At first glance you’ll notice something about this airgun is vaguely familiar. See it yet? Yup, while not an officially licensed replica, the Crossman 1077 takes a lot of its visual cues from the Ruger 10/22. Even the name evokes a certain similarity. But does it meet the standards set by the 10/22 as a fast and accurate plinking rifle? Let’s take a look and find out.
The first thing I noticed about the 1077 upon holding it in my hands is that it just felt right. It was light, but not TOO light. The polymer stock didn’t feel like flimsy toy plastic, this felt like the same polymer a firearm would have. The stock is on the small end of adult sized stocks, but bigger than a youth stock, making it a good fit for a wider variety of shooter. The wide forearm is hand filling and provides excellent control, while the sharp downward curve of the grip is a nice compromise between a straight stock and a pistol grip, allowing the wrist to be angled comfortably while shooting. The comfort of holding and aiming the gun is certainly one of its strong points. There also exists a wooden stock version. If you prefer a heftier weight and a more classical look.
The 1077 is a semi-auto, CO2 powered, .177 caliber pellet gun. It’s powered by a single disposable 12 gram CO2 canister similar to those used in a number of airguns, and easily available in bulk, however aftermarket 88 gram CO2 tanks exist as well in both official Crossman products and 3rd party productions. However don’t confuse these with high pressure air tanks, as the seals are not designed with the intent of handling the much higher pressures that PCP airguns operate at, at least not without being regulated down to a lower PSI.
It’s fed by a removable magazine, which is its self loaded with 12 round rotary clips. You can buy these rotary clips (Crossman also refers to them as “speed loaders,”) to quickly reload, or for even quicker reloads, you can buy whole additional magazines for a bit more. In theory this design could allow the 1077 to accept a different sort of aftermarket magazine and support magazines of different capacities, but so far, none exist. The mechanism feeds best using round nose pellets or flatheads. If you plan to use hollow points, pointed pellets, or specialty pellets, be sure to check and make sure that they aren’t longer than the chambers on the rotary clip, as the fit of the feeding mechanism is very tight in order to make the most efficient use of your gas.
If you should get a jam, however it has a nice feature in two tabs that protrude from the sides of the receiver, that allow you to slide the barrel forward in order to clear jams. This is a nice feature that allows you to get back to shooting quickly and avoids the need for a ramrod to clear out feeding malfunctions. I find this especially important on a semi-auto airgun which has a fully enclosed breech.
It comes with a basic adjustable square notch rear sight, which is adjustable for elevation, and has a very basic windage elevation, the latter of which I strongly suggest that, if it came centered, you don’t mess with. The front sight is a high visibility fiber optic, which is fixed. There’s also an 11mm standard dovetail rail for fitting optics. With a fast firing semi-auto like this, a fiber optic might be nice. However the dovetail rail is made of polymer so it won’t be as stable as it would have been, had it been metal.
The barrel is a 3 layered affair featuring a rifled steel inner barrel with a polymer shroud, and a rolled steel outer shroud that presents what is visibly the barrel. This is to facilitate the previously mentioned barrel sliding feature, for clearing jams. I normally prefer solid barrels, but I can see the necessity for this. It also reduces the overall weight of the gun. The inner barrel is nested back a bit, meaning the actual barrel ends a bit earlier than it appears to. This is a minor gripe, but I don’t like nested barrels for the reason that it’s essentially dead space on the gun, offering no additional velocity, while taking up space.
When you’re ready to shoot unscrew the large screw at the end of the forearm. It has an aggressive texture to give you a strong grip, on it, and for those with weaker hands there’s also a slot at the front to use a flat head screwdriver. You’ll see a long rod attached to the screw which is used to push the CO2 canister in place. Just drop the canister into the hole, nozzle first (I suggest you put a drop of pelgun oil on the nozzle the first time to lube up the innards), and screw the screw back in over it until you hear a little hiss. Be careful while doing this, I’ve found crossthreading to be a problem here if you don’t get it in perfectly straight and it can cause it to stop before you get it all the way in. If it appears to be screwing in at an angle, back out and try again. You may need a bit of force to get the seal on the CO2 canister to pop.
If you’re smart you’ll get some extra rotary clips and load them up ahead of time you can have some real fun shooting. I’ve found that you can go through almost exactly 5 of these before the CO2 runs out, or in other words 60 shots. With this gun shooting as fast as you can pull the trigger, you’ll burn through ammo faster than you might think.
Accuracy is pretty impressive for plinking purposes. At 10 yards, which is a pretty typical airgun range for precision shooting, it’ll do whatever you ask of it, though if you’re shooting rapidly, then like all CO2 guns, you’ll experience increasingly drop off. It’s proven its self out to 30 yards at least while the CO2 tank is fairly full. You’ll find the drop off becomes greater as you run lower though.
Velocities while the tank is new range from 500 to 600 fps, though you may be able to get higher with non-lead pellets designed to reach higher speeds, and of course as your CO2 supply diminishes you’ll see some velocity drop off.
What surprised me was just how efficient the gun was with its CO2. Typically with other CO2 powered airguns, once I’ve gotten all the good shots out of a canister, and change them, there’s still a good bit of unused gas in there that leaks out. Not with the 1077. Rather than a hiss, and a spray, removing the canister only produces a slight “Pfft” sound as it’s unsealed and its empty husk is discarded, utterly drained of all usable gas.
If you attempt to bump fire, you may find the gun jamming up, as is the limitation of CO2, you can end up with a weak shot which doesn’t clear the barrel, but otherwise, you can fire as fast as you can reasonably pull the trigger.
For target shooting and plinking the 1077 is an enjoyable gun, with a light (for an airgun) trigger that breaks cleanly (again for an airgun), but I’d hesitate to use it for hunting due to its lower velocities, and the diminishing power of CO2. Considering that when hunting you may often only get one shot anyway, I’d really advise a piston, or PCP airgun that can produce velocities in the 800 to 1000 fps range for a humane kill. Though small pests like insects and arachnids would be no problem.
The 1077 retails for between $60-80 depending on where you buy it. The rotary clips come in 3 packs for around $7 though again price may vary by your supplier, and whole magazines can be ordered online for $10-15. Crossman advertises it as the only semi-auto pellet gun in its price class, and they aren’t kidding. Look around and you’ll find the next step up in semi-auto pellet guns is much much higher. Most other semi-auto air rifles in this price range only fire steel BBs, so this is a small price to pay to have fast firing, heavier and more accurate lead pellets.
Pros: Very affordable, light weight, comfortable to hold, fiber optic front sight, jam clearing mechanism, lots of aftermarket accessories and modifications, efficient use of CO2, accuracy, just plain fun to shoot.
Cons: Mostly plastic construction (though this might not be a con depending on who you ask), recessed barrel, inherent velocity reduction and drop off with CO2, lower velocities, not ideal for longer range shooting or hunting.
All in all the 1077 is a fun plinker, so if you’re looking for a cheaper and more available alternative to .22, it’s right up your alley. Although I didn’t touch on it extensively, this guns popularity has lead to there being a variety of aftermarket parts and upgrades for it, as well as a number of modifications one can perform on it if you’re a tinkerer. It’s not the perfect airgun by any measure, and there are by far, superior semi-auto pellet guns out there, but when you consider its price, you can’t deny just what you’re getting for your money. A semi-auto pellet gun, that’s fun to shoot, and won’t break the bank to purchase or to keep fed. If you’re a particularly well off airgun lover, there’s better out there for you, but if you’re a budget minded plinker who want a purchase they won’t regret, then by all means, pick up a 1077, take it out, shoot it, smile, and shoot it some more.