Crosman’s Nifty New Silhouette PCP Target Pistol

Monday, April 19, 2010


Recently, Crosman Corporation sent me a sample of its new Silhouette PCP Target Pistol (Model 1700P) for evaluation, and, to spare you any further suspense, I think it’s pretty neat.

The 1700P is a single-shot, .177 caliber precharged pneumatic air pistol that weighs 2.5 lbs and stretches 14.75 inches from end to end. The 1700P meets requirements for silhouette air pistol competition with both the International Handgun Metallic Silhouette Association and the National Rifle Association.

At the extreme back end of the receiver is the bolt, which comes from the factory hanging to the left so that right-handed shooters can cock and reload without taking their shooting hand off the grip, the bolt but can be switched to right hanging if the shooter prefers. Below that is a fitting at the rear of the receiver with a port through which adjustments can be made to the hammer spring and hammer stroke for velocity string tuning.

Below that is the ambidextrous pistol grip assembly with plastic grips on either side. These grips can be removed to a trigger weight adjustment (more about that later). Forward of the pistol grip is the cast metal trigger guard, inside of which is a die cast trigger that is adjustable for weight and over-travel and can accept an aftermarket trigger shoe. A push-button safety can be found between the trigger guard and the pistol grip.

Forward of the trigger guard, on the underside of the air reservoir, is a 3000 psi air gauge. At the end of the air reservoir is a snap-off plastic cap that protects a male foster fitting used to charge the 1700P. Above the snap-off cap is a black metal muzzle brake that also serves as a mount for a post-type front sight. (Originally, Crosman planned to mount a ported muzzle brake on this pistol, but the design engineers discovered this would violate IHMSA rules, so the plan was scrapped.)

Aft of that is the German-made Lothar Walter barrel which attaches to an anodized aircraft aluminum receiver that is fitted with 3/8 inch dovetails fore and aft of the breech. The breech has a .177 loading tray to make sliding pellets into the breech easier.

An important note: because silhouette shooters have so many varying preferences for sighting systems, the 1700P does not come with a rear sight or scope. Available extra-cost options include a William or LPA notch rear sight (favored by IHMSA Creedmoor style shooters) or a Williams peep sight (often used by standing silhouette shooters). In addition, this pistol may be easily fitted with a rifle scope, pistol scope, or red dot. Mine is shown below with the Williams notch rear sight.


To get the 1700P ready for shooting, charge it to 2900 psi with a high pressure tank or SCUBA tank. As it comes from the factory, the 1700P is set up to deliver 50+ shots from a fill, launching 7.9 gr. Crosman Premier pellets at 450 fps. I shot the pistol through my chronograph and found it was launching the 7.9 gr. pellets at 460 fps average. It takes about 35 pump strokes to refill the reservoir from 1700 psi to 3000 psi using a Benjamin HPP3k pump. If desired, the pistol can be tuned to shoot as fast as 550 fps, but with fewer shots per fill.

When I first tested the trigger on the 1700P, the first stage came out at1 lb 14 oz, and the second stage went off at 5 lb 13 oz, which is not so hot. So I removed the plastic pistol grips, ran the trigger weight adjustment up as high as it would go, and then dropped it back down to the lowest weight. With the next measurement, the second stage tripped and the shot went down range at a much more manageable 4 lbs.

Note: if you want to lighten the trigger by cutting coils off the trigger spring or polishing the trigger parts, you run the risk of voiding the warranty. Why? Because every air rifle and air pistol Crosman makes must pass the ASTM drop test. But if you modify the trigger in any way, it might not pass the test, and therefore Crosman accepts no responsibility.

I saved the best part for last: the accuracy of the 1700P is excellent. My pal, IHMSA champion Steve Ware is a steely-eyed pistol silhouette competitor. He clamped his 1700P into a vice and fired 5 shot groups at 18 yards. His best group, shot with H&N Finale Match pellets, measured just .071 inches ctc. No wonder Crosman claims this pistol will shoot quarter-inch groups at 30 meters.

In all, I find the Crosman 1700P to be an entirely worthy competition air pistol that delivers a whole lot of performance and accuracy at a price that is just a fraction of its high priced competitors.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

– Jock Elliott

16 Comments

  1. Mare Island Museum says:

    The new 1700P looks great.

    I recently got back into airgunning after a long hiatus. While waiting for a set of seals for my Beeman 800, I stumbled across the Crosman Custom Shop, and after more than a few hours of fiddling with choices, ordered a 2300kt.

    One of the many reasons for the selection is the vast array of aftermarket parts, and the huge community of enthusiasts for the Crosman 2240 line.

    And now this… I've been wanting a rear bolt breech for mine, and a riser to enable a full shroud. And here it is, at factory prices. As soon as they start selling parts, that is. (The breech is on the M-rod, too, but sometimes I'm a little slow.)

    But I digress — the real reason I felt compelled to post? Those darn, ill-fitting, slip-n-slide plastic grips! Unless these are different from the base model's (and mine) they're a bit lacking in a couple of areas, for me.

    Mine are slightly undersized right where the web of my thumb rides, needing a bit of moleskin for comfort, and the thumbrest is too low for me by about half an inch.

    On a $100 dollar custom pistol? No problem! But at an apparent list price of $500? I think they'd do well to offer the plastic grips as an optional downgrade, as they already have a line of nice, wood upgrades. I can only find them in the Custom Shop, which makes them a little harder to buy direct, a marketing decision I don't really understand.

    And of course it's the same trigger that's in all the 22xx pistols, adjustable for weight and overtravel, but with a lot of creep and no stage-length or weight adjustments. While it can be improved a lot without replacing parts, I'd like to see Crosman put some of their obviously top shelf engineering effort into a better trigger group.

    The IHMSA rules, if I'm reading them right, don't allow replacement of the trigger group in production class — and polishing the sides of the group on inside to the frame are off limits, too. But since the price of it takes it out of the production class, again, if I'm reading the rules right, this appears to be a non-issue. Since I'm not a competitor (yet) and haven't put a lot of study into silhouette rules, everything I say about them is suspect. Hopefully someone here can clarify, as it's an area I've long been interested in.

    All that verbiage to express a few very minor niggles!

    Crosman is doing a wonderful job of providing good quality air guns at great prices, with excellent customer support. For the shooter on a budget, the Custom Shop pistol is about $30 less than retail, and the engraving is free. I'm getting nicely stacked pellets at 8 yards from a tripod rest — as good as my Original 75 match rifle!

    1. Steve Ware says:

      In Reply to Mare Island Museum:

      I agree with your assessment of the standard grips that come on the pistol. However, RB Grips are readily available at http://www.rbgrips.net.

      I am a 25 year IHMSA competitor I will address your rules comments. Basically, your statements are all correct. The pistol is in the Unlimited (iron sight) or Unlimited Any Sight (scoped) class depending on the sight system you put on it. This is due to the MSRP. As such, you can modify the trigger group any way you wish as long as it is safe. (This will void your Crosman warranty in all probability.)

      I was another reviewer of this pistol. My review is published in the May 1 issue of Gun Week magazine. While I have shot air pistol silhouette in IHMSA matches since the organization approved AIR, I have always used a Daisy 747, IZH 46M, and Crosman 2300S and have not owned a PCP air gun. This pistol is so good that I bought the review pistol and a scuba tank and DIN to Foster adaptor. This pistol will compete with the high end Steyr and Morini pistols and put you in the winners’ circle.

      As an aside, I recommend the RB grips and a trigger shoe to make this pistol as shootable as possible. I also found the LPA sight offered by Crosman to be better for me than the Williams. My eyes are old and I need a Merit aperture. Also, our matches are inside and the lighting is not the greatest. Thus, I found the Williams notch to be too narrow for a good sight picture. The LPA is a bit too wide but much better for me than the Williams.

      I hope this addresses some of your questions.

  2. Jock Elliott says:

    Mare Island,

    thanks for your post. I agree that Crosman is doing a wonderful job of providing good quality airguns at great prices.

  3. seomoz says:

    Hi, colleague! I love your blog, it’s so interesting! I think it’s pretty popular, isn’t it?

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Thanks for the kind words, Mike.

  4. MarkSpizer says:

    great post as usual!

  5. Kapowie says:

    I recently acquired a Crosman 1377 and got turned on to a higher end gun. Looking around on line I found the Crosman Silhouette PCP and have been hee-hawing back and forth about it. I was not sure whether I wanted to go to a gun that needed to have refills instead of the pump up. I am sure some of you are rolling your eyes at me about this but I feel sure there are a lot of people out there that feel the same way. Anyway: I found a scuba tank this weekend for a fabulace price and that has got me a little more curious. Of everything I have read on line I have seen nothing about the ???? gizmos needed to put on the tank to charge the pistol or how it is done. I have only had a rifle and pistol with the CO2 cartridges. I have not seen the Crosman Silhouette or any other aiirgun that is powered as this is. New at the game, but interested.
    Thanks
    Kapowie

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Kapowie,

      You comments have raised several issues. There are two main ways of charging a PCP rifle or pistol such as the Crosman Silhouette PCP: with a SCUBA tank or a high pressure hand pump. With the SCUBA tank, you need a yoke (available from Airguns of Arizona) to connect the tank to the gun. The yoke clamps to the valve assembly on the tank and the other end needs whatever kind of fitting your gun requires (AoA can advise you on this as well.) SCUBA tanks have to be inspected every year, and after a certain number of years, they must be replaced. Before you buy a SCUBA tank, ask the last time it was inspected and hydro-tested.

      With a high pressure pump, you supply the energy to fill the reservoir on your gun. In about two weeks, I’ll be doing a blog on a high pressure pump that you might find interesting.

      Finally, you didn’t tell me what you intend to use the new pistol for. If it is just target shooting or silhouette competition, another option is a single-stroke pneumatic pistol such as the Daisy 747, Gamo Compact, or FAS. These offer terrific accuracy, one-stroke cocking, no need for pump or tank, but they don’t offer much power,

  6. Kapowie says:

    Jack,

    Here I am 58 years old and doing my first blog, ha ha, I had forgotten that I had asked the question and truly did not expect a reply so sincerely thank you for your time.

    I was not aware or the tank only being able to be used a certain number or ??? (times) or (is it number of years?) I think the guy has only used it a few times and needs the money because they had a car accident and need another car. Anyway will need to call him about the last time it was certified, and how many times or how old it is. But that is a good to know question before buying.

    Do you have any idea how many times a charge the Maurader could be charged from a full scuba tank? He is only asking $100 for the tank, two regulators, and some other scuba stuff. Including two carbon tanks that look like footballs that I think he used with paint ball, but did not find interesting until later, then thought maybe these could also be used to charge an airgun

    I have seen the pump or have seen a hand pump on line to charge the airgun and can use it but Ihave had both neck and shoulder surgery and although pretty well recovered am not very strong and the pumping is just kind of a nusiance to me. I barely got into airguns about a year ago when I bought an old 140 Crosman rifle at a garage sale, I really liked playing with it so I decided to buy a Crosman 160 – I think it is, a CO2 rilfe. then bought a RWS Model 30 break barrel and truly did not find either of them very satisfing although both good enough guns. I then bought several pistols and started going to the range and just fell in love with target shooting hand guns. At a garage sale I found a new 1377 Crosman for 25 dollars and brought it home and have really enjoyed it but it is not capable of the accuracy I would like to have. I had a friend tell me about the Crosman 2240 and started researching it, saw the Crosman Silhouette and ohhhh aaaaa, liked what I was reading. Only drawback was “really only for sillhouette and target” shooting. I would have to go back and do some rereading but someone was doing a forum review of the Crosman Silhouette and said for just a few dollars more you could get the Benjamin Maurader that is very accurate and can also be used to hunt. I am not a big hunter, but would rathre have something with the power to hunt if I so desired. Which answered your last question.

    So in closing, I will need to find out a little more about the air tank to see if that is a fesable option. I am pretty sure the Maurader is what I am looking for but thanks for the suggestions of other choices. I will be looking forward to your blog on the high pressure pump!

    Oh yeah, what kind of air can be used to shoot the Maurader? Can a compressor for nail guns be used?

    Thanks,

    Kapowie

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Kapowie,

      Thanks for the reply. You raise a bunch of issues. So here are some quick responses.

      1. SCUBA tanks have to be inspected every year and hydro tested every five years, and I forget what the maximum life is, but you could research it on the Internet.

      2. High pressure hand pumps — it’s more a matter of using your weight than using your strength. I talk about technique in my upcoming blog.

      3. The Marauder is designed to be used with a scope, not target sights. I haven’t heard of anyone fitting a Marauder pistol with target sights.

      4. Nail gun compressor — won’t work, not enough pressure.

      Finally, I don’t know where you are located, but I would highly suggest posting on the yellow forum — http://www.network54.com/Forum/79537/ — to see if there is an airgunner in your area who might help you with some of the ins and outs of pre-charged pneumatic air rifles and pistols.

      I still think you might enjoy shooting a single-stroke pneumatic target pistol. You could then visit the Crosman forum — http://www.network54.com/Forum/275684/ — and find out how to hot-rod your 1377 pistol. In addition, you might want to check out my blog on customizing the 1377: http://www.airgunsofarizona-temp.com/blog/2010/06/the-amazing-customizable-crosman-1377.html

  7. Kapowie says:

    Jack,

    I read your -Amazing-Customizable-Crosman some time back and just now reread it. Chuckling, It inspired me to purchase an All Steel Breech which I received and installed yesterday. I was under the impression that the rear sight was going to be able to be used on the new steel breech so am dissapointed that I am unable to plink away accurately but have ordered the Crosman LPA MIM rear sight this morning. Obviously your are a real 1377 fan, sorry I ditched it early on in our blogging. I have been shooting RWS Superdomes, have tried Crosman wadcutters also. With the Superdomes I finally got to the place that I was shooting groups at around 30 feet, open sights, sitting in my favorite outside chair with it resting on my knee less than an inch, but there were always strays. I am near sighted, need glasses to read and have to struggle to be able to have clear vision of front site when finding the center target. Have you had others complain about this delimma and is there any solution to the problem. Also am shooting with 5 pumps. If I shoot with glasses on everything changes, like shooting without them better.

    Also, put out a yellow blog to see if I get any hits. Up state New York, too cold for me, but beautiful country

    Thanks
    Kapowie

  8. Kapowie says:

    Jack,

    I was reading about “doctoring” the crown from the factory and I don’t know what the crown is. Can you elaborate a little?Please!

    Thanks,

    Kapowie

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Kapowie,

      The crown in lip of the barrel at the muzzle end — that is the metal around the hole where the pellet comes out.

  9. Md. Enamul Haque says:

    i am from Bangladesh, how can i buy a air pistol. i don’t know this is legal or e legal in our country. i have a air rifle (single short) this is legal here. i want to buy a air pistol (full metal buddy) by DHL. is it prosible?

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Contact http://www.airgunsofarizona.com at their email address. They should be able to help you.

  10. JOSE RODRIGUEZ says:

    Have the sequence to change bolt to left hand.
    I can to make myself with the proper tolos, but Crosman as said that you have to go to service

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