Tips on Choosing a Crossbow

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Crossbows have gained lots of popularity over the past decade and because the design and functionality of the crossbow has advanced significantly in recent years, we feel it is a must to add to your survival gear.


If you’re choosing a crossbow for the first time, it can be daunting, but is just as an important decision as choosing a rifle. We recommend trying out as many crossbows as you can, noticing how it fits to your shoulders and how it shoots. Also, crossbows are not going to be lightweight like your regular vertical bow and arrows.


When making a choice, keep in mind some important safety features; the more safety features the better. Some of these features include:

  • Ambidextrous Safety – which is very similar to a bolt-action rifle, no matter if you are right-handed or left-handed, the safety can be engaged or disengaged very quickly.
  • Dry-Fire Inhibitor – This safety feature doesn’t allow the bow to fire until a bolt is properly loaded. The dry-fire inhibitor feature will help protect the life of your crossbow. This is important because if you fire a mis-loaded or unloaded crossbow it can ruin it very quickly; not to mention cause unwanted damage to your prey.
  • Grip Guard for Finger Safety – This feature protects your thumb and forefinger in particular by keeping it out of the way when firing.

In addition to important safety features, there are some accessories that we recommend as well.

  • A scope is a must – While quality crossbows generally come with a pre-sighted scope you will still need to practice with it to ensure it is properly fitted and sighted in. Our preference of scope is either a multi-line scope or a red dot scope.
  • Cocking Aids – This isn’t a must, but it does help make cocking the crossbow quite a bit easier and is especially helpful for children, women or older men. There is the rope cocker that is one of the most popular, consisting of a rope with two handles and two pulleys that hook to the crossbow string, allowing you to cock the arrow. The cocking aid makes the job about fifty percent easier than the manual method. There’s also the crank style cocking aid, which comes permanently mounted or with a quick detach. While the permanent mounted seems convenient, many people find that it can become cumbersome, whereas the detachable style aids in drawing high poundage bows quickly and easily, then is removed until needed again.
  • Arrows – There are carbon and aluminum. Both have advantages, but the aluminum arrows are often straighter and more durable than the carbon. This is completely your preference. Having a dozen arrows is a good start; six for practice and six for use.
  • Points for Arrows – These come in a variety and you’ll want to have at least a dozen.
  • Quiver – You must have something to hold and protect your arrows. As long as your quiver does its basic job and has a cover to protect the points or broadheads then it needn’t be a very expensive one.
  • Crossbow sling – This works just like a gun sling and helps you carry it. Oftentimes a gun sling will work on a crossbow.
  • Waxes and Lubes – This is primarily for the maintenance of your crossbow and protects the rail of the crossbow and the string from dry rotting or fraying.
  • Crossbow Case – These come in soft and hardshell designs and protect your crossbow. You need to decide in what capacity you’ll use a case. For example, hunters prefer the softshell cases because it protects the crossbow from dirt while in the bed of the pickup truck, whereas a hardshell case will keep it from getting damaged, but can be rather bulky, heavy and cumbersome.

As with anything, price is a factor in a product’s quality. When it comes to crossbows, there are a variety of options available. Again, it is best to try them out before purchasing if at all possible. Crossbows can range in price from low $200s to $1000s, so get the best your money can buy and if at all possible, steer away from the ones priced in the low $200s or less. Paying for quality will provide you with a crossbow that has a better aim, better hardware and will last much, much longer.

Categories : Tips, Tricks & News


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