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“Gamo Shadow 1000 in .177”

Written on: 27/06/2012

To evaluate any airgun you have to have a broad experience with other airguns. I've seen too many firearms shooters buy an airgun and rate it against their firearm experience.

I've had a variety of spring piston airguns over the past 35-years in a variety of brand names and country of manufacture. As these go, the Shadow 1000 ranks favorably. It has the advertised 1000fps power with a regular lead pellet, is sturdily built and is accurate. It's also relatively cheap as high power air rifles go.

For a thousand-footer, one thing very noticeable about the Shadow is the ease of cocking. In fact, it's the easiest cocking gun of its power that I've used. It's lightweight compared to some of the other rifles in the same class. It's also relatively tolerant of varying pellet designs, brands and weights.

The rifle also feels good in the hands when shouldered. It seems to be part of your body instead of just balanced on your hands.

The downsides include the buzz factor. The light weight contributes to both the recoil and the sound, as does the synthetic stock which acts as a sounding board. The Shadow is not nearly the quietest gun on the market, or the most forgiving of recoil.

The other gripe I have is the trigger. Why can't airgun makers get the triggers right on the mid-level market? The Shadow is no exception... hard pull, and more creepy than Halloween. In messing with triggers over the years I've learned that lightness of pull is relatively easy to achieve, but creep is something that can never be worked out. A creepy factory trigger will always be just that... a creepy factory trigger. No, it won't "break in" and get better either as some writers say. What is breaking in is your brain as you get used to the trigger. At least not everyone is sensitive to trigger creep; I'm not, probably because of my early days of double-action combat pistol competition. I just need to shoot any creepy trigger a couple of times to learn where the sear breaks. On the other hand some shooters just can't shoot a creepy gun, and the side of a barn becomes a challenging target. Still, the Shadow's accuracy just can't be realized with the OEM trigger.

I also understand that the Gamo's airguns are disposable items. You shoot them until they break or wear out, then throw them away. Unless you know how to work on airguns, or someone who does. I have never used Gamo's customer service, but I understand that they will not repair their own product. They will replace while under warranty, and sell do-in-yourself parts. But, Gamo is a retailer; not a repair facilty.

But yes, I got my money's worth, and I would recommend the Shadow 1000 to a friend with limited funds. Sure, if my friend had a few hundred more dollars I'd recommend a better model. But, you get what you pay for with the Shadow.