by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman Mark I
Crosman Mark I target pistol.

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Hobby pellets
  • Crosman Premiers
  • RWS Superpoint
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today we look at the accuracy of the Crosman Mark I Target pistol. After adjusting the trigger in Part two, I feel confident it won’t let me down.

The test

I put in a fresh 12-gram CO2 cartridge. We learned in Part 2 that there are around 45 full-power shots in a cartridge and I plan to shoot less than that in today’s test. I will shoot a 5-shot group on high power and a second 5-shot group on low power with each pellet. That’s 10 shots per pellet times 3 pellets is a total of 30 shots. The range is 10 meters and the gun is rested directly on a sandbag. Let’s go.

Hobby pellets

The first group was shot with RWS Hobby pellets. The gun’s power was set on high. Five Hobbys made a very vertical 0.733-inch group.

Hobby group high
On high power the Mark I put 5 Hobbys into 0.733-inches at 10 meters. Not a bad group for an air pistol.

On low power, 5 of the same Hobby pellets went into 0.754-inches at the same 10 meters. This group isn’t quite as vertical and the point of impact dropped 1.8 inches.

Hobby group low
On low power the Mark I put 5 Hobbys into 0.754-inches at 10 meters.

Wadcutter pellets like Hobbys are easiest to see when they tear holes in target paper. Domes, however, can be more accurate. Let’s try some.

Crosman Premiers

The next pellet I tried was the venerable Crosman Premier. When they came to market in the mid-’90s airgunners suddenly realized that their vintage Crosman pellet guns were a lot more accurate than they thought. The gun that surprised everyone the most was the 160 rifle that went from being a plinker to a real target rifle. But the Mark I and II pistols also benefitted. Let’s see.

On high power the Mark I put 5 Premier pellets into a 0.442-inch group at 10 meters. It’s the smallest group of the test and can be covered by a CR2032 button battery or by an American penny. That’s some shootin’ and it makes me quite proud of this old air pistol.

Premier group high
Five Crosman Premiers shot on high power went into 0.442-inches at 10 meters. That’s the smallest group of the test.

On low power the Premier group dropped 2.4 inches and opened to 1.025-inches for 5 shots. Notice that both these groups are centered on the bull, where both Hobby groups were slightly right of center.

Premier group low
On low power the Premier pellets opened to this 1.025-inch group.

RWS Superpoint

The last pellet I tested was the RWS Superpoint. I had no idea how these would do because I don’t think I have ever shot them in a Mark I before. Pointed pellets don’t usually shoot accurately, although I have reported on some exceptions in the past. On high power 5 pellets went into 1.537-inches at 10 meters. It is the largest group of the test, so obviously Superpoints are not right for the Mark I Target.

Superpoint group high
On high power 5 RWS Superpoint pellets went into 1.537-inches at 10 meters. This is the largest group of the test.

I thought, after seeing this group, that the low power group would be even larger, but it wasn’t. On low power the Mark I Target put 5 Superpoint pellets into a 1.23-inch group at 10 meters. This group is centered about 2.3 inches below the high-power group.

Superpoint group low
On low power the Mark I put 5 Superpoints into 1.23-inches at 10 meters.

Discussion

I am satisfied with the performance of the pistol. It’s accurate — especially with Crosman Premiers. And the trigger is very sweet. This series makes me want to get a .177-caliber Mark II to go along with this one.

The power of the gun is fine and I’m getting a reasonable number of shots for the power that’s available. This is an airgun I don’t shoot all the time but I never want to get rid of it. It’s nice to know I can shoot it when I want to.

Summary

The Crosman Mark I Target pistol surprised me with more power and a better trigger than I had expected. How nice to know this vintage airgun still has what it takes!

Postscript

I went to a good gun show last Saturday. It was the first show I have been to in a long time. I picked up a Crosman 1377 that I plan to test for you. I also bought an old rimfire Flobert rifle of some unknown caliber around .30. I don’t know what I will do with it yet, but we shall see.