AllOutdoor Review: Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with Rapid Draw Crank


AllOutdoor Review: Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with Rapid Draw Crank

Killer Instinct Crossbows recently sent a Fatal X with the integral Rapid Draw Crank (RDC) to AllOutdoor to review. The Fatal X shares the same X Cam system as the X-1 crossbow that I have been competing with at 3D archery events all summer. I am a fan of the X cam system because it has 50% let-off as well as the cams are synchronized to eliminate tuning. The Killer Instinct Fatal X shares the same ultra narrow 6.25″ axle-to-axle cocked and 9.75″ width uncocked as the Killer Instinct X-1. It essentially has some of my favorite attributes of the Killer Instinct X-1 combined in a conventionally designed crossbow at a great price of $699.99.

Killer Instinct Fatal X
Photo courtesy of Killer Instinct Crossbows

Specifications – Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with RDC

The Killer Instinct Fatal X with RDC is rated at 405 FPS (feet per second) with the factory supplied 390-grain arrows. This equates to 142 foot-pounds of kinetic energy. The Fatal X also utilizes moon style nocks, and Killer Instinct will be bringing out arrows equipped with lighted moon nocks later this year. The Fatal X with RDC weighs in at 7.4 pounds. The overall length with the AR-style stock collapsed is 29.75″ while with the stock extended it is 31.50″. The draw weight is 195 pounds. Trigger pull is listed at 3.5 pounds. The Fatal X with RDC ships with the Pro package that includes a 4X Lumix scope, a sled rope cocker, a quick  detach quiver, three (3) 20″ inch Hyper bolts, field tips, and a tube of rail lube.

First Impressions – Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with RDC

When the big brown truck dropped the bow off, I was amazed at how small the box was it shipped in. Opening the box, you will find there is some assembly required. The buttstock assembly and Rapid Draw Crank are one unit. The barrel and limb assembly are another piece. The AR pistol grip and forearm are not on the barrel assembly and will need to be attached. The Lumix 4X scope is in a box and will need to be mounted.  The quiver mounting bracket will also need to be installed onto the full length picatinny rail. Assembling the Fatal X is rather simple, and an added plus is all necessary Allen wrenches are included. There are 3 bolts that fasten the buttstock/crank assembly to the barrel assembly. Killer Instinct has 9 minute assembly video on YouTube to help walk you through the process.

Killer Instinct Fatal X
Photo courtesy of Killer Instinct Crossbows.

I love the ergonomics of the AR-15 platform. When you shoulder the Fatal X for the first time, it feels like a slightly muzzle heavy AR-15.  The collapsible AR style buttstock and pistol grip will fit almost any shooter. The pistol grip and buttstock can be changed out with after market components. I prefer a more vertical pistol grip that has a longer length of pull between the grip and the trigger. A couple of years ago, I designed a grip for my AR that I really like and I happened to have a spare on my desk. I threw it on the Fatal X and it fit perfectly.

The Rapid Draw Crank system is well thought out. I like to use a crank system on all my crossbows regardless of how easy they are to cock. The cocking process is more repeatable using a cocking device over the sled. Cocking the Fatal X is very easy with the RDC. The Fatal X does not have a decocking feature. Rarely do I hunt away from my farm, so I shoot one of my targets on the way back into the house. I realize some do not have that luxury, so a decocking arrow would come into play.

I appreciate the full length rail under the barrel. The Fatal X could easily be adapted to a tripod with a ball head mount for an extremely steady shooting position. A vertical grip or any AR style foregrip would work if the owner would like to customize the Fatal X as well.  The angled fore grip works rather nicely off of sandbags. If you want to raise the bow – push it into the bag… if you want to drop the front end – pull it back off of the bag. A bipod should work fine on the rail also. The wire foot stirrup can be removed and the folding or fixed foot stirrup off of the X-1 and XP will fit the Fatal X. The X-1 and XP stirrups would have to be purchased separately.

Killer Instinct Fatal X
My Killer Instinct X-1 that I compete with beside the Killer Instinct Fatal X.

Shooting  – Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with RDC

The Lumix fixed 4X scope was a pleasant surprise. For a package scope, the glass is very clear and sharp. I found the reticle quite useful. The arrows impact right behind the hashmarks out to 50 yards. I did not have an opportunity to shoot the Fatal X out past 50 yards.

When I started zeroing the Fatal X, I was shooting it off hand at 15 yards. I got complacent and shot 2 arrows at the same target. The bow ships with 3 factory arrows, and in one shot, I was down to one useable Hyperbolt! I have a set of spine and weight matched Spynal Tapps from Southshore Archery in Florida. Jerry Ratliff hand built these arrows for my Sub-1, and they flat out shoot! The first day I shot a few groups. The wind was gusting more than I liked, but I still shot decent.

killer instinct fatal x
An average group at 50 yards on a gusty day.

The Fatal X trigger is heavier than I am used to shooting. I have been shooting Scorpyds, a Mission Sub-1, and most recently the Killer Instinct X-1 which has the best trigger of any crossbow I have ever shot. I guess the trigger on this particular bow reminds me of the trigger on my old Ten Point Titan. It is a very useable trigger, just heavier than I prefer. The next time I had an opportunity to shoot the Fatal X off of the bench, the wind became completely calm. I settled in on my 40 yard target and fired the first arrow. The shot broke really well. The second arrow I called a flyer. I pushed the bow a little left as the shot broke. I cocked the bow and settled in for shot 3. The trigger broke perfectly, and I heard the dreaded crack of death when the arrow made it to the target! I hate breaking arrows, I really hate breaking arrows that Jerry Ratliff built for me!

Final Thoughts – Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with RDC

The Killer Instinct Fatal X with the Rapid Draw Crank is a great value at an MSRP of $699.99. It is accurate, quiet, and very maneuverable. If you are looking for a solid bow with a lifetime warranty that will not break the bank, I would give the Killer Instinct Fatal X a look.

In closing, I want to say thank you to Killer Instinct for allowing AllOutdoor and myself the opportunity to try out their Killer Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with Rapid Draw Crank (RDC). That is greatly appreciated. Also, we would like to know what all of you guys and gals think? Do you believe that theKiller Instinct Fatal X Crossbow with Rapid Draw Crank (RDC) is something worth spending your money on? As always, let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below! We always appreciate your feedback.

killer instinct fatal x
Ouch, that is expensive!

killer instinct fatal x

killer instinct fatal x
My group at 40 yards when the wind calmed down.
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Brian Miller is currently a writer for AllOutdoor who has chosen not to write a short bio at this time.

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