Bear Archery has really stepped up their game with the 2017 Bear Moment. For shooters needing a short axel to axel rig, this 31-inch compound will meet the needs of maneuverability shooters demand from their equipment in the field. The aluminum riser extends a fair amount giving the bow some added stability and a nice stance for the limbs to work with as the bow is drawn. The bow tips the scales at the magical 4-pound mark, which keeps the rig at the weight many shooters feel is the perfect weight for an aluminum model. The EAZ hybrid cam system is a modular cam system adjusting from 25-30-inches is paired with 80% let off and speeds up to 340 feet per second. The cams start off fairly stiff right off the bat, but the second half of the draw cycle feels comfortable. After the shot, the bow has a slight felt vibration, but adding some accessories can go a long way in making that less noticeable after the shot. The Bear Moment backed by the legend Fred Bear himself is a pretty great deal for $899.
Bear could really use a few more camo options in their lineup. The finish options, and the actual final product looks really nice. However, it would be well received by consumers to have some added patterns to choose from. The archery world is booming, and each company offers a nice product based on what consumers are interested in. A few new patterns would really help Bear with showing how committed they are to giving shooters what they want. The choices for the Bear Moment are Realtree Xtra, Shadow Black, Coyote Brown, and Olive. Again, the matte finish is well done, has proven to be durable, and looks nice. It would be nice to see some newer patterns offered in 2017 dipped on the Moment.
The riser is a key component of giving the bow that sturdy feeling at full draw. The Moment riser is fairly long given the compact 31-inch axel-to-axel measurement. The bare bow weight tips the scales at the acceptable 4-pound mark as well. This is what many shooters feel the optimum weight of a bow is. Generally speaking, anything heavier is considered a heavy bow, and anything lighter is considered a lightweight model. The riser has dual string stops, which has been characteristic of high-end Bear bows for several model years. To accommodate this design, the riser gets a significant flair on the top and bottom of the riser, which has also been fairly characteristic of the company in the past as well. Aside from helping with string dampening, the weight also helps off set the accessory weight added to the front of the bow. The SonicStop offset string suppressors are bi-dimensionally adjustable to give archers their preferred placement in fully optimizing the vibration deadening and noise reducing performance possible. In addition to the string stops, SonicBonds and SonicKnots vibration dampeners are also added to give the bow the most in vibration dampening Bear has to offer.The Hinge guard cable containment system is a legit system as well. IT had a bad reputation when initially introduced, but has since been tweaked to not be rough on cables as the bow is drawn adding to the life of the cables. Instead of a more traditional cable slide or roller system, as the bow is drawn, the cables pull on a wishbone style containment bracket, which pivots to help reduce torque. The cables are allowed to drift towards the centerline of the bow, while returning back away from the arrow as it speeds towards the target. Allowing the cables to be closer to the center of the bow is ideal for getting rid of torque transferred from the cables to the riser through the cable guard. With the hinge system allowing a more natural path of movement, the cables place less torque on the cable system, and therefore less torque on the riser.
Bear goes to the Narogrip for 2017, which is a one-piece rubber composite grip with an absolute flat back. This design fits very well in the proper shooting position, and has proven to be very repeatable leading to great consistency. Compared to other Bear grips, the Narogrip is thinner, narrower, and flatter. All of these changes will hopefully lead to better shooting and increased accuracy based on how repeatable the hand placement really is.
Max Pre-load quad limbs are the split limb design of choice for the Moment. Split limbs have been integrated into the Bear lineup for what seems like a very long time now. The limbs are made using Gordon glass, and have contours designed to spread out the load of the limbs across the entire limb instead of a couple high stress points on the limbs. Limbs are also matched into sets in order to fully optimize how the bow performs. Limbs are also available in 15-pound weight ranges instead of the more standard 10-pound increment. This also means shooters only have two configurations to choose from, 45-60-pounds and 55-70-pounds. The limb pockets for the Moment as nice too because they have a spacer integrated to keep the limbs a set distance apart from each other at all times. They also have a side as well to make sure they stay in place on the outside of the limb too. As the limb bolts are tightened or loosened, the pocket pivots as well, which causes the limbs to perform more consistently regardless of whether the limbs are backed out all the way or tightened down all the way. The pockets also have a dampener located between the limbs to keep things as quiet and vibration free as possible.
The EAZ cam is the power plant of choice for the Moment rig, and it is a pretty impressive system overall. When added to the Moment's platform, and its 6-inch brace height, IBO ratings get as high as 340 feet per second combined with an 80% let off. From a performance standpoint, and assuming this bow will be used as a hunting bow, those numbers are very acceptable. Shooters will also be thrilled to hear the Moment has a modular adjustment system, which allows for draw lengths ranging from 25-30-inches all without the need to use a bow press.
Bear's advertising slogan for the Moment is, "Smoother than it should be, faster than it needs to be," and that is all made possible by the EAZ cam system. This system draw very smoothly, holds well on target for a shorter axel-to-axel model, and finishes with only minimal hand shock as a bare bow. To start, the Narogrip feels amazing in the shooters hand. The narrower grip feels amazing, and the flatback, although a bit strange at first, feels fantastic after spending some time shooting the Moment. The draw cycle is fairly stiff up front, as the weight seems to come quickly in the draw cycle. As the bow reaches the 80% let off, the transition to the dump is very manageable. It feels great as shooters come to the back end of the draw cycle and pull into the stops. The back wall has a nice solid feel as well, but there is not much creep room at the back end. The bow feels as though it wants to go, and the 340 feet per second speed rating makes that pretty clear. However, when practicing proper shooting technique, and pulling into the back wall, shooters will have absolutely no trouble with the Moment. Aside from holding well on target, the Moment also balances pretty well. It does not feel top heavy at all and it never feels like it needs to be wrestled vertically like some shorter bows do. For a compact design, the pin float is very minimal, and the shot is very quiet. There is a little felt vibration after the shot, but a good stabilizer basically eliminates that feeling. The arrow feels zippy off the string as well.
The 2017 Bear Moment is a designed hunting bow based on its shorter 31-inch frame, high let off cam system, and maneuverability characteristics. Shooters will enjoy honing their skills on the range, and will love the accuracy all the technology going into this bow has created. However, the Moment is a hunting bow, and a pretty dang good one at that.
The Bear Moment is a high-quality, high-performing compact hunting bow backed by the legendary Fred Bear name. The specifications scream hunting rig, and shooters on the market for a high end hunting bow will surely love the MSRP of $899, which is on the low end of the going rate for an upper end hunting rig. The 340 feet per second is amazing combined with a 6-inch brace height and 80% let off. The draw cycle is a bit stiff, but it feels great, draws smoothly, and packs a lot of energy after the arrow is fired. The Hinge system is a nice addition, and should function well for the reasons it was designed. There was a time when a 6-inch brace height was a bit scary for shooters because it was considered too unforgiving. With the advanced geometries of the riser and the engineered pre load limbs, a 6-inch brace height should no longer scare anyone away. The new grip is a bit different than past Bear models, but after spending some time holding and shooting the Narogrip, it will start to feel like every grip should feel the way this one does. After the shot the bow has some kick, and it would be great to see some more camo options available. However, for shooters on the market for a quality compact hunting bow, the Bear Moment is a wonderful option for what many shooters will be looking for to take to the field with them in 2017.