The Crosman Benjamin Trail NP XL 1500 is one air rifle that means serious business. Before proceeding any further, let’s get one thing clear. This rifle is for adults only. If you are planning to buy one for your teenage kids, you are better off giving this one a pass. The design and performance all point towards the fact that it is meant for adults. This rifle’s strong points include its great knockdown power and impressive accuracy. This review will breakdown all the necessary details that you would need regarding different aspects of this rifle. Give it a read and hopefully you’ll find it useful to assess whether to buy this rife or not.
The Crosman Benjamin Trail NP XL 1500 uses a nitrogen-filled gas ram as its source of power instead of a coiled spring. The nitrogen cylinder and piston inside the chamber work in cohesion to power shots. When you cock the rifle, the nitrogen air in the cylinder comes under pressure only to be released after one pulls the trigger. The compressed air then powers the pellets through the rifle towards the intended destination.
At the very outset, the Crosman Benjamin Trail is clearly a handsome rifle to look at. The hardwood stock is a fresh change from the composite stocks found it the cheaper air rifles. As the pictures would show you, the hardwood, checkered stock really does enhance the overall look of this rifle. And you’re bound to love the sturdy and durable material which has been used instead of the much more fragile composite in other rifles. Along with the solid wood finishing, this rifle is elegantly long measuring about 49’’ in length.
The stock is designed to be ambidextrous. Both left-handed shooters and right-handed shooters will be comfortable with using this one. The textured grip on the stock is also a blessing if you are a person whose hands tend to sweat when out under the sun for too long. The textured grip helps prevent slippage, maintain stability and improves accuracy.
However, there is a pitfall to having such a regal stock made of hardwood. This increases the weight of the rifle a bit. This one stands at 8.5 lbs. compared to the others that are about 6 lbs. heavy.
The Benjamin Trail rifle does not come with a recoil pad. However, this is not much of a problem because the recoil itself is very little to begin with thanks to the Nitro Piston mechanism in this rifle.
This rifle requires a bit of an effort when it comes to cocking. The Benjamin Trail requires a cocking force of about 45-50 lbs. during use. This basically means that only grown adults should use this as most teenagers would struggle with it. If you tend to have some sort of medical problem in your arms, you should rather avoid this rifle.
The Nitro Piston Mechanism that replaces the spring mechanism makes the Benjamin Trail a relatively quieter rifle. Initially, this might be a bit loud but with usage, let’s say after 500 shots, you can expect this rifle to be a lot quieter. And the noise tends to be a bit higher when you are using light pellets. Use reasonably heavy ones and this rifle will make minimal noise. All in all, this rifle makes even less than half the noise that spring powered rifles make.
Performance and the quality of shooting is mainly the area where the Benjamin Trail rifle is really strong. This rifle is a gem of a powerhouse. As the measurements suggest, with alloy pellets this rifle records speeds of about 1100 fps and with lead pellets, the speed is about 950 fps. But where it truly shines is with the fact that the knockdown power of this rifle is immense. While you can definitely use this for target shooting, this rifle is perfect for small game hunting as well. As observations have shown this rifle kills crows and rabbits within 25 yard ranges with ease. It has also been found to successfully kill small and medium sized varmint.
To get the best out of this rifle, I strongly recommend using a bit heavier pellets. From what I found, this rifle works best with pellets over 10.5 grains. Generally the trajectory tends to reduce in terms of flatness the lighter the pellets are which greatly hinders the accuracy of the shots. Light pellets losing direction is more common with this rifle as the pellets leave the rifle with immense force from the Nitro Piston mechanism. Hence, I strongly suggest that you use pellets of 10.5 grains or above for best accuracy. The Crosman Premier Domed 0.177 pellets for instance work great with this rifle.
The Benjamin Trail rifle is highly accurate within 25 yards range. One can get his or her way with this rifle at 50 yards too but maintaining the accuracy will need some work. This will depend greatly on the skill level of the shooter. The accuracy tends to improve after 200 shots after one has safely settled in with this rifle.
The Crosman Benjamin Trail air rifle comes with a complimentary 3-9×40 scope. In my opinion, the scope does a good enough job more so considering it is a complimentary one. Mounting it is simple for the fact that the scope was particularly designed for this rifle’s body. You can easily expect to shoot very accurate shots in the 30-35 yard range up until 50 yards also once you practice with it a bit. And the scope remains zeroed in even after 300 shots. You can extract even better performance out of this rifle with a better scope. One thing to remember is that the screws in the scope have a tendency of getting loose over periods of use from the jarring of the rifle’s body immediately after firing shots. So check into it every now and then and tighten them when necessary.
Where this rifle might make you struggle is with the trigger. The trigger in this one in my opinion is just unconventional and people who are used to normal triggers will find it irritating. The trigger in Benjamin Trail is a bit stiff and the trigger pull is a bit long. Luckily though you can change it easily. However, if you are relatively new with guns or perhaps willing to practice for a few hundred shots, you can very well adjust to this trigger as well.
That was all about the Benjamin Trail’s performance. I am sure you would agree that it has most right ingredients in place for a quality shooting experience. Given the accuracy it brings to the table and the sheer power of shots along with the convenient usage experience, the Crosman Benjamin Trail is well worth a person’s money.