The Benjamin Marauder – Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1


The Marauder sits on an MTM rifle rest at the AirForce test range–ready for 50-yard action.

Before I begin, another tidbit on the Pyramyd Air moving sale on Saturday, May 30. If you want to buy new items from the store, please bring a list of those items on paper.

Lots of interest in this rifle last week. Today, I’ll focus on the barrel. Although there are many interesting parts to the Marauder, some of the most anticipated features are centered on the tube with the spiral scratches. Just as a reminder, this barrel is American-made, choked, free-floated and shrouded.

American-made
I briefly mentioned that this isn’t a Lothar Walther barrel in the first report. It’s made by Crosman. Back when we were developing the basic requirements of the first- and second-generation PCP rifles Crosman would build, Crosman engineers were adamant that the second-generation barrel should be shrouded. I was equally adamant that it be choked. The subject of free-floating the barrel never came up in the discussions I attended.

Choked barrel
Crosman has been making good barrels for decades, so it isn’t a challenge to make another. But a choked barrel was a new concept. They discovered that all their major PCP competitors were using choked barrels, so just being able to put that into the ad literature was bragging rights by itself, but was it really important?

I can cite history–where famous barrelmaker Harry Pope clearly felt that a half-thousandth choke at the muzzle was a good thing. The intriguing thing is that many of Pope’s most accurate barrels were for muzzleloading rifles–yet they were still choked. Yes–the choke does squeeze the bullet down smaller than the rest of the bore as it enters the barrel; and no–lead does not “spring back” after being squeezed. But upon firing, the pressure of the explosion whacks the base of the bullet so hard that it squashes out to fill the bore tightly. This obstruction of the bore is called obturation, and all blackpowder arms do it. Diabolo pellets also expand at the skirt when hit with high-pressure air at the start. The force of the air is not nearly as great as the force of exploding gunpowder, but the skirt is made of thin lead and flexes more easily.

The choked muzzle then squeezes all exiting pellets to the same size as they leave the bore. And that’s been proven to increase accuracy. We shall see when we test for accuracy.

Free-floated barrel
In firearm rifles, a free-floated barrel allows the barrel to move as it heats up from firing. Since it doesn’t contact any part of the stock–the definition of free-floating–it never picks up a secondary point of contact to disturb its vibration. It’s free to vibrate the same with every shot–the same condition we strive for with the artillery hold. Free-floated barrels have long been known to improve accuracy over barrels that touch the stock along the forearm.


The barrel shroud has been removed, along with the baffles and end cap. The muzzle of the barrel touches nothing.


Here’s the muzzle sitting in the front hanger. As you can see, it touches nothing.


Here’s another view of the muzzle. There’s clearance all around. Note the stainless-steel Foster fitting with micron particle filter.

In a PCP, as the reservoir loses pressure, it flexes. If the reservoir is connected to the barrel, it will pull the barrel along with it as it moves. A free-floated barrel is not connected to the reservoir at any point. It tends to be accurate over the entire string of useful shots. In some rifles, like those from AirForce, the barrel is separated from the reservoir, so free-floating isn’t an issue. But in a rifle where the reservoir runs parallel to the axis of the bore, the potential for barrel movement due to reservoir flex is greatest.

One thing I must note is that the Marauder barrel shroud clatters a little when the rifle is handled. Actually, it’s the barrel inside that’s free to move around that causes the clattering. If you want a free-floated barrel, you have to put up with a little movement, and with the shroud being so close to the barrel, that means a slight bit of noise in the Marauder. Crosman engineers tell me they are working to minimize the noise, but I have to report on the gun I’m testing.

Shrouded barrel
Okay, here’s the thing so many want to know about. The shrouded barrel. Is it baffled? Yes, it is. How much quieter is it because of the baffles? Not much.

Huh? I thought baffles were THE thing for quiet rifles. Well, they can be if they’re needed and if they’re placed and spaced just right. But the muzzle of the Marauder is buried so deep inside the shroud (nearly 6″ from the outside of the end cap) that you can remove all the baffles, put the end cap back on and the rifle sounds almost the same. I just tried it and although I can hear a difference, it doesn’t amount to much. Maybe with a good sound meter that can freeze the high readings. If you had one that works fast enough to catch the fast peaks, there might really be a difference. But that’s like saying it’ll matter to your Collie but not to you. This rifle is quiet. Period. End of report.

No. Not the end. Not yet. I must be honest and revise my appraisal of what the rifle sounds like with the baffles installed and shooting a 10.5-grain Crosman Premier pellet at about 920 f.p.s. It sounds a lot like a Sheridan Blue Streak firing on one-quarter of a pump of air. Yes, that is louder than a ballpoint pen falling on a carpet. To all who went out and purchased ballpoint pens and had their homes recarpeted just to see what the Marauder sounds like so they didn’t have to risk buying one and being disappointed–I apologize. It’s still quieter than most weak spring rifles.

The end cap unscrews to remove the baffles that are just loose inside between the muzzle and the end cap. The shroud also unscrews so you can see the barrel. as shown in this report.


And there it is–the guts of the shroud. Four hollow Delrin chambers that sit in-line between the muzzle and the end cap. The o-ring sits behind the end cap, putting tension on the baffles behind so they don’t rattle.

Accuracy is also a barrel thing, but I’m not putting it here. We’ll have to get to it on a day all by itself. I’m thinking Friday.

105 thoughts on “The Benjamin Marauder – Part 2

  1. I was just looking into purchasing that mtm predator and then I saw it on your blog. How does it work for rifle and pistol shooting? Must the positioning of the rifle be reset after every shot?



  2. Off topic, I have noticed that the RWS/Diana Panther models have acquired a globe fiber optic front sight.

    Seeing as this seems to be the number one complaint about the old 34P, does anybody have a part number for the new sight? Are Pyramid intending to stock this?

    I really enjoy my Panther, as it is a solid, well made, all weather workhorse, and a globe sight would be the icing on the cake.



  3. Nic Brown,
    Instead of sliding off the complete front sight and replacing it….. Contact Umarexusa and they will sell you a metal globe that snaps right in to the grooves on your existing front sight. The cost is under $10 compared to about $30 for the entire “plastic” globe sight and the metal is more durable and looks better. I also have and extra one since I just removed my sights so if you are interested let me know and I would sell it for about 5 bucks.


  4. Jeff,

    No, the barrel always returns to it’s starting position. But if the rifle is jostled a little you can hear some clatter.

    Wait until Friday to decide whether the rifle is accurate or not.

    B.B.


  5. Barrel shroud,

    When compressed air exits the muzzle it make the same kind of sound that compressed gas makes when it exits a firearm barrel, only not as great because the air is under less pressure. The shroud contains the muzzle blast long enough that all the energy is lost before it exits the end cap of the shroud.

    The baffles help by breaking up the muzzle blast and redirecting the air. That removes the energy from the air, and therefore it becomes quieter.

    It’s the same physics as a silencer, only the shroud is part of the rifle.

    B.B.


  6. Jersey John,

    There is a handwheel in the front of the rest that allows you to adjust elevating very finely. This rest is perfect for PCPs. It will be less perfect for handguns because the tail end is of no use, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work.

    All rifle rests work the same way, but this one is extremely light weight and seems to hold the stock very securly.

    B.B.


  7. Questions about the marauder:

    Is there a change in loudness when going from air to co2?

    How do you fill the rifle with co2?

    What velocities and how many shots can I expect from co2 in .177 and .22 calibers?

    Do you think the gun will drop to $400 any time soon after it released?


  8. The Marauder is filled with CO2 through the same coupling as air. Crosman supplies the adaptors and Pyramyd Air now sells them for the Discovery. When the Marauder comes out, the coupling description will probably add that rifle.

    Yes, CO2 should be a little quieter than air, but the gun is adreal so quiet that I don’t think you will notice.

    As far as price drops, who can say? I think the sales will be strong for at least a year but after that who knows?

    B.B.


  9. B.B.
    I was under the impression that a choke improves accuracy not simply because it sizes the pellet , but that sizing the pellet right at he muzzle straightens out the pellet in the bore in case the fit had become loose while travelling down the bore or if the head was a bit undersize in the first place.
    The objective is to make sure that the axis of the pellet is in line with the axis of the bore so that the pellet exits the muzzle perfectly straight.

    twotalon


  10. Matt61,

    Not being able to leave well enough alone, I put a Beeman sport aperture sight onto the gun.

    http://www.pyramydair.com/cgi-bin/accessory.pl?accessory_id=717

    I then replaced the aperture with an adjustable iris from Merit. I’m in the process of replacing the front sight with a Weihrauch unit so I can change sight inserts a bit easier. My new 61 didn’t come with any additional front sight inserts–just the installed post from the factory. It’s a bit wide for my taste.

    I found the article BB was referring to about the gunsmith who customized his IZH60 and I thought that was pretty funny–and a worthwhile project! I actually looked at Anchutz target sights yesterday, but the only model I found in stock wasn’t going to fit the rear dovetail by 2mm.

    I’ll look at the Air Arms sight at the Pyramyd sale and if I think it’ll fit, I’ll snag one.

    I do remember reading that there have been some headaches mounting a scope on the IZH rifles–mainly because the dovetail is so short. Looks like the correct eye relief could be difficult to achieve. I bought an extra Centerpoint offset mount in case I do go the scope route and need that flexibility in fore/aft positioning.

    What did you end up using for a mount? Did you use the 4X,6X, or the variable power Bug Buster?

    Thanks, Matt!

    Derrick


  11. I hope Crosman at some stage will incorporate the choke procedure into their existing 22XX and 13XX guns or produce enough barrels (way down the road) to sell as an after market part.



  12. The Marauder is looking like a gun to love. Well, maybe love is a little strong but it’ll work for now. I skimmed over this report this morning but now I’m going back to savor it a bit more.

    Tunnel engineer,
    Happy to hear your having fun with your 586. I haven’t gone for accuracy yet so I can’t compare notes with you on that. There was someone else on this blog who was having trouble with a sticky trigger and something else, I forget what it was now. A couple of us recommended they send it back but I never saw what they finally did. I hope they got it corrected. Nice gun.
    -Chuck



  13. My interest in the Benjamin Maurauder continues to grow. It seems that Crosman has tried to do everything right. A choked, shrouded barrel with baffles is spot on for the informed pcp buyer. I still don’t understand hiding the power adjustment inside the stock.

    The floating barrel reminds me of the first? article that Wayne did. Putting a gob of glue on the Benjamin Discovery barrel to “tighten things up”. If I remember right, when he shot the disco with the glued barrel alongside of a disco with an unglued barrel the results were inconclusive. A floating barrel seems to provide more accuracy in so many guns.

    B.B., I admire your emphasis on a choked barrel. If accuracy isn’t the priority in a new pcp design what do the other “bells and whistles” matter? Nonetheless, quiet has to be a close second in consideration. The “loud” created by the disco is the major issue that I saw being modded. Especially in entry level pcp’s, “neighbor friendly” is very important to many buyers.

    Anyone, (especially B.B.),

    What pcp in .22 caliber, shooting 15-16 gr. pellets at 850fps-900fps (same specs as I assume the maurader will be) is the quietest that you have heard/shot? (my guess is a dialed down talon/condor with a good bloop tube).

    Can’t wait for the accuracy testing on the Maurader.

    kevin


  14. I still don’t understand how the baffles help. It seems to me that they are just blocks of “plastic” that the pellet passes through. Are they stacked one on top of the other? it seems that this would be no different that just using one solid plug instead of 4 smaller ones. It also seems that this would block any expanding air from traveling into the rest of the shroud. Can anyone explain how this works to me. I’m sure that I am misunderstanding something here.


  15. B.B.
    What is the choke like on this gun? Is it a very short quick restriction or is it a long gradual restriction like the LW barrels have?
    Does it squeeze a lot or just a little?

    I know you would have to remove the barrel and push a tight pellet through to find this out. Just a matter of curiosity. Don’t go to the bother if you have not already checked it out.

    At first I had wondered if the choke was to compensate for sloppy QA on bore size.

    twotalon


  16. Kevin,

    As much as I admire accuracy, quiet is also important. My neighbor to the rear lives about 75 feet away and the houses on either side are less than 20 feet. So I know what it means to live in cramped confines. The Marauder works well enough to exist in such an environment, as long as the target is in a silent pellet trap–which mine are.

    As for the next-quietest .22 caliber PCP, my old (late 1980s) Air Arms Shamal would be that gun. In fact, Kevin, I will blog that rifle tomorrow, so you have something to compare to.

    B.B.


  17. UW Hunter,

    The baffles are hollow cylinders–open on the muzzle end and closed, like you see in the photo, on the end-cap end.

    As the pellet passes through one, the compressed air behind it expands inside the baffle and loses energy. It also obstructs the air behind it–like a person slowing down at the end of a freeway acceleration lane.

    The pellet has to pass through four chambers before it gets to the end cap. By that time, all four chambers are full of air that’s rapidly losing its energy, and the end cap obstructs anything that gets to it.

    If you want to see what that looks like, read my article about silencers here:

    http://www.pyramydair.com/site/articles/silencers/

    B.B.

    B.B.


  18. UW Hunter…
    Those are hollow chambers that trap air like the chambers in your car muffler. Instead of a quick high pressure discharge, you get a long slow low pressure discharge.

    If they were solid, there would be no difference from shooting without them.

    twotalon



  19. B.B.
    O.K.
    This was something that most would not think about. I guess it comes from pushing pellets through a lot of barrels.

    twotalon


  20. B.B.,

    Oh my gosh!!

    So what you’re saying is that of all the .22 cal pcp guns you’ve shot, and all the .22 cal pcp guns you’ve heard shot the Maurader is the quietest with the Air Arms Shamal being second quietest.

    Alright, now you’ve got my full attention.

    kevin


  21. I think those Lothar Walther barrels are only choked at the muzzle. There’s no info on their site to suggest otherwise


  22. B.B.,

    A baffling question please, has anyone studied the effects of varying the size of the chambers, the positioning of those various sized chambers within the shroud and wether or not putting sound absorbent material in the chambers has any real effects on how well the baffles work?

    I’ve experimented with my Talon SS and the size and spacing of the various sized baffles does seem to make a differance in the observed noise. However, hearing protection was not used much when I first started shooting the powder burners and my hearing now isn’t what it should be.

    Thanks much Mr B.


  23. Derrick,

    I’m interested in more about your adjustable iris from Merit. I looked at some adjustable irises a while back but they cost more than the gun. Where did you get yours and how is it working out?

    FWIW, I used the following adapter with a 6X Bugbuster on my IZH-61.

    UTG 11mm to Weaver Adapter, Adjustable $9.

    http://www.pyramydair.com/cgi-bin/accessory.pl?accessory_id=2401

    The adapter hangs over the magazine release button but you can still get at least your pinkie finger in there to trip it. The base hangs a little over the back also but the two base screws hold so tight there is no creep.

    On one of my 61′s I put a red dot scope that works pretty good, too.

    I have another with the Beeman Sport aperature and one with the Daisy Avanti Precision Rear Diopter Sight. They work also.

    A scope works the best for me because of my BiFocal Deficiency(BFD).

    -Chuck


  24. Kevin,

    On the blog I did about gluing the barrel to the air tank on the Disco.. It turned out that “valve lock was the biggest factor. So much so, that a test on glued or not glued was not really possible.. I couldn’t tell any difference, because of other factors of inaccuracy..

    But what level of accuracy am I talking about? The disco is accurate enough for what is was sold for.. It was not sold as a FT rifle..

    I also think that on the Disco, with a fill pressure of only 1,800 to 2,000 (1,800 best to avoid valve lock), that the change in the air tank is less of an issue…
    Shooting down from 3,000 to 1,800 is different than 1,800 down to 1,200.. or at least that makes sense to me..
    I could not get the glued or unglued Disco to be repeatably accurate.. at least not even close to as accurate as my Air Arms S410.. but of course it costs about 1/3 as much!!

    Now, the Marauder should be a different story. If it turns out to be close to as accurate as the AAs410 at half the price.. well, that will be a very good thing… for Crosman and all us airgunners!!

    At least the shrouded barrel is not as “flimsy” as a free floated barrel with nothing around it, like the Disco.. Most floated barrels have a ring around them to protect them and give them something to float inside of… like on the Marauder..

    The build of the Marauder seems to be a giant step up from the Disco, while still keeping the price point that is so critical for an entry level PCP..

    The crazy thing for me, is, I’m already wondering what the 3rd edition will be like!!

    Kevin, I too wonder about hiding the power adjuster, and just leaving it set.. I like to play with it as the air tank goes down, to bring the POI back up… just to get those few extra shots.. It’s not a big deal, it’s not the most important role for the power adjuster, just a little bonus..

    It sounds like this is a way to eliminate more of the valve lock, so you set it and leave it, when you find where the valve lock starts.. but we must wait for the master to do the rest of the reports to tell us!!

    Wayne,
    Ashland Air Rifle Range


  25. Kevin,

    Not quite.

    I AM saying that of all the PCPs I have ever heard, only one was quieter than the Marauder. That one was a.177 BSA Super Ten that had a silencer that looked to be 1.5 inches across and 18 inches long. After that one rifle, the Marauder is as quiet as I have heard a PCP. However, I have heard DOZENS of other PCPs that were just as quiet as the Marauder. But the S410 sidelever in .22 that I tested was not one of them.

    The Shamal is the quietest .22-caliber PCP I have heard. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite meet the power requirement you asked about. Still, I am reporting it tomorrow.

    B.B.


  26. Mr. B.,

    Huge research has been done in the subject of silencer technology. Someday I may show you what I helped design when I worked at AirForce. It uses flammable materials so it cannot be used on a firearm.

    Oil os also used in silencer to absorb sound.

    It is an interesting subject that a Google search will reveal for you.

    B.B.



  27. BB,
    Did Bob the gunman get into trouble educating people about silencers? I followed your link to your silencer report (excellent must read for everybody), then the one to FirearmSilencers.com, and the only thing there are a bunch of links. No education.

    -Chuck


  28. B.B.,

    Thanks for the clarification. That’s still an impressive endorsement for how quiet the Maurader is. The AA S410 sidelever in .22 is not even close to as quiet. Wow. I shot my S410 earlier this morning to test a new pellet trap I made. I shot from inside my garage and it’s a very quiet gun. Like a cap gun we used to play with as kids. My tuned FWB 124 is louder in the garage than the S410.

    Thanks for tomorrows article on the Shamal. I suppose this will be another one of those hard to find airguns that I don’t need but must have.

    Wayne,

    Re-read your article on the disco that you did in July 2008. Wow, have you come a long ways in a short time. The valve lock issue was very enlightening. A must read for everyone that plans on entering the pcp world.

    I really like the exterior power adjustment feature. It’s a great bonus but certainly not a must have. I use the power adjustment to switch from short range shooting with lighter pellets to long range shooting with heavier pellets. Mil dots allow me to keep my poi where I want it so I don’t mess with the power adjustment for that when I get low on air.

    I’m already thinking about a stock mod to accept an adjustment wheel to the Maurader. Can’t tell in B.B.’s photo in the first part if that’s an allen head for the power adjustment but it shouldn’t be that hard. I’m waiting for part 3 before I place my order but I like what I hear so far. Multi shot, dual fuel, good looks including the checkering, dual raised cheek pieces, match trigger?, power adjustment, on board gauge, shrouded, baffled, choked floating barrel, rated 1,000 fps in .22 for $499.00??!!! If the Maurader is accurate with a decent trigger how can you lose?

    kevin


  29. Anon..
    To prevent confusion…
    When you push a pellet through a LW barrel, at first you feel the barrel tightening up. Once the pellet reaches the end of the constriction, it will slide most of the length of the barrel until it reaches the front choke which squeezes it again.

    twotalon


  30. BB,
    Thanks for addressing the sound issue again. I have a .22 S410 so I am very intrigued by your rating of the Marauder. However, my neighbors are only 10” away and they haven’t complained yet, and I’m not looking for a stealth gun. So at least for now, sound is not a prime motivator. Oh and don’t worry, I wanted carpeting anyway.
    MCA


  31. B.B.
    Crosman did a great job with this pcp rifle. Do you know if crosman will make a PCP PISTOL or carbine- based on the 22XX frames?






  32. Kevin,
    Yeah, it means something different here, too. But if you change your voice inflection you can change the meaning, kinda like Vietnamese or other Asian tongues.

    Anyone,
    On my Talon SS, there is a silver plunger looking thing extending into the receiver from the direction of the stock that the bolt contacts with and seals in the pellet when it is cocked. When my gun sits overnight with the bolt open this thing ends up extending so far into the receiver area by the next day that I can’t pull the bolt back far enough to lock it. At first I could push it back by hand but yesterday and today I had to dry fire it with the bolt closed (but not locked – couldn’t) to get it to go back. Is this something I should be concerned about? I even left it overnight last night with the bolt closed but it still had the same problem after I opened the bolt and tried to close it again. Once I get it back in it doesn’t cause a problem all day until it sits overnight.

    -Chuck


  33. Herb,

    Agree completely.

    But you must realize that if the barrel isn’t completely round, example: (sin-1(½) = 30°. In radians this is sin-1(½) = π/6.) then the pellet flight is affected. Expressed as:
    loga (x + y) ≠ loga x + loga y
    is ω2 → v2 – Δv2
    and, v2 + r2 = (Δv + r)2
    So, by substitution, ω2 + Δv2 + r2 = Δv2 + 2Δvr + r2
    Δv = √ v2 + r2) – r = ω2/2r

    ω = √[2r√v2 + r2) - 2r2]
    r = √[ω4/(4v2 - 4ω2)]

    Hope this helps.

    Sorry Herb, couldn’t resist.

    kevin


  34. CJr…….
    Valve stem creeping out.
    Have heard of this happening on CO2 adapters. Is this what you have?? If so, send it back .

    twotalon




  35. Nicely done kevin. Kind of reminds me of the fraternity I joined in college. I can’t remember the Greek letters, but I think it was pronounced “I Phelta Thi”.



  36. ajvenom,

    I missed out on that in college.. but… “I Phelta Thi” started for me in high school.. the question us guys all asked, was how high on the thigh did you feel? .. and what was it like?… who said I didn’t learn anything in school!!

    Wacky Wayne


  37. B.B.

    What a beautiful rifle. And that’s quite a monster scope you’ve got there. I take it that means that this rifle is suitable for field target. No doubt Friday will tell the story.

    Regarding chokes, if the issue is reducing the pellet to a uniform size one would think that is done by the obturation process. So, it makes sense that the choke performs a second resizing and an axis correction.

    As Kevin suggested, my only possible remaining ghost of a reservation about the Marauder has to do with the power adjustment. I sort of fantasized myself moving back and forth between low power indoors and high power at the range. But on the Marauder it doesn’t look like there’s a scale to allow you to record power settings very precisely.

    Derrick, ah yes, I’m reading up on adjustable irises and diopter sights. That would run you into some extra money. Pretty cool too. The one thing missing from my collection is globe target sights, so I can see whether I can line up the rings and dot better than I did in high school. How did you replace the front sight? It looks to be flush with the barrel.

    If you want high quality match sights and the Anschutz doesn’t work, what about the quality sights for the Air Force Edge?

    Yes, I’d read about the mounting problems, but for once things went easily for me. I got a 6X Bug Buster and medium Accushot rings. The mount fit perfectly on the mounting rail (tiny as it is) with absolutely no overhang or obstruction of the clip release. And the mount has stayed solid. After 50,000 odd shots it might have moved a few millimeters to the rear. As for eye relief, I don’t expect that would be a problem if you use the longest extension setting inside the stock. It’s described well in Part I of B.B.’s review. With this setting, I get a 14.5 inch length of pull which should be plenty for an adult size target rifle.

    Kevin, ha ha, that cracks me up. I was talking to a math professor once and he said even math professors are often lost when discussing their subject.

    Matt61


  38. BB,
    Looks like the Marauder does it all and makes coffee. I can’t decide whether or not I like the approach used with the power adjuster: On the one hand it would be nice not to have to remove the stock to tune; on the other, a one time adjustment period should be all that’s necessary for an ideal pellet. The free-floating scheme actually scares me a little, but since most rifles don’t go into the field anymore, its probably a non-issue.

    Wayne,
    As I understand it, Howa gained a lot of benefit from their association with Weatherby, so your results aren’t shocking I’m impressed by your conversion to synthetic stocks. I underwent a similar change of heart not long ago when I decided to try one on a low-end Savage. It was a .30-06, so recoil and thus weight weren’t much of an issue, and I really like the grip. Despite all I’ve read about how much the “Tupperware” stocks suck, it acquitted itself admirably.


  39. Everyone,

    The Marauder power adjuster IS NOT for fiddling with! You set the optimum velocity and forget it.

    One pellet at one velocity.

    You do this with the action out of the stock. The adjuster isn’t for messing around to see what happens. It is meant to be adjusted and then left alone.

    Once I find the right black powder load for my .43 Spanish I will never change it. No need to. That is the same rationale used with this power adjuster. It is the same rationale that causes an Olympic air rifle shooter to purchase pellets 50K at a time.

    You have to think differently about this adjuster, because it doesn’t work the same as the wheels, dials and levers.

    B.B.


  40. CJr,

    I’ve had the Merit adjustable iris sitting in a box for years. I think I took it off my grandfather’s Winchester 52 target rifle about 20 years ago. Truthfully, I was just looking through a parts bin to see what I had lying around that would be an upgrade from the stock sights on the IZH-61 rifle. The biggest advantage is that ability to instantly adjust the aperture opening for changing light conditions. Worth it $$$? Probably not if you shoot on the same range all the time with the same consistent lighting. You can pick a fixed size aperture that works best in that scenario for far less money. If you occasionally venture into the field with the gun it might make more sense, but it sounds like you’ve got other guns for that. If you shoot at a few different indoor ranges, it becomes easier to justify, as the lighting will be different at each. I’ve got a Gehmann adjustable iris on an Anschutz sight and I hate to think about what it would cost in today’s $$$ to replace it. It would be difficult, I think, to justify adding THAT kind of money into a 61. There’s just too many vintage 10-meter rifles out there for a reasonable price that would make better use of the sighting technology.

    I guess I’m interested in the Baikal because of the incredible value it represents and to see what I can make it do with some work and relatively minimal investment.

    I’ve got one of those Leapers 11mm to Weaver adapters, too. You can perhaps cut or mill a relief notch in the adapter rail if you need more clearance for the mag release. If there’s no scope ring at that point, maybe a u-shaped notch (as seen from above) would work, too?

    Anyway, if it wasn’t for you guys constantly (esp. Matt61) talking about this thing, I probably would have taken a pass. –And I’d have missed a really nice little shooter.

    I can’t believe you have 4 of them. Did I read that right? Ok, actually, I can. They’re pretty affordable.

    Derrick


  41. Matt61,

    OK, I’ve got that scope and mount combo. When (If) I get bored with the aperture set up, I’ll try that route.

    About adding the front sight–It’s not quite done yet, but I think the 61 is too light at the muzzle. I’m making a thread-on muzzle weight that will incorporate dovetails to mount a globe front sight. The 61′s plastic muzzle cap un-threads revealing a 12mm thread. Just need to machine the dovetails and do some finish work. Maybe in the next 2 days it’ll be ready for prime time.

    Derrick yet again


  42. B.B.,

    Okay, Okay. No fiddling.

    Just a reminder of what you said at the beginning of Part 1 for the Maurader, “Now, settle back, kids, and daddy will tell you all a long story about the Benjamin Marauder.”

    Knowing us kids, once you tell us no fiddling, you know the first thing we’re gonna wanna do.

    kevin


  43. Kevin – You’re formula looks like my mom’s meatloaf recipe, very interesting!! Seriously though, it did remind me of my college fraternity also – “Tappa Kegga Daya”

    Good times

    -Aaron



  44. Derrick,

    It’s nice to see you out and about again.

    Kevin,

    The quietest .22 @900fps with a 15-16 grain pellet gun I’ve shot is my Talon SS with 24″ barrel and an AirHog LDC. By quiet I mean SILENT except for the hammer slap. 5 or 6 crows were in a tree 26 lazered yards away. Shots one and two were instant kills and both birds silently fell to the ground. Shot three hit but didn’t result in an instant kill. Bird three told his friends something in crow talk and they all left. That’s how SILENT it is.

    So far the only nit to pick that I can see with the Marauder is the lack of the adjustment the power wheel provides an AirForce armed shooter.

    Mr B.


  45. B.b,
    great reports of late. im likin the style. you dont know what im talkin about? …. Me neither. Anyways i think Crosman really is trying to get these right. Im hoping they make a bigbore next. lol. I have a question on your reports. Have you already done all the testing on the guns, and just stretch it out over a few days, and try to kill us with anticipation? Or do you learn as we learn? I have always wondered this, just never asked. Oh and one more question. How do you find any time to test the guns between, writing the blogs, checking the comments, answering question, and sleeping and eating? You seem like a very busy man. I bet your weekends are hectic. Thanks again,
    Brody


  46. MrB

    I never went away. It’s just been so busy between work and writing the other blog I’ve turned into a lurker here.

    And the A/S project is slowwwwwwwly coming back to the top of the que! It’d all get done faster if I didn’t still have to work for a living–and if I didn’t have other sports and hobbies.

    Derrick


  47. Brody,

    Sometimes (like this time with the Marauder) I do the testing and then stretch it out. But my normal mode is to test on the day I write it up.

    I get surprised about 18 hours before you do. That keeps it honest, I think.

    B.B.


  48. B.B.,
    thanks for the quick reply. i have a question from yesterday. i want a gun to take with me while im bowhunting to take out pesky squirrels to keep them from barking at me. I need it to be small enough to fit in my pocket, or into a small pack. i dont want to carry a bow and a gun. It needs to be accurate and powerful enough to take out squirrels up to 20 or so yards away. The reason this question pertains to yesterday is i was thinking maybe a sheridan eb22, but i thought it would be to loud. what do you think? what other options are out there? i know the eb22, and the 2240 are quite loud, but other guns that are small are loud two. whats the answer to this equation?
    Thanks again,
    Brody


  49. Mr B.,

    Thanks for the reply to the quietest .22 cal pcp. A talon ss with 24″ barrel and an AirHog LDC. Hmmmm.

    Everyone,

    I would really like to hear your experiences as well. This is not idle curiousity. Here’s the question again:

    What pcp in .22 caliber, shooting 15-16 gr. pellets at 850fps-900fps (same specs as I assume the maurader will be) is the quietest that you have heard/shot?

    kevin


  50. Brody,

    Don’t forget, B.B. is also starring in a TV show.

    It’s still a mystery how he finds time for this blog, is able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, is faster than a locomotive, etc.

    kevin



  51. RE: Cheap “adjustable” iris

    Just cut some holes in plastic lens caps. Same idea. The “adjustment” is to change lens caps.

    I also had looked into camera filters to use with scope. A darkening filter (think like sunglasses) would reduce light, but use full diameter of scope. So you could still do range finding with scope. If you reduce the iris to a pinhole of course every distance will be in focus.

    It also seemed like a macro filter would be good with an AO scope to allow you to focus more closely. 100 yards on a pellet gun scope seems more like a dream than a reality to me. Certainly an “infinity” setting on a pellet gun scope is wishful thinking. ;-)

    Herb


  52. B.B.

    “The Marauder power adjuster IS NOT for fiddling with! You set the optimum velocity and forget it.”

    “One pellet at one velocity.”

    THAT’S NO FUN!!!

    You mean find the best pellet, set it and forget it.. order 50k of those pellets, and don’t use the gun for anything else…

    That sounds like a specialty gun, like my USFT, but I still shoot 8.4 or 10.2 JSB depending on the wind or whether it’s bench rest at 25 yards or FT on a windy day… the adjusting is in the scope not the power adjuster, the USFT doesn’t have one.

    I kind of do that with most of my guns anyway.. but the AAs410 spoiled me for “fiddling”…

    I can’t sing but I CAN FIDDLE!!

    So… show us paper punching at 10 yards offhand, FT at 10, 30, and 55 yards… then killing a crow and squirrel at 35 yards and a raccoon at 15 yards!! All with the best pellet.. it will need to be on the heavy side, like a CPH…

    No fiddling… indeed.. the very thought of it:)

    you’ll make me even more wacky than I am!!

    Wacky Wayne


  53. B.B.'

    Great review as usual. I can't wait for FRiday to come. In regards to the fill pressure, how many more shots do you get by filling to 3000PSI? How many shots do you get on a 2000PSI fill? I hope to get a .22 & set it up to shoot Kodiaks @ 900 fps(or 21 grn pellet)


  54. Scott,

    I don’t really know. This rifle is going to take a LOT of testing, and I doubt I will be the one to determine the answer.

    But if I had to guess, I would sat at least five more shots from the higher pressure. You would hope for more, but remember that the higher starting pressure also results in a higher ending pressure.

    B.B.


  55. Wayne,

    Ideally, you set up the Marauder with one pellet. If you want to shoot a different pellet, you simply get another Marauder.


  56. Thank you for explaining it so well. Yes, Wayne, what you do is get a golf bag and carry 4-5 Marauders around–each set up for a different pellet. You might actually get several bags –one for each range at which you shoot.

    B.B.





  57. B.B.,
    that would be hilarious. i can see it though. Wayne. I will gladly be your caddy. if i get all the marauders in the 5 bags i pull. lol.
    Brody


  58. B.B.
    I imagined him more in a standard golf cart with the back full of golf bags stuffed with rifles, rifles in scabbards strapped to the sides and front, and a few in one of those “Easy Rider rifle racks” mounted right behind the driver’s seat like you see in those redneck beater pickup trucks.

    By the way, the nip is up, have some of it fertilized, and it’s growing good.

    twotalon



  59. Mr B,

    I’m a Talon fan myself, but I think you might have overlooked a few details:

    1) The Air Hog moderator costs half of the $ for a Maurader.
    2) The Power Wheel does not have as big of a range as one might be led to believe. It is mostly effective in finding the range for optimal air use for consistant fps performance. This range isn’t all that wide. Above it and you don’t go any faster, just wasting air. Below it and the fps starts jumping around and accuracy goes away. Sounds a lot like the Marauder adjustment….



  60. Will the caddie be allowed to shoot?will he be rewarded his own Marauder?will he get profit sharing and 401k?how ’bout sick days? LOL,will he recieve total enlightenment on his deathbed?{at least he’d have that going for him…FrankB


  61. Derrick,
    Thanks for that reply. Yes, I have four 61s for four kids. Three grandsons and me. Each is configured differently so now we can pass them around and learn it all.

    -Chuck


  62. Kevin, to weigh in on your question about .22 pcp,I only own one Condor,with no LDC,just an endcap and an arrangement of spacers and1/4″ fender washers behind it…I also have vented my front barrel bushing to utilize the air space behind it.all of these things only work with the 12″ barrel.the difference in sound is like day and night!!!The pellet impact on a crow at 20yds is audible to me.the 12″ barrel without help sounds like a 22 short.I plan to acquire a LDC from Airhog ,based on Mr.B’s endorsement. That’s my .04$FrankB


  63. Sorry I’m late to the second half of the dance, had to run to the CPA.

    I’ll have the donkey carry all the guns! (the one I can’t ride yet) .. now how many was that…

    one for express jsb for indoor paper punching, and 8.4 of course at longer range, and I can’t leave out 10.2 heavy.. but if it’s really windy and long range, then kodiak 10.6.. and if I see a squirrel or raccoon then the Eunjin 16gr is in order.. so I can’t count.. can somebody help me out here..

    and so the donkey won’t be lopsided, I’ll have to get the same in .22 cal. .. don’t ya think?

    where oh where is my order form?

    and where is someone when I need them, to help take off my shoes so, I can count how many guns to order.. just can’t get good help these days!! there probably taking orders or some darn thing..

    Wacky Wayne



  64. Now wait a minute!!

    On one hand I could learn to ride the donkey, and carry just the Air Arms S410, adjusting to the situation… fiddling while roam burns… or was that while George burns?.. anyway fiddling to my hearts content.. or..

    walking beside the donkey and trying to find the right gun reading the labels felt penned on the stock looking, looking, looking.. while the quarry gets away…

    HHmmm I’ll have to sleep on it and let you know tomorrow..

    Wayne



  65. Frank B.

    Yes it can be dangerous when I place big orders… you should have seen me ordering all those Russian .223!!

    ever hear of toe cheese?

    Wacky Wayne


  66. I really had nothing to add to this thread but when I got to the bottom and saw the word verification for adding a comment, I had to let everyone know what it was: “laugh”.

    How do they do these things?

    OH, and BB, I think I’m more interested in the real Makarov now as opposed to Umarex’ BB pistol. Sounds neat even though I already have a Mauser .380


  67. Wayne…
    The game is going to get away while you are fiddling around with that S410.
    Just use something big and nasty that provides extreme overkill and blast the crap out of it. Works every time.
    If it’s something you want to eat, it’s already skinned, gutted, and tenderized.
    If it’s something you don’t want to eat, it will be adequately prepared for the flies and buzzards.

    twotalon


  68. Wayne,I am an APEX predator,so toe cheese or “fromunda”cheese is not on my menue.I’m the reason cows need a fence,not the cows…I can’ t survive on the stuff my food eats…there are ointments for that Wayne…! FrankB


  69. Twotalon,

    Now that sounds like a job for my new 12ga shotgun.. it’s a Remington 11-87 semiauto.. shoots any size shell in any order.. even .410 and 10ga:)

    It’s not as powerful as the AAs410, but way more accurate at FT:)

    Wayne


  70. you guys are a bunch of hoots,
    to think poor b.b. doesnt have enough time already you guys come in here goofin off like that geez. the nerve of some people. like i said wayne, i’ll be your caddy. lol. B.B., the real Mak its 9×18 cal. is that the same as any other cal? I know the 9×19 is 9mm. I was just wondering if it is any easy to find caliber. sounds like a good deal for a conceal carry pistol maybe.
    Brody


  71. JC and twotalon,

    Thanks for your thoughts on the Talon SS. I haven’t run mine through a chrony yet, but running on air with a power wheel setting of 3 I can put pellet on top of pellet with almost boring regularity and sink a pellet into a pressure treated 6 by 6 for one pellet length.

    Setting the power wheel at 10 gives the same pellet on top of pellet accuracy but about doubles the depth it shoots into the same 6 by 6.

    However guys, I’ll need to run some strings through my chronny, waiting for it’s printer to get shipped from PA. It’s currently on back order.

    B.B.,

    Thanks much for the mental picture–Wayne and gun cadies on Segways, all in a line–maybe sort of like Snow White the Seven Dwarfs….pricless thanks again.

    FrankB,

    Van and the folks at AirHog are wonderful people to deal with. They are very passionate and knowledgeable about PCP’s and HPA.

    Mr B.


  72. Mr B…..
    You will find some interesting things with the chrono…provided you do not shoot it.

    You are going to go through a lot of air and pellets before you get it figured out.

    twotalon


  73. Brody,

    your are right.. B.B. doesn’t need all this jive… my mom always told me I was a pain in the ass.. somethings never change!!

    Are you sure you want to caddy for me? What if I want you to help me count?

    just as I thought.. a fair weather caddy!!

    Wacky Wayne


  74. Twotalon,

    On the nip, our female undergoes a personality transformation when she gets it. It’s so dramatic (and bad) that we had to put the rest of the nip in the freezer, because she could smell it in the pantry.

    We’re still trying to figure out what to do about it.

    B.B.


  75. Brody,

    Unfortunately, the 9X18mm cartridge uses a nonstandard 9.2mm bullet. Instead of the nominal 0.356″ bullet that most popular 9mms and the .380 use, the 9X18mm uses a 0.363″ bullet. That makes the Mak cartridge unique and not usable in anything other than Maks.

    B.B.


  76. Is that green table an MTM folding shooting table? If so, I have that exact same table and MTM shooting rest.

    If you loosen the 2 black plastic knobs in the middle of the shooting rest and turn the back half 90 degrees, you should be able to remove the back part for use with a pistol. I don’t have any pistols so I have yet to try it out in this fashion.

    Shawn


  77. Shawn,

    Yes to the shooting table. It’s very solid for its weight.

    Of course the back of the rest can be removed! I overlooked that because I was only thinking of it as a rifle rest. Thanks for pointing that out.

    B.B.



  78. BB, you’ve confused me.

    At April 07, 2009 10:54 AM, B.B. Pelletier said…
    Kevin,

    Not quite.

    I AM saying that of all the PCPs I have ever heard, only one was quieter than the Marauder. That one was a.177 BSA Super Ten that had a silencer that looked to be 1.5 inches across and 18 inches long. After that one rifle, the Marauder is as quiet as I have heard a PCP. However, I have heard DOZENS of other PCPs that were just as quiet as the Marauder. But the S410 sidelever in .22 that I tested was not one of them.

    The Shamal is the quietest .22-caliber PCP I have heard. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite meet the power requirement you asked about. Still, I am reporting it tomorrow.

    B.B.

    So, first you say the Super 10 is the quietest. Then you say the Marauder is as quiet as any PCP and you’ve heard dozens that areas quiet.
    I want as quiet as I can get without a federal anal probe. I don’t want to shell out $530 for the Marauder to find out the $508 Talon SS is quieter.


  79. Anonymous that wants a quiet, powerful pcp without risking a “federal anal probe”,

    As B.B. said the .177 caliber BSA Super Ten was quieter BUT it had an aftermarket silencer in order to be quieter (federal anal probe potential). B.B. has also said a Talon SS is as quiet IF you install an airhog tube (read silencer). Again potential for “federal anal probe” AND additional expense for the bloop tube over and above the initial cost of the Talon SS. Here’s a quote from B.B.:

    At April 26, 2009 1:21 PM, B.B. Pelletier said…
    Marauder sound,

    There is a video on the Crosman website where you can hear the Marauder compared to a Discovery.

    The Marauder is quieter than the Talon SS. However, compared to an SS with an Airhog tube on it, it’s about the same.

    You don’t really hear the report–you hear the hammer spring.

    B.B.

    kevin


  80. Kevin and anonymous,

    I have a Talon SS with the AirHog shroud which doesn’t equal anal probe because it doesn’t fall under the law by definition.

    It is absolutly quiet, SILENT,–flock of crows 25-27 yards away–killed two instantly without scarring rest of flock. Didn’t kill number 3 instantly and he scared the flock away; not the sound of the gun! That’s what I mean by quiet.

    Mr B.


  81. Confused,

    The BSA I saw had an aftermarket silencer on it and the gun was totally silent.

    In a couple weeks there will be others commenting on the Marauder and how quiet it is. I advise you to read what they say. I have said all I can about the noise the gun makes.

    I will be testing it again, but the noise will not be affected, so that part of my report is complete.

    B.B.


  82. Hi Tom! Seems to me that clarification or amendment is in order with respect to your reporting on the "free floated" barrel. Your report implies that the barrel touches nothing, which I interpretted to mean that it truly floats free within the shroud. I have a Marauder now–and in fact their is contact between the barrel and shroud in two places: near the receiver with the shroud mount and near the end of the barrel with the shroud spacer. As a result, it is not accurate to state that the barrel floats, since the barrel, shroud (with mount & spacer)and baffles comprise a barrel system–the movement of which is dependent on a consistant mechanical relationship of all of the components. To further confuse things, on my specimen, the shroud contacts the barrel band o-ring–so the barrel/shroud "system" (if you will)does not really float either–since the position of the system can change with each shot depending upon the friction points of the barrel shroud o-ring. Your specimen was aparrently an early version of the rifle and did not have the o-ring. (The rattling you heard was not the barrel "floating" in the shroud, but rather the shroud rattling around in the barrel band. Removing the o-ring (in my gun) resulted in an "almost" free floating barrel/shroud system. I say "almost" because the clearance between the shroud and top of the band is not sufficient to insure no contact during a shot cycle (clearance is less than standard cardstock width–which has been a useful standard for floating rifle barrels). The barrel/shroud system can be "floated" only by removing the barrel band oring and milling out the barrel band to insure adequate clearance between the shroud and barrel band. Mill it out enough, and add a grove, and I suppose an oring could be installed to deaden the "rattling" sound, while still proving adequate clearance with the barrel band. Even so, the relative position of the barrel/shroud system depends on a constant mechanical relationship in all the components of the system with each shot cycle (so the orings, torque, torque with baffle system, end cap torque, and baffle postion relative to the centering of the barrel and spacer must remain constant, shot to shot. For the barrel to be truly "floated" in a conventional sense, the oring would have to be removed from the barrel spacer. As a result the "rigid" end would be at the receiver/barrel shroud mount–and from that point to the muzzle, their would be a true "float". You proabably don't really want this, however, because, then centering of the barrel in the shroud becomes and issue, since the "attenuator" is acutally part of the shround, instead of being mounted on the end of the barrel. My apology if it seems like I'm picking nits–but my impression is that the poi variations folks have reported are mostly a function of variation in the relationship in the barrel/shroud components. Hope this discussion helps someone resolve POI issues. Regards….


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