Crossbow vs Compound
So I've decided I want to start incorporating another option in my hunting repertoire, so now I need to decide what to go with. Having zero experience with either platform, I'm open to opinions.
Crossbows have come a long way, but I like the sporting aspect of the compound. Unfortunately, with a new daughter, I don't know if I have the time needed to become and maintain proficiency with the compound.
I like the PSE Tac15, which allows you to use your existing AR15 lower receiver and has insane speed, but the proprietary bolts are $18 apiece!
Anyone have good hunting experience with both platforms??
Check your game regs in MO unless you have a disability you can not use a crossbow during bow season. Its ok during rifle season on a rifle tag. Personally I am compound guy. But as long as you are in the woods I am ok with whatever you choose to use!
MI passed legislation allowing it during archery this season. First time. If they hadn't, I would have stuck with the 06 for rifle and looked at a compound.
I know there's usually a lot of contention around the crossbows amongst archers. Good to hear you're unbiased!
I use a stick and string( recurve). Simple, reliable and effective.
What the archer gets rusty with is range estimation, which is critical. I can not shoot my compound for a year, pick it up and do fine. The hitting at various distance is the only thing I have to brush up on, which isn't hard.
Now, traditional archery is a completely different animal.
Disabilities aside, what's the sport in a crossbow?
Like Glockman10mm points out, range estimation was my downfall, and still is. But I sure loved being out in the woods just seeing deer, hitting or missing was only climax to teh enjoyment leading up to it.
I'm sure I'll get tarred and feathered for this comment but...
Why is the harvest of deer considered a sport? The deer don't fight back so where's the sport of this?
Harvest the animal with the most efficient method possible and humanely as possible. Is the idea of sport being that the animal may escape death by having a razor sharp stick stuck in the hip or the intestines? Is this the 'sportsmans' idea of fun and fairness? The majority of so called bow hunters are very poor shots. They dust off the bow a few days before hunting season take a few shots at a target and off they go. Willing to take shots from a distance that's way to far. Many times the deer runs off with an arrow stuck somewhere out of the kill zone left to suffer sometimes for weeks and eventually die from infection.
The bow is the most primitive weapon you could use to kill a deer. Why is attempting to kill the animal in the most primitive method fun and exciting?
I believe in the harvest of deer and I DO hunt only for meat I'll consume. I use a high powered rifle in the most effective manor possible not to wound the animal. Quick and painless as possible.
The majority of bow hunters are a bunch of yahoo's looking for fun and excitement and have little to NO respect for the animal. Real sportsman they are!
For you bow hunters out there please tell me what is the farthest distance you'll attempt shoot a deer?
@Sig-- my reasoning for wanting to go into this is that it expands my hunting timeline.
I'm wondering how many archery hunters miss as opposed to a bad hit. I'm assuming a vast majority is a total miss from the deer jumping at the sound. In that would be the sporting aspect. Lets be honest, we've all had a gut shot or blown through a shoulder instead if a kill shot. Makes me sick to do it, but it happens.
I see your point and see the point of the archery fans.
Guess the same could be said for muzzleloader, too.
I really don't have to tell you a damn thing or offer an explanation or apology. I participate in a legal activity conducted under the laws limitation.
Originally Posted by Sig35seven
But I will tell you this, the average bowhunter is head and shoulders above the best rifleman.
I use handguns also. Why? Because I am good enough to hit and put meat in my freezer at will.
It's about the challenge. I could say that any tinhorn with a scoped rifle could be taking a dump and still be able to shoot a deer at 100 yards without his britches up. Where's the skill or sport in that?
And, it's true, there are game animals that are wounded not just by bow hunters, but rifle hunters also. If you hunt long enough and often enough, it will happen. That the nature of life.
But don't project your own lack of skill on others, just because you can't or are hesitant to do it.
It sounds to me like you are not just condemning archery, but rifle and shotgun hunting as well, is that correct? I would say that bow hunting would be more so than rifle hunting, because it gives the game more of a "sporting chance". But the sport is in utilizing our skills to achieve a goal. There are professionals, newbies, and everything in between. You can challange your tracking and locating skills to find the best trophy, or just practice quantity wise to put meat on the table.
Originally Posted by Sig35seven
What are your requirements for an activity to be qualified as a "sport"? Is fishing a sport? How about golf, or billiards? It is totaly subjective, and sport seems to be a catch all term to describe a physical activity that requires special skills to perform.
As to the OP original question, if you are wanting to learn a completely new skill, go with the compound. A lot of the aspects of the crossbow are similar to rifles. Plus, I like the "primitive" feeling of archery. It is an ancient art, simplifed by modern equipment of course.
Probably won't get much of a response to this. My understanding is that most experienced guys are really proficient and can reach out a good distance. They don't brag or even talk about it much because if a lot of people were tagging whitetails at 100 yards and advertising it, I'm sure DNR would seriously consider decreasing the bow hunting season. Also would give fodder to more anti-gun nuts wanting to go after archery next.
Originally Posted by Sig35seven
I didn't ask for an apology and if you don't want to answer the question fine.
Originally Posted by glockman10mm
For your information I have been involved with archery for decades and know very well what it takes to shoot a bow with accuracy. To shoot well takes lots of practice with a bow that's set up properly. To kill a deer you also need to know your distances and that's why I asked the question.
I disagree that bow hunters are "head and shoulders" above gun hunters. They're the worst I ever seen as far as accuracy. You even admit the same guy with a gun can hit a target at 100 yards. Better tool yields better results.
Having been on many hunts I see first hand how pathetically bad most(not all) bow hunters are. They know little to nothing about setting up a bow to shoot straight. At least a gun is easier to achieve success at killing the animal where as the bow hunter has a higher wound rate.
The compound bow is easier to shoot and uses technology to improve accuracy. The "stick with a string" is the most archaic tool for the job. If you practice and become proficient using it..fine. Most hunters are horrible with this type of bow and are better served with the compound and better served with a gun.
It sounds to me as though your priority in hunting with an old style bow is, as you say, for the "sport and challenge". Putting meat on the table is secondary. If my main goal was to put meat on the table I would be using the most accurate tool I could find and an old re-curve bow would NOT be my first choice for success. In fact, I can't think of a more inefficient way to attempt to kill a deer.
Once again, you are projecting. Sure, I make it as challenging as possible. I do it for the enjoyment and the meat. I don't harvest deer, that's what you do with crops. I kill them. Whether it be a recurve, compound or handgun.
I am not confused about issues like life and death of animals and how they live or die. Do I want to see an animal suffer? No, I don't. But, I have no problem with killing them for food, and if it gives me good challenge in the process, so much the better.
But heres the answer to your question; with my compound bow, at a clear high percentage unobstructed shot, my max is 50 yards, however my self limited shot on a live animal is 30 yards.
With a recurve, I am good at 25 yards on targets, but limit myself to high percentage shots on live game at 10 - 15 max.
My longest handgun kill was at a Blue Wilderbeast in SA at somewhere between 110 and 125 yards, open sights, 4 and 3/4 inch barrel, 41 magnum with my handloads.
With a six inch barrel s&w 44 mag and six inch barrel and my handloads, I would not hesitate to drop the hammer on live game out to 150 yards with open sights, and a good rest.
And, I'll bet my freezer is fuller than yours with game:)
No. I'm not condemning hunting. I am a hunter and have been for most of my life. I have seen too many deer stuck with arrows because of the lack of archery skills. Guys who don't put in the effort to become proficient at archery before they go out and stick deer with an arrow head loaded with razor blades. It would be better/more humane for the animal that these hunters use a gun instead as most of them can't hit 'the broadside of a barn'.
Originally Posted by BigStick
Golf, billiards, tennis don't have to factor in the suffering of an animal to experience a challenge.
I can't cut and paste on this phone, but what you say about bow hunters applys to gun hunters also. How often I have I seen a greenhorn with a big magnum cartridge and scope that looks like the Hubble Telescopes little sister mounted on it shoot a deer in the gut or arse because he is 1) afraid of the recoil, or 2) cant make out the deer in the scope because of too high magnification, or 3) just can't shoot.
It's not the equipments fault, it's the application of it. I will guarantee my 45 pound recurve, heavier wooden arrows, and cut to the tip 125 grain Zwickey broadheads have more punch than a compound shooting light tackle at high speed for heavy game like bear or elk.
But the light stuff is better suited for deer. It's about application, and expertise with it.