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How to Make a Crossbow: DIY 10-Step Guide by Enthusiasts

how to make a crossbow
Written by Robert Stevens

Crossbow – a much-favorite weapon of many bowhunters in the US – is designed with a horizontal bow placed on its stick that’s known as a stock. It’s created to shoot out projectiles bolted on a particular target. Most of today’s high-quality crossbows are bows built with stiff limbs that help increase the energy level on the bow.

It also has a string fixed to the pulley system that’s there to ensure the bolt moves off smoothly. You can experiment with this too, by merely having access to all the material, and this is easily accessible in a hardware store.

How to Make a Crossbow: DIY Step-by-Step

crossbow projects ideas

Step 1: Components and Tools Needed:


  • Hacksaw
  • Drill or a Manual Borer
  • Blowtorch
  • Gloves
  • Cutter
  • Meter and Pen
  • Knife
  • Metal File (Optional)
  • A Clamp (Optional)


– One PVC pipe – 1 meter – diameter 32 millimeter

– One PVC pipe – 1, 5 meter – diameter 40 millimeter

– One PVC bend – diameter 40 millimeter

– Three PVC bends 45° – diameter 40 millimeter

– One “Y” PVC connection – diameter 40 millimeter

– One PVC tee – diameter 40 millimeter

– 3 meters of rope

– Two pulleys

– Eight top-quality crossbow bolts with screws and ring

– A long tape (optional)

– PVC glue

– Protective rubber or foam

– Five PVC collar – diameter 40 millimeter

– Two Toothbrushes

– Wood trunnion – 60 centimeter – diameter 8 millimeter: one by arrow

– A 1-meter strap

Step 2: Make the Bow

  • First insert a 32-diameter pipe in a 40-diameter tee.
  • Make sure the tee is placed right in the middle of the pipe you intend using, then mark out the spot on both sides to help centralize the pipe once it is handled.
  • Soften the plastic by heating the pipe with a torch; afterward, you can flatten the pipe to get the shape of a bow.
  • Progress by a little section of 14 -20 centimeter, make sure the torch is appropriately moved; this will help the pipe from burning off completely.
  • Leave a space of 7 centimeters on both sides where the pulleys will be placed afterward.
  • Although this part is considered to be the longest part, since the strength of the arc is solely dependent on it. So it’s important to be patient.

Step 3: Installation of the Pulleys

  • Drag the location of the pulley and ensure it rests at the end of each arc. Now cut it out using a hacksaw.
  • Make a hole on the tabs created.
  • Place the pulleys in the right position and screw it properly with the right type of bolt. Do this with caution to avoid deformation on the tabs.
  • Make sure both pulleys are in-line facing each other.
  • Direct the rope to get across the pulley, and fix the end to a screw and then stretch.

Step 4: Housing of the Rope

  • Now insert the 40 diameter pipe in the tee.
  • Stretch out the rope and make sure it’s aligned in the direction of the crossbow. Now create a spot on the position where the extended rope stops.
  • Create two holes and ensure you have enough distance where you can place the arrow.
  • Place the screws and fasten the bolts on it. It’s vital to protect the rope from the screws.

Step 5: Make the Stock

  • Couple the stock and try not to stick if it suits your size.
  • Cut a pipe with a diameter of 40 millimeters that you can use to fix the elbow.
  • Once you carry out proper adjustment, it’s time to ensure all elements are correctly glued together, but don’t fix the stock you used directly on the crossbow. Allow all glue on the joint to dry off for a period of 10 -20 minutes.

Step 6: Make the Trigger

Now you will have to cut a 20-centimeters long strip and place it in line with the length of the pipe.

  • Use a torch to supply heat on the piece you intend using; this will help flatten it and gives it a perfect shape.
  • Create a hole of 1-centimeter size where you will place the screw. The screw will help create a lever with the help of the trigger.
  • Create a slit; this will act as the cross trigger.

Step 7: Cable Pass

To avoid all cables from tangling and limit friction, you need to create a slit positioned perpendicular in the direction of the rope right in the middle of the pipe. If fixed properly, it will form the body part of the bow you intend creating.

  • To create the slit, you will have to drill some small holes in succession.
  • File up the slot angle and make sure the rope is not damaged during this.

Step 8: Arrow Guide

  • Divide the toothbrush into two halves.
  • Place the PVC collar on the crossbow.
  • Use an adhesive to hold the PVC collar, and this should be done in “V” shape inside out.
  • The second PVC collar should be clip 10 centimeters away from the trigger position

Step 9: Make the Quiver

When it comes to quivers, you can use leftovers from pipe and foam pieces obtained from an old sports device. You can also use the remaining piece of pipes used to create the trigger and place it on the side of your arrows.

  • Insert foam directly in the pipe and drill small holes -smaller in size than the size of the diameter of the arrow you intend to plant.
  • Cut the second piece into two halves lengthwise.
  • Create incisions on the body of the foam; this incision will serve as positions that will act as a wedge to the arrow; if necessary, you can glue the hose in the foam.
  • Heat 40 centimeter of the pipe you want to use; heating it will help soften and will at large flatten the pipe. Both parts help to link both elements on the quiver.
  • While on the second element, you can fix the other part using either screws or glue.
  • Fix a PVC collar that has a diameter size 40 centimeter. Do this in a way it can quickly get snapped directly in the body of the screw.

Step 10: Crossbow Camouflage

Use a black adhesive tape to rap the bow all over. Or better still, using camo color around will be a perfect idea too.


Q. 1: Can you make crossbow bolts?

Ans: Yes, it’s possible to make crossbow bolts with the aid of different broad nocks and heads. But if you are one of those crossbow enthusiasts, you can make efforts to build one for yourself.

Q. 2: How much does it cost to build a crossbow?

Ans: When it comes to hunting, crossbows are top-rated equipment owned by 85% of bow hunters. Most times, the price can be considered as a hint to its performance, lifespan, and quality. The price to build a low-quality crossbow ranges from around $120 -$150 while coupling a high-quality bow could cost around $2000.

About the author

Robert Stevens

A Seasoned Hunter

It’s been several years that Robert, a retired teacher and a proud dad, has silently been piling up mature bucks down the South. This humble hunter began his hunting journey at quite an early age and since then, he spent countless hours in the woods and learned good lessons in terms of woodsmanship. Along the way, he also made money sharing his skill with his followers and well-wishers.

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