This website is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission.

Best Crossbow Bolt

Last Updated: 04.02.23

Bolts for crossbows – Buying guide, Reviews, and Comparison


If you want to find the best hunting gear, but you don’t have time to go through the buying tips and reviews prepared by our research team, this short paragraph should tell you everything you need to know about the best bolt for crossbow. After analyzing a lot of feedback coming from both amateur and professional hunters and target shooters, we have concluded that the Barnett Outdoors Carbon is the best because it comes as a set of five arrows to give budget-seekers genuine value for the money. The 20-inch 8.1-ounce arrows feature lightweight yet strong carbon shafts as well as better wall thickness to ensure greater durability. Get maximum accuracy and dependable target penetration thanks to the 100-grain point and 13.78 grains per inch.  Compatible with a variety of crossbows including the Jackal, Wildcat C-5, Penetrator and Ghost 350, the arrows in the set feature 24F field points and moon nocks for easy removal when embedded and problem-free string alignment. If the Barnett Outdoors Carbon is not available, you should consider the Carbon Express PileDriver as it is a reliable alternative both in terms of performance and quality.



Comparison table


The Good
The Bad



3 Best Bolts for Crossbows (Reviews) in 2023


1. Barnett Outdoors Carbon Crossbow Arrows


Made with composite carbon shafts, the Barnett Outdoors Carbon is composed of five arrows in one package for more bang for the buck. Each of the arrows has a more consistent wall thickness to guarantee greater durability.

These best carbon crossbow bolts are built to deliver maximum penetration and accuracy, which means that using them in the field will ensure a clean, humane kill every time. These particular bolts can fly fast and true to the target thanks to their smart fletchings with 4-inch vanes, which slice through the air to propel the bolts to the desired spot on the target.

Each arrow comes with 13.78 Grains Per Inch supplemented with 100 Grain Point for top-quality craftsmanship plus durability. The moon nocks enable easy connection and drawing with the bowstring for problem-free setup and release.

The lightweight yet strong shafts on the bolts ensure long periods of use. The bolts are geared for compatibility with a variety of crossbows, which enables use in target practice and hunting. Discover your real talent for shooting with the high-quality bolts in this smart package.

Be assured that the shafts will not break or splinter because of their quality craftsmanship and superior durability. You will love what you can do with these arrows.


These arrows with field points come in a set of five and their length is 20 inches, suitable for hunting medium-sized animals.

They feature half-moon nocks and strong but lightweight carbon shafts.

The wall thickness on these ones was improved for added durability and creating more precision when shooting.

Be careful as these arrows are extremely sharp and provide maximum accuracy and penetration, which makes them perfect for hunting or competitions.

Most customers praise the quality of these arrows and say that you can annihilate more than one target with the same arrow provided that you change the broadhead.


On the other hand, some other buyers say the arrows or bolts are not as accurate as predicted. You need to aim a few inches away if you want to target a specific item or object. Things become more complicated when we talk about moving targets.

Buy from





2. Carbon Express PileDriver Fletched Carbon Crossbolt


Because the arrows in the Carbon Express PileDriver 52140-P set do not come with field points, you can opt for the perfect ones for your needs. Choose from a variety of target points to suit your preferences.

The field points of your choice can be inserted easily into the front of the bolt shaft. The arrows are the heaviest carbon composite crossbolts in the exclusive Carbon Express series. They are designed for the shooter with unique specifications on ultimate penetration.

Get ultimate confidence with these bolts when going after large species. The pack comes with 6 universal flat nocks that enable seamless string alignment. On the other hand, the inserted moon nocks have a groove on to which you can rest the string at full draw. The half-moon shape provides an extra level of propulsion to drive the bolt through the bow and to the target.

Regardless which nock you put into the arrows, each one of them is designed to create high kinetic energy as well as fantastic knock-down power.

The fletching features 4-inch green hen vanes and a white cock vane to help the arrow maintain a straight and fast flight through the air toward the target.

Greater accuracy is guaranteed thanks to the Advanced Construction of the arrows, which also ensures consistency of the spine.


As suggested by the name, these arrows are made from superior quality carbon fiber to ensure durability and a lightweight design for added precision.

You can purchase these arrows in two available sizes, 20-inch and 22-inch, depending on your needs.

As stated by the manufacturer, these arrows are specifically designed for hunters who require the maximum level of penetration while still having the possibility of using the arrow again.

The carbon crossbolt provides maximum kinetic energy and good knock-down power for simply putting down all your hunting victims.

The bolts are equipped with standard 4-inch vanes and you will also receive six universal flat nocks.


Be careful when shooting as some of the buyers say that the nock on some arrows may have been incorrectly installed. Other than that, most of the reviewers who have purchased these arrows were pleased with the quality of these products and would definitely recommend them.

Buy from





3. Speed Track Mini Crossbow Bolts 


Suitable for 50-pound and 80-pound crossbows, the Speed Track Cobra is a set of 60 bolts in all. This means you can shoot continuously and still have more than enough arrows to practice with. This product offers real value for money because of the number of bolts in the package.

Each bolt in the set is engineered to deliver dependable accuracy despite the lightweight build. The arrows are also durable and make the perfect partner to premium-quality crossbows. The 6,25-inch length ensures easy and fast flight because there is less air resistance as the bolts move through the air.

The arrows come in bright yellow and glossy black colors for effortless visibility. This means you will have an easy time finding the arrows if they get embedded into a dark target or if you misplace them

The plastic body of each bolt is metal-tipped for toughness and added strength. The plastic construction also enables easy cleaning while ensuring resistance to corrosion. The tips do not break off but only slip off or come away undamaged so that you can place or insert them back easily.

You will also appreciate the solid fletching that helps propel the bolts right to the desired target by flying in a direct path. Each of the arrows flies straight and fast depending on your weapon.


These sharp arrows come in two different colors – yellow and black, but the ones you will receive in your package are randomly selected.

You will get no less than 60 arrows for a very affordable price.

They are engineered to fit 50 – 80 pounds style crossbows and provide a lightweight yet accurate design.

These are mainly training arrows but watch out as they are sharp too and can cause serious damage.

Each bolt is metal-tipped for added strength and toughness, making these arrows to be very reliable.


These arrows are made from plastic and not come with the durability or precision of the ones crafted from wood or carbon fibers. Thus, we suggest you to mainly use them for training.

Some customers claimed that not all of their arrows came with a metal shaft bolt, but some of them were lighter and only covered in plastic.

Buy from




Buying guide


It was around the fifth century when China rolled out bronze bolts despite the fact that crossbows have been around since the fourth century. Modern crossbows employ arrows that fit on a crossbow rail using a particular power stroke. How can you tell if you have the best bolts for crossbow use?

The best crossbow bolts for deer hunting have suitable specifications for their purpose

While the average crossbow bolt length is 20 inches, plenty of crossbow bolts measure from 16 inches to 22 inches. Some bolts even come shorter at 6.25 inches. You can choose the length you want based on your shooting style, of course.

Manufacturers of crossbolts do specify the length of the bolts they want for use with their products. This is your cue to purchase bolts that have the recommended lengths. You can go for slightly longer bolts than what is recommended. However, shorter ones are not suitable since their tip could pose an issue with the rail of the crossbow. The rail refers to the groove where the projectile goes.

The main body of the bolt is known as the shaft. This is the component to which all the other elements of the projectile are attached. A good majority of crossbow bolts feature a carbon or aluminum construction.

Aluminum or carbon bolts come with a lightweight structure. They are not prone to splintering. Furthermore, they are resilient against bending. Check out bolts that carry a combination of the two materials.

The shaft can be of a range of stiffness levels. This particular aspect is referred to as the spine. Just like when we say a ‘spineless person’ is a weakling, it is the same with crossbow bolts. A bolt with a greater level of ‘spine’ is more resistant to flexion.

The word ‘grains,’ when used in archery, refers to the weight of the bolt shaft. When examining this distinct aspect of a bolt, take note of the manufacturer’s specifications on the total weight in grains. You may even see this as a GPI value or Grains Per Inch, which is just another way of expressing the same thing.

Should you see only GPI in the product specs, calculate the total weight by multiplying the GPI value by the length of the shaft in inches. Thus, a shaft rated at 18 GPI with a total length of 20 inches would mean a total shaft weight of 360 grain, or what you will get when you multiply 18 by 20.

Use this value to convert into grams if you prefer. Just multiply the grain weight by the constant 0.0648. By using the example here, the weight of the shaft in grams is ~23.328, or the value obtained by the equation 0.0648 x 360.


Good-quality crossbow bolts for hunting come with well-crafted parts

Typically, the nock on a crossbow bolt is made of either aluminum or plastic. The nock is the segment of the bolt connected to or inserted into the back of the shaft. The role of the nock is to secure the bolt in place during the process of lining it up for the shot.

Crossbow bolts come with two main kinds of nocks. Half moon nocks have a unique groove that enables easy alignment with the string before firing. The manufacturers of crossbows have different requirements on the type of nock on bolts that can be used with their products.

While some brands specify only half-moon nocks to be used with their crossbows, others gravitate toward flat nocks. Check out models of bolts that accept both types of nocks, as they enable you to use the type you are more comfortable with. Do not attempt to invest in bolts until you have ascertained the crossbow manufacturer’s bolt specs on this element.

Rarely do nocks come with interchangeability between different crossbow models. If you do not use the particular type of bolt fitted with a specific kind of nock, there’s a high likelihood that the string would jump the bolt and result in dry-firing. Dry firing not only causes crossbow damage but also poses a danger to life and limb.

Dry firing, also called dry loosing, is a huge mistake since you allow the string to go loose without a projectile. It is wrong on many counts because it is through the arrow or bolt that kinetic energy is dissipated through the vibration of the limbs and string, among other critical elements involved in the firing. This makes the proper choice on nocks essential as all other aspects in your bolt.

The little ‘wings’ on the back of the crossbow bolt are referred to as fletchings. They are positioned quite close to the nock. Fletchings function to keep a stable trajectory along the flight path. They help to maintain the projectile moving in the right direction.

This component is sometimes called a vane. The fletching also prevents the bolt from unwanted swaying or pitching to the right or left. It is the part that causes the bolt to oscillate around its axis as it flies toward the target. What this results in is greater stability.

Modern bolts are characterized by having three fletchings made of plastic. However, bird feathers are used in making traditional fletchings. Crossbow bolts rarely, if ever, use bird feather fletchings.

You can find varying lengths of fletchings. This means there’s no ideal length to consider in this component. As a rule of thumb, a longer arrow shaft requires longer fletchings, and this goes both ways. Crossbow bolts always come with a set of attached fletchings on them.

Premium-quality crossbow bolts come with two types of arrowheads

Field points, otherwise referred to as target points, are designed for target practice. They can’t be used for game hunting. Why? They do not have any sharp edges, to begin with, so they won’t be able to cause enough damage internally to take down the prey.

Field points have a distinctive pointy tip that is just enough to only dig deep into the archery target but not create a lot of damaging power. They can easily be extracted from the material of the target without breaking it apart.

Typically screwed into the front end of the bolt shaft, field points can also come with non-detachable, glued-on edges in the cheap ones

The second type of arrowhead is the broadhead. Broadheads are what serious hunters use. They are screwed in for attachment to the tip of the shaft, in the same manner as field points. Broadheads are further subdivided into three sub-categories.

Fixed blade broadheads have unique, fixed, razor-sharp blades that cannot be detached, giving a single-element construction. Expandable-blade broadheads have hidden blades that only open up or get activated when the projectile strikes the animal. This type causes maximum damage because the broadhead digs deeper then gets lodged internally when the hidden blades are engaged.

The blades of removable-blade broadheads can be disconnected from the bolt. This provides replaceability when needed. Although a bit more costly, expandable broadheads are preferred by some hunters thanks to their ability to overcome wind resistance, which makes them fly fast in the same manner that a field point can efficiently go through the air.

Both field tips and broadheads come with weights averaging between 125 and 150 grain. If you want value for money, check out products that come in sets of three or six. More would be better.



Leave a comment