how to decock a barnett crossbow

Decocking a Barnett crossbow is an essential safety step to ensure that the crossbow is in a safe and uncocked condition before storage or transport. Here’s how to safely decock a Barnett crossbow:

Note: Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions specific to your Barnett crossbow model, as there may be slight variations in the process.

Materials Needed:

  • Barnett crossbow
  • Decocking bolt (also called a discharge or unloading bolt)


  1. Ensure Safety:
    • Prioritize safety above all else. Make sure there is no one in the firing path of the crossbow.
  2. Select the Correct Decocking Bolt:
    • Barnett crossbows often come with a specific decocking bolt designed for safe decocking. Use this bolt or ensure that the one you intend to use is recommended by Barnett for your crossbow model.
  3. Prepare the Crossbow:
    • Check that the crossbow is not loaded with any regular bolts or broadheads. It should be in a safe, unloaded state.
  4. Cock the Crossbow:
    • Using the cocking device that came with your Barnett crossbow, cock the crossbow as you would when preparing to shoot.
  5. Load the Decocking Bolt:
    • Insert the decocking bolt into the crossbow’s track and latch it properly, just like you would with a regular bolt.
  6. Point in a Safe Direction:
    • Make sure the crossbow is pointed in a safe direction away from people, animals, and property.
  7. Fire the Decocking Bolt:
    • Position the crossbow’s safety in the “fire” position.
    • Aim at a suitable target that can safely stop the decocking bolt (e.g., a target block designed for crossbow use or a designated decocking area).
    • Squeeze the trigger to fire the decocking bolt.
  8. Decocking Process:
    • The decocking bolt will hit the target and absorb the energy, effectively decocking the crossbow. The limbs will return to an uncocked position.
  9. Engage the Safety:
    • After decocking, engage the safety on the crossbow to prevent any accidental discharges.
  10. Unload the Crossbow:
    • Remove the decocking bolt from the crossbow.

By following these steps, you can safely decock your Barnett crossbow without the risk of dry-firing it, which can be harmful to the crossbow and dangerous to anyone nearby. Always prioritize safety when handling crossbows or any other firearms.

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