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Each year Bear Archery puts out several compound bow choices from flagship to budget bows. Whether you’re a backcountry wanderer looking for the ultimate elk hunting bow or you’re a new shooter planning to climb in a whitetail stand for the first time, Bear has you covered.
Bear makes one of the best bows for beginner bowhunters, the Bear Cruzer G2 RTH. It’s an adjustable and affordable bow that supports Bear’s mission to make archery more accessible. The Cruzer G2 will comfortably fit nearly any archer and with the RTH package, it comes with all the bow accessories you need for under $500. Just add a release aid and arrows to your cart to start shooting right away.
Bear Cruzer G2 Specs
- Speed: 315 fps at max draw weight and draw length
- Axle-to-Axle: 30 inches
- Brace Height: 6.5 inches
- Mass Weight: 3.0 pounds
- Draw Lengths: 12 to 30 inches
- Draw Weight: 5 to 70 pounds
- Color Options: Shadow, Realtree Edge, Undertow, Wildfire, Muddy, TrueTimber Kanati and Toxic
- MSRP for Bear Cruzer G2 Ready to Hunt: $419.99
Who is this Compound Bow Designed For?
I consider myself a veteran shooter, and over the years, I have slung carbon from Bear flagships like the Carnage, Anarchy, and Agenda 7, to name a few. However, this bow would be different. Bear developed the Cruzer Gen 2 to fit all ages and skill levels. The bow is adjustable between 12 and 30 inches of draw length and draw weight between 5 and 70 pounds. This adjustability makes it one of the best beginner compound bows.
The Bear Cruzer G2 feels excellent in hand. The grip is long, perfectly angled, narrow, and flat-backed. It promotes consistent hand placement, and I was thrilled the throat didn’t dive too deep under the arrow shelf. The draw cycle is generally smooth, and the bow’s 70 percent let-off doesn’t take you by surprise. However, there are no limb or cable stops on the bow, which creates a spongy valley. The more you have the limb bolts turned in, the more the bow is itching to go. Pull hard into the valley and accept the spongy feel. If you creep, especially at draw weights north of 50 pounds, you’ll know it.
Though the bow has a string stop, a fair amount of noise and vibration is present at the shot. I would, especially if I planned to shoot the Cruzer Gen 2 at draw weights more than 50 pounds, add some LimbSaver’s between the bow’s split limbs to help reduce noise and vibration.
A light bow measuring just 30 inches between the axles, I was surprised by how well the bow pointed. Once I accepted the valley and found my sweet spot, the Bear Cruzer G2 proved to be stable, and while it wouldn’t be my choice for shooting at long ranges, this rig proved money between 15 and 40 yards.
Cruzer G2 Fit & Finish
Measuring 30-inches between the axles, I was surprised at how short the riser was and how long the split limbs were. This design no doubt helps the bow achieve its adjustability. A feather in the hand, this compact bow only weighs 3 pounds. I immediately took notice of the bow’s machined grip, which provides a comfortable and consistent index. The grip does sport a pair of Bear-branded side-plates, but these are more for aesthetic purpose than functionality.
It also was immediately apparent the Bear Cruzer G2 was ready to hunt. The bow wore a four-pin Trophy Ridge sight, Whisker Biscuit arrow rest, stabilizer, five-arrow quiver, wrist sling, peep sight, and d-loop. Bravo, Bear.
The riser melted into the limb pockets, and the camo platform and black limbs showed no signs of wear and tear. The strings and cables mixed orange thread with tan, which added to the bow’s eye appeal. I was also excited to see Bear included a trio of cam modules. The module slaved to the cams resting on the axles allowed for 1-inch adjustments between 15 and 30 inches. The second module allowed for ½-inch adjustments, and the third module was for CD (Constant Draw), which is the ideal module for a young shooter or when measuring a new archer’s draw length.
Setting Up the Cruzer G2
There wasn’t much of a build with the Bear Cruzer G2, which will be fantastic for those with limited setup knowledge and those wanting to save some time. A double-check showed the Whisker Biscuit, and the attached d-loop ran the arrow level through the Berger holes, which was good enough for an initial shooting. I did adjust the peep sight to ensure perfect eye-to-housing alignment, which took about one minute. Lastly, I loosened the pair of set screws on the top module, keeping pressure on the center bushing, and rolled the module window to the number 29. After tightening the screws, I repeated the process with the bottom module. For the sake of testing, I switched to the 1/2-inch mod and CD mod. The swap takes seconds, and there is no need for a bow press. This is one of the most simplistic mod systems I’ve ever tinkered with, which was greatly appreciated.
Limb bolts were a tad chattery, and with the bolts maxed at 70 pounds, the bow did skitter and pop a little the first few times I drew it back. This got better with time, but I dropped the weight to 65 pounds for the sake of testing, and this mainly remedied the snap, crackle, and pop. I also opted to remove the old-school peep and cord system and replace it with a standard 3/16-inch peep. Yes, the peep and cord system will work, but the cord does create an unnecessary slap, and the rubber will break down over time.
Tuning the Cruzer G2
After 150 arrows, it was time for the tune-up. Whisker Biscuits get a bad rap, and many will tell you a bow sporting it will never tune. Not true. I’ve watched two professional shooters win local 3D tournaments with Whisker Biscuits. Why? To prove these rests have their place. It took only six arrows to get a perfect paper tear, and walk-back tuning put 20, 30 and 40-yard arrows touching the same piece of black tape running vertically through the target’s center. Whiskers in the rest will get worn out over time, and this is when accuracy problems will arise. Just keep an eye on your whiskers, and don’t fight it when it comes time to replace the rest.
Though the tuning process was a breeze, I did struggle to get used to the vibration and noise this bow produced. Twice, I had to stop and tighten one of the two screws that attach the string stop rod and once to tighten all four mod screws. Once you get this bow set to your specs, I recommend adding a little blue Loctite to any set screws.
While it’s not the fastest compound bow, I was impressed with the bow’s speed. Set at 61.78 pounds of draw weight and a 29-inch draw length, the Cruzer Gen 2 propelled my 418-grain Easton Axis 5MM shafts at 265 fps. When you crunch the numbers, that’s 65.17 foot-pounds of kinetic energy. More than enough to blow through the lungs of a whitetail deer.
How Accurate is this Compound Bow?
I would buy this bow for my youth shooter in a heartbeat. I would also recommend it to new shooters looking to pull 50 pounds or less.
I shot solid, sub 3-inch groups at distances of 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40 yards. Beyond 40, my groups started to widen, which was expected. I also spent time shooting the bow from an elevated perch. Most who drop coin on this rig will be whitetail hunters, and I was delighted with how the bow performed in the stand. It’s incredibly maneuverable, takes up little space in the tree, and shot solid groups out to 40 yards. The bow is somewhat forgiving, and its 6.5-inch brace height is a big reason for this. However, with such a short riser and no limb or cable stops, pin float is magnified at distances beyond 40 yards, especially in a stiff breeze.
Does the Bear Cruzer G2 Accomplish Its Mission
This is a bow a shooter can grow with over time. As a young archer learns to shoot it effectively, their confidence will grow. They can enjoy the Bear Cruzer G2 for five or more years while developing skills to become accurate in the field.
Is it a hunting bow? Yes. Set at lower poundages and with noise and vibration devices attached, this rig could be an excellent deer hunting bow.