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This article is about an older version of DF.

Ammunition for crossbows. Can be made from wood, bone, or weapon-grade metals.

Wooden and metal bolts produce a stack of 25 per log or bar.

Making bone bolts will take only one bone away from a stack and turn it into 5 bolts.

Wooden and bone bolts are made in a Craftsdwarf's workshop. Metal bolts are forged at a Metalsmith's forge or Magma forge.

Wooden bolts use the Woodcrafting skill to make. Bone bolts require Bonecrafting and metal bolts require Weaponsmithing (not Metalcrafting). Quivers are always required for bolts to be equipped.

When fired, Bolts have a chance of shattering on impact or bouncing off and being able to be reclaimed- However, when on the ground they are forbidden.

Tests show that where even masterwork wooden bolts bounce harmlessly off copper armor, iron bolts pierce without any issue. Bone bolts are significantly better than wood, but metal bolts are still recommended for military use.

Masterwork Bolts[edit]

As with other items, high-skill dwarves can make masterwork-quality bolts. While they don't care if the bolts are fired and shatter on impact, they do get upset if a bolt gets carried off - say by a retreating enemy with the bolt stuck in him. Unfortunately, dwarves also get upset if you melt down individual masterwork bolts, which are otherwise nearly useless.

The simplest remedy for this is to simply make more bolts - a dwarf who has produced hundreds of masterwork bolts will be more annoyed by flies than the loss of a masterwork.


Tests show that bone and wooden bolts are effective against most[Verify] unarmored targets, like wildlife, but for various reasons are quite useless against some other creatures and armored targets.

The same goes for some metal bolts (silver, copper) with variations depending on the precise metal.[Verify]

Bone bolts are not advisable for weapon traps as only a stack of 5 will be stored per crossbow, making frequent restocking necessary.

It is largely unclear what of the above constitutes a bug and what is intended behaviour.

  • If squad is assigned multiple ammo types, dwarves with "individual choice ranged" carry wrong ammoBug:1374.
  • Masterwork bolts cause unhappy thoughts when they get carried off the map or melted downBug:3169.