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How quiet can you be?

by B.B. Pelletier

Many years ago, I was of the opinion that a silenced handgun made virtually no noise when fired. Then, I bought a legal silencer and discovered that silencers do not completely silence the report of firearms. Since then, I’ve researched the silencer issue in much greater detail and have come to the conclusion that what a silencer can really do is often offset by the false expectations of shooters without previous silencer experience.

After that, you might think that today’s report is about silencers, but it’s not. Instead, I’m going to talk about what the word “quiet” means and how it fits into airgunning. Silencers (or moderators or any other word that means the same thing) never completely silence the report made by a gun. Some of the best ones do a lot, but none of them are ever entirely silent.

But for airgunners, that isn’t the entire question because our guns make noises that a silencer cannot address. To put it simply, no matter how good your car’s muffler is, it still won’t do much about the noise made when the doors slam shut.

Spring-piston guns generate more noise in their powerplants than they do at the muzzle. Trying to silence a springer is pretty futile. On the other hand, a PCP powerplant makes very little noise at all. So, this is an airgun that can be silenced most effectively.

Some specifics, please
The TX-200 Mark III is a very quiet spring-piston air rifle. The muzzle report is silenced by a baffled shroud that the barrel sits in. But that addresses only about one-quarter of all the noise the rifle produces. The remaining three-quarters of the noise comes from the piston slamming forward inside the compression chamber and the coiled steel mainspring rattling around when it does its thing. A TX-200 has a very close-fitted powerplant, whose parts have very little room to move around, apart from the room they must have to push the piston forward, so they don’t have any room to make a lot of extraneous noise. That’s the real reason why a TX-200 Mark III is so quiet.

But the average springer is not built to the same tight specs as a TX-200. A powerful spring rifle made for hunting will have looser tolerances, and a much louder discharge sound, as a result. However, I’ve done some testing in the past that reveals some very enlightening results. When I was testing the Beeman R1 rifle for the chapters of the R1 book, one of the things I did was tune the rifle several different ways. The most powerful tune I installed was also the quietest, as it turned out. The Venomac Mag 80 Laza Glide tune produced over 22 foot-pounds in my R1, yet it both felt and sounded as though it was far weaker. However, that tune also removed almost all vibration from the powerplant, and that afforded me the chance to see what a difference a tightly fitted powerplant can make to the noise issue.

Most of today’s super-magnums have lots of play in their powerplants, with the result that they make a lot of noise when firing. And, it’s noise that cannot be silenced by anything. Before you buy a spring-piston airgun, thinking that it has to be quiet just because it is a springer, consider what I’ve said here.

On the other hand, a weaker spring gun powerplant makes less noise just because the parts inside the powerplant are not making that much racket. They don’t have to be fitted tighter to do this, either. So an IZH 60, and an Air Venturi Bronco are both very quiet airguns, just because they don’t rattle violently when fired. They aren’t fitted tighter than the big magnum rifles, but their parts just never get thrown around as harshly, which makes all the difference in the world.

Crosman Corporation did something very important in reducing the noise a powerplant makes. They used a gas spring they call a Nitro Piston in place of a coiled steel mainspring. They also put the barrel inside a baffled shroud. Instead of tightly fitting all the individual moving parts, Crosman went with a technology — the gas spring — that by its very design is fitted tighter and is therefore much quieter than the conventional spring-powered piston gun. The epitome of their efforts can be found in the Benjamin Legacy, which uses a Nitro Piston, has a shrouded barrel and is also low-powered. So the best of all three design aspects went into one airgun, with the result that the Legacy is quieter than even the TX-200, but costs a lot less, too!

Of course the Crosman Nitro Piston Technology works for all the rifles they make, so even a Benjamin Trail NP XL is relatively quiet for the power that it has. But the Trail NP they used to sell with reduced power was always the quietest of all the guns they normally sold. Only the special-order Benjamin Legacy was quieter.

PCPs are the best
However, talking about silencing a spring gun is like talking about how fast a Honda Civic can go. Yes, you can improve the performance, but a Civic will never be a Ferrari…and a spring gun can never be a PCP, where quiet is concerned. The PCP is hands-down the easiest and most effective airgun to silence.

Let’s begin with the Benjamin Marauder as an example. Crosman didn’t invent the barrel shroud, but they did use it to the max on the Marauder. And, no, the Marauder isn’t completely silent, but it is one of the quietest over-the-counter airguns you’ll ever see.

A silencer can be made that will take the noise of the gun down to the point that all that can be heard is the sound of the hammer spring when it fires. That’s the best I’ve seen, and it’s pretty effective, but it’s also a special-build thing, in my experience. I’ve heard a few British silencers that were almost that quiet, but a special-built silencer is always quieter if it’s been built right. You cannot hear a gun like that shoot from 50 feet away, even though it’s putting out 30 foot-pounds.

I own an Airhog bloop tube for either an AirForce Condor or a Talon SS; and when the gun is set at 30 foot-pounds, the report is almost as quiet as a silenced .22 pistol shooting CB caps. The pistol generates less than 20 foot-pounds, so the airgun is more than 50 percent more powerful. Even so, it can be silenced to almost the same level, which is about as loud as the snapping of fingers.

The Ruger Mark II shooting Super Colibri CB cap ammo is extremely quiet. It generates maybe 18 foot-pounds.

The Talon SS with a 24-inch barrel and a bloop tube makes well over 30 foot-pounds. It’s nearly as quiet as the pistol.

So, what?
So, quiet has several faces, and the prudent airgunner learns to understand them all. A silencer fitted to the muzzle can either be a blessing or a joke. It all depends on what you’re trying to quiet.

Don’t be lulled into believing that all airguns can be silenced to nothingness, because that’s impossible. But also understand that nothingness is way more than you usually need. A little quiet goes a long way.

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 Airgunsβ„’ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

101 thoughts on “How quiet can you be?”

  1. derrick….

    I will be at the Findlay show tomorrow. I will be the tired looking old guy wearing blue jeans, a camo hunting jacket, and glasses. I am bald on top with long hair around the sides, and will have a short fat blonde with me.

    If you have an oversize .177 and want some pellets to play with, I have a bad tin of FTT. They are supposed to be 4.50mm, but are at least 4.52. Maybe even bigger. A lot of them have a ridge around the head and have some resemblance to the FT. You can have them if you want them.


  2. BB:
    ‘Quiet’ can be a particularly important for an air gun considering they are mainly shot at home,in back yards etc.
    What will the neighbours think?
    PCP’s more so I reckon.
    I thought silencers on air rifles were a bit of a gimmick till I got my first PCP.
    In the ‘Bang versus Twang’ stakes, the PCP bang is very loud indeed in comparison to the springer ‘Twang’.
    What I thought was a gimmick is actually quite an essential bit of kit for the PCP shooter.Especially at home.

  3. I have found that a good, tight fitting pellet has a measurable effect on the report of my air rifles, be it springer, gas piston or PCP. Unfortunately, the tight fitting pellet isn’t always the most accurate.

    Fred PRoNJ

  4. I have the close cousin to the TX-200, the Pro-Sport. Not only it is so quiet that I’m sure I’m not bothering the neighbors, it also gives the rifle a pleasing aplomb.

  5. I think there is another factor that needs to be considered – while the powerplant and muzzle report are clear sources of noise from the gun, there is also the sound of the pellet impact to consider. This becomes a bigger factor as energy goes up.

    With my Marauder tuned to around 30 ft lbs for summer pest elimination, the sound of the pellet impacting my “silent” duct seal pellet trap is quite loud – in fact, the total sound is significantly louder than when I shoot my 15 ft lb springer into it, even though the Marauder is silent compared to the springer. I tune it much lower for shooting indoors when “pest” season is done.

    And while the shot from the Marauder itself won’t raise any suspicions when eliminating pests, the impact on a pest can be quite loud and could draw attention to the activity.

    So if you want the shooting to be quiet, then in addition to the gun, the energy needs to be considered – most likely kept well under 12 ft lbs.

    Alan in MI

    • Alan in MI,
      You are absolutely right. Another factor is the acoustics of your range. Not only does the trap make noise, but if you’ve got walls, like I do, the sound can echo loudly. In an open field with vegetation, the sound might dissipate because of the absorbing material around your target. Not so indoors, or even in a back yard.

  6. How much quiet to you actually need? Another factor to consider in the battle for silence might be the amount of ambient noise in your shooting environment.

    I have a Rainstorm that is fitted with a de-pinger and a custom silencer that vents into the factory shroud. At 42 FPE, shooting during the day, all I can hear is the hammer dropping. Aside from the sound of the pellet striking the target, I literally can’t tell the difference between a regular shot and a dry fire on an empty reservoir.

    However, I do most of my accuracy testing between midnight and 2 am, when the wind is at a minimum and the distractions are few. It is then that I can hear the discharge quite clearly that is so well masked during the day by ambient noise.

    I suppose if you live close to railroad tracks or an airport, the amount of latitude your neighbors are likely to give you regarding loud noises increases significantly.

    – Orin

    • It’s kinda funny how much I’ve spent in the quest to not disturb neighbors.Ironic,really…..because
      those same neighbors think nothing of driving past my house,shaking the walls and windows with what they spent all their money on:amps and subwoofers!
      The biggest albatross I have is a 1.5″ diameter full barrel shroud on a Quackenbush .308 rifle.It is,however,quieter than the DAQ .308 with the LDC on it.Nothing covers up the impact of the big slugs though.

  7. twotalon,

    I should be there hopefully no later than 9:30 AM. I expect that you’ll be the guy on the floor bleeding with the blond standing over your fetal position body.

    I’ll probably have a black t-shirt on that says “Ridley Cyclocross– We Are Belgian”

    I’ll check back on the blog here later today. Heading to work right now. Is there anything you’re after? I’ve got quite a pile of stuff here. Any (especially weird or vintage) pellets that you’ve been trying to track down?


  8. There’s a member on one of the forum’s who’s signature goes something like: “a silencer does not make a rifleman silent. but it does make him invisible” I’m probly getting it wrong, but it’s words to that effect.
    I think pellet impact isn’t that big an issue. The impact noise is going to be in a different area than the shooter.

  9. Now, here’s a term to think your semantic teeth into. That’s interesting about the difficulties of silencing springers because of the powerplant. It raises a problem about hearing protection for the shooter, not just those around him. The energy of the powerplant transmits through the stock as vibration right into the shooter’s face, and these same vibrations are picked up by the hearing mechanism with its hammer/anvil structure in the inner ear. So, the shooter is hearing much of this sound through his face and you wouldn’t expect earmuffs to help much. I asked a doctor with shooting experience (firearms) about this, and he was kind of baffled; finally, he suggested a foam pad over the stock. Actually, I’m fine with my springers, even the B30, so it’s more of a curiosity than anything. Also on the subject of silencers, I’ve always enjoyed using one on my Walther Nighthawk by taping the muzzle break shut. Too bad it’s such a hassle to shoot with all the accessories on.

    On the subject of calling shots, I think that some of our extravagant examples of distractions from shots like popping paper bags, being struck by lightning, or hit by tsunamis are a little misleading in implying that in their absence, shooting is an exact process. Far from it, even in the best circumstances, it seems to me hugely complex. Have we preserved that natural body position? Are we inside the 5 second limit for holding the breath? Is that trigger finger going straight back or at a slight angle? Is that sight picture perfectly aligned or a little off? Did I follow through the shot properly? And was my concentration complete the whole time? There will almost always be partial answers to all of this. So, the notion of a correct shot process is more of a heuristic than anything else. That being the case, does it mean that calling a flier (identifying when the shooting process was flawed) is now useless by piling an ill-defined term on an uncertain process? Not at all. Among the many uncertainties at work, it seems like a very useful tool as a classification. It tells us when the multiple uncertainties have reached a point where we are sure that statistical laws are compromised. But just because we don’t call a shot doesn’t mean that everything is perfect. It just means that we are still in the hunt where statistics may be one tool to help understand a very complicated phenomenon without being the whole story.

    Victor, how about this. The call radius is the boundary of the wobble area. Pretty mathematical eh? Thinking in these terms, how would you describe generally the method of “handling” the wobble area as I think you mentioned awhile ago. My sense is that one starts to colonize the wobble area by taking a regular approach through it so that the landscape of the moving sights and the internal landscape of the mind become more familiar. And with that familiarity, you increase your chances of finding the moment of stillness when you are on target and can release the shot, but you never want to shoot on the fly on your approach. The famous essayist, E.B. White described the search for the exact right word in writing as being like a hunter hiding in a duck blind waiting for the exact right opportunity so maybe the metaphor of writing derived from shooting can be turned back to shooting again. One range officer, after looking at my ragged offhand target, told me about a friend who used a super high-powered scope–33X–for standing to blow up the target as much as possible. Then he would try to guide the wildly swinging arc of his crosshairs onto the target. It didn’t seem like the way to go.

    Mike, I’ve heard that Mausers actually have a fairly long lock time which you don’t associate with accuracy, but it doesn’t seem to hold them back. It is also interesting that the push-feed Enfield action did fine in the horrendous trench conditions of WWI. Someone said that a controlled round field rifle has never won a war, but I think that is a spurious observation. Today’s blog on the TX200 fills me with enthusiasm for British guns. One American author describing British airplane designs of WWII claimed that British engineers always sought the most complicated ways of solving a problem but I think that is highly xenophobic–certainly based on the products. After all, the P-51 was really a hybrid airplane with an American airframe and a Rolls Royce engine.


  10. Yes, you have to love the combination of the P-51 and the Rolls Royce engine (Most built by Packard for the Mustang).
    I wonder how much different the P-38 would have been with the Rolls Royce instead of the Allison’s which were problematic. As to controlled feed winning a war, it did. The American 03 Springfield and 1917 rifles in WWI. While different than the Mauser, the No. 4 Enfield really is a controlled feed action. As the round is pushed out of the Magazine, it is picked and controlled by the extractor all the way into the chamber. Check it out when you get one.


    • Matt61,
      Mathematically speaking, the DOMAIN would be defined as a complex set of elements that contribute to the execution of a shot, and that (hopefully) can be observed (called) by the shooter, including trigger squeeze, breadth control, sight alignment, natural point of aim, balance (e.g., swaying motion), pulse, and follow-through, among other things (including the guns precision). The pattern of holes at the target would constitute the RANGE. Of course, this set of definition for the mappings work, provided that we define the unique function that generated this mapping to be specific to the set of shots taken at a particular target. Otherwise, someone will say that the range is defined as the longest distances that can be traveled along a trajectory by the bullet/pellet in any direction (azimuth and elevation). This, of course, might look like a parabolically shaped, half-donut-like pattern, with a small hole, centered at the shooter.

      In any case, a shooters performance is a complex mapping between this domain and range. While one could explain how a point maps from this DOMAIN to it’s RANGE (e.g., I didn’t follow-through, and dropped my hold as the shot went off, so the shot was low), you can’t define an inverse, as this mapping is not one-to-one. At the target, there could be any number of reasons why a shot was low (e.g., pulled the trigger, didn’t follow-through, sights were not aligned, etc.). So the calling of a shot happens at the shooter within the DOMAIN. Confirmation of the “call” is seen at the target, within the RANGE.

      So, yes, the call radius could be defined as the boundary of the wobble area. And, of course, the wobble area is everything within that call radius. The question is, if you can find your wobble area, how can it be made smaller?


  11. I own the Benjamin Trail NP in thr lower power configuration and it is very quiet.
    But shrouded airguns aren’t allowed in Canada (where I live and bought the gun) so My guess is if Crosman didn’t advertised a rifle or pistol as being shrouded (they say bull barrel for the Trail NP) it would be “legal” as long as no one took the care to take a long look at the thing…
    I don’t hunt but really like shooting in my backyard and a Marauder rifle and/or pistol would be the perfect for me since I don’t want to bug anyone close to me (family and neighbor) so a shrouded airgun would be perfect for me. I’m really not getting the silencer interdiction. I just bought a 2240 that I was planning on modding into a nice little carbine with a longer barrel, metal breach, scope and the Crosman shoulder stock but that thing is LOUD so I’m not so sure anymore… I may end up just re-selling the thing… or might go back to my first plan and try to sneak an highly illegal Marauder in the country with all the included risk (mostly having the rifle taken and… Destroyed).
    It’s election time here but against a questioned 29 000 000 000$ fighter plane deal and silencers on airguns (or just airguns for that mather) I don’t think the guys I can vote for give a €%^+*~.


  12. I like quiet and so do my neighbors.

    In most parts of Europe it’s bad manners to shoot a loud gun. Silencers are legal in most? parts of Europe. Their power is highly regulated and fac guns are not as common as they are in the U.S.A. but that logically requires better accuracy/shot placement. One must learn to be a better shot with lower power and accuracy expectations are understandably elevated.

    The masses of consumers in the U.S.A. seem to embrace power over accuracy and our governing bodies attempt to regulate quiet. This seems to encourage loud inaccurate guns at the few retail outlets that are willing to carry airguns in their inventory.

    Polar opposites between Europe and the great U.S. of A.

    I understand the root of this lies in poachers and would be assassins but I’m still trying to put this in a logical perspective.


    • I did not buy, but a couple things caught my eye…
      There were a couple nice tx200s one with a nice walnut stock. A bit redundant if you already have a 97K.
      Then there was an R7 on PA’s table. Been looking at them. Made the mistake (?) of telling my wife that those were the only two that had my interest.

      Well, she likes the handguns. We went on the PA site and she looked around a while. Se settled on a Walther PPK and ordered it (Pink grip? puke).
      After we discussed the rifles a bit, she ordered the R7 combo for me as a birthday present.

      She was really impressed by the air bazookas. And the handguns. She don’t much give a crap about rifles.


  13. RE: Sonic Crack


    Assuming you were shooting a pellet above the speed, how much noise would the crack make?

    I’d assume that super-sonic speeds muzzle would also make silencing the muzzle noise much more difficult.


    • Herb,

      the silencer might now be effective on a pellet traveling at supersonic speeds assuming the pellet achieves this speed just outside of the barrel and the silencer. For this reason, sub-sonic loads for ammunition are sold – to keep the bullet below the barrier and eliminate that crack.

      Fred PRoNJ

  14. Target talk has nothing over these guys…!!!

    BB, are these fellows still shooting at an Olympic / Zen level or are they (now) retired because of their many Gold Medals and are just imparting their infinite wisdom and god-like experience to us by blog posts? We mere mortals are so blessed by their pearls of wisdom.

    For god’s sake, we are impressed already, please spare us the Zen talk and tai-chi and breathing controls, and references to great shooters you have read about but have never met, it is beyond pompous and transparent, ok?

    If only my prose and command of the english language were so flowery and so prosaic, and my shooting skills so near perfect in both command of my “domain and the range”, I could also blog or post to impress myself and one (and only one) other blogger. Unlike these fellows, I have actually made100 yard shots that really mattered, ask the viet-cong who are (now) part of the rice paddy they were crawling through and into my M14 peep sight.

    BB, it’s been fun but I need to go airgun chat and blog where the regular folks reside. Thanks for all you do on this blog and for our hobby, despite the pontification-ad-delirium from others.

    • Brian
      I know sometimes the discussions sometime seem to get into the area of how many angels can fit on the head of a pin , but it is usually relevant . If it gets to thick for me I just fast forward. Hope you stick around.

      • I do the same thing. Just like with off topic stuff, if it has no interest to me I’ll just skip it.
        You just can’t have interest in everything (10m, field target, reloading, mini-sniping, action pistols, vintage stuff, new stuff, martial arts, hunting, etc…) we can’t all have the same interests (that would be boring) and when it goes somewhere that has no interest to you just skip it.

        Don’t leave for that.

        Hope you change your mind and stay with us.


    • Brian,
      I’m a modest air gunner with plenty to be modest about but you have always had time to respond to my questions/comments or enquire as to how things are going.
      Whatever you decide(hopefully stay),that will always be appreciated mate.

    • Brian,

      Don’t make me fly out to Idaho and tear your tonsils out and tie them around your neck as a bowtie! (It’s a Three Stooges line, guys). Seriously, there are a number of topics that get broached here that I have no interest in. Like the rest, I just skip them when I see we’re discussing black powder or loads for a rifle that’s two centuries old. Hey, that’s why Bill Gates gave us thumbwheels on our mice. You have a significant amount of knowledge to contribute and we will all miss that if you decide to stop visiting the Blog. Many of us would appreciate your staying.

      All the Best regardless of what you decide

      Fred PRoNJ

    • Brian,

      Sorry to hear you’re departing.

      Here’s what happens on this blog and forums where people feel welcomed and at home:

      1. People discover that the site meets their needs for the topic they’re interested in.

      2. Others have the same interests and then discover they all share other interests.

      3. Everyone starts feeling so comfortable that they kick off their virtual shoes and and start chatting like they were in their living rooms instead of on an airgun blog.

      This is the way it has ALWAYS been on chat forums. When I was running the Airgun Letter chat forum in the late 1990s and early 2000s, people regularly went off-topic. Below is a thread I’ve recreated/paraphrased, but I’ve shortened the responses to make my point:

      Joe: I really like the vintage Crosman guns with those bulk-fill tanks hanging down. You get a LOT more shots out of them.

      Mike: I know what you mean! I just bought one at a flea market. It’s like a tiny summer sausage hanging off the forearm.

      Ralph: Yeah, I’ve got one. I just bought some summer sausage. I prefer the beef/pork mix rather than the all-beef variety.

      Don: I’m addicted to summer sausage. It’s great with beer. I try to restrain myself, so I eat it on weekends only…cholesterol problems and all that.

      Don (again): I went to a flea market last week & got some broken BB guns that I’m planning to use as parts guns.

      Joe: Beer! It’s one of my favorite food groups. Even without summer sausage.

      Mike: I prefer catfish to summer sausage. There’s a catfish farm not far from my house. Great stuff!

      Mike (again): Don–Where do you live? I rarely see BB guns at my local flea market. Lots of fleas though!

      Ralph: I like fishing for catfish. And bass. Both are great with suds.

      Don: Hey, Mike! You live near a catfish farm? There’s a farm not far from here (great vintage Johnny Popper abandoned in it).

      Joe: You like vintage tractors? Me too! I got an old JD I’m fixing. I have a used Kubota that I use to remove snow from my 1/4-mile long driveway.

      Joe (again): Mike–You got fleas, too πŸ™‚ Just treated my 2 dogs with flea & tick powder. It’s been a brutal summer for them bugs. Wife really hates finding ticks cause one of the dogs sleeps in our bed. She’s found a tick or two asleep with us.

      Joe (again): I like them all–catfish, beer and summer sausage.

      We got 1500 new postings every 24 hours on the Airgun Letter forum. I skipped comments that didn’t interest me, but I scanned all of them to find those that violated our rules.

      I never met most of those guys, but I felt like I had hundreds of friends. Same on this blog. I don’t read those that aren’t of interest to me. Eventually, everyone comes back to airguns. People get sidetracked. I’m probably the worst, which is why I limit my comments.

      Ideas are like popcorn. Somebody says something that reminds someone else of another thing because everyone’s got a different frame of reference. I can’t see the world through the same glasses as you, but I don’t have to wear your glasses but I won’t stop you from wearing your glasses πŸ™‚

      Bottom line: I wish you wouldn’t go. Skip the stuff you’re not interested in reading.

      I fast forward through the ads when I view recorded TV shows. I stop for ads that might be funny or show a new product in which I’m interested, but I don’t stop watching the TV show just because I don’t like the ads.

      Hope you decide to stay.


      • Edith Gaylord,

        “Somebody says something that reminds someone else of another thing because everyone’s got a different frame of reference.” Exactly! A couple days ago, B.B. said something that Idisagreedd with, so I responded. But there are important distinctions to be made. First of all, I did not take it personally. Second of all, I was not in conflict with B.B., but only with his statement. Why? Because we were looking at seemingly the same thing, but from different perspectives. After B.B. saw my reply, he helped me realize why he said what he said. B.B. didn’t have to say much. Just the fact that he acknowledged that I had a different perspective was enough.


        • Victor,

          In a couple weeks, I’ll celebrate 29 years of marriage to Tom…and I disagree with him a lot — because he’s wrong so much of the time πŸ™‚

          To be completely honest, I very much like that people feel comfortable enough to kick back and talk about whatever interests them.


          • I also like that a lot and it’s why I come here. Even if we can’t put a face to peoples names talking about more personnal stuff and our preferences gives us a small insight into how we each are. Even if I don’t know any of you I have the feeling we have some kind of friendship but more importantly mutual respect. I think that by being more personnal and knowing each other a little bit takes a little bit of the anonymity and by being “matt61, kevin or lloyd” we’re not “that guy I don’t” and by being someone yourself it takes the insult and condessending tone so common on other forums.

            I say don’t change a thing, if you’re not getting or interested in a particular topic just skip it but please don’t leave.


    • Brian in Idaho,

      This dialogue between Matt61 and I was not a serious one (at least I didn’t’ think so). I think that some have taken the discussion of things like “accuracy” and “precision” a lot more serious, and to greater lengths, than Matt61 and I have. In fact, IF you had read my posts regarding B.B.’s accuracy tests, my criteria are a lot more relaxed than others. From my perspective, Matt61 and I were just funning around with this “call radius”, “domain”, and “range” talk.

      Also, people talk about a lot of things at a level that some of us don’t follow. For sure, much of what some people say is way above my head, including B.B.. None of that bothers me. I read it, I take what I can from it, and I hope that it will all make sense over time, as details that I need are provided to fill in the logical gaps.

      Experience tells me that, when people have a common interest, they share what they think is important, but it is rare that they “talk shop” 100% of the time. I know that I’ve learned a great deal from fellow shooters, but looking back, it’s very hard to remember when or where I learned these things, because most of the time, we talked about other things, as we do here. When, B.B., Mac, Vince, or others, write a blog, it is generally the case that members of this blog pretty much exhaust pertinent ideas that came to mind before the next blog. Sometimes there just isn’t that much more than can be said. But there is always more to be said about other things. It is often the case that an unrelated question gets thrown out, and others jump in to address it. That’s what attracts so many of us to this blog. There are a lot of posts that don’t interest me, so I just pass them up. In a way, this blog is a living encyclopedia, or answer book.

      I’ve enjoyed Matt61’s questions because they’ve sort of rekindled my interest in important details specific to competitive marksmanship. I don’t hunt, very rarely plink, I’m not a gunsmith, and I’m still relatively new to “springers”. My background is competitive marksmanship. Maybe I’m in the small minority here, but when it comes to guns, that is my ONLY background. Matt61 has touched on things that have resided dormant in my mind for over 30 years. At a minimum, I believe that the book by David Tubbs, that Matt61 refers to, is worth every penny.

      I’ve obviously annoyed you, but part of the problem here is that you took this discussion between Matt61 and I a lot more serious than we did. I’ll be more sensitive in the future. By the way, this is why I’ve offered my personal e-mail, vector@collector.org, and others have done the same. I don’t have a problem responding to people offline, via e-mail, to questions and topics that others would like to share with me.

      Take care,

      • Victor,

        This is my first response to you.

        I appreciate what you bring to the party (blog). I read what you post. Much of your contributions are relevant and for those I thank you. Some is esoteric and a little is extravagent and therefore falls on my deaf ears (I had a hard time getting through jr. high. Forgive my inbreeding).

        Candidly, I don’t think you should change a thing in your posts or your content.

        See, the things I like most about this airgun site is that we are all allowed to gather around the campfire and talk about things airgun related. After the fourth or fifth hour (or fourth or fifth pull on the jug) we wander in topics. I like that as long as you speak from experience and from the heart or preface your remarks with theory and conjecture.

        I have a tough time with know-it-alls that spew forth conjecture or untried theories that they try to pass off as gospel.

        Your offer to be more sensitive is not accepted by me since I don’t think this is the issue.


    • Brian, I don’t understand what your beef is. If there’s a thread within the blog that does nothing for you, just skip it – like I do. Nothing says that if you come here you have to read everything. It isn’t like someone slammed you or your comments, although you certainly just did that to them. Why? What did they ever do to you besides have a conversation you didn’t approve of?

    • Beats me. I was there just as they were opening and was there for an hour. Very crowded.
      I had some bucks on me just in case I saw something that I wanted, but did not have anything in particular in mind. Mostly to just look around and see what kinds of stuff would be there.

      I am more partial to new stuff that is suitable for hunting (and under warranty). Could care less about collectables or competition guns. If someone would have had a big pile of new scopes that meet the right requirements, then I would have bought at least two.

      No desire for megamagnums either. Most of my rifles run in the 800-900 fps range with my pellet of choice. Have way too many already.

      The only things I have been tossing around are scopes and if I want a HW30S or an R7. Like the stock on the R7 better, but like the open sights as an option on the 30. Tough decision. Maybe a 30S with an R7 stock?

      Anyway the decision has been made on the lower powerd addition, but scopes are still up in the air.


  15. Twotalon,
    I think we were there for about 3 hours. After the mad shopping, I took some pics. They’re up on the blog right now here:
    I think I bought two pistols, three rifles, some diopter sights, a holster for the Predom… Some (most?) of this will go to co-blogger Nick.
    Then we went to the Medina gun show to pick up yet another rifle from a buddy. I swear to you guys, I did not buy any more pellets. Really. I didn’t even LOOK at them. Honest.

  16. B.B.

    I know you are a fan of the Umarex Makaro BB pistol, recently I came across a CZ-82 chambered in 9X18 Makarov. The pistol looked quite similar to the Umarex. Can I assume the pistol is the Czechoslovakian version of the USSR Makaro?


  17. Can an R7 be uncocked like the R9 can? I can wait a couple days if I have to and find out myself, but TV is awful poor today and not keeping my attention.


      • Sounds good to me.
        Sometimes I will push a pellet through the bore if I can uncock it or not when it is the right kind of rifle (access to the breech with a rod). This gives me an occasional check of how the bore feels. A little lead buildup starting changes the feel from what a good bore feels like.


  18. Tip on scope centering…
    If you roll scopes in the rings to center them, some times the adjustment knobs stick out too far and will not let the scope roll all the way over.
    I got a set of risers from PA to use with high rings just for this purpose. I expect it to work well, and will get to try it out in a couple days.


    • If you mean centering the cross hairs, a quick fix is a cardboard box with a couple “V’s” cut in it to hold the scope. Then, it’s easy to turn the scope.


    • OK, now this is an idea that’s useful. Sounds like a good use for quick connect scope rings, too. I’ve used this technique (but without being able to get 360 degrees like you are now) and when I did I didn’t bother to put the top part of the rings on. Just let the scope rest in the “cradle” as you rotate it.

      Also, Mike I did the cardboard box thing,too, but the sides weren’t stable enough and the scope would rock forth and back. What I did was get a couple scrap two by fours and put the inside the box to give it support then drove nails in 2×4 the width of the scope to keep the scope from moving side to side. This works but you want to to be very gentle if you are afraid of scratching the scope tube.

        • What I’ve found useful is using the bottom half of rings (1″ and 30mm) mounted on a short 2″ X 6″ then secured in my gun vise and set atop my shooting bench. I put a large cardboard box downrange and mark it with a felt tip pen where the crosshairs intersect and start spinning the scope from there.

          Makes it easier for me.


  19. Brian of Idaho,
    If you’re still reading: I want to add my support and hope you stay on this blog even if it’s just to lurk. However, if you are splitting your time between this blog and some others I can understand why you’d rather leave if you’re not getting anything back for the time you’ve invested. I can understand why you’d like to maximize your time. But I look at it like a party. I can go sit at Matt’s and Derrick’s table and if they’re talking about something I’m not interested in I’ll change tables, but I’m not likely to leave the party. And this blog is a party to me even though it is hard to get a drink around here. Then when they get back to discussing IZH-61’s and Marauders I’m there. Hopefully with drink in hand.

  20. Twotalon,

    You found time for coffee while there was treasure that needed buying? Yep. 41 years old. Black T shirt. Messenger bag bursting at the seems between trips to the car. Big stupid content smile…

    Chuck, yes, Matt and I will gladly talk about IZH rifles/pistols and with you anytime. There’s a two drink minimum but no cover charge.

    • I guess I was too unsure of who I was looking for and you were too busy shopping.
      We have different motivations. The coffee break was just before we hit the road. I usually live on coffee all morning, so walking around for an hour without a cup in my hand was too much of a strain.
      Maybe next time.


  21. Tom – Have you ever considered doing “shoot-outs” with the blog, comparing two+ guns in the same “category” to see which rises to the top? For example, I am looking for a low-price well built breakbarrel rifle to get into spring guns and to add some plinking fun. I’ve narrowed my list down to the Air Venturi Bronco, the Hammerli 490 Express, and the Norica 56 Basic. Another that could be in the price and performance class is the Stoeger X5, with the RWS Diana 240 Classic (Schutze) and Weihrauch HW23L in the same performace class, but in a different price bracket. I realize that the final result would only be one man’s opinion, but when that one opinion comes from one of the most well-respected voices in the industry, it would definitely be of value. Thoughts on the format in general?

    • Jim Davis,
      I’ll let BB add to this if I’m not correct but:

      BB tests individual guns for what they are and how well they perform. His policy is not to compare guns. He does not compare a gun to another gun(s) and he’s told us that at least a couple times on this blog so I think I’m correct in saying that. However, in one of the more recent articles he did weaken and compare two guns, briefly, but he doesn’t make a habit of it.

    • jmdavis,

      The Bronco will definitely out-shoot both other rifles, and I have said so in my reports many times. The Bronco will shoot at least as well as an R7, if not better.

      So I guess that will answer all the rest of your questions.
      As for the format, comparing one gun directly against another is not my style, The reason is, no tester is good enough to eliminate the human factor. And shooting is also a personal thing.

      So I’ll keep on reporting on each gun as I see it.


      • Thanks for the info. I don’t usually read the comments, so I probably missed comments on your preference to not compare guns.

        To my unintentional question regarding a plinker choice, do the iron sights of the Bronco limit its accuracy in any way? It seems like it is the only rifle I listed that doesn’t have micro-click adjustable sights. I have also read that the rear sight cannot be adjusted low enough to shoot less than 20 yards. Have you found this to be the case? I obviously want the best complete package, not just the best barrel.

        • And, my preference is to shoot standing without a bench rest, unless I am sighting in. I find it a little too “staged” to really show MY capability vs the guns capablity.

        • jimdavis,
          I like to shoot my Bronco with a scope but for you I put the open sights back on. Actually, only the rear sight, because the front didn’t have to be removed to mount a scope. I shoot indoors at 10m. On the lowest sight setting my point-of-impact (POI) is one inch below my point-of-aim (POA). On the highest setting my POI is two inches above my POA. I am shooting RWS Hobby 7.0gr pellets that I found to be one of the most accurate for this rifle. It is also the lightest pellet I have. I then shot a Kodiak Extra Heavy 10.6 pellet and the results were the same: 1″ low, 2″ high. I know, surprised me, too.

          So the answer to your question is, yes, it can be adjusted on target at 10m.


        • jmdavis,

          The Bronco rear sight is indeed adjustable, though not micro-click. It is as useable as anything from Germany.

          Did you read my report and see the groups I got?



          • I think I’ve read that report a half-dozen times. It proves that the rifle is wonderfully accurate, and the sights are the same, but you didn’t try to zero it in. I find that my Crosman 1377 is remarkably accurate, but trying to zero that sloppy rear sight is like trying to fit a fat girl into a wedding dress. It’ll get there eventually, but it’ll take a lot of time, work, and swearing. I’m trying to avoid that headache again.

            Now, the grain of salt in the equation is that I’ve never handled ANY of these guns before. All I know is what I’ve read from your reports and from other forums. Maybe click-adjustable sights aren’t that much better than manually adjustable ones? Maybe I am putting too much thought into this, and will be pleased with whatever purchase I make. Something to shoot is better than nothing, right?

            • jimdavis,
              After I tested my Bronco for you I put on a Beeman peep sight which does have click-adjustments. It works great and isn’t very expensive. I did have to remove the rear sight to see past it but there are only two allen screws there. I put the screw back in the holes without the sight so I wouldn’t lose them. They’re not in the way.

  22. Hi folks,

    Looking to fit a slip on adaptor to my Benjamin NP pistol, with a view to fitting a silencer, problem is, i cant find any info on the correct width of the barrel, does anyone know, thanks

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