2017 SHOT Show: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

  • Crosman
  • Benjamin Wildfire
  • Marauder Field & Target
  • Adjustable regulator?
  • 1875 Remington revolver
  • Best for last
  • Whew!

Crosman

Let’s continue with our look at the new airguns and things at the 2017 SHOT Show. We will begin with Crosman. While I was gawking at the guns, Jesse Caster from Crosman came up and showed me everything you are about to see.

Benjamin Wildfire

The first thing I did was examine the new Benjamin Wildfire rifle. Based on the famous Crosman 1077 that is itself a copy of Ruger’s iconic 10/22 rifle, the Wildfire feels just as light as the CO2-powered rifle. I was hoping it would.

Benjamin Wildfire
New Benjamin Wildfire looks very similar to a 1077. The biggest difference is the longer reservoir.

That tells me that the trigger will feel the same. The 1077 trigger both cocks and releases the striker and advanced the 12-shot circular magazine to the next chamber. That’s why I keep insisting it’s a double-action revolver. The feel of the trigger is exactly the same as that of a double action revolver.

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2017 SHOT Show: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

  • What I saw at Sig
  • What I didn’t see
  • Bucket list
  • Industry Day at the Range
  • Gauntlet
  • Havox
  • Gamo Swarm Maxim
  • Coyote Urban
  • There is more

Inn this report I will cover airguns I saw at Sig Range Day on Sunday, Jan. 15 and at Media Day at the Range on Monday, Jan. 16.

What I saw at Sig

Sig has been breaking into airguns over the past several years. This year they brought out the Max Michel 1911 that I tested for you back in November and December, plus they have now added the Sig P320 ASP pellet pistol. The 320 is unique in 2 ways. First, it has a 30-shot belt-fed magazine, so there are lots of shots on board. We haven’t seen a pistol with a belt-fed mag since Anics walked off the scene, years ago. This one is very slim, too.

The other nice feature is the trigger pull. Though it is a long pull, it is 2-stage and incredibly light. Yours truly was able to nail targets with this gun at respectable distances.

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2017 SHOT Show: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

  • What’s coming
  • Let’s get started
  • MP 40
  • Remington 1875
  • Benjamin Wildfire
  • Umarex ARX ammo
  • Umarex Hammer
  • Umarex Gauntlet
  • A shrouded Texan?
  • Other new things

Well, it’s that time again. Here I am at the 2017 SHOT Show in Las Vegas. This year will be the biggest one yet for new airguns. And when I say new, I mean really new designs. I’m not interested in a re-skinned gun that’s had other names in the past. There is so much stuff that is really new this year that everything else will get shoved to the rear.

What’s coming

Yesterday I was on the range with Sig and today I am out at Industry Day at the Range. That’s an event that allows gun writers to try out various new products at a gun range. Actually, it’s more than 50 ranges, all lined up, one after another, in a line that’s about a third of a mile long! A few years ago they started putting ranges on the other side of the walkway, for guns that don’t shoot as far — like shotguns and airguns.

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Diana model AR8: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana AR-8
Diana AR8 N-TEC air rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

  • New Diana scope base
  • Droop?
  • The test
  • Baracuda Match 5.53mm heads
  • Firing behavior
  • Better artillery hold
  • JSB Exact Jumbo
  • RWS Superdome
  • Notice all three groups
  • Conclusions

This report has taken a long time to write. I wanted to test the Diana AR8 from 25 yards with open sights, but my sighting eye has degraded to the point that I can’t do that. The AR8 is also very hard to cock and it would be too much trouble to shoot it left-handed, so I scoped it for today’s test. I used a 3-12X40 UTG scope that’s no longer made.

New Diana scope base

As you may remember, Diana changed the installed scope bases on all their spring rifles a few years ago, negating the aftermarket bases that were designed for them in the past by UTG. There are still hundreds of thousands of those vintage rifles that those bases fit, but the new base on all their spring rifles will not allow the old droop-compensating UTG mount base to be installed.
The problem is — Diana’s base on the rifle doesn’t accept a scope ring set very well. I wanted to use a base that accepted Picatinney scope rings, because of the heavy recoil of the AR8, but Diana doesn’t provide a ring like that, nor would it fit their base if they did.

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Firearm pellet adaptor: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Loading
  • Loading takes time
  • Loading a pellet
  • Velocity JSB Exact Jumbo
  • Eley Wasps
  • Longer pellets failed to work
  • JSB Exact RS
  • Evaluation so far

Today I fire the pellet adaptor with several pellets to both find out what it can do and also to get familiar with its operation. Let’s get right to it.

Loading

Several things have to happen to load the adaptor. First I use a cotton swab to wipe the carbon from the previous shot off the inside of the case neck. Then I wipe the outside of the cartridge neck and shoulder with a rag.

The primer is removed with a small Phillips head screwdriver pushed through the case mouth. Remember that the primer pocket was enlarged to accept a 209 shotgun primer, so it’s much larger than a conventional primer flash hole. There is no primer pocket anymore — just a huge hole with an o-ring inside.

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Generation 2 .25 caliber Benjamin Marauder: Part 11

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Benjamin Marauder synthetic stock
Second-generation Benjamin Marauder in a synthetic stock.

UTG Bubble Leveler scope: Part 1
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10

This report covers:

  • Brief recap
  • Bubble Leveler scope
  • Fill the rifle
  • The test
  • Second target
  • Third target
  • What did we learn?
  • Next
  • Pump-assist Benjamin video

Brief recap

As you may recall, this report now includes the UTG 4-16 Bubble Leveler scope that I am also testing. I mounted it on the gen 2 .25 -caliber Benjamin Marauder rifle because I had my rifle’s action tuned by Tom Himes. The maximum number of good shots on a fill went from 16 to 22-24 and the velocity spread across those magazines dropped to a much smaller number. That means an extra magazine before it’s time to top off again. Tom Himes can be reached at batts@spcracing.com if you want a tune like the one I had. You can read all about it in Parts 8 and 9.

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Pellet shapes and performance: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Beeman R8
My Beeman R8 Tyrolean is an accurate pellet rifle that I enjoy shooting.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Beeman R8
  • First test — Air Arms Falcons
  • Test two — RWS Superpoints
  • Test three — big one
  • What have we learned?

Today is the day we see how the three pellet shapes perform at 50 yards. This is the day we have all been waiting for. I was out at the range a couple times since the last test of these three pellets, but the wind was always a problem. Last week I had a perfect day and was able to get a lot of testing done. Tomorrow you will see another report that was also done on this day.

But today we look at the performance of the three pellet shapes — dome, pointed and wadcutter. Conventional wisdom says the dome should do the best, followed by the pointed pellet. The wadcutter will be dead last, if the wisdom holds.

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