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Education / Training A tale of two Red Ryders – Part 2

A tale of two Red Ryders – Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Update on Tom/B.B.: Improvements continue! One of the doctors mentioned that they’re starting to look down the road to see when he can be discharged. Nothing definite yet, but things look promising!

Today’s guest blog is a continuation of last Thursday’s, comparing a vintage Red Ryder with a new one.

Part 1

by BG_Farmer

Cosmetic differences cont’d

Both guns have identical view ports, through which you can see that a BB has been fed correctly. Externally, of course, I cannot detect any difference in the feeding and loading mechanisms. The old one is a little less particular about correct orientation during cocking. The 1938B loads reliably but is more particular about the orientation of the gun than the older 1938.

Functional differences

The new cocking lever (bottom) is plastic, whereas the old one is cast aluminum.

The 1938 cocking lever makes one solid “clack” at the end of its arc, whereas the 1938B makes seven clicks during its travel due to an internal ratcheting mechanism. This is a safety feature to prevent mashing fingers if one pulls the trigger with the cocking lever extended. I can attest that this was a fairly uncomfortable occurrence on the old 1938, but a pretty common dare as well! Despite the increased safety, the old 1938 feels a bit more solid when cocking, since the 1938B’s plastic lever is much less substantial and vibrates a little with the ratcheting.

Note that my 1938 has had a couple of nuts missing from the receiver since the 1980s, and the cocking lever pivot bolt and nut are a juvenile replacement; the bolt is undersized, and I don’t believe there was a nut originally, simply tapped metal. I replaced the original with an undersized bolt, necessitating the nut. The missing nuts on the receiver were seemingly for appearance, as the folded metal receiver is tapped for the screws also.

The 1938B has a plastic trigger and safety, whereas the 1938 has only a folded metal trigger (with a notably lighter pull). The 1938 has no safety! The 1938B’s cross-bolt trigger safety is part of a plastic unit that seems to be integrated with the trigger. Although wear on the older gun is a consideration, it also seems likely that the trigger-pull on the newer ones was increased on purpose, in addition to adding the safety.

Another significant functional difference is in the loading ports.

The 1938 loads by turning the metal cap that forms the muzzle (it looks like a bottle cap), which moves the tab over the feeding tube. Loading is easy…by cupping the hand into a funnel over the opening, one can pour 650 BB’s into the reservoir.

The new 1938B also holds 650 BBs, but getting them in can be tricky, as the loading port has been moved to the side of the barrel and taken the form of a sliding door. The feeding tube is plugged and shortened. I assume this change was made to prevent the user from placing his hand over the muzzle during loading.

Functionally, there’s a slight edge to the older gun, with easy loading, no safety and a very light trigger, as well as more solid and easily adjusted (although cruder looking) sights. I also suspect that nostalgia plays no small part in my preference. The new gun feels smaller and lighter, although the lengths are obviously identical and the weights are close. The clicking cocking mechanism and the plastic cocking lever are definitely glaring differences. Whereas the older gun still feels solid (albeit a little worn in) after all this time and perhaps tens of thousands of shots, the newer gun seems a bit more fragile. Since most of the changes seem to be a likely necessary response on Daisy’s part to the increase in litigation and costs of manufacture over the last three decades, it’s hard to fault them excessively for the changes, especially as the price has seemingly changed little (not even counting inflation) over the last three decades.

Out of the box, the new gun hit a cross-mark dead center at 5 yards on the first shot, so it shoots enough like the old one to be in the same league. Of course, that first shot was luck! It seems to group (using the term loosely) almost identically to the old one. My accuracy estimate is based on shooting offhand…I didn’t use a bench. In my experience, groups of around 2 inches at a maximum of 25 feet are what should be expected, although sometimes you may be able to do slightly better. Back in the day, we would regularly shoot bottle caps at about 25 feet, but we counted only the hits!

Range also is not very far, which is good in terms of safety and convenience. My brothers and I would play a “rifleman” game, where we would shoot a 4 ft x 2 ft piece of corrugated steel located about 150 feet away (just a guess as the “range/playing field” is now gone). This game did not require a precise sight picture (2 feet of windage was usually adequate), but it did require knowing which part of the writing on the back of the barrel to place in the notch of the rear sight. Again, we would regularly hit the long-range target, but there were, I’m sure, many misses. To my knowledge, none of us were ever injured by ricochets in that scenario, nor was the metal ever dented by the BBs, although it had many larger dents from being used as a backstop for baseball.

Given the age discrepancy, it’s hard to judge the differences in power: the newer gun definitely seems to hit a little harder, but age is certainly the biggest factor. I don’t think either one would/will ever get above 300 fps, and the rated 280 fps seems just about right, unlike the one from the 1940s that BB tested, which was a little more powerful.

Despite differences between the 1938 and 1938B, the current 1938B Red Ryder is still a gun that can be a lot of fun in the right application and, rather mysteriously given its roots in an otherwise forgotten cartoon cowboy, still appeals to its target market (and their fathers) many decades later.

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.

114 thoughts on “A tale of two Red Ryders – Part 2”

  1. I really don’t know which Red Ryder was the first gun I shot; although my parents both hated guns, and my Mom feared them, even a cap pistol (but I didn’t know for another 30 years that she had seen a man murdered at short range with a pistol), so I never owned one. But they sent me to a summer day camp where the activities were riding, making junk out of gimp and other useless handicrafts that let you take something home to Mom and Dad to admire, and air rifle, but never swimming. First day on the range. Handed loaded RRBBG, told how to cock it and to “aim” and squeeze. Then told that we must shoot at the paper targets at 15 feet (is that right? It feels right) and, as we were shooting towards the woods, never, ever, aim at anything alive.

    My first shot was at a sparrow perched above the target, and to my shock I hit it. No hunting ethics had been taught, so I wasn’t brave enough to admit I was disobedient. The guilt trip, suffered in silence because I couldn’t put the thing down, has kept me from any form of hunting from 1951 onwards.

    But I did learn to coax bullseyes out of that RRBBG (I’ve no idea what model) that made me a camp hero. Lucky I could do something, because I sure as hell couldn’t ride a horse! And it gave me a life-long love of using compressed gases to propel projectiles at targets, and a preference for breaking paper.

    I don’t have a suitable pellet trap in the basement, or I would buy one of the Replica Red Ryder BB Guns (RRRBBG) Daisy is making.

    • Pete,

      That’s a great story! If you end up with a replica, you’ll have to tell us about the difference in accuracy (or at least, as you remember it from the original).

      Your comment about hunting ethics made me remember a guilt-ridden story of my own that I had posted on the North American Airguns blog. I meant to put it here too, and then forgot. So here it is, copied and pasted. I wasn’t shooting an airgun, but I learned a similarly valuable and difficult lesson as you described…

      One of the hardest lessons I ever learned was [hunting as a kid] when I missed a squirrel and put a [.22] Winchester Magnum through my neighbor’s mobile home. From nearly 1/2 mile away, it penetrated three panel walls, a picture frame, a plastic utility sink, and lodged in their car door. Fortunately, nobody was home at the time. The guy was a mechanic and he only charged me for the damage to the house, but I deserved oh so much more. As you can imagine, the next day I was enrolled in an NRA Hunter Safety course.

      Sometimes I think back to that day and wonder how my life would be different if somebody had been standing in front of the sink, or been any number of other places the bullet had passed.

      – Orin

    • PeterZ,
      That is a great story — reminiscent of Harper Lee with a splash of Dostoyevsky:). 15 feet=5 yards, 16.4 ft=5M(?), those are official ranges for BB guns, so your memory is good.

    • When I was a lad, I killed a Robin Red Breast with my Daisy Red Ryder. I was completely confused by this. It was sitting in the bare winter branches of a Mimosa tree, and I shot at it from across the front yard…quite a distance. It dropped like a rock. I had not expected to hit it. I also thought the bb would just bounce off it at that distance, and make it fly away. I was really sad. I took it to my Dad; his reaction was like, “So? What’s the big deal? Go bury it in the backyard.”

      About the same time, I read a story about a teenager who accidentally killed his friend, horsing around with a .22 rifle, and how it had affected the rest of his life. Field & Stream magazine ran a similar, though fictional, story. I became anal about gun safety, equating the feeling I’d had at killing such a beautiful bird with what I imagined it would feel like to accidentally harm a human being. At the start of each hunting season, I’d clip stories of hunting accidents in nearby Pennsylvania. When I had kids, I passed on to them my safety concerns, starting with slingshots, archery, airguns, and firearms from .22 through .44 magnum and .45-70. When my kids were teenagers, the director of our local Trap & Skeet club told me, “I’m never afraid when I shoot with your kids, because I know you’ve taught them safe gun handling.”

  2. Tom’s idea of weighing and screening pellets still sounds good. But I don’t have a scale sensitive enough to see hundredths of a gram differences, so that’s out. I have gone through my entire inventory of 4.50 and 4.49 mm pellets looking for anything obviously varying or marking an axis, as BB showed might happen from die marks. New R-10s, 10 year old R-10s, some H&N pells sporting H&N markings on the tin or Champion’s Choice, Some JSBs masquerading as AirArms. All the same: no distinguishing marks along the longitudinal axis. Bench rested and sandbagged, they all cut ragged single hole groups of 5 rounds. Or better. I’m inclined to give the match rifle’s precision the role of repeatable standard. It’s a lot more repeatable than I! My pellets do not markedly degrade the group size.

    Am finally getting some professional coaching; first in my life. From Marcus Raab and his wife Janet. They’ve had me change essentially every adjustment on the stock and sights. Adding a set of sight riser blocks now lets me shoot with my head reasonably erect and w/o trying to break the fused vertebrae. Much better. You can google the Raabs if you care.

    Enough babble at 1:00 AM.



    • Hey Pete,

      Digital scales claiming accuracy to .1 grains are available on Ebay for 14.99

      Scales accurate to .02 grains are 39.99 from the same seller

      As to sorting pellets, you might want to check out this thread on the Yellow Forum

      Yrrah has done some incredible shooting at over 100 yards, with a tuned .25 PCP — sub-MOA at 100 yards, and almost sub MOA at 200 yards. He’s also posted some amazing stuff using an old Sheridan .22


  3. BG,

    Great follow-up to part 1! Thanks for taking us on this journey with you.

    I will probably never be a collector of vintage airguns, simply because they hold no sentimental value for me. Believe it or not, the first Red Ryder I ever shot was just after Daisy released their 70th Anniversary edition (my dad bought a couple for fun). Even so, it is fun to read about experiences that undoubtedly evoke nostalgia in many other people. And comparisons between old and new models of pretty much anything always maintains my interest. 🙂

    Again, thanks.

    – Orin

    • Orin,
      I’m about as far from a collector as you can get, although I’ve been tempted by RR’s before because they are relatively cheap:). I think Edith added “vintage” during editing — to me, its just my old RR, remarkable mainly because it survived (mostly intact) all this time and still works. I’m glad you like the comparative approach.

  4. BG_Farmer,

    Thank you for the two part blog on the RR. I was a Model 25 guy myself. Liked its positive spring feeding mechanism instead of the RR’s gravity one, specially when climbing around in the top of the barn hunting pigons.

    However, most of the other guys used the RR because it held more BB’s. Thanks for all the mem,ories you brought back for me.

    Mr B.

    • Mr.B,
      I had no choice in the matter. My dad was a western fanatic growing up in the 30’s and 40’s, so there was only one BB gun that was suitable:). I bet you were murder on the pigeons. Maybe you should get one of the new 25’s and see how it holds up; I think it was either gone or on its way out when I was a kid, so I don’t have any real knowledge of it.

  5. Bg Farmer,
    Good finish, I do need to give you a little jab however ‘cause I know you don’t have a Chrony. But I do suspect you are correct in the power estimates. I have a newer Daisy 499 and had picked up a 1967 99 Champion because I thought the heavier construction and multi shot capability would be nice to have. The reality was the 499 shot rings around it and was actually a little quicker at 318 fps also vs 298 fps in the 40 year old rifle.

    • Volvo,
      No chrony, lest I idle away more of my life trying to get an extra 5fps:). I like my shooting to stay low-tech:). As long as accuracy is acceptable and the power is appropriate to the application, I’m content not to know the exact velocity. Not to mention, the chrony would cost 2X the gun in the case of a RR!

  6. Excellent piece of writing!! I envy you your two beauties. My parents wouldn’t let me have a bb gun when I was a kid. Ha, they can’t stop me now! 🙂 Having said that, I never let my kids have a bb gun either. Don’t you just hate it when you realize, no matter how hard you’ve tried not to, you have just become your parents. But in both cases we never had a place where you could safely shoot a bb gun. Course as a kid that didn’t mean much, the living room was fine as far as I was concerned. I know, mystery solved.

    I did have a close friend who lived near a creek in a woods like setting. His parents let him have a bb gun. I don’t remember getting to shoot it very much, though.

    Again, good articles! And you did a great job on the pics, too.

    • Chuck,
      Thanks. I often do find myself doing exactly what my father would have done, sadly, sometimes even when I know it is not optimal:). My son and I shoot the RR’s, but I don’t know whether its a good idea for him to have one of his own (i.e., that he is totally responsible for). I may just let him go directly to pellet rifle (no more dangerous if handled safely and less chance of ricochet), although it seems like cheating him in a way. He wants the old RR, which he thinks looks better; he’s into “patina”, I think:). We’ll see.

  7. My first comment of the day and WordPress sends me a message, “You’re posting comments too quickly”. I am Super Commenter. I’ll have to start wearing a cape at the keyboard.

    • Chuck,

      I have to admit that I laughed to myself when I read your post yesterday in which you referred to shots being 1/4″ off target as fliers – on a good day for me that is simply a bad shot and not far enough off target to call a flier. But looking at the picture of the target, it is now clear to me that I must go down the PCP path if I ever want to be able to consitently place a high energy pellet right where I want it . . . .

      Great job!

      Alan in MI

      • Alan in MI,

        The eMatches are a humbling experience. That score (260 🙁 ) on that card I showed you is also laughable by the real shooters. The Anschutz guy I was competing against shot a 285 out of 300 that day (and he’s done better’n that before). That is at least, at least!, 15 dead-on 10’s out of thirty. My personal best with any gun is 269 and I needed a couple 10’s to offset a couple @#$% 8’s to do that well. Over the last four months I’ve been able to shoot a 269 with the 953, Talon SS, and the Bronco. I was so pleased with the Bronco that day. I expected the 953 and the Talon to do at least that good, but the Bronco was a pleasant surprise considering it is a springer and I haven’t done that well with other springers.

        • Chuck,

          I’ve been working away with my Quest 800 and just not making progress. I shoot patterns with it, even when resting my offhand on the bench. I want more accuracy, but also need a little more power to deal with a groundhog population boom. It looks like a PCP will be in my future, although I guess a Bronco could be a good step along the way – although it covers about half of the cost of pump that I will need. Choices, choices . . . .

          Alan in MI

          • Alan.
            The Bronco only comes in .177 and shoots at only about 550fps on Hobby’s. It’s more of a target/plinker. Not a particularly powerful rifle for hunting. Probably not as powerful as your Quest but I’m not familiar with your rifle. There is an 800x on PA that is a .22 at 800 fps. Is that what you have? You really should be looking at a .22 air rifle for hunting, although there are those on this blog who do use a .177. Maybe they can help you out better than I can. I just don’t know how tough prairie dogs are.

              • Chuck,

                My Quest (tuned) is getting 700 fps with 14.6 grain Beeman FTS (my best pellet) for about 16 ft lbs. It is good enough for the smaller ground hogs, but I won’t use it on the bigger ones anymore, as I did on one and it was not a clean kill. I figure I need at least in the mid twenties and better accuracy so I know I’ll make a good head shot. And I do want it in a .22.

                I know the Bronco is just for plinking. I’m thinking of a Marauder, as it can fill both needs (hunting, and indoor target). Just not ready for the full cost plunge I guess.

                Alan in MI

                • Alan in MI,
                  I’m feeling a bit hypocritical saying this (being a PCP holdout), but why not try the Discovery? It looks to be an excellent PCP for hunting, and the price is downright reasonable. If I needed an air rifle for hunting more than squirrels, the Discovery looks like a really good solution: lightweight, compact, etc. Add a 3-9×32 scope and you should be in business. Just a thought — the price is about equal to a higher quality springer, and you’ll get PCP knowledge with it. Some of the others can also probably help you upgrade some of its features for limited target work.

  8. BG_Farmer,

    A superb set of posts! The metal cocking lever, front end loading port and lighter trigger made me drool.
    The new 38B will pop balloons at 30 feet 50% of the time.
    The other 50% you can hear the bb’s bounce off them.
    Same thing with the new Model 25 pump gun. I suspect all the Daisys today have the same powerplant.

    Question: Can a new 38B be modified to be a bit more powerful to really deliver 350-400 fps?
    Also, do you know if there is any functional difference between the 70th Anniversary edition
    and regular versions of the modern Red Ryder?

    I am still trying to remember what Daisy I owned in 1970.
    I seem to remember it had an elongated white diamond decoration (like on a
    Daisy 5880)
    but it was definitely a bb gun and had a cocking lever… I think.


    • AlanL,
      Thanks. I gather you already got a new RR. Please let us know what you and your son think about it, good or bad. I’m surprised it bounces off balloons at 30 feet, but I probably shouldn’t be. 15-25 feet is about the optimum range for it. We use small plastic pill bottles (finally, the good side of hypertension:)) and similar as targets up to about 25 feet.

      I don’t know if 350fps or more is even possible on the current design. If there is enough volume, it would probably require a new spring and/or some tightening up of the seals. Sounds like a challenge for Vince!

      Don’t know what Daisy that you had. Probably someone else does. That white diamond pattern on the forearm was on the pumpers that my friend had. Also, no idea about difference between 1938B and 70th Ann. model. To me they appear identical except for the cosmetic differences.

  9. BB and Edith:
    The Hospital might have the same policy as in the show ‘Kung Fu’.
    When you are fast enough to catch a nurse Grasshopper you are free to go:)

    BG Farmer:
    A very good article even for a guy who didn’t grow up with the Red Ryder like me.
    Again the photo’s are great as well and look real good on the new blog format.
    In comparison, apart from a few changes for safety and production reasons, the new Red Ryder still has retained all the charm of the old one from what I can tell.
    Not an easy thing to do this day and age.
    A great survivor indeed.

      • BG Farmer:
        The Red Ryder looks great and is very clever incorporating a working BB mechanism into the classic cowboy Winchester carbine design.
        All it would take is for Hollywood to make a couple of western movies and those Red Ryders would fly off the shelves again. 🙂

        • Dave,
          They’re remaking True Grit now, apparently, but my guess is it is going to be a pale imitation. Hollywood needs to remake Sunset Boulevard (if they haven’t already) — at least the irony would be entertaining.

          • BG Farmer:
            Sacrilage!I say. 🙂
            Some movies and particulaly John Wayne films are sacred.
            Who could ever deliver that immortal line “Fill your hand you S.O.B” better than ‘The Duke’?
            It would have to have Clint Eastwood starring just to have half a chance of success.
            Message to Hollywood:
            Leave well alone 🙂

            • Indeed, “What d—–d good is a gun if it ain’t cocked and loaded?” I probably misquoted, but I loved that line from the courthouse scene, and I’m betting it doesn’t make it into the remake.

    • You’ll note that I shot a 260 during this test. My goal is to be able to record a 270 in the match. A 270 would be all nines. You’ll note that all but one of those 8s came from the 10.6 and 10.4 pellets.

      I may be onto something here that justifies all that sorting effort. The hope would be to get a fortuitous 10 or two during a session to offset the seemingly inevitable 8s. It is interesting to note that not one 10.6gr pellet came close to being a 10 while three of the 10.4s came pretty close. But then, only four of the 10.5s came close to a 10. A couple of the bulls shown were so close to being a 10 it was hard for me to call them a 9 but then I’d only be cheating myself.

      I’m not done testing, yet. I still want to try the Kodiacs and the Baracudas.


      • Chuck,

        Definitely stick with those 10.5’s, if you’re shooting the CPH’s! After reviewing your target (thanks, by the way), anything other than 10.5’s had considerably less precision.

        So, to answer my own question from yesterday, the listed weights have the best chance at precision.

        Have you ever shot JSB Heavies with your Talon?

        – Orin

        • Orin,
          I have had very good results with the JSB .177 8.4gr in just about all my rifles including the Talon. However, the CPH 10.5 are better in the Talon. I have not tried the JSB heavies. If you have good results from them I should try them, too, now that I’m on air. They would have been too heavy on CO2, I think.

          Wait until you see my latest results with the Kodiacs.

    • Gasp!!! Nooooooooo! Don’t do iiiiiiiiiiiiit! Get something else to shoot bb’s in. That’d be like inviting a super model to your pad and giving her Schlitz beer instead of Bordeaux wine.

        • BGF,
          You gotta love that bear, though.

          Speaking of bears, there was a black bear with a cub spotted about 40 mile north of me over the weekend. This is the third bear spotted here in the last year. The first one was captured and put in a zoo.

          So, you ask what’s so unusual about a bear sighting? I live in Illinois and the bears are right in the middle of the state about 100 miles south of Chicago. We are farm country. We haven’t had bears (or bear sightings) in Illinois for 50 years.

          • Chuck,
            My wife has family not too far from Galesburg (well, the actual town is so small that you have to have been there to know it:)), so I’ll have to ask if they’ve seen any bears in the timber. My guess is that bears would be preferable to some of the varmints they’ve found messing around in the woods:). We had a bear sighting one county south and the first bear season in a 100 years or so, but only in a handful of eastern (mountain) counties. They must be making a big recovery. I want to take one with a primitive muzzleloader before I die.

            • BGF,
              Galesburg is 40 miles north west of me, Tiskilwa is 40 miles North east of me. Bears have not been sighted around Galesburg yet or anywhere else in Illinois for that matter except for a 20 mile radius around Tiskilwa. Very suspicious, eh? Me thinks maybe someone has a exotic animal collection and a hole in their fence.

              • Maybe its the new home of the Dharma Initiative:). A guy not too far from here got in big trouble for raising turkeys, because the breed he selected was considered a non-native wild species. Thousands of dollars in potential fines.

                We also have a “primate sanctuary” not far away — I’ve always hoped one or two might get out and give us something to talk about:).

          • In the late 1950’s, early rising businessmen were startled to see a full-grown black bear meandering down the main street of my hometown of Cleveland, Tennessee. It was dispatched with a policeman’s .38 caliber sidearm and donated as food to the local orphanage.

      • BG_Farmer

        HA! Best Post Ever! I seized upon the idea of making a super-model related post, then I read what you wrote and knew I could not beat that. Kudos to you BG.

        Incidentally, I have the suspicion that most supermodels are about as fun to be around as shooting a FT match using a Gamo Hunter Extreme using PBA ammo. No need to waste the good stuff on them, the Hamms is just about right. I like a hoppy extra pale ale myself; Sweetwater 420 is ideal, Dale’s pale ale is excellent, Sierra Nevada is a close third.

        Don’t let the wife find out about the supermodels. They get into a fit for some reason.

        • SL,
          As a wise man once said, they may be “pretty vacant”. Persiflage aside, I never had too much trouble fighting off supermodels:). I like IPA’s as well. There is one that is made somewhere around here for the Liquor Barn (based in Louisville) chain that is called “Hopsalot” (or something like that; I’ve only had it a couple of times due to the drive to that store) — very heavy on the hops, almost like grapefruit juice with alchohol instead of fruit juice. By itself, it is good if you go for that sort of thing, but it also makes a great “tan” component of a black and tan.

  10. Chuck,

    My brain is running slowly today and I cann’t remember if you are shooting wadcutters or regular CP’s?


    Your instincts are spot on–very bad idea, possible damage to rifling, but PA sells lead balls if you want to try shooting the round things.

    Mr B.

    • Mr B,
      I was shooting regulars.

      Don’t listen to Mr B.. Shooting lead balls would be like giving your super model bottled water rather than Bordeaux wine. You’ll get nothing out her but frustration.

    • Chuck, Mr. B, Edith,

      Thanks! I thought as much! I’m intrigued by those lead balls though. Might give ’em a try. In the HW30S? 😀

      Oh, and maybe when that supermodel comes around I might pour her a glass of ’04 Chateau St. Jean Merlot. Best under $10/bottle red I’ve tasted for a long time. Put it up to any $60-80 bottle any day! Tough to get, though- now the ’06 is out. Hold out for the ’04 though- the 2006 is not as good.


  11. Edith,
    I’m getting somewhat proficient with the RSS feeds now, so you can remove me from the auto mail list when you get the time, no rush. I put my email address in the “mail(will not be published)” box for your convenience.

  12. Okay stupid question but what s the difference beetwen bb gun and airgun,i mean is it power, amunittion or something else,we here have only airguns and air pistols?

    • Croatia-Serbia,

      A bb gun is a gun that shoots “bb’s” which are round steel or zinc balls 4,5 mm in diameter out of a barrel that is not rifled. A “gun” is an air gun that has a barrel with a smooth bore. A rifle is an air gun or firearm with a barrel whose bore is rifled, meaning that there are grooves cut into the bore that twist around the circumference of the bore from breech to muzzle. This rifling imparts a spin to the bullet or pellet that you shoot through it, in order to give it more stability in flight. Since a bb is round, it does not need to spin, so it does not need a rifled barrel to shoot it, same as the old muskets that shot round lead balls.
      Here is a picture of a bb.


  13. Chuck,

    I didn’t comment on shooting lead balls verses pellets it was lead balls verses steel bb’s. Who are we to dampen another’s curiosity, besides which, I just ask the supermodel of the day what she would like and my staff gets it for her. :).

    Mr B.

    PS I also got a time out and a seat in the corner for “posting too fast” being a one and one half finger typer, notice not typest, that didn’t make any sense, until I noticed that I had starting posting on one screen without submitting it before I tried another post on a different screen. Perhaps that’s what you also did?

  14. Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun Review (this seems as good a place as any to add this. WARNING: it’s a long review and includes the Daisy Buck model as a comparison to the Red Ryder)

    1/14/09: I bought a Daisy Red Ryder BB gun today. I’d gone to Wal-Mart to stock up on more .22 wadcutters for my Crosman 2250 test. I briefly debated between the Red Ryder model and the Buck 105 model. Nostalgia won out…the Red Ryder had been my first BB gun.

    I sat with the box in my arms. What would the gun inside the box be like? Would it be so weak and flimsy I’d wind up taking it back out of disgust? Can one truly relive parts of one’s youth? I opened the box.

    OMG! It was beautiful.

    There is a large screw on top, where the back of the sheet metal meets the buttstock. It’s just as I remembered it. I used to love resting my thumb on it between shots, back when I was a kid. It just felt…right somehow. It still feels right today.

    The loading port is strange and seems to be engineered by someone who’d forgotten what it was to be a kid. As hard as I tried, I could not get the port cover to slide up more than what seemed like halfway open.

    BB’s made that familiar whooshing sound as I tilted the gun up and down. The sound said that I was ‘loaded for bear’…that I was ready for anything the world could dish out…me and my trusty Red Ryder bb gun. With a full magazine of 650 bbs (650!), the gun balanced nicely on the rear of the forearm. With only a handful of bbs inside, the gun balanced between the trigger guard and the rear of the forearm. Either way, the gun hefts nicely, just like my Winchester .30-.30 and my two old Daisy model 94s.

    I tried to pull trigger with cocking lever out; gun refused to fire unless lever was all the way back against the frame, just like Winchester’s celebrated model 94…very cool. BBs seemed more powerful as they thunked against the pop can…doubt my original RR had this much power. What happened to the loading port? My ORR (original Red Ryder) had a cap on the muzzle that rotated out of the way so I could pour a ton of BBs down a reservoir below the barrel (didn’t it, or was I just remembering it wrong?). This new port is in the side of the bbl, towards the front of the bbl on the left side. No matter how I opened it, it is a very narrow slot. Loading BBs from a bottle is an invitation to re-carpet your floor with them (“Now where did I put that magnet?”). Either that or they slip into the runnel between the bbl and bbl lug that runs underneath and most of the length of the bbl, at which point you have to turn the bbl muzzle-down and let the BBs roll into your hand.

    The stock is short, made more for a child than an adult (of course), but I still found it easy to shoulder. I thought at first that the buttstock and forearm were plastic but the box, which features a parts nomenclature on its bottom, says wood. Also, 350 fps seems faster than I remember my ORR capable of. With the ORR, I remember the bbs had a much higher arc. The bbs out of this NRR (new Red Ryder) seem as flat as I remember them from my model 25 Daisy. Most of the gun seems to be made of metal (lovely, cheap metal), except for the trigger group, the lever, and of course the wood stocks.

    Does anyone besides me remember something called loading straws from the mid to late ‘80s? They were long plastic straws with the ends flattened. You jabbed them repeatedly into the milk container BB boxes that Crosman made then until they were full. Then you held it at the bottom end and squeezed the flattened end open, allowing the single column of BBs to flow effortlessly into the loading port. Perhaps they were only available in Portland, Oregon. For absolute ease of loading, I miss them.

    1/15/09, 4PM: Target shot with the RRbbG & Crosman Copperhead BBs just now. Got 2 & ¾”, 10-shot groups at around 5 meters. I was surprised at how spread out the groups were. I was using a 2-yr old bottle of Crosman bbs, and some of them were discolored—this may explain some of the large groups I was getting. For comparison, I got out my Crosman model 2250 and shot three ¾” 10-shot groups with both Crosman Copperhead and Daisy wadcutters. The BBs were a bit easier to load today, now that I’ve given up stubbornly wanting them to load as easily as my ORR did.

    1/19/09: Judging by where the BB sits after it’s in position for the chamber, the barrel length of the NRR (new Red Ryder) seems to be about 11”. I used my old method (actually developed with my Daisy 25) of sighting down the left side of the bbl. The sights work perfectly but using the side-sighting method (which works because the eye can then see the BB’s actual trajectory) is more useful for a wider range of distances. I shot a tududedu (the cardboard core of a toilet paper roll) at 10 paces using the left side of the bbl aim, and hitting 8 out of 10 shots (with two blank shots because the bb didn’t feed into the chamber when cocked. I then shot at my 1 foot diameter bronze gong at 35’, missing three times in thirty shots. This early in the game, I found that the sights were slightly more accurate. Then I shot the tududedu with the gun stock held under my shoulder, using intuition for the sights, and hit it 6 times out of ten (OK, so the target was 5 paces away).

    You ever read where they tell you to use a Point & Shoot digital camera for candid portraits of strangers, because it looks much less intimidating than a large DSLR? This is the same, with the RR being the P&S. Because it’s not a ‘serious’ airgun, I find myself playing with it more…taking more chances of looking silly. Or like a photography workshop where pros go to learn intuitive shooting using a $35 Russian Helga toy camera? Same thing.

    Nostalgically, it felt good to rest the thumb of my shooting hand on top of the large screw head, where it fastens the sheet metal to the top of the wood stock.

    1/20/09: The Daisy Buck. (OK, let me see a show of hands of all the people who thought I was using a Daisy bb gun to hunt deer with?) I bought a Daisy Buck model 105 at my local Wal-Mart yesterday. This bb gun is supposed to be for even younger beginning shooters than the RR. Its stock is shorter, harder for me to shoulder. The picture on the box shows someone cocking the lever the same as you would a .30-.30…maybe if your name is Ahnold. The lever on the Buck is the same as on the NRR, and both manuals suggest you brace them against your leg to cock them. From a rest I found myself using my second rather than my first, or index, finger to squeeze the trigger…. It seemed easier that way. It has what appears to be an 8” bbl, compared with the NRR’s 11”. Sight picture with the Tru-Glow front sight was easily acquired. I don’t understand why they don’t put this sight on the NRR; I suppose it’s to keep the NRR looking as authentic as possible.

    I got the following results at 5 m, using a Shoot-N-C 8” square target (all you need’s a sturdy cardboard box to paste it to). These are approximate values, as I was using a tape measure. Each measurement represents 10 shots at each target. Each value is in sixteenths of an inch, in order to simplify comparison of the results.

    1) 1 & 4/16ths” horizontal by 1 & 12/16ths” vertical, C-T-C
    2) 1 & 9/16ths by 1 & 10/16ths”
    3) 15/16ths by 1 & 9/16ths


    1) 2 & 12/16ths” horizontal spread by 1 & 12/16s” vertical spread, C-T-C
    2) 1 & 14/16ths by 1 & 8/16ths
    3) 2 & 2/16ths by 1 & 10/16ths

    Notice that the Buck tended to shoot smaller groups as I got used to it. The NRR did not do as well and I wonder of it’s because of the bb being in the bbl for a longer time than the Buck’s 8” bbl. These are after all spring-piston airguns. I might try an artillery hold but frankly I’m having too much fun shooting these guns freestyle.

    Both guns shot about an inch to the right and a half inch low of POA for me. I began to hold the sights high and left to compensate but a better method for me is to ‘sight’ along the left side of the bbls (as I did as a child), so that I can visually track the bbs’ actual flight. With the Buck, I used sights only for the paper target results but I used the side aiming method to scoot an Arrowhead brand half-liter thin plastic water bottle from 5 out to 14 paces from where I sat shooting. None of the bbs broke through the plastic. Both bb gun boxes claim a mv of 350 fps. PA’s site claims 275 fps for the Buck.

    One of the reasons I bought the Buck model Daisy was because it has the same loading tube slot as the NRR. I wanted to see if it only went halfway open the same as the NRR. It opens all the way. After I found that out, I was able to push the NRR’s loading door all the way open as well. Before I knew this was possible, I didn’t want to force it for fear of possible breakage. I also bought a cardboard tube of (350) Daisy zinc-coated bbs. This is a much easier way to load these guns. I’ve never been able to get those Crosman plastic bottles with the pouring spout on top to work well. No matter how many bbs they hold or how large I cut the pouring tip, the bbs always bunch up at the neck and you have to turn the bottle back upright and then begin pouring all over again (if anyone knows a fix for this I’d love to hear it).

    The shoot was roughly one hour, not counting set-up and put-away times, which added about 15 minutes. As usual, the guns were treated to a wipe-down with a rag sprayed with RemOil and put away.

    1/21/09: In East Tennessee, our next farm up the road and around several bends was owned by a family named Evans. The two Evans boys closest to my age, and therefore playable with, had bb guns like mine. They said that their cousin claimed to get extry power from his by pouring a little gasoline down the bbl. We tried this and, danged if twern’t true…for a very short while. After that the guns had less power, and then, if I remember correctly, they stopped working all together (likely the internal seals went up in smoke). Now, I don’t understand the physical reason for why this happened, just that we weren’t to do it again with any other bb guns.

    That was the end of my beloved ORR. I switched over to my Daisy model 25 pump; although by this time I already owned a real .22 and a .410. Truly the end of an era for this ol’ east Tennessee boy.

    1/23/09: Today I perforated a Budweiser can, knocking it down the length of my yard with both the NRR and the Buck. I noticed the Buck took a bit of getting back into my shoulder, after firing the NRR with its longer stock. Also, while I did most of my shooting of the NRR with my eye running down the left side of the gun, with the Buck I preferred to use the sights. Again, the TruGlo front sight made target acquisition quick and easy.

    I still don’t quite understand about feeding bbs with either gun. The directions on the bbl say to cock the gun then feed the bb?! I did this by turning the muzzle down, then up again, until I could see a bb through the small slot on the top and rear of the bbl. But this didn’t always work unless I poked the visible bb down by pushing through the slot with my fingernail. I need to re-read the manuals.

    1/24/09: I was going to shoot some targets with the NRR this afternoon but frankly, it was just too darned cold outside. Here in Kula, on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala at 3,100’, we get what’s known as the Kula Cloud. It’s a massive cloud formation that hides the sun most afternoons. It’s the reason our solar pool heater just barely warms the pool up to uncomfortable. It’s one reason why winter mornings up here are in the 40s during winter. You start here bundled up in flannel-lined sweat pants and a sweater, which you shed as you drive down to sea level, winding up in shorts, a sleeveless t-shirt and shower shoes. Practically everyone, certainly the natives, wears shower shoes as standard footwear here in Hawaii…even to fancy restaurants. During the winter of 2002-3, my wife & I flew to Boulder, Colorado to teach a seminar. I got off the plane and found myself wading through knee-deep snow in shower shoes. It was just a little ridiculous.

    1/27/09: It’s weird. The Red Ryder is the first bb gun I’ve owned for a long time that I want to take with me in the trunk of the car when I go somewhere. It’s like it’s an old friend. With it, a full magazine of bbs and an empty soda pop can for a target, I feel like I’d have endless entertainment wherever I go.

    2/5/09: Just finished chasing an empty Budweiser can around the yard with my NRR. I mostly sighted down the barrel rather than use the sights. I noticed that this seems harder than when I was a kid, because the mv of the NRR seems faster than that of my ORR…it’s harder to see the bb’s trajectory. Still, if I “use the Force”, as they say, I can usually hit a lot more than I miss. I also noticed that there were quite a few shots where no bb came out. I solved this by noticing if there was a bb in the loading slot between the time I cocked the gun and fired it. There’s a small window where you can see if a bb is near the chamber. If there was no bb, I simply pointed the bbl downward and then back up again. In this manner I had a bb fire every time.

    I also experimented with cocking styles. Usually I pull the gun at a right angle to my body to cock the lever. I remember when I was a kid I used the inside of my thigh for leverage in cocking. Now I can cock it when it’s in mid air. I noticed a kid on youtube cocking the gun a different way, so I tried that this morning. You lower the gun a bit, get the lever down a bit and then push it away from you. Doesn’t seem any better or faster than my way…just different.

    I’ve also gotten into the habit of plugging the mouth of the gun with an archery field point, to keep bugs and dust out. I think I’m Capstick, keeping wasps from building mud nests in the bbls of his double rifle elephant gun….

    According to B.B., the early RRs had a mv of 325 fps. Another guy said it was 280-300 fps for the RRs with plastic stocks, which mine was. The butt had rules for safe bb gun handling on it.


    • JoeB,
      Wow. Thanks for writing that up. You won’t believe how much of what you wrote is similar to things I decided wouldn’t go into my piece. It is hard to describe how, as lawyer-proofed and cost-reduced as the new one is in some ways, it remains like a silver thread connecting to childhood. Even more remarkably, it seems to appeal to boys the same way it did when we were kids.

      PS. Don’t worry about stealing my thunder; I have enough fame and celebrity day to day, anyway:). I was hoping that RR fans would enjoy my article and comment as you did.

      • BG: We were living in Houston when my dad promised me my first Red Ryder. Unfortunately my dad was the “cheapest price” type. After dragging us all over the city one afternoon, we wound up at a hardware store. The clerk told Dad the price, which apparently displeased him. “I’m sorry, Joseph…maybe next weekend.” Normally a quiet, biddable boy, this was the last straw. I threw a major temper tantrum, and walked out of that store clutching the box of my new bb gun. My dad looked at me like, “Who ARE you?” But none of that mattered. I finally owned a Daisy Red Ryder.

      • I cannot tell you how joyful I felt when, at 62, I realized I could just walk into Wal-mart and recreate the absolute joy of my first bb gun for a paltry $32!

          • I’d bet both our dads went through the great depression.

            I remember trying to impress my wife when we were first married with how thrifty I was, looking for the best price at a number of stores. She asked me if I’d considered how much time, energy and gas I’d save if I just bought what I was looking for at the first place I looked.

      • JoeB,
        I agree with Chuck — it would be a fun read. Again, it is different from what I was trying to do for the most part, so don’t hesitate to submit it on my account. I wish you lived closer, because I would love to help recreate and photograph the “gasoline mod”:).

  15. c’mon BG_Farmer…give the kid the RR 😉
    I remember my first gun…an ancient Slavia that shot darts (probably a 618) that I got when I was 6…at 8, after I had proved to my dad that I was ‘safe’ (he never knew about the pigeon in the back yard) I was given a Mossberg .22 5 shot repeater with aperture sights and enrolled in a CIL youth program.
    I think we often don’t give kids enough credit.
    I know my two boys each received their Red Ryders when they turned 6. I spent a couple of afternoons with them in the basement teaching them safety…and impressing upon them that minor infractions of the rules (such as turning whilst holding the gun so that at some point it swept past a person) meant the gun went away for two weeks. I was brutal on this point and I’ve never had to actually put away a gun.
    As well the guns, even though ‘only’ bb guns are kept under lock and key when not in use. Not because I don’t trust my sons…more that I know they are so proud of them that they may want to show them to their friends, some of whom I wouldn’t trust with a peashooter.
    Anyhoo…now the oldest is 9 and the youngest coming 8. Next month at the end of school they will be given their new pellet rifles (Bam B-3…the AK lookalikes), mostly because the 9 year old can easily outshoot his Red Ryder. And because a couple of weeks ago he enquired why I wipe down and oil the guns after we shoot, and asked if he can start maintaining his own Red Ryder.
    I know it’s somewhat of a political issue…and all kids are different…but I think with proper supervision our kids are capable of way more than we give them credit for.
    Just my two cents…

    • CowboyStarDad,
      You must know by now that I like guns, so it isn’t a matter of PC-ness. He already has access to any of my guns under supervision; its just a matter of his having complete control over and responsibility for it, which I feel is essential to actual “ownership”. What I meant was that when he reaches that point, a pellet rifle (the likes of which we had no access to) may be more appropriate. Of course, at that time, he can have some say in what he prefers.

  16. BG, please don’t think I’m trying to steal your thunder here…just adding to the nostalgia of the semi-mystical Red Ryder experience. Your 2-part review is excellent.

  17. I bought my first Red Ryder about a week ago. Its anew 70th anniversary model and I am quite impressed by it. At 10 yards and shooting from a bench I am getting quarter sized 5 shot groups using copperhead BB’s. Actually the first 3 shots grouped to be about the size of a penny, the next 2 made the group open a little. All other groups stayed about the same size as the first. Off hand it opened up to about 2 inches. Amazingly the fixed windage of the sights on my gun is perfect.

    I do not care for the plastic lever. I would like it to be metal, slightly larger and wrapped in the same soft leather cord that is on the saddle ring. The trigger is heavy but usable, and the safety button is very small. I do not like the side loading gate as it makes pouring BB’s into the gun more difficult because you have to hold he gun at an angle. I have also noticed that sometimes the BB’s do not always load into the barrel, even when tipping the gun rearward. Luckily there is a viewing port to check and see if the chamber is loaded.

    Overall I am very happy with my Red Ryder. I am impressed by its accuracy and the fun of cheap short ranged recreational shooting. Once I deplete its huge 650 BB magazine, I’m going to do another accuracy test with some high quality Avanti ammo, just to see how accurate this fun little plinker can be.

    • mechredd,
      Thanks for the short review. Your experience with the feeding mechanism is informative, because you weren’t “contaminated” by experience with the old one. Something is different — maybe we need to take apart some RR’s:).

      • From what I can tell, the BB’s are funneled from a large hopper style reservoir into a single column tube magazine that holds 3-5 BB’s, although I may be wrong as I haven’t taken the gun apart or seen a parts diagram. It seems that the BB’s get clogged when they are being funneled into the tube. Shaking he gun vertically quickly dislodges this clog.

        • mechredd,
          That sounds reasonable. I just can’t see any difference between the two from the outside, and there’s no reason they should have changed it, that I know of at least. Will have to take it apart. Like I told JoeB. this weekend, I suspect it might just be tolerances inside causing the difference.

  18. Well, today I started working with .177 Beeman Kodiac Extra Heavy 10.6gr pellets. I weighed the first one and got 10.1, the second I got 10.2, the third I got 10.1. I thought alright I’ve got something worth testing. It turns out I have a controversy instead. After weighing 50 pellets here’s my results:

    10.1 – 14
    10.2 – 34
    10.3 – 4

    WHAT!!!!!!! Not a 10.6 in the bunch! Yeah, my scale must be off, right? WRONG! I re-weighed the Crosman Premiers I did yesterday and they were still weighing correctly. Now, who’s pellets do you think are labeled wrong? Crosman’s or Beeman’s?

    I rechecked the PA web site and the Beeman Kodiac Extra Heavys are listed as 10.6. I searched Beeman’s site but they don’t list weights (odd). I went to two other vendor sites, one did not list weight (odd) the other listed 10.6.

    I looked for any Beeman pellet on the Pa online catalog that weighed 10.1-10.3 and found nothing.

    OK, guys what’s going on here?


  19. BB says Kodiacs and Baracudas are the same pellet. Baracudas are listed at 10.65. I spotchecked a tin of H&N Baracudas. Same thing, 10.0, 10.1, 10.2 The controversy is spreading!

  20. BG_Farmer. Nice job. I just got back from several days in the bluegrass state which I highly recommend to all. What beautiful country and the people are as nice as can be in a very genuine way and with just a trace of a stylish Southern accent.

    I met one of the locals who told me about his BB gun wars as a kid where they would shoot each other. The risk to the eyes makes me shudder. This individual also told me about his new airgun which is a Remington spring piston rifle that shoots at 1200 fps and which he uses to hunt rabbits. When I asked him for the model number, he scoffed at that as an unimportant detail. Anyone have an idea of what he is talking about?

    Also as a little quiz, anyone know what kind of firearms malfunction is referred to by the acronym BOB? 🙂

    • Bring Own Booze. After a couple bottles of Olde Overcoat you’d be lucky to FIND the firearm, much less make it work.

      Quite a few years back I read about a new game teens were playing: they hid behind trees and took turns shooting at each other’s trees with .22 firearms.

    • Matt,
      Welcome home; we missed you. Glad you enjoyed Kentucky…most people do if they give it a fair try:). BOB? I don’t know — “B” in redneck acronyms usually refers to beer or feminine ornaments:).

    • There are 2 basic Remington springers. First is the Genesis and it’s gas-spring variants, I believe they trace their legacy to the old Benjamin Legacy 1000. The second is the Vantage/Summit twins – they are variations on the Crosman Quest. I think the older Vantage is the only one advertised with the inflated PBA numbers, so Chuck is probably right.

  21. Volvo, thanks for the Single Six info. I’m picking up the gun this Saturday. I saw it with my own eyes when I started the background check a few days ago, so nothing (one hopes) can stop me now.

  22. I counted out 101 Beeman Kodiac Extra Heavy 10.6(?) with the following results:

    10.1 – 29
    10.2 – 63
    10.3 – 9

    I rechecked the Crosman Lights 7.9 I did yesterday and their weights checked out ok, also, so I’m 100 percent convinced the Kodiacs and the Baracudas are mis-advertized. At least the two tins I have are, but what are the chances that both brands were defective tins/runs?

  23. bg-farmer…okay, that’s cleared up.
    I only mention the PC thing because I have a friend (whose attitude I don’t understand) who regularily competes in IPSC competition…is a certified ‘gun nut’…yet who has the opinion that a young person should not be allowed to shoot a gun until they are 12, and preferably in Cadets or some such thing.
    I do understand your nuance of ‘ownership’.
    My two sons own their Red Ryders and will own their pellet rifles.
    I, however, own the key to the gun safe! 😉

    • CBSD,
      Your view is actually more mainstream, so I can’t really argue it, but as Chuck pointed out, we tend to do things the same way our fathers did them, so I’m just sticking with tradition. Its mainly semantics, as they say, anyway:).

  24. AlanL,

    The Kentucky Rifle, as its name implies has a rifled barrel, while a musket was smooth bored. There really is a big differance in effective range of the two, as shown here: http://www.hackman-adams.com/guns/58musket.htm . The military liked the smooth bore cause it was easier to load when fouled with black powder residue.
    So yes the lead ball benefites from being spun by rifling.

    Mr B.

  25. Joe B in Marin,

    Thank you so much for your well written post. Thanks to BG_Farmer and you I’m going to take my Model 25 when I go to the cabin this summer and walk the same trails I did in ’53, at least the ones that are still there.

    Mr B.

  26. As a 14 year old, and my only experience so far with a RR so far, most of what you guys have been saying is true. I’m more accurate not using the sights but still having shouldered the gun. I get the same groups as you, which reinforces the issue that I need a new rifle. The bird incident is identical with me, but that was numerous years ago. Mendoza RM-200 on sale this week. Any thoughts? How good is it with lead free’s such as Skenco’s? BB said they like wide pellets, or is that just with the 22 barrel?

    Thanks HK

  27. BG_Farmer, yea, the father thing is something we can’t avoid, is it.
    I have a story that always brings a tear to my eye.
    My father was who got me into shooting. He was an avid shooter/reloader/collector. Everything from a restored Mauser K98 to a pair of matched Purdy shotguns he bought with a big poker win when he was working pipeline in the NWT of Canada years ago.
    I have all these wonderful thoughts of going shooting (the aforementioned CIL course) on a weekday evening and returning home late in his cigartte smoke filled GMC, me barely able to keep awake wishing I didn’t have school the next morning.
    Anyway, fast forward about 10 years (when I was 18 or 19) and girls and friends just became more important than going out shooting with the ‘old man’.
    So I didn’t touch a gun for 52 years. And I know it bothered him that I had lost all interest in his, and at one time my passion.
    Well, 5 years ago this summer dad passed away after a 5 years battle with cancer.
    My oldest son was 4 at the time. I married late…it took a long time to find someone who would put up with me 😉
    So when he turned 6 I got him the Red Ryder he so wanted. A couple of nights later, after he’d gone to bed I headed downstairs and tried the gun out…and I was flooded with memories from 40 odd years ago of shooting in the basement with my dad with my first gun, the dart firing Slavia.
    Before the year was out I’d purchased the 853c, Slavia 630, Gamo Compact and a couple of Umarex pistols…and the list has enlarged since then.
    I shoot for a lot of reasons…but I know partly it is to try and make up for lost time with my dad.

  28. Sorry to change the subject, but does anyone know if any of the old benjamin 300 or 310 rifled came with a rifled barrel or are all those smooth for the BB? Mike

    • I’m using Firefox. It doesn’t show up using IE8. On the current day’s blog I click on “Comments RSS”. At the top of the displayed RSS feed page is the master heading “Comments for PyramydAir – Blog” Directly under that is a greyed out heading that says “Dail Airgun Blog by PyramydAir.com” and then the comment headings and comments start after that.

      In testing IE8 for this “problem” I found IE8 does a much better presentation than Firefox does for some reason.


      • Chuck,

        The typo you mentioned should be fixed now. The verbiage doesn’t appear in Safari (or at least not in Safari on a Mac). Thanks for the heads up!


  29. I shot the Beeman Kodiac Extra Heavy 10.6gr (actually ~10.2 in my tin) today.

    My set up was the same as in my earlier report with the Crosman Premier 10.5. Here are the results for the Kodiacs:

    10.1gr – 5 eight rings, 5 nine rings, no 10 rings
    10.2gr – 0 eight rings, 7 nine rings, and 4 ten rings
    10.3gr – 0 eight rings, 8 nine rings, and 1 ten ring

    Total score 270 (Yahoo!! met my goal, unfortunately not during an eMatch. I hope this is repeatable) I even remeasured a 10 and downgraded it to a 9 or else I’d have had a 271 and beat my goal.

    The 10.2gr are clearly the best weight for this brand in my rifle. And the Kodiacs appear to have outclassed the CPH 10.5.

    Next I will do the Baracudas.


    • Dang,Chuck…catching up on a week’s reading.Very good job with your supermodel 10.2 pellets.Overall your shooting is not only improving,it’s also non-erratic.That’s two attributes worthy of envy…bravo!

    • Chuck,

      Dude – congrats on your score! I’m hoping the Baracudas are even better for you, as they outmatch Kodiaks in all my guns. I know they’re supposed to be the same thing, but I swear there are subtle differences between the two if you compare them side-by-side. For instance, I’ve noticed in mine (and pics that others have posted) that the Baracudas are shinier and most of them have a little nub on the tip of the head that the Kodiaks lack. Maybe they’re just coming off a newer set of dies or something.

      Anyway, thanks for posting your most recent data and good luck on the next round.

      – Orin

  30. Chuck/Edith
    Just downloaded and installed Safari for PC. Looks pretty good, RSS is very similar to IE8. Browser takes up less screen space which is nice since I use a netbook. I’ll have to try it for a while to decide. I like my Norton security remembering all my logins so I’ll have to see about that, maybe it’s just an upgrade or mod but Safari does look good right now. Thanks Edith!


  31. Have to make some sort of comment or something it is annoying me that the counter is setting is resting there at 999. Hopefully this will trip the meter.


  32. Note the change in how your name appears when you post a comment: It says [your name] Says:

    You don’t need to write “from” in any of your comments.


  33. I know this is an old blog, I don’t know if anyone will respond to my comment. I just got a Daisy 1938B and it has a metal cocking lever and does not ratchet, but also has the loading slide port. The observation hole is just like the 1938 pictured close to the barrel band. So I think with a mix of features that it may be one of the early 1938B’s, is there any way to tell the year of manufacture? I don’t see a serial number but do see it is Lot # J004289

    • Dan,

      You have narrowed it down as much as can be. None of them have serial numbers. When millions are sold, serial numbers get in the way. They slow down production and add paperwork.

      Your gun is probably a more recent one that someone swapped cocking levers on.


      • Thanks for responding B.B.
        I agree, I think it is probably a ’79 or ’80 but still wonder why it does not ratchet and cocks with a pretty fair amount of effort. I am not weak but if I shoot about 30-40 fairly fast shots I experience muscle fatigue. Maybe someone replaced the spring with a stronger one? It certainly isn’t too kid friendly. It really isn’t important I am going to shoot it anyway. I set up three cans about 10 feet apart in a circle with me being 18 feet from the cans and shot one after the other very rapidly and I only missed three shots out of 36. I also can hit my 2 1/2 inch wide chain link fence post 40 feet away most of the time, it does have a fair amount of drop at that distance though. This is my first Red Ryder BB gun. I haven’t shot it through the Chrony yet but I think it is shooting 250-300 fps. I got it for $20

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