The Beeman Kodiak pellet

by B.B. Pelletier

There are hundreds of different pellets on the market, but only a handful deliver accuracy in nearly all air rifles. One of these is the H&N Baracuda, a heavy, domed pellet made of soft lead. It was initially created for the Weihrauch HW EL54 Barakuda ether-injected air rifle because lesser pellets were blown apart or severely deformed when the ether gas exploded. Haendler and Natermann is a German firm with a reputation for making some of the most uniform pellets in the world, and their Baracuda gained great favor when spring guns rose to – and exceeded – the power of the HW EL54. Perhaps that was why Beeman Precision Airguns had it packaged under their label as the Kodiak.

The Kodiak
In all calibers, the Kodiak is a heavy pellet, though far from the heaviest. In .20 caliber, it’s 13.3 grains and the lightest in relation to other pellets. In all three other calibers, it is among the heavier pellets. It’s best known in .22 and .177 calibers, where its performance in the hunting field and in field target (.177 only) is legend.

What a Kodiak WILL do
In rifles of higher power, the Kodiak is nearly always one of the three best (most accurate) pellets. In some individual rifles, it is the best. There is no way of knowing this unless you test it in a rifle at long range. Short-range tests (out to 15 yards) do not reveal the full performance of a pellet, but after 30 yards it should start showing what it’s got. In .177 I would use it in a gun that has a muzzle velocity of at least 800 f.p.s. (but not shooting the Kodiak) and in .22 look for at least 700 f.p.s.

What a Kodiak WILL NOT do
Kodiaks are not made for air pistols or rifles with low and medium power. The R7 is medium power – don’t use Kodiaks. The RWS Diana P5 Magnum is an air pistol – again, don’t use Kodiaks. If you wonder if your rifle (or pistol) can handle Kodiaks, shoot some groups at 30 yards or farther and compare them to the best you’ve shot with the gun. That’s the only way to know for sure, but I think you’ll discover I’ve told you the truth.

Kodiaks in springers
Kodiaks were originally made for spring rifles. The HW 54 was at least as punishing as a Gamo 1250 or an RWS Diana 350 Magnum. So – springers, yes. Powerful springers, that is.

Kodiaks in CO2 guns
There are a few CO2 rifles powerful enough to handle Kodiaks at mid-range – the Crosman 2260, the Benjamin AS392T and similar guns. The others, from the 1077 on down, are not up to this pellet at anything but close range. In some repeaters, you may have feeding problems because the Kodiak is a longer pellet.

Kodiaks in PCPs
Though they weren’t designed for PCPs, they might as well have been, because PCPs really bring out everything the Kodiak has to offer to the top. Because American PCPs are more powerful than springers or CO2 guns, they are the perfect place for the Kodiak to shine. The heavy weight develops higher power, and the uniformity really helps accuracy.

Kodiak/Baracuda Match?
I’ve never seen any advantage to the Kodiak Match, so I buy whichever pellet is cheaper at the moment. As I write this, straight Beeman Kodiaks are cheaper than any Baracuda, though Baracuda Match are the cheapest in that brand. This changes all the time, so keep an eye out for it.

This is a pellet to try if your gun meets the criteria.

25 Responses to “The Beeman Kodiak pellet”

  • Anonymous Says:

    B.B.
    Another article that is right on target. I bought my first powerful air rifle (RWS 52 177) and following your advice bought a pellet sampler pack and several different pellets from different manufactures. I have a indoor range of just under 10 yards. I systematically tested the various pellets after breaking in the rifle and to two brands that without question yielded the smallest 5 shot groups was the Crosman Premier Heavy and the H&N Baracuda. The difference in pellet performance was very dramatic. The H&N pellets and to a slightly lesser degree the Crosman Premier, with my rifle scoped and shooting from a bench, consistently go into one ragged hole. And as you reported, when I tried these heavy pellets in my IZH46M, the results were clearly not as good as with lighter pellets like the RWS Hobby and the Gamo Match. Systematic testing and shooting five shot strings takes time but is well worth the effort because as you have repeatedly pointed out, powerful springer’s need heaver pellets and among the heaver pellets, some will work better in some guns than in others. One thing I did notice as I ran my tests is that the different brands of pellets fit the chamber differently. Some like the Baracuda and Crosman Premier H seem to snugly and fit the chamber just right amount of force, others like the heaver Korean pellets are a very tight fit and require a strong finger to insert them into the chamber. I wonder what effect this fit has on accuracy? Finally, I tried the Beeman Silver Arrow pellets and I would have thought they would perform like the B&N, but they did not. The question I have is why these pellets could not group as well since they are also in the same weight class as the B&N and Premiers, and seem to fit the chamber as well as the other two brands?
    PCR

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    PCR,

    Wow! Your comment is almost a separate post.

    I don’t know why Silver Arrow pellets are so bad, but they never work in any rifle I try them in, either. However, I have heard from others that they like Silver Arrows the best. So, go figure!

    B.B.

  • kd5byb Says:

    I’ve got to agree – Kodiak’s have always given me consistent performance across my small collection of air rifles.

    Question – is the new Umarex 850 AirMagnum a semi-auto rifle like the NightStalker or a magazine-fed, bolt-action rifle?

    I’ve looked at the description and the Umarex brochure and can’t tell…

    thanks,
    ben

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    ben,

    The new 850 Magnum is a bolt action. I have one coming for a test.

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB

    Preach on! I shoot mostly with PCP’S, and of the four I have right now, all of them love Kodiaks. They group really well and are very uniform (shape,size,and weight), not to mention they pack a wallop. The Kodiak is my hands down favorite pellet in .22 caliber. If you have a rifle with the power to handle them, you have to try them. They might just be the most accurate pellet in your rifle!

    Jason

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB,

    Does pyramidair do trading.I mean like,

    If I want the hw97k,

    I give them $300 and my cf-x(example)will they do stuff like that?

    CF-X guy

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB
    i bought a quest 1000x about 2 months ago and after about 2 weeks the thing was a replica of the gun (non-working). so i sent it back to crosman and two days ago i got it back. it seems to be very unlike the one i bought from the store, the difference being a very sharp trigger pull and well it shoots straighter but being the springer that it is im having trouble pulling it whenever i shoot. we have a crosman 2250b and a daisy powerline 822. i can shoot those fine but the jump of the quest throws me off since i havent shot it in over a month.
    i took off the scope that comes with it and put on a leapers 4×32 with the rings that came with the 822. but im having a hard time sighting it in because i cant find a shooting position that i can tell im not pulling it off target in. oh and do the baracuda work well with the quest?

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Quest,

    You need to let the Quest jump and buck as much as it wants to for it to be accurate. You can’t hold the rifle and expect accuracy.

    Lay it on your open hand and don’t hold it into your shoulder tightly. This technique takes practice, and some guns are more sensitive than otjhers. I don’t have any experience with the Quest, so that’s all I can tell you.

    Is a “sharp” trigger pull a hard one or does that mean a crisp pull? I’m guessing hard.

    Sight in starting at 10 feet. When you are in line with the target and 3 inches low, move back to 10 yards. When you get it hitting one inch low, move back to 25 yards.

    The Baracuda should work with the Quest because of its power.

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB,

    Does pyramidair do trading.I mean like,

    If I want the hw97k,

    I give them $300 and my cf-x(example)will they do stuff like that?

    CF-X guy

  • Anonymous Says:

    how do you sight in a scope

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB,

    I am very interested in hearing more about the HWEL54 Barakuda air rifle. I know it is old news to most, but not to me! It sounds kind of like a novelty, but interesting none the less. Diesel power. Maybe you would consider doing a post on the rifle. Thanks.

    Jason

  • Anonymous Says:

    Just found this blog a few days ago and love it. I too shoot a quest with Kodiak, and I shoot one inch pattern at 30 yards with no problem, love the gun. Yes it likes a loose hold to let it kick, if you learn the gun reaction, dime size pattern at 30 yards should be no problem. I would like to hear from other quest shooters and what pellets work well for them. Thanks again for the cool airgun info!!

  • D.S. Says:

    I LOVE THE 13.3 GR. KODIAKS IN MY .20 CAL RX2. THESE SHOOT FLAT.
    SIGHTED IN AT 1.5 INCHES HIGH AT 20 YDS. THEY STRIKE ABOUT 2 INCHES LOW AT 50 YDS. WITH NO WIND, 3 SHOT GROUPS ARE ABOUT 1 INCH AT 50 YDS.
    I LIKE THE 13.3 GR. BECAUSE THEY SEEM TO HAVE A LITTLE MORE VELOCITY THAN CROSMAN PRIMERS IN THIS GAS SPRING RIFLE.

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Jason,

    I knew someone would call me on that. Okay, I’ll do a post on the Barakuda (HW EL54).

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    BB

    thanks for the advice with the quest i know what you mean about letting it jump around. i think ive got it about where i want it now. by sharp yes i meant crisp. kinda hard but very short. although its starting to turn into a longer draw before it fires. the trouble i had with the rifle before was that at one point it stopped cocking when you broke the barrel and that has somthing to do with the two stage trigger i think, but after all was said and done it started acting like a hydraulic pump not wanting to compress.

  • Anonymous Says:

    I totally fell in love with this gun when I re-discovered airguns as an adult.

    Actually, the Daisy Powermaster 1000 first caught my eye but I was skeptical because it was a Daisy and a knockoff.

    My positive experience with Crosman (1400) over Daisy made me quickly move over to this rifle – even though it was a knockoff too.

    But I bought a Gamo Shadow 1000 instead because it was only $25 more expensive and the “real thing”, even if it didn’t come with a scope.

    Now my friends LOVE my Gamo and think it is a great deal at $200 ($125+$75 scope and rings). I keep trying to tell them that the Crosman Quest 1000 is an equivelant gun for $100. I really want at least one of my friends to get another airgun so they can shoot with me.

    They always ask me why I recommend this Crosman when I bought the Gamo. They don’t want to buy a lesser gun than me, they want to buy a better one – if anything – though the price forbids it.

    Bottom line: 9 out of 10 of these Crosman’s are every bit as good as my Gamo, 1 out of 10 of these Crosman’s are wankers and unless you buy them from a local retailer that allows exchanges you could get stuck with a wanker. Given the total lack of airgun retailers in my area the Gamo is a safer bet.

    Even though this Crosman costs less and is very handsome.

  • Jed Says:

    Well the ben/sheridan Legacy is one heck of a rifle for $160.It is powerfull enough in .22 cal to be a firearm,and it is accurate.Isuggest that you tell them about the legacy.The legacy is basically a more improved version of the quest for about $50 more.

  • JP Says:

    Slightly tangent of topic: I would like to try several pellets in my rifle, but due to my recent purchase of a 500 count tin of pellets that turned out to be poor performers in my rifle, I’m hesitant to purchase others. I’ve given Pyramydair the idea to create the “custom sample pack”, where you pick out say, 4 or 5 type, and they box up about 25 of each pellet in a compartmented cardboard box and ship ‘em. Do you think they will go for this? (oh, and I fixed my 22SG: looks bizzare, but the barrel’s solid and VERY accurate) JP

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    JP,

    The “pellet sampler” idea is an old one. I will mention it to Pyramyd Air as well and see what they think.

    Second – what did you do to fix your 22SG barrewl problem? A lot of owners would love to know.

    B.B.

  • JP Says:

    Fix a 22SG? My rifle looked like it needed a bit of tape on the barrel tip where it fits the front sight plastic (used to rattle there), and removed the wood side grips, because the wood crushed in and allowed play at the front screws of the outer barrel sleeve: the sleeve would move with each pump, thus pointing the [inner] barrel around at random. Just to eliminate mid-barrel rattle, I slid a few tube-shaped (nerf darts) foam on it before replacing the outer sleeve. I’ll maybe work up a page or something you all can link to if you want. JP

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    JP ,

    Okay, I’m getting the mental image of a dog-ugly airgun. Is that about right?

    I guess I’m really lucky to have a 22SG with a tight barrel. So many people have written about this problem that it must be significant.

    My two-piece forearm has clearance on both sides of the barrel sleeve, and I don’t have a screw at the front of the barrel like you indicate. Mine has just the end of a hot plastic rivit, but it doesn’t contact the true metal barrel.

    Yes, please show us what to do and what is wrong.

    B.B.

  • JP Says:

    Ok, I’m back. I’ve got my site up and running like a Model T on the freeway. It being my first site, it’s primative, but productive (had some help from an I.T. sibliing). Anyway, here it is:

    http://ctcis.net/~jspoynter/

    Good luck, and I’ll try to update with breaks, breakthroughs, and tweaks. JP

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    JP,

    Nice start. From now on, you will build on what you’ve already done. That’s how most websites are built.

    B.B.

  • Scott298 Says:

    B.B.-Scott298 reporting in-just taking a few minutes to pour over some old blogs on my favorite subject-the DIANA 350 MAGNUM, and to the readers out there mine is chambered in .177 I use kodiaks and I cashed in when there was a sale on the baracuda. In addition I have also used the baracuda match and all these pellets I am refering to are over 10gr. I have found these to be a great pelletts -especially in .177 being used in a magnum. My next choice would be -and is probably in the mix-the cph. The other day while sighting in and putting a few 100 pelletts down range-baracuda match- I spoted a group of crows rooting thru the grass. Best estimate was 65yrds but after pacing it off it was more like 70. I quietly slipped the baracuda in the gun and took aim. One crow was facing me straight on-I guestimated pellett drop and faised the scope up to the 3rd mil dot and let her rip. To my dissapointment they all flew away then I heard such a ruckus about 30 yards away coming from the crows I went thru the woods to investigate, they were all swarning around and raising holy hell but when they saw the rifle and myself they took off for good-with the exception of 1 who was lying flat on it’s side. Upon further inspection there was one small hole in the center of it’s chest and it was dead as a door nail. It has been a dream of mine since childhood and my 1st crossman 760 powermaster to get a crow-it took 45 yrs but I did it. I was almost tempted to remove the tail feathers to hang on my bedroon wall but I did not feel like sleeping on the couch for the next week. Speaking of the powermaster when I was a kid a friend and I were tracking a rabbit thru fresh snow. I had that crossman pumped to the max-not sure if at that time it was 20 or 25 pumps-but we found him and at close range I put a .177 pellett thru it’s ear. Running like crazy and punping like a mad thru the briars I soon realizes It was dead where I shot him. I can still see the expression onmy mothers face. I skinned him-stretched the hide but I had to cook it myself-well enough of these long winded tales-I suppose if my 350 were in .22 the crow wouldn’t have flown away at all-but would the pellet stayed on track for that long? Bottom line is you have to become proficent with what you shoot with and practice as often as possible and evev clean kill shots can be made in .177——–

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Scott,

    Good shooting! Crows are tough and very wary. I’ve never taken one, so I know how great you must feel.

    B.B.

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