Octane combo from Umarex: Part 2

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

Part 1

Octane combo
Umarex Octane gas-spring rifle combo.

Just a word
Befoere I get started with today’s report, I want to say something about what happened this weekend. Friday’s airsoft report got a lot of comments. Among them are several questions about the technology of the guns. And some admissions that people didn’t think much of airsoft before they tried it, then they found their opinions changed drastically. That also happened to me, so I can relate to it.

But all you who don’t care for the subject don’t need to worry. This isn’t going to become an airsoft blog. I will continue to report on it at a low level, but I know this is an airgun blog, and that’s not going to change. I want to assure the readers for whom the subject of airsoft is not welcome that we are still going to talk about pellet guns and BBs guns for the most part. I will write a few reports on airsoft now and then, and I trust they won’t upset you too much.

Okay, that’s done. On to the topic of the day!

Today is our second look at the .22-caliber Octane combo from Umarex, and it’s velocity day. Before I get to that, there are a couple adjustments I wanted to make to the rifle. Let’s look at those now.

The first adjustment is the trigger. In the first report, I said the trigger is crisp but heavy. The adjustment screw adjusts only the length of the first-stage pull; so I adjusted it to be longer, and stage 2 decreased. Don’t go too far or the rifle will not cock at all because this adjustment does affect the area of sear contact.

I did go too far and had to call Umarex USA, where I learned that the Octane is supposed to come with a warning tag telling you not to turn in the adjustment screw more than one full turn. I went way past that, so all I had to do was turn the screw back out until the head stood even with the trigger blade — and the trigger was back to working again. For even greater contact, turn the screw so it stands proud of the trigger blade.

Dismantling tip
The second thing I wanted to adjust is the tension on the action forks because the barrel pivot was too loose. To do that, I normally take the barreled action out of the stock. But with this rifle, you need to be aware that the pins in the trigger are not held in and will fall out of the trigger if the action is tipped sideways. I didn’t know this, of course; and when the first pin fell out, it set me up for 45 minutes of work to get the trigger back together again. It seems that the trigger pins are held in place by the stock. Other airguns I’ve worked on have the same arrangement, and one solution is to put tape on one side of the trigger to hold the pins in place…and keep the trigger oriented straight up and down.

Octane combo trigger assembly
Each of the 6 free (not held by circlips or springs) trigger pins seen here is very loose in its hole and will fall out of the trigger if the gun is jostled or tipped to the side. They’re held in place by the stock. What appears to be a pin at the far right is actually a rivet.

Better still — what you can do (VERY CAREFULLY!) is remove both forearm screws and just LOOSEN the rear screw behind the triggerguard. Then the front of the action can be tipped up clear of the stock far enough to tighten the barrel pivot bolt and nut. I would advise against taking the action completely out of the stock. If you do, know how loose the trigger pins are and treat the rifle accordingly. When the pins fall out, the internal trigger parts start moving around. They’re fairly easy to align with their pin holes, except for the safety that takes a little fiddling since it’s a 2-piece assembly with an internal pivot. My advice is to leave the gun in the stock.

One final tip. When you tighten the stock screws, don’t tighten the rear stock screw (the one behind the triggerguard) too much or the trigger won’t function. It was not tight when I first took the action out of the stock; and I found that if I tightened it too much, the trigger would not work. Umarex told me the screw shouldn’t affect the trigger at all, but I’m just reporting on the behavior of my test rifle.

Now, let’s look at the velocity of the Octane. I’ve selected 3 popular lead pellets and one lead-free pellet.

JSB Exact Jumbo
The first pellet I tested was the 15.9-grain JSB Exact Jumbo. This is a popular and very accurate pellet in many airguns, and I think it may be accurate in the Octane. This pellet averaged 762 f.p.s. in the Octane. The low was 748 f.p.s., and the high was 787 f.p.s.; so the spread was 39 f.p.s. At the average velocity, this pellet produced 20.51 foot-pounds of muzzle energy.

This pellet loaded easily, perhaps too easily. I think it might be a little undersized for the Octane’s breech. That could affect the accuracy. We’ll see.

RWS Hobby
The RWS Hobby pellet weighs 11.9 grains in .22 caliber and is very tight in the Octane’s breech. It averaged 889 f.p.s. in the rifle with a low of 867 and a high of 902 f.p.s. So the spread was 35 f.p.s. At the average velocity, this pellet produces 20.89 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.

I don’t know how Hobbys will do in the Octane, but I suspect they’ll do well because of the tight fit in the bore. Of course, the Hobby is a wadcutter, so accuracy will fall off after about 25 yards.

Beeman Kodiak
The .22-caliber Beeman Kodiak dome weighs 21.14 grains, which makes it a very heavy pellet. In the Octane, Kodiaks averaged 682 f.p.s. with a range from 665 to 691 f.p.s. That’s a total spread of 26 f.p.s. At the maximum velocity, the Kodiak produces 21.84 foot-pounds at the muzzle.

My guess is that the Kodiak pellet might also be a good one for the Octane. If so, that’s great because it also produces the most energy of all the lead pellets tested.

RWS HyperMAX
Okay, the name of the game with pellet rifles these days is speed, and the RWS HyperMAX lead-free pellet at 9.9 grains is the way to get it. In the Octane, they averaged 1029 f.p.s. with a spread from 1022 to 1075 f.p.s. That’s a spread of 53 f.p.s., so the rifle is probably still burning a lot of fuel. At the average velocity, the HyperMAX pellet produced 23.28 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.

The HyperMAX pellet fit the breech very loosely. That’s probably where the extra velocity spread came from, as more dieseling was generated by less pellet resistance. I doubt this pellet will do very well in the Octane because of the loose fit.

Shooting behavior
The rifle recoils noticeably in both directions, but there’s no vibration, whatsoever. Nearly all rifles with gas springs have a sharp buzz that hits you in the cheek, but the Octane doesn’t. In fact, aside from the recoil, it’s a very smooth-shooting spring rifle.

Trigger-pull
Remember that I had to adjust the trigger for a very definite stage-2 let-off. That affected the trigger-pull a lot. I was able to adjust it back to a release of 7 lbs., 14 oz. with very little creep. It’s heavy, as I noted before, but I think it’s crisp enough to do good work. We shall soon see!

The Octane IS NOT LOUD!
When I first tested the rifle it was very loud. And the sound persisted for longer than I felt the dieseling of a new airgun would last. But during this test the rifle suddenly became MUCH quieter. Obviously, it had been dieseling and I didn’t know it.

I originally told Edith it was a 3.7 on the sound scale when I tested it, and she adjusted the loudness level on Pyramyd Air’s product page to 4. But now she can hear that the Octane is clearly a 3. I apologize to everyone who was mislead by my earlier report. The Octane is a normal-sounding breakbarrel air rifle.

Observations thus far.
I said in Part 1 that the Octane holds very well in the hands. The weight is biased forward toward the muzzle, and the stock is slender when the off hand rests. Add the smooth shooting to this, and I think the Octane might surprise us in the accuracy test.

I plan on shooting the rifle at 10 meters with its open sights first. That should give us an idea of which pellets it likes. Then, I’ll mount the scope and shoot those best pellets at 10 meters, again. That does 2 things. First, it confirms the pellets are as good as we think; and second, it allows me time to adjust the scope for the second accuracy test at 25 yards.

59 Responses to “Octane combo from Umarex: Part 2”

  • Titus Groan Says:

    Hello Fellow Airgunners
    I haven’t paid much attention to this Umarex Octane combo rifle since B.B. offered it for testing. I noticed it had it’s origins in China, and that fact alone would negate any type of deal for me. After reading about the problems B.B. had concerning the loose pins in the trigger assembly, and the aborted trigger adjustment, I know my decision was sound. In the past, I always held hope that a Chinese airgun being tested would show some improvement over past offerings in quality control. However, they have all held onto their reputation for poor quality, and shoddy workmanship. These guns may give superior velocity at a low price, and that may appeal to some, however, I will settle for nothing less then quality in all aspects that make any gun an accurate shooter. I have too many wonderful airguns to choose from today, rather then settle for one with a low sticker price, and poor quality.
    Ciao
    Titus

    • Ben Says:

      I just bought my first pellet gun in decades, a .177 Octane and it is an accurate shooter. I know there are better rifles but since hammer forged barells became the recent standard for center fire rifles, i can buy a sub minute of angle accurate bolt action for under 400$ anywhere. I’m not shelling out 1000 bucks to fire pellets. I’m embarresed how much I love my Octane. For 200 into the rifle and 15 for 500 pellets, I can work on funmentals, sharpen my marksmanship and teach new shooters for all but nothing. With so many to choose from, I like to know which ones are better within the price of double what an Octane costs. I need to get a spare gun around my range for guests anyway.

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    It looks like the Octane was made at the same factory as the Ruger Air Hawk. The stock holds it’s trigger assembly together also.

    I’m with Titus. I will just have to save my pennies until I can buy something worth having, perhaps that Beemen gas sproinger. My little collection will keep me busy for some time to come. I can only shoot one at a time anyway.

    I do like reading about all of these other air guns. Who knows, maybe one day a diamond in the ruff will pop up. It has happened before.

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    Speaking of quality, it is my hope that though Umarex is having Wang Po Industries build copies of RWS and Walther air rifles, they do not force these companies to dump their quality in pursuit of market shares. I also hope the other German air gun companies can hold out and continue to build quality.

    • pete in the Caribbean Says:

      RR, Titus,
      Don’t go too hard o the Chinese, after all we are the ones demanding the low prices and we are wishing that somehow the Chinese can deliver a Mercedes for the price of a Lada. Their quality will keep improving just as Japan’s post WW2 quality improved to the point where “made in Japan” has become a badge of honor.
      It enables those of us who don’t earn Can & US dollars to own a fairly well made clone of a RWS rifle. To help you understand where I am coming from, let me give you an example.
      The RWS 350 which PA sells for US$429 is retailing in my neck of the woods for US$825. If I were to buy this same gun from a dealer in the duty free port in Panama I can get it at a landed cost of approx. US400. If I were to buy a clone of this same gun the price drops to US$290.
      In other parts of the world price matters and I suspect that the same applies to low income earners in the USA & Canada. WE can all enjoy the sport with what we can afford.
      Pete

      • Desertdweller Says:

        Pete,

        I agree with you. The Chinese can certainly turn out high-quality products. The problem we see in our hobby is that the Chinese are expected to turn out acceptable guns at a low price. That is their weak point.

        How good would the high-quality brands’ products be if they were required to be manufactured at the prices expected of the Chinese products? Would a $100 RWS springer be any better than a $100 Chinese springer?

        The Chinese could turn out world-class guns, or they can turn out cheap guns. They cannot be expected to produce guns with both qualities.

        I’m glad they are producing the guns they are. At least I can afford them. I get a lot more use out of a less-than $200 Chinese gun I can actually own, than a $600 German or English gun I can only read about.

        Chinese products can be as good as any others if they can compete in the same price bracket. Consider their products sold in the injection-molded plastic model kit market. These are not cheapo products made to undersell competition. They cost as much as their competitors, and are of equal quality.

        Les

        • cowboystar dad Says:

          x3 on the Chinese issue.
          I own a bunch of Tivoli Audio gear http://www.tivoliaudio.ca/ made in China and excellent quality. Their Table radio often outshines the Bose Wave in comparisons.
          Thing is it is very nearly as expensive as the Bose.
          I think that a $400-$500 Chinese airgun would be a fine product.
          But for some reason everyone complains that there $99 BAM just isn’t as good as their Weihrauch or Diana…just not a fair comparison at all.
          We have 3 Chinese guns in our collection, all are the B3 AK lookalikes from a couple of years back. My kids had to have them because of the ‘army’ look.
          One had a minor issue out of the box…a pin on the folding stock that fell out on the first day (an easy fix). All had that cheezy orange wood and all had less than stellar bluing. All of them had to be taken apart to get that awful grease that adorns many Chinese guns.
          But all of them will put 5 shots in 1.5″ at 20m…all of them have well over 10000 shots on them now and, and when we’re going on a weekend camping trip where space is at a premium (the folding stock) and might get banged around…they’re the cats derriere.
          And $90 each.
          Gotta admit…chinese or not, I’d sure like to see what they could have done at a $250 price point.

        • Matt61 Says:

          On the subject of Chinese products, I’m particularly interested in the great Chinese swimmer, Sun Yang, who is blowing away the competition in distance events. But it turns out that he is trained by an Australian coach….

          Matt61

      • RidgeRunner Says:

        Pete, Les and all the rest,

        Can Wang Po Industries produce good quality? The short answer is yes. The long answer is companies that sent their manufacturing over there have had serious quality issues because they have difficulty keeping them from cutting corners and no recourse when they do such. Add to that the rising cost of Chinese labor and shipping, many companies are starting to bring their products home.

        Personally, I have had my job go overseas before. I do not NEED another air gun, especially one made to a lower quality standard. I will just save my pennies until I can buy top shelf.

        • pete in the Caribbean Says:

          RR,
          I too lost my job when Canada signed on to NAFTA. Approx. 500,000 manufacturing jobs went south to the USA and Puerto Rico. The plan was that with Canada’s natural resources, the USA’s technology and Mexican cheap labour NAFTA would be able to compete with Europe and Asia but that fell through when American workers objected to work going to Mexico. American BIG BUSINESS then looked at China and saw a single market of 1 billion Chinese and decided to send the jobs there which would reduce their costs and at the same time they would sell the Chinese Mc Donalds, KFC, NIKE and all the other Brand Name products. Now the USA still lost jobs and the Mexicans are now flooding across your borders looking for work and the money you should have spent in building factories in Mexico is now being spent building fences and paying for border patrol. What a brilliant plan that was.
          Pete

          • Pete in the Caribbean,

            No one ever said politicians were smart. Most have checked out of reality and now live in an alternate universe where money grows on trees (or can be quickly printed) and the wishes of the electorate are immaterial. All that matters is holding on to a $150,000 a year job. In fact, it’s so important that many politicians spend tens of millions every few years to hold on to their jobs!

            Edith

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          Maybe China can make some things that have quality.

          But!

          We right now are starting to run production on machines at work that produces a part to mate to a part for the igniter housing on air bags for cars. We were running them. But the customer out sourced them to China because it was supposed to be cheaper for them to make. In the mean time those machines sat and all the tooling that was purchased sat. Luckily those people that were involved with the job was lucky to get moved to other jobs and not get laid off.

          China was trying to make the parts but the customer was finding metal burrs in the parts that could break free and become small projectiles inside the air bag when it explodes.
          That’s a immediate halt in production when that happens. All parts have to be segregated and then screened and reworked if possible. Plus determine if there will be a recall to see if any got installed in vehicles. Somebody has to pay when that happens. And then its a big problem if you halt the production of the car makers assembly plant.

          Can you guess why we are running them again. And it only took a little over a month for us to get the jobs back. I have seen it happen to many times in the last 4 or 5 years. Same scenario over and over.

          Maybe it ain’t like that with other products they make. But I have seen it to many times in the production world. And the thing is I wonder why. I mean really. You would think they (China) would catch on to the pattern by now.

          I just got through making a vision system that checks parts we produce for various things that could be wrong with the part that our engineers designed. (and funny thing about it; it checks the part that China had problems making and the cameras the engineers hand me and tell me to mount are made in China) I can get the brand name of the cameras at work tomorrow. But guess what the vision system is working great. Go figure.

          My question is. Why can’t they identify a bad part and fix the problem? They are smart people so there has to be another reason.

  • Korak Says:

    The german companies will continue to make quality airguns as long as we keep buying them.

  • Mel Says:

    Oh well…another 200$ chinese airgun with mediocre trigger, too much power to shoot comfortably, and flaws such as a loose barrel pivot. Just what the airgun world has waited for.

    • DMoneyTT Says:

      Well, I have to say that aside from the trigger my Octane has done nothing but impress me, and I do own an R9, and several other variously priced springers. Yes, out of the box, the pull was over 7 lbs, but after just a polish job and shimming the trigger I have a very nice pull of just under 3 lbs, which is ideal for a hunting weapon like this. It has a screw for the pivot crosspin, so any slack that is there (there wasn’t any on mine out of the box) can be easily adjusted out. Also, mine chronographs significantly faster than the example being tested here, putting out cphp’s at around 910 fps, and I don’t find it to be at all hard to manage the recoil or to cock the rifle. I’m getting 10-shot groups at 50 yards that fall around 1.25″ with cphp’s. While the fit and finish are just average, the accuracy and power speak for themselves. I do own some run-of-the-mill chinese and spanish springers, but I would put my octane a cut above them. Definitely not up to German or British standards, but also only about $200 and that’s with a useable (but not great) scope. For those shooters that are strapped for cash but want something that can perform with a little tinkering, the Octane is an awesome package.

      • Mel Says:

        That’s good to hear. The 150-250$ springer market is overcrowded, and it is very difficult for beginners to choose the right gun in this segment.

      • DMoneyTT,

        Well, a lot of guys are saying the same thing. That theor Octanes are more powerful than mine. So I guess I will try to do something about it.

        As for the trigger, this gun is on loan and I can’t make modifications like that. But it’s good to know that you were able to.

        By the way, did I get the right pins back in their holes (in the photo)?

        B.B.

        • DMoneyTT Says:

          B.B.
          Yes, you did get the pins back in correctly. Funny you should ask because I (and another of your readers that I know through an airgun forum) both had an identical experience with the pins falling out. I took my stock off just to do the usual inspection and wipe down of excess oil and next thing I know, all the pins, springs and levers just fell right out of the trigger group. It took me a minute to figure out how to put it all back in since there is no schematic online that I could find, and I went ahead and did a trigger job while I had it apart. I helped my friend get his trigger group back together based on my experience, and he said everything was working well, but he had an extra pin and hole. We both shot out rifles for days without that pin, because I didn’t remember having that pin in the first place. Then, lo and behold, you do an article showing the trigger puns on the octane and there is indeed a pin in that slot. So I drag a magnet through the carpet where I disassembled the octane and find the pin that was missing. After looking at the pin location it was obvious that it limits sear engagement for minimal creep. So, back in goes the pin, and the trigger pull post-tune is really excellent now. I feel for you trying to shoot for accuracy with the stock trigger. Mine was almost 10 lbs out of the box, and it actually affected my hold on the rifle enough to hurt my grouping. I do think that with enough use, the trigger will lighten up because I basically just polished and lubed the contact points, though shimming did help for consistency. The biggest difference came from just rounding the tip of the trigger adjustment screw where it contacts the lever. It is very sharp from the factory and digs into the lever it contacts, making it not slide smoothly at all, which it needs to do just a little. I’m enjoying your review as usual. Thanks for all the hard (and hopefully enjoyable) work!

          Derek

  • David Enoch Says:

    BB,
    I would like to apologize to you and the readers for my complaint against the Airsoft Blog. I should have just kept my mouth shut.
    David Enoch

    • David,

      No! You have a right to your opinion.

      I do understand how you feel, which is why I won’t do too much with airsoft.

      You keep right on telling us what you think. You aren’t alone, and I know there are many readers who feel the same as you who haven’t commented. I welcome your comments, no matter how you feel.

      B.B.

      • Fred DPRoNJ Says:

        BB is absolutely correct. In fact, our elected officials go by the same mantra. If they get several letters on a bill, the thought is this represents thousands of constituents who share the feelings of the letter writers.

        As for myself, the AS blog was an eye opener. I had no idea how popular this is or how widespread it is. In addition, for those who want to stay in practice during inclement weather when you can’t get to the range, it seems you can purchase an AS gun that literally mirrors your firearm and the accuracy could be good enough to satisfy most people. Very interesting.

        Fred DPRoNJ

    • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

      No worries David. There’s a pretty big tent here; that’s one of the things that has kept me reading for over a year now.

      FWIW, despite all my obvious enthusiasm (guilty!), I’d never want to see this place go too much Airsoft either. B.B.’s towering strength is not just the depth but also the breadth of his experience in all things airgun, and I’d never want to see that thrown off balance. I find that even the topics that are not of interest to me still wind up useful, usually somewhere downstream when they reconnect to something I am interested in, somewhere else.

      I love feeling like a kid again, learning all this stuff for the first time. I wasn’t expecting airgunnery to be quite this big a world, and I’m happy to say I’m still learning how wrong I was. :-)

      • Matt61 Says:

        Right you are. I can hardly imagine life without airgunning. The day’s shoot is one of my favorite things to reflect on at the end of the day. And my first act in the morning is to jump out of bed and see if the previous day’s target looks any better in the morning light.

        Matt61

    • Gene,

      The gun did not have a blaze orange muzzle. No wonder the cop shot him.

      Edith

      • Desertdweller Says:

        Edith,

        What’s going to happen when the bad guys start painting their gun muzzles orange?
        Will fluorescent paint become the new urban camo?

        The problem always has to be the gun, never the shooter.

        Les

        • Les,

          What’s to stop kids from taking brightly colored airsoft guns & painting them black? Nothing. And it will happen, and they’ll get shot if the police see them. As my brother is fond of saying, “you can’t fix stupid.” The real problems are (1) lack of parental supervision and (2) failure to properly educate children about the shooting sports. Until those 2 things change, no amount of legislation will change anything.

          Regarding coloring firearms with orange muzzles or coloring them the same bright colors as airsoft guns: Already been done. I mentioned that in a previous comment last week.

          Edith

          • Gunfun1 Says:

            I don’t care what kind of gun you have.

            I would have to say that if you wave it around out in public now days. Its like you just turned on a giant neon sign above your head that says (Look at me I got a gun). If you are at a event about guns that’s a different story. But in a public place your asking for trouble.

            I say don’t do something unless you know what the consequences will be.

            And that’s why we have gun cases and such. If your out flashing a gun around. Your going to probably have a problem. Even when you conceal carry it doesn’t mean your supposed to wave the gun all over the place.

          • Desertdweller Says:

            Edith,

            That is my point. The problem does not lie in the gun, no matter what color it is. The problem lies in how it is used.

            I make it a point for myself and my grandchildren to always transport guns in cases. Some of these guns are almost indistinguishable from firearms. The Crosman M4-77, the Walthers PPKs especially.

            Some of the California lawmakers refuse to recognize this.

            Maybe it is better for us that BB and pellet guns do not have to be marked as airsoft guns do. At least that shows appreciation that airguns are “real” and need to be handled as such. I worry that eventually BB and pellet guns will be treated legally as firearms. Then we will all suffer as a result.

            Every time a person is injured or killed by an airgun, it brings us closer to that predictable result.

            Les

  • /Dave Says:

    I’ve come to expect a handful of bugs when dealing with Chinese products. Some definitely major but on this gun they seem pretty minor. My TF99 trigger was the same. The pins like to come out by themselves, but if you know that, then you can use tape as BB suggests, or just be careful. Loose screws? Even German guns have them. Let’s hope this one does well in the accuracy tests!

    /Dave

    • ?Dave,

      Thanks! That is the attitude I like to see when testing a new airgun. The Octane is not a run-of-the mill cheap Chinese springer and it may just surprise us yet.

      B.B.

    • BG_Farmer Says:

      /Dave,
      It is reminiscent of the 36-2 trigger, but not exactly; it seems a stage or two up in development with the sear engagement adjustment and two-stage behavior. Also, user interface parts appear to be cast or moulded rather than stamped. We need to use a Call Vince card to see exactly which one it is based on. The assembly itself does look like IB (Shanghai), but I’m still certain that the designs come from central planning and not the factories themselves.

      Those pins don’t really cause any trouble in my experience, either. When the trigger assembly is fully assembled, most if not all (been a while) are held in place by tension on them. Only when you are disassembling and remove tension from the springs do they want to slide out. They don’t go anywhere inside the stock. I think I saw something very similar on one of the vintage rifles BB took apart, but I can’t remember which one it was.

  • John Says:

    Looking at this gun, it reminds me of the Gamo Whisper which I already own. So I must ask…..Has anybody come out with any original ideas lately? Or are we to the point where gun manufacturers (read chinese) down to ripping off older designs from other manufacturers? I expect the performance to be close to my Gamo Whisper and since we are talking chinese factory maybe even a bit worse. Certainly I expect the build quality to be close to good outside and very poor inside.

    • John,

      Your Whisper doesn’t have the gas spring mounted backwards. I have tested the Whisper with a gas spring, and it is a wonderful airgun — accurate, quiet and smooth. This Octane doesn’t remind me of the Whisper al all. It’s several pounds heavier for starters.

      B.B.

      • John Says:

        This still looks very much like a modified copy of the Whisper with the gas spring assembled backwards. I don’t know what that is supposed to do but over all I’d pretty much call this a chinese rip off copy. We shall see if I have reason to think differently in future reports. I’ll take what you see for results and compare with my whisper later. My whisper is one of the older ones with the metal triggers. I’m thinking of upgrading that to a grt3 trigger soon. This will be interesting to see if this “chinese knock off” can be as good as Spanish made. I’ll also compare this to a gun made here in the U.S.A. to see which one works better.

      • RidgeRunner Says:

        Speaking of backwards gas sproing, the vid on PA shows that it still has a piston, which means more mass in motion. I guess we will just have to see how it does.

        A thought. Maybe they are using a smaller and less powerful gas sproing.

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    And back to the guns performance.

    It seems that the gun makes a fair amount of fpe with the pellets you tested.

    And the average spread on the fps seem like the gun could try to be consistent when it becomes target time.
    If they got the barrel length and twist rate in tune with the output of the backwards gas ram.

  • chris in ct Says:

    We do not need new air guns.Just give us the old ones back like the Crosman 140s fwb 124s BSF 70S English Webely etc.etc…PLEASE PRETTY PLEASE…

  • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

    B.B., in reading your reviews for a while now, it seems like there are a handful of pellets that you tend to come back to for testing, and that universe is certainly a subset of the available options. I seem to recall you saying that in general you rely on a personal spidey-sense to govern which ones you think might do well with particular guns…but are there any harder, faster rules that might be of interest to us noobs? Maybe, for example, you like to use representative examples of pellets from across the industry, either based on availability (what might people reasonably expect to find easily), or design, or even history. Or maybe you just want to use, as much as possible, a “core” of the same pellets to test in lots of different guns.

    Anyway, I find myself curious about your logic in deciding where to start. :-)

    • Kevin,

      I am smiling that you think I have a “Spidey-sense” when it comes to picking good pellets. No, what I have is a well-developed gift of gab that might sound like a Spidey-sense, until you see how many times I miss the boat. If Spiderman had my Spidey-sense, he would die in the second reel of the first episode. There would never be a sequel. He would get hit by a truck as he tried to avoid a puddle.

      What I have is a small stable of good pellets in every caliber that have proven themselves time and time again, and a host of benchwarmers that I sometimes work into the mixture. As good as the pellets I use are it’s a wonder that I don’t do better.

      But thanks for believing! ;)

      B.B.

    • klentz Says:

      Kevin,

      For starters in finding the right pellet for your springer, listen and pay attention to the feel of your gun during the firing cycle.

      More powerful airguns usually like heavier pellets but this can be overshadowed by how the pellet fits the breech. Too tight not usually right, too loose not usually good, snug is what typically gives the best accuracy.

      In an oversize breech, like the gun being tested here, I usually try super domes and crosman premiers early on in my pellet testing. If they don’t group I’ll try seating pure lead pellets (like jsb’s) deeper in the breech so they’re snug.

      kevin

  • Matt61 Says:

    /Dave, are there any rules against ricochets to the head in the bb gun wars? Kids do such crazy things. I remember in fourth grade having a brief career in tackle football after school wearing glasses and with no equipment. Once I was hit so hard from behind that the glasses went flying off and landed four feet away. But there were no ill effects–apparently.

    If slings can stabilize a standing position is there a reason why you don’t see them used that way in competition? They seem to allow other aids like a palm rest.

    Matt61

    • Matt,

      You are just too young. You missed seeing the hasty sling being used in all the military matches.

      B.B.

    • /Dave Says:

      Matt,

      Accidents are accidents and will happen regardless of how many rules we have. There will always be an exception. Eyewear needs to be mandatory even with the low powered bb guns we used 45 years ago. It wasn’t, but if there was one safety item I’d drill into a kid, it would be the use of safety glasses. Wraparound type specifically. And that’s after the gun safety instruction and practice….

      My point is that kids these days grow up feeling that someone has already taken the risk out of whatever they do. They’re padded, protected, coddled, and if their parents do anything, it done after the fact in the form of litigation to exact revenge. This does nothing in my mind to produce a responsible adult. I’ve watched too many kids grow into adults feeling entitled to everything and accept responsibility for nothing.

      Dismounting soapbox again….

      /Dave

  • G&G Says:

    John,

    You wrote a little while ago and asked the question, “has anybody come out with any original ideas lately?”

    I would like to respond that in the world of breakbarrel springers at least that Walther hit a grand slam when they came out with the LGV Series of guns earlier this year. Just read up about this rifle and you will see several innovations in this gun.

    I have had one for several months now and I would go so far as to say that with the exception of the stock this rifle is very nearly the equivalent of the TX200. I will point out that I have the LGV Master Ultra as well as the TX200.

    It will be a pleasant surprise if the Umarex Octane is as accurate as the LGV. Especially since it is considerably cheaper. But from what we have learned so far it is my opinion the Octane is not nearly as nice as the LGV. Actually it is a very different type of rifle altogether.

    G&G

    • DMoneyTT Says:

      I surely wouldn’t expect a $200 hunting rifle making 26 fpe (with a scope and rings included) to be nicer or easier to shoot than a $550+ rifle making half the energy that still needs optics and rings. That said, the LGV looks like the real deal and I would never discourage anyone from such a fine rifle.

  • Western PA Says:

    Hi BB,

    I was actually fond of the AS entry as I really knew nothing of them. However, a nephew showed up at the house with an M4 clone, and I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of fun shooting it in different modes. A buddy then showed up with an AR-10, and I soon forgot about the AS. Of course there was a great discrepancy in ammo cost. I don’t own any Chinese airguns, but I did own a Beeman P17 for about a week. The seals went bad and that was it for me. It was really fun to shoot. My Russian guns have never disappointed, there just been anything new in a while. I’m tempted to buy a Benjamin Trail NP in .25 (I’ve shot it), but I’m waiting to hear something on the BSA Lightning gas ram first – the price being close. Anyone else request a review? It comes in .25 and has a gas ram – two of your least favorite categories… You had positive stuff to say of BSA in past.. Just wondering. I don’t think PA has sold one yet, or least no one has put in a review.

  • Tim Says:

    Tom, I’m a little disappointed with those fps/fpe numbers. I was hoping to hear something closer to 24-25 fpe for lead pellets. I know that airgun manufacturers have a very loose relationship with the truth when it comes to velocities, but when the speed for alloy pellets doesn’t even match the claimed velocity for lead pellets, it’s a bit of a let down.

    Some other reviews I’ve read have stated that part of the problem is the tag that they stick in the breech, it flattens the breech seal and that compromises the velocities. Is there any chance you could replace that seal and test one of those pellets again, see if it gives you a better string? I don’t have a chrony to test this out myself.

    Also, you seem to have something against fiber optic sights. I’m not the most experienced with these things, but I don’t understand that. I’ve shot enough to know that they are not just a gimmick. To me they seem as good as any other sight that has painted dots, and better than open sights without dots. With low light they really seem to help out. They aren’t as good as a diopter sights, or other target sights, but compared to other standard open sights they seem pretty good to me.

    Also, it’s good that it seems to have quieted back down. I’m hoping to take mine to the range this weekend and run through a good portion of a tin of crosman premiers, hopefully after I do that it will settle down a bit and make less noise.

    • Tim,

      I just looked at the breech seal and it looks pretty good to me. But I will ask Umarex for a replacement, just to see if this is correct.

      As for fiberoptics, they are fine for area-fire weapons like shotguns, but not for precision shooting. Maybe for a deer hunter who won’t shoot farther than 75 yards, but not for a rifleman who expects to get accuracy from his rifle. You can’t be precise when your sight covers 5 inches of target at 100 yards. That’s just my opinion, of course.

      B.B.

    • Ben Says:

      Ditch the fiber optics and keep a flat finish on your sights. Now concentrate on focusing your vision on your front sight and your front sight only. With some practice you’ll be able to aim with much more precision. Would you rather have the sun to your back or in your face? I’m with B.B. 100% on this one. Do you really like them in low light? Have you tried them in low light? THEY ARE AT THERE WORST IN LOW LIGHT! I have tried them on everything from compound bows, to shotguns, rimfire rifes, center fire rifles, air rifles, pistols, hell even on my potato gun. And the only place they were acceptable was on my Glock. And I don’t ask for precision out of that, I’m happy putting every shot on a 3″ bullseye at 20 yards with that. Aim small, miss small, or not at all Tim.

      • Tim Says:

        Well, I have limited shooting experience, so I’ll bow to superior experience. That being said, I’ve never felt that fiber optics were holding me back, especially in low light. In low light, I have a hard time lining up the sights, if I can’t see them well, and the fiber optics make it easier to line them up properly.

        Maybe when I’ve done more shooting i’ll understand it better.

  • Steve Says:

    Thank you for your excellent coverage of this new airgun. Several of us over at the GTA have Octanes and more than one of us experienced the pins falling out of the trigger group including myself. Calls to Umarex did not provide any assistance for us but it looks like you had a bit more success. We were wondering if you could shed any light on the pin that is directly below the sear pin. We learned that the rifle seems to shoot fine without the pin in place, and cannot figure out the specific purpose for that pin. Any information that you could pass along to a group of Octane lovers is greatly appreciated.

  • Steve Says:

    To Tim’s point, my chrony says that my Octane is consistantly shooting 25+fpe with several pellets including CPHP so not sure if something is not quite right with your test gun.

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