The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community banner

1 - 20 of 193 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,062 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm posting this here, in hopes of getting some rational discussion. In any other forum it will get trashed and closed faster than #2 Duke trap.

I've been watching the feeds (on Facebook) from the 2019 ATA show. Most of the crossbow manufacturers are breaking out the latest and greatest crossbows in their line. Many of which are posting bolt speeds in excess of 400 fps, some in the 450 fps range. Seems the PSE crossbow on the AR base started it at 405fps about 6 years ago, now there is the Raven, and then Ten Point, etc, etc, etc.

Traditionally, archery has been a close encounter endeavor. The fury hit with the compound bow, which expanded the distances out to 40-50 yards, and then again with the crossbow, which some manufacturers are touting firearm accuracy at 100 yards.

Question for discussion- could the speed, accuracy, and longer range killing capabilities of the modern crossbow cause the deer kill numbers to increase to such a degree that it threatens the use of a crossbow in archery season? It's almost like "be careful what you wish for".

For the record, I use a vertical bow in the fall, and a crossbow in the second season (when tags are available) and a rifle in-between. I'm what you would call an opportunistic hunter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
956 Posts
Hi Hittengguru, You are making a good point, a good example of careful what you ask for is on the archery forum (archery season length).
Drags
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,883 Posts
First a little about me... I started hunting with a bow in 1999 and used vertical bows up until 2014. I shot 21 deer in that time with a vertical bow. Then a recurring shoulder impingement in my bow arm made practice sessions unbearable and after trying to shot with a softer elbow to reduce the stress on my shoulder, I developed tendonitis in my elbow. I switched to a crossbow. Bought a Mission MXB 360 that shoots Mission bolts and 100 grain heads at 352 feet per second. I've shot 13 deer with it in 4 seasons. I hunt in a management program and shoot a lot of does.

To me, a crossbow is a much more efficient weapon than a vertical bow. It's not without its disadvantages though. The awkward shape takes quite a bit of getting used to. It's pretty much one shot and you're done, so you'd better make that first shot count. I've tried to re-cock from a tree stand and it's not fun. My x-bow is a bit noisier than I'd like. I'm also not able to de-cock without shooting into a target. The pluses are the extra speed (352 fps vs 284 fps with my Matthews Z7 at a 27.5 inch draw length and 67-68 pound draw weight), having a scope and being able to (at least some of the time) rest it on the shooting rail of my climber to get steady. The scope and extra speed increased my self imposed effective range from 25 to 35 yards. (I've not shot at anything farther than that.)

I cringe when I see the ads touting crossbows having rifle like accuracy at 100 yards, and worry that folks will begin to think of crossbows as 100 yard weapons, which in my opinion they clearly are not. I don't know what kind of kinetic energy you'd be getting at 100 yards. I would be concerned that it might not be enough to get good penetration or to open a mechanical broad head reliably on impact. This is similar to the compound bow quest to get better and faster with each design cycle. I too wonder when or if it will reach a point of diminishing returns. Ask DPMS about his experience with a Mission MXB 400 tearing up nocks. If this goes too far, I would be surprised if there wouldn't be a push for upper limits to draw weight and bolt velocities. As for one of ads touting 100 yard accuracy, the Mission Sub-1 is one. However, the selling points are a smooth trigger and release, quietness and being able to de-cock manually without having to shoot a bolt. It only shoots 350 fps.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
26,979 Posts
I find crossbow manufacturers irresponsible advertising 100 yard crossbows, and the old Ravin ad saying meet your new rifle. Sure experienced hunters would know that just because you can hit a paper tartget at 100 yds doesn't mean a deer is going to stand there and not move , but there people, a lot of them who would believe the hype.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,535 Posts
I think it won’t have that great an impact because most people will not be able to take shots that far. I said in another thread about the noise and another member mentioned the flight of the arrow and twigs, etc. However, I completely think they are doing us a disservice with advertising these distances. People against them or that have never shot one may think it’s a given. I am buying a new compound soon and will probably still pull out the crossbow at times. Maybe just how you do. I only used it these last couple years because my compound broke 7-8 years ago just as my kids were showing interest. I knew I wouldn’t have time to hunt alone for a while so I didn’t want to replace it and just invested in a crossbow. My daughter lost interest but my son got quite a few deer with the crossbow. He is 17 now and has wanted a compound the last couple years. We just got him a new compound.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
265 Posts
I hunt with a Excalibur matrix 380 it's a 380 fps crossbow and I will not shoot over 30 yds . I agree with Woods and Wexford , it's the crossbow marketing that makes someone believe that x bows are effective at that range , unfortunately some people believe the adds . I hunt thick areas with both x bow and rifle and I don't think I have ever shot a deer at over 100 yds with a gun let alone a x bow .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,260 Posts
As you said there has been bows shooting over 400FPS for a while now. Scorpyd has had a bow that shoots near 450FPS for a while. Not sure exactly when it came out. Still the majority of hunters are using a crossbow that is less than 350 FPS especially with hunting weight arrows. Some crossbows like the Excals are shot with an arrow that is lighter than the majority use for hunting. For example my Excal 330 is probably shooting 300-310 FPS with the arrow setup instead of the 330 FPS that it is rated for.

Just for comparison though I have seen shots on many hunting shows with compounds where guys are shooting 70,80 and even 100 yards.


The race for speed in crossbows was hot and heavy for a while and then it slowed down for a few years. This year it seems that there were several new "fast bows". Who knows were it will end up going.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
923 Posts
No, they have already been legalized. Advancements in FPS, thermal imaging etc.,:grin2: will not effect their use in bow season. However, technological advancements that make the weapons more effective/efficient could reduce the bag limit or length of season. IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,667 Posts
Question for discussion- could the speed, accuracy, and longer range killing capabilities of the modern crossbow cause the deer kill numbers to increase to such a degree that it threatens the use of a crossbow in archery season?
I highly doubt it...loss of hunters will likely cancel out any need for season and tag adjustments.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,620 Posts
If the PGC got rid of crossbows now it would be political suicide.Too many people have them now and those people would be contacting the politicians.How would a warden in the field know the fps?Perhaps the safety zone would increase because it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,296 Posts
I'm posting this here, in hopes of getting some rational discussion. In any other forum it will get trashed and closed faster than #2 Duke trap.
Question for discussion- could the speed, accuracy, and longer range killing capabilities of the modern crossbow cause the deer kill numbers to increase to such a degree that it threatens the use of a crossbow in archery season? It's almost like "be careful what you wish for".

I don't think so. We will hear the same thing when semi automatics are Okay'd for deer. If it's legal use it if you wish and get out and enjoy the sport.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,014 Posts
ever see what an accomplished archer can do with a recurve or longbow? some of those guys have made amazing shots. Fred Bear, Howard Hill and Ben Pearson are a few that come to mind. i was reading the biography of Fred Bear the other day and he made a 100 yard shot on a moose.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,783 Posts
I highly doubt it...loss of hunters will likely cancel out any need for season and tag adjustments.
I would agree with this. I think part of the reason for allowing the xbow in the first place was to get more hunters into the game.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
26,979 Posts
The reason for allowing crossbows into the general population of hunters was because of one legislator who screwed up the law so badly for handicapped hunters by making it so all they needed was a form signed by their family Dr. That opened the door for untold numbers of abuse of the permit because the officers investigation was removed from the equation and there were more fit people hunting with crossbows that actual handicapped people. I should also mention the legislator wanted to use a cross bow. The Commission could see no reason to continue as it was because the intent of the regulation had been over ridden by the legislature so they opened the door. I think it was the right thing to do under the circumstances they were operating under.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bohunr

·
Banned
Joined
·
26,979 Posts
That would be an accurate statement.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,849 Posts
My biggest issue with crossbows has always been the inexperienced people who just jumped into archery hunting because of them, not the crossbows themselves. I know a handful of guys who got into archery hunting purely because of the legalization of X-bows, and none of them were archery hunters before that. Every single one of them has lost AT LEAST one deer due to trying to shoot through brush like they would with a rifle. I even got into an argument with the one guy who did it multiple times before I convinced him that it is not a rifle and will not shoot through brush.

That being said, after over 20 years of hunting with various vertical bows, I switched to using an X-bow about 6 years ago due to a shoulder injury from lifting weights. Without an x-bow, I would have had to drop out of archery hunting altogether. The first few years, I used a Horton Vision and really like(d) it. It has a speed in the low 300's and is much like using the compound that I had.
Last summer I bought a TenPoint Nitro. It is a whole different animal than that Vision. It is ALOT faster - 440 fps. It seems to be more accurate, but is much more critical to shoot than my Vision. To me, the Vision is much more forgiving.
So to answer the question of the OP>>>>To me, yes, the X-bow industry is becoming it's own worst enemy. Advertising these speeds and showing those 100 yard shots is irresponsible. Way too many people, who do not have the ability to execute those shots, will be attempting them, and crippling deer as a result. Or worse, killing and not recovering deer because they attempted a shot that they shouldn't have.
When I first got that Nitro, I was immediately tempted to try shots out to 75 yards. I shot at that distance a few times, but quickly came to the conclusion that I would shoot no further than 50 at a deer, and at that only if it were ideal conditions. Not everyone out there will have the self control that I will though. If guys see it, they will try it. I don't care what skill level ANYONE has, IMHO it is totally irresponsible to shoot at a deer at 100 yards with ANY type of archery tackle. WAY too many things can happen while that arrow is in flight and 99.9% of it is very bad.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
26,979 Posts
Kudu, right on point. There are people who can't shoot a rifle with accuracy at 100 yards yet they think they can shoot a crossbow and be successful at the same distance.
 
1 - 20 of 193 Posts
Top