It’s the “Optimizer company,” the manufacturer that has won the Bowhunting World “Readers’ Choice” Award for “moveable sight of the year” for an impressive seven straight years. We’re talking about HHA Sports and its products are entirely made, assembled, packaged and shipped—as well as 100-percent guaranteed for life—in the U.S. of A.
Harry Hamm started his company almost 30 years ago in 1984, just as bowhunting became the fastest growing outdoor sport in America. As bows got faster, he pioneered the single sight pin concept and, ultimately, involved his family in the business. His son Chris is in sales (advertising, public relations and marketing). Son Brian works in engineering, designing new sight models with dad. Daughter Roberta works in the office.
The sight that truly brought HHA Sports fully into the limelight was the single pin Optimizer, which Harry began producing nearly 17 years ago and, in multiple versions, remains wildly popular today. One reason is that the single pin sight fits both right- and left-hand shooters by simply reversing the yardage tape on the dial and switching bracket extension sides for the aperture.
Today’s black, fingertip adjustable Optimizer Lite Series Sights are constructed from 100 percent machined aluminum and feature a fluorescent green sight ring with tool-less micro-windage adjustment. The green fiber optic up pin is protected inside the aperture by an independent metal carrier or bracket. HHA calls this Armor Sight Pin Technology. The Optimizer Lite with the 2-inch housing weighs 9 ounces while the Lite with the 1 5/8-inch housing weighs an ounce less. Each sight in this series carries between 3 and 6 feet of light gathering fiber optic cable wrapped around the aperture, and most of sights come with an installed bubble level.
All but one of the Optimizer Lite Sights accepts a lens kit and a sight light. HHA lenses—an item some other companies often procure off-shore—are also Made in the U.S.A. by Feather Vision. The lenses are polycarbonate, the Original Plus Series Aspheric style, coated for scratch resistance and water repellency.
“For many of our senior archers, a magnifying lens works great for 3-D shooting or for bowhunting,” says Chris Hamm, “and we have kits in both clear and amber, in 2-, 4-, and 6-power. Hunters will almost certainly prefer the amber lens for low light situations.”
The HHA Blue Burst sight light fits all HHA sights except the 3000 Series. The mounting bracket attaches to the sight in such a manner that the light only shines down on the fiber optic wrap; it does not reflect on the inside of the sight housing itself. A fingertip adjustable rheostat controls brightness.
The Optimizer Lite Ultra series is a Lite on steroids. These four sights include a Mathews Harmonic Dampener in the sight bracket and a fingertip dial upgraded to a wheel. This sophisticated yardage dial allows for rapid adjustment by the yard. “All you have to do,” says Chris Hamm, “is sight in at 20 and 60 yards and select one of the included 52 color-coded tapes, which are numbered in one-yard increments, depending upon your bow speed.”
Smartly Designed Multi-Pin Sights Are New For 2012
The news for 2012 at HHA Sports is its move toward multi-pin sights in both moveable fingertip adjustable and fixed bracket categories. “We’ve had sights like this in the past, but this is by far our nicest design,” Chris says. “We incorporated a tool-less micro-adjust system and fully protected pins. We’ve been getting calls for a multiple pin slider (fingertip adjustable) sight, too.”
An example of HHA’s commitment to venture into the multi-pin business is its new Brushfire and Optimizer FX Series. Of course, they are 100 percent machined aluminum with a tool-less micro-windage adjustment system, 1 5/8- or 2-inch round apertures and green fluorescent glow ring. In fixed and adjustable brackets, they will be available in 3- and 5-pin models, with .019 or .010 pins. A bubble level is included in the aperture. Brushfire brackets are fixed. The Optimizer FX uses HHA’s standard fingertip adjustable yardage dial which allows adjustment by the yard.
HHA has applied its ingenuity to adjustable muzzleloader and crossbow scope bracketing. The company also owns the C-Peep, the angled, bowstring mounted open-sided peep that squares up with the eye at full draw. “It’s really the best peep that has ever been developed,” says Chris who can’t resist a good commercial.
HHA products can be found in all major archery distributors, and the company attends the ATA and Mathews Retailer Shows each year, but the Hamms maintain a strong dealer-direct business. “Sure, we’re in the box stores and on shelves at distributors, but our bread and butter is still the ‘mom and pop’ store,” Chris Hamm says. “Those are the guys who gave us our start and who sustain archery at the ground level, so our loyalty lies with them.”
If there was one suggestion that HHA could pass along to all archery dealers it would be to investigate a buying group as soon as the business becomes eligible. “We deal with ARRO and NBS and Sports Inc. Those guys work hard to get special packages for members. For us as a manufacturer, presenting to a buying group is a high quality option.”
Four independent sales groups cover all of the lower 48 states. Hoover-Seville (973-948-3079; firstname.lastname@example.org) works the northeast. Blue Ridge Marketing (828-438-4254; www.blueridgemarketinginc.com