This is the third post in a series where I have been talking about the “perfect bowsight”. In Part I I explained why a multi-pin slider/adjustable bowsight is perfect for my needs. In Part II we covered how to set up a multi-pin adjustable bowsight. Here, in Part III, we are finally going to take a look at my bowsight – the Montana Black Gold Ascent.
One thing I love about Montana Black Gold sights is that they offer several sight models to meet many archer’s needs and budget. And not only are there several sight models, but there are many custom options available so that you can build a sight according to your needs.
Ordering A Custom Sight
Buying a Black Gold sight can be as simple as walking into the store and buying a standard model off the shelf, or you can decide to order a custom-built sight. When you order a custom sight you can choose the pin guard size (1.75” or 2.00”), the sight head (standard pins, micro-adjust pins, etc.), the sight ring color, the pin sizes, the pin colors, the sight base, the sight rail, etc.
Black Gold offers so many options and combinations that it can be a bit overwhelming if you haven’t spent a good amount of time reviewing each piece to get a solid understanding of what you need, and that is where a good dealer can help tremendously.
I ordered my sight from Steve Speck of S&S Archery. I initially sent Steve an e-mail with a few questions, and then I followed up with a phone call. Steve isn’t just a dealer of these sights, he uses them, and he knows these sights like the back of his hand. He was more than willing to talk me through every option and even down-sell me on a few of the extra features that he didn’t think were necessary for my particular needs. You can order a custom Black Gold sight directly from Steve’s site, and it will be custom assembled in the Black Gold factory and sent straight to your door.
So, what did I order?
I chose the standard 1.75” pin guard, the standard FlashPoint sight head, the 4” dovetail base, the rear-facing sight tape, and 3 pins: .019 green, .019 yellow, and .010 red.
Construction & Durability
There is no doubt that this sight is solid! I was a bit apprehensive about trying an adjustable sight, which introduces more moving parts than I am used to, but I have no hesitation in bringing this sight into the harshest environments that I will be hunting in. The construction of the machined 6061 T6 aluminum is rock solid and the tolerances throughout the sight are outstanding. The pins on the Black Gold Ascent are also machined from bar stock, making them much stronger than cast or tube-style pins. The entire length of the fiber optic is also protected in a groove throughout the length of the pin.
Black Gold offers and unconditional guarantee to the original owner of the sight, and they do have a reputation of fixing everything, even if the problem was caused by the user.
Black Gold is known for bright pins, and they have backed up that reputation by proving that their pins are brighter than the competition in independent tests. They use “SkyCoil” technology, which gathers light from the top of the sight, as opposed to gathering light from the horizontal-axis like many other wrapped-fiber bowsights. It has been my experience that Black Gold sights live up to the claim of having the brightest pins on the market.
Bright pins are important early in the morning and late in the evening, when animals are most active and the sun isn’t as bright, but have you ever noticed how difficult it can be to shoot with a fiber optic sight in the brightest times of the day? Many fiber optics bring in too much light in bright conditions and the pins become hazy and fuzzy, with a “halo” effect. Black Gold has solved this problem by using a PhotoChromatic shell, which limits the amount of light that the fiber optics gathers in the brightest conditions. As you can see in many of these photos, the fiber optic housing is purple – this is the PhotoChromatic shell at work, automatically adjusting to optimize pin brightness and clarity.
Adjustability & Consistency
There are several styles of adjustable sights on the market and when I was shopping I looked at all of them. Black Gold, in my opinion, has the best mechanism – I love their dial system! It gives you ultimate control and makes adjustments easy and consistent. The sight also features a lockdown lever to assure that you can lock the sight in place and it will never budge. I use the lockdown lever, especially when I am leaving the sight in the “home” position, but I have also found that the tolerances of the sight adjustment are so good that the sight will not move even if the lockdown lever is not engaged.
The only part of the Black Gold Ascent that is moving when you are making adjustments in the sight housing. This means that the base is stationary, allowing you easily mount any quiver directly to the sight without the use of extra adapters or brackets that are required for many other adjustable sights.
Speaking of adjustability, the Ascent also features 1st, 2nd, and 3rd axis adjustments, allowing you to fine-tune the sight to perfection.
Montana Black Gold sights are built with pride in the USA, and as I mentioned before, feature an unconditional full guarantee.
When my sight arrived I noticed that one of the threads on the dovetail base was slightly flawed. I could have forced the screw in and it probably would have been fine, but I didn’t want to make anything worse so I shot off a quick e-mail to the company to ask about the issue. Within an hour I received a phone call from the National Account Manager. He wanted to make sure that I received the proper parts and he actually kept me on the phone as he went into the parts room, grabbed what I needed and then took my address to ship the part out that day. If that is how they handle a minor issue, such as less than perfect threads, then I know that they will be more than anxious to take care of any real problems that a user may have with the sight.
What I Don’t Like
I always feature this section on all of my reviews, but unfortunately I don’t really have anything to say here. Honestly, it bugs me to write such a glowing review and not pick out something, anything that I don’t like. For my needs, the Ascent has been perfect thus far. I’ll be sure to update this review if any issues come up in the future.
I have been fortunate enough to have tested several bowsights, and I honestly can’t imagine putting anything but a Montana Black Gold on my bow. I like my quiver, but you could convince me to use something else. I like my rest, but I would certainly try other options. I like my stabilizer, but I would consider alternatives. My Black Gold Ascent?…You aren’t going to get me to switch any time soon!
Oh yeah, the usual disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Montana Black Gold in anyway…I am just an extremely happy customer!