Sheridan Blue Streak: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sheridan Blue Streak
My Sheridan Blue Streak was purchased new in 1978.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Not a shooter
  • You’ve got mice!
  • The problem grows
  • The rifle
  • Thumb safety
  • Rocker safety
  • Why so different?
  • Twenty caliber
  • Multi-pump
  • Accuracy
  • Trigger
  • Sights
  • Goodbye, Edie

Some readers asked me to do a memorial blog to my late wife, Edith. Today marks one year since she passed away, but this blog is still infused with her influence. So I thought I would tell you about her favorite airgun — the Sheridan Blue Streak.

Not a shooter

Edith was never a shooter. Even when she shot with me to get her Concealed Carry License, she wasn’t as interested in the shooting aspect as she was in self defense. But she had a soft spot in her heart for the Blue Streak and I’d like to tell you why.

You’ve got mice!

When we moved into our house in Maryland, the last thing the old owners told us was we had mice. There were woods all around us and game was plentiful. We figured with 9 housecats, there wouldn’t be any problem with mice, but we were wrong. Several cats were excellent mousers and caught a lot of them in the beginning, but they didn’t kill them right away. They would play with them, often breaking their legs and watching them squirm around on the floor. Edith had a soft spot for animals and could not abide that, so she asked me to teach her to shoot the Blue Streak, so she could finish them. This was almost a decade before The Airgun Letter was even a glimmer on the horizon.

read more


Let’s build a multi-pump!

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • B.B. is on board
  • Benjamin Marauder
  • Weight and fit
  • Trigger
  • Number of shots
  • Repeater?
  • Quiet?
  • Power
  • Where is the pump tube?
  • Sights
  • Keep those power adjustments?
  • No, to a parts kit
  • Don’t even THINK it!
  • So what?
  • Crosman knows, too

I am not writing an historical report today, because something has crept into our discussions that needs to be addressed. I will make up for this by publishing an extra historical report next Tuesday, along with the Monday and Friday reports.

This will be a good report for airgun companies to read, because it comes straight from the grassroots users of your airguns. They are asking for a specific multi-pump pneumatic.

B.B. is on board

This discussion has been going on for many months — maybe even longer than a year. American airgunners say they would like a high-quality multi-pump pneumatic, and today we are going to look at all that might mean. I’ve just watched this from the sidelines until now, but I do have things to contribute, so today I’m going to start the dialog in ernest.

read more


MeoPro HD 80 Spotting Scope: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Meopta MeoPro HD 80
MeoPro HD 80 spotting scope from Meopta. Photo provided by Meopta.

This report covers:

  • Otho is interested
  • Attaching my iPhone to the spotting scope
  • Oh-oh!
  • Otho needed the Meopta
  • Fix the problem
  • Stable tripod!
  • How well does it work?

This is a continuation of my report on the MeoPro HD 80 spotting scope from Meopta. I have now purchased this scope, so it’s mine to use from now on. Every time I look at it, I see it for the first time. It’s like being at a party and seeing the prettiest girl there and envying the lucky guy who gets to go home with her — then realizing she’s with you!

Last time I told you about using the scope at the range for the first time. I mentioned it was possible to attach a smart phone to the scope so you could view your targets even larger, because the phone has a zoom capability that’s separate from the spotting scope. Today I want to tell you how that went.

read more


Benjamin Maximus: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Benjamin Maximus
The Benjamin Maximus.

This report covers:

  • Pump incompatibility
  • Maximus barrel
  • Sight-in
  • The test
  • Baracuda Match 4.53mm head
  • Falcon pellets
  • Premier 7.9-grain pellets
  • Premier Copper Magnum pellets
  • What have we learned?

Today’s test has a lot of surprises. It should be good.

Some reports are more important than others and this one ranks near the top. Dozens of readers are waiting to hear about the accuracy. Today I shoot the rifle indoors at 25 yards.

Pump incompatibility

You may remember that I reported that my Air Venturi G6 hand pump is incompatible with the Benjamin Maximus rifle. I used the Benjamin hand pump instead, and it worked fine. I did some checking with both Pyramyd Air and Crosman and learned that both of them were aware of some problems. Pyramyd air has made some changes to their male Foster fill nipples, and Crosman just ordered a G6 pump so they can examine it. I think it’s helpful for all of us to know that these companies are working behind the scenes to make their products as universal as possible. That was the first surprise.

read more


Benjamin Maximus: Part 3

By Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Benjamin Maximus
The Benjamin Maximus.

This report covers:

  • First the pump
  • Left eye today
  • Premier 7.9-grain pellets
  • Crosman Premier Copper Magnum
  • JSB Exact Heavy
  • H&N Baracuda Match 4.53mm heads
  • Air Arms Falcon
  • Trigger pull
  • What’s next?

Today I start looking at the accuracy of the Benjamin Maximus. I have decided to run this test differently than my normal tests. Today I will shoot 5-shot groups at 10 meters off a rest. I will use the open sights that come on the rifle. I want to test those sights anyway, and this gives me a chance to do that. plus I start getting familiar with this rifle.

I also used the Benjamin Hand Pump to fill the rifle today, so I will report on that. I still cannot get the female quick disconnect Foster fitting on the Air Venturi G6 pump to fit the male fill nipple on this rifle, but the Benjamin pump fitting worked fine.

read more


Benjamin Maximus: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Benjamin Maximus
The Benjamin Maximus.

This report covers:

  • 2000 psi fill
  • First test — Premier 7.9
  • Test 2 — Premier 10.6 Copper Magnum
  • Test 3 — H&N Sniper Magnum
  • Test 4 — RWS Hobby
  • Cocking
  • Trigger pull
  • Overall evaluation

Today we look at the velocity of the new Benjamin Maximus PCP. I know I’m excited!

2000 psi fill

Like the Benjamin Discovery, the Maximus is filled to only 2000 psi, which means is it easier on air in all ways. It’s easier to fill with a hand pump, it takes less air from a scuba tank or other high-pressure air vessel and it allows you to continue to get full fills when your tank is below 3000 psi. Yet it gets the same velocity as other precharged airguns that are filled to 3000 psi and higher. It just makes everything easier for the shooter.

First test — Premier 7.9

First I filled the rifle and tested it for both velocity and shot count. I tested the Benjamin Discovery in January of 2008, and the .177 prototype peaked at 953 f.p.s. with 7.9-grain Crosman Premiers. That was the same pellet I used to start this test.

read more


Hatsan Gladius .177 long: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Hatsan Gladius
Hatsan Gladius Long.

This report covers:

  • H&N Baracuda Match with 4.50mm heads
  • Max power
  • Air use?
  • H&N Sniper Magnum
  • Crosman Premier 10.5 grains
  • Baracuda Match again
  • Overall evaluation

Today we look at the accuracy of the Hatsan Gladius long at 50 yards. I’m taking some time with this rifle for a couple important reasons. First — I think it deserves the extra attention because of the features it offers. And second — because the Gladius is so similar to other Hatsan PCP platforms, readers can use the report for many different models.

Hatsan Gladius Tom at bench
The Hatsan Gladius rifle was easy to shoot from 50 yards.

H&N Baracuda Match with 4.50mm heads

The day was perfect. No breeze to disturb the flight of the .177 caliber pellets. I loaded the rifle with 10 H&N Baracuda Match pellets with 4.50mm heads and started the test. I left the power setting on 3, where it was at the end of the 25-yard test. I wanted to see how much difference there would be at 50 yards, and I was surprised.

read more