Crossbow Basic Training Videos
1. Crossbow Training Part II – History
A brief history of the crossbow.
Crossbows have been around for more than 2,000 years. It’s not known whether they were developed in Asia, and imported to Europe by early explorers, or develop simultaneously on both continents.
Like this circa 1600 German made crossbow most were cumbersome heavy and slow to cock and load. This particular crossbow was cocked with a lever mechanism, which attached to the metal pins protruding from each side of the stock. The crossbow was replaced as a military weapon by the English longbow; because it’s shooter could draw, and release up to six arrows while the crossbow was re-cocked and loaded just once. When Europeans began to use black powder weapons, both forms of Bowl were replaced as a military weapon. Terms like prods and bolts are archaic when describing modern crossbows. Today’s hunting crossbows use the same terminology as modern vertical archery equipment
2. A comparison of today’s modern vertical bows and crossbows
Because the crossbow has a much shorter power stroke than the vertical bow, it must have much heavier limbs. The forward movement, and strength of the limbs combined with the length of the power stroke determined the ballistic performance of an arrow.
The vertical bow pushes the arrow more than twice the distance the crossbow does, therefore, in order for the crossbow to reach the same arrow speeds, it must have more than twice the poundage of the vertical bow. Recurve limbs on a crossbow in order to deliver similar arrow ballistic performance must be longer, and a little heavier than those on a compound crossbow.
Compound limbs on a crossbow are available in both solid and split limb configuration. The riser on a crossbow like the vertical compound bow is where the limbs attached. The attached to the front of the riser is the cocking stirrup, when manually cocking the crossbow, a foot is placed in the stirrup up to the arch to prevent slippage. The cocker bends over the stock and pulls the string back utilizing the strength of both hands arms legs, and lower back.
The stock and barrel configuration varies little on modern crossbows. The track barrels designed to permit the arrow to lay in perfect alignment with the string, but consistent arrow grouping. Stock length is determined by the bow, and power stroke of the crossbow. To match the faster speeds of compound vertical bows, crossbow manufacturers have lengthened stock, and widen bows for a longer power stroke. The barrels on crossbows will be made of either aluminum or polymer.
3. Crossbow Training Part IV – Firing and Safety Overview
Learn how cock, site and fire a crossbow correctly and safely.
above the latch mechanism that holds the bow cocked is the site bridge the safety is located on the side or at the direct rear of the site bridge. On some crossbows the safety is engaged automatically when the crossbow is cocked and on others it must be engaged manually.
When cocking the crossbow the safety must be in the fire position whether the safety is engaged automatically or manually. The arrow retention spring which is at the front of the site bridge holds the arrow on to the track until the trigger releases the latch.Because the powerful limbs move such a short distance and stop quickly the crossbow must weigh more than vertical bows to absorb shock which would otherwise be transferred to the shooter.
Every crossbow manufacturer includes an owner’s manual in the box with each model they make it is extremely important to read and understand this manual never attempt to put the crossbow together before reading the manual. If the dealer assembles the crossbow never attempt to shoot it before reading the manual.
4. A brief overview of crossbow arrows
An arrow is a shaft tipped with a broadhead or field point on one end ,and feathers or veins on the other. The crossbow bolt was a short dart like device utilized for indoors competitive crossbow shooting in Europe.
The crossbow arrow is usually shorter than the vertical bow arrow but is still an arrow. Each manufacturer stipulates in the owner’s manual the minimum size arrow to be shot out of each of their crossbow models. Never attempt to shoot an arrow that is shorter than or spined lighter than those recommended. Shooting shorter lighter arrows can create a safety hazard to you and those around you It can also damage your crossbow.
The vast majority of crossbow arrows are aluminum shafts with either a flat capped or halfmoon knock at the guidance end, and threaded inserts at the other. Broadheads should fall into the 90 to 125 grain class when utilizing the shorter and lighter arrows. Smaller heads create the opposite effect which put the balance point too far back of the arrow. Larger heads put the balance point too far forward on the arrow, causing bow front comes out heavy.
Fixed blade broadheads as a rule should be three blade configuration for best performance. The most important connection in archery is where the fixed blade broadhead connects to the arrow; that connection becomes even more critical with the lighter shorter crossbow arrow. Once the broad head is screwed into the shaft of the arrow it should be placed on a hard surface and spun. Place the tip of the broad head on a solid surface circle the shaft with the thumb and index finger of one hand and spin the shaft with the other. Closely watch the collar of the insert where the broad head is screwed into the arrow. If the broadhead spins true like a top it will fly true and if there is a wobble it must corrected before it will fly true.
5. A brief overview of crossbow broadhead arrows.
Even with perfectly tuned fixed blade broadheads, the arrow will not strike the target in the exact same place as the field points. Once the crossbow is on target the same weight, and type broadheads that will be attached when hunting should be used for final zeroing in practice. After each shot and removal from the target the broadhead should be spun again to ensure it still spins true.
In recent years manufacturers have introduced mechanical broadheads which do not overpower arrow flight. These broadheads feature blades that are retracted until impact. The mechanical heads offer a more consistent arrow flight for shorter lighter arrows launched from an overdraw equipped vertical Compound bow or a crossbow. The strike of the crossbow arrow on the target when switching to the mechanical broadhead from a field tip is much closer than with a fixed blade broadhead. Quality of performance on game with this type of broadhead has improved dramatically from earlier models.
Each manufacturer offers Quivers that attach to the crossbow to hold arrows they can be detachable or permanently mounted. Hip Quivers are available from most companies as well as archery dealers regardless of choice. It’s important that the quiver completely covers the blades of broadheads when the arrow is inserted. Never carry broadhead fixed arrows on the crossbow or off with the cutting blades exposed.
6. A brief overview of cocking the crossbow
All crossbow manufacturers offer two types of cocking devices. The first reduces draw weight by 50% it consists of a cord wrist straps, and hooks or a cocking sled that attaches to the string. The cord is placed over the stock, or back of the site bridge. The hooks or cocking sled is attached to the cross bolstering, the user then cocks the crossbow by standing up while pulling on the wrist straps. The cocking harness is very efficient although it does require some manual dexterity, and provides less physically capable individuals with the independence of cocking the crossbow
The hand cranking devices are either permanently attached to the stock, or can be easily attached, and removed. Both systems offer a mechanical means of cocking even the heaviest draw weight crossbow by most individuals. When using the cocking harness, or the hand crank cocking aid, follow the manufacturers enclosed instructions to the letter. Never use either device to uncock the crossbow.
When cocking by hand users must be extremely careful of placing the string in the same latch position each time, just as the vertical bow shooter must draw the bow to the same anchor point each time. The crossbow string must be drawn to the trigger latch in the exact same place each time for consistent arrow grouping. For the longer stocked crossbow models, even able-bodied people should consider a cocking aid to draw the string to the latch at the same place each time.
7. A brief of crossbow sight systems
8. A brief overview of Rail Lubricant and String Wax
9. A brief overview of practice range set up
10. A brief overview of Arrow Safety Loading, Trigger Release, Effective Target Outcome and Scope Fine Tuning Adjustment
11. A brief overview of site aquisition
12. A brief overview of the correct way to fire a crossbow in a tree stand.
13.Hunting Safety Guidelines
14.A very brief safety overview and closing credits