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advice in learning crossbow

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  • Barney Remington
    I d like to learn to use a crossbow (I m a recurve shooter), and am looking for some advice from those of you with more experience with the Dark Side . What
    Message 1 of 3 , Aug 4, 2006
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      I'd like to learn to use a crossbow (I'm a recurve shooter), and am
      looking for some advice from those of you with more experience with the
      'Dark Side'. What should I look for in a starter crossbow? Am I better
      off getting something that I can afford now and upgrade later, or saving
      my money until I can get a *nice* crossbow? How about sources for
      equipment/shooting/maintenance tips?



      I'm sure that this subject has been covered extensively in the past; I'm
      just hoping that someone is willing to give me a summary or some inside
      info. :-)



      Evan Hawkins

      SunDragon, Atenveldt



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    • Bruce R. Gordon
      Greetings The first thing you will want to do is fool around with a variety of different X-bows, in order to find the kind you like best and which system of
      Message 2 of 3 , Aug 4, 2006
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        Greetings

        The first thing you will want to do is fool around with a variety of different X-bows, in order to find the kind you like best and which system of loading and aiming seems to make the most sense to your style od sgooting. You will also need to experiment with various poundages to guage what you can safely pull, and also to assess the effect on targets that differing pondages will have. Understand, too, that a X-bow needs to be designed with your body frame in mind, so that you can easily bend over with foot in stirrup to grasp the string and pull back to cock (or support off your waist while pulling the string, if that's the methods you end up using).

        If you can find a X-bow "off-the-shelf" that meets all the requirements you have for length, pull, aiming characteristics, etc., well and good, but chances are you will need to have one built for you, and that will require talking to X-bow makers you can hunt up, for info on pricing, time involved, and other considerations.

        Waiting around until you find the perfect bow for you could involve a real long time - my recommendation would be to research as much as you think necessary, find a source for sale or construction, and get what works best for you given what you can afford. Know beforehand that it's a bit of a gamble, and that if you end up liking X-bows, your first one will almost certainly not be you last one. Upgrading as your skills develop and your needs shift is part of the game.

        If there is a dearth of bowyers and/or info about X-bows in your area, you will probably need to seek out both online. I would suggest Googling the terms "SCA" and "crossbow" in conjunction with each other - I'd bet you'll get quite a few hits nationwide from makers and enthusiasts.

        Cordially;
        Nigel


        --
        Three things never heard from the mouth of a Celt:
        "Do these colors match?"
        "Is this too much jewelry?"
        "Is that my drink?"

        http://web.raex.com/~obsidian/index.html


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      • Frederick Fenters
        Welcome to an adventure that can eat all your spare time, money, and your very essence (bhaw-ha-ha). Seriously, if I tell you something of my own journey, it
        Message 3 of 3 , Aug 5, 2006
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          Welcome to an adventure that can eat all your spare time, money, and your
          very essence (bhaw-ha-ha).



          Seriously, if I tell you something of my own journey, it may help you. I
          was a moderately skilled recurve shooter, as I framed it, a fair country
          archer. I had injured a shoulder years ago and eventually started to have
          problems pulling my bow. My best friend had an old Powermaster crossbow
          which he gave me on the grounds that I practice with it and see what I could
          do with it. First things being first, we cut down some arrows and I started
          shooting. I was hooked! I am a pretty good shot with firearms as well as
          my archery, but something in my soul just stood up and yelled "AT LAST!"



          The next thing I did was refinish that old Powermaster and design a rear
          sight that would be SCA legal and help determine elevations for various
          distances. Another friend who works in a machine shop helped bend the metal
          and away I went again. I also had been experimenting with my arrows (I
          fletch my own) and had found what worked best for me in that bow. In short
          order, I was shooting well enough to be considered for the Archer Champions
          at Pennsic.



          Then came the next step, as Nigel mentioned. I purchased another crossbow,
          a used Barnett Wildcat II. I made the necessary adaptations to render it
          SCA legal in the Midrealm and started shooting it as my primary weapon. I
          continued to be on the Champions team when I was able to go to Pennsic, and
          somewhere in this time was inducted into the Greenwood Company. I kept
          experimenting with my arrows, too.



          At an unusually flush time, I bought a more period style crossbow and
          started shooting it and using it for demos and some events. Experimented
          with the bolts for it, too, and found the combination that worked best for
          me.



          Next up, I was handed a modified Barnett with an Excalibur trigger and a
          period looking (sort of) stock. That is my primary weapon, now. I also
          have half completed a period style "clapper lock" weapon for the demos,
          court appearances and the other times I wish to look fully period.



          I sure hope this helps you out. Feel free to contact me here or off list if
          there is anything I can do to help you.



          Forester Padraig MacRaighne





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