Recurve Bow String Length Chart (Reference Guide)

By Andy Ryan


Updated at

A recurve bow string length chart is an easy-to-read graph that shows the recommended minimum and maximum lengths for bowstrings for different recurve bows.

You can figure out the string length of your recurve bow by subtracting 3 inches from your AMO length. You may also measure it directly using a measuring tape. An easy way is to just consult the recurve bow string length chart. 

AMO Conventional Bow String Tension Chart

Which One You Should Choose?

If you wish to replace your current string with a new one, you could measure your current string and a new one would of that length. Just measure the length of the string inside the loops. (1)

However, if you do not have a string, you could consult the manual that came with the bow.  

In case you don’t have a manual, you could use the table of recommendations provided here to know what length you want accurately. You will need to take some measurements such as AMO. But don’t worry; we will walk you through the process. Let’s start by talking about what on earth AMO is. 

What is AMO?

The Archery Manufacturers Organization or AMO is a set of standard lengths and specifications for bows. (2)

Bow manufacturers all over the world use and follow the rules and standards set by AMO to make bows. This makes it easy for consumers to compare different bows and understand the specifications of bows made by different manufacturers.  

Although originally the Archery Manufacturing Organization was just a standard for measurements, it has become a community. They have changed the name to Archery Trade association.  

Now that you know what AMO is and why AMO standards are important, we can move right on to what AMO length means and how it can help you figure out your string length.  

AMO Length

You can find the AMO length of your bow on the box that your bow came in. The documents include the bow weight category and the bow length designation.  

The AMO length is certainly not the bow length. The AMO length only is used to calculate the right string length.  

If you know the AMO length of your bow, all you need to know to calculate the string length is to subtract 3 inches.  

For example, say the AMO length of your bow is 58 inches.  

Your string should be of length 58 – 4 = 54 inches. It’s that simple  

But what if you don’t know and can’t find the AMO length of your bow?

Manually Measure Your Bowstring

It may be the case that you bought your bow used or that the AMO length and weight are no longer visible on the bow. If this is the case, you don’t have to worry!  

You can figure out the length of your string yourself. Here’s how you do it.  

Measuring Bowstring Length for Recurve Bows

In order to figure out the right string length, you first need to measure the length of your recurve bow with a tape measure.  

You are going to measure along the curve of the bow limbs of the bow from one string groove to the other. This will be the length of your string.  

Alternatively, you could figure out the AMO length of your bow first and use that to calculate the length of your string. The AMO length can be determined by measuring your bow from tip to tip. The string length would be 3 inches less than the AMO length.  


Can arrows be too long for a bow?

No. You can have a 6-inch arrow if you want. The length alone does not negatively affect anything. However, you need the arrow to have a spine proper for its length. Also, the tip weight should have forward of center (FOC), and the fletching should be proper.  

How do you determine your true draw length?

You could use an online draw length calculator.  

Alternatively, stand with your back against the wall and stretch your arms out, touching the wall. Measure the distance from the tip of your one middle finger to the tip of your other middle finger. This is basically the total length of both your arms and chest.  

Subtract exactly 15 inches from this length and divide it by 2. This is your draw length.  

How do you measure amp draw length?

Here’s how to measure your amp draw length:  

The way to determine your amp draw length is to measure the distance between the knock point and the deepest part of your grip. This is the place where the arrows cross the riser.  

Alternatively, you could use a bow square to figure out the amp draw length.  


A lot of people who start archery get very confused (as was l) by all the terminologies and technical labels they see on archery equipment. But reading just a little bit makes you realize that these technical terms are quite intuitive and easy to grasp.  

Now that you know what AMO length and AMO weight are, you can figure the right string length for your recurve bow yourself without having to go to an expert.  

(1) measure the length –
(2) AMO –