Useful Tips

Crossbows: questions and answers


  • Section 1: Assembling the crossbow after purchase

You got your first crossbow in your hands, what to do next? Your new crossbow and accessories will, of course, require some simple assembly and installation of some body kit. Most crossbow manufacturers include detailed instructions, and in most cases, an assembly kit and all necessary tools are already included. The equipment of the crossbow, usually should not differ from what you saw in the photo on the website of the crossbow and bow store, looked in the section - equipment. The crossbow shoulders are almost always delivered complete, but they will have to be screwed to the crossbow guide (almost always this is one bolt). To assemble and disassemble the crossbow in the future, you just have to unscrew this bolt and your crossbow is divided into two parts: the guide and shoulders, and is ready for transportation. An optical or collimator scope is sometimes already preinstalled, but this is rare and you will have to install it yourself in 95%. But this is nothing complicated, and it will take you no more than a minute. If the crossbow is in the maximum configuration, then you will still need to install a shako (holder for arrows) and a shoulder strap. For a person who has never collected a crossbow, if there is an instruction, the whole process will take, for the first time, no more than 15-20 minutes. Your crossbow is assembled and ready.

Missing or spare parts.

If, during or after assembly, you find any remaining or missing parts, be sure to contact the store where you purchased the crossbow or the manufacturer and explain your suspicions. Using a crossbow in such a situation can lead to further damage and harm to your health and others. Be careful after assembling the crossbow, even if everything is in place, review the entire manual again.

In the entire history of the development of crossbows, they are becoming more and more powerful. To cock a crossbow with your hands is quite difficult. Crossbows permitted in Russia with a pulling force of up to 43 kg. inclusive, it is easy to cock without any devices, but do not forget that it is very difficult to ensure that the lock of the bowstring is evenly latched. Therefore, our advice, even crossbows with shoulders of 43 kg. it is better to cock using the manual tensioner that comes with the kit, if not, it is better to buy it.

Since some crossbows in tension reach 115 kg. , then manufacturers must introduce devices that will facilitate the platoon of a crossbow.

At the moment, there are 3 ways to cock a crossbow: platoon with your hands, platoon using a manual string tensioner, and platoon using a mechanical tensioner. Before cocking a crossbow, be sure to ensure that the fuse is in the FIRE position. Each method has its pros and cons, let's look at each of them in more detail.

Hands platoon

Manual cocking a crossbow, the easiest and fastest way to prepare your crossbow for a shot. Insert your foot into the stirrup, hold the bowstring with both hands, as close to the guide as possible and pull it towards you until the fuse clicks distinctively. If the crossbow has a pull force of more than 43 kg. , then cocking it with your hands is almost not possible more than 3 times. This is a huge physical activity, and for this there is a gym. Smoothly locking the bowstring into the lock is almost impossible when using this method, since one of the hands always pulls more. This factor will affect the accuracy of the crossbow. I would also like to note that if, for example, you are going to go bowling, then the force is more than 43 kg. You will not need it.

Platoon with manual tensioner

The manual tensioner of the bowstring facilitates the bowing of the bowstring, unlike the cocking by hands, almost 2 times, and very strongly unloads the back muscles. The manual tensioner gives the effect of a lever, facilitating the effort. Cocking a crossbow with a pull force of 80 kg. , with a manual tensioner you will pull about 40 kg. The manual tensioner always has 2 hook hooks and 2 handles. Insert your foot into the stirrup, place the middle of the rope in the grooves behind the aiming bar, hook the hooks from the bottom of the bowstring as close to the guide as possible and pull the handles towards you until the fuse clicks distinctively. Manual tensioner, provides an ideal platoon of the bowstring into the lock without distortions.

Platoon with a mechanical tensioner

A mechanical tensioner is almost always installed in the crossbow butt and has a handle built into the butt itself. A mechanical tensioner usually makes it easier to cock a crossbow 10 times. The mechanism itself most often has two modes. The ratchet, which does not return, you can release the tensioner handle at any moment of tension, and everything will remain in the same place. This mode is the lightest, but also the loudest. If you came to the place of prey of the beast, then use the second mode. It is completely silent, but the handle will have a reverse stroke. Remove the handle from the stock and insert it into the winch mechanism. Release the mechanism and put the hooks on the bowstring. Cock the mechanism until the fuse clicks distinctively. Release the hooks and install it in its place, remove the handle from the mechanism and place it back in the butt. A platoon with a mechanical tensioner is the lightest in terms of physical exertion, but also the longest in time. It is also worth noting that for a platoon in this way, there is no need to install a crossbow vertically (ideal for a platoon in motion and for a platoon in a cradle or tristend). Also, a mechanical tensioner is the safest way to defuse a crossbow without a shot.

  • Section 3: Installing and Selecting the Boom

Each arrow has 3 feathers, one of them is always a different color from the rest. Place the boom on the guide with excellent plumage down. Slide the boom all the way along the guide into the lock. The boom installation is complete.

Arrows for crossbows come in different lengths and may consist of different materials. The length of the boom depends on the length of the guide. Ideally, the arrowhead should be immediately after the end of the guide. If the arrow is shorter and the tip lies on the guide itself, then the junction of the sports tip and the shaft of the arrow will spoil the guide. The use of a hunting tip in this case is not possible. If the arrow is longer and the tip extends much beyond the limits of the guide, then this is the extra weight of the arrow, which will affect the accuracy and range of the arrow. The best material for arrows is carbon. But actually in 95%, it is a plastic tube entwined with carbon fiber. The advantage of the carbon arrow is that it does not bend or break, it only breaks when hit in stone or metal. Aluminum arrows bend very quickly and this will affect the flight path of the arrow. Fiberglass arrows are the most budgetary, but have an almost unpredictable arrow flight.

  • Section 4: Crossbow Sights

Most crossbows come complete with a collimator or optical sight.

Collimator sights, usually with one point or three. The collimator sight does not give any increase, but is optimally suited for shooting at close distances, up to about 30 meters. The collimator sight is battery operated, and the dots are usually highlighted in red or green and have brightness options.

Optical sights are most often 4x32. 4 - 4-fold increase, 32 - lens clearance. The scope scale can be with one crosshair, but most often the sight will have a crossbow net, with several crosshairs, for shooting the product at different distances. Modern optical sights have backlight scales. Red or green with several options for backlight intensity.

Each sight will be equipped with two switches for adjusting the sight horizontally and vertically.

We considered the main points. If suddenly you have any questions, you can always contact our consultants. If you decide to buy a crossbow and you are in Moscow, we recommend that you visit our retail crossbow and bow store in Moscow and hold the crossbow you like in your hands and make a test shot in our shooting zone. Our consultants will be happy to answer all your questions and help you make the right choice. If you wish, when ordering, you can order the assembly and sighting of the crossbow.

Go to the section for choosing and buying a crossbow. Buy crossbow.

What is the difference between a crossbow and a recursive crossbow?

The main components of these two types of crossbows are almost identical. Their main difference is in the way the bowstring is attached to the shoulders. In a classic recursive crossbow, the bow is attached directly to the ends of the shoulders and is thus directly responsible for pulling the bow back and bringing the crossbow to the full platoon position. In the compound bow, a system of blocks is used - to reduce the force required to pull the bowstring. The wheels of this system are located at the ends of the shoulders. A rope is stretched through them, and they rotate at the moments of pulling and lowering the bowstring.

How to pull a new bowstring on a recursive crossbow?

Pulling a new bowstring onto a recursive crossbow is easy. Even in the field, a stretch will take only a few minutes if you want to change a worn out, but not yet bursted bowstring. Press the left or right end of the shoulder into the ground between the legs (to prevent the crossbow from slipping) and press until the bowstring sags. Remove the old bowstring from your shoulder and immediately loop a new bowstring over it. Then just lift the old bowstring off the other shoulder. Continue to bend the bow until you can loop a new bowstring and onto the end of the second shoulder. Relieve pressure slowly. and you're done! We recommend pulling the crossbow and marking “dead center” on both sides with a white or bright marker. And do not forget to wax a new bowstring to increase its lifespan.

I would like to hunt. With what tension should I take a crossbow?

You will be surprised when you find out how many people do not know that all crossbows have different pulling forces and that for each beast you need to choose your own crossbow. Tension varies from 22.65 kg (50 lbs) for pistol-shaped crossbows to over 90 kg for full-sized crossbows. Accordingly, the bolt flies out at a speed of 39 m s, and in the second case at a speed of 90 m s.

But what is nevertheless the necessary tension force and the speed of departure of the bolt for ordinary hunting?

If you want to shoot a couple of birds with one stone, a hunting crossbow with a tensile force of 30 kg (67 lbs) is just what you need. The bolt will fly at a speed of 29 m s to 34 m s. Such a pulling force and bolt speed will be enough for hunting a turkey, antelope and even a deer, if you immediately get into its affected area.

Believe it or not, bunnies are pretty tricky and fast creatures, and shooting them from a crossbow can be quite difficult. Hearing the sound of a lowered bowstring, they immediately wag to the side, bend down or bounce. Due to the small size of the animals and their affected area, the bolt departure speed is more important for a crossbow. You need the fastest bolt that can hit a nimble animal, and not the grass on which it was sitting.

For larger animals with thicker skin and a thicker layer of subcutaneous fat, such as a deer, caribou or little bear, you will need a crossbow with a pulling force of 40 kg (88 lbs). Remember, these animals are not too fast to get off the flight path of an arrow or bolt. You need only brute force to break through the zone of destruction of the beast. Some 88 lb (40 kg) crossbows fire bolts at a speed of 45 m / s.

If you want to go hunting for really big animals (moose, bear or African buffalo), you will be helped by a 95-pound (43 kg) crossbow. The speed of the bolt will be about 50 m s.

Before starting the hunt for these amazing animals, it would be nice to practice shooting. You cannot afford to miss a bear from 35 meters, knowing that an angry bear can overcome this distance in 6 seconds, and you need 5-10 seconds to reload the crossbow. First, hunt those who will not kill you if you miss, for example, a small rabbit.

Now you know what tension force is used for different hunts, it remains only to choose a weapon and go hunting.

You bought a crossbow: first steps

Few, having acquired a crossbow, will postpone its assembly for tomorrow, even if you have played enough with an exhibition sample, and did not wait a week and a half for a parcel from the online store.

After unpacking the box, first of all, check the completeness indicated in the passport, as well as the presence of three photocopies certified by the seal of the store: Certificate, Attachments to the certificate and Information leaflet. These documents plus downloaded from the Web and printed “Changes No. 1 to GOST R 51905-2002” will help with possible communication with the police.

The assembly order of the crossbow is described in his passport, and intuitively everything should be clear. If you have strayed the "block", do not rush to take on the hexagons. I advise you to do one strange, at first glance, thing: photograph your shoulders with good sharpness - the general plan, then large - the blocks themselves.

The fact is that abroad it is not customary to set up a crossbow on your own, especially to repair, including changing a bowstring and cables - this is done by professionals. (Which, incidentally, largely explains the high GDP figures of developed countries: a doctor treats a child’s abrasion, a dealer changes a light bulb in a car, and all the money paid for this will be taken into account in the country's gross product. But this is not our method, good hands and many still have technical knowledge.) The “pros” have all the digital data, they have solid experience, there are all kinds of certified devices, such as crossbow “presses”. In addition to the passport working stroke of the bowstring, according to which you can calculate the "base of the bow", you will not have anything. Our sellers can also be understood: you will describe the “blocker” configuration technology in the instructions, and then the client, having neither experience nor equipment, will break such firewood!

If you have a crossbow-beam center or its dealer near you, all problems can be easily solved. For residents of the outback, there is only one way out - to slowly become a specialist.

Why might you need photos? Serious sellers, and even more so in crossbow-beam centers engaged in assembly and putting their names on products, all products must undergo pre-sale training. That is, your new crossbow right now, before the first shot, is perfect! The blocks are optimally tuned, and the correct position of the various technological holes and grooves relative to the edges of the shoulder will now be fixed (example in the photo on the left). When you have to change the bowstring or, all the more so, the cables, you can twist them to set the initial position in the photo. Of course, it would be better to thoroughly understand the kinematics of the process of the blocks, but in this case you will have a wonderful cheat sheet!

Now let's do the assembly.

Recursive crossbows without pads have a mark in the center of the elastic elements. This is not the truth in the last resort: it is quite possible, according to the results of the “thread test” (about it below), you will have to slightly shift them left and right.

The assembly of "recursives" with a block should not cause any difficulties. It is better to put on a bowstring with an assistant or using the supplied “stringer” (photo on the left). From the following photo you can understand the principle of its action, but for every fireman I’ll explain: put on a stringer, cock a crossbow with it, then put a twisted bowstring on bent shoulders and, holding the stringer with the phalanges of the fingers, as when cocking, press the trigger with your thumb and gently weaken tension. Due to the greater length than the bowstring, this entire procedure does not require much effort. If you have a crossbow with protection against idling, you will have to block it with an arrow simulator, for example, a pencil.

When installing block shoulders, the main thing is not to damage the cables and the bowstring against the sharp edges of the guide (on some products) and do not forget to set the “slider” correctly. This is a small plastic part with two slots along which the cables will slide. It is clearly seen that the slots have different depths. Insert the cable going from the top into the deep one and the lower one into the shallow one. The runners themselves have a different configuration (depending on the crossbow model) and are inserted into special grooves of the guide.

Now is the time to carry out the “thread test”. Tie a string loop to the bowstring where it touches the right or left side of the guide groove. Now put your foot in the stirrup and start cocking the crossbow slowly. Carefully see if the loop moves to one side or another from the edge of the gutter (goes to the side or crawls onto the guide).

If this happens, most often the reason lies in the non-synchronous operation of the blocks, and this is not very cool - you will need to configure. You can also recommend taking a 5-centimeter piece of thread with you when buying a crossbow and, as agreed and with the help of a seller, conduct a test right in the store. I think he will not refuse, he also hardly wants to face a warranty case.

Имейте только в виду, что тянуть тетиву нужно, довольно плотно прижимая фаланги указательных пальцев к боковинам направляющей, иначе тетива может непроизвольно смещаться в сторону вашей «слабой» руки.

Не всегда отрицательный результат «ниточного теста» говорит о нарушении работы блоков — это может случиться на «рекурсиве» и, как правило, свидетельствует о не севшей на место колодке. In this case, you need to try to plant it until the disappearance of small gaps with the end of the guide. Without a hammer, naturally, but gently and accurately, and then tighten the main fixing screw.

True, the technique sometimes likes to throw rings! Two years ago, on a completely new crossbow, I ran into the unknown. The blocks worked absolutely synchronously, there weren’t any gaps, so I saved two minutes on the “thread test”. After the first shots, I noticed abrasions of the right edge of the central groove of the guide, characteristic micro-scratches were also on the corresponding side of the arrows - typical signs of bowstring withdrawal. As confirmed by the good old thread. No matter how he struggled, no matter how he pulled the fasteners to no avail. He took off his shoulders, examined all the mates, did not see anything - and assembled again. The problem has evaporated! Here's what it was: a “bad” influx of paint broke off, a flash, or was it just that a random mote fell out?

Another important issue regarding the main "recursive". Before putting it on, the bowstring is twisted, first of all, to reduce wear - as you can see in the photo, in the “rest state” it is all so shaggy (the “blockers” adjust the position of the blocks with the bowstring and ropes). But not only: bows, for example, have a very important parameter of the “base” value, that is, the distance from the bowstring to the stop (the most distant point on the handle where the arrow rests). For all models, the "base" is different, and not rigidly defined, but a kind of "plug", for example, from 7 to 8 inches. Somewhere between these values ​​there will be a “middle ground” that gives maximum comfort to the shot with a minimum of vibrations, sometimes even causing unpleasant sensations in the brush. Pay attention to the real sports bows, hung with stabilizers, balancers. Reducing spurious oscillations is one of the functions of these "architectural excesses." It is no accident that in crossbow practice all kinds of “jammers” on the shoulders and bowstring were widely used, the STS system, a kind of arrow-shaped analogue of the DTK - muzzle compensator, is also gaining popularity.

A recursive crossbow, of course, is not a bow - and it weighs several times more, and you do not squeeze flexible elements in your palm. (The “blocker” does not have so much shoulders as the whole complex of eccentrics, cables and bowstrings.) But he also has his own “golden mean”. Fortunately, some recursive crossbow models have special marks at the top of the rail. If they are not available, refer to the bowstring stroke indicated in the instructions. Let's say it is 33 centimeters. The course of your actions is as follows: twisted the bowstring by 10 turns, put it on, measured the distance from the bowstring to the base of the “walnut” latch, which was, say, 36 centimeters, removed the bowstring, twisted another 5 turns - and so on, until you get the passport value . Do not forget that you need to twist the bow in the same direction in which its winding is twisted.

For, as they say, experienced users: when your crossbow feeling "settles down", try experimenting by twisting and untwisting the bowstring a couple of turns and comparing the sensations of a shot.

Replacing a bowstring and cables with a block crossbow is not so simple, but on many models it is available without the use of additional tricky devices. You can find some ways in the article “The Golden Mean”: block crossbows MK-250 and Cayman.

With shoulders, perhaps, finished. It remains to consider some more accessories, often bundled with a crossbow.

The so-called shako (in the photo on the right), in my opinion, should not be fixed according to the instructions. It looks beautiful, but it shifts the balance of the crossbow forward even more, adding extra “hinges” to the already multi-fingered weapon. The shako can be adapted to be worn on the belt, like a quiver, and it is even better to put a bucket of sand next to the stool next to the gunfire and stick arrows at a shallow depth - this is very convenient.

Speaking of arrows: check and, if necessary, screw the tips all the way. And get acquainted with the information in the articles “Arrows for Crossbow”.

A belt for carrying in civilian life is also not particularly needed - you are still a long way from the "hunting hunt".

If your weapons in the database have only mechanical sights, I recommend to get an optical sight. Issues of choosing an OP, including for hunting, are discussed in detail in the article "Sight for crossbow."

That's all. In the next article we will consider the most important topic - the installation of the sight.

When I pull a new bowstring on a crossbow, it seems that it is too short and that the bow is too tight. What's the matter here?

I suppose this is a recursive rather than a composite crossbow? To begin with, make sure that you have purchased a bowstring suitable for your crossbow size. If you still have an old bowstring, just compare them. Otherwise, find the recommended material and length of the bowstring in the user manual or on the manufacturer’s website. If you are sure that the bowstring is of the correct length and is made of the recommended material (for example, Dacron), then most likely you simply do not have enough strength to pull a recursive crossbow. A crossbow with a pulling force of more than 68 kg can be quite difficult to pull. To facilitate pulling, you can purchase a tensioner. Many new crossbow models also have a foot stirrup (rail), which allows you to hold the crossbow with your foot and pull the string with both hands.

Could you explain to me why the crossbow arrow is called a bolt?

Good question. Previously, the crossbow arrow was called "kvarrel", from the French word "carre" - square, since it had a tip of a square shape. The name "bolt", most likely, came from the English word "to bolt" - a lightning strike, hinting at a quick and sharp flight of the arrow. Or perhaps the name is also given due to the shape of the arrowhead. Now no one is already talking kvarrel, and to call a bolt an arrow is also not entirely true.

Good luck finding the best crossbow.