Original Bugelspanner: Part 1

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

Buglespanner spring-piston air rifle

B.B.’s bügelspanner.

Today, I have a story for you. A couple weeks ago, one of our blog readers — a man named Eric — emailed me a link to a local craigslist.com posting. Eric met me at a gun show last year, and I sold him a Winchester model 427 (Diana 27) air rifle. He already knew about fine vintage airguns, and the 27 had been on his wish list for a while, but I don’t think he was a blog reader. Well, we fixed that right away! Since then, he’s been reading the blog and becoming more familiar with his new rifle and airguns in general

The listing he sent me showed a Tyrolean air rifle with the traditional high-cupped cheekpiece and hooked buttplate. What was even more fascinating were the double-set triggers and the large aperture sight located at the rear of the receiver, as well as the sporting sight mounted on the barrel.

The gun was a bügelspanner, or loosely translated, a triggerguard (lever) cocker. I’ve owned 2 bügelspanners in the past, but neither was as nice as this one. And the funny thing is that this was posted on craigslist! That’s funny because guns are sold on gun websites — not on a general website like craigslist.

But this posting had lasted for a minimum of 2 weeks before I saw it. So, I contacted the seller and, glory be, he still had it! We met last Sunday, did the transaction and this was one of those rare times when the gun was exactly as represented.

The gun is a smoothbore .25-caliber gun. The seller, named Joe, told me he had owned it for the past 34 years and had gotten it at the age of 8 as a gift from his father. The gun is much older — probably dating back to around the 1920s or ’30s.

It’s a spring-piston gun that has 2 opposed volute springs that compress against each other. They push a leather-covered piston in the same way that a coiled steel mainspring does in a conventional spring-piston gun, so this is just an odd form of spring-piston airgun.

Gallery volute springs and piston
Two volute springs push against each other when compressed.

Volute spring
The volute spring is a flat spring that’s been coiled and stretched into this shape.

Zimmerstutzen style
I was attracted to this airgun because of a long, abiding interest in zummerstutzens — indoor gallery or parlor guns used for target shooting. I’ve been fascinated with them since I was a teenager and first read about them in Guns & Ammo back in the early 1960s.

The zimmerstutzen rifle is usually found in the Tyrolean style, but not always. It’s nominally 4mm, but there are more than 20 specific calibers for which the guns were bored. They fire either fixed ammunition (a cartridge) or separate ammo with a percussion cap and round lead ball loaded separately. Rather than get into the full description here, I invite you to read my full article about them. I normally don’t like giving homework assignments; but if you read that article and look at all the pictures, you’ll have a much better understanding of the gun we’re examining today.

The subject gun
I was inclined to believe the subject gun is a dart gun, but what little historical documentation there is mentions using pellets as well. I thought it was a dart gun because it’s set up for extreme accuracy, and I didn’t think that pellets could be that accurate in a smoothbore barrel. But we did do a test of the Diana 25 smoothbore at 10 meters and established that it is, in fact, very accurate at that distance. So, I really don’t know if I’m supposed to shoot darts or pellets in this gun. For the present, I only have pellets because .25-caliber darts are not that common. But I could certainly make some.

This type of gun either fits or doesn’t fit — there’s no in-between. I’m lucky that it fits me pretty well. But that sporting rear sight does get in the way of seeing the front sight. I would have to remove it to use the rear sight.

Why a sporting rear sight? Shooters in the US are not familiar with how European airgunners view target shooting. They use their guns for both precision target shooting and also for sporting use. I guess the best comparison would be to the Hunter Class of field target. Therefore, European target guns often have both a precision rear peep site and a second sporting rear sight located somewhere on the barrel. The subject gun has both.

The front sight is a fine post and bead, which is typical of all zimmerstutzens and, indeed, of many target guns from the 19th century. This sight is very fragile, so it’s protected by steel “ears” on both sides.

Bugelspanner sporting rear sight
The sporting rear sight is adjusted in both directions by a clock key.

Bugelspanner rear peep sight
Rear peep sight is also adjust by a clock key and can be removed to use the sporting sight, only.

Bugelspanner post-and-bead front sight
Front post-and-bead sight is delicate, so two steel ears protect it.

The gun has an octagonal barrel, which dates its manufacture to before World War II. It’s impossible to get a more precise date than that because these guns were made from the beginning of the 20th century until the early 1950s. The octagonal barrel also suggests a time before 1940. Most likely this gun was made in the 1920s or 30s, but I have no way of proving that.

The name Original is engraved on the barrel. Several sources say that this is a name used by Oskar Will in Zella Mehlis, Germany; but one source says that name, by itself, was used only by his competitors, and all of his guns also have the word Will on them, as in Original Will.

Original
The name Original may mean this gun was made by Oskar Will of Zella Mehlis.

The gun is cocked by pressing down on the triggerguard, which is actually a long lever pivoted near the bottom rear of the butt. You can see the pivot pin sticking through the rear of the buttstock. A linkage pulls the piston back, compressing the two springs. To load the gun, you press a catch forward on the right side of the forearm, and the rear of the barrel can then be tipped up. You could call this a breakbarrel, but the barrel doesn’t have anything to do with cocking the springs. In that respect, the gun is like the breakbarrel Whiscombe rifles.

The cocking effort is pretty demanding. It’s on the order of 40 lbs., at least. I can’t see how a boy of 8 was able to cock this gun, but maybe his father cocked it for him until he grew into it.

Bugelspanner triggerguard is upTriggerguard is shown up…in the firing position.

Bugelspanner triggerguard is downTriggerguard is pulled down to cock the springs.

Bugelspanner barrel is broken open ready to loadPush the catch forward, and the barrel can be tipped up for loading.

The double-set triggers on this gun are interesting. They work in the normal way — the rear trigger is pulled to set the front trigger and the front trigger fires the gun. However, there’s one difference. Many guns with double-set triggers will also fire when the front trigger is pulled without being set. This gun will not. If the trigger is not set, the gun cannot be fired.

Bugelspanner double-set triggersDouble-set triggers function normally, except the gun won’t fire unless the trigger is set. Many double-set triggers will fire when the front trigger hasn’t been set, but not this one.

Joe told me he shot the gun, so I figured it would be okay for me to do, too. First I dumped about 20 drops of 3-In-One oil down the air transfer port and gave it an hour to soak into the leather piston seal. The, I loaded an obsolete 20-grain Diana Magnum pellet and shot it into the trap from just a few feet away. The firing cycle was very harsh, so I won’t be doing that, again, until I can examine the condition of the powerplant. I could hear how slow the pellet moved, which leads me to suspect I’m right about this being a dart gun.

The gun is stocked with a light-colored walnut that’s checkered on the straight pistol grip. Also typical of the Tyrolean stock is the thumbrest that protrudes from the right side of the grip. That makes this a definite right-hand rifle!

Bugelspanner Tyrolean stockThis top view shows how thick the buttstock blank had to be to begin with!

The gun’s metal is finished with a combination of heavy nickel plate and hot-tank bluing. I would put the finish at 80-85 percent, which is to say…a lot! There are pepper tracks of rust scattered around the blued barrel, but an application of Ballistol and steel wool has begun to remove them. I’ll keep this up for as long as it takes to get down to smooth metal.

The future
This report will not follow the traditional pattern of velocity testing followed by accuracy testing. For starters, I think the gun is too fragile to shoot that much, plus it does fire harshly. I need to find out what’s going on inside before I do much of anything.

I made this Part 1 so I could come back to it with a second report, though I have no plans for that right now. But as I learn more about it, there will be enough information to make an interesting Part 2.

90 Responses to “Original Bugelspanner: Part 1”

  • klentz Says:

    B.B.,

    That’s spectacular! Another hand made piece of functional art made its way home with you.

    Not only was that stock blank thick but considering the drop at the heel it was a tall blank too. Not a cheap piece of wood.

    Wish you would have shown a picture from the rear of that hand milled sight disk. I’m sure it’s a thing of beauty.

    Looking at that front sight I can’t help but think of those sights I have in the custom wood box that I showed you. You speculated they were for a bugelspanner/dart gun/zimmerstutzen.

    What a great gun for Friday.

    Kevin

  • t-bone Says:

    OT: I was reading the reference article where you were trying to determine the caliber. 4.20mm is 0.16535″, not 0.168, even using the pre-1959 conversion. (A sheet of paper is about 0.003″ thick)

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    What a score!

    So the springs and piston are not from this particular piece. You definitely need to get in there and find out what is going on.

    While researching my “new” toy, I learned that most of the German competition air rifles of the late 1800s and early 1900s were smooth bore. The “official” range was ten meters or ten yards if you were on this side of the English Channel. Lincoln Jefferies and other gunsmiths would rifle them and do other custom work on them for the British market.

    Yours may be a dart gun, but I don’t know. I found a .25 model of mine.

  • Editor’s Note Says:

    Orignal Bugelspanner: Part 1″ Should be Original.

  • /Dave Says:

    Nice find, BB! My first impression was, ‘Good grief! What an odd looking gun!’ That thumb rest on the right side would take some getting used to for me. It’s not a natural place for me, but it looks to be the only place that would work with that thick of a wrist. I’m looking forward to hearing more about this different gun!

    /Dave

  • FrankBpc Says:

    awesome find BB! Most excellent features & condition too!! Mine is just a defunct boat oar compaired to that one.Whooooohooo that it FITS you…..major coup.Mine also has the “Original” on the barrel,but only the simplest of sights on the rear.Parlor shooting needs to make a comeback……or bell shooting.

  • David Enoch Says:

    Hi BB,
    I must of missed that one. I check Craig’s List pretty often for airguns and pellet guns. How was this one listed? If this gun wasn’t 25 caliber I would have thought it was a bell target gun. But, I don’t think anyone is was using a 25 cal airgun when the hole in the bell target was 5/16″.

    Was there airgun dart competitions in English pubs like the bell target competitions.

    David Enoch

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      David,

      I don’t know about England. I think this one was made for Germany. And I don’t know much about dart shooting, either.

      B.B.

  • cowboystar dad Says:

    OMG, that thing is beautiful.
    I’ve just started reading a history of American precision shooting which goes back to the Jaeger rifles, Pennsylvania rifles, etc.
    Many of them were true handmade works of art…had no idea that the same versions were available in the airgun world.

  • Edith Gaylord Says:

    Isn’t today’s gun a beautiful example of craftsmanship? If you think such talent is lost to the ages, you’re in for a surprise!

    Pyramyd Air has listed a very special TX200 Mark III on eBay that has hand checkering and hand engraving. This rifle was originally revealed in our 2012 Christmas catalog.

    All proceeds from this auction will benefit Wounded Warriors, an organization that aids wounded U.S. military men and women.

    While you may think that eBay doesn’t allow gun listings, they do allow them from vetted retailers. Pyramyd Air has met the vetting process and has this and other guns listed on eBay.

    Click here to see this very special TX200 Mark III.

    Thanks,
    Edith

    • J-F Says:

      That thing is a work of art! It’s gorgeous. Do you know what the “21″ ingraved near the barrel stands for?

      J-F

      • Edith Gaylord Says:

        J-F,

        I have the original high-resolution images that are on eBay, and you’re only seeing part of the engraving. It actually says 21st, with the “S” and “T” smaller and stacked one atop the other. I assume this means the 21st century, but I’m not sure.

        Edith

      • Edith Gaylord Says:

        J-F,

        21st is a celebration of the TX200′s 21st birthday.

        Edith

    • RidgeRunner Says:

      My personal taste is I do not care for all the scroll work on the metal, but that chunk of wood is drop dead gorgeous! I would like to get that stock without the checkering and buy a beech stock TX200 to drop in it!

    • Matt61 Says:

      Yes, that’s what you call a Tyrolean stock, and it’s a real beauty. What does Tyrolean refer to anyway? I associate with shorts, suspenders, moutaineering gear and Laurel and Hardy films.

      Matt61

      • B.B. Pelletier Says:

        Matt,

        I am surprised! The Tyrol is where this type of shooting originated — schuetzens, zimmerstutzens etc. Hence, Tyrolean.

        B.B.

    • klentz Says:

      Edith,

      Will this purchase qualify the buyer for a DONATION to Wounded Warriors under the IRS code for a 2014 tax return?

      Impressive that the bid is already up to $2,000.00. It needs to be much more since the Wounded Warrior program is one of the best run for THE BEST OF CAUSES.

      kevin

  • Alan in MI Says:

    This was such a great blog to read, I really do hope that there are many more parts coming . . . .

    Now for something I normally wouldn’t do – a link to a post on the Yellow. It is a really great example of interpreting groups – somebody took the time to generate multiple computer simulated 10 shot groups that all come from the same system, of which the average 10 shot group capability is defined as 3/8″ ctc. It really is fascinating to see how “varied” the groups are, even though they all are equally likely from the given gun that is being simulated. This really shows how many 10 shot groups we need to shoot to really know our guns (not that I’m asking you to shoot that many B.B.!). It is worth reading and thinking about – I know I have ruled out pellets from a 10 shot group that has looked like some of these . . . .

    http://www.network54.com/Forum/79537/message/1383258454/Ten+-Shot+Groups%2C+shot+by+computer.

    Alan in MI

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    BB
    Cool gun. And it seems to me I have seen that type of spring somewhere before. But I cant place it for the life of me where or on what.
    And the gun looks to be built with very good quality in mind.

    But 2 questions come to mind. Why did the owner decide to sell the gun? And I thought that guns could not be sold on Craigslist? And I don’t know why I thought that about Craigslist.

    Oh and I forgot. One more question. And I might get you in trouble on this one BB. But I doubt it knowing how you and Edith get along.
    How much did you have to give for the gun?

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      GF1,

      I thought so, too, but Edith checked it out and found out that airguns can be listed. They are filled with paintball guns and pellet guns, so one dart gun isn’t going to hurt anything.

      Why did the owner sell it? He told me he was building an AR and wanted the money for his project. And he didn’t really use the gun anymore.

      B.B.

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        BB
        I don’t think I could part with the gun. Especially if somebody gave it to me. And the gun is definitely unique. So that would be another reason for me to keep the gun.

        I still have guitars my dad made (and believe me there was times I needed money) and there is No Way that I would even think about selling them. And I don’t even play them. You know Its the idea of somebody giving you something.

        But I guess each his own.

        And one other thing. I think that it is cool how the barrel breaks to load the pellet it shoots. Or wait a minute you said smooth bore. Does that gun shoot a round lead ball by chance?

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          GF1,

          It would shoot a round ball — very slowly.

          B.B.

          • Gunfun1 Says:

            BB
            So it does shoot a pellet then? I know you mentioned darts also. I remember some of the old Crosman guns shot darts. I shot some when I was a kid. Pretty fun.

            Is that the same design of dart your gun would shoot?

    • /Dave Says:

      Gf1,

      I have seen this type of spring used in the old hand, grass calipers and in pruning and hedge shears. Took me a while before I remembered that from back in the 60′s…

      /Dave.

      • Titus Groan Says:

        Hey /Dave
        I too have a couple pair of the pruning shears you describe. The metal spring is attached to the inside of each handle, holding the cutting jaws apart. A hook in eye is used to keep the jaws together when not in use. The spring used isn’t too strong or squeezing the cutting jaws together for any length of time would be too hard on the hands.
        Ciao
        Titus

        • twotalon Says:

          Titus

          I see some logic to this. The spring makes it’s own guide so it can’t buckle out to the side. It has to collapse into itself.

          twotalon

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        /Dave
        Yep that is where I have seen them.

        And thinking about what you said Mr.Titus after you guys made me remember where I have seen them.

        How much force does the human hand make when it grips something. From all the tool adjustment and tool changes and centering units and changing set ups around on machines and equipment throughout the years. I have a very strong grip now day’s. Some people have trouble taking something apart when I assemble it.
        But the reason I mentioned the above. How much pressure does it take to compress verses how much PSI you get when the spring is released. I wonder how efficient that design was?

        And TT. I guess that spring design was good for its purpose at the time. But could you imagine that kind of spring on the valve train of a car.

        And here is something I have thought about before. When you have a PCP, Pump or Co2 gun you have a pressure reservoir.
        What would happen if you put a spring in front of a compression plunger seating the spring against a stop that transfers the air to the chamber. Then use compressed air on the other side of the plunger instead of a spring to make the plunger move.
        The sear of the trigger would have to release air from a valve to move the compressed air in the reservoir; then to the plunger to transfer the air charge to the chamber. (maybe I should call it a floating piston) I bet the reservoir air supply would last for a long time and the FPS of each shot would be very consistent. Kind of like a regulator but different.

        And then back to BB’s gun. So when that spring transfers its power to the compression plunger is it more efficient than a coil spring as far as cocking pressure verses the amount of fps it can make? And maybe smoother than a coil spring? And I wonder if the rotational torque is less than what a coil spring would produce.
        Or maybe the technology of the coil spring was not around yet at that time when the gun was built is why they used that type of spring?

        • RidgeRunner Says:

          This particular spring design allows for a longer compression distance, hence a longer piston stroke. A larger volume of air is compressed per stroke. Also note that the two springs are counter wound, thereby countering torque.

          • Gunfun1 Says:

            RR
            That was the thought that I had. It would cancel out the rotational torque when the gun is fired.

            I wonder if that type of spring could produce the same amount of FPS with pellets compared to a coil spring or nitro piston?

            • B.B. Pelletier Says:

              GF1,

              No. Volute springs are not as fast as coiled steel springs. The produce lower velocities.

              B.B.

              • Gunfun1 Says:

                BB
                Maybe that type of spring would work for the lighter none lead pellets?

                • B.B. Pelletier Says:

                  GF1,

                  It’s been my experience that the greater the weight of the piston and spring, the greater the pellet weight can be. So I would think a volute spring would mean that a heavier pellet would work best.

                  But I don’t know.

                  B.B.

        • /Dave Says:

          Your air transfer idea sounds like the regulator inside of the differential piston of an Al Nibecker Quigley. Something I’ve wanted to build for a long time, only mine would be with dual opposed pistons and a larger air volume. But, I haven’t had the time to really get some traction on that project. Too bad he no longer makes them or even maintains his site… All of the principles of the action along with some moving diagrams (gifs) were there.

          • Gunfun1 Says:

            /Dave
            I remember the guns but never seen the website or how his guns worked.

            And I like your idea about the double piston too. Then put one of those transfer port adjustment screws on the gun were talking about like the Marauders have. I think that would work out to be a good combination of flow control. It should be very efficient.

  • Titus Groan Says:

    What A feast for the eyes this Bugeispanner is. The wood stock is second to none with the grain producing a myriad of colourful swoops and swirls. It is obvious a gifted crafts person assembled this airgun with love and a dedication to each of the many separate pieces that make up this gun. Did the seller have an ideal the velocity the volute spring produces? Would it be on par with a coiled spring? I have seen this type of spring in an old clock my Grandmother had. When I was 10 years old, I decided to have a look inside her cherished keepsake. I believe my Dad found the spring, and various other parts, and after massaging my backside with his belt, made the clock tick once again. As a suggestion, you should include a blog about unusual airguns once a month. I suspect this blog will result in some very interesting comments from the many knowledgable people who reside here each day.
    Ciao
    Titus

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Titus,

      Volute springs are noted for their power and resilience, not for their speed. The M60-series American tank used them as shock absorbers when the torsion bar suspension bottomed out.

      That clock spring was a coiled flat spring that used the torsion of its spiral winding for power. The volute spring works sideways to that. Instead of unwinding for power, it compresses and expands back to a cone shape. In other words, it compresses from the side.

      B.B.

    • Matt61 Says:

      Yes, but the volute spring is kind of ugly. I wonder how you make it anyway from a leaf spring. Presumably, the process involves heating the spring and then cooling it in the desired shape so as to rearrange the molecular structure. Is that right?

      Matt61

  • Bill in Indy Says:

    Hello all, I really enjoy these reports about vintage and antique air guns. I have great interest in the mechanics of some of these unconventional powerplants. Thanks BB for another great report. I had asked you several questions about my new Marauder .177, thank you very much for your help. I have had alot of problems getting extra magazines that were not cracked when I got them, both from pyramyd and directly from crosman. Kind of just gave up on it for now, they all seem to work fine so oh well. I noticed while looking around on Pyramyds page that the Marauder now has a note in the description that says they can no longer be used with C02, were you aware of this BB, I only target shoot with mine and was considering trying it out with C02. The manual says you can, but the note on pyramyds page says this is incorrect. Thanks again for the great blog

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Bill,

      Yes, I am aware of that change. That change was made by the Marauder product manager a month ago and it isn’t as big a deal as it seems.

      When the Marauder first came out, it was one year after the entry of the Discovery, which does operate on both air and CO2. The Discovery has a valve that stays at a fixed setting that is okay for both low-pressure air and CO2.

      The Crosman folks left the mention of CO2 in the Marauder manual when they made it up from the Discovery manual, because at the time they thought it wasn’t a big deal. But the Marauder has both a transfer port that can be adjusted, as well as a striker stroke and striker spring tension that can also be adjusted. So running it on CO2 means the valve has to be in the correct setting for the larger molecule.

      CO2 isn’t dangerous in the Marauder, it’s just too complex — given the adjustability of the gas handling system.

      B.B.

      • Bill in Indy Says:

        Thanks BB, I dont really need to use Co2 anyway, I get plenty of shots as is for plinking and target shooting with friends. I just need to get a crony so I can play around and see if I can increase my shot count a bit more.

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        BB
        Glad you explained that about the Co2 in the Marauder and the Discovery. We talked about different things in the past concerning Co2 so that is nice to know.

  • Kevin in CT Says:

    Wow, what a work of art!! I have to ask, how much would one expect to pay for something like this??

    • RidgeRunner Says:

      Wow, what a discussion your question can entail. As an example, though I think it is wonderful eye candy and also desire old air guns, the fact that it is essentially non functioning at the moment greatly reduces the value to me. Now if I thought I could get it working without a major investment, the value would go up some.

      Others may pay a large sum because it is old and looks nice and they have the money.

      Also, someone may sell it at a reasonable price because they deem it time to pass it on to others to enjoy.

      Value, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

  • /Dave Says:

    Finally, my LG55 with the tiger stripe/curly wood arrived last night! It’s got some scratches on the stock and time-worn blue, but it shoots really nice and actually has some character or what I might say is honest wear and scarring. I know I’ll be shooting it more today, but I already like the way it feels and fires! In fact, it just has that “old, nice tool” look and feel to it so now I’m not sure whether I’ll refinish it or not. Guess I better shot it for a while first. I do know one thing for sure, I’m happy with it and I think I got the better end of the deal! I don’t know if Matt Cooney reads this blog or not, but thanks Matt !!:-D

    /Dave

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      /Dave,

      Great ending to your delivery saga! I don’t suppose you would like to share your gun with the rest of us in a guest blog? ;)

      B.B.

      • /Dave Says:

        BB,

        Yes, I can do that, but it will take some time before it is ready. I’m going to diagnose its health with chronograph and accuracy tests and then see if it needs a rebuild along with the trigger research already planned, so I can write about that. I’ll email you when I have something ready. I haven’t decided yet whether to refinish it or not, so I guess that part would be at a much later date if at all.

        /Dave

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          /Dave,

          Before you consider refinishing, wipe the wood with Ballistol. You will be surprised how much it brings out!

          B.B.

          • /Dave Says:

            That’s probably the way I’ll go for now… The wood was already oiled when I got it, and the grain looks great! Lots of scratches around the edges, but if I go after those, I’ll need to do the metal too. Right now it looks old and I kind of like that look. I think it would look a bit off to have of metal in a newly refinished stock. I’ll get some better pictures for the blog so people can see what I’m talking about.

            • Gunfun1 Says:

              /Dave
              Right now a big thing in muscle car finds is a original owner car that has not been touched yet.

              In other words not restored. Maybe the car is not 100% perfect. It may have a few dings or scratches. And the least amount of cosmetic changes the better. Maybe even some chrome flaking on the bumper. But it is still all together as delivered from the factory.
              And the biggest thing is the owner always has a magnificent story to tell about the car that they owned through out time.

              I have known people that hopped up their cars through out time. Then changed them back to original.
              Muscle car owners have thought about their cars many different ways as the time ticked on. We had discussions back when I was a kid what would be worth more. The original car or the hopped up car with all the stuff done to it.

              I will have to say that I like cars both ways. And guns too. The hard part is to figure out which way you want to go with that particular gun or car at that time when you get it. And you have to take in consideration what shape it is in.

              I really like the untouched stuff now days. And especially if there is a story to be told about it.
              If I would have /Dave and BB’s gun I would have to leave the outside of the gun alone. And concentrate on making sure the gun worked right.

              Just like the muscle cars. They were made to be driven. Like guns to be fired. :)

              • /Dave Says:

                I guess I just like old stuff where not much was made on a cnc machine. Old cars are great in original condition as long as they’re not beaters. Restored beaters, hot rods, chopped and highly polished with chrome goodies, well taken care of originals… I like ‘em all! I guess I just like to see things where some one has poured their heart and soul into a project. This applies to everything else like art and sculpture, stone masonry, architecture, etc. The energy that people put into things just leaves me in awe sometimes!

  • Matt61 Says:

    Won’t steel wool take all the bluing of this gun?

    Titus, I’m afraid my loyalty to origins runs pretty shallow once you get away from the original surplus guns. My only concern with the Makarov is that its dimensions are relatively accurate and that it shoots will. So nice to hear from B.B. that the new version does.

    Matt61

    • Titus Groan Says:

      Matt61
      When I was talking about the original Makarov co2 pistol, I was looking at it from a historical point of view. For me to hold the refurbished Russian model, could equate to how you feel about your Mosin Nagant. A lot of history locked away in these guns. I read the explanation from B.B., where he states the Taiwan made airgun is the superior shooter of the two Makarovs. This does put the Chinese gun in a new light. The thing is, I’m just not much of a fan of bb guns. I did get a huge amount of pleasure upon receiving a Daisy Winchester 1894 replica bb gun for Christmas when I was 12. In fact, I wore the gun out, shooting in my parents basement. Now days I like the accuracy a good pellet rifle/pistol is capable of shooting at 20 meters. I think it would be difficult settling for the larger groups a bb gun produces. That is just me though, and shouldn’t be taken as a reflection on someone who enjoys the bb gun. I do like all airguns. I just like pellet guns more.
      Ciao
      Titus

  • John Says:

    i know BB gets irate at authors that have no real knowledge of guns. I have my own gripe. That is a total lack of knowledge movie makers have of strategy. I went to see Ender’s game today. I bet most of you have read the book. One thing that got me was the special effects department and the directors had absolutely no grasp of strategy when the kids are playing what amounts to a laser tag game in zero G. These were supposed to be brilliant kids that had a grasp of strategy, using platoons and formations, maneuvers and plans to attack the other army and defend their army. They are supposed to be training to fight a war against an alien threat. Every battle showed, and they were very few, were total free for all, all through the movie. Even the aliens had no grasp of strategy. It became nothing more than one huge unruly gang against another unruly gang swarming each other in space. as a veteran that is trained in combat I absolutely didn’t buy any of it as a credible fight. i bet even the airsoft players here wouldn’t buy what the directors tried to pass off as the world’s only hope for survival. For most of the movie I was thinking “So,this is it? This is all we got? We are so dead.” Then I saw these advanced alien life forms that think each other’s thoughts and I was like “How on earth did they even manage to get to us to attack us in the first place?”

    • Gunfun1 Says:

      John
      I’m thinking the people that made that movie had no kind of idea about strategy or warfare.

      But I bet if kids go to see the movie they are all over it about how the action played out. And if they did make it more realistic about what really happens in a war environment the rating of the movie wouldn’t allow the kids to see it. No more dollars for them if you know what I mean.

      And what you just described is why I really don’t find movies that are made today very interesting.
      I think I will stick to my drag racing and hunting shows. And of course my favorite… BB’s Blog.

      • John Says:

        It still would have been a good movie for all ages if they had stuck to the book’s plot. There is only 2 deaths in the book that are close up and personal. The rest is described as kind of like a modern day video game. In reality our kids are exposed to more violence on the news than what is in the book. It’s just the lack of credibility in the battle room wars (think laser tag but while flying) And how they paired actors for fight scenes. They just got so many things wrong that it got to me. They just could have done so much more with the story than what they did. Didn’t do Orson Scott Card justice to his brilliant book.

        • Wulfraed Says:

          Given the length of the typical movie — I suspect they’d have done better sticking with the original short story (forget padding to the novel), and staging the battle room scenes directly from the short story description.

          Probably felt there wouldn’t be enough special effects action given the way Ender’s planning made for rather one-sided combats.

          • John Says:

            I think it had the potential to be a very rich detailed story if they would have done it as either a 2 or 3 part movie. They just tossed most of the story out the window.I would have paid to see it in 3 parts if they’d have stuck to the book a bit more, had more of the battle school, kept the armies and strategies from the book, and of course detailed out Ender’s brother and sister some more. Then they could have marketed some of the sequel books into movies like they did Harry Potter. Card made this wonderful galaxy full of adventures that could have been played out on the big screen. But the way they hurried it along they can’t do that now.

            • Gunfun1 Says:

              John
              I just watched the movie Platoon. I have seen it before but It seems that I watch it everytime it comes on when I catch the time.
              You like it?

              • John Says:

                That was a good movie as was Full Metal Jacket, and Jarhead (That one is set in Desert Storm which is when I was there). I also enjoyed The Hurt Locker. That looked fairly real. Yes I was in Iraq.

                • Gunfun1 Says:

                  John
                  I cant remember The Hurt Locker? What war or and what was it about?

                • Slinging Lead Says:

                  John

                  I love war movies. They tend to feature courageous people adapting to conditions that would reduce most people to piles of quivering jelly.

                  I LOVE “Full Metal Jacket”. That is about as good as it gets. R. Lee Ermey is absolutely magnificent in that film. As are Matthew Modine, Adam Baldwin, and Vincent D’Onofrio. Epic movie.

                  Platoon is good. But I will chalk that up to the stellar actors, and not so much to the loony idiot director, Oliver Stone. Stone can contract cancer of the genitalia, as far as I am concerned. He is scum.

                  “Enemy At The Gates” is a fantastic film. The only thing holding it back is that all the characters in the film are Russian and German, but have English accents. What’s up with that?

                  I haven’t seen “Jarhead” based on principal. That idiot Jake Gyllenhaal, born with a silver spoon firmly inserted in his rectum, made some very disparaging remarks about the soldiers who served during Operation Desert Shield/Storm. If he had to serve during that war for 10 minutes, he would cry himself to sleep every night for the rest of his pathetic life. I can’t understand why anyone would do him the favor of casting him for a role in the military.

                  “The Hurt Locker” is an excellent movie. Who among us could not admire the reckless courage of a man tasked with dismantling improvised explosives? Jeremy Renner was perfect in that role. Mr. Renner also excels in the “Bourne Legacy.” His performance exposed his predecessor, Matt Damon, for the stilted meat puppet that he is.

                  “Braveheart”, “Master and Commander” and “The Patriot” are also worthy of mention. Awesome movies.
                  Lastly, I recently saw a film entitled “Defiance.” It stars Liev Schreiber and Daniel Craig. Not bad at all.

                  • ajvenom Says:

                    I think there was another movie called Hamberger Hill.

                    One of the first movies I remember seeing was an old b&w film on WWI, All Quiet on the Western Front.

                  • J-F Says:

                    Come on guys… Saving Private Ryan???
                    A little less accurate but a great war movie for me was Inglorious Basterds, I love everyone in that movie, I’m a HUGE Tarantino fan and his movies are pure genious, there’s so much research and levels to get. You can watch the movies over and over and catch small details that he put in there from the music played during a scene to the posters and ads featured in the movie everything is there for a reason.

                    For sniper fans theres a TV movie called “Shot Through the Heart” with Vincent Perez and Linus Roache.
                    It’s based in Sarajevo when the town was split in two. They’re both marksman and are or were on the olympic team and end up on different sides.
                    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0171741/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_42

                    There’s some great sniping stories without being gory, the shots are taken from too far away and usually inside buildings so the people just fall down dead or they would wound someone on purpose and then start shooting the people who rushed over to help. It’s a great sad movie.

                    J-F

                  • Edith Gaylord Says:

                    Slinging Lead,

                    I also love war movies. A squeamish relative once asked why I like war movies or any movie with violence. It’s really simple: I like to see the good guys win. That doesn’t always happen in life, so I watch movies that remind me that good wins, evil loses.

                    Your list of movies includes some I’ve never seen, and they’re now on my list to rent.

                    Two of my favorite war movies are “Patton” & “Sergeant York.”

                    Edith

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    And BB I have to ask. First this is the topic of the question I want to ask. You said these guns were bell ringers and parlor guns.

    The front sight on the gun shines as a target sight along with the adjustable rear peep sight. Which by the way looks simple but very effective and well made for the purpose.

    But here’s the question. And it is more related to the history of what the gun was used for.

    Was there some sort of competition involved with the bell ringers and parlor shooting as well as field use?

    Oh and I did do my homework assignment. And you did mention the different distances that they shot the guns at. But since it was a parlor gun. Wasn’t there some kind of reward if you were the best for that day? :)

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      GF1,

      You have asked the million-dollar question. “What was this gun used for?”

      The answer is I don’t know. And I don’t know anyone who does know.

      Let’s examine the facts. First, I never said anything about this gun being used as a bell-ringer. Others may have said that — not me.

      This is a gun that has a Tyrolean stock that is hands-down the best stock for offhand target shooting. It is very expensive to make, as I tried to point out in the report by mentioning what a large butt blank had to be used.

      Second, it has sights that are second to none for their time. That rear peep is not cruder — it is equal to anything Feinwerkbau puts out today. The only thing it doesn’t have is click detents and a scale to go with them, to tell you where you have adjusted the sight. But the adjustments are actually finer than any we see today.

      Third, there is an expensive double-set trigger mechanism on the gun.

      Why would you put all that precision on a .25 caliber gun, when that is the worst smallbore caliber for accuracy? And, on top of that, the gun is a smoothbore!

      In my opinion, this has to be a dart gun — and the darts are better than anything we see today.

      Even so, I find it hard to understand how such a gun could be made after BSA came out with a precision rifled air rifle in 1906.

      I have read the literature which is pathetic on the subject of these guns. There are innuendos about pointed pellets and even round balls, which is crazy talk in my opinion.

      This rifle appears to me to be a Stradivarius violin to which someone has affixed an electronic pickup for greater volume! A Ferrari with a 3-point hitch for a plow! A Suzuki Hayabusa with a sidecar!

      B.B.

  • BG_Farmer Says:

    BB,
    That is one of my favorite vintage airgun you’ve shown on this blog. It definitely gives me some ideas for a Kentucky style springer — never thought of that cocking lever setup. I think lead balls and/or a variety of pellets (do they make lightweight .25 cal. pellets?) might be worth a try, sometime, or it may well be a dart gun, although it really seems overbuilt for that, unless I just have a completely incorrect idea of what dart guns usually were. The harsh firing cycle might be nothing more than a ragged leather seal. Looking forward to finding out more about it — don’t put off part 2 forever, please!

    That double trigger is actually probably the more common configuration for some times and places. Terminology varies, but it sometimes called double trigger, single lever, as there is no bar (lever) connecting the front trigger to the sear, so it can only be fired if set first. Still used in some target rifles, although the double-lever type is preferred for field use, so that there is a “non-hair-trigger” option in case of cold, numb hands and/or gloves. Also useful for uncocking a lock on a MLer. I don’t see it being a particular liability for this one. Whatever its use was, “practical” is not likely the primary consideration, although I bet it was fun!

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    So BB what did the darts look like that your gun might of shot? Do you by chance have one so you could show on Part 2.
    I remember the ones that came with the Crosman guns to be metal with I believe nylon feathers if I remember right. And the feathers were multi colored. And I think they were only in .177 cal. Aint that right? Do you remember the Crosman darts?

    • Gunfun1 Says:

      BB
      I was trying to remember about the Crosman guns that I thought shot darts. So I searched it and found that it was probably a Daisy pistol that shot the darts. And they were .177 cal. Or that is probably the gun that the darts came with.
      But I’m pretty sure I shot the darts in my Crosman 760 also. So I can’t remember really who introduced them with their gun at that time. But I remember them and I shot them.

      But here is something else that came up with the search. The old cork guns. Do you remember them? I forgot all about those. I had some when I was a kid. They were cool. And I can remember now I got in trouble shooting the house cat when I was real young. I think maybe 5 years old?

      Now that I start thinking about it there was all kinds of air and spring guns made throughout time. And I still like those automatic air guns that you could shoot when the carnivals came to town. You had to shoot the star out of the paper then you won a prize. That was were I hung out at when they were in town. Cool stuff.

      And BB back to your Bugelspanner gun. How cool would that be to have a shooting room at your house. Have a little Friday night get together and shoot some guns (in the house at that).
      And I would be all up for that. Oh but wait a minute. I do that now. But out side. I think I need to get me a Bugelspanner room set up in the house. But the next step is to find the gun. :)

      • B.B. Pelletier Says:

        GF1,

        I did something very similar to your Bugelspanner room. Maybe I’ll tell you the story someday.

        B.B.

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      GF1,

      Thank you for giving me an idea of what to put in Part 2. I’ll talk about darts.

      Yes, I have many airgun darts, but only the modern ones made in the U.S. after 1950.

      The real darts are something you have never seen and their accuracy is legendary.

      B.B.

      • leh Says:

        Tom:

        I’ve got some original prewar German darts in .25″. I’ll get some to you for testing.

        P.S.-Beautiful rifle!!! (I’m jealous!)

        Larry

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          Larry,

          You should really be the one writing this report. But if I could see those pre-war darts, maybe I could make something equivalent?

          Thanks for your help!

          B.B.

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        BB
        I would definitely be interested in seeing the darts when you do part 2.

        And maybe a few bits and pieces about your shooting room. That would fit in with the subject of the Bugelspanner shooting rooms also. That would be a interesting part 2 if you could get it all to fit in one article.

  • ajvenom Says:

    Hello again,

    I finally got some time off from work…..I have been working a lot. Things are slightly better now and I can finally see a little light at the end of the long tunnel.

    I just wanted to say what a beautiful airgun. It would be hard to pass up an airgun like that one.

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