Posts Tagged ‘trigger’

The blog that I wrote on installing the GTX aftermarket trigger in the Benjamin Trail NP All Weather has proven to be one of the most commented-upon items in all the time that I have been writing this blog. You can find the original posting here:

Recently reader Don Swyers wrote: “I upgraded my nitro trail trigger to the gtx generation 2 and my safety hasn’t worked since.. I tried adjusting the secondary, and it still doesn’t work…”

I contacted Steve Woodward, inventor of the GTX trigger, to answer Swyers’s question and some other common queries regarding the GTX trigger.

Woodward: In addition to correct adjustment of the GTX Secondary screw (you can find the directions for adjustment here: http://www.airgunsofarizona.​com/GTX.htm Just click on the blue “Installation Guide” button), proper operation of the Crosman “Gamo-Style” safety depends on a number of things. (Note: the picture below shows the trigger assembly with the trigger pointed up and the receiver pointed to the left.)


One of those things is Correct installation of the Safety “hairpin” spring, including alignment with the Safety Toggle index notches (#1) and retaining tab (#2).  The leg that engages the index notches (#1) should press against the trigger housing and should be underneath the outer tab labeled “1”. It curls around the pivot pin and is held in place with an e-clip. The other leg should be clipped firmly behind the retaining tab (#2). It is the anchor for the free end of the spring.

Also, these springs are sometimes made of poor quality wire, resulting in inadequate tension.  This can sometimes be improved by removing the spring, bending the two ends together, and then reinstalling.

Finally, the profile of the sheet-metal Toggle (#3)  is sometimes malformed, and can be improved by minor reshaping to better conform to the face of the trigger blade.

These factors are especially important with the GTX, due to its machined anodized aluminum fabrication, which is smoother and has a lower coefficient of friction than the stock steel trigger blade.

Another common Question: Why doesn’t the GTX trigger reset when I pull halfway and then let go without firing?

Woodward: The stock trigger does the same thing, but you probably never noticed before because it hides the fact from your trigger finger. After the gun is cocked, the mating surfaces of the sear hold the piston back against hundreds of pounds of force from the compressed mainspring or ram. When you pull the trigger, moving the mating surfaces toward break, there’s such a lot of friction; the spring that returns the sears to the original position while the gun is being cocked, is not strong enough to overcome the friction. The behavior of the GTX trigger is the same, but with the stock trigger, the trigger spring makes the trigger blade return to the original position, while the sear is still partially disengaged.  By contrast, the GTX trigger tracks the true position of the sear and reports that to your trigger finger. In both cases, with the stock trigger and the GTX, what the prudent shooter needs to do is adopt the habit of always recocking the gun whenever the trigger is touched without firing. Incidentally, this applies to almost all inexpensive airgun triggers, not just springers.

Question: The GTX trigger feels really light. Is it safe?

Woodward: Any trigger that will never fire unless it is being touched at the time is a safe trigger. The GTX satisfies that criterion just as well as the stock trigger does. The safety of the trigger depends on the engagement of the sear. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. We recommend practicing with your GTX trigger until you are familiar with the feel of the first and second stages.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

–          Jock Elliott

The Daystate Air Ranger is a beautiful air rifle.

I guess the good folks at Airguns of Arizona got tired of my whining: “How come you never send me any of the really nice airguns, huh?” (The real answer is that they can hardly keep them in stock. Commander in Chief Robert Buchanan tells me that the most expensive airguns they stock are also their best sellers.)

So, to quiet me for a while, they sent me a Daystate Air Ranger. Not just any old Air Ranger, mind you, (It’s available in four different calibers: .177, .20, .22 and .25.) but a 50 foot-pound .22 caliber model.

My first impression of it is that it is just flat gorgeous. And this is not just an opinion of one – my wife wandered by while I was writing this review. She stopped. “Is that real wood?” she asked. “Yes,” I said. She said: “And a compass in the stock . . . ooh, I’m getting goosebumps!”

Okay, it doesn’t really have a compass in the stock, but the Daystate symbol — crosshairs through two concentric circles with stars around the perimeter – really resembles one at first glance. Even without a real compass, you’d have to be pretty jaded not to recognize that the Air Range is a nice looking rifle in a 40.5-inch, 8.6-lb package.

Starting at the back, you’ll find a soft rubber ventilated butt pad. Forward of that is the ambidextrous, oiled-walnut thumbhole stock. Moving forward again, just ahead of the thumbhole itself, the pistol grip is knurled on either side and finished on the bottom with a dark hardwood cap separated from the pistol grip itself by a thin white spacer. Above the pistol grip on either side is a shelf for parking your thumb while shooting.

Ahead of the pistol grip, a black metal trigger guard surrounds a silver metal trigger that is adjustable for second stage weight, trigger angle, and first stage travel. Moving forward again, the walnut stock overlaps the trigger guard somewhat. The forestock has a groove on either side that I found quite handy for pulling the Air Ranger down onto my knee while shooting from the sitting position.

Next, underneath the forestock you’ll find a single allen bolt that secures the action in the stock and black cap that can be slipped off to expose a quick fill fitting (a male Foster fitting) for charging the Air Ranger. Above the quick fill fitting on the left side is a gauge to show how much pressure is left in the air reservoir.

Beyond the end of the forestock is a 500cc non-removable air reservoir. Above the air bottle is the barrel, which has a full-length shroud. The aft end of the barrel attaches to the matte black receiver. The top of the receiver has dovetails fore and aft of the breech for mounting a scope. On the left side of the receiver, you’ll find the serial number, the words “Air Ranger” and the Daystate “compass” – all in white. (On the right side of the receiver, you’ll find “Air Ranger,” “Harper Patent,” and “Daystate England.) In the middle of the receiver is a slot for inserting a 10-shot rotary magazine.

At the aft end of the receiver, you’ll find a black metal righthanded bolt, and, to the left of the bolt, the rotary safety. Flick it up to fire and down to SAFE the action.

That’s all there is to the Daystate Air Ranger. Next time, we’ll see how it shoots.

Til then, aim true and shoot straight.

–          Jock Elliott

I cocked the unloaded, uncharged Crosman 2240 and handed it to my testing partner. “Give the trigger a squeeze and tell me what you think,” I said.

A few seconds later, the action clicked, and he said, “It’s kind of crummy.” I tried it and agreed. With a trigger gauge, we measured the weight of the trigger pull at four-and-one-quarter pounds.

To improve the trigger, we decided to install the Adjustable Trigger Sear for the Crosman 17xx and 22xx. Along the way, we learned a bunch of things that will help you install one on your own airgun. (Note that the Adjustable Trigger Sear [ATS] is not a factory authorized part.)

To get ready for installation, Make sure the gun is not cocked or loaded. Lay the 2240 on its left side with the pistol grip pointed toward you, and the muzzle pointed to the right. Next, remove the grip by removing the screw that holds it in place.

With the grip removed, you’ll see a view like the picture below.

With a pair of needle nose pliers or the blade of a screwdriver, slide the coiled spring off the post. When the spring is off the post, tug gently on the spring, and you will be able to remove it completely from the pistol. Additional note: you can defer removing the coiled spring until after you have removed the trigger side plate, but having the side plate still in place reduces the chances of parts being launched into the air (see note about cranky uncles below).

Before you do anything else, make sure the safety is in the FIRE position – protruding fully from the left side of the pistol with the red stripe show. Prop the pistol’s air tube up on a pad of paper or a paperback book – something that will elevate the air tube about one-half inch. This will prevent the safety from being pushed into the SAFE position. If the safety is pushed into the SAFE position when the side plate is off the trigger assembly, a tiny silver ball bearing and teensy spring will fall (or worse – FLY!) out, and YOU WILL HAVE THE DEVIL’S OWN TIME TRYING TO GET THEM BACK INTO POSITION! (Please believe Uncle Jock on this. It happened to me, and it made me very cranky).

Next, remove the two screws that hold the trigger side plate, and gently remove the side plate. In the picture below, you’ll see the original sear that sits on a pivot pin just to the rear of the trigger (in this picture, the original sear is overlaid on the ATS.) Remove the original sear but leave the pin in position. (Just to the right of the sear, you’ll see that teeny spring that I told you about.)

Put the ATS in position as shown below. Notice that it wraps below the pin that the original sear pivoted around, but unlike the original, the ATS doesn’t have a hole that the pin can be inserted into. This is true despite the fact that some ATSs have holes that might appear to fit over the pin. They don’t.

Put the trigger side plate back in position. Slide the end of the coiled spring over the end of the sear, and then slide the other end over the bottom post. You’re done, except for adjusting the trigger and replacing the grip. (Note: you can attach the coiled spring to the ATS and the post with the side plate removed, but I think it is easier with the side plate holding the sear and post in place.)

To adjust the trigger, follow the instructions that came with the sear.

In the end, the ATS tranformed the trigger in my 2240 from a creepy 4-1/4 lb affair into a very crisp trigger that sends the shot down range at just 1 lb 15 oz.

What to do if the little ball bearing and spring fall out. Make sure the safety and trigger are in proper position. Replace the trigger side plate. Remove the two screws that hold the trigger assembly to the air tube. As you look down on the trigger assembly from the top, you’ll see a small hole just above the safety. Drop the small ball bearing in the hole, then place the small spring on top of it. Now reattach the trigger assembly to the air tube. This will compress the small spring and hold it in place.

Note about Screw Starting Point Adjustments

The final, optimum adjustment of the 1st and 2nd stage screws will be determined by experimentation and a combination of the shooter’s personal taste with the particular manufacturing tolerances of the specific gun. Still it’s sometimes useful to have a starting point for the fine tuning process – kind of a home base – that represents average reasonable settings that the sear can be easily set to in order to begin the process in an orderly way, and reset to if the process goes awry.

Starting Point settings are defined so…

1. Turn the screw being set so that the tip is exactly flush with the surface of the sear.

2. Turn the screw clockwise by the number of turns (and fractions of a turn) indicated in the figure.

Here are Starting Point settings for the three styles of Crosman sears. To identify which style you have, check for:

1. Presence of the two fabrication alignment holes present in styles A and C but not B.

2. The square “heel” of style A that B and C lack.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

– Jock Elliott

If there is one complaint that can be made about the modern crop of Benjamin and Sheridan multi-stroke pneumatic rifles (such as the Benjamin 392 and 397 and the Sheridan CB9 and C9), it’s that the trigger in these air rifles is mediocre. The pull is heavy, and there is a lot of creep to the trigger.

For example, my Sheridan C9 measured right around 6 to 6-1/4 lbs of pull, and there is a lot of movement between where the second stage of the trigger engages and the shot is finally triggered.

If you want a better trigger quickly and easily, buy a Benjamin SuperSear and install it yourself. What follows is an account of how I installed the SuperSear in my C9.

First, look underneath the forestock just ahead of the trigger guard. You’ll see a Philips head screw recessed into the forestock. Using a Philips screwdriver of appropriate size, remove this screw by turning it counterclockwise. With this screw removed, you can now slide off the buttstock. (Two notes: [1] You might want to open the pumping arm slightly to make it easier. [2] Every time you remove a screw or small part, put it in a safe place like a small plastic dish so it won’t wander away.)

You will now have an assembly that looks like the picture below.

Next, remove the two Philips screws that are on either side of the air tube just above the trigger assembly. This will allow you to remove the trigger assembly, resulting in an assembly that looks like the one below. (Note the spring and black steel spring guide that sticks out of the air tube; you can put these in a safe place with the other small parts.)

Next, remove the two screws that hold the cover on the trigger assembly, remove the cover, and you’ll be able to see what’s inside:

Notice the arrangement of the components inside the trigger assembly: the trigger (with a coiled spring to the left of it), the sear (at the top right of the assembly, with the wire spring hooked into it), and the safety (sticking through a hole in the trigger guard, with the wire spring pressing against it). Notice that there is a pin that goes through a hole in the trigger and goes into sockets on each side of the trigger case. The sear also rides on a pin that fits into sockets on each side of the trigger case. Also notice that there is a tab on the trigger that presses on the “tongue” of the trigger sear when the trigger is pulled.

Finally, notice the trigger case post which is just below the tab on the trigger. Because the SuperSear has a longer “tongue,” you will need to grind, file, or drill the trigger case post so that the SuperSear can operate without interference. The picture below shows the trigger case with everything removed, clamped in a vice, ready for grinding down the trigger case post.

The next picture shows the post ground down (I used a Dremel mototool and a small grinding wheel – don’t forget your eye protection) so that it is level with the trigger pin socket. A vital step in the process that follows the metalwork on the post is cleanup of the abrasive debris that will have been produced (e.g., metal chips and grinding wheel grit) before reassembly. Forgetting to do this will do no good for either the feel or longevity of your new trigger. A blast of compressed air (if available) can be used to blow the muck out, or a quick rinse with soapy water works too. Then dry and relubricate.

The next picture shows the trigger, SuperSear, wire spring, and safety reinstalled. All that remains is to reinstall the coil spring between the trigger and the two cast tabs and put the cover back on the trigger case. The trigger assembly slides back into the air tube (don’t forget to reinstall the spring assembly in the correct orientation) and put the two screws back in place. Finally, slip the buttstock on and put the screw back in place. You’re done!

To optimize my SuperSear Installation, I polished the engagement surface of the sear (indicated by the arrow in the picture below) with Arkansas stones that I use for sharpening knives and chisels. I started with a fairly rough stone, moved to a medium stone, and then a smooth stone. I finished the polishing with some emery cloth. Finally, I sprayed a drop of silicone lubricant on my fingertip and wiped it on the working edge of the sear.

So how does it work? Quite well, thank you. What once had been a creepy 6+ lb. trigger has been transformed into a crisp two-stage trigger that lets off at an average of 3 lb 11 oz. That’s significant improvement and results in an air rifle that is a lot more predictable and more fun to shoot.