The history of airguns is fascinating to those who enjoy applied creativity. But sometimes when creativity is carried too far it becomes a liability. And that’s the case with today’s guns.
Rocky Mountain Arms Corporation
In the 1970s the Rocky Mountain Arms Corporation (RMAC) created a little gun for kids who wanted to shoot with their fathers. They referred to it as a .22 caliber, though it shot a number 4 buckshot that is really 0.24 inches rather than 0.223 inches in diameter. That didn’t matter because a 5-pound bag number 4 buckshot was available for a few dollars. For that you got thousands of shots. Nobody worried about the size of the ball that much.
Airgunners are naturally curious, and when it comes to their ammunition, their curiosity piques. Today we will take a look at how JSB, the Czech Republic pellet manufacturer, makes pellets. This report was made possible by information and photos supplied by JSB.
It begins with lead
The process naturally begins with lead — a lot of lead. JSB buys lead in ingots that are at least 99.97 percent pure. They melt this lead and add a small amount of antimony for optimal hardness and to prevent rapid oxidation. This process is entirely controlled by them so they know the quality of the end result.
It takes a lot of pure lead ingots to feed the pellet manufacturing process.
Before we start, here is an update on Edith. Sunday was the last application of the medicine for Guillain Barre Syndrome. She was still in pain and only able to move her legs a very little, plus she had not eaten much in the past 5 days, so she’s weak. I got her to eat some fruit, which she enjoyed. I hope they have diagnosed her condition correctly and that she responds to the cure. I guess we now have to wait and see.
Apparently you readers let me miss a day of the blog last week. It was written, but just not published, because I am so new to doing the admin stuff. Therefore, I have an extra blog for this week, which I really needed.
A couple weeks ago, several readers had a discussion on the blog about shooting the Colt Single Action Army BB revolver with pellets. I didn’t read everything they said in detail, but the basic idea stayed with me for several days until I began to wonder, “Why not?” Back in 2013, I tested the Diana model 25 smoothbore pellet gun and discovered that it’s very accurate out to 10 meters — even though there’s no rifling to spin the pellet. Why wouldn’t this BB revolver also be accurate?
When JSB introduced their Exact Premium pellets at the 2015 SHOT Show, Field Target Team USA, through Hector’s connections, immediately agreed to conduct a test. It would be valuable to the team and to the airgunning community to have a solid body of results conducted by serious sportsmen. And, in essence, it’s a way for Team USA to give a little back to the community that so generously supports them. The test, therefore, had to be comprised of both PCP and spring-piston shooters. What better shooters than to use the four best-placed shooters in the World’s roster (a ranking of field target shooters).
Before we start today’s blog, I wanted to remind you that we changed how to post a comment or reply to a comment on the blog. This was done mid-morning yesterday. If you’re having issues logging in or don’t know how to create an account, please email Edith (firstname.lastname@example.org) for assistance.
The .177-caliber Pelletgage. The holes are in a steel plate. A plastic plate above the gage plate helps guide the pellet head to the gage hole.
This report covers:
Today I’m taking the suggestion of blog reader Alan in Mich., who wondered if an air rifle with less of a pedigree than my TX200 Mark III would also benefit from the Pelletgage. I wondered the same thing, so I tested the Pelletgage using a Chinese B3-1 underlever rifle. Of all the air rifles around, this is the one without a pedigree.
The new Gletcher Nagant pellet revolver comes in both silver and black. I’m testing a silver gun.
This report covers:
Lothar Walther barrel
Loading the pellets
H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
RWS Superdome pellets
I got an eye-opener in today’s test of the Gletcher Nagant pellet revolver! I had selected my ammo and was all set to start the test when it dawned on me that this gun doesn’t shoot BBs! I had selected 3 different BBs to shoot in this pellet revolver! That’s how strange it seems to be loading lead pellets into an inexpensive airgun revolver.
Lothar Walther barrel
The second eye-opener came from an alert blog reader who mentioned that these Gletcher revolvers have rifled barrels made by Lothar Walther. Yeah, right, I thought. Then, on checking their website, I discovered that it’s true. I don’t expect them to be match barrels, but all the barrels Lothar Walther makes are pretty good. So, chalk that up in the plus column.