Crossbows work like a spring. The force and tension applied as you pull the string of the crossbow is what creates the movement and energy to propel the arrow from the bow at high speed. The more force, the better the flight path, as the arrow will be able to achieve a higher velocity, giving it a better chance of hitting its target and being unaffected by air and other elements.

Thus, for crossbow manufacturers, it is important to determine how much force a crossbow generates to determine the max rated capacity of the crossbow. A load cell is an excellent way to measure the force in this application.

OMEGA products used in this application

QuickShip PLATINUMâ„¢ Series Digital Panel Meters
PLATINUMâ„¢ Series Digital Panel Meters


The figure above shows how a load cell can be used to measure the force of a crossbow. The application is comprised of two products:

LCR 100: This s-beam load cell with high accuracy is built for rugged industrial applications. These features, combined with the load cells compact and physical dimensions, makes it the perfect fit for use in a tension and compression measurement application.

DP8PT: This digital panel meter is a fast response load cell indicator, which is easy to read or to connect to a computer using the USB output.

How it Works

  1. The crossbow is laid down on a flat surface with its front end attached via a bolt or other mechanism to secure it to the flat surface.
  2. At the other end, an elevated load cell attaches to a small hook.
  3. The hook at the end of the load cell connects at the middle to the strings of the crossbow.
  4. When the crossbow string is pulled back as far as possible and then released, the load cell measures the force.
  5. The digital panel meter provides a readout of the force measurement.


The load cell, combined with the digital panel meter, allows for an accurate force reading for rating capacity requirements and to determine if the product is functioning as desired.

Pro Tip

Because this application required a rugged load cell with high accuracy as well as the ability to measure tension and compression, the LCR model is the best load cell to fit these parameters.