Testing the Slavia 631 with non-lead pellets: Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

Announcement: Here’s this week’s winner of Pyramyd Air’s Big Shot of the Week on their facebook page. He’ll receive a $50 gift card.


Choon Weng Chua submitted this photo from an airsoft skirmish. He’s this week’s Big Shot winner.


It’s a little crude but also elegant. The Slavia 631 is the testbed for this report.

I reviewed the Slavia 631 breakbarrel air rifle one time back in March 2006. At that time, I wasn’t reviewing airguns in the format you see today, so it got a quickie once-over and we moved on. Perhaps, if the rifle had been available here in the U.S., I might have done more with it, but since it wasn’t being sold here, and still isn’t, I didn’t think there would be that much interest among the readers.

I also used the rifle for a testbed back in 2003 when I wrote an article about the performance of pellets versus round balls. That’s an interesting article you may wish to review, and I find it a little interesting that here I go again, using the 631 to test the performance of non-lead pellets against lead pellets. Apparently, there’s something about this rifle that makes me think of it as a standard airgun.

This test isn’t really about the air rifle as much as it is about the pellets. We’re just using the 631 because of its accuracy and mild manners.

The Slavia or CZ 631 and 630 are breakbarrel spring-piston rifles made in the Czech Republic. The 631 Lux model I have was purchased new about 12 years ago when they were still being imported into the U.S. It has a rather plain stock that’s too blocky and square for my taste, but the barreled action is where the performance lives so I can put the looks aside. The 630 and 631 are the same rifle in different stocks, just like the Diana 48 and 52 sidelevers. The 631 is the dressier one.

The stock is a medium brown beech with a thin, non-reflective finish that’s very topical. Mine has several scratches that cut through the thin top layer of wood. Because it’s blocky, it doesn’t fit me very well. I do like the slender forearm, but the pistol grip just doesn’t fit right. There’s impressed reverse checkering on the forearm but not the pistol grip, and the overall appearance is one of cheapness. The metal parts are not polished beyond tumbling and are finished with a thin black color that comes through as matte.

This is a low-to-moderate air rifle power-wise. I expect to see the lighter-weight pellets shooting in the low- to mid-600s somewhere. We’re going to find that out in today’s report.

One of the reasons I’m using this rifle is because a number of our readers own them. Canadians can still buy them, as can Europeans and almost anyone else except Americans. But I’m also writing about it because one of our readers suggested that I test the accuracy of non-lead pellets in this rifle. He felt the power was not so high that it would scatter the pellets, and also because the 631 is a very accurate air rifle in its own right. I agreed and here we are.

As I describe the rifle, bear in mind I’m describing the one I own. It’s at least 12 years old and possibly more, and there may have been some changes to the design since mine was made. Generally, cosmetics change faster than fundamental design items, so my rifle is probably still a good representative of the type.

A couple features before I test velocity for you. First, is the barrel lock. Before you can open the barrel to cock the gun, you must push forward on the spring-loaded barrel lock that’s located under the barrel just forward of the baseblock. It retracts the chisel detent and allows the barrel to flop open a little. From there, you can cock the rifle with 35 lbs. of effort. My rifle is in need of a tuneup, and I can feel some metal rubbing when I cock it. I think it would drop back to a 28-lb. cocking effort with proper lubrication. I did oil the piston seal for this test but not the rest of the powerplant.


The barrel-lock latch (left) is pulled forward, retracting the chisel detent (right) and allowing the barrel to open.

Another feature is the automatic safety. It’s a knurled knob located at the rear of the spring tube; and when the rifle’s cocked, it pops out. You must press it back in before the rifle can be fired.

Although the safety is automatic, there’s no anti-beartrap device and the rifle can be uncocked by taking the safety off and pulling the trigger while restraining the barrel.

The two-stage adjustable trigger is very light. I don’t think too many owners will complain about the crisp l-lb. trigger-pull. Oh, and it has a metal blade! A screw in the plastic triggerguard adjusts the length of the stage-one pull, and it can be eliminated entirely.


Trigger adjustment screw (second from left) controls the length of the first stage, only.

The sights are things of beauty! The all-metal front sight is a hooded post that appears as a sharply defined rectangle through the rear sight. The rear sight is a study in elegant design. It’s all-metal, fully adjustable and yet simple and probably inexpensive to build. It ought to be a required study for any engineer wanting to design airguns.


The front sight is hooded and looks a lot like the front sight of an SKS.


The rear sight is all metal and an elegant design. It shows what some thought can do.

The firing behavior of my rifle is very buzzy. It takes me back to the 1970s, when all spring rifles buzzed, and I guess it’s the one thing I like least about the gun. But I’ve left it as it is all these years so I’d have something unaltered to reference.

The rifle does have dovetail cuts for a scope mount, but this is the very rifle that caused B-Square owner Dan Bechtel to enlist my aid in the 1990s to measure the width of as many airgun scope rails as possible. We found that 11mm airgun scope rails range from about 9.5mm separation to over 14mm! And, the Slavia 631 is the biggest one of them all. So, those “11mm” scope mounts you buy will probably not fit this rifle unless the package specifically names this model or the 14mm width. To my knowledge, only BKL now makes scope mounts specifically designed for this air rifle.


There they are. The widest set of “11mm” air rifle dovetails in existence. They measure just over 14mm, so they require purpose-built mounts. To keep the scope mount from moving, a half-round transverse pin in the bottom of the mount has to fit one of the grooves or you’ll need BKL mounts. That knurled knob on the bottom is the automatic safety.

Pellets selected
Because this report is really about the accuracy and performance of lead versus non-lead pellets, I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the performance of the gun other than to document the accuracy with lead pellets of known quality. Today, I’ll show the pellets that will be tested and chronograph each of them for you. In the next test, we’ll finish with accuracy at 10 meters.

The pellets I’ve selected to test are the following:

Lead

Crosman Premier 7.9-grain
JSB Exact RS
Air Arms Falcon

Non-lead

Gamo Raptor
Skenco Hyper-Velocity Type 1
RWS HyperMAX
Crosman SSP

The lead pellets should show the relative accuracy of this rifle under the best conditions. What the non-lead pellets will do is what we’re going to learn.

Velocity
Premier lites averaged 589 f.p.s. The range was 586 to 593 f.p.s. They generated an average 6.09 foot-pounds.

JSB Exact RS pellets averaged 593 f.p.s. with a range from 586 to 596 f.p.s. The average energy was 5.7 foot-pounds. These pellets fit the bore very loosely.

Air Arms Falcon pellets averaged 592 f.p.s. They ranged from 591 to 594 f.p.s. The muzzle energy was 5.68 foot-pounds. They fit the bore tighter than the JSB pellets, but not as snug as the Premier lites.

Gamo Raptor pellets fit the bore variably — from snug to so loose they fell out. They averaged 741 f.p.s., ranging from 727 to 754 f.p.s. The average energy was 6.59 foot-pounds.

Skenco Hyper Velocity Type 1 pellets averaged 719 f.p.s. The range went from 689 to 749 f.p.s. Their average energy was 6.2 foot-pounds.

RWS HyperMAX pellets averaged 743 f.p.s. They ranged from 639 to 750 f.p.s. The average muzzle energy was 6.38 foot-pounds.

Crosman SSP pellets averaged 738 f.p.s.. The range went from 658 to 750 f.p.s. The average muzzle energy was 4.84 foot-pounds.

So these are the pellets I’ll be testing for accuracy, and we now know how well they perform in this rifle. I’ll save my conclusions of the test for the finish, at the end of Part 2.

101 thoughts on “Testing the Slavia 631 with non-lead pellets: Part 1

  1. Best open sights i know ,why doesn’t Diana airguns learn from Slavia -i don’t see any plastic sights there and this rifle defines precision on 10 m it is like surgical tool .


  2. I kinda like this airgun, and I have no idea why! Lol! Ok, I have a question that’s off topic, but I feel.like I have to ask it here because I know it will be answered quickly, and the advice will be sound.

    I finally got to put my Walther Falcon Hunter in 22 over a chrony today. Good thing too, cause even though it sounds like it was shooting immensely hard, I only averaged. about 560 fps with 14.3 pellets. This is super low, and the advice I was given says that I have a bad main seal. Its the first Gen model rifle without the Quattro trigger, it has 4 stock screws, 2 per side, and runs a regular spring instead of ram. I emailed umarexusa to see if they had a main seal, and hopefully I’ll hear from them soon. Also, I Have a spring. compressor kit that I’ll put together soon. Anyway, I’m wondering if anyone else knows where I could get a main seal and how hard are they to install? I really appreciate any advice from anyone, thanks a lot guys.

    Chris in LI NY


    • Before you jump too fast…how far was the muzzle from the chrono? If you get too close, the muzzle blast will trip the first chrono screen before the pellet gets there and give you a very low reading.
      I like to stay a couple feet from the chrono to make sure this does not happen. Not much point in getting as close as possible to get the very fastest reading. You might get 2 or 3 fps lower reading at 2 feet, but it does not make a crap.

      twotalon


      • TT

        I wa probably only about 3 feet fro the first sky screen. I will definitely try it again a little further away, I’ll actually move to 10 feet away from the screen to make sure. The thing really sounds like its pounding those pellets through, and I thought (hoped) that I was muzzle blast. I’ll definitely give it another shot. Thanks.

        Chris in LI NY


        • Three feet should be plenty. If you want to stretch it out farther just in case you can but I don’t think it will make any difference.
          You do need to make sure that your lighting setup is not throwing any funny shadows or reflections. You can get some pretty wild readings if you are not careful.

          twotalon


          • TT

            Thanks for the advice man, I’m definitely going to give it another shot tomorrow. All of my other rifles were fine at that distance so it probably is the main seal. You wouldn’t happen to know which one at ARH to order would you? Or if it’s going to be difficult to change? Thanks again.

            Chris in LI NY


            • I don’t have any idea what seal fits it. You might look at the breech seal too.
              These rifles come apart all kinds of different ways. Some are easy with a press and some are still a royal pain. The piston seal itself will probably just snap on, but you have to be careful not to cut or tear it in the process. It has to stretch over a retaining stub(for lack of a better word) which may be sharp at the front edge.

              twotalon


              • TT

                Thanks again man. My buddy offered to tune It and fix it for me, so I might go that route and just start.tuning my easier rifles to start. Thanks!

                Chris in LI NY



      • Robert

        Hey Robert,
        So if it turn out to be the main seal, should I just write ARH an email and they’ll know which size seal I’ll need and everything? Should I order anything else for the WFH while I’m there? Thank you very much for the advice Robert.

        Chris in LI NY


        • Your welcome. I see that ARH lists a piston seal specifically for the talon and WFH. The spring and breech seal you would have to e-mail and ask.


          • Robert

            Thank you sir, its much appreciated. I hope you have a great weekend, and a huge HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all the dads in here!!!

            Chris in LI NY


  3. I was thinking of buying the RWS HyperMax just to get the nice little packaging box and re-use it with my other pellets.
    If they end-up being accurate in low velocity rifles it might be one of those win/win situation but with a spread of 90fps… not so sure.

    J-F


    • J-F,

      I am also not so sure they will be accurate. But that’s the purpose of this test — to find out what works and what doesn’t. The box those pellets come in is like a target pellet box, but harder to use. I prefer a purpose-made pellet box that I can grab the pellets from. In this box they sit too low.

      B.B.


  4. Another option for scope mounts might be Sportsmatch since they make mounts specifically for the CZ guns. In addition, Sportsmatch or BKL are the only options I’m aware of for a two piece mount specific to the FWB’s and Webley’s that require the hardened cross pin as a stop (Sportsmatch T03S) or clamping pressure alone (BKL).

    http://www.tawnadoairguns.com/13mm_mounts.php

    kevin


  5. Good morning all,

    I really loved my 631, and 634 for that matter.. but alas.. someone wanted em more, and traded me out of them. I wasn’t shooting the piston guns anyway. I haven’t found a non lead pellet that shoots worth a darn.. but haven’t tried all those your trying, so this will be a great test. As far as lead pellets go, I’ve found the JSB express in 7.9 grain to be very accurate in my 12fpe USFT bench rest rig. They preform much better in the wind than the 7.34 falcon, which I had preferred before I tried the 7.9.. The Cometa version are even slightly better.

    My favorite pellet holder, especially for field target when one is getting up and down, with the chance of spilling, is this simple pouch from Crosman. It’s very inexpensive but works great… So great, I buy them by the dozen and give them away free at my events, so folks won’t spill pellets all over. I hang mine on a strap, so it’s at my side about hip level. Then it’s easy to get the next pellet with my right hand as I flip open the breach with my left.
    here is the link..
    https://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/Crosman_Airgun_Ammo_Pouch_Holds_500_Pellets/1956

    on with the testing!

    Wacky Wayne,
    Match Director,
    Ashland Air Rifle Range


    • Great to hear from you, Wayne. I’ve been using that Crosman pellet pouch ever since I saw a photo of you wearing one at an FT match. The key is to sling it over your shoulder, Wayne-style. Worn on a belt, they’re only good for dumping or squashing pellets when you’re getting up and down at an FT match.

      Knock ’em dead at the benchrest championships!

      PS, I’ve heard kind words about the Dynamic brand tin(?) pellets, for use where lead ammo isn’t allowed. I’ve never tried them myself. One key difference about them is that they’re reasonably heavy, in the same weight ballpark as their lead cousins – almost as if they exist for some other reason than deriving big velocity numbers for the Marketing dept.!

      -Jan


  6. Also,

    So many top shooters couldn’t or wouldn’t make the journey to S. Carolina in late July, that I moved up onto the light varmint “B” team and heavy varmint “C” team USA for air gun bench rest at the world championship. LD and I will be driving it!
    Here is a link
    http://www.usairriflebenchrest.com/12101.html

    Wacky Wayne Burns,
    Match Director,
    Ashland Air Rifle Range



    • Wayne,

      If you can, please link some pictures and the results.
      I would love to see some of the winning targets too, hopefully they will be yours.
      Best of luck,
      Volvo.


      • Thanks guys, I be practicing like crazy. This rookie bench rest shooter has a lot to learn! Thankfully, some of the guys with the top scores, who aren’t going… are coaching me on the fine points of flag reading.. and there is some fine points to learn! The slightest misread and you are blown into the 8 ring.. and that’s not a good thing:-)

        I’ll see what I can do about posting some pics and the results from afar… I got a laptop now, so it might be possible. This link will most likely post results as they happen..
        http://benchrest.com/forumdisplay.php?19-Airgun-Benchrest

        Wacky Wayne



  7. Lesseee….. velocity spread……

    CPL 7fps
    JSB 10fps
    AA 3fps

    Raptor 27fps
    Skenco 60fps
    Hypermax 111fps
    SSP 92fps

    Can’t we just call the superlites a joke and leave it at that?



    • Vince,

      Okay, you stole my thunder for the wrap-up. It;s pretty obvious what pellets this gun likes.

      But I was asked to test this by a reader and I’m going to follow through. In fact, today I learned about a new scope base made by BKL for the 631 so I will probably put a red dot on the gun after all. I was going to shoot with the open sights, but with this new base I don’t have to.

      B.B.



      • My first Slavia was a 618 my Dad bought in the 50’s or 60’s, and gave me around 1970. Still have it, still in very good shape, still shoots credibly well.


  8. I am curious if any of these pellets will group. I think we all know the Gamo raptors are terrible, but perhaps there is hope for some of the others?
    As you suggest the rifle sounds ill when you look at cocking effort vs energy. If you have an R7 lying around you could make life easier on yourself, after all that is R1 level work.
    I’ll guess in the end we should all stock up on lead pellets while we can still get them, based on averages I need enough for about 25 more years if I am lucky.


    • I think we all know the Gamo raptors are terrible, but perhaps there is hope for some of the others?

      Considering that these “terrible” Raptors had the best (smallest) velocity spread of the non-lead… the others are likely going to strung out vertically…

      I’ll guess in the end we should all stock up on lead pellets while we can still get them, based on averages I need enough for about 25 more years if I am lucky.

      Heh… if one went by my average usage in the past — I don’t think I’ve used up the RWS pellet sampler I’d bought in the mid-80s yet… So 500 pellets was a 25 year supply!

      However, I’ve purchased a Condor, Maurader, Baikal 10m pistol, and Silhouette pistol this year alone… AND I’m eligible for early retirement in two years… My pellet usage may thereby increase in the next decade. Time for a few boxes of the Crosman pellets, and a mass of Barracudas…


      • I admit with head hung low that I did buy and try Gamo Raptors in a variety of .177 rifles, none showed the accuracy that I require and I am hardly the first one to draw this conclusion. It may well be that the Slavia does okay with them due to the low velocity, but that will not elevate them to the category of truly accurate fodder. Nothing light weight can retain enough energy at distance to be viable for real use. Honestly I doubt that any will be worth the price of admission.

        As far as the averages, I fear I consume far more pellets.


        • I tried some once in my TSS with 18 inch barrel. I had bought some of everything that WW had to try out. Our new WW store only has some Daisys and CPHP now.
          Anyway…..they shot as fast as 1200fps. At 25 yds most went into a group somewhere around 1/2-3/4 inches. Shooting at cans and rocks at different distances out in a field at 35-45 yds , some of them went where they were supposed to but a lot missed by a wide margin. One of them broke apart (in the barrel I would guess) and splashed the ground at two widely seperated spots at the same time.

          Not a pellet I would trust at any distance. I need pellets that carry some weight, have consistent fit, and shoot good at distance. Since I nearly always have wind I need something that remains as stable as possible under variable conditions. Light weights or anything but domed do not fill the bill.

          twotalon



  9. Interesting on the velocity spreads and that brings up a question. Do the lead pellets fit the bore that much better or is it the skirts of the lead pellets are expanding to give a better seal ?


    • I think Scott may be onto the cause. Could it be that the non-lead skirts don’t expand like the lead ones do therefore leaving the non-leads at the mercy of inadequate manufacturing tolerances.


    • Scott,

      Most of the non-lead pellets were small, but so were two of the three lead pellets. But lead is by far the better material for its ductility. I don’t think the non-lead pellets expand when the air hits them.

      B.B.


      • Right. And if lead is softer, the pellet makers can err a bit on the larger side and the pellets will still work fairly well. They’ll just squish down. The harder non-lead pellets, however, really can’t afford to be oversized because they might fit too tight (they don’t squish as easily) and not even leave the breech, especially in lower powered guns. So if you have a given size range due to production tolerances, but you have to push the upper end of that range down for non-lead pellets, that means the lower end will REALLY be loose.

        My guess, anyway…




      • David, I should have been more specific. I think my original post a few days ago concerning the new RWS Hypermax was one of the things that sparked this test.
        I’ve found in the past that on the whole, RWS puts out a very good, consistent line of pellets…I use Hobby’s, Superdome’s and R10 Match with good success. I had high hopes for the Hypermax…but with over 100fps spread I don’t think RWS has a winner here.


  10. Hi BB,
    I wish Pyramid would pick up the Slavia 630, 631 and 634. I think they would sell well, especially the 634.
    Have a good weekend everyone,
    David Enoch


  11. 630/631 needs to be “tuned”to give the best performance (beer can tune 🙂 sheet of metal inside piston to give a tight fit to the spring -there is a lot about tuning 630/631 so i won’t talk too much about this ,634 is almost perfect as it is but it can be also lubed and “beer can tuned” -634 is a bit shorter air rifle so it is not as pleasant to shoot with open sights like 631 so 634 is only Slavia (on my opinion) that is best scoped
    Interesting fact- piston from 630/631 and 634 are the same diameter just 634 piston is shorter -that means it has more air capacity that means it has more power …


  12. A new feature has just been added to blog comments. If you have an email address attached to your comment entry/sign-in, all responses to your comment will be mailed to that address.

    Let me know if you find this new feature helpful or annoying.

    Thanks,
    Edith


    • I always thought the email address was a required field (so the sysops can contact offensive posters in private).

      Considering that my flaky DSL set-up at home finds the blog site unloadable (it can find the IP address, but no data transfers; I suspect there is some problem with WordPress and my DSL “modem” — mostly sites that are heavy in javascript and/or security give me problems… at present while I can browse Amazon, it hangs up on the secure order pages).

      Getting responses on my home email (and POP3 is another protocol that connects and hangs — I’ve been using dial-up to retrieve email; I can send SMTP on the DSL with no problem), yet having to wait until lunch time at work to connect to the blog is a bit futile to me…

      A separate checkbox

      [ ] Send reply notification to email address

      might be more explicit.


      • Wulfraed,

        No, the email address is not required. If you create an account so you don’t have to sign in each time to make a comment, then you must provide an email address.

        If someone posts an offensive comment, I don’t contact them. I just take it down.

        I’ll mention your suggestion to the IT department to see if they can add the checkmark box. When I spoke with them earlier, they said it was an all or nothing deal.

        Thanks,
        Edith


        • Since Firefox retains a “form memory” for certain fields; the name and mail fields tend to get filled in for me every time… I don’t know if I /can/ blank out the email address and have it stick for future visits… Heh… Oh well.


          • Edith

            I think it is a great idea.

            Sometimes I forget what I said, when, and to whom. If I get replies in my email it simplifies things for me ( and some others I think ) so that replies are not left hanging if they have questions in them. Most of the time blog regulars respond on the current days blog, but not always.


        • I have an auto-fill feature in chrome too so my e-mail adress is always there and my email has to be there so that my avatar shows up so…

          But if an email adress isn’t needed how about adding a alpha numeric code to enter or a check word like we had before? Wouldn’t it keep the spammers away and it wouldn’t be too complicated for newbies?

          J-F

          ps : I’m still not getting the spell checker once in a while, I’m getting a page not found :/blog//wp-content/spell-plugin/blank.html


          • J-F,

            Don’t know why spell checker isn’t working for you. I’m on a Mac using Safari but also have Firefox. Spell checker works in both. Pyramyd Air is Windows-based, and several members of their IT team tested the spell checker in a number of browsers, and it works in all of them. It must be something about your computer’s configuration, your security software, your provider’s firewalls, your browser setup or something else that doesn’t affect everyone using the same platform and the same browser. Spell checker opens a separate window when I open it, even though I don’t allow pop-up windows. So, the spell checker isn’t considered the same as an ad pop-up. Maybe your computer is set up different than mine.

            Regarding the new feature of getting responses to your own comments. I spoke with the IT team, and they said that there are apps that might satisfy your & Wulfraed’s requirements. I went to the site for WordPress apps for comments and started looking for something that would work. There are 856 apps! I went thru several pages of the apps, but I just don’t have the time to do the legwork to look at all of them. At this time, it’s an all-or-nothing proposition. Either we keep the new feature or we don’t. I’ll have to see how many people hate/love it.

            Thanks,
            Edith




  13. I’d say our photo winner earned his $50. Is that supposed to be an FN 240 he’s shooting? I suspect that while we often make fun of Asian pellet guns that they are probably in the forefront of airsoft which they are channeled into by their gun laws. That’s an all-around impressive outfit.

    The Slavia and CZ brands too for that matter are some of those great guns that I would buy if there weren’t so many other guns I would like to buy too.

    Thanks to all for the info yesterday on wood and pet odors. You guys are quite the fund of information. I love stories about geniuses from earlier times doing things that cannot be reproduced with modern technology like the medieval stained glass, the Stradivarius violins, or John Browning’s guns. Someone should do a computer analysis of the violin design and see if they can improve on it. 🙂 I’m now armed with a fund of information about pet odors which is a formidable problem indeed. I would say that the test of Ozone Generators of sniffing a pee bottle wins the prize for most brutal. All of this (in an inverse way) seems to testify to the love of pets….

    The fact is, though, that I was warming you guys up for a problem that is far, far worse. My reloading effort has been derailed right at the start because I cannot figure out how to attach the press to the bench!? There are holes in the press for inserting screws down from the top, but how are you supposed to fasten the press to the bottom of the bench too. Without that you haven’t accomplished anything. This is the Lee Breech Lock Challenger Kit if anyone happens to have that model (highly recommended too >:-)). The instructions just say to fasten the press to a sturdy bench with 1/4 or 5/16 bolts!? Edith could make a killing rewriting the crappy technical manuals that are out there. Anyway, I’m going to call Lee and hopefully get an answer, but right now I can’t imagine what it will be. This is just inconceivable, and it will be a pretty long weekend if I don’t get an answer.

    Matt61


    • Someone should do a computer analysis of the violin design and see if they can improve on it.

      Ah, but you are trying to make a science out of an art… Since each piece of wood is different, the masters must always hand tune the wood when carving it, adding braces, etc.

      And I’m fairly certain that samples from a — gasp — damaged Strad have undergone scanning electron microscope (to visually study the pores in the wood) and gas chromatography (to determine the chemicals in the finish)

      There are holes in the press for inserting screws down from the top, but how are you supposed to fasten the press to the bottom of the bench too. Without that you haven’t accomplished anything. This is the Lee Breech Lock Challenger Kit if anyone happens to have that model (highly recommended too >:-)). The instructions just say to fasten the press to a sturdy bench with 1/4 or 5/16 bolts!? Edith could make a killing rewriting the crappy technical manuals that are out there. Anyway, I’m going to call Lee and hopefully get an answer, but right now I can’t imagine what it will be. This is just inconceivable, and it will be a pretty long weekend if I don’t get an answer.

      Well, my old RCBS Junior (or whatever the small, single stage model was back in 1978) was designed with a lip that one positioned on the front edge of the bench. One then drilled holes through the top of the bench using the mounting holes as guide. Then run moderately long bolts through the press and bench top, and tightened washers/lock washers/nuts from underneath.

      Based on the poor quality photos on the sites selling it, it looks like you have three bolt holes (my RCBS only had two)


    • Matt,

      Those holes are not for screws; they are for bolts.

      Try mounting the press to a one-inch pine plank and then mount the plank to your desk top.

      Guys, I’m ahead of you on this because Matt told me he is really mounting to a desk and not to a bench.

      So Matt, if you want to use screws, use them on the plank, but mount the press to the plank with bolts and nuts.

      I have three presses mounted this way, so I know that it works.

      Now if the problem is there is no clearance for the bolt heads on top, the solution is to have three wide flat legs welded to the base of the press and drill mounting holes out near the end of each leg. I had to do that with a Herter’s U9 press back in the 1960s.

      B.B.


    • Matt,
      If you’re concerned about damaging the bench/desk by drilling holes in it here’s another option. Bolt the press to a plank as BB mentioned by inserting the bolts up so the heads are on the bottom of the plank and counter sink the bolt heads. Then using C-Clamps or any other ingenious device like that clamp the plank to the bench/desk. This way you can move/remove the press as needed.


  14. Edith,
    The picture of the Big Shot of the Week is too large and covering up part of the links on the right side of the blog page. I’m using Internet Explorer 9. This has not happened with previous pictures.



  15. In the final episode of the 2010 season of American Airgunner, Paul Capello tests several non lead pellets. The results for the .177 cal were very impressive. I believe the RWS Hypermax pellets had the best results. The H&N green pellets and Gamo weren’t bad either. The distance was a mere 16 yards, and the testbed was an Air Arms MPR in a gun vice, indoors. If the distance were opened up the groups might go in the toilet. Still, .2″ groups at that distance aint bad.

    Perhaps the barrel on that Slavia is just too big for these pellets. Loose fitting pellets seem to be the death of accuracy. I have a tin of JSB exacts that are supposed to be 4.52mm but fit loosely in every breech I own. I can’t hit anything with them.

    I really like my 630 which appears to be a transitional model with the checkered stock. The cocking effort is a breeze (easier than my R7) and the Slavia allows me to shoot the best open sight groups I have ever achieved. No vibration in the shot cycle. Maybe it has one of Milan’s beer cans inside of it! 😛


    • SL,

      This is the problem when I report on a test in increments instead of all at once. We see things unfolding (the fit of the pellets to the bore of the rifle) and we start thinking what that might do to accuracy. But I promised somebody (I think it was Cowboy Star Dad) that I was going to do this test with the Slavia 631, so I’m going to finish it.

      As for the rifle, I am seriously considering giving it a small tune to improve the cocking effort and quiet the shooting behavior.

      We’ll see!

      B.B.


    • Slingging Lead
      So you have my beer can ,) …bring it back !Just kidding- if it is empty then you’re doing nature a favor !
      Enjoy your shooting ,i’m glad because you are satisfied but don’t forget to lube it from inside and polish the piston with a sandpaper …it is easy – so why not 😉



  16. wprejs -interesting stuff
    I have a spear Slavia 631 but the sear is broken ,now i have to find another sear and if i can piston for Slavia 634(if possible) because it fits in 631 ,then a little bit of grinding with the angle grinder (634 needs longer cocking lever slot ) and hopefully i will make from 631 631/4 hybrid rifle



  17. Anyone wants a Slavia 631? There’s a guy on a Canadian airgun forum selling one and he’s currently studying in the US on scholarship, shoudn’t be too hard to ship it to one of you…

    J-F


  18. Well, my Williams target notched sight arrived yesterday. I mounted it on the FWB 124 and found that it liked being in the middle of it’s adjustment range to shoot at POA at 28 feet. The notched sight is pretty wide compared to what I’m used to but it’s much easier than using a peepsight looking through a hooded sight. I found that I preferred one or the other. That is, a peep looking at a post or a notch looking at a hooded sight but not both. The FWB barrel might be bent but I’ll leave it alone for now as it’s shooting very accurately and I prefer the notch sight to the hooded sight.

    Fred PRoNJ


    • Fred
      What you have there is a pistol sight, because a notched rear sight should be further forward on the receiver. That is why the notch looks so wide.
      Loren


      • Loren,

        thanks for that. I’ll slide the sight as far forward as I can but I know Williams sells different width notch sights so I may purchase a smaller notched sight.

        Fred PRoNJ


        • Fred
          I’ll be interested to hear how the sight works since I have the same rifle, allthough I believe I think I prefer the peep with my old eyes. But experimenting sure is fun, ain’t it?
          Loren


          • Yep,

            what’s nice about this sight is it has enough adjustment so that if the FWB’s barrel is bent, I need not worry about it for now. The other thing is that with the notched sight, I have plenty of light from the target, something the peep didn’t provide me with but I will say it was much easier to line up the target with the peep as opposed to the notch. The biggest problem is making sure the post is even, elevation wise, with the notched sight. But that’s just something to get used to, not shooting a lot with a notched sight.

            Fred PRoNJ


  19. Gamo update:

    I won a 2007 era Gamo rifle on Gunbroker for the princely sum of $25.00. It is one of the standard offerings with 1200\ 1000 fps boldly stamped on the receiver tube. My limited experience with the brand tells me that I could expect the mid to high 700 fps range with an average pellet. My plans were to send the Gamo to Rich in Mich for a full house tune to make this bargain basement rifle the ultimate cheap back-door rig. Upon receipt of the finished product I was going to let it go toe to toe with the HW50S that Paul Watts is currently tuning for me. Given the $600 spread in cost it would be interesting to see what the disparities were.

    Now the bad news: The gentleman that I won the rifle from insisted that it be sent to an FFL. The ad clearly stated NO under FFL required, which is correct. Sour grapes for the low sales price, who knows?
    His shipping was already high at $35.00 and my FFL requires $35.00 to receive a long gun. So all totaled it would cost $70.00 to get a $25.00 rifle delivered. Not to mention my cousin who has the FFL and his buddies snicker at anything less than .308 caliber or 5.56 that holds less than 30 rounds. So picking up a Gamo pellet gun would get me more ribbing than I care to bother with. I told him to keep the rifle in no uncertain terms.

    So Slinging Lead we will never know if your prediction that the Gamo would be on the Yellow classifieds in a week will come true.


    • Volvo

      What a shame. I was looking forward to one of your ‘no holds barred’ reviews.

      Sorry about the deadbeat. If you can’t stand the heat, don’t post no reserve auctions.


  20. Edith….
    Some scumbag posted a bunch of kiddie porn spam at the end of the comments section of the Red Ryder blog dated May 17 2010.
    It shows up in the RSS feed just a few posts from the top of this weekend’s blog.

    twotalon


  21. Hi guys !
    This is my observation about 630,631 and 634 they are long (years,decades lasting airguns )but with one weak spot -it is the sear .
    Sooner or later the sear wears down ,now i don’t know will it be for a year or two or twenty years but it is just my 2 cents


  22. Back from a bit of a vacation.

    On Friday I finished a long negotiation with Scott Pilkington for one of his used FWB 300s rifles. Should be here by Wednesday if UPS holds its schedule. This rifle is described as being about 75-80% on the stock and 85% on the metal, which sounds just fine for a user.

    I paid $400 which I think is fair, but somewhat rougher rifles are $ cheaper. This is a real opportunity to have a classic springer match rifle at an unbelievable price. But better hurry. He has only about 15 or so left from the batch.


    • Pete

      Nothing like a new air rifle to take the sting out of getting back to the daily grind. I hope you had fun.

      Enjoy, and give Pixel a kiss on the head for me.



        • I wanted folks to know why I had a silly grin on my face.

          The 300s was the first match gun I ever bought, but I sold it to get something else. However, I always regretted having to sell it. BB put me onto the Pilkington Treasure Trove in his report on Roanoke (or maybe it was Michigan). At Scott’s prices, these rifles are bargains for anybody who wants to revisit the days when the springer was king, even at the Olympics.


  23. Oh, and here’s hoping everyone who is a father has had a Happy Father’s Day and everyone whose father is still alive, hope you spent quality time with him and if you couldn’t, at least sent a card or called.

    Fred PRoNJ


  24. Tom & Edith,

    Hope all is well.

    Now that PA is the authorized service center I understand that lack of advertising since there are still lifetime service warranties out there that would cost PA considerably.

    What I don’t understand is the lack of advertising on PA’s site regarding their ability to service and tune airguns. PA has apparently gone to great lengths to build a tuning division but aren’t advertising? Are they too busy taking care of current customers to solicit business for tuning older guns like FWB 124’s?

    kevin



  25. Hey BB,

    I just wanted your opinion on something. I recently bought an IZH 61 from pyramydair and I think the barrel is misaligned. I can get it to shoot pretty much center if I adjust the windage all the way to the right. If I don’t the gun shoots to the left. The barrel also looks misaligned with the dovetail on the receiver. Should I exchange it?


    • Evan,

      If the barrel appears to be out of alignment, then it probably is. You are fortunate to have bought it from Pyramyd Air, because they will take care of the problem without an argument.

      The quality of the IZH guns has certainly dropped off over the past few years. It’s sad to see a rifle with so much potential fade like this.

      B.B.


      • I agree. It’s a great gun, and shoots wonderfully, but it seems the quality just isn’t what it used to be. I still feel it’s a fantastic gun, but it could be even better were it made with the same quality as 10 years ago. I’m definitely going to go ahead and get an exchange. You’re right, Pyramyd Air has a great return/exchange policy!


Leave a Reply