Umarex Embark breakbarrel spring rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Unarex Embark
Umarex Embark air rifle.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • New development
  • RWS Hobby
  • Journey pellets
  • One more pellet test
  • Firing behavior
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation so far

New development

Last time I told you that the Embark air rifle was not available from Pyramyd Air. Well, that has changed. As of this week you can buy the Embark from Pyramyd Air. They list it as a youth rifle, which it certainly is, but I have a feeling a lot of adults are going to want one after we test it.

After I published the first report I was contacted by Jake Hindman, the president of the Student Air Rifle Program (SAR) and we had a nice conversation about his program. Some of what I will share with you today is a result of our talk.

We also discovered that one of our readers, Robert from Arcade, has a son in the SAR, and he gave us his views on how the program is benefitting that school. As he said, with SAR schools can have a safe marksmanship program in their existing facilities and the cost is not prohibitive. That’s exactly what SAR is designed to do!

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Blowguns — the first airguns

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This is a guest blog from reader Hiveseeker. Today he reflects on the very first airguns — blowguns

If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me. Now over to you, Hiveseeker.

Blowguns — the first airguns
by Hiveseeker

This report covers:

  • Airgun history
  • Blowgun calibers
  • Blowgun length
  • Popular .40 and .50 caliber darts
  • Popular .625 caliber darts
  • A word about blowgun hunting
  • Blowgun accessories
  • Make a blowgun target
  • How to blow that blowgun
  • Aiming a blowgun
  • For further study

lead photo
Modern-day blowguns come in .40, .50, and .625 caliber. Note the accessory dart quivers.

Airgun history

Here at the Airgun Academy blog B.B. has done a great job of sharing his passion and knowledge of airgun history, deepening our appreciation for our favorite sport. Today we’ll be traveling even further into the past as we delve back to the earliest roots of airgun history — the blowgun! B.B. took us there in 2007 when he wrote about The blowgun Where it all began, and observed that “As airgun collectors become more interested in their hobby, they eventually start acquiring blowguns.”

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Beeman R8: Part 7

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Rail Lock Compressor R8

The Beeman R8 looks like a baby R1.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • New mainspring
  • The compression chamber honing
  • The Rail Lock Compressor
  • Cleaning
  • Piston seal
  • Installed the new seal and mainspring
  • Back in the stock
  • Cocking effort
  • RWS Hobbys
  • RWS Superdomes
  • JSB Exact RS
  • Firing behavior
  • Conclusions so far

The new mainspring and piston seal Pyramyd Air sent for my R8 arrived and I installed them last Thursday. This will document how that installation went and look at the velocity results, plus the powerplant smoothness.

New mainspring

The new mainspring is made from better wire than the stock Weihrauch spring. Gene Salvino has reports of guns with up to 9,000 shots with this spring that have lost little velocity, if any, since installation.

I knew there would be a lot of interest in this mainspring, so I examined it carefully and also photographed it next to the existing spring. The new spring wire is silver colored, where the Weihrauch spring wire is a darker color. The new spring appears to be about one inch longer than the original, but I don’t think it has been scragged.

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The Beeman C1 – Part 2 The rifle that created the artillery hold!

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
A history of airguns

This is an oldie from 2009 that I recycled because I was out of town, attending to my sister last week. Today we look at Part 2.


Despite the size of this photo, the C1 is a small rifle. The western look was unique in its day. The scope is a 2-7X32 BSA.

Part 1

If you remember, the C1 is one of the first adult air rifles I ever owned. I got my .177 C1 from Beeman and had the opportunity to break it in and shoot it until it smoothed out to become a great little shooter.

Today I’m testing the .22 version I acquired in a big trade with my buddy Mac, following the Little Rock show this year. I didn’t own a chronograph when I had the first rifle, so this test will be as revealing to me as it is to you. Kind of like finding out whether the girl next door was really as chaste as you envisioned when you were a kid, or whether she dated the fleet.

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Umarex Embark breakbarrel spring rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Unarex Embark
Umarex Embark.

This report covers:

  • Student Air Rifle Program
  • Umarex Embark
  • Description
  • Trigger
  • Safety
  • Where is it made?
  • What’s it like to shoot?
  • Accuracy
  • Summary

Student Air Rifle Program

This report is about more than an air rifle. It’s about an entire shooting program called the Student Air Rifle Program, or SAR. SAR was developed in 2013 by the Missouri Youth Sport Shooting Alliance (MYSSA) as a standardized way to facilitate an introduction to school-aged youths, the lifetime sport of target shooting. Think of this as similar to the NRA Marksmanship program that reaches over one million kids each year, except SAR has trimmed the cost and operates under less formal rules. SAR sees itself as a feeder to the more formal program, which culminates in the Olympics.

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Ballistic coefficient: What is it? Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Last week I republished Part 1 of this discussion about ballistic coefficients because I was out of town helping my sister. I’m back in the office, but Part 2 of this report is necessary to close the loop. So here we go.

This report covers:
• Review
• Today’s discussion
• Round balls
• Conical bullets
• Smokeless powder
• A big point
• Shape
• Round balls — again
• The bottom line

I’ve taken 11 months to return to this subject of ballistic coefficients (BC). That was in spite of some tremendous interest in Part 1 of this report last May.

I’m purposely avoiding all discussion of mathematics, which is difficult, since ballistics is a discipline that heavily employs mathematics. But I’m not qualified to write about the math; and, more importantly, I know that 99 percent of my readers would be turned off if I were to write the report that way.

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Beeman R8: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Rail Lock Compressor R8

The Beeman R8 looks like a baby R1.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Don’t over-lubricate
  • Rail Lock mainspring compressor
  • Degreasing
  • Lube the piston seal
  • Clean the mainspring
  • Finish the assembly
  • What is it like now?
  • Velocity test
  • Discussion

Last Friday’s report set us up for today. I was discussing “tuning” airguns before knowing how they performed. I didn’t do that with this rifle, but that discussion loosened up a lot of minds, and I got many suggestions of what to do with the R8. I wanted to disassemble it and remove most of the “special” grease I had applied, and then Gene Salvino of the Pyramyd Air tech department and I had a long conversation about what was happening with that rifle.

Don’t over-lubricate

Gene said it is very possible to put too much of that grease into a lower-powered spring gun. He said if you do that you’ll get exactly the result I got with the R8 — a reduction of several hundred feet per second in the velocity.

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