Crossbow Safeties and Anti Dry Fires
The safety and anti dry fire mechanism on your crossbow are design to keep both you the shooter and your bow safe from injury and or damage. And I thought it was important to take more of an in depth look at crossbow safety’s and anti dry fry mechanisms. So on this segment of the crossbow safety and education series, we’ll show you a few examples of the types of crossbow safety’s you can expect to find on today’s crossbows. We’ll also show you a few examples of anti dry fire mechanisms and explain what makes each of those different.
Lets take a look a safety’s first. Every crossbow will have a safety of some sort. Yours may be auto engaging, meaning that when you cock your crossbow, the safety will automatically move from the fire position to the safe position. Or you may have a safety that requires you to manually put it in the safe position after your crossbow is cocked. In either case, it’s a good habit to visually check to make sure that your safety is indeed in the safe position after you cock your crossbow. Some safety’s will be located on either side of the trigger housing just underneath the sight bridge. Others will may be located at the back of the trigger housing or in front of it located somewhere in the barrel of the crossbow. So let’s go over some examples of crossbow safety’s.
The first bow we have here is a carbon express crossbow with an auto engaging safety located on the side of the trigger housing. Watch when the bow is cocked, the safety will move from the fire position to the safe position.
The next bow we have is an Excalibur crossbow. Here is an example of a rear mounted manual safety on an Excalibur crossbow. When the bow is cocked, the safety does not move. So you will be required to manually put the safety in the safe position.
Here we have a Parker crossbow with a rear mounted auto engaging safety. As the string comes back into the latch, the safety move into the safe position.
And last we have a Mission crossbow with the safety located in front of the trigger assembly in mounted in the barrel. We pull back the string, and the safety does not move. So you must manually put it into the safe position.
Ok next we are going to take a look at 3 types of anti dry fire mechanisms. The first one we have here is from CAMX crossbows. And the way theirs works is that it will not allow you to put the crossbow into the fire position without having an arrow loaded. They have what is known as the PAR which stands for pivoting arrow retainer. And what it does is holds the arrow in place when you slide an arrow between it and the barrel, and then at the same time, there is a lever that will pivot out of the way of the safety, allowing you to move it from the safe to the fire position.
The next bow we have here is a Wicked Ridge crossbow. Now with both the TenPoint and Wicked Ridge anti dry fire mechanisms, they actually allow safety to be moved into the fire position and allow the bow to be shot and then the ADF catches the string before it has a chance to do any damage to your crossbow. Now if there was an arrow loaded into this bow, this lever would pivot out of the way allowing the bow to be operate how it is supposed to. But with no arrow, the lever stays down and catches the string. So I’m actually going to show you how this works.
As you can seen the string has now been released from the latch, and is now caught by the anti dry fire mechanism.
The last anti dry fire will sow you is on a Parker crossbow. With Parker’s system, the safety can be put into the fire position, and then the trigger can be pulled, but the latch will not release the string. I and I’ll show you how this works too.
Well we just took an in depth look at the most popular styles of safety’s and ant dry fire mechanisms. As stated before, these devices are here to help insure our safety as crossbow hunters and to prevent our crossbows from damage in the case we forget to load an arrow. However, even know these safety devices are here to help, it truly is the responsibility of the crossbow shooter to practice safe shooting habits each and every time you shoot a crossbow.