Crosman’s new M4-177 multi-pump air rifle: Part 4

by B.B. Pelletier

As you read this, I’m at the SHOT Show in Las Vegas. I’ll be there all week. In fact, today is Media Day, where the media gets to go to an outdoor shooting range in Boulder City and shoot the guns displayed by manufacturers, importers and distributors. Since I won’t be monitoring comments much of this week, I would appreciate it if our regular readers would help answer them. Edith will still monitor all the comments but may not have a chance to answer many more than she already does.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3


Crosman’s new M4-177 is a smart-looking M4 battle rifle lookalike.

How many of you remember that I said I would come back to the Crosman M4-177 multi-pump air rifle and test it at longer range with a dot sight? Well, if everything went right, Mac and I are out at the range in Las Vegas at the SHOT Show Media Day today, but while we are seeing and shooting all the new guns you guys get one more look at this one.

As I mentioned in the last report, I mounted a dot sight on the rifle, to see how it performs at longer distance. I picked the 25-yard indoor range for this one. For the sight, I selected the BSA Optics red/green/blue dot sight that also has a laser and a tactical flashlight. It certainly looks right at home on this rifle, and the Weaver clamp fits the rifle’s Picatinny base. All I had to do was remove the open sights, front and rear, and put this one on the base.

The problem with optical sights on a multi-pump rifle is they get in the way of holding the gun during pumping. I had to hold the M4 at the buttstock extension tube because the sight sat right where I wanted to put my hand. Because of that, pumping was more difficult, and I wanted to pump the rifle 10 times per shot. So, I decided to shoot 5-shot groups until I found an accurate pellet, then shoot 10 shots with that one.

Accuracy testing
As I said, all testing was done at 25 yards off a rest. The rifle was pumped 10 times for every shot. Pay no attention to where the groups land, as I adjusted the sights several times to keep the pellets on the target.

I first tried the Crosman Premier Super Match pellet that had worked so well at 10 meters in Part 3. Once it was on target, I shot a group of 5 to see how they did. Unfortunately, at 25 yards, they didn’t do as well as I’d hoped. The group measures approximately 3.01 inches, but that’s not precise because the widest pellet didn’t land entirely on target. Suffice to say it was poor enough to disregard.


Crosman Super Match wadcutters didn’t give the performance I wanted.

I continued on, testing RWS Hobby pellets. They were better, with 5 going into 1.563 inches but not what I was looking for.

Next came 5 JSB Exact 8.4-grain domes. This was the first domed pellet I tried, and the group size shrank to 1.406 inches. The group was also very vertical, however, which leads me to an important point.


JSB Exact 8.4-grain domes did better.

By this point in the test, I noticed that this dot sight is not precise. The dot smears in all three colors at all three intensities. I’ve used quality dot sights that held the size of their dots very well, but with this one the dot smeared to the sides. I tried it both with my glasses and without, and the results were always the same. Maybe it’s me and not the sight, but I felt I wasn’t able to aim precisely enough with this sight.

The last pellet I tried was the Crosman Premier 7.9-grain dome. This one gave me 4 very tight shots, with No. 5 landing several inches away. Now, I had a quandary. Should I go with the JSBs or the Premier lites?


Four of five Premier lites made this tight group, but there’s that lone shot up to the left. What to do?

I decided to go with the Premiers, because of the tighter group of 4. So, I shot 10 more Premier lites at 25 yards.


And this is what I got. This “group” is pretty poor, and I don’t believe it represents what the M4 can do. It measures 3.358 inches between centers.

What now?
Well, I had been unhappy with the performance of the dot sight to this point. What if I replaced it with the original factory sights — a peep rear and a post front? Hey! Haven’t I read somewhere on the internet that those kind of sights can do a good job?

The dot sight came off and the factory sights went back on. It took 4 shots to sight in, and then I shot another 10-shot group. This time, the pumping was much easier because my hands could hold the rifle in the right places.


And that’s the same rifle, same pellet with factory peep sights. This group measures 1.546 inches between centers, with 8 of the 10 shots going into 0.923 inches. Clearly, the factory sights were better in this case.

Bottom line
Well, I’ve wrung out the M4-177 pretty thoroughly. It’s accurate and fun to shoot, and for my money you can use the sights that come with it. I know that the look of the gun begs for tactical accessories; but for me, accuracy is always the trump.

37 Responses to “Crosman’s new M4-177 multi-pump air rifle: Part 4”

  • Victor Says:

    So you need a sight worthy of this gun, if you’re not going to use the sights that come with it. This gun is easily worth the price tag! Now if only you could get a couple shots per charge. That would make this gun even more fun, but that’s not to say that it’s deficient in any way.

  • Mike Says:

    Indeed, there is probably a market for a multi-pump that would fire several shots before you need to recharge. Basically a PCP with a built in pump. It must have been thought of or perhaps it is out there but I haven’t run across it.

    Mike

    • BB Pelletier Says:

      Mike,

      As I said before, the multi-pump that shoots more than one shot per charge is at least 300 years old.

      BB

    • J-F Says:

      There’s the FX Independence but you better have a fat wallet because it retails for close to 2 000$
      http://www.fxairguns.com/product.asp?id=independence

      At that price I’d rather bring a small tank or spare air tube (it retails for 100$ for my rifle), it would be more economical and you’d get more shots per fill, the FX only has 6 shots before it needs to be pumped again. I must admit that I was expecting more from a 2 000$ rifle.

      J-F

      • Mike Says:

        The IFX Independence. Just looked at their web site. Nice looking rifle! It could be a steal at $1749.00. Just a bit much for me. I would have to do some heavy duty selling.

        Mike

    • lukas Says:

      hmm,
      PCP with a built in pump? well please try googling: gejluk
      tell me what you think….

  • Roachcreek Says:

    The multi pump PCP you mention is called the FX Independence it is basically a FX Royale with12 shot magazine a tube vessel instead of a bottle and a pump handle. It takes around 7 pumps for each shot to give you 30 + FPE continuously .

    • Chuck Says:

      Let me see if I got this math right…J-F says you get 6 shots per fill. If I understand Roachcreek correctly, for multiple shots on one charge, you need to pump the rifle 7 times for each shot you expect to take (and not 7 pumps will give you 6 good shots). That means it will take 42 pumps to charge the tank for those 6 shots (6shots x 7pumps each=42pumps). I suppose for a hunter that would be great. For a plinker that would be a real workout. For a 10m target shooter that would be awful. For field target I don’t know, those guys are pretty tough.
      -Chuck

      • kevin Says:

        Stock, out of the box, the FX Independence likes to be filled to 200 bar. Very common for the Independence to get 5 shots with less than 25fps spread without additional pumping. Refilling using the onboard pump requires 3 pump strokes per shot here at 5,200 feet elevation (thin air). 3 pump strokes X 5 shots = 15 strokes. I’ve read that it only requires 2 strokes per shot to refill at lower elevations. The FX Independence is very easy to pump. Even the last stroke. It’s a big gun but balances well.

        The primary attraction for this gun is being independent from a fill source/tank. You get FX quality, good trigger and accuracy thrown in for free.

        kevin

        • Mike Says:

          It would make a great “Squirrel Rifle”!

          Pump, load, shoot, shoot, shoot………………..!

          Mike

        • J-F Says:

          That’s a lot more interesting! 2 or 3 pumps per shot is very honest and suddenly becomes a lot more interesting… but it’s still 2000$, that’s olympic rifle territory!

          As for the quality, good trigger and accuracy thrown in for free… I think it’s far from being free!

          J-F

  • Frank B Says:

    While these groups may not be “screamers”,considering the price point I’m rather impressed.I think
    a Beeman SS 3 would work great on it.You would have to adapt it to dovetail though,and they seldom sell for much less than 250$.They are built “bombproof” and the mount is so beefy it could serve as the place you hold to pump it.From what I have read they are popular on black rifles too.I have several of the Beeman Blue Ribbon scopes and I really like them alot.Mine all feature the roof lit retical……I’m amazed that feature isn’t more common on scopes! The retical is always the right intensity of illumination because it uses ambient light collected through a piece of optical plastic,either clear or colored.Never needing batteries is great,and extra collectors mount into the side of the base.Can you tell I really like them?

  • twotalon Says:

    Mini review of the M4-177

    I know I said no more Crosman, but thought what the heck….

    Non functional straight out of the box. Would not hold air. 5 drops of pellgun oil fixed that after it worked its way through the valves.

    Initially shot about 6″ high at just short of 10 yds. Backed the front sight out until it was about even with the top of the ears . Very wobbly at this point. Need to extend the front sight so it will be high enough when screwed all the way down.

    twotalon

    • Chuck Says:

      twotalon,
      Sorry to hear your M4-177 wouldn’t hold air out of the box. My experience with the M417 front sight is the same. At 10m I can’t get the sight high enough before it comes completely out and it is indeed very wobbly at that point. This baffles me because I would think 10m-15m would be about right for a backyard shooter, which I think this gun is addressing. Even BB had to do a mega adjustment at 25 yds. Just what range did Crosman have in mind?
      -Chuck

      • twotalon Says:

        Put a piece of heat shrink over the front sight and cut to fit.
        Had windage problem. Sight wobbly. Tightened the small allen head on the bottom of the sight.

        Groups tightening up after about 50 pellets (CPL). Only been shooting 5 pumps so far.

        Dead sparrow accuracy at about 10 yd so far. Would like to get it apart and clean up the barrel.

        twotalon

        • Beazer Says:

          TT,
          Please forgive my ignorance. I’m new & I’m learning. Don’t own an M4, but will very soon. Do have a 1377 so your comment does apply. How can you tell, what do you look for or is it audible when a pumper won’t hold air?
          Thanx for your time,
          Beaz

  • Matt61 Says:

    Safe travels B.B. and we’ll look forward to the info that you bring back. The M4 177 sounds like my $20 M4 airsoft gun ($50 shipping!). There was a cool-looking red dot sight with a crosshair reticle but it was nowhere near the aimpoint–which wasn’t really an aimpoint since the shots went all over the place. On the subject of good factory sights, the IO Hellhound AK made in America is supposed to get 2 MOA at 100 yards with the open sights!

    J-F, Playboy and gun magazines eh? That must be the reason for the term “gunporn” which is applied to lavish photographs and pictures of guns. It strikes a chord with me poring over websites of SW 686s, IO AKs, Mauser k98s, Benjamin Marauders, and much much more. By the way, I notice on the PA site that the “Top 20″ pages only list 10 items, and I still can’t find Tom’s Picks all together. Anyway, I’m reminded of the Goldfinger lyrics by Dame Shirley Bassey.

    Pretty girl! Beware of his heart of gold.
    This heart is cold!
    He loves only gold (guns actually).
    Only gold (guns).

    Flobert, $25 is a nice sum. That was the hourly rate of my piano teacher with degrees from Julliard and Columbia in piano performance. Poor fellow. I made him earn every cent.

    DaveUK. Just what will the Germans be up to next. Last century, they were tearing their continent apart. Now, they seem to be in a fair way of saving it.

    Slinging Lead, as you can tell, I’m not a fan of hip-hop, especially this character, Beyonce. What is she trying to do onscreen? Her work and the adulation that it gets just has me stupified.

    Matt61

    • J-F Says:

      Gun porn indeed, I didn’t use the term because I was scared the SPAM filter would block my comment but it’s exactly what it is, especially for me as I’ll never be able to get my hands on most of these as they are either illegal or very hard to obtain in Canada unless I win the lotery and am to buy myself a house in the US where I could order, buy and stock a bunch of guns.
      And the same is probably true of the playmate of the month. ;-)

      J-F

  • J-F Says:

    Edith… I just went to PA and 2 items (the 4 and 6 inch Dan Wesson BB revolvers) have disapeared from my basket, everything else is in there (6 items) so I wanted to put them back in my basket but ALL airguns seem to have disapeared!!! Only airsoft guns are left!!!
    I typed Dan Wesson in the search window and tried using the manufacturers name but only the mags come out, I tried the old site and it doesn’t seem to be working and my wishlist doesn’t seems to be available either…

    Is PA updating for the new articles being annonced tommorrow?

    J-F

    • J-F Says:

      I just went back and tried clicking everywhere and nothing is working, there is NO gun left, no airguns, no airsoft either… the airsoft menus are still there but not the guns, I’m scared.

      J-F

      • Chuck Says:

        J-F,
        I checked the PA site and you’re right. None of the guns show up. Even the arisoft come up blank. There isn’t even a category for pellet guns anymore.
        -Chuck

        • J-F Says:

          I think the end of the world must be coming, it’s the apocalypse, the mayans calendar apparently says 23rd of December but it seems to be the 13th of January after all…
          I don’t want to sound alarmist or anything but if airguns disapear from PyramydAir, I’m not sure life is worth living anymore.

          Edith please tell us it ain’t so.

          J-F

  • Edith Gaylord Says:

    I just want to give everyone a heads up that Pyramyd Air’s website is having some serious issues.

    All airguns seem to have been wiped from the new website. The entire old website has vaporized. The database that I use every day is inaccessible.

    I’m posting an announcement on tomorrow’s blog because it has a LOT of links that aren’t going to work if things aren’t fixed by the time it goes live.

    Stuff happens.

    My apologies for the inconvenience.

    Edith

    • J-F Says:

      So are you saying the end of the world has been postponed? What a relief!

      Seriously it’s weird how all guns have disapeared but the accessories are left?
      Hope nothing nothing has been damaged and everything is fixed soon, good luck.

      J-F

      • J-F,

        Truth be told, I broke it. It wasn’t on purpose. I was saving a selection of accessories I picked for a new gun Pyramyd Air is going to sell. I do this at least 5-6 times a day for guns. This time, something weird happened, it took a long time for it to save and then I got an error message instead of a message telling me my selections had been saved. Uh, oh!

        Sometimes, doing ordinary things in an ordinary way delivers extraordinary results. They say a sign of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. When it comes to computers, I do the same thing over & over and hope I never have a different result. But, it was not to be.

        Edith

    • Victor Says:

      I hope they do regular backups.

  • DanB Says:

    B.B, love your articles and really admire your knowledge and experience in all things air gun related. Some time ago you did a comparison of various 10m rifles. In that series you mentioned doing a more in depth series on the FWB 300s; I’m really, really, looking forward to reading it (hint). I finally got around to buying a nice one earlier last year and am just amazed at how well a duffer such as myself can shoot with one of these things.

    Thanks for the great work!

    Dan

    • BB Pelletier Says:

      Dan,

      I’m at the SHOT Show this week. If you will remind me of the 300S next week, I’ll start the report.

      B.B.

  • Michael M Says:

    I have the M4 177 and it is a blast to shoot. My question is, has anyone else experienced a broken trigger after about 500 rds? The plastic trigger itself broke in half. The gun can still be fired with the top half of the trigger, but would like info on replacing, please.

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Michael,

      That’s a new one! I’ve never heard of it happening, and Crosman is the place to check with. Call their customer service.

      1-800-7AIRGUN (724-7486)

      B.B.

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