Ron Jones Reviews The Crosman American Classic – Part Two
In part one of our review of the Crosman American Classic, bolt action, variable pump pneumatic 0.177 cal handgun, we took a close look at the anatomy of the gun.
While Crosman has made judicious use of polymer and plastic, the $60.00 gun has a lot to like in terms of functionality. We made note of the fact that versatility and utility were bedrock features of the gun.
The American Classic is equally at home in the basement target range, back yard field targets, or as a constant companion for those wishing to carry an airgun on field trips. Today, we’ll take a close look at performance characteristics of the American Classic.
Velocity and Accuracy
With pellets weighing 7.9 grains, the gun will produce velocities ranging from 375 FPS with three pumps of power. The maximum is approximately 550 FPS when the shooter applies a full 10 pumps.
Ultralight alloy pellets are said to approach 600 FPS, and Magnum Weight (greater than 10 grains) will approach 450 FPS.
When the sportsman is pursuing rodents and small birds, the gun should be fully charged with 10 pumps of power. For short range targets (5 Yards), three pumps per shot produced excellent accuracy. And for targets at medium ranges, 10-15 Yards, 5-6 pumps produces velocities which will produce a flat trajectory, and activate a field target.
In my first accuracy test, I shot groups with the 7.4 Grain Crosman Premier Pointed pellets that had been recommended for the 2300T. They averaged 0.25 Inch/3-shot bench rest groups (stock open sights) at 5 Meters.
There seemed to be no difference in group size or point of impact with three, four or five pumps of power. I then shot the 7.9 Grain Crosman Premier, match grade wadcutter pellets Crosman had supplied with the 1377. The groups were nearly identical to the pointed pellets.
Groups shot with 7.9 Grain Benjamin hollow points were marginally more open, as were groups shot with 10.6 Grain Crosman Premier Copper Magnums and 6.4 Grain, alloy H&N Barracuda Green pellets.
After a short, “get acquainted” period with the American Classic, I decided that 5 Yards was a good sight in distance. I adjusted the rear sight blade all the way down. The POI was dead-on when the top of the blade was level with the top of the rear sight notch.
If you are shooting at a two Inch bull at 5 Yards, and you prefer a hold tangent to be bottom of the scoring rings for a bullseye, then you’ll have to raise the rear sight a small amount – about 1/16 Inch. With a sight radius of just over a Foot, the rear sight should be raised, or moved horizontally, in a ratio of 1:15. The reference markings on the front of the rear sight base are spaced 0.025 Inch apart, which will move the POI 0.375 Inch at 5 Yards.
I prepared a trajectory chart for the American Classic in Part One. That used standard Crosman Premier 7.9 Grain hollow points and the Ballistic Coefficient listed in the HAM BC database (0.010). The velocity was 400 FPS which is approximately what your gun will deliver with 4-5 pumps using that pellet.
We’ll repeat it here. As you can see from the table, your gun should shoot dead flat out to 10 Yards – maybe 10 Meters. That’s perfect for indoor target and backyard plinking with a comfortable number of pumps for each shot.
Pyramyd Air lists the factory, non-adjustable, single stage trigger pull as 5.5 Lbs. That is exactly the reading I measured using my trigger pull gauge.
This is light enough to allow accurate shooting. Yet it’s firm enough to prevent accidental discharge when the gun is being handled by a novice shooter, or anyone using the American Classic in the field. There is a modest amount of trigger creep, but I didn’t find it objectionable.
The gun has a cross bolt trigger block (safety) to prevent accidental discharge. This safety should ALWAYS be engaged immediately after firing a shot, and before pumping the gun in advance of the next shot.
A quick search of the internet and our favorite air gun sources for a holster which would carry the Crosman American Classic came up empty. That may be because most sportsmen who carry it in the field have opted to secure it in their hunting vest, field jacket, back pack or range bag.
As you can see, the gun slips nicely into game pouches found in most hunting coats and vests. I like to keep things simple.
After sighting in and accuracy testing the American Classic, I had to have a little fun shooting it indoors at my Gamo Rocker trap, and in the back yard with my Air Venturi field targets.
Beeman, SIG SAUER and Umarex all make quality indoor traps, but I’ve had my Gamo reset trap for a decade now, and it is always a challenge. Just make sure you are using lead ammunition!
I found 3-4 pumps of pressure more than adequate to trip the paddles. I did fire two rounds of lead free (tin-based) pellets at 5 Meters just to see what would happen. Good thing I had on my safety glasses, because the H & N Greenies came flying back, right over my shoulder at 5 Meters.
Transition to Field Targets
It was raining when I started testing the American Classic. That didn’t keep me from setting up my Air Venturi Quiet Pellet Trap in Sportsman’s Room. But after an hour of punching paper targets with a variety of pellet styles and weights, I had to get the gun outdoors!
The American Classic was obviously designed to be carried and shot in an outdoor environment. And Air Venturi Field Targets are perfect for getting the feel of the gun in the woods or along the trail.
Ron Keller has invited Jak and I to join him on a spring trip to Deer Camp as soon as the rains subside, and you can be assured we’ll take the American Classic along to reduce the surplus rodent population.
In the meantime, I wanted to test Crosman’s latest iteration of their Model 1377 on the Air Venturi Field Targets that were languishing in the basement.
So next time we’ll join Ron Keller for an Air Venturi Field Target test. Since I had already established that Crosman Premier 7.9 Grain wadcutters produced the best groups, we’ll use that ammunition for the test. They consistently produced ¼ Inch groups at 5 Meters, so I could reasonably expect that the handgun would keep the Premiers within the 1.5 Inch Kill Zone of the Venturi Rat-on-a-run and Rat-on-a-stick at up to 20 Yards.
We’ll see if Ron Keller and the Crosman American Classic can step up to the challenge next time…