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The Crossbow Wars #8115046 01/04/21 09:12 PM
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Wow, we are in the midst of a crossbow arms race! Prices have steadily creeped up every year for a decade plus, but ever since the Ravin brand hit the market it's triggered a marketing and engineering arms race, similar to what happened with bows! I just saw an ad for what looked like a really nice Ten Point crossbow; was curious enough to go look at it online... $3,600+! It looks like the super-premium category is here.

I have no bone to pick here as I do not own a crossbow yet, nor does my budget cover a weapon that expensive. I'd much rather have a thermal optic for one of my rifles than pay that much, but I work in sales/marketing and this is very interesting to me. Just like YETI created an entirely new category, it looks like this arms race of who can make the fastest/lightest/most accurate crossbow is on, with no end in sight. The good news is that it will introduce new technology and materials and that should have a positive impact on even the lower and middle end of the spectrum. A similar thing happened to camo. If you go to Academy or even Under Armour, you'll find affordable camo made up of lighter, scent reducing materials, and that's driven by a trickledown from KUIU and Sitka pushing the envelope at the top end of the spectrum with their insanely expensive stuff. Just a few years ago, Academy camo was the old school canvas stuff! In the meantime, marketers will continue to push their messaging to drive the market ("the lightest, most durable materials", "new pattern developed in partnership with NASA"), just like happened to bows ("dual cam action", "single oblique cam", "no cam", "cam made from titanium/nanotubes/human cartilage"). "What, you're still using a three year old bow? You can't possibly kill one of these huge bucks without the latest Matthews, endorsed by our legendary pro staffers and these three newbie huntresses"! smile

I also wonder what the arms race will do to crossbow reliability. As manufacturers introduce more power/higher velocity out of lighter materials, will this compromise durability and simplicity? I've only ever hunted with Excalibur crossbows, and I love how basic and simple they are, less complexity usually means less risk of issues).

Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.

Last edited by Exiled; 01/04/21 09:14 PM.

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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115067 01/04/21 09:20 PM
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Good perspective.

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115089 01/04/21 09:33 PM
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They will continue to push the boundaries of what guys will buy, I’d be out well below a grand, it’s not like a gun where they pretty much hold their value or increase over time, It’s a crossbow that In 5 years will be worth peanuts or sold in a garage sale in 10. To each their own but that’s simply nutty pricing. I’d rather have the gun that shoots the arrow out of it that was posted the other day for $700.

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115092 01/04/21 09:35 PM
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Never really shot a crossbow much.

I did see a couple of photos this year from guys that had fingers lopped off by them though. wink

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115141 01/04/21 10:25 PM
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Good info

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115441 01/05/21 01:32 AM
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I only have one because I live in Grayson county (AO) and my 64+ year-old shoulders won't hold up pulling a compound bow.
There fast, fun to shoot and accurate but really it's not my thing. I shot shot a bobcat with it and never found the bolt.

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115453 01/05/21 01:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Exiled


Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.



The fact that crossbows are allowed in the Archery season at all shows that its not gonna do anything at all.

Although technically its archery, I'm in the camp that believes its not really bow hunting. I don't believe that their range is really all that extended over a vertical bow as I've made kills at 80 + yards with my compound bow, but when you eliminate the draw cycle and add in a telescopic sight its not near as challenging.

most bowhunters get busted on the draw and that has saved many a deer's life. Its eliminated with a crossbow.


I support their use during general season but don't compare using a crossbow to using a vertical bow in any other aspect other than they both put a shaft thru an animal.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115550 01/05/21 03:00 AM
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txtrophy,I agree. Forrest

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: txtrophy85] #8115677 01/05/21 04:57 AM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by Exiled


Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.



The fact that crossbows are allowed in the Archery season at all shows that its not gonna do anything at all.

Although technically its archery, I'm in the camp that believes its not really bow hunting. I don't believe that their range is really all that extended over a vertical bow as I've made kills at 80 + yards with my compound bow, but when you eliminate the draw cycle and add in a telescopic sight its not near as challenging.

most bowhunters get busted on the draw and that has saved many a deer's life. Its eliminated with a crossbow.


I support their use during general season but don't compare using a crossbow to using a vertical bow in any other aspect other than they both put a shaft thru an animal.

Have you ever hunted with a crossbow?


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: angus1956] #8115852 01/05/21 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by angus1956
I only have one because I live in Grayson county (AO) and my 64+ year-old shoulders won't hold up pulling a compound bow.
There fast, fun to shoot and accurate but really it's not my thing. I shot shot a bobcat with it and never found the bolt.

I also went to a crossbow due to my second rebuild on my right shoulder and I am your age. I am still trying to get to where I can pull my compound bow with enough draw weight as I still prefer to hunt with it. The OP is correct, the prices for new top of the line crossbows and compounds have skyrocketed. You can purchase a fantastic rifle and scope for the price of the most expensive bows.

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115865 01/05/21 01:35 PM
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anything that kills the deer cleaner and deadlier......I'm a fan of......don't give a rats a$$ about it not being as challenging.......egos are way down at the bottom of my list for rules we should implement or consider when it comes to killing animals.....


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: stxranchman] #8115885 01/05/21 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by stxranchman
Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by Exiled


Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.



The fact that crossbows are allowed in the Archery season at all shows that its not gonna do anything at all.

Although technically its archery, I'm in the camp that believes its not really bow hunting. I don't believe that their range is really all that extended over a vertical bow as I've made kills at 80 + yards with my compound bow, but when you eliminate the draw cycle and add in a telescopic sight its not near as challenging.

most bowhunters get busted on the draw and that has saved many a deer's life. Its eliminated with a crossbow.


I support their use during general season but don't compare using a crossbow to using a vertical bow in any other aspect other than they both put a shaft thru an animal.

Have you ever hunted with a crossbow?


Yes I have. I have not killed anything with it though.

I’m not anti crossbow by any stretch and will probably buy one for my wife and daughter to use this upcoming season.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: txtrophy85] #8115902 01/05/21 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by stxranchman
Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by Exiled


Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.



The fact that crossbows are allowed in the Archery season at all shows that its not gonna do anything at all.

Although technically its archery, I'm in the camp that believes its not really bow hunting. I don't believe that their range is really all that extended over a vertical bow as I've made kills at 80 + yards with my compound bow, but when you eliminate the draw cycle and add in a telescopic sight its not near as challenging.

most bowhunters get busted on the draw and that has saved many a deer's life. Its eliminated with a crossbow.


I support their use during general season but don't compare using a crossbow to using a vertical bow in any other aspect other than they both put a shaft thru an animal.

Have you ever hunted with a crossbow?


Yes I have. I have not killed anything with it though.

I’m not anti crossbow by any stretch and will probably buy one for my wife and daughter to use this upcoming season.

Why were you not successful since you had eliminated the draw aspect? You claimed it made the hunting easier....deer should have just died when you showed up since you did not have to draw....... grin I am in the camp of I believe in hunting with what you want to in the season that it is legal and where you want to.


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Pitchfork Predator] #8115907 01/05/21 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Pitchfork Predator
anything that kills the deer cleaner and deadlier......I'm a fan of......don't give a rats a$$ about it not being as challenging.......egos are way down at the bottom of my list for rules we should implement or consider when it comes to killing animals.....

I agree with this!


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115925 01/05/21 02:26 PM
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I bought a crossbow this year. My old compound was going to need some work and I figured for what it was going to cost me at the bow shop to get an older bow up and running like new again I may as well stick my money into something else. I ended up buying an excaliber crossbow from cabelas for about $400 i think.

To me it is much more user friendly than a normal compound bow, i sighted it in and was drilling bullseyes in 5 shots. My wife nailed the bullseye first shot and my 5 year old(with a little help) and mother who hasn't shot a gun or bow in over 30 years shot it plenty well enough to hit vitals at 20-30 yards. It is much more rifle like.... but it isnt a rifle! They are not flat shooting by any means. I sighted mine in and checked it at the various distanced per the hash marks in the scope and found it to be very accurate and consistent. Sitting in a blind with my wife and 2 year old i shot at a javalina with it. I hadnt shot past 40 yards with it so wanted to limit my shots to that, in the hubub of having a little kid in the blind that wanted to look and tryign to keep her quiet i shot at the javi with the 40 yard hash mark when the javi had actualy come in to 35 yards or so and the arrow sailed right over his back.... worst part? Loosing the probably $15 arrow/broadhead lol444

My take is that a crossbow doesnt increase the capability as much as it reduces the amount of practice required to attain that capability.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8115963 01/05/21 02:43 PM
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I hunt with all of em, depends on my mood on that particular day. I have a nice compound, decent crossbow, fantastic recurve, and an untested on deer longbow. I have taken 1 deer each with all but the longbow and multiple pigs with all of them. I have also taken turkey with the compound (2) and recurve (1).
What does this say about the OP, not much really. Just saying in the right hands they all kill game, it is your responsibility, whatever you choose, to make sure you hands are the right ones

Last edited by Kevin Heath; 01/05/21 02:43 PM.

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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Pitchfork Predator] #8116035 01/05/21 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Pitchfork Predator
anything that kills the deer cleaner and deadlier......I'm a fan of......don't give a rats a$$ about it not being as challenging.......egos are way down at the bottom of my list for rules we should implement or consider when it comes to killing animals.....

My feelings as well. Its far from a slam dunk also.

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: txtrophy85] #8116100 01/05/21 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by Exiled


Finally, what does the ability to shoot a deer from 70 or 80 yards (or more) with reliable accuracy with one of these cutting edge weapons do to "archery" season and potential bag limits? This one is going to be interesting to follow.



The fact that crossbows are allowed in the Archery season at all shows that its not gonna do anything at all.

Although technically its archery, I'm in the camp that believes its not really bow hunting. I don't believe that their range is really all that extended over a vertical bow as I've made kills at 80 + yards with my compound bow, but when you eliminate the draw cycle and add in a telescopic sight its not near as challenging.

most bowhunters get busted on the draw and that has saved many a deer's life. Its eliminated with a crossbow.


I support their use during general season but don't compare using a crossbow to using a vertical bow in any other aspect other than they both put a shaft thru an animal.


I agree with this. Also with redchevy about the practice. It’s not the same. That said, I was pleasantly surprised that the inclusion of crossbows during bow season did not have any appreciable negative effect that I could see here in Texas. It was sold as a hunter recruitment opportunity when it was really just a manufacturer backed push to sell more crossbows. (New hunters are not likely to start with a crossbow.) Turns out here in Texas most vertical bow hunters stuck with their vertical bows and most rifle hunters who bought crossbows didn’t like the limitations even a crossbow provides compared to a rifle. The vast changes in the industry as far as technology may change this, but I doubt it.
It’s a different story out west. These changes are simply another extension of the long range shooting trend that’s been on the upswing for years. I expect that pendulum to swing back also as the years go by, but maybe it won’t.


Originally Posted By: Russ79
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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: redchevy] #8116134 01/05/21 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by redchevy


My take is that a crossbow doesnt increase the capability as much as it reduces the amount of practice required to attain that capability.


100% nailed it.


And that is ok.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: txtrophy85] #8116138 01/05/21 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by redchevy


My take is that a crossbow doesnt increase the capability as much as it reduces the amount of practice required to attain that capability.


100% nailed it.


And that is ok.

In the end that is why I went with an x-bow, so my wife and son could take advantage of archery season without having to put in the dedication to learn to shoot a compound. They enjoy hunting, but at the time neither is that interested in it, but when they can pick up the crossbow and its essentially like shooting a scoped rifle at 30 yards its game on.


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8116233 01/05/21 05:21 PM
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I started with an entry level Parker compound that I bought almost by accident, but recently upgraded to a very lightly used Excalibur Matrix Bulldog 380. The Bulldog 380, as the online Excalibur forum tells us, isn't for the weak, but the simplicity and easy maintenance make up for any theoretical lack of super-duper velocity, at least to my mind. I've no real interest in any of the compound crossbows that cost silly money, and are obsolete within 18 months.


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8116257 01/05/21 05:31 PM
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I was an avid bow hunter old age eye sight (diabetes) and bad shoulders made me have to stop I don’t have anything against a fellow hunter if they want to hunt with a crossbow but I don’t want to use one and I don’t have any interest in shooting one with a rifle I enjoy hunting with the grandkids now if someone enjoys hunting with a crossbow power to them have fun

Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8116263 01/05/21 05:36 PM
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I guess we are all different and nothing against that. I don't gain my interest in hunting from how I kill the deer. I enjoy hunting and that is why I do it. Ive killed deer with scoped rifles, iron sight rifles, pistols, bows, muzzleloaders, and hopefully next year I will get to add crossbow to the list. They are all enjoyable to me.


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8116278 01/05/21 05:52 PM
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Shooting deer with anything isn't the challenge to me, it's getting up close that's challenging. The best hunt in my life was with my 8 year old granddaughter last October. We were in a ground blind an she took her first deer, 9 point , with a Parker Thunderhawk crossbow at 17 yards. its hard enough for me to get that close to a deer but with an 8 year old it was even tougher. We got it done and she got her first 3 deer with a crossbow, longest shot was 17 yards closest was about 9 yards. She told her dad that she doesn't even want a rifle.


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Re: The Crossbow Wars [Re: Exiled] #8116283 01/05/21 05:55 PM
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With all this being said , what is a good Crossbow under 700.00 ?


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