There's a bit of talk on the crossbow vs firearm in SitX or general hunting.
Being a UK-based kinda guy I went and bought a couple to play with and get trained up on.
Just picked up the first one - A small 'pistol' sized xbow. (Still waiting on the full sized one)
Now it's a bit larger than a pistol and the cocking lever increases its size somewhat. But for someone in a confined space (like a car etc) this
isn't as bad as you might expect.
Anyway, here's the low-down:
Came packed in a polystyrene case and everything was in order.
The pistol bolts are nice and small, I think one of these will be excellent for small game and even fresh-water fishing.
Assembling the xbow.
You just slide the 'prod' through the gap, pack it with the tiny slip plate and rubber grommets then tighten the screw with an allen key to fix the
'prod' into place.
Next comes slipping over the two tabs on either end so the string can 'sit' comfortably.
The tricky part comes when you come to stringing it. Now for ordinary bows/longbows it is easier as you can curl your leg around one then 'kneel'
down slightly to use your entire body to bend the bow for stringing/unstringing.
For a crossbow you don't have this luxury due to the more compact nature and the fact that the arms are now installed.
So it becomes a more in-depth task.
The instructions say you should use a friend to help you, all well and good but all my buddies are miles away and I ain't calling them up on a whim,
besides which it is always good to know what you're capable of.
With no 'tiller' device (what Xbow/bow makers of old used to test the pull on the device) to bend the 'prods' arms i started by pulling down by
hand, no dice.
It's also an 80lb Xbow meaning it's a lot tougher than the usual 50lb ones...
I then used the carpet itself as a brace and me gripping the pistol grip and pushing down on the right-hand prod with as much body weight as necessary
to get the string hooked over left-hand prod-end tap.
After carefully checking the fibre glass prod wasn't going to explode under the strain the third attempt had it hooked on and adjusted.
It has a neat retainer so with a bolt in place and it cocked and ready you can move it about without the bolt dropping out.
It's raining outside and this might affect the performance but it might rain in the field and in the 'can do' spirit of ATS and survivalists out
there I began running the tests in the pouring rain.
Besides which I was itching to see what this baby could do!
The first test was at near-point blank range of about 1 yard. Obviously, you really don't want to be using it this close unless you really are
caught unawares but knowing what it can do is wise.
The thickness of the wood was *about* an inch & a 1/6. I would of used a measure but the rain was coming down relentlessly.
On shooting it, hardly any recoil and fairly quiet, you'd notice the sound but not so much that you'd equate it to being a crossbow.
Not bad, the result is better than I expected from such a small xbow. It nearly pierced the wood.
The next was a more manageable 10 yards distance, at the 5-10 yard bracket range I reckoned the bolt would have time to be at peak power for a
It was, going completely through to the other side:
Now it was time for the 25 yard test.
Not bad here either, the powers dropping off but it still would have the power to bring down or severly wound small game.
Handily the bolt has an end-cap which could be easily crafted to attach a mono-line for retrieval if you're fishing with it.
The size of a bolt (pistol) with a pair of pliers for size comparison.
The string itself isn't bad, but it does show signs of wear. This is mostly due to the cocking prongs that pull it back more than the friction of
the rail though:
The accuracy was very good, I was aiming using the iron sights and was getting within 2 inche groupings most of the time.
So overall, not a bad little thing given that it only cost about $50 plus an extra $20 for 2 x pack of bolts.
I might add a sling onto it later but its early days yet.
[edit on 5-9-2008 by WatchRider]