As more companies jump into the crossbow market, hunters have more crossbow options to consider. These firms are introducing products with a variety of features. New players, and even old ones, maybe overwhelmed by these crossbows.
How can you ensure you choose an excellent crossbow?
One way to evaluate the crossbow options is to know things to consider when buying one. This article will help you discover the things you need to know when purchasing crossbows. Consider them to pick the best model for you.
Things To Consider When Buying Crossbows
Consider these aspects when buying crossbows:
- Recognize and Address Physical Limitations
Crossbows make hunting possible for most people, regardless of sex, age, size, or physical ability to bow hunt. However, not all crossbows are easy to operate or handle by everyone. Choose an option that suits your physical prowess.
- Cocking Your Crossbow
Choose crossbows with cocking aids if you don’t wish to cock yours manually. You may pick one that is clamp-on and needs to be removed before shooting. You may also choose one that is integrated into the crossbow’s buttstock.
- Research Is Essential
Research the various crossbows before buying one. The research will help you choose the user-friendly option that fits your needs. For example, some crossbows can reduce the effort needed to cock the crossbow. The analysis enables you to limit your options.
- Consider Cost
Crossbows can cost $399-2,500. The simple entry-level options cost around $399, while the high-performance alternatives cost up to $2,500, and they come with all accessories you’ll need. Inform the salesperson of your budget range, and they’ll help you pick a crossbow you can afford. The various price ranges provide different levels of quality and features.
- Consider Various Manufacturers
Crossbow manufacturers have different track records. Check a company’s reputation before buying its product. For example, clients’ reviews can show whether they deliver on their promises or if the company designs its crossbows well. Picking a firm with good ratings can ensure you are content if you choose its crossbow. You may also enjoy more benefits, such as warranty, customer service, and favorable return terms.
- Consider Noise, Speed, Recoil, and Weight
On average, crossbows shoot 300-380 fps (feet per second). If you choose a crossbow that shoots at 300 fps, it will be fast enough for the job. However, a 380 fps crossbow hits harder and has a flatter trajectory, minimizing distance judging issues. Some crossbow manufacturers offer extra speed by increasing the power stroke, adding cams, and using heavier limbs. However, these modifications can make the shot louder, increase recoil, and increase the difficulty in cocking the crossbow.
Noise level is a primary concern for many archers. Manufacturers know this need, and they are making less noisy products. Compare the different noise levels with each crossbow to choose the best model. Other accessories may also help, like the Bowjax Noise Dampening Kit.
Excessive recoil may affect shooting accuracy. Leading crossbow manufacturers are continuously improving their designs to limit their recoil. Test various models to find one that suits your needs.
Every shooter has an ideal crossbow weight. A light crossbow with severe recoil is difficult to control. Similarly, a heavy crossbow is hard to use. Choose a crossbow that you can carry with ease as you aim and shoot with it. Furthermore, consider the draw weight, which varies from below 160, 160-200, and above 200. The draw weight affects the arrow speed and ease of handling.
- Safety Features
Safety is an area you shouldn’t compromise when using crossbows. Research the safety features of the various models you are considering and check them out in the store. For example, TenPoint Crossbows have auto-engaging safety, safety wings, and a Dry-Fire-Inhibitor (DFI). Reevaluate your options if the model you picked doesn’t have many safety features.
- Consider the Balance
Carry various crossbows and determine the balance point. Crossbows having excess weight at the front are difficult to hold steady while standing or handle as you shoot out of a treestand. The reverse-draw crossbow design is increasingly popular because its balance point is farther toward the shooter, making it feel lighter. Test both reverse-draw and forward-draw crossbows to choose the best model.
- Ascertain the Width and Length for Your Situation
The width and length of your crossbow aren’t as critical when shooting off a bench or at a range, as it is when shooting out of a treestand or out of a blind. Most range shooting happens in warm weather, and one’s clothing is usually less bulky and lightweight. Confort at the range may mean discomfort when hunting. Consider your hunting clothing as you test your prospective crossbow.
- Monitor the Trigger Pull
Trigger poundage and creep impact the crossbow’s shooting accuracy. A trigger that has no creep is dangerous, while one with excess creep is challenging to squeeze steadily. A light trigger can be dangerous, while a heavy one is hard to squeeze steadily. Crossbows with premium triggers often shoot more accurately, as they tend to have optimum poundage and travel.
- Research Local and State Laws
Once you know what you’ll do with your crossbow, find out if the crossbow or its accessories are legal within your jurisdiction. For example, some states have laws regulating the scopes, draw weight, and cocking mechanisms used by crossbow owners in their territories. Other local jurisdictions have rules against discharging a crossbow within specific areas, such as city limits. Learn these laws to avoid getting in trouble. Failure to comply with the local and state regulations can lead to hefty fines and jail terms.
- Trying On a Prospective Crossbow
Limit the models to consider based on how you’ll use the crossbow. Avoid standing in stores shouldering and pointing a crossbow in the air. The test doesn’t accurately reflect how the crossbow fits or feels in real-world shooting or hunting situations.
You may sit in a chair, then point a crossbow forward if you use it for hunting out of a blind. Point the crossbow at an angle you will shoot from if you’ll hunt out of a treestand. Try these steps with several crossbow models to determine the best model for you.
Continue to limit your options by shooting various models that are comfortable to you. The best crossbow for you will feel right as you cock, aim, and shoot it. A model that suits your buddy might not be ideal for you. You have to try it out to see if it is perfect for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions about crossbows.
What Care and Maintenance Do Crossbows Need?
Crossbows need some maintenance to remain in excellent condition. Turning ensures the many moving parts are mounted and aligned well. Adjusting ensures there is a balance between the crossbow’s limbs as you use it constantly. This approach ensures the crossbow doesn’t shoot high or low, as would be the case if the limbs had an imbalance. Simple cleaning and waxing can enhance a crossbow’s durability. Crossbow’s strings should be waxed, except those at the center. Replace strings and cables to avoid them stretching and decreasing their draw weight. It is advisable to replace the cables and strings every three years – sooner if necessary.
Is a Crossbow More Powerful Than a Compound Bow?
The average crossbow produces slightly more kinetic energy than the average modern compound bow. We use kinetic energy to measure a bow’s power, so a crossbow is more powerful than a compound bow.
Which Are the Best Lightweight Crossbows?
Here are the leading lightweight crossbows:
- TenPoint Venom Crossbow Package: This crossbow weighs 2.7 pounds, meaning you’ll barely feel it on your shoulder. It has dimensions of 1×1×1 inch and is ultra-compact. The crossbow combines the new shortened carbon fiber barrel with the popular FSB stock.
- Barnett Whitetail Hunter II Crossbow: This crossbow weighs 6.4 pounds. Its manufacturer, Barnett Outdoors, LLC, is among the leading manufacturers of crossbows worldwide. You can get this model for under $300. It has a maximum velocity of 350 fps and a draw weight of 150 pounds. Its maximum kinetic energy is 103 ft-lbs.
- Wicked Ridge by TenPoint Invader G3 Crossbow Package: This crossbow is among the safest, lightest, fastest, and narrowest Wicked Ridge Invader models so far. The model weighs 6.6 pounds, which is why we consider it a lightweight crossbow. You’ll get many accessories and equipment in this package. The overall length of the crossbow with the stirrup is 37.75 inches, and it has a power stroke of 13.5 inches. You’ll also enjoy a draw weight of 165 pounds and a maximum velocity of 330 fps.
These considerations can help you choose the best crossbow. You’ll carry it without any challenges and use it with ease. Considering these 12 things will help you limit your options and test the best crossbow models for you. The model you choose will ensure you have a pleasant experience as you use it to shoot your targets or hunt with colleagues.