Gamo Swarm Maxim: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gamo Swarm Maxim
Gamo Swarm Maxim repeating breakbarrel air rifle.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Loading
  • The feeding mechanism
  • Velocity JSB Exact RS
  • Gamo PBA Platinum pellets
  • H&N Baracuda Match 4.50mm heads
  • Back to JSB RS
  • What about dry fires?
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Trigger adjustment
  • Evaluation

Today we look at the velocity of the new Gamo Swarm Maxim multi-shot rifle. Of course this rifle is so different that we will also be looking at several things we don’t normally see. Should be an interesting report.

Loading

I was concerned about loading the magazine because I have some experience with other multi-shot breakbarrels and none of it is good. But the Swarm magazine loads like any rotary PCP mag, so there is no worry. Like most of them, there is an o-ring that’s around the entire rotary wheel and part of it intrudes into each chamber to hold the pellets. Consequently, they don’t just drop in. You have to push on their bases a little to get the heads past the rubber.

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Gletcher Stechkin APS BB pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gletcher Stetckin APS BB pistol
Gletcher’s Stechkin blowback BB pistol.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Velocity day
  • Piercing pin
  • Daisy BBs
  • Slide stays back after the last shot
  • Air Venturi Copper-Plated BBs
  • Umarex BBs
  • Shot count
  • Don’t count on the brand of CO2 cartridge!
  • Recoil from the blowback
  • Trigger pull
  • Summary

Velocity day

We learned a lot about the Soviet Stechkin select-fire pistol in Part 1, or at least I did, when researching it. Today we discover how powerful this Gletcher Stechkin APS BB pistol is. I will also comment on the trigger and the blowback feel.

Piercing pin

The pistol is rated to shoot at 410 f.p.s., so let’s see what this one will do. Before we dive in, though, let me give you a peek at the piercing pin and corresponding CO2 cartridge seal.

Stetckin BB pistol piercing pin
The piercing pin is hard to see because it’s slightly out of focus. It’s a hollow tube that’s ground on an angle on one side to have a pointed tip on the other side. The green around it is the seal material that the face of the cartridge pushes into.

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Millita breakbarrel rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Millitia rifle
Millita air rifle.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • An important lesson
  • RWS Hobby
  • JSB Exact RS
  • Air Arms Falcons
  • Cocking effort
  • It’s been lubricated
  • What have we learned?

Today we look at the power of the Millita rifle I bought at Findlay. The numbers will sound slow, but please remember this rifle is from the 1930s. It’s not a youth rifle, despite the velocity.

An important lesson

We will also learn something important from today’s test. I will show it to you in a little bit. Let’s get started.

RWS Hobby

The first pellet I tried was the venerable RWS Hobby. At 7 grains the Hobby is the quintessential high-speed pellet that gives the top velocity numbers that can be believed. Yes, there are lighter lead-free pellets that get thrown into the mix, but everyone knows they do not represent an airgun very well. Many manufacturers have taken to quoting two top velocity figures, one for lead pellets and the other for lead-free pellets.

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How to make a spring-piston air rifle shoot smooth: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Benjamin Legacy SE
The Benjamin Legacy SE.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • The rifle
  • Important point!
  • The chase
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger
  • Accuracy
  • Summary

Today’s report should make an interesting contrast to the work I have been doing on Geo791’s Diana RWS 34P. By the end of this report I think you will see that American airgun manufacturers have the ability to make world-class spring guns. Let’s get right to it.

The rifle

Now I’ll tell you a little about the gun we have been looking at. The Legacy SE looks a lot like Benjamin Trail rifles. There’s no Weaver scope base because the Legacy SE was made years before Crosman began putting Weaver bases on their Trail rifles. What it does have is a set of conventional 11mm dovetail grooves with a single hole at the back for a vertical scope stop pin. Given the extreme smoothness and lack of recoil, that was good enough. There are no open sights.

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Checking out a Diana RWS 34P: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Diana 34P
The Diana RWS 34P is a classic breakbarrel spring-piston air rifle.

This report covers:

  • How to tell if the mainspring is broken
  • Tight piston seal
  • JSB Exact RS domes
  • RWS Hobbys
  • RWS Superdomes
  • Where are we?
  • Did the rifle smooth out?
  • Cocking effort
  • What are the advantages?
  • The rest of the story

Today we look at the results of yesterday’s tune on Geo791’s .22 caliber Diana RWS 34P. I talked to Tom Gore, the owner of Vortek, and asked what kind of results I could expect from this kit. He said this one was designed to make the rifle perform at the factory spec, but with much longer spring life. When I told him how the rifle had tested before he said he felt it was right on spec already. I felt so, as well. And of course that was with a broken mainspring.

How to tell if the mainspring is broken

Several of you have asked me whether it’s possible to know when a Diana mainspring has broken and I said no. If just one end of the spring is broken the gun will shoot smoother than before and will have the same velocity. I think the broken piece winds itself into the new end of the mainspring (it always does) and helps dampen vibration. Unless you are observing the performance of your rifle very carefully and watching for this you’ll never see it.

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Crosman’s V-300 BB pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman V-300 BB pistol
Crosman V-300 BB pistol.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • I’m learning, too
  • The poppet valve
  • How it works
  • Velocity — Crosman BBs
  • Air Venturi Steel BBs
  • Hornady Black Diamond BBs
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Summary

Somebody recently thanked me for admitting I don’t know everything. Guys, if the truth be told, I don’t know more than most of you. Some of what I know is just because I’m old, and other stuff is because I’ve had a lifelong fascination with guns.

I’m learning, too

I learn from this blog just like most of you. A lot of that comes when I research things, but every so often you readers tell me things. That happened in the comments to Part 1 of this report. Reader Kevin told us that he believed those three detents in the V-300’s cocking mechanism were for three different power levels. I immediately went to my pistol and tried it and found he is right! We will see that today.

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Checking out a Diana RWS 34P: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Diana 34P
The Diana RWS 34P is a classic breakbarrel spring-piston air rifle.

This report covers:

  • The breech
  • Velocity JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Superdome
  • RWS Hobby
  • Firing behavior
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Next
  • Next
  • Evaluation

Today we are back with reader Geo791’s Diana 34P, and we’re looking at the velocity. This is a .22, and a fresh one should produce velocities and power in the same neighborhood as the Beeman R1, but not quite as powerful. George was never concerned about the power of his rifle — only the accuracy that he thought was sporadic. But I do plan to tune his rifle with a Vortek kit that was donated by Vortek for this series, so either way, he wins.

Power has little affect on accuracy. Sometimes if a shot cycle can be smoothed a lot you may see tighter groups, and other times if a weak powerplant is restored to new or better the airgun might shoot better. But typically I tell people that accuracy lies in the barrel and not in the tune. However, just because I say it doesn’t make it so. We shall see.

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