Archive for August 2005
by B.B. Pelletier
Today I’m going out on a limb and telling you what I think is the best pellet in the world. Actually, there are several pellets, because every caliber needs something different. So I’ll do a David Letterman countdown.
Starting with .25 caliber
Not as many shooters shoot .25 caliber, so the pellet selection is not as great. But, I know two that deliver the goods for me all the time. Sometimes one outshoots the other and sometimes they both work well in the same gun, but I have never seen another pellet that could compare to either in this caliber.
The Diana Magnum weighs about 20 and a fraction grains, which makes it medium weight in .25 caliber. They are not too uniform in weight, but on target they shine! I have a Whiscombe JW 75 that likes this pellet better than any other, and, because it is so light, it really sails! Buy these for all your medium-powered .25s, such as the RWS Diana 48/52 and others in that power range.
The Beeman Kodiak or H&N Baracuda (same pellet) is the other .25 caliber star. In a Webley Patriot or a Beeman Crow Magnum (no longer imported), these are the best. They are 31 grains and can really tame those big springers! They also work well in the lower-powered guns, but the velocity will be in the 600s.
For .20 caliber
In .20 caliber, the Crosman Premier has long been my favorite. At 14.3 grains, it’s on the heavy side of medium weight, and it really delivers the accuracy and power at long range. Another pellet that SHOULD be excellent, though I have no real experience with it beyond shooting them in my Sheridans, is the Beeman Kodiak. At 13.3 grains, they’re lighter than the Premiers and are pure lead, so they won’t lead your barrel like the Premiers.
For .22 caliber
The absolute BEST PELLET IN THE WORLD at this time (in my opinion) is the 15.9-grain JSB Exact domed pellet in .22. At least, this holds true for hunting and general shooting. (I’m not talking about match pellets today.) The reason Exacts are so good is that they’re hand-sorted by the manufacturer. I buy them by the 10-tin sleeve – and I’m usually a cheap guy. This is almost the ONLY pellet I shoot in .22.
The other great .22 pellet is the Beeman Kodiak or H&N Baracuda. This is the same pellet, but sometimes one brand is less expensive than the other, so I shop for the bargains. At 21 grains, this is a heavy pellet, though the extra-heavy Eun Jin has it out-classed at 28 grains. Kodiaks fly true for a very long range.
Finally – .177
I suspect that JSB Exact pellets are also the best in .177, but I have no experience with them. Therefore, my top choice is Beeman Kodiak or H&N Baracuda. Several years ago, I would have selected Crosman Premier in 10.5 grains for PCPs or 7.9 grains for springers, but I found that the pure lead Kodiaks shade them just a little beyond 35 yards – in some guns. In other guns, the Premiers are clearly the best.
There – that’s what I think about pellets. I’m sorry if your favorite was not mentioned, but this is my opinion. I’d like to hear yours in the comments.
by B.B. Pelletier
The Crosman 1377 descends from models 105/106. Introduced way back in 1948, they were Crosman’s first attempt at a pneumatic pistol. In 1955, the company came out with the self-cocking model 130 pistol, and it would be 25 years before they returned to the more conventional knock-open valve. The 1377 is the model that made the big change and is also the one with the longest life, having been in the lineup since 1977.
Crosman started making more and more guns in .177 only
Over the years, Crosman has followed the general shift toward .177 caliber, and today the 1377 has no 1322 counterpart. This pistol is the only multi-pump pneumatic in Crosman’s line since the year 2000. Three to seven pump strokes give controlled velocity up to 600 f.p.s., which is screaming for a pellet pistol!
The barrel is finely rifled for good accuracy and, given the power, some close-range hunting is possible. This gun hits like a small air rifle out to 20 or 25 yards.
Lots of goodies to go with it
Crosman has developed many accessories for the 1377 and similar pistols. Because the grips are similar to all the pistols they ever made, the detachable 1399 shoulder stock fits almost any Crosman pneumatic and many CO2 single-shots, as well. At one time, the shoulder stock came with the gun and they called it a carbine, so this should be high on your list of accessories to pick up.
A perfect pistol to scope!
This is also a good pistol to scope or to mount a red dot sight, especially if you mount the shoulder stock. Get Crosman’s 459MT optional dovetails that clamp directly to the barrel, and you have what you need to attach scope rings to the gun. The Crosman 0410 Targetfinder is affordable, in keeping with the price of the pistol and gives you 4x optics instead of open sights. Of course, a dot sight is also possible and Daisy makes a very affordable one that fits Crosman’s optional 3/8″ dovetail base.
No powerlets required!
All you need to start shooting is air and pellets. Unless you live on the Moon, the first requirement is taken care of, and my recommendation for the pellets is Crosman’s own 7.9-grain Premier. They’ll preserve the velocity potential of the gun and still be very accurate. You might also try the Crosman Copperhead pointed pellets in the big box and save a few dollars.
The bottom line for the 1377 is this: it’s every bit as powerful as the more expensive Benjamin pistols, and I would think it would be as accurate, too. What you give up is some appearance, and if you’re willing to do that, here is an American classic just waiting for you. I’d like to hear what you 1377 owners think of your guns.