Review: Alpine Archery Lil Guff™

By: Dave Conrad

Outdoorsman Jim Shockey has endorsed Alpine Archery for a few years now. Jim is an avid outdoorsman and guide who is known for taking on the most rugged outdoor situations found in the world in search of big game.  He is also a firm believer in helping the younger generation get involved in the outdoor and hunting experiences. This desire has resulted in the development of the Lil Guff, a bow by Alpine Archery designed for helping them develop the fundamentals of archery.

My ten year old daughter has been going outdoors with me since the
tender age of 5.  With several hunts under her belt she is now
progressing from the crossbow to the compound and the Lil Guff is
helping her hone her skills.  Taking after her mother and being petite
has limited her strength but the Lil Guff suits her current needs just

Alpine's Jim Shockey Lil Guff - A bow your young archer can grow with.

The 35 pound max bow is currently set at 30 lbs but with her determination I see her at max weight by early summer.  The bow sports an amazing 10 to 35 pound adjustment range, perfect for kids from 5 to 10 years old.  This is accomplished by tightening the limb bolts that are set on clear anodized aluminum limb pockets machined out of 6061 aluminum.  This color scheme makes a great combination and also accents the black riser.  Add the Bonz™ camouflage on the 11 inch Power Tuff semi-setback fiberglass limbs and you have a setup any youngster would be proud to shoot.

The Radial Force cam system also allows you to quickly and easily change the draw length over a 6 inch range of 17 to 23 inches.  This allows both my 6 year old son and 10 year old daughter to enjoy plenty of range time with the Lil Guff.  I simply remove one set screw, adjust the draw module, retighten the set screw and away we go.  The module is anchored and pivots on the axle resulting in the need for only one screw.  No worry about misplacing the module and this innovative design eliminates the need for a press as well.

Young archers can also anchor with confidence thanks to the 65% let-off.  The six inch brace height and 28 inch axle-to-axle length allows shooting with fingers or release.  This is a real winner as I am trying to introduce both of my kids to the benefits of a release.

The all black machined riser is powder coated with a textured surface that will surely take years of abuse.  Below the handle it is embossed with an attractive pewter circular emblem with the Jim Shockey/Alpine logo.  The two piece rosewood grip is a nice added feature that is affixed permanently with epoxy.  The grip is comfortable and given a thumbs up by both my young shooters.

The shooting shelf is wide and will accommodate a variety of rests.  I finally settled on a fixed based biscuit style rest.  I recommend a rest like this, especially for younger shooters as it allows for easier loading of the arrow.  The easier it is the more time shooting, hence more enjoyment.

In conclusion I am happy to report that both kids are progressing well.  The Lil Guff is the complete package for introducing young ones to the sport and, thanks to the quality and adjustability features, will progress with them as they grow.  The first words out of my daughter’s mouth during her first volley of arrows was “This is great fun!”  And with the way she is progressing, in no time I know she will be sporting her first bow kill.

Dave's daughter is already showing signs of a future star.

Design Rating 9 of 10 – This little bow rocks.  The machined riser, limb bolts and cam system really are designed for a growing archer.  The ease of converting this bow so that both of my kids can use it is a great design in itself.  The rotating cam module that is integrated into the axle makes draw length changes a breeze.  The only thing keeping this from a 10 is that a max of only 35 keeps this bow from being legal in many states with a 40 pound minimum for hunting.

Value Rating 10 of 10 –  On a kids bow this is an evaluation category that is a must.  With grown up features such as machined parts while using quality aluminum, this bow will take my youngest through the learning stages while adding fun.  No corners were cut when developing this little shooter.

For more go to: Alpine Archery