When I first saw the Mach X for 2006 at the ATA show last January, my initial reaction could be summed up as: “This bow is innovation from one end to the other.” I haven’t changed my opinion after testing the bow, but I do think that some of the innovation will require more than just casual acceptance…. Not that it isn’t a step forward in bow design, but it does add some extra complexity. I have one friend who has been shooting the AR version of the Mach X ever since they became available earlier this year. He thinks that it is superb, but he is a skilled archer and a pro-shop owner. Let’s take a look at some of this innovation.
The Mach X, with a nominal axle-to-axle length of 33 inches, is built on a long, straight handle that measures 28 1/2 inches overall. The handle is fully machined from aluminum alloy. The stepped sight window can be stretched to 10 1/2 inches in length if you start with the shelf and extend the centerline to the level of the second step. The window is cut 9/16-inch past the centerline of the handle, but there is an additional clearance cut of 1/4-inch at the arrow pass. The surface of the shelf has two indicator lines machined into the surface to aid in setting up the bow. There is one in-line with the center of the cushion plunger hole and another outboard of the center of the grip. When I set up the bow with a laser tool, I found that it proved to be 1/8-inch farther out than the plane of the string. This location seemed to be a bit of a puzzle, but that is where the bow shot best for me.
The triple position mounting provision for a sight, one of PSE’s contributions to bow design, is located in the webs of two partially machined lightening holes in the lower part of the sight window. Having experienced some problems with the functional locations of sights, I feel that this option is particularly attractive. There is a single hole for a cushion plunger or arrow rest attachment and a through-drilled hole to accept a stabilizer and/or other accessory below the grip section. This hole has a tapped (5/16-24 NF) stainless steel bushing set into the back of the bow, but the face side is tapped (5/16-24 NF) into the base metal of the handle. There are two additional holes tapped (5/16-24 NF) into the face sides of the riser ends that may be used for attaching balance weights if desired.
The grip is ultra-thin, having no covering on the bare metal of the back and face and only rubber pads inset on the sides. The pads do not extend into the throat. The cable guard rod is a dog-legged section of 3/8-inch-diameter aluminum alloy mounted in a hole in the face of the handle. There is a socket-head bolt set into the handle to lock it in position when it is adjusted to the desired degree of cable clearance. *Read the rest of the report by downloading the PDF