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S&W 586 – Ideal for Handgun Training

by B.B. Pelletier

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Chuck decided to gamble on a pellet gun he saw in this blog. Read what he thinks about it now. If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me.

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S&W 586 – Ideal for Handgun Training

by CJr


Smith & Wesson 586 is very realistic, as Chuck found out!

Let me start out by saying the Smith & Wesson 586 air pistol fits my needs perfectly. Of course, my needs may not be the same as most air pistol owners. I hear a lot of talk about accuracy, which is admittedly important, but that’s not my primary reason for choosing this particular pistol.

I’m not interested in pistol competition/match shooting or even obtaining quarter-inch groups from this gun. Nor am I interested in its value as a collector’s item, even though, from what I hear, it may be suitable for all the above. I chose this pistol because it resembles a firearm in feel, size, weight and operation. What’s so important about that? Although it would be foolish to use an airgun for self defense (don’t even think of doing that!), this one is ideal for self-defense training! I want to use it to practice shooting with confidence one-handed, two-handed, through the sights, sideways like a gangsta, from the hip and everything in between.

I own a firearm that I keep for home defense, a .38 Special +P Airweight. Someday, if my state wakes up, I will pursue a concealed carry license. In any case, I want to be the best I can be in handling and shooting my firearm of choice. Today, for me that firearm is a revolver because of its simplicity, safety and preparedness. So, how does that make the S&W 586 such a great choice? Why not just go out and practice with the real thing? I’ll tell you why. It’s darned expensive!

I first researched getting a .22LR version of my pistol. I found a couple companies that make them. The idea seemed plausible, and .22 ammo is certainly cheaper than the ammo my firearm uses. However, a visit to the local gun shop discouraged that notion right away. New .22 revolvers were selling for over $500 apiece. The cheapest .22 ammo I could find was $1.49 for 50. If I’m going to spend that much money, it should go into a really good air rifle. I considered looking for a used version, but I’m not knowledgeable enough to know a good used gun when I see one. I’d be lucky to find one even $100 cheaper, I thought. That’s when the S&W 586 caught my eye.

I was rummaging through back issues of the Pyramyd AIR blog when I came across a couple posts evaluating the S&W 586. Smith & Wesson 586 & 686 revolvers and S&W 586 & 686 pellet guns – Part 2. After reading those posts, I knew this was the tool I was looking for. I felt I could count on its quality and reliability. It’s much cheaper than the firearm, plus the pellets will be a lot cheaper than .22LR, not to mention that I already have plenty of pellets because of my interest in air rifles. As an added bonus, I can practice in my 33′ indoor range in any weather, any time of year and without driving 20 miles to the outdoor range.

I purchased the 586 (from Pyramyd Air) to see if it could live up to my expectations. I’ll tell you right now it has. I was impressed with the gun as soon as I removed the box lid. If I hadn’t known better, I’d have sworn they sent me a firearm instead of an airgun. When I took it out of the box, I noticed it was a little larger and heavier than my firearm. So, it won’t be exactly apples to apples, but it’s close enough for my needs.

My first concern, since it was a CO2 pistol, is if the cost of cartridges is going to be a factor. After shooting about 500 pellets, I found that CO2 is not going to be costly. The cylinders (magazines) hold 10 pellets, and I can shoot through six cylinders easily before accuracy begins to drop off significantly. Sixty pellets from one CO2 cartridge per practice session is within my budget.

The gun is very reliable and very easy to shoot in both single- and double-action. Very similar to my firearm. The only time I had a problem with jamming was when there wasn’t enough gas pressure for the pellet to fully clear the cylinder, causing the pellet to stick half into the breech. Jams happened around 80-90 shots on the same CO2 cartridge. They’re easily cleared with a rod down the barrel, forcing the pellet back into the cylinder. I use very thick weed trimmer line so I don’t damage the crown. It also works as a great cleaning rod.

My first attempt at shooting was not very productive. In my book, 33′ is a long distance for a pistol. I quickly moved up to 15 feet and worked my way back from there. I was shooting at an 8.5″x11″ target. After eight sessions, I can now hit it consistently using the open sights at 33 feet. That size paper is smaller than a man’s chest, so I’m in the ballpark without the recoil factor. From the hip…thats another story. Very small movements of the gun result in very large misses. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to master this. Only some very special people have. We’ll see. I haven’t tried “gangsta” yet.

I’ve found that I can be productive as long as I use the sights. My first priority was quick target acquisition with open sights. Since a defensive distance in my house will be about 12′, I think I’m on the right track.

In the beginning, I fully expected to be able to consistently hit the vital areas of a man-sized target at 33′ (with the actual firearm). I think my experience with the 586 has supported that goal. The only things I won’t be able to practice this way will be the recoil of the firearm and the anxiety and stress of facing a real threat. The former, recoil experience, I can practice at the local gun range with the firearm once in a while. It is my hope and desire that I never need to experience the latter.

A postscript by B.B.
Edith and I try to visit the indoor gun range once a month to stay current with our 1911 defense pistols. As a comment to what Chuck says about quick sighting and 12′ distances in home defense, we can relate to both of those. The Texas qualification course for a Concealed Carry permit has you shooting at 3, 7 and 15 yards. These are considered reasonable defensive distances.

When we go to the range, we always start out at 3 yards, then progress to 15 yards. I can vouch for the fact that my sights, which are called Heinie 8-Ball sights, are the fastest-acquiring sights I’ve ever seen. From a starting position, where the pistol is rested on the table, I can get two rounds through the 9- or 10-ring at 15 yards in less than 1.5 seconds. This level of shooting was never close to possible for me before getting these sights.

The 8-ball sight is two large white dots. One is on the front post and the other is centered below the rear notch. You stack them like the number 8 when you shoot–but in reality it’s even faster than that. I just put the front ball on the spot I want to hit and the bullet lands within 3″…most of the time. I seldom even see the rear ball.

Heinie 8-Ball sights are the fastest pistol sights I’ve seen. Most of the time, all I see is the front ball, and that’s where the bullet goes. The special handling technique I mention in the report is shown in this picture. My thumb is hooked over the manual safety, which counteracts muzzle flip during recoil. As a result, the 1911 becomes very controllable!

I’ve been a target pistol shooter all my life (shooting handguns for over 45 years), and it did me no good for defensive shooting. After reading one book on the subject three years ago and learning the importance of a proper grip on the gun, I’ve gone from being a plodder to a pretty fast reactive shooter. I’m 61, so this isn’t the result of quick reflexes. It’s the result of a technique that actually works. The technique makes the gun recoil so little that Edith became an enthusiastic .45 ACP shooter, where for the previous 20 years she loathed my loaded-down .38 Special loads in a heavy-frame .357 Magnum Ruger revolver.

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.

60 thoughts on “S&W 586 – Ideal for Handgun Training”

  1. Chuck-
    Once you get the basics down, and want a greater chalenge, I suggest you begin to master instinctive shooting. God phrobid you do find yourself in a threatning situation, looking down and lining up the sights might become more difficult. If you pay attention to the news, a lot of times you’ll see police shootings where 40 shots were fired and 1 man injured. This happens for two reasons: sometimes they are shooting through glass (auto window) which is extremeley dificult; also because police ( atleast NY) are NOT trained for instinctive shooting. This is the perfect skill to practice with an airgun!

  2. Chuck<

    Thanks for taking the time to write a guest blog for us. What a good way to pratice. Where I live the county police would pay a quick visit if I was shooting that in my back yard cause it sure looks like a powder burner.


    Thanks for the Heinie 8 Ball site picture. Looks like the way to go for me and house 1911.

    Mr B

  3. B.B. and all. A great and timely article.Without going into politics there is a gun and ammunition shortage in this country right now which is driving the prices out of sight.I bought a box of .357 mag.ammo the other day(the cheap stuff) and it cost me almost $30.00.People are hoarding and buying by the case because of an uncertain future.Practice with air guns makes perfect sense.Any one who is concerned about their constitutional rights should contact the NRA. Thanks for listening.Jersey Boy.

  4. Chuck,

    Great job on the article. The 586 sounds ideal for your needs. Being a CO2 gun, does this hinder your practice for quick fire?

    Greatly appreciate the time you spent on the article for our benefit.


  5. BB, While we are on the subject of handguns I have a question for you. Are you by any chance related to Chic Gaylord from NYC.? He was one of the pioneers in practical combat shooting and especially in combat holster design. He wrote the book “Handgunners Guide” published by Hastings House , in 1960. The Library of Congress Card Number was 60-9121. I have this book in my collection, and while dated it is a still a very good read on the subject. Chic designed and made holsters that were light years ahead of their time. He was one of the first to offer combat,duty. field, and concealment holsters, that were molded (boned ) to fit specific handguns. These holsters would hold the gun securely without the need for saftey straps. He had a shop on Manhattan’s West Forty-seventh Street. Just thought you might find this interesting. Take care. Robert

  6. Very informative guest blog! I’ve kind of wondered which airguns are best for training purposes, and this lends some nice insights.

    BTW, I don’t think you’ll find gangsta style accurate unless you wear silvered aviators (to shield your eyes from glare), some bling around your neck (as a counterbalance of sorts), and a huge diamond ear ring (to blind your potential antagonists/illuminate the target) 🙂

  7. Kevin, I don't believe so. The name has come up in other books that reference combat holsters and their design. There was another shop in NYC. called Seventrees. It was run by Paris Theodore. They made molded (blocked/boned) concealment holsters from horse hide and shark skin, based on the same design principals that Chic used. The Alessi holsters which I have one of for a S&W mod 19 I carry ,are based on the same designs, pioneered by these two men. This was before moulded plastic holsters. There is however, another "BB" pen name. It belongs to an English writer who's real name is D.J. Watkins -Pitchford. He wrote many delightful books and stories related to the sporting life ,fishing, and country life in England. I have several of his books as well in my collection. Robert

  8. CJr:

    Wonderful report. Well written and informative.

    One question that others considering doing the same may want to know. If budget was a concern as you appear to indicate why did you go for the S&W 586 at $200+ versus the Crosman 357 at $50? I'm not faulting your decision just curious on what made you choose one over the other.

    You didn't mention if the one you got was the 4 or 6 inch barrel. My guess is the 6.

    I do have the Crosman and have had a chance to hold the S&W and I will admidt that the S&W does feel heavier and appears to be a better fit in the hand but you hadn't said if you had had a chance to hold or shoot eother before buying.


  9. Rabbitt,
    Very good questions.
    First off, I got the 4" barrel. I wanted something that looked like and felt, as close as possible, like my actual firearm. I chose the S&W 4" barrel because that is closer to my S&W .38 firearm.

    If the air pistol came in a 2" version I would have bought that, instead. My firearm has only a 1 7/8" barrel which I thought would be better for concealment if Illinois ever allows that. Being a smaller gun also fits my physic and is more maneuverable for me.

    Secondly, I didn't even look at other air pistols after reading BB's review because I wanted a close lookalike and BB's review helped convince me the S&W was the one for me. I knew I would be getting a good gun and that my $200 wouldn't be wasted.

    However, I did look at the Crosman 357 after I read your comment but it is too big with the 6" barrel and I didn't see a shorter one being offered.

    As far as budget concerns – I thought less than half price sounded real good. .22 S&W and Taurus revolver firearms were $500 so $200 seemed like really good price to me to do what I wanted.

    How satisfied are you with the Crosman? It might be a good buy for my grandkids. Would you recommend it?

    Hey! You just described my go-to-church clothes ;>)

    I don't understand quick fire question. I may not be familiar enough with CO2. I haven't seen a problem firing off all 10 shots in rapid succession, yet, if that's what you mean. Let me know and I'll watch closer and let you know what I see.

    J from J,
    Now I'll have to learn what instinctive shooting is. Does it never end?!!

    I like the looks of the 8 ball sights. I don't think I can upgrade my firearm, though. The front sights are molded as part of the barrel and the rear sight is just a groove in the frame.

    Thanks all for the friendly comments.


  10. Chuck,

    Thanks for the blog. Hip shooting sounds difficult. In the books I’ve read, the only time it is used is as part of the “close contact” position where the opposite elbow is raised–in other words for when the guy is almost on top of you. Otherwise, you might practice an intermediate move described by Elmer Keith and others where you push the pistol towards the target as you fire. This is also similar to the instinct shooting posture of W.E. Fairbairne that you can read about. I think the pure quick draw hip shooting is for the experts and is not going to happen in 8 sessions or many more. Regarding the CO2, the gas cools down with each discharge, so you have to wait for it to warm up to achieve consistent accuracy and pressures. But at the distances you shoot, I doubt you would notice anything. Kevin, I shoot rapid fire with my 1077 at 20 feet and don’t notice any deviation.

    Does anyone know the rationale for the sideways gangster hold? I can’t see any advantage.


    Nice picture of the sights. So, you do have a fund of information about tactical pistol shooting. What’s your book? I’ve read a few and they all say the same thing more or less.


  11. Chuck:

    I see your reasoning and I would agree that the S&W was the better choice for you based on why you were getting one. I think I would have done the same.

    BB has blogged about the Crosman (a couple of years ago) and at one time I think it came with a shorter barrel but probably very hard to find now.

    I like the Crosman. It was my first airgun and perfect for a beginner who isn't sure about getting into airguns or pistols. I have only been airgunning for a couple of years despite being in my late 50s. I'd never shot pistol before and wanted to so it was a good one to start with without paying a lot of money in case I changed my mind. A friend had one and I liked it so got one. I have since added firearms with my latest purchase being the Ruger GP100 357 and I feel having an airgun revolver style pistol was a part of that. I would recommend the Crosman for anyone wanting to "try the waters" out.

    As far as your grandson I guess it depends on if he can handle your S&W airgun. If yes then I would recommend the Crosman as a cheaper alternative. For $210 you could get the Crosman 357 along with a Walther PPKS and a Beretta PX4 Storm and have 3 pistols for BB and pellet plinking and two with blowback for that realistic feel.


  12. Sorry Chuck. You said grandkids and not grandson. Don’t mean to slight the female shooters out here. My wife is a better shot than I am and I have an adopted 15 year old niece that loves to come over and shoot my airguns. The niece is more into the semi-auto style rather than the revolver style but will shoot the Crosman.


  13. Matt,
    I think the gangsta hold is popular today as more of an arrogant, intimidating, “for show” position. However, in a defensive situation one never knows what position one’s body might be in. I can see being knocked to the ground or some such and having to shoot sideways.

    Thanks for the input. I think three guns for the price of one sounds good, too.

    I was playing an 007 James Bond computer game with my 5 yr old grandson and I was trying to teach him about the Walther PPK Bond uses. He thought it was hillarious just to be able to say Pee Pee K without getting into trouble.

  14. Chuck,

    I asked about rapid firing your S&W 586 quickly for the same reasons Matt61 commented. Accuracy. Pausing between shots to let the gun warm improves accuracy in most CO2 guns but as Matt61 pointed out, at the distances you're shooting it's probably a non issue.


    Re: Does anyone know the rationale for the sideways gangster hold? I can't see any advantage.

    My guess is…to sell more movie tickets.

    Now I have a couple questions in this same "gansta" vein. Why wear a billed cap when you put it on backwards? Why wear pants that let your underwear show if you're not a plumber. OK, I'll stop.


  15. Kevin,

    I keep trying to get to the indoor range and Edith is always busy. Now the TV show is heating up, so I think I’ll have to just go alone.

    I will report on the grips and the magazines as soon as I know. The grips feel much better than what was on there before.


  16. Matt,

    The book I refer to is actually two books–The Gun Digest Book of The 1911, Vol. 1 & 2. Patrick Sweeney is the author. He does go into great detail about the grip, but he does cover it. Then I watched some online videos and noticed all the pros using it, and that convinced me.

    As for the 8-ball sight, I've never seen a better one for fast work. And putting them within a few inches at 45 feet is minute-of-bad-guy for me.


  17. B.B.,

    Thanks for the photograph of your hand holding the .45 correctly. I always wondered if I was doing it right when practicing with my WE 1911A1 airsoft pistol. The photo is easily worth a thousand words.

  18. Chuck,

    Thanks for the blog.

    I've owned 5 Crosman 357s over the years, in all three barrel lengths. They're cheap, reliable, and allowed me to be a much better shot when switching to my S&W .44 mag, even though the two guns are not that close in size and weight. They also allowed me the familiarity with a revolver that would negate many psychological problems when facing an armed perp. They also, like the 586, have excellent triggers for both double and single-action work.

    Remember that the Crosman 357 is a large handgun for a kid's hands.

  19. B.B.,

    A report on the grips and magazines is unnecessary. You and Mrs. Gaylord going to the range is.

    Tell her to call me and I’ll see if I can set you up on a date with her.


  20. BB/Others
    OT – I use the Airguninfo.com page frequently. Now when I try to go there I get routed to airgunarena. Have they changed it or is it just my computer?

  21. B.B.

    I’ve heard of this book and will look into it. Thanks. But, I’m sold on the grip already, and it even feels natural.

    Kevin, the backwards baseball cap is actually a better position for shooting rifles for me so that the brim does not bump or obscure the scope. But if I’m shooting the Winchester 94, the brim goes forward. As for the underwear showing with half their butts exposed, that seems like an outrage against commonsense to me and very uncomfortable-looking.


  22. Frank B,

    After typing that I just knew I’d hear from a plumber. No offense. I appreciate the spirit that you took my comments.

    Never thought I’d get so set in my ways that I still couldn’t understand the desire for youth to differentiate themselves from the older generation (me) and their (my) standards.

    Hopefully your tongue and eyebrows aren’t pierced and your tatoo’s don’t cover all your body or I’ve completely offended you.


  23. Matt61,

    Your hat backwards is for temporary function. I turn mine around when welding. Wearing it that way all the time as a fashion statement, or worse, sideways, I can’t wrap my little brain around.

    I don’t know if wearing your pants around your knees is uncomfortable but it requires one of your hands frequently to keep them from falling all the way to the ground. How can you carry Mary Ellen’s books and still have a hand free for slipping around her shoulder at just the right moment?


  24. Kevin…
    Wearing your pants low has a couple useful functions.
    You walk on the legs until they are wore off then you can use them for shorts. Until that happens you can take a leak without knowing how to operate a zipper.
    I know a punk who wore them that way, and I noticed that it required him to walk bow legged like a gorilla to keep them from falling down. Looked like a real dip.


  25. Pee Pee K – CJr., that brings back memories of me teaching my son how to write his name in the snow. The best was when my wife took him to the toilet the next day, he started moving around. When she asked him what he was doing, he told her he was writing his name like Dad showed him.

    Tomorrow he goes to pick up his NJ ID card. Then we’ll see who’s advice he takes as to what will be his first firearm.

  26. twotalon,

    You’re throwing gas on the fire.

    I don’t go downtown too much but had to today. Maybe it’s because the weather was 70+ degrees but the kids without jobs were strutting around in their “outfits “, including bearing lots of skin all covered in tatoo’s and lots of bling filling holes in their bodies and I just thought I had landed in another world. Don’t know why it hit me so hard.

    Was it so long ago that only sailors had tatoo’s and only a few women had their ears pierced?


  27. MCA and Kevin
    You are being taken to AirgunArena.com when you go to AirgunInfo.com.

    In the AirgunArena site click on Articles in the menu on the left side of the screen. In the articles list – click on Forums About Airguns. This will provide you with a list of forums.

    Found this just now,don’t know if it works yet.good luck


  28. Anybody seen the fake ad for a gangsta .45 with the sights photo-shopped onto the side? As for the pants – Just say “No” to Crack! I have no explanation for wearing your hat backwards. (I wear mine forward with a scope to confirm my cheek weld.)

    Dillon – Check my post to you on yesterday’s blog.

  29. Pretty off topic:

    I’d be careful about blaming video games. Blaming video games for actions amount to blaming guns for actions. My boxers are for private viewing only, and I hate the “fashion” but I wouldn’t attribute it to any one thing, unless it’s individual choice. It’s a product of everything in an individual’s experience.

  30. Need some info.
    My local dealer has the following air rifles that Pyramydair doesn’t:

    Beeman R8 $299
    Maraco(sp) Talent $99.95
    Benelli Stoeger X10 Wood $119.95
    Benelli Stoeger X10 Synth $119.95
    Benelli Stoeger X8 Wood $99.95

    Anybody know anything about any of these? Any of these sound like a bargain?


  31. I have a few questions and comments as a relatively new airgun shooter(but I’ve shot many thousands of rounds through powder guns for over 40 years).I gave up competeing some years ago, and have a tough time getting to a gun range anymore, just because of the logistics.I got into airguns as a means of keeping whats left of my shooting skills, and the great feature of being able to do it in my yard, and set up in a few minutes(!!!). My bibbest problem is my 55 year old eyesight and getting the right scopes.I’m shooting at shorter distances like 10 yards to maybe 15 yards. My first air rifle, a Crosman 1077, came with a Centerpoint 4×32 scope.Its not a bad scope, but I can’t really get the bullseye into sharp focus. Then I picked up a Beeman model 1024 breakdown rifle that came with the ever present,inexpensive 4×20 scope.So I then ordered a Winchester 3×9 scope in the hopes of getting a bright view through the scope, and a target that was in focus. I got the bright view, but still can’t get a clear bullseye. What do I need to get, that’s not too spendy, that will get ma a clear bullseye at the distances I’m shooting at (as I said,maybe 10 to 15 yards)? Should I have bought something like the BSA 4×32 airgun scope with the adjustable front lens? The Beeman can shoot a 1/4″ group at 10 yards, and thats with an out of focus bullseye.So I can’t help but feel it, and I , can do better if I can clearly see what I’m aiming at.
    My eyes are far from perfect. I have astigmatism and wear hard contacts, and reading glasses on top of that.
    Just looking for some suggestions from more experienced airgun shooters.

    Thank, Jon in Puyallup, Wa.

  32. jon,
    If you don’t call $60 spendy and you like the short scopes, the Bugbuster is a nice scope that can be focused from 3yds to infinity.

    I use the 6X32 version and like it. There is also a 4X32. I don’t know how it compares to your other scopes as far as brightness but I find the Bugbuster brightness sufficient even at 100yds.

    I used it on my .22 a couple days ago but had a hard time seeing the holes in white paper at 100yds. But it works very well at 10yds.

    I shot my friends shoot-n-see target at 100 yds until he got mad at me for mucking it up and I could see my hits ok, then. However, the next time I shoot that far I’ll use a more powerful scope.

    There are other scopes with similar close ranges that others on this blog can tell you about. You’ve come to the right place.


  33. i think we need to be careful here.

    my parents, who grew up on jazz, hated my folk music in the mid-’60s. this made me determined to treat my own kids’ music with respect when they became teenagers. then some fool invented hip hop. really hard to get behind that.

    my teens, amused, kept playing various hip hop artists for me, hoping to find one i liked. no go, but i never lost respect for my kids and their own choice of ‘folk music’.

    wish i could say the same for hip hop itself.

    change is scary but each generation needs to uniquely define itself, especially in a culture that makes teenagers feel like 2nd class citizens…not to mention 3rd world teenagers.

    i think we’re not so much disgusted by baggy pants and gangsta posturings as we are frightened of them. and i believe we’re meant to be frightened of them. in Vietnam, where the Army’s racial ‘acceptance’ was largely a failure, the Blacks greeted each other with ritualized handslappings and other hand movements meant to frighten the white soldiers, which worked much as planned. the handslaps were almost as loud as gunshots, and i noticed every white in hearing distance winced. the slaps said, “don’t mess with us”.

    we might consider baggy pants uniforms and gangsta posturing as unionizing. the kids and young adults are tired of being pushed around. and they are organizing.

    just a thought.

  34. Chuck,

    That Beeman R8 is obsolete. It was removed from the line a few years ago. It’s a good midrange breakbarrel pellet rifle made by Weihrauch. This one is obviously a new-old-stock rifle. That would be a good buy.

    The Stoeger guns are Turkish, I believe. I haven’t had the chance to test them yet, but consider them to be equal to average Chinese airguns.

    I’ve never heard of the other one, but I’ll bet that it’s also Turkish.


  35. Jon,

    At 55 you are about average age for an adult airgunner. I have the same eye problems that you have and I use open sights all the time. Yesterday I shot at a 200-yards target with open sights.

    You don’t need to see the target clearly. All you have to see is the front sight. By keeping both eyes open, you can probably do things with open sights that you never thought possible.

    The suggestion of the Leapers Bug BVuster II was a great one. Another good clear scope for not much money is the UTG (from Leapers) 4X40 Tactedge scope. It’s the clearest optic around, because of the low power.



  36. Jon,

    I guarantee my eyes are worse than yours and not because of age. I have a number of scopes – 2 Bushnells (one is the pricey 3200) and 3 Leapers – all minimum 3×9’s. The Bushnells will focus down to 15′ while only two the the Leapers will so you need to do a bit of research on the Pyramyd website. I like both the Bushnells and Leapers scopes – clear enough picture for my eyes and bright image and durable.


  37. Chuck, BB, after I looked over the exploded diagram and the parts list for the X10, it is definitely a Gamo knockoff and I am almost certain that it’s a Chinese made BAM product. BAM used to make the old B18 and B19 (basically the same model) air guns, which eventually became the Crosman Quest and all the subsequent derivatives. So I suspect it’s basically the same action as the Crosman Quest, except with better sights.

    I’ve only seen one Turkish Gamo knock-off (an Accu-Air 1100), and there were enough differences that I can tell you that this ain’t one of THEM. Just as well, it was inferior to the Chinese ones.

    Coincidentally, most of the Stoeger X10 part numbers begin with either “B18” or “B19” Coincidence? I think NOT!!! The X5 exploded view bears a strong resemblence to the BAM/Xisico B12 rifle… and most of THOSE part numbers begin with “B12”.

    Stoeger doesn’t list the X8 on their website, so I can’t say anything about that one specifically.

  38. Vince,
    Thanks for the research, Vince. I appreciate it. Stupid me – I thought Benelli was Italian, so Benelli Stoeger must be, too. Seems these big names farm out their stuff so you never know where it’s made. Can’t say much, though. I worked for Caterpillar Inc. and a lot of our stuff was made overseas, too, under the Caterpillar name.


  39. Sorry to change subjects, but this blog is my #1 source of airgun info & I have a couple questions.

    I have a Benj Sher 397, & a Williams peep sight. The rear stock sight is in the way of the peep. Do I screw the Benj Sher's stock rear sight all the way down – or remove it to use the Williams? If I remove the stock rear sight, do I slide the stock rear sight forward or back to remove it, or lever it off?

    Also, I have a Daisy .22 in hand & a Beeman aperture on the way – same questions about the Daisy's stock rear sight. Love this blog & love the info – & back to topic, I am trying to decide b/t the Crosman .357 revolver or the Umarex/SW 586 – I'm leaning toward the Umarex/SW 586.

    Many thanks,


  40. Jim,

    You'll need to remove the original rear sight, because the new peep will want to look in exactly the same place. Most people leave the original sight in place and align the peep on the rear notch, before prying the rear sight off.

    I don't have any experience with peeps on Daisys, but sights are sights and the same physics apply to all.

    I think you will really appreciate the quality of the 586 over the 357. If you can afford it, get the S&W gun.


  41. Hello air gunners. Im very pleased with the new air gun social site. Can anyone tell me Which gun better suits my needs. I have 2 choices: the benjamin superstreak in .177 caliber or The walther talon in .177.

    I want long range accuracy. I want to hunt small game at long range. The lowest cocking effort possible.
    The widest variety of accurate pellets.

    I also have another question. Do I need to have an airgun with around the same power as the two guns I’ve listed above to be able to hunt effectively past 70 yards ?

  42. After reading this blog entry and the others about the S&W 586 air revolver, I bought one (6" barrel) earlier this week. I like it. It feels like a real gun and shoots well. But it does have a few problems. Double-action, the trigger is stiff and occasionally fails to fully return after shooting — it needs a little tap to get back to the original position. Also, one of the two cylinders included with mine didn't fit the gun — the hole in the center is too small. Still, I like the gun enough to have ordered three more cylinders and the 4" barrel from PA. In fact, I like the feel of this revolver so much that I'm thinking about getting the .357 at some point.

  43. Travis,
    I have a 586, with 4″ barrel and do not have that trigger problem nor the cylinder problem. If you can’t get it loosened up after a while (and I wouldn’t wait too long) you should seriously consider sending it back in for a new one. It’s a terrific gun and I’d hate to see you frustrated with it and lose interest.

  44. Travis,

    The 586 doesn’t have to be broken in. There is something wrong with that gun. Definitely return it and get another.

    The .357 is just as nice, though the noise and recoil will seem different. But the single action trigger is just as nice. The double action trigger isn’t as light, but for a firearm it is light. I have owned a 686 and, except for its being stainless, I liked it a lot.


  45. I just received this fine piece from Pyramid. Bought the 6" bbl version with the accessory 4" bbl and extra cylinders/magazines.

    The packaging/case is great. I have room for the 4" bbl, pellets, Co2 etc etc etc; all in a hard case.

    The pistol is the best quality of all my air pistols, bar-none. It rivals my S&W Model 27 .357 magnum in weight and size and I actually think the trigger is better.

    Will post again after 200 or 300 rounds down range.


  46. Brian,

    The S&W 586 has received alot of great reviews.

    Anxious to hear your thoughts after 200-300 rounds.

    You'll find most of us addicted airgunners sharing stories, asking questions, etc. in the comments section under the most recent article that B.B. has written. B.B. writes a new article everyday, Monday-Friday.

    Here's a link, that you will have to copy and paste, that will always take you to the most recent article:


    Look forward to seeing you there!


  47. Brian,
    Hope you like the S&W 586. I sure like mine. I'm interested in your comparison of the two barrel lengths, also. If you shoot farther than 10m it sounds like others will be interested in accuracy during rapid fire. At 10m and less, which is my shooting distance, there's not much loss.

    I agree with Kevin. Let's take this over to the current blog he showed you so more people can see your results.

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