Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord, a.k.a. B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

• Lots of interest
• Crosman’s quality inspection
• Velocity testing
• Cocking effort
• Trigger pull. and adjustment
• Firing behavior
• Quiet
• Evaluation so far

Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2
Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2

There has been a lot of talk about the new Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2 since it showed up three weeks ago. Some of that talk has been critical of certain faults. And some of it has been the pile-on of people who just wait to say bad things about a company.

After the first part of this report went live, I received the following email from Jennifer Lambert — Crosman’s vice-president of marketing.

“Tom, I have been reading and appreciating your reviews, the comments, and debate on NP2.  I just wanted to write and clarify some of your comments around the origin of NP2. In your review you imply that the NP2 guns are not made here and that is not accurate.

While it is true that we use a mix of domestically made and imported components in the gun, I can assure you that every gun is built and quality tested right here in the U.S. in our Bloomfield factory. I will snap and send you some photos of the line and would be happy to take you on a tour and personally introduce you to some of the workers on it. And as sales of the Trail ramp up and we bring out more new guns in the NP2 platform, the number of jobs based here will continue to grow

If you have any questions or would like to discuss further please let me know, and keep the analysis coming.”

Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2 wording
This is the wording that lead me to make my comment in Part 1.

I told Jennifer I would restate my initial report. You can see the wording on the side of the gun. When something is worded like that rather than saying Made in the U.S.A., it draws attention to itself. We know that the parts can be manufactured outside the U.S., then brought in and assembled here. Many airguns are made that way, and I was pointing out that apparently this is one of them. However, after rereading what I said in Part 1, I see that I did go over the line.

I stand by my statement that the phrasing on the rifle means that some of the parts are sourced from outside the U.S. I did not mean to imply that the NP2 was assembled in another country. If I gave that impression, then I want to set the record straight. I do believe that the NP2 rifle is being assembled in the U.S. from parts and assemblies that are sourced from a variety of places — some of which are in this country and others that are not.

Crosman’s quality inspection
What Jennifer told me that I did not know was that Crosman does a quality inspection after assembly on each gun in their plant. I remember when they were launching the very successful Benjamin Discovery in 2007, Ed Schultz set up an assembly line in their New York plant that included a 24-hour pressure test for every gun they built. He said he did that until he was certain they were sealing the guns perfectly.

No company can afford to spend that much time on every airgun they make — it would break them. But when you’re launching a brand new product that has the potential for huge sales and represents an important step forward for the company, you take such measures.

We did the same thing at AirForce Airguns when we launched the new Condor in 2004. I personally tested and recorded the velocity of the first 100 rifles until we were certain that what we produced would always exceed the performance parameters we advertised for the gun. When you’re betting the farm on something, you take extraordinary steps to ensure your bet is a safe one!

Velocity testing
The first pellet I tested in the NP2 was the .22-caliber Crosman Premier, a medium-weight pellet. Ten shots averaged 793 f.p.s. with a spread from 767 to 807 f.p.s. So, a spread of 40 f.p.s. At the average velocity, this pellet produces 19.97 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.

The second pellet I tested was the JSB Exact RS dome. Since it weighs 13.43 grains, you’d expect it to go faster than the 14.3-grain Premiers; but these pellets averaged 752 f.p.s. in the NP2. The spread went from 741 to 764 f.p.s., so 23 f.p.s. At the average velocity, these pellets generate 16.87 foot-pounds of muzzle energy.

The third pellet I tested was Crosman’s own SSP lead-free alloy pellet. At 9.5 grains weight, these are the pellets you’d expect to go the fastest. Crosman advertises 1100 to 1200 f.p.s. with alloy pellets for this rifle, depending on where you look. [Note: The box states 950 f.p.s. with lead, 1100 f.p.s. with alloy pellets. The Crosman website states 900 f.p.s. with lead, 1200 f.p.s. with alloy pellets.] In the test rifle, they averaged 949 f.p.s. and spread from 939 to 964 f.p.s. A 25 f.p.s. spread. At the average velocity, this pellet produces 19 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.

I know there will be a cry of “foul” on these numbers because of the advertised velocity, but in my opinion, this is exactly where I want this rifle to be. If it shoots this fast and is also accurate, the NP2 is definitely worth consideration. I’m on record as saying the same thing about the Walther LGV Challenger when I tested it back in 2013, so at least I’m consistent.

Cocking effort
I measured the cocking effort after publishing Part 1 and found it to be 38 lbs. But during this velocity test, it seemed like I was growing stronger. So I measured the effort again, and it still measures 38 lbs. What’s different now is much of the cocking friction has gone from the stroke. It actually does feel lighter now than it did before.

How does that compare to other gas-spring rifles? The powerful ones cock with between 40 and 60 lbs. of force, so the NP2 is definitely on the lighter side. To put it into perspective, it cocks about like a Beeman R1 after break-in.

Trigger-pull
I said in Part 1 that the trigger-pull was creepy. So, I adjusted the single screw located behind the trigger. I unscrewed it about 2 full turns and the trigger became exactly like the one I tested at the SHOT Show. It now has a long first-stage pull that measures 3 lbs., 4 oz., then a crisp second stage that releases at 4 lbs., 4 oz. You can take up the first stage and just wait at stage 2 until you’re ready to fire. Then, just one pound more fires the gun. I really like this trigger!

Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2 trigger
Turn the screw behind the trigger blade counterclockwise, and the first stage gets longer, while stage two becomes crisper.

Firing behavior
Experienced airgunners won’t believe how smooth this rifle is. The pulse of the shot is strong (a strong two-way push), but there’s no vibration. It’s dead smooth! You would pay hundreds of dollars to get a coiled spring gun this smooth.

Quiet!
The test NP2 is very quiet! The shooter hears the noise through the stock against his face, but a bystander hears a much lower discharge sound. During velocity testing, I was also assaulted by the instant hit of the pellet in the trap in front of me. I suspect that when I shoot for accuracy, I’ll get a better feeling for the sound.

Evaluation so far
I’m no longer at the SHOT Show. I’m in my office where I can control the testing and the evaluation. People are not telling me things — I’m finding them out on my own. And the Nitro Piston 2 I have is testing very well.

Sure you can make a big deal out of the velocity being lower than advertised. But I never wanted that advertised velocity to begin with. I wanted what this gun has — solid numbers in the 750-800s with practical .22-caliber lead pellets that I’ll probably use.

The firing behavior and trigger are exactly as they were at SHOT, which is to say stunning for a gas-spring rifle of this power. Although the cocking effort measures higher than expected, it isn’t bad for a spring rifle that shoots this fast.

Yes, there have been some quality problems in the first batch of guns that went out. There were cracks in some plastic parts and some scope bases fell off the guns. If that happened to you, you have every right to be angry; but the rest of the public should know that Crosman is doing something about it. Everyone who experienced a problem with their rifle will be taken care of by Crosman, and you can be sure that they’re refining their in-house quality assurance program to correct future shipments. They want the NP2 to succeed because of how important it is to their business.

I want it to succeed for my own reasons. This is a $250 air rifle, and there aren’t many of them around that have what this rifle has. We need a good gun in this price range, and I’m hoping the NP2 is it.

What remains to be seen is the accuracy. If this rifle is accurate, I will buy the one I’m testing because this is too important an airgun for me not to own.

92 thoughts on “Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston 2: Part 2




        • /Dave
          I did that years ago. I didn’t like it at all. Some people did though. But a lot of people started to quit because of it so they stopped it. I sure couldn’t get use to it.


  1. I appreciate Jennifer from Crosman writing in to the blog, but for what its worth, I understood perfectly well what BB meant in part 1 of this report. Of course anytime we can bring jobs back home is a good thing. I realize that if all of the components were manufactured here, the price couldn’t be as competitive, and so on and so forth, but I would be lying if I said it didn’t feel a little disappointing anyways. With that being said, its certainly nowhere near close to a deal breaker for me. This platform has positioned itself to be the next big thing in affordable break barrels, and I know I’ve been chomping at the bit to get one myself if they really are anything close to what all the hype has made them out to be. I’ve read all the reviews I can find up until now, and folks have had some issues but I know Crosman will make it right in the end. Theres no sense at all in trying to crucify Crosman like some have when they are doing their best trying to bring us the rifles we want at a price we are willing to pay.



      • Thanks Gunfun1. It just bugs me that with the internet these days, folks tend to gravitate toward posting up a storm all over when something goes wrong with a new air gun, but when it goes right they are too busy outside shooting so we never hear about it. It sort of skews the perception that things are much worse then they actually are and can unfortunately turn people off when it might not be deserved. Hence why I’m so glued to the blog for BBs take on the NP2, because he hasn’t steered me wrong since I started reading it years ago.


        • Mitchell

          If you pillory a product (especially from Crosman) it demonstrates your discerning tastes and refinement for all to admire. It matters not if a person has actual experience with the actual product, sneering skepticism based on hearsay is just as good. For instance, if you have a Marauder in .22 that shoots accurately, you’re just a danged liar because ‘everyone’ knows that the .22 cal barrels in the Marauder are just no good. It has been well documented by people that have never shot one, but read about it somewhere several years ago that they are no good. Being opinionated despite inexperience is valued far above open-mindedness.


          • Yep, that pretty much sums up airgun forums in a nutshell. Thats also precisely why I choose to hang out here instead of elsewhere. I’m almost embarassed to tell you all this, but I actually like Crosman. I clearly lack all discernible taste and refinement in my choice of airgun manufacturers, at least according to some other self-appointed prophets of the pellet that can be found across the web. I try not to get too hung-up about it! Hahaha….



              • Me too! I live about 60 miles from Crosman. There are few manufacturing jobs left here in Western NY and very , VERY( !)high taxes and regulations.Also, we are fighting new droconian gun laws that most readers of this blog could only experience in their nightmares. I for one , applaud Crosman for staying here and providing an affordable product that shoots, and jobs.



                • Hmm’ I have owned a Crosman 1400 for 45 years that when I pulled it out of the closet 1 year ago after setting for 20 + years and put a few drops of pellgun lube on the piston and felt wiper it shot just as good as the day I bought it in 1968. So I to am one of the rare few that love Crosman guns.
                  Buldawg


              • Hello, my name is Fred and I’m a Crosman owner. (Pause for the response from the support group: “Hello, Fred!”) I have 5 Crosman rifles and air pistols. If this rifle can deliver 1″ groups at 25 yards, it will be 6 that I own. I need help, I think.

                On the serious side, I believe Crosman makes great products for every price range a person is looking for. You do get what you pay for, after all.

                Fred DPRoNJ


              • I like Crosman. I want to join too.

                And dog gone it anyway now I believe there ain’t no accurate .22 cal. Marauders around. :)


                • I like Crosman products and so does my grandson Nicky.

                  I have a Crosman Storm XT that is just fine once it got broken in. It did break the first scope, but I replaced it with a tougher one.

                  Nicky has a 760; an M4; and an Optimus. I told him to shoot the Optimus until it was settled down before mounting the scope.

                  All these guns are good guns for the money.

                  Les


              • Hi guys, I’m John, and a crosman owner as well, i have a vantage springer, .177 marauder, and even two crosman airsoft pistols. I love them all. Of note the CP scope that came with my springer lasted over three years with well over 5000 rounds through the gun. Go figure.



          • SL

            My best pistol, by a long shot, is the Crosman Silhouette. I love everything about it. I just bought the Crosman 1720T pistol and I expect it to be every bit as accurate and much more powerful.

            My Marauder(.177) is one of my top 4 rifles. I honestly can’t believe how accurate it is(especially for the price). My Crosman 1077 may not be a sophisticated air gun but it sure is fun to shoot, very accurate and, once again, for $65 what else would you dare to expect? As far as I’m concerned Crosman is a Premier gun maker.

            It makes me sad if most of the naysayers out there are not speaking from personal experience. They should all grow up and keep their mouths shut.

            G&G


          • Yes indeed. I was reading one guy who was fulminating about all sorts of shooting products. Ruger guns he said are “hammered doodoo.” That is kind of funny, but it’s also totally wrong. My Single Six is a fantastic gun, and Ruger has too many fabulously successful designs to ignore.

            As to quality control of the Benjamin Nitro, that does raise the question of exactly where things can go wrong. Is it in the fabrication of the parts or the assembly? I actually wondered about this when I was thinking about buying a Mauser. The word was that in the closing days of World War II, Mauser rifles were assembled by slave labor in concentration camps, and the workers would take every chance of sabotaging the equipment as a way of striking back. In the case of the rifles, one can imagine doing something to make the gun blow up in the face of the shooter. But some argued that the fabrication of metal parts was too complex to be done in concentration camps. The slave labor was used only to assemble guns. And with the SS supervising things, there were not any problems. From this I gather that rigorous inspection can take care of things. The only problem in the case of the Benjamin is if some parts, such as barrels manufactured in China were produced out of spec. I’m not sure if an inspection would catch that.

            Heard some interesting news from a friend. She tells me that on her high school rifle team, they used WWII rifles that had been converted to pellet guns. These must have been bolt action guns, Springfields of the Enfield 1917. How the heck would you convert those to airguns? Even rimfire would be kind of a stretch it seems to me. Anyway, she has given me the go-ahead to get her started in airguns with whatever equipment I think is appropriate! How often does this happen?! We’ll need to make this a blog project when I have a little more time.

            Matt61


            • Matt,

              There are no WW II firearms that were converted into airguns — as far as I know. It is possible she used the Crosman 160 that was made for the Air Force in the 1960s. To a young person that would look like a WW II firearm and would also be nearly that old.

              B.B.


        • Mitchell
          Its the old saying that states, “A satisfied customer will tell a few people but a dissatisfied customer will tell everybody” still hold very true today. you are right 9in that the first release of any new product is going to have teething pains, as long as Crosman is taking care if the issues that arise they are doing the best that any company can be expected to do. When I worked for Harley at a research and development facility for 11 years. The new model year release’s in August always had some issue that was not caught in testing and we would work 24/7 until we got the required info to the engineers in Milwaukee for them to make the required fixes and notify dealers of the needed updates to the affected vehicle’s. This was a big issue in 2001 with the release of the all new from the ground up V-Rod water cooled V twin engine designed by Porsche. There was one time we worked 24/7 for 4 months straight to get the testing done for Milwaukee. There are just some people that will never have anything good to ,say about a new product.
          Buldawg


    • If the companies here in the US were to pay the workers a decent wage and quit paying the upper crust such outrageous salaries and bonuses for such little output, we might be able to afford something totally made in this country.


      • The affordability of products made in this country have little to do with the incomes of the CEOs, and more to do with the strangling regulations companies are saddled with. CEOs in comparable companies from comparable countries earn comparable wages to US CEOs.

        Ben & Jerry’s ice cream had a policy of paying their highest worker not more than 5 times the rate of their lowest paid worker. After Ben Cohen retired as CEO, they could not maintain this model and remain profitable because they could not attract competent leaders that would accept the pay structure. Only after scrapping the policy did the company return to profitability by competing for competent leadership.

        The key to bringing manufacturing jobs back to America, and making US made products more affordable is reforming the tax-code and removing the yoke of government over regulation. Americans are some of the most skilled workers in the world and companies should not be punished for keeping jobs here.

        That said, it seems to me that executive pay should be based on performance in a variety of criteria, and golden parachutes are an idiotic thing to put in any CEO’s contract.


        • I do agree with the issues of taxes. As far as regulations, some are very good and some are very bad. As far as CEO pay, it is ridiculous. I work for an ESOP. I am an owner. All employees are hourly, including the CEO. The top hourly wage is no more than ten times that of the lowest hourly wage. It can work.

          You cannot convince me that the top CEOs in this country are any better at business management as many others who are willing to work for a whole lot less. The top dogs are just better at BS and more ruthless. They are willing to destroy others and not lose a minute of sleep. After all, “It is nothing personal”, at least not as they view the world.

          It is the same with the Board of Directors. They like there big bucks also. That is why they give the CEO, etc. what they do. If they were truly responsible to the share holders, they would look around and hire people for the top positions who are just as capable, but willing to accept less. To do that would likely risk their fat cat salaries though.


          • I couldn’t agree more RR. The ONLY reason that CEOs are paid such ridiculous salaries and perks is because the board of directors is willing to do so. It isn’t to attract “better” leadership. It is because the boards are made up of people with a vested interest in keeping those wages high,,, other CEOs. If you take a good look at the BoD of any of these companies we are speaking about,, you will find that they are made up of CEOs of other companies. Each is willing to give out these huge “incentives” because they want to get them when it’s their turn.

            There is, unfortunately, only one way to bring a significant manufacturing presence, back into this country,, and that is tariffs. The American people have proven that they will buy from the cheapest source,, no matter what that source might be. We have also proven that without the “stifling” regulation,, unsafe products WILL be offered.

            Human nature isn’t very nice, sometimes.
            Ed


          • RR
            I agree with you, when I was employed at Harley they had a STIP program (short term incentive program) that was based on how much profit the company as a whole made each year and was paid out a lump sum bonus to all employees. I can’t tell you how they did all the figuring for determining what each employee got as a bonus, but I can say that the better the company did the bigger my bonus was every year. it was based on a percentage amount of your base salary including overtime pay. In the years from 2000 to 2004 Harley did very well and I received bonus checks for from 9 to 11% of my base salary plus overtime paid every February. It was a definite incentive to do the best job you could because the better you did your job the better the company did and the bigger your bonus check was.
            Buldawg


    • Mitchell,

      Thank you for that comment. That shows the reason that I hope most airgunners will have in this situation. I mean every word of what I am reporting. I will not cut the NP2 a break — but neither will I try to bury it because that is what seems popular right now.

      I don’t care about anything but how this gun performs.

      B.B.


    • “I believe” that if Crosman wants consumers to know without a doubt their products are made here in the U.S.A.. that the simplest way to do so would be to print MADE IN U.S.A on the product instead of trying to state all facets of US production facilities which is what I think they did when they printed what they did instead however THEY left the question open, not the reader of the printed material.The wording itself implies lack of US involvement in at least one area or it would instead say MADE IN U.S.A and we wouldn’t be having this discussion at all. Keep it simple or don’t make it an issue.

      Reb


      • Reb,

        There are legal requirements that must be met to say Made in the USA on any product. Every company would love to write that on their products, but they must meet the legal definition to be able to put those words on them.

        B.B.


        • B.B.
          I realize there are requirements they cannot meet in order to legally print it on the product yet they( Jennifer) get defensive when the issue is brought to light ,which is why I ended my statement the way I did.

          Reb


          • Reb,

            If they’d just said “Assembled in the U.S.,” I think it would have been accepted and everyone would have moved on. By printing an overly long statement right on the gun, it may serve as a negative comment magnet. To be honest, I’ve never seen another mfr use such a long statement regarding a gun’s mfring status — esp. on the gun.

            Edith


            • Edith, Thank You for pulling that outta my head! That was pretty much my point. If there is any question that can be asked it will be( Murphy’s law for business).

              Reb


      • Very likely most, if not all of the components are made elsewhere and shipped here for assembly.

        We have a similar problem with the systems we build. Many of the components are not made it the United States, period. We have to import some components, period.


  2. G’day BB,

    Note: The box states 950 f.p.s. with lead, 1100 f.p.s. with alloy pellets. The Crosman website states 900 f.p.s. with lead, 1200 f.p.s. with alloy pellets

    Well BB the box does not speak with fork tongue, the Crosman Premiers are spot on 800fps and 950fps for the SSPs. 150fps increase as stated above on box.

    Website may talk with tongue in cheek, 300fps increase! A common occurrence these days but a lot easier to change than the print on the box.

    Cheers Bob


  3. Also in regards to the preliminary velocity figures you obtained BB, I noticed a similar thing with my .177 Benjamin Titan NP. For whatever reason, I actually get slightly lower velocity readings with 7.33gr JSB Exact RS than I do with the regular 8.4gr JSB Exacts and the 7.9gr Crosman Premiers. I wonder why that is? Could it have anything to do with the nature of nitro piston powerplants? I wonder how the NP2 powerplant will cope in .177.


    • My somewhat educated wild guess would be that at least in part it is due to how the particular pellet fits the barrel. How well is the skirt sealing? With sproingers, there is not much air there to begin with, so the slightest loss has dramatic effect.


      • This particular rifle has a relatively narrow breech. Everything fits very tight initially. Its one of those rifles where you find yourself trying to “rock” the pellets into the breech to ease loading, because pushing them in straight will put a dent in your thumb. I hate to do that because I’m sure it buggers up the head of the pellet, especially ones made of softer alloys. I wonder if one of those pellet seating doo-dads would be useful?


        • It just might as it would help conform the pellet to the rifling. They are pretty cheap and worth a try. You could even make one. Take an ink pen like a Bic Stick and try it.


        • Mitchell,

          I hadn’t thought of that, but you are right about the tight breech. I find that usually goes with an accurate gun, so we’ll see.

          I may try a pellet seater, though I like hand-seating pellets when the breech is tight like this one.

          B.B.


          • Just to be clear, I’m talking about my .177 Benjamin Titan NP, not the new NP2. I figured I’d pick up a NP1 to play with until the NP2′s dropped onto the market to get my feet wet in the nitro piston game. I’m pretty confident this rifle’s parts came from the same place however (cough…BAM…cough) that some or most of the NP2 components are actually made, so the barrel manufacturing process is likely similar if not outright identical. By that I mean gun drilling the blank, rifling, etc. Actually come to think of it I don’t know what method the chinese use to rifle the barrels in Crosman guns for sure. I bet they might be button rifled, due to the volume they produce, that would seem to me to be the logical choice.


        • Mitch

          So you don’t like the tight snaggy breech thing either ? I think it hurts accuracy until it gets smoothed up and pellets can be smoothly pressed in.
          I have given a few rifles a little help with the process.

          twotalon



      • This is just a guess, but I wonder if it’s because of a consistent push by the ram instead of a the sudden burst by a spring. I mean you get the most energy from a spring when released from full compression, and as the spring extends it’s power output decreases? I would imagine with a gas ram that the the power output from full compression would be more consistent along the full stroke and not just dumping most of it’s power after being released. I could be wrong, I often am but this makes sense to me.


  4. I am glad to hear they intend to bring out other models, hopefully with a more “traditional” stock. I have been wondering if this will fit in one of the other stocks they have.



  5. Hello B.B.,
    The velocity spreads seem to be a little high. Could you try a tissue paper test over the breech seal to check for leaks?

    I would like to see you try a heavier pellet such as JSB 18.1′s. I think a gun of this power would shoot these well with a tighter velocity spread. And if the breech is extra tight, as another post mentioned, try seating pellets deeper. Also, it might be worth brushing the bore to reduce the spread.

    I don’t see a problem with outsourcing parts, and I did not think the part 1 review implied that any assembly was done overseas. I believe companies are forced to outsource to be competitive. If the part drawings and specs are well engineered and quality assurance inspections verify that the parts meet the specs, then it seems to me that the performance and success and of the product firmly rests on Crosman’s engineering, QA, and assembly staff.


    • Feinwerk,

      Since I will probably spend more time with this NP2 than I dod with the other breakbarrels, I will do what you ask. But I want to test the accuracy next. After that, I may return to test the velocity with some other pellets and maybe I’ll measure the cocking effort once again.

      B.B.


  6. B.B., The scope on the rifle in the picture looks like a centerpoint 3-9×40. are you testing this rifle with that scope? I have the same scope and would like your opinion . I am considering mounting it on my Beeman R7. Thanks, Ed


    • Ed,

      I just opened the scope box and it is indeed a Centerpoint 3-9X32. It’s in a plain white box with no source information, other than Made in China. It looks good on initial examination, but I will be sure to review it for you in the accuracy report.

      B.B.


  7. B.B.,

    Any chance you’ll take Jennifer Lambert up on her offer? I’d like to read about the NP2′s manufacture. You could take your $100 PCP along to show them. Maybe they would show you their skunk works, and you could tell us all about their almost-in-production Discovery with on-board pump, all wood and metal M1 Carbine pellet rifle, and all the other secret projects!

    I look forward to reading more about the NP2, and especially your next report on accuracy. I’d like to have a quiet, spring-piston rifle comparable to my Discovery, and the NP2 could be it.

    Crosman’s Discovery is a tremendous little rifle. I’ve shot mine almost daily since buying it six months ago. I never imagined an inexpensive rifle could be so much fun. Just yesterday I installed an aftermarket sear and power adjuster. The trigger was smooth, but extremely heavy, and the new sear made a dramatic improvement. The power adjuster made the gun much quieter at 580fps with 8.4 grain pellets. Turning the power up to 675fps made the gun louder, but quieter than before. Today I’ll test for shot count and accuracy at this power level. Yes, I like Crosman guns, too, and appreciate the value and good designs they offer.

    Thanks for writing a great blog.

    RB


    • RB,

      My schedule is full for the next 6 months, so I doubt I will be going to Crosman, but Jennifer has already sent me some pictures of the assembly process that will be in the next report.

      I am glad to hear how much you enjoy your Discovery. We made that rifle just for guys like you, and it sounds like we succeded.

      B.B.


  8. Although I purchased early, returned quickly and made a video of the process, I don’t consider myself a Crosman basher – not even an NP2 basher. My NP2 had the cracked “barrel” (plastic shroud) but the scope did not fall off! If the cracked shroud had been discovered on an old gun, I’d probably have repaired it with epoxy and duct tape but to do so on a new gun did not seem a good idea. I liked the NP2 and am likely to purchase another after Crosman corrects the design/manufacturing process. The question is: “How will we know when these early problems have been corrected?”.


    • Gordon,

      Welcome to the blog!

      That is a good question. I know that buyers will be more wary of the NP2, now that some problems have been reported.

      Pyramyd Air has said they are going to send me another NP2 from the next batch they receive — even though the rifle I am testing is doing fine so far. I know that Crosman is very busy working on the quality issues right now and I doubt they will let more rifles ship until they feel that all problems have been resolved.

      I will test the second rifle in an abbreviated test to see how it measures up to the one I’m currently testing. And I will report those results to you in this report.

      B.B.


      • Thanks for the quick reply. I’m new to the airgun sport and your blog is interesting and useful. Here’s hoping that Crosman keeps you up-to-date on their progress.


        • Gordon,

          If you are new to airgunning, then you are the exact person I write this blog for. Crosman will keep me informed of what is happening with the NP2, and I will pass that along to you readers when I can.

          This blog exists for the betterment of airgunning, in general. We want better understanding as well as a place for everyone to ask questions and to share their opinions and experiences. What you are seeing with this particular report is the blog working as it is supposed to.

          You are key to how this works, because you have the perspective of a person who hasn’t seen all this before. Today we are looking at a particular model of airgun — tomorrow we may be discussing something basic about shooting. I really need to know what seems confusing or unbelievable to you, so I can write accordingly.

          B.B.


    • Welcome to the blog sir. Thanks for putting that video up, I was one of the few scouring youtube to see if anyone had done an unboxing and managed to find yours. Your pellet trap is pretty neat as well. Keep up the youtube videos, we airgun people could always use new content creators. Ted Bier from Ted’s Holdover is a great guy, but not everyone is into hunting.


    • I also watched your Youtube videos. Excellent. I always look for these “real world” reviews before purchasing. Thanks much for taking the time.
      Rob


  9. It looks good so far. Often a new product will have a few “bugs” to work out. BTW, can the trigger pull be lightened? A final of 3 to 2.5 lbs. would be nice.

    Mike



    • That is something I would like to see Crosman address in their next generation of sproingers. I have two FWB sproingers that have triggers to absolutely die for. Yes, I know a great trigger costs money, but if the NP2 had a trigger like one of these, I would spend an extra $100 for it and drive to NY to buy one at the factory.


  10. I’m never okay with businesses outsourcing components, but it’s the world we live in today…and I expect it in every product until proven otherwise. You want to end this practice? One simple rule, If you want to sell it here, you have to build it here. Make it a law with few exceptions. America is still the largest market in the world and manufacturers would make every effort to participate in it-even hire, train, and pay American workers a living wage…if that were the rule, but it’s not. Nope, we’ve got free trade agreements which have sold us out–and we’ve been told to like it.

    I am a big fan of Crosman. They manage to make some good products-especially at their price point (outsourcing has its benefits). That said, while it’s completely understandable that a new product have some flaws–there is no excuse for shipping those flaws to the consumer.

    And, it seems that airguns are one of the few products where the manufacturer and the consumer expects this form of business to be conducted. How many other $250 items can you name where you EXPECT problems that you will have to fix to make the product useable? Screws that won’t stay tight? Stocks that slip and slide? Cracks? Fouled barrels? Sights that can’t be made to point at the end of the barrel? If this were the rule with cameras, TVs, or cars…well, they wouldn’t last. I will pick on the Beeman p17. After a couple of hundred shots, I reviewed it as a great pistol and bought another for a friend. 500 shots later and neither pistol would shoot across the room. Then, I find out that I was supposed to grind the barrel smooth before I operated this gun? Like it was my fault? I won’t be fooled a third time (Beeman, you want to send me a couple of free guns? Well, I did already pay for them.)

    I’m also one of the few fans of consumer protection laws (they get a bad rap). We can’t expect the government to regulate airgun (non-safety) quality, but manufacturers are right to fear the ultimate regulation. Money…losing it.

    If Crosman ships poor quality, they will lose their good name, market share, and business. That would be terrible in the short run, but in the long run it might not be so bad. Remember, cars used to be of Terrible quality. We expected as much. Then, Japanese cars demonstrated better quality, and now 35 years later–everyone is on that bandwagon. Let’s hope it doesn’t take that long for airgun manufacturers to get behind QA.


    • Today’s world IS a global economy. A lot of manufacturing has moved from Japan to Korea and is now just stating to move to even lower tier third world countries because labor costs drive product costs. Period. Even Boeing has been outsourcing major components of their commercial airliners (entire wings and tail assemblies are made in other countries!)

      So it is really getting almost redundant to even use have this as a talking point. It really boils down to the parent company investing in the training and quality control IN the foreign factory. Look at Apple. All Macs and iPhones have been made in China or Taiwan for years and years. But Apple has their people their performing Q.A. checks and they help train and set up the factories. That is what makes the difference in final, delivered quality.

      I’m brand new to air guns (well my last pellet gun was when I was about 12-13 and I’m in my 40′s now). Being so new and pouring over the info on the internet it does seem like gas springs are the wave of the future and I look forward to watching them develop as old “tried and true” spring design “rules” get updated to account for the differences in the highly dynamic functioning in this application.


  11. BB
    When you were talking about the firing behavior above you said it still had that back and forth kick to it. But no vibration.

    What I’m thinking about is maybe as the gun gets more time on it that back and forth movement will lighten up. Do you think that’s a possibility?



      • BB
        Not making a argument here but interested in how or what would cause the cocking effort to lighten up then.
        You would think if the cocking effort lightens that the firing cycle would lighten too. And maybe I’m looking at this the wrong way. Tell me what you think please.


        • GF1,

          Only one thing makes the cocking effort lighter — reduction of friction. I did get the reduction of friction, but the cocking effort remained where it had been. Now what I am fighting is the gas pressure in the Nitro Piston.

          B.B.


  12. B.B.,

    The way you describe how this rifle fires makes it sound like my FWB 124, a San Anselmo one which has probably been expertly tuned. It has a lightning-quick slight jump, and that is all, an incredibly quick firing cycle and a short lock time. (It’s about 13 foot-pounds and so is not in the same power realm as the Trail NP2.) Do you think in the Trail NP2 this “quickness” might be because of, not despite, the gas piston?

    As for Crosman-bashing, I have criticized Crosman here in the past, but it has typically been because of specific frustrations I have experienced with a couple products and a couple times with their customer service. BUT these instances have occurred in between other entirely positive experiences with their products for me. And I’m sure their customer service is usually very good.

    It is unfair to expect of Crosman, a big and mainstream-market company, something that they do not claim to be. Crosman is not and does not pretend to be Air Arms, Anschutz, or Feinwerkbau, and their products are well below the price range of those European manufacturers. A $250 air rifle should be evaluated in the context of its price, not the context of much more expensive or much cheaper air rifles.

    And imported parts are a reality of almost every (perhaps every, period) mass-produced product made in the U.S. We live here and we live now, and I am guilty, as are a lot of other old fogeys, of forgetting that. If today Crosman made air pistols that were 95% metal and sourced from entirely American parts, they’d cost as much as Umarex German-made air pistols, a couple hundred bucks. Back when a Buick cost, say, $2000, Crosman could and did sell such pistols for what, $49?

    I am not a hunter, so I have read about this product with an interest not in buying it, but out of a curiosity about how the innovations in technology in it might eventually make their way to low-powered gas spring guns. I have no gas springers because I would want from one what I want in a metal spring air rifle: low velocity, very light cocking, low noise, exceptionally smooth firing cycle, and low recoil (in addition, of course to the paramount accuracy). I suspect that years from now someone might make an Air Venturi Bronco type of air rifle that uses a small or detuned gas spring.

    So, I am very interested in this series of reports and eagerly await your accuracy findings.

    Michael


  13. BB,
    I think you have the influence with Crosman to get them to make the NP2 something to be proud of. I encourage you to talk to the people who can make things happen and remind them of the success that the Discovery and Marauder have been due to quality. I don’t honestly expect them to be made as well has the better German or English springers but I think they can make a gun that is affordable and is better than any of the other manufacturers if they want to.

    We will be having our first Dallas Field Target match this Saturday at Elm Fork Shooting Complex in Dallas on their 3D Archery range. Several of us have been working hard to get things ready. We have a lot of people signed up and l look forward to it. I am sure we will have some rough edges but I am excited to finally have Field Target in Dallas.

    David Enoch


  14. B.B., I too like all made in the USA, but really, how many things are? Ford or GM trucks/cars are full of parts made somewhere else. As several pointed out, it’s the world we now live in.
    I too am thankful for Jennifer’s reply. I’m impressed that Crosman is reading these and are responding to them!!! That can only be good for both parties involved. That said, Crosman (Jennifer), can you please convey that a lot of us want an open sight on the NP2. The cost couldn’t be that much more, and yes, I’d pay the difference. I’ve turned away from several guns because of the lack of open sights.
    Thanks again for this review B.B. So far, at least to me, not bad at all. The velocity looks good to me. I don’t pay much attention to the “claimed” stats. I usually subtract some fps in my mind when looking at a air gun’s claimed FPS. Bradly


    • Bradly,
      I’d like to second the motion for open sights on the NP2.Maybe even a carbinized version to shave a little weight too. I would also like to say that the desire for performance is a much more important issue than geographic location of assembly and production facilities.I am very interested in how this rifle performs and considering it for stalking type hunts, sometimes in low light conditions. The sling swivels will definitely come in handy! The moderator seems to be effective at noise reduction and it sounds like a decent trigger. Now let’s work on the weight.

      Reb



      • Reb, I’m all for losing weight, but not at the cost of harder cocking effort (As B.B. said). And I don’t really want a “cocking aid” to keep up with. But yes, they could somehow lose a pound, that would be great! I’m very happy with 700+ fps in a .22 cal gun. That’s a good balance for cocking effort vs speed of the pellet. But I’m awaiting the rest of the test for accuracy. That will be the tell tell story for me. Bradly


  15. BB, do you think the NP2 gas piston may be a longer length than the NP1 gas piston? Longer piston stroke ? I’m thinking this could help with firing cycle and felt recoil to smooth it out a bit. Also is the stock and barrel longer than an older NP1 model to accommodate a longer piston? I know the baffled shroud is longer it’s huge! The recoil is huge factor in gas ram guns it can be violent and reak havock on your scope mounts, I think Weihrauch has it right with open sites and you can remove them if wanted but then Beeman adding just over a pound in laminate stock to help with recoil so you can scope it. I have a Chinese brand .22cal under lever gas ram tuned rifle I bought last year and the firing cycle is a quick snap and you have to hold on, but it’ so different than my springer and pcp. I love my gas ram rifle just as much as my sproinger and pcp, to be able to shoot all these different power plants is a dream, I never know which gun i’m going to grab and shoot and sometimes I grab all three! I also have a Crosman M4 for plinking and it’s pretty accurate and a c11 bb pistol for fun. Out sourcing is bad but it’s always going to be around and as a country we have improved in this respect that we want and make quality products in the USA. It will get better to a point.


  16. I this np 2!!! its by far the most accurate pellet rifle i have ever owned.I shot prob 1000-1500 pellets through it, but unfortunately i had to send it back because the scope mount fell off.I cant wait till i get my replacement back and i am sure Benjamin will have this prob fixed quickly because they have a winner here .I know 3 people are waiting to see how i make out with a replacement because they plan on buying one for themselves. Benjamin if you can read this please hurry up with that replacement ,i want to put that 177 back in the gun case gt


  17. BB
    I have handled an NP Trail and like the fit and balance. I have never shot it though. How does the fit and balance of the NP2 compare to this older rifle?

    Crosman mentioned that they will have other models of NP2 can you use your good standing with them to have a less powerful ram as an option?


    • Ton,

      It’s difficult to compare guns when I only have one in front of me. But I would say the NP2 handles like the old NP.

      As for a less powerful NP2, I certainly hope so. Years ago Crosman made a Benjamin Legacy that was a less powerful .22 caliber gas spring air rifle and it was about perfect. Could have used the NP2 trigger, though. So, put an NP2 piston into a Legacy-powered (650 f.p.s.) air rifle and you really have something!

      B.B.


  18. i think many people are unhappy with crosman due to the fact the release date was pushed back a few months and then they released a defective product that should of been caught at the factory.. this shows they just threw the guns together just to fill an order.. they claim they are hand inspected but to have these kind of problems leaves doubt in the ability of the qc people.. seems like these days crosman over promises and under delivers.. they do have a great marketing team though to get people this excited about a sub par product..


  19. Nice write up. However what explains the bad ratings of the 8 Benjamin Trail NP2 Wood Stocks that were sold in recent weeks??? It’s a near 50/50 split on good to bad in rating, a mere 3 out of 12 raters. Scopes shake loose continually. Scope rail tack welds break and the rail falls off the gun to the ground. Several cracked barrels with white residue where they enter the breech. How can Crosman let these out of quality control inspections as referred to in the above article?


  20. B. B., I likely fit in the category of one of those pile-on people who wait to say bad things about a company. When I first saw the info in the “New” NP2, I again became interested in air rifles again. I saw what you had to say about it from a clip from the “Shot Show” and also the claims by Chip Hunnicutt along with Jim Shockley being astonished at Chip’s claim of the 35 yard hole in hole accuracy. After much waiting, I planned to order one to add to my old collection of air rifles that have been sitting on gun shelves and in drawers for the last 9 years. I have regularly used only powder burners during these last 9 years. Well delay after delay ensued about the expected availability of this new air rifle with this fantastic reversed nitro-piston, CB trigger, high feet/second, with low noise to boot. And all this for only $249.00. Well to my disappointment, the assembled in USA results turned out to be rather unexpected when the early reviews started coming in. I canceled my pre-order and ordered a .22 wood Marauder instead. Yes, I am one of those pile-on-people, but I expected Crosman to follow through with their assembled in America quality for the NP2 that they were marketing. Call this waiting to company bash if you want, however I do have a number of Crosman air rifles and have a new .22 Marauder with pump on order. Lest we forget, companies are run by people and if they want our $money, they can earn it by producing products that we are willing to pay for.


  21. Well, it’s obvious the gun has too many chinese parts to be called made in the US, but my question is where was the barrel made? If the barrel was made here and is accurate that would make a big difference, but knowing how things work I imagine the barrel was the first to be imported.
    Cocking effort 10lbs less that what??? I assumed they meant a Trail which would make it 18-20lbs. You’re saying 38 which is exactly what my XL is. So what gun has 48 that their claim is based on? Crosman doesn’t make one like that. Basically I see this and their 26ftlbs power as flat out lies.
    It weighs 8.3lbs, my XL weighs 2 oz more. So basically it’s like an XL in price, weight, and cocking effort, but without all that bothersome power. And I hear the shrouds are cracking and scope rails are popping off. Sounds like a multi-million dollar failure to me, the New Coke of airguns. They should fire all those jokers and put me in change, then you people would get guns worth having…
    I’m so glad I didn’t waste my money on this gun. This failure just might put Crosman out of business… Something to think about, like buy guns and spare parts while you can.


  22. I just wish they would send me the parts I need to fix instead of having to send the whole gun back. It’s just a piston seal and a tube cap…


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