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Trigger improvements to Crosman’s 13XX-series multi-pump pistols

1322 American Classic
Crosman American Classic .22 caliber multi-pump pneumatic pistol.

This report covers:

  • Back to the report
  • Trigger pull before
  • Remove one grip panel
  • Lighten
  • Don’t lose
  • BB’s trick
  • And..?
  • Polish the sear?
  • Other things
  • Summary

Yesterday I reported on the accuracy of the Crosman American Classic .22 caliber multi-pump pneumatic pistol. I said in that report that, “I forgot how heavy the trigger is. It definitely opened the groups today somewhat.”

Reader Yogi commented, “Can you do anything about the trigger? You have convinced me to take my Diana 5G to the range tomorrow.”

Then reader shootski stepped in to say, “You can do a great deal for the trigger groups on this “family” of Crosman airguns. You can start with lubrication and maybe a trigger shoe to give a lighter feel all the way to replacing the entire trigger group with parts or an entire trigger assembly that will cost you two to three times the price of the stock gun and the shipping & handling. Before that an aftermarket steel breech would be a real nice addition. It goes on and on until you have spent way too much for what you get!”

Before I get to the main part of this report, I’ll comment on what shootski said about the cost of upgrades. About 25 or more years ago I attended an NRA Annual Meeting in Kansas City. The NRA hosted an airgun breakfast or lunch for us and I sat next to Dennis Quackenbush who sat next to the then president of the Crosman Corporation. The two men were conversing about some Crosman pistol that might have been the 13XX series. Crosman’s president told Dennis that the $29 (at that time) pistol was one of Crosman’s mainstays and Dennis responded that it was one of his, as well. Crosman sold people the gun for $29 and Dennis then sold them $125 worth of upgrades  for it. The Crosman president was shocked to hear that. Six months later Crosman’s Custom Shop opened for business! True story.

Back to the report

So Yogi asked me if anything could be done about the heavy trigger. I told him that because I did not own the pistol I didn’t want to modify it, but I went online just to see what could be done and was surprised to discover that this particular trigger can be lightened very easily with almost nothing done to the gun!

The “fix” is so simple that I tried it and it really does work as advertised. That’s what I am about to show you.

Trigger pull before

I tested the trigger pull before this procedure. It released at between 6 pounds 5 ounces and 7 pounds 5 ounces. The average was about 6 pounds 14 ounces.

Remove one grip panel

I removed the left grip panel to expose the trigger/sear spring.

1322 grip off
The grip panel off exposes the sear/trigger spring. The plastic nub on the bottom supports it in the frame and it presses up directly on the sear.

1322 sear
The sear (arrow) is pressed up by the spring.


All you have to do is lighten the sear/trigger spring. I removed it from the pistol and squeezed it with pliers and — BINK — it was gone! Fortunately for me it hit the RovAir Portable air compressor sitting on the garage floor by my workbench and I heard it. It took me just a minute to find it.

Stock Up on Shooting Gear

Don’t lose

I was holding onto the spring with my hand when I squeezed it with the pliers, but naturally it escaped.

BB’s trick

A trick to keep the spring from flying away is to work on it inside a plastic bag. I used a one-gallon bag, but a dry-cleaning bag works well too — maybe even better.

I held the spring inside a gallon plastic bag and compressed it. It didn’t try to escape.

And here is the secret. As long as you do your work inside a bag this way, the spring will not try to escape. The moment you try working on it outside the bag it recognizes the opportunity and BINK — it’s gone!


The first time I squashed the spring the pistol wouldn’t cock. I then stretched it a bit by hand and the pistol cocked fine.

After this 5-minute procedure the pistol now fires with 3 pound 4 ounces of pull on the trigger. So, Yogi, yes it is possible to lighten the trigger pull. And I did it. I will say that there is now more felt drag in the trigger pull (creep), but I can live with it.

Polish the sear?

You can remove the sear and polish it — BUT a warning! These parts are no doubt low-carbon steel (1010 to 1020) that are case-hardened. That hardness is a thin skin that only runs about 0.015-inches deep in the metal. If you are too aggressive when polishing you can cut through that thin skin, exposing the soft steel beneath. That allows it to wear rapidly. The pistol becomes unsafe because the contact surfaces of the sear are constantly changing and can slip at any time. A better approach is to leave the parts hard and just lubricate the sear face so it slides away from the striker easier.

Other things

The parts in this trigger are on crosspins and they are not fitted tightly. They do their jobs just fine, but there is some slop that can be taken up by thin shims on the sides of the parts. As Dennis told Crosman’s president, there is a lot that can be done to these pistols.

Now I’m wondering if I should repeat yesterday’s test to see if I was right about the heavy trigger causing the groups to open. I think I will. Even if the groups stay the same size it will be fun to shoot the gun again.


To sum up this report, just collapsing that trigger/sear spring a little makes a big difference. And the airgun isn’t really modified. It’s more of an adjustment.

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.

40 thoughts on “Trigger improvements to Crosman’s 13XX-series multi-pump pistols”

  1. “The first time I squashed the spring the pistol wouldn’t cock. I then stretched it a bit by hand and the pistol cocked fine.”

    My experience was identical to yours, and it helped a great deal with the trigger.
    And like you said, it’s not really a mod, it’s just an adjustment! 🙂

    “Now I’m wondering if I should repeat yesterday’s test to see if I was right about the heavy trigger causing the groups to open. I think I will.”

    I’ll second that idea, and I appreciate you taking the time to do it; it’s such a popular pistol that I think the repeat testing will be well-received.
    Thanking you for all you do,

  2. Tom,

    Those shims also make a world of difference in making the trigger consistent. Would you recommend molybdenum grease for trigger lubrication or just oil?

    Second the motion to repeat with the “improved” trigger.


  3. B.B.

    Trigger finger on steroids? Shooting a pistol is hard enough. Shooting one with a 6+lbs trigger pull is INSANE! How can you not jerk the trigger when it requires that much force?
    Shooting the 5G was fun. Tomorrow I will bring the 10M to the range as well.


        • Yogi,

          My, my Y!
          Trigger pull weights below 10# do not create an accuracy problem for this 75 year old shooter; i prefer 5# or a little less for my carry/practical shooting.
          I DEMAND the trigger be CONSISTENT on every pull which is why i prefer Single Action (SA) or Striker Fired trigger group over most Double Action (DA.)
          IF i shoot my Smith & Wesson .44 caliber Magnum which is SA/DA I practice DA but typically will manually cock the hammer and shoot it SA (gunsmithed to about 4#) if i have the time. It usually results in 6-10/4-X on a B-27E qualification target.


        • Yogi , I personally think the reason a lot of inexperienced pistol shooters are not very accurate is because they anticipate recoil.

          Even some of the Guntubers that make their living with firearms.

          When they have a failure to lock back on the last round.

          When they try to “fire” the next round the pistol will make a nose dive from them anticipating recoil.


          • 45Bravo,

            That explains it!

            All these years i blamed it on all the actors in television and film (especially Westerns) that throw bullets out of their shootin’ irons by pushing the guns forward at their targets… ;^)


              • Yogi,

                I used to try to count the number of rounds shot in films but it got old fast. Especially when the Director of Photography started demanding those no cut VIOLENCE ENHANCING scenes.
                ONLY 8 rounds out of a six-shooter? You must have lost count ;^). I thought gunslingers rolled up paper dollars to fill on chamber on the Single Action guns for “Safety” of the directors and cinematographers.
                OH! NOT in RUST…


          • Ian

            I see the same thing all the time and get tickled every time it happens! Also see frequent signs of obvious trigger jerking when they forget the safety is still on. What should appear as just a long period of pointing the gun at the target, followed by a curious look, instead results in the gun being jerked off the target line. (then the curious look, eventually)


      • RR,

        Try shooting at 10M single handedly with a #6 trigger pull.
        I bet not one of your rounds would land in the black. Not one!!!
        Why do you think that a 500 gram minimum is required?


        • Yogi,

          If the trigger pull was consistent, accuracy would improve with familiarity. Personally, I think you have been spoiled by “pulling” too many light triggers.

          The trigger on my Izzy is so light that many will misfire it the first time they pick it up, even with my warning of such. In comparison, my Lucznik has a truly horrible trigger with a very long first stage and a much higher release weight. Even so, with experience it becomes a very accurate pistol.

        • It is easier to amend if you end up with too short a spring. I think I have four or five Crosmans with the same trigger and on all I have compressed the overall length, polished the coil ends, made a spring guide with a .22 LR case and used a tiny bit of Moly grease on the sear. Lots of tutorials online (GTA for one I think) that show how to use a spent .22LR case for a spring guide, I find it makes for a more consistent trigger press.

        • Bill,

          Never did either since Crosman sold a twisty sear spring pre load adjuster.
          I also used spring striker/hammer guides and pre load adjusters to get more control over the valve dwell.
          I used a bunch of thin Brass washers left over from installing my Sea Kayak deck compasses to take the side to side slop out of the stock triggers. Then i bought aftermarket roller triggers that fit perfectly.


  4. Thanks for another great report BB. I think that the trigger might also smooth out a bit just from usage (if this pistol is shot enough times). It will be interesting to see the results of the retesting for accuracy.

  5. I would second not polishing the sear on this pistol. A little moly grease and some shooting will go a long way to smoothing out the firing cycle without ruining the sear. Over the years I have worked on many different trigger assemblies. Believe me, you do not want to go into this blindly.

  6. Guys,

    I put also some weight in the grip on my 2240. I used lead balls (some cheap Gamo trainig ammo) and put them into empty spaces wherever I could – I get some more weight and the pistol became much more stable. It might be an option. I stabilized the balls with some deadener. Just a thought regarding tuning.

  7. Ridgerunner,

    How did you end up with a set of custom grips for a pistol you didn’t even have? I’d guess you just saw them and they were too nice to pass up?


  8. I second the spring guide. Very easy to make and install with just stuff from around the house. I made mine from a piece of a plastic clothes hanger. Just as important though, if not more so, is a couple of Mylar (or Nylon, if you can’t find Mylar) washers on both sides of the trigger to shim with. I added a film of moly to mine, but it takes up all of the side to side slack in the trigger giving a much better and consistent feel and pull.


  9. B.B.,

    “Now I’m wondering if I should repeat yesterday’s test to see if I was right about the heavy trigger causing the groups to open.”

    Yes! Please do see if the groups shrink significantly. If I recall correctly, this is a debate that has come up in these comments from time to time. Some argue that it ought to make no difference if the “shooter does his part,” while others argue it is easier for the shooter to do his part with a light, crisp trigger.

    I am in the second camp, especially if the air gun is a pistol.


  10. BB

    If you repeat the accuracy test with improved trigger pull weight, you may or may not see a significant difference shooting only one or two groups. But if you had the time for hundreds of shots there is no doubt that groups would be smaller.

    I hope you are intrigued enough by some of the fixes suggested today to buy a 13xx and give it a go.

    Thanks for this report which certainly is useful for me.


    • Deck

      I think the better trigger would also make a greater difference in freehanded shooting than it will for rested shooting. I can get a pellet pistol (non spring piston) nestled well enough in a heavy sand bag that it won’t move because of a 7# trigger pull, but not so, if I shoot the same gun standing in the open, especially single-handed.

      What’s your thoughts?


      • Half

        Yes! Now days I shoot targets rested. But a wonderful trigger like the Ataman P16 helps me getting group sizes down even when snuggled on a bag. Ten shots at 25 yards with a pistol invites herky jerky nerves and muscles. This is especially true the last shot of a really tight group.


  11. BB

    I posted a group yesterday using the standard 1322 and Mohawk 22 darts. I will repost this evening after I have tried the trigger adjustment. Hope it closes the group. The photo below is yesterday’s group at 5 meters.

    Kind Regards


  12. Trigger shoes help a lot, not too hard to make just takes time and quality files. I also fill the grip panels with silicone RTV , adds a little weight and makes them feel solid with no hollow sound.

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