In this post, we will take a look at three high-grade .177″ hunting pellets, and how they perform in wet mass. These include…
- Beeman “Crow Magnum”
- Gamo “Rocket”
- Gamo “Red Fire”
The test gun was a Crosman 2100 Classic pump rifle, and the test medium was a single, water-soaked phone book.
The entry’s above were fired from a distance of 10 feet. The “Shooting Chrony” did not register the tiny projectiles at all. So, I cannot provide you with impact velocities. However, the Crosman 2100 Classic will generally push pellets to 700-750 FPS, depending on the design and weight of the projectile.
Midway through the book, the Red Fire and the Crow Magnum are showing signs of good expansion where the Rocket did not expand.
At the rear of the book, only the Gamo Rocket managed to fully penetrate. Above, you can see how the two Rocket rounds were stopped by the polyethylene backstop. The Red Fire and the Crow Magnum both penetrated through 2/3 of the book before coming to a rest. Since this particular book was a bit thinner than the standard ones I use, I have calculated the following estimates for ballistic gelatin penetration equivalents…
- Gamo Red Fire = 4″- 5″ in ordinance gelatin
- Beeman Crow Magnum = 4″- 5″ in ordinance gelatin
- Gamo Rocket = 6″- 7″ in ordinance gelatin
The Red Fire displayed excellent expansion, even at these modest velocities, and was recovered with an average diameter of 0.242″.
The Crow Magnum was the best performer when it comes to expansion with a recovered diameter of 0.251″.
The Rocket did not expand or deform at these velocities. However, the heavy weight of the pellet makes for fantastic penetration for quick kills on small game.
All three of the pellet designs performed very well. The Red Fire and the Crow Magnum work great on a wide variety of small game, and deliver uniform expansion and energy transfer without over-penetrating. The Rocket is a great choice for slightly larger animals where more penetration is needed… I personally know an entire coop of deceased, over-fed feral pigeons that can attest to that.
Any of the three pellets ought to quickly drop game up to the size of a large crow (at reasonable distances) as long as you do your job as a marksman. Accuracy-wise, all of the pellets shot true through the rifled barrel of the 2100 Classic. The best groups came from the Crow Magnum, but not by much. All were well within the acceptable range of accuracy needed to hit small targets.
One thought on “In Review: .177″ Hunting Pellets”
You should try some JSB Predators instead of the Gamo Redfire. they’re the same basic design, but the Predators have much better consistency as far as uniformity goes, plus they’re extremely accurate. I have a Crosman 2100 too and I’ve gotten 10 shot 1/4″ groups and 3 shot matches at 25 yards ( benched and scoped of course ). I’ve heard they’re softer lead and get better expansion too, but who knows; they run a couple bucks more than the crow magnums. They will take out a crow at 20 yards if shot in the upper back/chest.
Also, the 2100’s actual velocity is a lot lower than the rating. It’s more like 600-650 FPS, mine is closer to the 600 side.