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Education / Training Daisy 717 – Part 2

Daisy 717 – Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Routine maintenance – continued
The pump lever must be adjusted correctly for the Daisy 717 to achieve maximum power. The test is to open the lever as far as it will go without cocking the bolt. Then close it until you feel resistance. The tip of the lever should have stopped between 1-1/8″ and 1-1/2″ from the side of the receiver. When I adjust it, I try to get as close to 1-1/2″ as I can. I feel that gives the highest possible velocity.

Looking down from above the pistol. Tip of the lever is about 1-1/2″ from the side of the frame. This is where it stops when the lever is worked without cocking the gun.

Let’s adjust the pump lever. With the lever open as far as it will go, the pump lever adjustment mechanism is seen to the left (in front) of the felt wiper. There are two notched rings. One is attached to the pump lever mechanism and is fixed. The other is the head of a large adjustment screw attached to the pump head assembly. It can be rotated in either direction by using the flat blade of a large-bladed screwdriver as a lever. Insert the blade into both opposing notches and rotate the blade as if turning a screw. The rotating ring on the right will move in either direction, depending on which way you turn the screwdriver. Turn counter-clockwise to increase lever clearance and clockwise to decrease.

The slots in the adjustment mechanism accept the blade of a large screwdriver.

Screwdriver tip works as a lever to rotate the adjustment ring in either direction.

The sights on the 717 are crisp target sights, fully adjustable in both directions. Though they do not have click detents, you could hardly ask for a better pair. Both adjustments have indexes that show where the sight is positioned.

Advertised velocity for this gun is 360 f.p.s. I chronographed three different pellets and got these results:

H&N Finale Match pistol 382 f.p.s.
Gamo Match 384 f.p.s.
Daisy flat-nosed premium-grade pellets 395 f.p.s.

The H&Ns are very clearly best for the pistol I’m testing. I actually tested several other brands, including some that are no longer available, but the H&Ns buried them all.

My test gun is new and I adjusted it as discussed above. Also, I lubricated this gun heavily. Both these steps will improve the velocity in most guns.

I set up a 10-meter course and lighted the target well. I also wore my shooting glasses that sharpen the front sight and target dramatically. The pistol is very muzzle-heavy and the stiff trigger makes the hold difficult, but nothing can hide the target accuracy the 717 has to offer.

Anytime I can shoot a 49 out of 50, I’m pleased. This was the best target. Most were 45s. Shot at 10 meters on a National Target 10-meter air pistol target.

It’s quiet!
One final comment about this pistol. It’s very quiet. This is the pistol I used to shoot target practice in an office building when there was an adult education class in the next room. No one heard anything. So, shooters who have very great need to remain silent, this is a gun to check out. It sounds loud when shot without a pellet but quieter with one. And, shoot into a Quiet Pellet Trap for maximum noise reduction.

This pistol proves you don’t need a pedigreed barrel for accuracy. The trigger needs to be broken in, but this is an airgun with which you can form a lifelong relationship.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

51 thoughts on “Daisy 717 – Part 2”

  1. Received my Avanti 747 in the mail yesterday and I could not put this pistol down. Very impressed with its accuracy and very happy with the trigger pull which is nowhere near the 6 lbs on your 717. Little bit heavier than the other pistols I have and of course the plastic grip will be replaced with an rbgrip shortly (ordered one the same time I ordered the 747!).

    I assume the 717 is just as quiet, and I could not be happier since I live in an apartment building. Finally I can shoot all night w/o worrying about the folks around me!

    BB, I have read your article on the “Quietest Air guns” and which to choose etc. But I still have 2 questions. Do any Air Rifles or pistols even come close to these Avanti 7×7’s? Do any .22 Rifles or Pistols come close to being as quiet as these Avantis? I would really enjoy a Decibel comparison with some nice “broken in” .177 and .22 non-CO2 models assuming your target is silent.

    -peter pressure

  2. Peter,

    I don’t own an audiometer, so this test isn’t possible. The cheap one sold by Radio Shack isn’t correct for measuring this type of sound. It takes a calibrated machine capable of recording on three separate sound scales.

    If you want quiet, you should hear a tuned Walther LGV. Barely a whisper. But my Diana 27 is as quiet this 717. A good tuned spring gun is hard to beat.


  3. BB, if I’m scaling this picture right, your best group with the 717 seems to be on the order of .5″-.7″ or so. Am I reading this correctly, or was the group tighter than that?

  4. You probably know what my next comment is!

    When you tested the marksman 2004, you got a 3/8″ group at 25 feet with a pistol that sells less than $50. Seems to me that this translates into performance that is at least comparable to the 717, and possibly a smidgen better. And the Marksman had higher velocity and a lighter trigger to boot.

  5. Barrel choking,

    With a cut rifling, the barrel is bored with a half-thousandth taper, rear to front. A button-rifled barrel can either be swaged after rifling or a collar can be placed around the muzzle before the button is pulled through. When the steel springs back, the collar forces to spring inward.


  6. Vince,

    Yes, the Marksman 2004/Beeman P17 is more accurate and has a better trigger. It also is harder to pump and it has an automatic safety. Also the grips are not as form-fitting as the 717 grips.

    The Marksman is very light, so it floats in your hand. The Daisy is muzzle-heavy so it doesn’t float. I guess the choice is up to the shooter. I like them both.


  7. BB

    I’m a bit intrigued by your mention of the shooting glasses sharpening both the front sights and the target.

    I don’t believe you have blogged about shooting glasses with all the info on what, why, etc. Any chance of doing one?



  8. I have a 717 that I got years ago.
    Probably mail order from Bass Pro Shops.
    The grip has never felt just right though. I thought I’d seen something about a moldable grip stuff for use by bow shooters, and wondered if that would work, but have never bothered.

    My 717 has no resistance when closing the pump lever with the bold un-cocked.
    Curious, I got out the chrony.
    Shooting Daisy Flat Nose pellets.
    Approx 18″ from muzzle


    And since the chrony was out, I figured I might as well see what the Marksman 2004 was doing….


    My 2004 is an early model from WalMart.
    I like the grip of the 2004 better than the 717. The 2004 is more work to cock so shooting sessions with it are shorter.

    Hope that someone finds that velocity info helpful.

    I had a Crosman 357-6 years ago. It started leaking so I think I gave it away.
    A new 537 from PA is on the Delivery truck today, along with some pelgun oil, and more pellets.

    I’m curious to see what the PG oil and adjustment does for the 717.

    Lots of good info to be found in the Blog B.B. Thank You !!

    Don in Indiana

  9. BB

    I had seen that and of course had forgotten about it. It does answer basic questions but I feel there is more to it than that. But of course I really don’t know enough about the subject to know what is missing. Perhaps there isn’t really anything else but if there is…..

    My right eye is dominant but with my no line bifocals I cannot see the front sight sharp. I shot for awhile with a plain pair of shooting glasses but sighted with my left eye as they weren’t right for my right eye.

    What I ended up doing for the time being is buying a pair of +1 reading glasses. These allowed me to shoot with my right eye as they are almost perfect for that distance for a sharp front sight but of course worthless for seeing the target to see where I hit so I have some binocs close by for that.

    I have thought about seeing my eye doctor about getting some shooting glasses but am not sure what I need to discuss with him on what I need so I guess that is what I am really asking for.

    Hopefully all that rambling made some sense.


  10. BB

    hmm im somewhat puzzled. Im a right handed, left eye dominant shooter (yes, one of THEM). I simply use my right eye for all shooting, and close my left eye simply because it feels natural to do so. Thing is, my groups and accuracy are usually very good (benchrest .5inch groups for 5 shots, with a rifle) though i do sometimes get what i call fliers. I tend to blame the pellets as i just use whatever is in the tin. Are you suggesting that if i used my left eye to sight, or just kept my left eye open while sighting with my right eye, that my accuracy would be better?
    I just assumed that while the dominant eye is stronger, when closed, the less dominant eye takes over and that they both see just as well?

    Great subject and im looking forward to your reply

    Boggle eyes

  11. After adjustment and lubing with PGOil.


    I should have tested after adjustment before adding the PGOil.

    My gun wasn’t unlubed. I’ve been using BreakFree.

    I don’t think that foam washer likes the Breakfree though.
    While oiling with the PGOil tube, a bit of that washer came off on the end of the tube.
    Probably not a good sign.

    The foam washer on my 917 came apeart a year or so ago.

    How neessary are those foam washers? Should I contact Daisy and get replacements ordered?

    I forgot to mention earlier that my 717 came with a wire shoulder stock. There are cutouts near the bottom of the grip backstrap for mounting.
    I should have that here somewhere, but have not seen it in awhile….

    -Don in Indiana

  12. Boggle eyes,

    I have done some experimenting by shooting with my weak eye and here is what I have learned. Your weak eye sees parallax (or is affected by it) much greater (faster, easier) than your master eye. If you can keep the master eye in check by closing it, you can shoot very well with the weak eye, but it never becomes easy.

    That said, I have a friend who is a government weapons instructor and he is right-handed with a dominant left eye. He teaches pistol and sights wth his left eye. Obviously it will be harder with a rifle.


  13. BB
    Great shooter that little Marksman 2004. I’ve found a golf tee makes nice pellet insertion/seating tool for it. Hard to get ones fingers in that area of the gun past the locking bar. Thanks for recommending this pistol.

  14. I had the foam wiper disentigrate also after 24 years. I had to order a new rear sight anyway so while on the phone I ordered the seal kit(2 or 3 orings and wiper) as well as a screw kit (all included screws on the gun)and the rear sight. I beleve all told it was less than $15 including shipping. Daisy sells their parts at a very afforadable rate vs some other co’s.


  15. Dear B.B. and all you other air gun experts,

    I’m trying to generate interest at my church in starting an informal 10m pistol league/club.

    It would seem that the Avantis, 7X7 pistols would be a good, cheap way to get a pistol that will ‘shoot’. What other guns or gear should I reccomend for even newer shooters than myself?

    Al Pellet

  16. BB

    Looking forward to the blog on shooting glasses.

    I had to wait until I got home to be able to see the photo in the previous blog. (Blocked at work by Surf Control. Weapons. I’m lucky when your blog opens every so often.)

    Am I correct in that the sighting eye lens appears to have a peep sight type opening where you are looking through a small hole?


  17. BB,

    I got my airwolf back on wednesday. The new shroud is great! Improved groups over the factory shroud. How accurate could a ricochet be (the pellets were hitn the shroud)? I still got the logun pellets to group with the factory shroud but only just under an inch.

    I shot for 3-4 ours today with the kodiaks and the jsbs. The jsb won by a mile… (it won by .7 inches at 50 yards). The kodiak would do a 1 inch goup so that means the jsb would do a .3 inch group. If not a lil (much) better! It looked like one shot! As you said about that group with the skan, when a pellet would not fit in the group. For me, it would go but not without touching! I can not picture a better group in my head. There was NO wind so that helped. thats great for the firs day! It took all this time to get this thing going. I will shoot at like 70yards this weekend becauase 50 is no trouble for this gun.

  18. I’d second the comment on the affordability of the Daisy parts. After buying my used 717 I ordered two sets of spares… the seal kit and also replacement valve. The maintenance job is easy and the cost very low. The seal kit gives you two o-rings and the felt washer. – Gazza.

  19. b.b.
    I have 3 questions

    I have never owned an air rifle with a walnut stock, I have only owned guns with beech stocks.

    I have 3 questions

    1.Can you describe to me what a walnut stock feels like?

    2.Is the wood walnut stronger than beech?

    3.why is walnut more expensive than beech?

    Thanks -Panther

  20. panther
    walnut is a premium hardwood so thats where the cost comes from. i belive walnut is more dense than beech so a sping gun might shoot differently. walnut is softer than beech and will dent easier. beach has a more tight grain and will take more abuse than walnut. the main reason for walnut is the color and elegance. it is very dark and a beautiful wood. on pyramyd you can see some stocks in beach and some in walut. you will notice the grain in the beach is more defined while the walnut is barely noticable.

    Nate in Mass

  21. I’m sorry, but this is off topic. I just got a FWB 124 with BSA 3-12×44 scope. The gun is great, but the elevation clicks don’t work on the scope. Probably overturned. Is there a way I can get the clicks back myself, or do I have to send it out for repair? I’m pretty new to this so excuse me if this is very elementary. thanks. This is a great resource!


  22. paul,
    awsome review. ive been looking for a good review on this gun and i guess it came to me. very comprehensive. cant wait to see more. please tell me you will make more?
    thanks again

    Nate in Mass

  23. Has anyone here returned a gun to PyramydAir before? I sent a ProSport back over a week ago (i.e. I received the delivery notification from FedEx over a week ago) because of some bad bluing on the left side of the receiver but have not received a refund or even a courtesy email yet?

    Originally I wanted a replacement, but the person who gave me the RMA surprisingly talked me out of that and now I’m kind of glad she did.

    How much more time should I give them before I get upset? I want verification of the refund before I order another gun.

  24. Panther,

    Walnut is a very soft hardwood, though it does vary throughout the various types of walnut available. It is less dense than beech, which is why it is lighter.

    Walnut is used to stock rifles because it is attractive and stong enough to do the job if the stock is made rght.

    Beech is much stronger and heavier than walnut, but it’s not as attractive.

    Walnut is more expensive than beech because of demand, alone. The wood grows very fast and is in no danger of running out, but the fine types of walnut (English, Turkish or American with fine crotch grain) are in extremely short supply. Walnut stock blanks can cost over $10,000, when they are exceptional. Those end up on $400,000 shotguns.



  25. JDP,

    You have described a condition in which you have the scope adjusted as high as it will go. Is that the case? If so, the erector tube in the scope is now floating with no spring tension.

    You need to install a B-Square adjustable scope mount so the mount can take up the adjustment and leave the scope knobs centered for fine-tuning.


  26. Don,

    AirForce trighgers have tighter tolerances than other PCP triggers, which is why they are sealed inside the receiver.

    Notify AirForce the first thing tomorrow. They take trigger malfunctions very seriously.


    As long as you are the origiunal owner and have not disassembled or modified the gun, they will fix it for free.


  27. Hello,

    I know I’m splitting hairs, but I’d like to set up a 10 m range in my basement.

    The line is ten meters from the face of the tarket. Are my feet behind that line, or the muzzle of my gun?

    I may never shot in competition, but I’d like to get it right.


  28. Marc,

    You’re not splitting hairs. The muzzle is supposed to be 10 meters from the target, but, as different people have different sized arms, the distance will vary – even in the Olympics. The difference is so slight that no one has an advantage, but you do need to confirm your zero on each new range.


  29. Hey BB,

    this is sumo

    yea, i cant wait to get to know this gun. today i took it up to my house in upstate new york and i got partridge with it at 25 yards. It seemed to be be injured so i had to. I took the shot off hand and heard the thwak sound. It did not fall over. Did i miss? No, i did not. it went in and out without the bird reacting but then…. Five steps and five seconds later at fell over and did not breath. I got home to CT and got the theoben out because i cant have a favorite child. Killed a sqrl with it at about 20 yards. I shoot sqrls more than anything else. Mostly at 50-70 yards. I shoot them past that some times but almost never. I cant get closer than 50 yards but this one was stupid. i was thinking about getn another gun but now that the airwolf is going strong and that i have only had it for like 3 days so its not old news yet. i have not explored its depths yet.

    The new shroud that i have on my gun is amazing. It makes almost no sound! the pellet wizn through the air is louder and when it hits is MUCH louder. I get up to 43 foot pounds with eun jins. Almost like a talon ss with the 24in barrel. I remember you saying “They really want to know which rifle is the most accurate out of a Condor, an FX 2000, a Falcon and a Daystate. Believe it or not, all those rifles are pretty much equal in the accuracy potential department, because they all have wonderful barrels.”

    “Pretty much” are the key words! My condor never shot like the theoben or daystate at any power. But it was allmost as good. The condor could shoot a half inch at best and that very good! But never shoot group like the one i shot with the airwolf. Its a great gun but i like the fine wood and crisp trgr. Thats just my experiance.

    My daystate has about 13 foot pounds on my theoben and it likes jsbs and the theoben likes kodiaks. i cant shoot on full with jsbs with the airwolf they will go about 1060. Kodiaks go 750 in the theoben.

    Hey! good idea! I should set up a range in my basement. My new gun is silent.


  30. sumo,

    You have an accurate rifle. Now you know what Col. Townsend Whelen meant when he said, “Only accurate rifles are interesting.”

    Over my lifetime I have come across a few guns like this that were superb. Sometimes they belonged to others with no chance of a sale and other times they were beyond my means.

    Sometimes, though, I owned them and let them get away from me. I have never forgotten those guns. Don’t let that happen to you.


  31. Person with the complaint about Pyramyd Air’s return policy,

    I forwarded your complaint to Pyramyd’s sales department and they want to contact you. Can you please either contact Pyramyd AIR and ask to speak to the sales manager about this complaint or leave your contact info here?


  32. Hey BB … a sorta newbie here:
    Got my first Daisy Red Ryder at age 5, back in 1953. Since then have shot everything from that humble start to many caliber hunting rifles, all shotguns, and the standard military hardware such as the Garand, M-16’s, 60 cal’s and crew-served 50 cal’s, all the way up to being gunner on a 155MM SP howitzer and later in service as a Forward Observer for same.
    All that, and never a pellet pistol until now. Just ordered a Daisy Avanti 747 so I can shoot indoors and out and have some fun without worry about police showing up and taking me places I’d rather not go. I LOVE target shooting and look forward to getting involved in this sport until eyes stop me.
    Question for you is what magazines/sources ought I be looking into that can teach me terminology and such re this type of firearm? I see things I think I understqand but am not sure such as “break barrel” and “blowback” and the differences in charging systems, etc. Like I said, I think I know what they mean, but I’ve gotten in trouble before with that kind of logic – just ask my ex-wives! So, what do you recommend for an experienced newbie?

  33. Oneshotonekill,

    Well, There is a 4.5-page glossary in the Blue Book of Airguns. But I think if you read this blog you will learn most of what you want. There are over one-thousand entries like this one in this blog. Go here to the latest posting and then you can access all the archive reports.



  34. Thank you from these great tips, with all these and using H&N pellets you mentioned, I get now perfect cut of target each time, no tearing at all.

    I have owned 717 from late 90's but haven't really used it much until last week, I'm still beginner at shooting, but with cleaned oiled, adjusted pistol I can at least tell where fault was when I did miss that 9 or 10.

    One additional modification I made was to add some material between trigger and trigger ring, so that when gun fires trigger stops right after that point, makes a lot easier to get consistent results, especially as I have still bit weak arm.

    40-43 is scores what I currently get, so there is still room to improve, I have been practicing just an week, before this I made few shots between few years without understanding a much about shooting, now I did some reading and am progressing in this art.

    I have read a lot about trigger being heavy, but mine has always been very light, I even doubt that it would comply with 500 grams mentioned at international rules, but that said I have never shot competition air pistol and can't say that I could really tell how much force is needed to get gun to fire, something around double to what is needed to press key on keyboard of HP business laptop I'm writing this text at.

    Just about perfect so there is feeling but you don't need to fight to squeeze it. Pistol has been shot less than 500 pellets, so probably has not wear either.

    Bought this from Finland, but I have heard newer models bought from here that have had heavier trigger, so don't know why mine has light trigger.

    • Gary,

      Welcome to the blog.

      This report was written 8 years ago. You can comment on the current blog, where over 60,000 readers will see what you have to say. No need to stay on topic.


      I was shooting pellets with 4.50mm heads.


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