By Dennis Adler
It is rare that I do a follow-up article on a gun that I have recently tested, but the new 2018 ASG CZ 75 SP-01 Shadow left some interesting questions after its initial range test in March; one of which was that the test gun was continually shooting low at 21 feet, and the hold over was around 2 inches. This was not a terrible thing but it was uncharacteristic for the CZ 75 CO2 models. So, this is test gun number two, and the entire range test will be redone in this updated review of the ASG CZ-75 SP-01 Shadow. There is, however, more to this one specific ASG CZ model than initially meets the eye. Not only is it exceptionally authentic to the centerfire Shadow (updated by the Česká zbrojovka Custom Shop for 2018 to the Shadow 2 Black & Blue), but the CO2 model from ASG can be modified with an accessory kit to look more like the original Shadow competition version, Shadow 2 and competition CZ 75 Tactical Sport models. How you may ask can this be done? Look down.
This is the Shadow 2 competition Black & Blue (updated from the original SP-01 Shadow Blue and Shadow II) alongside the modified ASG CZ 75 SP-01 Shadow, fitted with the same alloy grips and an extended magwell, in the same anodized blue finish as the 9x19mm models. I really don’t need to embellish this; the gun with the new grips and magwell says it all.
You will also see a picture of the early 9x19mm SP-01 Shadow with the blue aluminum grips and blue magwell. The ASG option is identical with the ready to mount aluminum grip panels and mag funnel, which will give you better pistol control for fast target acquisition and follow-up shots. The grips have a textured pattern and slimmer profile than the hard rubber grips that come on the SP-01 Shadow. The standard grips are excellent and stay put in the hand, but the anodized aluminum grips not only add style to this airgun but function as well. The ASG version grips and magwell for the SP-01 Shadow has an MSRP of $80 because it is the same aluminum design and anodized blue finish used on the centerfire models. (Actually designed for the Airsoft Shadow model, you can find them by searching online for ASG Short Grip and Magwell set).
Form and function
The mag funnel covers the base of the pistol grip’s magazine well and is easily installed by slipping the channeled inner edge of the magwell over the base of the grips and tightening it into place with two set screws, one in the bottom and one in the left side, that come with the ASG kit. This makes the mag funnel a permanent part of the gun (unless you remove it) and helps speed up reloading by channeling the magazine into the magwell. The flared magwell also provides more surface area for the support hand when using a two-handed hold, and with the Shadow being an ambidextrous design, this works equally well for left-handed shooters.
The machined aluminum grips use a hex head aluminum screw to mount in place of the hard rubber SP-01 Shadow grips. Positioned above the mag funnel, they line up with the original grip screw holes and have the same profile. Both the grip screws and set screws use a Chapman No. 5 hex head driver to tighten down.
Like the setup for the centerfire models, the aluminum short grips (short grips are used with the mag funnel) for the CO2 Shadow are blasted to ensure a uniform surface and are hardened afterwards for increased protection against corrosion, wear and colored through the same anodizing process. Thus, they are a bit pricey (and you will need to buy them online) but if you want to take the ASG model to the next level, this is it. The ASG grips and magwell are also available in the Shadow Orange and Shadow Red color combinations; 18546 Blue, 18547 Red, 18548 Orange.
In Part 2 we will examine the ASG CZ-75 SP-01 Shadow’s handling with the new grips and magwell.