Christmas gifts for the airgunner: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Gifts for $25 and under
  • Gifts for $100 and under
  • Gifts for $250 and under
  • Gifts with no price limit

First of all, to my American readers — Happy Thanksgiving! I have a lot to be thankful for this year, and I hope you do, too.

With the holidays fast approaching we sometimes need help finding those perfect gifts. This blog offers some of my personal picks this year.

Gifts for $25 and under

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention my book, BB Guns Remembered. It’s the perfect short story collection bathroom reader for someone who enjoys nostalgia. And this book makes the B.B. gun the star. At $10 it’s the perfect stocking-stuffer. If your airgunner likes to read, this is a good one!

Your airgunner may like a tin of Smart Shot Lead BBs. These BBs are on the large side and tend to be more accurate than steel BBs in many guns, plus they are much safer. Before ordering these, be sure to ask your airgunner if he has guns that can use them.

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Sig Sauer Max Michel 1911 blowback BB pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sig Sauer Max Michel BB pistol
Max Michel 1911 BB pistol from Sig Sauer.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Loading the CO2 cartridge
  • Daisy BBs
  • Sig BBs
  • Hornady Black Diamond BBs
  • Sig CO2 cartridge
  • Blowback is heavy
  • Trigger pull
  • Overall evaluation

Today we look at the velocity of the Sig Sauer Max Michel 1911 blowback BB pistol. Let’s get right to it.

Loading the CO2 cartridge

The CO2 cartridge loads differently than any I have encountered. Remove the left grip panel and pull up on bottom of the flat mainspring housing to unlatch, then swing the housing out of the grip and down under the grip. Now the large end of the cartridge must be inserted into the grip first. There are two flanges at the bottom of the hole in the grip that are too small for the cartridge to pas through, so the large end has to be inserted above them and then dropped inside the grip. That’s the first departure from the norm, but there is one more.

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Sig Sauer Max Michel 1911 blowback BB pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sig Sauer Max Michel BB pistol
Max Michel 1911 BB pistol from Sig Sauer.

This report covers:

  • Who is Max Michel?
  • The pistol
  • The safety
  • The grip safety
  • CO2
  • Sights
  • Magazine

Who is Max Michel?

Today we begin looking at yet another lookalike airgun — the Sig Sauer Max Michel 1911 blowback BB pistol . If you wonder who Max Michel is, let me tell you. Max Michel is an IPSC shooter with many world championships to his credit. He is the captain of Team Sig. He is noted for being a very fast shooter, which, in IPSC competition, means everything. And he is giving Sig permission to use his established name on this pistol, so you have to be impressed. His name means as much to him as Sig’s name means to them.

He actually says in the press release that he recommends this pistol for training, and for teaching younger shooters. If the pistol proves to be somewhat accurate, I will expand that to teaching all shooters.

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Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun
Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun.

This report covers:

  • Correction
  • Install CO2
  • Daisy BBs
  • Air Venturi Copper-plated steel BBs
  • H&N Smart Shot BBs
  • Shot count
  • The sling
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation

Correction

In Part 1 I told you the true barrel length of this Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun is around 5 inches. Someone called me on that so I measured it again today. Now I am reading a length of 15.5 inches. The real barrel is buried deep inside an outer jacket that conforms to the appearance of the firearm barrel, so measuring is done by means of a thin cleaning rod. I’ve gone back and corrected Part 1 to reflect what I’ve learned.

Install CO2

Today is velocity day. This BB gun is rated to 427 f.p.s., which is very brisk, so take precautions to eliminate bouncebacks. Let’s begin by installing one 12-gram CO2 cartridge.

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Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun
Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun.

This report covers:

  • Extremely realistic!
  • Can she cook?
  • Description
  • Dog collar sling
  • Sights
  • Operation
  • Best for last

WOW!

Okay, that’s Part 1 of the report. I can quit for the day. But I won’t. Today I’m showing something very special and you have to read the entire report to find out what it is.  It isn’t what you think.

I’m looking at the Mosin Nagant M1944 BB gun that several readers goaded me into testing. Two days ago I was sitting at my table at a gun show, and the guy next to me had the firearm equivalent of today’s BB gun on his table — a genuine M1944 Mosin Nagant carbine.. It was so attractive and compelling that I considered buying it! But you don’t buy an M1944 Nagant without a lot of thought. They chamber the massive 7.62X54 rimmed cartridge that’s the Russian equivalent of our own 30-06 round. In a standard rifle it’s a kicker. In a carbine like the M1944 that also has a very short pull and a large drop at the comb, an M1944 is the firearm equivalent of allowing a prizefighter to punch you! He might not knock you down, but he’ll definitely ring your bell! Knowing that, I kept my wallet safely in my pocket.

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Behavior at an airgun show

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Prepare for the show
  • Tie your airguns
  • Price all your guns
  • Table coverings
  • Packing the car
  • Be careful
  • Asking to “borrow” table space from a friend
  • Theft
  • Watch what you say!
  • Common stuff you always need
  • Watch out!
  • Loading in and out

This report was requested by reader Michael and elaborated on by reader Siraniko. At first I didn’t think I could write much that would be of interest, but Siraniko opened my eyes to what Michael was asking. I have been selling at gun shows for almost half a century and at airguns shows since 1994, so I have hardened to all those things that might puzzle someone new. It is a worthy topic, and if it gives just one person the courage to have a table at a show, it will have served its purpose.

Prepare for the show

It might seem obvious, but the first step is to get ready for the show. A major part of that is deciding which airguns you want to sell. Maybe there is one you aren’t sure of. You like it a lot, but it’s also something that will attract a lot of attention. I like to put those guns on my table, so I price them in such a way that if they sold I could live with it. Put yourself in the shoes of someone who is attending the show. Maybe they are like you and would like to see a Sheridan Supergrade for sale. So price it at $1,800 and be prepared to sell it if a buyer comes along. These days a working Supergrade is worth $1,250-1,500, so pricing it like that assures that only a serious buyer will be interested. However, if it is a gun you truly love, like I love my Diana model 27, then either don’t take it or mark it not for sale.

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Crosman 600 air pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman 600
Crosman 600 CO2 pellet pistol.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Update on the Brice scope mount base for the Daisy Red Ryder
  • A true semiautomatic
  • .22 caliber
  • Power and gas use
  • Ultimate ergonomics
  • Gas caps
  • Sights
  • Safety
  • Modification
  • This pistol
  • Could Crosman do it today?

Update on the Brice scope mount base for the Daisy Red Ryder

I was going to mount an optical sight on my Red Ryder and test it for today’s report. Unfortunately I discovered that the base does not work on my old model 111-40 Red Ryder.

The problem is the rear sight. The mount requires the rear sight elevator to be removed to fit the base, but a 11-40 rear sight doesn’t have an elevator. The sight is tack-welded to the gun and doesn’t come off.

Red Ryder Rear sight
The rear sight on my vintage 111-40 Red Ryder is tack-welded in place. The Brice mount will not fit over it. The raised portion to the right of the sight is the mainspring anchor.

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