Mission’s MXB Sniper Lite crossbow has stirred things up in the world of crossbows.
As the popularity of the crossbow mushrooms and more companies throw their hat into the ring, the options for the modern crossbow hunter is greatly expanding making it more complicated to choose from all of the bows being offered by the manufacturers.
One sure way to insure that a good decision is made in choosing a crossbow is to stick with a company that is known for quality manufacturing, and no one can deny the quality of a bow made by Matthews or their subsidiary, Mission. Both names are synonymous with excellence and distinction in the archery world.
The newest crossbow produced by Mission is the MXB Sniper Lite and I was delighted to spend some quality time with this neat and petite offering from one of America’s best. When the Sniper Lite arrived at my door, I carried it down to my office, broke it free of its packaging, and gently pieced the bow together. I found assembly to be quite simple. And once entirely intact, I held it in my hands for a careful inspection.
At just under six pounds it was hard not to notice how delicate the balance of the Sniper Lite is and how well it nestled into my shoulder. The overall length is a diminutive 32 3/4″ and just 20 1/2″ wide. A 14″ powerstroke and a conservative 150 lb draw weight still propels an arrow from the bow’s slight frame at up to 310 FPS depending on arrow weight. The bow is finished in a bold, black accented with splashes of orange (my favorite color) on the bow’s warning labels and accessories. A beautiful and striking package to say the very least.
The Sniper has a new patent pending Smart Guide Cable Slide that assists in a smooth draw and that, along with the precision cam synchronization, helps to insure a self-centered lock at full draw. It also greatly reduces the down pressure on the cable and cams resulting in less torque within the cam system enhancing durability and accuracy.
The Sniper Lite comes in three different packages all of which include Rail Lube, Three 22″ Mission Arrows with moon nocks and a Mission MX-3 Quiver. The Basic Package includes a Hawke 4×32 Wire Reticule, Non-illuminated scope. The Hunter Package comes with the Hawke 1×32 SR Etched Reticule Illuminated scope. The Pro Package is completed with a Hawke XB-1 1.5-5×32 SR Etched Reticule, Variable speed 2-color Illuminated scope and Match grade rings. The latter is advantageous by the fact that it allows the shooter to chronograph the arrow speed and then adjust the speed dial to the chronographed speed, bringing all the reticules into exact 20-30-40-50 yard placement.
The next step was to take the Sniper Lite out to the range to learn exactly what it was capable of. For this process, I rely on the assistance of friend and hunting partner, Perry Mason, to do the sighting in, while I document the process with photos.
On the range, after a quick chronograph to determine that the arrow speed was truly 310 fps, the scope was zeroed in at 20 yards. Once that was set, a few shots were taken at 30 and 40 yards to establish the integrity of the scope. Throughout the process, the Sniper Lite shined.
Certain features began to manifest themselves, not that any of them were major, but all contributing their little share to enhance the overall experience of working with the Sniper Lite. The color coded cocking rope with the right-hand orange grip, allowing you to quickly and correctly install the rope every time, was the first thing noticed. The fact that there was no foot stirrup, but an inside-the-bow foot piece instead, not only made the bow shorter and easier to handle, but it was also much simpler to acquire a lock than with a stirrup.
Another feature that was not that noticeable at first but became one of my favorite features was the pistol grip. I can’t count the number of times this attribute was a benefit in the handling, holding and maneuvering of the Sniper Lite. A pistol grip on a crossbow is one of the features I definitely look for in a crossbow and all of my pet bows have this beneficial feature.
The excellent handling, accuracy and overall performance of the Sniper Lite is undeniable. The crossbow is easy to handle, not a heavy burden in the field, and always deadly on the mark with its projectiles. The Sniper Lite is a crossbow that will provide years of consistent performance for hunters at any level. And considering the fact that it starts out at right around $600, it won’t break the bank either. For more information about the Sniper Lite and all of the fine crossbows manufactured by Mission, visit their website at www.missionarchery.com