My Marauder - This is too long -

My Marauder - This is too long -

Joined: March 15th, 2005, 12:43 am

May 17th, 2011, 3:58 am #1

My Marauder Rifle
05/16/2011

There has been a huge amount of talk about the Crosman Marauder rifle on the net with a lot of contradictory conclusions from posters. One loves theirs and the other hates his. One rifle shoots like a laser and another wont group at all.

So, I ordered in a couple about three months ago with the intent to finding out what really is going on with these rifles. I mean, where else could you find a PCP (made in the good ol USA, too) for $400 or so?! Until the CZ-200S came out this was unheard of.

One thing after another got in the way of my intentions and it wasnt until about 4 weeks ago that I finally had time to take one out of the box and play with it. I had shot two other Marauders before and was put off by the poor stock design but impressed with how the rifle shot.

My prep time was short and simple. I wiped the rifle down with some TSI-301, cleaned the barrel (a total of less than 10 patches with a pull thru line), filled the cylinder to 200 bar, and proceeded to shoot thru my chronograph.

The muzzle velocity was way over 900 fps and when I finally found a pellet that shot with some consistency, I decided it needed to slow down. My idea is that most air rifles shoot best at somewhere around 800 fps and I am happy with my opinion. You can argue with that point if you wish but Ill not change my mind. Besides, if youre happy with your rifle, why should you care what I think.

I took the rifle apart leaving only a few sub-assemblies together. The only major alteration I did was replace the trigger return spring. I did flush out the trigger mechanism and re-lubed it, using some light oil and Brownells Action Magic. Its good stuff and lasts forever. I put some dry moly lubricant on the striker and spring. After screwing in the restrictor screw and locking it down, I finally ended up at almost exactly 800 fps, plus or minus 7 fps.

The barrel was in good shape with no burrs on either end. The muzzle was cleanly done and there were no burrs on the breach end. A cheap cotton swab checks this out for you in one minute or less.

I have never had a magazine fed air rifle before and it took me a few minutes to figure out exactly how to load the darned thing. Once I was successful there were no problems. Kind of like riding a bicycle. Ie. Once you learn, you never really forget.

At 50 feet, my Marauder seemed to like JSB Exacts, Express, and Heavies about the same. For the record, I still have a few boxes of CP lights and CP heavies. Okay you can start drooling. They are #2s, #5s, and #7s. My rifle wasnt particularly fond of any of them when comparing them to JSBs. It hated Walther Super Domes.

Once I was out to 25 yards tho, It became quickly obvious that the JSB Exacts (8.4) were marginally better than the JSB Heavies. The Expresss came in a close third. The main group sizes with all three pellets were close to the same. The tie breakers were the number of fliers I experienced with the Express and Heavies. I just didnt get any fliers with the JSB Exacts.

Since then, I have put over 1000 pellets thru the rifle and have a pretty good grasp of how this rifle is going to perform.

At 50 feet, I can literally hit a 0.010 dot with every shot. Not dead center each time but the dot will disappear. The rifle shoots as well as any other PCP I have at that distance and I have several. However, once I get out to 25 yards, the groups arent quite as tight.

We all know that pellets dont travel in a straight line. They tend to pattern sort of like the bell on a trombone. Ie. They curve out slightly as they travel down range. Its the amount of curving out that makes the difference.

In powder burners, there is a term: Hummer. A Hummer barrel is one that doesnt seem to be as affected by wind currents as most barrels. Benchrest shooter live for the day when they get one and go into a deep funk when it finally gets shot out. The barrel on this Marauder isnt a Hummer.

As far as I know, we have only two PCP rifles in the $400 class. That is the Marauder and the CZ-200S. The CZ-200S will outshoot the Marauder. Its not even close!! Ive shot at least five different CZs and they all will shoot better at distance than will this rifle. The Marauder will give you twice as many shots per fill as will the CZ but once youre out past that 50 foot marker, the CZ wins hands down every time in the accuracy battle.

So, what do I think of the my Marauder? I think its a hell of a good rifle for $400+. You cant expect to get performance from a Crosman that is similar to what you expect from an Air Arms 400 or equivalent. Youre not going to get as pretty a stock and its not going to fit as well. But, what do you want for $400?!! Its a value gun and is a good value.

We all want the magic bullet and the closest thing to it right now is the CZ-200S. But if you want a full sized rifle at a good price, then the Marauder is your rifle. You have to understand just what Crosman Corporation is and how it operates to understand the Marauder.

Crossman doesnt want to sell 100 or 200 rifles. They want to sell 10 thousand rifles!! So, they keep the price down and do that by cutting some corners. If youre handy, you can make up for some of the short comings or you can pay someone to do it for you. OR, you can just take those extra dollars and buy a better rifle up front.

A company like Crosman will work hard to develop a reputation for a product and then they tend to ride on that reputation. See the Crosman Premier line of pellets. At one time, the CPs were the ONLY pellet to shoot. Now just about anyone makes a more consistent and reliable pellet than does Crosman. If Marauder sales begin to decline, watch for Crosman to either discontinue it or they will drop the price precipitously to increase sales. If you remember a few weeks ago, they sold a lot of their stock at $385 fgt. Pd. Thats how theyll keep their inventory at a manageable level.

Remember, if you spend $300 to $400 fixing up your Marauder, you will still have a Marauder. A 400ERB by Air Arms will sell used for a lot more than a tuned used Marauder.

If you do get a Marauder, you will need to tune the trigger. Out of the box, its lacking, to be nice. It is really quite a simple mechanism and appears to be hell for stout. I dont think youll have any problems with it ever with this new trigger..

If you are going to hunt with the rifle, I think an out of the box Marauder will do just fine. But, if you want to shoot it competitively, youll need to do some work.
John
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Joined: November 17th, 2006, 3:51 am

May 17th, 2011, 11:07 am #2

Thats information that the average airgunner can relate to.
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Joined: January 31st, 2011, 2:29 am

May 17th, 2011, 6:40 pm #3

My Marauder Rifle
05/16/2011

There has been a huge amount of talk about the Crosman Marauder rifle on the net with a lot of contradictory conclusions from posters. One loves theirs and the other hates his. One rifle shoots like a laser and another wont group at all.

So, I ordered in a couple about three months ago with the intent to finding out what really is going on with these rifles. I mean, where else could you find a PCP (made in the good ol USA, too) for $400 or so?! Until the CZ-200S came out this was unheard of.

One thing after another got in the way of my intentions and it wasnt until about 4 weeks ago that I finally had time to take one out of the box and play with it. I had shot two other Marauders before and was put off by the poor stock design but impressed with how the rifle shot.

My prep time was short and simple. I wiped the rifle down with some TSI-301, cleaned the barrel (a total of less than 10 patches with a pull thru line), filled the cylinder to 200 bar, and proceeded to shoot thru my chronograph.

The muzzle velocity was way over 900 fps and when I finally found a pellet that shot with some consistency, I decided it needed to slow down. My idea is that most air rifles shoot best at somewhere around 800 fps and I am happy with my opinion. You can argue with that point if you wish but Ill not change my mind. Besides, if youre happy with your rifle, why should you care what I think.

I took the rifle apart leaving only a few sub-assemblies together. The only major alteration I did was replace the trigger return spring. I did flush out the trigger mechanism and re-lubed it, using some light oil and Brownells Action Magic. Its good stuff and lasts forever. I put some dry moly lubricant on the striker and spring. After screwing in the restrictor screw and locking it down, I finally ended up at almost exactly 800 fps, plus or minus 7 fps.

The barrel was in good shape with no burrs on either end. The muzzle was cleanly done and there were no burrs on the breach end. A cheap cotton swab checks this out for you in one minute or less.

I have never had a magazine fed air rifle before and it took me a few minutes to figure out exactly how to load the darned thing. Once I was successful there were no problems. Kind of like riding a bicycle. Ie. Once you learn, you never really forget.

At 50 feet, my Marauder seemed to like JSB Exacts, Express, and Heavies about the same. For the record, I still have a few boxes of CP lights and CP heavies. Okay you can start drooling. They are #2s, #5s, and #7s. My rifle wasnt particularly fond of any of them when comparing them to JSBs. It hated Walther Super Domes.

Once I was out to 25 yards tho, It became quickly obvious that the JSB Exacts (8.4) were marginally better than the JSB Heavies. The Expresss came in a close third. The main group sizes with all three pellets were close to the same. The tie breakers were the number of fliers I experienced with the Express and Heavies. I just didnt get any fliers with the JSB Exacts.

Since then, I have put over 1000 pellets thru the rifle and have a pretty good grasp of how this rifle is going to perform.

At 50 feet, I can literally hit a 0.010 dot with every shot. Not dead center each time but the dot will disappear. The rifle shoots as well as any other PCP I have at that distance and I have several. However, once I get out to 25 yards, the groups arent quite as tight.

We all know that pellets dont travel in a straight line. They tend to pattern sort of like the bell on a trombone. Ie. They curve out slightly as they travel down range. Its the amount of curving out that makes the difference.

In powder burners, there is a term: Hummer. A Hummer barrel is one that doesnt seem to be as affected by wind currents as most barrels. Benchrest shooter live for the day when they get one and go into a deep funk when it finally gets shot out. The barrel on this Marauder isnt a Hummer.

As far as I know, we have only two PCP rifles in the $400 class. That is the Marauder and the CZ-200S. The CZ-200S will outshoot the Marauder. Its not even close!! Ive shot at least five different CZs and they all will shoot better at distance than will this rifle. The Marauder will give you twice as many shots per fill as will the CZ but once youre out past that 50 foot marker, the CZ wins hands down every time in the accuracy battle.

So, what do I think of the my Marauder? I think its a hell of a good rifle for $400+. You cant expect to get performance from a Crosman that is similar to what you expect from an Air Arms 400 or equivalent. Youre not going to get as pretty a stock and its not going to fit as well. But, what do you want for $400?!! Its a value gun and is a good value.

We all want the magic bullet and the closest thing to it right now is the CZ-200S. But if you want a full sized rifle at a good price, then the Marauder is your rifle. You have to understand just what Crosman Corporation is and how it operates to understand the Marauder.

Crossman doesnt want to sell 100 or 200 rifles. They want to sell 10 thousand rifles!! So, they keep the price down and do that by cutting some corners. If youre handy, you can make up for some of the short comings or you can pay someone to do it for you. OR, you can just take those extra dollars and buy a better rifle up front.

A company like Crosman will work hard to develop a reputation for a product and then they tend to ride on that reputation. See the Crosman Premier line of pellets. At one time, the CPs were the ONLY pellet to shoot. Now just about anyone makes a more consistent and reliable pellet than does Crosman. If Marauder sales begin to decline, watch for Crosman to either discontinue it or they will drop the price precipitously to increase sales. If you remember a few weeks ago, they sold a lot of their stock at $385 fgt. Pd. Thats how theyll keep their inventory at a manageable level.

Remember, if you spend $300 to $400 fixing up your Marauder, you will still have a Marauder. A 400ERB by Air Arms will sell used for a lot more than a tuned used Marauder.

If you do get a Marauder, you will need to tune the trigger. Out of the box, its lacking, to be nice. It is really quite a simple mechanism and appears to be hell for stout. I dont think youll have any problems with it ever with this new trigger..

If you are going to hunt with the rifle, I think an out of the box Marauder will do just fine. But, if you want to shoot it competitively, youll need to do some work.
John
and a darn good review. This is one of the pcp's that I am considering for a pcp hunting rifle. I am glad you took the time to answer the questions that I haven't thought to ask yet. Youre the kind of person that makes the Yellow a Great resource.
Thanks again.


As it written, let it be done, you bring the pellets I'll bring the gun
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Joined: April 6th, 2011, 11:25 am

May 18th, 2011, 1:08 am #4

My Marauder Rifle
05/16/2011

There has been a huge amount of talk about the Crosman Marauder rifle on the net with a lot of contradictory conclusions from posters. One loves theirs and the other hates his. One rifle shoots like a laser and another wont group at all.

So, I ordered in a couple about three months ago with the intent to finding out what really is going on with these rifles. I mean, where else could you find a PCP (made in the good ol USA, too) for $400 or so?! Until the CZ-200S came out this was unheard of.

One thing after another got in the way of my intentions and it wasnt until about 4 weeks ago that I finally had time to take one out of the box and play with it. I had shot two other Marauders before and was put off by the poor stock design but impressed with how the rifle shot.

My prep time was short and simple. I wiped the rifle down with some TSI-301, cleaned the barrel (a total of less than 10 patches with a pull thru line), filled the cylinder to 200 bar, and proceeded to shoot thru my chronograph.

The muzzle velocity was way over 900 fps and when I finally found a pellet that shot with some consistency, I decided it needed to slow down. My idea is that most air rifles shoot best at somewhere around 800 fps and I am happy with my opinion. You can argue with that point if you wish but Ill not change my mind. Besides, if youre happy with your rifle, why should you care what I think.

I took the rifle apart leaving only a few sub-assemblies together. The only major alteration I did was replace the trigger return spring. I did flush out the trigger mechanism and re-lubed it, using some light oil and Brownells Action Magic. Its good stuff and lasts forever. I put some dry moly lubricant on the striker and spring. After screwing in the restrictor screw and locking it down, I finally ended up at almost exactly 800 fps, plus or minus 7 fps.

The barrel was in good shape with no burrs on either end. The muzzle was cleanly done and there were no burrs on the breach end. A cheap cotton swab checks this out for you in one minute or less.

I have never had a magazine fed air rifle before and it took me a few minutes to figure out exactly how to load the darned thing. Once I was successful there were no problems. Kind of like riding a bicycle. Ie. Once you learn, you never really forget.

At 50 feet, my Marauder seemed to like JSB Exacts, Express, and Heavies about the same. For the record, I still have a few boxes of CP lights and CP heavies. Okay you can start drooling. They are #2s, #5s, and #7s. My rifle wasnt particularly fond of any of them when comparing them to JSBs. It hated Walther Super Domes.

Once I was out to 25 yards tho, It became quickly obvious that the JSB Exacts (8.4) were marginally better than the JSB Heavies. The Expresss came in a close third. The main group sizes with all three pellets were close to the same. The tie breakers were the number of fliers I experienced with the Express and Heavies. I just didnt get any fliers with the JSB Exacts.

Since then, I have put over 1000 pellets thru the rifle and have a pretty good grasp of how this rifle is going to perform.

At 50 feet, I can literally hit a 0.010 dot with every shot. Not dead center each time but the dot will disappear. The rifle shoots as well as any other PCP I have at that distance and I have several. However, once I get out to 25 yards, the groups arent quite as tight.

We all know that pellets dont travel in a straight line. They tend to pattern sort of like the bell on a trombone. Ie. They curve out slightly as they travel down range. Its the amount of curving out that makes the difference.

In powder burners, there is a term: Hummer. A Hummer barrel is one that doesnt seem to be as affected by wind currents as most barrels. Benchrest shooter live for the day when they get one and go into a deep funk when it finally gets shot out. The barrel on this Marauder isnt a Hummer.

As far as I know, we have only two PCP rifles in the $400 class. That is the Marauder and the CZ-200S. The CZ-200S will outshoot the Marauder. Its not even close!! Ive shot at least five different CZs and they all will shoot better at distance than will this rifle. The Marauder will give you twice as many shots per fill as will the CZ but once youre out past that 50 foot marker, the CZ wins hands down every time in the accuracy battle.

So, what do I think of the my Marauder? I think its a hell of a good rifle for $400+. You cant expect to get performance from a Crosman that is similar to what you expect from an Air Arms 400 or equivalent. Youre not going to get as pretty a stock and its not going to fit as well. But, what do you want for $400?!! Its a value gun and is a good value.

We all want the magic bullet and the closest thing to it right now is the CZ-200S. But if you want a full sized rifle at a good price, then the Marauder is your rifle. You have to understand just what Crosman Corporation is and how it operates to understand the Marauder.

Crossman doesnt want to sell 100 or 200 rifles. They want to sell 10 thousand rifles!! So, they keep the price down and do that by cutting some corners. If youre handy, you can make up for some of the short comings or you can pay someone to do it for you. OR, you can just take those extra dollars and buy a better rifle up front.

A company like Crosman will work hard to develop a reputation for a product and then they tend to ride on that reputation. See the Crosman Premier line of pellets. At one time, the CPs were the ONLY pellet to shoot. Now just about anyone makes a more consistent and reliable pellet than does Crosman. If Marauder sales begin to decline, watch for Crosman to either discontinue it or they will drop the price precipitously to increase sales. If you remember a few weeks ago, they sold a lot of their stock at $385 fgt. Pd. Thats how theyll keep their inventory at a manageable level.

Remember, if you spend $300 to $400 fixing up your Marauder, you will still have a Marauder. A 400ERB by Air Arms will sell used for a lot more than a tuned used Marauder.

If you do get a Marauder, you will need to tune the trigger. Out of the box, its lacking, to be nice. It is really quite a simple mechanism and appears to be hell for stout. I dont think youll have any problems with it ever with this new trigger..

If you are going to hunt with the rifle, I think an out of the box Marauder will do just fine. But, if you want to shoot it competitively, youll need to do some work.
John
I really think this $400 gun is a buy as you mentioned. Thanks for taking the time to give this thoughtful review.
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Joined: April 12th, 2011, 4:48 pm

May 18th, 2011, 8:50 pm #5

My Marauder Rifle
05/16/2011

There has been a huge amount of talk about the Crosman Marauder rifle on the net with a lot of contradictory conclusions from posters. One loves theirs and the other hates his. One rifle shoots like a laser and another wont group at all.

So, I ordered in a couple about three months ago with the intent to finding out what really is going on with these rifles. I mean, where else could you find a PCP (made in the good ol USA, too) for $400 or so?! Until the CZ-200S came out this was unheard of.

One thing after another got in the way of my intentions and it wasnt until about 4 weeks ago that I finally had time to take one out of the box and play with it. I had shot two other Marauders before and was put off by the poor stock design but impressed with how the rifle shot.

My prep time was short and simple. I wiped the rifle down with some TSI-301, cleaned the barrel (a total of less than 10 patches with a pull thru line), filled the cylinder to 200 bar, and proceeded to shoot thru my chronograph.

The muzzle velocity was way over 900 fps and when I finally found a pellet that shot with some consistency, I decided it needed to slow down. My idea is that most air rifles shoot best at somewhere around 800 fps and I am happy with my opinion. You can argue with that point if you wish but Ill not change my mind. Besides, if youre happy with your rifle, why should you care what I think.

I took the rifle apart leaving only a few sub-assemblies together. The only major alteration I did was replace the trigger return spring. I did flush out the trigger mechanism and re-lubed it, using some light oil and Brownells Action Magic. Its good stuff and lasts forever. I put some dry moly lubricant on the striker and spring. After screwing in the restrictor screw and locking it down, I finally ended up at almost exactly 800 fps, plus or minus 7 fps.

The barrel was in good shape with no burrs on either end. The muzzle was cleanly done and there were no burrs on the breach end. A cheap cotton swab checks this out for you in one minute or less.

I have never had a magazine fed air rifle before and it took me a few minutes to figure out exactly how to load the darned thing. Once I was successful there were no problems. Kind of like riding a bicycle. Ie. Once you learn, you never really forget.

At 50 feet, my Marauder seemed to like JSB Exacts, Express, and Heavies about the same. For the record, I still have a few boxes of CP lights and CP heavies. Okay you can start drooling. They are #2s, #5s, and #7s. My rifle wasnt particularly fond of any of them when comparing them to JSBs. It hated Walther Super Domes.

Once I was out to 25 yards tho, It became quickly obvious that the JSB Exacts (8.4) were marginally better than the JSB Heavies. The Expresss came in a close third. The main group sizes with all three pellets were close to the same. The tie breakers were the number of fliers I experienced with the Express and Heavies. I just didnt get any fliers with the JSB Exacts.

Since then, I have put over 1000 pellets thru the rifle and have a pretty good grasp of how this rifle is going to perform.

At 50 feet, I can literally hit a 0.010 dot with every shot. Not dead center each time but the dot will disappear. The rifle shoots as well as any other PCP I have at that distance and I have several. However, once I get out to 25 yards, the groups arent quite as tight.

We all know that pellets dont travel in a straight line. They tend to pattern sort of like the bell on a trombone. Ie. They curve out slightly as they travel down range. Its the amount of curving out that makes the difference.

In powder burners, there is a term: Hummer. A Hummer barrel is one that doesnt seem to be as affected by wind currents as most barrels. Benchrest shooter live for the day when they get one and go into a deep funk when it finally gets shot out. The barrel on this Marauder isnt a Hummer.

As far as I know, we have only two PCP rifles in the $400 class. That is the Marauder and the CZ-200S. The CZ-200S will outshoot the Marauder. Its not even close!! Ive shot at least five different CZs and they all will shoot better at distance than will this rifle. The Marauder will give you twice as many shots per fill as will the CZ but once youre out past that 50 foot marker, the CZ wins hands down every time in the accuracy battle.

So, what do I think of the my Marauder? I think its a hell of a good rifle for $400+. You cant expect to get performance from a Crosman that is similar to what you expect from an Air Arms 400 or equivalent. Youre not going to get as pretty a stock and its not going to fit as well. But, what do you want for $400?!! Its a value gun and is a good value.

We all want the magic bullet and the closest thing to it right now is the CZ-200S. But if you want a full sized rifle at a good price, then the Marauder is your rifle. You have to understand just what Crosman Corporation is and how it operates to understand the Marauder.

Crossman doesnt want to sell 100 or 200 rifles. They want to sell 10 thousand rifles!! So, they keep the price down and do that by cutting some corners. If youre handy, you can make up for some of the short comings or you can pay someone to do it for you. OR, you can just take those extra dollars and buy a better rifle up front.

A company like Crosman will work hard to develop a reputation for a product and then they tend to ride on that reputation. See the Crosman Premier line of pellets. At one time, the CPs were the ONLY pellet to shoot. Now just about anyone makes a more consistent and reliable pellet than does Crosman. If Marauder sales begin to decline, watch for Crosman to either discontinue it or they will drop the price precipitously to increase sales. If you remember a few weeks ago, they sold a lot of their stock at $385 fgt. Pd. Thats how theyll keep their inventory at a manageable level.

Remember, if you spend $300 to $400 fixing up your Marauder, you will still have a Marauder. A 400ERB by Air Arms will sell used for a lot more than a tuned used Marauder.

If you do get a Marauder, you will need to tune the trigger. Out of the box, its lacking, to be nice. It is really quite a simple mechanism and appears to be hell for stout. I dont think youll have any problems with it ever with this new trigger..

If you are going to hunt with the rifle, I think an out of the box Marauder will do just fine. But, if you want to shoot it competitively, youll need to do some work.
John
Thanks for the post. I'm seriously considering a M-Rod so I'd appreciate your thoughts.

My only have a few airguns and I'm very new to the hobby. I love to shoot and got into airguns so that I could practice in my yard at home. Then I discovered airgun hunting and it was all over for me.

I have a disco tuned by mac1 that is awesome. Check the turkey target below, that center hole is 15 H&N Barakuda's from 30 yards shooting with sticks. Awesome hunting gun once I figured it out.

But now I have my eye on a repeater. I would like a quick follow up shot. I like the looks of the M-rod. I wouldn't mess around, I'd just have Mac1 tune it. But, it's big and heavy.

So before I spend the money, I was wondering about some of the other $400 PCP's I've seen out there. You said there were only two...

What about these?

Evanix Renegade Carbine ($440)
Gamo DynaMax ($400)
HaleStorm ($400) - this is my next top pick.
Hammerli Pneuma Elite ($350)

They all get decent reviews. The only thing I don't like is they are loud and not back yard friendly ( I live in a suburb of L.A. county). But with the M-Rod, I know that Mac will tune it and if I have issues I have a goto guy to help me fix it. He's also in L.A. and I can drive out there.

Once again, I'm a total nub and would appreciate any advice you guys have for me.



.22 Mac1 tuned Disco
Sheridan Blue Streak
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jz2
Joined: January 28th, 2010, 10:57 pm

May 28th, 2011, 3:39 pm #6

My Marauder Rifle
05/16/2011

There has been a huge amount of talk about the Crosman Marauder rifle on the net with a lot of contradictory conclusions from posters. One loves theirs and the other hates his. One rifle shoots like a laser and another wont group at all.

So, I ordered in a couple about three months ago with the intent to finding out what really is going on with these rifles. I mean, where else could you find a PCP (made in the good ol USA, too) for $400 or so?! Until the CZ-200S came out this was unheard of.

One thing after another got in the way of my intentions and it wasnt until about 4 weeks ago that I finally had time to take one out of the box and play with it. I had shot two other Marauders before and was put off by the poor stock design but impressed with how the rifle shot.

My prep time was short and simple. I wiped the rifle down with some TSI-301, cleaned the barrel (a total of less than 10 patches with a pull thru line), filled the cylinder to 200 bar, and proceeded to shoot thru my chronograph.

The muzzle velocity was way over 900 fps and when I finally found a pellet that shot with some consistency, I decided it needed to slow down. My idea is that most air rifles shoot best at somewhere around 800 fps and I am happy with my opinion. You can argue with that point if you wish but Ill not change my mind. Besides, if youre happy with your rifle, why should you care what I think.

I took the rifle apart leaving only a few sub-assemblies together. The only major alteration I did was replace the trigger return spring. I did flush out the trigger mechanism and re-lubed it, using some light oil and Brownells Action Magic. Its good stuff and lasts forever. I put some dry moly lubricant on the striker and spring. After screwing in the restrictor screw and locking it down, I finally ended up at almost exactly 800 fps, plus or minus 7 fps.

The barrel was in good shape with no burrs on either end. The muzzle was cleanly done and there were no burrs on the breach end. A cheap cotton swab checks this out for you in one minute or less.

I have never had a magazine fed air rifle before and it took me a few minutes to figure out exactly how to load the darned thing. Once I was successful there were no problems. Kind of like riding a bicycle. Ie. Once you learn, you never really forget.

At 50 feet, my Marauder seemed to like JSB Exacts, Express, and Heavies about the same. For the record, I still have a few boxes of CP lights and CP heavies. Okay you can start drooling. They are #2s, #5s, and #7s. My rifle wasnt particularly fond of any of them when comparing them to JSBs. It hated Walther Super Domes.

Once I was out to 25 yards tho, It became quickly obvious that the JSB Exacts (8.4) were marginally better than the JSB Heavies. The Expresss came in a close third. The main group sizes with all three pellets were close to the same. The tie breakers were the number of fliers I experienced with the Express and Heavies. I just didnt get any fliers with the JSB Exacts.

Since then, I have put over 1000 pellets thru the rifle and have a pretty good grasp of how this rifle is going to perform.

At 50 feet, I can literally hit a 0.010 dot with every shot. Not dead center each time but the dot will disappear. The rifle shoots as well as any other PCP I have at that distance and I have several. However, once I get out to 25 yards, the groups arent quite as tight.

We all know that pellets dont travel in a straight line. They tend to pattern sort of like the bell on a trombone. Ie. They curve out slightly as they travel down range. Its the amount of curving out that makes the difference.

In powder burners, there is a term: Hummer. A Hummer barrel is one that doesnt seem to be as affected by wind currents as most barrels. Benchrest shooter live for the day when they get one and go into a deep funk when it finally gets shot out. The barrel on this Marauder isnt a Hummer.

As far as I know, we have only two PCP rifles in the $400 class. That is the Marauder and the CZ-200S. The CZ-200S will outshoot the Marauder. Its not even close!! Ive shot at least five different CZs and they all will shoot better at distance than will this rifle. The Marauder will give you twice as many shots per fill as will the CZ but once youre out past that 50 foot marker, the CZ wins hands down every time in the accuracy battle.

So, what do I think of the my Marauder? I think its a hell of a good rifle for $400+. You cant expect to get performance from a Crosman that is similar to what you expect from an Air Arms 400 or equivalent. Youre not going to get as pretty a stock and its not going to fit as well. But, what do you want for $400?!! Its a value gun and is a good value.

We all want the magic bullet and the closest thing to it right now is the CZ-200S. But if you want a full sized rifle at a good price, then the Marauder is your rifle. You have to understand just what Crosman Corporation is and how it operates to understand the Marauder.

Crossman doesnt want to sell 100 or 200 rifles. They want to sell 10 thousand rifles!! So, they keep the price down and do that by cutting some corners. If youre handy, you can make up for some of the short comings or you can pay someone to do it for you. OR, you can just take those extra dollars and buy a better rifle up front.

A company like Crosman will work hard to develop a reputation for a product and then they tend to ride on that reputation. See the Crosman Premier line of pellets. At one time, the CPs were the ONLY pellet to shoot. Now just about anyone makes a more consistent and reliable pellet than does Crosman. If Marauder sales begin to decline, watch for Crosman to either discontinue it or they will drop the price precipitously to increase sales. If you remember a few weeks ago, they sold a lot of their stock at $385 fgt. Pd. Thats how theyll keep their inventory at a manageable level.

Remember, if you spend $300 to $400 fixing up your Marauder, you will still have a Marauder. A 400ERB by Air Arms will sell used for a lot more than a tuned used Marauder.

If you do get a Marauder, you will need to tune the trigger. Out of the box, its lacking, to be nice. It is really quite a simple mechanism and appears to be hell for stout. I dont think youll have any problems with it ever with this new trigger..

If you are going to hunt with the rifle, I think an out of the box Marauder will do just fine. But, if you want to shoot it competitively, youll need to do some work.
John
this is a very thorough and informative review, thanks NT
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