SA Sports Ripper Crossbow Review

ModelDraw WeightStrokeVelocitySuggested Arrow LengthCrossbow Length / Weight
SA Sports Ripper

SA Sports Ripper

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185 lbs.13.5"340 FPS

Crossbow Academy: ballistics, sighting, tuning
20"35" (w/o foot stirrup) / 7.75 lbs.
- Easy to assemble
- Very fast and powerful
- Includes everything you need, even a padded sling

- Short 1-year warranty
Small Game Hunting?yes2
Deer, Elk Hunting?yes2
Moose, Bear Hunting?yes2
Target Shooting?yes2
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Also Recommended:Best SA Sports Crossbows

Assembling The Crossbow

SA Sports has created a compound crossbow that is very easy to assemble. You attach the cable slide to the cables, then assemble the stock and riser assembly. Once the riser assembly and body/stock are positioned right, you attach the nose bolt and tighten it. Once that’s done, there is another screw to tighten, and then you can mount the quiver and scope. All together, it took me about 15 minutes to have my Ripper assembled and ready to fire.

Accuracy And Power

SA Sports RipperThe SA Sports Ripper has the speed and power to make for a very powerful crossbow, flinging 400-grain arrows at 340 fps, giving each shot almost 103 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy. That’s enough power to knock my target block over if I don’t have it right up against my backstop. But how about the accuracy? That’s what crossbow hunting is really all about, so I put the Ripper through its paces to see how accurately it would shoot.

Sighting in the scope was effortless, with just a few tiny adjustments needed to get the scope completely zeroed in. Once I had finished sighting in, I was able to maintain quarter-inch groupings from 25 yards, and half-inch groupings from 40 yards. Very accurate, indeed, for such an inexpensive crossbow! I walked out to 70 yards, and was able to keep my groupings right around 2.5 inches, so I was pretty pleased with the accuracy of the crossbow.

Use our arrow ballistics calculator for more valuable information.

Ballistic Data For The SA Sports Ripper

Your actual results will vary slightly depending on weather, and significantly with arrow weight change. See our Crossbow Ballistics Guides section for a complete understanding of how we conducted our tests and why this data matters.

Hunting: What To Expect

SA Sports Ripper2With its 103 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy and amazing accuracy, I predict one thing from this crossbow in the hunting field: death to any game animal legal for hunting in North America. I took the Ripper out hunting elk, and found the crossbow to be excellent, if a bit weighty, in the field. I was pleased with the way SA Sports has tried to minimize the weight of this quad limb crossbow by building the skeletonized stock, but still found it a bit heavier than some of my other crossbows. This wasn’t too noticeable, but anybody who is using an x-bow because of some sort of physical impairment might want to keep weight in mind and look for a lighter crossbow.

I had an elk meander right under my tree stand, and took careful aim at his chest as he was quartering away from me. When I was sure of my shot, I eased back the trigger and felt and heard the comforting “thwap” of the arrow bolting off the rail and towards the elk. The arrow passed clean through his chest, burrowing into the ground on the other side. The elk stumbled off for a few yards, dropping within 15 yards of where I shot him.

The width of the Ripper, from limb to tip, is 28”, which is pretty decent for a crossbow in this price category. All in all, I’d say this model is better for hunting than most other crossbows at its price point.

Cocking The Ripper

SA Sports Ripper3The SA Sports Ripper has a draw weight of 185 pounds, but it includes a rope cocking device to make drawing the string much easier. Pullback is very smooth and clean, and the bowstring cocks into place with a very assertive click. The loud click might be a bit unnerving for some, but I haven’t experienced any problems with it scaring off game.

The anti dry-fire mechanism and safety work perfectly.

The Crossbow Scope

The Ripper includes a 4×32 multi-reticle scope, which is perfect for the various ranges you might expect to take a shot from in a hunting situation. The scope sights in quickly and easily, and holds true for quite some time.

The scope is very fogproof, with optics that resist fogging better than many other scopes I’ve tested. The only drawback to this scope is the poor light gathering capabilities of the scope. If you do a good deal of hunting during early morning or late evening hours, dawn or dusk, you may prefer a better scope during those hours.

See our detailed guide on how to sight-in your crossbow


The included bolts are carbon, which is a definite upgrade over the aluminum arrows included with some of SA Sports’s other crossbows. I found the arrows to be extremely well-balanced and well made, and have used them for both target practice and hunting. If you want to buy your own bolts, SA Sports recommends 20” arrows with a total weight of 400 grain.

You can also learn more about crossbow arrows and take a look at our broadhead recommendations

Safety and Design

SA Sports Ripper4The SA Sports Ripper is exceptionally well made, especially given its price point. The anti-dry fire mechanism and safety work flawlessly for every shot, and the addition of the padded sling makes the crossbow safe and easy to carry around. The foregrip is sized just right for keeping your fingers away from the string, and the trigger pull is light and smooth with a solid breaking point. I was very pleased with the quality of workmanship that went into the SA Sports Ripper, as it shows a dedication to excellence that is unexpected in the budget crossbow lineup.


SA Sports provides a 1-year limited warranty for all of its crossbows, and the customer service team at SA Sports is very knowledgeable and helpful. I’ve found them to be very accommodating in fixing problems that arise with their crossbows, which is commendable.

What Crossbow Case Fits the SA Sports Ripper?

A soft case match under 70 bucks is the Carbon Express Deluxe Case. Of course, larger scopes do not work as well with it. For bigger scopes try opting for the Allen Company case for a soft case. The Plano 1133-00 Manta Crossbow Case is a nice hard case alternate.

Crossbow Review Summary

Thanks for reading our crossbow review. The SA Sports Ripper is an affordable, yet well-made, crossbow that should provide years of excellent shooting, whether you’re shooting just for fun or for hunting. Take a look at today's price on this crossbow and check out our top 10 crossbows rankings for more.

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