What Is A Good Crossbow For Hunting?

best hunting crossbows

If you are planning on buying a crossbow for target practice then there is no real need to be picky.

A good hunting crossbow needs to shoot at least 250 FPS, have a high quality hunt ready sight system and a solid set of safety features to prevent injury.

It’s also important to choose a hunting crossbow that shoots quietly and is easy to draw and load without too much effort on your part. (2)

Running out and buying just any crossbow can be a big mistake because there are a lot of differences between the different brands and models.

The last thing you want when you buy an excellent deer hunting crossbow is a model that you can barely pull back to full draw, is super loud when fired, and weighs a ton!

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The use of crossbows dates to ages before modern civilization. As generations come and go, the crossbows have been refurbished and modified to suit man’s needs.

Crossbows were previously used in warfare. In the present day, crossbows are used for hunting and shooting sports. In every activity, you need to know the best of the available crossbows before you buy.

For any xbow lover, there is a need to find the best one for yourself. We understand that choosing a great crossbow can be very challenging to newbies.

Our article below highlights some of the characteristics that you should consider when purchasing a new crossbow.

What is a good crossbow for deer hunting?

good crossbow for huntingFinding a top tier crossbow to buy for hunting means looking at the top crossbow features important to you before you make a purchase. Safety, speed, and accuracy are all priorities to consider when buying an excellent hunting xbow.

Draw Weight and Crossbow Weight

While purchasing a decent hunting crossbow, you should consider the draw weight and the weight of the crossbow.

The weight of a crossbow determines how difficult it will be to hold steady when at full draw.

More crossbow weight assures you of better arrow placement due to increased stability.

A light crossbow is more effective if you are hunting on the move or in a treestand. Getting an accurate shot using the lighter crossbow requires skill and experience because the xbow will be more challenging to keep steady.

The draw weight of the crossbow, on the other hand, ranges between 90-260 lbs. Most users recommend the crossbows within the average of 150 -175 lb range.

Choose a crossbow whose weight and draw weight does not wear you out, especially when you are doing a lot of target shooting or out in the field hunting.

It’s essential not to go too crazy with draw weight. Sure it’s nice to have a lot of power and arrow speed from a heavy draw weight crossbow.

But if you buy an xbow with super heavy draw weight, it could lead to problems when you need to draw while wearing lots of bulky clothes or when you are up in a small tree stand.

A Top Quality Hunting Crossbow Will Shoot At A High FPS

good hunting crossbowA high quality xbow for hunting can shoot over long distances accurately. Most hunting crossbows one can buy will fire arrows within the range of 265-400fps.

For best results, while hunting large game animals such as deer or elk, we suggest buying a crossbow capable of firing at 285 FPS or more.

Anything slower and you increase the odds of the animal jumping the string and moving before the arrow arrives, which can lead to injury.

Also, be aware that buying a super fast crossbow is going to require more maintenance and upkeep. Crossbows shooting over 400FPS are extremely powerful and are made with cutting-edge components that will need more TLC to remain functioning correctly over time.

It’s Smart To Buy A Crossbow For Deer Hunting With A Noise Reduction Mechanism

A solid choice in a hunting xbow needs to be relatively quiet so as not to alert the prey when fired.

The pulley mechanism of a crossbow creates some noise when you release an arrow. The amount of sound ranges from a dull thud to a loud snap depending on the brand and model of the crossbow.

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String and cable stops can greatly reduce the amount of noise. Whisker type string dampeners can also be very useful and most top brand crossbows to buy will have these noise muting features built in.

Buy A High-Quality Safe Crossbow

When out hunting for deer or other animals, you want a crossbow fitted with an auto safety mechanism.

When the crossbow is fully drawn the auto safety device will engage and require the shooter to click the safety to the fire position before releasing an arrow.

This is very important when hunting and moving around the forest in situations where applying the safety may be forgotten.

Another important safety feature is the anti-dry fire mechanism. The anti-dry fire mechanism protects you from making blank shots without an arrow loaded on the rail.

The safety bar is held intact until you load an arrow. This doubles as an automatic safety that automatically engages when the crossbow is cocked.

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Thumb and finger guards are also essential features on any good crossbow to buy.

It’s easy to forget about the strings and cables and how quickly they snap forward when firing.

Place your thumb or finger in the path of the string and bad things can happen. Any good xbow to buy will have robust thumb and finger guards preventing the shooter from reaching up too far near the rail of the xbow.

Consider Buying An Xbow With An Adjustable Stock

The quality of adjustable xbow stocks has improved drastically. It is now possible to buy a good crossbow with a stock that extends and locks in place to accommodate shooters of different sizes.

Having an adjustable stock is a great feature to have and can make shooting the xbow more comfortable and with more accurate results.

Great Durability Is Important For Any Hunting Crossbow

A decent deer hunting crossbow should be built to survive in any environmental conditions.

Stainless steel parts are best to avoid rust. This will also allow you to hunt in any climate.

Be wary of crossbows featuring plastic parts in high-stress areas that endure a lot of wear and tear.

While plastic and carbon fiber can be great options for lowering weight, you don’t want to buy a xbow that was designed with plastic parts just to save money during the manufacturing process.

Purchase A High-Quality Crossbow With Decent Optics

purchase xbow onlineThe optics of a good hunting crossbow determines the precision of your shot. A xbow with a scope of above 4X is suitable for long-range shots.

An xbow scope of 4X allows you a range of 20-60 yards in most cases.

A range of 10-35 yards is most suitable for beginners. As you advance in acquiring skills, you might be able to shoot out to 60-80 yards with higher end optics and greater magnification.

Just remember that beyond 40 yards, the delay between the sound of the crossbow being fired and the arrow actually arriving at the target dramatically increases.

Crossbow arrow speed drops off quickly out past 40 yards, so you must be extremely confident in your shot before squeezing that trigger or you risk injuring an animal.

Know What An Ideal Hunting Crossbow Is Before You Buy

By arming yourself with the facts of what a decent xbow should feature you will be on your way to a successful purchase.

Take your time and think about the features that are important to you and your particular hunting style and situation before you start the decision making process.

Crossbows are not inexpensive purchases, so it’s important you know what models are good crossbows to buy before you start shopping around for the best prices online.


Written by Mark Metzlov

A certified "Crossbow Guru," with over 35 years of bowhunting experience Mark loves to test new crossbow models at the range, and in the woods during hunting season. Mark is also a top-notch wild game chef who can cook up a wicked venison burger on a moment's notice!

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