Sig Sauer Super Target Part 1

Sig Sauer Super Target Part 1

A Sig P210 influence and a classic single shot pneumatic

By Dennis Adler

For the suggested retail of $399 the new Sig Sauer ASP Super Target comes with an exceptional SIG carry case equal to many centerfire handguns. The Super Target has Sig-inspired styling for the over-lever handle (slide design), its own ambidextrous walnut grip design, and a P210-style beavertail for added hand support.

This is one we have been waiting for since Sig Sauer announced it in January, and it is unusual for Sig to wait so between previewing a new model and getting it into production, but SIG AIR wanted to make this new entry (their first single shot pneumatic pellet pistol) a winner right out of the chute. And yes, this is yet another new category for Sig Sauer’s SIG AIR division to step into. They made a few adjustments to the gun between January’s prototype preview at the annual Shot Show and now. We’ll get more into that in Part 2. But right out of the box, this is a first class act right down to the impressive Sig Sauer case that holds the ASP Super Target. read more

When good guns go away

When good guns go away

Losing the Tanfoglio Limited & Gold Custom

By Dennis Adler

When it comes to accuracy with a .177 caliber blowback action BB pistol, there were always two guns you could count on to provide sub 1-inch groups almost every time, the Tanfoglio Limited Custom and Gold Custom, two airguns that almost no one ever had a bad word to say. I certainly didn’t and always used the Gold Custom as my baseline for 21 foot accuracy with a BB pistol. The Limited Custom was always the close second. The CZ-75 based designs were just about flawless with precision triggers and consistent velocity in the 300 to 320 fps range.

I have been sitting on this for awhile. I have certain favorite air pistols that I bring into articles from time to time because they are worth a second or even third mention, because someone might not have read the original articles, or might be new to airguns and are looking for a really great pistol. These were really great air pistols. There are, in fact, a lot of really impressive air pistols today, some introduced just this year, that are almost game changers for blowback action CO2 models. But over the past half dozen years there have been several equally impressive blowback action models, and now two of them are conspicuously gone. I was hoping that the Limited Custom would come back as models sometimes do, but I don’t think it will, especially since the Gold Custom is gone as well. The Limited Custom was, in my opinion and that of individuals who own them, one of the most accurate and best built blowback action CO2 pistols since blowback action air pistols were introduced 19 years ago. And there is a certain irony in that, as the first blowback action CO2 pistol, the Umarex Walther PPK/S, is still being manufactured almost two decades later, while the Tanfoglio Limited Custom, introduced in 2012, is nowhere to be found. Every online retailer that still has a listing, shows it as “out of stock” or “no longer available” and that pretty much spells “out of production.” read more

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 5

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 5

Crosman P1 stands alone

By Dennis Adler

A slightly larger 92FS, the Crosman P1 will still fit most leather holsters made for the Beretta. The finish on the Crosman has a gloss, so it doesn’t come off with that matte black look like so many air pistols. Overall, were it not for the heavy verbiage on the left side of the gun, the P1 would look pretty good. Overlooking that, as Beretta clones go, this one is a pretty sharp pistol that really fills your hand. The large ambidextrous selector/safety also makes it a good choice for left-handed shooters.

In most instances, full auto is for suppressive fire to pin down an enemy. It is not precision shooting. This is sometimes essential in a military or law enforcement situation against multiple shooters or even superior numbers, and almost always executed with carbines and rifles that can fire on full auto; seldom is it with a pistol. At close range, a full auto handgun can be effective, but as distance increases, accuracy begins to decline, one reason why the 1932 Mauser Broomhandle Model 712 could be fitted with a shoulder stock holster, why the Beretta 93R had a metal shoulder stock that could be attached, and the H&K VP70M (the first pistol to use a plastic frame) could not fire in bursts (like the Beretta 93R) without the shoulder stock holster being attached (part of the burst fire mechanism was tied to shoulder stock). Stocks increased the potential accuracy, but turned the pistols into short carbines. This goes all the way back to the Civil War with shoulder stocks for Colt’s 1851 to 1848 Dragoons, the 1851 Navy and 1860 Army revolvers, which used by Union and Confederate Cavalry. read more

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 4

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 4

Full Auto Test

By Dennis Adler

There are some interesting choices here because for overall authenticity, the Umarex Beretta branded 92A1 and M9A3 as semi-autos, totally eclipse the Crosman model for fine details and overall build quality. But, the Crosman has a more authentic semi-auto, full auto thumb selector (based on the actual Beretta 93R select fire pistol,) so it has that going for it. Also, the centerfire counterparts to the 92A1 and M9A3 are not select fire pistols, so authenticity flows both ways.

The first select fire Beretta 92FS-style CO2 model was the Gletcher BRT, later TAR92, and now the Crosman Full Auto P1 (also sold as the Crosman PFAM9B, without laser), it is worth noting that all these various versions of this same air pistol have been made in Taiwan by KWC, and thus are essentially the same gun re-branded. Why I expected the Crosman version to perform any differently than its predecessors was the claim of up to 400 fps. I found this frustrating and went and got another magazine (same mag as the Swiss Arms), loaded it with a fresh CO2 and Dust Devils. Average velocity increased to 351 fps, some 20 fps better than the first test with Dust Devils and the highest average velocity between the 92A1, M9A3, and P1, but using the lighter weight frangible BBs to do so. The Crosman does function smoothly with the Dust Devils. And in case you’re wondering, I ran Dust Devils through the M9A3 and velocity was 366 fps. But all of that is going out the window when you flip the selector to Full Auto. read more

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 3

Select Fire Beretta Pistols Part 3

Faster than a speeding BB

By Dennis Adler

The original select fire design used for the new Crosman Full Auto P1 predates both the Umarex Beretta 92A1 and M9A3 because it is built on the same platform as the old Gletcher BRT 92. The 92A1 is a better built and more authentic looking Beretta pistol and the newer M9A3 (also a new 2019 model like the Crosman) takes the design a step further in exterior appearance. But there is a lot more going on between these three blowback action CO2 models which are all competitively priced, the 92A1 at $129.99, the M9A3 at $119.95 and the Crosman at $129.99 including a rail mount laser.

Select fire pistols have always been a curiosity because few of us will ever get to try one and for the most part, that is just as well, they are hard to control (except in movies) and not that many are in use by military and law enforcement. It’s some pretty rare air where full auto pistols come into play, but make no mistake, there are elite forces that use the Glock 18 and 18C as well as other select fire pistols, and of course during WWII there was the M712 Broomhandle Mauser, again not a particularly accurate handgun when fired on full auto. Given that one can have a select fire pistol in .177 caliber, you have the opportunity to experience a little (very little when it comes to recoil) of what it is like to shoot a full auto handgun. With the trio here, none of which have actual select-fire counterparts in this exact configuration, it is more just a shooting experience with a very high performing, blowback action CO2 pistol. These three don’t exist as centerfire arms. The two noteworthy exceptions in CO2 firearms are the Umarex Legends Mauser M712 and the Mini Uzi submachine gun, which are direct copies of actual select fire pistols. read more