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Crosman Fire breakbarrel air rifle: Part Seven

Fire rifle
Crosman Fire breakbarrel air rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

This report covers:

  • Review
  • The test
  • First group
  • Group two
  • Adjusted the scope
  • Third group
  • What have I learned?
  • Back to BB
  • Summary

Today we return to look at the Crosman Fire breakbarrel air rifle. There is a big surprise coming — at least it was for me.

Review

I’m doing this test in the person of a new air rifle owner who has stumbled on this blog and is trying to apply the principles he has read. The Fire was all he could afford and since it came with a scope he thought it was a deal. But in shooting it he found that the scope that came bundled with the rifle didn’t focus at the distances he wanted to shoot, so he was fortunate to be able to upgrade to a UTG Bug Buster 3-12X32 scope. He mounted it on the rifle, sighted in and shot in Part 5. From that he was able to back up to 25 yards, which was covered in Part 6.

In Part 6 our fictitious owner discovered that the JSB 8.44-grain pellet was the most accurate in his rifle. Let’s see what he discovers today. I will now step into character.

The test

In the last test in Part 6 the final group I shot was with JSB 8.44-grain pellets. Five went into 0.537-inches at 25 yards. I thought that was pretty good for the rifle, since my other groups all measured over an inch. I wanted to test the Fire with 10 shots the way BB does, so today is the day.

I shot today’s entire test with the JSB 8.44-grain pellet. I had planned to shoot two other pellets and I did try one but quit after three shots for reasons I will share when we get there. I think I have found the best pellet for my Fire.

I shot off a sandbag rest at 25 yards with the rifle held in the artillery hold. I’ll say a lot more about this as we go. All groups are 10-shot groups, though I may have to stray off the paper to show some.

First group

I wondered whether my shots would hit the same place after two months off. My last group was on the edge of the black at 7 o-clock. The first shot today hit at the top of the bull and I wondered if the scope had been bumped. Then I remembered that I had to relax and hold the rifle as lightly as possible. More on this in a bit.

The remaining nine shots went exactly where the last group in October had gone. This group measures 1.645-inches between centers, with the last nine shots in 0.737-inches between centers. Apparently relaxing before shooting is very important with this rifle.

Fire JSB 844 1
The first group measures 1.645-inches between centers, but the last nine shots are in 0.737-inches. They are exactly where the last shots from the last group in October fell.

The thing I noticed this time was that on the first shot I was pulling the rifle into my shoulder. When I relaxed, the shots all went to the same place they did before.

Group two

Okay, could I do it again? That was what I wondered. On the next target eight of the ten pellets went into 1.048-inches. But at some point I must have held the butt too hard to my shoulder and two of the pellets dropped off the paper.

Fire JSB 844 target box
Two pellets hit below the target paper. I must have held the butt too tight to my shoulder.

Fire JSB 844 2
Eight of the ten shots went into 1.048 inches at 25 yards
.

After this target I tried three JSB Exact RS pellets. But when the second one hit four inches from the first and the third landed six inches from that I stopped. I guess the JSB 8.44-grain pellet is what the Fire wants.

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Adjusted the scope

I adjusted the scope up and a little to the right. The scopes clicks are too quiet to hear and too soft to feel. They are there, but I used the amount those adjustment knobs moved to guesstimate how much to adjust.

I was going to try my hardest to shoot the best group I could this time. The secret with this rifle is to not pull it into your shoulder. It makes all the difference in the world. I hold the rifle on the flat of my off hand that touches the back of the cocking slot in the stock and I can feel the square bottom of the forearm on my hand.

It’s the trigger that causes all the trouble. It’s so heavy that I instinctively pull the stock back into my shoulder. I have to consciously relax before the shot each time.

Third group

The first shot of the third group took away my aim point. Of course it did! But with the scope at 12 power and with its thick reticle this didn’t seem to matter as much as it might if the image were larger and the reticle were thinner. My shots seemed to go to the same place, shot after shot. It was only when I walked down to retrieve the target that I saw a single pellet was not in the main group. These 10 shots are in 0.533-inches between centers at 25 yards. This group is slightly smaller than the 5-shot group I shot in October! And nine of these shots are in 0.474-inches. This is the big surprise I mentioned at the start.

Fire JSB 844 3
Ten shots are in 0.533-inches at 25 yards with nine in 0.474-inches.

What have I learned?

I have learned that you have to work with a spring rifle to make it shoot — at least with an inexpensive one like the Fire. The artillery hold that I call the loosey-goosey hold is the key. I have learned that a good scope does make a big difference. I have learned that the hold is important with some air rifles like mine. I have learned that the pellet matters a lot and the Fire I have is very picky.

Would I shoot better and learn faster with a rifle like a TX200 Mark III? Undoubtedly. And someday maybe I’ll have one. But, with work, even a cheap air rifle can be made to shoot — or at least this one can.

Back to BB

That’s as far as I’m going to take this report. It appears that Crosman is no longer selling the Fire. But what we have done in this series should apply equally to any spring-piston air rifle.

Summary

In this series I have shown you the ins and outs of breaking in, learning and adapting to a breakbarrel spring-piston air rifle. I hope the series has been of some help.

15 thoughts on “Crosman Fire breakbarrel air rifle: Part Seven”

    • Good Morning, it”s been quite a while since I’ve pipped up. As I read this part of the blog, I couldn’t help thinking about my Old Remington NPSS. It too is very pellet picky and also very hold sensitive. If my open palm isn’t just right in the exact spot (yes, right at the back of the opening of the cocking lever), and the butt just ever so softly touching my shoulder, and not too much cheek pressure on the comb, then…….wait for it………then will the groups be small. Of course the pellets of choice for my Nitro Pistion are the 10.5 varities of H & N and Premier Dome, and suprisingly the poly mags and Red Fires. I did some work on the trigger and that helped alot also. Other than that, it a shooter out to 45 yards.
      p.s. I couldn’t help it, I bought a Hw 77k to make my life a little less frustrating!
      shawn

  1. Good Morning BB!

    Not selling it anymore? Maybe I need to pick up one of the Shockwaves before they quit selling it. With the lower power level, it might actually be decent. I know the trigger will be horrible, but I think I might be able to improve it some.

    If they would just learn to make a decent sproinger trigger, they would find themselves a lot nearer the top of the heap.

    Speaking of TCFKAC, I really do wish they would bring the price of the ST-1 down to well under $150. I would like to have one, but at the present price, I do not see that happening. Maybe Umarex will get the Buck Rogers fever.

  2. Once again late in being posted……

    Guess you really need the artillery hold to shoot the Crosman?
    I find that the thickness of my shirt makes a difference when I shoot my springers.

    -Y

  3. Ok ok BB, good afternoon
    Since Siraniko and Yogi are here now it’s time for me also, being second coming from the East. Sorry RR usually it’s sleeping hours for most of the readers.
    I believe that no comments usually mean no interest. Why with the certain airgun? I don’t really know, since for the price seems ok. Maybe it’s just that you have spoiled us…
    See you tomorrow on 7.01, mid European time, as always.

  4. B.B.,

    Air rifle Newbie said:
    “It’s the trigger that causes all the trouble. It’s so heavy that I instinctively pull the stock back into my shoulder. I have to consciously relax before the shot each time.”
    Perhaps Newbie is correct…but Newbie seems to have a trigger finger that is connected to the rest of his/her body which is a HABIT (NOT something instinctive) that needs to be gotten rid of right now.
    So with this shooter, pellet and air rifle combination we have, at best, a 3+ MOA potential level of accuracy.

    shootski

  5. Obsolescence planned or not is a pain in the butt. Whenever I buy a new hot and happening product said product is discontinued shortly after and so is the manufactures support, it is the times we live in. Thankfully I did not buy a fire.

  6. My Crossman n called the F4. I think it is the same as the Fire, though mine is an over model without a shrouded barrel or large muzzle brake. So, Wal-Mart may still be selling the F4.

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