Barnett Jackal – Crossbow Review

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Barnett Jackal – Crossbow Review
8.3 Total Score

$198.00

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  • Competitive price point
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Powerful enough for most game
  • Accurate
  • Energy wheels enhance performance

The Barnett Jackal compound crossbow is often in the list of recommendations for affordable, reliable crossbows. A good majority of its users speak rather highly of it and give it excellent ratings. Let’s look at some of the features that inspire this positive feedback.

8.3 Total Score

If you don't mind a loud crossbow that still offers decent power and accuracy, this is an especially great option at a low price point.

Power
7.8
Durability
8.4
Quality of Optics
8.3
Noise Suppression
7.8
User Comfort
9.0
Safety
8.6
PROS
  • Competitive price point
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Powerful enough for most game
  • Accurate
  • Energy wheels enhance performance
CONS
  • No rope cocking device included
  • It is really loud
User Rating: Be the first one!

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BowAuthority’s Detailed Review:

Power

Even though it may not be among the most powerful crossbows in the market it still holds its own by offering sufficient power to take down most game. It has a velocity of about 315fps and delivers arrows at about 90 FPKE. This would mean that even under less than ideal weather conditions it would still strike its target with a force above the required 75 FPKE. It is therefore good enough to hunt all sizes of game up to and including grizzly bears.

Its most ideal accuracy range is up to about 40 yards but if you have great precision you’ll find that you can exceed 50-60 yards. This kind of accuracy is not the norm for crossbows within its price range. One of the main contributors to this accuracy is the picatinny rail guide system that keeps your arrows firmly on track.

User Comfort 

It comes with a highly detailed instruction manual for setting up and the assembly should not take more than 20 minutes. You have to take into consideration the fact that compound crossbows are generally a little bit more complex to assemble the recurves.

The Jackal’s build is simply superb, starting from the quad split style limbs that are extremely stable: providing great support so you can take proper aim and make an accurate shot. These limbs are not only visually appealing but the design allows for a slightly faster acceleration rate thanks to a significant reduction in air resistance. This really helps with the overall speed and is a major plus for this bow.

Its design is lightweight and therefore ensures there will be no arm fatigue in the course of your hunting expedition and you could keep going for hours on end. However, the retainer isn’t of the best quality and will likely need to be replaced in about a year if you use the weapon frequently. Considering the price of the bow this is not so surprising.

The Barnett Jackal has energy wheels strategically positioned on the edges of the limbs to make for an easy draw. The stock is built under inspiration from a military style rifle and gives the bow a classy look. The stock also provides functionality with a foregrip that is ideally designed for a comfortable and firm hold. It features a camouflage design that makes it easy for the hunter to blend in the wild .

Its riser is made of machined aluminum – one of the best materials available- to ensure high quality and durability while keeping the weight to a minimum. Its shoulder rest is not the worst in the industry, but lacks a little width that would otherwise make it very comfortable.

The three bolts that come on the package are relatively good quality and weigh a total of 400 grain. Their field points are not glued in: meaning they can be removed if you wish to get a different broadhead. They do not easily break on impact and you will only need to buy more so that you do not run out of options while you are right in the middle of hunting.

At a total weight of only 7.7lbs, the Jackal can be used by virtually anyone, including younger hunters in training. There is no front-heaviness with this crossbow, as the weight is evenly distributed, making it comfortable to use. The only downside to its numerous great features is that it does not come with a rope-cocking aid. This means that you will have to keep drawing the 150lbs of draw weight every time until you make a point to get one, so we highly recommend it (check the addon section).

Noise Suppression

Like any other compound crossbow, the Barnett Jackal is pretty loud when firing arrows. It does not include any noise suppression devices in the packaging and therefore it’s highly recommended to purchase a dampening system to enable you to get some actual hunting done. Otherwise you might just end up scaring away every target you set your eyes on and go back home empty -handed.

Quality of Optics

The included scope is pre-sighted, offering accuracy for up to 20 yards but when adjusted it allows for double that distance. Sighting it is not a challenge and in about five shots or so it should be dead zero and ready to go. After the first sighting, the scope holds zero for a really long time and does not require any adjustments.

Even though it is referred to as a red-dot scope, the scope has both green and red lights, both of which feature five settings for brightness. These can easily be adjusted to suit the lighting and weather conditions. Keep in mind however that this might drain the battery pretty fast and it is always a god idea to have backup batteries close at hand.

Unless you simply must have a reticle scope, this one comes with most of the relevant features needed and should last you for quite a reasonable duration.

Safety

The positioning of the foregrip serves to secure your hold on the bow, reducing the chances of accidental firing. It also serves to keep your fingers out of harm’s way by ensuring that they are nowhere near the path of the string as you draw on it to release an arrow.

The trigger system offers about 3.5lbs of resistance, being firm enough to ensure that you do not pull on it by mistake, but also allowing for a sufficiently smooth experience to give you efficient performance every time.

Most importantly, it features a dry-fire inhibitor, a tool that is standard for most models and tat will ensure your safety and that of your weapon for as long as it is in use.

Durability

The majority of features on this crossbow are an indication that it was built to last. Most of its parts will last you well past the 5-year warranty period for as long as you take good care of it. Always remember to wax and condition the string for optimal performance and to ensure that they will last you a good while. Without such diligent care the strings will soon start separating and will not give you their full service of approximately 800 arrows.

Summary

From the above features, it is clear that the Barnett Jackal offers so much more than one would expect from its low price point. It sleek design and lightweight build make it easy to carry around and it delivers enough power to take down all manner of game. Apart from being a bit loud and not including a rope cocking device, both of which are problems that can be addressed easily, this weapon is simply remarkable and surely deserves all the glowing tributes it has been getting.

barnett jackal specifications