is different than the provided factory offering.

Currently PSE is the only archery company offering a carbon riser made in the USA. It’s the same team of skilled Americans building the risers and doing final assembly of the bow.

Mach 34 riser

This riser comes equipped with a rear stabilizer mounting hole along with a machined dovetail mount for inline arrow rest mounting. Note, the Mach 34 riser is not offered with a grip. I find the riser very natural (the last bow only had side plates) but if you prefer a grip, you’ll need to purchase an aftermarket version.

The PSE Mach 34 has a 7-¼ brace height and measures 34 inches axle to axle, making this bow very forgiving to shoot. PSE redesigned the limb pockets so the limb pivots and locks in, so they remain centered no matter the limb bolt position. They also widened the limb pockets adding to the stability at full draw.

EC2 cam is a slightly wider version of the original EC cam. The EC2 cam is very adjustable with varying let offs of 65% all the way to 90% by changing the modules. PSE gives the Mach 34 with the EC2 cam an IBO rating of 330fps.

Real world-

Bow drew slightly long so I set at 31.5 length. Backed the limb bolts to 65 pounds and set module to 80% let off. I chrono the 447-grain arrow at a respectable 290 fps. It still amazes me at the buttery smooth draw cycle of the EC2 cams. While draw stability sounds like a taboo term the Mach 34 seems to hold steadier minimizing pin float while on target. The bare bow weight helped offset my Garmin A1i sights nearly 15 ounces. I also added a back bar to balance everything out. One improvement needed is an integrated picatinny front rail to better balance the bulk of a heavy bow sight.Mach 34setup

I packed this bow up some of Nevada’s tallest peaks, Utah’s steepest canyons and drug it up a tree during the November whitetail rut. Overall, it’s been one of my best hunting upgrades in many years.

PSE Mach34 Nevada

Comment or ask Sam questions here.