Crosman 102 multi-pump pneumatic repeater: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman 102
Crosman’s 102 is a .22 caliber multi-pump repeater.

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • More than one shot per fill?
  • How many pumps?
  • The test
  • Sights
  • Pellet feed
  • RWS Meisterkugeln
  • Crosman wadcutters
  • RWS Hobbys
  • Crosman Premiers
  • Now 10 shots
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today we look at the accuracy of the Crosman 102 repeating multi-pump pellet rifle. The last time I shot this rifle was back before the SHOT Show in January. I kept putting it off for no reason that I can remember.

More than one shot per fill?

Since it is a repeater, does it get more than one shot per fill? It’s not supposed to. There are multi-pumps that do get more than one shot per fill and I will be covering one of them for you — a rare Benjamin 700. But that’s not today. The 102 has to be pumped for every shot.

How many pumps?

If you take the time to read Part 2 you will see that I discovered that this rifle doesn’t need more than 5 pump strokes to achieve its best velocity. I tested it to 8 strokes, but after 5 strokes the velocity increase got really small.

Then a reader found an old manual for the 102 that said it has a efficient new style of pump that needs no more than 4 strokes to achieve maximum power. I had tested this rifle to 8 strokes because I was unaware of that. And yet my test proved it over the chronograph. The difference between the recommended 4 strokes and the 5 that I found to be best has to do with the individual airgun. It is another example of why owning a chronograph is so important for an airgunner.

The test

Today I shot the rifle from a rest at 10 meters. I pumped the gun 4 times per shot. The pumping is so easy with this rifle that I don’t mind it one bit. The rifle is also very quiet. So quiet that the cat who always complains about the noise went to sleep on the floor next to the shooting bench. She never does that!

I shot 5 of each type of pellet and then 10 of the pellet that looked the best. That way the pumping didn’t get overwhelming.

Sights

The sights are adjustable, but for today I left them where they were when I got the rifle. I discovered they were close enough on the first shot, so I left them alone.

Pellet feed

You probably don’t remember but the 102 has a 20-round tube that holds pellets until the bolt is operated. The hole for the pellets is very short which limits the pellets that can be used. There is no easy way to load a pellet other than through this hole into the gravity-feed magazine.

That said, if the pellets fit through the hole in the magazine, they will load into the breech. The 102 is the slickest-feeding pellet repeater I have ever used. Most pellets that fit are wadcutters but the Crosman Premier is a dome that also works very well.

RWS Meisterkugeln

The first pellet tested was the RWS Meisterkugeln wadcutter. They hit a little above and slightly to the left of the center of the bullseye, in a 5-shot group that measures 0.434-inches between centers.

Meisterkugeln group
Five RWS Meisterkugeln pellets went into 0.434-inches at 10 meters.

Meisterkugeln pellets loaded a little hard because they were almost too long to fit through the loading hole. When I fed them into the breech I could feel some resistance, too.

Crosman wadcutters

The second pellet I tested was a vintage Crosman Wadcutter. These fit through the hole in the magazine easily and they dropped down the magazine tube rapidly. Five of these 14.3-grain pellets went into 0.599-inches at 10 meters. That’s not bad for an inexpensive pellet.

Crosman wadcutter group
The Crosman wadcutter group was only a little larger than the Meisterkugeln group, at 0.599-inches for 5 shots.

RWS Hobbys

Next up were RWS Hobbys. Like the Meisterkugeln pellets, Hobbys were tight through the loading port and they fed a little tight into the breech. But they did group well. Five went into 0.411-inches between centers. They edged out the Meisterkugelns by a smidgeon that is almost too close to call.

Hobby group
Five RWS Hobby pellets went into 0.411-inches at 10 meters. This was the best 5-shot group of the test, by a small margin.

Crosman Premiers

Crosman Premiers were the only domed pellet I tried, because they also fit through the short hole in the magazine. At 10 meters 5 of them went into a rather open group that measured 0.672-inches between centers. I think that’s okay, but they are not the pellet I would choose for this rifle.

Premier group
Five Crosman Premiers went into a open group that measured 0.672-inches between centers at 10 meters. While not that bad, it isn’t as tight as the other pellets.

Now 10 shots

Now that I had tested 4 different pellets, I wanted to shoot the best one in a 10-shot group. Through the spotting scope that looked like the RWS Hobby, and measurement proved that it was, though Meisterkugelns were nearly as tight. The rifle was so easy to pump and shoot that I found myself looking forward to it.

Ten Hobbys went into 0.415-inches at 10 meters. That is so close to the 5 shot measurement that it’s really a wash! And it tells the story of this entire test. The Crosman 102 is accurate and also a real pleasure to shoot!

Hobby 10-shot group
Ten RWS Hobbys went into a group measuring 0.415-inches at 10 meters. This rifle can shoot!

Discussion

Shooting the 102 put me in mind of owning a vintage car. It’s like a 1940 Ford. Yes it’s a car and it does drive, but you need to be prepared for the experience. It’s not like a modern car that’s controlled by computer chips. This is one you must get to know and feel to get the best out of it.

Pumping the gun is light and easy. If only all multi-pumps were so easy. Of course there is not much power, but I find myself not caring that much because it’s so fun to shoot.

Summary

I was surprised by how easy and pleasant this was. I expected a lot less than I got. I expected the 102 would be going away after this test, but now I find myself wondering what it will do at 25 yards. We will find out, because this one is staying with me!

48 thoughts on “Crosman 102 multi-pump pneumatic repeater: Part 3

  1. B.B.,

    That’s always a wonderful surprise for a sleeper to be screamer. The improvement in the rear sight was probably for production not for the end user.

    Siraniko.


    • Siraniko,

      I myself would probably not use the word “improvement”, however from looking at the loading mechanism I would say “necessity” of design. Now I would say that it is likely easier to adjust those sights than on the 100 and 101 and probably just as precise.


  2. I have always seen the 100 series guns floating around, but have never had the opportunity to shoot or own one.

    Since I am kinda into the vintage guns, I guess I need to put one on my list…

    Can’t wait to see what it does at 25 yards.


  3. B.B.,

    I would guess this gun has the same pump handle and linkage as the rest of the 100-102 series Crosman rifles. That would mean that the piston head and dead space is the difference in the pumping effort. I would guess this one has a little more dead space at the end of the compression stroke than the 100 and 101. That is giving the lower pump force and the velocity topping out at 5 pumps. I would bet the connecting rod could be lengthened a smidgen and get a tad more velocity.

    I was doing some chrony tests on my Dragonfly today and it is showing the same characteristics, the velocity is topping out with 6 pumps. My velocity did not increase after 6 pumps. I may have to do a check but I would bet with 15 pumps my Dragonfly would still get near the same velocity as 6 pumps. Once the valve pressure equals the maximum dead air pressure you can pump all you want and the velocity will not increase. The Dragonfly has a short pump stroke/volume so the dead space in the pump has a much larger effect on the velocity than the Crosman or Benjamin multi-pumps.

    Maybe this will get me off the rail and finish my program on the physics of a multi-pump. Forty years ago it would take me a few minutes to finish but now I need to relearn my vector mechanics and I can’t find my book. I will give it a go in the next two weeks while off grid.

    I also want to do a comparison of pump strokes verses energy (foot-pounds) to compare some of the multi-pumps. My guess is that the Apache Fire Ball is at the top pump force versus energy curve and does not pump much harder than the Crosman 101 or the Benjamin 312, Not sure why the Benjamin 392 is harder to pump than the 312 but it feels that way.

    There is a point of maximum pump force on a multi-pump that occurs before the maximum pressure is reached at the end of the pump stroke. That can be optimized for a given pump geometry and valve reservoir capacity if I ever finish my equations.

    Enough rambling, if you get any spare time let me know if the pump linkage dimensions on the Crosman 102 is similar to the 101.

    It will be interesting to see how the 102 does at 25 yards.

    Don



      • Dave,

        Will do, Halfstep has offered to help. I have been lazy. I will be working on it over the next couple of weeks. It is a simple excel spread sheet, i will make available to whoever wants a copy.

        The main thing left is an equation that calculates the force on the pump handle from the force on the piston. It should take me ten minuites, but that was 40 years ago.

        Don


  4. BB,

    LOL! The Enabler enabled himself! I am glad because I might have been tempted to find a room for her at RidgeRunner’s Home For Wayward Airguns. The appeal of shooting these old airguns is such a joy.


  5. B.B.,

    Glad that it worked well at 10 meters and looking forwards the 25 yard testing. (kind of like a 50 yard test for a more powerful gun or a 100 yard for a big boomer) Always a treat to see what the upper limits of something are.

    Good Day to you and to all,…… Chris


  6. B.B.
    I am also looking foward to the 25 yard testing. I think you should not write off the crosman premiers just yet. My feeling is that the dome pellet will not increase group size as much as the wadcutter at the longer range.
    Gerald



  7. BB
    So the 102 is saying to us all check me out in it’s on nonchalant way. I can do 10 shot groups as well as I did 5 shot group’s. How about that!

    That makes me think that just maybe this 102 can repeat itself on a daily basis.

    Now is when you say. Yep you 102 we got to spend some more time together. And then you just nicely remind it that it’s only going to get harder the farther out you try. But that old 102 just might have more up it’s sleeve than we think. It’s just sitting back and waiting for the next time you shoot it.

    After all it’s BB that’s got his hands on it this time. And people are going to see. So now that 102 says. Do I really show them what I can do? Should I surprise them now or just tease them a little more so I can maybe get to shoot out to 35 yards next?

    Well I think I like this old 102’s style. I think it’s a smart old gun. And it’s just calmly saying. What do you want to learn today.

    I say that there is more to learn about this 102. Then maybe we can learn how to shoot it best for what it knows how to do. 🙂


  8. Hmmmm. Do we have the beginnings of a new noise standard description here? One sleeping cat, two sleeping cats, one sleeping one leaving?

    Fred formerly from the DPRoNJ now in GA


  9. B.B.,

    I like the car analogy. We have an automobile restoration company in New Caney, TX. I know there are many but this fellow boasts the largest parts inventory in the southern U.S. and has customers in Europe. They are steadily at it, as I suspect some airgun restorers are.
    This morning I noticed my other habit; I reach in my pocket for the car key before I remember I don’t have one.
    Whether cars or firearms it is easy when there is no rush but there are situations where habit can be an asset or a death trap, as in the shootout in Florida a couple of decades (or so) ago where law enforcement officers were policing their brass in the middle of the fire fight. Training needs to be as realistic as it can be.

    ~ken


  10. Kenholmz,

    I can’t believe that policing their brass during a fire fight wouldn’t have been overcome by their self-preservation instinct! But I guess if your firearms instruction team was a bunch of marionettes and clean range freaks that might happen. It might also be a case of trainees being allowed to get away with picking up brass to make a few extra bucks at the range. Whatever it was it was stupid! I know the Safety/Bean counters tried to do away with spin training for US Navy pilots saying that it was more costly in lives and equipment than just letting people in the Fleet just have spin accidents. Fortunately the warfighters realized that spin training was more than Risk Management; it allowed pilot trainees to see the entire flight envelope rather than never knowing how far an aircraft can be taken.

    UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES!

    The biggest problem with the Progressive approach vs the true Conservative approach to things.

    shootski


  11. Figured I would post some info about getting the regulated pressure figured out for my.25 Condor SS.

    I found that the gun shoots most consistently out at 100 yards at 1700 psi down to 1300 psi. And by that I mean repeatability no matter when I pick up the gun to shoot. That same day on multiple fills. Or shot at two day intervals. The gun hits consistently.

    So now I believe I can say that I need a average of 1500 psi working pressure. That means I need the regulator set around 1500 psi on my bottle to get the amount of air flow to the barrel that’s needed. And bottle volume is another story.

    Bottle volume will happen after the regulated pressure gets worked out. I now need to shoot with the adapter and that working regulated pressure to see if the adapter needs opened up to get velocity.

    Once I get those things done. Then it’s getting the right volume bottle for the shot count I want.

    Wanted to post that so ya all know I’m still messing with it. But I have confidence that I will have a regulated high for checking Condor SS that can shoot 100+ yards consistently when I’m done.

    Just like researching a new gun you want to buy before you get it. Likewise when modding. You got to research what happens. All in time.


    • This should say.
      “But I have confidence that I will have a regulated high (for checkin) Condor SS that can shoot 100+ yards consistently when I’m done.”

      But I have confidence that I will have a regulated high (fpe) Condor SS that can shoot 100+ yards consistently when I’m done.


  12. BB
    Tinkering with my DPMS SBR and decided to see if the short barrel I removed from my HellBoy could be used to extend the 10″ barrel in the DPMS and it sure can. Self centers and lines up perfectly with the barrel retainer built into the quad RIS and adding a few Airsoft outer barrel extensions with a washer installed hold it in place nice and tight. The end result, a 24″ split barrel.

    I have not shot the rifle yet in stock barrel length or extended to see if there is any gain in velocity or detrimental effects.

    I searched Bing on the internet for any info on the best barrel length for a CO2 airgun and of course it referred to your 2005 blog on barrel lengths. Didn’t surprise me at all. What did surprise me was Siranikos entry in this old blog dated this year then noticed many others entered throughout the 13 years.

    In it you stated there are no barrel extensions and that a longer replacement barrel would be the way to go. Springers perhaps?
    I’m sure I have seen many CO2 pistol barrel extensions or fake silencers with the equivalent of a longer barrel inside it that do increase the velocity. Is it just that technology has improved over the years and CO2 airguns can in fact benefit from having a two piece extended barrel, if it actually functions right

    Is it common for old blogs to be active for many years or is it just the ones that deal in general subjects applicable to most airguns? If so there must be a lot of reading to catch up on out there. Seems to be a lot of bloggers coming and going over the years too, fading passions being replaced with new ones ?

    Bob M



    • Bob,

      That whole split barrel thing is very cool. I think you are the first one I have heard of trying that. Luckily your DMPS format accommodates that modification. From what you say though, air soft and some Co2 rifles already deploy such tech.. I was not aware as I do not follow either air soft or Co2 closely at all. I do suppose that split barrels would be limited to air soft and bb’s though? I can’t see that working to well for pellets and rifle barrels with leade’s and crown’s. Plus, maybe different twist rates.

      With your interest in full auto bb rifles, I am surprised that you have not considered making some high capacity tube filled with bb’s and pushed by air,… or something. The limiting factor would be the Co2 cartridges, but with an air or some larger Co2 tanks, coupled with a high capacity feed system, that could definitely extend the fun. It is fun I am sure, but it seems like that there would be a whole lot a cartridge swapping and magazine re-loading between the short full auto excitement.

      All in all,…. very interesting.

      Chris

      .



    • Bob M,

      Some new blog posters put in there questions on the old blog that pertains to their question instead of the latest blog entry. Only B.B. and those following the blog comments by RSS can see those questions so only a few can answer. That’s when they get directed to post their questions to the current blog so that many more readers can see the question and many more can benefit from the discussion.

      The Umarex Morph: https://www.pyramydair.com/s/m/Umarex_MORPH_3X_CO2_Pistol_Rifle/2747 which B.B. reviewed: https://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2013/01/umarex-morph-3x-co2-bb-pistol-and-rifle-part-5/ is the closest to what you are currently doing. Note it is a BB firing gun not a pellet firing rifle.

      Siraniko



    • Mike,

      That is the ultimate in “cool”. I love the fine detail of the workmanship. Just one left you say,.. ehh? Mmmm?

      On second thought,….. 😉

      Chris


      • Chris,

        Looks good, made in the USA, would be a blast to shoot, but the price of admission is out of my reach and considering 1200 rounds per minute feeding it would get real expensive real fast.

        As a daydream very cool.

        Mike


        • Mike,

          I am not,… nor shall I ever be in that “price of admission club”. I do recall someone posting about a dream “shooting vacation” awhile back. Kind of like the high end, big game hunting trips,…. only you get to shoot big calibers and full autos till your heart’s content. While less cost,… I shall never be in that club either.

          Like you said,… fun to dream.

          Chris


  13. Split Barrels
    Thanks for all the replies guys. I totally forgot that my “Re-Morph” actually had had a barrel extension and after I did all that customizing too.
    Chris, there are plenty of ways to send mass quantities of BBs flying at a target, but I kind of like to have something that resembles a rifle instead of a contraption. Unless of course it looks absolutely mind blowing !

    I just spent all day retrieving my ex from the hospital and getting new prescriptions. Hopefully I will get to test out the barrel extension out tomorrow.
    I definitely got hooked on full-auto performance with real steel. Bump stocks just made it easier to aim but you can finagle just about any semi-auto into achieving it’s fastest cyclic rate. The fire ball and sound from firing 40 rounds of 223 in a few seconds from a Mini 14 just after sunset is a thing you’ll never forget.


    • Bob M,

      I went the opposite way. When I was young almost everything I shot was bolt action. Before I went in the service I was used to shooting groundhogs in the head at 500 yards. In the service I was given all sorts of automatic weapons to play with and had ample opportunity to burn up many rounds. After I quit playing with Uncle Sam I returned to my roots. Why shoot off thirty rounds when one will do. One shot, one kill.


      • RR
        Well I suppose if you line up 30 pop cans in a row one shot will do, but what’s the fun in that. Single shots are good for hunting and target shooting. Full auto is for exciting plinking with your friends, outside the military of course.
        In my 20 plus years in the Navy I don’t recall shooting a gun once, including boot camp. And rivet or paint guns don’t count.
        I did manage to get some range training with a 45 but that was only because a shipmate found out we could do some shooting for free.

        Off base it was an entirely different story but somewhat costly so I never got enough of it. I’m sure it would get old eventually like anything else done over and over again but I doubt I will ever reach that point shooting full-auto so infrequently. Unfortunately I had no firearm shooting experience in my youth.

        How the heck could you even see a groundhog head at 500 yards to shoot it? Unless you already knew where it was and had a very good scope. Great shooting.


        • Bob,

          It was a Remington 700 Varmint Special in .25-06. It had been glass beaded and free floated by a gunsmith. The rifle was zeroed at 300 yards. With the hand loads my father and I worked up for it you could put five shots in a 1″ circle at that range. It had a Weaver 12 x scope on top with very fine crosshairs. Even then the reticle was almost as wide as the groundhog’s head.

          On board ship I worked for a Marine Captain and had ample opportunities to play with many different “toys”. Perhaps my favorite was the M79 grenade launcher. The Ma Deuce was pretty nice also.


          • RR
            Sounds like something a military sniper would use today. Very impressive…!
            Ah yes ….Gotta love those toys capable of mass destruction.

            Fired a sort of Gatling gun device once. It mounted two M1 Carbine receivers on a tripod. It had an inertia developing crank wheel with trigger cams 180 degrees out that once spun up engaged when the trigger was pulled. 60 rounds of totally wild shots in a few seconds. After you stopped firing all the empty cases came down like brass rain. Actually needed big rocks to keep it on the ground.

            Those were the days, cheep ammo and carefree shooting.





                • Bob,

                  Not with those rifles. They are quite heavy and have little recoil with that round.

                  At that time all of the services had switched over to the Mattelomatic with the exception of the Navy. We were still carrying the M-14. Now that was a battle rifle.


  14. Hey all,

    Just finished up a session on the back porch with my Millitia shooting feral soda cans at 25 yards until I was bored.

    https://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2017/07/millita-breakbarrel-rifle-part-3/

    I am so thankful that most airgunners have no clue about these old gals. It is bad enough that I have to deal with the “professional” collectors to obtain these old air rifles and pistols at reasonable prices, but should the general population of plinkers come to the realization of the quality that is available for prices lower than what they are paying for new plinkers, the prices would skyrocket.

    What many do not realize is most of the air rifles and pistols of this era were designed for competition shooting. Almost all parts are of machined steel and more often than not the wood stocks are walnut. They are well built enough that no matter how bad a shape they are in, they can be restored to working condition without much trouble.

    I hope that most of you out there ignore what I was just ranting about and go on buying those new fangled toys as I have a couple of more I would like to provide boarding at RidgeRunner’s Home For Wayward Airguns.


  15. Greetings All from your resident Luddite
    I’ve continued to keep up with the blog, even tho I mostly have nothing to contribute. Also, being the Luddite that I am, I haven’t bothered to upgrade my photo equipment nor bothered to learn how to use my “smart” phone.
    Many months ago I mentioned here that I purchased a FWB124 way back in ’77 from the original Air Rifle Headquarters and I still had it. Also, the conversation got around to triggers, then eventually peep sites.
    So, on a whim, I tried taking another picture of my Feinwerkbau since my new “smart” phone is an Android and my laptop is Ubuntu Linux – mainly just to see if it was compatible and would work in a pinch. Anyway, what I submit here is a poorly taken picture of my very first air rifle and what is very likely my very last air rifle.


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