Crossbow Report: TenPoint Nitro 505
TenPoint Crossbow Technologies from Mogadore, Ohio, is known as a world-class manufacturer of crossbow products that are recognized as an industry standard for safety, accuracy, precision engineering, durability, performance, and power. Annually offering multiple models at varying price points, TenPoint Crossbow Technologies continues to be at the forefront of crossbow innovation.
TenPoint’s patented reverse-draw bow assembly is the heart of the new 2022 Nitro 505. This bow assembly is powered by the new RX8-Cam™ system that rotates an industry-leading 404-degrees. The new cam system features deeper cable grooves and improved cable spacing which allows for an increased strand count on string and cables for added strength and durability at these unprecedented speeds in excess of 500 feet per second.
“The Nitro 505 is the fastest, most accurate, and most powerful crossbow ever manufactured,” said Rick Bednar, TenPoint CEO. “To exceed 500 feet-per-second and maintain the durability you’ve come to expect from TenPoint, our engineering team was denied no expense in the research, design, and testing phase of this crossbow. All major components were designed to handle this level of power. The Nitro 505 is the most tested TenPoint crossbow ever – with over 25,000 shots put through the design.”
OUT OF THE BOX
The TenPoint Nitro 505 is shipped in awell-packaged plastic shell encased in durable cardboard. The crossbow comes fully assembled except for the scope and bow hanger. The scope rings are already attached and positioned on the scope which simply needs to be secured to the scope rail. Two set screws attach the bow hanger to the front of the bow for complete assembly in only a few minutes. Available in Veil Alpine Camo or Moss Green, this ready- to-hunt package includes 6 new EVO-X CenterPunch 20” premium carbon crossbow arrows, a 6-arrow Tech Quiver, the new EVO-X Marksman Elite scope, and an integrated string stop system.
The Nitro 505 features a patented reverse-draw bow assembly that draws the string through the riser, creating a 17-inch power stroke. The increased power stroke generates more speed with less draw weight – creating a smoother, quieter shot. The elongated power stroke also keeps the arrow nock engaged with the string before release – this is a critical component in performance, as the longer the nock remains engaged with the string, the more accurate the crossbow will shoot. In addition, this center-mounted riser provides superior balance, eliminating the “nose-heavy” feel of traditional crossbows and making it easier to hold steady, increasing the shooter’s accuracy. The Nitro 505 measures only 30.7 inches in length and 6.5 inches wide. TenPoint’s new 20- inch Micro-Trac fluted aluminum barrel reduces the flight deck surface by 50%; the barrel is fastened to the ultra- light, two-piece TECH-X™ stock that features multiple weight-reducing cutouts and houses the ACUslide cocking and de-cocking system.
The Nitro 505 features the company’s S1 trigger. This 2-stage, zero-creep design features an advanced roller-sear system that delivers a consistent crisp pull. The trigger is equipped with a DFI (Dry-Fire-Inhibitor) and is fitted with a nylon-filament arrow retention brush that improves arrow grip and alignment to reduce noise and vibration. An integrated string stop system is also included to further reduce noise and vibration. The RX8- Cam system rotates an industry-leading 404-degrees to produce speeds of up to 505 feet per second with a 400-grain arrow. The crossbow’s revolutionary Vector- Quad cable technology utilizes four cables instead of the traditional two which eliminates cam lean and generates straight-nock travel leading to same-hole down-range accuracy.
The new EVO-X Marksman Elite Scope, included in the bow package, features fully multi-coated 2-8X optics, capable of precision down-range accuracy out to 100-yards. A variable speed design compatible with crossbows shooting over 500 FPS, the Marksman Elite scope features external Target Turrets for easy adjustment to windage and elevation (one-click represents ½” MOA at 100-yards) for unmatched long-range accuracy. Also included in the package are the new EVO-X CenterPunch 20” carbon crossbow arrows. The ultra-accurate 20” arrows weigh 400-grains and feature TenPoint’s new Alpha-nock aluminum bushing system. Each arrow is inspected for straightness to within .001-inch and each package is weight-matched to within 1-grain per arrow.
SPECS & PERFORMANCE
I always stress the difference between the advertised specs of an individual crossbow and its actual “hunt setup” specs. Most of the time manufacturers market bare bow specs which can be misleading. In extremely rare cases, the advertised weight and speed of the crossbow are its true weight and speed when set up in full hunt dress. Because of this, a side-by-side comparison test is completed against the crossbow’s marketed specs. The TenPoint Nitro 505’s advertised weight without accessories is 7.9 pounds. My comparison weight with the crossbow set up in full hunt dress with scope, quiver bracket, quiver, and arrows is 11 pounds.
Ten shots were put through a chronograph with the fastest and slowest recorded speeds eliminated from the equation and the average speed being calculated from the remaining eight shots. The Nitro 505 consistently shot the 400-gr. arrow at 517 FPS. Kudos to TenPoint for not only reaching their advertised speed but for far exceeding it.
My trigger pull analysis data is comprised the same way as my feet-per-second data. Ten shots are gauged with the highest and lowest numbers being removed from the equation; the remaining eight shots are calculated to achieve the average. The 505’s S1 trigger is a typical 2-stage trigger for those familiar with that style of trigger. There is absolutely no creep with the trigger. Once you take up the first stage of the trigger, you are on the wall. As you apply pressure, the trigger breaks clean. It is a very safe and accurate trigger. Factory specs list the nitro 505 as having a 3.5-pound trigger pull. My comparison testing produced a 4.0-pound trigger pull. The TenPoint Nitro 505 has a very good trigger.
SHOOTING THE Nitro 505
All TenPoint crossbows are built on a safety-first platform. Regardless of the numerous technological advances they’ve brought to the industry and the blistering speeds their top-end model crossbows achieve, rest assured if the crossbow isn’t first and foremost safe, it will never reach the consumer. This begins with their auto-engaging trigger which automatically moves the safety into the “safe” position when the crossbow is cocked and their Dry-Fire- Inhibitor which makes it impossible for the crossbow to fire without an arrow nocked. The ergonomics of their crossbow designs and additional safety features make it nearly impossible to accidentally cause oneself bodily harm if you’re responsibly operating the crossbow.
The Nitro 505’s ACUslide features the company’s groundbreaking Auto-Brake Gear System, which allows for silent cocking and safe and controlled de-cocking of the crossbow. The Auto-Brake Gear System features a new brake pad designed for more robust braking power, eliminating the potential of losing control which can lead to injury or costly bow damage during the cocking or de- cocking process. While cocking and de-cocking with the ACUslide, the user can remove his/her hand from the handle at any point, with no other action required – and the handle will stop in place. The cocking system features a new Dyneema cocking strap which has been upgraded to handle over 2,000 pounds of force – an incredible two times stronger than the previous generation strap. The 7 ½-inch XTEND Adjustable Crank Handle reduces cocking effort to 5-pounds and stores securely in buttstock.
The Nitro 505 is not only fast, but it’s beyond accurate. For accuracy testing, I shot five groups of three arrows at 30 yards off a bench rest and then repeated the process at 40 and 50 yards. The 505 consistently held groups of less than one inch and stacked arrow upon arrow. The accuracy of this crossbow is outstanding. Reverse-draw-designed crossbows are also typically quieter than forward-draw bows shooting the same poundage. The Nitro 505 is no different. Although not whisper quiet by any means, my decibel level readings recorded it to be quieter than forward-draw crossbows that are exceeding 480 FPS.
I also tested the Nitro 505 in the field; and even though it received high accolades from my controlled environment range testing, the field is where this crossbow performs. It balances incredibly well in the hand; there is no shock or vibration at the shot, and it’s a joy to maneuver in a ground blind or tree stand setting. Three stock spacers are also included in the package which allows for additional adjustability when switching from range shooting to a bulkier hunting clothes situation. The bow is more accurate than my shooting capabilities and is lightning fast. I was able to knock down a late-season antlerless deer with the Nitro 505, and it performed as I’ve come to expect TenPoint products. The EVO-X Marksman Elite Scope yields perfect eye-level alignment and is crystal clear, and the EVO-X CenterPunch 20” carbon crossbow arrows flew like darts. The Nitro 505 is a very user-friendly crossbow to handle in the field.
There aren’t many crossbow packages on the market that one can’t find fault in or with certain components of the package. After spending days afield with it and finding success, if I had to make any upgrade recommendations it would be directed towards the purchase of lighted nocks. The Nitro 505 is so fast that there’s just no way to see the arrow after it leaves the crossbow. TenPoint offers an array of brand-specific accessories to complement their crossbows. Their proprietary lighted nocks can be purchased directly from their website. They will most definitely help every hunter during and after the shot.
THE BOTTOM LINE
TenPoint Crossbow Technologies continues to push the envelope in crossbow design year after year and they’ve once again hit it out of the park in 2022! The TenPoint Nitro 505 has no peers in the realm of reverse-draw crossbows. With a MAP of $3,099.99, it may be above many potential buyers’ budgets, but if you’re in the market for a fast, compact, accurate, complete crossbow package, that will last you a lifetime, the Tenpoint Nitro 505 will not disappoint. For additional information go to www.tenpointcrossbows.com