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Education / Training The Crosman Silhouette PCP pistol – Part 2

The Crosman Silhouette PCP pistol – Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Well, I wanted to post the velocity results of the Benjamin Trail NP XL1100 today, so the first thing I did was measure the cocking effort for you. No more than 32 lbs., according to my bathroom scale. Wow, I thought. Crosman has found a way around the laws of physics. I’ll take three, please!

Then, just as I returned to my desk an email arrived from Crosman informing me that the cocking effort I had inquired about was supposed to be around 38 lbs. Oh, oh! A few shots through the Chrony confirmed that this test rifle was not up to that spec.

The bottom line is this one has to go back to Crosman. They will expedite shipment of a replacement, and I must retract everything I said about the cocking effort until I test that rifle. I still am wildly impressed by what I see, and now I’ll get to see a second one.

Sometimes it even rains in Camelot. And when it rains, we make mud pies and splash in the puddles until mother calls us to dinner.

So, casting about for alternative fun, my eyes fell on the Crosman Silhouette PCP pistol, which reminded me of their claim that it would give 50 good shots with a 7.9-grain pellet at 450 f.p.s. So, I decided to do the velocity test today. Actually, I’m doing only the first half of the velocity test, because I was reminded by one of our sharp readers that the Silhouette PCP has a power adjustment. Yes, besides all the wonderful things you already know, you can also adjust the velocity–up to 550 f.p.s. with a 7.9 pellet, says Crosman. That needs to be tested, as well. But, today, I’m doing the yeoman’s work of testing the gun as it comes from the factory. Fifty shots at 450 f.p.s. with a 7.9-grain pellet.

Airing up
The pistol arrived with a caretaker charge of about 1,000 psi, and it needs to go to 3,000 for a full fill. This time I used my carbon fiber tank and filled until the needle was centered on the 3,000 mark. The pistol’s internal gauge read 2,900 at that point, so the two disagree by 100 psi. Good thing I’m not anal!

How many shots?
Most of you regular readers know the drill by now. I start shooting and record every velocity that comes. If the Chrony misses one, I put in a line to indicate there was a shot that wasn’t recorded. That’s important, because that unrecorded shot uses just as much air as one that was. After the string is over, we’ll look at it to see what we can learn.

Here we go. 3,000 psi fill, Crosman Premier 7.9-grain pellet.

8………..444 (Start useful string at 2,800 psi onboard)
72………441(end useful string at 1,600 psi)

*Fastest shot in string

With a shot string laid out like that, we can determine a few things. For starters, we can see that Crosman was conservative in their estimates of the useful number of shots. I put in a start point and a stop point on the string. Using the point I chose, which started when the onboard pressure gauge read 2,800 psi, and running to the stop point, when the onboard gauge read 1,600 psi, there are 65 shots in my string.

Another thing we know is the average velocity in the selected string is 457 f.p.s. and the maximum velocity spread is 28 feet per second. The claim of 450 f.p.s. was right on the money. You could cut this data string many different ways to accomplish other things, such as a greater number of shots, for instance, but it does demonstrate that the Silhouette PCP is everything Crosman has claimed and more.

My final comment about today’s test is that I am, once again, impressed with Crosman’s grasp of a metered valve in a precharged airgun. They’re using a fill pressure spread of 1,200 psi to get 65 shots within 28 f.p.s. of one another. That’s exacting performance on just a trifle of air.

More on how the gun shoots
I must comment that the bolt on this pistol is far smoother than any I have seen. It’s made from hardened steel, and the bolt shaft is a wider diameter; when you pull back on the handle, there’s never any binding or hesitation. The action simply cocks smoothly as a non-airgunner would assume that it should. Many years of experience with similar bolt-action pistols that were not this smooth have distorted my perceptions.

And the promised look at the trigger
This time I removed the sideplate for a look at the trigger. As you can see, it’s a simple, one-lever type. Some smoothing of the sear that engages the hammer would probably pay off, but don’t use a file! Use a hard stone and don’t go too far. I doubt these parts are case-hardened any deeper than about 0.15″–if that. Follow up with moly grease. You’re interested in stoning a smoother surface–not a perfect mirror finish, which would probably ruin these parts by cutting through the hardened shell and allowing the part to wear.


Not much to it. The trigger blade pushes the front of the sear up against the spring tension you set. The rear of the sear pivots down and away from the hammer, releasing it.

The trigger has a spring shim on the back side to remove slop in the pull. All the pins could take the tiniest bit of grease.

Next, I’ll try the Silhouette PCP with an optional peep sight Crosman sent with the gun.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

97 thoughts on “The Crosman Silhouette PCP pistol – Part 2”

  1. BB,I can see from what you have squeezed out of it so far,this airgun is going to be a tuners dream!!That trigger is one even I would fiddle a little.A huge shot count begs to be played with more than most.This pistol will be one to watch.That is something to be certain of…very nice mudpie sir!

  2. Fred,
    I'm surprised you haven't gotten an answer to your rim fire question yet. Maybe today's post has it. I haven't read it yet. But here's my take,which may be like hearing from Mr. Obvious:

    I vote Ruger 10/22. I have one with the standard barrel, like it very much, it is pretty accurate, nail shotgun shells on a berm at 50 yards regularly, it has all kinds of after market upgrades and stock variations available.

    Someday, I'd like to get a bolt action but haven't decided what yet.


  3. Mr. B.,

    A metered valve is a valve that has been intentionally constructed and then tuned to get the maximum number of shots with the lowest possible velocity spread, high to low. It might seem like everyone would try to do that, but most companies and even tuners are just happy to get the gun to work.

    It takes more care to come up with the perfect combination of port sizes, valve angles and return spring strength to get a valve to meter as well as what you see here.


  4. BB, I just have to tell you again how much I enjoy your blog. Every day I come here for a little airgun pick-me-up and you always deliver. Thanks for the hard work.

    The only new airguns I have ever bought were Daisy 953s on closeout at Sam's Club and Marksman 2004s on close out at Walmart. All the rest I have bought used. But, Crosman is doing so well that I really feel compelled to buy a new gun from them just to support them. I am really proud of the products that this US company is putting out.

    See you in Little Rock.

    David Enoch

  5. Fred,

    My suggestion for a nice bolt action .22 is to buy used. I like the old Remingtons–especially those from the 1940s with peep sights. I have a 521-T that shoots an honest 3/4-inch 10-shot group at 50 yards with most standard-speed ammo.

    If you really want nice–and I mean REALLY nice–look for a Springfield 1922 M2. For about $1,500 you'll get a rifle that will shoot with a Winchester 52 and will look great all the time.

    Remington models 511 and 513 are a great ones, too.

    Look on Gun Broker and Guns America.


  6. BB,

    That shot string is pretty impressive. And thanks for the trigger picture. Looks identical to the 13XX and 22XX guns save for a new wider blade. Hopefully this wider blade will make it's way downstream to all the other Crosman's that use the uncomfortably thin original.

  7. Kevin:

    My BSF 55N has a leather piston seal.


    I'll second the vote for a Remington 513. I've got a nice old Match Master that shoots about the same as my Anschutz 64 match. If your looking for a sporter don't forget the Rem 581-S.


  8. Kevin,

    Thank you for the dates. They are what I suspected.

    I hope you can come. Little Rock is a very small airgun show, but a lot can happen there. I remember a couple years ago when a doctor arrived with all his old guns still in the boxes. He wanted what he'd paid for them 20 years before.

    Then there was the time…

    And you will get to meet Mac, who helped you sell all your cameras. I just did the same thing with all my old analog stuff and the money has really surprised me.


  9. B.B.,

    I need to get a job in the airgun industry then I could justify attending all the long distance shows.

    Be great to meet Mac. He's a first class gentleman that helped me out of a mess.

    I was also surprised to learn about analog camera equipment collectors.

    My goal is Roanoke this year.


  10. Re: accurate .22s

    Don't overlook the old Mossberg 44 and 144 models that were designed for military training and then used by youth shooting clubs.

    Many are still around and come with nice Mossberg aperture sights that mimic Lyman sights. The CMP distributed a lot of them.

    I'd say in the same league as Remington 513Ts.

  11. Kevin,

    Now, Roanoke is a big airgun show. The largest in the world, though small by gun show standards.

    The organizer, Fred Liady, has been hospitalized since January and may not be able to host Roanoke this year. A number of airgun leaders are waiting to see what he wants to do, because this show it too important to miss.


  12. To the reader looking for a .22,

    I don't know what you want to use it for. But if you are considering a Ruger 10-22 I guess maybe plinking and hunting. I have no idea how current Rugers perform. But they do have the potential to be quite accurate.

    I have an old one (made in 200th year model) that will bench rest .5 inch 5 shot groups at 50 yards. But it is highly modified. I spent hours with the trigger getting it down to a 2 pound pull with no creep or over travel. I also full length glass bedded the action and barrel.

    Stock as I purchased it I got benched 5 shot groups of about 2 inches at 25 yards and the trigger pull was 14 pounds and gritty!

    Might I suggest if you have the money you try to find a good used Remington 541 S target model? One of the BEST guns I ever owned. From the factory need no modification what ever. The trigger was superb at 2 pounds and the gun would shoot benched quarter inch groups at 50 yards. They are probably pricy now but will be well worth the money.

    Another good gun from the factory is the Weatherby .22 semi auto. I also owned one of those and it required only one slight modification. The trigger is adjustable but the factory had it stop adjusting at about 4 pounds. All I needed to do was back out the adjusting screw and file down the post it screwed into about 1/4 inch so I could screw the adjusting screw in further. That game me a 2 pound pull and I used loc tite to insure it stayed where I set it!

    Not quite as accurate as the other two, but still about 3/4 inch groups at 50 yards benched.

    Shot many a squirrel with those three guns at ranges up to 75 yards though the average shot was probably less then 25 yards.

    They laughed at me when I took the 541 S Remington to my first .22 rifle Silhoutte match but stopped laughing when I won the match with 38 of 40 hits!

    I hear the Kimber rifles are pretty accurate but have no experience with them so can't recommend one.

    So if you want a gun you know will be really accurate and not require any modifications then go with a good used 541 S Remington bolt action.

  13. B.B.

    Alittle off topic, but I noticed you mentioned using moly grease. These days I see alot of ammo being referred to as moly coated. What is the advantage of moly coated ammo?


  14. B.B.,

    I've been watching the updates about Fred Liady with great interest. What a tremendous asset to the airgunning community he has been.

    I'm hoping and praying for his full and speedy recovery.


  15. BG_Farmer (and anyone else that gives a hoot),

    I recalibrated my monitor to photoelements. The color seems more representative of what's now posted. There seems to be a degradation when transported to photobucket and the photoshop tutorial warned that other peoples monitor settings can throw off color in images posted to host sites.

    Here's the latest edits done after synchronizing. The photo of my fancy refinishing table (card table with a towel) should appear with red overtones the rest shouldn't. Would appreciate you telling me what you see.

    ps-don't give me any guff about the pink towel. it's the only one my wife would let me have.



  16. Good Morning BB
    did you ever hear back from crosman about the 1077 airsource setup working with the 2260/1760 rifles?
    I can ask them directly but I'm sure you'll get more direct information that I would.

  17. Fred,

    I second the pawn shop search idea..

    I've found many, many old Remington .22s at pawn shops here in the rouge valley… Some just like B.B. has:-)

    and do bring the bore light…

    The cool thing about the old Rems, is that they will hold and grow in value, while you enjoy the great groups. They also have such a terrific feel when shouldered… that's also what's great about the pawn shop shopping, you get to hold the gun before you buy.

    Wacky Wayne

  18. "Now, Roanoke is a big airgun show. The largest in the world, though small by gun show standards.

    The organizer, Fred Liady, has been hospitalized since January and may not be able to host Roanoke this year. A number of airgun leaders are waiting to see what he wants to do, because this show it too important to miss."

    At least it's "just down the road" for me to really be able to come and see. Hope it does happen.

  19. Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Mounting a globe front sight on an RWS 48/52/54":

    Way off topic, but I followed your advice from other strings and sent an old, but working Benjamin 3120 to George Pena to have a bent pump lever replaced. Being a Benjamin Dummy (I own 2 Sheridan Bluestreaks, pre Benjamin), I didn't even know the mag tube was missing. I bought the gun at an antique mall for $40.00. Well, George obtained brass tubes and made a mag tube and did a great job. Just wanted to give george credit and recommend his work.

    George Pena is in TX. George is at heligun1@msn.com or 512-863-2951.

  20. FrankB,

    I couldn't get your link to work. It goes to the website, says 'loading album' and hangs there. I do have Adobe Flash version 10 in my machine. Something's messed up I think…


  21. B.B.

    I've heard that stoning a trigger for firearms is a very tricky thing that could impact safety. Not sure if the same is true of airguns. I read a gunsmithing book by a guy who was willing to try all sorts of things, stock-cutting, glass-bedding, peep sight installation, and all sorts of hand-filing and modifications of the action, but he said that he would not attempt stoning triggers; that was for the gunsmiths.

    For a .22 I vote Ruger 10/22. There are modified versions that you can buy for $500 that are supposed to shoot MOA or better. Aguila is one company that does this. Clark Custom is supposed to be top of the line and is a little pricier ~ $900. Otherwise Savage all the way. Any of the Mark II rifles are super accurate, and the Accu-Trigger is new technology that was not available in the older guns.

    Edith, thanks for you info about Macs, very illuminating. I had one episode of kernel panic on my old computer before the logic board failure. Fred (was it your daughter with the Apple computer?) just make sure to take out an extended warranty and you should be okay. I must say that my new 13" model that I got for $1000 is more capable in every way than the 15" except for screen size which is not all that much. With my flight simulator I need the graphics.

    AlanL, I actually have a B30, not an RWS 48, but the information is that BAM, which produced the B30, slavishly copied the Western designs down to the last detail, so I suspect everything is the same. The B30 has a dovetail rail. There is a slot for a scope stop pin and a kind of raised bolt head at the end of the rail that also works as a scope stop. The medium Accushot rings are sized so that their built in scope stop pin fits exactly into the slot and the end is blocked by the bolt head. Somewhere along the line, the pin went missing, but the bolt still holds everything in place. I have never had a problem with scope movement even with recoil so strong that it knocked off my lens cover every few shots from a bench rest. I've dismounted the scope and replaced it and moved the turrets through 100 clicks and it comes exactly back to zero.


  22. The whole computer fiasco yesterday was a drag, but one of my ships has come in and I am riding high today. I am the proud possessor of a Ka-Bar USMC knife. I have been aware of this knife for awhile but dismissed it as a diminished Bowie design. However, the spirit moved me, and I’m glad it did. It’s lean and mean and, though it has some weight, feels wonderful in the hand. It also has a lot of history of its own in the Pacific War where it appears in many memoirs. With my M1, 1911, and Ka-Bar, I’d say I’m well-outfitted to watch TV. Incidentally, the Ka-Bar appears to be the same design as the Smith and Wesson survival knife that PA sells (minus the serrations), but I wanted the history of the original brand, built to the original specs. (By the way, I see in the advanced video of the samurai sharpening series that the bladesmith does concede that serrations are the best options for slicing bread. But he doesn't give up easily–only when the bread is freshly-baked with a hard crust.) Anyone have a Ka-Bar story?

    My package also contained a Gerber Mark II, the second most popular military knife (so I read) after the Ka-Bar. This is supposed to be the military knife of the Vietnam War. That was not a fond national memory although of great historical importance. But what was critical with this purchase was reading that it was designed to reproduce very faithfully the Mainz Gladius, one of the best preserved Roman short swords. There's some history. This knife would make me a Roman soldier! The knife has its own distinctive amazing feel in the hand. All one has to do is lower their eyelids and let the mind drift: “Omnia Gallia in tres partes….” If anyone has a Gerber Mark II story, I don’t think I want to hear it. From the design it is apparent that this knife was designed soley for killing people and not for utilitarian tasks like the Ka-Bar. I do wish I could get to the stage of contempt for factory edges that one encounters so commonly. Both of these knives are stunningly sharp. I haven’t mastered the three-finger samurai test for blade sharpness although I'm making progress. My rough and ready method is holding a ball point pen at a 45 degree angle to a flat surface, resting the knife and the pen and seeing whether it slides or sticks. You can even sense just just how well it bites in, and both of these knives are some of the sharpest I’ve ever encountered. They do not budge even a little.


  23. Matt61

    Did I read correctly that your IZH61 was tuned by Mike Mellick? I know you said you had a difficult time at first. Mine has been sitting in the back of the closet, behind clothes. If you could tell me what you did, or what Mike did or anything you could tell me would be appreciated. Mine only has about 3,500 pellets through it.

    Glad you like your BAM. Always wanted a B40.

  24. Fred,

    I would look at Savage MarkII — you can get the heavy barrel, laminate stock and Accutrigger for ~$300. My BV does 1/2" at 50 yards with more than one _bulk_ ammo. Just "sold" one to a curious 10/22 user at the gun club last week — he shot his first three into one hole, left-handed with his ammo!

  25. BB, AlanL,

    Just saw BB's request from yesterday. I don't have a Diana 48/52/54 sidelever in the pile to check for anotherairgunblog. I did look at a 3 or 4 year old RWS 54 Air King yesterday and the owner told me the base was riveted in place.

    Don't think Nick has one either. AlanL should give Umarex a call and we can get a definitive answer.

  26. Kevin,

    Much better — thanks for the personal calibration:). They both look great, with the rifle being noticeably better in my opinion. The carbine (I think–its the one on the bottom) has what looks like a rough area under the cheekpiece — maybe unfilled pores or you haven't smoothed it out? It also seems like the finish on the carbine is murkier and thicker — almost like a pearlescent clear-coat. As always, I would be more than pleased with either, but I think you want this type of opinion on the comparison. Does this help?

    Don't sweat the pink towel, I've already admitted to carrying a huge pink comb with me (impossible to lose) — noone except my brothers has ever said anything about it:)!

  27. BG_Farmer,

    Thank you.

    The finish on the carbine came out nicer than the rifle. What you see in that picture was the high gloss oil finish before the knockdown WITH a coat of ballistol on the stock.

    This is a photo trick that Mike Driskill is famous for. It works on his vintage guns that have an older worn finish but you can see the horrible effect it has on a high gloss stock. Another one of my failed photo tests. Promise to never do that again.

    The soup on the table was oily and bitter. An inbred cousin to sweet and sour soup.


  28. BB

    Are the RWS and/or Beeman brands of "Chamber Oil" of any usefulness in either springers or Co2 guns? Is there a generic clone of these oils?

    If so, how to use these oils and their purpose?

    (I'm assuming these are pure, non-petro oils thus, no flash point / dieseling?)

    Thanks as always

    Brian in Idaho

  29. Kevin,
    Well that makes sense, because I thought you said the carbine was going better earlier, but I wanted to call it like I saw it. The rifle does look quite good, though, problems or not. Is the forend tip the rifle or the carbine? I'm now guessing the rifle (RLO?) with some flash left?

  30. Brian,

    Anything branded chamber oil by anybody other than the Chinese is the only kind of oil to use to lubricate the piston seals of a modern spring gun. There are no generic clones of this oil. It is a high flashpoint pure silicone oil.

    They are only for that purpose and will not lubricate metal to metal parts.


  31. Kevin,

    Your link to FrankB's stock pics worked. What a gorgeous hunk of wood.

    Your towel shows up pink on my old laptop but fades to near white around the butt of the stock. I was intrigued by the remains of your Flor de Caña rum in the cat bowl.


    I will be calling Randy of Umarex as soon as the new cocking lever comes in, and will be sure to ask him about the base rail screws/rivets.


  32. john

    Enjoyed your video. I would not waste much time responding to some of the comments you get on YouTube. I've never seen a forum with comments of such ignorance/filthy language/bad grammar. Don't sweat the haters.

  33. BB,I have about 1500$ in the whole gun….Hopefully your question meant you were suprised I got such a nice piece of wood,and not that I got ripped off….Believe it or not,I paid 625$ for the roughly shaped,inletted stock.Then 2 months or so of learning as I finished it.That is with the benifit of all those on this blog.God really looks after this guy!!!! Thanks for all the compliments on not ruining it guys!! Frank B

  34. BB,
    I've had my Marauder for a few months now and I knew it was quiet. I have recently watched other(s) shoot their non-Marauder PCP's. I won't say who the shooter(s) are because I have very high respect for them and their choice of PCP, but Oh My, Oh My, how quiet the Marauder is!

  35. Help me out here BB, this trigger has received high marks in quick reivews (including yours). From the looks of it, it is the basic components of the 2300 series CO2 guns (custom shop and 2300S). Same basic shape trigger and sear, same look for the spring and adjuster???What is really different about this trigger mechanism? Are the tolerances tighter?

  36. Since this weeks blog included tearing down a TX200,I thought someone might appreciate this tip.On Air rifle headquarters website ,under today's specials,they have a new spring featured that improves power and is still real smooth for 25$….FWIW

  37. Kevin,your stocks come out great.The closeup of the schnabel and the thumbhole look a little green.Nevermind,that is envy!I have never tried scotch from a bowl before,is it THAT cold there?

  38. Matt,
    Regarding factory edges, I put up a touching Christmas story in your honor about the Buck knife I got from my son (I don't think you saw it) — very sharp. At this point, it is still very usable, but it hasn't maintained that extreme edge as well as my old Victorinox, which was simply sharpened with a fine file.

    We need to ask BB about the 1850's sex tapes…those were heady days before the war:)! I'm OK with Whitman on most things, but he can be a little outside my preference zone sometimes. I do enjoy reading Thoreau and Emerson as well, or at least I used to.

  39. MrB, I've gotta say…I was all kinds of nervous,but I took my time and with all kinds of help from here…I did it!Now I can't wait to get my hands on some more wood.This was very rewarding.A couple people have commisioned me to do rifle stocks for them and I cannot wait to get started.By the way Bruce,I am getting up right now to pack that thing up and send it,I'm sorry for the delay.

  40. BB-

    I'm really enjoying reading about the harder-hitting more powerful air guns than the FWB CO2 ones I shoot, but I sure would appreciate a column or two about guns for the 10 meter ISSF disciplines.

    Thanks for thinking about it.

    –pete z

  41. John,

    what a perfectly good waste of spray paint and we really need to discuss you choice of music for that impressively edited video :).

    Have fun and shoot straight. Do you have the TKO modified trigger in that puppy?

    Again, thanks to everyone for all the rifle suggestions. For those that suggested pawn shops, here in the Republic of NJ, the shop has to be licensed, not necessarily FFL but a NJ license I believe but am not sure.

    Anyway, the hunt is on but, you know, maybe a Marauder or Challenger or Edge is in my future instead. Then again, tuition time is coming this September….

    Fred PRoNJ

  42. duskwight,

    Thanks for the info on the previous page! Interesting how that stabization system on the AK 107/108 works. Kind of like the opposing pistons on Whiscombe's springers.


  43. Fred,

    If you are on a budget, and like bolt guns, you might check out the TOZ 78. It's a Russian .22LR. Mine was less than $200 including the background investigation fee and the Tasco 4x scope I put on it. It has pretty decent accuracy with every kind of ammo I've put though it. The only thing I did to mine was smooth out the ramp a little. Google "TOZ 78" and you'll see pics and opinions. Stock is small and a little cheesy with it's black painted fore end, but mine shoots pretty well.


  44. Dave

    Do you know any other _simple and reliable_ way of compensating a front-back moving mass? 🙂
    However Whiscombe's a bit different – 2 opposing pistons are supposed not only to compensate each other's movement, but also to decrease time of pressure buildup. JWs' huge power is in this principle – let the swept volume stay the same, but decrease the time to get to maximum pressure.
    Actually AK/AEK system looks and operates more like Diana 75 counterweight system, moving away from piston and acting only as counterweight.


  45. Boy, we need threaded comments for this blog. When is Pyramyd going to switch to WordPress?

    As for the .22 rimfire, I second the vote for the heavy-barreled Savage bolt actions, though for a little more money, the CZ 452/453 models are a little better put together.

    I've seen impressive strings from the bolt-action Savages – so much so that a heavy-stocked version is on my list.

  46. Fred,

    This is pcp4me and again my blog sign on is bugged. I posted earlier here about the .22 rifles as anon.

    I forgot to mention the Ruger 77's. Again no personal experience, but all the reviews about them are great and I trust Ruger.

    Also another gun touted highly in online reviews is the Remington 504 which is an off shoot of the 541 S. From all I read it is a great gun and very accurate but a bit on the heavy side at 8.5 pounds unscoped.

    Also you can't go wrong with a Marlin 39 M. This is an out of production Marlin lever action carbine with a straight "Western" stock and lever and a bull barrel. It was short, reasonably light, and VERY accurate. From a bench rest the one I had could print half inch 5 shot groups on a wind less day all day long! Alas some one broke into my house and stole it! It there was one gun I could get back it would be that gun!

    I also would like to comment on others trepidation at "stoning" triggers. It is NOT something that you must be a gunsmith to do.

    You do need some common sense. Your goal is to smooth the mating surfaces WITHOUT removing much metal. This is easily accomplished by using at first a coarse stone only sparingly and then finer stones in succession sparingly till you get to a 600 grit or finer stone. I finish mine with a 1000 grit stone to a mirror finish if possible. I have done at least 25 – 50 such triggers and have ruined only one. And that one was fine till I lubed it with moly grease because the best I could get the pull to was 5 pounds. When I lubed it with moly it became a "hair trigger" which would go off if bumped hard. I simply reordered the hammer and sear from the manufacturer and started over. The end result was about 2.5 # real nice trigger pull.

    So if you use some sense, go slow, and test frequently you can easily stone any trigger successfully. And you must have a trigger pull gauge to do this. You disassemble, stone some, reassemble, test pull and rinse and repeat as many times as necessary to get the pull you want. Expect it to take anywhere from 2 hours to as much as 15 hours to get it right without ruining the parts. The Ruger 10-22 I mentioned earlier took me about 15 hours to get it right. And part of that time was spent hand manufacturing a trigger stop pin to eliminate over travel.

    A warning here….do NOT alter the angles of the hammer or sear. That should only be done by professionals with the correct jigs to hold the hammers and sears while working on them. If you attempt that without the benefit of the correct equipment and knowledge you WILL ruin the parts.

    Also be VERY careful working on air gun triggers. All firearms trigger have case hardened parts. Most air gun triggers are not case hardened. Which means you can remove too much metal very quickly.

    The ONLY modification I have ever made to an air gun trigger is to polish it with a dremel tool and a felt wheel using polishing rouge. And you must be careful not to allow the metal to heat up. And I use moly paste to lubricate them. Only other modification on air gun triggers is replace it with a Charlie da Tuna drop in if one is available for your model.

  47. Trout UG and PCP4Me,

    Thank you both for the additional suggestions. I find that I now have to put together an Excel spreadsheet and start researching pricing.

    I have a very good friend who is a member of the Charlotte Gun Club who is keeping his eye open for a good used bargain. He mentioned a Remington 521T but we'll see. There's no hurry here. I'm going to enjoy the research and the hunt.

    As for trigger work, Trout UG, that's good advice. I polished the sear of my Disco using rouge and my dremel to get a nice, shiny finish, not mirror. Like you, I was concerned with removing too much material. But I can tell you that the TKO mod for this Crosman trigger is marvelous.

    Fred PRoNJ

  48. Fred,

    PCP4ME again. I would urge you not to consider price when you pick your rifle.

    Get the best you can afford even if it means saving and waiting.

    Let me rate the guns I reviewed for you in the order I would want to buy them if I was getting them now.

    1) Marlin 39M "Mountie" For me this gun was a perfect weight, perfect fit and only the 541 S Remington was as accurate. At 100 yards I could sometimes get 1/4 inch 5 shot groups and I could on a calm day shoot shot gun primers out 5 of 10 X at 100 yards. It was never more than 1/2 inch 5 shot groups at 100 yards unless it was a briskly windy day. I had that trigger set at 3.5 pounds as it was a lever action and I was afraid to take that one down to 2 pounds. To me the "perfect" gun. All steel and wood. Easy to disassemble and clean and few working parts. Should last forever.

    2)Remington 541 S. Superbly accurate, adjustable trigger but a bit on the light side. It benefits from a higher power/heavier scope to give it the needed weight. You also lose the "neat" factor of the lever action here.

    3)My highly modified Ruger 10-22. Be care full with the "stock" modded ones that go from %500 to $1000. I do have extensive experience with those as my brother owned several and ditto some of my shooting buddies. NONE was as accurate as my highly modified one! Most were terribly heavy. In order to get away from that terribly heavy weight, some went with carbon fiber barrels which then made them too light! Also the carbon fiber barreled ones cost upward of $1000.

    My guess is you could accomplish the exact same thing with a $190 Volquartsen Custom drop in trigger and finding a really good gunsmith who would full length glass bed the barrel and action and put maybe $600 in the gun. Of course if you also want a fancy stock and other mods the roof is the limit.

    4)Weatherby .22 semi auto. This was a fun gun. Good weight and balance, quick handling and not quite as accurate. But 3/4 inch 5 shot groups at 50 yards are nothing to sneeze at and more than accurate enough to dispatch squirrels and other small critters. Other than the 541 S Remington this one required the least amount of work as it took less than 15 minutes to file down the post holding the adjustment screw about 1/4 inch and readjust the trigger to 2 # and loc tite it!

    5)Here I would place the rest as I have no experience with them. I hear Kimber and Ruger make some fine guns. I am sure there are other modern and old guns that would be winners also.

    But if I could have only one of these fine weapons it would be hands down the Marlin 39M "Mounty". I would only want one in excellent condition and would expect it would go somewhere from $600 – $1000. A lot to pay for a gun but it is truly an heirloom!!

  49. PCP4ME,

    thank you again for all this marvelous information. You've saved me a ton of time doing my own research. I'll add the Weatherby to the list. This might take a few months or so but I will let the list know what finally transpires.

    I'm fairly ignorant when it comes to rifles and pistols but having re-joined the AMA and reading everyone's comments here, I'm getting an education on what's happened since I stopped shooting regularly (back in the 70's).

    Fred PRoNJ

  50. Well I had a disappointing day of air gunning in the back yard. The new Benjamin XL-1100 has shot craps before making it to 150 rounds. The Nitro cylinder is total dead; no resistance to cocking. I have a detailed account of my review at:


    Look for Part 3. Parts 1 and 2 deal with the more promising aspects of my assessment of this air rifle.

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