by B.B. Pelletier

I was asked by several people to review the Crosman 1088. In fact, I think the requests date back over a year. I thought this was just a modern extension of the 1008; but, where the 1008 is mostly metal on the outside, the 1088 is mainly plastic.

This is an 8-shot CO2 pellet and BB pistol with a revolving action housed in a pistol frame. The steel barrel is rifled, so we can expect some accuracy from pellets. Owners rate it above 4 stars, which is a good indication that it’s worthwhile.

Being plastic, the gun is light…just over a pound. The grip is quite large, so the gun feels large, yet the double-action trigger-pull is very light and smooth.

A CO2 cartridge fits inside the right grip, which pops off the gun. The winding key that tightens the cartridge is enclosed by the grip, so nothing shows from the outside.

Pop off the right grip panel to install a CO2 cartridge.

To load the 8-shot clip, the slide is flipped up at the back, exposing a pin that the circular clip sits on. The clip is loaded by pushing pellets or BBs in the back side, and you can load either one without regard to anything. You cannot mistake which side of the clip is the back because the front is the only side that has a hole to fit over the pin. I was surprised to find only one clip packed with the gun though. Since this is an action pistol I think you’ll want at least another 3-pack of clips to keep going.

To load, flip up the top of the slide and insert an 8-shot clip.

The clips have 8 chambers with ridges running down the inside to hold the smaller steel BBs securely. Naturally, the gun will be more accurate with lead pellets, but the lighter BBs may give the highest velocity. I say may because Crosman Silver Eagle hollowpoint pellets weigh 4.8-grains and steel BBs weigh 5.1 grains. That slightly lighter weight coupled with fitting the bore tighter may allow the non-lead Silver Eagles to be the fastest. I’ll certainly check that for you.

I was supposed to check something else with this gun. Several readers say the CO2 mechanism will eventually leak after several cartridges have been installed. I thought they might be over-tightening the cartridges at installation, but I promised to have a look at it for them. If I’ve made a mistake in this, please correct me so I can check for the right things.

This pistol has a single Weaver notch on a rail under the slide. Accessories with Weaver rails (like flashlights and lasers) can be fitted to the gun. Unfortunately, Crosman’s own laser has a 3/8″ dovetail that will not fit, but there are plenty that do. There’s no possibility of fitting optical sights to this pistol.

The sights are a square notch in the rear and a square ramp on the front. There are no dots or fiberoptics, which I think is the best way for pistol sights to be if you want sighting precision. The rear sight can slide left and right for adjustment. Two very small Allen screws lock it in place.

The main way to shoot the pistol is double-action, but it does permit single-action operation, too. I’ll try both ways for velocity and accuracy.

This pistol can be fired single-action, with the hammer back as shown here. Double-action is the preferred way to shoot, however.