by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Well, you’ve waited patiently for the second test of the Evanix Blizzard S10! And none more than Jane Hansen, who’s still making a buy decision. All I can say is that with all the traveling I’ve been doing, and the TV show, I’m starting to forget things in a major way.

Enough apologies–on with the test. The Blizzard S10 has a growing group of advocates who admire its looks, accuracy, power and perhaps the trigger (I know I do). The only thing they all say is that it isn’t as quiet as they would prefer. While it’s fully shrouded and much quieter than without the shroud, they think it is still a bit loud. Well, for the power it delivers, it’s hard to be quieter without attaching a car muffler to the muzzle.

I’m testing the .22 caliber version. Although the rifle does come in .177, I think at this power level a .22 is the only way to go. The .177 shoots so fast that accuracy with diabolo pellets is going to be a problem. Heck, even in .22 it’s shooting some medium-weight pellets well over 1,000 f.p.s.! Since this is the velocity test, we’ll see how real those numbers are.

Fill pressure
The fill pressure is 200 bar, which is 2,900 psi–not 3,000. I’ve learned and been reminded several times that a manufacturer’s recommended fill pressure is the place to stop, unless you know something to the contrary.

Beeman Kodiak
The first test was with Beeman Kodiak pellets. At 21.1 grains, they’re a heavyweight pellet. In a PCP like the Blizzard S10, they’re going to probably deliver the maximum energy the rifle is capable of. In consideration of Jane, who uses a hand pump, I shot three strings of 10 shots, which is what the circular clip holds. Because of how the velocity decreased, I will report the strings individually.

String 1

Shot…Velocity
1……….978
2……..1005
3……….960
4……….992
5……….989
6……….992
7……….973
8……….972
9……….970
10……..948

Average…980
Extreme spread…57 f.p.s.

String 2

Shot…Velocity
1……….964
2……….960
3……….955
4……….949
5……….948
6……….942
7……….937
8……….936
9……….914
10……..919

Average…942
Extreme spread…50 f.p.s.

String one was pretty good, but there was a total of 57 f.p.s. from the fastest shot to the slowest. However, the next string had shots that were faster than the slowest shot in string one. String two was okay, as well. The total variation from the fastest to the slowest shot was 50 f.p.s. That’s close to the variation for the first string. However, the variation between the fastest shot in string one and the slowest shot in string two is 91 f.p.s. That’s pretty high, so I think two 10-shot clips are the max for this rifle. But just to know what happened, I shot a third string.

String 3

Shot…Velocity
1……….915
2……….909
3……….903
4……….887
5……….881
6……….882
7……….871
8……….862
9……….852
10……..850

Average…881
Extreme spread…65 f.p.s.

Now, the velocity is dropping pretty fast. The rifle would still be usable at 25-35 yards, but probably not at 50 yards with this kind of velocity decrease. From the fastest to the slowest shot, there are 65 f.p.s. in string three. And from the first shot to the 30th, the velocity varied by 155 f.p.s.

Air Arms domes
Air Arms 16-grain domes were the next pellet I tried. They actually weigh 15.8 grains from the tin I tested.

String 1

Shot…Velocity
1……….1045
2……….1096
3……….1090
4……….1088
5……….1072
6……….1077
7……….1067
8……….1067
9……….1044
10……..1053

Average…1070
Extreme spread…52 f.p.s.

String 2

Shot…Velocity
1……….1036
2……….1049
3……….1043
4……….1034
5……….1026
6……….1020
7……….1015
8……….1098
9……….1005
10……….991

Average…1023
Extreme spread…58 f.p.s.

Well, I think these pellets are going too fast for the best accuracy. The first string averaged 1070, which is well beyond the conservative velocity Pyramyd Air advertises for the rifle. So let’s not hear any complaints there! The total variation in string one was 52 f.p.s. String two averaged 1023 f.p.s. and had a total variation of 58 f.p.s. That’s not much different than the Kodiak performance, though the velocities were higher. And I did shoot a third string.

String 3

Shot…Velocity
1……….985
2……….980
3……….976
4……….968
5……….959
6……….953
7……….941
8……….919
9……….922
10……..911

Average…951
Extreme spread…74 f.p.s.

Like the third string with Kodiaks, this string also varies by too much, in my opinion. Of course, it depends on how far you’re shooting and how much compensating you’re willing to do with the scope. From the first shot to the 30th, the velocity varied by 185 f.p.s.

My feeling is that the first 20 shots are the usable ones, if you’re hunting at long range, which I define as 50 yards or so. If you take the time to really learn your rifle, much more performance is possible, and you’ll still be able to hit on string three.

Power
Kodiaks averaged 44.79 foot-pounds on the first string and 41.39 foot-pounds on the second string. With Air Arms domes, the first string averaged 40.18 foot-pounds and string two averaged 36.73 foot-pounds. That makes the Blizzard a powerful PCP with a reasonable number of shots.

Trigger
The adjustable trigger on my test rifle breaks at a consistent 1 lb., 14 oz., making it a remarkable sporting trigger. The second stage is reasonably crisp and only the lack of an overtravel adjustment keeps it from being world-class. I must comment that the trigger is one of the best features on the rifle.

This trigger is adjustable for the length of the first-stage travel, the length of the second stage, which is also the sear engagement, and the position of the trigger blade. As nice as the trigger is on my rifle, I’m pretty sure you’ll find an adjustment that will feel good.

Accuracy is next. I’ll try to stay on schedule so you get the full report soon.