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Mark Hiller





Joined: 07 Sep 2007

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 6:36 am    Post subject: crossbow question         Reply with quote

hi all i am very new to all of this but i just have one question... what is the average length a 50lb, 60lb, 70lb and 8lb crossbow would fire... either in yards, meters or feet. im just looking to get one to have some fun with out in the yard shooting targets. the type i am looking at is a pistol crossbow like these... http://www.kingofswords.com/Airguns-Crossbows...sbows.html

that website confuses me though as it says the 45lb can travel 60 yards but the 80lb crossbow only 40 yards. like i said i am brand new to this but i figured the more lb's the farther the darts/arrows would travel. any advice is appriciated. thanks
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Lin Robinson




Location: NC
Joined: 15 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 9:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Marků

The folks who are selling these crossbows are probably repeating what the manufacturer publishes in its sales literature. I doubt they have done much testing of what they are selling.

These crossbows are probably made in China and, if they are like the ones I used to see at gun shows, are of low quality. I had one of the pistol type crossbows about 15 years ago and it was junk. Crossbows are not sold much in NC any more since the State decided sales should be restricted to persons with concealed carry licenses or handgun purchase permits. This resulted from one incident where a crossbow was used in a murder.

The range of any projectile is subject a lot of factors such as wind resistance, the weight of the projectile, the force of gravity and the initial velocity at which it leaves the source of propulsion, etc. The best I can offer is that if you buy one of these things, try it out to see what kind of range it produces with consistency. That is the answer to your question about what draw weight produces what range. I would not pay a lot of attention to what the advertising says.

Lin Robinson

"The best thing in life is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women." Conan the Barbarian, 1982
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Dan P




Location: Massachusetts, USA
Joined: 28 Jun 2007

Posts: 208

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 9:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Almost certainly all of those crossbows will fire a bolt much further than they say, especially if you point it up at 45 degrees. You really need to test the bow to see how far it will shoot, and how far you can shoot it accurately.

I "used to" have a cheap 70-80lb pistol crossbow. Its pretty powerful, as in it will put a bolt about 5 to 6 inches into a phone book at about 15 meters. The problem is that the "adjustible sights" are neither apt to adjust nor stay put after being adjusted... so I woudn't shoot at anything further away than that (except for maybe the side of a barn). That said, these cheap things can be a lot of fun. I've probably fired almost a hundred shots with mine without mechanical mishap. If one needed food it could be used to kill rabbits, squirrels, and geese pretty easy.

Crossbows are probably illegal in my state; I think there was a murder a decade ago and then the state classified them as assault weapons or something... so even if you have a permit to carry a concealed pistol, you might not be able to get a crossbow... go figure. Anyway thats why I "lost" mine. I don't have it in my possession, currently. If you get a crossbow please treat it like a firearm, use common sense, and follow the safety rules.
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Mark Hiller





Joined: 07 Sep 2007

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 10:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

thanks guys. i am in uk and as far as i know they are legal here. i found a few uk shops selling them none mentioned permits or anything. i will only use it in my yard against a wooden fence wich has nothing behind it apart from stacks of tiles and deffinatly use it safely. i think i will go for a 60-80lb one depending on the prices. my garden is only small anyway probally about 30 feet long. its just nice to know if you have one wich is capable of going a few hundred feet lol
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Randall Moffett




Location: Northern Utah
Joined: 07 Jun 2006
Reading list: 5 books

Posts: 2,098

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 12:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark,

As a fellow UK dweller I have the sad duty to tell you there are legal issues to owning a crossbow. I could not find it off hand in my loads of legal jibberish I have here at home (I used to work in the arms and armour gallery at a museum in the north) but I can give you the run down of what I know about such things. If transporting it keep it unstrung. Even with bolts they seem to be ok with this measure. If you keep the bolts seperate even better, less cause to trouble you. If you cannot get it unstrung keep the bolts seperate from the crossbows and that might help as well. You may want to make sure what the laws are in your area. It all falls under the the descretion of the local police under reasonable possesion and use. Basically they can stop you anytime with it if they want. Most responsible reenactors here have no problems but the key word of course is responsible.

RPM
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Dan P




Location: Massachusetts, USA
Joined: 28 Jun 2007

Posts: 208

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 12:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark, if you have never done this before, please read this and stay safe.
http://www.nrahq.org/education/guide.asp

Here's some more advice that I follow when shooting.
Its always a good idea to keep your crossbow unstrung whenever you are carrying or storing it. Even if the bow is unstrung and unloaded don't point it at people or pets. Store the bolts and string separate from the crossbow, locked up if you have kids.
Especially with a cheap crossbow, inspect it each and every time before you load it- its cheap for a reason.
Replace the string- when it starts getting frayed- before it snaps on you and takes out an eye or something.
For that matter, consider wearing eye protection, and possibly some gloves.
Don't re-use any bolt or arrow that appears cracked, bent, twisted, or otherwise structurally defective. They may not fly straight, or shatter on impact.
The rules against what you intend to do are only enforced when your neighbors get scared and call the cops. Don't scare the neighbors.
At 30 feet, that bow is going to put holes in your fence, and possibly shoot bolts all the way through it. A softer, thicker target, like a bale of hay, is less likely to be completely penetrated or cause a ricochet.
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Mark Hiller





Joined: 07 Sep 2007

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 1:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

oooh thanks i will deff read up on it. im only going to keep in the house so shouldnt have any probs transporting it and police taking it. though maybe customs will seize it im not sure. i wont be using bolts... not sure what they are to be honest or how it can fire a small bolt... if thats what it is lol i will only use darts... probally blunt ones or just sharp enough to stick in wood. does anyone have a rough ideal of how far a 70lb pistol crossbow would fire ?
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Malcolm A




Location: Scotland, UK
Joined: 22 Mar 2005

Posts: 89

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 1:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Mark
I don't want to rain on your parade but I think you would be seriously tempting fate if you use your crossbow in your back yard even if there is nothing beyond it. [except maybe if you are in the country away from other houses]

Whilst I can't provide anything definitive from the statute books, I recall some time ago being told that even firing an airgun rifle or pistol within 50 yards of a built up area would be seen as chargeable offence here in the UK.

I would stroongly advise you to check with your local police office just to make sure, as if a passerby sees you and reports it to them, you may have a heck of lot of questions to answer. On some unfortunate occasions here in the UK, armed police units have been sent to investigate situations where "allegedly armed people" have in fact been carrying lumps of wood etc; the public can often relay a flawed report to the police leading to the arnmed unit response.

I hope that you can find a suitable location to try out your crossbow and can revert back here with your findings.
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Mark Hiller





Joined: 07 Sep 2007

Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 1:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

hey mate my garden backs onto a abandoned factory wich has a big wooden fence at the end my garden with lots of tiles behind it so it should be very safe to use the garden. also no passers by can see into my garden only the neighbours wich one side is empty and the otherside i will tell them in advance i will be using it. the only risk is stray animals... if the dart does penetrate the fence wich i doubt it will. i will make sure my animals are locked in the house and everyone else with me is stood well behind me so i should be ok. and of course i will wear eye protection and maybe hearing protection.. im not sure if they produce a loud noise or not
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Lin Robinson




Location: NC
Joined: 15 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 1:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark...

I did not realize you were in the UK when I posted my reply. I know very little about the laws in the UK except there is an almost total ban on private ownership of firearms. Your countrymen have given you some good advice and from your replies it appears that you will take it.

These things are dangerous. The cheap ones are even more so and that includes danger to the user as well as anyone or anything in the line of fire. The one that I had seemed quite powerful, but the bolts, like the rest of the thing, were junk and did begin to fracture and bend after being shot just a few times. I bought some extra bolts for that reason. The string did not last any time and when it frayed to the point of being unusable, I "dismantled" the cross bow with "extreme prejudice" to be sure it did not get into the hands of my then ten-year-old son.

My advice is to rethink this project unless you are on very good terms with the local police.

Lin Robinson

"The best thing in life is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women." Conan the Barbarian, 1982
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Randall Moffett




Location: Northern Utah
Joined: 07 Jun 2006
Reading list: 5 books

Posts: 2,098

PostPosted: Fri 07 Sep, 2007 11:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mark,

Two things came to mind. The first is see if any shooting clubs are close. If they have a range you might be able to talk your way onto it. What we have been able to do around here is ask a few clubs and farmers to allow us to use their property. As long as they have the area and it looks safe they may not mind. In the end the responsible party is you so just dot you i's and cross you t's. The group I have been with here in the south does heavy weight longbows so they are needing a minimum of 240 yards (which many hit quite easily) so finding a good area is challenging at times. Luckily there are a few places that fit the bill rather well.

I doubt your smaller crossbow would get that far but also remembered that about a decade ago they had a shooting in Leeds with a crossbow and I think that was when many people in the Uk realized these could still be weapons. As always politicians jumped up and down and shouted about it and made a stink. I would recommend not getting a pistol hand crossbow for one reason. The police rarely will feel you have any good reason to own one likely but if you have a chat with one they will give you the run down. Some will feel there is no reason to own one about anything though so just be mindful. I did the same thing when I began building my own crossbow up in York. Also a medieval type crossbow might seem more reasonable to them if you are in a reenactment group or do reenactment. If you are in a group ask someone there if they know.

RPM

RPM
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