So here we have a supermini review of the Theoben Crusader in .20 cal and the Theoben Evolution in .177
The Crusader is fitted with a walnut stock from the Eliminator range and the Evolution has a walnut stock too.
The Crusader sports the evolution silencer while the Evolution has the additional Vortex silencer add-on.
These gas ram springers are top notch...very well built and sport excellent blueing.
Barrel lock-up is superb and the stocks are extremely well executed.
The finish on the stocks is of the usual synthetic urethane type and I will eventually strip it off and apply London Oil...walnut deserves it!!
The figuring on the Evolution stock is especially attractive.
The Theoben gas ram triggers often get a bad rap on airgun forums but this is due to misadjustment and general misinformation.
They are a bit creepy out of the box [probably adjusted so for safety reasons] but with some adjustment after having read the instructions they become very good and predictable 2 stage triggers...perfect for hunting and HFT....although never quite as good as a well fettled TX200 or HW springer trigger unit.
The Evolution is a delight to handle...it feels like a Rolls Royce when loading...very very smooth and the barrel lockup is superb.
Very quick and snappy to shoot with a short and quick recoil.
Very easy to keep the scope on target after the shot.
Very consistent too at just below 12 ft\lbs...770 to 780fps with JSBs
Accuracy is truly outstanding and it is nowhere near as hold sensitive as my TX200 or P.S.
The Crusader in .20 is a slighty different beast...at 18 ft\bs it is considerably harder to load hence it sports a longer barrel.
Balance is more forward than the Evo but the firing characteristics are very similar to the Evo.
Definitely easier to shoot accurately than a similarly powered HW90 that I had before.
I was hitting spinners out to 50 yds very consistently from the FT position the first time I ever took it to the range.
It shoots H&N FTTs [11.5gr] at 835 fps [17.5ft\lbs] very consistently.
The JSB .20s are also very accurate but the power drops to just above 15 ft\lbs and the firing cycle is a little harsher.
The Crusader is also supplied standard with a Theoben Dampamount.
I also bought the Theoben HE pump in order to adjust the power of these 2 rifles to get the optimum velocity out of them....very simple operation to perform.
Both Theobens have Dampamounts and I am testing them with the new range of Leapers|AGS hunting scopes.
The Crusader sports the new 3-9X40 and the Evo the 3-9X50.
These new Leapers scopes are really excellent value.
They have an illuminated reticle with the rheostat control mounted on a small side wheel.
The turrets are lockable and resettable [a good option on springers] and the optics are superb at the price.
They come with extra Sun shades and flip-up caps.
They are TS springer rated so I will see how they hold out on these gas rams.
I will report further on these 2 gas rams in time...all I can say is that in my gun cabinet there has been a springer revival...my springers are going to outnumber my PCPs soon!!