How To Make Crossbow Bolts At Home: 7 Super Simple Steps

Learn how to make crossbow bolts with our step-by-step guide. From choosing the right materials to assembly, we cover everything you need to know to create crossbow bolts
By Rebecca Rios | Updated On February 1, 2023
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Make Crossbow Bolts

Have you ever thought about making your crossbow bolts at home? While traditional bolts are typically made of metal or carbon fiber, it is possible to create your own using wood. Wood has been used for centuries as a material for arrows and bolts, and it can be a cost-effective and sustainable option for those looking to make crossbow bolts. But how do you go about making wood crossbow bolts, and are they effective? This article will explore the process of creating wooden crossbow bolts and discuss their pros and cons.

Understanding The Various Components Of Crossbow Bolts

Crossbow bolts, also known as arrows, are an important component of any crossbow. These projectiles are designed to be shot from a crossbow and are typically made of carbon or aluminum. There are several different parts of a crossbow bolt that work together to ensure accurate and efficient shooting.

The shaft: The shaft Is the main body of the bolt, typically made of carbon or aluminium—the part of the bolt that is most visible and extends from the nock to the point.

The nock: The nock Is the part of the bolt that sits in the string groove of the crossbow. It is what holds the bolt in place before it is fired. Nocks come in different shapes and sizes to fit different string grooves.

The fletching: The fletching is the part of the bolt made up of feathers or vanes. It is located at the backside of the bolt and helps stabilize it in flight. The fletching is responsible for helping the bolt to fly straight and true to the target.

The point: The point Is the very front of the bolt and is the part that does the actual damage to the target. Points come in different styles, such as field points, judo points, and broadheads. Field points are used for target practice, while broadheads are used for hunting. Judo points are used for target practice and are designed to fall out of the target upon impact, making them easier to retrieve.

Best Material For Making Crossbow Bolts

You can make crossbow bolts out of compatible and durable materials with your crossbow. Ensure your bolt meets the manufacturer’s specifications to ensure its quality and performance with your crossbow.

Crossbow bolts for hunting are typically made of wood, aluminium alloy, or carbon fibre.


It is a common practice to use carbon for crossbow bolts. Because they are durable and can withstand impact, they are great for target shooting and hunting. You can also reuse or straighten bent carbon bolts.

Also, carbon bolts are less likely to bend and have a higher velocity, which helps overcome mistakes if fired at long ranges and stop on impact without damaging the shaft. As a result of their small diameter shaft, they also provide better penetration.

Carbon bolts are an excellent option if you need strong and long-lasting bolts.


The second most popular material for crossbow bolts is aluminium. For target shooting, aluminium bolts are a good bolt material due to their precise weight and spine specs.

There is a wide range of spine options available for aluminium bolts. Bolt spines indicate their stiffness. Bolts with more spine are more flexible.

Although aluminium bolts with a spine bend at a higher rate than carbon bolts when shot into a hard surface. When bent, they are also more likely to drift in the wind.

Using stronger materials will also improve the bolts’ accuracy and effectiveness. Carbon or aluminium crossbow bolts can be tricky to make at home, especially if you have no experience.


The main advantage of wooden crossbow bolts is that they are typically cheaper than their carbon or aluminium counterparts. This makes them a great option for those starting archery or those on a budget. Wooden crossbow bolts are also generally easier to find, as they are more widely available than other bolts.

Another benefit of wooden crossbow bolts is that they are often more accurate than other bolts. This is because wood is more forgiving than other materials and is less likely to deform or bend upon impact. This will be a great choice for those looking for outstanding accuracy in their shots.

You can use wood instead of aluminium and carbon when making crossbow bolts. The following information can help you make your wood crossbow bolts.

make crossbow bolts at home
Wooden Crossbow Bolt

A Step-By-Step Guide To Make Crossbow Bolts.

Step 1: Gather the materials.

To make crossbow bolts out of wood, you will need the following materials:

Wood: You can use any type of wood that is strong and straight-grained. Good options include oak, ash, and maple.

Shaft diameter gauge: This tool helps you measure the diameter of the bolt shaft, which is the main body of the bolt.

Fletching jig: This tool helps you attach the fletching (feathers) to the bolt shaft.

Fletching glue: This special glue attaches the fletching to the bolt shaft.

Fletching: You can use natural feathers or synthetic vanes for the fletching.

Nocks: These small plastic or aluminium pieces are attached to the back of the bolt and fit onto the crossbow string.

Points: These are the tips of the bolts, and they come in various styles, such as field points and broadheads.

Step 2: Cut the bolt shafts.

Once you have all of the materials, you can start cutting the bolt shafts. You can use a wood saw, or a power saw to do this. The length of the bolt shaft should be a few inches longer than the width of your crossbow. This will allow you to trim the bolt to the proper length later.

Step 3: Measure and mark the bolt shafts.

Use the shaft diameter gauge to measure the diameter of the bolt shaft. Mark this measurement on the bolt shaft with a pen or pencil. This will be the point where the fletching will be attached.

Step 4: Attach the fletching.

Next, use the fletching jig to attach the fletching to the bolt shaft. Place the bolt shaft into the fletching jig and position the fletching so that it is evenly spaced around the shaft. Then, use the fletching glue to attach the fletching to the shaft. Be sure to follow the company’s instructions for the fletching glue, as different glues may have different application methods.

Step 5: Trim the bolt shafts.

After the fletching has been attached, you can trim the bolt shafts to the proper length. The length of the bolt should be a few inches shorter than the width of your crossbow. This will ensure that the bolt is properly seated in the crossbow.

Step 6: Attach the nocks.

Use the nocks to attach the bolt to the crossbow string. Simply slide the nock onto the back end of the bolt and press it into place. Be sure to follow the company’s instructions for the nocks, as different nocks may have different installation methods.

Step 7: Attach the points.

Finally, attach the points to the front of the bolts.

Points come in various styles, such as field points and broadheads, and you can choose the one that best suits your needs. Simply screw the point into place on the front of the bolt, making sure it is securely attached.

However, there are also a few drawbacks to using wooden crossbow bolts. One of the main disadvantages is that they are not as durable as other bolts. Wood is prone to splintering and breaking, which can be problematic if you use your crossbow frequently. This can lead to a higher cost in the long run, as you will need to replace your bolts more often.

Another downside to wooden crossbow bolts is that they are slower and more powerful than other bolts. This can be a problem if you are hunting larger games or shooting at long ranges. The lack of speed and power may make it difficult to get a clean shot, leading to a longer and more challenging hunt.


Now, You have a set of custom-made crossbow bolts you can use during your crossbow hunting. You might think that making crossbow bolts is a daunting task due to the things you have to consider, but nothing beats the feeling of making them by hand. Also, it’s a fun, rewarding, and cost-effective experience. By making your crossbow bolts, you will learn how to maintain and care for them. It will also let you test all the components until you find the right bolt.

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