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Crosman 2300T CO2 Pistol Review

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Ok, I've had this pellet pistol for a few weeks now and have been plinking with it quite a bit. Haven't yet shot any formal targets with it, but when I get a chance to, I will update this thread with some pictures of groups. For now, I'll relate my anecdotal "accuracy" findings based on plinking around the yard.

I decided to purchase this pistol a few weeks ago when I realized that while a good choice for cold weather, my 1377 Classic pump pistol just wasn't as convenient as changing a CO2cartridge.

I ordered the pistol from Amazon. Here's a link with price info:

Crosman also produces a version called the 2300S, which comes with a Williams micrometer adjustable sight, a Lothar Walther barrel, a power adjustment knob, and a Crosman Custom Shop Muzzle Brake.

I wanted to jazz up my pistol and replace the factory plastic front sight, so I ordered a Crosman brake, and saved about $75 over buying the 2300s model. I plan to use this gun for pest control and plinking, so the extra expense of a fancy rear sight and a Lothar Walther barrel didn't seem worth it.

The brake was purchased here:

In any case, on with the review...

The 2300T is a .177 caliber target training pistol powered by 12 gram CO2 cylinders.

The pistol shipped in a nice, stout, brown, egg crate foam lined cardboard box.  The box contained the gun, an instruction manual, and the adjustable rear sight, along with a small hex key for installing the sight, and a 4 way screwdriver tool for adjusting the sight and removing the grips on the gun.

The grips themselves are molded plastic, but these fit the frame better than the ones on my 1377C, with no wobble.

The trigger is adjustable 2 ways. First, is an over travel stop screw located at the bottom rear of the trigger guard. A few threads of this screw protrude out past the trigger guard. The screw itself is a brass-tipped 8-32 set screw. In use, the protruding part of the screw is very uncomfortable, and scrapes the knuckle of my middle finger when gripping the gun. I made a little brass "button" to thread onto the exposed threads, and the pistol is no longer uncomfortable to hold and shoot. It is important to leave enough over travel past the point where the trigger breaks, that the sear does not drag on the hammer (striker) as it travels forward. The other way the trigger is adjustable, is the sear spring adjuster inside the grips. It comes from the factory on the heavy end of it's range. I lightened it a bit to about the middle of it's range. The trigger was surprisingly good for an airgun, but it is not  a match trigger out of the box, and would need a little polishing of engagement surfaces to be truly great. Still, it was a better trigger out the box than my Discovery, and WAY better than the 1377 Classic.

The pistol's CO2 valve is an interesting design. In my previous, limited experience with CO2 guns, you would pierce the cartridges by tightening a screw until a fixed piercing tube punctured the seal at the end of the cartridge. The 2300 series pistols use a piercing pin on the end of the valve stem. To charge the gun, you first place the gun on safe, then cock the bolt to take the hammer pressure off the valve stem. Then load a cartridge into the front of the main valve tube, tightening the cap down to seal the cartridge against the valve seal. Then you aim in a safe direction and "dry" fire the gun. The hammer hits the valve stem and forces it forward, driving the opposite piercing end into the seal on the cartridge. This first piercing shot allows some gas to escape, however it is not as much as a normal shot so you should not load a pellet for the piercing shot because it might fail to exit the barrel.

Another nice feature of the 2300 series guns is the redesigned steel breech. Some Crosman pellet pistols (like the 1377C pump pistol I have) come with a plastic breech, and the front breech hold-down screw location is right in front of the breech opening, which can make loading difficult as pellets tend to nose-dive into the screw location. The new steel breech moves the screw location back a bit, so that the breech opening in front of the bolt is smooth leading into the barrel. This reduces the tendency of pellets to get caught or flipped when loading. Upon disassembling the pistol, the main tube is drilled and tapped at BOTH screw locations, which will allow the user to install aftermarket breeches that might use the forward screw hole location. The breech is milled with a standard airgun dovetail so you can mount optics if you so desire.

The front sight is a simple, molded plastic piece that is press fit onto the barrel. The front of the barrel has a small flat milled on it that indexes the front sight blade at 12:00 to line up with the rear sight notch. I decided I didn't like the plastic front sight, and after making my own from brass and aluminum, I ultimately ordered a Crosman muzzle brake that attaches with an 8-32 setscrew. The brake has 16 small ports drilled into it and a steel pin for the front sight. This pin is a bit high from the factory and needed to be filed down about a millimeter or two in order to put it closer to the center of the rear sight's range of adjustment. There is nothing really wrong with the factory plastic sight, but I like the aesthetics of the brake so it was worth it for me to make the upgrade. The pin is narrower than the blade of the plastic front sight, so it takes a bit more concentration to center it in the notch. Also, the brake extends the barrel a bit so it lengthens your sight radius.

The rear sight is an LPA MIM sight, as seen here on Crosman's website:

It's actually quite good. Easily as good as any adjustable target sight I've used on real firearms. I installed the rear sight by centering the sight in the breech dovetail, then tightening the two hidden setscrews you access through two tiny holes in the top of the sight. Once installed, I centered the windage adjustment. There is a tiny "vernier" on the sight with 3 lines and an index mark for the windage. Both windage and elevation have click detents. Once it was mounted and centered, I made gross windage adjustments by adjusting the position of the front sight on the barrel. This ensured that the front sight will be as close to the center of the rear sight's adjustment range as possible with the gun shooting to point of aim.

Crosman claims 40 good shots from a CO2 cartridge, at a velocity just a hair over 500 FPS. This is quite good! My experience with the gun supports this claim. Higher velocities could be attained by adjusting striker and valve springs, and modifying the valve. Crosman includes a small "spacer" inside the valve which serves to reduce the internal valve volume. This could be removed to allow the valve to store more gas, but it would reduce the number of good shots you get from a cartridge. Another way to increase power would be to increase barrel length (up to a point) to allow more room for gas expansion. Still, at the factory valve settings the pistol produces enough power to sink lead pellets into a pine board at close range deep enough so that the entire pellet is below the surface, but still visible. This is more than enough power for small pest control. It will also completely flatten pellets fired at a steel plate rimfire "spinner" target. This is more than enough for dispatching small rodent pests, with tree squirrels being the maximum size animal you could ethically take with this gun, assuming good clean shot placement. Mice and small rats are right in this gun's "zone" as far as power output.

You can also mount one of Crosman's shoulder stocks to the pistol by removing both plastic grips and slipping the stock over the grip frame. This would be a good choice if you plan to use optics on the gun, but bringing the rear sight that close to your eye makes the notch appear too wide, and accuracy could suffer if using iron sights. The trade-off in that regard is a steadier hold because you are using a stock, so the two effects might cancel one another out.

As for accuracy, based purely on plinking around the house, shooting at objects no farther than perhaps 10-15 yards, I believe the gun is capable of better accuracy than I am. I can consistently hit small pine cones at 20-30 feet, and beverage cans a bit farther. I shot a fly off a rock right at my feet by aiming a half inch high or so to account for the sight height above the bore. I've cut twigs in half at perhaps 10 feet away with it. As mentioned earlier, time and weather permitting I will get a real target shot off of a rest and post the results when I can, but I expect it will shoot very well and any problems on the targets are more likely to be my own error than any inherent inaccuracy.

One other change I made was to replace the grip screws and the rear breech screw with stainless steel socket cap head screws. The slotted head screws are awkward to remove and by replacing them with screws that accept hex wrenches, it is easier to work on the gun.

Things I liked:

convenient power source
steel breech with new screw location
excellent rear sight
sear spring adjuster
solid construction
adequate power for small pest control

Things I didn't like:

over travel screw located in an uncomfortable position
plastic front sight isn't bad, but it cheapens an otherwise well made gun

Overall I'm pleased with the purchase and have enjoyed shooting this gun quite a bit the past few weeks. Shooting is like riding a bike. You never really forget how, but you need to practice to remain proficient. This pistol is a great way to keep up basic skills like aiming and trigger control without having to load up the car for a trip to the shooting range. It is a little on the loud side, so probably not the best choice for indoor shooting in an apartment. But people in single family homes and especially those with basements could easily shoot indoors with this gun and a safe backstop.

Here are some pics.

The sear spring adjuster inside the grip frame.

My little brass "button" to make the over travel screw less uncomfortable.

The Muzzle brake front sight pin after filing down a bit and painted with a Sharpie marker.

Thanks for looking! :)

Great write up! Thanks. i have the 1322 and the 1377.

Great review!  With ammo prices and availability the way they are, I've been thinking of picking an air gun.

Sweet! that looks great, how on earth did I miss this post originally? :doh:


--- Quote from: zammer on October 04, 2013, 02:36:07 PM ---Sweet! that looks great, how on earth did I miss this post originally? :doh:

--- End quote ---



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