The Red Ryder – Parts 2 and 3

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1


This is an early (1947) model of the first BB gun that Daisy sold as the Red Ryder.

Well, we’re back with our favorite BB gun. Do you know that your comments set a record on part 1? More responses in 24 hours than any other report.

Today, I’ll test both accuracy and velocity, and the latter I will do in two ways, one of them quite authentic from the period of this gun.

Velocity first
Private individuals didn’t have access to chronographs in the 1950s. A chronograph was a room full of expensive electronic test equipment that had several full-time employees on staff to operate it. And as high-falutin’ as it was, it had only one-tenth the accuracy of today’s models that you can buy for under $100.

So, we used other things. For BB guns, the standard test medium was a tin can. Not an aluminum can that’s eggshell-thin and easy to punch through. I’m talking about a real tin can, which had very little tin in it, because it was made from thin steel plate. The tin was used to solder the joint where the side of the can body was made. Those cans were very tough, so the test was to see if your gun would shoot through one side. We became experts in evaluating the depth of the dents left by BB guns. Powerful guns would tear out a crack at the bottom of the dent, as the metal was starting to part. More powerful guns would tear completely through one side of the can, leaving a long open hole. Of course, safety glasses are a must when shooting at any hard object!

As the power increased even more, the gun started denting the other side of the can, on its way through. A real magnum BB gun, and I can’t say that I ever saw one, was supposed to be able to punch through both sides of the can. Can you imagine what was said when Benjamin started advertising their new 3030 BB gun that would shoot through BOTH sides of a five-gallon steel bucket? But I digress.

It matters how close to the can you are when you shoot. I stood 10 feet fback for both shots, but I’m sure I would have put the muzzle next to the can back in the day. It also matters what kind of can you shoot at, and the one I used wasn’t anything like the ones we had in the 1950s. They had seams and this one doesn’t. It appears lighter than the old cans, but very strong.

I had been conditioning the gun’s piston seal ever since the last report by lubing it with oil every couple of days. Before this test, I removed the shot tube and put in 10 drops of 3-in-One oil, then shot the gun a half-dozen times (with BBs, of course). I believe I had the gun shooting at its absolute maximum.

The gun dented the can deeply on the side and not as deep on the bottom. It looks powerful, but not overly so. You may recall that I said I guessed the Red Ryder would be between 325 f.p.s. and 350.


This is a deep dent, but there’s no tearing of metal. I’d say this looks like an average BB gun of the 1940s.


This dent is shallower than the one in the side. This is the bottom of the can.

The chronograph says the gun pushes Daisy zinc BBs out the spout at an average velocity of 312 f.p.s. That’s just a little slower than predicted. The spread went from 307 to 317, so not much variation.


I found this stuck in the fabric of my BB trap. The plating appears to be coming off. This isn’t a common thing, but I found it so interesting that I took this photo.

Joe B. out on Maui asked me to also test the Red Ryder with Daisy Avanti Precision Ground Shot, just for fun and I said I would. I didn’t expect to see a difference, but I’m darned if it didn’t happen. The average velocity was 320 f.p.s. and it ranged from 313 f.p.s. to 326. That was a surprise to me, and it indicates this shot is a little larger. Thanks for the suggestion, Joe!

On to accuracy
For accuracy, I shot the gun at 5 meters offhand. I used a 6 o’clock hold with a fine bead. That means the tip of the front sight was held down in the rear notch as deep as it goes while still remaining visible.


This is about average accuracy for a BB gun at 16 feet. Remember in Part 1 that I mentioned BB guns usually shoot to one side or the other? Here’s a classic illustration. The bull is the size of an American quarter and was shot with 10 Daisy zinc BBs, though it looks like only 8. There are two holes in the black. One is close to nine o’clock inside the bull and the second is on the edge at about 7.


Daisy Avanti Precision Ground Shot was clearly better in the Red Ryder.

There you have it. The Daisy Red Ryder, and a classic one at that. Now I’m ready for Christmas and watching little Ralphie get his Daisy Red Ryder 200-shot range-model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time.

152 thoughts on “The Red Ryder – Parts 2 and 3

  1. BB,How could anyone not love this report.The very sight of that tin can…brought me back to sneaking off to the pond to shoot my neighbor's Daisy.My parents would not have approved!They just didn't understand….A real right of passage.Thanks for stirring those memories.This one had to be fun to write!!!


  2. BB,

    I like the tin can dent analysis. Kind of like "splatology". We'll need to see more dents and corresponding velocity figures. Probably need a tin can standardization as well. What kid hasn't done exactly this same test?

    Matt61,

    (and anyone else with a Daisy Avanti 717/747 pistol) I posted a detailed disassembly on the blog.

    http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/2009/12/daisy-717-repair-part-1.html

    Part two has yet to be written. About 4 or 5 days I'd venture.

    Derrick


  3. Derrick,

    Nice blog on the 717. Your photos show everything. I feel as though I could do the job, myself.

    I see you are using one of Nick's lathes. How do you like it? Is it ideal for small airgun work, like what you show in the blog?

    B.B.


  4. BB,

    Thanks. You could certainly repair the 717. It still remains to be seen whether I can repair one.

    Yep, the Taig lathe has been perfect for most of the projects that airguns entail. Especially the vintage guns where there is zero parts availability for repair. The best thing about the lathe is the huge range of accessories available and the modularity. There's a small milling attachment, too. I think if you're pretty handy in the home workshop, most folks would have a learning curve of a month or two of regular use before they're able to do some very acceptable work. I picked it up pretty fast and I have no machining background. My biggest fear at first was having to learn a new language with all the various terms, measuring devices, etc. It looks really daunting at first. But for most work, the reality is that projects usually just entail shaving something down a little bit. Truth is, there doesn't HAVE to be much in the way of precision measurement. Lots of times the part just needs to be a little smaller and a few cuts and some test fitting is all that's required to make it work. I got over it. The expensive part is the constant need to grow your tool collection. Drill press, grinder, taps, dies…it never ends. But you have a lifetime to accumulate all of it.

    Since Nick sells the lathes and has a passion for airguns, it was kind of a no-brainer to combine the two on the blog.

    And we're learning a ton and having a blast working on some of these guns.


  5. Morning B.B.,

    Yes the famious tin can test. What wonderful memories, thanks. Talked with 3 men at BassPro in tha airgun section the other day.

    Two of them were familiar with you and this blog. The 3rd was talking FPS and a hog killing. Two out of three not too shabby.

    Mr B.


  6. BB and others,

    I've been following the discussion on stock refinishing over the past week and looking at various websites. I have a R10 that needs and deserves a stock refinish, and I've ordered JM's RLO and Stock Mud. Before I get started, I'd like to get some input on a few final questions. 1) Does anyone know what kind of finish a stock R10 came with (for stripper selection). I'm assuming an oil based varnish. 2) The checkering is in good shape – I'm planning to apply both the stripper and RLO with a toothbrush to avoid damaging the checkering. 3) The stripper I'm planning to use (assuming an oil based finish) claims to remove stain as well. I'd like to apply Minwax Red Mahogany stain. Comments or recommendations?

    Thanks in advance,

    Jay


  7. B.B.

    As I continue to expand my airgun world beyond Springer’s, I find out how little I know. What is the difference between a Crosman CB9 and a Crosman C9, both are advertised as .20 caliber?
    Which one would you get, and why?

    Thanks,
    Volvo


  8. Volvo,

    Well, at last a question I can answer!

    There is no Crosman CB9 or C9. They are Sheridan guns, and that is a big deal when you try to look them up on the internet.

    The CB9 is a Sheridan Blue Steal and the C9 is the Silver Streak. I bet that's all you need to know.

    I Crosman-ese, any model number with a B in it probably means blued. And any number with a 2 in it probably means .22, just as 7 denotes the .177. Hence the 392 and 392.

    B.B.


  9. Jay,

    When you are dealing with a modern production airgun, don't think oil finish. Oil takes time to apply and time to dry. Think polyurethane that can be sprayed on 100 stocks at a time and dries in less than a minute.

    B.B.


  10. Derrick38,
    You are certainly a skilled craftsman.

    I had some luck with JM heavy tar on the IZH61. It had arrived very dry, and I had put a little Beeman Chamber oil it. Last night, I tried the JM heavy tar expecting the usually drop in velocity, and instead I am getting 425fps with STD pellets. Nice surprise.
    Next I want to add weight to it. I’ll let you know what I dream up, should be as creative as the sponge in the Walther.


  11. Jay,

    You probably realize that there have been many books written in order to answer your questions and many differ because of the end result preference. LOL!!

    Let me quickly try to answer a couple of your questions.

    Most Weihrauch's I've seen from the R10 era are Beech with a dye/stain then sprayed with an oil/varnish blend undoubtedly spec'd from the supplier with additional dryers added for assembly line spraying. I've also seen walnut from Weihrauch that was hand finished in oil. Take your stock to a knowledgable woodworker and get an opinion.

    If it's beech you've got your work cut out for you to properly stain and finish. Beech is tough/non-uniform.

    Your checkering may be in great shape now but after stripping and refinishing plan on recheckering.

    I've never used minwax stains since the ones I've seen are water based.

    To select a stain it’s important to know what the different types are. Most can be broken into two different types based on how they color the wood, namely pigmented and dye types of stain. Those that contain pigments can be distinguished by the thick sludge that settles to the bottom of the can or bottle and must be stirred into a liquid form before it can be used. On the other hand, dye based stains can be used right out of the bottle or with just a little shaking to get it mixed up well. Personally, I try to avoid some of the pigmented stains because they tendency to make the finish cloudy.

    For a guns stock I would just focus on dye type stains. These can also be broken into categories relating to what liquid they use to deliver the dye: oil, spirit or solvents, and water. I don’t often use the oil base dye stains since they take quite a while to dry, generally 24 hours or longer. The water based stains work great and can be thinned by adding water to which you can do to vary the colors. One drawback to the water based variety is if a person doesn’t do a good job of steaming and sanding, it will raise the grain and then you’ll have to re-sand the stock and redo the stain. I really like the spirit or solvent stains are my personal favorite as they are easy to apply and dry quickly. These dye stains provide very dark colors for those light colored, hard to stain stocks and they can provide vivid coloration to accent an already nice wood grain. Again, this depends which brand you choose.

    Look at Pilkington's, Gale lock and Laurel Mountain Forge (sp?) brands.

    Type of stain must also take your finish into consideration. I'm out of time.

    Tell me why you want to strip the stock and refinish rather than finish over what currently exists.

    kevin


  12. OK, Edith..

    I'm adding to the Air Arms Shamal… (notice the new lower prices from the earlier post on the yellow.. here first, then there tomorrow..)

    1- Crosman 100? pump Maybe copy?, I can’t figure it out. $120

    1- Crosman 101 pump, 5 ring cocking knob – fair condition $130

    2- QBT5 and 62 .22 cal poor job of up-grade $10 ea.

    1- Markham King md "D" 1907 – 09, fair cond. Operates well, Vince rebuilt $450

    1- Markham King md "500 repeater" 19036 – 41 $140

    2- CZ Slavia 624 .22 cal $110 ea.

    1- Winchester 423 .177 cal (Diana 23) good cond. Made in W. Germany $90

    1- HY-Score 806 .177 (Same as Diana 16). $75

    2- HY-Score 809 .22 (same as Diana 35). $210 & $225

    1- Diana 27 with custom front & rear peep $240

    1- Diana 27,custom sights and a scope rail. $265

    1- Haenel Md. 310 lead ball repeater Suhl E. Germany. $190

    1- Haenel MOD I DRP .22 cal mid Size Breakbarrel, $220

    1- Hatsan MD. 60 .22 cal. $220

    1- Winchester 722 .22 cal md in Turkey. About like Diana 35 $225

    anyone else can buy and I'll start a pile of cash for Edith and Tom to add to the Shamal.. for that ugly old USFT.. but they get first choice..

    Prices are delivered to the lower 48 states. Credit cards or paypal no fees! Personal check ok too..

    chickens and goats must be delivered..

    Wacky Wayne, MD. Ashland Air Rifle Range

    wayne.burns@naturalyards.com


  13. Volvo,

    Adding muzzle weight to the IZH-61:
    http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/derricks-izh-61-sight-upgrade.html

    Overhaul of the IZH61 (it's a fairly easy one. There's minimal spring preload and you don't need a spring compressor):
    http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/derricks-izh-61-tune-part-uno.html

    http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/izh-61-tune-part-deux.html

    And Nick's blog on the 61:
    http://anotherairgunblog.blogspot.com/2009/06/short-note-on-izh61.html

    If you want to borrow my 61 just let me know.

    Derrick


  14. BB,
    You are great at dredging up old memories in us. I never had a BB gun but, like most commenters I've seen here lately, I had a buddy who did. How come everybody else's parents were so lenient? Of course he had a paper rout and all I did was wash the dinner dishes. Big difference in income!

    I let my gkids shoot at soda cans because they are so soft. One day one of them go hold of a soup can without me knowing about it – it only takes a second after you turn your back. Anyway, because the metal can was so much thicker, the pellet ricocheted straight back from 10yds and nailed him on the shoulder. That was lesson #2 for gpa's insistence on wearing safety glasses and one more point for Murphy Law.

    Volvo,
    I'm keenly interested in what you're doing with your IZH-61. Please keep us posted. One question I have is how did you apply the tar? Did you have to take the gun apart or were you able to do a reasonable job by applying it through the cocking slot?

    -Chuck


  15. Derrick,
    It looked like we were both commenting at the same time so I didn't see your IZH-61 links until I got done. Glad you sent those. They will be useful.

    Volvo,
    I'm still interested in what you're doing, too.

    -Chuck


  16. Wayne,

    The TF97 that you "donated" to the blog after Vince tuned it is going to be here for a visit later today courtesy of Disco.2.2.

    In my case I'll call it part of the "Guns for Gramps" program. Thanks for your generosity for making it possible.

    Mr B.


  17. B.B.

    I went back and reread your article on the Shamal you had to let go.

    Kevin asked why it's not listed in the blue book of air guns… and I didn't see an answer.. how many were made? How rare are they..

    Please increase the price you'll have to give me for it by telling the whole story :-)

    Wacky Wayne



  18. MCA,
    And tuned by Vince, who also belongs on the elf list for Edith's gift card, here is the full list, I hope! that sent me contributions for the effort..

    Vince, you worked on most of those guns, didn't you?

    Kevin
    Volvo
    Gavin
    BG_Farmer
    Chuck
    Vince
    Fred
    Frank B
    Matt61
    Bruce
    Wacky Wayne

    B.B.
    Sleigh bells ring… are you listening?

    Wacky Wayne, MD. Ashland Air Rifle Range


  19. B.B.,

    I am curious about something and would like your opinion. It is on choosing a scope Zero Distance.

    I have been reading all your past blogs, and I understand why you suggest 20 yds as the zero point. But I am curious of your opinion on some of the free online ballistics calculators available that can give more specific answers for a specific gun velocities and sight / scope set ups. They definitely point to different aim points when the muzzle velocity is considerably below 900 fps.

    One I have used is at the following link (hopefully you can leave it for others to find and play with, but if not, we understand): http://www.airgunexpo.com/calc/calc_opbz.cfm?

    When I plug in my Quest 800 / scope height / pellet info, I get a different answer than 20 yards – specifically, I get optimal zero points for a 0.25" POI zone of 14.2 yards and 29.9 yards (of course our ability to zero with such precision is unlikely). This yields an optimum point blank range for the 0.25" zone of 11 to 33 yards. When I play around with other ballistics software tools, this seems to make sense.

    Of course for this to really be more accurate for a given user, you do need to have a Chrony and know the ballistic coefficient of your pellet (or calculate it with your Chrony). If you don't know the inputs, 20 yards is not bad advice, but for a gun like mine (703 fps with my Beeman FTS pellets), that zero point will actually be an apogee and not yield a second zero point. And that same 0.25" point blank range will only be around 14 to 28 yards – not bad, but not as good as it can be.

    For anyone without a Chrony that wants to play around with this, do not use the advertised rating for your gun, as that is likely to be overstated from what you are really getting.

    I am just curious if you think this is a good way to go, or not? Is it all pretty much negated by the spiraling and other factors that have been discussed at other times? If it does make sense, then maybe the rule of thumb could be easily adjusted by MV of the gun (say maybe 15 yards for 600-700 fps guns etc.). Let us know what you think.

    Alan


  20. BB,
    Now we're talking. Red Ryders and tin cans. The BB's do make a difference, as I found out when I ran out of Crosman's and starting filling up with Daisy's. The Avanti's are the best by far, but the "accuracy" is relative, even there you can see the little BB flying of to the side:).


  21. Slinging Lead,
    My level scope is the Sun Optics SF3-12x40B with a 30mm tube, 13.5" long at the longest point. It is made for air rifles. It looks like the Leapers 5th Gen 3-9×32 Rifle Scope with the slanted bell front. The Sun has the illumination knob on top of the eye piece, blue illumination of the reticles, and a side knob for parallax adjustment.

    The 1/4 MOA elevation and windage adjustment knobs turn smooth with light, audible clicks, no detents. The illumination knob has 11 definite detentes for each increasing intensity. The parallax knob is smooth with no detents or clicking.

    The cross hairs start out thick at the edge of the tube but are very thin at the cross point with 4 mil dots out to where it thickens. They do not blur or become thicker at the highest illumination. They are much thinner than the Bug Buster reticle which becomes unusable at 10m at high intensity. I never use any scope at high intensity, however, but the Sun is very good there. I set the brightness to the min in order to just illuminate the level and still have black cross hairs and that works fine for me.

    The optics are clear and do not blur at the outside edges at any magnification. The scope will focus down to 10m.

    The level is inside the tube and looks like a carpenter level. With ambient light you can see the bubble but I always use the 1 setting to illuminate it. It virtually eliminates any canting of the rifle you might introduce otherwise. Since the bubble is inside the tube you don't have to take your aiming eye off the target or lose your sight picture to see it.

    I think the tube has to be 30mm to help accommodate the level. I don't see why, with today's technology, it couldn't be put in a 1" tube. I also don't understand why Leapers or Centerpoint haven't made one yet. I compared the eyepiece to 1" tube scopes with illumination and they are the same length and diameter.

    SL, Let me know if I've left anything out.

    -Chuck


  22. Wayne,

    Shamals are not rare, but they are uncommon–especially here in the U.S. They were the first precharged guns Air Arms made, way back in the '80s. Then they moved on to the NJR series that were designed by Nick Jenkenson. He was a world champ FT shooter back when I got started in the mid-'90s.

    B.B.


  23. Alan,

    My scope zero range was based on two things–.177 guns shooting between 800 and 900 f.p.s. and the sport of field target. The holdover crowd wanted the best trajectory that involved the smallest holdover/holdunder possible. 20 yards as the first zero point was it.

    Change any of the assumptions and the equation changes, but it takes so long to explain how each of the fundamentals affects the trajectory that I simply stonewalled into 20 yards. It's like the saying, "An apple a day keeps the doctor away." That happens to be true, but no one explains that apple juice dissolves gallstones, and also helps cleanse the liver, which is why the doctor stays away, because a healthy liver means a healthy life.

    B.B.


  24. Thanks for providing the full list of contributors. I didn't recognize some of the names, because I know them only by their Blogger handles.

    What a wonderful surprise. Tom can verify that my jaw dropped, my mouth hung open and nary a word was spoken by me…for a few seconds, at least :-)

    It isn't often that I can be surprised, but you certainly did. Thank you, again, for your generosity and thoughtfulness.

    Edith


  25. Jake,
    As BB said, that stock is probably stained and finished in one step by spraying a polyurethane (or similar) with dyes and pigments mixed in. This seals it, gives it maximum protection, even coverage regardless of grain direction, and hides minor imperfections. The perfect compromise for an assembly line, and they often look pretty good. There are finish removers, but you may have to experiment a little to find the right "formula". If you do have to sand, it's not the end of the world, because the finish doesn't penetrate far if at all into the wood, just be careful around checkering.

    If the Minwax Red Mohagany is the penetrating oil variety, then that is a good choice if you like the color. Just be prepared to rub it in during application — any excess will sit on the surface and cause blotching. You might also need a pre-stain conditioner (Minwax recommends for "soft" woods, i.e. those you can imprint with a thumbnail). You might not need it if you sand to a higher grit and are careful during application. Be especially careful where the end-grain is exposed, as it will soak up stain faster! Also, depending on the darkness of the color you want, a second application might be necessary.

    You might want to consider a water- or alchohol-based stain also, as Kevin suggests, as they are even better with oil-based topcoats (less bleeding). I really like water-based stains, but they have a lot of pitfalls to work around, and the Minwax water-based stains are almost impossible to find in the big stores here, probably because they can be difficult to get right.

    Your RLO sounds good — I need to try it.

    Kevin,
    One note, after reflecting on our finishing discussion the other day: A lot of the criticisms of poly finishes on gun stocks seems to assume that the finish is like a factory one-shot deal, i.e., dyed and pigmented finish. Perhaps that is why people say poly finish is so easily scratched and hides the wood?


  26. B.B.

    Thanks, that fills in a blank for me on the Shamal.

    I stumbled upon a link where folks were listing their early PCP collections and Daystate and Air Arms Shamals were on their lists, with numbers like 13, 17,.. and 110 was the highest number I think I saw.

    If I trade you my Shamal, I'll probably be buying it back again, sometime in the future… hhhmmm what's wrong with this picture???

    …now I get why Edith wants me to pile up Shamals in trade for your USFT

    but…maybe a pile of cash is better for Edith and Your USFT???

    Wacky Wayne, MD. Ashland Air Rifle Range



  27. Wayne,

    We have sold & bought back a number of guns. Besides a number of Hakims that fall into that category, we can also add the Whiscombe. Tom really regretted having to sell the Shamal at the time. I recall it so keenly, that I tried for a number of years to find a replacement Shamal. However, he's got so many other guns, that I think the sting of losing the Shamal has lessened, and he stopped muttering about it after a few years. The muttering about the Whiscombe never stopped, so that's why he jumped on it the minute it became available again.

    Your extremely generous offers have opened our eyes to the USFT's true value. I'm afraid that even the addition of llamas and sheep won't persuade us to release the USFT at this point. In fact, maybe we need to buy your 2 guns!

    Edith



  28. Cjr,
    I just applied it through the slot in the receiver. A few dozen shots seem to spread it well enough. I hold the gun sideways and upside down as I do this. On some rifles I would swear they have been sent out for a $200.00 tune afterwards. However, invariable they slow down a good bit. I believe on this one I lucked out on the amount I applied. I spoke with Paul Watts before and he told me that is one of the keys. Needless to say, Paul does much, much much more. I would never call my rifle tuned; I simply see it as proper maintenance.

    As far as the weight, it is the stock that is too light. While a low power rifle, holding the receiver so close to your ear also makes it seem much louder that it is. I am hoping to improve both these areas.

    Volvo


  29. Edith,

    You and Tom must be related to my dad way back… I only learned half his tricks… cause he always traded with me too!

    Ok.. we table the trade for now..
    my team of traders and I will retreat for a new plan.

    I'm locking up the Shamal.. I dare to think.. their might end up more USFTs than Shamals'..

    Wacky Wayne, MD. Ashland Air Rifle Range


  30. Chuck

    Thanks for the skinny on the Sun scope. Just the detail I was looking for.

    As far as illumination goes, I don't know why the manufacturers make the light so bright. One of my favorite scopes is the Bug Buster 3-9×32. The illumination is more like a rheostat and is variable with no detents. I like it set to barely perceptible and that is hard to do even on this scope. The manufacturers really should concentrate on around that level of light intensity and maybe a little brighter, but does anyone really use the highest levels?


  31. Bg Farmer,
    Sorry I did not get back to you yesterday, but all is fine.

    On the airgun side of things, seems I spoke too soon on the 392T. It was a Dutch auction with 3 items and no bids but mine. So I felt fairly safe. Guess I spoke too soon as someone jumped in today all bought all 3 for $5.00 bucks over my bid. Someday I will learn not to mention items here. These had been listed for weeks with no interest.

    I am enjoying shooting the 61 with open sights, do you have one or is it just Matt?

    Hope you and your family are well.

    Volvo






  32. Wayne,

    I don't gotta listen no more–'cause now I SEE!

    And I don't gotta write no more, 'cause now I gotta printer for my Shooting Chrony!

    Thank you and the entire list (I assume they were in this, too?) so very much for this wonderful gift. It arrived just in time for my test of the Edge, which will be over 100 shots in the string. I have plugged it in and it does work just fine! Now I have to install a huge paper roll and put this thing to WORK.

    Thank you all so much! : ) : ) : ) : ) : )

    B.B.


  33. B.B.,

    Thanks for the price and info. I will let the C9 go as it is a little high. The 1077W should keep me busy for a few weeks anyway.


  34. Volvo,
    If the stock is hollow, why not put some expoxy and lead shot in it to bring it up to weight (you can also tune the balance), then fill the rest with foam for sound-deadening. I've seen a lot of people report good results on rimfire and high power tupperware stocks with a similar approach.

    Just saw you were writing at same time. No, I don't have a 61, and it overlaps with my 490 and our QB88, so I can't really justify it.

    I really am glad to hear things came out OK with you. We're doing really well here, too, thanks. I hope you and your family enjoy a wonderful holiday season.


  35. Jay & BG_Farmer,

    Really depends on the wood as to what direction you should go with the stain or dye. As I alluded to earlier, if its beech it's a beech to stain. Most beech stocks are dyed for that reason.

    Early on Potassium Permangenate was used but found to fade. Fuming was also popular but stockmakers quickly learned that the lack of tannins in beech required them to be soaked in tannin/strong tea prior to fuming. Aniline dyes are still popular for beech stocks today.

    RLO (Royal London Oil sold by maccari) acts like a oil/varnish blend (like watco, deft, behr, behlen, etc.) and can be built up slowly over time to a hard finish if done correctly but these products will darken a stain when applied in multiple coats as directed. Take that into account when testing your stain.

    A wiping varnish (like waterlox, daly's, jasco, hope's, etc.) over a stain can be built up quicker and be clearer to help with stain/dye color.

    BG_Farmer is a fan of polyurethane (poly). I think it's a great product for many applications but I have never and will never use it on a gunstock. My criticism's are many. Poly is a surface coating. A plastic wrap on a piece of wood. Poly is a hard finish but can be scratched just like a good oil/varnish can. But, water that seeps under poly creates a mess. Poly is a hard repair for surface scratches and impossible to steam out the inevitable stock dings. If you need to take the poly off for a total refinish it's a beeeeach. Poly feels like plastic in my hands and I prefer the feel of wood.

    There are many that prefer the thick, glass looking finish that is poly. I'm just not one of them. Different strokes.

    kevin


  36. Mrs Gaylord & B.B.,

    You're very welcome.

    B.B.,

    Everyone thought long and hard. The decision was finally made to get something fun for Mrs Gaylord and get you a work tool.

    Now get to work.

    kevin




  37. Volvo

    Sorry to hear your 392T slipped away. I mentioned to you earlier that I was burning with envy oops I mean glad to hear of your purchase of a 61 with a metal receiver for such a price. A short time later I found this:

    http://www.network54.com/Forum/79574/message/1259979705/2+rifles+F-S+go+together+as+a+package-

    Listed and sold in less than 7 minutes. Irony is, I have been looking for a 2100b as well. Imagine my frustration.

    I broke down and bought a new one from PA. What I want to know is how is your accuracy? Mine is very accurate, wait.. no its not. Ok, yes it is! Wait… no its not. You get my point.

    It is HUGE fun on my indoor range of almost 10 yards. But frustrating, I have 1500 pellets +/- through it in a couple weeks time, trying to figure out if I am doing something wrong.

    The Gamo resetting trap is a perfect accessory for this rifle. The 61 is low power and won't destroy it like even the 1377 will, and best of all– 5 shot clip / 4 swinging targets + 1 reset target. It's a match made in heaven.

    Prayers here for your daughter's quick recovery.


  38. Slinging lead,

    No need for envy here, Derrick checked the receiver for me and found it to be plastic. It was made in March of 2006, and my guess is it was probably the first of the plastic editions given my luck this year.

    That said, it has proven very accurate with a light hold on the forearm, almost amazingly so for open sights. It also works without fault as long as you cycle it with authority.

    Don’t worry about the 392T. I thought I would be ok, but just picked up a Daisy 130B for $75.00 to console myself that is also old new stock. This one had the Buy Now feature, so no need to worry that someone will steal it. Not that anyone would. Also this will be only my second Gamo; the first was destroyed with self tuning in a week and sent to Rich in Mich as payment on a BSA tune.

    Anyway, I will try and hone my marginal skills on the 130b when it arrives and hopefully not turn it in to a basket case.


  39. Bg farmer,

    I am thinking duct seal right now for the stock on the 61. Just need to figure out how to get it in…
    I’ve got it in pieces on the bench right now, and just need to stare at it a little longer. Somehow that usually seems to help. : )

    (if you heat duct seal will it turn liquid?)


  40. B.B.
    On the subject of lathes…the one Derrick is using was modified from stock to have a 7/16" bore. This is not recommended by the factory but seems to be working fine. I did this so Derrick could fit Crosman barrels through the headstock.

    The Taig works well for small stuff but…

    If you can afford a larger lathe for airgun work you will always be happier. I do the small stuff on the Taig and larger stuff on my 10" South Bend lathe. You have to think about the types of projects you'll be doing. If you want to do a lot of barrel crowning, etc then you'll want a bigger lathe, likewise work on airtubes, etc. If you want to do special threads it's good to have a screw cutting lathe.

    But I use the Taig for all the special urethane seals I cut, as well as small screws, washers, valves, etc.

    Other small lathe options are the Sherline and the import 7×10 (12, 14…) lathes as well as older Atlas 6" lathes.

    The 7x lathes are used by a lot of airgun guys because it has a large bore through the spindle and does single point threading. The downside is it's a Chinese import and not quite as accurate although just like Chinese airguns it responds to tuning…

    What I do want to recommend is you get a lathe! Any lathe will do because any lathe is better than no lathe at all…you'll wonder how you got by without one all these years.

    Nick


  41. B.B.

    I know it's hard to listen now with "shots a ringin" twice as fast now.. more trigger time.. less written time..
    but.. like I said

    Sleigh Bells ring..
    are ya listening??

    Wacky Wayne
    and gang


  42. Volvo,
    That staring technique is "stage one":). I don't know about duct seal melting — never seen any. Hot glue melts, or how about the concrete repair "caulk" — its mortar with a latex addititve, and should be plenty heavy. Better run out for any supplies quick — it looks like snow here, so I can only imagine what accumulation you'll get:).


  43. Volvo,
    Thanks for that info. Where did you get the tar?

    It looks like on mine I could open up the pistol grip and put weight in there or the very back of the stock looks hollow. Don't know right now if a pistol grip weight would properly affect the balance, though.

    Slinging Lead,
    The one thing that stands out well on the scope is the thinner cross hairs. I really like that! And, as I mentioned, full intensity doesn't affect them, not that I would use it.

    I like the Bug Busters, also. They are excellent when a short scope is needed, like on the 61. I do wish their cross hairs were thinner for 10m distance.

    BB,
    I went to Staples and bought enough rolls to last a lifetime for $10. They didn't have them in smaller quantities. I'm just hoping the ink carts stay available when I need more.

    Remember, the printer will print every shot that you take in real time but during summary it will only print and summarize the last 10. For your very long power curve strings you'll be able to list every shot but you'll still have some manual calculations to do to get those spreads and averages of those prior to the last 10. Here I am trying to tell you something like you don't know – ain't that a hoot?! Well, maybe someone else will benefit.

    -Chuck


  44. Volvo,

    Rarely need an excuse to play with fire but it's nice to have one.

    Took out my torch and a pug of duct seal.

    Took awhile but the duct seal caught on fire. Immediately went out. Put the torch to it for a minute. Took about 15 seconds for the duct seal fire to go out after I removed the torch from it.

    The duct seal doesn't melt. It gets softer. Best analogy is the duct seal before heating is like a gob of bubble gum but after heating the duct seal, the portion that's heated is more like the bubble gum after you've chewed it.

    Small corner of the duct seal turned to ash after burning.

    kevin


  45. Volvo,
    Also, if you accidentally let go of the lever and it swings forward and back there is a good chance you just fed in a second pellet. You can actually keep cocking it and feed in all 5 pellets and shoot shotgun style.

    -Chuck


  46. Kevin, BG_Farmer, and BB,

    Thanks for the input – I'll look for a dye stain instead of the pigment. Do you think it would be reasonable to just leave the checkering alone (maybe add a coat of RLO)? Otherwise, I suppose I could learn to checker!

    Kevin,

    As to why, I saw an R8 at Roanoke this fall, and was very impressed with the finish. I found this rifle advertised with a scratched stock, and I bought it in part to give refinishing a try. It has two areas that are well scuffed, and it has several pressure dents that can be pulled out. I enjoy working on projects like this, but have never tried a gun stock. Other than the stock, the rifle is in great shape and it might shoot better than my R7. It's a keeper.

    Thanks,

    Jay


  47. Nick,

    Thanks for that! I used to have a 6-inch Atlas from Sears, but I got rid of it to pay bills after a divorce many years ago. While I worked at AirForce I had access to their 12X36 South Bend, which is tooled pretty well, so life was easy for me for awhile.

    But I have to be careful now, because I have too many hobbies. Reloading and bullet casting takes so much time and the rest of the time I'm working. Plus, as poor a machinist as I am, I would be better off relying on somebody else who is more competent.

    It's like electric trains. I love 'em. I even have 'em, but I've never found the time or space to play with 'em.

    B.B.


  48. Wacky Wane,

    Well, the gifts keep right on coming. You and the list know what I mean. The amaryllis just arrived.

    Could you please shoot me all the email addresses from the list, so we can respond more appropriately?

    Tom


  49. Chuck,

    Yes, I know I have to stop and calculate smaller data sets. The Chrony forces me to do that after 30 shots, anyhow. But still, I no longer have to stop after every shot and write it down! Halleluja!

    A very grateful B.B.


  50. B.B.
    I recently got my new TX200mkIII and developed a noise when cocking and you guys directed me to a blog about oiling the chamber that was very helpful. My TX makes a low pitch/frequency hum when cocking when cocking arm is at about 90 degrees. B.B. said to give it a drop of chamber lube and if it wasn't a high pitch squeak to just shoot it. So I gave it a drop and it didn't change anything.

    Today I got my TX out to shoot some more and the sound seemed to be louder than it was the other day so I gave it two drops stood it verticle for about 30 min. and went to the basement to shoot it. Still hums. The gun now has approximately 600 pellets through it and I am constantly having to re-tighten the two forearm bolts and the one through the trigger guard. Is this normal for a spring gun? Is this just what you go through during a break in period? It seems every time I have to re-tighten the bolts my point of impact changes and I have to re-adjust the scope.

    My other rifle is an RWS Diana 45 that I couldn't make shoot very well so I bought this new TX. Now after reading your blog and others comments I put 4 drops of chamber lube in it since it has had nothing in the ten years since I have had it, learned about the artillery hold, and switched to JSB Exact 10.2gr pellets and the thing shoots excellent!

    Compared to my TX the RWS seems much more "dead" sounding and quite a bit quieter also. I probably shouldn't be comparing the two rifles but this is the only other air rifle I have experience with.

    I guess what I am asking is, is this what I should expect from my TX? Will it break in and calm down or is this normal for this gun? The reason I am asking is because if there is ever going to be someone to have a problem with something you shouldn't have a problem with it's me.

    Thanks for any help and comments, Scott


  51. Many thanks to Mr. B for organizing the gift donation list and to Wacky Wayne for taking the time to place the orders. I think I speak for the rest, Edith and Tom, that this was an insignificant expenditure on our part in return for all the information, joy and entertainment we all get from this blog.

    And now, I'm going to write a letter to the editor at the local pennysaver wondering why they accept "enhancement product" and message advertisements but won't accept my classified ad for air rifles.

    From the Republic of New Jersey to all the readers of this Blog – Happy Holidays and shoot straight!

    Fred


  52. Slinging Lead,

    I have found a real-world application for the brightest settings on my illuminated scope reticles: my three- and five-year-old boys think they're cool. Even plinking in broad daylight, The Boys usually find it necessary to turn on the illumination. Sometimes we need to pause briefly for a critical switch from red to green.

    But I agree that, at least with the Leapers scopes I'm familiar with, only the very dimmest settings have the least bit of utility (except for the cool-factor, of course).

    -Jan


  53. B.B.

    That will have to be Bruce… I'm not privy to that high a security level.. I just received the money and made the orders… Bruce sent me the list of elves..

    So, now that the trade is off.. tell us more about Air Arms start up.. their first PCP, the Shamal, how many there are, who has them, how much they want for them… where they are scratched, and..how much the owners paid originally…

    I'll think of more questions later.. just get started on those please! :-) .. but really, anything else.. the mystery got me

    My sense of the thread I picked up on that search, was you collect them and only sell when bills need paying like in your case….

    I ain't getting your USFT and you ain't getting my Shamal anytime soon, so spill the beans on the gun that is not listed in the "Blue Book of Air Guns"… which you helped with!

    Kevin asked, long ago.. set some history straight for us please???

    I have to ask now, while the gifts are arriving :-)

    Wacky Wayne, MD. Ashland Air Rifle Range


  54. Kevin,
    I was going to just use a heat gun on it. The torch is a neat idea, reminiscent of my childhood. The little green army men with flame throwers would be envious. Fight fire with fire.

    CJr,
    I will post a link for the tar for you. I would suggest the 3 pack sampler with Heavy tar, Clear lube, and Moly. It runs about $20.00 but should last for years.

    Scott – you need this also.

    Bg Farmer,
    I may be far enough west to miss the snow. If not, I would enjoy the time off work. : )
    Duct seal is not nearly as hard to work with as real ballistic putty, which I have also. It is meant to seal electrical boxes and stay pliable. I’m thinking if I grease up the duct seal it will be fine.


  55. Tunnel Engineer,

    Dredging up ancient history… glad to hear that you solved your Mosin feed problem.

    But perhaps more importantly, how was your inaugural field target outing? As a fellow FT rookie and budding addict, I'm interested to hear how you liked it.

    I enjoy the "no hope of doing well" factor. To paraphrase Wayne, plinking away at those absurdly tough targets on a nice day in the company of interesting folks, it's easy enough to forget you're keeping score.

    -Jan




  56. Scott,

    Okay, it's not the piston seal. But your Diana 45 is now shooting better.

    I'm wondering if there is a spot in the stock where the cocking arm or linkage rubs the stock. Take the action out of the stock and look for shiny patches of wood where the metal may have rubbed it.

    As for the stock screws loosening, yes, that's pretty typical in spring guns, but there is a solution. Since all three of those screws pass through a steel part on the gun, you can stpp the loosening. First, remove all the oil and grease from the screw threads with rubbing alcohol. Then apply some blue number 242 Locktite to the threads. That should stop the loosening.

    Please let us know if there was wood rubbing or if we need to look further on your gun. One way to tell, by the way, is to cock the rifle outside the stock. That's not hard to do with a TX 200. Load it and fire it safely after you cock it, so you can try it several times. If there is no sound, you have identified the stock as the problem.

    B.B.


  57. Mr. B.,

    Okay, Edith and I have to deal with you–the list putter-together and probable instigator.

    Can you please send me an email to blogger @blogger.com with the email addresses of everyone on the list. We want to thank them more personally.

    Thanks,

    B.B.



  58. Jay,

    As to adding a coat of RLO, not yet.

    What finish is on the gun now? Laquer? Poly? Oil/varnish? If the surface is impenatrable adding RLO will make a mess since it can't penetrate.

    Recheckering is easier than checkering, time consuming and necessary if you strip and refinish the stock. You may be able to mask off the checkering and avoid recheckering if you just want to "revitalize the stock".

    Tell me about the current finish on top. Tell me what you liked about the finish on the R8 you saw in Roanoke (was it the one on Paul Watts table that was traded?). Glossy? Oiled? Nice walnut vs. your beech? Do you like the current stain on your R10? Is the scratch on your stock through the stain/dye?

    kevin



  59. B.B.
    I will try the stock remedie and let you know.
    It is amazing how much my Diana 45 has changed with just that little amount of work. The trigger is crisp but fairly heavy. Is there anything I can do about that or is there an aftermarket trigger I can get for it. Or would a new trigger cost more than the gun is worth?
    Scott


  60. Hi all,

    That tin can brought back some memories for me too! I almost did "put my eye out" as a kid. I shot a steel Coke can that I had set on top of the swingset with about 5 pumps in my Crosman Powermaster. Nice sunny day. I watched the flash of the bb as it flew out and hit the can dead center. Then I saw it coming back down over the sights and over the top of my glasses. I barely had time to blink. It hit me on my top, right eylid and left a little round bruise on the center of it. My eye was blurry for a couple of hours after that. Told my mom I ran into a tree branch because I was afraid she or my dad would take my gun away…

    Later I looked at where I'd hit the can. Dead center of the seam (betcha forgot cans had seams back then…). That was why it didn't penetrate like it usually did. I made sure to always have the seams pointed to the side and keep my glasses pushed up on my nose after that. :)

    /Dave




  61. Kevin,

    Yes I believe I found that link by doing a search. I consider finding it one of my great computer triumphs of all time. Usually I cant ever find what I am looking for.

    The other day a friend mine and I were talking about John Browning and how he had a hand in designing almost every modern firearm we shoot today. My friend thought that he was German since the Belgium Browning is so well known. I told my friend that he was American and he then asked me why did he then go to Belgium to have them made. I knew that he had died before the famous Superposed Belgium was manufactured but couldn't find why they were made in Belgium.

    Anyhow, sorry about the firearms talk. But yes I did find the site about the TX trigger. It was extremely helpful and made adjusting my TX very easy after you understand how and why it works. My TX trigger is awsome and probably better than anything else I own. It was the Diana trigger that I had a question about after I saw how good the TX trigger could be. I don't have a scale to check the trigger but judging off me Remington .308 heavy barrel which has a good but with ever so slight creep at 24 ounces. I would say my TX comes in at about a pound or slightly under with absolutely no creep.

    Scott


  62. Scott,

    The Diana 45 trigger is adjustable. Or at least it should be. But it depends when your gun was made how it adjusts. If there are two screws try loosening the front screw, which should just be a locking screw. Then try adjusting the rear screw. When you get the trigger the way you want it, screw the front screw down again.

    Kevin, Vince, did I get that right or am I turned around?

    B.B.



  63. B.B.
    I just took my TX out of the stock and it still makes that humming sound. I didn't fire it because you don't have to cock it that far to get it to make the noise. It makes the noise on the down stroke and if you return it back to its "home" position it makes the same noise but maybe a little louder on the way back. This is well before the the anti bear trap engages and like i said before happens at about 90 degrees.

    Thanks
    Scott


  64. Scott,

    John Moses Browning was an American from Utah. He had a long relationship with Winchester, but when he took them a semiautomatic shotgun, they didn't want it, so he took it to Belgium. They liked everything he did and Winchester lost their best designer.

    B.B.


  65. Scott,

    The noise is in the powerplant. I would call the techs at Pyramyd Air and ask them, if I were you.

    Now it just so happens that the TX 200 is one of the easiest spring rifles to take apart. You don't even need a spring compressor. We could probably talk you through a small relubrication of your gun, but before that happens, let's let Pyramyd Air do their thing.

    And you must decide what you want to do. I don't want to talk you into anything you feel uncomfortable with.

    Plus that, if parts are needed, Pyramyd Air techs should be the ones to find that out. If you do the work you will have to buy the parts yourself. I don't like that with a brand new gun–especially not an expensive one like yours.

    B.B.



  66. Scott,
    I think it may be a bent spring and/or broken guide. BB's right of course, Pyramyd can make it right. Tx200 is supposed to be smoothest springer out of the box, so something is definitely wrong.


  67. B.B.
    Thanks for your info. I will call Pyramid Air Monday, I don't think there is anybody there on Saturday. And see what they say.

    I don't feel uncomfortable with working on it if I don't need a spring compressor since I don't have one. And since you guys would be kind enough to walk me through it. I would actually love to understand my rifle more by doing such a thing if necessary. I'm sure I would have to wait for anything to be delivered that I would need since I don't know of anywhere to get the lube that you talk about locally here in the St.Louis area.

    By the way, is it OK to continue shooting it or should I not until I talk to Pyramid Air?

    Thanks for your help, Scott



  68. Scott,

    You can try tech support after 9 a.m. Saturday. They will be there helping with orders, but I don't know if they can take a tech call, because they aren't in the right part of the building.

    You are right to not do the work yourself. The TX200 is a premium air rifle and it should be made right for you. Thanks for being patient.

    As far as shooting it goes, that's your call. You are the only person who knows how bad it sounds. I think BG_Farmer may be right about the spring guide, and I know for a fact that TX 200s make no noise when cocking, so it's your call. But you sound like you want to wait, and that's the safest route.

    B.B.


  69. Kevin,
    Thanks for you link to Rowan engineering. I really like the looks of some of the triggers shown. I actually thought the only thing on my TX that wasn't pretty was the trigger. I polished mine and I think it looks much better now.
    Scott



  70. Jan

    If I had an illuminated reticle scope when I was five, not only would I have found it necessary to use the illumination at all times and at full power, but I would not have looked at anything at all unless it was through the scope.

    Your sons are quite right about how critical it is to switch from red to green. You use green if you are pretending to be GI Joe, red if you are pretending to be Cobra.

    Keep us updated on your FT progress. If you need some pointers Wayne is your man. He wrote something about holdover one day that really lit the lightbulb for me.



  71. Dave,

    Congratulations on not shooting your eye out! Like Ralphie, you had to do some quick thinking to save your BB gun (guess there weren't any icicles around at the time).

    I too had a faux pas with my new Daisy Model 94 Western Carbine I had gotten for my birthday in 1959. Not understanding much about rebounds, I decided to rip off a round at the old tractor tire my father had set up as a sandbox. You know, rubber will bounce a BB as well as that can seam did!

    In my case, the BB did not come back at me, but hit the right rear quarter window of my father's car (1951 Chevy Club Coupe). It left an ugly half-moon gray spot in the safety glass.

    My father never did replace it. He left it, I think, as a reminder to me.

    And I had to tell him about it. It was just too obvious what had happened.

    Les



  72. Afternoon folks,

    I'm inside the Maryland beltway watching the snow blowing past the house. Reminds me of growing up in Up State New York. I've been here for 30 years and do not remember ever being under a blizzard warning. Before this storm is over we'll be getting snow at 2" per hour driven by 20+ mph winds. Looking for maybe 2' when it's over.

    Filled the bird feeders last night and so far the Talon SS with its AirHog shroud running on CO2 has 4 one shot, dead before hitting the snow, grackles under her belt. They've all been chip shots at 16 to 20 yard.

    Word Verification is snagruko–a new Japanese math game?

    Mr B.


  73. BB

    I propose you do a part 4 of the Red Ryder review in which you test how well ol' blue dispatches Black Bart and his creeping marauders.

    Unfortunately for you, you don't have a compass built in to the stock, so I don't know how well you'll fare.

    "Adios, Bart. And if you do come back, you'll be pushin' up daisies. And don't you fergitit! (Spit)" — Ralphie



  74. Diana 45

    I didn't know the answer to the trigger question. Went to the Diana forum.

    Apparently the early Diana Model 45 had leather seals and the 3 ball bearing trigger. The mid models had TO1 triggers and some even had the TO5 triggers. The closeouts from AOA had TO5 triggers and a square trigger guard!

    The older 45 can be distinguished by the cross pin through the stock just above the trigger. The older 45 has two versions, but it is all in the piston and the way the piston seal is attached. The seal is exactly the same just the hardware attaching it to the piston are different. The later 45 uses the more standard screw up from the trigger guard to hold the rear of the action in the stock.

    Scott, I'm sorry I confused your diana 45 trigger needing adjustment to your TX 200 trigger that you already adjusted to your liking. Let us know the manufacturing date of your diana 45 and I think we can help make the trigger the best it can be.

    kevin



  75. The current issue of THE SUN has an interesting nostalgia piece about a young boy and his first bb gun. It's called My Father Tore Out of the House, and the ending is less than happy. But the boy's description of his love of the gun is well done.

    This issue also has a hunter-positive article on hunting, called The Good Hunter.


  76. Hmmm…. I've got an old Beeman 250 (Diana 45) that has the cross-pin holding the rear of the action in the stock – and I coulda sworn the trigger was different. I'll see if I can look at it later this evening.


  77. Mr. B.,

    Quite a good show shoveling day, eh? You're in the Baltimore/Washington area? I'm in Baltimore. B.B. once said that we were in prime airgunning territory; can't disagree with that.

    Have you ever checked out the Damascus Izaak Walton League of America Chapter? The Chapter has a terrific dedicated air rifle range, separate from its various powderburner ranges – very fun. It also hosts DIFTA field target matches – the FT club that B.B. helped to found. And there's a weekly indoor adult 10m air rifle/pistol get-together, and a thriving youth 10m program.

    I'd be glad to show you around sometime if you're interested.

    -Jan


  78. Kevin,

    The original finish does not look like the finish on my R7 (which looks like poly to me). It is glossy and looks clear, more like a varnish. There are two areas on the right of the stock that are scuffed through the finish, but the color is intact underneath. Also, the scratches don't look like they're in poly.

    Yes, it was the R8 on Paul Watts' table that caught my eye – both the color and appearance. Do you know any more about it? I believe he has a picture of it on his website.

    Can you point me to a source for checkering so I can get an idea of what's involved?

    Thanks,

    Jay


  79. Jay,

    IF you like the current stain there's a good chance you can remove the scratches, that I understand to be in the surface coat (you think probably varnish) and then finish with an oil.

    Find a picture of a stock finish on the web that you like, give me a link and I'll try to be more help.

    If you want to save yourself alot of work and keep the existing stain (that you like?) you can carefully remove your top finish layer by sanding with 1200-1500 grit wet/dry using soapy water or baby oil as a lubricant. Go slow and carefully since you don't want to go through the stain. If it's beech and you get too agressive you easily go through the finish and into the stain. If you penetrate the stain on your beech stock it will appear white and the jig is up. Once this top layer is removed you should be able to steam out deep scratches and refinish any way you want (oil, oil/varnish or poly).

    Paul told me there were three guys gathered around his table at Roanoke when he swapped for that R8. It was gone quickly. I haven't seen an R8 on his site but would kill for that tricked out R7 with the maccari stock, hand checkering, high gloss blueing, set back trigger in brass with matching safety button, etc. etc.

    Here's a rough outline on repointing your checkering:

    Some refinishers skip this step, but pointing up the checkering in my opinion is the difference between a quality refinishing job and one that's merely satisfactory. Pointing the checkering is time consuming, but not difficult. You'll need a couple of Dembart checkering handles and four F1 Dembart single-line cutters, obtainable from Brownell's for about $30.00 for the lot.

    The Dembart cutters cut in one direction only. Mount one in a handle so that it cuts on the push stroke, and another in the other handle so that it cuts on the pull stroke. Some areas of the checkering will cut better on the push stroke, others on the pull stroke. Try both, and use whichever cuts easily without any chatter or fuzzing. (to be continued)

    Jay, This comment was too long so I broke it in half. Look at my next comment to you.

    kevin


  80. jay,

    Here's the continuation of checkering……..

    Lay the cutter in a groove in the center of the checkering and slowly move it back and forth, advancing a fraction of an inch with each stroke until you reach the end, where you STOP. Use light pressure on the tool (little more than the weight of the tool), and keep as much of the cutting edge in the groove as possible (it will feel like you're cutting with the rear third of the cutter). The tool wants to follow the path of least resistance, and the groove is the path of least resistance.By using light pressure and keeping the tool flat in the wood it will track easily along the groove. The exception to this is that you cut the last tiny bit of the groove with the point of the tool. Again, use almost no down pressure on the tool; we aren't trying to deepen the checkering, just cleaning it up and pointing up the diamonds.

    Keep the sawdust brushed out of the checkering, and brush the checkering cutter frequently.
    Do all the grooves from the center to one edge, then turn the stock around and do the grooves from the center to the other edge. Repeat the process with the intersecting grooves. If the panel has a groove cut around the border, use the checkering tool to clean up that groove.

    When you finish a panel, give it a good brushing (a stiff toothbrush works well) to clean out any sawdust, then brush in a LIGHT coat of boiled linseed oil and let dry. Use a small artist's brush for this step, and wipe up any oil that slops outside the panel with a rag.
    Some tips on using the checkering tool:
    1. Work slowly (it takes me an average of 3 hours to re-do the panels on the pistol grip and fore end; you should take longer until you've done a few).
    2. Use light pressure on the tool; let it do the work. If it dulls, put a new cutter in the handle.
    3. Keep as much of the cutting edge in the groove as you can.
    4. Keep the cutter vertical (don't cant it to one side or the other).
    5. Always cut in a forward direction (even if using the pull cutter).
    6. Always move the tool directly away from your body, turning the stock as necessary.

    A checkering cradle will greatly simplify this process, but impractical to build or buy if you're only going to do one or two stocks.

    If you plan on checkering or re-pointing the checkering on many stocks look into a versatile cradle.

    kevin




  81. Jay,

    Volvo is correct. The stock you linked is walnut. By the lines it looks like a maccari diy, checkered by Paul Watts and finished by Paul Watts using rlo (either satin rlo or gloss rlo with a knock down at the end).

    Here's a good comparison with a beech stock. Put your picture and this picture up at the same time and click back and forth to see the difference between beech and walnut:

    http://www.springgunning.com/SRR7.html

    I like laurel mountain products.
    Do you HATE the stain AND finish currently on your R10 OR just the finish? Your first "strip down to bare wood" of a gunstock refinish shouldn't be one made of beech.

    kevin


  82. B.B.,

    I've been meaning to compliment you. Yea, I know, don't fall outta your chair.

    The picture of the bb with the plating coming off in this article is phenomenal.

    Did you take that photo using your "painting with light" technique, a flash or some other lighting source?

    kevin


  83. Kevin and Volvo,

    The walnut stock certainly looks better, but I'd be very satisfied with http://www.springgunning.com/SRR7.html.

    To be clear, I'm not crazy about the stain (don't Hate it), but the finish needs to be fixed. I did buy this with the intent of refinishing the stock, and I have another rifle I can shoot while I'm working on it. Turns out to be my best shooter, though!

    Out of curiosity, are the stocks on the R9 and 10 interchangeable?

    Thanks,

    Jay Pokorski


  84. Jay,

    To me, both of those R7's look like beech, although the H7R1 stock could be walnut.

    You should be able to beat the stock finish job on the SRR7 in your sleep, it looks like a rush job and there are obvious erros in the stain application. The R7N1 picture looks OK — there's hope for better, but its about what you can expect to get if you take your time. I hope no one paid too much for either one.

    Sand it down to the bone and you can make it look better than either one of those.


  85. B.B.,

    Got my new RWS 48 22cal. Friday. To quote Paul Capello, "man, I think I'm in love." What a difference a quality piece makes in all areas of shooting. Accuracy and enjoyment have improved tremendously.

    I will write a bit more about the Model 48 experience in the near future, but I have a question concerning the trigger. Perhaps some explanation before the question will help your answer.

    I know that the release point of the sear on the trigger is to come as somewhat of a surprise to the shooter, but my first shot darn near scared me. It was certainly crisp and creepless but seemed a little too light. Granted, I have been shooting a Gamo with a heavy and creepy trigger, but I still think a little more resistance on the second stage of the RWS48 would be helpful to my accuracy. I haven't adjusted this trigger, although the gun was scoped and reboxed in a Plano case by Pyramyd. I'm rather certain that they would not attempt a trigger adjustment without my recommendation, so this must have come from RWS with this light setting.

    Is it possible for a newbie such as myself to adjust a little more resistance in the second stage? I don't have a reliable way to test the current trigger weight, but I would estimate the current setting to be below one pound.

    Thanks again for letting us benefit from your vast knowledge and experience.

    RickO'shea


  86. Kevin and Vince,

    Here is what I have on my Diana 45.
    It does have a pin through the stock just above the trigger. The trigger guard to me looks square-ish. The front angles down at a 45degree then completely flat till about 3/4" behind the trigger then sharp radius to completely verticle. There is a hole in the bottom of the guuard to access two screws. One large headed straight just behind the stamped metal trigger. This screw seems to change the first stage. There is another smaller straight screw that is painted orange closer to the back of the trigger guard. This screw seems to possibly change the pull weight? I have tried it from backing it out to running it quite a bit in and it doesn't seem to change very much.
    The serial # is 503815 if that helps give a clue.
    If I remember right I think I paid about $175 nearly ten years ago.

    As far as the TX200 trigger I am sorry to confuse you Kevin by writing about two guns on the same post. The TX trigger was so good it made me wonder if my Diana 45 trigger could be made better.

    If you guys need any more info on the Diana 45 just let me know.

    As far as my TX200 making that funny noise Pyramyd Air didn't have anybody that could awnser tech questions on Saturday so they are supposed to call me back Monday.

    Thanks, Scott



  87. Jay,

    To get the finish you're after (similar to the one in http://www.springgunning.com/SRR7.html) won't be difficult.

    The hardest part will be taking your scratches out of the current finish. As I said earlier, go slow, keep it wet and I wouldn't go below 1,000 grit.

    You want to avoid gouging the stain. Re-staining your beech stock is not something you want to do.

    You can finish with rlo since you've already ordered it. If the finish gets too glossy for your taste, after multiple applications of rlo, knock the gloss down with 0000 steel wool or 600 grit. If you want it even glossier polish it up with 1500, VERY lightly and then finish with a stock polish like macccari stock mud or brownells 5F. Use an old nylon stocking stuffed with pure cotton or flannel rag (a pommard) when using stock mud/polish and do it lightly.

    kevin



  88. Scott,

    B.B. and Vince are trigger experts I'm not. Hope Vince chimes in after looking at his Beeman 250 (rebadged diana 45).

    Because of the larger screw head on your trigger adjustments it doesn't sound like the early 3 ball bearing trigger. Sounds like a TO1 or TO5. You may want to research your serial number on dianawerk. Did you look for a date production stamp on the rear of your metal receiver? Should be stamped in VERY small letters and look something like 11 80 (means November 1980 production).

    Scroll down to about the middle of this link and tell me if this looks like your trigger:

    http://www.eddiecolwell.tzo.com/RWS-54.htm

    If it is your trigger then this is a good tutorial on tuning the trigger. I did this trigger tune on a Diana 54 I owned (TO1 trigger) and really liked the results.

    kevin


  89. BG_Farmer,

    Always respect your opinions.

    Would greatly appreciate a link to a finished gunstock that you admire and aspire to duplicate on one of your guns.

    Thanks in advance.

    kevin


  90. Volvo,
    I knew I'd catch it for that, but, yes, the R7N1 looks like beech to me, due to reddish tint and tight curl. It also looks like the checkering job was goofed.

    Before you have me carted off, take a look at the AA section on PA, and you'll find some beech stocks that should have been used for firewood and others that actually look better than the walnut versions. It does take some imagineering, however, because they are always finish the beech in the least flattering way possible, to account for the lowest common denominator. Another good example — check out BB's proto-Disco, which has a beech stock that was much nicer than any of the walnut ones I saw online.


  91. BG_Farmer,

    In the grip checkering on the R7N1 I assume you're referring to the last line not being parallel (it is offset, slipped) and one line of the border is overrun?

    I almost think Paul does this intentionally since I've seen this one line overrun on his work so often. Trademark?

    That's 22-24 lpi and a fine job otherwise.

    kevin


  92. Kevin,

    That pic of the BB was a lazy shot. I used a desk lamp to illuminate the BB. A Swiss Army knife on edge was the tripod. But to take a pic like that you need the Fuji 9100S camera that I've been using for three years. Most of my videos are taken with it, too.

    It has both macro and super macro settings. Can't fail to take good pix.

    B.B.


  93. Rick,

    Read your manual. The trigger adjustment instructions are in there. It's the rear screw that adjusts the pull, and in your case you want to screw it out.

    If you don't have manual, they are online. Find manuals at the bottom of the Pyramyd Air home page.

    For certain Pyramyd Air didn't adjust the trigger.

    B.B.


  94. Kevin,
    I'm assuming you mean in the modern vein, so I'll admire this AR stock from JM, although the quality is dependent on the wood.

    http://www.airrifleheadquarters.com/albums/album_image/253699/82829.htm

    In reality, that kind of thing would sit in a safe and be useless to me, and I'm not saying I could do it if I wanted to:). The finish is impeccable, however.

    RE: checkering. There are several non-parallel lines, and the points are not sharp, in addition to what you point out. I don't know about the trademark.

    I do disagree about the beech staining — Jay wants to refinish a stock, and stain is critical part of that if beech is the wood selected. Its just wood, time, and money, but the learning experience would be significant in return for the cost. If its a stock beech (or even walnut) stock, not much to lose, and I've found that for me, at least, less than perfection is bearable as long as I'm progressing and learning.


  95. Kevin,
    The stamp on my Diana 45 is 09 85.
    The pictures of the 54 trigger do not match my 45. Both of the adjustment screws are behind the trigger not in front like on the 54. The trigger is fairly crisp just a little heavier than I would like.

    Since you guys are talking about stocks I have a question about my TX200 stock. This might sound weird but when I shoot my TX the hair from my beard gets stuck in the pores of the walnut stock. When you remove your cheek from the gun you can feel the hair getting pulled and it gets quite uncomfortable after a while. I was thinking about using a dark furniture wax to fill the woods pores but after reading your other comments about stocks do you think there is a better thing to use?
    Scott



  96. Scott,

    Ok, you own a diana 45 original. Vince should be able to give you even better advice about whether to shorten your spring. He did a great job on my diana 27 although that's a completely different trigger than yours.

    Here's a guide to tuning your gun and trigger complete with photos:

    http://www.network54.com/Forum/509674/thread/1151934287/Diana+Original+45+Makeover

    Here's an exploded view of your gun and some interesting literature:

    http://www.network54.com/Forum/576299/thread/1190450220/Diana+Model+45++Info

    You can obtain a better copy of the exploded view, even blow it up
    and order parts here:

    http://www.gunspares.co.uk/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=24388&cat=45#

    You should be able to adjust your trigger to your liking now.

    Paste wax on your tx stock to fill in the pores won't hurt the stock and will give you a quick fix to minimize your beard getting stuck in the pores. You can always remove the wax if you want to sand the pores or just fill the pores with clear finish during a stock refinish.

    kevin


  97. BG_Farmer,

    That blackpowder gunstock is beautiful. Permalyn sealer and permalyn finish was used?

    Although permalyn has some poly blended with dryers added I'd catagorize that as an oil finish.

    You disagree that beech is the toughest wood used for gunstocks to stain properly? I've never refinished any tougher than beech. Very hard wood with closed pores. Stains unevenly. The medullary rays within beech are the dead giveaway.

    I do agree with you that if Jay wants to look at this stock refinish as an experiment and has the attitude that "its a stock beech (or even walnut) stock, not much to lose" then he should go for it.

    I'm frugal and would prefer to see people practice and experiment on scrap wood rather than a Beeman R10 stock.

    BG_Farmer I always enjoy our exchanges even when we have differing viewpoints.

    kevin


  98. B.B.,

    Thanks for photo lesson #23. Knife as a tripod and desk lamp for lighting may seem basic to you but I learned something.

    I have also taken your attempt to spend my money for the 789th time in the spirit it was intended.

    You have empowered me and I'm actually reading through the manual on my old Leica Digilux. I learned that my Leica can also take video's. I'm going to play with this camera and photoshop a little bit before I buy a Fuji 9100S.

    kevin


  99. Kevin,

    Don't buy a Fuji 9100S. In fact, I'm not sure you can anymore.

    My best friend, Mac, showed me a photo on the internet made by a Cannon G10 (a $400 digital camera) that tiled multiple images of the Obama inauguration with such fidelity that from a thousand yards away you could read the nametag on a person's shirt or see what color their eyes were.

    And the G10 has been replaced by the G11.

    My point being that digital camera technology advances so fast these days that what I own is a dinosaur. But it's a dino with a great macro, which was all I was saying. Whenever I buy a camera, the macro is always the most important feature I look for

    B.B..


  100. Kevin,

    No arguments about beech being tough to stain. The absorption will be maddeningly slow and you need to wipe like crazy to keep unabsorbed stain from drying on the surface if it is an oil based stain. I would also suggest not going past 220 (or even 180) before staining if a darker tone is desired, because too glassy a surface will only hurt matters. On the other hand, the end grain needs to be as glassy as possible, and maybe even have some sealing, since the contrast due to absorption will be even more obvious (I think that was what I don't like about the SRR7). Water or alchohol based stain would be a better choice, especially since they seem to work well on maple, which can have similar problems.

    I'm glad you like the long rifle stock. I did think the JM stock is pretty, but not my style and saw this one while reading later. He used the LMF stains, which you had recommended, as well. Permalyn seems a reasonable type of compromise, one that is fairly popular these days: polyurethane or other varnish for durability with oil to retard drying and aid penetration, thinned to ease both application and penetration. It seems like many of the rubbing oils are a similar in concept, although the marketing is almost fraudulent due to public perception of oil and varnish, esp. polyurethane.

    If people didn't disagree, there wouldn't be much to talk about:).


  101. B.B.,

    Thought about keeping one camera that was among the many that were sent to Mac's lady to sell on ebay.

    The digital that gary used most was a Sony DSLR A900. He had 7 or 8 lenses for that body. Among them were a Zeiss Makro Planar 100mm f2.0 T, a Zeiss/Sony Planar T 85mm f1.4 ZA and a Zeiss/Sony Vario-Sonnar. The macro photo's he took with that camera were stunning.

    I was/am intimidated by the Leica so I knew the Sony was way out of my league.

    kevin



  102. Kevin and Bg farmer,

    The long rifle does have an amazing piece of yellow pine on it, very attractive.

    I’ll still stay with Walnut as my guess on the first R-7, but then I was fooled once in an e-mail of a pretty girl that turned out to be dude. Maybe I need to wear my glasses more often.


  103. Volvo,
    Yes, you always need to save pallets, since you never know what use you might put the wood to:). Sorry about the e-mail HeGirl, but you now you know that a girl describing herself as "beautiful and yearning for a man" is too good to be true:). Again, I could be wrong about the R7N1, but it doesn't scream walnut to me.


  104. Kevin,

    I am in no way a photophile, but I think I know some folks who would do spit-takes at the phrase "I was/am intimidated by the Leica so I knew the Sony was way out of my league." You are too modest.

    I'm intimidated by my Air Arms, so I know my Discovery is out of my league.

    -Jan


  105. Kevin,

    I know they're not making R10s anymore, so I will do my best not to ruin this stock! With everyone's input, I'm now pretty confident I have the info to avoid any critical mistakes. Of course, if anyone has a "scrap" beech stock sitting around, I wouldn't mind having one to practice on!

    BG_Farmer,

    What is the "AA section on PA"???

    B.B.

    My G3 still takes respectable pics, even though it has a lower pixel count than my cell. Superior lens on the G-series.

    Thanks again!

    Jay


  106. Jay,

    Sorry, I just meant the Air Arms rifles on Pyramyds website– if you click on the picture to take a closer look, you'll see that many models show detail shots of both beech and walnut variants. The same is true for some of the Beeman guns, but there seems to be some confusion between the wood type specified and the pictures in some cases, or at least it is not as clear to me.



  107. BB,

    Do you have any special tips for care for springers in really humid climates? I live in Brazil in the middle of what is the largest urban forest in the world (Tijuca forest) and I've just bought a Diana 34 Panther, and I was wondering if there is anything extra I should do to keep it rust free, aside from wiping it with a silicone cloth after use?

    Thanks in advance,

    Nicolas


  108. Jay,
    I think this is what BG farmer wants you to see:

    Wood ID 101:
    http://www.pyramydair.com/cgi-bin/zoomed_model.pl?model_id=177
    http://www.pyramydair.com/cgi-bin/zoomed_model.pl?model_id=174

    Bg Farmer,
    The only common HW gun with Walnut now is the HW35E, which PA does not carry for some reason. I would tell you about the one I almost had, but I’d start to choke up again.

    Nicholas,
    You may want to use a little Beeman MP-5, Break Free, or other gun oil on the rifle also. Would not hurt to take the action out of the stock and hit it to. Just don’t keep the rifle in a gun case.


  109. Everyone,

    Especially Frank B, Jay, BG_Farmer, Volvo, B.B., Vince, etc.

    All this recent talk about taking better photo's and stock refinishing has motivated me.

    I recently bought a used FX Ranchero that came with a pistol and a carbine stock. Both stocks were very rough. These will be my first airgun stock refinish project.

    It took me about 3 hours to remove the varnish. These stocks were not stained. I lifted the dents and dings and let the stock sit for 48 hours. I started wet sanding with 180 and watco. Then 220, 320 and I'm currently using 400 grit. At 400 grit I switched to using RLO. I'm at the 3rd application of satin RLO with 400 grit. Few more applications with 600 grit and I'll start to apply RLO with a rag. I took the tape off the stipling and put the action in for photos.

    Hopefully you'll be able to see in the photo's that I've got about another 20 coats of RLO before I start smoothing the finish then polish. I'll knock the finish down since I don't like gloss.

    I'm ready for your criticism's about my photography and stock finishing:

    http://s444.photobucket.com/albums/qq167/klentz4/stock%20refinish%2012-20-09/?action=view&current=77475621.pbw&t=1261357805

    kevin


  110. Kevin,With enough rlo,will the pores get filled?my big problem is getting enough mudd to fill the porous spots…I've sanded all the rlo off,now I'm out:( Frank B


  111. Frank B,

    The short answer is yes.

    If you've used up the entire amount of RLO from maccari something is wrong.

    Did you bed your action? This should be allowed to cure for several days before starting on the outside of the stock.

    Did you seal the outside of the stock? This is where you thin your finish with mineral spirits and soak the stock. The stock should dry at least 24 hours before you start any sanding.

    Did you follow these steps?

    Now you're ready to sand. Always sand with the grain and the grain in your stock doesn't just run right to left. Always follow the grain when you're sanding or polishing.

    If so, then starting with 180 grit (if your stock has large pores) or more common in walnut 220 grit using a thinned mixture of your finish (now 50-50) to cut the whiskers is your next step. If you didn't thin your RLO to start then it's difficult to build the slurry/muck.

    Once you see the slurry/muck forming in the area you're sanding stop and move to another area of your stock. Don't let the original area dry out but do let it set (3-5 minutes). Use shop paper towels (heavy, not very absorbant) to wipe off the slurry/muck. WIPE ACROSS OR DIAGONAL TO THE GRAIN. Remember, you're trying to fill the grain. Don't wipe hard or you will pull the filler out of the grain.

    As the pores fill and your sand paper becomes finer you will wipe off the slurry/muck more completely but never hard. Remember, each time you sand you're re-wetting the filler in your pores and can easily wipe it out with an overly agressive paper towel ragging.

    Sand with the grain, wipe off against the grain.

    As you graduate to finer grit sandpaper the finish gets thinned less and less. At 400 grit I'm now using 80% RLO. At 600 grit I will be using 100% RLO. As the grit gets finer your pressure should become less and less as well.

    Hope that helps.

    kevin


  112. Kevin,

    Looks like you're going full steam. Picture #3 is the closest to what I was expecting in terms of color (unstained walnut), but some of the photos make the color seem really red. My photos of stocks seem to do the same thing (more red than reality), so I'm guessing that its a color balance thing going on. That's not a criticism but rather a request for visual guidance!

    Does the RLO darken any as it builds? It doesn't seem like you've lost any fine grain structure to the finish yet.

    That carbine stock is a pretty wild piece of wood (it has all sorts of figure) and style. If you really give it 20 more coats, its going to be crazy slick!



  113. Kevin,

    Looks great – If RLO will do the same (color wise) to beech, then I don't want to stain.

    What ratio of RLO to mineral spirits did you use to seal the stock?

    Jay


  114. Nicolas,

    You want to use something that prevents rust. Break Free is good for that, as is Barracade. If you don't have those in Brazil, find something equivalent.

    The silicone cloth is as good as it gets in that department. And shooting the gun will help a lot, too.

    B.B.



  115. Thanks, BB, for this report on the old Red Ryder. It makes me nostalgic for the childhood one I had from the 1950's. Many years ago I donated that one to the local YMCA for their youth shooting program. Now I realize that today it would be worth several new ones!
    Back then we Red Ryder owners were always envious of the pump model 25 owners, as we perceived the pump models to be better. Or at least they were more rare in our neighborhood. Now I'm not sure if there is much difference. In your testing, BB, have you found a significant difference in handling or shootability between the Red Ryder and the pump model?

    –Mike U



  116. Power, eh? B.B., don't tell me you have cast your lot with the crass worshippers of airgun power over all else! Mr. Ryder would be upset with you. (Just kidding)

    –Mike U


  117. Many years ago in the mid-late 70's I was given a .177 cal Daisy springer by my cousin who died on this date. only a few years older than myself. I'm 41. I broke the barrel at the chamber after a fall onto rocks while trying to "GET ME THE SQUIRREL" that I shot at and was thrashing on the ground in the woods of Benton La. I'd use a screw driver stuck into the barrel to cock it after that though I could not hit the side of a house at 10 feet with no barrel.
    It is a wonder I have any fingers as I remember that rifle smashing my fingers once oe twice for some of the most painfull moments in my life.
    My parents sent it off for repair in Rodgers Ark. And was told by my parents it cant be repaired. I never believed that…And never saw the rifle again.
    Any Idea what this single cock break barrel rifle was?


  118. Daisy probably didn't make that rifle–they had it made for them by Milbro in Scotland. In the 1960s and '70s they sold five different breakbarrel springers. All were .177 caliber.

    They are found on page 202 of the 7th Edition of the Blue Book of Airguns.

    B.B.


  119. I used to muzzle load alfalfa pellets in my old Jaycees Red Ryder. My ramrod was a piece of coat hanger with a bend to set the depth just ahead of the hole in the side of the barrel.

    Accuracy was decent to about 10 feet if I carefully chose pellets with a good front end. They would barely crack one side of an empty pop can but would punch clean through both sides if the can was filled with water. Why did I do this? The alfalfa pellets cost a few dollars for a 25 pound bag. Many thousands of shots! Of course they had to be the right size.

    Some larger pellets had me wondering if they could be used with light powder loads in a .38 as an extremely cheap alternative to Glasers. (I read my grandfather's gun magazines cover to cover every month, so in my single digit years I knew about such things.)


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