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Education / Training Gamo Compact vs IZH 46 – Part 4

Gamo Compact vs IZH 46 – Part 4

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Before I begin with today’s report, there’s some things I need to cover. The first has to do with leaving comments. Some of you think you have to leave a comment on the report to which your comment pertains. You don’t have to do that. Leave your comment on the current blog, if you like. This will help you find my answer rather than having to remember which post had your question.

Second, and this is related, some of the older posts now have over 200 comments. When the comments go over 200, Blogger (the software we are using) displays only the first 200 comments unless you direct it to do otherwise. So, people will leave a comment, then they will look for it and it doesn’t appear in their window. When a post has over 200 comments, select “Newest” comments (a blue selection tab at the top right of the comments window) after you click on “Leave a Comment.” Then, you’ll see your comment.

Let’s look at the power of an 11-year-old IZH 46. I told you in Part 2 that this model produces velocity in the 410 to 430 f.p.s. range. That’s with a lightweight wadcutter lead pellet – no trick or synthetic pellets. My particular pistol always produced about 430 f.p.s. with RWS Hobbys, so today we’ll find out what 11 years and 8,000 shots has done to this single-stroke mechanism. You’ll recall that I told you these mechanisms have to be warmed up before they perform at their specified velocity, and we saw that with the Gamo Compact in Part 3.

RWS Hobbys
RWS Hobby pellets averaged 444 f.p.s.! That’s with a spread from 433 to 457. I’m as surprised as anyone about that, but I think I’ve discovered a way to pump new life into old single-strokes. When I started this test series, the gun began with a shot at 303 f.p.s. and within 10 shots it was up to about 390. After 20 more shots, it seemed to stall out around 400 f.p.s. Then, I tried something new. Instead of one fast pump stroke that I normally give the gun, I pumped two semi-strokes real fast and then closed on the third stroke. The first two semi-strokes were only about 25 percent of the pump stoke distance. I did all three pump strokes in rapid succession.

What I think this does is limber up the pump head so the third stroke really gathers all the air it can. Whatever the cause, the numbers don’t lie. My pistol now shoots faster than ever before. Next time I test the Gamo Compact, I’ll retest the velocity using this new procedure.

Crosman Supermatch
Crosman Supermatch averaged 415 f.p.s., again, using the new pumping procedure. The spread is 409 to 421. With the old style of one fast stroke, the average falls to 390.

Gamo Match
Gamo Match pellets averaged 438 using the new pump method. The spread was 433 to 448. With the old, fast single stroke, the average was 406 f.p.s.

H&N Match
H&N Match averaged 447 f.p.s. The spread was from 441 to 452, and I discovered something additional about this new method. It isn’t how fast you pump, but rather how far the two false pumps go. If they go as far as three-quarters of the full stroke, the power increased by 10-15 f.p.s. So, naturally I had to retest Hobbys.

RWS Hobby retest
This time, the average was 471 f.p.s., with a spread from 466 to 476. That means my 11-year-old IZH 46 is now shooting very close to where a 46M is supposed to shoot. My gun was always a fast one, but this goes well beyond that.

I feel like I own an 11-year-old thoroughbred horse that should be out to stud and instead he’s posting the fastest times of his career. I think I’ve stumbled on to something that’s very fundamental and very wonderful. I want you all to try this new method and see what it does for your guns. Don’t forget to lubricate them before you do it.

How to oil an IZH 46
Someone asked how to properly oil an IZH 46, so I took a picture. The pump handle is fully extended, bringing the pump head out to the bottom of the pump slot, so it is barely visible. It’s no different than any other pneumatic that has the pump built in, but here’s the picture anyway. I use three drops per session, and I lube my old gun very frequently. If I were shooting it every day, I’d lube it once a week. You cannot over-lubricate your gun by doing this, so no worries.


Put the oil on the pump head and work it in with the pump mechanism. Use at least three drops.

39 thoughts on “Gamo Compact vs IZH 46 – Part 4”

  1. Hello Sir,
    How about a post on helping shooters with poor eyes? Dealing with the joy of bifocals and all the aides and tips to improve the shot. I guess I should have said old eyes. I remember how I teased the folks that HAD to have scopes;but now I’m there. Thanks

  2. Hi BB!

    Got a question about an Airforce pump…
    I had to clean the dark oil/grease because it got dirty with thin dust and sand from the ground. I cleanned it before pumping it, I guess it won’t damage the seals.

    But… the pump dropped on performance! Every 200 PSI I pump, the needle goes down by a 100… can I lub the pump again? What should I use? Is it teflon o-ring lubricant?


  3. Hi BB,

    What is your take on the claims that I have seen on the forums stating that “excessively” light or “excessively” heavy pellets will damage a spring air gun? These claims sound like urban legends to me.

    Mike T.

  4. Mike T.,

    I have never liked shooting light pellets in spring guns. But I have also not thought that heavy pellets caused damage.

    Pellet fit to the bore has some part to play in this discussion, as well. So I look for the most accurate pellet and forget the rest, as a rule. However, with spring guns, I don’t shoot the extra-light or extra-heavy pellets as a matter of practice.

    I don’t know that they cause damage, but I do know they don’t work well.


  5. B.B. Off topic: Would you happen to know why it is so difficult to obtain .22 cal lead round balls? Pyramyd has not had them for about a year, although they have all of the other calibers. I did write to Pyramyd and I’m awaiting an answer. I can’t find them on any sites! It seems odd that the .22 cal is so hard to get.
    Thanks, ————Don

  6. Don,

    H&N has held up their shipment to Pyramyd AIR (and everyone else in the U.S.) for a long time.

    Pyramyd AIR has contacted another supplier to get Lobo balls from Argentina, and now they are dragging their feet.

    The problem is one of supply.


  7. B.B.

    Interesting new method for single strokes although I think I will stick with a single stroke for the 747 because I expect that increased velocity will make it louder, and I value it’s quietness.

    I have to say you were dead on with your comments about recoil. When shooting the .30-30 yesterday, I was impressed with a sensation of incredible violence. But on a video that a friend took the gun hardly seems to recoil and it actually looks like I know what I’m doing. And I was glad to see that the airgunning seems to have helped. I was able to put 5 shots within a couple of inches at 25 yards with iron sights thanks in part to the glorious Beeman sandbags.

    But while the sandbags worked great for the firearm, they didn’t do much for my B30 which was shooting all over the place. Part of this, I realized later was due to the fact that I got mixed up and was shooting RWS Hobbys instead of the Beeman Field Target Specials and JSB Exacts. But it was also due to my intoxication with the Beeman sandbags and my readings that the B30 was hold insensitive so that I was resting the gun right on the bag. It’s not that insensitive. I finally put my hand into the notch of the front rest and reduced the group to around an inch.

    I know what to do with the front rest, but I’m wondering if resting the butt directly on the rear bag is going to interfere with the artillery hold. More generally, I’m curious about Beeman. They know how to make good spring guns. But the directions accompanying their bags instruct you to rest the gun right on the bags. And I’ve read their advice about gripping spring guns as hard as you can. In other words, they give the worst possible advice for shooting springers. How can this be? Don’t they have a competition team that can shoot springers accurately?


  8. Matt61,

    Those Beeman instructions were written in the early 1970s by Robert Beeman, himself. They’ve never changed. I actually sent Robert the first draft of what would come to be my artillery hold, but it wasn’t published in the catalog.

    The Beeman “team” knows how to shoot PCPs, but they don’t use springers in FT competition. So don’t look for a lot of new information in that area.

    As far as the recoil goes, if the .30-30 was your first centerfire rifle I’m sure it did feel violent. Trust me, though, when I say it is one of the softest-recoiling .30 caliber rounds in existence.

    The action of a rifle can help absorb recoil energy. For example, the M1 Garand shoots a .30-06, which has a healthy kick. In a Garand that kick is spread out over a long time and feels lighter, while the same cartridge in a bolt-action rifle will kick your teeth out. It’s a matter of perception.

    As for the rear bag rest, I haven’t done any work testing that. I would expect it to have less influence, but that’s just a guess.


  9. BB, Got my rifle to the UPS depot, so I guess I’ll be hearing from them within the next couple of weeks. Hope they can “make it right” again. I’ve got to admit, the break barrels will spoil you being single cocked, un-like my Benji’s. But they’ve (the 397/392’s) proven themselves better with reliability and accuracy. Just a pain having to pumps them up!! My 650 fps Laurona (the Spanish Marksman ?!?!) is still shooting better every time I take it off the rack. Wish it shot faster though. It can’t penetrate through the rear side of a soup can, and not sure if it’s worth taking out for hunting next season. Still a good practice/plinker gun. In your opinion, what is the lowest fps velocity for hunting squirrel within 25 yards?!? Thomas

  10. B.B.

    Thanks. Well, that’s an interesting marketing strategy that the Beeman line is famous for its spring rifles but their competition team shoots PCPs.

    If the .30-30 is one of the lightest recoiling .30 caliber rounds, I believe that class is as high as I want to go. The Elmer Kaye character in the Bob Lee Swagger books says, “Recoil is for sissies” but I think I’ll take a pass….


  11. Thanks BB, That was about what my assumption for fps aught to be. I think it’s interesting that we seem to have the same ideas on shooting light weight and heavy weight pellets in springers. Some how, I believe that the lighter pellets don’t give the nessesary resistance against the piston forced air during firing, and uin a way resembles “dry firing”. On the other side of the scale, heavy pellets may cause more wear on the rifleing, and might even cut through the lands without getting the proper spin when exiting the muzzle. I think one thing that may have happenned to my Sierra is that in my search for the best pellet to use, I’d jump from light to heavy pellets without giving the action (internal springs/seals) enough time to relax. If that makes any sense. I was getting the best results with the Crowmags, Predators, and yes BB, the Crosman Destroyers. Thomas

  12. BB,
    After seeing your report I had to give it a try. My IZH46 is almost as old as yours but does not have as many shots through it. I lube mine with 2 drops of Chrysler ATF+4 about every 200-300 shots. With a cold gun and single pump using 7.9gr Chinese pellets (Green label/clear plastic) I shot a 10 shot string with a low of 437 and high of 449, Avg 444. Then I tried the 2 quick half pumps followed by a 3rd full stroke for 10 shots getting a low of 463, high 483, avg 473. Now I dont have to sell mine to get the 46M just a quick short stroke gets me an added 30 fps.

    Mike T,
    I dont have any actual experience with spring problems but Jim Maccari recommends against heavy pellets in spring guns.

    The amount of recoil you feel is also directly affected by the weight of your gun and the size of the butt pad. I have a Win lever in 375 Win. and have fired the same gun in 30-30 and they both feel like they kick more than my Rem 700 in 300Win Mag. Mostly because of the thin butt w/solid rubber pad and because they weight 2.5 lbs less than the 700 which has a nice 1″ thick recoil pad.


  13. I have a question about the Gamo Viper/Shadow express. Is it built to last a good 4/5000 rounds. Is the plastic good quality? Can the shells be reloded with larger shot?
    (I loded my crosman 66 with 13 #8 shot, the barrel jamed. I did it again with 5 #2 shot and it hasn’t jammed a good 700 shots later).

  14. Viper/Shadow,

    I would be surprised if the gun didn’t last longer than 100,000 shots. The plastic they use isn’t the kind that breaks. It’s the kind that Glock uses.

    Yes to larger shot, except the number of shot decreases rapidly as the size increases. Especially in the tiny shotshell.

    My advice to you is to get one and try shooting it. In a month, you’ll know more than anybody.


  15. Sam,

    Thanks for the additional info. I shot off 30 rounds in a few minutes, so I wasn’t hating it. Can’t wait to see what the Garand will feel like.


  16. Hi BB,

    Thanks for an interesting read:

    Just a couple of questions if you dont mind?

    1. When considering spring (i.e non PCP or CO2) air pistols are the HW45 etc. considered the highest models?

    2. Just wondering what your opinion is of “crippled” (i.e 12 ft/p limit) Air Arms etc. I am looking at a TX200 (want to avoid PCPs) in the UK but am worried the restrictions will result in a lack of velocity to hit farther targets on the range. Might it be worth it to buy a US imported R9 etc.?

    Thanks again BB,

  17. thanks BB,

    Unfortunately I am in the UK, but based on your response, it seems a crippled TX is not quite the same. I guess I will try to import it…

    Also, do you happen to know the import laws in the USA for bringing in airguns? In about a year and a half I will be moving to canada/us and I don’t want to have to leave my airgun behind.

    Thanks again,

  18. Pat,

    I don’t know the specific law for importation into either country, but I do know that Canada is even more restrictive than the UK for airguns. Their law declares that an airgun must have less than 500 f.p.s. muzzle velocity. Above that requires a permit of some kind. I don’t know that they classify it as a firearm, but there is some restriction.

    Generally, the U.S. is pretty free. Airguns are not legislated at the national level, but a few of our states have laws that impose some restrictions. We have a national law that makes it a federal offense for any federal, state or local municipality to declare an airgun to be a firearm, but I believe several states are in violation of that law at present.


  19. Matt61,

    Ok – about that ed brown…
    I really like this rifle – the go to golfer getter

    It has exceptional eight ounce trigger in my opinion – and I am very fussy about my triggers.

    Its not much fun to shoot – other than for the extreme accuracy. The ammo is expensive, especially when compared to the .223. For these reasons, I only shoot it when hunting – no fooling around. Then again, i didn’t buy it to be a fun gun (something with cheap ammo and throws lots of lead). Its fun in its own way to have a rifle that shoots through the same hole at 100 yards.

    Heres an example of fooling around….. Over this past weekend i took out one of my .223 (i have a few) and did some 1500 yard shooting – into a lake. Its not that hard to hit a three are lake, even at that distance. To help you image this, i am on the side of a mountain shooting into a lake in the valley. Dangerous? Not in the least – in order for someone to get hurt there must be people around.
    and yes, i know bullets skip off water! Childish? a bit

    the point is that i wouldn’t do that with my 22-250. And if i did, i would be hitting the fish in the lake!

    If you want a 22-250 this is the one!

    Any specific questions


  20. Hi BB,

    I’m glad to see that you’re review more 10 m pistols. I was wondering about the 10 m gun made by Air Arms:


    Have you heard anything about this gun? It’s a PCP, would any hand pump be good to fill this gun?



  21. Carl,

    I have handled the Air Arms 10 meter pistol at the SHOT Show. It holds like a $2000 Olympic gun. What little I’ve tried the trigger, it seemed very nice, as well.

    Yes, it can be filled from a hand pump. All it takes is the right adapter.


  22. BB,

    Do you know if the Benjamin .177 Diablo (tin of 250) is the same pellet as the 7.9 gr. Crosman Premier (cardboard box of 1250)?


    PS Thanks for the great blog site. I’m relatively new to the hobby and am learning a lot from it.

  23. I don't know about the IZH 46 but the manual for the 46M tells you NOT to double pump. It also says that you should use a high flash point oil on the piston seal. Over oiling any gun air or cartridge is not a good idea in any case.

  24. L. Smith,

    The design of a single-stroke pneumatic like the IZH 46 and 46M makes it impossible to double-pump. When you pull open the pump for the seconf stroke you release the air from the first one.

    It is impossible to over-oil the IZH 46 and 46M with Crosman Pellgunoil. And you do not need to use a high flashpoint silicone oil, because this is a single-stroke airgun — not a spring piston gun.


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