by B.B. Pelletier
A couple of new products were announced late this past Friday and are so revolutionary that I couldn’t wait until Monday to report. So, just this week you get one extra report
The Field Adaptive Reactionary Training pellet
Agro Industries of California announced a joint venture with the U.S. Department of Defense that has resulted in a remarkable new kind of airgun projectile that’s approved for use at very close ranges and becomes harmless the farther it flies. The new projectile is a liquid with some of the properties of a solid and is based on the properties of non-Newtonian fluids (specifically Oobleck fluids) that become rigid when subjected to sudden external pressure.
The “projectile” is loaded as a liquid into a special reservoir on the gun and is manually injected into the breech just before firing. The force of the air blast from a conventional spring-piston powerplant turns the proprietary blend of ingredients into a solid that retains its integrity for approximately 34.3 feet when fired from a .177-caliber air rifle at 985 f.p.s. Because it’s a solid during this time, it takes the rifling and spins in the same way as a pellet, though the projectile is much lighter than lead. A low-powered air rifle like an Air Venturi Bronco can easily push the 2.9-grain pellet to the optimum velocity.
The manufacturer refuses to disclose the exact mixture of the projectile, though they do admit that at least half of it is comprised of the pink slime that the California State Board of Education has been lobbying the FDA to approve for use in school lunches. The rest of the contents remain undisclosed and are contractually protected from a FOIA, but the manufacturer assures the public that they’re nutritionally neutral. The contents of the projectiles are therefore considered safe to eat.
The pellets can be used for target shooting to 10 meters, where they punch perfect round holes in paper targets. Two feet past the target the pellets liquify in flight, making it unnecessary to use a backstop of any kind. A “splash zone” of approximately eight feet past the liquification barrier (LB) necessitates the use of a drop cloth behind the target holder and on the wall if it is closer than eight feet from the back of the target.
Marksmanship coaches are not pleased with the accuracy of the new projectile, which seems to be in the range of three inches for five shots at 10 meters, but California educators have responded that the problem could easily be resolved by simply making the targets larger. This approach has worked in the past for modifying standardized scholastic tests, and they are confident the principle can be successfully applied to target shooting, as well.
The vacuum gun
Apparently, last Friday was a special day for airgun advancements, because the North Korean firm of Airgun Factory Number 12 announced a breakthrough in powerplant technology — the vacuum gun. Instead of putting pressurized air or gas behind a projectile, the North Korean gun puts a hard vacuum in front of it. The pellet isn’t blown out the muzzle, it’s sucked out!
The vacuum gun, called Peace Over Safety, has the advantage of cocking with near-zero resistance. There’s nothing to compress, so there’s no resistance when the breech is rotated open for loading. And the vacuum chamber located under the barrel weighs relatively little since there’s nothing inside. So the 4.5mm gun is lightweight and self-contained.
The overall length is 43 inches and the gun weighs 6.5 lbs. without sights. The trigger is called a “super fantastic number ten world finest lever-breaking unit” that the hopeful European Union importer has translated to a mean a target trigger.
The gun comes with a special high-vacuum pump that’s used to evacuate the gun’s vacuum chamber before every shot.
Preliminary tests show the gun achieving velocities of 271 f.p.s. with the special PTFE projectiles supplied by the company. While these pellets won’t break regular target paper, the manufacturer ships each gun with 100 of their own targets printed on special rice paper. A cardboard target holder made from the interior parts of the gun’s shipping container holds each target securely.
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea official making the announcement of the new gun told the press at Friday’s unveiling that “… the Peace Over Safety gun really sucks!
Predictive targets (PT)
The California Board of Education has given tacit approval to Junior ROTC programs in state-funded schools to resume competitive target shooting programs if they agree to use the new predictive targets (PT) supplied by the state. The targets use onboard computer technology to predict where a shooter’s projectile will strike and relay that information back to a monitor at the shooter’s position. No shots need to be fired for this technology to function, nor do the guns need any special technology to work with the targets. In fact, in a public demonstration just two weeks earlier, the shooters were all equipped with special blue resin non-guns that are used by police for training purposes. These “guns” have the outer shape of firearms but are solid resin and contain no working parts. A spokeswoman for the board of education told the press after the demonstration that these is no reason the “guns” cannot be made in rainbow colors to appear even less threatening.
Several marksmanship groups have criticized the targets for displaying hits when no gun was used. In one demonstration a coach simply shaped his hand like a mock gun and achieved three “hits” on the target in rapid succession. For that reason, the NRA wanted the targets to be subjected to further development, but the board of education countered by noting that no one is allowed to shape their hand like a gun on any California state campus. Thus the complaint is null and void.
An unnamed senior board member stated that “PT” is going to become a staple of California’s new marksmanship philosophy.
Pyramyd Air bows to public pressure and changes spelling of its name
Pyramyd Air has finally bowed to ongoing public pressure regarding the spelling of its name.
The company was started by Joshua Ungier almost 20 years ago, and the unique spelling of the name was never a problem until the advent of the internet. Often times, prospective customers couldn’t find Pyramyd Air’s website because it had too many Y’s in it. This led some to seek out other retailers with domain names they could actually spell.
Beginning April 1, the company’s name will have only one “Y” in it and will be known as Piramid Ayr. While the website logo has already been changed, the domain name and other changes on the site will transition to the new spelling over the next 30 days.
The company offers a 5% discount coupon code to customers who email them with a bug or incorrect information on their retail site. President Val Gamerman stated, “We receive a significant number of emails from customers seeking a discount code for pointing out that our name has too many Y’s in it. The employees who respond to these emails were demoralized from the burden of answering them, so changing the spelling was the path of least resistance.”
Here’s the new banner we’re using to promote this change: