How To String A Crossbow

Arbalist or hobbyist the first thing you’ll want to know is how to string a crossbow. Done wrong you can damage the bow or yourself.

The most common method among modern crossbow enthusiasts is with a stringer. The secondary method is done by hand. This is by far the most difficult way to string a crossbow and should really only be used in situations where the bow has a comparatively low draw weight for the user.


#1: Hook your new string around the left nook. The nooks being located at the edge of the crossbow limb.

#2: Hook the stringer onto both nooks. The stringer is longer than the actual bowstring so this should be easy. Remember at this point only the stringer is on both nooks. The actual bowstring should only be on one nook.

#3: Cock the crossbow and place it limb first against the flat surface. The stock should be facing upward. Not all crossbows have a stirrup but the ones that do generally don’t require you to press into them with full force. Doing so could damage the stirrup. Simply steady the device.

#4: Once cocked, place the other end of the actual bowstring into the other nook. Once it’s safe to do so, fire the unloaded crossbow. (Note: without a stringer you’d have to pull on the limb of the crossbow to bend it towards you. This is the part that makes the by hand process so difficult.)

#5: Remove the stringer from the bow – without removing the actual bowstring. This can be a tedious process and is typically done by using a small screwdriver to work the stringer out of the nook without damaging the bowstring.

Once this is completed – congratulations! You’ve learned how to string a crossbow!

Remember to unstring your crossbow before a long period of inactivity to preserve the string.