The Crosman Phantom 1000 air rifle is an enigma. It is a decent high-powered barrel break cocking pellet gun, but with some quirks which might fit your needs, or might drive you crazy. It is important to consider as you read this entire review that the Crosman Phantom 1000 is a low cost break barrel rifle from one of the leading companies in the industry. The rifle will not match the needs of everyone, but might be the perfect choice for you. Let’s take a look at all the features, quirks, and positive aspects of this air rifle.
Crosman Phantom 1000 Air Rifle Main Features
- High Power Spring Action Rifle
- Rifled Steel Barrel
- Bundled Scope for Increased Accuracy
- Two Stage Trigger
High Power Spring Action Rifle
The Crosman Phantom 1000 must be considered a high-powered air rifle simply by the fact it can shoot a .177 caliber pellet at over 1000fps. Some speed tests using high performance alloy pellets have obtained speeds of nearly 1200fps, but it is safer to consider this a 1000fps rifle.
The Phantom 1000 uses a break barrel cocking action which is spring powered. To cock the gun requires an initial quick slap to the end of the barrel to loosen the pivot lock. Then you simply grasp the barrel near the end while resting the butt on your leg and pull downward. It takes approximately 30 pounds of pull strength to cock the gun.
The gun gives an audible pop when you fire the gun from the rapid spring action. You will feel a definite kick from the rifle. Crosman has installed a rubber butt plate on the stock to absorb the kick and you will appreciate it. The kick is less than you would receive from most center fire rifles, but enough you would tire of the pounding on your shoulder if you were shooting many shots.
Rifled Steel Barrel
Crosman chose to go with a traditional rifled steel barrel on the Phantom 1000. This barrel gives the gun a little extra heft compared to guns using a composite barrel. The barrel has been blued with the traditional Crosman quality. It is hard to find any flaws on this series of guns.
Mounted on the barrel you will find the front and rear fiber optic sights. Here is the first place we hit one of the quirks of this rifle. The fiber optic sights used on the Crosman Phantom are cheap. They are low quality and many reviewers mention finding the sights are not tightly secured. If you want to shoot with high accuracy without using a scope this could be a troubling problem.
Using the Bundled Scope for Increased Accuracy
The Crosman Phantom is sold in two different packages. One package includes the Crosman 4×32 optics scope. With the problem we just talked about with the fiber optics sights a scope seems almost essential. The bundled scope is adequate, but barely more. It provides high quality optics which are clear and easy to read but lack somewhat on adjustability and overall quality.
If you are avid hunter using high quality optics on your hunting rifles you will be disappointed by the scope. If you are a weekend shooter you will probably find the scope very adequate. When you properly adjust the scope it will allow you to group shots in a 1 to 2 inch diameter from 25 to 50 yards away.
As we mention, this is a bit of an odd problem. You have a low cost rifle with a very average scope. If you are like most shooters seeking a simple pellet gun for keeping pests out of your yard and to enjoy a little shooting fun, then the scope will work fine. If you want high accuracy you should consider buying an alternative scope.
Keep in mind the Crosman Phantom 1000 air rifle is offered with or without the scope depending on the bundle you select. If you are concerned about the quality of the scope buy the gun without the bundled scope and add a scope of your own choosing. With the standard mounts on the rifle you can select scopes from BSA, Crosman, Barska, Gamo or your own favorite. They will all easily mount to the Phantom 1000.
Two Stage Trigger
We will now move on to our next curious feature from Crosman. Crosman knows how to make a high quality two stage adjustable trigger. You find them flawlessly deployed on many of their air rifles sporting the Remington brand. Sadly they failed to implement the same quality on the Crosman Phantom 1000 series.
The two stage trigger is most commonly described as sloppy. There is no mistake it is a two stage trigger, but the difference between the stages is so slight that it is not a big benefit. The trigger is adjustable, but the adjustments affect both stages simultaneously. On Crosman’s higher end guns the adjustments are to each stage independently letting you adjust for the feel you desire.
You will find some people who purchase the Phantom 1000 will replace the trigger assembly with an aftermarket product. The trigger quality is adequate for the majority of owners. It provides a reasonable feel with a slight variation between stages. Not the best trigger from Crosman, but still superior to the single stage triggers on low-end rifles.
Dimensions and Physical Characteristics
The Crosman Phantom 1000 air rifle is an excellent sized rifle. It is 44.5 inches long and weighs a solid 6 pounds. The six pound weight is a nice balance. It is not too light where control is difficult and kick is problematic. It is not too heavy. You can carry it comfortably for hours of pest hunting or target fun. The steel break barrel is approximately 18” long giving you good leverage for cocking the gun.
There is one piece of additional information which is crucial when discussing the Phantom 1000. It is a Crosman. The importance of this label is often overlooked by buyers. Crosman provides high quality service and customer support which is unmatched in the air rifle industry. This simple fact elevates the value of the Phantom 1000 compared to competitors at the same price point.
Other items which need to be mentioned include the all synthetic stock, checkered grips, and comfortable design. The rifle is designed to mimic the size, weight, and feel of a real center-fire .22 caliber rifle. You will enjoy the way it feels pulled to your shoulder with your cheek pushed against the cheek plate preparing for your shot. The gun’s comfortable feel adds to accuracy and reduces shooting fatigue.
The stock of the rifle is designed to be used by both right-handed and left handed hunters. The same checkered pattern and cheek plates can be found on both sides of the stock.
The Crosman Phantom 1000 comes with a 1 year parts and labor warranty from Crosman. This feature may be the most valuable item you will find in the package. When you find a problem with a Crosman rifle you can be sure the issue will be resolved.
The Phantom safety is a manual system which is mounted inside the trigger guard. You can wait until you have your target lined up and then with your trigger finger flip the safety switch off and pull the trigger in a split second.
Maintenance for the Crosman Phantom is very easy. The stock requires gentle cleaning with a soft damp cloth. The barrel should be cleaned with a slight amount of Crosman oil. Use the proper caliber cleaning rods and materials to clean the barrel after every 200 to 300 shots.
The one option included with the Crosman Phantom 1000 bundle we reviewed is the 4×32 scope. This option is essential for the most accuracy with the rifle.
Other optional items you should consider include:
- Crosman RMCOIL – Silicone chamber oil for Crosman break barrel rifles.
- Crosman Destroyer .177 Pointed Pellets – These pellets are a pests worst nightmare.
- Crosman Super Point Pellets – Low priced pellets which offer maximum shooting distance.
- Crosman Varmint Target Block – Practice your pest shooting skills with complete safety.
Pros of the Crosman Phantom 1000 Air Rifle
The list of pros for the Crosman Phantom 1000 must start with cost. This low cost entry into shooting with a break barrel rifle is a great value. It may not have the power, quality, and accuracy of higher-end rifles from Crosman, but it fits the market space almost perfectly. Other pros for the gun include:
- All synthetic stock for weather resistance.
- Excellent power of 1000fps.
- Avoids the loud crack of breaking the sound barrier.
- Easy cocking action
- Accurate shooting
Cons for the Crosman Phantom 1000
The cons for this rifle need to be weighed carefully against the cost. The Phantom 1000 is an entry level product in the break barrel market and should be viewed as such. For many new shooters the following issues are not a concern.
- Little difference between stages on two stage trigger.
- Fiber optic sights are not highly durable or accurate.
- Bundled scope should not be considered a high-quality option.
- Pivot locks are not as tight as higher end rifles.
As you can imagine, many of those small items cause complaints and concerns from experienced shooters, especially hunters familiar with using high-powered center-fire rifles. These issues will be largely ignored by beginning shooters as irrelevant.
The consumer ratings on the Crosman Phantom 1000 may have you questioning many of the conclusions reached in this review. The Phantom 1000 receives above average to excellent reviews consistently on top retail sites. This brings us back to the most important point of this rifle. It is a great value for the cost. This is a low cost rifle with good features. It does not measure up to the features of products from Crosman or Gamo which cost twice the price, nor should it.
It is interesting to read most reviews which list a series of faults with the gun and then promptly give the gun a “must buy” rating. This even occurs when the reviewer is an experienced hunter. It all comes back to the comparison between quality, features, and cost. These experienced users realize with all the minor faults they uncovered in the rifle it is still an excellent value for most buyers. Make sure to pay attention to the features which are really important to you and not get stuck on features which do not affect your enjoyment and success using the product.
The consumer ratings are based on buyers getting what they expected. When you buy a lower priced product you must expect a little different shooting experience. This gun deserves the high ratings it receives due to overall value.
Who is this product targeted to? It is targeted to new shooters and people looking for a low-cost alternative. Serious shooters should not consider this rifle as their first choice, they will be disappointed.
If you are looking for an air rifle to keep the pests out of your yard or garden and want to keep your costs low, then do not hesitate. This rifle is perfect for that purpose. It provides plenty of power to eliminate squirrels, rats, starlings, and other pests which invade your yard. Once you adjust the scope to match your shooting style it can have you shooting accurately within a 1” diameter from 25 to 40 yards away.
If your desires are to develop your skills as a target shooter, then this rifle is NOT for you. If you are only shooting for fun it is a great choice. The accuracy of the gun is adequate for most purposes, but for someone who desires to hit the bulls eye with every shot the gun will be a little frustrating.
The rifle is a true Crosman rifle. The Crosman Phantom 1000 was designed to be their entry break barrel rifle and it fills the niche perfectly. If you desire a better rifle, take a look at other options from Crosman, but it will be hard to beat the balance between quality, accuracy, and low price found in the Phantom.