Crossbow -vs- Compound Bow

Crossbows and compound bows are very useful tool for hunting, but there are a number of issues to deal with when using both. We will address both the negative and positive of each to give you information so you can make an educated decision when making your purchase. Articles will also be sited to back up obvious and not so obvious issues.

  • SPEED/ENERGY
  • POWER STROKE
  • DRAW WEIGHT
  • NOISE
  • DRAWING THE BOW
  • SIZE
  • MASS WEIGHT
  • ACCURACY

 

Compound Bows typically have draw weights less than one half of a crossbow.

A 70 # compound bow is faster and has more energy than150# crossbow.

Speed is largely determined by the power stroke and draw weight.

Power Stroke:  Power stroke is the distance the bow string travels from full draw to the rest position. A compound bow with a 30 inch draw length and a 7 inch brace height (the distance from grip to the string at rest) has a 23 in power stroke (30-7=23).

The longer the power stroke the faster the arrow will fly at the same poundage. A person with a 30 inch draw will shoot faster than a person with 28 inch draw because of the 2 inch longer power stroke. Like the compound bow the longer the power stroke the faster the crossbow. Unlike the compound bow which only needs a module change to make the draw length longer, the crossbow has to be made longer increasing the overall length, making the bow heavier.                                                                                                             

DRAW WEIGHT: The draw weight is the maximum amount of force it takes to draw a bow.  Crossbows have a much higher draw weight (150# is average) to generate the speed and energy due to the much shorter power stroke (14” is average) of a crossbow.

VIBRATION=NOISE: While crossbows are getting faster there are several problems created because of the higher poundage. The extra energy creates more vibration which   adds unwanted noise, and more noise is the last thing that a hunter needs.

DRAWING THE BOW: The high poundage of a Crossbow can make it troublesome to draw. It takes lots of muscle power to draw the high poundage or the alternative is to use a cumbersome crank that takes up to 30 seconds to draw and lock the bow between shots and is very inconvenient. They are also tough on the strings, cables, and other components requiring them to be replaced or repaired often.  These are problems that you don’t typically have with a compound bow. They are quieter and the strings, cables and components will usually last for thousands of shots before needing to be replaced or repaired. But drawing the bow can still be an issue for weaker or injured persons.

SIZE: Compound bows are longer axle-axle than crossbows, but are not as cumbersome to carry through the woods. Most crossbows are around 24 inches axle-axle but are 34 inches or more in length making them heavier and harder to deal with in hunting situations.

MASS WEIGHT: Because of the over all size of the crossbow (limbs, forearm grip, and the shoulder stock) it is more than two or three times the weight of today’s compound bows, making it a chore to carry on long hunting trip.

ACCURACY: The compound bow is more accurate due to the fact of a consistent anchor point. String loops have become a must for extreme accuracy. The arrow sits between the string loop knots and the release is held on the string loop in the same place every time making it very accurate. The crossbow has to be drawn and locked into a latch where the consistent string position can be compromised, allowing for the arrow to hit the left or to the right of the target. This is why Competitive Compound Bow Shooters score higher than Cross Bow Shooters in the same tournament.

Considering all of these issues, backed by published articles from industry experts, it is not hard to see that the only real advantage that the crossbow has is being able to draw and lock it at full draw until ready to be shot. When at full draw the crossbow shooter is STILL confronted with the challenge of letting down or disarming it.  It is recommended that it be shot to be disarmed.

By installing a Draw-Loc on a Compound Bow you combine the best of both Bows.

  • FASTER AND MORE ENERGY AT LOWER DRAW WEIGHT
  • LONGER POWER STROKE
  • LESS DRAW WEIGHT FOR EASIER USE
  • QUIETER
  • DRAWING AND DISARMING THE BOW IS EASY
  • SMALLER AND LIGHTER FOR EASIER MANOUVERABLITY  
  • EXTREMLY ACCURATE
  • FUN TO SHOOT

 

Useful Links:
Myths and Facts - http://www.uxbnj.com/mythsandfacts.htm
Field & Stream Article - http://www.fieldandstream.com/blogs/hunting/2010/01/crossbows-during-reg...