Diana’s model 5 air pistol: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana model 5
This Diana model 5 air pistol is marked as a Winchester model 353.

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Hobbys
  • A couple observations
  • Air Arms Falcon
  • Crosman Premier lites
  • Qiang Yuan Training pellets
  • Summary

Today is accuracy day for the Diana model 5 air pistol I’m testing, which is labeled a Winchester 353. We heard from several owners who like their pistols, so let’s see what this one can do.

The test

To get right into it, I didn’t know where the sights were adjusted. You may remember I mentioned that the rear sight was adjusted all the way over to the right. I decided to shoot the first group as the gun was set up. After that I could adjust the sights. All shooting was done from 10 meters with a 2-hand hold and my arms rested on a sandbag. I used a 6 o’clock hold.

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Diana’s model 5 air pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana model 5
This Diana model 5 air pistol is marked as a Winchester model 353.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • A valuable report!
  • RWS Hobby pellets
  • Oil
  • Crosman Premier lites
  • The oiling
  • Experience pays off
  • Qiang Yuan Training pellets
  • Back to Hobbys
  • How is it doing?
  • Trigger pull
  • Cocking effort
  • Evaluation so far

Today’s the day I discover how healthy my new/old Diana model 5 (Winchester 353) air pistol is. This is best done with a chronograph, which is the Nth time I have told you that.

A valuable report!

Today’s test will be a valuable lesson in spring gun dynamics. Because of how I conducted it, this test shows things that are not often seen this clearly. Let’s begin.

RWS Hobby pellets

I wanted to know up front whether this pistol is in good condition or not. So I used the RWS Hobby pellet first. In my research for this report I found stated velocities for the Diana model 5 pistol between 375 f.p.s. and 450 f.p.s. Those numbers were no doubt obtained with a light pellet, and in the days that the model 5 was selling, lead pellets were the norm. I thought a lightweight lead pellet would have to give me the fastest average velocity. I was wrong, but let me tell you how the test went.

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Diana’s model 5 air pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana model 5
This Diana model 5 air pistol is marked as a Winchester model 353.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Iconic air pistol
  • History
  • Winchester
  • Gun Broker
  • The gun
  • Grip
  • Sights
  • Trigger
  • Expected performance

Iconic air pistol

Today we begin looking at one of the most iconic air pistols of all time — Diana’s model 5. In all my years as an airgunner, I have never owned a model 5! I’ve seen them, handled them and shot them, but have never owned one. I have owned 2 Diana model 10 target pistols that are related to the model 5, if not that similar. The model 10 has the Giss anti-recoil mechanism and is the target version of the model 6, while the model 5 is a conventional recoiling air pistol. Models 5 and 6 look a lot alike, except for the round caps on either side of the model 6’s spring tube that house the Giss anchors.

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2017 SHOT Show: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

  • Umarex USA
  • The Hammer
  • .50 caliber
  • Repeater
  • 4500 psi
  • Absolute zero
  • Second Zero
  • MP 40 BB gun
  • Umarex Forge
  • Trevox and Strike Point
  • Optical Dynamics flashlights
  • Still not finished

Before we begin I want to tell you about a blog series I will start this week. I have the new Air Venturi air compressor on hand and I used it for the first time yesterday. It works so well that I’m jumping the line to get the report started. You can expect to start reading about it this week.

The 2017 SHOT Show was the biggest show I have ever experienced for airguns. Some manufacturers like Crosman and Umarex brought out many new gun models and related products that are really different. Others brought out only one of two items, like the Gamo Swarm Maxim, but they are so significantly different that they deserve to be recognized. My work is cut out for me this year!

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Methods of power adjustment — springers: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • More power!
  • Example
  • Stronger mainspring?
  • Piston stroke
  • Increase the piston length
  • Dual power is possible through piston stroke
  • Larger piston?
  • Cost
  • Transfer port size
  • Port location
  • Piston weight
  • What can be done with this knowledge?

Today’s topic was suggested last week by reader Riki from India. A lot of other readers jumped on the bandwagon when he asked for it, so I agreed to write a series of reports. The question is — how do airgun manufacturers control the power/velocity output of the guns they make?

More power!

An American airgunner who is new to the hobby will look at this in a different way. He will wonder how airgun manufacturers get the highest possible velocity/most power from an airgun. He won’t appreciate that in nearly every country in the world other than the United States the governments have limited the power of airguns. And there is no common way they limit it. In the United Kingdom they limit the output by energy, allowing no more than 12 foot-pounds for air rifles and 6 foot-pounds for air pistols, I believe. They aren’t concerned with velocity, except as it produces energy. This is a thoughtful regulation that forces airgunners in those countries to learn basic ballistics. It also forces manufacturers to test their airguns with almost every pellet to be sure they are not exceeding those limits.

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What makes a good barrel?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Rifling methods
  • Barrel steel
  • The rifling method
  • Availability of steel
  • Changes to technology
  • Inexpensive barrels
  • Business practices — cheap
  • Business practices — quality
  • Stress relieving
  • Summary

Today’s report is in answer to a reader question. Riki from India asked the following.

“BB,what makes a good barrel? I mean in all smallbore air rifles the twist rate is the same, then why is the lothar walther barrel so much more coveted than a chinese barrel ? What does lothar walther do different from the others that their barrels are so accurate?”

I told him the answer would take an entire report, and did he really want to know that much? He said yes and several other readers chimed in, as well. So here goes.

You need to know up front that B.B. Pelletier is no barrel expert. I am writing this partly from what I have read about barrels over the past 50 years and partly from researching them for this report.

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What is accuracy?: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Pellet head size
  • Barrel crown
  • BSA Meteor .177 caliber
  • Gun vibration
  • A case for the PCP
  • Barrel size
  • Choke
  • The right pellet
  • Summary

This report started in the historical section, but today I’m moving it into the mainstream reports. Tuesday I talked about why some new air rifles don’t shoot well. Today the topic is broadened to all airguns.

In Part 1 we learned about all that Dr. Mann did in his 37-year quest to discover why all bullets don’t go into the same hole every time. In that report we learned that things people think work for accuracy, like clamping a gun in a vise, don’t always help.

Today I’m going to talk about accuracy with pellet guns. Dr. Mann showed us that pellets (bullets) will never go to the same place every time, no matter what you do. But what helps bring them together? Why are some airguns accurate and others are not?

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