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Education / Training B.B.’s airguns – What I kept and why – Part 1

B.B.’s airguns – What I kept and why – Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

This subject was suggested by several readers who want to know what airguns I have become attached to over the years. I can write about that because I’ve given a lot of thought to the subject. Whenever I think about selling a gun, I run it through a thought process to (hopefully) ensure that I won’t have seller’s remorse after the sale. So, I think I’ll begin this series with the tale of the one gun I bet most folks would assume I would never sell: the Beeman R1 I used as the basis to write my book, The Beeman R1 – Supermagnum Air Rifle.

The rifle I’m talking about in this report is the very airgun on the cover of my book.

Before I tell that tale, though, I think you need to know why I would ever sell any airgun. I sell them for two reasons that are really only one. And that is money. I don’t have unlimited resources, nor do I have the soul of a true collector. So, I sell some airguns to get the money to buy others.

A true collector who has no more money than I would adapt his lifestyle to the point that ownership would be all-important. He would therefore not part with a single gun; or, if he did, it would be only because he got a better one. When his house ran out of space, which is the second reason I sell, by the way, he would let airguns take over his house and his family would either understand or they would make adjustments — to the point of divorce!

I have too many airguns as it is, from a space standpoint. But I also have an understanding wife who not only supports this hobby, but has actually helped me transform it into our joint vocation over the past 16 years. Plus, she’s often suggested that we buy guns that I hadn’t planned to buy. The airguns I keep justify their storage space (somewhat) by providing a continuing resource for making a living. This very report series is a perfect example of that.

I do still sell airguns, and so the question of what gets sold and why is a valid one. And, of all the guns I should never have sold, the very one I used to write my first book, ought to top the list. Don’t you think? Yet, I did sell it about nine years ago. Why?

When I sold the .22 caliber R1 that was used as the testbed for the R1 Homebrew series of 9 articles in The Airgun Letter and then turned into several chapters in the R1 book, it was because I thought I was through with the gun. I’d used it, tuned it and generally spent so much time with it over the year I was writing the book that I was sick of it, in all honesty. I owned other spring-piston rifles that were easier to cock, easier to shoot (the R1 being a breakbarrel requires a LOT of technique to shoot well), more accurate and even more powerful. Such is the case with the Whiscombe. Never mind that I also sold the Whiscombe at the same time and to the same person who bought the R1, I still did use it as partial justification for selling the R1. Isn’t it marvelous how we can compartmentalize our minds to justify anything when we want?

The simple truth is that. at the time I got rid of both rifles, we needed the money. The newsletter was losing money due to the impact of free info on the internet, and we were edging closer and closer to the brink. Over the course of a year, I parted with many guns I wished I could have kept. Two more of them were a Zimmerstutzen rifle I wrote about in an Airgun Revue and a Sheridan Supergrade I loved. But those are tales of remorse that will not be told today.

So, yes, I sold my R1. THE R1, if you will. When I sold it, it had the Vortek gas spring installed and was in the factory stock. The gentleman who bought it wanted it because it was what it was. He owned my book and recognized what he was buying as the cornerstone of the work that produced it. He also bought my Whiscombe with its four barrels (each with the HOTS installed) and a set of numerous air transfer ports for tuning the power from 6 foot-pounds up to 30. And all the documentation from John Whiscombe about the gun!

My Whiscombe JW75 has become a very desirable collector’s item, now that they are no longer made.

I won’t disclose what he paid for those two rifles, but I didn’t sell them cheap because I needed the money, as I said. However, in the transaction I did a thing that saved the day, as things turned out. I allowed him $800 credit on a beautiful Inland M1 Carbine he traded me, so the transaction was not entirely cash. I rationalized that I would write about the carbine, then resell it for what I had valued it in the deal. Carbines had just begun to take off in the collector’s market, and it was worth about what I had allowed. I did write about it for Shotgun News, but then I discovered that I didn’t really want to get rid of it, after all.

Now, you need to know something about the other guy. He was an M1 Carbine collector and the rifle he swapped me was his personal gun. From a collection of over 30 carbines, this Inland was the one he saw as his personal gun! But he had told me I could have my pick of his carbines with the sole exception of his Irwin Pederson, which was valued at many thousands of dollars. I guess he figured I’d take a $1,500 like-new IBM, Winchester or a beautiful Rockola, or even the Garand that was an authentic Iwo Jima pickup (it was still covered with the volcanic sand!) that he offered me in a moment of weakness. You see, he REALLY wanted my R1!

But I disregarded all those choice guns and went straight for his personal Inland carbine that had an M4 bayonet with the owner’s name written on the sheath! Apparently he and I shared the same taste in military weapons. He must have really been hot for the R1 because he also threw in 500 empty carbine cartridge cases (for reloading) and 4 original magazines from WWII. Two of the magazines were still in the original WWII-era red cellophane wrappers, having never been unwrapped!

This Inland M1 Carbine was a beautiful military rifle.

The cash he paid me for the Whiscombe was substantial enough to represent the best part of a month’s income that we sorely needed at the time. With that, I figured the deal was done.

Then, we moved from Maryland to Texas, where our prosperity turned around completely. Money was no longer the pressing issue it had been, and the sale of our home in Maryland right at the peak of the real estate market erased all of our debts and set us up comfortably in our new home.

Seller’s remorse crept in, silently at first, but grew louder when the blog launched in 2005. I missed the Whiscombe as a wonderful testbed, of course, but I especially missed my good old R1. And that’s when the call came. The guy who bought my guns was interested in selling the Whiscombe back. And I was in the position of being able to afford it. I was about to head back to Maryland to have a table at a combination firearm/airgun show.

One stipulation, though. He wanted the Inland Carbine back. Actually, I was the one who raised the issue, since I didn’t quite have all the cash I needed to do the deal. And Whiscombes were starting to increase in value because John Whiscombe had announced that he was thinking of retiring. The guy made me a surprisingly fair offer, even though he was aware they were taking off, so I reciprocated by pricing the Inland at the same $800 he had valued it three years before. It was by now worth $1,200 for everything, and I had had the good sense not to unwrap the two red cellophane-wrapped magazines in a moment of weakness.

I went to Maryland, purchased the Whiscombe that he had graciously put into a fine aluminum case. At the show, I had just sold a Daisy 1894 Texas Ranger that was NIB, and was therefore flush with cash. So, when he pulled the R1 out of his car I leaped at the chance to buy it back. He had restocked it in a fine Maccari figured walnut stock, but the factory stock came with it as well.

Why did this collector suddenly become a “don’t wanter?” He had gone so far out of his way to obtain both air rifles, so why did he suddenly want to undo the deal? Well, his health was not good. He had joint problems and was not that fit, and both these rifles are heavy and require a lot of muscle to cock. The R1 had a gas spring in it that took 50 lbs. of effort to cock, and the Whiscombe needs the underlever pulled three times to cock the opposed mainsprings. So, these aren’t “all day” airguns.

Add to that the fact that my M1 carbine had increased in value by 50 percent in the three years I’d owned it. The guy was selling his carbine collection, and the buyers were paying him top prices, so as soon as he got it back, it was sold again. That created a hole in my heart for a fine shooting carbine that I haven’t yet filled.

And that is the tale of how I sold my Beeman R1 and then got it back again. I celebrated its return by writing a 13-part blog series on tuning a spring gun. I now appreciate that this rifle is very special, just because of what it has done for me.

Today the R1 looks like this. The walnut stock was finished by the temporary owner, who left it on when I bought it back. The muzzle brake is a Vortek that can be tuned for vibration. The scope is a 6-18×44 Bushnell Trophy.

I also sold the Whiscombe and got it back, as well. And now the price of Whiscombes has risen off the charts, since John finally stopped making them. That makes this a tale of two airguns I have that I intend to hold onto for the rest of my life.

This report is not what I intend doing for the rest of my airgun collection. I think a paragraph per gun is about all it should take for most of my other guns. But this story was extra special, and I felt it had to be told. I hope you can appreciate that.

More used guns
A few blogs ago, I alerted you to some used guns that I thought were special. Edith knows how much I liked the Career 707 guns, and she alerted me to three used models that Pyramyd AIR recently uncovered in their warehouse. One is an older style with twin air reservoirs, another is a carbine with twin reservoirs and the last is a single-reservoir carbine.

Lastly, there’s a used Condor and a used AirForce hand pump on Pyramyd Air’s site. If you’ve ever wanted to buy this type of setup, act now and save a bunch!

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.

171 thoughts on “B.B.’s airguns – What I kept and why – Part 1”

      • Milan

        Well, actually I throw it *modestly*. Heavy weight and good aerodynamics make it an excellent high-precision throwing club, and don’t forget V-shaped and sharpened muzzle, to make it a sort of spear.
        I cannot say I’ve outdone myself on this photo http://i2.guns.ru/forums/icons/forum_pictures/002393/2393432.jpg , but that was one of my best throwing series – 25m outdoors from standing, 5 JSB Heavy 4.52 pellets in each target. You can see me getting tired towards the end of the serie. Clubthrowing is not an easy activity, comrade 😉


        • Dusk-i love wooden stocks -my opinion is that there should be no other then wooden,and this makes this gun “gun of my dreams ” no steel at all 🙂 (i had to say that 🙂 ) 😉 your results are similar to one that i get with my Slavia 😉 come on i gotta know how much fps does it produce 🙂 !?

          • J-F,

            Right, the ruler is in cm/mm. Rings are 13mm outer / 12mm inner diameter and “bullseye” is 4.5mm
            Well, it looks a bit weird actually, as photos were taken not exactly perpendicular to the rifle just for technical reasons – to send them to case maker 🙂 People on range call it somewhat like “shillelagh” 😀
            Front part has a smooth triangular cross-section, with muzzle protection protruding some 15 mm forward. If you like it, I’ve got better photos of it with FT parallax ring – but I won’t reach that computer until Sunday evening.


              • CJr

                Well, I guess you are overreacting. It’s just a mod-CFX, it’s nothing better than TX-200 Mk3 or HW97, so 1K off. I think it’s even worse.
                Or, you can get crazy and try my way – mod your $300 CFX into something like that. Trust me, even this way you won’t get over 1K, however you’ll spend lots of time and sweat.
                After all, rifle is not the cornerstone, it’s just a piece of steel, screwd to a piece of wood, and it’s not 1K 🙂
                Gamo barrel is not much worse in terms of accuracy than LW, so everyday 12mm @ 25m is not a miracle if you spend some time to choose your rifle and find its best pellet. I made even tighter groups from soft rest with Gamo barrel.

                Cutting and re-crowning it can give you another boost in accuracy. Gamo barrels seem to be a bit loose on front ends, but they become “tighter” and better-surfaced year by year, IMO 2008 is the best. Straight hands, some tools and a bit of reading can give you an almost free crown, made as good as some pompous $100 work.

                Tuning your trigger (Gamo old style, not modern madness) with CharlieDaTuna’s upgrade will give you another freedom in keeping your aim while pulling the trigger. $35 AFAIR.

                If you are lucky to be of average build you don’t need any custom stock at all, CFX Royal wood stock is a VERY nice one. Maybe you’ll like to play with bedding. Ok, then some reading, food film, $30 epoxy and steel raspings will do the trick.

                Another very dirty trick – de-power your rifle. CFX is a 21-22J powerplant. 16J is more than enough for paper piercing @ 50m, but on that setting rifle is almost recoilless, compared to kicks it gives you on 20J setting.
                Gas spring may give you a bit more stability, but well-fit piston insulator and spring guide is almost the same. $100-150 if you like to spend money.

                That, in fact, is all you need. I guess you still have more than $400 on your hands 😉
                Technically, your CFX after all these mods will shoot far better then you do, then I do, and more than 95% of airgunners do 🙂

                Then comes “polishing” yourself. That IS priceless, but comes cheap. Just pellets and time dedicated to your favorite activity. Keeping yourself in shape, shooting, analysing, making notes and shooting again with corrections.
                1 year of weekly training and you’ll consider .22LR empty casing @ 40m or so a piece of cake, an amusement, another pleasant proof of your skill. Put your faith in skill, not steel, comrade 🙂

                And thinking of 2K bucks… whew, I wish I had free-to-spend 2K bucks… Well, I wonder if I would build my own Whiscombe eer… JW-100 for example, or buy HW97 or TX-200HC and rework it into twin-rod gas-spring powered, rail (think D-54) recoil-adsorbing rifle for FT 😀


                • duskwight,
                  Thanks for that reply. Your knowledge and experience show through. Sometimes it seems like it is so much easier to throw money at a problem to solve it rather than to think it through or ask for guidance.


      • B.B.

        The hardest part was not about craftsmanship, it was about reading and understanding anything in the way of building stocks, airrifle bedding and some physics 🙂
        It took me three months to get books and files, to read, to understand, to chew on that and so on. And after that – measurements (I was amazed to learn that our hand has at least 12 measurements important for building a right-sized stock!), calculations and 2-3 mockups, another month.
        The reason for making a fullstock was mostly pure physics.
        I wanted my rifle to have optimum power/precision balance and I didn’t want to load the barrel with any weights, like other do, to distribute mass towards rifle’s front and back ends. Solution was rather obvious – it acts same time as a free-floating barrel shroud, distributes mass and IMO looks nice.


        • duskwight,

          Well, you have seen my wood butchery, so I think we both know who the real craftsman is. All that studying that you put into the front of the project, plus the prototypes you made, is a large part of what I call craftsmanship.

          And yes, it does indeed look nice!


        • duskwight,

          Fantastic job on that stock. I admire your ability. Do you mind sharing what product(s) you used to finish the stock? Oil, poly, or ?

          Great shooting too.


          • Kevin,

            3 coats of different stains (color, light, dark), linseed oil, thinned and pure tung oil and lots of polishing with different grits and steel wool.


            • duskwight,

              You’ve built an interesting rifle–an excellent shooter that looks wonderful. You could have the beginning of a new career field, if you’re interested. Thanks for sharing it with us.

              Mr B.

              • Mr B.

                I’m afraid not in this country 🙁 It is VERY difficult here to obtain license for making even airguns, and to start a small factory is a hell of a red-tape and bureaucrats. So it may be some small-time oeuvre 🙂 for myself and maybe my friends.


  1. B.B.

    I still have more guns than I have sold. I should dump half of them because they are junk or little used any more. None of them cost much in the first place and will probably never be worth anything.

    Of the ones that I have sold, there is only one that I regret. It was a Blue Streak that I bought about 20 years ago. It did not shoot worth a crap with the only pellets that I could find….the Bantams. After getting my old early 70’s Blue Streak back and shooting some FTS and Exacts through it, I found out that it was a good shooter after all. It had been stashed in a closet at home for all these years because of the same problem….crap pellets. I will always wonder how good the newer gun would have been if I had some good pellets to shoot.

    Then there was my second 1400 that I made the mistake of loaning out…and never got back. That was a great shooter even with the old Crosman wadcutters.

    I have also had a few that fell apart or just plain wore out.


      • The old Daisy 25…
        The barrel assembly . Got so worn that it would try to load a bb and a half at the same time and jam. Spring got weak eventually too.

        Benji smooth bore pumper…
        Barrel wore out . Pump hinge pin sheared off. Pump endcap retaining screws sheared off.

        Daisy lever gun…
        Hammer/sear, severe wear (pot metal). Front sight broke off all by itself (pot metal).

        CO2 gun Daisy I think..
        Started firing multiple shots.Probably from lack of proper lubrication.

        Daisy spring powered target pistol…
        Piston seal gummy and swolen. Probably age and improper lube.


  2. BB,

    Nice post. I really enjoyed this morning’s read. I remembered reading earlier that the R1 came home, but the whiscomb would have bothered me all day had it not come home too! Thanks for sharing. Perfect for a Friday.


  3. OK everyone… let’s hear your “wish I had never sold/traded/let that one go” stories!

    1) Beeman R1 in .20 cal
    2) Beeman P1 in .177
    3) Air Arms Shamal in .177, modified and power adjustable w/ Leupold 6-20 X 50 AO
    4) Daisy Red Ryder circa 1958 (I think)
    5) Sheridan Blue Streak in .20

    • I only sold my 1377 and I don’t regret selling it. I would also sell my benjamin HB22 but the market for airguns isn’t too great in Canada most are the CO2 action pistol looking revolvers.

  4. I guess I don’t have much to say. I’ve been spoiled by the accuracy of the Daisy 853 and the smoothness of the Benjamin Discovery. Now if I only had more time to shoot them, that would be great.

    • I am looking at the Disco. In your opinion, would you get a hand pump or a tank, if you could afford only one. This will be my first PCP. And when we fill those tanks, how much do they charge us? Thanks.

      • Gene,

        I designed the Disco to work well with the hand pum. That is the way I would go.

        Here is what you need to know about hand pumps. Some people are offended by the need to do anything physical to enjoy their hobby. Scuba tanks are ideal for them. They hate hand pumps. But if you mow your own lawn, a hand pump should be no bother.

        Besides, I purposely set the fill limit of the Disco at 2,000 psi, so pumping it would be easy, and it is!

        I use a hand pump most of the time with mine. And I am 63 years old and am finishing a lengthy illness. It’s too easy to pump a Disco.


        • Thanks, the hand pump it is. I read you designed the Disco and that is 95% of why I want one. I’m becoming one of your groupies, not a stalker, just a big fan. Like I want to stalk someone who has so many rifles. lol I am 6’4″ 235, is the stock big enough for me?, I see there is an option of another stock for the Disco, the name escapes me. Wonder if one stock would be better for me.


          • Gene,

            With your large frame I would bet that you will find the Disco stock a bit short. It’s really just a very nice Crosman 2260 stock, after all.

            Now Pyramyd is offering the Katana stock for the Disco. That would be bigger.


          • Gene – I’m close to the same size as you and have both the Katana and Discovery. The disco stock isn’t bad but definatley a bit small. It does keep the weight down though. The Katana’s stock is great for me. It has a lot more wood to grab on the forearm, a raised cheek rest and nice rubber but pad. It too is surprisingly light.

            If you are already thinking about the Katana stock, I would just get the Katana. Besides the stock it has a choked barrel and the Maurader trigger, which is a great trigger. It’s the same basic gun as the disco, but with those upgrades. I think it’s only about a hundred more than the disco.

            Also, it is very easy to fill to 2000 psi with the hand pump. Maybe 10-15 minutes from empty and less than 5 minutes to top off. There have been some quality issues with the pump, but Crossman stands behind them. Mine quit working, I called Crossman, they asked when I bought the gun, told me it was under warranty, and gave me an address in Texas to send it to. It cost me 12 bucks to ship and I had it back in two weeks.


            • I was thinking about that, just get the Katana. I have time to think about it. I still have a cedar strip kayak that needs finished, and an 84 Supra needs an engine swap, then the fall garden… lol

              Its y’alls fault!!!! I did not need this new hobby. lol

        • BB,

          Bet you got more than one scuba tank though? LOL,I know the tanks are for the 3500 psi guns you have. And Gene that too needs to be a factor. If you think you will NEVER want another gun at 3000 or higher pressure then buy the pump. If you may, or tend to be a little out of shape or getting up in years, buy the tank. At 3000 psi a pump tends to demand you be in great shape. At 3500 psi you don’t need a gym membership!

          And BB,I have a question about the 4500 psi tanks.

          I have had several scuba shops tell me they WILL NOT fill them to 4500 psi. They say it is “too dangerous and too hard on equipment”. One says he will fill to only 3300 psi, another to only 3700 psi. They also tell me those tanks rarely last more than 5 years.

          Are they blowing smoke or what? And if a scuba shop won’t fill them, who will? And what about the safety factor of those carbon wound/aluminum bladder tanks?


          • pcp4me,

            Bull. 4,500 psi carbon fiber tanks are over designed. Especially for airgun use. Absolutely harder on equipment to fill to 4,500 psi but for a compressor designed for these fills, and above, it just takes longer since you don’t want to overheat.

            Find the source where fire stations are getting their tanks filled. Not every fire station has their own compressor.


          • pcp4me,

            The shop that won’t fill to 4500 either has a cascade system that won’t go that high or they don’t want to run their compressor more than once a day. Some shops are like that.

            As for carbon fiber tanks not lasting more than five years, nothing could be farther from the truth. Look at the service the firemen get from them, and they use them a lot more than most airgunners do.


            • Another thing you have to keep in mind with scuba shops is that they are extremely safety conscious. They eat, sleep, breathe and teach safety every day. My guess is that they don’t understand how 4500psi can be used safely without proper training sanctioned by an organization like PADI or NAUI and opens the door to liability issues. I don’t know where they are finding all these dead firemen killed by exploding 4500psi tanks. Seems like municipal government agencies ought to be investigating these mysterious deaths.

          • Carbon fiber tanks are excellent designs. The strength to weight ratio of high modulus carbon fiber is many times that of steel. The hoop strength or toroidal pattern of the winding of the fibers and the selection of resins is also a high-tech design factor.

            Scott, Drager and others are famous for their designs and SCBA market share. They regularly burst test their tanks at over 8000 psi and the burst tests also require a particular type of destruction, and only a certain shape of exit hole and deformation shape and failure are allowed in certain areas of the tanks. The thin, alum liner is just a moldto wind the fibers on and to act as a non-permeable gas barrier to hold air, and a neck to thread the valve into.

            The 4500 psi refill issue is as BB and others noted, the cascade style units are 3500 max working pressure and volume is also an issue (long fill times). The dive shops are SCUBA guys not SCBA guys.

      • Gene,

        I went with an 88 cu ft steel tank. But who says they are all that easy? To fill it I must lug it up from my basement, carry it about 50 yds to my car and take it to the shop, lug it in and back out, then back into my basement. I probably expend as much energy there as I would filling the gun many times with a pump. Cost for me is $75 for 15 fills if I buy a card so it is $5 per fill. Otherwise $10 per fill.

        I think I made the best choice. I have arthritis and bursitis in my shoulders, arms, hands, fingers and wrists. So pumping is not what I want to do. One tank fill lasts a good 3 months of much shooting.

        If you have plenty of money I recommend the 4500 psi aluminum/carbon fiber wound tanks. Much lighter and hold much more air per fill.

        But I do want to buy a pump also as they are much easier to take to the range or throw in your car when you go out in the field.

        • pcp4me and everyone,

          I cannot release any details, and I don’t know very many of them at this time, but there might soon be an electric pump to fill PCPs like the Disco.

          I hope to see it at the SHOT Show.

          I don’t think it is the same as the electric pump that was released this year, either.


          • BB,

            Is that the little mini compressor that supposedly will sell for around $400 – 500? Think they are calling it a “lunch box compressor” And it piggybacks off a regular shop compressor to get the volume needed, takes 24+ hours to fill an 88 cu ft scuba tank and MUST be lubricated every 4 hours! Premature failure occurs rapidly if it is not lubricated often (ever 4 hours) as it has no way to dissipate the enormous amounts of heat generated other than air cooling! These are available in 3000 psi and 4500 psi with the latter costing about $100 more. They have automatic shut off valves so that you can dial in the psi fill you want and forget it long as it won’t take more than 4 hours to fill your tank!

            Might be ok for filling guns directly, but is a stationary setup and not at all portable.

            Details are available on the web and I will post a link if I can find it!

            When they make a small portable compressor that is stand alone and can deliver 4500 psi output and has a good enough heat dissipating system it won’t fail I will consider it!

            Don’t care if it takes 24 hours to fill a scuba tank long as I can “set it and forget it”!

      • In addition to what B.B. said…

        Unless you are going to do a lot of shooting all the time, then a pump is fine.

        I got the worst workout with my Talons while testing pellets, tuning, and adjusting scopes. Once everything is set up and working right, I usually do not shoot enough to sweat the pumping.
        These are my primary killing machines. With 30 good shots or better out of either one, that’s quite a bit of hunting.

        I have plenty of other guns to choose from for plinking or other purposes when I don’t feel like a scoped gun.


  5. BB,

    I have a problem in that every gun I buy, I don’t want to sell. This blog was very good and I thoroughly enjoyed the happy ending.

    Since I have the IZH46M (thanks Frank B>!), I have decided to try to sell my Gamo Compact at Roanoke this year. Hopefully I don’t see something that I have to buy there but what the wifey doesn’t know can’t hurt me:)

    Fred PRoNJ

  6. I have a story about an air rifle that I will never sell. It’s my RWS 94. You may be thinking – of course it is, he’s always chatting up how great it is. But there is more of a reason than that. A little more than a year ago, I had squirrels im my attic and an overabundance of them in my yard. I started looking at air rifles in order to take care of them. Problem was, the economy had (and still has) taken a drastic toll on my business and money was tight to say the least. I wished I could spring for a PCP and accessories, but could not. Springers was where I had to be. I was very shy of actually ordering one because I was brand new to the sport and kept reading about hold sensitivity, etc. I was posting and asking lots and lots of questions – everyone on the blog was very helpful. One person, was most helpful – Wayne Burns. He had a shipment of RWS 94’s and 92’s come in to Vince B and Vince was ‘going through’ (I think that’s what he calls tuning) and soon to be shipped to Wayne for use in his range. Wayne suggested, very kindly, that I could have Vince ship one of each to me so I could try them, ship the one I didn’t want on to him and pay Vince for the one I decided to keep. During that time, Wayne was also posting comments about his vintage air gun collection. I was also constantly searching the online classifieds for an actual purchase that I could afford. Well, I came across a very old air gun that looked like one that Wayne would be interested in. I emailed him about it and was surprised with how excited he got about it. He immediately started the bidding process and shortly after notified me that he bought the gun. That was not all, he was so happy with the purchase that he told me to keep the guns! So, I now had two rifles a RWS 94 (love) and a 92 (not so much.) I intended on keeping both as a rememberance of the kindness and generosity that Wayne showed to me, but I did sell the 92 – both because I really didn’t like it very much, but also because my father has a rabbit problem in his garden and I wanted to get an air rifle for him to use and the 92 wasn’t powerful enough. So, I sold it and bought a used Beeman RS2 (yes, I know it’s a Chinese rifle, I’m a hypocrite.) The 94, though, is here to stay – both because I love the gun and because it reminds me of the quality of people that are involved in this sport and specifically the nicest guy I have never met – Wayne Burns. I hope one day to repay Wayne by showing the same generosity to another new airgunner.

    Sorry so long, but I thought this should be told.

    • Fused,

      Your story was great and deserved to be told. Wayne is a gentleman all the time and continues to demonstrate it at every opportunity.

      Others on this blog are equally generous, but have asked that their stories not be told because they don’t want the attention. I wish I could tell you some of the kind acts that I know about.

      Suffice it to say, the people on this blog are all a bunch of wonderful guys and gals.


  7. That’s a good story Fused.
    I too am amazed at the people in this sport. In my work and in daily life I’d say that 80% of the people I meet are great people. On the road I’d drop the percentage of people with manners down to 50%. I do think that a lot of people, wrapped up in their automotive cocoons become someone they really aren’t ;-(
    But I can truly say I’ve never met anyone at the gun range I’m a member of who hasn’t been friendly, courteous and willing to share whatever knowledge they have.

    • If I haven’t bored everyone to tears, maybe next time I can tell the story of the RS2 and the other person directly responsible for my addiction – I mean interest in this hobby, Vince B.

  8. B.B.

    Nice story, however it is concerning that you started this series, as it is not unlike a piece that is begun before someone decides to retire.

    I have always known I am not a collector, and your description of one confirms this.

    My thoughts on collecting:

    There is nothing wrong with needing the cash, and airguns and firearms are pretty much sure things when it comes to investing. They are certainly better than a horse race, a story that I will shelf for another time.

    Since I was laid-off twice in the last two years for stretches that total about 8 months and when I was working I was earning at a level of 25 % of my past norm, my firearm and airgun collections were real life savers. When the dust settled, about 45 airguns were gone and two remained. I need to add that a number of fellow air gunners were wonderful during this process. Often the question arises “why are you selling it?” and the answer is simple “cash”. While some tried to exploit the need with a low offer, others moved in the opposite direction.

    These amounts went from an extra $10.00 over what I was asking too much more than I could have ever predicted. You know who you are, many many thanks again. These folks will not be forgotten when I am flush again.

    One Spring and one PCP.

    It may have seemed like I was chasing my tail as a bought and sold airguns with a fever looking for these two. For the Springer category I seeking something R7 like, I tried the Diana 27, a Walther LG55 and numerous others. In the end, I decided for me the best replacement for an R7 was an R7.

    The PCP category was much easier; I adored my FX Cyclone, so much so that I discarded the box because I knew I would never ever sell it. Well, at least up until I sold it a few months ago.

    Why? My daughter that had the operation a year ago wanted a prom dress that exceeded what I thought it would cost. Without hesitation, I listed it for sale. I can buy another airgun and I still vividly recall how after her surgery she had a lung collapse and stopped breathing momentarily.

    You can always replace an inanimate object, which includes a Volvo.

    • Volvo,

      Sad story, but the way you handled it is an example of a true hero! I’m very proud to know you from afar. You’ll be raking in the winning pot soon enough. I’m sure it’s in the big guys’ plans for your family:-) Karma is on your side BIG TIME!!!

      Wacky Wayne

      • Wayne,

        It was not meant to be sad; my family is all doing well!

        Those airguns can easily be replaced and mean very little in the end. If you watch Pawn Stars you see people constantly bringing in items that were treasured by a relative and sold off by another in the blink of an eye. “It’s been in my family for 150 years, sure I’ll take $60.00”

        Like you I prefer a little excitement, which may not be the same for everyone, but I enjoy the thrill and the constant change..

        Matt – I’ve made double my wife’s yearly salary in a month and also not made a nickel for months. And I love it, (sure, I love the double part more. Big smile) Buy high and sell low.

        • Volvo,

          It’s wonderful how our minds get rid of the chaff and the truly important things in life come into focus in ways we never could predict.

          My bread always lands buttered-side up. Come what may, my life always works out for the best. I believe it, and I’ve never been let down. Nor do I expect to be let down.

          Staring down a big black tunnel, it may appear that nothing good can come from it. It appears endless. Hopeless. Then, all of a sudden, you see the very tiniest inkling of light. Almost imperceptible, it soon starts to shine and glimmer. You’re back in daylight. The darkness is gone. You’re changed forever. You can never go back. You know what’s important. And what’s not.

          Life is good. My bread has landed buttered side up. Again. Life is good.


            • rikib,

              My wife has it, and read it, and really thinks I should read it too. It’s in the pile she has for me.

              The problem is; I can’t read and shoot at the same time, so guess what gets done:-)

              So I just ask for a “book report” and call it good.

              Wacky Wayne

              • Wayne,
                It is an excellent book, worth the read as are his others. I had most of them, couple months ago went looking for them. Wife just said, oh I must have donated with all the other books!. Now I’m trying to fine missing books. 🙂


    • Alan in MI,

      Not rats. I read the same story. These are nutria (coypu). They’re rodents, not rats. In Louisiana, their used to be a $4 or $5 bounty for every nutria tail brought in. They’re also encroaching on other wetlands (Maryland was noticing a problem).

      Funny story: A plumber who came to fix something in our home in Maryland mentioned that he had a gigantic guinea pig. My father always had a guinea pig as a pet, so I know a good deal about the critters. I asked the plumber if his guinea pig whistled when he called its name. He said it never whistled. It just made a murmuring sound. He then described a critter that was about the size of one of our cats…and then mentioned its tail. Okay…he had a nutria. Turns out he got it from a pet store. A sucker is born every minute 🙂 I told him to go to the library and get a book on guinea pigs. I also told him to look up some books on nutria. And, THEN decide which rodent he had.

      Never heard back from him.


    • Alan in MI:
      My dad rang and told me about it so I checked it out online.
      I may head to Bradford with my BAM.LOL
      What I read,the actual beast the guy shot was tossed away and maybe eaten by foxes so the paper used a photo of some giant buck tooth rodent from their archives 🙂
      If that is how big it was then to coin a phrase,
      “I’m gonna need a bigger gun” lol

  9. BB,
    I like your air gun stories especially when told from a personal perspective, like this one. It adds so much more flavor to the story. I can only imagine the pain of parting with something as personally valuable to you for the sole purpose of keeping ones head above the economic waters.

  10. B.B.,

    This was a great story. I thoroughly enjoyed it. You are lucky– yours came back. I am a “true collector” but not of airguns. Mine never come back, and there are a few I’ve greatly regretted over the years. But I’ve also had a few homeruns that make up for them. You win some and you lose more, but the more you educate yourself by reading and learning from fellow collectors the more of the former and the fewer the latter you will experience.

    Hey Wayne: Now you know what just might tempt B.B. into parting with that USFT… 😀


    • AlanL,

      I missed that, what did you see as the weak spot in Tom and Edith’s USFT defense.

      A promised buy back plan:-) … with my fingers crossed behind my back:-) (bad Karma)..

      The only thing I know they want is the Air Arms Shamal, but so far it’s not enough to tip the scale. I’ll just hang on the sidelines and see what the future brings:-)

      Wacky Wayne

      • Wayne,

        It was towards the end, when Tom talked of selling back the Inland Carbine – “That created a hole in my heart for a fine shooting carbine that I haven’t yet filled.”

        Happy hunting!

        Alan in MI

        • Alan,

          Not to worry. Last weekend I scored! I now own a quality shootable Saginaw Steering Gear (S’G’) carbine whose parts all match. I’ve disassembled it already and it looks great. Got it cleaned up for the day I can get back to the rifle range, which will be the first time since February. I’ll probably find a way to work it into the blog before long.


          • BB – I live in Saginaw and work as a contractor at a company called Nexteer. Many years ago Nexteer was known as Saginaw Steering Gear. Unfortunately the plant your gun was made in “Plant 2” was tore down 5-10 years ago. “From guns to gears” was their motto after the war. Congrats on the carbine, that’s pretty cool.

            Aaron in Saginaw

            • aaron,

              Saginaw Steering Gear took over the Irwin Pederson plant, when Pederson, a gun maker, proved unable to built even one acceptable carbine. People today don’t realize that the gun was 20 years ahead of its time. They still to this day cannot build replica M1 carbines as light as the originals, because of all the special metallurgy that was employed.

              Pederson used 1920s technology to try to build the carbine and failed. Then Saginaw took over the Grand Rapids plant and did what the government asked them to do, and after several tries they succeeded.

              Of all the companies that did make the carbine, the only gun maker who made them was Winchester. The rest were makers of automotive parts, office machines, typewriters and jukeboxes.


  11. When my financial adviser explained the various levels of risk in investing, she said that only a few people have the temperament for real speculating. There are not many that can handle the nervous strain and sleepless nights of second-guessing…. That’s how I feel about wheeling and dealing with guns. Also, a part of me is so attached to the ones I get that I want to consider them mine forever. 🙂


  12. Afternoon B.B.,

    A wonderful story–it’s very nice when they come back. You’re right, this blog contains one of the finest group of people that I’ve run across in my 66 years–thanks guys for calling me a friend.

    Mr B.

  13. B.B.,

    That was one of your best articles! An incredible story of quality people trading with each other! I see it over and over again in this hobby. Something about gun folks that lets the good part of them shine. The average percentage of gun folks seems a much higher cut above the average population.. Just my humble opinion:-)


    Your story also shows how guns are usually one of the best investments one can make. My cash flow varies greatly with our seasonal online garden bed business. I buy like a drunken sailor in the spring, and sell like a homeless guy in the fall/winter. Even in this poor economy, guns hold or increase in value. Maybe because they are such a practical item, better than money if times get real tough.

    Besides the folks I meet trading is the best part of the whole thing. Speaking of which, I got a great little story from one of them this morning, that I’ll post here in a moment.

    Wacky Wayne,
    Match Director,
    Ashland Air Rifle Range


    I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes… I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas.
    I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes.
    Pondering the peas, I couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between Mr Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.
    ‘Hello Barry, how are you today?’
    ‘H’lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus’ admirin’ them peas. They sure look good.’
    ‘They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?’
    ‘Fine. Gittin’ stronger alla’ time.’
    ‘Good. Anything I can help you with?’
    ‘No, Sir. Jus’ admirin’ them peas.’
    ‘Would you like to take some home?’ Asked Mr. Miller.
    ‘No, Sir. Got nuthin’ to pay for ’em with.’
    ‘Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?’
    ‘All I got’s my prize marble here.’
    ‘Is that right? Let me see it’ said Miller.
    ‘Here ’tis. She’s a dandy.’
    ‘I can see that. Hmm mmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?’ the store owner asked.
    ‘Not zackley but almost.’
    ‘Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble’. Mr. Miller told the boy.
    ‘Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.’
    Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me.
    With a smile she said, ‘There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever.
    When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.’
    I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.
    Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.
    Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts…all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband’s casket.
    Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and
    moved on to the casket. Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one; each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.
    Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband’s bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket.
    ‘Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about.
    They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim ‘traded’ them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size….they came to pay their debt.’
    ‘We’ve never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,’ she confided, ‘but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho ..’
    With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.
    The Moral:
    We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath.

    Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~ A fresh pot of coffee you didn’t make yourself…
    An unexpected phone call from an old friend…. Green stoplights on your way to work….
    The fastest line at the grocery store….
    A good sing-along song on the radio…
    Your keys found right where you left them.


    What kind of legacy will you leave?

  15. Tom, Edith:

    I just received my PA order of Radians Safety Glasses
    to be worn over prescription glasses. Thanks for getting these stocked at PA.

    For the price they work. Unfortunately they are not optical quality so they add some distortion.
    Also, I have a large head (save the wisecracks) e.g. I wear a size 7-7/8 or 8 hat.
    These safety glasses press against the side of my head; would need to take a break every so often.

    But I’m glad to have them and will use them for now on.

    Thanks again.


    • Jim K,

      I’ve forwarded your comment to the purchasing agent at Pyramyd AIR. I’ll look around for some higher-quality safety glasses that go over prescription lenses. I’m pretty sure we can’t get larger sizes, but I know that some glasses come with adjustable temples.

      The line with the link in your comment is kind of messed up. Let me know if you’ll allow me to embed it so the line isn’t spaced out.


      • Edith,

        Please make any corrections you like. The link works fine for me (ha, ha) but I can’t see what it looks like for you.

        Thanks for your continued interest.


  16. BB:
    Please do put the R1 in a glass fronted case with a big sticker on.
    “NOT FOR SALE” lol
    Our family air rifle from the early 70’s,The BSA Meteor, is still in the family with my cousins up north.So that is safe.
    Every other air rifle and pistol I have ever owned apart from the B-3 is gone 🙁
    The Logun went for financial reasons but the others I traded or sold to mates so as to get another.I never had more than two at one time and even that was rare.
    With me it is not regretting what I sold but regretting what I should have bought instead.
    By the way it is not bad form to ask what something means in Rhyming slang.
    I know in films the speaker gives this incredulous look if someone fails to understand them, but that is just films.
    The reality is you wouldn’t be able to make a cockney shut up once he started explaining the in’s and out’s of a duck’s bum to do with rhyming slang. lol

  17. PCP4ME,

    If you want to tame that Disco trigger and turn it into something that IMHO is on par with the Marauder trigger, go pay TKO22 a visit and buy the trigger kit he sells. It’s $14 or, you can do a search on the Yellow and get instructions there and spend $3 for the hardware at a good hardware store. The trigger modification involves tapping two existing holes in the trigger box, drilling another hole and tapping that and then inserting screws and adjusting to taste. I love the trigger on my Disco now.

    Fred PRoNJ

  18. pcp4me,

    Fred is absolutely correct about the trigger mod from TKO. I’m using one and my Discovery’s trigger is very close to a Timmney trigger. While you’re at it if quiet is needed TKO has that problem solved also.

    Mr B.

  19. Today’s blog read differently for me ,BB.It’s an amazing coincidence…but I felt like you were talking to me personally over a cold one! You see,first off I just last night missed out on a Paul Watts tuned R1.Two or three weeks ago I missed on a copy of your book….and tomorrow a wonderful fellow from Iowa will be hand delivering my Whiscombe JW80 fb MKII.And I learned from this to figure out what’s wheat and what’s chaff…and quit hoarding airguns or I’ll die single!

  20. Volvo,what was your feeling about the LG55?? Did yours have the barrel weight? How about the stock weight? In or out?? Since discovering how right you and BB were about the R7,I’m curious if you liked the LG as much?

    • Volvo,thanks for the links and a great read!That Derrick & Nick…..they’re sorcerers I say! I am waiting on a beauty [LG55T] from Jim Edmondson that is rare in that it was not threaded or weighted at the barrel.I believe I’ll be able to scope it,with the right pins on a Beeman SS2.Which is About the best small scope I’ve ever used.Gaines is a fascinating man!! He is still driven,and still sought out as an architect,busy even.

      • I found the LG55 to be a smoother shooter with the weights installed. The 55 is still lighter than an Anschutz, FWB or Diana 10-meter rifle and the weight damps out the felt recoil. I think Volvo would’ve left the weights installed if he had a larger selection of airguns at the time.

        Nick conjures up some really cool things on those machine tools of his. He’s amazingly talented. I’m not even remotely close to his level of brilliance.

        Frank B,
        if you want to borrow my copy of the R1 book, say so and it’ll go right out. It’s a bit dog-eared as I’ve read and re-read it at least 20 times.

  21. I will keep my Slavia s for sure ,some Slavia s are 40 yrs or older here and they work perfectly and man have i punished that gun with changing spring with stronger ,sanding the internals-you name it(every week 🙂 ), and this gun is just keeping to achieve better and better results (both 631 and 634)

    • Milan…Guess what I got today!! I bought a mint condition second-hand CZ Tau B96! Five shot rapid fire 10meter Co2 pistol.It has beautiful walnut handle,fully adjustable wit a single shot and a five shot clip.I even got an excellent price,about half what it is worth.

  22. I haven’t fallen off the earth. I started a new job in May. It really cuts into my time for all of the other stuff. I usually get to this blog a few days late, which makes it hard to comment.

    I’m fortunate to now be looking for a home to buy. I told my real estate agent “I’m not too picky, but you have to be able to shoot a pellet rifle off the back porch”.

    Wayne – great story, but an airgun blog is not supposed to make you cry.

    BB – I haven’t been accumulating airguns long enough to think about getting rid of any of them. Most of them aren’t worth much, any way. Other than the Marauder, I don’t think that I paid more than $100 for any of them.

    Last week, I came across an RWS 45 20th Anniversary Edition at a firearms shop near my job. It had what seemed to be a good price. They got it from a store that had closed. I’ve got one question about it, though. It’s been setting in the box for at least ten years. Is there anything besides lubing everything that I should do to it before shooting it?

    • Randy,

      Buy it, buy it, buy it!

      The 45 anniversary model was sold at a premium years ago. You should be able to shoot it right out of the box. No lubing unless you know it needs it.

      $150 would be a fabulous price. $250 would be about the limit I would go.


      • BB – I already bought it – $150, NIB.

        They had a second one that was displayed, but un-shot, according to the guy behind the counter.

        Tomorrow is my son’s birthday, but I should be able to run a few pellets through it before taking him out to dinner.

        • Randy,

          You got a classic rifle at a fabulous price. The Diana 45 20th Anniversary Model is essentially the same as a 34/36/38 powerplant, I believe. That makes it a 1,000 f.p.s. gun. And the special stock gives it the extra value you want.

          The second rifle would be a good investment, if you can negotiate a lower price for handling wear.


      • That RWS 45 is a nice looking airgun, and it shoots better than it looks. I’ll report back after I’ve run a few tins of pellets through it. I really like the sights on it. I probably won’t put a scope on it.

        If the other one is still there, I think I’ll get it as a present for my brother, who helped me out when I was out of work.

  23. Wayne,

    Today I finally broke out the jar of coconut oil you recommended to fry up some eggs for breakfast. My son walks in to the kitchen 5 mins later. “What’s that smell?”
    “Pellet oil”
    “The oil I use to lubricate my pellets.”
    “That’s gross, dad.”
    “Just kidding, son. It’s coconut oil. I decided to use that to fry up the eggs this morning. But I do use it for my pellets too. Fellow by the name of Wacky Wayne recommended that. Want some eggs?”
    “No way dad.” And high tails it out of the kitchen.

    I’m half way through my plate of eggs. Can’t smell anything out of the ordinary. In fact, there’s less of a scent than when I fry up with olive oil, or butter. Then one of my daughters walks in.

    “Ooo, what’s that smell?
    “What smell?”
    “I dunno, something smells.” She looks around. Looks at the stove, stares at the frying pan. Approaches slowly. Turns to look at me.

    “What? That’s coconut oil. It’s delicious! Decided to fry the eggs in that for a change.”
    “Smells nasty.” Wrinkles her nose and stalks out without so much as a backward glance.

    I take deep sniff. Can’t smell anything. Must be that my three pack a day habit that I quit 21 years ago has permanently ruined my nose. Now my wife walks in, stops suddenly, looks at my plate then looks at the stove.

    I get up, put my plate in the sink, furtively grab my jar of coconut oil, and carry it lovingly back to my gun closet and set it down next to my tin of Baracudas.

    Thanks, Wayne– you better send me some reeeeal good recipes! 🙂


    • AlanL,

      Oh well, It was good …. no???

      I put it so thick on my toast, it soaks out the other side as it melts in. But I like “cowboy 18 seed bread” toasted so dark it curls and gets black on the edges:-)

      Did someone ask if I was on the crazy side of the population??

      I use to be 188 in this 5’10 frame. “dunkin” was my first name then…

      Coconut oil seems to “wash out” the other bad fats in the body.. at least in this one..

      Wacky Wayne..

      • Oh, forgot to say I’m still 5’10” but 150 lbs..

        Only took 20 years to change my diet… I was that weight in junior high school (7th grade), when I played tackle on the football team. But after I moved out and started my own meal planning.. I stopped getting taller, but not wider:-)

        Along comes a good woman, my wife Chris, veggies and fruit, instead of muffins and candy… what is this??? my mom made me eat that stuff… but actually yours tastes better..

        I stopped getting wider, but I really got back in “balance” when her mom discovered and started us on coconut oil instead of butter and other oils… on everything..
        I exercise about the same.. you need to of course, but diet is really the key if you, at least move yourself around normally.. walk a mile or so… ya know…. in the other guys shooooeeess:-)

        Wacky, Crazy, Wayne..

  24. When I first met my wife she had never really heard of cooking with olive oil. She complained all the time. Now we use it in almost everything, with the occasional peanut oil! 🙂


  25. BB,can you help me please? I am on the trail of a very special Beeman R1…I am not sure what stock is on it.It is described as having a laminate of blond and reddish wood stock,dark[walnut?]schnabel,and an inletted Beeman medallion.I intend to purchase it,but he and I need to know more about the value.Does his description sound consistant with a Goudy/Beeman model?I can’t find reference to a laminate stock. Ps.Got the Whiscombe today! WOW is an understatement!He also sold me a minty CZ Tau B96 for 275$!!Banner day!

    • Thanks to Derrick I was able to find out from the clues,It’s a R1 Laser MKI made post 1994.Pre 1994 would have a metal schnabel.Now I have to get a good price….

  26. Wow! What a collection of great personal stories this weekend!

    I haven’t got any great stories to contribute, but today I finally got a chance to do some airgunning. I was shooting at Shoot-N-C targets stuck on an Arm-and Hammer cat litter box. The box was hung on some protruding rebar on the end of old concrete railroad ties. Nothing is gonna get through that!

    After I finished with that, I was looking for something else to shoot at. I pulled an old golfball out of my equipment bag and shot at that at around 25 yards.

    I soon realized what a nice target that made. It is tough enough to take hits without the cover tearing. A white ball shows up nice against the tan desert sand here. And for hunters, it is about the same size as a squirrel’s head. It was fun to hit it and then try to hit it again where it stopped rolling.

    I’m not good enough to hit the small targets used in field trial, but the little ball was quite entertaining.

    Out here in the American West there is a natural target that I also like to shoot at. We have a thing called Buffalo Gourds. These are bright yellow-orange spheres about the size of a tennis ball. Hard and tough, they can take multiple hits before shattering.


      • Frank,

        It is a shame that anyone would have to pay for gourds. Drop me an email at leslieforan@aol.com and I’ll send you some.

        You could even do what I did: shoot them till they shatter, then take the seeds out and dry them. Plant them next spring, and you will have a lifetime supply.

        Word of caution: These are big plants. They will cover a lot of ground, with bright yellow flowers. You won’t have to replant them the second year, they will just keep on coming. I ran mine up a trellis at the end of my front porch on my Nebraska house.

        You can also make Christmas tree ornaments from them. Take the ripe gourds and cut the tops off. Hollow out the inside, and let the shells and tops dry in the sun. When dry, glue the tops back on.


  27. Well I have refrained from making any sarcastic comments this weekend. I’ll keep it at that. Maybe because as the midnight hour passed my computer was playing “Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down”.


    p.s. maybe a quote later, no promises.


  28. Any ideas why that I am more accurate with my 2240 w/shoulder stock and long breech no rear sight than I am when I mount Leapers red dot. I’ve tried all adjustments, I’m just not getting it. I plan to order a scope and longer barrel.
    Without the red dot I have more of a sense as to where I am aiming. Will I have this problem with a scope. The red dot came with no instructions, I must be doing something wrong.


      • Rikib,I don’t have a 2240 anymore,but I remember on mine the rear sight had a small phillips head screw.If yours has the screw on it ,it should have a peep sight if you turn the notch upside-down with that screw loose.I would loosen it over a white towel so you don’t loose the screw.You might really like that peep sight, it really makes aiming easier,especially with the shoulder stock.If not,it’s easy to put back the other way.

    • I don’t think you’re doing much of anything wrong. Personally, I hate red dot sights, whether for a gun or for aiming a telescope. It’s harder than it’s worth to adjust them so that parallax from moving your eye is down around zero, and that means that it matters exactly where your aiming eyeball is. And unlike the diopter on match sights, you don’t have much of any cues to tell you where to put said eyeball.

      Why good results w/o a rear sight? Because you actually have something that takes up the slack: the reflected “blaze” of light on the top of the barrel. It points straight at the front sight, and when you get blaze, front sight, and target all lined up the gun is pointed where you want it. It’s exactly what you wrote: you have a good sense of where the gun is pointing! No adjustment for elevation and windage tho’. ;-( But still, we’re talking about a fun plinker, not a match gun.

      Shoot and enjoy! I hope my painkiller kicks in so I can go to bed. Shooting is more fun than blogging, but with painkiller in my body I won’t go anywhere near a trigger!

      • PZ,
        Thanks for that info. I hope things work out better with a scope. I like going with a feeling but would like to get more accurate as I have added shoulder stock and plan to increase barrel length.


          • Milan,
            Have the shoulder stock mounted, really like it. Once I get longer barrel and scope all will be well. Right now had to get Charlie a “service dog vest”, seat belt adapter, and service dogs tags. Seems like something is always coming up!


            • rikib,
              Stop it! Stop it! You’re confusing the heck out of me! I’m trying to convince myself to enter the air pistol world and then you buy one and begin turning it into a rifle? Put the pistol down and buy a rifle! Then there’s the guys who buy rifles and start sawing off stocks and barrels to make them pistols. Put the rifle down and buy a pistol! Mama Mia! Papa Pia! Whatsa guy gonna do?!!
              PS. I am interested in how this turns out, though. How about a blog article?

              • CJr,
                I’m still a pistol man! The shoulder stock was a gift from a friend. Even when I add the longer barrel it would not be considered a rifle (but that’s my opinion), I can still go back to pistol grips. Mainly I feel that the stock just gives me some stability as I nearly always shoot offhand.
                Also I have not found a rifle in my price range that I would consider over modifying my 2240. I do not shoot that often.
                If I tried to write a blog article it would turn into a short story and then into a novel.


                • rikib,
                  Re: “If I tried to write a blog article it would turn into a short story and then into a novel.”

                  If this is true you would make BB and Edith very happy (not to mention the rest of us).

                  • CJr,
                    The problem is that I am no avid air gunner. Maybe these words by Kris Kristofferson might describe me:

                    He’s a poet, he’s a picker
                    He’s a prophet, he’s a pusher
                    He’s a pilgrim and a preacher, and a problem when he’s stoned
                    He’s a walkin’ contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction

                    No one would be interested in the words I put together. I do not have the technical jargon to write about air guns. I love my gun and I really like reading this blog and gaining knowledge where I can. Thanks for the offer though 🙂


    • rikib,

      Your sighting problem with the red dot is parallax. You aren’t putting your cheek against the stock in the same way every time. When your eye looks at the dot from a different position, the dot moves, relative to the target. That’s called parallax, and it’s why you aren’t having any luck using that sight.

      The shoulder stock obviously doesn’t fit you very well.


      • Parallax is also a problem with diopter sights on a match rifle. It’s why it takes literally hours to get the cheek piece in the right position so that your eyeball always views the sights exactly the same way. We talk about a “cheek weld”, so precise and repeatable it has to be.

        But red dot sights give me fits.

  29. B.B. or anyone with older Sheridan experience….

    I took the old Blue streak apart yesterday to clean up the firing mechanism.
    The hammer had half of the front ring broken off. It is very narrow and looks like it is intended to match up to the cocking/locking pin on the bolt for cocking purposes. It still cocks..probably using the sear catching part of the hammer.
    I could not find any pieces of the missing metal in the gun. I don’t know who may have had their hands on it while it was stashed at my father’s house.
    The only way I can see that the ring might get broken away would be to fire it with the bolt open…allowing the ring on the hammer to strike the bolt cocking pin. Or possibly the ring was chipped off the hammer before it was installed at the factory.
    I cleaned it up and used some moly to lube the moving parts.

    I also pushed an Exact from muzzle to breech and found that the barrel is considerably tighter at the breech end than at the muzzle end. I would guess that this rifle shoots as well as it does may be because at the lower velocity of this gun, there is less effect caused by the rifling and the aerodynamics of the pellet can get it pretty well straightened out before it heads way off course.


  30. Rikib is using the plastic shoulder stock from a 2250.

    Try to place your head in the exact same position on the stock for every shot. It may also help if you try to keep the red dot as centered as possible in the sight housing rather than sight with it at an extreme edge.

      • Rikib,

        I use the tape approach too, and I find that cloth tape (like hockey tape) works best. It is easy to feel against your skin/facial hair and know that you have the same spot every time.

        Alan in MI

        • Alan,

          Same here. Hockey tape twisted and wrapped like the grip on a hockey stick right where my cheek bone is. It took awhile to get the exact spot, but I had to do something, cause the shoulder grip has short l.o.p.


          When sighting through a scope one of your steps for every shot will be centering the reticule, i.e., eye placement. Most important. Have fun.


  31. It seems like I read somewhere that the newer illuminated sights like the Trijicon or ACOG work regardless of how your eye is placed relative to the scope–within reason. Don’t know if that’s really possible.

    I have broken new ground in minimizing my shooting distances. The other day I was dry firing my Anschutz at an inkspot about two feet from the muzzle. The dot was sized to fit inside my front sight ring, and I found it plenty challenging.

    At the other end of the spectrum, I was flying my radio controlled plane the other day and between sensing the wind, the thrust needed to maintain heading, and the correction I needed to make on the controls, I suddenly got a sense of what it must be like to shoot at a thousand yards with all of the variables in play. B.B. has your sister the pilot made any connection like that? What is the furthest distance at which anyone has landed a shot? My record is 270 yards where I hit a gong three times with my Savage 10FP.


    • Matt,

      Every pilot is aware of the effects of the wind. It’s always something to watch a 747 take off and then turn 15 degrees sideways because of the wind. Or to land a plane sideways until the final seconds when you align with the runway.

      On a breezy day you can find your self going 40 knots faster or slower, just from the direction the wind is blowing.


  32. Seems that almost every Friday topic by B.B. gets my juices flowing. Unfortunately I usually leave town early Friday mornings and don’t have internet access until late Sunday so have little time to join in the fun….

    This article struck home with me not because I’ve ever been comfortable talking about the guns I currently own but because I’ve bought, sold and traded guns for a long time. Early on I enjoyed the activity solely because of the guns but in later years it was because of the friendships that were developed. Guns were a shared trait that forged bonds that last to this day. Shift gears…

    I’m baffled by the negative comments about red dot sights. With a decent red dot, adjusted for lighting they allow quick acquisition and precision shooting for close work. Since most red dots don’t have magnification they’re no substitute for a scope at longer distances but consistently easier than open sights in my limited experience. Here’s my caveat…………

    Lately I’ve been shooting firearms more than airguns. I dusted off my winchester 94 over the weekend and shot this gun with its’ factory open sights at 75 yards. Haven’t shot this gun in almost 20 years. It took me 4-5 shots to remember the cheek weld on this gun. It was one of those “Oh Yea” memories and a smile came on my face as the shots started grouping. You guys that have those guns you’ll never sell because you know how to shoot them and therefore know they’re accurate understand this moment. I’ll never put a scope or a red dot on my 94 but I spent a lot of time way back when learning the proper cheek weld. A red dot is a short cut for me.

    And now for something completely different….since I’m spending more time lately with firearms I’m curious as to what you guys are using for lubing the internals. Now I’ll date myself. I grew up learning to use a mixture of 50% whale oil (you could buy it at the drug store, yarbro drug) and 50% gulf oil since in our cold hunting climate the whale oil wouldn’t stiffen. I graduated to using hoppes for years then rem oil, tetra and others. A quick search says the latest and greatest is breakfree or many others that claim they are a CLP (cleaner, luber, protector). This old goat has a hard time believing that one product can do everything. Lots of people sing praises of FP 10. Help. Need experienced opinions. Thanks.


  33. Kevin,

    I only used the red dot sight once. I like the idea and I’m sure it works good, and I will be getting one in the near future. I just went away from the range thinking I need more time behind one to be good with it. I’m going to put one on my 1377 after I change the breech.

    We share the same opinion on the one product does it all. I’d have to go to the garage to see what it is, but I think I bought break free, for cleaning badly fouled barrel. For lube it’s Hoppes Elite Gun Oil. Just went to garage to check… yep Winchester Break Free Power Blast, big can. Used break cleaner for years to clean inside metal years ago, no problems. No plastic either, that would’ve been bad.


    • KidAgain,

      Thank you. I’ve used hoppes #9 on barrels for years. Lately have been using rb17 since that’s what my gunsmith friend uses. rb17 isn’t as messy but can’t really tell much difference with results.


  34. Man, you were lucky times three! How many of us have sold a gun, later wished they hadn’t, then never had the opportunity to buy it back? The collector gods were certainly smiling upon you that day!

  35. I have a JW75 Whiscomb since new, with a serial number of 75-0005. It has .0177 and .022 barrels. It shoots Crossman Premier 22’s at 975 f.p.s., and, as everyone would know, is a remarkably smooth shooting gun. I won several silhouette matches in the ’80’s with this gun and became obsessed with improving it’s 50m accuracy to even beyond what anyone would believe a .22 capable of. I contacted John Whiscomb by phone and sent him my rifle with a new Anshutz .22 match barrel. The gun was shooting 10 shot 50m groups at 0.75″ with a usual “flier” out to perhaps an inch and a half. I always felt that this was the barrel with its square cut rifling loading up with lead. The Anshutz barrel was design for lead projectiles with half round cut rifling and about twice the twist rate of the original rubber-bedded barrel. Was I ever right, as the group size went down to 0.75″ at 50m, with half or more often falling in less than 0.5″.

    I had Mr. Whiscomb do whatever upgrades he wanted to the gun while he had it. These included fitting his amazing custom match trigger, replacing the springs with better alloy parts, installing his adjustable port kit, and replacing the piston seals with the newest burn resistant materials. It is an incredible gun in perfect, mint condition with the fully checkered Tyrolean stock and adjustable butt plate. No where is the bluing even worn. It is a truly one of a kind but does not make sense for me to keep at this time in life.

    I am asking out there, if someone knows the best and most appreciative home for such a gun that has been so cherished. I am also curious about what the fair market for such a piece would be.


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