Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

Time for the performance report on the Crosman Pro77 BB pistol. We know it’s a blowback, and with the test of the Walther CP99 Compact so fresh in out minds, don’t we expect this pistol to turn in similar results? Those were my thoughts as this part of the test approached.

Loading
You can load up to 19 BBs into the stick magazine (the spec says 17, but 19 will fit) through the same loading hole that the CP99 Compact uses. The spring-loaded follower works the same way, too. But I have to comment that the Crosman magazine is much more fragile than the Walther mag. Mine came apart at the start of testing and from that point I was constantly putting the floorplate back on. It’s held in place by two rather thin plastic latches and one of them on my mag is bent and useless. While a replacement mag will solve the problem, it will not correct the inherent weakness of this design.

The Pro77 has the same tendency to drop a BB out of the muzzle each time the trigger is pulled when the gun is uncocked – just like the CP99 Compact. A reader just told me that he sometimes worked the trigger of his uncocked P99 Compact between shots and got double feeds when the BB didn’t fall from the muzzle, so you definitely don’t want to do that!

Accuracy
Using Crosman Copperhead BBs, I saw similar accuracy at 15 feet with the Pro77 as the best groups with the CP99 Compact, or, let me rephrase that – this gun grouped well from the start. Actually the two guns grouped about the same one inch after I got used to the Compact, but the better sights of the Pro77 made it easier to hold those groups from the beginning.

The trigger that I had liked so well before shooting BBs suddenly decided to hang up, leaving the pistol with an very indecisive one-stage pull that could go two-stage at any time. Had that not happened, I believe the groups might have improved.

Hold-open device failed
For some reason the device that holds the slide open after the last shot is fired quit working during accuracy testing. The only way to make certain of whether the gun was loaded was to remove the magazine and examine it. Now that’s a safety measure anyway, but it is odd that the hold-open function quit working. I believe the reason for this failure is the action is over-lubricated. The slide release that springs up to catch the slide seems to be slowed down by excessive oil.


When the magazine is empty, the slide release is suppose to spring up and catch the slide like this. Too much oil and a weak spring caused intermittent operation.

Velocity
It was 52 degrees when I tested the pistol’s velocity. That’s very significant, because 50 degrees F is where CO2 guns start losing major velocity. Using Crosman Copperhead BBs, I averaged 256 f.p.s. with an extreme spread from 249 to 267. Had the temperature been 68 degrees, as it was for the CP99 Compact test, I believe the average velocity might have been about 275 f.p.s.

Hard case
The Pro77 comes in a hard black plastic carrying case, as opposed to the plastic clamshell packaging on the P99 Compact. The triangular case has two latches to secure the lid and egcrate foam inside to protect the gun.

Summary
Although the Pro77 is meant to be a P99 Compact competitor, there are several subtle differences between the two guns. The Pro77 has just been launched as this is written, so buyers have to give Crosman a chance to catch up with their orders. The basic gun has already sold out at Pyramyd Air, but they do have the kit for just a few more dollars. I’m sure they have the guns and magazines on order, as this promises to be one of the hot items for this Christmas season.