Hatsan BT65 QE: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Hatsan BT65 QE
Hatsan BT65 QE.

This report covers:

  • First group
  • Problem solved
  • A good start
  • Benjamin domed pellets
  • Beeman Kodiak Match pellets
  • RWS Superdome pellets
  • Back to the JSB pellets
  • What about the silencer?
  • Conclusions

I’ve wanted to get back to this .25-caliber Hatsan BT65 QE for a long time. Today, I’ll tell you what happened. I wasn’t satisfied in part 3 that I was seeing the best accuracy this rifle could produce at 50 yards, even though there were some okay 9-shot groups. This big PCP has the reputation for shooting better than it did, and I wanted to see that; so I removed all the silencer parts and went back to the range.

Over the years, I’ve had problems with airgun silencers — starting with a Daystate Mirage in the late 1990s that just didn’t hold up at 50 yards. When its silencer was removed, that rifle suddenly tightened up and shot like it was supposed to; and that’s what made me aware that airgun silencers are tricky things. When they work, they do so beautifully, and you never know they’re there. But if anything touches the pellet before it leaves the muzzle, all accuracy is destroyed.

Today, all shooting you will see was done with a rifle that was not silenced. And the results are dramatic. This was shot last week on the same perfect day that the Benjamin Bulldog was tested. The conditions could not have been better for shooting 50-yard groups from an air rifle.

As you recall, the BT65 has a 9-round circular clip. So, I shot 9-shot groups instead of 10 for this test.

First group

The first group told me the rifle was performing differently with the silencer parts out. Seven of 9 JSB Exact King pellets landed in a tight 0.598-inch group at 50 yards. But there was a double feed in this first attempt, and I want to talk about that. Those 2 pellets went out the muzzle slower and landed about 5 inches below the point of impact.

The online description says the BT65 has a mechanism that is supposed to prevent double feeds, but the rifle I’m testing doesn’t work that way. I had double feeds both times I’ve had the rifle out to the range. This time, I observed exactly what happened and can now tell you. When the bolt is pulled back, sometimes the circular clip rotates and the striker is caught by the sear but the rifle does not set the trigger. Even though the action is cocked, the trigger isn’t in position to release the striker, so the bolt has to be retracted a second time with more force. This allows the clip to advance again, and a second pellet is pushed into the breech.

Hatsan BT65 QE JSB group 1
Seven of 9 JSB Exact King pellets made this 0.598-inch group at 50 yards. There was a double feed on this clip and 2 shots landed about 5 inches below the point of impact.

Since this was the first group of the session, it was easy to document everything that happened — including the 2 shots that landed low. I also developed a feel for when this situation happens; and when it happened a second time during a later group, I just removed the clip, shot the pellet (after setting the trigger) and installed the clip again.

Problem solved

The real solution is to pull back the bolt harder than I had been. When I did that, the rifle never had another double-feed problem. I put this information in the “getting to know your rifle” category. My point is that although the BT65 is not supposed to double-feed, this one does and I found the way to deal with it.

A good start

I knew the rifle was a shooter when I saw that first group. I wanted to try a couple different pellets, but I also wanted to get back to the JSBs and test them some more. I had another observation on the first trip to the range. I wondered if there’s only 1 or possibly 2 full clips of accurate shots on a fill.

Benjamin domed pellets

Next, I tried a clip of 9 .25 caliber Benjamin domes. In some .25s, these are the best pellet. In others, they’re second behind the JSBs. It’s always worthwhile to try them.

Nine Benjamin domes went into a 1.239-inch group at 50 yards. That’s good, but not great — especially in light of what the JSBs did. I decided to try a different pellet.

Hatsan BT65 QE Benjamin dome group
Nine Benjamin domed pellets made this 1.239-inch group at 50 yards. It’s okay but not as good as the JSB.

I have to tell you that I was seeing some of the pellets in flight. Just before they zipped through the target I caught sight of some of them, and it was stunning to watch them zip through the same hole, time after time.

Beeman Kodiak Match pellets

Next up were .25-caliber Beeman Kodiak Match pellets. These used to be the best .25 pellets on the market. That has changed over time, but they’re still very good in some airguns.

The BT65 put 9 Kodiak Match pellets in a 1.404-inch group at 50 yards. Ten years ago, that would have been a good group for any .25-caliber airgun; but with today’s improved pellets, it’s just mediocre. Don’t stop trying them in all guns, though, because sometimes they’ll really surprise you.

Hatsan BT65 QE Beeman Kodiak Match group
Nine Beeman Kodiak pellets made this 1.404-inch group at 50 yards. It’s not the best, but don’t forget to try Kodiaks in every .25 you shoot. Sometimes, you’ll be surprised.

RWS Superdome pellets

I also tried shooting a group with .25-caliber RWS Superdomes; but when the first pellet landed 7 inches away from the aim point, I stopped. I was afraid they might ruin some of the groups on other bullseyes I’d already made, and I didn’t want that to happen. Maybe .25 Superdomes are good in spring rifles, but they don’t seem to be right for the BT65.

Back to the JSB pellets

I really wanted to return to the JSB King pellets to see what they could do when all 9 pellets went into a group. The next group I fired was the second clip after a fill. Nine pellets landed in the group that measured 0.978 inches between centers. We were off to a good start.

Hatsan BT65 QE JSB group 2
Nine JSB Exact King pellets made this 0.978-inch group at 50 yards. This was the second clip after a fill.

I refilled the rifle to 3,000 psi and shot 2 more groups. These confirmed what I suspected all along.

Hatsan BT65 QE JSB group 3
Nine JSB Exact King pellets landed in 0.758 inches at 50 yards. This was the first group after a fill, and it was the best 9-shot group of the day.

Hatsan BT65 QE JSB group 4
Nine JSB Exact King pellets landed in 1.124 inches at 50 yards. This was another second group after a fill.

What about the silencer?

I proved this rifle works with the silencer guts removed, but what if I want them? If this was my air rifle, I would work on the silencer to allow it to be used without affecting the accuracy. Since it has several parts — two metal baffle chambers and two other plastic chambers that have felt wrapped around them and the muzzle cap. Somewhere in all of those parts the edges of one or more of the small central holes the pellet passes through is touching the pellet. If the touch is hard, there will be some lead left as evidence. But it it’s sight, there might not even be a mark.

There are a couple solutions. The first is to assemble the silencer parts carefully to align them better. You might have to repeat this several times. Misalignment, alone, can cause problems.

Hatsan BT65 QE silencer parts
These are the silencer parts from the BT65. The pellet first passes through the two silver chambers at the top left. They have small holes and are probably causing the accuracy problem. Then, the pellet passes through each of the black plastic tubes wrapped with felt. They have much larger holes and aren’t likely to hit the pellet. Next, it passes through the muzzle cap, which also has a larger hole.

If that doesn’t work, I would go through all the parts and slightly enlarge all the smaller holes. That’s what I did with my Daystate Mirage, and it worked. Remove a very small amount of material and stop when the rifle shoots accurately.

The point is that you can have a silenced rifle that’s accurate — it just takes some work. And, not all rifles will even have this problem, so don’t condemn the model based on one test.

Conclusions

Okay — this BT65 can really shoot! It would also seem that the first clip after a fill is the best one.

I still want to try the with some other pellets like the Predator Polymag. I also want to shoot the BT65 at 100 yards. You haven’t seen the last of this big Hatsan!

47 thoughts on “Hatsan BT65 QE: Part 4



      • Hopscotch should be here any day now. Then I’ll be working on how to fill it. Give me a call when you get a chance. I can’t get a hold of you or Buldawg.



        • Reb
          I have been out of town over the week end and do not use email on my phone so I can only text or talk when I am out of town. but I am home now and should be for awhile.

          Other good news is I got my SSD decision papers today and was approved so life will be much better and if I can get my doc to stay in his office for more than a day or two here and there I will be even better as I have been without pain meds for over a month now and I am hurting very badly.

          BD


          • Just tried your# again and got the same recording .
            Glad to hear about your SSD!
            Watch out detoxin” on those pain meds! My Doc just put me on a muscle relaxed that’s keeping me down most of the afternoon.


            • Reb
              The phone is on and it has not rang so I will send you it in a pm as you may have it wrong.

              Done been detoxed for several weeks now and yes it sucks since my doc was not in his office all in Apriil and when I tried to get my records for the hearing on the 22nd of April he wanted 488 bucks, 35 bucks plus one dollar per sheet of paper for the records so I went with out them so when I can see him again he will be told where to put those 453 pages of records that I did not need anyway.

              BD



        • Reb
          I been sick with a stomach virus and on top of it a respitory infection in my chest. Still not a hundred percent. Missed a couple days work last week and this week.

          So what your saying is your hi-pac is on the way? I think I remember you talking about it a little while back. Let me know what’s on your mind.


  1. Hmmm. A checklist is forming regarding a list of things to check if accuracy is not as expected. Check all screws, are they snug? Check the barrel, does it need to be cleaned? Use open sights first before using scopes to check accuracy. If a silencer is fitted try shooting groups without it. Be consistent in your hold and make sure you are at ease when shooting for groups. I am sure there are more to add but these are just off the top of my head.



    • Steve,

      Is your rifle throwing pellets around? In other words, is the pellet touching the inside of the silencer parts? That is the only reason for doing what I did here. If your rifle just needs to find the right pellet or a refinement of the artillery hold, this procedure will do nothing to help the accuracy.

      B.B.


    • Steve,

      Looking at my Gamo Recon Whisper shroud/suppressor is molded and I don’t think you can just unthread or pop off the suppressor. You could pull the guts out but I don’t think accuracy will improve. My gun is a good 10 meter open sight starter rifle but at 25 yards the groups open up.

      David


      • David,

        What you describe is normal and what I would expect from a Gamo rifle. I don’t think the silencer parts are interfering with the pellet.

        I realize you were answering Steve, but I’m saying this for his benefit.

        B.B.


        • B.B.,

          I have the original Gamo Recon (without the sound suppressor) and its a tack driver up to 25 yards. I have 2 Gamo Recon Whispers and they start loosing accuracy at about 18 yards. I have conducted tests to determine which pellet they prefer and all 3 of my Recons prefer the JSB 7.33 grain pellet. Don’t know if the suppressor accounts for why the 2 guns are not as accurate as the Recon without the suppressor. No matter what, I really enjoy shooting these low powered guns. I use the non-suppressed Recon for hunting pack rats and I have very few misses with it. The other two are for plinking and target shooting. Life of a retiree is grand!


          • Steve,

            Okay, I didn’t know how much experience you had when I wrote that comment.

            Look down the muzzle with a tactical flashlight and look for one of the baffles that has a nick or groove. If you have that, you have a problem. But it doesn’t even have to be noticeable to affect accuracy.

            B.B.


          • Steve,

            Yeah, that sounds like my Recon Whisper good to 15 yds or so then the groups start to open up. Shoots a little over 1″ @ 25 yds good enough for plinking and feral can hunting. I got some other pellet rifles I can use when I have a desire to drive tacks.

            David


      • I had a feeling the shourd was molded and could not be removed. I have an orginal Recon without the suppressor and its a real tack driver out to 25 yards. I have 2 Recon Whispers and their accuracy drops of at about 17 – 18 yards. No matter, I still enjoy shooting these little low powered guns. Lots of fun!


        • I seem to recall that when the Whisper was introduced, Gamo had to go out of their way with the BATF to prove that it could not be removed (and later fitted to a .22 rimfire)…

          So… it’s cut it off completely with a hacksaw, or drill it out…



  2. BB
    Have you got any word on the .30 and .35 caliber QE model yet if you will be getting one to test soon?

    And it looks like it likes the JSB’s. I was just curious. Did it possibly feel like the JSB’s loaded into the magazine smoother than the other pellets?

    And by chance did it feel like there was less resistance when the bolt loads the JSB’s?

    My .177 caliber QE I had shot better groups when the bolt loaded the pellet the smoothest and easiest. You didn’t notice that by chance did you?



      • BB
        I hope you get one soon since all this big bore rage is going on.

        And I was going to ask about the bolt loading on the Bulldog the other day and it slipped my mind.

        Do you think the bolt could have a chance of pushing the bullets maybe wrong at times that the Bulldog uses verses a pellet. Maybe that is part of the cause for accuracy not being as good on some of the big bores. The bullets tend to be flat or convex on the back and possibly the bullet might try to cock to the side when it transfers from the magazine to the bore.

        Its just a thought but I can sure that bullet trying to move around before it makes the bore.


        • Oh and forgot. Maybe that’s part of the reason the Texan does shoot accurately.

          You load the pellet by hand then the bolt loads it the rest of the way. Maybe a truer load.



          • BB
            Yep that’s what I was trying to say. I thought maybe it was getting sheared like you described.

            But if not then good. Just wanted to bring it up just in case.


  3. ATTENTION! ATTENTION! ATTENTION!

    Calling all airgunners! I have just learned of an airgun shoot and show that will be happening next week!

    May 15, 16 and 17

    Gateway To Airguns Fun Shoot and Airgun Show 2015
    Gallatin County Fairgrounds
    4576 US 127 North
    Glencoe, Kentucky 41046

    President
    Hargis Davis
    (859) 466-2331
    [email protected]

    If you go to this thread and read through it, you will find information for location, local hotels, etc.

    http://www.gatewaytoairguns.org/GTA/index.php?topic=77828.0

    Crosman will be running a FT instruction and airgun tryout range. Pyramyd Air will be there. There will be several competitions with prize money, including a big bore competition.

    Lloyd Sikes and I will both be there and will be looking forward to a great time! Come out and join us!


    • RR
      I got that email from the GTA forum many months ago and was hoping to attend but the wife is having more issues with her left knee that was replaced back in 2013 and has never really gotten better so it looks like more surgery.

      I have a friend that will be there and was wanting me to go but it is just not in the cards at this time
      . I would have been very interested in meeting you and Lloyd for sure. he just got done making me two disco tubes to fit my 2240s that replace the very poorly designed hipac kits that I wasted good money on and he does exceptional work as I now have very good looking and dependable HPA tubes for my 2240s.

      I really do wish I could go but there are just other priorities at this time.

      BD




  4. Nice shooting. I experienced a double feed myself when I double loaded and fired my IZH 61 by accident even after tens of thousands of rounds through the gun. I’m just glad it’s strong enough to take the abuse.

    David, yes, I saw that the Terrus is not a poor man’s LGV. I was wondering how this was achieved. If the idea is to give great value, wouldn’t it have been easier to cut corners with a quality system that is already known than to develop quality in some completely new system? It’s nice that they could do that, but it doesn’t seem to follow the usual marketing practices.

    Mike 250 and 300 yards is pretty cool. I was getting all warmed up to shoot to 300 yards and beyond at one rifle range with my Russian sniper rifle. But they closed everything down beyond 100 yards after some stray shots went into a nearby community. Still I got to experience some of it. One of my most memorable shots was hitting the gong at 300 yards with my Savage 10FP. I can only imagine hitting targets at extreme long range.

    Matt61


    • Matt,

      Yeah, I know what you mean, usually high tech shows up first in the top of the line model and then trickles down to the lower price point item. Like ac was a luxury car item when I was a kid, now even your basic ecno box has ac standard from the factory. If the Terrus can shoot pro le are gonna call it a “poor man’s LGV” no matter what Walther says. 🙂

      David


    • Those long range shots at a gong is great fun.. At one of our past Cowboy Action shoots, I remember hitting the 280 yard gong with my Trapdoor Springfield 45-70. Boom………………………….clank! You have to love that!

      Mike


  5. I own the brother to the BT- the Gatatian. I had the BT first, but it felt primitive and clunky. The Gatatian operated much smoother, from cycling the action, to regulating air. The JSB are very accurate in a clean (freshly cleaned) barrel, but I’ve been experimenting with the Predators. You have to trim the plastic nose down a bit with toe nail clippers- you can get repeatable reductions with a large pair of clippers. Those pellets have two advantages- I’ve had one hole groups for 9 rounds (I mean- 1 hole, not cloverleaf) @ 22 yards and they don’t blow through my office supply catalogs I’ve stacked for a backstop. I suspect they’ll deliver quite a punch on the ground squirrels here in NorCal. I’m going to try them out today.



      • Wow, Edna, you are right on it! Good for you- I admire your rapid response. I have three tins of the .25 cal full size Predators, and I’m a little ‘tight’. My pellet collection has been growing exponentially I’m sure you can sympathize.
        Follow up to using t.he ‘clipped’ predator: I took 18 squirrels off of my friends ranch, in about an hour. The pellets were devastating to the exterior of the squirrels, but didn’t give quick, lights out response I’ve enjoyed with JSB’s and other domed pellets. All shots were head or neck, and hit solidilly. Still, some of the animals needed a quick second persuader to keep them out of their holes.



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