Anatomy of a Crossbow

Bolt clip: This holds the rear of the bolt firmly in place so that it cannot be dislodged when moving the crossbow


Bolt rest: This centers the bolt at the front of the tiller, aiding in accuracy.  In our Rusting and Schnepper models, the bolt rest is adjustable for windage.


Bridle: This is the cord which secures the prod to the tiller, and is typically made from hemp cord that has been waxed with beeswax.


Bridle block: A wooden block that makes for a more secure anchor for the bridle, as the prod vibrates significantly when shooting, which can place lots of stress on the bridle.

Cheek rest: While not a universally employed feature in European crossbows, the cheek rest is ergonomically designed to increase comfort - and therefore accuracy - in shooting.


Nussfaden: Literally "nut thread", this cord keeps the nut firmly located in the tiller when shooting.  In some bows, this function was fulfilled by an iron pin, and in some cases, rotating nuts of this kind had no anchor and were retained by the dimensions of the slot in the tiller.


Nut: This cylindrical piece is locked into place by the locking mechanism, and retains the string when the bow is drawn.


Prod: The bow of the crossbow, which stores the tension energy and then transmits it to the bolt upon release.


Safety cord: Secured to the prod, this cord traditionally helped to retain any flying debris produced if the prod broke under strain.


String: The string imparts the stored energy in the prod to the bolt.


Suspension ring: A ring for hanging the crossbow when stored, it can also be used as an anchor point for a spanning device such as a gaffe lever.


Tiller: The main body, or stock,  of the crossbow


Trigger: The lever which the arbalist depresses in order to release the nut and thus the string, discharging the bow.


Trigger guard: While not universal in European crossbows, the trigger guard in late Medieval and Renaissance German crossbows was a simple design adaptation of the earlier trigger lever ubiquitous in Medieval crossbows.

©2020 by The Modern Armbruster. Proudly created with Wix.com