Outdoor Life - - GEAR - —W.B.

The cross­bow test panel in­cluded hunt­ing ed­i­tor Will Brant­ley, se­nior ed­i­tor Natalie Krebs, ex­ec­u­tive ed­i­tor Alex Robin­son, and archery tech Danny Hin­ton. We eval­u­ated each bow for ac­cu­racy, speed and en­ergy, han­dling and bal­ance, fit and fin­ish, trig­ger pull, cock­ing ef­fort, safety, and value. Speed was checked with a chrono­graph with fac­tory-pro­vided bolts and field points, which were also weighed so we could cal­cu­late ki­netic en­ergy. Ac­cu­racy was mea­sured by av­er­ag­ing three 3-shot groups from each tester, taken at 30 yards from a Lead Sled. Cock­ing ef­fort was sub­jec­tive but easy—is the bow a pain to cock or not? Trig­gers were weighed on a Ly­man trig­ger scale and sub­jec­tively judged for creep and travel. For safety eval­u­a­tions, we con­sid­ered such things as whether the bow’s safety mech­a­nism au­to­mat­i­cally en­gages when cocked, and if the de­sign re­quires some part of your body (hand, foot, face) to be in a po­si­tion it shouldn’t be in while you’re load­ing or shoot­ing. Ac­cu­racy, speed and ki­netic en­ergy, and han­dling and bal­ance are the key mea­sures of a cross­bow’s util­ity to a hunter, so those cat­e­gories were dou­bleweighted. What about noise? Af­ter years of cross­bow test­ing with deci­bel me­ters, we’ve de­ter­mined that, com­pared to ver­ti­cal com­pounds, all cross­bows are so loud that the dif­fer­ence be­tween them is moot for hunters.

Se­nior ed­i­tor Natalie Krebs with the Mis­sion Sub-1.

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