Having newly purchased a crossbow and coming from a compound bow I was wondering how long you can leave your crossbow cocked. While compound hunting it was not unusual for me to sit for 5 or 6 hours with all day sits during the rut. Will leaving a crossbow cocked for this entire time that I am in the stand hurt it?
You can safely leave them cocked all day. I would never leave one cocked for longer than that though. We usually get together at noon to compare notes and I always use the opportunity to release my bow.
I did a test where I left a Middleton cocked for a few weeks in a room full of freezers. It gets very hot in there in the summer. No issues or problems and it actually shot within a few f.p.s. of the original shot.
I once had a customer bring me a crossbow that had been put into a closet in a cocked condition and forgot about. (the season before) He didn't want to fire it. We loaded it up and pulled the trigger with a string. Nothing terrible happened.
I have had two bows come in with slivered limbs that were left cocked for longer than a day. One gave up on the third day and the other gave up on the fourth day. Both were compounds.