El Gamo 300: Part 3

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

Part 1
Part 2

El Gamo 300
El Gamo 300 was a low-priced quality breakbarrel from the 1960s and ’70s.

Before I begin, blog reader HiveSeeker has asked me for some photography tips. Not that I’m a great picture-taker, but I do have some tips on how to photograph airguns. For starters, he wondered about photographing dark guns like his Winchester MP4. In the past, I’ve done several reports on airgun photography, but we may have enough new readers that it would be of interest, again. What do you think?

Okay, let’s get started. Today, we’re looking at the accuracy of the El Gamo 300.

This report covers:

• Poor man’s R7
• Trigger
• Firing behavior
• Accuracy
• First pellet
• Summary

A poor man’s R7
The El Gamo 300 was supposed to be my “poor man’s Beeman R7.” It was supposed to have the power and accuracy of the R7 (which is a modified HW 30S) at a cost that was far less. At the time, when the 300 was selling (the late 1970s), the R7 was sold with open sights, so the two airguns were comparable. The HW 30S still does has open sights today; so in that respect, the comparison can still be made.

As it turned out, the 300 is about 100 f.p.s. slower than an R7. The cocking is easier, but this rifle isn’t in the same power class, so any comparison suffers.

Adjustable trigger
Alas, the 300′s trigger is much simpler and only minimally adjustable, while the R7/30S both have the famous Rekord, which is one of the finest sporting airgun triggers of all time. I did try to adjust it, but the biggest thing that seemed to change was the length of the first-stage travel. The pull did drop, but only by a little. When the first-stage travel was shortened it did increase the length and creep of stage two; so I guess you could say it does adjust the pull to that extent, but the results were not very encouraging. It’s an acceptable trigger for an inexpensive spring rifle, but far below the Rekord for performance and adjustability.

One reason I wanted to get a 300 is because I believed it had the same action and trigger of the El Gamo 68 XP. That rifle’s trigger is very adjustable; and, while it gets unreliable when you take it down too light, it’s very crisp and positive when adjusted to a normal sporting level (3-5 lb. pull weight). The 300 trigger can be adjusted even lighter with safety, but it still retains some creep in stage two.

Firing behavior
The 300 is a buzzy gun. I could no doubt fix it with a little tuning, but right now the buzz is its most annoying feature. When this gun was new in the 1970s, nearly every air rifle felt the same and there was no basis for comparison. However, in the past 20 years, both airgun design and tuning tricks have improved so much that the vintage guns now suffer in comparison.

Accuracy
For today’s test, I shot this rifle at 10 meters from a rested position. I used the traditional artillery hold with the rifle rested on my off hand, back by the triggerguard. As you’ll recall from my earlier reports, I felt the rear sight notch was too narrow for the front blade. Well, when the target was illuminated by a 500-watt lamp, it was easy to see the whole front sight and some light on either side. That made aiming precise when I didn’t believe it could be.

The rifle cocked easily; and when the barrel closed, the detent locked it tight. One of our readers mentioned that breakbarrels with opposing chisels at the breech seem to lock up tighter and with more authority than do those whose chisel detent rides over a round pin. I have to mention that the 300 has the double chisel arrangement and the reader is right. When this barrel closes, it sounds like a bank vault.

El Gamo 300 chisel breech
Looking down at the open breech, we see the chisel lock (right) that engages the spring-loaded chisel detent on the baseblock. This arrangement makes the breech lock up more positively than if the chisel detent had to go over a round crosspin. That hole above the chisel lock is the air transfer port.

First pellet
The first pellet I tried was the RWS Hobby wadcutter. I used a 6 o’clock hold and squeezed off the first shot, which surprised me when I saw the pellet had hit the 10-ring almost in the center. After that, I just shot the next 9 rounds without looking again. When I looked after all 10 shots had been fired, I saw a nice round 0.588-inch group in the center of the bull. That was a good start!

El Gamo 300 Hobby target
Not only is this 0.588-inch group of 10 Hobbys nice and round, it’s also centered in the bull. That makes it appear even better than it is. This is the best group the El Gamo 300 shot at 10 meters.

Next, I shot 10 Air Arms Falcons. The first shot hit the 9 ring, and I didn’t have to look again until it was all over. Ten shots landed in 0.629 inches, but 9 of them were in 0.41 inches. While this group is slightly larger than the Hobbys, I would say the Falcons are probably more accurate, just based on those 9 tight shots.

El Gamo 300 Falcon target
This group of 10 Air Arms Falcon pellets looks amazing, though at 0.629 inches between centers it’s larger than the Hobby group. Without that one pellet at the bottom, there are 9 in 0.41 inches.

The last pellet I tested was the 7.9-grain Crosman Premier lite. I saw the first shot go into the 8-ring so I stopped looking until it was over. This time, though, the pellets spread out more, and the group measures 0.771 inches between centers. From the open appearance of this group, I can tell that Premier lites are not the best pellet for the El Gamo 300.

El Gamo 300 Premier lite target
Crosman Premier lites scattered more than the other two pellets. Ten made this 0.771-inch group. The group looks larger than it really is because the pellet on the right tore the target wider than where it penetrated.

Summary
The El Gamo 300 is not a poor man’s R7. It is what it is — a nice, inexpensive spring rifle that offers a lot of value for the price. Even today, when the used guns sell for $50-100, they’re still a bargain. But they’re not in the same class as a CZ Slavia 630/631, which really is a poor man’s R7.

I’ve been fortunate to be able to test several air rifles in this same vintage class over the past few years. Some of them, like the Diana 25 with the ball-bearing sear, are superlative airguns that withstand the test of time. Their very design makes them perform at a higher level than most guns. Others, such as the Falke model 70, promise the moon but fail to deliver. This El Gamo 300 is closer to the latter guns, although its low price does make it an ideal candidate for home gunsmithing for the careful hobbyist.

No doubt the 300 can be modified and tuned to be a wonderful air rifle; and when it is, it’ll have the accuracy needed to carry it off. But there are other airguns that are inherently nice just as they come from the factory. A 300 is probably the cheaper way to go, but expect to spend some time and sweat equity to turn it into what you really want.

63 Responses to “El Gamo 300: Part 3”

  • 103David Says:

    On photography;
    It’s not so hard if you adhere to a VERY few rules.
    1.) If you insist on using incandescent light (as in light bulbs, as opposed to flourescents or lEDs,) go to the WB (white balance) setting and select the shining light bulb setting. This will pitch a blue filter on your image capture to compensate for the very orange color of incandescent bulbs. This is very easy to do, but very hard to remember to undo it when you’re back to regular picture taking. If all your pictures are now too blue, you forgot. (Contemplate b.b.’s occasional photo of his bright orange vintage Crosman M-1 Carbine to see why you want to adjust the white balance.

  • Mitchell in Dayton Says:

    The double chisel detent is probably my favorite arrangement for breakbarrel lockups, short of positive latch types. The single chisel on the round pin arrangement is probably my least favorite part of my Benjiman Titan NP, as it appears to have the hole already for an actual chisel in the compression tube, they just didnt use it and instead opted for the cheap-o crosspin. Design revisions like that really make me scratch my head, how much could it possibly be saving them money wise to do that and consequently throw the repeatability of the barrel lockup into question? Also hope to see what comes of the how the blog changed your life responses. I know its meant alot to me for these last few years, especially now that I started regularly posting, so I’m interested in seeing what others experiences have been.

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    Oliver,

    I am quite envious of your collection! I have become an admirer of Lincoln Jefferies since I acquired my BSA this past Fall. It has been very difficult not to buy up every one of them I learn about. I dream of the day when I will be able to acquire one of his early pistols. The quality and craftsmanship that is exhibited in these early air rifles are incredible! To build an air rifle to these standards today would cost well over one thousand dollars, possibly two.

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    RB & GF1,

    I want to hear more of your impressions of your HWs. With top quality pricing, I would expect top quality craftsmanship. Are you paying for such or just the name?

    • RB Says:

      RidgeRunner,

      I like my HW50 .22 caliber rifle.

      I mounted a Hawke 4x, and the rifle is lightweight and handles well. The metal and wood is well finished.

      I’ve fired less than 100 H&N Green pellets. Five went into 7/8″ at 25 yards. Velocity was 625fps for 11fpe.

      The rifle did not seem very sensitive to hold.

      The rifle takes effort to cock. It’s not a youth rifle.

      The muzzle report is quiet.

      My only complaint is that the rifle had a loud “Hmmmm” on firing that has become a louder, vibrating twang. It needs attention.

      Hope this is of assistance.

      Gunfun1, what say you?

      RB

    • Gunfun1 Says:

      Well here is the up date on the HW50S.

      Unboxed it last night when I got home. Nice wood on mine. Kind of medium dark brown with darker slightly brownish red lines. And it almost tiger stripes vertically on the bottom of the stock at the muzzle end of the gun and then turns into horizontal lines and ends up tiger stripes on the top of the stock at the butt of the stock. Hard to explain and its not as defined in places. But definitely a better looking stock then my Diana 54 air king. And the bluing is normal. It doesn’t stand out as much as a Air Arms bluing does.

      I tryed to use the open sites on it in the garage last night at 10 yards and my eyes just wouldn’t do it.
      So I threw one of these on it just because its the only scope that’s not on a gun right now.

      http://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/Gamo_3_9x50_Rifle_Scope_Illuminated_Glass_Etched_Duplex_Reticle_1_4_MOA_1_Tube_3_8_Dovetail_Mount/4384

      And funny that scope is not available anymore. But its clear. But here is what will go on it. A Hawke scope. They seem to work the best for me. So I will be ordering this one soon.

      http://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/Hawke_Optics_3_12x44_AO_Varmint_Rifle_Scope_1_2_Mil_Dot_Reticle_1_4_MOA_1_Tube/4431

      And here is the rings I used.
      http://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/Leapers_Accushot_1_Rings_High_9_5_11_5mm_Dovetail/635

      But as far as 10 yards in the garage with the Gamo scope on 3 power it was hard to get the reticle or target focused good. (to close for the scope) So it was kind of fuzzy but I was putting one on top of the other every shot and that was sitting down in a chair and resting my arms on my knees.

      The gun is quiet when it shoots. All I hear is I guess the spring slightly. And my gun has hardly any buzz at all. I couldn’t even feel it in my cheek. (I can with the Steoger X20S). And the gun has a very light backwards kick and hardly any forward kick. And it does slightly raise the muzzle when it fires. So I’m very happy about that.

      And the gun is easier to cock than the Stoeger and the to 2 Benjamin nitro piston XL rifles I had. And since I’m talking about the cocking right now. I don’t like the automatic safety. Never did like that on a gun. That has made me miss shots when I have been hunting before.

      Oh and I forgot the gun is very easy to hold and I tryed various holds and it liked to be held a little light to the shoulder and on my trigger hand with just slight pressure with my thumb directly on top of the stock. And the gun didn’t care if I held my front hand with my thumb on side of the stock and fingers on the other side. Or just wresting in the palm of my hand. So the gun is pretty friendly to shoot.

      And as far as this morning went. Just sighted the scope at 50 yards like I do all my guns on 9 or 10 power. Then after I get it sighted I turn down and shoot at 6 power. That just works out best for my eyes because I shoot 90% of the time with both eyes open.

      Didn’t chrony the gun yet and was just shooting at a blank piece of paper with 1/2” diameter circles drawn on it. But it looks to be like about a 1.125 inch group out of 3 groups I shot with 10 shots fired at each circle I drew at 50 yards. And I was hitting the Caldwell 1.5” metal spinner target I got at 50 yards bench resting the gun every shot. I put a half a tin of these through it already also. and I think I will be able to get better groups after I get more use to the gun.

      http://www.pyramydair.com/s/p/JSB_Diabolo_Exact_Heavy_177_Cal_10_34_Grains_Domed_500ct/388

      And I almost forgot about the trigger. Its nice but the first stage is a little shorter than I like. It travels about half way then hits the second stage. But most guns I don’t like the way the first stage is set also. I like mine to go about 2/3rds of the way on the first stage before it hits the second stage. But I will just leave it set as it is for now. Maybe after I shoot the gun more I will see about adjusting it.

      And I almost forgot. Absolutely no barrel droop. I’m right in the middle of the scope adjustment. Maybe one turn up from the middle.

      But yep you all were right I do love it. I’m happy. :)

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        I just remembered something after I read through todays blog. The HW50S had only a slight smell of burning for about 10 or so shots. No smoke at all.

        So I guess that’s ok. I don’t remember my 54 air king smoking or burning either. The Stoeger did a bit. And the Gamo whisper I had along while back really smoked and smelt like the bacon was frying.

        I just thought I would throw that out there.

      • Reb Says:

        Congratulations! Wow! Close to $700 on that setup.The best of everything.This should be very satisfying for a long time, for the whole family of course :) I admit I was a little perplexed when you didn’t go with the TX200 but I think I see why now.
        Enjoy!
        Reb

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          Reb
          Just imagine how much the TX200 would be. Plus the cost of a good scope.

          And yes I hope it lasts for good long time. And I will have to look up when I get home tonight how long I have had my 54.air king for. But it still shoots great

      • twotalon Says:

        GF1

        So far , so good. At least no immediate problems. Let’s see some chrono results when you get them .

        Your pellet choice may be a tad heavy .

        twotalon

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          TT
          Hopefully I will chrony it tomorrow morning before I go to work. Yes they asked me to tomorrow and Saturday.

          And those 10.3 JSB’s shoot and chrony like they are 8 grn pellets. I think its the shape of the pellet.

          And they are shooting a nice flat trajectory. Were my targets are placed is by the woods were it starts to go up a hill. Its shady there at different parts of the day and it acts like a black back ground. If its sunny outside I can see the pellet flying.

          If you havn’t tryed those JSB pellets you should once. I like them. They are my number 1 pellet for .177 cal. guns. They work nice in the wind also.

          • twotalon Says:

            GF1

            My R9 and the 97K do not consider them first choice . Been there a long time ago.

            twotalon

            • Gunfun1 Says:

              TT
              Whats your #1 pellet for your guns?

              • twotalon Says:

                GF1

                I have two “Holy Grail ” rifles in the .177 R9 and 97K . The peak performers are……FTT 4.50 or 4.51 depending on which tin. Some times the 4.50 can be just a tad smaller than I like .
                I get the tightest velocity spreads and the most power out of them at the same time, and they are the best shooters. The whole works .
                The R7s have been the best with the power plant with RS, but might possibly do just a bit better with a different pellet….while giving up a significant amount of power . But they do good enough that I am in no hurry to change .

                Since the HW50 is a bit below the R9, guess what I would try when dealing with .177 ?

                twotalon

                • Gunfun1 Says:

                  TT
                  You know how that goes with different pellets and different guns.

                  But what is strange that JSB pellet works good in my lower powered 1377 and 2240 with the different barrels as well as the 1720T,TalonSS and my wood and synthetic stock Marauders.

                  It would be hard to convince me that others might be better. But Im sure there is.I hate even shooting a different pellet in the upper end guns I just listed. I know thats a mind thing but I stick with that pellet. The 1377 and 2240 withe the other barrels is a different story.I will try different pellets in them.

      • buldawg76 Says:

        Gunfun
        Glad you like you HW50S, sounds like you almost got it broke in with the number of pellets you have already put through it. The way you described the stock make me think of the stock on my 853 as it is a light to medium brown with what I call zebra stripes close together at the front end of stock and gradually widening out toward the butt of stock. if yours is like that it is definitely good looking and unique in it appearance. My 853s stock is a nice blending of light and dark colors and is one of a kind for sure.

        It is good to get a new gun that shoots just like you want/expect right out of the box. I bet when you get your hawke scope on it and sighted in it will be even a better feeling and more fun shooting gun than it is now and I can tell you already are happy with it.

        I agree with you about BB not writing about the 124, just don’t seem right.
        Buldawg

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          buldawg
          I do like the gun alot so far. I didnt want to put it down this morning. Had to stop and eat and get ready for work.

          And I definatly like the 1/2 mildot side wheel Hawke scopes alot. So yes I think I will be able to do a better job with the Hawke scope.

          But I think the gun will get smoother even more. I think it will really start shining after it starts getting closer to around 1500 or so pellets through it.

          Hopefully I will chrony it tomorrow. But the wsy its shooting Im thinking it will be mid to low 700′s with the 10.3 JSB’s. Will see. :)

      • RB Says:

        Gunfun1,

        Sounds like you have a great little rifle, and a lot of skill behind the trigger.

        Well done, Sir.

        RB

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          RB thanks.
          And not really skill. I just made alot of mistakes through out time. But I’m learning everyday. :)

          But what about your gun? Are you happy that you got it? Truthfully I was worried that I spent the money for mine and it wasnt going to be what I thought it would be like.

          Are you just target shooting with yours or will you use it for other types of shooting.

  • twotalon Says:

    B.B.

    The picture of the open breech looks a lot like an R9 .

    twotalon

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    This was sent to the wrong address, so I’m posting it here. I will answwer it below.

    Hello Tom,
    I recently purchased a spring piston air rifle a uramex surge too be exact. I had never owned a spring air rifle before. I was in the army and I consider myself a good marksman. For the life of me I could not get this rifle too shoot groups smaller than an inch and a half. That was until I read your article on the artillery hold. I would just like today thank you for the information. I was about to give up on the air gun sport altogether without giving it much of a chance. I do still have a few questions though. When I’m out hunting and I’m shooting off hand and not over a bench with a rest how would I go about doing that? I will enclose a picture of the after target.
    Thank you,
    Luke

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Luke,

      When you shoot offhand it isn’t as necessary to use the artillery hold, but you should still try to let the rifle move as much as it wants to.

      Many people support the forearm on the tips of their fingers in the offhand stance. You can also sit and support it on your forearm when you cross your arms to shoot.

      I saw your picture — I would be proud of that group[! Good shooting!

      And welcome to the blog.

      B.B.

  • twotalon Says:

    B.B.

    I sure would have liked to see this rifle do much better than it did. I know that you really wanted it at the Findlay show. It could have been much worse.

    twotalon

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      TT,

      It was curiosity that drove me to want this rifle. And now I have. I am glad to have seen the results. Now I know for sure what the rifle is like, instead of wondering and re-reading the ARH catalog text.

      This is a good thing.

      B.B.

  • zimbabwae ed Says:

    BB- It looks like this rifle is damaging the breech seal at 6 O’clock. My my milbro Diana 27 did the same thing to every O ring that I used. I finally made a leather seal and deburred the edge of the air transfer port to stop the damage to the seal. Ed

  • Reb Says:

    I don’t understand the lack of enthusiasm for these groups.They actually remind me of the ones my 953 was putting out while searching for it’s favorite pellet, which doesn’t really make that much of a difference at 10m,so long as it’s a lightweight wadcutter. I’m currently out of the standard Daisy wadcutters it is so fond of so I’ll be sighting in with 8.18 Stoeger match for now.I finally got it on paper just before dark last night.
    Keep your head up B.B.!
    Reb

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Reb,

      I do think these groups are okay, but only in the context of being shot from an inexpensive gun. You may not have been a reader when I tested the Walther LGV, but it put 10 shots into 0.35 inches at 25 yards and shot a 10-shot group smaller than an inch at 50 yards.

      http://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2013/03/walthers-new-lgv-challenger-breakbarrel-spring-air-rifle-part-6/

      B.B.

      • Reb Says:

        I feel it’s only fair to point out that the Walther you used in comparison to this $150 used rifle with open sights had the aid of that huge 6-18x50AO optic that I’m going back to study as soon as I finish this statement. By the way, would you happen to have something comparable lying around for fitting on this gun once you’ve established a good pellet for it?
        Thanksfor the link!
        Reb

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          Reb,

          Putting a scope like that on this rifle would be like putting a blown V8 into go-cart. This gun is for open sights.

          B.B.

  • Michael Says:

    B.B.,

    How should one deal with detonations in a vintage but previously unfired, youth air rifle?

    Recently I acquired another potentially “poor man’s” R7, a cute little Slavia 622 Minuteman with rifled barrel in absolutely NEW, unfired condition. The bore is as shiny as a mirror. I do not know how old it is, but it has the finger grooves along the forearm and lacks dovetail grooves for optics.

    The trigger is a bit creepy, but it has two light stages, so that is fine with me. It cocks probably two pounds harder than a Bronco, but like the Bronco, it has a VERY short cocking arc, perhaps 90 – 100 degrees. It’s shooting behavior is mild, with no vibration and very light recoil. I’ve not chronied it yet, but the three 14.2 grain RWS Super-H-Points I fired through it at 10 meters (and which did not group, not the pellet for this little guy) hit my telephone book late enough that I could hear the impact. The penetration and mushrooming tells me that for a youth rifle, it is hitting hard, however.

    It is definitely detonating. Not only do I have smoke curling out of the barrel after each loud shot, but with each shot a gust of smoke follows the pellet out of the barrel. This is bad for the piston seal, I know, but what do I do?

    Michael

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      Michael,

      A detonation is an explosion you can hear. That smoke comes from dieseling, which most spring guns do all the time. Yours is excessive, which just means the oil needs to be shot out.

      Shoot that rifle a lot! Put 500 rounds through it. It may still smell and smoke a little, but I bet the problem will be cured by then.

      B.B.

      • Michael Says:

        B.B.,

        I am familiar with dieseling, as I have owned two or three Chinese springers before, LOL. I chose the word “detonation’ because of the loudness of the thing. For a youth rifle this is LOUD.

        But I will do as you say, and I’ll also look in my ammo dump for something heavier than the .22 Hobbies and RWS pellets I know I have. I’ve gradually become something of a pellet collector without ever really meaning to.

        Thanks for your advice,

        Michael

    • kevin Says:

      Michael,

      Would recommend shooting heavier pellets like barracuda’s/kodiaks or jsb 18.1 gr until you burn off the excess lube.

      If you don’t have heavier pellets try to load and shoot two of your 14.2 gr super h points. Pay attention and make sure they’re both clearing the barrel before you shoot two more.

      kevin

    • Reb Says:

      I want one.

      • Michael Says:

        Reb,

        It seems to be a .22 version of the rifled version Slavia 618. Sweet little no-effort-to-shoot rifle.

        It didn’t come with a box, but it looks like it just left the factory floor.

        Michael

        • Reb Says:

          I had a 618 in .177 many years ago, although no powerhouse I took many dove with it inside 25 yards all one shot kills, Bird’seye accurate all day shooter!

          Reb

  • Gunfun1 Says:

    BB
    You said something on yesterdays blog about the spring guns made before the 70′s were all 12 ft. lb. guns.

    It seems that something sparked the need for more power in the 70′s. The muscle cars got the biggest engines from the factory. The government finally allowed it.

    What made the gun company’s decide that they needed to make more power. Was there a power war going on with air gun makers like the horsepower wars with the muscle cars?

    And I think I predicted that the little 300 was going to group the best with the Falcons because it had the least fps variation of all the pellets you chronyed. I think you should throw out that flyer on the Falcons and call it the winner of the pellet groups.

    But I think the 300 did a good job shooting. Doesn’t it represent what the guns were like back in the day with the lower priced economy models.

    • B.B. Pelletier Says:

      GF1,

      I have written about the airgun “horsepower” wars several times in this blog, plus I did a feature on the 4 Horsemen — the first 4 airguns to break the 800 f.p.s. barrier.

      It is an interesting story but I was asked to stop writing about the FWB 124 by several readers and since the 124 is pivotal in this discussion, I haven’t mentioned it for a couple years.

      • Gunfun1 Says:

        BB
        I hope I aint stirring something here.

        Not write about the 124 ???

      • buldawg76 Says:

        BB
        Can you elaborate more about why you were asked to not write about the FWB 124 back in the day. I am in the process of building/tuning a 124 for a friend that has obliviously has a piston seal that is disintegrating because when I tested fired it before tearing it down the pellet would get stuck in the choke of the barrel and when I pushed it out with a wood dowel there is piston material stuck in the tail end of the pellet. My friend said he was trying to clean the barrel by shooting a fiber pellet thru it and after that it did not shoot right. I told him he should have used at least two if not three fiber pellets when cleaning that way, but it would be better to use a 17 cal cleaning rod or wood dowel and push the cleaning pellets thru the barrel rather than shooting them.

        He did not have a 17 cal cleaning kit at the time. I have not torn the spring/receiver assy apart yet because I am going to build a compressor to do it with as the three spring guns I have done were a handful to get back together.

        Any pointers or tip on getting the new piston seal into the piston, I have the new piston and breach seal from Maccari and the piston seals conical rear portion that secure it in the piston is very stiff. Does it help to heat the seal with a heat gun some to soften it or is there another trick to get it down in the piston easily. Any suggestions or further info would be appreciated.
        Buldawg

        • B.B. Pelletier Says:

          buldawg,

          You are a new reader, so you missed the 15-part report I did on the FWB 124.

          http://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2011/02/a-shrine-built-for-a-feinwerkbau-124-part-15/

          You also missed the report I did on the Beeman and Air Rifle Headquarters companies.

          http://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2010/09/a-brief-history-of-beeman-and-air-rifle-headquarters-part-3/

          That report included a lot of info on the 124.

          And there have been a dozen other reports on the 124 over the years. I guess I have written more about it than any other airgun.

          My regular readers got fed up with it and asked me to take a break, and so I have.

          B.B.

          • buldawg76 Says:

            BB
            Thanks for the reviews on the 124 and see why you were asked to stop writing abut the 124, doing 15 reviews was some what lengthy but I found it very informative and definitely will help me in building/tuning my friends 124 (serial # 14733 San Rafael). I know that the brownish material I found in the rear of the two pellets that I tried to shoot thru it is piston particles for sure and the piston will most likely look like some of the one you showed in the reviews. Him trying to clean the barrel with the fiber pellets had nothing to do with the piston seals degradation as I now know from your reviews. It had simply seen it better days and needs rebuilt.
            You still did not state if there is a trick to getting the new seal into the piston or is not that difficult with just a little lube on the back of the seal and some elbow grease.

            I am getting ready to build my compressor to fix his 124 with and thanks again for the links to the reviews as they have given me a better understanding of the internal working of the 124
            Buldawg

            • B.B. Pelletier Says:

              buldawg,

              124 piston seals just “button” onto the piston. The wide base is inserted into the hole at the end of the piston and then rotated as you push in. It should pop right on.

              It’s getting the old ones out that can be a problem, but my blog reports covered that.

              B.B.

              • buldawg76 Says:

                BB
                That’s sound good, it just looked like as hard and unpliable the new seal is that it would be difficult to get to push into the piston. Glad to know it will be easier to put knew one in than get old one out. I have had plenty of experience in getting old thing out when they have seem to have become one piece while working as a mechanic for 40+ years.

                I will let you know how the rebuild/tuning turns out.
                Buldawg

                • buldawg76 Says:

                  BB
                  I am eagerly awaiting your next review of the Hatsan AT44 long QE. I am very interested in the buying one in the near future. Is the next review coming next week sometime or when will it be.
                  Buldawg

                  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

                    buldawg,

                    Buy the gun. The review will be next week.

                    B.B.

                    • buldawg76 Says:

                      BB
                      I’ll take that as the review #3 will be very positive.

                      I just got done making my compressor and building/tuning the 124, and you were absolutely right the piston seal had become a mass of little kitty litter sized chunks of seal scattered everywhere inside the receiver. luckily though the remaining seal still in the piston body was just as soft and crumbly as what was scattered through out the gun and came out the piston easily, the new one popped right in and away we went cleaning and lubing and back together in short order.
                      Just getting ready to put the barrel back on and test it out over the chrony. I will let you know what it does and what I think as this will be the first time for me shooting a 124, much less a break barrel. I just can’t get past the belief that any gun that you cock by breaking the barrel open is not going to be accurate so we will see first hand. It may change my mind because the FWB 124 has such a great history behind it, you never know maybe I will like it and my buddy will sell it to me cheap, it a fairly low serial number at 14733.
                      Buldawg

                    • buldawg76 Says:

                      BB
                      Just got done shooting the 124 and I will eat my words, the 124 is a fun and accurate gun with open sights no less. I was surprised that with my aged eyes I could still hit the bells that I have on the outside border of my backstop which is roughly 10 meters ( actually about 11 1/2 meters at 37 feet). The bells are from the wrecked bikes I used to make runners and rollers out in my last job, they are supposed to ward off the evil road demons when a fellow biker gives you one to hang on your bike. They are about quarter sized and give you a visual confirmation that you hit your POI by spinning or flying off the hooks they are on.

                      The chrony numbers were equally impressive with 20 shots thru it to loosen and distribute the moly grease down the whole piston and cylinder, then 10 shots with a high of 795.3 and a low of 791.4 with crosman pointed premiers out of the wally world tins. This gun is just as your review said it is, a very well engineered quality air gun that is fun and easy to shoot. I may try and steal it from my buddy for a good price if he will let it go.
                      Buldawg

  • RidgeRunner Says:

    RB & GF1,
    I am glad to hear you are very happy with them. I am getting ready to seriously reduce my “collection” and want to pick up a top shelf sproinger for 50 yard shooting. I have pretty much decided it will be a TX200 MK3 with a walnut stock or an HW35E also with walnut stock. I am leaning toward the HW because the TX200 is just too nice. I would be afraid of scratching it.

    • Gunfun1 Says:

      RR
      Thats why I have been getting guns with synthetic stocks lately.

      But aint nothing like a good looking wood stock. And I hate like crazy if they get scratched.

      • David H Says:

        Gunfun1 & RB,

        Thanks for the info on your new HW50′s. The report from RB was pretty much what I expected based on my experience with my Weirauch’s. So I would say Gunfun1 was lucky to get one with less spring twang. That will also make it easier to shoot accurately, less vibration during the shot cycle. The cocking effort is what I was interested in and it appears my suspicions were correct in that it is on the high side for a gun of this size and power level. And while this is not a serious flaw, neither is it an asset.

        And by the way RidgeRunner, a scratch on the walnut stock of a TX200 is not that big of a deal. Think of it as a sign of character. At least that’s what I say to myself about the scratch on the walnut stock of my TX200 HC.

        Good Shootin’, David H

        • Gunfun1 Says:

          I wonder if there is a different spring theuse in the .177 cal. guns verses the .22 cal. guns.

          RB is 22 and mine is 177. And he mentioned above that after he shot it for a while it was making more noise and vibration or something something like that without going back through and reading the comment.
          So maybe something aint right with his ???

          • David H Says:

            Gunfun1,

            I think the spring is the same for both calibers. As for the vibration it’s hard to know for sure, but he did say he was using H&N green (non-lead) pellets which are on the light side, although not overly so. I would want to try some heavier pellets and put a few more miles on it before passing judgement, unless it gets obviously bad.

            David H

            • Gunfun1 Says:

              David H
              I may be wrong but that’s kind of why I went with the heavier pellet in my gun. Maybe it helps slow the piston down a little in a spring gun. I don’t know. I’m just taking a guess.

  • 103David Says:

    Gotta say, tried twice today to send my insightful, not to mention concise and helpful treatise on photographing airguns, yet both times, on submission, they dropped into the aether. Frustrating, indeed. Seems to be a problem with the spell-check. Any other complaints, or just me?

  • Feinwerk Says:

    Hello B.B.
    Photography is one of my hobbies so yes, I for one would be interested in learning more about your methods.

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    buldawg,

    First, the 124 is the mother of all spring rifles that need a perfect artillery hold.

    Second, you are guest blogging this in the comments section. That’s okay, but take pictures for later.

    Third, if your buddy wants to sell and you don’t want the rifle yourself, I would like to be considered. I no longer own a 124.

    B.B.

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Buldawg,

    So, you like the rifle! Great.

    Try to get it for yourself. Those velocity figures tell me the rebuild was successful. The velocity will get higher as time passes.

    B.B.

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