Mission by Mathews MXB Dagger Crossbow Review
Russ Chastain 08.06.14
I’ve had the pleasure of spending some time with a new crossbow this summer, and it’s been nice. The crossbow is an MXB Dagger from Mission Archery, and I like it.
In case you didn’t know, Mission Archery is part of Mathews, and any hunter or archer who hasn’t heard of Mathews hasn’t been paying attention. Their original entry into the crossbow market came a couple years back, and they’ve been refining it ever since. I’ve done some target shooting with a new Dagger model, and hope to hunt with it this fall.
The first thing I noticed about the MXB, which surely stands for Mission X (cross) Bow, was that it hasn’t got a stirrup. You know, that thing that sticks out from the end of your crossbow, into which you put your foot to cock it. It ain’t there!
The lack of stirrup can be good and bad; good because it allows the crossbow to be shorter, and you can’t put your foot in harm’s way should you accidentally decock it before you remove the arrow. (Decocking is not recommended by Mission, though–just shoot an arrow.)
But the absence of a stirrup means that you might not have a handy way to prop the bow up and that longer arrows (the Dagger can use 20″ or 22″ arrows) will allow the broadhead to protrude forward beyond the front of the bow. That can be a bummer in the woods and on the stand, so I will likely opt to use 20″ arrows. I need all the help I can get.
The Mission MXB Dagger offers some nice features. Here’s a rundown.
- Adjustable butt stock – remove four screws (hex/Allen head, wrench not included) to adjust. Three lengths available, 3/4″ increments.
- Automatic safety – the safety automagically engages when you cock the bow.
- Anti-dry fire – I love this feature. The bow won’t fire unless there’s an arrow on the string.
- Spring-steel arrow keeper includes a rubber dampener to keep it quiet.
- QD sling studs are included and installed.
- Package includes Hawke crossbow scope with red or green illuminated reticle.
- 3-arrow quiver, included with packages, can be mounted above or below the bow, on the left or right.
- The quiver is parallel with the stock, which will help keep the arrows out of harm’s way.
- Instructions say you must remove the quiver to cock the MXB.
- Cocking rope is included and was hooked on the bow string when I opened the case.
- Cocking rope anchor is located below the stock rather than above it. This can be a little awkward but prevents the string from lifting up during cocking.
- Slim-profile butt of stock can be used as a handle or to hang the crossbow.
- Includes RS (Riser Step) Tread, which replaces the cocking stirrup without adding length.
- Adjustable draw weight – and you can loosen the adjustment bolts all the way if you need to work on the string or cables. No bow press required!
- Stock hand guard helps keep your fingers away from the string and cables when firing.
- Black or Lost AT camouflage.
- Crossbow made in USA (Hawke scope made in China).
- Comes with a free soft case with two exterior pockets for accessories.
- Lifetime warranty (requires registering online).
Small and Light, but Powerful
Some years ago, I bought a Barnett Wildcat C5 crossbow and spent a few years hunting with it. My first impression when I unzipped the (free, included) soft case from Mission to unveil the MXB was that it’s much more compact than my old Wildcat.
Even with the MXB Dagger’s stock at its longest, its overall length is just 31 inches, a full five inches shorter than the Wildcat. The Dagger wins in weight as well; at 6.56 pounds it’s lighter by almost 1.25 pounds. The biggest win, though, is in the width. Where the Wildcat needs more than two feet of space for the limbs when it’s cocked, my MXB only needs a foot and a half. That’s going to be great going through the woods or maneuvering in a tree stand.
The MXB Dagger tops out at an impressive 220 pounds of draw weight, and is adjustable down to 125 pounds. It has a 10″ power stroke and produced about 320 fps (feet per second) with the included 22″ Mission arrows and 100-grain field points, which makes for about 412 grains total arrow weight. This produces roughly 94 foot-pounds of energy, and I’ve sure done the job on whitetail deer with less.
Mine was a package deal, which included the quiver and mounting hardware, three 22″ Mission arrows, and a Hawke scope with Weaver-style rings and flip-open see-through lens covers. After taking some photos, I started setting up the crossbow to suit me.
I like the soft case. It seems to be of good quality, and is well designed. Every Mission crossbow comes with a case.