by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1


The Air Venturi HaleStorm is a good-looking PCP repeater that is also testing very well. We may have a major winner in this rifle!

Today, we’ll look at the performance of the Air Venturi HaleStorm. When I did the velocity testing of the Hammerli Pneuma, I got energy levels from .177 Beeman Kodiaks of 23.21 foot-pounds. I also got 24 shots that I considered close enough in velocity to be called the power band. At that time, I predicted 26 foot-pounds or more in .22 caliber for the same rifle.

The HaleStorm has the same action as the Pneuma, only made into a 10-shot repeater. Therefore, I expected its power to play out as predicted. But first I needed to establish the power band of the rifle. Remembering that the Pneuma liked no more than 200 bar, I started with a fill to that level. The following is the performance curve from that fill, shooting Crosman Premier pellets.

Shot…Velocity…Pressure (bar)
1……….846……….200
2……….863
3……….866
4……….871
5……….863
6……….871
7……….884
8……….892
9……….890
10……..898
11……..901……….175
12……..909
13……..915
14……..921
15……..923
16……..930
17……..930……….160
18……..921
19……..933
20……..934
21……..939
22……..941
23……..946
24……..942
25……..950*
26……..947
27……..941
28……..941
29……..937
30……..940
31……..936
32……..931
33……..935
34……..917
36……..915
37……..908
38……..908
39……..899
40……..897……….110

*Highest velocity

The way I read this chart, the rifle likes about 165 bar as a max fill with this pellet. Using that as a starting fill and taking the shots from 13 to 36, there are 24 “good” shots on my performance curve–the same as the Pneuma. However, this curve will vary with each pellet you shoot, because heavier pellets will keep the valve open longer. They’ll respond better to a slightly higher fill level of perhaps 175 bar.

The thing to do is to find that one accurate pellet and forget the others. Then develop the optimum fill pressure and total number of shots for that pellet, alone. If you want to have several good pellets so there’s a fallback in case you run out someday, develop a notebook for the rifle with pressure curves for each good pellet. This kind of analysis, by the way, is a demonstration of why Matthew Quigley COULD NOT have used a different bullet in his rifle, as portrayed in the movie, unless he had such a notebook for his gun. Blackpowder shooters know this from experience, and PCP shooters should become aware of it, as well.

The point is that it would be a useless waste of air to follow the manual to the letter and fill this rifle to 200 bar every time it needed air. And knowing this, I was able to proceed with testing by filling to far less pressure. Before we move on, though, let’s consider the power of the Premier in the HaleStorm. If we use 930 f.p.s. as an average (I did not do the math, but I think that’s close), the rifle is putting out 27.47 foot-pounds, or pretty close to my prediction. However, with a heavier pellet the energy should go up.

Beeman Kodiaks
Beeman Kodiaks delivered an average 832 f.p.s. in the HaleStorm. The low was 826 and the high 838, but I didn’t test the entire string. At that average, they develop 32.29 foot-pounds, which is way beyond my estimate. Let’s hope they’re accurate!

RWS Hobbys
Hobbys delivered an average 996 f.p.s. for 26.22 foot-pounds. The spread was from 989 to 1005 f.p.s., and again, I didn’t explore the entire shot string.

I said in part 1 that the HaleStorm is not quite 30 foot-pounds, but this test demonstrates that it is more powerful than that. So, it’s a little more powerful than the Benjamin Marauder that I compared it to. Of course, it’s a lot louder!

The HaleStorm has good power and a reasonable number of shots. I can also tell you that it feeds butter-smooth. Just cock the sidelever, let it go forward and the gun’s ready to go. We’re two-thirds through this test, and the rifle is looking very good, indeed. We know that the Pneuma is accurate, so there’s no reason this rifle shouldn’t be, as well. Time will tell!