If you’re looking for some discreet backyard plinking action, you may want to look into the Marksman (Beeman) 1018 BB repeater handgun. The first thing to realize about this spring-piston-powered gun is that it isn’t a high-end airgun. It retails for around $25 at various places online and in brick-and-mortar locations. With that in mind, know that you are sacrificing some functionality …but there often nice gems in that price range that are worth buying for some impromptu fun!
Marksman Model 1018
Action is single stroke spring piston
Ammo is .177 BBs and single shot pellets and supposedly darts, although I did not shoot any darts
Capacity is 18 BBs in the reservoir
Size is 9”
Weight is 1 pound
Velocity is up to 200 fps with BBs
Trigger pull was measured at between 7 and 8.8 pounds with an average of 7.9.
The purpose of the gun is pleasure shooting in small spaces. With the proper backdrop such as old pillows, a cardboard box with balled up newspaper or a BB trap, I would have no issues shooting this in a basement (although you must wear eye protection). Obviously shooting in a backyard would be great as well. The gun makes very little noise and neighbors are unlikely to know what you are doing when shooting it. I would not bother shooting more than 15 to 20 feet with 10 -12 feet being the ideal range.
When I first unpacked the gun I was not too excited. The gun just did not readily impress me until I began handling it and giving it a chance and keeping in mind the cost. One negative that was hopefully an oversight was the lack of directions in English. There were some directions in other languages, but none in English. So, I looked at the pictures and muddled through the directions I had and figured it all out fairly easily.
The fiber optic sights are bright and easy to see. The loading is very easy, particularly with the 200 BB plastic reloader device, which works very well. I really was impressed with the speedloader device. The action and working the device was very stiff at first. After a bit of lubrication and a break-in period, the gun smoothed out quite a bit.
As I stated above, the trigger pull was a bit heavy, but for liability purposes and for the price, it was not too bad. The gun I tested had no rough creep or bad spots in the trigger at all. It was just heavy. However, it was fairly smooth, so groups were sufficient to hit a can at 10 feet regularly.
There is a disclaimer here on my end. The gun I tested shot very high and to the left with several brands of BBs. The sights, although bright and very crisp, are not adjustable. This was a bit of a disappointment given that the BBs were impacting about 6 to 7 inches high and approximately 4-5 inches left at 15 feet when testing it. If the sights were adjustable, that would be a really fine feature to have for an indoor or small backyard plinker! So, I used the old Kentucky windage and soon figured out the sweet spot and began pecking at a Coke can.
At seven yards the BBs were striking the can with fair results. This is not a handgun to go bragging about accuracy, but I will say that despite its low power the can was getting popped a lot. At 5 yards the can was getting hit pretty much each time when I took my time and used a rest. The trigger not being rough helps. Did the BBs go through the can? No, they did not. I could easily see where it was hitting, but at 5 yards the BBs just did not have the energy to penetrate.
You can load pellets one by one into the gun. I did so and found that they would not penetrate the can even at 3 yards.
Several brands of pellets also shot left but not as high as the BBs. So, shooting pellets, if you prefer, is an option. I would stick with BBs, as they are not lead, are probably safer handling and less expensive.
The grip and feel of the gun in my average size hands was quite good and comfortable. As I mentioned, lubricating and working the moving parts a lot to break in the gun really makes a noticeable difference.
I typically shoot at longer ranges and do not have to worry about neighbors complaining or causing a fuss about me shooting, so I initially did not really consider the point of having a gun that I only shoot at 5 yards. However, as I remembered my apartment and postage-size yard some 30+ years ago, living in a city, I began to soften a bit and see the point of such a gun. I also considered the positives about the gun: It can be easily shot indoors; the trigger is fairly smooth; the fiber optic sights are crisp and bright; and the grip is nice and feels good.
While I might not give this gun a rave review, it did grow on me quite a bit—especially for that $25 price tag. I will keep it around for those snowed-in days when it is too bitter to go outside … I even already stashed a cardboard box that had a bunch of balled up paper in it for my backstop. Beeman.com