What is the range of a crossbow? A question that has been asked in the circle of hunters for many years.
First of all, the distance depends very much on how heavy the arrow is and which arrowhead is used. According to simple school physics, the distance of the crossbow decreases when the heavier crossbow bolt is used.
2 Things that Determine your Crossbow Range
1. Crossbow Moment
The mechanics behind a crossbow animal shot is important to understand. The simple principle is that your projectile requires enough energy to hurt the animal fatally. Often people speak of kinetic energy for rifle hunting which is an important element in distance shooting. However, momentum is a bigger driver for cross-bows than cinematic capacity.
This is important to consider because while cinematic energy and momentum are the product of a projectile’s mass and speed, they are measured differently. Kinetic energy increases with speed exponentially, while dynamics increase with speed and mass linearly. This is critical for crossbow hunting because it ensures that the arrow mass (a crossbow arrow has been traditionally called a bolt but most chasers today claim the arrow) is not decisively more valuable in your setup.
2. Shooter’s Accuracy
If the arrow is strong enough to penetrate, aiming is the next big element in destroying a game painlessly. The more you fire, the more your arrow will be impacted, if a difference happens because of aiming error or crossbow efficiency.
One way to boost your arrow’s momentum is by buying a super fast firebow. Keep in mind, though that the arrow slows down and dynamic decreases over some distance. In comparison, a quicker arrow would have a long effective drag work on it (slowing it down to a faster speed). Nevertheless the arrow’s initial speed is important at the ethical distance that an animal can be shot. Generally speaking, fire bows cost a little more money also.
The weight of the arrow is the other element of dynamism. By using strong shafts and broad tips you can modify the weight of the arrow.
The fact that you fire heavier arrows has two advantages:
Dynamism also has a directional aspect at the risk of being too scientistic so that a crosswind might play a role in shifting the momentum in the arrow. It’s worth noting, since the crosswind would also be less harmful with a heavier shot.
Apart from that, below are the four things that can determine the how far can a crossbow shoot or the range of a crossbow:
- Are you trying to test the maximum crossbow range or you are shooting for a goal?
- How good is your accuracy?
- How good is your technique?
- How fast does your crossbow can shoot (in feet per second)?
How Far Can A Crossbow Shoot
Most modern crossbows shoot between the dart at about 300 to 400 fps. If you shoot into the air with a powerful crossbow at the right angle, you can easily shoot an arrow 500 meters in good weather conditions. At this distance, of course, the arrow has little punch and correct aiming is just quite impossible. If you are only concerned about the maximum range of a crossbow 500 meters and more can be realized.
If you shoot at a target or a shooting cube, you’ll have to get a little closer to predictably reach it. The best crossbow can hit their sports equipment very precisely at a distance of 80 meters. Only a few hunters are able to deliver accurate crossbow shots at well over 80 meters.
Nevertheless, it is not unthinkable to hit the target at 150 meters and more. To hit the ring center from this distance depends on pure luck.
However, shorter distance will make better accuracy. You can see 20, 30, 40 or 50 meters more often than the long-distance tests. This is not least because of the route with the route becoming increasingly difficult to predict the trajectory of the arrows.
Depending on the shooting speed of the crossbow, the arrow sinks slower or faster. With a 350fps crossbow, a 26g arrow hits the target about 10cm lower than the height at which it has left the crossbow. At about 50 meters from the 10 cm fast times 50 cm with otherwise the same variables.
Most crossbows come with a red dot. If you want to aim as precisely as possible, you need a riflescope that can be adjusted in the distance. Some models can be set in 10-yard or 10-meter increments. The minimum distance is usually 10 or 20 yards / meter, the maximum distance usually 50 yards / meter.
For all distances beyond shooting, you have to rely on your skill and experience. That’s the only way you can estimate how high you’ll have to do the shot to balance the flight curve and place the arrow in the target. (You can also check our step by step guide on sighting a crossbow and best crossbow targets)
Differences Between Crossbow and Bow
But there are some major variations between the bow and the crossbow. A crossbow’s limbs are often much more strong than a bow’s, but they are shorter as well. This also shortens the extension of the weapon, which in turn has the consequence that stronger tractive force must compensate for the shorter acceleration path.
Here, everything is causally connected, since the shorter acceleration path and the higher power of the bow suggest that when it is shot, stronger forces act on the projectile. When fired, regular bow arrows will split. Therefore, crossbow bolts are heavier than arrows and are shorter overall due to their shorter extension. Crossbow bullets are correctly called bolts to differentiate between bows.
The fletching of bolts is another distinction, because while bow arrows typically have three-sided feathers, crossbow bolts are almost always just two-sided. This is because, unlike the bow, along its entire acceleration course, the bolt rests on the weapon’s shaft. Springs have to stick out on the sides and can not be fixed to a triangular profile, otherwise the bolt would be braked and heavy abrasion would occur.
Moreover, feathering also does not occur at all. This is done for the advantage of thin wooden wings, as it is easier to store bolts of this sort. This is extremely important for a tool that is mostly used defensively, as when kept for a long time, feathers are eaten away by bacon beetles and other bugs, or simply rot in humidity. You should plan for it early on if you go to battle, but a castle never knows when it will be threatened and must therefore still keep ammunition in stock.
The silence of the crossbow is a common belief, but this myth is grossly false. Roughly quiet, but still almost useless, are just the very weakest crossbows. When they are shot, even light crossbows make a noise that is similar to that of a bow. Medium and strong go beyond that well. A crossbow does not however, make a sound until once it is cocked, the bolt is released. The target is not alerted by the gentle creaking of the string and extension in the event of an ambush, as is the case with bows, but only with the heaviest primitive bows.
Crossbow Reach: A summary
If you do not bother to hit a target, a powerful, modern crossbow can shoot up to 500 meters or you want to shoot at a target, up to 80 meters are possible for a very experienced shooter.
If you are not a professional shooter, you should orient yourself at a maximum of 50 to 60 meters. As a beginner, 30 to 35 meters are already can be a big challenge.