Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel CO2 blowback airsoft kit: Part 3

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

Part 1
Part 2

Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel airsoft pistol
The Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel pistol is a competition airsoft gun in a box!

Today is accuracy day for the Tanfoglio Gold Custom CO2 blowback airsoft kit gun, but it’s just the first of many tests. An airsoft gun with adjustable Hop-up, or BAXS in this case, has to be adjusted to shoot its best. I’ve never adjusted a gun with BAXS, but I’ve adjusted plenty of them with Hop-up and that is how it always happens. The gun never shoots its best right out of the box. I’m assuming the BAXS is the same.

All I did today was find out which BBs are worth continuing with and which aren’t. As it turned out, I got good results with several 0.20-gram BBs, which is what the manufacturer recommends for this gun. I also did well with one 0.25-gram BB.

I’ll warn you right now, the targets you’re about to see are not very impressive. They look terrible, in fact. If you’re used to good groups from pellet guns, these are going to seem hopeless. But they do show small differences between the good BBs and those that aren’t worth pursuing, and that was all I wanted to do today.

I shot off a bag rest with the butt of the gun (the bottom of the magazine well) rested against the bag. I also tried holding it ahead of the bag and just resting my arms on the bag, but it moved around too much. Maybe next time I’ll play with some different holds.

I shot only 5-shot groups today because I was testing a large number of different BBs. In all, I tested over 10 different brands, but only the most promising will be shown here.

Sight failure!
Before I get to that, however, there was another problem not related to the gun. The Swiss Arms red dot sight that was bundled with the pistol quit working suddenly during the first session. It wasn’t the battery because that’s still good. So, I dismounted it and installed a Walther Competition II Top Point red dot sight┬áthat I got from Pyramyd Air for testing;┬ábut some funny-bunny at the factory had left the sight turned to high power, and the battery was dead. I replaced it with a fresh battery but the sight failed to respond. So — two red dot sights out of the running even before we start. That was what ticked me off yesterday and caused the rewriting of my blog.

Fortunately, I have an older Tasco Pro Point red dot sight that has functioned perfectly on many airguns over the past 15 years. That one went on for this test, and everything was good again.

Quick rundown
Sight-in was a bit frantic because I unknowingly chose the least accurate 0.20 BB for the job. The gun doesn’t like the Air Venturi Pro CQBBs that weigh 0.20-grams. It took me about 10 shots to get sort of on target, but it wasn’t until I switched ammo that I found out what was happening. More on that in a moment, now for the quick rundown.

This pistol hates 0.12-gram BBs. They couldn’t even stay on the trap at 10 meters, and I was using the UTG Accushot Pellet and BB trap. Forget staying on target! This things were hitting the backer board that was behind the trap. Fortunately, I expected something like that, so I didn’t waste much time. BBs this light are usually good only in lower-powered spring-piston guns.

The pistol also performs only average with the 0.28-gram BBs. Though I only tried one brand, the TSD Tactical 0.28-gram BBs, I can tell from experience that this BB is too heavy for the pistol.

That leaves 0.25-gram and 0.20-gram BBs. The gun shot the best group with Air Venturi Pro CQBBs 0.25-gram BBs, but it was 2.864 inches for 5 shots. See what I mean about not getting too excited?

Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel airsoft pistol Air Venturi 0.25-gram BB target 10 meters
Five shots of 0.25-gram Air Venturi Pro CQBBs went into 2.864 inches at 10 meters.

The second-best group of 5 shots was a 0.20-gram Marui Black BB that Pyramyd Air doesn’t carry. Five of those went into 2.875 inches at 10 meters, which is really too close to call. The round BBs tear holes that are indistinct and measurement may be off by a lot. Fortunately, the pictures don’t lie.

Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel airsoft pistol Marui-Black-0.20-gram BB target 10 meters
Five Marui Black 0.20-gram BBs went into 2.875 inches at 10 meters. It was the second-best group of this test, but also too close to call. It may be just as good as the first group.

But it was another 0.20-gram BB, the TSD Stealth that’s apparently no longer made that tipped the scales on this day. The first group I shot was spread out wide, but it was just one BB that did it. The other four were in 1.809 inches. I was so encouraged that I shot a second group; and, again, 4 BBs went into 2.229 inches and the fifth shot opened the group several more inches. I think this might be the most accurate BB after the BAXS gets adjusted, or at least 0.20-gram BBs of some other brand might turn out to be the best. If not, the 0.25-gram Air Venturi BBs might get better with the adjustment.

Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel airsoft pistol TSD-Stealth-0.20-gram BB target 10 meters
Four of five TSD Stealth BBs went into 1.809 inches. This BB shows promise and may do a lot better after BAXS adjustment.

Don’t get discouraged!
My time with airsoft has taught me to first look for the best BB, and then spend more time adjusting the Hop-up to maximize its potential. That’s what lies ahead of us for this pistol. I won’t guarantee the gun will be much more accurate than this; but if past experience holds true, it will be!

Shooting characteristics
Believe me, I do understand that this is not a target pistol. But to win as a competition gun, it has to place its shots close together. IPSC for airsoft doesn’t shoot as far as 10 meters, so this test is extreme, but it’s also quite good at showing what the gun is capable of.

The gun’s recoil is sharp when you’re aiming carefully. And the trigger that I loved before is still preforming well. All in all, I’m a little disappointed that I can’t show you better groups than these; but if the BAXS works as it should, I should be able to reduce these by a lot.

45 Responses to “Tanfoglio Gold Custom Eric Grauffel CO2 blowback airsoft kit: Part 3”

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    Do you plan on any bio BB’s after you get the BAXS adjusted?

    And by the way what does BAXS stand for?

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    Well, like you said, nothing for me to get excited about. Not too bad though. I still don’t see me getting into airsoft, even if the groups tighten up with tuning. If someone sets up one of those ranges, I might reconsider though.

  • /Dave Says:

    Not bad so far for a combat pistol. I’m sure that in airsoft, just as in real combat, reliability factors in heavily. Accuracy doesn’t have to be target pistol perfect, but you just can’t afford to have fail to feeds, jams, or fail to fires. I’m interested in seeing up close how that BAXS is adjusted.

    /Dave

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      /Dave,

      That’s my plan.

      B.B.

    • JTinAL Says:

      I’m looking forward to the BAXS adjustment as well.
      The contact with the BB must be very minimal if the barrel
      has even half way decent tolerance.
      I wonder how much velocity is given up by using a bumper to
      impart back spin.Probably no more than a choked pellet rifle barrel
      and hopefully the benefit outweighs the slight negative of a loss
      of speed.

      • B.B. Pelletier Says:

        JTinAL,

        Nothing is sacrificed, because with a backspin, the BB travels with less drop. Hence you get much farther shots without adding velocity.

        B.B.

        • JTinAL Says:

          Thanks BB.
          This is opening up a whole new area of ballistics for me
          that I’ve never considered before.

          • Gunfun1 Says:

            That is what I’m interested in also.

            And BB I know what you mean. I would be aggravated also if I had only one sight fail.

            Also I hate when you think you got everything covered when you make a order on a new gun. And you cant wait for the gun to come so you can shoot it. And find out you forgot something when you ordered or it ain’t working out right.

            I got a rifle and scope one time and new it did not have the rings included. But knew I had some. So I wasn’t to worried. Well the rings I had wouldn’t allow the scope to clear the magazine. That took about 2 more days to get straightened out. Then I finaly got to shoot the rifle.

            But yep just one little thing like that can mess up your whole day.

          • B.B. Pelletier Says:

            JTinAL,

            It’s not really ballistics in this case. It’s aerodynamics. The BB flies like a fastball.

            B.B.

            • Gunfun1 Says:

              BB
              What I had in my mind was something like when I was a kid throwing a wiffle ball. Depending on how you held the open slots. It made the ball go in different directions when you threw it.

              But maybe it should be compared more to how you hit a ping pong ball with the paddle. You can put some crazy spin on a ping pong ball and make it doe some crazy stuff in flight depending on how you hit the ball.

              How much does the hop up or BAXS usually tighten up the groups typically?

  • Ben brown Says:

    A really good example of what spin accomplishes is to see a golf ball with no dimples struck. The ball goes out a few yards and just dies (dives).

  • John Says:

    This is a common problem that makes airsoft so aggravating to me. When you fire them you are “making it rain”, but if you hit the target it’s pure luck, not skill even if you normally have uncanny accuracy with everything you touch, an airsoft gun will defeat your very best efforts. Since these things are normally used for shooting at each other in airsoft battles they do frustrate people. They can be rocking 700 rounds per minute and have you dead in their sights and they are mad because you refuse to9 admit defeat. Well if you aren’t taking hits you don’t surrender.

  • Ben brown Says:

    Anyone interested in how airsoft is used for IPSC training should go to http://www.bamairsoft.com. Good videos and description of the reduced targets and distances used. The airsoft battles don’t interest me or the BAM folks in the slightest.

  • /Dave Says:

    Does BAXS/hop-up work with normal .17 cal bb’s? Has anyone ever tried to develop something like that for regular bb guns?

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      /Dave,

      To the best of my knowledge, Hop Up has never been tried with steel BBs.

      B.B.

      • /Dave Says:

        Seems like it wouldn’t be too hard to do. Drill and tap a small hole near the muzzle and thread in a piece of o-ring stock to just barely protrude into the barrel. That should impart some backspin when the bb passes. Whether it would be enough to do any good is another question. Might be worth a try though… Hmmm, another experiment for a cheap bb gun!

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          /Dave
          We have these little plungers at work called Ball screws. They are about a half inch long with threads on the outside and a screwdriver slot on top. On the bottom it has a little crimped in steel ball with a spring on the inside resting against the ball.

          It could be done like you said with the threaded barrel and then thread one of these in. Then you could adjust the pressure like you said. They are made with different weight springs available also.

          Maybe your idea would be better though. Maybe the o-ring would last longer. That is a interesting thought though.

  • Matt61 Says:

    I’ve heard about red dot sights that it’s a case of go big or stay home. All of the cheapo versions out there are not worth the trouble. Even though the Aimpoint sights have a simple reticle, I like the way the battery lasts for years.

    So what exactly is the distance of IPSC airsoft shooting if it’s under 10 meters? There’s not much room to get shorter.

    Matt61

    • klentz Says:

      Matt61,

      I have an Aimpoint Comp ML3. Best red dot sight I’ve owned.

      I also have an Ultradot Matchdot and at 1/3 the price of the aimpoint it gives up nothing. I would never buy another aimpoint but would buy another ultradot Matchdot instead.

      Kevin

      • Bub Says:

        Aimpoints are no doubt the best red dots made. I have a T1 and the thing is rock solid. Eotech also makes a nice unit especially the new ones that take the A123 batteries, however I personally find the reticle a little busy for my taste. A good quality less expensive micro, the Bushnell TRS-25 is worth looking at if anyone is interested. They typically can be found for under $100.

        • Fred DPRONJ Says:

          I second what Bub says. I have the Bushnell pro red dot on my. 22 target pistol and have been very pleased with it. The Pro has 4 different recycles or dots to choose from in addition to the brightness selection. I don’t believe PA sells this higher end model, however.

          Fred DPRoNJ

    • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

      According to the target comparison video at BAM Airsoft, to give you an idea of the relative reduction in distance, a steel star placed a minimum of 23 feet away in a USPSA match, would imply placing the Airsoft star at 9 feet to get the same perspective as viewed over the sights. (The video makes the “perspective over the sights” point pretty effectively.)

      On one hand, that seems awfully close to me. But perspective is perspective, and if the smaller target does present the right perspective at closer range, the “minute of target” requirement does probably deserve an adjustment in my usual thinking. :-)

  • Mark N Says:

    B.B. and all,

    Did you see this years Punkin Chunkin? The winning air cannon used what I believe to be a type of hop up on their pumpkin launcher. 4 thousand 6 hundred and some odd feet with an 8 to 10 pound pumpkin. New record and the first to use the hop up that I have seen.

    I know nothing about airsoft or hop up except what I have read about here. The chunkers used some compressed air to impart the backspin on the pumpkin as it exited the barrel.

    Just FYI,
    Mark N

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Mark,

      Thanks for that update. I wasn’t aware they were using Hop Up, but it makes sense, doesn’t it?

      B.B.

  • dangerdongle Says:

    Bet if I used my sister-in-law for the weighted side of a trebuchet I could chunk a punkin all the way to Santa’s workshop.

    On a serious note, the wood-stocked Marauder is no longer listed on Crosman’s site, and only the .177 & .22 remain at PA.
    The .25 was to be my next purchase, but NOT the plastic version.
    Am I too late? Did I miss out?

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      DD,

      Pyramyd Air still has wood-stocked Marauders available. And there will be a wood-stocked version of the synthetic-stocked gun next year, though you can count on it costing as much as the synthetic stocked rifle.

      B.B.

  • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

    Well, very interesting, certainly. Will very much look forward to what we learn from the BAXS adjustment process.

    B.B., you spoke here about the TSD ammo showing promise, based on multiple strings with a tighter core group and a single, statistically significant flier that was not called. If I’m reading you right, you considered this more encouraging than other groups that were both rounder and smaller for all five shots. Can you articulate what it is you’re seeing there, or what you’re expecting? I’m having trouble following the logic. Have you found that hop-up adjustment works most effectively on high amplitude fliers, rather than generally tightening groups overall?

    Also, here’s a question that you might already be planning to cover in the next part of the primer, so no worries if you want to push that off. Let’s say, here, that two and a half inches plus, and not impressively round, is the best you manage to get out of this pistol. Might a custom replacement barrel be a possible ticket to a significant improvement? I know that some firearms benefit tremendously from even drop-in replacement barrels; might the same be true here? From everything I’ve seen and read so far, it certainly seems like the platform is capable of impressive performance; if the trigger and consistency of the powerplant are there, can a barrel make the difference?

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Kevin,

      I’m going to beg off of trying to answer your first question because I don’t know why I said that, either. ;)

      As for the groups that aren’t round, I’ve found with airsoft that that is a symptom of the Hop Up being out of adjustment. If I get a small group that isn’t round, I expect Hop-Up to make it smaller and rounder. Does that make sense?

      Yes, replacement barrels do make a difference, but not with guns like this one. They come into play with the long guns we call sniper rifles. They are the guns the tighter barrels are made for. I doubt there is a tighter barrels for this gun, so I’ll have to make it shoot with the barrel it came with.

      B.B.

  • SeanAT Says:

    I have the version of this gun with the adjustable iron sights, sans compensator (shorter barrel?). Using .30g aluminum BBs I can get 1.5″ groups at 10yds with the occasional flyer. I did put a target crown on the barrel just because I could. Not sure if that really helped any.

    All of these KWC/Cybergun models are available in 4.5mm steel bb versions. I get a lot better grouping with the 4.5mm KWC M1911 A1 TAC (Blackwater R2).

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      SeanAT,

      The compensator does wiggle even when it is as tight as it will go. Maybe I should take it off?

      We’ll see.

      I do have the BB gun to test as well.

      B.B.

  • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

    I understand that I’m coming back here well after most of the traffic has died down, but it seemed more polite to ask this question on one of the Airsoft posts. (Tom/Edith, if there is a different preferred protocol, please do advise and I’ll be happy to use it. :-)

    Is it just me, or is something up with BAM Airsoft’s website over at least the last few days? In the Firefox browser, it returns what looks like a blank page (there is some HTML source, but I haven’t taken a close look at it yet), and in the Chrome or IE browsers, it serves up a response that smells like a domain squatter to me.

    Their website would seem to be a vital part of their business, and it seems strange that I’ve now got the same response for several days.

    Does anyone know the story there?

    • Edith Gaylord Says:

      Kevin,

      Looks like their website is no longer owned by them, & the domain name is probably up for sale. They may be giving up on having a separate airsoft site or getting out of the airsoft business.

      Edith

      • Kevin Wilmeth Says:

        Thanks for the intel there. Boy, that would be a shame. It looks like their targets were well designed, and I’d already been planning on a few.

Leave a Reply


2 + 7 =

NEW: Dan Wesson pellet revolvers!
Dan Wesson pellet revolvers

You wanted Dan Wesson revolvers that could shoot pellets, so we ordered them. Six-shot pellet shooters that so closely copy the firearm, you'll be stunned by the realism. An excellent way to hone trigger control and maintain accuracy with your firearm -- without range fees, expensive ammo or leaving your house. Pre-order yours now. Get it. Shoot it. Love it!

Ka-BOOM!
Airburst MegaBoom reactive targets

Airburst MegaBoom bases transform ordinary plastic soda & water bottles into booming targets that deliver up to 150 decibels when punctured. Get the base and charge your own plastic bottles or get the MegaBoom bottles filled with BoomDust that mists like smoke when the bottle is punctured. Low-pressure air pump and blast guard accessories also available. A real blast!

Archives