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Mathews Creed Review

If you have never had the privilege of touring the Mathews manufacturing facility in Sparta, Wis., you can catch a glimpse of their world-class machinery and capabilities by watching the "Introducing the Mathews Creed" video found on the company website. Among other things, you will witness state-of-the-art CNC machining and futuristic robotics.

Mathews is focused on the enjoyment and overall experience an archer is afforded when shooting one of its bows. The flagship Creed was created with a synergistic approach, meaning they brought together all of the top technologies from previous models into mechanical and aesthetic harmony. The Creed is outfitted with the SimPlex Solocam, split parallel limbs, super lightweight GeoGrid Lock riser, and much more.

Simplification

Mathews owner Matt McPherson says that single-cam bows are the most efficient and simplest cam system in the world. What Mathews calls Advanced Simplicity is aptly expressed by Leonardo da Vinci in one of my all-time favorite quotes: "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." It is a truly amazing accomplishment to advance a technology through a process of simplification.

To that end, the Creed's SimPlex cam system raises the bar on bow efficiency while producing a super smooth draw cycle and excellent arrow speeds on a comfortable, 7-inch brace height and 80 percent system letoff. Cam and idler wheel ride on stainless steel axles and sealed bearings for reduced friction and increased efficiency. Draw lengths from 26-30 inches, in half-inch increments,  are offered through separate cams.

Unification

The Creed's riser serves to unify many of the technologies and features showcased on this new rig. First, the riser itself is a feature with GeoGrid Lock structure, which uses interlocking bridges in a pattern that flows with the Creed's contour to build strength and stiffness while eliminating excess material.

Another riser-based benefit is offered by the company's Reverse Assist Roller Guard, which gets part of its name from the position of the cables on the rollers. Rather than placing the cables in the typical position under the rollers, Mathews reverses the position of the cables, placing them over the rollers and closer to the archer where they are held in position by the system's tension.

Unlike typical roller guard systems that get tighter and tighter as the bow is drawn, this configuration decreases tension, resulting in less torque and a smoother draw.

The one-piece Walnut SlimFit Inline grip is fitted to and blended with the riser for comfort and function. It sports a smooth finish, ergonomic contours and a comfortable size and angle. The polished wood allows the shooter's hand to repeatedly move into position without excess torque, and a distinctive layered line in the grip indicates the centerline of the bow, making initial setup and tuning easier.

Dulcification

To dulcify something is to make it agreeable or sweeter. In an effort to make our shooting experience sound and feel sweeter, Mathews has added several features and technologies. For starters is the configuration of the split limbs — yes, I said split limbs. The Creed represents the very first Mathews Solocam bow with quad-limb technology. Matt and his team weighed the benefits and found the Creed performed better and more

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efficiently with the split-limb design. Creed split limbs reach a parallel position at full draw, which brings inherent benefits in reduced vibration, shock and noise.

Mathews' Harmonic Stabilizer Lite is nearly 70 percent lighter than the original while reducing 75 percent of residual vibration running through the riser. The Dead End String Stop Lite and Monkey Tails also attack vibration and noise by dampening string oscillation at the shot for a fast reduction of string movement.

Impressions

First impressions are always important, and mine was favorable of the Creed. When I first picked it up, the light mass weight was noticeable. Couple that with the 30-inch axle-to-axle length and it makes the bow quite maneuverable.

The draw cycle is consistent and smooth, building all the way to the break over point. A very slight bump was felt in the handle at the shot, but I could detect no vibration. The grip is my favorite Mathews model to date, and the bow was stable on target. In the end, I think Mathews accomplished exactly what it was shooting for with the Creed — a bow that blends performance, comfort and enjoyment in an overall shooting experience.

Archery Accessory Box

ols, you'll realize that they are easy to misplace, which is why a storage system like the Archery Accessory Box from Plano Molding is a good idea. The Archery Accessory Box is designed with a see-through top, one lift-out tray, up to 16 adjustable compartments, and is compact enough to throw in your vehicle when you hit the road in the fall. Price: $20

Archers Allen Wrench Set

If you want to boil down tool needs to a granular level, the jumping-off point for all bow work involves a quality set of Allen wrenches. I emphasize the word quality because I've had sets completely explode on me the first time I've used them. I don't know why it's so hard to make a set of Allen wrenches that will last, but a lot of companies seem to have trouble with the task. Fortunately, Pine Ridge Archery has it figured out with their Archers Allen Wrench Set. This set has all of the wrenches you're likely to need, and it contains them with a bolt and nut assembly that doesn't allow them to flop all over the place like lesser-quality sets. I keep a set in my shop, my truck and my daypack, so I'm covered no matter where or when I hunt. Price: $10

Bowsmith

Another tool that has found its way into my shop is the Bowsmith from Real Avid. The Bowsmith contains needle-nose pliers, a string spreader, knife blade, fletching stripper, nock crimp, string loop setter, and a bevy of other tools (28 in total). This handy tool set is small enough to stow away in a pack as well, and it can be invaluable in bow camp when the nearest pro shop is far away. Price: $50

Allen Company Compact Bow Tuning Kit

I also used my Allen Company Compact Bow Tuning Kit. Since I had to redo my center serving, I also needed to tie on a new string loop, which necessitated the use of the contained bow square. Although I didn't use a nock set, the Compact Bow Tuning Kit comes with nock pliers and three nock sets. Price: $15

Digital Bow Scale

An often-overlooked tool that is simple and can be used by every bow owner is a bow scale. I like Cabela's Digital Bow Scale, which features a backlit LCD screen and automatic weight lock, and is accurate up to 110 pounds in case you plan to shoot deer hiding behind concrete walls. It amazes me how often I talk to bowhunters who simply guess at their draw weight after cranking their limbs in or out a few turns. It's much better to know exactly what your bow is set at, especially if you're getting close to either end of your bow's recommended weight spectrum. Price: $20

Pro Archery Pliers

If you're in the market for a pair of pliers that will last longer than any bow you're likely to buy and features a nock set crimper and remover, a D-loop stretcher and scary sharp side-cutters, look no further than the Pro Archery Pliers from Easton Technical Products. These needle-nose pliers are extremely durable and can make home bow fixes a breeze. Price: $22

Bohning Mini Server

Considering potential bow fixes, it would be wise to not ignore serving issues. Last fall I was sitting in a treestand in north-central Wisconsin, when I happened to glance down at my nocked arrow. The angle looked off, and upon closer inspection I realized that my center serving had slipped and my entire string loop had crept up my string, throwing my entire bow tune out of alignment. Back at the cabin, I busted out my Bohning Mini Server and re-served my string. The Mini Server is perfect for the home bow mechanic because it eliminates the need for a cable spreader and is extremely easy to use. However, that wasn't the only tool I used to get back to shooting. Price: $19

Economy Vise

After putting the above tools to good use at home or in deer camp, it's inevitable that you'll realize something is missing — a vise. The option to clamp your bow into a quality vise and work on it with both hands free is important, which is why I've started using an Economy Vise from Apple Archery. Plastic-coated jaws provide a secure grip on your bow's limb without causing any damage to the finish, while the Economy Vise allows for 360 degrees of left-to-right and front-to-back rotation. Just like using a lineman's belt to hang a treestand for the first time, when you use a vise like this to work on your bow, you'll wonder how you ever functioned without it. Price: $81




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