The Evolution of the Crossbow

The Popularity of Crossbow Hunting is Growing

by Wade Middleton

Hunter wading through water with crossbow

In this episode of Cabela’s Deer Gear TV, we are looking at the evolution of the crossbow and how it has become a popular option when hunting for big game, especially whitetail deer. Brian Flaherty from TenPoint Crossbows joins us in this episode, as we discuss the newest crossbows (Vapor RS470, Vengent S440, and Viper S400) to hit the market and the revolutionary technology that they possess. No matter your opinion on crossbows, you can’t deny the amazing advancement in technology that they have had over the years.

I’ve had a chance to hunt with a lot of different models of TenPoint Crossbows. Field test them or provide feedback about each one of the different models that we’ve used and what’s been exciting to me is to see the evolution of them. Whether I’ve been deer hunting with them in many different situations and scenarios, whether I have taken exotics, I shot a giant fallow one time with them. Turkey hunting with them, lots of hogs at various times. All year long, I’ve found reasons and needs to go hunting with a crossbow.


Brian Flaherty Posing with Deer

Brian Flaherty poses with his long 8-point and the Viper S400

Whitetail hunting is something that has driven and seen such a huge increase in the crossbow market. Crossbows have always been both not only a recruitment tool but a retention tool. So crossbows on the recruitment side, you can start kids at young ages that maybe can’t pull a vertical bow back yet and you take them out there and they can be shooting bullseyes with their crossbow or they can go out and they can harvest an animal at such a young age, that just gets them into the sport of archery and they get excited about it. Naturally, they may transition to a vertical bow, but on the recruitment side of it, now we’re building the numbers of hunters out there. On the retention side, there are situations that come up whether it’s a shoulder surgery or maybe just whatever physical things may prohibit someone from getting out there and drawing their vertical bow. They can still get out there and enjoy the sport of bowhunting and then for gun hunters that want to get into some archery seasons or some late season archery hunters, it’s just all over the place from recruitment and retention crossbows are doing a great job. – Brian Flaherty, Marketing Manager for TenPoint Crossbows

Hunter smiling with deer and crossbow

Wade is all smiles with his first buck with the TenPoint Vapor RS470

I’m a person that just loves to hunt with a lot of different means and methods and TenPoint Crossbows and I have been working together for quite some time now. What I learned about the TenPoint models looking at their innovations, field testing them, and taking them hunting for a lot of different types of game species is that their innovation and advancement continue to evolve hunting with crossbows into levels of comfort and deadly accuracy that are mind-boggling.



There’s still a little bit of a mindset with vertical bow hunters that the crossbow doesn’t belong in archery season, I would just tell you to go out there and try them, they’re very cool to shoot, they’re very fun to shoot. They provide tons of opportunities for hunters and it’s growing in numbers every single year and we’re just happy that we’re the forefront of it. For the past 25 years, TenPoint Crossbows have been at the forefront of crossbow technology and continuing to push the envelope and provide more opportunities for hunters everywhere. – Brian Flaherty, Marketing Manager for TenPoint Crossbows

TenPoint Raises the Bar with the Vapor RS470

470 Feet-Per-Second and Safe De-Cocking in the
NEW Ten Point Crossbows Vapor RS470

At the 2020 ATA Show in Indianapolis, IN, TenPoint Crossbow Technologies launched the world’s most technically advanced crossbow ever produced – the NEW Vapor RS470. Delivering supercharged speeds up to 470 FPS and featuring the NEW revolutionary ACUslide cocking and de-cocking system, the industry’s premiere crossbow measures an ultra-narrow 6.5-inches wide and weighs an incredible half-pound less than previous TenPoint flagship models.

“The Vapor is the most accurate crossbow I have ever shot.” Said Rick Bednar, TenPoint CEO. “We have always committed ourselves to building the best crossbows on the market and, while de-cocking is not a new concept to the crossbow market, the silent ACUslide is the first safe option to de-cock a crossbow with a crank”

The NEW ACUslide features the company’s groundbreaking Auto-Brake Gear System, which allows for silent cocking and safe and controlled de-cocking of the crossbow.  The Auto-Brake Gear System eliminates the potential of losing control which can lead to injury or costly bow damage during the de-cocking process. While de-cocking with the ACUslide, the user can remove their hand from the handle at any point, with no other action required – and the handle will stop in place.

The NEW 7 ½-inch XTEND Adjustable Crank Handle reduces the cocking effort to 5-pounds and stores securely into the butt-stock.

The ACUslide system is integrated into the company’s NEW TEC-X stock.  The high strength-to-weight ratio of the stock helps reduce the weight of the Vapor RS470, including the cocking mechanism, to 8-pounds – a half-pound lighter than previous TenPoint flagship models.

Fueled by RX7-Cams™ and SLING-SHOT technology, the reverse-draw bow assembly is the difference-maker for the world’s finest crossbow. The innovative cam system rotates an industry-leading 404-degrees which powers the DUAL FLEX™ limbs, while the SLING-SHOT technology provides an extra turbo boost to produce speeds up to an unprecedented 470 feet-per-second. The assembly’s revolutionary Vector-Quad™ cable technology utilizes four cables instead of the traditional two which eliminates cam lean and generates straight-nock travel leading to same-hole downrange accuracy.

A lightweight CNC machined 7075-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum riser featuring the company’s TRI-LOCK™ pocket system ensures perfect alignment between the pocket and limbs for further increased accuracy.

The bow assembly is mounted to a NEW 20-inch -MICRO-TRAC™ fluted aluminum barrel that reduces the flight deck surface by an incredible 50%.  The minimal string-to-barrel contact ensures the longest string life in the industry.

The barrel is fitted with the company’s NEW S1 3.5-pound 2-stage trigger that delivers a crisp, consistent break. The trigger is equipped with a DFI™ (Dry-Fire-Inhibitor) and is fitted with a nylon-filament arrow retention brush that improves arrow grip and alignment to reduce noise and vibration. An integrated string stop system is also included to further reduce noise and vibration.

Fully assembled, the crossbow weighs just 8-pounds, measures only 31-inches (w/o stirrup) in length and shoots up to a supercharged 470 feet-per-second.

Decorated in Veil® Alpine camo or Graphite Gray, the Vapor RS470 ships completely assembled and includes the most extensive Ready-To-Hunt package in the industry.

The package includes:

  • ACUslide™ cocking and de-cocking system
  • Evo-X Marksman™ Precision Scope
  • TenPoint STAG™ Hard Crossbow Case
  • 6-pack of EVO-X Lighted CenterPunch™ Premium Carbon Crossbow Arrows (.001” straightness)
  • 6-pack of EVO-X CenterPunch™ Premium Carbon Crossbow Arrows (.001” straightness)
  • 3-pack of EVO-X CenterPunch™ Rear-Deploying Broadheads
  • Sling
  • Integrated String Stop System
  • NEW 6-arrow Tech Quiver

Vapor RS470 MAP:

$2,999.99 – Veil® Alpine Camo

$2,899.99 – Graphite Gray

TenPoint Crossbow Technologies is 100% American owned, operated, and all of its crossbow models are manufactured in Mogadore, OH.