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My Story

How the Lock-a-Draw Draw Keep and Bow Rest Came to Be.

Bow Hunter's Advantage is the business name of Dr. Vernon R. Sandel's enterprise.  I am Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at Michigan Technological University.  One of my hobbies for many, many years has been deer hunting with a bow.  I began in college with a long bow and graduating to a compound bow when they became available.  I considered myself a reasonable shot with a bow, but hardly an expert.  I got my share of deer over the years until creeping old age took its toll on  my strength.  I had gradually cranked my bow's draw weight from the original 65 lbs to down to 47 lbs, the lowest I could go without danger of collapsing it.  In my 60's my accuracy with a bow waned because I could no longer hold a 5 lb. bow steady at the end of my arm while struggling to hold a draw.   I wounded a deer in the front leg and missed a couple altogether.   I considered giving up bowhunting, but then I got an idea.  Why not build a boom system to take the weight of the bow?  Thus the Compound Bow Rest and Holder was born.  With it I was again bow hunting and harvesting deer and shooting competitively with my younger friends.  In fact, I have not missed or wounded a deer since I began using the Bow Rest.  Each deer was hit well for a merciful kill.  I decided to patent the Compound Bow Rest and Holder and market it myself.

In my 70's another problem developed.  Although I could draw my 47 lb bow (the lowest draw weight it could be adjusted) well in a target situation, I could not after sitting in a tree stand for a couple hours in the cold.  Arthritis in my shoulders stiffened me up so that I struggled to draw my bow, and the deer took off before I could get it drawn.  At age 73 I applied for a draw keep license and built a simple draw keep.  It was accurate and I could draw my bow with ease using my feet and both hands even after tightening the limb bolts fully (61 lbs draw weight, after more than 20 years of use).  Using it along with the Bow Rest, I harvested two deer each year 2005-8, all with the bow.  The commercially available draw keeps  (http://www.drawloc.com and http://www.pullinarchery.com/index.htm) were not, in my opinion, practical for hunting.  Besides increasing the weight of a bow by as much as 40% (mine weighs only 8.3 oz for a 28" draw) the method of cocking and the awkwardness of holding a drawn bow were not suited to hunting from an elevated platform.  I decided to patent my draw keep and get it manufactured.  I offer it along with the Bow Rest and a quiver as a complete bowhunting solution. It is primarily targeted for those like myself whose strength does not allow accurate shooting and smooth drawing of a compound bow with a draw weight appropriate for hunting.

I want one!

I welcome comments on this web site and on the product.  I may be contacted by email or by telephone.

Vernon Sandel


2008 Bow Hunter's Advantage / Vernon Sandel
216 Rust Street, Licking, MO 65542

(906) 482-6557
vsandel@yahoo.com