There are two common types of crossbows:
Based on the same principle as a compound bow with wheels and cams, the compound crossbow has a unique design. This crossbow type features a trigger mechanism that holds the string in place until the archer releases its bolt (projectile). A crossbow frame resembles a rifle stock and features a top rail for attaching a telescopic sight. The bolt rests on the rail and is held in place by a retention spring. Its limbs function similarly to a compound bow, but are much shorter.
Before using this kind of crossbow, always read and follow the manufacturer's instructions.
The recurve crossbow is another popular style for archers. Similar to the recurve bow, it features limbs that sweep back and forward at the tips, giving it more potential energy. There are no wheels or cams to break and no cables or cable savers to change. Recurve crossbows are also generally lighter than the compound crossbows. This style also uses a bolt, which is held in place by a retention spring. Make sure to read and follow the manufacturer's specific instructions before using this crossbow type.
Important! Consult local laws on the use of crossbows for target shooting and hunting. They can differ from bow hunting regulations.