New to the Benjamin line up of break-barrel rifles this year is the Vaporizer from Crosman, now part of Velocity Outdoor. Fitted in an ambidextrous black polymer pistol grip stock, it offers clean lines with grey soft touch stock inserts at various grip points for good purchase and control. Molded into the stock is a raised cheekpiece and a thick, dense rubber buttpad plus two sling attachment points. Topping it off is a set of barrel mounted sights with the rear being adjustable, and a picatinny rail for attaching the included Center Point 3-9x40mm AO scope. Crosman also included their market leading sound suppression SBD/Gold unit to the 15-inch barrel which, as a bonus, gives additional leverage when cocking. The report was relatively mild, so the SBD was doing a good job. The Vaporizer weighs 8 pounds 9.5 ounces with the included scope and is 46.5 inches long; balancing well in the hands so the weight is not an issue.
Definitely an adult air rifle, the cocking force on this rifle is stout. Although it has become easier to cock after an initial break-in period, it can still be a workout for the average adult. Of course, that strong, proprietary Nitro Piston Elite gas ram you are cocking translates to adult power as well. My location is above 6000 feet and the average velocity of 14.66 grain pellets was a respectable 700 fps, yielding almost 16-foot pounds of energy. Plenty of power for pest control or small game hunting at air rifle range. Crosman rates the Vaporizer as capable of 950fps and 29fpe.
The 2-stage “Clean Break Trigger” was heavy at approximately 6.5 pounds out of the box with a long first stage take-up. The trigger is adjustable via a small hole in the trigger guard, but even with that, I found I could not adjust it lower than 5 pounds without approaching what I felt was a danger threshold. It wasn’t a bad trigger, but there is room for improvement on a gun in this price range. The manual safety is a lever located directly in front of the trigger and it does not automatically engage upon cocking. Unusual to my thinking in this age of rampant lawsuits, yet the lack of an auto safety engagement will no doubt be lauded by some.
The Center Point scope appears to be of good quality with a clean image from edge-to-edge and the parallax adjustability from 5 yards to infinity via the Adjustable Objective bell. Elevation and windage adjustment turrets are calibrated in ¼ MOA. Most shooters should find this included scope adequate for the capabilities of this air rifle. Accuracy-wise the Vaporizer did well after it settled down from running the first 100 or so pellets. Taking time out to tighten all screws occasionally is always good practice as well as using Tom Gaylord’s recommended “Artillery Hold” when shooting break-barrels. At 20 yards the shot groups with H&N and SIG pellets could be covered by a U.S. quarter.
I experienced dieseling for the first 40 or 50 shots before the manufacturing oils/solvents worked their way out. That is a concern, but Crosman’s new 5-year limited warranty on materials and workmanship should have you covered. MSRP on the Vaporizer is $259.99 and if you have questions or desire to obtain the Vaporizer or any of Crosman’s other fine products, reach out to our friends at Airguns of Arizona.
On a side note and in the spirit of the season, to help prevent someone from “shooting their eye out” check with AofA regarding new shooting glasses from Howard Leight Shooting Sports. Named Genesis, these are lightweight, extremely comfortable, and have adjustable temples for ease of fitting the adult face. You forget you are wearing them – always a plus when out shooting for any length of time – and when coming from the cold outside to a warm room, you still won’t think about them because they won’t fog up! Their Extreme Anti-Fog treated lenses eliminate that annoying problem. They also provide 99.9% UV protection and for an MSRP of $18.99, they are a bargain.
Happy Holidays to all and remember: Don’t Shoot Your Eye Out!!!