ASG CZ 75 Shadow 2 airsoft pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

CZ75 Shadow 2
ASG’s CZ 75 Shadow 2 airsoft pistol.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • The history of airsoft
  • BB gun wars
  • Airsoft shooters
  • How accurate is airsoft?
  • This pistol
  • 0.25 gram “BBs”
  • Biodegradeable
  • Remove the magazine floorplate
  • Fill
  • Load BBs
  • Velocity
  • Trigger pull
  • Slide blows back
  • Accuracy
  • Summary

Get ready for an odd report! Today we look at the velocity of the ASG CZ 75 Shadow 2 airsoft pistol. As I told you in Part 1, this is not your run-of-the-mill airsoft pistol. It retails for $180 and is considered a serious competition airsoft gun — just as the thousand-plus dollar firearm (suggested retail of $1,349.00 for the USPSA Production Division) equivalent is considered ready-to-go right out of the box. Of course no champion will ever leave a gun alone — be it firearm or airsoft, so look for another $500 to $1,000 worth of modifications and accessories to be to be bought/made for/ to the airsoft gun — so long as they remain within the rules.

I have officially given up buying a 9mm firearm for every airgun lookalike I own, and that’s a good thing, because this one would push me to the limit.

The history of airsoft

Airsoft is relatively recent. It was invented in the orient — Japan, I’m pretty sure. It was developed so people with a desire to own guns could have something realistic without endangering anyone. The early guns were extremely realistic and some sold for thousands of dollars. A wooden-stocked Browning Automatic Rifle that you can buy today for just $300 once sold for well over $3,000 when airsoft was new. Of course the older gun was made with many actual firearm parts and was fully the equal in size (47 inches) and weight (24 lbs. for the M1922) of the firearm. Today’s gun is engineered to be produced and has no firearm parts whatsoever. At “just” 11 lbs. it’s a lightweight. But it’s a very impressive thing, nonetheless.

For many years airsoft just fulfilled the collector’s dream of a realistic thing that was also legal to own. Its principal market was Japan, where firearms ownership is generally prohibited.

BB gun wars

However, airsoft had one redeeming aspect. It wasn’t that powerful. The guns are made to launch 6mm plastic balls that the Asian manufacturers call BBs at low velocities. Boys being boys all around the world, it wasn’t long before the guns were pressed into service for “capture the flag” skirmishes. The press said it was a safer alternative to paintball, where people were getting injured, and indeed it was, but what it actually did was shift the BB-gun wars from real BB guns to airsoft.

And before long the cry went out for more power! They said velocity, not knowing that it equates to power. And today the world of airsoft is split into divisions that include the skirmishers, the history buffs and the shooters. We have now at least identified the first two groups, but who are these shooters?

Airsoft shooters

I don’t think target shooting has taken off yet, but action pistol shooting — called International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) for firearms and Action Air for airsoft has. If you want to see some of the best, watch this video.

How accurate is airsoft?

My introduction to airsoft came at the 1999 SHOT Show in Atlanta. I was visiting the Leapers booth and owner, David Ding asked me if I wanted to try an airsoft gun. I said no, I was just interested in accurate airguns. He then proceeded to shoot a small wastepaper basket that was 100 feet away five times in succession and I was hooked! “I’ll take several, thank you!”

These were spring guns that sold for about $20 retail, so we are not talking high tech. They were M1911A1 repeaters whose slide had to be manually retracted for each shot. Back at my motel room I was able to get about 17 feet of distance and, once I found the aim point, I could not miss a hotel soap bar. For those who don’t know, hotel soap bars are about the size of a lollypop that’s been in your mouth for half an hour — at least they are in the hotels where I stay. A matchbook is larger.

I could not believe the accuracy of this cheap little airgun. It shot flat and true for over 150 feet. Edith and I were popping the neighbor’s hubcaps surreptitiously for days! As weak as the guns are they made a satisfying “clink” when they hit, but left no mark on even a dusty surface.

Well, that got me into airsoft! For the next several years I wrote about airsoft for my newsletter, for Shotgun News, and even for this blog and for the Pyramyd Air articles section. I tested a lot of the automatic electric guns (AEG), tuned up a couple sniper rifles and even shot some odd guns that had dual magazines for green gas and CO2. I even made a film about airsoft for one of the larger retailers in California.

This pistol

This pistol operates on CO2 — a powerful gas that isn’t normally used for airsoft. The gas that’s more common is green gas that has a vapor pressure of about 115 psi at room temperature. CO2 runs at 850-900 psi at room temp., so the valve has to control it, because the 6mm balls it shoots are so light they offer little resistance.

0.25 gram “BBs”

The plastic balls this gun shoots weigh 0.25 grams, which is nominally 3.86 grains. While that’s on the heavy side for airsoft, it’s even lighter than a steel BB. ASG sent me a large bottle (3,000 count) of 6mm 0.25-gram BBs to test with the gun, so I weighed a few. Of five BBs, four weighed 3.9 grains and one weighed 4.0 grains. Steel BBs should be so close!

Biodegradeable

The BBs they sent are biodegradable, which means I can shoot them in my back yard and not work about where they go.

I have other BBs I will try when I test the gun for accuracy. Airsoft ammo has just as big an impact on accuracy as any other ammo.

Remove the magazine floorplate

Let’s get to the good stuff. To load a CO2 cartridge, the magazine floorplate must be removed. It’s held on by a spring-loaded pin through the plate and at first I thought it was one of the old designs that needs a pen to push down on the pin as you remove the plate. Then I read the manual and learned that no tools are required. This mag is designed so the pin can be retracted by your finger while holding the mag.

CZ75 mag floorplate 1
The floorplate has been removed so you can see this better. My thumb is about to pull the spring-loaded pin out of the way so the mag floorplate can be removed.

CZ75 mag floorplate 2
And here the spring-loaded pin is pulled down out of the way. The floorplate comes off easily because of this feature.

The reason this is important is because the floorplate has to be removed every time you change cartridges. That is, it does if you want the gun to look realistic. It is possible to just use the magazine without the floorplate being attached. All you loose is the look. In fact, when I tested the velocity that’s how I did it.

Fill

Once the floorplate was off there was access to the screw cap that puts tension on the CO2 cartridge. I installed a fresh 12-gram CO2 cartridge, using the large Allen wrench that came with the pistol. ASG sent me a spare magazine, as well, and that also came with an Allen wrench of its own. Naturally I put a drop of Crosman Pellgunoil on the tip of the cartridge before inserting it.

I noted that when I turned the wrench the cartridge was pierced but the gas didn’t seal right away like it does on some airguns. I had to put an additional half-turn on the wrench to seal it. Sometimes these things seal so fast you don’t even hear them puncture, but this time I needed to go a little farther to seal the cartridge. I expect that will be the case every time.

Load BBs

The gun was now pressurized and it was time to load the BBs. For that you pull down on the follower in the magazine and drop the BBs in the follower groove where it gets wider near the bottom. The manual says the magazine holds 26 rounds. I was able to put 24 BBs in and there was one void in the stack where a BB was missed.

CZ75 mag BBs
I got 24 BBs into the magazine without much trouble. Loading it full takes a lot of care!

You have to hold the follower down as you load the BBs. I haven’t found a way to lock it in place like many magazines have. That would be an improvement, because those little plastic balls are slippery and difficult to control!

Velocity

Now let’s test the velocity. The manual says the pistol outputs 1.0 joule, which is 0.738 foot-pounds. To get that energy a 0.25-gram ball (3.86-grain) must go 294 f.p.s.

I tested only the 0.25-gram biodegradable balls that ASG sent with the gun. I shot fast, taking only the time necessary to record the velocity. That’s a shot about every 3-5 seconds. The pistol is semiautomatic, which made it easy. Here are 10 shots.

Shot…………Velocity
1………………304
2………………301
3………………306
4………………317
5………………305
6………………311
7………………311
8………………307
9………………306
10……………..311

The average for this string is 308 f.p.s. That works out to 0.81 foot-pounds or 1.1 joules. Pretty close to the spec!

Trigger pull

This pistol fires in both the double action and single action modes. The double action pull is 6 lbs. 8 oz. which is phenomenally light for a double action trigger pull. A revolver owner will pay a lot to get a pull that light!

The single action trigger pull is 1 lb. 5 oz. The only handguns I own with triggers that are lighter are two FWB 10-meter target pistols and an IZH 46. This is a drop-dead gorgeous trigger!

Slide blows back

The metal slide blows back on every shot. It gives a sensation of recoil, though it’s pretty light.

Accuracy

Because this is an airsoft gun that only shoots 300 f.p.s. and because the BBs I’m shooting are white, it was easy to see how this pistol is shooting. Get as far back from my dark gray fence as possible (20 yards?) and shoot at the fence. With the BBs going that slow it’s easy to see if they curve to the right or to the left. But they didn’t curve at all! Wonder of wonders, they shot as straight as a laser, because the backspin on the ball also didn’t allow them to drop. For you American readers, shooting this pistol is like watching a major league pitcher throw a fastball that’s a rope!

If the BBs had been off to one side or the other I was prepared to field-strip the pistol and adjust the Hop Up. I showed that adjustment to you in part 1.

CZ75 Hop Up
To adjust the Hop Up (that controls where the BBs go — left or right) it’s necessary to field-strip the pistol.

Summary

So far I am, to quote the 17th-century British sailor, “Impressed!” I wish “they” would make a version of this pistol as a real BB gun with a tight barrel in the style of the M1 Carbine and the new Umarex Legends Cowboy Lever Action BB gun. Bob Li — now I’m pulling your chain, because you want this as much as I do.

Realism and quality this fine need to be spread around. I can’t wait to see how it shoots!

33 thoughts on “ASG CZ 75 Shadow 2 airsoft pistol: Part 2

  1. B.B., aka the Great Enabler

    Now you are making this gun very interesting. Please don’t get me started on airsoft guns. Make sure the groups on part 3 are horrible.

    Don


  2. B.B.,

    Accurate airsoft seems to be an oxymoron in my limited experience. Then again one should get what one has paid for.

    Getting impressed sounds better than getting shanghaied.

    Siraniko



  3. Ohh, now classic airsoft guns were something else.
    Asahi (not the camera company) made some outstanding replicas in the 80’s and 90’s.

    There’s a topic for a future blog.

    And yes, to me airsoft guns are airguns, just a different type.
    Like B B guns, and pellet guns.

    Due to the popularity of airsoft guns, a lot of the replica pellet and B B guns we are starting to enjoy were first produced in airsoft form.

    Yes as much as we don’t want to believe it, world wide, there are probably MANY more airsoft shooters than us conventional airgunners.



  4. Airsoft… interesting – in a casual sort of way for me.

    I am not into replica pistols, less BB pistols and even less Co2 BB pistols – the (lack of) performance and the slow shooting cycle (due to cooling) just kills any interest.

    Never looked at AirSoft products and (through my ignorance) thought that anything that shot plastic projectiles was a toy. Now I am reading that they are accurate and have a decent range.

    You got me B.B. – bring it on, I’d like to hear more about these airguns.

    Hank


  5. BB,

    I have really made a concerted effort to stay away from paintball and airsoft, but you are starting to make that a difficulty. If the manufacturers continue to make quality airsoft guns that operate on CO2 capsules or HPA I may have to dabble with this a bit. I do like the availability of biodegradable ammo.

    You made no mention of the shot count per capsule.



    • RR
      Paint ball has never crossed my mind. Well I shouldn’t say that. I know it’s there but it just don’t interest me.

      But on the other hand if they are accurate and I can paint some feral cans blue out at a reasonable distance then I guess I could like paint ball guns.

      Now air soft. That’s another story. I did try some air soft some time back. And that was at a time when I was really picky about my pellet guns being very accurate. So I was very skeptical about air soft guns.

      I guess I got the right ones because they gave a good impression to me. One was a sniper gun and scoped it was a good shooter at 35 yards and could do 50 yards with the right size target. Think about it. The sniper rifle was supposed to make kills on life size people at longer distances. So I got a accurate air soft gun basically. That usually makes a person want more.

      The other was a semi-auto pistol that had a select fire that could shoot full auto just like the firearm it copied. Need I say anymore. You know how I am with a full auto or semi-auto gun. Yep it was fun as long as I didn’t push it to far out of it’s usable range.

      This pistol BB is reviewing will be one to watch I believe. And that’s exactly what I’m doing.


  6. As we all know, there are different expectations of accuracy.

    BB guns are shot at 5 meters, pellets at 10 meters.

    The accuracy level of airsoft guns are not 10 meter match accuracy.

    But the accuracy of a quality gun, shooting quality projectiles is quite impressive at some amazing distances.


    • Ian,

      If I am able to hit feral soda cans reliably at 25 yards with a quality airsoft gun operating on CO2 or HPA, I can be tempted. If it is also selective fire the temptation level rises further.


      • That level of accuracy is entirely possible.

        And the full auto stream of white plastic bb’s is like moving a water hose stream.

        I have seen medium priced guns hit a palm sized target at 50 yards all day long.

        Quality projectiles are a major component of the equation.


        • 45Bravo
          “I have seen medium priced guns hit a palm sized target at 50 yards all day long.”

          That’s the exsperiance I had with air soft.

          I would like to hear if anyone has tryed paintball and shot them like we do pellet guns. That be accurately.



  7. Good morning all.

    Maybe 15 years ago I had a Tippmann 98 with an optional barrel.. the “Flatline” barrel. It was literally but subtly banana shaped! Talk about inducing backspin.. paintballs would just sail away like on a wire. The biggest drawback to me was they would have far too little energy to actually break at the extended ranges.

    Have any of you encountered backspin in bb guns? I have a P08 that frequently, but not always, shoots bbs that climb well above the sight line. Sometimes the shots arc up and left, or up and right. It is a useless gun for close targets. But when things are just right, I can shoot a skillet at 50 yards, watching the bb’s virtually flat trajectory the whole way. That happens maybe 3 bbs per co2, but it is tantalizing. I’ve long wished I could figure out what’s up with that gun, and how to make that action more reliable. Other bb guns in my collection have done that to a much lesser degree and from time to time, something I attribute to a little blown through oil settling in just the right spot in the barrel. But that P08 very rarely shoots like a “normal” gun, hinting there’s something else at work… some nearly perfect defect.

    Anyway, just curious. Thanks!




      • Hey GF1

        That’s supposed to be a reasonably good brand, or at least it was back in the day.

        As I remember it, that’s optimistic. I think milk jugs were more a 50 foot target than a 50 yard target. But honestly, that was a long time ago!


    • NTOG,

      I have an Avanti 499 lever action bb rifle. The barrel comes right out. It just unscrews. I have used small, but very strong magnets in a variety of configurations,…. up to 10 or so. Spiral, all top, all bottom, half and half, all forwards or all aft. I do believe things improved,… but it has been awhile. I would have to revisit my targets. It did not hurt any,…. that I can say for sure.

      The 499 is insane accurate to begin with anyways. This of course was an attempt to induce bb back-spin with magnetism, not direct contact as in paintball? and air soft.

      Welcome too,… by the way,…………. Chris 🙂


      • Hi Chris,

        Thanks!

        I have one of those too, but never thought to use it as a testbed. I did think about doing the hotrod mods I’d read about, but in the end wound up just leaving it alone… for now. 😉

        I wonder if you might be able to use the magnets to draw the bb against the top of the barrel? At that point it’d be mechanical, not magnetically induced of course. But it might be a reliable way of doing it mechanically! What was the outcome of your experiments?


        • NTOG,

          You are right, it would be mechanical at the point because of the bb touching the barrel in a controlled manner. Short on time now (work day) and I will be out the door in an hour. I made a note and will get back you this evening.

          Mine is “hot rodded” by the way with a Red Ryder spring.

          Till then,……….. Chris


        • NTOG,

          Good evening. The accuracy was no better or worse with magnets. The mod is a Red Ryder spring only. Point of impact (from aim) went from a 3″ drop at 41′ to a 1″ drop with the RR spring, sights unchanged (from my usual dead on 24′ normal sight setting). I did modify a TX200 piston seal and shaved the front lip as it is more pliable as opposed to the hard, white plastic of the 499 stock seal. No real fps was gained though with the TX seal.

          FPS went from 247 avg. to 412 fps with the RR spring.

          Cocking effort went from 5 1/2# to 10 1/2# with the RR spring.

          Accuracy is still as good with the RR spring as it was stock,… which is excellent. There is a considerable more “thump” with the RR spring.

          The biggest hassle is the safety on reinstall. Use the homemade fork tool to compress the spring. A washer is highly recommended to install and push on.

          Here is a good link,….

          https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php?threads/putting-a-little-more-power-in-a-15-00-daisy.807316/page-9

          Trigger pull was basically unchanged at around 2# 4oz..

          Hope some of that is found to be interesting,……….. Chris


          • Some of it? All of it! Great stuff, and thank you for sharing! Hmm.. maybe (yet another) project to consider.. with all the other projects queued up already 😉

            Thank you for sharing!


            • NTOG,

              The other 2 times I messed with magnets on air guns was the multi-pump 880 and 760. The 760 has a solid, unshrouded barrel. The 880 was for arrow shooting. It is shrouded and I took a tubing cutter and cut it off as far back as I could, then epoxied the gap. At that point, the barrel is exposed. An aluminum arrow (shortened) fit right over the barrel. It did work,… that is if you call a weak, slow 30′ working. I was pretty new back then. 🙂

              As for magnets, all 3 guns were played with. Sometimes,…. I would get astounding results with a magnet set up, then it would not repeat the same results consistently.

              Looking again, the 760 did show a higher POI (by about a 1/2″) with the magnets at the muzzle end and on top. So,.. I guess it did influence the trajectory some like the air soft hop-up. 5 pumps and 41′, 5 shot groups.

              Chris


            • NTOG,

              By the way, the disc magnets are (very) strong ones that I picked up at Walmart in the craft section. Silver in color. They are .315″ in diameter and .117″ thick. They are small enough that they could be applied to the 499 barrel and still get the barrel back in the shroud. Those are the same ones I used on the 880 and 760. The 880 is probably the best candidate with it’s thin barrel, but the shroud needs cut off. The 760 was ok, but the barrel is much thicker.

              I recall now too that the bb’s would stick at the magnet area. A bamboo BBQ skewer nudged the bb past that point and then it would drop as normal. (the 499).

              Chris



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