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pdskal

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Reply with quote  #1 
Thinking about purchasing a xbow this winter or spring. Kind of want to get one set up prior to my spring turkey hunt in mid April.

I don't know what I'm getting, yet, but thought I'd let you guys know I'm in the market for one . Then I can be in the DIY xbow club. Jon told me at Camfest he wasn't just a member of the club, he was the president. [wink]


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fasterem

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Reply with quote  #2 
I love my parker thunder hawk, lifetime warranty
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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #3 
Parker makes a very nice line of crossbows. The Thunderhawk (Used to be some other name but it is the same bow but due to infringement rights they had to change the name only) is a great one and not really that much bling as far as crossbows go.
Take a serious look at the TenPoint line. They have the least amount (next to Excalibur) of trouble, virtually nill. Along the same line look at the Warrior bows, they are made by TenPoint, like Misson is to Mathews. Several of the models have cranks that are made into the stock which makes it so you never forget the crank (no not your wife either!). A hand held pull rope shouldn't be any problem as long as you remember to keep it with you! (know someone typeing this reply happened to do that when he got to his blind in the morning so good idea to carry a spare).
Any Horton product don't even look at since they are out of business (TenPoint bought the name only so won't cover any warrenty). Dave (archery shop friend) bought out from the liquidator alot of parts and has been having loads of people (interestingly most from the south) who have been purchasing them and his parts supply is diminished greatly. I'm going to assume that TenPoint may come out with a reverse limb type model. If they do I would give that a serious look. When cocked very narrow, quiet and fast.
This is probrably the most important thing to remember on a crossbow (and one stressed by the seller or else ask them till you understand) is to NEVER fire it without a bolt (make sure is proper bolt for it...some are flat back, some half moon and some full capture) nock in it. I know Larry and/or Bruce may say that Excaliburs withstood this and they are right but it isn't a good practice to get into not loading one. Next in importance is to KEEP YOUR FINGERS BELOW THE RAIL!! If above the rail then they are usually in the string path and you'll lose a finger(s) almost all the time.
Stay away from Barnetts, They are cheaper in price so that is a top selling feature but you'll have problems, almost guarenteed.
Mathews Stryker and PSE's personally I would stay away from as well as Bowtechs. Need for speed is a crock with these. My Parker Challenger is a model below Emmets and still shoots 300 fps at 150#. Think Emmets is 165# and 320 fps which is plenty. Remember you are shooting bolts min. 350 gr. but usually more then 400 so at those speeds you have great kinetic energy. Excessive speed causes more stress on everything. Again this is just personal but I'd feel comfortable with only 330#-340#, but everyone has different opinions.
Another important thing to remember is to keep the rail waxed. Every 15 shots or so (special lube rail, not string wax) or the friction will burn the string right up and probrably cause a dry fire which can be broken limbs, bent cams as a result. Regular string wax on the string. Change the string every year and the cables every 2 years. If kept waxed and not alot of shooting can stretch that but again it's better to be safe then sorry.
Remember a crossbow (in my opinion) doesn't allow a greater range really then a compound and I also personally feel they are a bit more difficult to stay steady at 30-40 yards (alot of scope waver on the target).
Practice to what you feel comfortable but again because it has a scope doesn't mean it's a gun
End of book.

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fasterem

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Reply with quote  #4 
WOW Jon, Yes I have the thunder hawk, just called it the name that it changed to. gets the job done, Robin hooded right out of the box, so don't aim in the same spot twice you will regret it for sure
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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #5 
 Excalibur Matrix 355's are probably the best selling excal for now. Guy's seem to love em a lot better than the 380's. Excal also has a 405 out now if you like speed bows, Draw Weight 290 lbs, Velocity 405 FPS,  $$$$$
  
 Like my Exocet 200, all the bow I ever need.  

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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #6 
Bruce, Excalibur was bought out.
Emmet, your vanes fell off on all your arrows so no Robin Hoods for you!!
Also I wouldn't go with lighted nocks. They are not as strong where the moving parts are and have been known to break there.

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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by IroquoisArcher
Bruce, Excalibur was bought out.
Emmet, your vanes fell off on all your arrows so no Robin Hoods for you!!
Also I wouldn't go with lighted nocks. They are not as strong where the moving parts are and have been known to break there.


Saw where excal was purchased by Bowtech, hope nothing changes. Might have to put a extra set of limbs on a shelf for mine, still only takes 10 minutes to swap em, no Press required   [thumb]   much less to swap a string.....

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pdskal

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Reply with quote  #8 
Thanks for the comments guys, really good info, greatly appreciated. I need to decide what poundage I want to go with, thinking turkey's, coyotes, whitetail deer.
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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #9 
My Parker Challenger at 150# will do any of those and again it is around a 400 gr. arrow (I think haven't weighed them for awhile and us old farts don't remember) but isn't below 350. I'm using a 100 gr. broadhead so if you go to a 125 or even 150 think that will stabilize the arrow more but lose some speed. Only animal shot with mine was a spring gobbler at 37 yards (was with my buddies crossbow and shooting about 320-330) and of course arrow went right through. Turkey went straight up about 5' and fell forwards and was dead hitting the ground, maybe 5'-6' from where shot. Buddy shot a hen in fall next year and it dropped right where it stood (the rest of the flock gathered around it and held a prayer meeting he said it looked like!). Only deer I shot at was my fault for poor aiming point and hit the shoulder bone way up high. Know a guy who says on a broadside one he aims for the shoulder blade and blows right through both. I still believe in placement and don't feel that is an ethical shot.
Good luck. Do homework and ask questions.
I'd also watch it at some of the retail stores as sometimes they will tell you things and have no idea. When I found out Horton was out of business I went to our local Gander Mountain to see if they knew what they were talking about. First guy didn't but he was honest and said he didn't know alot about them and to wait for the other guy who was helping someone. This guy knew his stuff so they all aren't bad.
Oh, poundage for me won't be over 165# as I am short as you remember and the Challenger fit me perfect for drawing. Can do the longer ones if not too long but 165# draw weight seems my limit. Anything those range will do good.

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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #10 
A 150 lb is fine for any of them, my 200 lb is rated for any animal in North America, Bill Troubridge, Excaliburs foundered took a elephant with a 225 lb Equinox. I shoot 100 gr slick tricks on black eagle executioner arrows, accuracy is impressive. Crossbow arrows like a high foc, 15-20+%
Here's a quick guide on recommended crossbow weights an your height, arm reach, critters your hunting. And keep in mind Horton is done, no more parts or service....

 http://www.excaliburcrossbow.com/content/display/select
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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #11 
Tom, almost any Jaguar (think that is the Barnett model) and the Ghosts usually come back with limbs blown up. They are the #1 problem bow at Dave's shop. Hope yours stays good, sounds like you got a good one, but again this is all personally for me but after seeing the difference in failure rates of all them this is why I made my desicion.
Oh, btw the Parker Challenger went through 2 sets of limbs for me (first during spring gobbler...in the woods at the time...and second during deer season...up my treestand). I personally knew of over a dozen with same problem (Bruce's wife was one) and got mad and tried making Parker upgrade me to the Tomahawk (now the Thunderhawk). They told me that out of about 5000 they sold there was only 8-10 problem ones. Guy didn't even flich when I told him I was on my second set, friend who bought out of the same store had 2 sets go, Bruce had a set and then a couple months later he had 5 of them at the same time in his shop with spilt limbs. Lifetime warrenty so no problem. Buddy said that his Parker rep. told him they couldn't have the shim taken out to go from 125# to 150# like advertised or they'd break. Parker said they never said that. So far though haven't heard of anymore Challengers having problems. This was the only model of Parkers that I can remember him having problems with...other then guys dry firing so everything goes.

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pdskal

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Reply with quote  #12 
Liking the idea of the lighter poundage. Thanks for all the feedback so far. Anyone have any experience with lineup from Middleton crossbows?


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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdskal
Liking the idea of the lighter poundage. Thanks for all the feedback so far. Anyone have any experience with lineup from Middleton crossbows?


No experience with Middleton, they are a Excalibur clone mostly. At one time there was a lawsuit filed by excal against Middleton over patent infringement, bout all I know about em. Don't know who won or loss...

My wife shoots a Parker ThunderHawk @ 160 lbs, don't let the draw weight bother you, it's the Power Stroke or draw length that'll bother you. Her's is 10.75", my exocet 200 is 15.5", I've shorten my rope cocker so I can put one hook on the string an pull the string up to the other hook, it's around 13" pull for me. The wingspan on my excal is quite a bit wider, something else to keep in mind.

As for warranty, Parker offers the original owner a lifetime warranty, Excalibur offers lifetime on the bow, not the owner  [biggrin]   I'm the 2nd owner of mine and they still replaced my limbs.
Excals have no serial numbers on em  [thumb]   [thumb]

Almost forgot, if your looking for a high end recurve, check out Kodabow. If I could figure out how to get one past my wife, I'd have one!

http://kodabow.com

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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #14 
Thanks Bruce, forgot it was original owner only on the Parker. Agree with Bruce about the weight. Like him my main problem is once have the rope cocker on and the butt against my stomach I run out of pulling up room. Shortened mine like Bruce does and no problem plus keeps tension on it so when walking into the woods I know it's on there so some dummy doesn't leave it back home. I have no problem like said with 165#, again it is the pulling up limit for me.
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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #15 
Just a slight difference in the warranty, nothing major if your buyin a new one.

One bit of advice I read about, when your target shooting, don't put the cocker rope around your neck. Lotta guys do instead of laying em down, have heard of a few that the string caught the T handle and turned the rope into a wild whip [nono]  Yea, that'll leave a mark!
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fasterem

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Reply with quote  #16 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckhunter1
Just a slight difference in the warranty, nothing major if your buyin a new one.

One bit of advice I read about, when your target shooting, don't put the cocker rope around your neck. Lotta guys do instead of laying em down, have heard of a few that the string caught the T handle and turned the rope into a wild whip [nono]  Yea, that'll leave a mark!

ouch Ya that would leave a mark for sure always through mine on ground, then can't find it LOL
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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #17 
Another thing to keep in mind is what Jon mentioned bout the dry-fire, that'll trash a compound crossbow in a heart beat. Most compound Xbows have a anti-dry fire built into em, however is it possible to have a arrow loaded in far enough to depress the adf but not engage the string causing a "partial dry fire", still gonna bugger your bow. It's pretty much a given that in the first year, you'll forget to load a arrow at least once. Especially when your with some one else and talking having a good time, it happens. A routine of cocking, and loading in the same order every time helps.

My Excal has no adf, it is offered on the new Matrix line and now as a add on for older ones like mine for $65. When I did dry fire mine the string came off and landed 15 ft away, good reason to wear some type of eye protection  [eek] . It took a few hundred more shots for a splinter to show up and they replaced the limbs, no hassles. Was so simple to change em out, even Jon could do it  [biggrin]  [biggrin]  Ouch!

http://www.diytrailcams.com/post/excalibur-warranty-6562388
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IroquoisArcher

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Reply with quote  #18 
[tongue][tongue][tongue][tongue][tongue]
Yepers on the loading of the bolt, just like on a compound. Must admit those Excaliburs can withstand alot. Never liked them without the anti dry fire when all the rest had them.

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Buckhunter1

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Reply with quote  #19 
According to the Excal forum fan boy's club, the 200 & 225 lbs series of crossbows are being phased out, when existing stock is sold off, that'll be it for them. If you watch just maybe you could get a deal on one, just possibly maybe.....  Equinox, Exomax, Vortex, Exocet 200 and Eclipse XT.
The Discontinued bow thread is over two pages and growing quick, drama an tempers are a flarin, the Fan boys are gearin up for a beat down!


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tanglefoot

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Reply with quote  #20 
I've got the anti dry fire on my 380 and don't really like it. I suppose because I'm not used to it. Never had one on any of my other bows. I was target shooting one day and wasn't paying attention I guess and when putting in the arrow, I slid it back till I heard it click and thought it was in all the way. I think it was in just enough to flip up the AD and took the shot. It hit the target but blew the end of the arrow out and ripped apart the serving on my string. I pay attention more when loading an arrow now. I've only ever dry fired a bow once and that was my exocet 175 and it didn't hurt it a bit. I've still got 4 excals in the house counting my wifes vixen and never changed a set of limbs on any of them. That vixen is 20 years old now and still shoots great. For a 150 lb. bow it still puts the arrow right in and out the other side of a deer. The warranty on excals is great but its not too often that you really need it. [cool]
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