Pistol crossbows


July 4, 2008, 12:18 AM
Are those pistol crossbows with 80 lb pull junk?


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July 4, 2008, 01:07 AM
yes, mostly.

July 4, 2008, 01:13 AM
Fun, though. Handy for sneaking up on the rabbits that pillage your urban garden, without freaking out the neighbors.

July 4, 2008, 08:51 AM
The one I have is actually pretty accurate. I managed to pop a rabbit at about 25yrds with it. Broke the string a few years ago and haven't gotten around to replacing it yet.

July 4, 2008, 05:15 PM
Who makes these?


July 4, 2008, 05:30 PM
Uhh China makes them. They are good entertainment for the money if you get the stronger ones.

July 4, 2008, 06:39 PM
groundhogs beware!!!

July 5, 2008, 06:23 AM
In my opinion, pistol crossbows seem like a gimmick. They possess neither the power nor accuracy of quality crossbows such as a TenPoint. True, they might prove "fun" for backyard plinking, but their usefulness is limited beyond that point. I suppose my jaundiced view of pistol crossbows stems partially from seeing them advertised as self-defense weapons on various internet websites. To market them for such a purpose seems criminally irresponsible to me. I hope my views on this subject provide some food for thought.


July 5, 2008, 11:32 AM
Very true but there hell on rodents. A very fun way to cut down on the rat population.

July 6, 2008, 08:35 PM
If they are legal for self defense, I don't see a problem

July 7, 2008, 05:15 AM
LAR-15, the problem with marketing pistol crossbows, shurikens, blowguns and other such items as legitimate self-defense tools is they lack the effectiveness of firearms, clubs and swords in countering a deadly threat. People who market such gimmicks target audiences ill-informed about the reality of life-and-death confrontations. To mislead naive people about such important matters seems criminally irresponsible to me. The following true story should demonstrate why I feel so passionately about this subject.

Some years ago, a martial arts magazine ran an advertisement about "a deadly karate weapon" with which people could defend their homes. What was it? Why, it was a scam to sell naive folks nunchucks as a home defense weapon. Those marketing scoundrels claimed people could protect themselves by purchasing a self-defense kit which included an instructional videotape, a plastic training nunchuck and a wooden nunchuck. The idea that this kit could provide inexperienced individuals with legitimate training and weapons to meet a life threatening situation seemed criminal to me. This is why I view such advertisements with scornful contempt. I hope this posting has made my position clear.


July 7, 2008, 06:03 AM
If they are legal for self defense, I don't see a problem

I am sure they are legal, but boy, what a bad idea that would be. I would rather have a bat than a pistol crossbow if it came down to it.

That being said, they are fun to play around with, and I can see them being effective on small rodents and things like that. The one that I had proved to be entertaining for a while, and then I passed it along to a buddy who I am certain also found it entertaining.

July 7, 2008, 11:04 PM

I do understand these are not great self defense weapons

July 8, 2008, 05:41 AM
Well, I understand that you know they aren't a great SD weapon, as even 95% of hardcore mall ninja's are smart enough to know that would be dumb, lol.

To answer your question directly from my own personal experience, yes, they are kind of junky. Fun, potentially effective on small game, but ultimately kind of junky.

The one that I had was purchased at Big 5. Made in China, mostly plastic. It had reasonably effective (adjustable!)sights, though they weren't particularly sturdy and broke almost immediately, necessitating repair by super-glue. Past that, it worked pretty well, but there just wasn't anything that inspired any particular confidence in the overall design. The safety, in particular, was a little sketchy. It worked, and the basic principle of why it worked was pretty obvious, but a lack of anything approaching smooth operation always left me a little wary that I was going to twang my fingers or something. It never happened, but it goes back to that confidence thing.

As far as actually shooting it, the adjustability of the sights actually worked well enough to get me on target most times. The bolts left the pistol with a fair amount of zing (I actually would have liked to chrono them out of curiosity), and they would hit to point of aim, more or less. The cocking mechanism was a bit awkward, but it did work very well.

If you have some spare cash laying around, and you can find one on sale like I did, you will probably get your money's worth in entertainment out of it, which is more than I can say about a lot of things. If your looking for something serious and useful, probably best to pass.

If your looking for something to quietly whack small pests in the backyard with, I honestly recommend a blowgun. With very little practice, you can be accurate enough to kill stuff and your neighbors will never know. You can pick up a decent blowgun and enough darts to last you for a good while for under 20 bucks.

July 8, 2008, 10:37 AM
I will look at the blowgun

July 8, 2008, 02:39 PM
I've owned 2 pistol crossbows over the years. I would put them in the 'toys' category. Aside from my college roommate setting off the general fire alarm in the dorms with one, it was totally useless. The bolts are normally solid plastic with a cheap field point on it, don't think you can get any real broadheads for them -and it you could, it'd probably be too front-heavy to be accurate.

Be careful with losing track of blowgun darts, you don't want to step on one barefoot.

AJ Dual
July 8, 2008, 04:09 PM
My experience as well.

The cheap Chi-com flea-market crossbow pistols are pretty shoddy in manufacture. If you see one for under $20, buy it for fun to get the bug out of your system.

The standard field point will only penetrate one pane of a double-pane thermal window.

Don't ask. :rolleyes:

July 13, 2008, 02:27 AM
Barnett used to make a decent quality pistol crossbow, i think it was called the trident.
Haven't seen one around lately though.

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