It’s powerful. It’s accurate. It’s quiet, and it performs just like a PCP costing twice the price. The Benjamin Marauder in .25 caliber is an American-made marvel!
You know that dream where you remember at the end of the semester that you signed up for a course that you forgot to attend, and the final exam is today? And you just walked out the front door without your keys and the door locked behind you? And you’re in your underwear? And you live on Main Street? Well, something similar really happened to me!
Two years ago, I spent some time in the hospital, and the best-laid plans….Actually, my buddy, Mac, drove out from Maryland and spent a week testing airguns and taking pictures to help Edith and me keep the blog going. When he left, Mac left me with a pile of targets and photos that I continued to use to write blogs for two weeks after I was finally discharged but still not back on my feet.
If you guessed that this was what I was going to write about today, good for you. I certainly left enough clues. And by “clues,” I mean hitting you over the head until you were bloodied by all the obvious references to what I am about to show.
The Talon SS stock DOES NOT have to be modified
But before we get to that, I told you back in Part 1 that I would be showing you things about the .22 caliber AirForce Talon SS that have never been seen before. Here’s one of them now. You know how people are always inventing things to “fix” AirForce airguns because the factory isn’t smart enough to do it right to begin with? Well, I used to stand in their booth at both the SHOT Show and at the NRA Annual Meetings; and whenever someone would come up and complain about how they couldn’t get their head down far enough on the stock of one of these rifles, they didn’t want to run into me! But some of them did, to their misfortune.
My rifle is a lot longer than the standard Talon SS. It has a 24-inch, .22-caliber barrel and an aftermarket silencer tube that extends the frame of the gun past the muzzle. I’ll tell you about the scope in part 3 of this report.
Today, I’ll sample the velocity of my .22-caliber AirForce Talon SS with its optional 24-inch barrel. I cannot do a complete velocity test on this rifle, and neither can you. There aren’t that many years in any of our lives. This rifle has adjustable power and can therefore be “tuned” to do a remarkable number of things. And, with the 24-inch optional barrel, it becomes even more powerful and flexible.
Sometimes, I just need to blow off steam by writing about the things that interest me, and today is one of those days. There were a lot of oddball guns I could have written about, like my 1860s gallery dart gun that I showed you a while back. I took it to the airgun show at Malvern, Arkansas, this April and airgun collector/writer Larry Hannusch disassembled it as fast as I might field-strip a Garand. And almost as easily. I watched so I could do it again on my own, and I discovered that the gun is lacking its volute springs — the very things I was worrying about breaking if I shot the gun. So, I can now fix it with a coiled spring and a new cocking arm from Dennis Quackenbush. But that will be a future report.
The last time I looked at the Marauder was when I was out of the hospital for 4 days in April. Today, thanks to the help of Mac, I’ll look at velocity. Mac tested several pellets you’re likely to use in the rifle. Because pellets have been coming up with odd weights lately, Mac weighed them to see what they really weigh. He tested Sam Yang, H&N Baracudas, Benjamin domes and Eun Jins.
The H&N Baracudas ranged from 29.8 grains to 30.3 grains. That’s a very tight spread, but not as heavy as advertised (which is 31.02). The average weight for Baracudas was 30.0 grains. We’ve weighed the Benjamin domes before, but Mac did it again. This group ranged from 27.3 to 27.9 grains. An EXTREMELY tight spread. The average was 27.6 grains. Beeman Crow Magnums ranged from 26.2 to 26.4 grains. Again, an extremely tight spread. The average was 26.3 grains. Eun Jins ranged from 35.1 to 36.0 grains. Also, not bad for such a heavyweight pellet. The average was 35.4 grains. Sam Yang was the heaviest pellet of all, ranging from 42.1 to 42.4 grains. That was also the tightest spread. The average weight was 42.3 grains. The longest pellet Mac tested in the Marauder magazine was the Sam Yang, which measured 0.456 inches long. That indicates you can use very beefy pellets in this gun, if you want.