My recent trip to Canada for spring bear provided me with an opportunity to begin development of a personal relationship with one of the new kids on the block of the rapidly expanding crossbow world – the Kodabow. Kodabow is an American made crossbow distributed out of Pennsylvania. It is of recurve configuration and is an extremely well made piece of equipment.
The Koda-Express from Kodabow is every bit as good as it looks.
On this particular mission I was using the Koda-Express, which has a 185 lb draw weight and is rated at up to 305 fps in the speed category depending on arrow weight. That’s a lot of power as far as crossbows go, but Kodabow has two more models that are even more powerful than the Koda-Express. I have always been a proponent of “it’s not how fast your arrow goes, but where you put the broadhead that counts!” Shot placement is critical and the first thing that I learned about the Koda-Express is that it is an extremely accurate shooting bow. Confidence, which in my humble opinion is the most important asset a hunter can possess, is quickly acquired with this crossbow and from that point on the rest is just plain fun.
The Hawke Optics HK3244 Scope greatly enhances the performace of this bow.
Easy to assemble, the Koda-Express comes complete with a rope cocker, a destringing aid and several optic options. My bow is topped off with a Hawke HK3244, which is perhaps my favorite Hawke scope. Choosing my favorite Hawke is a tough call, but it is reassuring to know that one of the best, new crossbows in the field comes adorned with one of the best crossbow scopes in the field, as well.
The projectile of choice for this test run was the Lumen-Arrow by Burt Coyote.
The Koda-Express I received must have been zeroed in at the plant by the senders because when I took the first shot at 10 yards, I was a little high of dead center. At 20 yards, I was right on the money. The second mark was right on at 28 yards and the third zeroed at 36. I did not go beyond that mark as there is little likelihood that I would ever shoot beyond that distance and as always, lack of time to play with my new toy was a major consideration.
The adjustable military style stock and pistol grip definately enhance use.
I really like the Military-style adjustable stock and rear pistol grip. It allowed me to adjust the bow to a perfect fit and the pistol grip makes for easier handling. The bow has an adjustable 90 degree hand grip on the fore-end, but I was not impressed with that option and did not use it other than to stabilize the bow in the ladder stand.
I was not personally impressed with the grip on the fore-stock, but it worked great for locking the bow onto the safety rail.
An automatic safety engages when the bow is cocked and has an ambidextrous release that is clearly marked. There is an anti-dry fire mechanism to prevent accidental discharge, which could seriously damage the bow or its user.
The ambidextrous safety automatically engages on the Kodabow.
A feature that I really appreciate is the anti-dry fire indicator level which allows the user to visually confirm that device is working and also that the arrow is properly seated when it is loaded. The trigger pull is smooth and crisp allowing for steady and accurate release.
The oval "ringy-thingy" is one is a sample of Kodabow's carefully thought out construction.
My Koda-Express has a machined riser with built in string-dampening pods that serve to make the bow quieter when fired. Its rail is also machined from solid aluminum for durability and lightness and is designed to safely keep my fingers away from the string. One of my favorite features of the Kodabow, as silly as it may seem, is the flat, oval ring that is attached to the bottom of the riser. I don’t even know what its proper name is; I just call it “Wonderful”. Not only can it assist in keeping your fingers away from the string when you are shooting, but when resting in the stand it allows the shooter to comfortably and stably balance the bow on their lap, hands-free, without danger of it tipping or falling from the perch. This bow is packed with “little things” that demonstrate the long and clear thought that went into its design and construction. And with the crossbow market becoming so competitive, it’s the little things that can really make the difference in the long term relationship with your crossbow.
The new Rage Crossbow Head prvided the cutting edge at the moment of truth.
The Koda-Express performed flawlessly in the field while serving as the core of my hunting equipment package. I combined it with Lumen-Arrows and the new Rage Crossbow broadheads. The combination proved to fatal for my quarry with only a fifteen yard chip-shot being required in order to close the deal. All of the time spent shooting arrows into the target with the Koda-Express paid handsome dividends at the moment of truth when the hunt ended in the blink of an eye with one perfectly placed shot. The startled bear hit the large tree right behind the bait and nimbly climbed to escape danger unable to stem the doom that had already be sealed by the killer Kodabow. The shot was clean, humane and quickly dispatched the bear. I really didn’t have to shoot the bear as the fall out of the tree would have killed it.
All Kodabows are of recurve configuration with a solid and well designed string attachment.
In the final analysis of this hunt, the Koda-Express did all that was expected and required of it and is a super value at a MSRP of $800. And there were a few unexpected benefits realized from the many hours spent in the ladder stand with the bow, but the bottom line is that I am looking forward to the next outing with one of the newest and most solidly built crossbows on the market. Now I know that there are two even more powerful Kodabows available, but it is my humble opinion that the Koda-Express is equipped to handle any animal on the North American continent and therefore is all of the crossbow that any hunter would ever need. Personally, I would be more inclined to want to examine Kodabow’s Alpha Strike, which is their 155 lb draw weight model. Any more power than that contained in the Koda-Express is unnecessary overkill - unless you are hunting a Tyrannosaurus Rex.
The very last night of the hunt, the Koda-Express was responsible for creating one very happy hunter.