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Bow Wars: The Crossbow Controversy

Do crossbows represent the salvation of hunting as we know it, or should they be outlawed from the nation’s archery seasons? How the bow wars are dividing America’s hunters.

With a fast-paced job and a house in the suburbs of Columbus, Dave Risley is a quintessential Ohio deer hunter. He’s surrounded by an exploding whitetail herd, and hunting seasons are long and generous. But he has little time to get out in the field and even less to devote to his first love, bowhunting.

 

So Risley hunts with a tool that—with relatively little practice or alteration—allows him consistent harvest success during Ohio’s four-month archery season. Like 140,000 fellow Buckeyes, Risley hunts with a crossbow.

 

What makes him different is that he is also Ohio’s wildlife management chief, and it’s his job to balance hunting opportunity, wildlife populations and regulation of hunting implements. And Risley is an unapologetic fan of crossbows.

 

“Crossbows allow hunters to get out in the woods more often, and allow them to be more successful hunters,” says Risley. “For wildlife managers trying to kill as many deer as possible, crossbows have become a necessary tool.”

 

Crossbows have been legal in Ohio’s archery season since 1984. Every year they grow in popularity, and in the past decade the number of archery hunters who used a crossbow has been about the same as the number who hunt with compounds, recurves and longbows combined. In Ohio’s 2007–08 deer season, crossbow hunters harvested more than 42,000 whitetails, more even than “vertical” bow hunters, who took a record 36,347 deer. In all, archers accounted for more than a third of the state’s 233,000 deer harvested.

 

More meaningful than their success is crossbow hunters’ participation, says Risley. “Every game agency across the nation is lamenting the loss of hunters and license revenue. By embracing crossbow shooters, Ohio has managed to get and keep hunters, and as a result I’d say the archery hunters in this state have more credibility and clout than ever.”

 

Ed Wentzler couldn’t disagree more. The legislative director for United Bowhunters of Pennsylvania, Wentzler considers crossbows an unwelcome abomination, and he’s especially rankled that the implements were approved in January for inclusion in the Keystone State’s six-week archery deer season. This fall’s season will be the first to include crossbows, and even before the first bolt is launched, Wentzler is concerned that archery harvest will increase so sharply that gun hunters will lobby to shorten the season to leave more deer for their ranks.

 

Besides, says Wentzler—a longbow shooter whose last few deer were taken with stone points that he knapped himself—crossbows simply are not bows.

 

“Archery equipment should be defined as implements that are held by hand, drawn by hand and released by the motion of the hand in the presence of game,” he says. “If you are shooting a crossbow, you are not drawing the string in the presence of game. That alone gives crossbow shooters an unfair advantage. It is not bowhunting.”

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from vietnamvet66 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

I have been a deer & elk (Colorado) hunter most of my adult life. However, I am now 64 years old and a recent recipient of shoulder surgery and can not pull a compound bow. This is the first year I have hunted with a cross bow and found it more challenging than a firearm. I envy the hunters that have the agility, ability and/or youthfulness to pull a compound. Please don’t knock us “old guys” for using equipment that allows us to venture into the field in the pursuit of game. Just F.Y.I. I passed up an 8 point buck Monday, 11-09-09 because I didn’t feel that he was close enough for a sure shot. I still enjoyed the day in the woods.

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from vietnamvet66 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

I have been a deer & elk(Colorado) hunter most of my adult life. However, I am now 64 years old and a recent recipient of shoulder surgery. This is the first year I have tried cross bow hunting and found it more chalenging than hunting with a firearm. I can not pull a compound bow so this is my only alternative to expanding my hunting seasons. I appreciate the fact that Ohio, where I live, allows cross bows for deer hunting. For those hunters who are able to use a compound bow, I envy you for your youth, strength and agility. Please give us "old guys" a break. We enjoy the outdoors and the hunt just as well. Just F.Y.I. I passed up an 8 point Monday 11-09-09 because I didn't feel he was close enough. Sure enjoyed the day though.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 37 weeks ago

Benrichards87

No fears Ben -- I am a compound bow shooter; however, crossbows have been allowed in archery-only hunting seasons for many years now in Ontario - and it has only enhanced the overall sport - the same as compounds did when they gradually got accepted. I'm just happy to see some youngsters taking up the sport. Having said this, you have to be at least 12 years old to take the Hunter Education Program in Ontario - and you have to have the Program before you can hunt. And I believe they need this education.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

You guys sound like a bunch of women whining. Traditional archers sounded the same 30 years ago, when compound bows became popular. Today manufacturers still produce recurves and long bows. Traditional archers at the time thought they were the better hunters and shooters. Now the compound bow hunters are whining like little babies claiming the woods belongs to them. I am surprised that the compound bow crowd has not tried to eliminate rifle and shotguns as not being pure enough. Why don't we just limit Xbows to one eyed, one armed, one legged people over the age of 90.

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from benrichards87 wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

I'm from Michigan were they are now allowing crossbow use for any age in the southern part of the state. I don't have a problem with hunters taking crossbows to the woods because I don't think they will cause a spike in deer kills. They still have to hunt. If you gave me a $2000 crossbow, I would still choose my compound. I'm confident that I would out-shoot the average crossbow hunter at 40 yards with my compound.

My only problem with allowing crossbows is that they are allowing young kids to use them. A 10 year old wants to start hunting. He/she has the choice to use a compound bow with a 35 pound draw weight or a crossbow that their parents will draw for them, long before they have to shoot. They will choose the crossbow. I'm 20 years old and in 30 years, I still hope to be hunting with my compound or recurve. My fear is that with so many young crossbow hunters coming in and so many traditional hunters on their way out, there will be a whole new generation of hunters only using crossbows. The top bow makers are not going to spend money on making top of the line equipment for traditional archers. They will be forced to make the best crossbow in order to stay in business. I will be forced out of hunting. Crossbows should only be allowed for the disabled or anyone over the age of 45.

I will continue using my compound and recurve.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

I shoot side by side with some folks at the local outdoor archery range (70 lb compound, 50lb recurve/long bow), I can't say that I have seen what you are suggesting being demonstrated. Most of these people are little guys(Asians) shooting the latest line of crossbows.Some blow right through the bales and so they use foam blocks instead. Their bolts are visually much faster than my arrows and pack much more wallop with better accuracy-physics and ergonomics in action first hand, again.

I have also hunted with some of these folk, the allegation that they can't use hand held bows with enough poundage to kill a deer is also false. I have seen them be successful with a hand held bow with my own eyes. Dragging them out whole (for religious, cultural reasons) seems to be the norm and they do struggle with that. Unless of course I offer to supply my hand cart, which I have done.

This brings up an issue of recruitment for people preferring to use high energy crossbows over low energy hand held bows-how do they expect to pack something out if they don't have the strength to shoot a 30-35 lb bow? ATVs and crossbows becoming the norm? I hope not as ATV misuse, overuse opens up an whole other can of worms.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

Laws of physics don't lie Swampthing -- both compounds and crossbows have very high trajectories. The high trajectories make the crossbow a 40-yard weapon - a bow for archery seasons. Take a Hooter Shooting Machine and well matched arrows and you use it to sight in any high performance compound bow at 200 yards and you can shoot tight 4" groups on a calm day out to 200 yards too - but a hunter could never hit anything inbetween in a hunting situation -- not that it would be ethical to even try to do so anyway. The high performance 175# crossbow tested had a drop of 26" between 20 and 50 yards while the compound bow tested,set at 70# had a drop of 27.5" between 20 and 50 yards. You can't change that. It is arrow speed that dictates trajectory.

Just looked through the latest catelogue for Horton -- Their crossbows are advertised at 305 to 350 fps depending on the model. Ten Point advertises from 300 to 343 fps depending on the model. Parker advertises from 315 to 350 fps depending on the model. The Armcross advertises 305 fps (they have only one model). Bottom line is that crossbow manufacturers are not that far apart - and we have many compound bow manufacturers out there today that advertise these same kinds of speeds.

One of the problems with comparing crossbows today is that the crossbow manufacturers out there haven't yet settled on a base line for comparisons. Some use 400 grain bolts; some use 420 grain bolts; and at least one used 425 grain bolts.

Another interesting point is that in 3-D Shoots where crossbows are allowed (within their own divisions) the crossbow shooters shoot from the same stakes as compound shooters. Top scoring compound shooters consistently out-perform the top scoring crossbow shooters.

Compound vs. Crossbow – Kitchener 3-D Shoot
Category 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Average

Senior Compound 416 406 404 400 400 405.2

Senior Crossbow 409 400 363 343 278 358.6

These scores were not unusual. The organizers of this annual event told me that average compound shooter scores are regularly higher than those of crossbow shooters at these events. I attribute this to the fact that both the compound bows and crossbows are shot from standing positions in this shoot. Many years ago, before I started to hunt exclusively with the bow, I was a competition rifle shooter and a rifle hunter. Shooting from standing positions was always much more difficult than shooting from prone, sitting, or kneeling positions; in fact, very few shooters shoot their best when shooting from off-hand, standing positions. With the crossbow I found that standing-shot errors were magnified a bit because having the bow out in front of the stock makes the crossbow a bit front heavy, and this all has to be controlled by the front arm.

Something more to think about?

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

I stand corrected on the NBEF manual I'll scold my class material supplier as there are usually 1-2 crossbow users in the bowhunter ed classes that could use that info.

As far as the crossbow vs compound bow testing you have pretty much limited yourslef to just a few examples. Way to many variables out there to make simple assumption that they all shoot the same. My personal file is about 5 inches thick and weighs about 7 lbs, so my info is far from just being my opinion. I recall a simple test done on a Great lakes-Durango about 4 years ago and the author who had never shot a corssbow before put arrows in a 4" group at 100 yds rather quickly. Again it is not I who is making claims that the new crossbow can shoot 1 " groups at 100 yds and 4" groups at 200 yds(one arrow hole groups by military sharpshooters) It is the sales staff from PSE and their TAC that was demoed this year at ATA show. Gotta wonder what the new line of springolts would do if there is no defined upper limit.

ASTM does have a method for testing bows, its not free but has sound physics behind it. Also must bear in mind that ergonomics are also a factor (man + machine). Bench tests are lot differtnt than shooting them in the field. Hand someone a crossbow and most will shoot very nearly the same without adjustments, give a bunch of a people a hand held bow (compound, recure or longbow) most if not all will shoot them differently.That's why folks need to get properly set up for their own body type and form, and practice to be a good bowhunter-thus the need for a private season. Crossbowmen really don't have to practice-many would argue they don't need to have long season separate from firearms.

My crossbow shoots a lot more accurately than my compound bow, they are separated by about 25 years in technological developments, crossbow still shoots better with that disadvantage.
Not surprisingly my compound and recurve shoot alot better than my long bow. So much for personal testing...

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

I see that the formatting for the schedules in my comment above sent was not accepted so for your convenience I've re-written them in a different format. Hopefully this will work.

Trajectories - all shots taken using 20-yard pin

Crossbow 30 yards -5.75"; 40 yards -16.25"; 50 yards -26.00"

Compound 30 yards -6.00"; 40 yards -16.75"; 50 yards -27.50"

Penetrations - All shots taken at four yards

Crossbow Penetration (Foam)15 12/16” (Plywood & Foam) 11 9/16”

Compound Penetration (Foam)17 14/16” (Plywood & Foam) 11 4/16”

Hope this helps!

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

Swampthing

As explained above I am not a crossbow user - but I am a dedicated bowhunter who happens to use compound bows. I presently use a Bladerunner A51 compound. I did the comparision between crossbows and compounds after witnessing the destruction of the crossbow at the PBA convention. I frankly wondered what all the fuss was about. The vast majority of those people had never held a crossbow in their hands before let alone shot one. There was little literature about crossbows available at the time so I decided to do my own testing to find out what the real facts were.

The tests were done in a very controlled way. The bow used were an Excalibur Exocet Crossbow (175#) and a Golden Eagle Splitfire compound bow set at 70#. Arrows and bolts were each 400 grains. Both bows were sighted in at 20 yards and, using the 20-yard pin only, arrows and bolts were shot at 30, 40 & 50 yards - with the trajectory for each shot carefully measured (in fact each shot taken was video taped). The trajectory drops were almost identical for the two setups.

20 yards 30yards 40 yards 50 yards
Crossbow 0 -5.75" -16.25" -26.00"

Compound 0 -6.00" -16.75" -27.50

We had similar results with penetration tests with the compound bow slightly beating out the crossbow when shooting into dense insulation foam, and with the crossbow slightly beating out the compound bow when shot through 5-ply plywood backed with the same insulation foam.

4 yards 4 yards
Foam Only Plywood Backed With Foam

Crossbow Penetration 15 12/16” 11 9/16”

Compound Penetration 17 14/16” 11 4/16”

these results were not surprising. The compound bow arrows used, while of the same weight as the crossbow bolts, were of smaller diameter and thus had less friction when penetrating. The crossbow bolts, being much shorter than the arrows, had less tendency to bend when hitting the plywood than the longer arrows.

What testing have you personally done to back up the statements you have made above Swampthing? I don't see anything there of note that isn't just opinion! Go do you own testing - If you do the the testing properly you'll come to the same conclusions as we did in our tests. You'll also come to a better understanding of crossbows and some basic laws of physics.

By the way, you are way out of date on the materials used in the IBEP programs. The NBEF has had a crossbow supplement manual out for some time now. It is a 28 page manual called "Today's Crossbow - An Addendum to a Hunter Education or Bowhunter Education Course". It is available through the NBEF store.

Good Hunting!

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

Oh way funny Phil! I am sure the folks at RAC are very familiar with Broken Arrows test described above. I am not big on willfully destroying good equipment but have been close to throwing my own bow sometimes when it isn't working right(usually target panic a know variable in shooting a hand held bow).

But seriously when someone mentions tests one has to keep in mind how it was designed and performed. What it ASTM, ANSI,method or just a testimonial? Who performed the test and did they have pre-established opinions and goals, was it impartial? Were items reported that didn't go along with the thesis? How were they explained? I have read many "tests" that wouldn't hold up to peer review. My suggestion is to talk to someone like Norb Mulaney who haas probably done more tests and written more articles on archery equipment than anyone alive.

Getting back to my inquiry about NBEF and crossbow training I don't see anything speciifc to crossbows in the 80 page "Today's Bowhunter" teaching manual used at the NBEF courses. Only item I was aware of the last time I held a course(2008) was the tree stand video that covered crossbows as well as hand held bows.

Yes P & Y were against compound bows at one time, they still have specific requirements for technical advancements that can be used in taking game to be entered into the record books. They have "evolved" but still have a defined limitation. Many of the states rules books have archery definiitons too, especially Montana!

When we look at this controversy that's simply what its about isn't it? How much technology is acceptable in a season that has a history of being created for primitive weapons? Again, I would argue that is for the bowhunters to define not the manufacturer groups, firearms lobby or an judge educated by only on side of the argument to decide.

Bows-10,000 yrs
Crossbows-1,000yrs
Muzzleloaders-500 yrs
High Power Cartridges-200 yrs

We all share the woods, hand held bows having the longest history
What's next?

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from toxyphil wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

I am glad someone has done some appropriate testing.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

swampthingMN -- Are at all reading anything posted by others? The comments I make about Ontario for example? the comments made about our own testing where we compared compounds to crossbows? P&Y were against compounds at one time -- The world evolves! States and provinces are gradually allowing crossbows to be used in bowhunting seasons for the simple fact that crossbows just don't have the power and long-range shooting capabilities that some 'against crossbows' groups made them out to be. Their shooting capabilities are about the same as compounds. The PBS group is a good example -- They even have an anti-crossbow committee and I have wittnessed this group sponsoring a 'crossbow throwing' contest at an annual convention where members took turns throwing a brand new crossbow on a cement parking lot to see who could do the most damage. They destroyed it of course -- seemed pretty silly to me - and that is why we did the testing we did. Tests don't lie!

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

That's the problem you are teaching folks that a crossbow is just like any other bow, its not-I have shot them too. Even my five year old knows this. I am also a NBEF instructor. I don't do my students the disservice of telling them that is is a bow and its just like any other bow you have ever shot. I doubt you tested the TAC-15 as its new this year. Please update your information.

A recommendation of 4O yards is different than practice. You can
(and should) shoot deer with a 270 and high power scope at 40-50 or 100 yards but the effective range is way way beyond that. Most guys can't see too much further than that in the woods..

If there is so much support fot the crossbow weapon why do they need to hide behind the ATA and NRA to get them approved in states where they are not curently used?? Why are such large organizations as
P & Y , NABC and many, many archery clubs against their use? If it was such a simple argument they could stand on their own merits, they have yet to convince me and plenty of my feloow archers. I have researched the issue, plenty and talk to folks all over the country, my reasoning is sound (OH gee I have even taken college courses on the subjects of scientific reasoning as well as physics and engineering, politics).

I plan on continuing the argument that firearms should be used in firearms season, muzzleloaders in their season and hand held bows in their season-the one my ancestors fought and lobbied for. Crossbows don't get a free pass to be used in all three. If all type of hunting equipment needs to be defined by statute and appropriate periods of use established, so be it. A far cry better than just throwing a new weapon into an exisitng group (one who doesn't want it) and call it a day.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

Swampthing -- I don't know where you are getting your information but it is terribly flawed. In my tests the 175# crossbow tested had a trajectory drop of well over two feet between 20 and 50 yards. 4" groups at 200 yards - hogwash! Almost all crossbow manufacturers have a recommended max hunting distance of 40 yards - same as recommended by the National Bowhunter Education Foundation for other types of bows. I am a Master Instructor with the NBEF - Ontario -- We teach the crossbow as just being another bow - along with longbows, recurves & compounds.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

The TAC-15 didn't exist in 2004, the upper extremes for crossbows (nor compounds) are not generally defined in many state statutes. (MT is very good about defining it). Do you really want to be wearing camo out there hunting with folks who don't have to practice with their high tech weapon and can shoot 4" groups out to 200 yds? You will if high energy crossbows are accepted as "archery equipment." On the rare occassion I hunted with a bow during firearms season, I was dressed head to tail in blaze orange-not very effective in the range of a hand held bow. I have yet to meet an archer who wants me hunting with a firearm in archery season with them while they are wearing camo. Its scary enough having the small game hunter in the woods shooting into the trees or the general direcion of ground blinds where the average bowhunter hides.

Again the average bowhunter is not pushing for this change the cross manufacturer's lobby is.(have you seen NABCs position on it?-they represent almost all state/provicial bowhunter associations in the US and Canada)I have hunted with crossbow men who made safety and shot placement mistakes, as a fellow hunter and NBEF educator, I offered my support.

What I have an issue with is a mfg. group and firearms lobby who pushes high energy weapons in the name of hunter recruitment(especailly for youth and women) but then offers no training program to educate users as the previous firearms and bowhunters groups have done. You can't just roll them into a firearms or bowhunter ed class. The weapon has its own safety issues, ballistics, etc. etc. etc. in addition to all the social and political issues that have been argued here.

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from toddj77 wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

I'm concerned about the author's description of a "moderate" compound bow: "moderate compound (75-pound draw, 350-grain shaft tipped with a 125-grain field point)." Moderate???

Of all my friends and other archers at my local club, I know one person that shoots a bow set over 70 lbs. My bow and several of my friends' bows top out at 60... while the majority of us can comfortably draw 70+ lbs, it becomes awkward in cold weather, heavy clothing, and with obstructing tree limbs.

Calling a 75 lb draw weight "moderate" is like calling n H3 hummer a mid-sized car. Additionally, a 350 grain arrow is under weight for a 75 lb bow. When you consider that most manufacturers require 5 grains per pound of draw weight and others require 6 grains per pound of draw weight, the author is suggesting shooting in unsafe situations.

Although I'd prefer to see crossbow hunters participate in rifle seasons, I'm not necessarily against crossbows in archery seasons either. But I feel the author's comparisons are definitely flawed.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

I did some serious testing for an article "Crossbows vs. Compounds -- Myths & Facts" -- published in Bow & Arrow Hunting Magazine, January Issue, 2004. I came to the consclusions that in terms of penetration and trajectories out to 50 yards, a 175# crossbow had almost the same performance as a high quality compound bow set at 70#. I am not a crossbow user but they have been allowed in archery hunting seasons in Ontario for many years - and this has only helped gain increased archery seasons, with crossbow users having no greater success than compound users. Both types of hunters still have to develop the same sort of hunting skills to get close enough to the animal to achieve success. They definitely should be allowed in archery-only hunting seasons - Crossbows are simply another type of bow.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

Sorry that would be the "TAC 15" in the article above(AR-15 is a type of rifle). Look up the video on it from ATA as well. I assure you once you have read the references the issues will become more clear. Hint: NRAs recent testimonies supporting crossbows in the archery season, repeating fire crossbows are similar to firearms-they can be made, why invalidating the public trust doctrine is wrong.

There are alot of issues surrounding crossbows and hunting technologies in general. If you don't want to waste your time becoming informed of the complexities of the issues, that is another matter.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

swampthingMN, all I can say is WHAT? What a bunch of drivel. I read your post three times and can't figure out what your opinion is. What the ---- is a TAR-15? What is the reference to the Sino-Japanese war with repeating fire Xbows got to do with anything? Whether I agree with the other peoples'postings I respect their views and see that their position is genuine. I don't think yours is at all serious or meaningful. I think you are wasting people's time with this nonsense.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

For more references look up:

Public trust doctrine,Roosevelts books, the Lacey Act

The Sino-Japanese war (where repeating fire crossbows were used)

The North American Bowhunters Coalition (NABC)

NRAs postiion on crossbow use in archery season 10 years ago(e.g. its not a 2nd amendment issue, we will never get involved in it).

State wildlife mgt. organization's postion on disabled permits for crossbow use (disability generally not defined as convenience, or being lazy-but reasonable)

A recent Cabelas, Gander Mt,, Bass Pro shop Catalog-camo anyone?

This debate is probably as old as the hand held bow and crossbow themselves, best interst for everyone to become informed.

Just beacue some one opposes a certian hunting technique, weaponry, seasonal placement doesn't make them an anti. Traps, pitfalls, snares, nets are illegal for deer hunting too. No biological reason why they couldn't be used for game harvest methods....developed by a mfg., lisc. developed, and equip. taxed appropriately. But how many would support their use?

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

From the looks of the article and the discussions the impression I get is that the mechanical compound AND traditional stick bow bowhunters are concerned that the firearm hunters looking for a way to extend their season will encroach upon the archery season with the TAR-15 type of crossbow equipment. Per the mfg. it can shoot 1" group at 100yds, 4" group at 200 yds. Doesn't sound like any vertical bow I have ever heard of. Doubt Robin hood, Howard Hill, Mr. Ulmer, Asbell, Adams, or anyone else drawing a hand held bow with their own strength is that good. Thus a basis for bowhunters concerns about allowing crossbows in the archery season (past perceived issues becoming very real?).

Sounds like a safety nightmare in the wrong hands. Blaze orange safety/hunters perception studies that have been conducted don't even start until out at 100 yds or so, way beyond the effective range of compound bow, but apparently not the TAR-15.

So how is a traditional archery guy supposed to take an animal that has been pressured night and day by other groups at a range of 10-15 yds, while wearing blaze orange? (likely requirement for all hunters in the near future after all weapons mingle).

Conversely how can wildlife agencies expect to maintain hunter involvemnt and recruitment once they have met population goals? By the recreational value it provides! Not everyone wants to hunt with a gun, or gun-like weapon. Think about what the population goals were when archery seasons first came into existence? People want an option to enjoy peace and solitude away from large groups of other hunters, typically not the situation with firearms seasons. However commaradeire during that season has its own value, seperate from other needs.

Yes I do hunt with bow, also shotgun and rifle and own a crossbow. Different seasons, different needs, all appreciated, AND respected.
I refuse to sacrifce one season such as archery for another in the name of unity-BAH! ATA, NRA and PSE doesn't have me fooled, they want my money, period. They aren't going to get it.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Compound bowhunters haven't really thought out their exclusionary position of trying to exclude crossbowhunters in the archery season. Do they think some guy who plays golf when told that he can hunt with a crossbow is going to run out and buy one and become a hunter or a 14 year video gamer is going to become a hunter just because he can use a Xbow. Who and where are all the new hunters who are dying to hunt with a crossbow and are a threat to the mechnical compound bowhunters?

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from hoveysmith wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Those considering using a crossbow should consult Crossbow Hunting which is the only comprehensive book on the subject that is now available. It was written by Wm. Hovey Smith and published by Stackpole in 2006. This book may be ordered from Amazon.com or at any bookstore. This book has chapters on choosing an appropriate crossbow, discussions on their capabilities, stratigies on how to hunt, and crossbow hunting stories from around the world. Deer too tame for you? How about a Cape buffalo with a crossbow - or a gator?

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from Big O wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

Yea, "we"(Bo/I) could have used your "voice" in the "dust up" we were having with some "long bow" hunters who REFUSED to look/listen to "the rest of the story"(RIP Mr. Harvey). They had attacked us for several comments that were not even made.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

gerry123a, Sure wish you'd been around a week or so ago. Seems there are folks that disagree with us on this issue and don't want to listen to a reasoned, rational approach. It got a little testy, but us old guys can weather that kind of storm, been through worse, but just the same, I wish you'd been around.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

cont...Compound bowhunters need to stop being exclusionary and allow fellow hunters to join them in the archery season or the individual states will need to break up the archery season in to two parts. If this does not happen then the crossbow groups could very well go to court under equal treatment under the law, statutes and who knows if the outcome will be to anyone liking.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

I shoot both a compound and a crossbow and I am very effective with both weapons. I am very unhappy with the compound bowhunter's position on crossbows. Long archery seasons were created when bowhunters shot recurves and had a very low opportunity to score. Today, the compound bow is a mehnical tool. An impartial judge when showed a compound bow with a lighted magnified scope,various counterweighs,mechnical releases,65 % or better letoff,shooting an arrow at 350fps, or a crossbow could not make the distinctions that the compound bowhunters whine about to try to keep the crossbow hunter out of their precious archery season. Crossbows and compound bows are more similar than dissimilar

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Go for it, if they're on the web, it's free. I am not one of those people who think I have proprietary right to intellectual concepts. From my standpoint, anything and everything we can use to show people the light is fair game (as long as we don't pull a Maureen Dowd and take credit for someone else's words.)

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

To Bo,
I'm about to "get into this mess" again, is it ok if i use some of those website's you used to make "our" point? Thank's in advance.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

As far as I can tell on mine( see above). NO, but I'm just a hunter not a manufact. so my word is'nt "GOLD".
I understand. Key words here are, "LIQUOR CONSUMPTION CONTRIBUTED"
these are the idiots that have no bussiness hunting or even breeding,know what I mean?

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Big O,

I was looking for details about safety mechanisms on various crossbows and came across this news item from 2008. This is the kind of moron i don't want to meet while hunting. Luckily he only shot himself in the head. That must take talent.

B.C. man accidentally shoots himself in head with crossbow

Last Updated: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 | 2:00 PM PT

A Kootenay man was rushed to hospital after accidentally shooting himself in the head with a crossbow on Wednesday morning.

The accident happened just before 5 a.m. PT at a party at the man's house in Grasmere, near Fernie in southeastern B.C., according to Cpl. Andy Veltmeyer of the Elk Lake RCMP

The 19-year-old was flown to a hospital in Calgary to have the projectile, known as a bolt, removed.

The RCMP did not release the man's identity or further details about his condition, but said they suspected liquor consumption contributed to the incident.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Big O,

That's good to hear. I have 2 PSE compounds and they seem fairly good.

Is there any way the string could release without the trigger moving?

bp.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Sorry it took so long to get back.
The safty on my crossbow(Horton/Hunter) the safty blocks the trigger from "moving up" and releasing the string.
I've had one fall from a stand (years ago, PSE brand) and it did'nt go off. It was "loaded" at the time.
Had to reset the pins but no other problems.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Bo,

The story i heard on the bow hunter who was shot sounded like pure incompetence (shooting before good visibility in the AM) but it was hearsay so i can't say if it was true.

The US is a stronger democracy than Cda and apparently our constitution has no counterpart to your 2nd Amendment. So in Cda firearm ownership is called a privilege, not a Right. Perhaps an oversight by our founding fathers. Firearms were obviously critical to the survival of settlers of both countries which is often forgotten here. And every time a Liberal gov't gets elected they go to work making life difficult for gun owners.

Our current Conservative gov't refunded my $60 PAL fee but it is a minority gov't so has not been able to get the long gun registration law cancelled. Which was a campaign promise. We have both owner licenses and gun registration here. And it may not since the Lib's seem to be gaining strength since their new leader returned from the US.

I'm also hoping Obama does not try anything with your 2nd Amend. since the disease seems to spread and the US is one of very few countries where it is still a constitutional right.

bp.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Bp, in my years working in ER, I have seen many people come in from hunting accidents. I have heard probably every possible scenario, most of them were true, but others were confirmed to be BS, someone trying to make up a story to cover up less than legal activity.
I feel for you on the firearm possession permit, Thank God we still have a Supreme Court that understands what our precious Second Amendment is all about, at least for now. Hopefully it will still be intact in 4 years.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

bo,

Agreed, it is the competence of the hunter that determines the safety of the situation. So am also very selective about who i hunt with.

I was quite upset when my firearm possession permit expired and was told i needed to take tests to get it renewed. After hunting and owning guns for 40 years and being taught safe gun use by my Dad, who was an army officer. I explained all this to my test instuctor, a former cop about my age, who said 'Don't get too upset Bob, you don't need the course, just take the tests and we'll make this work for you'. And he did. But i was in an unknown status for 74 days while the Fed's processed the paperwork.

But on the other hand when i hear about a bowhunter getting shot while setting up his deer decoy during a rifle season, i sort of think that maybe there are guys out there that need more training. Or maybe a brain transplant. That happened near where i sometimes hunt a few years ago. Surprisingly the bow hunter lived after being hit by a .303 Brit, i heard, and was taken to hospital by helo medevac.

bp.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

bp, I am completely against more regulations for any hunting. In the US there are too stinkin' many regulations now. Every time someone thinks something might happen they want to put out a new regulation. There is a risk while hunting regardless of the method being used. I have been shot at multiple times, some by accident, some by stupidity ("I thought you was a deer when I heard you in the brush") As long as there are people there will be stupidity. I am very selective as to the people I hunt with. And I have never had a close call with them, just others that think they know what they're doing.
It is not the weapon, it is the hunter that you need to be concerned about. A fool is just as dangerous with a crossbow as he is with any gun. It's the hunter not the weapon that is the problem.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

In your reference, did not see anything about the accidental discharge issue that is my hang up. The author is a Cdn. who now crossbow hunts in ON.

While there i spotted another article by Kevin Wilson, another Cdn who lives in AB, who hunts with all types of bows and now a crossbow. He did not really talk about AD safety but did have this comment:

"With the crossbow, any time you're on stand you want to have it cocked and, due to the sheer size of the crossbow, maneuvering it can be a challenge. Likely more due to its unfamiliarity, I find that I am hyper-sensitive to the need to exercise due diligence when it came to safe handling of the "loaded" crossbow".

So at least he is aware to be very careful what he's doing when the weapon is cocked.

Bo,i am not against crossbow hunting for those who wish to do it. But i prefer to stay away from them although i used to build them when i was a kid. In Canada we now have mandatory safety training req'd for the license to acquire firearms. I don't know but am hoping it is also req'd for crossbows. If not it's my feeling we're headed for accidents.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

OK thanks, i will have a look at that.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bobpenny,
take a look at http:http://www.biggamehunt.net/sections/Archery/Dispelling-the-Crossbow-Myth-01220812.html
There is so much disinformation about crossbows that very few people really know anything true about them. I think the anti-crossbow furor has been blown completely out of proportion and there are hunters turning on other hunters and we all will be hurt in the long run.
We need to stick together, not be at each others throats.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

I hear you and one of the reasons i took up bow hunting was the safety aspect. Some people should not own guns, crossbows or even power tools.

But if crossbows are allowed in bow hunting seasons in AB, i will stop bowhunting due to the safety issues i mentioned. I also feel that most crossbow hunters could not be bothered with the time and effort req'd to learn to shoot hand drawn bows. So i wonder if they have the time to be concerned about safety. Handicapped people of course not included.

My opinion is that it will take a few accidents involving crossbows before authorities figure out that they are considerably more hazardous than bows and probably even rifles, at close range.

If i knew a crossbow hunter that wanted me to go in the field with him, i would say sorry but you're on your own.

bp.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

No weapon is more or less safe than the person carrying it. I know several people who are not safe regardless of what they are hunting with. I will NOT be hunting in the same county as they are. At least one of them almost shot me and was completely unaware that he was at fault, to this day thinks it was just an "accident" He is an accident waiting to happen.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Big O,

Yes i knew that argument would show up. But there are 2 issues i see here:

* Myself and many rifle hunters leave the chambers empty but mag loaded til they see target game. This eliminates discharge under any condition including dropping the gun or hunter falling.

* The safety on a gun is blocking the trigger with no force or tension on it. The safety on a crossbow has to hold the cocked force of the bow or maybe 100 lbs or more. Which is safer? I believe most hunters would be walking around with cocked crossbows due to the time involved on cocking them. So if a cocked crossbow is dropped out of a stand, do you want to be downrange even if the safety is on. I'll pass.

bp.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Just re-read the posts here. To bobpenny, Yes it is "loaded" when you go out,but is'nt your gun? Crossbows have a "safty" on them like other weapons. They are just as safe as any other weapon.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I started with a long bow/shotgun,rifle then I started muzzleloader hunting with a "kit" musket/crossbow. Now I hunt with an in-line muzzle-loader and which ever bow "I" decide to shoot. I have been using the old "Bear" again just because I can still shoot instinct. So I'm not sure if I'm evolving/devolving or what(LOL).
All I know is that I'M HUNTING period.

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from 6phunter wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I BELIEVE., but have no proof that most all archers started hunting with long guns,then switched to bow hunting for the purpose of extended seasons and for the adverseity .I think a lot of crossbow hunters will evolve into compound users,some may even join the ranks of the recurve and long bow ranks.We all strive to be better hunters, and when we become proficient with one weapon we move to another that will challenge our skills.A novice may take the first game he see's. while a trophy hunter may go years without taking a shot. This is what I call THE EVOLUTION OF THE HUNTER .

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from Steve_In_Heber wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I support anyone to legally hunt as they choose. Whether you kill it with a bow, rifle or knife -- I'll be glad to help you drag it out!

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from jack wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Much ado about nothing. Having shot all three types of [b]bows[/b] for over 50 years, I can assure you offhanding an xbow at 30 yards is no piece of cake. On a good day, I can hit a snuff can lid at 30 w/ either compound or xbow. On a good day.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Happyg21, Welcome aboard. You are correct in that there are advantages to using a crossbow, and I don't know how anyone can deny that fact, nor do I know of anyone putting forth an argument contrary to that.
I can remember back many years ago when the traditionalists (users of recurves and longbows) looked disdainfully down at those who were using compounds because they felt that compounds had a distinct advantage over the traditional bows due to the let off the compound had. I knew many people who felt that, when bowhunting first took off, only traditional bows should be used for hunting, not compounds. Granted they were a minority, but those voices were there. But it was the mentality that "it's not fair, and if it''s not fair, then they shouldn't be able to use it." That kind of equal the playing field by making everyone suffer alike mentality drives me up the wall.
Anyone who wants everything to be fair is incredibly naive. Nothing in life is fair. If it was, there would be nothing to work for, to strive to attain. Hunting would not be a challenge. There would be no need for military troops, or police. We would stagnate as a society, shrivel up and die.
If life had been fair, none of what I have done would have happened, because adversity is what makes us strive to better our situation.
I grew up poor, never lived in a house with running water until I was 10 or 11. That wasn't fair, but it made me not want to be poor and go back to that. I went into the Army, accomplished what I wanted to and although I have encountered other adversity, each barrier has something to overcome and make me a better citizen.
I hope life never becomes fair, for any of us. We are better people when we see what we CAN do, in spite of or because of would be adversity and barriers to our goals.

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from happyg21 wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I have to say that I am impressed. I never thought I could see the side of the argument for crossbow hunters, but upon reading these posts my eyes have been opened to a new perspective. I agree completely that anything to introduce new people and keep others coming to the sport of hunting should be embraced. I have read and researched trying to find a way to deny the fact that a crossbow is actually a bow. The truth is I can't, by definition a crossbow is very truly a bow. That being said I do not believe that anyone can deny the fact that a crossbow has advantages that a vertical bow cannot compete with. Think about archery turkey hunting. The fact that a crossbow is already drawn and ready to fire makes the taking of a turkey infinitely easier. I do not usually have trouble during archery season with getting close enough to game, my trouble begins with the cycle of moving to draw the bow. If you eliminate this then the task at hand becomes much easier. I think that the easiest way to accomplish the common good is to seperate the seasons. In Missouri, where I hunt, there is a season for muzzleloader and a season for modern rifle. There is no denying that they are both guns but in the same sentence there is no denying that one has a definite advantage over the other.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Crossbows are now legal for public use in rifle seasons in Alberta. I believe this is the correct place for them since i think there is a safety issue with them.

Crossbows are different from other bows in that they can be carried in a cocked position, making them considerably more dangerous due to accidental discharge. Although i have not seen stat's on this, i suspect they may be more likely to accidentally discharge than firearms. Normal bows of course are only drawn when game is in range, making accidetal discharge risk close to zero.

As a bowhunter i feel this problem increases safety risk in the field so am pleased they are not allowed in our bowhunting seasons, except to handicapped hunters, who are fairly few.

As a rifle hunter i try to maintain a distance to hunters i don't know, minimizing risk of discharge accidents. So with crossbow hunters i will do the same, esp. if i see one who carries a cocked crossbow, which i consider to be very dangerous.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

How about we just agree to disagree and move on?

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I thought my point WAS that the Mini-14 argument makes no sense at all.
Most things that can take game reliably has a place in the woods.
Right now there is a broad range of permissable weapons in the deer woods. I think they all have a purpose. They are all managed differently, and this is good. I don't see why crossbows should be lumped in with bows any more than my bolt action should be lumped in with flintlocks.

There were a few posts which mentioned disabilities as an exception. That's long been accepted and I've never heard any objection to it. I certainly don't have one myself.

Well, I'm finally tired of my own braying.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Buck, I looked at your website. I don't think I really fit in the criteria you have there. I do fit in with the "Why we hunt'. I go after the meat, and the experience of being out in the wilderness. But I do not go out with the intent of taking a trophy, though if one presents itself, I will take it. Hunting meets a need that I cannot express easily. It is most certainly not to compare myself with others.
35 plus years ago, I was a medic in the Army and we were hunting people, doing Search and Rescue stuff. As you might imagine, there was some adrenaline involved in that. After I got out, I was immediately hired to work ER as they figured with my background I wouldn't go bonkers on seeing some blood. I worked ER since then until 2008, when it seemed that it was time to retire from it.
There is adrenaline in the ER, but nothing like the adrenaline rush I feel when I am hunting deer or elk. The first deer I see, regardless of whether it is shootable, raises my heart rate. That is why I hunt. I don't keep a score of whether I did better than a friend, or who got one and who didn't.
I go out with the intent on taking a deer, but if I don't, I still spent valuable unwind time out in the great outdoors. I am considered by many who know me to be a good hunter, and I hope I am.
It is more important to me now to pass on the hunting ethic to future generations of hunters than it is to take a deer each year.I have mentored several young men in the art of deer hunting, because I believe it is an art much more than a science.
That's what I will be doing this year, showing a younger individual what deer hunting is all about,teaching him the art.

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from Vernon Freeck wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I LIVE&BOW HUNT WISCONSIN AM 69 AND NOW USE A CROSSBOW.I NOW ONLY HUNT WITH A CROSSBOW DEER,TURKEY,SQUIRREL,ETC.WE CAN ONLY USE A CROSSBOW IF WE HAVE HANDYCAP, WITH A DOCTOR FILLING OUT A FORM OR WHEN YOU REACH 65. I DO MISS MY COMPOUND BOW, IT ISN'T EASY TO GET IN AND OUT AND AROUND WITH A CROSSBOW, BUT THEY ARE GREAT BLIND BOWS. I THINK OUR LAWS ON CROSSBOWS ARE THE RIGHT WAY TO GO.

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from Buck wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I'm really glad to see such good intelligent comments here. Bowhunters Rock!

We could fix this little problem and most of what is wrong with hunting if we would change the way we look at things. Most sports score the performance, but hunters score the trophies. We should score both!

This makes authentic hunting less important to many hunters. Score the hunters performance, and many of the problems we have in hunting will eventually go away. Allow hunters to use a crossbow, but a bow scores a little higher.

More important those hunters who do really poor quality hunting and buy trophies would be scored low. They could cheat (that's what they do), but they could only brag about the animal, not how they got it.

As one writer said, "Follow the money." Much of the money goes to try and sell hunters on easier ways to get a deer, and especially a trophy deer. "Hunters" buy feed, feeders, seed, farming tools, trophy hunts, canned hunts... That's not a part of Authentic Hunting?

Buck@score-your-hunting.com

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from Big O wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Apology accepted.
I re-read all posts, and have this to say. ALL bows have "stored" energy in their limbs as soon as the string is attached. It is when they(bow) are pulled/cocked/loaded(energy), it reaches it's full potential of stored energy.
No one is saying they are not different, any more so than saying that Moose,Caribu,Elk,Mule,White-tail,and Key are all members of the "Deer" family. See what I mean?
I hope to meet you "in the parking lot" one day so we can wish each other luck, and maybe share a glass of fine burbon at the end of the day toasting each others success.
I shoot both crossbow, and a compound, and am re-learning how to shoot intinct with a long bow.
As Bo said "WE CANNOT AFFORD TO BE DIVIDED" AT ANY TIME.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

What is the accepted dictionary definition of a crossbow. Encarta says: "powerful weapon that fires bolts: a medieval weapon, or its modern sports successor, consisting of a bow attached crosswise to a stock with a cranking mechanism and a trigger. A crossbow fires short heavy arrows called bolts or quarrels."
A crossbow is a bow. Your mini 14 is not a muzzle loader because the cartridge is not loaded through the muzzle. That argument makes no sense at all.
The principle of the crossbow is the same as any other bow, the only difference being that the crossbow can be held in a cocked position awaiting the use of the trigger and the others cannot. They still work the same, tension held in the bow causes the string to fling the arrow in the direction pointed.
What too many people don't seem to understand is many years ago there were many people who did not like compounds because of the let off. And they did not want them to be considered to be archery.
We are going through the same thing all over again with crossbows.
If we keep this bickering up, trying to redefine what a bow is we all will find that the anti-hunters will have looked at our arguments and use them against us, who have provided that very ammunition to limit hunting, and our options will be sorely limited. And no hunter will be happy.
There are already those who want all forms of bowhunting banned as they think it is cruel. We cannot afford to be divided at this time.

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I apologize to Big O, that was meant to be addressed to Bo. I may have a touch of dyslexia.

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Big O. I hear what you're saying, but I don't really agree with it. One of the arguements that keeps being made is that a crossbow still fires using the stored energy in the limbs and is therefore no different than a traditional or compound bow. (A whole different arguement. I use a compound btw.) By that rationale my Mini-14 is essentially a muzzle loader becuase the chemical energy stored in the powder is what drives the round. I'd like to repeat, I'm not against the crossbows as a hunting tool. If you want to use a javelin or a net and spear, happy hunting as far as I'm concerned. I just disagree that it's a bow. Lets bring it back to semantics, which happens repeatedly in the arguements above. When such things were in common military use a soldier trained with a bow was an archer, a guy handed a crossbow was called a crossbowman. If on opening day I see a guy with a crossbow in the parking lot, I'll wish him luck and mean it. I don't think we're engaged in exactly the same activity, however. I might even try one some time, because it'd be interesting and DIFFERENT.
I think the thing that I'm having trouble accepting isn't that it's going to be allowed during archery, it's the stubborn refusal of its proponents to admit that the two are not equal.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

To paraphrase Shakespier " A bow by any other name is still a bow".
I don't care what they shoot as long as we can get more people hunting(youth/ladys).

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I agree with part of what you say, I don't think disagreeing with another hunter is wrong in principal. It's when the disagreeing results in denigrating all other points of view and refusing to accept common sense things (like saying a crossbow is not a bow. They both work on the same principle.) I perceive Mr W to be narrow minded and very selfish, and ego centric, because of his exclusivist comments(IMO).
To separate crossbow seasons from vertical bow seasons is ridiculous, IMO. If you do that then it would behoove you to have separate season for compounds, recurves, and longbows. There can be no rational argument against that if you separate out the crossbow because of the difference in let-off with the compound. This opens up way to many areas for increased legislation and I, for one, find any more legislation to antithetical to our American Heritage.
The more legislation there is the easier it will be to make that downward spiral to what Europe has. Very few people are allowed to hunt and the sport is viewed less and favorably every year. I think it is safe to say that none of us really want that.

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from camoman wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I would like to use a bow, but i have 6 screws and a metal plate on my collar bone that makes it very hard to draw the bow back.I hunt with a crossbow.

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

First, I don't think disagreeing with another hunter is wrong in principal. We're all entitled to our own opinions.
I personally wasn't a fan of the PA change. It's not that I have anything against crossbows or those who choose to use them. I just wanted a separate season, even if they overlap. I know from experience that the draw is what's most likely to get me busted and thus keeps my success rate down. That being said I fear that an increase in percieved archery success will shorten the season and take away opportunities that archers currently have to compensate for the difficulty. Frankly, I don't even care if they're entirely concurrent, but again, I'd like them regulated seperately. That might even be the best initial approach and certainly a good compromise. Establish archery and crossbow as different seasons that have the exact same dates. If there ends up being no statistical differences in success or management needs leave it that way and everybody is happy (Ok, more people are happy). If the introduction of crossbow is shown to have a different impact than archery, manage them independently from there. I'm all for allowing both, but as they are not the same thing I'd just like them to be defined as two different seasons so that they can be managed seperately if necessary.

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from Fishingfreak wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I agree with Bo (kingdom divided will fall) and MNbowhunter (if you have a problem with crossbows....don't use one), but I have another point. With all of the deer populations spreading into populated land where firearm use is illegal, and deer-car crashes rising, bows.....whatever kind they are.....will be needed. Anything that will get people out into the woods hunting is O.K. by me (and
I think crossbows would be cool to use)

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from MNbowhunter wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

i feel that a crossbow reduces the challenge of bowhunting, but if you choose to use one, more power to ya. At least crossbow hunters arent trying to ban compounds... We're all in this together and if we start bickering back and forth it just gives the tree hugging liberals more reason to ban hunting altogether.
IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM WITH CROSSBOWS.........DON'T USE ONE!!!

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from cjmax8@hotmail.com wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Dose it really matter wether you use a crossbow or a compound? We are all after the same thing a trophy animal. Who cares if you use one or not.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

To the people against cross-bows, ever tried one? Bow hunting is bow hunting folks. having said that I'll leave you with two quotes.
"Can't we all just get along" Rodney King
"We must all hang together, or we will all surely hang alone" Ben Franklin. Get the point?

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from 6phunter wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

THE ethics and passion we share as hunters is not determined by what weapon of choice we take to the field, there is no wrong way to hunt{food plots,mineral stations,scent imitations,dogs,ground blinds,tree stands.etc you get my point.There is plenty of deer nation wide ,so don't worry about the next guy . Does he have an advantage? or do I with 45years of white tail hunting?

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Nater7, Thank you. You say you are young at 18. But in showing that you listen and learn, you demonstrate a maturity that many twice your age do not have. You give me hope for the future of hunting.

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from VAHunter100 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Bow hunting is far more a passion than other forms of hunting, because of the intimate setting that is required to get in close to the target and remain completely undetected. Bow hunting has also has built somewhat of a fraternal group that share experiences and stand together on a number of issues, which is very good for the bow hunting community, but not the whole hunting community. Anything that gets kids and young adults my age in the woods should be considered great for the sport. Besides xbow hunters, once received into this passionate group, could learn a lot from the bow hunting community on shot placement, distance, and overall tactics. The more we have in numbers, the more we have to fight lovely organizations such as PETA. Besides, why should bow hunters alone be given their own private hunting season for a solid 2 months before anyone else?

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from Nater7 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Thanks Bo I understand your point now. You are just saying to not be to harsh on our fellow bow hunting friends. And not add fuel to the fire of the anti hunters. I guess if crossbows get people out in the woods then kudos to them, because enjoying the outdoors is truly amazing! I'm young (18) and I will continue to learn more things everyday.

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from elkslayer wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't bow hunt but my opinion is that crossbows are bows. the effective range of compounds and crossbows are very nearly the same.

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from Mike wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Thank you for an excellent article, Mr. McKean. I suspect that the state wildlife agencies will be tracking crossbow use and hunter success closely, and will adjust seasons and rules as necessary.

I bow hunt. I don't have a crossbow but find them intriguing, as with all arms. I welcome them here in Michigan. I know a least one 70 year old ex-recurve hunter who is smiling because he can now bow hunt with his grand kids.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

If you follow the history of political discourse, you will see that the best way to take over an issue is to divide and conquer your opponents. Hunters are divided on this issue. The anti-hunting crowd can take almost everything stated by the anti-crossbow crowd, modify it slightly and make an argument against hunting and the general non-hunting public would not know who was right.
If you don't believe it ca happen here, you need to study up on the history of Europe starting at the beginning of the 20th Century. When gun control was first brought up, most folks living in those countries never believed it would happen in their country. Look at them now. Previously law abiding citizens in England are now in prison for defending themselves because the general population gave in to emotional pleas and decided that gun control was the way to go, leaving many people defenseless. Hunting in Europe is strictly regulated. You have to pass multiple tests and there is a long waiting period if you don't pass. You want to lose the right to hunt because you didn't dot an i or cross a t on a form. I am told it happens in Europe. You say we are not Europe, we have president that wants us to be like the Europeans. He said so in his European "Blame America First Tour"
Hitler and Mussolini took over by the divide and conquer tactic using emotional nontruthful arguments to win the people over. That only cost 10-12 million lives.
It's okay to be against something. Just be careful on how you attack your opponent because there are those waiting in the wings to use the very argument you used against you.

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from Nater7 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't understand how disagreeing with crossbows is going to cost us this sport we love! I mean we all have our own opinion and somehow we have to keep things in check. I have every right to disagree with crossbows. I also disagree with the fact that people are using the excuse they don't have enough time to practice with a bow. I mean it doesn't take hours to get good with a compound. You just need to take a couple minutes every once and a while, and shoot a couple arrows. I believe that people nowadays are looking for an easy fix. It takes some skill to shoot a bow, but you can pull a crossbow out of the box and shoot like a champion, all you need to be able to do is aim and pull a trigger. I feel people who have the ability to pull a bow back should us a bow. (disabled people of course should be able to use crossbows, they have special circumstances)I also agree with Mr W, crossbows have an unfair advantage. So I believe they should have a specific season. Just like we do with muzzle loaders and how we separate guns and bows. I don't think crossbows and bows should be allowed in the same season. Just like you can't use a rifle in bow season or a rifle in muzzle loader season. On the flip side you still could use a bow during crossbow season, just like you can use a muzzle loader or bow during rifle season. Overall I don't want just any Joe Smo to be in the woods who just picks up a crossbow and thinks he can shoot a deer at 50+ yards. I want someone you put in some time and effort to enjoy the art of bow hunting. So if ya don't know i am against crossbows, and i hope they never become legal in Michigan.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't think Ed Wentzler could be more wrong. He is extremely short sighted and narrow minded.
I say narrow minded because William Tell and most Swiss would be surprised to be told he was not shooting a bow. Anytime anyone wants to redefine an accepted definition to suit his own purpose, you must be suspect. If Mr W. gets his way, who is to say that an anti-hunting group cannot also get other definitions of hunting set in place further limiting the taking of game.
If Mr W. can say crossbows are not bows because he only wants certain types of bows, I must ask are compounds far behind because they are not longbows? But if crossbows are simply not bows, why are long bows? They both are compound words ending in bow, and have been accepted in general history as bows and arrows. Maybe in Mr W's world everyone who hunts with a bow should only be allowed to use authentic Native American shortbows, with sinew string and only wooden arrows with flint arrowheads.
I said Mr W was shortsighted and that is because any time a hunter begins to talk bad about other hunters, particularly for his own selfish gain, the anti-hunters will use it to campaign against hunting in general. And they will take it out of context and they will create a firestorm campaign that makes all hunters look bad.
I do not have a dog in this fight other than to say I am a hunter. We cannot afford to fight like this amongst ourselves. There are people out there who are looking for anything we do or say that gives credence as to why we should be stopped from hunting. Why should we supply them with ammunition to end a sport we love?
A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. When people like Mr. W attack other hunters for anything other than criminal acts he is increasing the chance that his activity will fall also, because there will be no one left to assist him when he needs help. He may win this battle but we will all lose by his actions.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't think Ed Wentzler could be more wrong. He is extremely short sighted and narrow minded.
I say narrow minded because William Tell and most Swiss would be surprised to be told he was not shooting a bow. Anytime anyone wants to redefine an accepted definition to suit his own purpose, you must be suspect. If Mr W. gets his way, who is to say that an anti-hunting group cannot also get other definitions of hunting set in place further limiting the taking of game.
If Mr W. can say crossbows are not bows because he only wants certain types of bows, I must ask are compounds far behind because they are not longbows? But if crossbows are simply not bows, why are long bows? They both are compound words ending in bow, and have been accepted in general history as bows and arrows. Maybe in Mr W's world everyone who hunts with a bow should only be allowed to use authentic Native American shortbows, with sinew string and only wooden arrows with flint arrowheads.
I said Mr W was shortsighted and that is because any time a hunter begins to talk bad about other hunters, particularly for his own selfish gain, the anti-hunters will use it to campaign against hunting in general. And they will take it out of context and they will create a firestorm campaign that makes all hunters look bad.
I do not have a dog in this fight other than to say I am a hunter. We cannot afford to fight like this amongst ourselves. There are people out there who are looking for anything we do or say that gives credence as to why we should be stopped from hunting. Why should we supply them with ammunition to end a sport we love?
A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. When people like Mr. W attack other hunters for anything other than criminal acts he is increasing the chance that his activity will fall also, because there will be no one left to assist him when he needs help. He may win this battle but we will all lose by his actions.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

If you follow the history of political discourse, you will see that the best way to take over an issue is to divide and conquer your opponents. Hunters are divided on this issue. The anti-hunting crowd can take almost everything stated by the anti-crossbow crowd, modify it slightly and make an argument against hunting and the general non-hunting public would not know who was right.
If you don't believe it ca happen here, you need to study up on the history of Europe starting at the beginning of the 20th Century. When gun control was first brought up, most folks living in those countries never believed it would happen in their country. Look at them now. Previously law abiding citizens in England are now in prison for defending themselves because the general population gave in to emotional pleas and decided that gun control was the way to go, leaving many people defenseless. Hunting in Europe is strictly regulated. You have to pass multiple tests and there is a long waiting period if you don't pass. You want to lose the right to hunt because you didn't dot an i or cross a t on a form. I am told it happens in Europe. You say we are not Europe, we have president that wants us to be like the Europeans. He said so in his European "Blame America First Tour"
Hitler and Mussolini took over by the divide and conquer tactic using emotional nontruthful arguments to win the people over. That only cost 10-12 million lives.
It's okay to be against something. Just be careful on how you attack your opponent because there are those waiting in the wings to use the very argument you used against you.

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from Nater7 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Thanks Bo I understand your point now. You are just saying to not be to harsh on our fellow bow hunting friends. And not add fuel to the fire of the anti hunters. I guess if crossbows get people out in the woods then kudos to them, because enjoying the outdoors is truly amazing! I'm young (18) and I will continue to learn more things everyday.

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from VAHunter100 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Bow hunting is far more a passion than other forms of hunting, because of the intimate setting that is required to get in close to the target and remain completely undetected. Bow hunting has also has built somewhat of a fraternal group that share experiences and stand together on a number of issues, which is very good for the bow hunting community, but not the whole hunting community. Anything that gets kids and young adults my age in the woods should be considered great for the sport. Besides xbow hunters, once received into this passionate group, could learn a lot from the bow hunting community on shot placement, distance, and overall tactics. The more we have in numbers, the more we have to fight lovely organizations such as PETA. Besides, why should bow hunters alone be given their own private hunting season for a solid 2 months before anyone else?

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from Bo wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Nater7, Thank you. You say you are young at 18. But in showing that you listen and learn, you demonstrate a maturity that many twice your age do not have. You give me hope for the future of hunting.

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from 6phunter wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

THE ethics and passion we share as hunters is not determined by what weapon of choice we take to the field, there is no wrong way to hunt{food plots,mineral stations,scent imitations,dogs,ground blinds,tree stands.etc you get my point.There is plenty of deer nation wide ,so don't worry about the next guy . Does he have an advantage? or do I with 45years of white tail hunting?

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from Big O wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

To the people against cross-bows, ever tried one? Bow hunting is bow hunting folks. having said that I'll leave you with two quotes.
"Can't we all just get along" Rodney King
"We must all hang together, or we will all surely hang alone" Ben Franklin. Get the point?

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from MNbowhunter wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

i feel that a crossbow reduces the challenge of bowhunting, but if you choose to use one, more power to ya. At least crossbow hunters arent trying to ban compounds... We're all in this together and if we start bickering back and forth it just gives the tree hugging liberals more reason to ban hunting altogether.
IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM WITH CROSSBOWS.........DON'T USE ONE!!!

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from Mike wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

Thank you for an excellent article, Mr. McKean. I suspect that the state wildlife agencies will be tracking crossbow use and hunter success closely, and will adjust seasons and rules as necessary.

I bow hunt. I don't have a crossbow but find them intriguing, as with all arms. I welcome them here in Michigan. I know a least one 70 year old ex-recurve hunter who is smiling because he can now bow hunt with his grand kids.

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from elkslayer wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't bow hunt but my opinion is that crossbows are bows. the effective range of compounds and crossbows are very nearly the same.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Happyg21, Welcome aboard. You are correct in that there are advantages to using a crossbow, and I don't know how anyone can deny that fact, nor do I know of anyone putting forth an argument contrary to that.
I can remember back many years ago when the traditionalists (users of recurves and longbows) looked disdainfully down at those who were using compounds because they felt that compounds had a distinct advantage over the traditional bows due to the let off the compound had. I knew many people who felt that, when bowhunting first took off, only traditional bows should be used for hunting, not compounds. Granted they were a minority, but those voices were there. But it was the mentality that "it's not fair, and if it''s not fair, then they shouldn't be able to use it." That kind of equal the playing field by making everyone suffer alike mentality drives me up the wall.
Anyone who wants everything to be fair is incredibly naive. Nothing in life is fair. If it was, there would be nothing to work for, to strive to attain. Hunting would not be a challenge. There would be no need for military troops, or police. We would stagnate as a society, shrivel up and die.
If life had been fair, none of what I have done would have happened, because adversity is what makes us strive to better our situation.
I grew up poor, never lived in a house with running water until I was 10 or 11. That wasn't fair, but it made me not want to be poor and go back to that. I went into the Army, accomplished what I wanted to and although I have encountered other adversity, each barrier has something to overcome and make me a better citizen.
I hope life never becomes fair, for any of us. We are better people when we see what we CAN do, in spite of or because of would be adversity and barriers to our goals.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

gerry123a, Sure wish you'd been around a week or so ago. Seems there are folks that disagree with us on this issue and don't want to listen to a reasoned, rational approach. It got a little testy, but us old guys can weather that kind of storm, been through worse, but just the same, I wish you'd been around.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

Yea, "we"(Bo/I) could have used your "voice" in the "dust up" we were having with some "long bow" hunters who REFUSED to look/listen to "the rest of the story"(RIP Mr. Harvey). They had attacked us for several comments that were not even made.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

You guys sound like a bunch of women whining. Traditional archers sounded the same 30 years ago, when compound bows became popular. Today manufacturers still produce recurves and long bows. Traditional archers at the time thought they were the better hunters and shooters. Now the compound bow hunters are whining like little babies claiming the woods belongs to them. I am surprised that the compound bow crowd has not tried to eliminate rifle and shotguns as not being pure enough. Why don't we just limit Xbows to one eyed, one armed, one legged people over the age of 90.

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from Fishingfreak wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I agree with Bo (kingdom divided will fall) and MNbowhunter (if you have a problem with crossbows....don't use one), but I have another point. With all of the deer populations spreading into populated land where firearm use is illegal, and deer-car crashes rising, bows.....whatever kind they are.....will be needed. Anything that will get people out into the woods hunting is O.K. by me (and
I think crossbows would be cool to use)

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I agree with part of what you say, I don't think disagreeing with another hunter is wrong in principal. It's when the disagreeing results in denigrating all other points of view and refusing to accept common sense things (like saying a crossbow is not a bow. They both work on the same principle.) I perceive Mr W to be narrow minded and very selfish, and ego centric, because of his exclusivist comments(IMO).
To separate crossbow seasons from vertical bow seasons is ridiculous, IMO. If you do that then it would behoove you to have separate season for compounds, recurves, and longbows. There can be no rational argument against that if you separate out the crossbow because of the difference in let-off with the compound. This opens up way to many areas for increased legislation and I, for one, find any more legislation to antithetical to our American Heritage.
The more legislation there is the easier it will be to make that downward spiral to what Europe has. Very few people are allowed to hunt and the sport is viewed less and favorably every year. I think it is safe to say that none of us really want that.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Buck, I looked at your website. I don't think I really fit in the criteria you have there. I do fit in with the "Why we hunt'. I go after the meat, and the experience of being out in the wilderness. But I do not go out with the intent of taking a trophy, though if one presents itself, I will take it. Hunting meets a need that I cannot express easily. It is most certainly not to compare myself with others.
35 plus years ago, I was a medic in the Army and we were hunting people, doing Search and Rescue stuff. As you might imagine, there was some adrenaline involved in that. After I got out, I was immediately hired to work ER as they figured with my background I wouldn't go bonkers on seeing some blood. I worked ER since then until 2008, when it seemed that it was time to retire from it.
There is adrenaline in the ER, but nothing like the adrenaline rush I feel when I am hunting deer or elk. The first deer I see, regardless of whether it is shootable, raises my heart rate. That is why I hunt. I don't keep a score of whether I did better than a friend, or who got one and who didn't.
I go out with the intent on taking a deer, but if I don't, I still spent valuable unwind time out in the great outdoors. I am considered by many who know me to be a good hunter, and I hope I am.
It is more important to me now to pass on the hunting ethic to future generations of hunters than it is to take a deer each year.I have mentored several young men in the art of deer hunting, because I believe it is an art much more than a science.
That's what I will be doing this year, showing a younger individual what deer hunting is all about,teaching him the art.

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from happyg21 wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I have to say that I am impressed. I never thought I could see the side of the argument for crossbow hunters, but upon reading these posts my eyes have been opened to a new perspective. I agree completely that anything to introduce new people and keep others coming to the sport of hunting should be embraced. I have read and researched trying to find a way to deny the fact that a crossbow is actually a bow. The truth is I can't, by definition a crossbow is very truly a bow. That being said I do not believe that anyone can deny the fact that a crossbow has advantages that a vertical bow cannot compete with. Think about archery turkey hunting. The fact that a crossbow is already drawn and ready to fire makes the taking of a turkey infinitely easier. I do not usually have trouble during archery season with getting close enough to game, my trouble begins with the cycle of moving to draw the bow. If you eliminate this then the task at hand becomes much easier. I think that the easiest way to accomplish the common good is to seperate the seasons. In Missouri, where I hunt, there is a season for muzzleloader and a season for modern rifle. There is no denying that they are both guns but in the same sentence there is no denying that one has a definite advantage over the other.

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from Steve_In_Heber wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I support anyone to legally hunt as they choose. Whether you kill it with a bow, rifle or knife -- I'll be glad to help you drag it out!

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

I shoot both a compound and a crossbow and I am very effective with both weapons. I am very unhappy with the compound bowhunter's position on crossbows. Long archery seasons were created when bowhunters shot recurves and had a very low opportunity to score. Today, the compound bow is a mehnical tool. An impartial judge when showed a compound bow with a lighted magnified scope,various counterweighs,mechnical releases,65 % or better letoff,shooting an arrow at 350fps, or a crossbow could not make the distinctions that the compound bowhunters whine about to try to keep the crossbow hunter out of their precious archery season. Crossbows and compound bows are more similar than dissimilar

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 46 weeks ago

cont...Compound bowhunters need to stop being exclusionary and allow fellow hunters to join them in the archery season or the individual states will need to break up the archery season in to two parts. If this does not happen then the crossbow groups could very well go to court under equal treatment under the law, statutes and who knows if the outcome will be to anyone liking.

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from Nater7 wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

I don't understand how disagreeing with crossbows is going to cost us this sport we love! I mean we all have our own opinion and somehow we have to keep things in check. I have every right to disagree with crossbows. I also disagree with the fact that people are using the excuse they don't have enough time to practice with a bow. I mean it doesn't take hours to get good with a compound. You just need to take a couple minutes every once and a while, and shoot a couple arrows. I believe that people nowadays are looking for an easy fix. It takes some skill to shoot a bow, but you can pull a crossbow out of the box and shoot like a champion, all you need to be able to do is aim and pull a trigger. I feel people who have the ability to pull a bow back should us a bow. (disabled people of course should be able to use crossbows, they have special circumstances)I also agree with Mr W, crossbows have an unfair advantage. So I believe they should have a specific season. Just like we do with muzzle loaders and how we separate guns and bows. I don't think crossbows and bows should be allowed in the same season. Just like you can't use a rifle in bow season or a rifle in muzzle loader season. On the flip side you still could use a bow during crossbow season, just like you can use a muzzle loader or bow during rifle season. Overall I don't want just any Joe Smo to be in the woods who just picks up a crossbow and thinks he can shoot a deer at 50+ yards. I want someone you put in some time and effort to enjoy the art of bow hunting. So if ya don't know i am against crossbows, and i hope they never become legal in Michigan.

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from cjmax8@hotmail.com wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Dose it really matter wether you use a crossbow or a compound? We are all after the same thing a trophy animal. Who cares if you use one or not.

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from camoman wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I would like to use a bow, but i have 6 screws and a metal plate on my collar bone that makes it very hard to draw the bow back.I hunt with a crossbow.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

To paraphrase Shakespier " A bow by any other name is still a bow".
I don't care what they shoot as long as we can get more people hunting(youth/ladys).

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Big O. I hear what you're saying, but I don't really agree with it. One of the arguements that keeps being made is that a crossbow still fires using the stored energy in the limbs and is therefore no different than a traditional or compound bow. (A whole different arguement. I use a compound btw.) By that rationale my Mini-14 is essentially a muzzle loader becuase the chemical energy stored in the powder is what drives the round. I'd like to repeat, I'm not against the crossbows as a hunting tool. If you want to use a javelin or a net and spear, happy hunting as far as I'm concerned. I just disagree that it's a bow. Lets bring it back to semantics, which happens repeatedly in the arguements above. When such things were in common military use a soldier trained with a bow was an archer, a guy handed a crossbow was called a crossbowman. If on opening day I see a guy with a crossbow in the parking lot, I'll wish him luck and mean it. I don't think we're engaged in exactly the same activity, however. I might even try one some time, because it'd be interesting and DIFFERENT.
I think the thing that I'm having trouble accepting isn't that it's going to be allowed during archery, it's the stubborn refusal of its proponents to admit that the two are not equal.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

What is the accepted dictionary definition of a crossbow. Encarta says: "powerful weapon that fires bolts: a medieval weapon, or its modern sports successor, consisting of a bow attached crosswise to a stock with a cranking mechanism and a trigger. A crossbow fires short heavy arrows called bolts or quarrels."
A crossbow is a bow. Your mini 14 is not a muzzle loader because the cartridge is not loaded through the muzzle. That argument makes no sense at all.
The principle of the crossbow is the same as any other bow, the only difference being that the crossbow can be held in a cocked position awaiting the use of the trigger and the others cannot. They still work the same, tension held in the bow causes the string to fling the arrow in the direction pointed.
What too many people don't seem to understand is many years ago there were many people who did not like compounds because of the let off. And they did not want them to be considered to be archery.
We are going through the same thing all over again with crossbows.
If we keep this bickering up, trying to redefine what a bow is we all will find that the anti-hunters will have looked at our arguments and use them against us, who have provided that very ammunition to limit hunting, and our options will be sorely limited. And no hunter will be happy.
There are already those who want all forms of bowhunting banned as they think it is cruel. We cannot afford to be divided at this time.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Apology accepted.
I re-read all posts, and have this to say. ALL bows have "stored" energy in their limbs as soon as the string is attached. It is when they(bow) are pulled/cocked/loaded(energy), it reaches it's full potential of stored energy.
No one is saying they are not different, any more so than saying that Moose,Caribu,Elk,Mule,White-tail,and Key are all members of the "Deer" family. See what I mean?
I hope to meet you "in the parking lot" one day so we can wish each other luck, and maybe share a glass of fine burbon at the end of the day toasting each others success.
I shoot both crossbow, and a compound, and am re-learning how to shoot intinct with a long bow.
As Bo said "WE CANNOT AFFORD TO BE DIVIDED" AT ANY TIME.

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from 6phunter wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I BELIEVE., but have no proof that most all archers started hunting with long guns,then switched to bow hunting for the purpose of extended seasons and for the adverseity .I think a lot of crossbow hunters will evolve into compound users,some may even join the ranks of the recurve and long bow ranks.We all strive to be better hunters, and when we become proficient with one weapon we move to another that will challenge our skills.A novice may take the first game he see's. while a trophy hunter may go years without taking a shot. This is what I call THE EVOLUTION OF THE HUNTER .

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Bp, in my years working in ER, I have seen many people come in from hunting accidents. I have heard probably every possible scenario, most of them were true, but others were confirmed to be BS, someone trying to make up a story to cover up less than legal activity.
I feel for you on the firearm possession permit, Thank God we still have a Supreme Court that understands what our precious Second Amendment is all about, at least for now. Hopefully it will still be intact in 4 years.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Go for it, if they're on the web, it's free. I am not one of those people who think I have proprietary right to intellectual concepts. From my standpoint, anything and everything we can use to show people the light is fair game (as long as we don't pull a Maureen Dowd and take credit for someone else's words.)

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Compound bowhunters haven't really thought out their exclusionary position of trying to exclude crossbowhunters in the archery season. Do they think some guy who plays golf when told that he can hunt with a crossbow is going to run out and buy one and become a hunter or a 14 year video gamer is going to become a hunter just because he can use a Xbow. Who and where are all the new hunters who are dying to hunt with a crossbow and are a threat to the mechnical compound bowhunters?

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I apologize to Big O, that was meant to be addressed to Bo. I may have a touch of dyslexia.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

How about we just agree to disagree and move on?

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from jack wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Much ado about nothing. Having shot all three types of [b]bows[/b] for over 50 years, I can assure you offhanding an xbow at 30 yards is no piece of cake. On a good day, I can hit a snuff can lid at 30 w/ either compound or xbow. On a good day.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

No weapon is more or less safe than the person carrying it. I know several people who are not safe regardless of what they are hunting with. I will NOT be hunting in the same county as they are. At least one of them almost shot me and was completely unaware that he was at fault, to this day thinks it was just an "accident" He is an accident waiting to happen.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bobpenny,
take a look at http:http://www.biggamehunt.net/sections/Archery/Dispelling-the-Crossbow-Myth-01220812.html
There is so much disinformation about crossbows that very few people really know anything true about them. I think the anti-crossbow furor has been blown completely out of proportion and there are hunters turning on other hunters and we all will be hurt in the long run.
We need to stick together, not be at each others throats.

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from Bo wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

bp, I am completely against more regulations for any hunting. In the US there are too stinkin' many regulations now. Every time someone thinks something might happen they want to put out a new regulation. There is a risk while hunting regardless of the method being used. I have been shot at multiple times, some by accident, some by stupidity ("I thought you was a deer when I heard you in the brush") As long as there are people there will be stupidity. I am very selective as to the people I hunt with. And I have never had a close call with them, just others that think they know what they're doing.
It is not the weapon, it is the hunter that you need to be concerned about. A fool is just as dangerous with a crossbow as he is with any gun. It's the hunter not the weapon that is the problem.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Bo,

The story i heard on the bow hunter who was shot sounded like pure incompetence (shooting before good visibility in the AM) but it was hearsay so i can't say if it was true.

The US is a stronger democracy than Cda and apparently our constitution has no counterpart to your 2nd Amendment. So in Cda firearm ownership is called a privilege, not a Right. Perhaps an oversight by our founding fathers. Firearms were obviously critical to the survival of settlers of both countries which is often forgotten here. And every time a Liberal gov't gets elected they go to work making life difficult for gun owners.

Our current Conservative gov't refunded my $60 PAL fee but it is a minority gov't so has not been able to get the long gun registration law cancelled. Which was a campaign promise. We have both owner licenses and gun registration here. And it may not since the Lib's seem to be gaining strength since their new leader returned from the US.

I'm also hoping Obama does not try anything with your 2nd Amend. since the disease seems to spread and the US is one of very few countries where it is still a constitutional right.

bp.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Sorry it took so long to get back.
The safty on my crossbow(Horton/Hunter) the safty blocks the trigger from "moving up" and releasing the string.
I've had one fall from a stand (years ago, PSE brand) and it did'nt go off. It was "loaded" at the time.
Had to reset the pins but no other problems.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Big O,

I was looking for details about safety mechanisms on various crossbows and came across this news item from 2008. This is the kind of moron i don't want to meet while hunting. Luckily he only shot himself in the head. That must take talent.

B.C. man accidentally shoots himself in head with crossbow

Last Updated: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 | 2:00 PM PT

A Kootenay man was rushed to hospital after accidentally shooting himself in the head with a crossbow on Wednesday morning.

The accident happened just before 5 a.m. PT at a party at the man's house in Grasmere, near Fernie in southeastern B.C., according to Cpl. Andy Veltmeyer of the Elk Lake RCMP

The 19-year-old was flown to a hospital in Calgary to have the projectile, known as a bolt, removed.

The RCMP did not release the man's identity or further details about his condition, but said they suspected liquor consumption contributed to the incident.

bp.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

As far as I can tell on mine( see above). NO, but I'm just a hunter not a manufact. so my word is'nt "GOLD".
I understand. Key words here are, "LIQUOR CONSUMPTION CONTRIBUTED"
these are the idiots that have no bussiness hunting or even breeding,know what I mean?

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from Big O wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

To Bo,
I'm about to "get into this mess" again, is it ok if i use some of those website's you used to make "our" point? Thank's in advance.

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from gerry123a wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

swampthingMN, all I can say is WHAT? What a bunch of drivel. I read your post three times and can't figure out what your opinion is. What the ---- is a TAR-15? What is the reference to the Sino-Japanese war with repeating fire Xbows got to do with anything? Whether I agree with the other peoples'postings I respect their views and see that their position is genuine. I don't think yours is at all serious or meaningful. I think you are wasting people's time with this nonsense.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

I see that the formatting for the schedules in my comment above sent was not accepted so for your convenience I've re-written them in a different format. Hopefully this will work.

Trajectories - all shots taken using 20-yard pin

Crossbow 30 yards -5.75"; 40 yards -16.25"; 50 yards -26.00"

Compound 30 yards -6.00"; 40 yards -16.75"; 50 yards -27.50"

Penetrations - All shots taken at four yards

Crossbow Penetration (Foam)15 12/16” (Plywood & Foam) 11 9/16”

Compound Penetration (Foam)17 14/16” (Plywood & Foam) 11 4/16”

Hope this helps!

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

Laws of physics don't lie Swampthing -- both compounds and crossbows have very high trajectories. The high trajectories make the crossbow a 40-yard weapon - a bow for archery seasons. Take a Hooter Shooting Machine and well matched arrows and you use it to sight in any high performance compound bow at 200 yards and you can shoot tight 4" groups on a calm day out to 200 yards too - but a hunter could never hit anything inbetween in a hunting situation -- not that it would be ethical to even try to do so anyway. The high performance 175# crossbow tested had a drop of 26" between 20 and 50 yards while the compound bow tested,set at 70# had a drop of 27.5" between 20 and 50 yards. You can't change that. It is arrow speed that dictates trajectory.

Just looked through the latest catelogue for Horton -- Their crossbows are advertised at 305 to 350 fps depending on the model. Ten Point advertises from 300 to 343 fps depending on the model. Parker advertises from 315 to 350 fps depending on the model. The Armcross advertises 305 fps (they have only one model). Bottom line is that crossbow manufacturers are not that far apart - and we have many compound bow manufacturers out there today that advertise these same kinds of speeds.

One of the problems with comparing crossbows today is that the crossbow manufacturers out there haven't yet settled on a base line for comparisons. Some use 400 grain bolts; some use 420 grain bolts; and at least one used 425 grain bolts.

Another interesting point is that in 3-D Shoots where crossbows are allowed (within their own divisions) the crossbow shooters shoot from the same stakes as compound shooters. Top scoring compound shooters consistently out-perform the top scoring crossbow shooters.

Compound vs. Crossbow – Kitchener 3-D Shoot
Category 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Average

Senior Compound 416 406 404 400 400 405.2

Senior Crossbow 409 400 363 343 278 358.6

These scores were not unusual. The organizers of this annual event told me that average compound shooter scores are regularly higher than those of crossbow shooters at these events. I attribute this to the fact that both the compound bows and crossbows are shot from standing positions in this shoot. Many years ago, before I started to hunt exclusively with the bow, I was a competition rifle shooter and a rifle hunter. Shooting from standing positions was always much more difficult than shooting from prone, sitting, or kneeling positions; in fact, very few shooters shoot their best when shooting from off-hand, standing positions. With the crossbow I found that standing-shot errors were magnified a bit because having the bow out in front of the stock makes the crossbow a bit front heavy, and this all has to be controlled by the front arm.

Something more to think about?

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 37 weeks ago

Benrichards87

No fears Ben -- I am a compound bow shooter; however, crossbows have been allowed in archery-only hunting seasons for many years now in Ontario - and it has only enhanced the overall sport - the same as compounds did when they gradually got accepted. I'm just happy to see some youngsters taking up the sport. Having said this, you have to be at least 12 years old to take the Hunter Education Program in Ontario - and you have to have the Program before you can hunt. And I believe they need this education.

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

First, I don't think disagreeing with another hunter is wrong in principal. We're all entitled to our own opinions.
I personally wasn't a fan of the PA change. It's not that I have anything against crossbows or those who choose to use them. I just wanted a separate season, even if they overlap. I know from experience that the draw is what's most likely to get me busted and thus keeps my success rate down. That being said I fear that an increase in percieved archery success will shorten the season and take away opportunities that archers currently have to compensate for the difficulty. Frankly, I don't even care if they're entirely concurrent, but again, I'd like them regulated seperately. That might even be the best initial approach and certainly a good compromise. Establish archery and crossbow as different seasons that have the exact same dates. If there ends up being no statistical differences in success or management needs leave it that way and everybody is happy (Ok, more people are happy). If the introduction of crossbow is shown to have a different impact than archery, manage them independently from there. I'm all for allowing both, but as they are not the same thing I'd just like them to be defined as two different seasons so that they can be managed seperately if necessary.

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from Buck wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I'm really glad to see such good intelligent comments here. Bowhunters Rock!

We could fix this little problem and most of what is wrong with hunting if we would change the way we look at things. Most sports score the performance, but hunters score the trophies. We should score both!

This makes authentic hunting less important to many hunters. Score the hunters performance, and many of the problems we have in hunting will eventually go away. Allow hunters to use a crossbow, but a bow scores a little higher.

More important those hunters who do really poor quality hunting and buy trophies would be scored low. They could cheat (that's what they do), but they could only brag about the animal, not how they got it.

As one writer said, "Follow the money." Much of the money goes to try and sell hunters on easier ways to get a deer, and especially a trophy deer. "Hunters" buy feed, feeders, seed, farming tools, trophy hunts, canned hunts... That's not a part of Authentic Hunting?

Buck@score-your-hunting.com

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from Vernon Freeck wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I LIVE&BOW HUNT WISCONSIN AM 69 AND NOW USE A CROSSBOW.I NOW ONLY HUNT WITH A CROSSBOW DEER,TURKEY,SQUIRREL,ETC.WE CAN ONLY USE A CROSSBOW IF WE HAVE HANDYCAP, WITH A DOCTOR FILLING OUT A FORM OR WHEN YOU REACH 65. I DO MISS MY COMPOUND BOW, IT ISN'T EASY TO GET IN AND OUT AND AROUND WITH A CROSSBOW, BUT THEY ARE GREAT BLIND BOWS. I THINK OUR LAWS ON CROSSBOWS ARE THE RIGHT WAY TO GO.

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from jcarlin wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

I thought my point WAS that the Mini-14 argument makes no sense at all.
Most things that can take game reliably has a place in the woods.
Right now there is a broad range of permissable weapons in the deer woods. I think they all have a purpose. They are all managed differently, and this is good. I don't see why crossbows should be lumped in with bows any more than my bolt action should be lumped in with flintlocks.

There were a few posts which mentioned disabilities as an exception. That's long been accepted and I've never heard any objection to it. I certainly don't have one myself.

Well, I'm finally tired of my own braying.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

Crossbows are now legal for public use in rifle seasons in Alberta. I believe this is the correct place for them since i think there is a safety issue with them.

Crossbows are different from other bows in that they can be carried in a cocked position, making them considerably more dangerous due to accidental discharge. Although i have not seen stat's on this, i suspect they may be more likely to accidentally discharge than firearms. Normal bows of course are only drawn when game is in range, making accidetal discharge risk close to zero.

As a bowhunter i feel this problem increases safety risk in the field so am pleased they are not allowed in our bowhunting seasons, except to handicapped hunters, who are fairly few.

As a rifle hunter i try to maintain a distance to hunters i don't know, minimizing risk of discharge accidents. So with crossbow hunters i will do the same, esp. if i see one who carries a cocked crossbow, which i consider to be very dangerous.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

I started with a long bow/shotgun,rifle then I started muzzleloader hunting with a "kit" musket/crossbow. Now I hunt with an in-line muzzle-loader and which ever bow "I" decide to shoot. I have been using the old "Bear" again just because I can still shoot instinct. So I'm not sure if I'm evolving/devolving or what(LOL).
All I know is that I'M HUNTING period.

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from Big O wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Just re-read the posts here. To bobpenny, Yes it is "loaded" when you go out,but is'nt your gun? Crossbows have a "safty" on them like other weapons. They are just as safe as any other weapon.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Big O,

Yes i knew that argument would show up. But there are 2 issues i see here:

* Myself and many rifle hunters leave the chambers empty but mag loaded til they see target game. This eliminates discharge under any condition including dropping the gun or hunter falling.

* The safety on a gun is blocking the trigger with no force or tension on it. The safety on a crossbow has to hold the cocked force of the bow or maybe 100 lbs or more. Which is safer? I believe most hunters would be walking around with cocked crossbows due to the time involved on cocking them. So if a cocked crossbow is dropped out of a stand, do you want to be downrange even if the safety is on. I'll pass.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

I hear you and one of the reasons i took up bow hunting was the safety aspect. Some people should not own guns, crossbows or even power tools.

But if crossbows are allowed in bow hunting seasons in AB, i will stop bowhunting due to the safety issues i mentioned. I also feel that most crossbow hunters could not be bothered with the time and effort req'd to learn to shoot hand drawn bows. So i wonder if they have the time to be concerned about safety. Handicapped people of course not included.

My opinion is that it will take a few accidents involving crossbows before authorities figure out that they are considerably more hazardous than bows and probably even rifles, at close range.

If i knew a crossbow hunter that wanted me to go in the field with him, i would say sorry but you're on your own.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

OK thanks, i will have a look at that.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

Bo,

In your reference, did not see anything about the accidental discharge issue that is my hang up. The author is a Cdn. who now crossbow hunts in ON.

While there i spotted another article by Kevin Wilson, another Cdn who lives in AB, who hunts with all types of bows and now a crossbow. He did not really talk about AD safety but did have this comment:

"With the crossbow, any time you're on stand you want to have it cocked and, due to the sheer size of the crossbow, maneuvering it can be a challenge. Likely more due to its unfamiliarity, I find that I am hyper-sensitive to the need to exercise due diligence when it came to safe handling of the "loaded" crossbow".

So at least he is aware to be very careful what he's doing when the weapon is cocked.

Bo,i am not against crossbow hunting for those who wish to do it. But i prefer to stay away from them although i used to build them when i was a kid. In Canada we now have mandatory safety training req'd for the license to acquire firearms. I don't know but am hoping it is also req'd for crossbows. If not it's my feeling we're headed for accidents.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

bo,

Agreed, it is the competence of the hunter that determines the safety of the situation. So am also very selective about who i hunt with.

I was quite upset when my firearm possession permit expired and was told i needed to take tests to get it renewed. After hunting and owning guns for 40 years and being taught safe gun use by my Dad, who was an army officer. I explained all this to my test instuctor, a former cop about my age, who said 'Don't get too upset Bob, you don't need the course, just take the tests and we'll make this work for you'. And he did. But i was in an unknown status for 74 days while the Fed's processed the paperwork.

But on the other hand when i hear about a bowhunter getting shot while setting up his deer decoy during a rifle season, i sort of think that maybe there are guys out there that need more training. Or maybe a brain transplant. That happened near where i sometimes hunt a few years ago. Surprisingly the bow hunter lived after being hit by a .303 Brit, i heard, and was taken to hospital by helo medevac.

bp.

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from bobpenny wrote 4 years 47 weeks ago

Big O,

That's good to hear. I have 2 PSE compounds and they seem fairly good.

Is there any way the string could release without the trigger moving?

bp.

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from hoveysmith wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Those considering using a crossbow should consult Crossbow Hunting which is the only comprehensive book on the subject that is now available. It was written by Wm. Hovey Smith and published by Stackpole in 2006. This book may be ordered from Amazon.com or at any bookstore. This book has chapters on choosing an appropriate crossbow, discussions on their capabilities, stratigies on how to hunt, and crossbow hunting stories from around the world. Deer too tame for you? How about a Cape buffalo with a crossbow - or a gator?

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

I did some serious testing for an article "Crossbows vs. Compounds -- Myths & Facts" -- published in Bow & Arrow Hunting Magazine, January Issue, 2004. I came to the consclusions that in terms of penetration and trajectories out to 50 yards, a 175# crossbow had almost the same performance as a high quality compound bow set at 70#. I am not a crossbow user but they have been allowed in archery hunting seasons in Ontario for many years - and this has only helped gain increased archery seasons, with crossbow users having no greater success than compound users. Both types of hunters still have to develop the same sort of hunting skills to get close enough to the animal to achieve success. They definitely should be allowed in archery-only hunting seasons - Crossbows are simply another type of bow.

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from toddj77 wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

I'm concerned about the author's description of a "moderate" compound bow: "moderate compound (75-pound draw, 350-grain shaft tipped with a 125-grain field point)." Moderate???

Of all my friends and other archers at my local club, I know one person that shoots a bow set over 70 lbs. My bow and several of my friends' bows top out at 60... while the majority of us can comfortably draw 70+ lbs, it becomes awkward in cold weather, heavy clothing, and with obstructing tree limbs.

Calling a 75 lb draw weight "moderate" is like calling n H3 hummer a mid-sized car. Additionally, a 350 grain arrow is under weight for a 75 lb bow. When you consider that most manufacturers require 5 grains per pound of draw weight and others require 6 grains per pound of draw weight, the author is suggesting shooting in unsafe situations.

Although I'd prefer to see crossbow hunters participate in rifle seasons, I'm not necessarily against crossbows in archery seasons either. But I feel the author's comparisons are definitely flawed.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

Swampthing -- I don't know where you are getting your information but it is terribly flawed. In my tests the 175# crossbow tested had a trajectory drop of well over two feet between 20 and 50 yards. 4" groups at 200 yards - hogwash! Almost all crossbow manufacturers have a recommended max hunting distance of 40 yards - same as recommended by the National Bowhunter Education Foundation for other types of bows. I am a Master Instructor with the NBEF - Ontario -- We teach the crossbow as just being another bow - along with longbows, recurves & compounds.

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

swampthingMN -- Are at all reading anything posted by others? The comments I make about Ontario for example? the comments made about our own testing where we compared compounds to crossbows? P&Y were against compounds at one time -- The world evolves! States and provinces are gradually allowing crossbows to be used in bowhunting seasons for the simple fact that crossbows just don't have the power and long-range shooting capabilities that some 'against crossbows' groups made them out to be. Their shooting capabilities are about the same as compounds. The PBS group is a good example -- They even have an anti-crossbow committee and I have wittnessed this group sponsoring a 'crossbow throwing' contest at an annual convention where members took turns throwing a brand new crossbow on a cement parking lot to see who could do the most damage. They destroyed it of course -- seemed pretty silly to me - and that is why we did the testing we did. Tests don't lie!

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from toxyphil wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

I am glad someone has done some appropriate testing.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

Oh way funny Phil! I am sure the folks at RAC are very familiar with Broken Arrows test described above. I am not big on willfully destroying good equipment but have been close to throwing my own bow sometimes when it isn't working right(usually target panic a know variable in shooting a hand held bow).

But seriously when someone mentions tests one has to keep in mind how it was designed and performed. What it ASTM, ANSI,method or just a testimonial? Who performed the test and did they have pre-established opinions and goals, was it impartial? Were items reported that didn't go along with the thesis? How were they explained? I have read many "tests" that wouldn't hold up to peer review. My suggestion is to talk to someone like Norb Mulaney who haas probably done more tests and written more articles on archery equipment than anyone alive.

Getting back to my inquiry about NBEF and crossbow training I don't see anything speciifc to crossbows in the 80 page "Today's Bowhunter" teaching manual used at the NBEF courses. Only item I was aware of the last time I held a course(2008) was the tree stand video that covered crossbows as well as hand held bows.

Yes P & Y were against compound bows at one time, they still have specific requirements for technical advancements that can be used in taking game to be entered into the record books. They have "evolved" but still have a defined limitation. Many of the states rules books have archery definiitons too, especially Montana!

When we look at this controversy that's simply what its about isn't it? How much technology is acceptable in a season that has a history of being created for primitive weapons? Again, I would argue that is for the bowhunters to define not the manufacturer groups, firearms lobby or an judge educated by only on side of the argument to decide.

Bows-10,000 yrs
Crossbows-1,000yrs
Muzzleloaders-500 yrs
High Power Cartridges-200 yrs

We all share the woods, hand held bows having the longest history
What's next?

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from Broken Arrow wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

Swampthing

As explained above I am not a crossbow user - but I am a dedicated bowhunter who happens to use compound bows. I presently use a Bladerunner A51 compound. I did the comparision between crossbows and compounds after witnessing the destruction of the crossbow at the PBA convention. I frankly wondered what all the fuss was about. The vast majority of those people had never held a crossbow in their hands before let alone shot one. There was little literature about crossbows available at the time so I decided to do my own testing to find out what the real facts were.

The tests were done in a very controlled way. The bow used were an Excalibur Exocet Crossbow (175#) and a Golden Eagle Splitfire compound bow set at 70#. Arrows and bolts were each 400 grains. Both bows were sighted in at 20 yards and, using the 20-yard pin only, arrows and bolts were shot at 30, 40 & 50 yards - with the trajectory for each shot carefully measured (in fact each shot taken was video taped). The trajectory drops were almost identical for the two setups.

20 yards 30yards 40 yards 50 yards
Crossbow 0 -5.75" -16.25" -26.00"

Compound 0 -6.00" -16.75" -27.50

We had similar results with penetration tests with the compound bow slightly beating out the crossbow when shooting into dense insulation foam, and with the crossbow slightly beating out the compound bow when shot through 5-ply plywood backed with the same insulation foam.

4 yards 4 yards
Foam Only Plywood Backed With Foam

Crossbow Penetration 15 12/16” 11 9/16”

Compound Penetration 17 14/16” 11 4/16”

these results were not surprising. The compound bow arrows used, while of the same weight as the crossbow bolts, were of smaller diameter and thus had less friction when penetrating. The crossbow bolts, being much shorter than the arrows, had less tendency to bend when hitting the plywood than the longer arrows.

What testing have you personally done to back up the statements you have made above Swampthing? I don't see anything there of note that isn't just opinion! Go do you own testing - If you do the the testing properly you'll come to the same conclusions as we did in our tests. You'll also come to a better understanding of crossbows and some basic laws of physics.

By the way, you are way out of date on the materials used in the IBEP programs. The NBEF has had a crossbow supplement manual out for some time now. It is a 28 page manual called "Today's Crossbow - An Addendum to a Hunter Education or Bowhunter Education Course". It is available through the NBEF store.

Good Hunting!

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

I stand corrected on the NBEF manual I'll scold my class material supplier as there are usually 1-2 crossbow users in the bowhunter ed classes that could use that info.

As far as the crossbow vs compound bow testing you have pretty much limited yourslef to just a few examples. Way to many variables out there to make simple assumption that they all shoot the same. My personal file is about 5 inches thick and weighs about 7 lbs, so my info is far from just being my opinion. I recall a simple test done on a Great lakes-Durango about 4 years ago and the author who had never shot a corssbow before put arrows in a 4" group at 100 yds rather quickly. Again it is not I who is making claims that the new crossbow can shoot 1 " groups at 100 yds and 4" groups at 200 yds(one arrow hole groups by military sharpshooters) It is the sales staff from PSE and their TAC that was demoed this year at ATA show. Gotta wonder what the new line of springolts would do if there is no defined upper limit.

ASTM does have a method for testing bows, its not free but has sound physics behind it. Also must bear in mind that ergonomics are also a factor (man + machine). Bench tests are lot differtnt than shooting them in the field. Hand someone a crossbow and most will shoot very nearly the same without adjustments, give a bunch of a people a hand held bow (compound, recure or longbow) most if not all will shoot them differently.That's why folks need to get properly set up for their own body type and form, and practice to be a good bowhunter-thus the need for a private season. Crossbowmen really don't have to practice-many would argue they don't need to have long season separate from firearms.

My crossbow shoots a lot more accurately than my compound bow, they are separated by about 25 years in technological developments, crossbow still shoots better with that disadvantage.
Not surprisingly my compound and recurve shoot alot better than my long bow. So much for personal testing...

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from vietnamvet66 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

I have been a deer & elk(Colorado) hunter most of my adult life. However, I am now 64 years old and a recent recipient of shoulder surgery. This is the first year I have tried cross bow hunting and found it more chalenging than hunting with a firearm. I can not pull a compound bow so this is my only alternative to expanding my hunting seasons. I appreciate the fact that Ohio, where I live, allows cross bows for deer hunting. For those hunters who are able to use a compound bow, I envy you for your youth, strength and agility. Please give us "old guys" a break. We enjoy the outdoors and the hunt just as well. Just F.Y.I. I passed up an 8 point Monday 11-09-09 because I didn't feel he was close enough. Sure enjoyed the day though.

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from vietnamvet66 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

I have been a deer & elk (Colorado) hunter most of my adult life. However, I am now 64 years old and a recent recipient of shoulder surgery and can not pull a compound bow. This is the first year I have hunted with a cross bow and found it more challenging than a firearm. I envy the hunters that have the agility, ability and/or youthfulness to pull a compound. Please don’t knock us “old guys” for using equipment that allows us to venture into the field in the pursuit of game. Just F.Y.I. I passed up an 8 point buck Monday, 11-09-09 because I didn’t feel that he was close enough for a sure shot. I still enjoyed the day in the woods.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

From the looks of the article and the discussions the impression I get is that the mechanical compound AND traditional stick bow bowhunters are concerned that the firearm hunters looking for a way to extend their season will encroach upon the archery season with the TAR-15 type of crossbow equipment. Per the mfg. it can shoot 1" group at 100yds, 4" group at 200 yds. Doesn't sound like any vertical bow I have ever heard of. Doubt Robin hood, Howard Hill, Mr. Ulmer, Asbell, Adams, or anyone else drawing a hand held bow with their own strength is that good. Thus a basis for bowhunters concerns about allowing crossbows in the archery season (past perceived issues becoming very real?).

Sounds like a safety nightmare in the wrong hands. Blaze orange safety/hunters perception studies that have been conducted don't even start until out at 100 yds or so, way beyond the effective range of compound bow, but apparently not the TAR-15.

So how is a traditional archery guy supposed to take an animal that has been pressured night and day by other groups at a range of 10-15 yds, while wearing blaze orange? (likely requirement for all hunters in the near future after all weapons mingle).

Conversely how can wildlife agencies expect to maintain hunter involvemnt and recruitment once they have met population goals? By the recreational value it provides! Not everyone wants to hunt with a gun, or gun-like weapon. Think about what the population goals were when archery seasons first came into existence? People want an option to enjoy peace and solitude away from large groups of other hunters, typically not the situation with firearms seasons. However commaradeire during that season has its own value, seperate from other needs.

Yes I do hunt with bow, also shotgun and rifle and own a crossbow. Different seasons, different needs, all appreciated, AND respected.
I refuse to sacrifce one season such as archery for another in the name of unity-BAH! ATA, NRA and PSE doesn't have me fooled, they want my money, period. They aren't going to get it.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

For more references look up:

Public trust doctrine,Roosevelts books, the Lacey Act

The Sino-Japanese war (where repeating fire crossbows were used)

The North American Bowhunters Coalition (NABC)

NRAs postiion on crossbow use in archery season 10 years ago(e.g. its not a 2nd amendment issue, we will never get involved in it).

State wildlife mgt. organization's postion on disabled permits for crossbow use (disability generally not defined as convenience, or being lazy-but reasonable)

A recent Cabelas, Gander Mt,, Bass Pro shop Catalog-camo anyone?

This debate is probably as old as the hand held bow and crossbow themselves, best interst for everyone to become informed.

Just beacue some one opposes a certian hunting technique, weaponry, seasonal placement doesn't make them an anti. Traps, pitfalls, snares, nets are illegal for deer hunting too. No biological reason why they couldn't be used for game harvest methods....developed by a mfg., lisc. developed, and equip. taxed appropriately. But how many would support their use?

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

Sorry that would be the "TAC 15" in the article above(AR-15 is a type of rifle). Look up the video on it from ATA as well. I assure you once you have read the references the issues will become more clear. Hint: NRAs recent testimonies supporting crossbows in the archery season, repeating fire crossbows are similar to firearms-they can be made, why invalidating the public trust doctrine is wrong.

There are alot of issues surrounding crossbows and hunting technologies in general. If you don't want to waste your time becoming informed of the complexities of the issues, that is another matter.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 43 weeks ago

The TAC-15 didn't exist in 2004, the upper extremes for crossbows (nor compounds) are not generally defined in many state statutes. (MT is very good about defining it). Do you really want to be wearing camo out there hunting with folks who don't have to practice with their high tech weapon and can shoot 4" groups out to 200 yds? You will if high energy crossbows are accepted as "archery equipment." On the rare occassion I hunted with a bow during firearms season, I was dressed head to tail in blaze orange-not very effective in the range of a hand held bow. I have yet to meet an archer who wants me hunting with a firearm in archery season with them while they are wearing camo. Its scary enough having the small game hunter in the woods shooting into the trees or the general direcion of ground blinds where the average bowhunter hides.

Again the average bowhunter is not pushing for this change the cross manufacturer's lobby is.(have you seen NABCs position on it?-they represent almost all state/provicial bowhunter associations in the US and Canada)I have hunted with crossbow men who made safety and shot placement mistakes, as a fellow hunter and NBEF educator, I offered my support.

What I have an issue with is a mfg. group and firearms lobby who pushes high energy weapons in the name of hunter recruitment(especailly for youth and women) but then offers no training program to educate users as the previous firearms and bowhunters groups have done. You can't just roll them into a firearms or bowhunter ed class. The weapon has its own safety issues, ballistics, etc. etc. etc. in addition to all the social and political issues that have been argued here.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

That's the problem you are teaching folks that a crossbow is just like any other bow, its not-I have shot them too. Even my five year old knows this. I am also a NBEF instructor. I don't do my students the disservice of telling them that is is a bow and its just like any other bow you have ever shot. I doubt you tested the TAC-15 as its new this year. Please update your information.

A recommendation of 4O yards is different than practice. You can
(and should) shoot deer with a 270 and high power scope at 40-50 or 100 yards but the effective range is way way beyond that. Most guys can't see too much further than that in the woods..

If there is so much support fot the crossbow weapon why do they need to hide behind the ATA and NRA to get them approved in states where they are not curently used?? Why are such large organizations as
P & Y , NABC and many, many archery clubs against their use? If it was such a simple argument they could stand on their own merits, they have yet to convince me and plenty of my feloow archers. I have researched the issue, plenty and talk to folks all over the country, my reasoning is sound (OH gee I have even taken college courses on the subjects of scientific reasoning as well as physics and engineering, politics).

I plan on continuing the argument that firearms should be used in firearms season, muzzleloaders in their season and hand held bows in their season-the one my ancestors fought and lobbied for. Crossbows don't get a free pass to be used in all three. If all type of hunting equipment needs to be defined by statute and appropriate periods of use established, so be it. A far cry better than just throwing a new weapon into an exisitng group (one who doesn't want it) and call it a day.

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from benrichards87 wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

I'm from Michigan were they are now allowing crossbow use for any age in the southern part of the state. I don't have a problem with hunters taking crossbows to the woods because I don't think they will cause a spike in deer kills. They still have to hunt. If you gave me a $2000 crossbow, I would still choose my compound. I'm confident that I would out-shoot the average crossbow hunter at 40 yards with my compound.

My only problem with allowing crossbows is that they are allowing young kids to use them. A 10 year old wants to start hunting. He/she has the choice to use a compound bow with a 35 pound draw weight or a crossbow that their parents will draw for them, long before they have to shoot. They will choose the crossbow. I'm 20 years old and in 30 years, I still hope to be hunting with my compound or recurve. My fear is that with so many young crossbow hunters coming in and so many traditional hunters on their way out, there will be a whole new generation of hunters only using crossbows. The top bow makers are not going to spend money on making top of the line equipment for traditional archers. They will be forced to make the best crossbow in order to stay in business. I will be forced out of hunting. Crossbows should only be allowed for the disabled or anyone over the age of 45.

I will continue using my compound and recurve.

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from swampthingMN wrote 4 years 41 weeks ago

I shoot side by side with some folks at the local outdoor archery range (70 lb compound, 50lb recurve/long bow), I can't say that I have seen what you are suggesting being demonstrated. Most of these people are little guys(Asians) shooting the latest line of crossbows.Some blow right through the bales and so they use foam blocks instead. Their bolts are visually much faster than my arrows and pack much more wallop with better accuracy-physics and ergonomics in action first hand, again.

I have also hunted with some of these folk, the allegation that they can't use hand held bows with enough poundage to kill a deer is also false. I have seen them be successful with a hand held bow with my own eyes. Dragging them out whole (for religious, cultural reasons) seems to be the norm and they do struggle with that. Unless of course I offer to supply my hand cart, which I have done.

This brings up an issue of recruitment for people preferring to use high energy crossbows over low energy hand held bows-how do they expect to pack something out if they don't have the strength to shoot a 30-35 lb bow? ATVs and crossbows becoming the norm? I hope not as ATV misuse, overuse opens up an whole other can of worms.

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