I always wanted to shoot a crossbow but never had the chance until a couple of years ago when I visited my brother-in-law. We spent a morning shooting his CAMX crossbow and I loved it. The only problem was the price.....and more so the fact that Minnesota did not allow crossbows during deer archery season, which is where I would be using it should I get one. A couple of years later, the Minnesota DNR finally figured out that some of us older folks maybe didn't have everything it took to draw and hold a regular bow so they modified the crossbow law and cut us a break. The new law stated that if you are 60 years or older, you can legally use a crossbow during archery season.
It was a couple of years after my seeing my brother-in-law that I retired and moved back to Minnesota, in the middle of winter no less. As winter was slowly grinding to a halt, I happened across the CAMX website and saw they were having one heck of a sale. I was fortunate, from a timing perspective, as we had gotten pretty much settled into our new home and I still had some dollars in my "hobby fund". A I discovered after the fact, CAMX was being purchased by a large outdoor corporation....except this was not public knowledge. I stumbled across their "sale" which was to apparently help clear out the existing inventory. I just happened to be checking when the price was several hundred less than usual. I immediately ordered the crossbow along with some extra arrows, happy to save the money which ultimately ended up funding bag and block targets, hunting broadheads, etc.
According to Dave Choma, the man who founded CAMX and has 30 years veteran of crossbow design, the Chaos 325 was developed as a hunting crossbow. Many features were incorporated to make it one of the best hunting crossbows out there. And to give you an idea of how serious the company is about the Chaos 325, it is the only model they make. The weight, compactness, and durability all contribute to it being able to take your game animal.....to put game in your freezer shot after shot.
Some of the features that got my attention, and as a result the subsequent
1. It has a 175 pound draw weight that you can cock by hand, although I prefer using the supplied rope cocker.
2. It weighs 8.5 pounds, which includes the optic and an ambidextrous quiver for four arrows. The crossbow itself is 6.75 pounds.
3. The length of pull (LOP) can be altered by changing the supplied spacers beneath the butt plate.
4. Engineered using a monoblock scope base and steel mounting rings for the purpose built short eye relief crossbow scope.
5. Integral pivoting arrow retaining (PAR) system (built into the monoblock base) to securely keep the arrow against the string.
6. Built in thumb savers to prevent accidental thumb injury.
7. The riser is machined from 7075 billet aluminum to minimize weight while ensuring necessary strength.
8. Three piece laminated limb for durability.
9. You can use the roper cocker to safely "de-cock" the crossbow so no discharge bolt and target are needed.
10. Life time warranty extends to any owner of the crossbow. Only the strings and cables, which are obviously wear items, are not covered.
Here is the Chaos 325 crossbow, fresh from the shipping box. The manual is great and does not require you to interpret what is written. CAMX also includes a low carry style sling and the corresponding attachment points for it on the crossbow's stock. While crossbows from some companies are never actually assembled and tested prior to leaving the warehouse, CAMX assembles and shoots your bow approximately 20 times. They even include the 20 yd accuracy target shot by your bow once they have the optic dialed in. The bow is guaranteed to shoot a 1" or better group @ 20 yds but I would not recommend using the same bull as you'll be hitting your arrows on subsequent shots.
There isn't much to do regarding assembling your bow so you can go shooting. The cable saver is positioned so that it protects the cables where they cross under the flight groove of the barrel. The cable saver slides back towards the stock while the string rides along the top of the barrel until the riser is nearly ready to engage the front of the barrel.
Once the barrel is properly aligned with the cutout in the rear of the riser, the riser is slid onto the barrel until it is fully seated. A 1/4"x20 shoulder bolt is used to secure the riser to the barrel.
Here is a close-up of the cable server properly installed in the cable slot of the crossbow. The saver keeps the cables from binding up when the crossbow is cocked and also when the trigger releases the string upon firing. Yes, the Pledge of Allegiance is inscribed on the barrel of the crossbow.
The assembly of the crossbow is complete. The section of the owner's manual covering the assembly details the process very well and includes clear photos showing just how everything fits and slides together.
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