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You asked for it: All about Pyramyd Air customer reviews & images

by B.B. Pelletier

On the heels of yesterday’s blog about what people expect after making a purchase, we noticed that there was a lot of interest in the product reviews on Pyramyd Air’s site. Edith (for those who don’t know…she’s my wife) will address those questions and give you some insight into how reviews (good, bad & ugly) are handled. As long as she’s at it, she’ll also give you the scoop on customer images.

If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email us.

Take it away, girl!

One of most time-consuming jobs I have at Pyramyd AIR is reading customer gun reviews. When the review process was originally created, it was easy to handle. Now, it doesn’t take long before I get a huge backlog if I decide to skip a day or a week.

While I read the gun reviews (airsoft guns & airguns), Laura Nelson takes care of the accessory and ammo reviews. She’s located in Iowa, and we were lucky to get her when Pyramyd AIR bought out her former employer…Airgun Express (for you newcomers, Airgun Express was Pyramyd Air’s closest competitor at the time). Elise Vendetti works the customer-submitted images. She’s located in Cleveland at Pyramyd Air’s headquarters and has been with the company for a little over two years.

What we hope you’ll write in your product reviews
The purpose of the customer review is to give others a full evaluation of your experience with the product. While we’d like to think everyone will be pleased with their purchase, that doesn’t always happen. Plus, there are hiccups with shipping that are out of our control…especially when it comes to product damage during transport. Still, we want to know all of it. Roses, thorns, warts and troll dung…we want you to tell other customers what you found when you got your gun, how it was packaged, how it shot and if it met your expectations based on what we’ve written on the product page.

When we devised the format for reviews, we wanted to know what you liked, what you wanted to see improved and any other thoughts you might have about the product. The original space allotted for the reviews was unlimited because we wanted to encourage sharing and full disclosure from end users. Before I knew it, I was reading as many as 10,000 words in some gun reviews! To save my sanity, text boxes are no longer unlimited. For some people, there wasn’t enough room in the “what’s good” text block…and others found the “what I’d like to change” text block much too limited. Surprisingly, the shortest reviews — the ones that have “everything” and/or “nothing” written in all the boxes — are declined. That’s not information about the product. We want details.

Why we decline reviews
Within 24 hours of approving or declining a review, an automated email goes out to tell you the status of your review. It includes the name of the product, and a link to the product where the review is listed.

If your review was declined, you’ll get the product name and web link plus a list of reasons that your review may have been declined. Here are the reasons:

  1. Negative review of a product purchased from another source.
  2. Does not own or use the product.
  3. Includes links to non-Pyramyd AIR sites.
  4. Provides maintenance, repair and/or disassembly instructions that may not be safe or accurate.
  5. Mentions or suggests removing or concealing the orange muzzle of an airsoft gun.
  6. Mentions or suggests adding a silencer to a pellet gun or BB gun or mentions the use of the same (except for silencers that are integral to the gun as originally manufactured).
  7. Unhelpful terms, foul language or negative remarks about other reviews or reviewers.
  8. So short that it doesn’t provide helpful info.
  9. Written in cryptic text message format.
  10. Includes incorrect statements about the product.
  11. Tasteless or unsuitable screen name.
  12. Includes inappropriate uses or prey for the product or overly graphic descriptions of kills.
  13. Mentions a competing merchant or that it can be bought cheaper elsewhere.
  14. Unrelated to the product.

Note that there are 14 reasons. It has always been my belief that if 10 Commandments were enough for God, then 10 is enough for anything I do. So, I came up with 10 rules that would prevent a review from being approved. Well, it worked for several years until some customer reviews forced 4 additional rules to be created.

Here are the guidelines for images and videos. If yours has any of these, it won’t be approved:

  1. Does not own the rights to the submitted items.
  2. Inappropriate or has inappropriate elements.
  3. Suggests or shows removal or concealment of the orange muzzle of an airsoft gun.
  4. Suggests or shows a silencer on or for a pellet gun or BB gun (except for silencers that are integral to the gun as originally manufactured).
  5. Unrelated to the product.
  6. Poor quality (blurry, too dark, etc.).
  7. Mentions a competing merchant or that it can be bought cheaper elsewhere.
  8. Includes inappropriate logos or text.
  9. Shows a hunting scene.
  10. Shows a person’s face or a recognizable person.

For each review, image or video that’s declined, we record the reason. I don’t want to bore you with reasons for declining things, but here are examples of reviews that forced me to decline them:

  1. The person doesn’t own the gun, but he’s written a complete review of it. He’s never shot it but “knew” what to expect and decided to cut to the quick and get the review out of the way to benefit others who may not know as much.
  2. A rant about FedEx (we also had rants about UPS when they had Pyramyd Air’s shipping business).
  3. Reviews that are a love story about a buying experience with Pyramyd AIR. People read reviews to get product info. The reviews that are “love letters” are copied and sent to a customer service supervisor, who will contact you and tell you that your review is being declined and why. We don’t want to erase that smile, so we go the extra mile.
  4. If you wrote an honest review that brings out a large number of negative points about a product or state the product is not worth buying, we’ll check our system against the email address and/or name you used to post the review to see if you bought it from us. If you didn’t, then the review is declined.
  5. The worst reviews are the ones for which I’ll probably need therapy: shooting at inappropriate critters (usually with underpowered guns) and then describing the agony of the dying or injured animal. For me, the worst ones are the grandfathers who are teaching their wee little grandchildren…tomorrow’s shooters…how to shoot with a Red Ryder and using the neighborhood birds, squirrels and pets as targets. After reading such reviews, it takes a while before the screaming in my head stops!
  6. Rachel Carson, author of “Silent Spring,” probably didn’t envision airguns as being the death knell of birds, but the number of youthful shooters (as well as some mature adults) who have just gotten a powerful breakbarrel air rifle who shoot at federally protected migratory birds is staggering. Who uses an airgun to shoot at owls? Kestrels? Canadian geese? Pelicans? Woodpeckers?

The largest number of declines are people who went to the local sporting goods store and bought a gun and didn’t like it. Because their retailer doesn’t accept customer reviews, they assume they can post it on our site. If you spend your dollars with another business, don’t come on our site to complain about your purchase.

What is enough power for hunting?
I’ve mentioned that people use underpowered guns to shoot at critters. I see on Crosman’s site that they recommend some pretty low-powered guns for pest control. We don’t allow that on Pyramyd Air’s site.

A few years ago, I had to come up with a minimum velocity that a gun had to meet in order to accept it for shooting critters. I selected 800 fps in .177 and 600 fps in .22.

Those numbers are very significant. By picking 800 fps in .177 caliber, I’m omitting the BB guns that are reputed to shoot at 755 fps. These are not only inaccurate guns, but they’re probably not shooting that fast all the time. So, if you mention in your review that you dispatch mice, rats and chipmunks with your 2100B rifle, you’re going to get gonged. Can you use such a gun to kill a small rodent at 10 yards? Probably with ease. However, the other people who are reading your reviews will see only 2 words: kill and 2100B. They won’t care about distances or projectiles. I’ve seen it too many times to ignore it.

Picking velocities has been very hard on many customers who swear that their BB and pellet guns are real killers. I prefer to take the high road and not encourage the use of these guns across the board for shooting at animals. If you want to hunt, please get an accurate gun…and not a BB gun.

I hope this has helped some of you who may have had a review, image or video declined and didn’t know why. If it happens to you, please write to our sales department and ask for an explanation. They’ll ask Laura, Elise and me for an explanation that will be passed along to you.

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.

103 thoughts on “You asked for it: All about Pyramyd Air customer reviews & images”

  1. Great post Edith, it’s always nice to see how things work and are handled on a day to day basis.
    If you and Tom (or anyone else working for PA) wants to do a post on how things work behind the scene I’d be more than happy to read it.
    If I remember right Tom did an article in the long dead Airgun Illustrated about PA and their then new building? I remember reading it telling myself how great a company they looked like and here I am a few years (and few airguns later) reading about the very same company on blog financed by them.

    I’m not sure I ever received a notice telling me my review had been posted, I see one on there that I think is mine (it’s 2 years old so I’m not 100$ sure) but it says “customer” from “USA” is it possible my “Canada” and name has been removed or the complete review been thrown away because the gun isn’t sold here (which is really sad, as I’m talking about the Bronco and everyone calling himself an airgunner should own this nice rifle PLUS it’s perfectly legal here and within the legal limits, unless my chrony is WAY off) ?


    • J-F,

      No, your name was not removed & replaced with “customer.” You have to fill in a nickname in your profile in order for a name to appear with your reviews. If you just register and fill in your first & last names (which you did not do), we don’t use that because most people want to protect their privacy.

      I don’t know why they automatically put in USA as the location for you (maybe it’s the default). I’ll ask IT and let you know what they say.


      • Edith, you are a phenomenon. Your response to J-F, your helping me with the Gravatar. I admit that I deliberately attempted to minimize having you do more for me, both because I know you have a lot to take care of (and, of course, I still have trouble asking for directions). You did point me in the right direction and I sincerely appreciate that.

      • Edith, my stream of consciousness was definitely impaired. I wrote to you that I have trouble asking for directions, but what I meant to say was that I have difficulty stopping to ask for directions 🙂

        You, and B.B. and the guys here have been great. Although I may never meet any of you in person I do feel that I am not alone as I move toward a place I’ve never been before; it was on thing to have a competent surgeon remove a bullet from my foot, but this cervical spine surgery feels more like, “The Barber of Fleet Street” even though I know I have a competent, experienced neuro-surgeon on the case.

        Thanks, Edith (and everyone) for being here.


        P.S.: I got home with enough light to shoot a bit, then it started raining again (sigh).

  2. Good post! It might actually be necessary eventually to have a blog post educating new shooters on what they shouldn’t or can’t shoot (broad categories like migratory birds, pets, etc.) I too cringe whenever I see someone ask (on other airgun forums) if they can shoot the neighbor’s cat with a BB gun. Ugh! There can never be too much education.

    • I freaked the first time I saw someone writting about shooting cattails… I figured if Edith let it get posted it must have another meaning that I wasn’t aware of so I researched it and found the true meaning and why people liked to shoot them 😉


    • jimby,

      That would be a very long blog post! The problem that we have is that the vast majority of people who are shooting at the wrong things are not interested in finding out that they’re shooting at the wrong things 🙂

      So, even if we had such a list, only the people who care about such things would access it. Most of the people who shoot at things that are forbidden don’t give a flip that they’re doing it & wouldn’t give a second thought to such a list. That’s why we have people who obey the law & those who don’t 🙂 It’s not that the laws are a secret (for the most part), it’s that they don’t care that there are laws!


  3. There is one thing that I do have to disagree with, pellet velocity and the suitability for hunting. I have used a Daisy FWB150 for years for pest control and it gets about 625 FPS with RWS basics. In the past when I used to have many maple trees in my front yard crows would like to come and just make a total mess of my front yard, cars, driveway, etc. I used to use the FWB 150 for head shots at 20 yards or less and I could knock down 5 or 6 crows before they knew what hit them. I also had a more powerful RWS 48 in 22 that I stopped using because it was not accurate enough (I had not yet heard of the artillery hold). The RWS 48 still did not reliably drop crows in their tracks with body shots and head shots were out of the question. What I am trying to say is that shot placement whether it is on a bull elk, a bull elephant or a crow is the most important factor in successful hunting.

    • steve,

      I agree that shot placement is important. Generally speaking, BB guns have insufficient hunting accuracy, so shot placement is a toss up. As I said in the blog post, I deliberately selected 800 fps so BB guns would be excluded.


    • Steve,

      You have raised the issue that Walther D.M. (Karamojo) Bell raised in the early 1900s when he hunted african big game including elephants with a 7 X 57mm Mauser. I believe he dropped over 1,500 elephants during his career and he maintained that a hit in the right place was always preferable to more energy delivered to a less vital spot.


      • The good old .303 British service cartridge which I believe at that time was loaded with a full metal jacketed 215 grain bullet and cordite , was also used by Bell as well .The early British hunters and settlers killed many elephants and other game with that cartridge. Like pellets which don’t expand ,penetration to a vital area is what counted .

          • Matt: there is an article in the Febuary issue of “Fur Fish Game ” magazine, on the .303 British written from the perspective of a Canadian hunter. It apparently is the most common caliber used for hunting in Canada. You might find the article interesting .

    • Steve, I’d give Edith the benefit of the doubt on this one.
      Your right… you can hunt with a lower powered gun, if you know how to control your shot placement.
      Thing is…if you can do that consistently you’ll know what lower powered guns will do this.
      Unfortunately (and I truly mean it is unfortunate) review sites like Pyramyds have to pander somewhat to the average reader…you know…the people that have caused our newspapers to write to a grade 5 level.
      So sad!

        • Edith (and Steve)…please don’t misconstrue what I was saying.
          I totally agree with Steve…just saying it’s too bad that people in your position (Edith) have to word everything for the lowest common denominator (intelligence wise)…and that that intelligence seems to have sunk so low in the past 20 years.
          Or maybe I’m looking at the past through rose colored shooting glasses 😉

  4. The velocity limits that Edith has set for hunting airguns are the same as what our DEC ,who controls hunting regulations here in my state (NY) has recently set for airguns used for hunting legal small game. It’s a good general guideline. What the problem is with airguns used for hunting and pest elimination is the owners of the guns. In an old airgun book written by George Nonte that I’ve had for years , a high quality airgun as mentioned by Steve above, is shown with a brace of dead squirrels and rabbits. It is stated that the owner has used his gun to hunt game at close range for years. That owner ,like Steve , is an experienced and knowlegable airgunner. Problem is, there are folks out there with NO experience , who only want an airgun because, 1: they can’t use a firearm and are trying to get around local regs that prohibit discharge of them, or 2: they buy a cheap airgun which is weak and /or inaccurate and then assume it is powerful enough because someone ,somewhere has gotten lucky and wacked some hapless pest sucessfully ,ONCE with one. If you use airguns for hunting and I use a 48 to hunt squirrels with, you have to realize that they are NOT firearms, and they are more like traditional archery tackle.There is NO difference in killing power between my Diana 48 .22 or my Diana 24. 177 practically speaking. The 48 with it’s higher velocity and bigger pellet generate more energy, but it takes more skill to harness that accuracy in the field. It’s only then , that you can take advantage of that extra power. Even then, it is only a very small advantage that you could do without by getting closer to the prey if possible. The hunting tactics involved, require restraint , patience, practice, and a high level of fieldcraft. Airgunpellets will only kill cleanly if they penetrate vital organs and terminate their function . 99% of the time an airgun pellet will NOT expand. The velocity and wt of the pellet at the common range the game is shot at is what determines that.

      • TT,

        And that’s the whole issue. What’s close? 10 feet? 10 yards? 50 feet?

        What’s “plenty of power”? BBs flying at 350 fps to shoot a starling at 20 feet? 20 yards? If you’ve shot only anemic guns, then 500 fps from a Daisy BB gun will seem like ripping power!


        • Edith..

          I like to restrict myself (with airguns) to something like this…
          starlings with R7 or similar power out to 30 yds or so, 55 yds with TSS and cph.

          fox squirrel out to 30 yds with Talon (16 gr Exacts)
          ground hogs out to 30 yds with Talon using Kodiaks
          ground hogs out to 30 yds with Talondor (18″ barrel, Condor tank and hammer weight)


  5. As I also work in retail, the last couple blog posts hit home regarding customer behavior. No matter what our best intentions, customer education is a difficult subject. I keep asking our marketing staff to add a small disclaimer to everything we print whether it’s signage, advertisements, web site, blog, Facebook… Something simple like, “applies only to the literate”.

    • “applies only to the literate”
      That’s hilarious, sadly the illiterate won’t read it, you would need some kind of pictogram (or pictograph which ever term you guys use) to tell them.


  6. I won’t take offence if you ever have to delete one of my posts or reviews, Edith.

    TT,……Talondor… Hehehe! Sounds like a character from Clan of the Cave Bear series…..


  7. If only I knew then what I know now. I have a Crosman Phantom 1000 (really about 850). I had bought it to do some small game hunting. I have taken a rabbit at 28 yards with a head shot. Man, after that shot I thought I was “da man”. However, one time “da man” hit a rabbit in the vitals at a similar distance and that rabbit began running around wounded. Thankfully I have an athletic 95 pound chocolate lab that was able to get that rabbit before too long and put it out of its misery….misery that I caused with a shot that was too long with a gun that was underpowered. “Da man” changed his name to “da idiot”. My Phantom is now used only for squirrels under 25 yards away, house sparrows and starlings (i.e. unprotected nuisance birds). Those are always clean kills. I see now on the internet where you can calculate not only muzzle energy, but the retained energy at certain distances. I’ve found that 8 fpe is the magic number for squirrels, and with my gun that is about 30 or so yards, but I limit myself to 25 yards to make absolutely sure and to be at a distance I feel confident of making a good shot. Airgunning is so much fun. The ironic thing is that hard core firearms folks think of these things as toys. I would argue it takes more knowledge, responsibility and skill to use an air rifle appropriately.

    • se mn airgunner,

      The Phantom and other similar magnum rifles are inexpensive. It seems to me that most mainstream airgun buyers don’t think about accuracy when buying inexpensive guns. Most assume that a gun IS accurate. The only thing they have to do is get the “mostest, powerfulest” gun because all other things are equal among all guns. That would place FWB Olympic-grade guns at the bottom of the heap because they offer nothing more than a fancy stock & German heritage.

      These are the same people who won’t move up to a PCP because it’s more money for no more power (in most cases). It’s only when they can afford to buy a PCP because of the extra power they want (Condor, Evanix guns, Sumatra, etc.) that they discover vastly improved accuracy.

      Some people never progress to a higher level of accuracy. I can only guess that the firearms they own fit in the same category. I’m just glad these people aren’t running for public office. All they’d want is power and give nothing in return for that privilege. On reflection, I think those ARE the people in public office 🙂


  8. No doubt. My next gun will be a .22 caliber with gas spring of some sort. However, even some of these “cheapies” can be fairly accurate, as long as you learn the proper hold and trigger squeeze….and know it’s limitations! Inside of 25 yards, my Phantom is pretty good. But yes, I’d like a higher quality gun no doubt. I suppose my sons don’t have to go to college all FOUR years?!? 🙂

  9. OT…can you verify this B.B.?
    It’s on ‘that other website’ that Crosman has discontinued the .88 gr CO2 cartridges.
    I checked and the Nightstalker is gone as well.
    My question will be if Pyramyd will ship CO2 across the border. No one in Canada that I know of sells the Walther .88 gm cartridges…though I don’t use my Nightstalker very much anymore I’m hoping these can be shipped cross border.

    • CSD,

      I read what you did on the Yellow Forum. By the way, these aren’t .88-gram cartridges as listed on the Yellow; they are 88-gram cartridges. I say that because it will make a difference when you search the internet.

      I did a quick search and found nothing but Big Al’s Aquarium service:


      This sounds like an excellent business opportunity to me!


    • Might have some truth to it, I’ve seen them in the clearance section of my local WalMart a few weeks ago. I’ve seen plenty in local sporting goods stores but it would surely suck if it disapeared for the people owning guns who work with them.

      If you need some D&L seem to have the Crosman ones in stock (is it ok to mention another seller since they’re selling only to Canadians so aren’t really in competition with PA?).


        • j-f,
          On a whim, I looked at my youtube video stats yesterday and saw the video I made for you on how to load the Marauder clip. I had forgotten all about that. It has gotten nearly 1,400 views so far. Not hardly viral, but now I feel so important. 😛 The only thing is, I can’t tell if the viewers are laughing at me or with me.

            • J-F,

              You might try getting a permit for it. I noticed that when big o took office here in the states, many many new people bought firearms and got concealed carry permits. Within a couple of years more states relaxed their gun laws a little and things got a little more sensible (although far from ideal,a step in the right direction). I think the politicians took notice of what people really wanted and acted on it. Sort of a reversal. Maybe you can help start a trend up there in Canadia, eh? 😉


              • That’s the sad part Chuck, there is NO permit for it. Shroud=illegal
                The way our classification works if the shroud was legal, firing over the 500fps/4.2 ft-lbs limit it would be considered a firearm BUT being a pistol (even if it comes with a shoulder stock, it’s detachable so it’s a pistol) it would be considered a restricted firearm, so I would need to be a member of a shooting club and would only be allowed to transport the gun from my house to the range.
                So it means I’ll never legally own one.


  10. For those interested in the Crosman MAV 77 (the BAM 40 underlever they will soon be selling), Crosman posted a video of it at the SHOT show and they are talking about a price range of about 350$ again WITH the centerpoint scope, a lot more interesting than the 530$ they first put up on their website!

    You can watch the vid here: https://www.crosman.com/croswords/?p=2384
    you can go straight to 1:10 for the price.


    • j-f,
      Did you notice him cocking the gun? Intended or not it gave me the impression that it is awfully easy to cock. I suspect he either didn’t cock it fully or it had already been cocked relieving any tension on the spring. He cocked it twice without firing so I suspect the latter. I suspect he also tested the dry-fire durability later. 🙂

      • Yes I noticed, I’ve seen this in their other vids as well.
        Maybe Tom can enlighten us?
        He doesn’t fully cock it but it seems REALLY easy so maybe they put a really weak spring for demo purposes?


  11. Responsibility.

    I don’t know what the Mission Statement for this blog says. Based on my observations, in general, I’d say it’s about educating the consumer that has an interest in airguns and airgun related subjects. Since the blog has close ties to Pyramyd AIR we are treated to glimpses of what it’s like to be in the business of selling airguns and airgun related stuff.

    The last two articles have generated a lot of great discussion. The articles always further my education about airguns and so does the discussion. I’d like to thank everyone for their comments since I’ve learned much from them.

    The last two days of discussion underscored to me the disturbing trend that in general people want answers to questions they don’t know how to ask or are unaswerable for the masses. It seems to me that too many people aren’t willing to risk their time and money to find the correct answer for themselves. Instead, they want shortcuts. The query is, “Please, Point me to a book or website where all of life’s questions are answered.” Sometimes there isn’t an answer since there are just too many variables. Sure it makes sense to seek advice and guidance from people with more experience. But in many instances there aren’t specific answers nor guarantees for many questions in life.

    IMHO, Gun ownership and the responsibilities associated with gun ownership create questions that sometimes there aren’t definitive answers to.

    It’s important to not only know Federal, State and local laws for gun ownership and hunting but know your personal limitations. Take hunter safety courses, read, ask questions and learn how to safely handle, shoot and care for your gun. Learn about ballistics, trajectory and shot placement. Practice so you know what you’re capable of. Admit your limitations.

    To answer a few of the questions:

    1-Some people should not own any gun for any reason since they don’t have a clue about responsible gun ownership. These people feel empowered to own a gun because of the little they’ve read on the internet and can own a gun but shouldn’t own a gun. Yet.

    2-Some people should not hunt anything for any reason even with the most powerful weapon since they can’t range properly, don’t know their limitations, are clueless about ballistics, don’t know their preys anatomy and have never field dressed an animal in their entire life.


    • Kevin

      You said a mouthful!

      The last two days of discussion underscored to me the disturbing trend that in general people want answers to questions they don’t know how to ask or are unaswerable for the masses.

      How do I talk to someone from Flatland about height? And how do I talk to someone who doesn’t know ballistics, when the crux of their question requires an understanding of ballistics to comprehend my answer?

      I have tried in the past to answer the question a person asked by simply answering it fully and completely, knowing full well they didn’t understand what they were asking. It’s like scattering pearls before swine, to use a biblical reference.

      We currently have a discussion ongoing over the difference between 9mm and .357. The guy is arguing that everybody knows the caliber 9mm, but my point is that an airgunner will do the research to find that while there are hundreds of lead bullets available for .357 caliber, there are incredibly few for 9mm (I mean cast or swaged lead bullets that can be shot in an airgun). But this guy means ammunition when he says bullets, so my argument is falling on deaf ears! It’s like talking to a petulant child who gets angry when the answer doesn’t conform to his simplistic view of how things should be.


        • kenholmz,

          My statements about handguns?

          That link is a big read. I’ll try to find some time later tonight to digest it all. What did I say?

          I’m not a handgun guy. My feelings about handguns are that the only reason you should own one is to be able to fight your way back to where you left your rifle. 😉


      • B.B.,

        I’ve re-read my post and it sounds preachy. Apologies to everyone since this is not at all what I intended.

        I think you do a terrific job of educating without sounding preachy. Obviously a tough road for me.

        My major point was that you can’t graduate high school without doing homework. Just hoping to get an education by showing up and hoping through osmosis that wisdom will become yours is unrealistic. You must read, ask questions, try it for yourself, fail and try again to gain wisdom. The greatest teacher in the world can’t give you all the answers.

        I think you’re doing a terrific job as a teacher but we need to remind ourselves that we have a responsibility to meet you half way.

        Unfortunately, there will always be the PHD level questions asked by those that don’t have their masters degrees yet. It’s almost impossible for these discussions to end in anything but frustration or worse argument since there’s such a disconnect in knowledge and experience. You can’t learn everything relevant about guns just by reading books and spending time on the internet. You’ve got to do it. There just isn’t a substitute for experience and until you have a little you just can’t fully grasp my examples or explainations.

        I don’t have all the answers but realize my responsibility is to do my part and learn everything I can in everyway possible. Still wish there was one book or one website that could teach me everything about all things though.


        • Steve,

          If everyone was brain-dead I would agree. But the people I talk to are in the sporting goods industry. It’s their job to get spun up — not mine to dumb down.

          These are the people who, when they learn that something comes out of this bullet immediately invent names for it. Names like bullet heads, bullet tips and bullet noses.

          Let’s see, I need a box of 100 cast bullet noses for that 9 mm revolver of mine – you know, the .357 Python?


          • B.B., I want to tell you that despite my earlier faux pas I really do know the difference between a bullet, a cartridge and ammunition. I don’t know a great deal but I do know the basics when I slow down and think.


    • Here’s my short version for those in a rush today.

      There is no fountain of knowledge. There are many. Keep walking to the next one and you may learn something along the way.


  12. I have read Edith’s post and I have read all of the posts I could (except I know they are still coming and I can’t catch up).
    I wrote previously about shooting a house sparrow with my first bow and arrow. I hurt badly over that. I hurt so badly because, at the time, I had not reason to kill that bird (that was still living when I went to it, my arrow half way through its body). Today, I might shoot an English Sparrow with less emotional difficulty.
    However, I have had only one guiding principal since that day; I don’t want any animal to suffer. I love my paternal grandfather but I saw him do one thing that disturbs me to this day. Sometimes my brother and I would go fishing with him. If my grandfather caught a gar (which was common) he would break their snouts with a pair of pliers and thrown them on the nearby dry ground. I suffered in silence, not because he felt he needed to kill the fish but because he left them to suffocate.

    In the latter ’70s I purchased a 5mm Sheridan Blue Streak and about a year later I added an El Gamo .177 break barrel to my small collection. In Tennessee I had occasion to shoot Starlings and rats. It was my guiding principal that dictated how and what I did.

    I bought my Daisy Powerline 1000 (Hatsan 70) early one morning. The evening before, as I was driving to work I came across an Opossum badly injured by a passing car. I stopped and helped it off the road. I was distraught during the night that I had no reasonable way to help that creature. When I got off the following morning I went immediately to check on him. He was still alive, but mortally injured. I drove three miles to an Academy because I wanted to euthanize him as humanly as I could. I went back and shot a pellet into his head. I felt badly but I knew I had no better choice.

    I confess, I went bow hunting each season for three years while in Tennessee. I took two shots in those three years (both missed). I really only wanted to know that I could have the skills to hunt if I felt the need; I am not trophy hunter in any form.

    I have the 1000 and a Titan. I have not shot (until last September) for several years. My guiding principal dictates that I not thing of shooting a living creature for any reason until I have determined what I can do with the rifles, both what the rifle can do and what I can do.

    Having read the posts here, I know that you also have the same guiding principal. I only mention this because I really didn’t know much back in the ’70s, I only knew that I wouldn’t willingly leave even a Starling or a rat to suffer needlessly.

    • And God know how I feel about the severe abuse that goes on, some in ignorance and some due to a sadistic streak. I know Edith suffers from reading those accounts.

      Also, it is my understanding that law enforcement officers are trained “not to wound” (regardless of what some may do, by intent or not, all television aside). I know this is absolutely true for Texas State Troopers. Back when I paid for the privilege of exceeding the speed limit I made sure that my hands were visible at all times.

    • kenholmz,

      We’re all learning. In my book, showing mercy & compassion to those who are dependent on you is the No. 1 way that demonstrates who you are inside.

      Lack of mercy & lack of compassion indicates a hard heart. I have no issue with killing animals for food or dispatching destructive animals and pests. I DO have an issue with killing for the simple bloodlust of seeing something die or because you can. What is the purpose? Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. I wish no one and no thing a lingering, painful, miserable death. A swift end with minimal suffering.


      • It dismays me that there are people that feel the need to do pointless, sadistic things like that and I appreciate that you’ve removed those reviews etc. It also dismays me that many people who read these things (or witness events like the drunk with the shotgun in the previous post) can end up thinking that THIS is what hunting is. I’m not a hunter myself (don’t care much for venison, moose or duck and there aren’t really any pest problems where I live – the herbivores and carnivores seem to keep each other in balance!) but my Dad was and some family and personal friends are and one thing they all had in common was a sense of compassion and a respect for the animals they hunted. I see the same characteristics in your readers here.

  13. Edith, without you watching the reviews, I shudder to think at what would be up there. Torturing animals really brings out the worst in me.

    I have my own love story with PA. There was a woman receptionist who would take my orders over the phone. At one point I got mixed up with my totals while trying to hit the then $150 minimum for free shipping. So, I asked her if I had reached the limit. She said, “No!” and started laughing! Actually, that made me laugh too, and she had a nice voice….

    Victor, I had no idea you were in such pain. I would have guessed that you were out there nailing targets as usual. Well, good luck with the recovery and we’ll let modern medicine do its thing. Before I found my wonder drug for rheumatoid arthritis, I was barely able to hobble about on a cane. The martial arts was not even a remote possibility. Then, it occurred to me that all the drills in the practice hall was not the purpose nor was some competition or fantasy self-defense encounter. THIS health problem was the challenge and what it was all about. And so it is. So hang tough.

    Mike, right you are about the expense of the .338. Ouch.

    On the subject of my list of skills and hunters, I did not mean to overgeneralize. The way the chart works is that any individual would be assigned the skills of the highest category that applies. This implies that each category is defined in terms of its minimum. So, for hunters, I did not mean people like Kevin who is a pro and a serious shooter, but those folks who are focused on making the kill. The rifle is just a means towards an end and they take it out only to sight it in and shoot the game. I had thought of the military as another category, but law enforcement would be more interesting. Where would they fall? I’m guessing near hunters as defined. This is based on a visit to a range where some very young-looking female police officers were sweating it out about qualifying with their handguns. Then there is my own experience working with an officer who was completely clueless about shooting as he was about self-defense. He said that the ammo was too expensive for regular practice on an officer’s salary which I can see. And then there’s Jeff Cooper who claims that the Glock is the perfect for police because of its simplicity and relative inaccuracy due to its “spongy” trigger. In other words, it was perfect because police can’t shoot! Well, we know that Jeff had strong opinions.


    • Matt61,
      Thanks! Yes, I too believe in modern medicine, but I also know that you have to be critical of doctors. Pain is like the Devil, in that it can be misleading, and cause us to act out of desperation. It’s tough to fine the balance, but support and faith help. I am a man of faith, but as Tammy Wynette would say, “… after all, he’s JUST a man”. I’ll be fine. I just need to get over this leg, and then work on recovering from the back problem. That’s going to take a lot of time and work, but I’m worth it.

      Regarding your hierarchy. Thanks for clarifying what your thought process is. Before this blog, I would have created a list exactly like yours. So I agree with your reasoning. The only thing that changed in my mind is the notion that a hunter wouldn’t have super high standards with regards to accuracy. But that’s only in terms of what is ideal, which someone like Kevin and my son would hold to. In practical terms, you’re correct.


  14. Kevin,

    “My feelings about handguns are that the only reason you should own one is to be able to fight your way back to where you left your rifle. ;-)”
    I like that!

    “What did I say?”
    You didn’t say Kevin, that was B.B; obviously I am not shooting straight today 🙂

    You don’t need to read that paper but I do think it is worth while.

    Have a good one,

      • B.B., you wrote to Kevin earlier on:

        “We currently have a discussion ongoing over the difference between 9mm and .357. The guy is arguing that everybody knows the caliber 9mm, but my point is that an airgunner will do the research to find that while there are hundreds of lead bullets available for .357 caliber, there are incredibly few for 9mm (I mean cast or swaged lead bullets that can be shot in an airgun). But this guy means ammunition when he says bullets, so my argument is falling on deaf ears! It’s like talking to a petulant child who gets angry when the answer doesn’t conform to his simplistic view of how things should be.”

        I liked the reference to Flatland.

        I looked carefully to insure it was you (or someone impersonating you) 🙂

        • kenholmz,

          I have sometimes responded to emails that I didn’t read carefully…or at all 🙂

          Going off on a tangent, responding to people who never wrote anything to me, etc., often puts me in a deep hole that appears bottomless. I find it best to move on as if nothing happened or even as though I never responded in the first place. Sometimes, it’s the only way to retain whatever shred of sanity I have left. Since I’m 63, I’m sure people think it’s due to old age and that sound they hear is just one more marble I’ve lost 🙂


          • Thank you, Edith. You know, what you said is true on the blog is true in person. Not everything needs to be addresses and sorted out. It is sometimes best to quietly go forward, perhaps with some modification of behavior in response to whatever caused that inner alarm to go off).

            Wow, only one session with you and I feel much better. Just send your bill and I will owe you forever. 🙂


  15. Kevin,

    “My feelings about handguns are that the only reason you should own one is to be able to fight your way back to where you left your rifle. ;-)”
    I like that!

    “What did I say?”
    You didn’t say Kevin, that was B.B; obviously I am not shooting straight today 🙂

    You don’t need to read that paper but I do think it is worth while.

    Have a good one,

    • I give, I am satisfied with what I have written except for the post I am responding to (although I a bit embarrassed about not responding to the correct person or place). It is the medication and it is transient, but I would not want to be driving today (so I may have some semblance of good reasoning). If I have no student come in (and I hope at least one does soon) I will just read quietly to myself. I expect I will find it worthwhile. I am not familiar with Jeff Cooper but I see the Internet is loaded with information about him (and by him, I expect). Thanks to all for offering information and grist for the mill.

  16. I love it when the blog gets all philosophical!!
    Never been much of a hunter…it just seems so easy to go down to Safeway to get my meat 😉
    But in truth, as much as I like paper punching for the sake of the competition…I think like many people I consider it a huge benefit that I’ve gotten good enough at my pastime that if need be I could put food on the table.

  17. Edith,
    FedEx just delivered my Sketchers XT. I put them on and the first thing out of my mouth was, “Whoa, these feel good!” Tomorrow morning will be the first test when I first get out of bed and tomorrow night the second when I get done grocery shopping. Both of these times make my feet hurt the most.

    Tom, you could be the greatest Sketchers salesman. I’ll let you know Thursday.


  18. B.B. & Edith,

    As of this moment your last 5 articles (one weeks worth) have generated a total of 561 comments.

    Even when you discount my posts it’s still an enormous airgun buzz that you’ve created. I can’t help but wonder how many airgunners are sitting on the sidelines unaccounted.

    I think PA should compensate you for the interest you’re generating from airgunners worldwide. It seems justifiable that being paid by the comment should be fair.

    Should we start a petition? 😉


    • kevin,

      Yeah, it sounds good, but what about the ones that don’t have a lot of comments? We’d be on bread & water diets!

      Tom said that if they pay us by the comment, he’s going to hire kenholmz. If they pay by the word, we’re hiring Matt61 🙂


          • Yes ma’am, although he has said it was about bragging and not royalties. But, regardless, I wish to present to the court that he did confess and appeared to be truly contrite. To me, that means he was a person who could listen to the evidence and was willing to change his beliefs. It also means that he was responded to in a way that was not offensive; although it is not an American idea I think the best way to state it is that he was able to “save face”.

            Good night and good luck,

          • Edith,
            Maybe so, but there’s no denying you deserve it. I sincerely believe what you and Taom are doing has brought many sales to PA. Maybe they’ll buy you a dinner some day, then.

            How about this: I pay you a dollar for every gun I bought because of what you two do?

      • Uh oh, I didn’t realize….I have just responded to whoever and whatever has triggered a thought. I have been aware of this but I haven’t kept count. The fact is, at some point I will find I can’t think of anything to say, or at least I won’t know how to say it. I will likely still be reading fairly steadily. It’s cyclical but there is no set pattern to the cycle. This is probably TMI, but it is what it is.
        I am pleased to have come to this place.


        • kenholmz,

          “Uh oh, I didn’t realize….I have just responded to whoever and whatever has triggered a thought.”

          Yup. That’s what happens when you feel comfortable. It’s what we’re trying to achieve with the friendly informality of Airgun Academy 🙂


          • Thank you, Edith. It was incredibly easy to just start responding once I got started. I made note of the kind of latitude that was allowed and that made it easy. The cold fact is I would tune in just to read B.B.’s posts. This is not a honeymoon; this is realizing that I stumbled on a platinum mine of information about a subject I enjoyed so much in the late ’70s. But B.B. continued and became a main player in the airgun world.
            When I slack off from participating, please know now that my appreciation will not be dampened.


    • You know, Kevin, although there has been a fair amount of posting that was not specific to airguns, I, for one have not forgotten for a minute that airguns are why we came here and a large part of why people stay. The other is knowing that I am interacting with real people who are about more than airguns. I see that as a plus except that I must find my own balance to a large degree.

      But yes, Tom and Edith are among the very best the sport could even ask for.


      • kenholmz,


        Airguns are the larger body that almost all discussions here orbit around. Topics rarely stray very far from our shared interest in the shooting sports.

        Edith and Tom are the reasons that I frequent this blog. They share unprejudiced information about products, diseminate this information without a condescending demeanor, create an atmosphere of family and are devoted to maintaining a moral and civil household.

        Very comfortable to me. They’re lucky this isn’t their physical home since I would never leave. I’d have to be evicted.


  19. Looking back at some of my reviews I realize now that I may have been a little over zealous because at the time those airguns were better than sliced bread to me, but now that I can shoot an 18 grain pellet at 900 fps and still have 15 foot pounds at 100 yards from a gun that has no recoil and is stupid quiet, I may not have been so forgiving of their heavy triggers and what I consider now as mediocre accuracy. Then again I had a lot of fun with them without having $800.00 invested in them. I agree with B.B. about people that shoot anything that moves and let animals suffer by shooting them with bb guns, because they are not reading this blog and could probably care less. I am a hunter and do so legally, that being said I gave up bowhunting a few years ago because of a poorly placed shoot that hit a large doe further back than I wanted, after tracking her for 1 hour I found her still alive and all I had was my bow, one reason I wish you were allowed to carry a pistol while bowhunting, sold the bow three weeks later.

  20. It’s a bit late and I don’t know how many of you may see this but I want to throw it out to you, if only for the historical value it has.

    archive .org has quite a bit to offer. This link is to a page that has a few videos of military marksmanship training. There is also a video conversion of a German film about training snipers (with English subtitles) you can do a search for

    If for any reason the above link does not work just go to the main page and search for marksmanship in the search box. You can filter the results for only “Moving Images” by choosing this from the drop down menu next to the search box. Then click Go.

    Searching for “airgun and “air rifle” with “All Media Types” chosen brings up a few things (although some may be duplicates).

  21. ken,
    Thanks for that link. I was watching Rifle Marksmanship with the M1 Rifle (1942) Part 2 and lo and behold the instructor was teaching the artillery hold with the M1- in 1942!

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