A tale of two TS45 rifles

by B.B. Pelletier

Unlike most of us, Vince gets to look under the hood of a lot of strange airguns. Today, we’ll get a peek at two that are related but separated by years.

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by Vince

Yup. BB was right. Pointy is a TS45. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let me back up a bit. Some time ago I blogged a older no-name sidelever Chinese airgun I bought in a bunch with some bottom-feeder Industry Brand stuff. Normally, I wouldn’t have given any of those pea-shooters a second thought, but this particular rifle demonstrated one unexpected quality that really caught my attention: It shot GOOD!

Not talking about velocity, mind you. It’s amazing how being relegated to basement shooting will make you less concerned about that. This little gun, with less-than-precise open sights, was routinely shooting 10-meter groups of less than 3/8 inches. That’s not bad, especially for a rifle that, shall we say, doesn’t exactly represent the cutting edge of air rifle design. But, whatever shortcuts were taken in building this gun, the barrel sure wasn’t one of them.

The gist of that blog was (1) What the heck is it? and (2) What does its family tree look like? The second question was answered pretty easily. The gun shared many details with the old BAM/Xisico XS-B3 and XS-B7 rifles that were still available until at least a couple of years ago. But what was it?

One reader identified the logo for me. The gun (whatever it was) was made “EMEI,” a Chinese factory that is apparently a notch above the Shanghai factory that makes Industry Brand stuff. Based on B.B.’s description of a TS45 he bought many years ago, I dismissed that because the trigger is different. But B.B. had another TS45, an even earlier one, and THAT’S the gun that B.B. thought was the same as mine. When he tested it, he sure didn’t get the same sort of results I was getting.

B.B. sent me his TS45, I plunked them down side-by-side and started comparing the two. Pointy is on the bottom:

The lengths of the barrels and actions, the cocking lever, and the location and size of the loading port seem to match. The front sights are of the same type (AK47-style, adjustable with a special tool) but different in detail:

Again, Pointy is on the bottom, and its sight appears to be made a little better.

The wood finish on my gun is also a bit better overall, as is evident at the front of the stock (my gun is on top):

Moving back on the rifle, we come to the rear of the actions, Tom’s gun (bottom one in the first picture, top one in the next one) is again finished a little more sloppily. Behind that the stock is also thinner and shaped differently:


The rear sight details are similar, but not identical:

The biggest differences are in the painted numbers and in the little push-button that unlocks the slider on my gun. That button is a nice feature, as it makes it harder to accidentally move the elevation adjuster. Oh, and one other thing. They don’t use the same font for the numbers! That’s an important detail, you know.

I’m gonna make a bit of a leap here and try swapping stocks. This will tell me with fair certainty if the chassis of the guns are the same. I popped my action into Tom’s stock:

It’s a perfect fit, and the gun operates just fine.

So, now I’m 99% certain that these guns are more or less the same, but I’m going to tear down Tom’s gun and compare the parts, just to make sure.

When I pulled out the actions, I can see that they’re virtually identical, differentiated only by sloppier machining on Tom’s gun. Note in particular the uneven edge circled in the second picture:



A note about the safety mechanism that both guns use.That ratchet is NOT really an anti-beartrap. All it does is prevent the lever from slamming closed if you let it go while cocking it. You’re not likely to have your fingers in the loading port at that time. As soon as you finish the cocking stroke, the ratchet toggles and disengages so you can close the lever.

However, there IS a proper beartrap that prevents the piston from releasing. It works directly on the trigger and blocks it from moving. This first picture shows the beartrap disengaged, as when the lever is in the firing position:

This is what happens when the lever starts coming back. The tang pointed out in the previous picture moves rearward and blocks the trigger, preventing it from moving.

On a lot of guns, this sort of anti-beartrap is iffy at best. Some of the more sophisticated trigger mechanisms can still theoretically fire in case of mechanical failure even if the trigger is blocked. I actually had that happen to me with a Daisy Powerline 1000.

But, that’s far less likely on this gun. The direct-sear trigger has a lot of drawbacks, but its simplicity translates into a very predictable mechanism. If the trigger can’t move, the gun isn’t going to fire without a massive and very unlikely structural failure, such as the piston rod breaking or the pivot pin shearing. Even if it wears to the point where there’s no positive engagement angle between the mating faces, the worst it will do is go off when the lever is closed. But, while that lever remains open, that trigger — and, thus, the sear — ain’t goin’ nowhere!

Back to comparing the guns. That cocking lever does look a little different, and I tried installing Tom’s cocking lever into Pointy:

It fits fine, even though they’re not identical. Oddly enough, the lever on Tom’s gun is milled from a solid piece of steel while mine is stamped (Tom’s on top):


And the guts? Top picture is Pointy’s innards, the bottom is Tom’s innards (I mean his gun’s innards):


As noted before, more views of the stock show that while Pointy’s woodwork would look out of place on a Gamo, it’s still better than Tom’s:


The fit of the action to the stock is also better on Pointy (on the right), but neither is anything to brag about:

Another picky detail (don’t worry, we’re almost done) — those sling swivels:

The one on the left is from Pointy; and while they’re physically interchangeable, the ones on Pointy are better made with a thicker, welded loop and a larger screw holding it in.

Finally, the last thing: company logos:

We’ve finally established with certainty that this gun is, indeed, a very close relative of Tom’s, and there’s little doubt that it is of the TS45 family. Different factories, certainly, and different factories might have almost inconsequential detail differences like those noted here, even when they build a gun to the same specification. But, maybe there are some consequential differences, as well.

Next step, of course, is shooting them. I’ll try them side-by-side using 6 different economy wadcutters. These are lower-powered guns, they’re cheap guns, so I’m using pellets that seem consistent with what would normally be fed to these rifles.

First, some impressions. In my opinion, Tom’s gun is actually nicer to shoot despite the shorter pull length. The firing cycle is smoother, and the slender stock seems nicer to hold. When I reassembled Tom’s rifle, I used a different lube on the inside — something a little thicker than I used on Pointy. Maybe that’s why the firing cycle is calmer. And, the milled, solid steel cocking lever on Tom’s gun…much nicer to hold and pull back. Pointy’s is sharp and still a bit uncomfortable after I covered it with a piece of heat-shrink tubing. But, Tom’s gun has a lever handle that’s rounded, smooth and not objectionable in the least.

Ultimately, we have to get back to where it counts: holes. Pointy’s targets are the top row on each paper. The first target shows the results with (left to right) Beeman Coated Wadcutters, Crosman Copperhead Wadcutters and Daisy Precision Max:

Pointy did fair with the Beemans and a little worse with the Daisys, while Tom’s gun didn’t do well with any of them.

The next three pellets are, left to right, the NEW Gamo Match pellets, RWS Basic (formerly Geco) and the OLD Gamo Match.

Pointy, oh, Pointy — How do I love thee? Let me count the ways: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 into almost the same hole. You really were a lucky find! About two-tenths of an inch with the RWS pellets. But look at the third column for Tom’s gun. That ain’t bad, especially considering the oinker groups it tossed with everything else. Tom had also found that this gun performed fairly well with these pellets, while scattering others to the four winds.

Of course, the irony of these results isn’t lost on me. The only pellet that Tom’s gun seems to like is the one that’s been discontinued and is no longer available. Sheesh!

I suspect that Tom’s gun was really made for home market Chinese surplus of some sort, while Pointy was intended specifically for the export market. The English wording stamped into the tube and the fancier stock would seem to suggest that. As a side note, I’ve read a number of complimentary comments on the internet about the EMEI guns. If you happen to come across one, it might be worth a gander. You just might get lucky!

69 thoughts on “A tale of two TS45 rifles

  1. I do like these Chinese sidelevers. They remind me of youth when I used to use them in the back garden!

    The mystery of how the Chinese design their airguns remains unresolved. Clearly at one point multiple factories produced the same essential design with variations. Look at the B3 underlever series, produced by Shanghai and Snowpeak, as essentially the same gun. Shanghai produced a slightly different and earlier version called the Pioneer which had subtle variations, which is effectively the same as an underlever called the Sea Lion which I think is also by Shanghai, so one factory has diff rent brands. Then there is BAM that makes the DB4, almost exactly the same style action and design, but different stock and build. And of course here was the old Lion underlever made by the Beijing factory (at least, but now closed), of more or less the same design. That one seems to have a pedigree (if you can call it that) back to the 1950s. I suspect there were other producers of this underlever. The point is there must have been a single design (I suspect from some State design bureau) issued to them all. Now however, as many of these factories are privatised the types of guns they build have far more variation.

    So, back to the the sidelevers. I’ve got a feeling that BB’s gun is a Snowpeak, its got a different makers mark, which I think I read as Snowpeak, or is it the other version of the EMEI mark? I cannot read the letting well enough to see, tough it appears different in the two guns. However, to complicate things further an exact match for BB’s gun was sold here in the UK in the 1980s, same style stock, but made by EMEI….. The sidelever I have is a one of these restocked by Falcon Airguns.

    Possibly BB’s gun and pointy are simply of different dates, thus explaining the variations. Pointy’s stock is very like the KL3-B Fast Deer (which caused some confusion on the other thread), though the gnus are different. The Fast Deer was on sale later than the EMEI if I’m not mistaken perhaps, the stock is copying the KL3-B?


    • VINCE Thanks for another interesting article and a good look inside these guns

      OLIVER About the various factories and markings on Chinese guns etc. It is my understanding, that in the “new” China with it’s capitalistic version of communism, the People’s State actually owns the designs and intellectual properties of many products and industrial goods. This is especially true for anything that is an export item or has potential as such. In this way, Mr. Lee can make a side-lever air rifle in his factory and Mr. Chung can also make the same rifle in his factory. (the factories are state owned too in most part, although the owners actually make money these days) Each factory may have different levels of quality, product appearance (blueing or stock color & quality) and the identity or markings can be different.

      Maybe not so different than the 1911 .45 ACP that was made by Colt, H&R, Remington, Browning and about 10 other toaster factories during WWII?


      • Thanks for that Mike. It would explain a lot, ‘Capitalism with Chinese Characteristics’! But I’m still curious as to who the ‘creator’ of some of these designs was originally. They must come from a single source.


        • Agree, it would be interesting to find (see) that little apartment in Nanjing where 4 or 5 of the peoples republic designers were cranking out these designs and drawings . I’ll bet that they had Haenels, BSAs and Crosmans in pieces all over the floor and on their drafting tables. You have to give e’m credit though, they actually MAKE things as opposed to the U.S. in the past 30 years. We mostly make government debt, and bad home loans. (ok, Benjamin Marauders too)

          Saw an interesting video on the Chinese influence in Africa in the past 10 years. The fellow in the video was from So. Sudan and basically said the same thing…”the Chinese come here and build roads, hospitals and water-works, and teach us to run them or repair them, the U.S. just brings money to our leaders and then leaves.”


    • I thought that one design strategy of the Chinese after they rolled out absolute crap that was rejected was to scrupulously copy the best designs out there like the TX200 and the RWS series.

      Matt61


  2. Sorry, Edith – it looks like I got sloppy with the pictures. picture #4 shows MY gun on top, not Tom’s. Sorry for not being more consistent!


  3. Vince….

    You mentioned the Powerline 1000. Was that the one that was Turkish, had the laminated sear, and the horribly noisy butt ugly stock?

    twotalon


    • I’ve had 2 – the first had the laminated sear parts, the other had solid parts. I had the first one fail on me (auto-fire) after smothing the surfaces in an effort to lighten the trigger. The second one did that same thing after I did nothing more than put some moly on those surfaces.

      Both guns were very accurate, very powerful, unreliable and very unpleasant to shoot. It’s one of the few guns I’m not highly motivated to add to my collection.


      • That’s why I always try to raise the caution flag when it comes to moly and triggers. As I’ve said before, some less sophisticated trigger designs actually rely on a bit of “stiction” to be safe.

        I’m not saying “Never use moly in a trigger.” But just make sure you understand the geometry and function of the various pieces before introducing such an effective metal-to-metal lubricant into a system that may have been designed NOT to be slippery.


        • Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. When they do, I suspect it’s by accident (loose manuf tolerances) as opposed to design.


          • Please don’t take this the wrong way, but by your own account, two separate guns became unsafe only after you did something to the triggers. Daisy imported and put their name on the Powerline 1000, and I doubt it would have gotten by their legal dept. with an inherently unsafe trigger design. It may not have been a very GOOD design, IE very stiff, but out of the box, it wasn’t an unsafe design.


            • No trigger should rely on friction to hold it in place, they should rely on geometry. Friction is way too unpredictable to use. It changes as the gun breaks in, and it’s not impossible that some of lube that’s in the spring chamber (even from the factory) might make its way back to the trigger. It’s rare that I find one like that – besides the Daisy’s, a QB51 is the only one that comes to mind. And THAT gun is hardly an example of precision craftsmanship.

              With regard to the Powerlines, I never said the design was unsafe. The actual mechanism is really the same design as the Gamo’s, all the BAM B19 variants, a few Shanghai guns, and the Benji Legacy 1000 variants to name a few. But if the mating angle at the sear-to-intermediate lever interface is off a but, the sear will try to rotate the intermediate lever all by itself (which causes the gun to go off). If the angle is right that will never happen, and I’ve never seen it happen in any other gun using this trigger design.


  4. BB I was shooting the TF79/AR2078 last night and noticed that the barrel band screw was loose (I have the metal type band). Not falling out loose, just not adequately torqued down. In the loose condition, the barrel easily moves off axis to the co2 tube and stock. For me, this explains some fliers I had and some repeated scope adjustments I was making this past weekend. I am sure it was even worse with the tube being cold from a full fill of co2 and metal “shrink”.

    I replaced the slotted screw with a stainless socket head type and torqued her down tight. After that, I only had 2 fliers out of 50 shots and no more scope adjustments after getting her zeroed in again. (10 meters w/ R10 match pellets) Shot several .280 c-t-c, 5 shot groups. Worst groups were .390-ish and all of my doing, not the gun. (don’t sneeze or rub your eyes while aiming!)

    Anyway, thought I would mention this to you as it may relate to the poor groups you saw on the first TF79 rifle you tested for us last month?


    • Brian,

      Thanks for that. The first rifle has been returned, but I have a replacement to test any day now. I will watch that screw.

      B.B.


  5. Vince:
    “It’s wood Jim but not as we know it”
    I took a leaf out of Derricks book and sprayed the stock on my XS-B3 black.That covers a multitude of sins.
    Not as good a shooter as yours but still fun none the less.
    The logo on pointy also looks a bit like a cracked fingernail.I wonder if the lettering translates into,
    “Mind your thumbs” :)
    DaveUK


  6. I have one like BB’s. In fact, I sold them back when Compassco was the importer. The later version was much better. It had an anti-bear trap that blocked the bolt when it was in the full cocked position. You had to push a button on the bottom of the stock to close the action. The one I was shooting was also very accurate. I still have it but not in firing condition. I found that it would fire if you tapped the butt when it was cocked. NOT GOOD! So, I took it apart to see what was going on.
    But that’s as far as I got with it. I got to thinking. Why was I messing with this thing when I have much better air guns. It was just unsafe and I don’t trust it.

    Mike



    • Thanks for that video link J-F, the wobble in the pellets is very interesting as is the arc or trajectory and the good groups vs. bad.

      Brings to life all the ballistic theory and plot points we see on paper.


    • J-F,
      Thanks for the link to the video. Reinforces what BB says: if its maintaining accuracy, don’t clean the barrel. Those high speed cameras really are a trip!

      Could you figure out what gun he was shooting at 100 yards?
      Thanks,
      Lloyd


  7. These Chinese guns are a real conundrum. I’ve been lucky, but it seems two identical guns, coming off the assembly line one after the other…one can be a tack drive and the other falls apart after a dozen shots.
    As I mentioned, I’ve been lucky. Our family has 3 of the the BAM AK look-alike, which seems to have the identical mechanical as the 45 tested here. My two sons really liked the ‘army’ look of them in the store, and I bought one ‘just because’ when I heard they were not being imported any longer.
    One of them, out of the box had the pivot pin for the cocking lever fall off right out of the box. I took it to a machinist friend of mine and while he was looking at it the pivot holding the folding stock fell out. As he said it was as though none of the pivot pins had had the ends flared to keep them in place.
    Anyway…he went over all three of the guns, made sure everything was going to stay together and we were off and running.
    All I know is that, after about 1000 shots each they are all working great. All of them will cloverleaf at 10m (my basement range), and at 30yds will keep 5 shots in a bit over an inch, unrested.
    The other thing I like is that they Chinese obviously lied to get them into Canada. They are rated at under 500fps, so don’t require a firearms acquisition. Yet they seemed to be hitting a lot harder then either my 630 Slavia or my 853c (both tuned down to 495fps).
    I chronied all 3 of the B3 and they are all shooting between 570-600fps (RWS Hobbies).
    They look kinda rough…next to the Slavia and the 853 (hell, even the boys Red Ryders), they just don’t hold up finish-wise. But I’ve shot a Chinese type 56 Norinco years ago and they look about the same, quality wise…so it’s just a Chinese thing.
    Anyhow…I’m really happy with them…they’re great fun for the money and sometimes that’s all that matters.
    An aside: Last night I started reading K. Marx’s ‘Capital’. I find it interesting, the difference in mentality, commerce-wise between the socialist model and that of capitalism.
    The Chinese airgun industry seems such a perfect example of what I’m reading. Put the same low-cost, utilitarian item in EVERYBODIES hands as opposed to what we’re used to which allows one to spend what one wants and get either the cheapie base model or the loaded premium version.
    Of course it’s our system (I feel) that spurs innovation and quality.
    On the other hand, does it not spark so much of the ‘gotta keep up with the jones’ attitudes that is so prevalent in the west.
    Communism has prov-en to not work all that well…but the last few years one has to admit that capitalism has taken some knocks as well.
    This is not in any way meant to knock our system…I truly think it’s the best of what’s out there…I just wonder where it will all pan out in a hundred years or so.


    • CowBoyStarDad, I’ve thought the same about capitalism. I think we’ve already discovered that unrestricted laissez-faire capitalism doesn’t work, but the exact right form of it is not clear to me. I’ve thought too that capitalism, not to mention democracy as a whole, is based on the extremely bold and unintuitive move of harnessing people’s natural self-centeredness to drive the system. It’s done well out of all expectation so far, but it means that when the system is working at its best it is not far from crashing–a precarious operation to be sure.

      Matt61


    • CBSD You zeroed in on one of the core beliefs for the communists, utilitarian products for all. No one gets more or better than their other comrades.

      You can see the growth of the product variations away from the basic model on the Chinese gun websites.
      BAM 5000, BAM 5000 with gold trigger, BAM 5000 with gold trigger and special stock, etc, etc. That all came from exports to us and the UK.

      What I haven’t heard about is, can the Chinese own any of these airguns themselves? I’m guessing not?


  8. Brian in Idaho:
    How did your bulk fill set up work on your AR2078 ? I gave up on mine, since one charge didn’t last as long as the twelve gram cartridges. I get those real cheap 15.99 for 40 at Academy Sports & Outdoors. After I installed the hamer debounce kit I’m getting about 40 to 45 shots.

    Loren


    • Loren, Well… after I reworked the bulk-fill adaptor to re-position the seal…anyway, I am only getting about 25 decent shots on bulk fill. I have the HDD and the new style probe etc in mine too, and with the 12 gram carts I get about 40 shots.

      Problem with bulk-fill is, equilibration and temperature between gun and bottle and the liquid versus gas stages of the cO2. It’s a dance between freezing the bottle and warming the gun etc, etc. There are probably a 1000 posts about this on the web (for bulk-fill generally) but they all come back to the above.

      Upside for me on bulk-fill is two-fold, 1) the local paint-ball guy is just 1 mile from me and 2) he only charges $3 for a 20 ounce fill for those who buy his bottles, which BTW are only $18.99. So, 20 ounces = 566 grams divide 12 grams, that’s approx 46 12 gram cartridges or 23 gun fills. In my area, a 25 pack of Crosman 12 gram carts is $14.

      All this sounds great except, how much cO2 liquid am I really getting into the gun each time I fill? From the shot count, it would seem only half of what the two, 12 grams provide? Still, even if I only value the bulk-fill cost by total shot count from a 20 ounce bottle, it costs me $6 to get the same total shots in bulk-fill that 12 gram carts get for $14.

      Sorry for the convoluted math, but this bulk-fill process is not as straightforward as I thought it would be!

      Bottom line, it’s way cheaper, you can refill anytime (precision shooting) and you don’t have to keep taking that end plug on and off! :-)


      • Is it necessary to freeze your bottle of CO2 and heat your guns reservoir before bulk filling or does this just result in a greater fill?

        kevin


        • Kevin,

          The reservoir needs to be as cold as possible to get the densest fill. With the TF 79 there is a very easy way to do it. After a short initial fill, bleed the tank with the tool provided and refill immediately. That will chill the reservoir to give a good fill.

          V.B.


          • Ah ha, another use for that little T handle tool!

            PS I welded about 2.5″ inches more of steel rod to that tool to clear the scope when turned.


          • B.B.,

            OK, I misunderstood. I thought it was the other way around. For those guns that don’t have a bleed tool to quickly chill the reservoir on the gun how to you get it cold? Stick the entire gun in a freezer?

            Sorry, I have very little experience with CO2 and now need to learn.

            kevin


  9. Great job as usual, Vince, with beautiful pictures and an interesting narrative. I must have gotten one of the good barrels with my B30 because it continues to shoot very well. Okay, I’m motivated to finally learn what a trigger sear is!

    Brian in Idaho, the restaurant you describe sounds just perfect. Let’s now tot up the advantages of the West. Great restaurants with game dishes. Open spaces where you can just get out of your car and shoot like I see on YouTube. I am so jealous. A chance to observe grizzly bears from a safe distance. I understand that they are as smart as human 3 years olds and have been known to break into cars, climb into the driver’s seat and put their paws on the steering wheel. Hysterical. By the way, my Dad has fond memories of working in Idaho for the forest service during a summer in college. As a young kid from the Midwest, he was wondering what he had gotten into his first night in the barracks when a naked man came running out of the shower singing: “I jumped for the saddle but the saddle wasn’t there….” Perhaps you know the rest of the verses. But he had a great time and thought those guys were the best when he left. I believe he said he worked around McCall, Idaho which is not far from Boise.

    Victor, thanks for your thoughts on shooting and for the Colvin reference which is right up my alley. What do you think of using a sling for offhand? I haven’t had much luck with that, but I’ve seen some high-ranked people, maybe even David Tubb himself, using a sling. And what do you think about that new rest for standing that people use? It seems like a good idea. You just rest the gun there, and when you are ready, you just have to raise it a few inches. Yes, I have seen the perfect shot, but the problem is repeating it. Right now, I’m grappling with the fact that in grasping for the shot, I tend to lose it. I’m trying now to cultivate a serene indifference and a sense of a continual present. Part of my inspiration for this is the T10000 model, the upgraded Terminator that Arnold had such a hard time coping with in the last Terminator movie. The T10000 was designed without any time sense and was completely focused and implacable.

    KidAgain, thanks for the kind words, but I must beg off from any comparisons with St. Paul. He was truly on fire with the supernatural although, based on one documentary I saw, not necessarily the most pleasant person to be around like many driven people. I have not read his letters apart from hearing them in church when I’m not always as focused as I should be. But his imperative, uncompromising tone is something I particularly like in the sayings of Jesus in the Gospel. For example, one of my favorite passages has an exchange between some disabled person–blind, lame or whatever–who says, “Master, you can cure me if you want to.” And Jesus replies, “Of course I want to.” I like that attitude very much. :-) Self-defense in the military eh? Much of that seems based on the combatives evolved in WWII which look like short, economical strikes delivered with aggression and sustained forward pressure. Was that your experience? I have the profoundest respect for the experience of veterans in all forms. As Erich “Bubi” Hartmann, the greatest air ace of all time said, “There is a big difference between playing at war and being at war.”

    Say, I’m finally getting a handle on the forging of metal. It’s described as a process of shaping metal that compresses it, increasing its density and eliminating air bubbles and other impurities. Sounds good to me, but probably unnecessary for airguns with the pressures they develop. Am I right that airgun metal is cast?

    Matt61


    • Matt61,

      The verses that you are looking for are Matthew 8:1-4 where Jesus heals a leprous man. It follows his sermon on the mount. It’s also told in Mark 1:40-45 with a few more details about what happened as a result of the healing.

      :-)


    • Matt61, re good Venison and more out in Idaho,

      Yup, we are lucky out here to have 75% of the State mostly uninhabited by humans and houses. McCall is about 80 miles north of me, nice area there on Payette Lake. South of that is Lake Cascade and the Payette river, famous for the class IV rapids and rafts and kayaks. I have done the rapids there many times in rafts. East of us is the lower levels of the lesser-Teton ranges and the Sawtooth range near Sun Valley. Lewis & Clark country, literally. Farther north of here is Couer d’ alene and Lake Pondereil and the Canadian border. Total wilderness and you could not count the pine trees on any one mountain in a lifetime, it’s that thick with timber and all the wildlife that comes with it.

      I shoot airgun in my garage in winter and in the backyard about 8 months of the year with no PC Police or even the real Police worrying about it. Otherwise, I shoot the airguns and firearms anywhere on BLM or Idaho state land that is not posted. There are guys shooting geese within ear shot of my place all the time and on county land or private farms. CCW out here is as simple as signing up, taking a proficiency test and getting your permit. State law requires that local Sheriffs that administer the CCW must process your permit in 30 days or less (assuming you aren’t a felon and pass the proficiency). No such law exists in states like Ca. That’s why there are folks in L.A. who are still waiting for their CCW to be processed by Sam Yorty and Bill Parker ( L.A.mayor and police chief from the 60′s!) They don’t technically refuse your CCW, they just never get round tuit!

      Along with the great, local wild game food, we also have the 200k sq ft Cabelas that has the huge wild game taxidermy displays and the Elmer Keith diorama and tour. Many of Keith’s original six shooters and S&W pistols and big game rifles are at this Cabelas too.

      Well, enough about Idaho for now, I can feel Fred in the PR of NJ getting steamed with all this free living chatter!


      • Steamed is the wrong word, Brian. Just very envious and jealous of the quality of life you have. It sounds wonderful.

        Fred PRoNJ


        • You mean there’s no white-water in NJ, or the kayak use permit process takes 2 years to complete?

          I though Mr. Christie was gonna straighten all that stuff out?


      • Brian in Idaho,
        Idaho sounds like a great place to live. Do you think it’s a good place to raise a family? My wife and kids have been talking about finding someplace better than CA or NV to raise a family. We all like the outdoors, shooting, and fishing. I’d just like a slower pace life after busting my butt for over 30 years. Sam Yorty! Good Lord! I forgot that name.

        Victor


        • Victor,

          I have spent some time in the outlying Boise area and If I were to raise kids again that’s where I’d go. Thinking of going there anyway, but the wife is pretty rooted in Southern California. I have family in Meridian, Castle Rock and Boulder. My dad hunted out of Colorado Springs for 30+ yrs and I made many a trip there as well. Loved it. Not too sure about the upper part of the state, as the weather can get pretty cold (for me anyway). Just my $.02.

          ka


        • Victor,

          You might also want to check out Texas. A lot of Californians have already, though some of them have tried to bring their state’s short-sighted ways with them (just the ones they liked, of course). But Texans won’t have it and this state is still free.

          It was 81 degrees yesterday and our winters are usually quite mild. The southern part of the state only sees snow every ten years.

          There is no state income tax, and we are off the national power grid. But things like property taxes, water and power do cost more than in most places, though they will seem cheap to a Californian.

          B.B.


          • BB,
            When you say Southern Texas let’s make it clear you’re talking way, way south of Dallas. I’ve driven through Dallas in December and it ain’t any better’n Central Illinois. My uncle lives in Phar and that’s the place to be, but he’s right near the Mexico border.
            -Chuck


            • Chuck,

              Once you get below Austin, which is about in the center of the state, the weather becomes warm most of the time.

              B.B.


    • Matt61,
      I’ve never tried shooting offhand with a sling. I don’t believe that it’s allowed in competition (at least not any competition that I’ve participated in). I used a rest for offhand, and yes, it was just inches off. I had a little platform build for any standard tripod. This platform had both a rest for the rifle, and a loading block, making it easy to maintain my position. Although it’s been 3 decades since I last shot competition, I sometimes find that perfect shot when I bring the rifle up to simulate offhand, but like you say, it doesn’t last long. But seeing the rifle stop almost perfectly still for a couple of seconds is encouraging. I believe that it just takes time (lots of practice) to eventually do it “on demand”. The article “What it takes to be great” supports my own ideas about practice, namely, that you need lots of it. I only shot for a few years, but I jumped from Marksman to Expert well within a couple years, and then to Master in less than a year after that. Marksman and Sharpshooter class was a blur. I have some memory of being Expert class, but mostly was just trying to win “overall” in competition, even as an Expert. At some point, it simply didn’t matter what class I was in. I don’t believe that I was “gifted”. I believe that it was my intense training. At that time, I didn’t know of anyone who trained as hard as I did (for anything, really). Our Karate training was intense and brutal, so lots of my training was to prevent injury. I didn’t lift weights, at all, but at one point, at 147 lbs, I could bench 265. I ran at least 5 miles a day, did lots of jump rope and sit-ups. During our Karate training, we did four kinds of push-ups; on our fist with knuckles facing forward, knuckles facing to the side, on our fingertips, and on the back of our wrists. We developed very thick calluses everywhere we needed hard skin (feet and knuckles). Doing push-ups on the back of your wrists will not only work your wrists, arms, and chest, but also your upper back.

      Victor


    • I would agree that most of an airgun is made from (DOM?) tubing and sheet and bar stock — not castings. Sometimes it looks like the sears are stamped and then (we hope) hardened with a surface treatment, but they don’t seem like hardened steel throughout in most cases. Barrels are probably blanks drilled and cut- or button- rifled in most cases — IZH is the only hammer forged barrel I know of in airguns. Given the low pressures involved, barrels could be made of plastic (as some are) with a steel insert. In general, an airgun is so simple, it could probably be built from scratch in a few days by a competent hobbyist with a small welder and a good source of metal nearby. All I mean by that is that there are no special castings or tooling required that I’ve ever seen on an airgun, until you get to the really recent, mass-market ones which use lots of molded plastics — I wonder if vintage airguns of the same type (large production) do use metal castings?


      • BGF, Some of the older BSA and Webley guns with loading taps look like castings to me (from photos)

        Would make sense given the shape of the thumb levers etc? Still, any mild steel or even zinc alloy casting would do, as there is little pressure exerted outside and no firearms/expansion issues inside.

        Similar subject; in reading through the *th edition of the BB of Airguns, it is surprising to see how early-on electronic triggers and such were used by Crosman and Daystate et al. Ok, so 1980′s is not that early on but, it’s surprising to me anyway.

        Last comment for the day. The Crosman Rogue hoop-la sure seemed to be short-lived? Like only the 4 or 5 days of the SHOT Show? Maybe due to no guns yet ready for sale? Or is a purpose built, production hunting airgun not yet on the radar for most air-gunners?


        • Brian,
          Bite your tongue, the Rogue is still coming!

          This quote is out on the web from Chip at Crosman today :

          “We’ve changed the mag design so it is inserted from the left. This will keep the bolt area clear on the right side of the gun. Field tests are planned for Pennsylvania at end of this month and Texas in April.”

          Lloyd


    • ….Cast airgun metal…
      There are a few million diecast parts out there in the 760 Pumpmaster and similar high volume designs.
      Lloyd


      • That’s true, and the old RR cocking lever, originally cast iron (from what I’ve read, though steel is more likely), then cast aluminum, now plastic. Cast metal was the plastic of its day, in some ways.


        • BG,
          Yes, just think of all the cast iron that used to be used for everything. I’m looking at an old Singer sewing machine base right now. Pretty design and made by the thousands. Plastic just doesn’t quite compare.
          Lloyd


    • Matt,

      “Self-defense in the military eh? Much of that seems based on the combatives evolved in WWII which look like short, economical strikes delivered with aggression and sustained forward pressure. Was that your experience?”
      Yes and no. Initially as you described, but there was much more.

      As far as st. Paul… don’t put off what similarities you might have with him. Before he was a saint he was Paul and before that he was Saul.

      ka


  10. RE: Turkish/Daisy 1000
    Bought one a few years ago when W-M was blowing them out simply because I wanted the challenge of trying to civilize a rifle that had acquired the rep of the worst springer ever foisted on the airgunning public. So far it is winning the war. Oh I have the cocking and firing cycle almost acceptable after 3 attempts and the last effort on the trigger group helped a LOT, but the last time I picked it up one side of the fore-end fell off forward of the stock screw hole. Shattered (Exactly the right term) into many pieces while just sitting. I’m not a big fan of plastic guns.;o(

    RE: TS-45 & clones

    Look closely at the the logo stamped into the rear of the TS-45 compression tube and you will note that the ‘mountain’ (Snow Peak brand?) is actually a highly stylized T & S. Dunno what it signifies but there it is nevertheless.
    Many moons ago I used to drop in at Paul Landrith’s house and buy 4-5 TS-45s at a time from him that needed repair. IIRC he told me that they were all returns that he had bought as a huge lot from the importer which I presume was Compasseco since at that time he worked closely with them as their ‘repair center’. Again IIRC I paid 5$ bucks apiece for them, revived them and resold them for a pittance but it helped fund my own habit.
    I also ran across one of the versions identical to ‘Pointy’ at the Little Rock show one year and paid waaay too much for it so that I could satisfy my curiosity. I think I may have even showed it to Tom to see if he had any ideas about it, but I think that was the show that he found the R-1 clone that had been ‘super-sized’ and had eyes only for it. His rampant delight at acquiring it was infectious. Unfortunately my ‘Pointy’ was little if any more accurate than a TS-45 so it went to live somewhere else as soon as I found someone who wanted it as much as I had.
    I still have a couple of TS-45s. One disassembled in a box simply because the bore inside the sliding chamber is so rough that no amount of honing could ever correct it so it has been consigned to parts donor status. I dug it out in hopes that the finely machined side lever could be adapted as a replacement on a nearly new QB-88 but no cigar.

    I just reached behind behind me and picked up my ‘keeper’ TS-45 in order to examine the logo to refresh my memory before typing the above. It’s no longer quite as it left China. It’s now my ‘sleeper’, bar bet Weirauch embarrasser.;O) I originally decided to do a full no-holds-barred tune on it to see just what could be done with one. In short it came out very sweet and whatever I did to the trigger worked—–in spades. And it still wouldn’t hit the barn.;o( So it received the barrel and front sight off of a defunct Daisy/Gamo 10 meter gun from the mid ’80s that was languishing in my donor deadwood. One of the Daisy SSP target models (853?) donated a rear sight and while fully as ugly as ever it shoots beautifully—in the mid 600s IIRC.

    With airguns fun is where you find it! Tom @ Buzzard Bluff



    • Tom,
      So in the last paragraph you are saying that putting the super tune on your TS45 made no real difference, but swapping in a nice barrel turned it into an accurate gun?
      Thanks,
      Lloyd


  11. As before, I don’t think either one has much to do with BAM outside of sharing similar designs from the central board of airgun design and manufacturing control. BB’s is likely a Taishan, whereas Pointy is an EMEI. Seems like there is a penchant for naming airgun brands in China for famous mountains, as both Taishan and Emei are. These are almost certainly from different factories but based on an identical design, which is an interesting study in itself.




    • Tom @ Buzzard Bluff, and BB,

      That certainly begs the question, what does it take to make an accurate rifle. Maybe not what it takes to make a rifle you can actually shoot accurately, but rather what is the minimum needed to make a pellet travel consistently out of the barrel??

      Consistent pressure.
      Proper muzzle crown.
      Proper barrel/rifling dimensions for the pellet.
      Consistent pellets (a given in this instance).
      Just guessing.. I am not really sure what that minimum set is.
      Lloyd


  12. Vince,

    Another very interesting story. Amazing how some of these details have gotten lost in time. I’m looking forward to your next adventure.
    Regards,
    Herb


  13. I have a 177 Ts 45 side lever i think its a 1970s to 1980s model serial number is 9600645
    im just wondering how mutch a new main spring will cost and where i can get one.

    many thanks
    paul


  14. Thank you for posting these pictures. I had a little trouble getting the trigger assembly back together after main spring replacement. This is a great articule and pictures are terrific.


  15. Hi Guys, thanks for helping me identify my Chinese sidelever. Mine is closer to pointy. I had a really hard time sorting and fitting a new leather piston seal in mine, but solved it by making a 0.010 sleeve to push the piston through. I had to do this as I could not fathom out how to remove the piston from the action. Does it seperate from the ratchet arm? If it does I couldnt work it out. Anyway got it all working, a bit low on power/fps, but as you say, this kind of rifle would probably not benefit from high ponies. I have mine (almost) pellet on pellet at 10 yards, so I’m very happy. A joy to shoot. A lot less tiring than the Walther LGV, though not as good at 55 yards ha ha


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