AirForce Talon SS precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 10

by Tom Gaylord, a.k.a. B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9

AirForce Talon SS precharged pneumatic air rifle both sides
AirForce Talon SS is a whole shooting system.

Before we start, you’ll remember that the president of Pyramyd Air promised to eat his hat if the IZH 60 I recently tested could not put 10 shots inside a quarter-inch group at 10 meters. It was close, but he lost the bet, so today we have two photos — one of the hat and the other of him eating it. Well done, Val!

Hat
The “hat.”

Eating hat
Pyramyd Air President Val Gamerman eating the hat.

The caption to the first picture of the Talon SS PCP says it is a complete shooting system, and today we’ll look at another facet of that. Let’s look at the performance of the CO2 adapter, which turns the rifle from a PCP into a CO2 gun. Before this adapter existed, people were always asking for it. They envisioned it exactly as it turned out, but the demand went unanswered for several years. Then, Pyramyd Air negotiated with AirForce for a production run of adapters and we got them.

AirForce Talon SS precharged pneumatic air rifle with CO2 adapter
The CO2 adapter connects any standard paintball CO2 tank to the Talon SS or any AirForce sporting rifle.

I’m running this report today because I need to use my Talon SS for a lengthy test that’s going to increase our understanding of the components of airgun accuracy. The rifle is the perfect platform for the test because it accepts barrels so quickly and easily. That test will begin soon, and I won’t tease you — everything will be fully explained when that test begins. But before I get to the heart of today’s report, a little history on the Talon SS.

How fast on CO2?
Now comes the question of the day. How does the Talon SS perform on CO2? Using the 14.3-grain Crosman Premier as the standard pellet, I was able to push them out the muzzle at 854 f.p.s. with the power setting on 10. That would be the number I would test against with CO2.

I used a full 20-oz. CO2 tank for this test. I tested the Premiers on both the lowest power setting and the highest. There shouldn’t be too much difference between the two settings, because CO2 is at much lower pressure than air, plus it flows slower than air; so at the same pressure, the velocity with CO2 will be less than with air.

On the lowest power setting, the average velocity for Premiers was 571 f.p.s. On air, it was 854 f.p.s. That’s a difference of 283 f.p.s. with air over CO2. But that was on the lowest power setting for the CO2, so how much does it change when I set the power as high as it will go? The average increases to 582 f.p.s. Not much difference, is there? The extreme spread on the low setting went from 568 to 574 f.p.s., and on high it went from 580 to 584 f.p.s. Since the low and high settings are so close, I decided to just keep the riffle on the low setting for the rest of the test.

At the average velocity (at the low-power setting), the pellet generates 10.36 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle. On air, it generated 23.16 foot-pounds, or more than twice as much. That gives you a good appreciation of what the CO2 adapter does for the rifle. And remember, this rifle has a 12-inch barrel. If a longer barrel were installed, the velocity would increase somewhat, but not as much as with air. The optimum barrel length for CO2 is around 14-16 inches. After that, the velocity starts to fall again.

After the Premier, I tested the Beeman Kodiak heavy domed pellet. It weighs 21.1 grains and averages 506 f.p.s. in this gun on the low setting. It’s generating exactly 12 foot-pounds of muzzle energy at that speed. I don’t have the data for this pellet on air. The variation on CO2 went from 503 to 508 f.p.s.

Next up was the JSB Exact 15.9-grain domed pellet, which is the most accurate in this rifle. They averaged 567 f.p.s. on the low setting, which produces an average 11.35 foot-pounds of muzzle energy. On air at power setting 10, they average 823 f.p.s. The variation on CO2 went from 564 to 570 f.p.s.

The final pellet I tested was the RWS Hobby, which weighs 11.9-grains in .22 caliber. It averages 618 f.p.s. on the low setting and ranged from 614 to 621 f.p.s. The muzzle energy was 10.09 foot-pounds at the muzzle. And I don’t have a velocity for this pellet on air.

How many shots on a tank?
All I can tell you is that there are hundreds of shots per 20-oz. CO2 tank. The number is certainly more than we saw in any other test, and I would guess there are no less than 800 shots per tank. It’s one of those things that will vary each time the tank is filled, because no two fills will contain the exact same amount of liquid.

Conclusion
On CO2, the Talon SS is a 12 foot-pound rifle in 70˚F temperatures. It’s better-suited to all-day shooting and indoor plinking, though the Micro-meter tank gives it a fair run for the money. The accuracy of the rifle will not change, except that on CO2 it won’t have quite the same range as with air.

So, there you have the Talon SS in a 10-part report. To recap, we’ve looked at this .22-caliber rifle in stock trim, with a 24-inch barrel installed, with a Micro-meter tank and now with a CO2 adapter. There’s more to come, but it won’t be a test of the rifle. It’ll be a test that uses the rifle as the testbed. Now that you know how it performs, it’ll serve us very well in this new role.

Get a free CO2 adapter for Xmas
After I wrote this blog, I found out that AirForce is giving away a free CO2 adapter with the purchase of every Talon, Talon SS or Condor PCP air rifle. The adapter sells for $99.95, so that’s a nice gift! I understand that the giveaway ends Dec. 31, 2012.

30 Responses to “AirForce Talon SS precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 10”

  • Wulfraed Says:

    So we have:

    Full-power tank: can be filled using hand-pump, able to terrorize forest dwellers probably up to Turkey (with a good neck shot), 30-60 shots

    Micro-meter tank: can be filled using hand-pump, 150+ shots, but with a linear velocity drop-off from shot to shot, maybe useful on small pests.

    CO2 tank: needs access to paint-ball supply for refilling, 150+ shots, very consistent velocity but too low for reliable pest removal — upper end of competition target range.

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    Now that I have one, I will have to run some rather extensive tests myself. ;o)

    As Wulfraed pointed out, CO2 is out because of temperature issues and hassle and cost of refills.

  • Mr B Says:

    RidgeRunner

    I’ve got to chime in and say that my Talon SS sits with a 20 oz. CO2 tank attached most of the time. I’ve never done a shot count, but it seems that a 500 count tin of JSB pellets is finished off before I run out of CO2. Temperature is not a factor for me becasue I shoot from inside the house into my back yard. The farthest I can shoot though is 16 yards with an occasional shot at a crow sitting in a tree at 28 yards. ( Grackles, starlings and the occasional crow are one shot kills, if I do my part.)

    Most of my shooting is targets both paper and reactive types, ie, Necco Waffers, steel spinners, etc.

    I fill the HPA tank by pumping which for me got to be more of chore than I wanted since I do not need the extra power for shooting in my yard.

    Bruce

    • Frank B Says:

      I have to second that Mr.B.My experience with Co2 is that of amazingly consistent shot to shot velocity
      variance,and an abundance of shots possible without giving a single thought to what is going on in the tank.Sure,there is extra trajectory involved at ranges that challenge the shooter……but that is merely an obstacle in setting up the gun.Once that hurdle is passed…you can “get in the zone” and get to the task of making small groups! Much like vintage springers are being appreciated by those who have learned that quality & precision trump high velocity……AF guns on Co2 have much to offer when your goal ISN”T shooting through 2x4s.

      • Frank B Says:

        I also want to point out that using an aftermarket HPA tank fitted with a regulator & topped with the AF co2 adaptor is also a possibility.If the tank is regulated down to 900-1100psi….well,you guys see where I’m going.

      • Mr B Says:

        Frank,

        You are so right about what the AF guns have to offer runing on CO2. However, we can also shoot through 2 X 4′s with a simple tank change, if that’s what floats your boat.

        Loren,

        I never thought about using a different scopes with QD mounts for CO2 and HPA. A stroke of genious sir. Would it be possible for us to see a picture of your walnut butt pad and how you’ve worked out the velcro attachmnet.

        Thanks,
        Bruce

  • Eric Says:

    I wish I could echo the CO2 satisfaction, but I find that my adapter leaks. I attached the adapter to a brand new 12 oz CO2 tank and after a time, switched my shooting back to air. I left the adapter on the CO2 tank. When I returned to CO2 weeks later, the tank was empty. What a disappointment.

    • Loren Says:

      My co2 adaptor developed a leak so I returned it t Air Force, I received a new one within a week no charge. What I I like to use on mine is the 9 oz. bottle because the rifle seems to balance better and I still get plenty of shots and I can use low scope mounts. I use two scopes with Quick change mounts. One for co2 and the other for air. Oh and I also made a butt pad for the 9 oz bottle out of walnut and attach it with velcro. Also you can get co2 bottles and have them filled very reasonably at many big sporting goods stores.
      Loren

      • Eric Says:

        While AF warrants the rifle for life, I don’t believe the CO2 adapter is covered, and mine is well over a year old. Tell me if I’m mistake, warranty always welcome.

        • Loren Says:

          Eric
          I don’t know if Air Force warrants the co2 adaptor all I know is they sent me a new one and an apoligy for the trouble I had. Very nice people I would say. I also won a new Condor from them in their BKL contest. I would say give them a call,they may surprise you. If not i’m sure its an easy repair.
          Loren

  • twotalon Says:

    Well now….TSS again.

    Never had the desire to go to CO2. Once in a while, the Micro. Usually stay in standard configuration.
    It’s my favorite starling killer. Hundreds served.
    But once in a while the honors go to the HWs.

    twotalon

  • chuckj Says:

    My experience with the Talon SS was the reverse. I started with a CO2 tank because I didn’t want the cost of a pump nor the hassle of pumping. But I later converted to air for two reasons. I didn’t like the cold tank against my cheek that got colder with every shot, and I had CO2 fill stations in the area who didn’t know squat about filling a tank, or who were always out of CO2 when I needed it, or their equipment was broken down. I know that sounds like more than two reasons but consider the fill station problems as one BIG problem.

    I was able to tolerate the cold CO2 tank, first by placing a thick wool sock over the tank. Of course I used a black sock to match the rifle. Then later a beer cozy, instead. The fill station problem was the worst especially after they damaged a good tank and wouldn’t take the blame for it.

    I have not regretted going to HPair. I’m a scuba diver and had wanted a tank anyway for testing my gear. There are three dive shops in my area and they have more experience doing their job, usually, at least more so that an 18yr old checkout kid who can’t even make change without a computerized cash register.

    I just thought of a third reason and that was a perception, on my part, right or wrong, even though I always shot indoors, that my accuracy changed as the tank got colder and I didn’t like waiting X number of seconds between shots for the rifle to warm up again.

    I just thought of a fourth reason: the CO2 bottle was larger than the air bottle and didn’t have a shoulder rest whereas the air tank fit better and did come with a shoulder rest. Third party shoulder rests for CO2 on the Internet but they were ridiculously expensive.

    Maybe things have changed now and there are more options for CO2 but I’m firmly entrenched in HPA and like it, and now that I have the Marauder and Challenger it’s an even better choice.

    I want to quickly add that I have all this neat stuff because Tom is a very bad influence on me. He knows how to push my “gotts-to-have-neat-stuff” button.

    -Chuckj

  • Fred DPRoNJ Says:

    Well, now I feel that I’m a member of the tribe here, being a proud owner of a Talon SS. Anyone have the off angle adapter made by Talon Tunes? Comments? Are any of the aftermarket stocks worth while getting?

    Fred DPRoNJ

  • Matt61 Says:

    I wouldn’t mind eating that hat and many like it. With such a display of integrity, PA looks like the very group to replace the seals in my Daisy 747…

    Mac, I’m sure that I enjoy my IZH 61 as much as any 11 year old. :-)

    Kevin, they will say in future that we are living in the golden age of airguns.

    Matt61

    • Mac Says:

      It was funny to see Val eat his hat!

      We all seem to have the inquisitive nature of an 11 year old and that is a blessing for sure.

      These are “the good ole days”. We just won’t be aware of it for a few years.

      Mac

  • duskwight Says:

    More wood into dust!
    Some more chiseling and rasping and sawing and milling and filing.

    This time I started working on buttplate end. Piece of cake when compared to chisel dances inside the grip and thumbhole.

    Preliminary shape is there. Then some grip carving – first with mallet, then with hands only. Fits into hand quite ok, so “toothy” surface left after round chisels wend down with grater file and rough sandpaper in preparation for further and more subtle work. Thumbhole is almost in shape and getting close to “seashell” curved surface, deeper form will be given with soft “petal” milling bit.

    Next I’m planning to take some off the butt itself, to make it lighter more narrow and more sculptured and to carve a scallop for safety button (well, it’s not actual safety but rather a sear disconnector, Weihrauch style). DWR Mk.1 will have both disconnector and real safety, blocking the trigger and 3rd sear.

    Pics, left and right sides: http://i45.tinypic.com/34so13b.jpg http://i45.tinypic.com/1xzz9y.jpg
    Hope you enjoy it.

    duskwight

    • chuckj Says:

      duskwight,
      When I carved my IZH-46M left hand grip, I used an electric Dremel tool with a wood carving bit. Do you have access to something like that? Carving was very easy but it did take some measure of care to not over carve.
      -Chuckj

      • duskwight Says:

        Chuckj

        That’s exactly what I use for some work on finishing stages, but for big work like I’m doing now even my Proxxon IBS/E is too small. Chisels, mallet – that’s my choice when it comes to big chunks of wood, small tools should wait for now.

        duskwight

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      duskwight,

      I can see the elephant starting to peek out of the wood! ;)

      B.B.

      • duskwight Says:

        Yes, and I hope it to be a very slim elephant :)

        By the way, I made a deal on Monday and now I’m waiting for FWB C62 to arrive to me. That would be my Halloween gift to myself :) A real creep from behind the grave – it was bougth in 1996, arrived to Russia and then _forgotten_ in the storage room until 1 month ago. Unpacked. I plan to speed it up a little, install optics and to use it for indoor 25 m BR range with simulated wind.

        duskwight

        • duskwight Says:

          Sorry, I misspelled it – not unpacked, but unopened – in factory styrofoam box, just like it came from Germany.

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          duskwight,

          A new old-stock Feinwerkbau. Now, that is a find!

          It may need seals after all these years without pressure.

          B.B.

          • duskwight Says:

            B.B.

            I hope it won’t as I believe in German Quality :) I’ve read reports on quality of their seals, but to be on the safe side I ordered a couple of replacement kits from FWB.

            duskwight

  • Mike Says:

    I’m heading for South Dakota in the morning with a couple friends for this year’s pheasant hunting. It’s always a good time but this year looks really good. The bird counts in my area show a 18% increase.
    The corn crop harvest is complete, that is very rare for this early. Also, cover is a bit thin do to the drought this year. It could turn out to be the perfect storm of conditions for a once in 20 years hunt. Time will tell. Since I don’t have a traveling computer (Too Old School I guess) I will have to catch up on what’s going on here when I get home.

    Mike

  • David Enoch Says:

    BB,
    I have enjoyed the Talon SS series a lot. I have a weakness for multi purpose things.
    I would question one of your comments in today’s blog. I think you would see an increase in velocity and power past the 15 to 16″ barrel length. I wish you would take just a few shots with 18″ and 24″ barrels. I think the longest barrel will give the best results. If you don’t have time I understand.

    Thanks,

    David Enoch

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      David,

      I don’t have an 18-inch barrel I could test it with a 24-inch barrel, but that would delay the most important test I have ever done with any airgun. I would rather go on with that test, and then you remind me and I will shoot some pellets through the 24-inch barrel for you. Is that okay?

      Years ago I tested a Quackenbush XL that started with a 24-inch barrel. I shot it on CO2 and cut off the barrel an inch at a time, to determine where the optimum length was. Of course that was only valid for the valve in that rifle. But others have reported similar findings with Crosman projects.

      B.B.

  • David Enoch Says:

    Hi BB,
    Don’t stop what you are doing for me. I seem to remember Tim McMurray saying that you would continue to gain velocity as the barrel length to more like 24 or 25 inches. I guess the duration of the valve opening would be an important factor.

    David Enoch

  • GenghisJan Says:

    Hi, folks. Have you seen the LG-55 Tyrolean with Double Set Triggers on the airguns.net classifieds? Wasn’t somebody around here talking about exactly that rifle just recently? Kevin? Looks pretty fantastic.

    I have never experienced set triggers. Sure would like to someday. Closest I’ve come is netflixing Quigley *blush*.

    PS, fellow East Coasters: if the weatherman is right, let’s just take the next few days as an opportunity to practice our wind doping!

    -Jan

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