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Big Game Hunting Sub-1 crossbow: Part 2

Sub-1 crossbow: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sub-1 crossbow
Sub-1 crossbow.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Airgun shows
  • Crossbows
  • A lot to learn
  • Read the manual
  • Lightbulb!
  • Just like an airgun
  • Fire
  • Confidence
  • Shot 2
  • Shot 3
  • Arrow management
  • Summary

I am not writing a history report today, because there are too many things on my backlog. Not all of these reports are about airguns, as you can see by today’s title, but they are all pertainent to the subject at hand. This one more than most!

Airgun shows

First, here is a list of the airgun show dates that I know about.

Flag City Toys That Shoot airgun show April 14

Malvern Airgun Extravaganza — Arkansas — April 27 & 28 (For more information email seth.rowland@att.net)

Gene Curtis Memorial Fun Shoot and Airgun Show — This one is not well publicized. It’s at the Tri-County Expo Center in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas May 18-20. I have no phone number or email address link yet.

Texas Airgun Show Saturday, June 23, followed by a field target shoot on Sunday, June 24.

Midwest Airgun Show June 30

Baldwinsville Airgun Show –New York — July (For more information email rh6larry@mac.com)

Kalamazoo Airgun Show August 19

Pyramyd AIR Cup September 21-23

North Carolina Airgun Show October 19 & 20


Back when I decided to write about sharpening straight razors to experience what a new airgunner must feel like, I should have chosen crossbows, instead. The Sub-1 was thrust upon me when the editor of Firearms News asked me for a feature after seeing my report from the SHOT Show. He was intrigued by a crossbow that can put three arrows into less than an inch at 100 yards, as I’m sure most shooters would be.

A lot to learn

Because I am an American man, I was born with the full knowledge of firearms in my DNA. That’s a joke, for all of you who just arrived on Earth. But don’t most men act that way?

Crossbows, on the other hand, are mysterious and arcane. No one is born knowing how they work. You hold this lethal weapon in your hands and, if you make a mistake, it could be disastrous! The same is true of firearms, but as I said, American males are born knowing how to handle them.

Read the manual

First I read the manual that came with the bow. I prayed there would be no jargon inside, and thankfully there was none. I learned that the crossbow has to be lubricated every 5-10 shots and, since no lube came with the bow, a trip to the archery store was next.

The very helpful salesman told me that not only does the launch rail (I’m learning the jargon) need to be lubed, the bowstring also needs to be waxed for longer life. These powerful crossbows wear out their bowstrings pretty fast, so you do what you can to prolong their life.

lube kit
The lube kit I bought consists of these three appetizing items — String Snot, Rail Snot and a general purpose oil called Got Snot? Yum!

I then lubed the rail and waxed the string, following the directions on the package. The oil is for the bearings and pivot points that all seemed fine. Then it was time to shoot. But there were still some questions. For instance — how do you boresight a crossbow? What lines up with what? The crossbow had come to me with the scope attached, which I hoped meant it was already on target, but I wasn’t about to shoot it until I knew it would be safe.

This crossbow is normally sold without the scope installed — just like most air rifles that come with scopes. The company set this one up for me because I’m reviewing it. But if it came with the scope not mounted, what do you do?


Then it dawned on me! We don’t boresight airguns, either. We mount the scope and shoot them, hoping to hit somewhere inside a safe backstop. How can we make certain that we will? By getting very close to the backstop for the first shot.

I had an arrow stop I had purchased for testing the Seneca Wing Shot II air shotgun with Air Venturi Air Bolts, and we know that its velocity with arrows is close to 600 f.p.s., so the same arrow stop should work fine for a crossbow that’s rated at 340-350 f.p.s.

I went out into the small backyard of my very suburban home and set the arrow stop bag on the ground. Then I backed up 15 feet. It was time to cock the bow and load an arrow. I had cocked it once at the SHOT Show, where it felt easy enough. But remember, I had been challenged by the prowess of a 13-year-old girl. Or at least that is what the clever salesman made me believe. Now, however, I was alone in my backyard with no one to tutor me. What if I did something wrong?

Just like an airgun

And that’s when it hit me. This must be what a new airgunner feels like when he has to cock and shoot that brand new airgun all by himself. Forget straight razors — this is something I can relate to!

I had read the manual, so I did what it said, plus what I had remembered doing at SHOT. Lo and behold — it worked! In fact it was easy. And my question about what happens to the cocking aid rope and handles after the bow is cocked was answered. It becomes loose and useless after the bow is cocked, so you remove it! Time to load an arrow.

Again drawing on the wellspring of knowledge that’s found in the manual, I placed an arrow on the launch rail with the white fletch down between the split rails and slid it all the way back until it contacted the bowstring. The nock (the metal thingy on the back of the arrow that sometimes grabs the bowstring, but not in this case) is shaped like a half moon. It fits around the cocked bowstring without locking onto it.


There was no turning back now! Standing just 15 feet from the bag I shouldered the bow like a rifle, released the automatic safety (it comes on every time the bow is cocked) sighted on the center of the bag and gently squeezed the trigger. The shot went off before I was ready. Did I shoot through the fence? Was the neighbor’s dog still alive?

Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles — I hit what I was aiming at!!!!! I was so thankful that the crossbow was apparently sighted-in. I took a picture to show you.

Sub-1 shot 1
I was aiming at the 9-ball in the center of the bag. I’d call that a hit!

The crossbow recoils about like a magnum spring rifle — quick and light. There is no vibration whatsoever. It’s a solid feel. Also, the Sub-1 is one of the quieter crossbows on the market, which hunters appreciate, because game doesn’t usually move when it releases.


At this point my confidence soared! The arrow was deep in the bag but came out easily. I threaded the cocking aid rope onto the bow the way the manual said and cocked the bow again.

Sub-1 cocked
I’m holding the bow at full draw, which takes only 20-40 lbs. This is easy!

The bow is very easy to cock. Just grab the cocking assist handles and stand up. As the bow draws back it does pass a spot of maximum resistance, but that spot comes at a place where most people will have the greatest strength and mechanical advantage. In other words, the designers thought it through!

Shot 2

Shot one had been offhand from 15 feet. For shot 2 I backed up to 15 yards, which is three times as far, but still pretty close. This time I sat on the ground and assumed a good AAFTA field target sitting position. Shot two went to the dead center of the aim point! Whaaaat?

Sub-1 shot 2
Shot 2 went exactly where I aimed! This is addictive.

Shot 3

By now I was an expert — a legend in my own mind! So I backed up as far as my tiny yard permits, a trifle over 20 yards. Shot three went into the same hole as shot one.

Sub-1 shot 3
Shot 3.

Arrow management

I hope it is obvious that I could not and should not have fired three different arrows at the target without extracting them as I went. I would have ruined two or three arrows that way. The Sub-1 is so accurate that you have to watch what you do. We airgunners shoot our two-cent pellets at targets and look at the holes they make. Archers shoot $10-20 arrows at targets and hope that one of them doesn’t hit any of the others. The Sub-1 got its name by putting three arrows into less than one inch at 100 yards. At closer distances they are all going to stack! You have to be careful if you don’t want to ruin a lot of expensive arrows. And there is more.

Mission Archery told me that archers number their arrows so they can watch the flight patterns of each one. I wrote numbers on the white fletching with a Sharpie (an indelible felt-tipped pen). Arrow number three may always land to the left of arrows one and two, but it may also always go to the same place. If you know that you can compensate when you aim and get it to hit where the others hit. That is one of the secrets behind the one-inch group.


So far this experience has been a good one. I think the Sub-1 is the TX200 Mark III of the crossbow world. Through sheer luck I started at the top of the food chain. It will be hard for me now to work with anything less than a Sub-1. My personal Barnett RC 150 that I have never shot will now look like a poor cousin.

Will I buy the bow I’m testing? Even with a writer’s discount, it is not inexpensive. But having used it I find that I want to continue using it. It’s like eating peanuts. Drive a Cadillac for a day and you won’t want anything less.

I can now shoot in my backyard and nobody is the wiser. Decisions, decisions!

68 thoughts on “Sub-1 crossbow: Part 2”

  1. BB you sound like a kid in a candy store 🙂

    It seems exactly like a TX200 Mark III, if a TX200 Mark III could fill your freezer with delicious venison 😉

    “There was no turning back now!” I though it was decockable? AAAAHHHH my need to be pedantic satisfied for another day 🙂

  2. BB,

    I have a brand new Barnett I have not fired yet. I recently mounted a UTG scope on it. I have a laser bore sight for crossbows. You remove a tip from one of your arrows and screw it on in place. You then put that arrow on the rail under the string WHILE THE BOW IS DECOCKED and sight at 20 yards.

    If you should buy this bow I would strongly recommend that you go ahead and buy a couple of extra strings and a string replacement tool for it. If you shoot it, you will need it. If you decide to fool with the 150 much I would recommend the same.

    Thanks for the list of shows. Here is an event that everyone who can should attend. It is the 2018 Fun Shoot / Airgun Show.


    There will also be a rimfire only show going on there at the same time. It once again promises to be quite an event. I have attended in the past and it is quite a time getting together with other enthusiasts. I only wish I could make it this year, but life dictates otherwise this time around.

  3. I have never been to an airgun show but would love to attend all of these. Unfortunately, It would be expensive for me to attend any shows because of travel costs so i would have to choose 1 or maybe 2. Would anyone know which are the 3 or 4 largest must-see shows so that i could choose from among them?

  4. Hard to believe you can get reported 100-yard accuracy like that from a bolt resting in a rail, compared to a pellet or bullet coming out of a rifled barrel!

    • HiveSeeker,

      A couple of comments about arrows…

      A properly designed/balanced/tuned arrow or bolt is very stable in flight. The bow and the archer can introduce all kinds of abnormalities into the shot (even more so than an airgunner) which affect the point of impact.

      A good crossbow is mechanically consistent – the power stroke and the release mechanism launch a bolt off the rail with minimum vibration. If the shooter does his part crossbows are very accurate. I have an Excalibur Exocet crossbow that will easily hit a one inch target at 25 yards. As B.B. says, you don’t shoot “groups” with a crossbow, it can get real expensive, real fast if you do 🙂

      Field tips (target points) have minimal affect on arrow flight because they are aerodynamic. Broadhead hunting points have large flat surfaces and need to be aligned to the longitudinal axis of the arrow to stop them from “flying” the arrow off course.

      When I mounted a broadhead I would tune it to be true to axis and it would never be removed from the arrow.

      At the opposite extreme from crossbows like the Sub-1, my real pleasure is to shoot my home made wooden bows – there is something special about the “live power” in them. So light, so quiet. To watch an arrow spinning smoothly on axis, arching to the target always makes me smile.

      Happy Monday!!


  5. Neighbor Bob looks over the fence and says “Hey Tom, is that your new toy?”

    “Bob, this is a Sub-1 crossbow and it is definitely not a toy. It is a serious hunting tool.”

    “Tom, it looks really cool, and I see from the bolts in your target that it is very accurate”.

    “It also has a lot of power at 350 feet per second speed.”

    “So you’re saying it flys a hundred yards in under a second? WOW! What does that thing cost?”

    Bob, this quality is expensive and it retails for over $1500″.

    “I’ve been window shopping for a crossbow and saw them advertised in the Sunday newspaper supplement at Academy Sports & Outdoors at the same fps speed for under $500. What makes it so expensive? Is it a $500 quality scope? Is it carbon fiber construction?

    “It’s the difference between a big box store airgun and a quality model from a vendor like Pyramyd AIR.”

    Enough of this senseless chatter. Just curious why this fine instrument is so much more expensive than a crossbox one can purchase at Walmart or some other big box store???

    Bob in Texas

    • Bob,

      I suspect that the high price tag is due to the Sub-1’s accuracy and innovative design and WOW-factor. Think this one is in the Porsche class of crossbows.

      I doubt that it costs any more to manufacture that a similar (compound wheel) design crossbow.

      If I was in the market for a crossbow I would definitely consider the Sub-1. Expensive, yes but you only buy it once and then you own the accuracy 🙂


    • Bob,

      The trigger is better, the release is quieter, the accuracy is far better, the bow limbs are closer together which makes it easier to pack in the field, it’s much easier to cock and the scope is included in the price. Those are a few differences that I see.


        • I agree completely B.B.

          I have always maintained that the cost of the rifle is insignificant relative to the cost of the ammunition that you put through it over the many years of service you will get from a quality one.

          I have been lucky to have made some good investments.


          BTW, I think the Sub-1 is awesome and would make one heck of a weapon for hog hunting! 🙂

      • Continuing the analogy with airguns, I would say that the next step is comparison. What is the normal accuracy for crossbows? I doubt it is anywhere near this which leads to the question of what makes this so much better. Is there something different in the mechanism? Apparently not, so it sounds like it is just workmanship although I didn’t think the design could support this level of accuracy.

        Did I miss a figure for the power of this crossbow in terms of foot pounds? And as a related question, I wonder what is its effective range. I don’t know that knock-down power goes with long range. The .458 Win Mag will kill an elephant but is not a long-range cartridge from what I’ve read. Perhaps the weapon is limited by the design of the bolts as well. My sense is that the crossbow was built for great penetrating power and not for range. For this, we have the writings of Princess Anna Comnena of the Byzantine Empire who was astounded by the crossbows of the Crusaders. “The Western barbarians,” she wrote, “have an engine of terrifying force that will shoot its arrows right through a wall!” Presumably, as a rough guide, the effective range is at least 100 yards where it has great accuracy, and that is further than I expected.

        And a less important but puzzling question, what the heck are you bracing the stock of the crossbow against in the picture? That looks potentially painful.


        • Matt,

          Didn’t you read in Part 1 that the Sub-1 has 24 patents? It has tons of new technology. I’m just not certain of what everything is.

          Foot-pounds in a bow or crossbow isn’t a term that means much, I think. As long as you have penetration you will have blood loss and that is what kills animals shot with bows.

          I am standing on the bow with my right foot through a stirrup. That’s a common way of cocking a crossbow that doesn’t used a goat’s foot lever or windlass.


          • I missed the part about the 24 patents. But looking at the picture again, I see wheels like a compound bow, and if these wheels enhance performance like they do for archery, I can see how you would get high accuracy.

            No doubt the tearing from a broadhead arrow does a lot of damage. Still that isn’t a reason to discount the energy behind the impact. This is also true from a historical perspective since the armor piercing qualities that made the crossbow so effective relied on very pointed arrows to focus the power on the smallest possible area. So, the effect of broadheads was virtually eliminated. The damage there was due almost entirely to energy. I have the sense that arrow heads are weighted by grain, the same unit of measure as bullets. The body of the arrow seems to be completely discounted, but my impression is that it might be significant for crossbow bolts which are heavier. Given that the velocity is 350 fps, if one knew the weight of the bolt, you could come up with an approximate figure for energy that might be interesting.

            In the picture it looked like you were bracing the butt end of the crossbow against your hip or thereabouts for stability, but it sounds like that end was unsupported.


            • I just ordered a Killer Instinct Ripper 415 that shoots bolts at (yup) 415 fps and 149 foot lbs of kinetic energy, that’s with a 420 grain bolt. The more shock you can impart upon your prey the better chance of a kill obviously.
              Accuracy is sub 1” at 80+ yards according to KI.

  6. Hey Everyone

    I know I read somewhere on this blog that Beeman Kodiaks are H&N somethings but I cannot seem to find this info. Was able to find the RWS Superdomes that Siraniko recommended on walmart.com (in cart and waiting for checkout). But there are like six different types of H&N pellets. Can’t remember which H&N’s are s’posed to be Beeman Kodiaks.


    And also thanks to everyone offering help.
    I appreciate it.

  7. B.B.

    Hope you don’t mind if I repost this comment from the weekend? I am still looking for answers. And because you worked at Air Force and are familiar with PCPs, maybe you would have some input. Seems like it’s always something 🙁

    I need some advice regarding PCPs, magazines, and my Gamo Urban. My new BKL offset rings arrived Wed. I have remounted my UTG scope with the new rings. Yesterday I took the Urban down to my basement range and sighted in the scope. It only took a few clicks from where it was set to get it back on target.

    Now for the questions. I have shot about 6 or 8 magazines through the Urban. At least once or twice in each magazine load, the bolt feels as if it is not aligned with the pellet / breech perfectly and I have to fiddle with the bolt a bit to get the pellet to chamber. Maybe this is something that happens as things are breaking in? Or, is there a more serious problem? Secondly, during my shooting sessions I have experienced a misfire about 3-4 times. When I pull the trigger, the hammer releases and sounds like the reservoir has no air in it, just a thump with no pellet movement. I recock the bolt, pull the mag out, and retry again. It always fires on the second try. I reinstall the mag and everything seems normal again. It’s as though the hammer is not hitting the valve hard enough to open it. Again, could this be a breaking in issue? If not, I would like to know soon because I will return the Urban if these are actual defects. As this is my first PCP, I am not familiar with the nuances of them yet and so I am relying on my fellow bloggers to educate me. The Urban holds pressure very well at 3000 psi. No leak down whatsoever over several days. I’m still loving the small groups I am getting, if only at 15 yards. Thanks for the help guys.


    • George,

      That is exactly what happened to me with the Gauntlet shooting Premier pellets. When I switched to pure lead pellets the problem went away.

      I’m telling you to try several different pellets and don’t use the ones that had the problem. Whatever you do, don’t force the bolt when it sticks like that. Do what you have done. That’s what I had to do.

      These circular magazines are all different. The Marauder mags always work for me but I’ve read where Marauder shooters have the same problems as you have described.


      • B.B.

        I have only used the JSB Jumbo Heavies 18.13gr so far as those appeared to be the most accurate pellet for the Urban from the reviews I have read. Steve Scialli at AEAC did a video review and the JSB 18.13s were best at 50 yards. Tyler Patner also found the JSB 18.13s to be the best pellet. I can not understand why the JSBs would be the problem with magazine.


      • B.B.

        You did not comment on the issue of my Urban having misfires. And, do you think that the JSB 18.13gr might not cycle in the Urban’s magazine properly? Wouldn’t that be ironic, if the most accurate pellet was not compatible with the magazine? Man….Murphy’s Law.


        • George,

          I did comment on the misfires! That’s what I meant when I said that is EXACTLY what happened to me.

          Yes, I think the magazine isn’t cycling properly. Either it has some burrs that are jamming it or the pellets are being loaded in such a way that they jam it intermittently.


          • B.B.

            Sorry, thought you were only telling me about the magazine jamming. So you had misfires as well? That would not have anything to do with the pellet would it?

            Here’s an update on the issues. This afternoon I went down to my basement and shot about 70 shots. I made sure to pull the bolt all the way back and today I had no misfires. I did have a couple of slight jams where the bolt didn’t want to chamber the pellet. I pulled on the magazine slightly and the bolt chambered the pellet easily. So I think it’s an alignment problem with the pellet in the magazine.

            When I load the magazine I notice that the first pellet is perfectly centered in the magazine’s bore. But, on all the subsequent mag bores (#2 thru #10) the pellet appears to be slightly clockwise of being centered in the bore. It looks like maybe about .020-.030″, maybe a little less, but enough so it is visibly off center. The pellet loading side of the Urban’s magazine is metal and the remainder is plastic. It uses an o-ring around the circumference to retain the pellets. It uses an internal spring to advance the pellet. I believe this is similar to a Marauder? The Urban magazines are $50 each so one is all I want, or need.

            Is there an internal adjustment to the stop for alignment? I can probably live with the magazine “as is”, or maybe contact Gamo for a replacement mag. I would hate to send to whole rifle back because of this little issue. I’ve included some photos of the mazazine. Thank you.


            • George,

              I don’t know if there is an adjustment, but there must be a fix. By now somebody must have figured it out. I don’t know what it is, but this blog has over 100.000 registered subscribers and many more readers. I bet someone will speak up.


            • Geo791,

              Yes that’s definitely misaligned more than it should be. That should be covered by warranty. If you bought it from Pyramyd I bet they would replace it without you sending everything back in. If it were my gun I would call them and see what they can do. You can even refer them to your blog comment above (with the photos) so they can see the problem.

              A few years ago I bought an Evanix that came with a bad magazine (feeding problem). Called Pyramyd, explained the problem I was having and they sent me a new mag. Did not even want the old one back. They will definitely try to get you back up up and shooting. After all, they can’t sell you more pellets If you can’t!

              David H.

    • Geo,

      I don’t have an urban. But i have experienced something like what you are describing with my M-rod. When I am shooting groups I don’t like to break my cheek weld. I cock while remaining sighted. When this happened to me I left go of my rifle and got up to inspect it and found the bolt had not been fully closed. Now I pay extra attention when I close my bolt. Might not be what you are experiencing but sounds like what you are describing


      • Airfun,

        Thank you for your comment. I don’t think that the bolt not being closed was my issue. When I pulled the trigger it sounded like the hammer was striking the valve, but there was no air in the reservoir. I did have 2000-3000 psi pressure in the reservoir though.

        Today I shot about 70 rounds and did not have a single misfire. So maybe it was me, or the rifle is breaking in and the misfires will not happen again. I did have a couple of magazine jams. See my reply to B.B. above and some photos of the Urban’s magazine.


  8. Gunfun1 and Chris USA,

    Here are the photos I promised of the Urban with the new BKL offset rings and UTG 3-12x44mmSWAT scope mounted. Also added the RWS34 P with the Hawke 3-9x50mm scope mounted. GF1 requested this photo.

    The first photo is the Urban with the original UTG 30mm rings which I could not adjust back far enough to get a good eye relief.


      • Geo791,

        Although I don’t have a Gamo Urban, I do own several PCP’s. With some of them it possible to pull the bolt back just far enough to cycle the magazine but not cock the hammer/striker. I don’t know if that is your problem, but just make sure to be deliberate when you cycle the bolt, and pull it all the way back to make sure the hammer gets cocked.

        David H.

      • Geo,

        Looks like you are getting quite the selection of scopes and rings going there!!!! 😉 I “might” know something about that! 😉

        I am glad the new rings worked for you. Having everything just right makes all the difference.

        Hopefully B.B.’s advice will help a bit. It is odd that others shot the JSB’s with no issue. The loading may be a bit finicky or a pellet may try to creep out the mag., backwards or forwards causing a jam. On the M-rod, they are contained unless it is the one that is ready to go. Maybe something internal in the mag.?

        Either way,.. I am super happy that the rings worked for you.

            • GF1
              No, the Urban does not have a single shot tray available. It’s a simple matter to load one pellet in the #1 mag bore and slide it into the rifle if I only wanted to shoot one shot.

          • Geo,

            Good detective work there! That could be an issue. I would be more interested to see what the front side looks like. (If there is some “slop” in the wheel, the bolt passing through the mag. may self right the issue). Call PA and send them some pics as someone suggested. If they want to be super nice, they could test what they are sending you. (load, view and poke pellets back out)

            A single shot tray may work. You could attempt to make one. Either way, you should never have to be put in a position to consider that option. It is a repeater and should function as one, after all. Yes, the M-rod mag. works very similar.

            • Hi Chris USA

              Unfortunately I did not purchase this Gamo Urban from Pyramyd. And yes, I agree that it is a repeater and should function as one. Has anyone opened up one of these magazines to see if there is any adjustability for indexing?

              • Geo
                Bummer no single shot tray available.

                And that’s a good question about opening one up. I’m thinking there will be no adjustment to get it to index to position correctly.

                From the pictures above that looks like the problem with loading. And if that’s shearing the head of the pellet or the probe is hitting the edge of the skirt that will probably cause a accuracy problem.

                What I would try is when you cock the gun. After you pull the bolt back and start to push forward to load the pellet push slowly and gently. That should allow the probe to center itself inside the back of the pellet.

                Let me know if you try it and if it works or not.

                • Hey GF1,

                  My guess is that you are correct that there will not be an adjustment for the indexing position. I did try just as you suggested yesterday during my shooting sessions. I pushed the bolt forward slowly and if I felt any resistance I stopped at that point and gave the mag a slight tug outward and then the bolt pushed the pellet into the chamber easily. So the mag may not be centering the pellets as well as they should but it is not a deal breaker.

                  BTW, B.B. commented to me that he has found a solution to the rotary mag indexing issue and we’ll hear about it on Thursday. You may have already read that 🙂
                  I am excited to find out what he has found. Thanks for your comments.


            • Chris

              Here is the side of the magazine facing the chamber. There is no slop in the wheel because it is under spring tension against the internal stop. When the bolt is pulled back after firing the next pellet advances to the loading position.

              • Geo,

                Thank you for the pics. I checked my M-rod mag. and it does have slop (movement) one way, but firm the other. It sounds as if B.B. has a solution though. I am very interested in that myself. The M-rod mag. can have the spring indexed with more tension, which I have not done,.. but know of no “tweaking” of the (indexing) aspect of things.

  9. B.B.,

    I am not a future crossbow owner (although if you ever send me some venison steaks, burger, or jerky, I would be overjoyed). However, I marvel at the design of this device. To be able to generate so much energy from a mechanism that requires so little effort to cock is impressive, to put it mildly.

    I wonder if similar leverage could be harnessed to assist the charging of a single or multi-stroke air rifle. Hmmm, perhaps an alternate (to the one owned by Crosman) design of obtaining leverage in a PCP hand pump? :^)

    Affordable compressors are an excellent development to help spread PCPs to a wide, mass market, but there will always be a place for a good hand pump, be it for the remote area hunter, as a backup for a compressor, quick, small top-offs, and so on. I can’t imagine a PCP owner who owns only a compressor but no hand pump in a closet, ready to jump, er, pump into action at a moment’s notice if called upon to serve.


    • Michael,

      What you suggest is possible. It’s done by dividing the cocking effort into two parts and changing the leverage of the cocking link for the second stroke.

      It’s been done by John Whiscombe, but nobody else, to my knowledge.


  10. B.B.,

    This excellent design also has me thinking of a semi-hybrid .25 or .30 single-stroke/multi-pump air rifle that produces vermin power (20 fpe.) with one stroke, pest power (37 fpe.) power with two strokes, and small varmint power (50 fpe.) with three strokes. If it were stout enough and had enough leverage assist, perhaps even 60 fpe with a final, fourth stroke.

    Before Gunfun1 points it out :^), the POI and POA would change with each velocity change, but as Ron Robinson has demonstrated, measuring, knowing and documenting your multi-pump rifle’s performance can completely account for that: /blog/2014/04/bb-visits-new-field-target-club/

    Or, there would be nothing wrong with a .25 single stroke that uses an assist mechanism to produce 25 fpe. and a .30 single stroke that generates 30 fpe.

    So, maybe the right mechanism, an efficient high-pressure valve, and a stout and large reservoir might do the trick.


    • Michael,

      A single or multi pump with a wheel/pulley system? A pneumatic/cross bow hybrid? Now that would be quite the sight to see! 😉 No reason for a bow though,.. just a fixed mount pulley system to assist with a super heavy pump effort.

  11. The “Toys that shoot” show?

    Especially (but not only) given the current generation of high-power airguns, shouldn’t we as a community be trying to move away from the idea that airguns are “toys”? And which therefore don’t need proper, safe, handling and use?

    Sorry to be a killjoy, but this kind of thing matters to me.

    • Geezer,

      That always kind of got me too,.. in the back of my mind. It is about fun. I do see your point though,.. but,.. I am also sure that it would not be the first time that they have heard the same comment.

      Like anything,.. there will be some people that get it and get past it,.. and others that never will.

  12. Vana2

    Was going through todays blog and found out that there is an alternate me on the planet! I also prefer to shoot stick bows over anything else, but do to a medical reason ” both a right and left encapsulated shoulder ” my hunting is now done with an Excalibur Vortex. For some reason when the temp. gets below 32 deg. I can’t draw over about 36 lbs.

    I must admit that this new Mission crossbow is a mechanical wonder but all those pulleys and cables give me nothing but bad vibes! As I am a firm believer in KISS , I think I’ll just keep on using my Excalibur. In 10 yrs. of hunting use I’ve only had to make one new string ( flemish twist ) and rewrap the string serving once or twice a year. That’s it! Only time will tell if the Mission crossbow can live up to that.

    One last thought. I know its a wonderful thing to be able to shoot 1 inch groups at 100yds with a crossbow. But, and this is a big but, probably 95 % of all crossbows sold are bought for one purpose only, and that’s to kill deer! If you tell the average Joe he can shoot one inch groups at 100yds guess how far out he is going to be flinging those bolts.” 350 fps ain’t that fast ” and alot of bad things can happen from 0 to 30 let alone 0 to 100yds !

    Enough of my ranting, hope everyone has a good evening and keep your fingers crossed that this rotten weather breaks soon! It better, I have a tin of JSB’S sitting here just begging me to shoot them.

    B Frey56

  13. BB, I am surprised that you would use the terms you have used in this report knowing as you do that using the term archer for a crossbowman is as correct as using rifleman to describe an artilleryman. Yes both fire projectiles that are propelled by hot gasses but the similarity ends there. And lastly crossbows shoot bolts or quarrels not arrows, even if the points on both are the same. The Sub-1 looks exciting and fun to shoot. Extending the accurate range from approximately 50-70 yards to 100 yards is a quantum leap.

  14. B.B.,

    Not to worry! A state of ignorance is only a problem if we are not willing to learn from those who will to teach us what we don’t know and can’t learn in reasonable fashion on our own. But then, Archer sounds better to me than Crossbow person, or Artillery person…in the Navy we just called them “Shooters.”. To include the Catapult Officer!

    I have a feeling the chances of the “hook almost being set” in your bolt/quarrels shooter future is almost inevitable.

    After all it seems you do find precision, accuracy and repeatability interesting…do you not? Also, close shaves!


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