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Converting an anti-gunner AND teaching a person to shoot 10-meter pistol

by B.B. Pelletier

Pyramyd AIR will have a booth at the NRA show in Louisville, Kentucky, from May 15-17. They’ll be selling guns! This is an opportunity for you to see the guns before you buy them and save on shipping at the same time.

Now, on to today’s post.

I was going to start a report on the SIG Sauer BB pistol today, but that will wait until Monday. BG_Farmer posted a comment about how difficult handguns are for him, so today I want to tell you a story about how I took an anti-gun person and converted him into a 10-meter pistol shooter.

I was serving in Germany in 1976 when my first wife’s parents came for a visit. I was scheduled to go to tank gunnery for a month, so I missed most of their visit, but they really didn’t come to see me. We lived in an apartment on the American Kaserne (Ferris Barracks) in Erlangen.

Our front door was sheathed in steel, so I hung a pellet trap on it and used it as a backstop. In all the time I shot at that door, I never missed the pellet trap. If I had, the steel door would have stopped the pellet perfectly. The only gun I shot was a Diana model 10 target pistol. Because there was very limited space in the apartment, the longest distance I could get was 19 feet, so I used 10-meter rifle targets instead of pistol targets. They have a bull that measures 1.211″ across. The scale wasn’t perfect, but it was close enough for me.

Diana model 10 was a top-of-the-line target pistol in 1976.

Ten-meter air rifle target has a smaller bull than the pistol target. It’s more suitable for close-range target practice.

When they arrived, the first thing my in-laws noticed was the pellet trap hanging on the front door. Both of them were anti-gun, but they liked me and knew I was a shooter. Plus, they were very aware that my branch in the army was armor (tanks) which is a very violent combat arm, so they understood that shooting was what I did for a living. Yet…that pellet trap hanging on the inside of the front door really got to them.

Finally, my father-in-law asked me about it. “Why do you shoot inside your house?”

“I do it for relaxation.”

“Isn’t it dangerous?”

“Well, I don’t shoot if anyone else is home.”

“Yes, but what happens if you miss that little trap?”

“Well, I don’t miss, but if I ever do, the door is made of steel, so there’s no danger of penetration.”

“But wouldn’t the pellet bounce around the house and break things?”

“No. It would fall to the floor beneath where it hit. It’s only going about 475 feet per second. It doesn’t fragment at that speed and it can’t bounce back from a flat steel plate like the door. But why worry? The trap is five inches square and I can’t miss it from 19 feet.”

“I sure could!”

“No, you couldn’t. In fact, I’ll bet you couldn’t miss a quarter from that distance.”

[Now, pay attention, folks, because this really happened exactly as I am telling it and it’s how I can get YOU to be a 10-meter pistol shooter, too.]

My father-in-law, who said he never shot a gun in his life, looked at me and said, “You think I couldn’t miss a quarter from way back there?” pointing to the back of the hallway. “You’re crazy!” Then he turned to his wife and said, “He’s crazy!”

So, I bet him he could learn to shoot a Diana model 10 target pistol so well that he couldn’t miss an American quarter (about one inch in diameter) from 19 feet. He thought I was insane, but he agreed to try, so when everyone else went shopping, my father-in-law and I stayed home to shoot.

I showed him how to cock the gun, which he thought was hard (it was) and then we started. I asked him to stand five feet from the trap. Naturally we both wore safety glasses. When he extended his arm the way I will show you in the next 10-meter pistol installment, the muzzle was about two-and-a-half feet from the target.

“Well, I agree that I can’t possibly miss from this distance. I thought you meant from back there” (indicating the end of the hallway).

“We’ll get there. But let’s start here. I want you to sight the gun by putting that huge black bullseye on top of the front blade, with the top of the front blade even with the top of the rear notch. Make sure there is equal white space on either side of the front blade.”

So we began. His shots were all below the bull and grouped in a hole the size of a dime. After about 20 shots, I asked him how he felt about it.

“Well, it’s easier than I thought it would be. This trigger is so light that I barely touch it and it goes off. But I’m hitting way below the bullseye.”

“That will change as we move back. Are you ready to try?”

He was, so I moved him back to about 8 feet from the target. This looked like more of a challenge to him, but his shot group was no larger. It did climb on the target just a little, but it was still below the bull.

After another 20 shots, he felt good enough to move way back to 12 feet. Now the shot group was touching the bottom of the black, and it was still dime-sized. After he got comfortable at that distance, we moved back to 15 feet. This looked like a long distance to him and he said so. He could see that the slightest twitch of his hand would throw the shot off the pellet trap. I told him not to twitch. By now he was comfortable enough with the pistol that there were no surprises left. He knew the sights worked, and that what I had told him about sighting also worked. In fact, I had described the same procedure used by top Olympic pistols shooters, so I knew it would work for him. All he had to do was try. He was also used to how the trigger worked, so the chance of a flinch or a “sniped” shot (a shot in which the shooter pulls the trigger instead of squeezing it until it breaks by surprise) had passed.

So he started shooting from 15 feet. His group opened to the size of a nickel (just over three-quarters of an inch), and it also climbed well up into the black. He was concerned about this distance until, after about 25 shots, he saw that he could not miss.

“I never would have believed it, but I guess you were right. I really can’t miss the target.”

“Now let’s back up all the way.”

It was only four more feet, but they were the most daunting of all, because he knew what he had done in such a short time. And now he was about to take the acid test. I had to back up into my bedroom, because there was room in the hall for only one person. That first shot took a long time to come, but finally he fired. Then he lowered the pistol and walked forward until he could see the round hole in the bullseye. It wasn’t in the center, but it wasn’t that far out, either.

After seeing the first shot, he never doubted himself again. He fired about 15 shots and then we both walked up to the target. I’d like to tell you that all the shots were inside the bullseye, but a couple were in the white, close by. Still, the point had been proven. In about one hour this man who had never shot a gun before was shooting at targets from 19 feet and hitting within 1.5 inches. None of his shots ever came close to the edge of the target trap, so he finally understood what I meant when I told him how difficult it was to miss.

I had to leave for tank gunnery the next day, but the folks stayed with my family for two weeks. When I returned a month later, my wife filled me in on the details. Her father had shot up about 3,500 of my RWS Meisterkugeln pellets, practicing with the pistol every day. When he left he was thinking of buying a target pistol of his own. That never happened, of course, because back in the States he fell back into more familiar routines. But he did buy a BB gun to keep the birds out of his apricot trees. As I understood it, he taught his wife to shoot, as well and they both guarded the ‘cot trees in their Campbell, California, backyard from that time on.

This report was part of the 10-meter pistol report, though I haven’t numbered it as such. If you want to learn how to be a better pistol shot, this is how I would teach you. But you don’t need me. You can do this yourself.

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.

68 thoughts on “Converting an anti-gunner AND teaching a person to shoot 10-meter pistol”

  1. An old and dear friend was over for a visit a couple of years ago – sorta gun-shy herself although she allowed her kids to shoot with me in the back yard. She came out to watch and I asked her if she wanted to try it, and to my surprise she said ‘OK!’.

    I gave her my wife’s Shadow 1000 fitted with a weaker spring and a CDT trigger, and pointed at the circular saw blade hanging about 60 yards away. I started explaining how to use the sights but she wanted to figure it out herself.

    First shot – CLANG! Second shot was a miss, third shot – CLANG!. When I expressed surprise she asked ‘What’s so hard about that?’

    I then pointed out the next target over – a hunk of pipe the size of a soda can. First shot was a miss, the second was a hit. Remember, this was 60 yards – and she never fired a rifle before in her life.

    Her husband tried shooting, and didn’t do nearly as well…

  2. B.B.

    Thanks for all this 10-meter stuff. I am a hunter and all this talk about the gamo and izh-now an excellent story-your giving me a new itch! Just when I had read enough of your blogs and was fully convinced that a talon ss was the ticket….Now I am thinking a target pistol would be fun too.

    Been reading since January now and you never cease to amaze/intrigue.


    I will dig through some junk this weekend I’m not sure but I might have a bolt for your model 73.


  3. Hi BB,
    Great post. Very insperational.
    Im toying with the idea of buying a 717 for 10 meter. I wanted to see what the targets look like. I want to draft targets on AutoCAD and was hopeing you could supply me with the diameters of the rings. If this works ill need to get some heavy paper. (seems like i always take the cheap way) Thanks so much

    Nate in Mass

  4. B.B.

    I thought this person was the one who went on to outshoot you after 18 months? So, you’ve taught several people like this. My parents are visiting next week, never having seen my guns before, so, the stage is set for another encounter.

    Your indoor shooting range was about the same size as mine, so my case is not so unusual! I recall you mentioning that the NRA rankings are based on an average score. Are there a certain number of trials that go into this average? Do you get demoted once your average goes below the qualification score? If I understood the NRA site properly, a distinguished ranking is given for an average score of 95 out of a 100. I’m going to reproportion targets and set up my own little branch of the NRA to see where I fall. How do the NRA shooting rankings compare in difficulty to the military ones? My Dad is particularly proud of qualifying as a sharpshooter with the M1 in 1960, so it would be nice to establish a comparison.

    I read about the frontier village. That’s quite some loyalty for people to have a reunion for a business 20 years after it closed. You have a knack for the cool jobs.


  5. Matt61,

    Here is how military qualifications compare to NRA ratings. In the army I was an expert with the rifle (both M14 and M-16), pistol and the smallbore rifle. In the NRA I am a Sharpshooter. I shot expert in the army with no practice. It took me a year to earn my Sharpshooter rating in the NRA which I still have, by the way.

    I don’t know how the NRA determines your rating except that it takes more than one formal match. I used to shoot four a year, plus informal matches all the time. I cannot imagine ever slipping back, because if I were that much out of practice I wouldn’t compete (like I am right now).

    I have an I.D. card with my NRA rating that I present at each match I enter. I think I’d have to shoot expert at least two times to bump my rating higher, or maybe it’s a yearly average.

    The distinguished ratings are all above expert. The army has no equivalent, but they recognize the NRA distinguished ratings and allow you to wear the badge on your uniform. Distinguished Experts can try out for the Olympics.


  6. Hi BB,

    Very interesting post today and yesterday! I’m really enjoying this 10 meter pistol series! I see that PA still has the Izh 46M’s availability for 4/30. I hope it doesn’t get bumped back again or I’ll be really bummed for a while. Meanwhile I’m still playing (oops, I mean seriously practicing) with my new HW57 and my P17. Both have such nice triggers, they’re a joy to shoot. No, my Izh 513M hasn’t fallen out of favor, and gets cycled through regularly. As well as most of my other guns. See? You’ve created a monster here…

    Thanks for that,

  7. B.B.

    Thanks, now I have the framework to understand what all these rankings mean and to appreciate the ISSF films.

    Stingray, thanks for the description. I never hear about intercollegiate shooting these days. I wonder if this is a generational thing that has gone out of vogue like intercollegiate boxing.


  8. BB, Nice write-up. Not much into pellet side-arms but my try one out for kicks. Off the subject, what do you do with empty tins? Recycle them, use them for targets, etc.?? I’m getting a nice collection of them an hate to see them go to waste. Headed to Academy Sports to buy a few more tins of destroyers!!!! Might even splurge and get a tin of Premiers. Thomas

  9. I like the post, its a very nice story. I have a home-made quiet pellet trap that I can set up in my basement. I have shot everything from my cheap marksman bb pistols to a few 1000 fps springers down there.

    This leads me to a few questions. My favorite air gun to shoot down there is a Daisy Powerline 1200. It is a CO2 bb pistol with adjustable sights and good accuracy for a bb pistol. I’m getting tired of just shooting paper and would like to start shooting spinners. I know that a steel bb can bounce out of a steel trap, so I was thing of using lead round balls. I wanted to know if any of you know if I could shoot lead balls out of my gun, and how it would effect my accuracy.


  10. BB,
    I’ll have to give that approach a try — I really like the incremental method. I already have the feeling that I might enjoy a pellet pistol more than I do firearm handguns.

    As for your FIL: 3500 MK’s in one month – it’s a wonder that he didn’t go professional! Unfortunate coincidence that gunnery training was the same time as visit from your in-laws:)…

  11. Mech,

    Some BB guns will tolerate a .177 lead ball, but most won’t. However, you can always try a .174 (4.4 mm) lead ball that’s a lot closer in diameter. Buy a pound of them from this guy:

    Will they bounce out of a trap. A few probably will but I don’t think most of them will.


  12. hey b.b.,
    cool story. thats a really accurate pistol. do you still have it? also off topic, but have you reviewed either the crosman storm, or quest? my 88s will no longer hold air, si i need a starling gun. thanks,

  13. BB(or anyone else that can answer my question),

    Do you know if the Benjamin 392 and 397 are as accurate as the Silver/Blue Streak? I was just wondering because I was about to buy a Blue Streak, but I may want to get a 397 because I have a lot of .117 pellets because I have a .177 cal rifle.

    Hope you can answer

  14. BB and all,

    I have had somewhat similar experiences on my basement range.

    I feel better knowing bb shot at 19′ feet. My range is a whole 27′. I wanted to move the furnace out of the middle of the basement to get to 10 meters but my wife didn’t think that was too funny.

    At least two couples, anti gun to the core (No, I don’t remember HOW I got to be friends with such negative people) have shot on my home range and now at least will listen to why some of us like to shoot.

    Thanks BB, for the 10 meter stuff, it’s my favorite. I’m not home enough to practice regularly. I’m the guy who bought the springer Airsoft to shoot in my many motel rooms. That was fine ’til I had it at home in the living room and my wife won’t let me take it on trips as she ‘won’t be able to shoot during commercials’ if I take it. Looks like I’ll just have to get another one.

    I say all that to say this – people I would never have expected to like shooting DO like it, and it all started with pellets and/or airsoft bbs.

    Keep the faith and keep firing!

    Al Pellet

  15. Al,
    I don’t think you should worry about shooting at 27 feet versus 33. You could always scale the resulting group sizes by 1.22(or your scores by 0.82), although that wouldn’t be perfect.

    As I said, I’m going to give it a concerted effort, but my 4 year old is already doing it. Tonight on the porch, he was shooting what I think are cicada’s (plastering themselves to the glass door) with his spring-powered plastic dart pistol. I didn’t think much about it until I saw that he was hitting them. The range was only 2-3 feet, but wow! Of course, he had to start taking wing-shots, so now we have to go look for darts tomorrow:).

  16. B.B.,
    Thanks for the cool story…

    I have to ask you, which PCP gets the most shots per fill? I think Air Force rifles on the MM tank get the most, am I correct? Any others that get a large number?

    Thanks a lot

  17. Scott,

    In my experience the Blue and Silver Streaks are as accurate as the 397s and more accurate than the 392s. I suspect that may differ gun to gun, and my Blue Streak has been fired many thousands of times, so the barrel is well broken-in.

    Get a 397 and shoot up that supply.


  18. Andreas,

    The number of shots per fill varies greatly with the gun’s power level. For example, certain Falcons get 30 shots here in America but 100 shots in the UK because they shoot at one-third the power.

    I don’t find the AirForce rifles particularly conservative of air. For their power they get around the same number of shots as other European rifles, but they use more air.


  19. B.B.,

    Aren’t the Air Force rifles supposed to get 150-200 shots per MM tank? at 15 ft/lb for the condor?

    I just want the PCP with the most shots per fill/tank even at relatively low power levels. The Discovery maybe? The talon at low power level?

    Which ones do you think offer the most shots?

  20. Andreas,

    Okay, you have chosen an unusual combination. Yes, the MicroMeter tank will give 14-15 foot-pounds with a Condor, but that’s not what you want. I now understand what you are after and I can tell you how to get it.

    Get a regular Talon SS and instal an optional 24″ barrel. The MicroMeter tank will give you hundreds of shots with this tank, and, with the power adjust wheel, you will be able to select the optimum power setting for whatever you want to do.

    A Condor powerplant will overpower the MM tank, not using more air but having less adjustability on the low end. The SS powerplant and the 24-inch barrel will be the most flexible with the MM tank, plus if you ever want higher power, you’ll get up to 45 foot-pounds using the regular tank..


  21. B.B.
    Ok, I think I understand.

    Just to get things straight: Is the talon SS powerplant any different from the talon powerplant??

    How many shots can I expect at the highest setting (15 ft/lb) ?

    By the way these power figures are for .22 caliber, I will be getting the .177 caliber so it loses 20% right?

    Thanks again, sorry for the confusion

  22. Andreas,

    Yes, the Talon and Talon SS powerplants are the same. I recommended the Talon SS because the frame is longer and with the 24-inch barrel the gun doesn’t look odd.

    There has never been a test of how many shots you get from an MM tank with a Talon SS in .177 on high power. I know because I do all the testing for AirForce.

    I don’t know how many foot-pounds you’ll get from a MM tank running at high power with an optional barrel – it has never been tested. The MicroMeter tank is a LOW POWER tank, so no testing was ever done to see what it does at the highest power with an optional barrel. Too many variables to test.

    We almost never test the .177, except when top and bottom velocity numbers are needed. Most of the guns are made in .22. However, a 20 percent reduction in power is a common relationship, and that’s why that number is given in print.

    Do you live somewhere where .22 caliber is not permitted? If so, I can understand your interest in the .177 caliber combination you have proposed.

    Andreas, the only way to find out what this combination will do is to put one together and test it. I will do that if you like. This is such an off-the-wall combination that it might be fun to try it out.

    But before I put in the time to test this for you I want to make certain that this is what you want (if it tests out the way you want it to). We are looking at about 8 hours of time to test everything.


  23. B.B.,
    I definately don’t want you to spend a day’s work on my question! I can’t ask for that.

    I am in the market for a PCP with lots of shots per fill, that’t the main feature I am looking for, and the MM tank is what came to mind immidiately. On the other hand a bit of long range shooting when I head to the mountains is what I love doing, that’s why I had the Condor in mind at first.

    I live in Cyprus where .22 caliber is not permitted.

    What I don’t understand is how the hi-flo valve in the condor works.

    I am trying to firure out if I can get the same number of shots using an MM tank in all three Air Force rifles on their HIGHEST setting. If my reasoning is correct, the answer is yes.

    Anyway, B.B. I know that I want to order an AF rifle and the MM tank for it. The bottom line is that I want a plinking airgun to use at home 90% of the time, and then be able to convert it to a hunting long range rifle when I head out.

    I understand that nobody has asked for this before and it’s kind of strange because it covers all the bases of airgunning needs.

    Thanks for all the info and your willingness to test these things.

  24. Andreas,

    Your question has merit. Even though it will take time to test it, I do want to do it.

    The 8 hours was just an estimate. I can shorten that a lot by constraining the parameters of the test.

    For example, I can mount a 24-inch .177 barrel on a Talon SS and shoot it with a MicroMeter valve on high power with three pellets in about two hours, after I get the parts I don’t have. I live close to the AirForce factory and they are very cooperative on any testing, so getting the parts I don’t have shouldn’t be a problem.

    As long as accuracy testing is not a part of this test, the time can be cut back.

    Since this is so far from the norm that we normally test, I believe there will be a lot of interest in the results. I like doing things that have never been done before.

    I am going to the Little Rock airgun show next week, so I will have to schedule this for after that if you can wait.


  25. Andreas,

    No, I had planned to test only the Talon SS with the MM tank. A Talon would test nearly the same, since they both have the same powerplant.

    I could test the MM tank with a Condor, too. That will make the test much longer, but it seems like a worthwhile thing to do. Leave no stone unturned!


  26. Andreas…

    I have a MM tank. I think it has a weak valve spring that makes it about useless…

    With the SS and 12″ .177 barrel, it shoots cpl’s at 750 fps with the power wheel all the way down. Turning up the power wheel decreases the velocity a little.
    Was only getting about 20 shots on a fill. After some valve tophat adjustment got up to 30 or so shots, but power was still uncontrolable.

    Can get a alot more shots with a standard tank with the valve and power adjustment tuned properly with over 900 fps.

    You can tune a standard tank down easily to any speed you like and get even more shots.

    B.B may not like this suggestion, but I would get two standard tanks, tune one to work full power with max air conservation, and tune and mark the other for whatever lower velocity you want and get lots of shots.

    You can slow a tank down to the point that the pellet will not even get out of the barrel.

    If you decide later that you would rather have two high power tanks, you can adjust the slow one back up.


  27. Twotalon,

    What you say makes me want to do this test all the more. Because your experience certainly isn’t what one would expect from this combination.

    I will be testing a Talon SS with an optional 24″ .177 barrel and a MicroMeter tank. The power setting will be set on high power – if that gives the best power. We’ll see what happens.


  28. B.B. and Andraeus…..

    Yes my micro is flakey. It’s low priority right now.

    Tuning is not hard if you know how and have a chrono.

    Hate to pitch for another website, but checkout Talonairgun website. Everything you ever wanted to know or not know is there.


  29. Andreas,
    I wanted as many shots from one normal-sized tank for my AirForce .25 Condor for 10 metre indoor use, while expecting to use a different set up for squirrel/rat shooting. Using the Pyramid Air 12 0z. CO2 tank with screw-on adaptor, shooting 26.5 grain H.P., I have so far achieved over 400 shots at 10 metre readings of 535-585 fps, which transalates to 16-20 ft.-lbs. of energy at 10 metres. PA site touts more than 1,000 shots, and I have no doubt that I have already gotten more than my money’$ worth. The accuracy of the gun falls off significantly using the CO2, but it turns out to be accurate enough at 25 yards (about 1 3/4″ at 25 yards and about 3/8″ at 10 yards versus stock tank set-up which is accurate at 1/2 ” at 25 yards and 1/8″ at 10 yards) and powerful enough to still effectively take out squirrels 100% of the time at distances up to 25 yards. A nice side benefit is that (whether the power wheel is at 3 or 8) with this reduced power and a decent moderator all you hear is the mechanical cha-clank of the rifle’s internals followed by the thud of the pellet striking its target – Dr. G.

  30. B.B. That’s just great – thanks!

    twotalon, thanks for the website – lots of info there.

    Dr G. Unfortunately CO2 guns are illegal here too! I live in airgun hell I know!

  31. BB,

    Do you know of any air guns with field-target like accuracy with the field target price? I don’t mean like hit a dime from 30 yards accuracy, but reasonable accuracy.

  32. Matt61,

    to keep you updated, im now leaning over to the .338 lapua. It seems to be the round of choice for long range shooting. Not exactly sure what i want in terms of a specific model. Maybe a TAC -338 or an accuracy international. I know what scope i want. Its a Schmidt & Bender Police Marksman 5-25×56. I have a fixed 4x Schmidt & Bender on my .375 H&H so i know they are good! I don’t say much about them but they are probably the best (likely above Swarovski). I thought you would like to be informed!

  33. sorry if a already posted this comment, if so I lost it. I remember you talking about the new scope rings pa was developing for rws and their barrel drop… Or droop, idk. Have you come out with them yet ?

  34. Drop or droop,

    You also posted this question on the Intro to 10-meter pistol report.


    What I have developed is not rings. It is a scope base that works with Weaver rings. It does fix the barrel droop problem, and it also anchors the scope mount solidly to an RWS Diana rifle without endangering the big screw at the back of the rifle’s own base.

    It will be on the market in June.


  35. Reasonable accuracy,

    You are asking for something that will not work. You say the rifle doesn’t have to hit a dime at 30 yards, but you want a field target rifle. A real field target rifle MUST be able to hit a dime at 30 yards! That would be the one prerequisite for making it a field target rifle.

    Maybe you are using the term field target without understanding what field target is. If all you want is a reasonably accurate air rifle for not too much money, there are several good ones I can recommend. How about the RWS Diana 34 Panther, for starters? You could shoot that in a field target match. It wouldn’t win, but it would work for many of the targets.

    A Gamo Whisper is another fine shooter. Again, not field target accuracy, but a great price on a reasonably accurate rifle.

    The Benjamin Discovery comes closest to what you say you want. The price is right and you get a whole PCP shooting system for under $400. It could shoot a field target match and win, in the right hands.


  36. Scott, you really can’t go wrong with any of the Benjamin-Sheridan multi-pump rifles. I own an older 397, and a 392 that was manufactured in ’07. Both shoot very accurate,..for my needs anyways. I’ve shot a friends Blue Streak on many occasions with very good results. The only difference I’ve noticed in mine is that the wood used for my 392 is a lighter weight. All are basically the same rifle in different calibers. One thing to remember with the Blue/Silver Streak, is that you don’t have the selection of pellets like the .177/.22. But they are all fine guns that won’t dissappoint you. I do prefer the 397 for hunting 25 yards and out, but the shot placement narrows alot, and you have to be on the mark for a clean kill. I always shoot for the spine at the whithers, or just behind the front legs for the heart/lung shot. The 392 is great for anything 25 yards and closer (in my opinion). Really slaps the crap out of a squirrel with better knock down power. I wish B-S made a cylindrical pellet for .177/.22 like they do for the Streaks. Best of luck, Thomas

  37. B.B.–Scott298-loved the write up and you have has peaked my curosity into air hand guns-loved the way you taught your father-in-law to shoot and I suppose this could also translate into teaching someone in shooting an air rifle (under safer conditions of course). I am quite aware of the artiliary hold that you preach about when using springers and it’s the only hold I shoot mine- thanks to you I am slowly progressing to the air arms where I am considering field target competition. The question is this-if I were to put a bi-pod on my springer would this cancel out the effects of the artilliary hold? If it didn’t it would sure be a lot easier when I’m bench shooting-not having to drag that 50lb of sand I use to rest my hand on, or will I have to learn a new way to shoot my 350 all over again. As always say hello to your wife for me and I may need a new book-I’m wearing out the pages on the 1st one.–Scott298

  38. Scott298,

    I don’t have any experience with bipods on spring guns, but what I think they will do is normalize the vibration patterns, the same as the artillery hold. Since the bipod doesn’t move, it should work pretty well.


  39. Andreas

    I also have a MM tank and must second twotalon’s advice to avoid it.

    Mine tends to dump the tank’s entire air charge when the rifle is fired. Probability of air dump is influenced by which way you turn the bolt knob. This behavior seems to fit with twotalon’s thought that it has a weak valve return spring.

    No, I haven’t returned it to Airforce for repair, but when I do I’ll request that it be retrofitted to a standard valve configuration.

  40. Scott289,
    You might want to consider the Leapers Zytel Clam-on Bipod (LECL-BP70[PY-A-773]). It is only $8 pops on and off very quickly. I have one and really like it – do not use it much – but it serves the purpose when needed.

    If you like using a bi-pod then step up to a better one that more firmly attaches to your gun.

    Just a thought,

  41. BB,

    It is interesting to follow the thread with Andreas in cyprus. On the subject of testing, you mentioned that “As long as accuracy testing is not a part of this test, the time can be cut back.”

    I wonder, isn’t accuracy the ultimate holy grail in our beloved sport? Is number of shots more important that hitting the target we aim for?

    Please dont get me wrong, I too would like a rifle that shoots hundreds shots per fill, but it should also be accurate, provided I do my part of course.

    A great blog. Thanks.


  42. Im looking into putting a scope on my izh baikal 513M. What scope and scope mount combo would you recomend. I need a low power scope that so probably a 2-7×32 or something like that. What scope stop should i get also? Thanks

  43. Interesting selection of a Diana 10. That was one of the APs that I lusted for when I got started, but could not afford. Then I got the 6G and found out how hard it was to cock the pistol. I wish Diana did a better job there. It is hard enough to shoot a match but to also have a HARD spring to cock for each shot.

  44. In an earlier blog you said that the 34 panther had a choked barrel. Is it likely that the regular 34 would have one too? Also are the scope end rings that come with the combos good? Would the panther be more accurate, less hold sensitive, etc. Than the regular 34?

  45. Andreas,

    The gentleman who mentioned his MicroMeter tank dumping its air has a different problem. He isn’t seating his pellets deep enough in the breech. All AirForce rifle will dump the tank if the pellet isn’t seated deep enough, but the MM tank is particularly sensitive to it because it has such a low airflow.

    The MM tanks do not have faults.


  46. David,

    Yes, accuracy is the “holy grail’ of our beloved sport, but in a decade of testing AirForce airguns I have only found one barrel that wasn’t uniformly accurate. I repaired and tested each rifle that came back to AirForce for three years, and I set up every rifle that was sold to a customer with the scope already mounted, plus every rifle that went to a writer or sales rep. They were all highly accurate.

    The accuracy of an AirForce rifle is a given. Therefore, I don’t see the need to perform accuracy testing, when all that is asked is for the velocity performance of the gun with an optional barrel and the MicroMeter tank.


  47. Deric,

    Any 2-7 power scope will suit you, but have you given any though to the UTG 4X40 Tactedge scope with 11m scope rings? It’s a wonderful low-powered scope.

    The 513M has an improper scope base that’s similar to the RWS Diana scope base. Hang the scope stop pin in front of the base, as shown in this report:



  48. John,

    The barrels from a manufacturer are nearly always the same from rifle to rifle. So the other barrels should be choked, as well.

    I like the Panther’s slim stock profile. But it shouldn’t be less hold-sensitive than the wood stock 34.


  49. BB,
    Thanks for the tip about pellet seating with the MM tank, however it dumps air even without a pellet. I know it needs to be repaired, but since I’ve also purchased the CO2 adapter I don’t have an urgent need for the MM tank.

  50. Anonymous……
    In case you misunderstood my comments about the micro…
    While mine is flaky, there is no need to avoid micros as long as you are certain that you will ALWAYS want a low power tank. Also remembering that a scope adjustment will probably be necessary when switching between two different power tanks, unless you happen to have a mil dot that accidently falls in the right place.


  51. Hi Thomas,

    What kind/brand of .22 pellets do you use with your 392?. My 392 can not have a decent group with cps,rws & some others, however, the lowly daisy wads does better but still not so consistent.


  52. BB,

    This article got me to want to get into 10-meter Air pistol shooting. Since I cannot find a coach around my area, could you recommmend a book or website that help a beginner like myself get started?


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