Over the centuries, crossbows have evolved from being tools of warfare to being tools for recreation. Crossbow makers constantly strive to make the weapon as accurate, easy-to-use, and fun-to-shoot as possible, and today’s manufacturers are no different. Here’s a rundown of the features novice and seasoned hunters alike can expect from the crossbows of 2013.
In this design, the open end of the limbs faces outward. Because this brings the center of gravity closer to the shooter, the crossbow feels lighter in the front. The weight can spell the difference between an easy, accurate shot and a nervous, terrible one. (Example: Barnett Vengeance)
Land animals aren’t the only creatures you can hunt with crossbows. There are those that have adjustable draw-weights designed to help bring down quarry in the water, like the Parker Stingray. (Contrary to its name, the Parker Stingray isn’t only for large, cartilaginous fishes with flat bodies and a venomous tail.)
For those who are unable to handle draw weights of more than 80 pounds (i.e. women, children, and elderly), there are crossbows crafted for that purpose without sacrificing power. Of course, the people belonging to these groups have the option to buy heavier, more powerful crossbows as they see fit. (Example: Scorpyd Ventilator)
Excalibur crossbows are known for their speed and power, and the Matrix 380 Xtra is no different. As its name implies, it can hit speeds of up to 380 fps. The Inferno Firestorm is no slouch either, as it can hit an incredible 375 fps even with a 165 pound draw weight. There’s the PSE TAC Elite too, with a 17.25-inch powerstroke and a jaw-dropping 405 fps.
No hunter should be forced to break the bank just to buy a good crossbow. The MXB-360 can shoot at a maximum speed of 360 fps (assuming a 160-pound draw weight), and it costs around $1,000.
The X-Force 350 is a winner among crossbows in the ergonomics department. The stock is lightweight, and is shaped for maximum comfort and accuracy. The fit of the model’s forearm can likewise be adjusted according to the shooter’s needs.
For safety purposes, the Stealth SS Crossbow incorporates rubber on a couple of components: the embedded barrel’s inserts, and the wings. Aside from keeping noise to a minimum, the wings also ensure that the shooter’s hands are kept below the deck.
Balance is the main strength of the Tactical XLT. The aircraft-grade aluminum barrel adds power and reduces weight at the same time, while the arrow retention spring dampeners keep the projectile from vibrating too much.
The Crusader crossbow has limbs made of fiberglass, enabling them to withstand multiple shots for a long time. The stock is likewise reinforced with a composite material.
Crossbows come in all shapes, sizes, strengths, and weaknesses. Pick one according to your skill level, hunting terrain, and budget. If you don’t know how to choose one of these beauties, consult with a professional or your crossbow vendor.
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