Best of 2020

Got You In My Sights – Our Best Crossbows

Best Crossbows

If you’re looking to buy a crossbow, it helps to know where to start. There are numerous models, all with different features, and designed for various tasks, and it can be confusing to know what to look for.

First, consider why you want a crossbow. A model that keeps the kids happy is going to be severely lacking when it comes to taking down the zombie horde or hunting food for the winter larder. For food store stocking or protection purposes, there are two main types of crossbow to consider – the compound bow and the recurve.

Compound Bows

Compound bows use a pulley system to create a fast, powerful bow. The pulleys store the energy and release it in the arrow. With an impressive accuracy, even for a beginner, your store cupboard will soon fill up, keeping to the suggested ethical hunting distances.

They tend to be quiet bows, are easy to cock, and comfortable to shoulder; however, if anything more than the basics need repairing, you’ll have to head to a bow shop.

Recurved Bows

The popular recurve bow looks like the more traditional crossbows and has a simple, easy-to-maintain design. Lighter than a compound bow, but with a slower arrow speed, they can be hard to cock, although a cocking device cancels any issues. Purists love this bow for its simplicity and are happy to overcome any small flaws.

We’ve tested the best bows available and have singled out three that we like and are more than happy with the performance after numerous trials.


1) BARNETT Whitetail Hunter STR Crossbow

BARNETT Whitetail Hunter STR Crossbow, Mossy Oak Bottomland, Standard 4x32 Scope

 

Overview

This high performance, lightweight compound bow is rapid firing at 375 feet per second and weighs in at only 6.5 lbs. The box also includes two 22 inch headhunter arrows, lightweight quiver, and a rope cocking device, among other things.

The Good

This fiberglass crossbow is well designed with safety paramount. To avoid dry firing, there is a retainer,  finger safety reminders, and innovative trigger technology – this baby ain’t firing unless you say so!

We found it fired straight and true, with incredible speed and power.

The Bad

Talking of speed and power, if you’re not prepared for the sheer audacity and glaring confidence of this fine compound bow, it can come as a bit of a shock, and may amount to a few overshot targets initially.

9.7Expert Score
A high-quality compound bow with the power to take down most targets quickly and cleanly. An easy recommendation.

Last updated on October 21, 2020 6:15 pm

2) PSE Thrive 400 Crossbow

PSE Thrive 400 Crossbow Kryptek Highlander 175lbs 4x32 Illuminated Scope Package

Overview

PSE Archery have designed a winner here. The build quality is second to none, and there are several innovative features here that improve on an already great idea, including Anti-Dry-Fire Technology. The box comes packed with four 22″ carbon bolts with bullet points, 1 discharge bolt, a 5-bolt quiver, a cocking rope, and rail lube.

The Good

With the reversed cam system boosting the kinetic energy, and the CNC mechanism, the power, speed, and accuracy afforded by this bow is more than impressive. Offering a mahoosive 142 ft lbs of energy, arrows fly at a staggering 400 fps! Pre-installed stops make this baby the ideal hunting crossbow, especially with the illuminated scope – 5 brightness levels make it infinitely adaptable to any environment.

The Bad

While the stock length is perfect for most average people, the taller individuals could find it a little short.

9.8Expert Score
The Final Verdict

If you’re after an effective compound bow, this is the bow for you. Powerful, staggeringly fast, and lots of great ideas, PSE’s bow would suit any survivalist well

Last updated on October 21, 2020 6:15 pm

3) SinoArt 58″ Takedown Recurve Bow Bamboo 

SinoArt 58" Takedown Recurve Bow Archery Right Handed Riser Bow for Hunting Target Shooting 30-60Lbs (50lbs)

Overview

It has to be said, this is a beautifully made recurve bow – a mix of bamboo, laminate, and fiberglass limbs highlights the ergonomic design which can be easily transferred from right  to left-handed.

The Good

SinoArt’s bow possesses both sinuous beauty and strength, performing exceptionally well as a silent, deadly hunting weapon. Lightweight, comfortable to hold and draw, allowing a true, straight flight, we found this was better served with feathered arrows. But it was powerful enough to take down a deer, clean and quick.

The Bad

The furry rest pad was a little tricky to fix, but no big deal.

9.6Expert Score
Elegant, sophisticated and very effective, this recurve from SinoArt checks all the right boxes and then some!

Last updated on October 21, 2020 6:15 pm