How to choose a crossbow for hunting and entertainment, selection rules

Crossbows are becoming more and more popular every day and this is not surprising, because they are really good weapons for hunting and entertainment. Like any weapon, crossbows differ in design, characteristics, etc. some are suitable for hunting, others for sports shooting, etc. If you are new to crossbow shooting and, moreover, are just about to buy a crossbow for the first time, it is a good idea will learn the main aspects that you should pay attention to first when buying a crossbow.

First of all, decide on the choice between a compound and a recurve crossbow. At first, it is enough for you to know that the main difference between them is that a recurve crossbow is easier to maintain, since it has quite a few components compared to a block crossbow.

Block crossbows, in turn, have many variations. In their production, modern technologies are used to significantly increase speed and ease the tension of the bowstring. Remember that such crossbows require special care, and maintenance and repairs should only be trusted to specialists.

Regardless of which crossbow - compound or recurve - you prefer, it is important to know the basic parameters by which you should choose the appropriate crossbow model.

Crossbow shot power

The expression “bigger is not better” does not apply to such a parameter as the power of a crossbow shot. Many novice archers and crossbowmen think that the main thing is speed, and they make the mistake of purchasing a crossbow with the highest shot speed (meters per second). While speed does play an important role in terms of successfully hitting an animal while hunting, it is more important to focus on the amount of kinetic energy created by the crossbow. The higher the kinetic energy, the more likely your arrows are to not only reach their target, but also hit it.

Crossbow string tension

One of the reasons why many people switch from vertical bows to crossbows is the difficulty of keeping the bowstring taut or constant injuries due to blows from the bowstring. If you are one of these people, then you should know that there are three main standards for bowstring tension - 150/175/225 Lbs respectively. If you are just starting to shoot with a crossbow, we recommend choosing a model with a minimum tension force, and at the same time purchasing a winch for cocking the bowstring.

The characteristics mentioned above are just the main ones that you should focus on when buying a crossbow. The specifications that were mentioned above are just a few that I feel are powerless. Not the last factor is the price of the crossbow. Search, compare and be sure to find the best option for yourself.

Crossbow device

Despite the fact that modern small arms are very different from their distant prototype, their design has changed very little. All current models have a similar set of main parts.

Stock and guide

The stock is the main part of the weapon, a kind of “butt” of a crossbow, the shape and material of which determines the ease of use. As a rule, it is made of wood or plastic and has an anatomical shape. The stocks of historical copies or expensive collectibles are often decorated with carvings or inlays.

Guide – a base made of a metal or fiberglass profile to which the remaining parts of the crossbow are attached. The guide has a groove for holding and directing the arrow to the target. In most modern models, the guide is a separate part that is attached to the stock, but in some cases, a recess for placing the arrow is cut directly into the stock. To facilitate the sliding of the arrow, the working part of the part is polished and lubricated with a special compound.

Arcs and block for fastening

The arches (bows or shoulders) of a crossbow are the part of the weapon that accumulates energy during the tension of the bowstring and transfers it to the projectile at the moment of the shot. It is made of metal (steel, aluminum), fiberglass, carbon, composite materials. The arches can be solid or split, have a straight or recursive (curved) shape.

Most modern models of small arms have split arms, which reduce the friction of the bowstring on the guide and simplify the transportation of the arrow. Block crossbows have special blocks at the ends of the arcs that make it easier to tighten the bowstring and increase the power of the shot.

The block is a part that attaches the arches of a crossbow to the stock. The main task of the device is to hold the shoulders motionless and absorb the recoil energy after shots. Made from durable materials: steel, titanium, aluminum alloys, composites or wood.


The lock (or trigger) is designed to hold the bowstring in a cocked state and release it when the “trigger” is pressed. The lock can be built into the guide or mounted on it. In modern models, the trigger mechanism is a complex system that includes many parts: fuses, locks, adjustment systems, etc. On expensive models there are locks with an electronic release (activated by lightly pressing the trigger).

Crossbow locks are divided into three main types:

  • With top hook.
  • With bottom hook.
  • With a fixed hook.

Today, manufacturers primarily produce weapons with an upper hook, which eliminates the premature release of the bowstring from cocking, which is possible with models with a lower hook.

Sighting devices

Sighting devices for crossbows are selected taking into account the flight characteristics of the projectile fired from them. Since the speed and flight range of a crossbow arrow are small compared to a bullet fired from a firearm, sighting devices for this type of weapon have their own characteristics. Crossbow optics are equipped with a special aiming reticle, which makes it possible to shoot the weapon at different distances.

The modern market offers fans of throwing small arms sighting devices of the mechanical (diopter) and optical types. Collimator sights have also proven themselves well, for example the Model 3 Red Dot Scope 1×30 (MK-RS) Man Kung, which makes life easier for hunters at any time of the day and in any weather.

The optics are installed on the so-called “dovetail”, which most current models have.

Tension devices

Loading powerful combat or hunting crossbows requires significant physical effort. It is very difficult for an ordinary person to charge some models manually even in a quiet environment, and even in “field” conditions this task sometimes becomes impossible. That is why manufacturers began to equip crossbows with special cocking (or tension) devices - devices that facilitate the process of cocking the bowstring.

To facilitate manual loading, a stirrup or loop is installed on the front of the crossbow. When charging, this part rests on the floor or ground and is pressed with the foot, and the bowstring is pulled until it latch. When cocking this way, you need to carefully ensure that the center of the bowstring hits the latch. A mark placed on the central part helps to simplify the task.

In some situations, a cable equipped with simple blocks is used for charging. A cable with handles and brackets for gripping the bowstring reduces the strain on your hands by approximately 50%. The principle of cocking remains the same as in the first case.

Mechanical tensioners make the loading process as easy as possible - special gates (mini-winches) mounted on the butt of the crossbow. With their help, even a physically weak person can cock a weapon, but the speed of loading by mechanical means is significantly inferior to loading by manual methods.


To make a crossbow bowstring, strong and elastic polymer threads (Kevlar, lavsan, polyamide, fastflight) are used. Areas of the bowstring that are subject to friction are reinforced with a winding of non-slip thread, which is replaced as it wears out. The string of modern crossbows is much thinner than that of historical prototypes, but withstands greater loads and lasts significantly longer.

On powerful block models, thin steel cables are sometimes used as an auxiliary bowstring.

Arrows and bolts

Modern crossbowmen have no shortage of choice of ammunition for their weapons - manufacturers offer a lot of arrows and bolts for throwing weapons of various purposes and types. Beginners should pay attention to the following factors when purchasing a set of shells:

  • Arrows or bolts must be the same in weight, thickness, length, rigidity, and have uniform feathering.
  • The distance between the center of gravity and the middle of the bolts must be identical for all units in the kit.
  • The arrow bodies should not change shape much when bent.

Depending on the purpose, crossbow ammunition is divided into hunting and sporting.


– light hollow projectiles capable of hitting a target at a considerable distance at high speed. They are made mainly from aluminum alloys or fiberglass.


– solid-cast massive projectiles designed to defeat wild animals and inflict fatal wounds on them. They are approximately 2 times heavier than sports ones and have longer tails, which help them stabilize in flight as quickly as possible. Carbon and fiberglass are used to make hunting arrows with great penetrating effect. Fiberglass or aluminum alloys are suitable for creating arrows for small game.

Some crossbow arrows are equipped with a special insert that allows you to change the tips. Such shells can be used for both hunting and sport shooting.

Aluminum crossbow arrow 52 cm MK-AL20 Man Kung 236 for 1 pc. Aluminum crossbow arrow 40 cm MK-AL16 Man Kung 208 for 1 pc. Aluminum crossbow arrow 37 cm MK-AL14 Man Kung 213 for 1 pc. Set of arrows for crossbow 6.5″ plastic (12 pcs) colored Yarrow 370 for 1 pc. Arrow for crossbow-pistol, aluminum 6.5″ (pack of 12 pcs.) MK-AL Man Kung 437 for 1 pc. Arrow for crossbow 16 (44 cm) Yarrow 331 for 1 pc. Aluminum crossbow arrow 40-44 cm MK-AL16R Man Kung 258 for 1 pc. Hunting tip TORRID EXP 100 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs.) 2,901 per 1 pc. Hunting tip SHOCKER 100 GRAIN (pack of 2 pcs.) 896 for 1 pc. Hunting tip F-15 FIXED DUAL BLADE 125 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs) 4,480 for 1 pc. Hunting tip TROIKA 125 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs) 2,285 for 1 pc. Arrow for crossbow 14 (37 cm) Yarrow 325 for 1 pc. Hunting tip F-15 FIXED DUAL BLADE 100 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs.) 55625 5,701 for 1 pc. Ultimate Hunting Tips 100 grains (3pcs/pack) AT100US 3,808 per pack. Set of arrows for crossbow 6.5″ plastic (12 pcs) black Yarrow 370 for 1 pc. Set of arrows for crossbow 6.5″ aluminum (12 pcs) Yarrow 661 for 1 pc. Hunting tip TORRID 100 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs) 2,828 per 1 pc. Hunting tip SHOCKER 125 GRAIN (pack of 2 pcs.) 1,031 for 1 pc. Hunting tip TORRID SS 85-100 GRAIN (pack of 3 pcs) 2,442 for 1 pc.

Certain arrowheads are used for hunting different game. All of them are conditionally divided into three types:

1. Multi-blade broadheads with wide or narrow blades. 2. Bolts with drop-down blades. 3. Arrows with blunt tips - shockers.

The average weight of crossbow arrows ranges from 19.5 to 32.5 grams. Powerful hunting crossbows can also use heavier projectiles (30-35 grams). Brass inserts are used to weight the arrows. The length of bolts and arrows for crossbows does not exceed 40-50 cm, diameter - 6-9 mm. For hunting small game, lighter and shorter arrows are used.

Additional accessories and devices

  • Numerous additional accessories and accessories produced by crossbow manufacturers make the life of a modern crossbowman significantly more comfortable and easier.
  • Quivers and livers - allow you to fix and firmly hold spare arrows or bolts.
  • Bowstring waxes – protect the string from moisture.
  • Cases for storing and transporting weapons.
  • Stoppers for eliminating interference and increasing shooting accuracy.
  • Bipod for shooting from a rest.
  • Shields and targets for training, sports and recreational shooting.
  • Arrow removers, etc.

Scott-Caliper release (black handle) 6,228 for 1 piece.
Ending for crossbows Yarrow Model B, C, H, F (2 pcs) 135 for 1 pc. Bow string MK-CB006 with Man Kung 840 cams for 1 pc. Bow limbs Recruit, 68″ 22# (black) Bowmaster 3,500 per 1 piece. Stabilizer for compound bow Shock Stop Camo 2 352 for 1 pc. TP gaiter - camouflage, cordura, 3 fasteners TP107 Topoint 516 for 1 pc. Arrow puller Cartel-Arrow Puller 572 for 1 pc. Release (black, buckle strap) Samurai 5,544 for 1 piece. Bow string Predator 1,714 for 1 piece. Bow press Portable Bow Press Bowmaster 6 720 for 1 pc. Gaiters No. 1 (plastic) Centershot 240 for 1 pc. Shelf for classic bow TR magnetic RH Topoint 500 for 1 pc. Dark brown suede quiver (buffalo horn clasp) Bowmaster 5,600 for 1 piece. Belt quiver advanced (blue) Centershot 1 507 for 1 pc. CBear Logo Light weight Back Quiver 10,568 for 1 piece. Release MR1 hand B10010A Interloper 1,568 for 1 piece. Sight for compound bow Hit Man 5 (5 pin level) 7,056 for 1 pc. Shark release (black, buckle strap) 9,089 for 1 piece. Shoulders for crossbow MK 150 (black) (MK-150B-BK) Man Kung 2,335 for 1 pc. Case for arrows and accessories 850x150x86mm (BHUC-40) 2,666 per 1 piece. Cable for crossbow STINGER (CR-029) 706 for 1 pc. Shelf for a classic bow, plastic KAP 60 for 1 pc. Inserts for arrows 5/16 Carbon Express Inserts #1 (pack of 12 pcs) Carbon Express 1,076 per 1 pc. Finger guard JX-JX109 390 for 1 piece. Crossbow string G3 (CR-010, CR-011, CR-030) 1,132 per 1 piece. Release of Fletchmatic Deluxe 102d Jim Fletcher 6,160 for 1 piece. Bowstring wax Rail Rube/Wax 6.5×1.5cm (MK-RL) Man Kung 170 for 1 pc. Black crossbow belt 1,120 for 1 piece. Shako for crossbow and bow for 6 arrows (camouflage) B10003B-BC Interloper 1,792 for 1 pc. STRING-LOOP NOCKING PLIER Carbon Express 2 128 for 1 pc. Crossbow string Ifrit, Skald, Tactician CRS-061 Interloper 1,714 for 1 pc. Shield 50x50x20 2,280 for 1 piece. Crossbow string DesertHawk (CR-020, CR-030, CR-037) Man Kung 303 for 1 pc. Sight for compound bow Cypher 3 camo (3 pin level, micro-adjustment, backlight) 6,720 for 1 pc. Bowstring wax B10016Р-T Interloper 220 for 1 pc. Sight for compound bow 5 pin (illuminated) B30013B1 Centershot 1,460 for 1 pc. Set of rubber vibration dampers TP109 Topoint 1 120 for 1 piece. Crossbow shoulders Scorpio 2,688 per 1 piece. Hand quiver for darts CSNFJ-19D04 Centershot 290 for 1 pc. Yellow-brown suede quiver (buffalo horn clasp) Bowmaster 3,383 for 1 pc. Arrow puller for Avalon Steady Orange PTR-A-QT449-5 Avalon Archery 350 for 1 pc. Hunting gaiter 19cm (camouflage) AMG9105 CAMO 500 for 1 pc. Bowstring for crossbow Yarrow Model Z 549 for 1 pc. Bowstring for a classic bow 68″ white CXZGX-68″WH 375 for 1 pc. Handle for recurve bow Recruit (black) Bowmaster 3 835 for 1 pc. Vision safety glasses (yellow lenses) CS1189 Centershot 443 for 1 pc. Shelf for compound bow falling MK-AR-NEW Man Kung 1,500 for 1 pc. Yarrow Model B crossbow string with ends 426 for 1 pc. Vision safety glasses (mirror gray lenses) CS1150 Centershot 493 for 1 pc. Shako for crossbow and bow for 6 arrows (black) B10003B Interloper 1,792 for 1 pc. Crossbow string Ek Cobra System R9 Ek Archery 577 for 1 pc. Flex Arrow Puller Regular Red 101825-1240 Flex Archery 426 for 1 pc. Case for crossbow (camouflage) AR-1C Centershot 2,380 for 1 pc. Bowstring for classic bow 54″ black CXZGX-54″BK Centershot 375 for 1 pc. Belt quiver expert (black) SQR1110 Centershot 2,352 for 1 pc. Aluminum insert Victory NVX 23 ACXBI153-12 62 for 1 pc. Belt quiver Flipside blue Easton 2,000 for 1 piece. Release TP414 (black, plastic handle) Topoint 1,670 for 1 piece. Bowstring wax Seal-Tite Bohning 389 for 1 pc. Case for blocks and bowstrings with belt LUK-REM Centershot 1 658 for 1 pc. Tensioner for hand crossbows B10021 Interloper 616 for 1 pc. Stabilizer Aluminum 8″ 6.5oz (Black) TP617-8 Topoint 2,800 per 1 piece. Stabilizer Aluminum 5″ 5.3oz (Black) TP617-5 Topoint 1,200 per 1 piece. Case for compound bow camouflage LUK-BLOKC 2,845 for 1 pc. Case for traditional recurve bow LUK-TRAD Centershot 1 927 for 1 pc. Shoulders for crossbow Scorpio 2 Ek Archery 3,265 for 1 pc. Aluminum insert for carbon archery arrows 30″ Ek Archery 37 for 1 pc. Rubber stabilizer 3.5″ 4.6oz black (TP612) Topoint 768 for 1 pc. Arrow puller Avalon Grasper Black PTR-A-QT256-1BK Avalon Archery 415 for 1 pc. Buy crossbow accessories

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