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Education / Training Air Arms Alfa Competition pistol – Part 3

Air Arms Alfa Competition pistol – Part 3

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

I told you this report would take longer than most because of the complexity of the gun. Today I’m going to pick a “best” pellet to use in the future tests. I’ll show you how I do that, but before I do there is an error to correct.

Pistol is regulated
In the last report, we looked at velocity and after seeing the huge spread of velocities, I declared the Alfa to be unregulated. Since then, two people have contacted me and assured me that it does have a regulator, after all. All I can say in my defense is that I have never seen a spread of velocities like that from a regulated gun unless the reg went south. But I don’t believe it did. I think that it’s just a reg that’s doing the best it can with the tiniest breath of air. It’s impressive on the one hand, but hardly world-class performance on the other. Sometimes, you just can’t squeeze 10 lbs. into a 5-lb. bag! At any rate, now you know the truth and I’m sorry I told you different.

Shooter is unregulated
Ever lay off long-distance running for 10 years and then try it one day? It doesn’t work–I don’t care how old you are!

Neither does 10-meter pistol shooting. I haven’t practiced or competed for close to 8 years and it shows in my lack of form. It takes me three times as long to plant my feet and get into position, and even when I do I feel like the marshmallow man.

Compounding my own shortcomings were the pistol’s sport grip (non-target style), plus the fact that I didn’t have the trigger overtravel stop adjusted correctly. This is important training for all who aspire to become 10-meter competitors. Always establish your alibis BEFORE you embarrass yourself in front of witnesses.

Picking a pellet is easy…
Despite all those warnings, I was easily able to select the best pellet from a group of four target pellets. You will be surprised at how it turns out. But before we see that, here is what I DIDN’T do.

I didn’t stick the gun in a vice and select the best pellet that way. Besides being lazy (please add that to my growing list of alibis), I discovered years ago that vices are meaningless when it comes to pellet accuracy in a 10-meter pistol. Not everybody agrees with me on this (no big surprise there), but some of the top shooters in the world do. Here’s why.

A gun can shoot a tight group when clamped in a vice and not be as accurate when shot as a hand-held pistol. Some other pellet that didn’t do as well in the vice may do much better when fired from the hand. I don’t know why that is, but it seems to work that way. Everyone in my 10-meter club tested pellets in their hand-held guns. Just as they all adjusted their sights while hand-holding their guns. You wouldn’t think it was possible, but you can actually do better that way, even if you’re a beginner.

When I test pellets I hold the pistol the same way I do when in a match. Think it doesn’t matter? Take a look at the results.

Before we begin, know that we are not looking for high scores in this drill. We don’t care where the pellets land–just how close to each other they are. After you select a good one you simply adjust the sights to get it into the 10-ring.


Five RWS Meisterkugeln pellets went into this group at 10 meters. The Meisterkugeln is a good practice pellet or a cheap pellet for clubs to use but it doesn’t equal the world-class target pellets from RWS, H&N, and Vogel. These pellets fit the breech with varying resistance, indicating tolerance variations.


Five Beeman H&N Match pellets are much tighter at 10 meters than the Meisters. That one to the right is not a called flier. Do you see the dramatic difference a pellet can make? These pellets all fit the breech with equal tightness.


Here is the money target. Five RWS R-10 pellets at the top group very well. They would score a perfect 50 if they were on target. Then I adjusted the sights lower and fired five Gamo Match pellets. While the Gamo Match is in the same class as the RWS Meisterkugeln, it sometimes works shockingly well in an individual gun. I know good shooters who use them in competition. Not for this pistol, though.

Well, what do you think? Did you imagine it would be that easy? I did, because I’ve done this several times before. You may have to shoot several groups with each pellet as I did to see this kind of performance, but it will usually stand out just as dramatically as you see here.

Picking a pellet is easy…NOT!
You aren’t done at this point. You simply have a pellet that can be used for the next step, which is to adjust the sights and start learning the pistol. The clear winner in this test is the RWS R-10, so it becomes the pellet to beat. After this, you will shoot R-10s, but you’ll always be on the lookout for something that will shoot even better.

What about head sizes?
Target pellets come in various head diameters–typically from 4.49mm to 4.52mm. I have never found a gun that likes 4.49mm pellets, but I’m sure they must be out there because they still make pellets that size. I usually prefer to start with 4.51 heads and go from there. The head size is what gives the pellet its resistance in the breech, and I like a tight pellet.

But I don’t worry about head sizes until after this test is complete. One thing I will try to do is test all pellets of the same head size, but the tins aren’t always marked as some of these weren’t.

And pellet weights?
I selected the lightest weight pellets if it was offered in two weights. Light is for air pistols and heavy is for rifles. The object is to keep the velocity between 475 and 575 f.p.s., approximately. Since the Alfa is low-powered, light pellets will usually be best.

One final thing
Since I used a clean backerboard over the opening of the trap for this test I got an interesting thing. Thirty pellets from three different types (10 from each type) went into a large hole and the five Gamo Match went below that after the sights were adjusted.


I wasn’t planning on doing this, but when I saw how it came out I thought I would show it to you. I took no special care to hang all the targets in the same place, but apparently that’s what happened. Four of the five Gamo Match holes from after the sight adjustment are seen below and everything else went up above. That’s 30 shots–29 in the one hole and the one flier to the left.

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.

75 thoughts on “Air Arms Alfa Competition pistol – Part 3”

  1. Goodmorning B.B.,

    If that group shot with the RWS R-10 pellets reqires an aliby, us mere mortals are in big trouble.

    Hope the shooting is going well for all of you folks. We’re all looking fwd to watching the show!

    It’s been nice talking with Edith–snoring cats?????

    Mr B.

  2. B.B.
    Do you know anything about the Hammerli Pneuma?
    This looks like the rifle I have been looking for.
    I read the review/test, and the instruction manual. Looks very good but did not find answers to these questions……
    Who really makes it?
    Are the open sights really useable without grinding away half of the stock to get good eye position?
    Can it be filled from a hand pump….unlike the AA rifles that require a scuba to fill from empty?


  3. twotalon,

    B.B.'s still filming in NY.

    Who really makes it?–>Hatsan in Turkey.

    Are the open sights usable?–>I have the gun right here & the sights line up just fine for my eyes. (I prefer open sights to optics) What specific issues do you have lining up the sights?

    Can it be filled from a hand pump?–>Why do you think it can't be? Why do you think an AA PCP can't be filled with a hand pump?

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  4. B.B.,

    Very interesting.

    So if it's on the target you don't call it a flier but if it's on the backerboard you do call it a flier?

    Seriously, I have probably tested a wider range of pellets in my diana 27 than any other gun I've ever owned. I read an article you did a long time ago that is very similar to todays in that you were shooting a low powered 10 meter something (as I recall) and you detailed the pellet selection you tested (like today). Pellets with exacting standards including head sizes that only vary by .01mm.

    Since the diana 27 (and many other guns) fall in this low velocity catagory I reasoned that a pellet typically used for 10 meter shooting could work very well.

    I bought and shot some very expensive pellets like vogels and the Haendler & Natermann finale match (in 4.50 & 4.51) and they were terrible in my diana 27. The cheap meisterkugeln's beat them hands down.

    Since the infamous accuracy of these pellets didn't translate into my diana 27 I'm wondering what has your experience been using these high end pellets ("used in Olympic competitions") in lower velocity non 10 meter guns?


  5. Wayne,

    “No, I don’t have a FWB300S in my collection yet.. should I?”

    I’m contemplating adding a classic spring 10 meter match rifle to my arsenal, and the FWB300S gets mentioned a good bit. Others are the Walthers and Dianas. This is about the only thing I haven’t tried yet.

    Basically they all shoot a .177 pellet at less than to just over 600 fps in a very heavy platform. So I believe they are very mild and accurate.
    Since you are the Noah of airguns I figured you could tell me which target platform you liked best. I’m sure you’ll get to them one day.

  6. Edith…

    The sights….
    I have an RS2 that required serious wood removal to get my eye in place to use the open sights. The sights were just on the rifle for looks, as they were not useable without modification. That rifle simply was not made for open sights. Don’t want to get bit again on that problem.

    AA guns can leak out faster than you put air in them with a pump when filling from empty. They also bleed out if the pressure gets too low. Have heard these things before and don’t want these problems either.

    Turkey? Let’s see now…I have a Daisy Powerline springer made in Turkey. That may have just crossed the Pneuma off the list.


  7. twotalon,

    While B.B. is out of town, he’s not rec’g the blog comments and has asked me to forward those that need his attention. I’ve forwarded yours. He won’t be able to answer your questions til later tonight or even early Tuesday morning.

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  8. Edith..
    No big hurry. Don’t have the money right now, and the weather…

    In hindsight…
    That RS2 would have been good to turn into a Tyrolean (sp?) considering how much wood I removed.

    I think I will go and play with one of my cats. By the way, Tom says one of yours gets unruly around the nip. posessive/agressive by any chance?


  9. Kevin
    I knew I should have taken notes on which ones did that. I pick up a comment here and there over time without remembering which model did that or who mentioned that.
    There was also one instruction manual that said that it takes 700 psi or so for the valve to quit leaking air out the barrel.

    Next time I won’t mention such things unless I have all the info written down in front of me.


  10. twotalon,

    Our cats are Dale Evans & Roy Rogers. Roy gets a little too amorous when he's around the nip, although both cats were fixed when they were 6 months old. Neither one is uncontrollable, as I have a foolproof method that makes cats discipline themselves with just a look from me.

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  11. Edith…
    A cheap spray bottle full of water and adjusted to shoot a stream like a squirt gun works around here.

    If yelling does not work, then all they have to do is see us pick up a spray bottle…the trouble stops real fast.


  12. twotalon,

    Sorry, but squirting water is not good for carpets or furniture (and I don't really care for doing that to my kitties). Instead, I trained the cats to discipline themselves. Well, actually, Roy is the only one who needs discipline.

    When he started being bad (about 8 months old) by jumping Dale's bones about 10x a day, I would simply pick him up and put him on top of the cat scratching post. He'd stay there until he calmed down & was civilized again. After doing that several times, he would put himself on top of the post whenever he got caught roughing up Dale. Now, he does it 2-3x a day and sometimes not at all for days at a time.

    Time out works like a champ, and I have used it very successfully for even the most aggressive cats (which is how I discovered its affect about 10 years).

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  13. two talon – When did you get your RS2? I got mine about a year ago and it didn’t come with open sights and I don’t see where it does on the PA site either, so maybe yours is older than mine?

    Anyway, I would guess I have close to 4000 shots on mine and it’s broken in nicely. The trigger is really crisp. I’ve only shot a couple other springers (both Gamo’s) and mine is definatley smoother than those, and the recoil seems to have decreased dramatically over the last year.

    BB and Vince have both said that this is the same gun as the AR1000 made in China, which is also known as the Tech Force 89. BB gave the Tech Force 89 very high praise in a review on another site, and Vince has had high remarks for it on this blog as well.

    I really enjoy mine, how about you?


  14. AJ,
    Thanks very much for that vid! Joe Cocker is my all time favorite performer. He gets me laughing every time I see him. I thought I’d die from apoplexy when I saw John Belushi imitate him on SNL. I have one of his concert albums and he has the most fantastic band ever backing him up.

    Patty Labelle was so energetic and just so awesome, I was afraid she was going to hurt herself.

    Ha! Word verification “premiest”.


  15. Chuck & AJ,

    Joe Cocker is also one of my favorite singers. I have "You are so beautiful" on my iPod. Can't be without it too long!

    I also remember Belushi's rendition of Joe Cocker on SNL. A classic!

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  16. Do we have enough people for an Airgun Joe fan club? Edith can be president, AJ can be secretary, and I’ll be treasurer (hee, hee, dues will be one Marauder each). It’ll keep her busy what with Tom being on the road all the time now, and all.

  17. Aaron
    The one I have came from Wallyworld a while back. The box had a number that I don’t remember…
    Anyway it came with two barrels, sights on both, and a scope.

    Initial problems…
    Both barrels bent, .22 barrel had gouged up bore at the muzzle end, stock too high and thick for eye position. Never installed the scope so don’t know if it was any good. Cocking linkage rattled. Safety kept turning itself on with the slightest bump. Open sights suck.

    Worked on the stock and safety. Cut and recrowned the .22 barrel.

    Velocity was around 900 fps in .177 and after a little breech seal work, around 730 fps in .22 . Both with cp.

    Shooting with .22 barrel now. Shooting pretty good at 25 yds with open sights. Trigger was pretty good right out of the box.

    Hard to cock and the cocking linkage still rattles, but I like it now. Except for the crummy sights. Still need to see if I can do something about that.

    Bought it on impulse as a project gun. Yep…it was a project alright.


  18. twotalon,
    I’ve been tempted by that rifle several times. I would love to see what you did to it, especially the stock (hint). The trend to put benchrest/scope-only stocks on springers seems really silly to me, since 50 yards is at the practical limit of their range and open sights should be more than adequate.

    What is wrong with the open sights — is it the Industry special flexible plastic wonder rear sight? I’ve been thinking about putting a rear sight from a QB18 (=Hammerli 490) on my 36-2. Even though the 18 is a cheaper rifle, the sights are excellent. If the front post is high enough, the Mendoza peep sight works well, too.

    Also, sounds like yours had the non-adjustable trigger?

  19. twotalon-I bought the single caliber (.177) with no-sights and a scope. I replaced the scope woith a leapers 3×9. I really wonder what the differences are between the RS1, RS2, and RS3. I see the RS1 comes with sites, RS2 doesn’t, and the RS3 has a nickel finish. The other thing I’ve always wondered is why the dual caliber RS2 is chaeper than the single caliber RS2? They appear to be the same gun?

    Maybe Vince has some thoughts?


  20. Also, my RS2 does have the adjustable trigger. I wonder if the RS1 and the dual caliber combo’s don’t? That could explain some of the price difference.


  21. I just got a Crosman 1077 and Leapers 4-16 scope. The thing is shooting all over the place.

    I can understand why it was chosen for the 2001 Bikathlon Event at the Boy Scout Jamboree. It is so light it would be virtually un-noticeable on a bike. The 12 shot clip and double action makes it very easy to load and shoot. The trigger has a real nice positive click to it as it goes into the second stage which then has a nice crisp pull.

    I've gone through many pellets so far and haven't found anything it likes yet. I do have some r-10s I haven tried yet. So far the best has been JSB. I've tried Gammo Match, Meisterkugeln (usually my most successful but not this time), H&N Match, and RWS Hobby.

    Chrony wise, with the first clip on a new CO2, the gun shoots in the low 600s to high-mid 500s. But mostly in the high 500s.

    I'd heard good comments on 1077 accuracy but I keep getting around three radical fliers from each clip and one inch groups of ten at 10 meters. Sometimes it'll be dead on for a few shots and then just go wild. Then, sometimes it'll shoot wild then go dead on.

    I'm wondering if something is wrong or if it needs a break in period, or I just haven't found the right pellet.


  22. twotalon,

    Please keep mentioning these things. This is why I’m here. To learn.

    I only own one air arms gun, the s410. I like the fit, finish and accuracy so it wouldn’t surprise me if I buy another air arms gun.

    There is a “trick” to filling my gun with a pump when it’s empty. You must open the bolt. After this first time of filling the bolt never needs to be open again for filling since it’s never empty when it needs to be filled. I’ve never shot mine below 70 bar (1,000 psi) so I was curious about the leak. Maybe it would leak when only 700 psi is in the gun but there’s no reason to shoot it that low.

    Thanks for the input.


  23. BG-Farmer
    I just started sanding down the left side and the comb ,repeatedly shouldered it to check progress . The stock is dished in a little right where my cheek goes.

    The sights are just wrong….
    The notch in the rear is too narrow…no light shows around the front sight. The top of the rear sight is rounded too. So you have a rounded rear sight that is notched too narrow with a rounded top front sight riding behind it.
    The fiber glow dots are worthless.

    The trigger is adjustable but did not need to adjust. This one is smooth and easy. Does not have resemblance to a Gamo trigger in shape or feel.

    This gun is very easy to shoot…not much hold sensitivity. Almost like a big brother to my Marksman 0035.

    Also kills starlings real good.


  24. Kevin…
    So there is a trick to it!
    Take the hammer pressure off of the valve and it will not leak??
    They should mention that in the instruction book.

    Thanks for the info.


  25. To the forming Joe Cocker fan club,

    Very worthy man to be a fan of. Joe and Pam Cocker’s spread, the Mad Dog Ranch, is a short drive south of our place in the Colorado Mountains. The live just outside of Crawford, Colorado.

    They are very active in the community including almost single handedly supporting the Cockers Kids Foundation. The Cocker’s frequently open their home (small hotel is more accurate description of the size) to fundraising.


  26. twotalon & Kevin,

    I have just rec'd a disk from Air Arms with their newest gun manuals, which Pyramyd AIR will eventually put on their site (and I assume these will be included with the Air Arms guns). If this info isn't included in the new manuals, I'll let the appropriate people know that it's missing.

    Edith (Mrs. B.B.)

  27. The 1077 is about the worse for accuracy of all my airguns I’ve shot, but it is also one of the funnest to shoot. CTC about 10mm (.394) at 10M. I get a flyer about every 12 to 24 shots.

    Hobbies and Raptors seem to do well. After 3 to 5 rapid shots, wait for the gun to warm up for 30 to 60 seconds between shots. T
    o kill time I load mine as a single shot.

    I also bought a spacer to add to my barrel. If your handy, you could make one yourself.

    As far as I can remember, I’ve yet to see an award winning performance from a non PCP repeating or semi-auto air gun.

  28. twotalon,
    RE: RS2 sights. “fiber glow” — enough said:). Those are right up there with “black rifles” and thumbhole stocks for me:). The round front might work with a peep, but its just not the same as open to me, so you might not like it either. Sounds like the rifle is worth the work — hitting what you aim at is the ultimate characteristic of a rifle.

  29. Mrs. Gaylord,

    The information on the first fill of an air arms Model S410-SL is in their current USERS HANDBOOK.

    It’s well hidden on page 12 (deep in the manual). “If the rifle is empty the mechanism will need to be cocked to allow the firing valve to close. If the rifle is not cocked when the bottle is opened or the pump used, the air will past (pass) the valve and exhaust through the barrel.”


  30. BG_Farmer

    There is a lot of “luck of the draw” when getting any gun.
    I’m sure that some guys have gotten rifles that really had nothing wrong with them. I hear of happy buyers all the time. I seem to have very bad luck. Sometimes I think the big stores get all the rejects and returns from the manufacturers.

    This one works pretty good now…crooked barrel and all. Shoots pretty smooth with cp. Need to put the Talons down long enough to get a thousand rounds through it.

    You should have seen the breech end flopping around when I cut the muzzle end of the barrel in the lathe. Took about 3/8″ off to get rid of the gouges…and accidently ended up on a tight spot for the crown.


  31. Food for thought, from the Yellow Airgun Forum:

    To All:
    I designed the Predator pellet based on my experience from my own hunting experience and studying the terminal performance of different types of ammunition on game. I contracted Joseph at JSB to manufacture the lead bodies for my pellets because of his willingness to work with me on a new and challenging idea and his reputation for superior quality. The poly tips are made at a separate facility, and the assembly of the pellets takes place using my machinery. Predators (Polymags) are not “JSB” pellets, but I am very proud of the fact that JSB makes the pellet bodies for us. I could not have recieved the patent for the Predator pellet if it was a copy of another design. Thus the term “copy”. Gamo is copying the Predator pellet with a pellet they call the “Red Fire”. Cabela’s is now selling them in their catalog. The “Red Fire” is an attempt by Gamo to copy my patented design, red polymer tip and all. Yes, this is a small operation that began in my garage with my wife, Bonnie. Dick and Jay now run the business out of Denver, Colorado. Many thanks to Harry from “Big Pond” who has always supported us and our effort to supply airgun hunters with what we believe is the best hunting pellet available. Over the years I have sat back and listened to all of the “chatter” about my pellets, both the pros and the cons, and have kept pretty quiet. However, we are not a multi million dollar corporation with a team of high powered lawyers at our side….just fellow airguners that try to give something back to our sport….Thank you every one for your loyal support.

    Tom and Bonnie May

  32. ajvenom,

    Thanks. I can't stand copyright, trademark or patent infringement.

    This looks like a classic case. Here are the predators:


    Here are the new gamo red fire pellets:


    Look alike to me. One more black mark for gamo in my book.

    Hope Pyramyd AIR doesn't start carrying these copycats.


  33. aj,
    Thanks for the CO2 “warm up” reminder. I was aware of that known fact, but, in my glee to shoot, it slipped my mind. My fun factor was much higher than my common sense factor. I am gaining more respect for the 1077 now (1/2″ group, no fliers), but much less respect for CO2 (maybe an air upgrade is in order for my Talon). I have a hard time imagining a large group of Scouts having the patience to wait for their guns to warm up between shots. 30sec to a minute is a long wait time even for a Sr. citizen especially when you’re excited to shoot.

    This gun is so light it’s harder for me to hold steady. I’ll have to go back and retry all those other pekkets again.


  34. twotalon,

    Really good pellet – pegget
    Really bad pellet – pewwet
    Pellet that hits you in the foot – peddet
    Pellet that goes sour – pezzet
    Pellet made in Japan – perret


  35. Edith..
    You need to ask Tom how to pronounce “pe??et”.

    Cleaning rod with a tight patch in a Condor…”spearett”.

    I need to write this stuff down.

    Almost done a “spearett” with a muzzle loader one time. Good thing I shoot with both eyes open. Saw the end of the ramrod sticking out the muzzle with my left eye.


  36. Speaking of cleaning, did you clean the 1077 CJr? Also, I feel the 1077 gets smoother with age.

    Wow, that’s pretty funny lingo….LOL!!!!!!!

    dropped pellets you lose – leffets

    I’m at a lost of words….velocicraptors!!!!!!!! oh man……that’s too funny.

  37. Velocicrapters take the prize!

    Yes I did clean with J-B Bore Cleaning Compound. Didn’t notice much difference afterwards.

    So far Crow Magnums are grouping the best followed by RWS Supermag. I’ve still got three more brands to test.

    Following Edith’s lead –
    Two pellets loaded (happens a lot with some guns) – pel2ts (pronounced pel-toots)


  38. Crosman 1077

    How tight are the “wings” on the barrel breech locked to the receiver? Do you have more than one magazine? Not just the circular clip, but the magazine body as well. Does that give the same poor performance as well? Is there any play in the barrel to barrel shroud?

    I wonder if perhaps one of the above mentioned things may be slightly out of whack on your 1077. I have one and the thing drills pellet after pellet through the same hole at 10 yards.

  39. Chucker re 1077
    1st a simple one:check to see that barrel adjuster(can’t remember the name for it)that moves the barrel away from the clip for cleaning jambs is in the rearward and locked position.
    2nd use a cleaning rod to make sure barrel and clip (magazine)are lined up well,since the barrel is inside a shroud it may need to be shimmed to keep it tight.
    3rd is a little more complicated:
    the hammer may need weight added to keep it consistent and also add a few fps.this is pretty easy with a small lead wt.and some good epoxy
    like JB weld.
    hope some of this may help


  40. JTinAL and ALinCT (odd similarity),
    and AJinVEnom,

    Thanks for the tips. I will check them out. It came with only one clip and one mag so I can’t compare there.


  41. Kevin,
    Don’t worry, gamo can’t even make 2 tins of pellets from the same mold or without wings. My Gamo rockets and gamo magnums have changed design multiple times (It say nothing on the site or the box of coarse) and carry huge manudacturing defects (wings, crumples shapes you name it). Theres no way gamo can hope to copy such a good pellet as the predator.
    Shadow express dude

  42. Chuck,
    Remember that the 1077 has a revolving clip. Sometimes the pellet scrapes along the barrel wall. I’ve had this happen to my 1088’s and 1077 in some clips. Try oiling the teeth or replacing the clips.
    Shadow express dude

  43. Hey guys I messed up, need some advice.
    Ordered pellets that were both in and out of stock on sat w/ express delivery. I ASSuMEd that in stock and out of stock pellets shipped seperately. I was wrong. The catch is that PA is closed now and I could not contact them until late tmrw. Questions are, how much extra is it to ship items as they become available?Because I am running on empty, would it be better to order a single tin of in-stock pellets with express delivery that would have the possibility of shipping tmrw?
    Thanks guys

  44. Hi all,

    Yesterday, some of you were talking about high power scopes for hunting and the small field of view. Years ago when I started hunting with a variable scope, I read an article that said to take your unloaded rifle, turn the magnification all the way up, and to just walk through the woods.

    Any small distinctive target, such as a leaf, a knot on a tree, a bird flying, quickly put your rifle to your shoulder and sight in on the target. It doesn’t take long before you are shouldering the rifle, and the crosshairs will be on the target. Even in the back yard will give you many targets to aim at.

    Hope this helps someone.


  45. RE powerful scopes
    I don’t have a scope over 9x myself
    (powerline 3-9×32 cheapies)
    But I have read and been told that if you leave both eyes open,target
    is faster and easier to get.
    this takes practice for me since I grew up using only one eye.1 thing that helped was learning to shoot with either hand and not let one eye be dominant(rifles).I can’t say it made a lot of difference with these cheap scopes but it did help a little.Maybe a better scope would benefit more from this style?


    HAH word veri. is UKETS
    (lightweight euro pellets maybe 🙂

  46. Shadow,
    I’m trying to visualize what’s going on in there. I know the pellet skirts are flush with the back of the clip when I insert it into the magazine and I know that the pellets are not protruding out the front. What I don’t know is how the pellets are slid into the breech.

    I suspect that the clip itself is the breech and the pellets are fired out of that and into the barrel rather than being slid into the barrel breech by cocking like the IZH-61 or 953 does. Unless that click I feel right before the second stage fires is the pellet being shoved into the barrel breech.

    I can visualize the pellet being damaged if the clip is not aligned properly with the barrel during firing.

    I’ve been using oiled pellets so there is oil all over the clip already. However, I will try directly oiling the gear teeth as you suggest.

    I checked the “wings”. They are seated to the rear but there is a very minute amount of back and forth movement allowed.

    I’m not feeling comfortable at all with this gun. You’ve all had some very good suggestions however I feel if some of these really need to be done then the gun wasn’t made right to begin with and I’d rather opt out for something else…I think. I’ll scratch my head over it a bit longer.

    Right now I wouldn’t want my grandkids shooting it, They’d be all over the place.


  47. Chuck
    the pellet doesn’t get seated in
    the barrel.It gets fired from the clip directly into and(hopefully)
    down the barrel.Hence the need to check for proper alignment.
    It wont take much to check and any slop is fairly easy to remedy.
    But if you don’t really want to tinker(lots of times I don’t either)
    you can probably get most of your money back on the yellow.
    If you do decide to tinker a search on the yellow can turn up lots of good mods and repairs.

    My nephew now has the 1 that I worked on and is very happy with
    it.the yellow and green is where I got all my info,they are mostly very helpful.


  48. JTinAL,
    Maybe you’ve inspired me. You and ALinCT and Aj take these things apart all the time. Maybe I’m ready to enter Tinkerville. The gun didn’t cost that much so I don’t have that much to lose. It looks like it’ll come apart easily. Maybe it’ll go back together easily, too. But therein lies the rub.


  49. Volvo,

    I had the real fine HW55T, I traded to Tom, because I can't do 10m thing..

    .. it's the glass thing, don't ya know.. 50 power min..:)

    Not, much time to comment these days, it's turkey season, and we have a great spot close to the house so we can go mornings and evenings..

    I did get the shotguns patterned and took some pics..(to come soon I hope)..

    I like what the Remington semi auto 11-87 (still not a jamb with any size shell in any order!!).. did with the 3" 2 oz. # 4 shot at 25 and 40 yards.. about 1/2" spacing at 25 and 3/4-1" at 40 yards… and very even spacing..

    And aiming high and left put the perfect number of pellets on the drawings of the turkey heads… just like you said it would…

    The Citori over/under isn't choked to give that same pattern with the shells I've found at 40 yards.. (and the two shots with 3" 2oz abuses me too much..)

    With the same shells, I can get three non abusive shots off super quick with the Rem 12 ga. 11-87.. (all 3 perfect kills on the drawn birds.. but they weren't moving!!)..

    I guess that means the Citori will be for the lighter loads… and smaller birds.

    I did get two of the Browning Auto-5s to give those patterns with the 2-3/4", 1- 1/4oz #4… the other two like the 1 to 1-1/8 oz. so they will be for the smaller birds too..

    Josh thinks I need something to shoot 3- 1/2" shells.. and I think he's crazy!!!

    So..as they say.. I'm loaded and ready for beer… aaahhhh no.. I mean bear…. uhh. no… I mean Turkey!!! and I didn't load up yet!
    ah forget it..

    Josh & Nate even showed me how to use the scratch caller.. but they laugh when I do it for some reason… oh well..
    ..off to bed, got to get the blind set up well before sunrise…


  50. Wayne,

    That’s great news!

    Too many hunters go into the field with a shotgun that they have no idea whether it shoots high, left, right or low for them. Too many hunters take a load into the field that they’ve never patterned. These same hunters then wonder why they can’t hit the broad side of a barn or worse, why they cripple so much game.

    I admire you for not being one of these irresponsible hunters.


  51. Kevin,

    “If not for you” (Dylan song)… and this fine place to meet you…

    I would be one of those hunters!! I would have just grabbed a box of shells that said turkey on it and called it good.. would have been a big mistake!! they ain’t the same by brand.. and of course each gun shoots them different.. so lots to learn about shotgunning..

    I thank you… and hopefully a turkey will thank you for a quick and humane check out!!…

    I just know there is one out there that wants to merge spirits with this human being.. a tough old “tom” that wants to make room for the young strong jakes.. I heard him calling this morning..


  52. I am wondering whether i should get a gamo whisper or a rws 34 striker combo from pyramid. I dont know whether to get .22 or .177 either. I need it for hunting and plinking. Any suggestions????

  53. Anonymous asking about a 34 or a whisper,

    B.B. answered your question where you originally posted (under the rws 34 article B.B. did in 2006). Here’s his answer:

    At April 27, 2009 5:37 AM, B.B. Pelletier said…
    Either rifle is great in .177, but the 34 surges ahead in .22. If you want to hunt, get a .22.

    Here was my comment to your question:

    At April 27, 2009 8:59 AM, kevin said…
    Anonymous adking about a gamo whisper or a rws 34 striker combo from pyramid,

    You posted your question in a relevant place (an article that B.B. wrote about the RWS Diana 34). Unfortunately, this was an article that B.B. wrote in 2006. You’ll find most airgunners asking each other questions, answering each others questions and sharing their airgun stories in the comments section under the most recent article that B.B. has written (B.B. writes a new airgun related article every day Monday-Friday).

    If you copy and paste this link it will always take you to the most recent article that B.B. has written. Scroll down to the bottom of the article and in the green box click on comments and you will join a great group of airgunners. Here’s the link:


    Look forward to seeing you there!


  54. Hi B.B.

    I shoot 10m air pistol and read your article on choosing pellets for the Air Arms pistol with great interest. But I am confused. I shoot in the low 530s (comparable with you, if I remember correctly from your 10m pistol articles) yet my shooting is not nearly consistent enough for me to be able to recognise the difference between good pellets when hand-holding my pistol. I shoot H&N finale match and RWS R10 match in various head sizes and I can't tell the difference. Any difference in the pellets is eclipsed by inconsistencies in my aim.

    The confusing thing is that your picture of the best group is more consistent with a 570+ shooter than the 530+ shooter that you say you are. So either you are a lot better than you think or….well I don't know.

    I shoot a Steyr LP10, by the way.


  55. U.,

    Don’t fixate on my groups. I was having a good day. If you average 530 you surely have those.

    I know how to push you past 530 to 550 or 545 at the worst. Wanna know how? It takes time, but it will work–I guarantee it.

    Practice dry-firing at least one hour each day. I’m talking 7 days a week. Also, shoot a match a day.

    Concentrate on the front sight, only.

    What will happen is your trigger finger will soon become wired to your brain and will fire the gun for you when the front sight alignment is perfect. Your score will soar and before you know it, you won’t be able to shoot under 545.

    It takes a lot of time (maybe as long as a straight month) to do, but if you want a better score, it’s the only way I know to get it. I was on the cusp of this when personal problems forced me to stop shooting competitively.

    Your Steyr LP 10 is a dream gun for me. I’ve shot them, but never for long. I shoot a CO2 Chameleon, with a trigger that creeps. My dream is to own an FWB P34/44.

    Now, as for knowing the best pellet, let’s examine what you are doing. You adjust your sights by how you score don’t you? You don’t put your pistol in a vice to sight in, so you certainly know how the gun is shooting in your hand.

    I think you may have a case of a spastic hand. I had it for awhile. I would be lined up for a ten and then my hand would jerk me to an 8. If you practice the way I describe above, that will go away. What it does, you will be able to tell the difference between pellets very well.

    One last thing. Yopu have never tried 4.52 mm heads in your gun, have you? Try them, because they may make the difference you say you can’t see yet.


  56. Ajvenom,

    (I know I'm posting in an old blog, but figured it's better to stay with the original topic.)

    I just purchased a tin of your .22 Predator Polymag pellets from a competitor of PA (because PA is currently out of stock.) Like Kevin, I HATE theft of intellectual property in any form. I noticed that Cabela's still carries the Gamo knockoff of your design. I hope you sent them a strongly worded letter. Often, companies that do care about their image and customer service WILL stop selling an infringing product, if it's brought to their attention, particularly if sent Registered Mail with Return Receipt from your attorney's office. Needless to say, a 'Cease and Desist' letter to Gamo is essential as well, to preserve your rights. Much as we all abhor the expense of lawyers, sometimes one has to bite the bullet. Overt infringement that is known to you should not go unprotested since that constitutes a tacit acceptance which weakens your rights.

    I hope you are successful, and look forward to trying your pellets in my new RWS Diana 54.


  57. I have been shooting the Alfa Prog Com for two days now. I have just gotten 103 and 105 accurate shots before the air dump. I suspect that Air Arms may have tweaked the regulator.

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