Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo

Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo.

 

This report covers:

• Crosman Premier lite pellets
• H&N Baracuda Match pellets, 4.53mm head
• Air Arms Falcon pellets
• Conclusion thus far
• What’s next?

Let’s look at the accuracy of the Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo. I’m shooting lead pellets, only, and I’m shooting at 10 meters with open sights. This will not be the last test with pellets, because this combo does have a scope. But for today, I’m just getting used to the rifle and seeing how it does.

I decided to shoot 10 shots off a rest at 10 meters using 5 pumps of air. You can refer back to Part 2 to see what kind of velocity that gives me.

The rifle feels very clunky to me because of the fake magazine lump they put on the pump handle. I would prefer that not be there, though I was able to make my sandbag accommodate it. On the other hand, I do like the squared-off comb on the stock, because it helps me locate my face. My eye came into perfect alignment with the sights every time.

Crosman Premier lite pellets
The first pellet I tested was the 7.9-grain Crosman Premier lite. I normally use a spotting scope, or, to be more exact, a pair of 7X40 binoculars to see the pellets on the target, but this time I didn’t have to. The rifle was hitting about 2 inches to the right of the center of the bull and landing in the white. At 10 meters, even I can see a pellet hole in the white with my naked eye.

I did lower the rear sight, but since I planned to also test the scope I didn’t bother to adjust the group to the left. It was nice to see where the pellets were impacting.

Ten Premier lites went into 0.517 inches. Given that I was shooting with open sights — and plastic ones, at that, I felt that wasn’t too bad.

Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo Premier 10 meters
Ten Premier lite pellets went into 0.517 inches at 10 meters. Not bad for inexpensive open sights!

H&H Baracuda Match pellets, 4.53mm head
The next pellet I tested was the H&N Baracuda Match with 4.53mm head. For some reason, I felt this might turn out to be a good one, and I think you will agree that I was right. These pellets struck the target even lower and more to the right than the Premier lites. But after just 3 shots I knew I was on to something good. The hole just didn’t seem to grow as the shot count rose.

After 10 shots, the very round group measures just 0.267 inches between centers. I’m glad to see it, for it proves two things. This rifle can shoot, and so can I! This group earns the Black Ops Junior a chance to move back to the 25-yard line. But that’s in the future. Before we get to that point, BBs still have to be tested at 5 meters.

Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo H&N Baracuda 4.53mm 10 meters
Baracuda Match pellets with the 4.53mm head are great in the Black Ops Junior rifle at 10 meters! Ten made this round group, which measures 0.267 inches between centers.

Air Arms Falcon pellets
Thinking the pellet’s large head size might be something the rifle likes, I tried the Air Arms Falcon pellets next. They weigh only 7.33 grains, but they have a 4.52mm head. That’s very large for a .177 pellet and just 0.01mm smaller than the H&N Baracuda Match. So, great things were anticipated.

Alas, they did not deliver. The 0.78-inch 10-shot group they made is the largest of the session, although 9 of those shots were in 0.546 inches. But even that is still larger than the first group of 10 Premier lites. I don’t think the Falcon is the right pellet for this rifle. I also had some difficulty loading them. Three times they flipped around in the loading trough, and once a pellet tried to fall into the BB loading hole! If it had made it, that might have ended all testing with this rifle.

Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo Falcon 10 meters
Ten Air Arms Falcon pellets went into 0.78 inches at 10 meters. Even the 9 that are together measure 0.546 inches. Not the pellet to use.

Conclusion thus far
The Black Ops Junior Sniper can shoot! The open sights are off on the test rifle, but they can be adjusted to center the pellets. The trigger-pull is stiff, but the stock fits me better than I expected it to. All in all, this is a nice, inexpensive multi-pump.

Okay, I’m going to belabor the point. This budget rifle just shot a 10-shot group at 10 meters that’s as good as a 10-meter rifle can produce! Maybe I just lucked out and got a good one. But those of you who’ve read my blog for a while know that almost never happens. I get the bad ones, and then I make them cry in public!

And, now, my friends, for some learning. If my groups were 5-shot groups you might say that nice one was luck. But 10 shots don’t get lucky very often — maybe once every 10 years, or so. And that’s why I shoot one 10-shot group instead of five 5-shot groups. Because I take no chances.

What’s next?
Next, I’ll test the rifle with BBs at 5 meters. I don’t think I’ll test round lead balls because they nearly fell into the BB reservoir through the BB loading hole during the velocity test, and then I had almost the same thing happen with one of the Falcon pellets. I don’t want to take any chances with the rifle.

After the BB test, I’ll mount the scope and back up to 25 yards. And you know that H&N Baracuda Match pellets with 4.53mm heads will be first on the list. That’s really putting this inexpensive rifle under the spotlight; but based on what I see in today’s test, it may be able to handle it.

54 thoughts on “Black Ops Junior Sniper air rifle combo: Part 3

  1. B.B.,

    First of all, nice shooting. I was surprised by the tight groups and even more surprised that you did’nt make more of a “deal” about it as your report progressed. Then I got to the end. I think it surprised you, it did me, as I’m sure it will your other readers. Open sights no less.

    The rear sight looks to have enough adjustment to bring the impact back from the 2″ right of center, would you agree?

    It will be interesting to see how the 25yd. test does and just how “usable” the scope is. As well as if more pumps will help keep the pellets grouped and on target.

    As an aside,..you mention from time to time that it is important that there are entry level air guns that can deliver accuracy. And,..by the gun doing so,..helps insure the new shooter will not be disouraged and will hopefully further their interest in air gunning for years to come.


    • Chris,

      Tom said nothing after he shot these groups. He just went about his usual business of writing the blog. When I proofed it yesterday afternoon, I commented on the incredible groups. That’s when Tom brought the original target to me. If a cheap Chinese gun can do this well, all the other guns have no excuse!

      I was so impressed with the targets, that I alerted the president of Pyramyd Air since they may see a marked uptick in sales for this gun. What a spectacular youth gun.

      Edith


      • Edith,

        Thanks for the reply. Nothing to dissagree with there. If this budget shooter can do this,…then why not others,.. that cost the same or more. They got some sort of parts combo right.

        My only concern would be with the scope. It can’t be too good. I had a cheap Tasco once and it was awfull. I do suppose though,..that is the one thing that you must “pay up” to.




  2. BB, a question for you about steering a younger shooter. My son has shown an interest in shooting my Condors. He’s the one that disassembled and reassembled my Diana. When things looked a little brighter–before the tax man came, I planned on picking up a couple of air rifles this year, including some project guns like the HPA pistols you profiled last year. Now, with a sharply curtailed budget, I am wanting a project for my son for his fifteenth birthday. My cash limit is $400. The gun’s mission is rabbit, squirrel, and turkey, and lots of backyard plinking. 22 or larger is needed to hunt. We’ve got 200′ to shoot in our back yard, but I don’t expect 60 yards of accuracy–say minute of squirrel at thirty yards? Now, we could go Discovery or even a Marauder pistol and stay in budget, but I want the gun to be a project, a learning platform for tuning and modifying. If I go straight to the Marauder, there won’t be much room in the budget for playing with the platform. If we do the HPA CO2 Crosman 2240 conversion, I’m concerned that the gun’s punch as a hunting weapon is diminished (kinda spoiled by the Condors).

    To round it all up, I’m looking for a learning tool as much as a hunting one. I want him to be able to tune, change stocks, valves, triggers and the like, but still be satisfied with smacking ground squirrels around without having Condor envy. The kid is meticulous, and a real wrench on his RC and BMX bikes. I think he would really dig a gun and a kit of parts to modify it for his birthday.

    Thanks!


    • Zack,

      Welcome to the blog.

      With your requirements I would say you should consider the Diana 34. You can do all those modification things you mention and it is a wonderful gun to lear on. I would also suggest it in .22 caliber.

      The Benjamin Discovery in .22 would be another recommendation if you are set on a PCP.

      B.B.


    • Hello Zack,
      The RWS 34 is an excellent first choice for a springer, but it requires technique to shoot well (search for ‘the artillery hold’). To service it, you have to first build your own spring compressor. Then you get some spring tar and moly paste and do a lube tune. Look at the specs in .22 cal on the Pyramyd Air website and decide if it would be powerful enough for your needs. Once tuned, just grab your pellets and go. This gun will last a lifetime with care.
      The Marauder pistol is a wonderful platform, since you’re already started on PCP’s and have a pump or fill tanks. It won’t require as much technique to shoot accurately, once you find the right pellet. You first learn about adjusting hammer spring and stroke, and choosing optimum fill pressure based on chrony strings. The comes inspecting and replacing orings, using heavy silicone grease. Then mods; You can upgrade the hammer spring, drill out the transfer port, build an adjustable cheek rest, install a double air tube kit, lube tune the trigger with moly, install a trigger shoe, and more. I have found it easy to work on and replacement parts are inexpensive direct from Crosman, so no worry if something doesn’t turn out just right. After mods, mine is delivering over 20 ft lb and great accuracy with JSB 18.1 grainers.



  3. Tom,

    This looks like a winner at this price point. If it continues to be accurate in the next test, I would really consider getting one simply as a fun little 3 pump aluminum can plinker (with BBs).

    The only thing that would make me hesitate is the cumbersome pellet-loading procedure, as I have big fumbling fingers. But if I used the gun only for BBs . . . but man, those groups with pellets are impressive!

    Michael



    • My thoughts as well Fred.
      If this had been a $200+ gun with the same results there would be a ton of comments on how great it was.
      Definitely on my short list for a fun little backyard plinker.


    • I do like to see groups like this gun put out with those Barracuda match! and at the price the performance can’t really be beat but I was reminded a couple days ago when I started pumping my old 880 that my brother had to have,why I stay away from plastic. Felt like a dead fish floppin’ around in my hands and bone dry because his wife moved all the ammo & accessories, such as oil, to some unknown dark corner.
      Sounds like a good competitor for the APX & 880 They all produced some respectable groups especially at lower velocities like under 500 fps but the experience is totally different than holding a gun you don’t have to worry about breaking


  4. B.B., concerning the fake “magazine” on the pump handle, is there a screw(s) that hold it on? Or does it look “glued” on. Just wondering if the person that buys the rife (could be me the way this thing is testing out) could take off the fake magazine if he/she so desired. Thanks, Bradly


  5. I just found the rifle I was looking for yesterday! Tech Force M-8 manufactured by Mendoza advertised as 18# cocking effort and I believe Mendoza is who was making the Bronco. Please can anyone tell me anything about this rifle from personal experience? I’d like to know what the LOP is on it for a 7 year old.
    Thanks,
    Reb


  6. Sorry off topic. A guy on a FB airgun page just posted this “Ok try this …….I will assume no responsibly however. Spray down the pellets in the tin with furniture polish. Liquid gold. And shake it up. Take now wet pellets and shoot them. Write your observations.” I think this would be a Bad Idea what do the rest of you think.

    James the frostbitten Canadian


    • Not sure what that is going to accomplish…

      At best it does nothing or creates some extra power (and wear) by detonating.

      At worst, it contaminates the barrel with some gunk of unknown propertiers or damages the seals.

      Why not strawberry jelly or Heinz Ketchup? 🙂


      • My understanding of furniture polish is that most of them contain denatured alcohol and it sounds like the guy doesn’t wanna be responsible for blowing up someone else’s gun. I’d tell him to strap on a pair and do it himself then report to everyone his findings.


        • BB, great groups with this rifle. I am still a little concerned with the difficulty in loading pellets. As your test continued, did you find a trick to load the pellet easier ? With my fumble fingers, stay away from pellets on my 880. I think that would be a drawback for a new shooter if dear old Dad was continually having to fix load errors. The groups look good enough to make me want to buy one, but if I can’t load it, can’t shoot it . Thanks


          • It seems like the 880 used to have sliding mags. I don’t believe they were self indexing like the 953 but a lot easier to load and well before Crosman did it on their 760’s. I could be wrong though. I didn’t have one because I steered clear of the plastic stuff back then. My 1377 was the most plastic I’d bought on a gun until this round of fever,Even now if I’ve gotta gun with much plastic on it you can bet I don’t have much money in it. Like my dumpster-dive Remington Airmaster. Which is the most reliable pumper I’ve ever had! I bought 2 nuts for $0.29 and gotta back-up in case it comes loose and gets lost again.



      • CptKlotz,

        How would this cause detonation? I thought that only occurred in the compression/piston chamber if a petroleum based lube was used in there,…not in the barrel.

        And yeah, unknown barrel “gunk” is a factor too. I am pretty sure B.B. did a study on pellet lubing, and it really did not show much difference, Plus the mess and work involved.

        I must admit though that the idea has intrigued me.



  7. Great that this can deliver accuracy, so often the saviour with cheap multi pumps.
    So, people, if your progeny are showing an interest, you now know what to buy

    An HW25 or HW30, you tightwad 🙂


    • I was looking at the HW30 also but it is kinda pricey for a kid’s backyard plinker. I missed the last of the Bronco’s by mere minutes but I found one of it’s siblings for $99 and the package says it comes with a 4×32 AO scope which I’m hoping will be included as advertised. Check out the Tech Force M-8!
      /s/m/Tech_Force_M8_Air_Rifle/3220/6242

      Reb


      • Reb
        I like the stock on your new Techforce M8. The two things that turned me off the Bronco were the colour of the wood stock, and the Winchester 1894 style strait grip. Because of some arthritis in my wrists, I am not able to shoot this style of stock without developing severe wrist pain. I have tried shooting a friends Daisy 1894 BB gun with painful results. Your M8 appears to sport a similar grip to my Weihrauch HW50. A gun I can shoot for two or three hours with minimal wrist discomfort. I say a pox on this getting old business.
        Ciao
        Titus


        • Titus,

          I have to ask,….”I say a pox on this getting old buisness”….POX???? I like new words and wondered what this means. I could not figure out a misspell for it.

          And for wrist pain,..I can relate. Oddly more in the left than right. Odd, because I am right handed. Shoot rifles left and pistols right.

          On getting old,…before I was 50, I had to think how old I was if someone asked. Now that benchmark has passed, I still have to think about it. In other words, I don’t think about it! 🙂



            • Tim,

              Nope. Never anything close. I figured it might be a term from “across the pond”. We have some European guest on here and I have seen some odd words. I like it though. I get to learn something new.


          • Chris USA
            Tim is correct when he calls the term an expression. It was widely used in the days when a pox referred to any disease that left unsightly pock marks on the skin. Primarily the facial area. To wish a pox on someone was considered the about the worst thing that could happen. Back then Small Pox, Chicken Pox, etc, had no cure, and just ran they’re coarse leaving unsightly scars the victim . Vaccination has all but eradicated these diseases, and the term.
            Ciao
            Titus



      • I should have checked that, for once there is a rifle that is actually cheaper here in the UK than it is Stateside!
        Weihrauch do a £150 ($290) kit with scope and bag baded around the HW30….which given a Crosman 760 is £99 you can see my reccomendation makes more sense here than there.
        (Makes you feel any better the rest of the Weihrauch range is cheaper there, marginally)


    • Dom and the group. BB did not get back to me on the ease of loading pellets. If a adult has problem loading them how is a youngser going to do it, unless with their smaller fingers they can index them better.


  8. Will the Tech force M8 stock fit a Bronco? I do not like the straight grip Bronco stock.If it will,. fit the Bronco, how can I get one ( without buying a complete M 8)? Ed


  9. Ha. Can’t wait for the five yard test that I can relate to. Nice shooting. I’ve never heard of the company that produces this rifle.

    On the general tactical phenomenon, I made an interesting discovery. Supposedly Soviet training had soldiers shooting rifles much more squared up than a Western stance which is more bladed for marksmanship. This would explain why the length of pull for the AK 47 and other Warsaw Pact weapons is shorter than the NATO counterparts. This had previously been attributed to heavy clothing for the Russian winters, but the squared style would be another missing piece. And if this stance is not optimized for marksmanship, it might be for a human wave type charge which was part of Soviet doctrine in WWII about when the AK 47 was invented. Even in the Korean War, Communist doctrine involved large numbers of soldiers advancing and hosing down the enemy positions with submachine guns firing 900 rounds per minute. That makes sense if you have enough manpower and is not unlike the old marching fire technique that the BAR rifle was designed for.

    Also, Mike is confirmed in his account of the design history of the AK. I read that Mikhail Kalashnikov had a whole array of weapons available to his design team and one of them was the M1 Garand. The Garand was responsible for the long-stroke piston and some elements of the action. Other elements came from the ubiquitous John Browning through his Remington 8 rifle which has dropped out of the historical picture. Between his American military weapons, the Browning Hi-Power and even the AK, Browning was even more influential than anyone imagined.

    Matt61


  10. Everyone,

    I noticed that the refurbished kit was $9 cheaper that the regular kit for this rifle. I’ve never had much luck with refurbished products but have never tried a refurbished air gun. Has anyone here dad good or bad experiences with refurbished air guns?

    Thanks,

    Jim


  11. My vote for young teens with an interest in air guns and tuning is to get a RWS Diana 34 and 12 fpe Vortek spring kit, and do the trigger tune with the longer screw on the Internet. This gun is perfect for hunting and plinking since it is self contained, and as accurate (but not as nice looking) as the HW series guns. The trigger is 85% as nice after the tune too.

    For a PCP, I recommend a discovery, and tuning the trigger with the 2 screw mod on the Internet, doing the hammer debounce mod on the Internet to decrease any gas waste, and adding a bolt-style power adjuster.

    The PCP is MUCH easier to shoot small groups with. Shooting springers requires a VERY consistent hold, and VERY consistent and long follow through. But you only get 30-40 shots before you need more air with a discovery, so it’s not as convenient for walking around in the woods plinking leaves off trees 🙂

    Both guns are accurate enough for field target when home tuned- so neither will be something your son will outgrow.


  12. Well I’m off to the Great American Outdoor Show in Harrisburg, PA tomorrow or as the Cabela salesmen were callling it, the Shotshow of the East. I’ll stop by the PA booth but I don’t think they’ll have any RWS 34s’ or Nitros for sale, only the Tech Force rifles plus the P17 and some other accessories.

    Fred DPRoNJ



  13. I bought a Remington AirMaster 77 refurbished I think from Pyramyd for a bargan price. It appeared to be new when I got it. Works perfectly. Its the same as a Crosman 2100, just a different name on it.


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