Britain's biggest-selling airgun magazine
Tim Finley gets to grips with the latest gas-ram rifle from Crosman - the Shockwave NP
To continue reading this content please register for our newsletter.
Please read our policy notice for details of how we use your data.
I am registered, skip this step
I’ve been shooting Crosman airguns since I was 16 years old, so that’s a very long time, according to my two kids, bless their cotton socks, so I was pleased to get my hands on the new Crosman Shockwave – an ultra-modern, break-barrel air rifle, from its synthetic stock design to its nitrogen power plant. It also comes as a kit form, complete with a scope and mounts.
The name ‘Shockwave’ refers to the gas-ram power plant, although there’s no massive shock upon firing, of course, but the very quick action of a gas-ram piston airgun is well known. Gas-piston TIM FINLEY gets to grips with the latest gas-ram rifle from Crosman – the Shockwave NP guns are also smoother in their firing cycle than traditional, metal coil, springpowered air rifles.
It also has other attributes; there is no spring noise upon cocking the breakbarrelled action, nor any upon firing, and the compressed gas can remain cocked without it degrading the power of the rifle. Another bonus is that when the piston moves forward, there is no torque imparted into it during the firing cycle. Overall, the nitro-piston is a major selling point on the Shockwave – Crosman have added ‘NP’ to the Shockwave name.
The rifle is not just about the modern power plant. It has a manual safety catch which needs operating before you cock the Shockwave, and on cocking the rifle, it has a massive 130 degree swing to the barrel, more than most. The safety catch is a curved steel blade that swings back to align snugly to the cast-steel trigger blade – make a habit of putting it on before cocking. There are letters under the stock’s integral trigger guard with a double-ended arrow telling the operator it’s forward position for F (Fire), and rearwards for S ‘Safe’. The catch being where it is means that the safety is fully ambidextrous and there’s an anti-bear trap device upon cocking, so the action cannot be unleashed unless the barrel is closed and locked.
Over the chronograph, the Crosman was brilliant. I’ll give you the actual figures of a 10-shot string – 611, 612, 610, 611, 610, 611, 612, 613, 610, 611 feet per second! That’s excellent, and to be honest, what I expected from a gas-ram-powered, break-barrel air rifle. Power-wise, with 14.2 grain pellets, that’s 11.8 ft.lbs.
The Shockwave has a synthetic stock, and the design is striking, reminding me of a full-bore hunting rifle, but that’s not to say it’s not ergonomic. The stock’s pistol grip has stippled panels on each side, and grip panels are also on the fore end. The front stock screws are set to 30 degrees to the axis of the barrel pivot because as we know, this helps to prevent them from loosening on recoiling break-barrelled air rifles. The base of the grip also has the Crosman circular logo embossed into it, and it’s totally ambidextrous – good for leftor right-handed shooters.
Anyway, enough about the stock, you’ll want to know how it shoots. As it happens, I didn’t have to fit an optical sight because the Shockwave has open sights. Even though it has a large integral sound moderator, there’s a front post moulded into the barrel shroud and the rear sight is attached to the top of the barrel at the breech. It has windage and elevation adjustment wheels with detents upon each click rotation.
The sights are clear in use and I was able to get them exactly where I needed them to zero at 20 yards – I picked 20 so that I could see the fall of the pellets when zeroing. Shooting over open sights is real ‘old-school’ fun, but I also wanted to see how it performed with the Center Point 4 x 32 scope. It’s sold in the USA with a scope so that owners can get to shooting with an optical sight straight away, and as it happens, it’s a cool little scope. They give you mounts, too, which is good, but I was confused at first because the twopiece mounts were different; one had two clamping screws, but the other, only one. The reason became clear, though, when I turned them over because one also had an arrestor screw in the middle of the mount, between the two clamping screws. The arrestor screw is vital for recoiling air rifles, so it’s clear that Crosman is a highly competent airgun manufacturer.
The scope rail is 11mm (in diameter?) and 170mm long, so the 4mm arrestor hole can take other scope-mount arrestor pins should you wish to upgrade. They also provide a very good scope setting-up instruction sheet, and a soft lens cloth for the Center Point scope.
From the bench at my airgun club, the Shockwave punched 25mm groups at 25m with .22, 14.2 grain Crosman Premier pellets, and the snappy recoil was easily managed.
The trigger has a long first stage, but is predictable and light enough at 1.8kg. The instruction sheet details the trigger adjusting screw behind the trigger blade, and how to adjust it correctly, but I left it as factory set because I was getting good enough groups with it as it was.
It has a very distinctive sound when fired. The full barrel shroud takes the majority of the forward firing noise away from the Shockwave NP – the action is the loudest noise you hear when shooting, and that’s not loud at all. If you are a back garden shooter and you make a good enclosed back-stop the Shockwave is perfect for you. Crosman call the system on the Shockwave ‘the QuietFire’, and it sure is!
I enjoyed shooting the Shockwave NP, very much and I also liked the fact that it has open sights. I learned to shoot with open sights, and I taught my son to shoot a rifle over open sights, too. The action is quick and smooth, the rifle supremely light and accurate, and as a gas-ram package well under £200, it really is the epitome of a top value airgun.
Rich Saunders lines up some great bullpup rifles costing less than £600 to help you to avoid buying a dog
Jim takes a break from big-game hunting to head out on a quest for the big desert jackrabbit, with a new rifle he thinks might just be the best entry-level small-game rig yet – the Umarex NOTOS CRK!
Register for our newsletters to receive tips and advice direct to your inbox.
Choose one or more and receive content relevant to you!
More information |
If you choose to block cookies some parts of this website may not operate. To block cookies please do this within your browser settings. Most browsers allow you to block cookies within their settings and we have provided links to the most commonly used browsers.
Please view our cookie details page for more information on the cookies we use.