by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
I had to take Edith to the emergency room yesterday and when I returned home there were only 4 hours left to write and publish today’s blog. She is not well, and we don’t know what it is yet. In fact, we’re going to another ER tonight at the advice of the wife of Pyramyd Air’s president (who is a physician). She was surprised that the first hospital never tested Edith for an obvious illness. I will keep you updated as we learn more.
Today I am rerunning an old blog from the past. This one was published on November 11, 2005. Enjoy!
I’ll tell you about my first airgun, then I want YOU to tell me about YOURS!
A Benjamin 107 pistol
My first airgun was a .177 Benjamin model 107 air pistol. Although the Blue Book of Airguns says no Benjamins were ever marked with the 107 model number, I’m pretty sure mine was, because at the age of nine I knew the model number.
Benjamin 107 was a slim air pistol due to the pump rod extending straight out from the front. This one still has lots of fragile black nickel over silver nickel, which covers the brass.
Benjamin made air rifles before the turn of the 20th century but they started making air pistols in 1935. The 107 was made from 1935 to 1941. It had the name “Benjamin Franklin” in quotes stamped into the left side of the compression tube. The quotes indicated the name was a farce – a play on the name Benjamin Air Rifle Company that was stamped on the end cap along with the model number. It tickles me to see gun dealers advertising that they have a Benjamin Franklin for sale!
The 107 is a multi-pump pneumatic with a long pump rod coming straight out the front of the pump tube under the barrel. There is no mechanical advantage with this system. Any air that gets crammed into the reservoir has to be compressed by muscle power alone. Since about 1909, Benjamin had been using this system with their rifles. It worked okay for them, but a pistol is not as handy to pump as a rifle. You could pump the first and even the second pumps by hand. After that, help was needed. The mushroom-shaped pump rod end was put against something hard – like a tree – and the gun shoved forward to compress the air. You could get five or six pumps into the gun that way. If the tree was slippery, you could also have an accident that would leave your knuckles barked (pun intended).
Benjamin High-Compression pelletsB
The only .177 pellets I even knew about were in the single Benjamin tin that came with the pistol. Years later, I found other similar tins in sporting goods store and bought them immediately, thinking they might be the last pellets on the planet! This was in the 1950s and information about things like airguns was in short supply
These are Benjamin .22 diabolo pellets and .22 lead balls, but the tin for the .177 pellets is identical. It looks like old-fashioned patent medicine.
Power was low
Even with as many pumps as I could muster, the pistol wasn’t too powerful. I suppose I over-pumped it, thinking it would get faster. All that happened was the onset of valve lock. I’ve never chronographed one of these pistols, but I’d be surprised if they went much faster than 300 f.p.s. with vintage Benjamin pellets.
Accuracy was limited by the pellets
In the 1950s, my pistol could hit a tin can at 25 feet and that was about it. In the 1990s, I tested another 107 with modern pellets, and it grouped about two inches at 33 feet. That’s okay, but it doesn’t compare to a Beeman P1.
Benjamin was stubborn and Crosman carried the day!
The Benjamin Air Rifle Company was always quite conservative. They held off switching to the compound underlever pump linkage until 1938, even though Crosman had demonstrated its superiority back in 1924. The first underlever pump they offered was an attempt to convert the front pump to an underlever through a Rube Goldberg arrangement of levers and linkage points. It was horrible and worked poorly. Their conservatism eventually cost them their company, which Crosman purchased in 1992.
Benjamin’s first underlever pump was a weak attempt to adapt the front pump to an underlever. It did not work well.
Tell me about YOUR first airgun
Using the comment section, please share your first airgun with us. Everyone has a first gun and probably more memories of it than they care to admit. Love it or hate it, it helped make you the person you became.
90 thoughts on “Best of B.B.: My first airgun”
Our thoughts and prayers are with you and Edith.
Best wishes to Edith and you for a speedy and complete recovery. My thoughts and prayers are with you both!
I ditto 45Bravo thoughts and prayers!! Semper fi!
A Benjamin 312. Got it as a hand me down when I was 9, I could burn a tin of pellets on a Saturday. I pumped that thing so many times, it was 10 pumps per shot or nothing.. Shooting the same Benjamin green tin pellets, or the crosman ash cans in the square black plastic “tube” . I new of no others either.. If I pumped enough, I could just get “a shot and a half” meaning without pumping, it retained enough air for a second shot to exit the barrel.
Our Prayers and thoughts are with you and Edith. May she have a speedy recovery.
First airgun was a Daisy Red Rider. Main thing I can remember about it was spinning mom’s wooden clothes pins on our clothes line. When I would split the wood on one, would hide it and use it for spare parts for the next one I split.
Please update us about Edith. Saying a prayer now. Hope she is ok soon. Sorry to hear.
First airgun for me was around a 1970 Crosman 760 with a rifled barrel and wood stock and pump handle. Mostly used Daisy flat nose wadcutters and round nose pellets if I’m remembering right.
I was about 9 years old then. And what was funny I got my Winchester .22 rimfire rifle for Christmas that year. I managed to keep both guns pretty biusy all the time. That sure makes me remember some fun times I had back then.
Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Edith.
I’ve never been one for traditional prayer, but when good will and best wishes are needed, I do play music, and I’m bringing out the stops for Edith tonight.
My first airgun was some form of Daisy multi-pump in .22 caliber–the current 880 looks just like it. I was not ready at that time (my teens) to see the value in airgunnery, and it was never much used. At that time I had ready access to plenty of firearm ammo, and range time was on the schedule regularly, and I simply overlooked it in favor of the firearms. I later gave it to a friend, and the poor thing probably found a much happier home there.
It’s easy to look back on this now as an obvious mistake, but I should be mindful of making a mistake there too. My adult discovery of airgunnery has actually been one of the great joys of my life, and perhaps I needed the miss in my early years to fully appreciate it all later.
Hell, that’s a bit of a leitmotif for me. As one example, a divorce I neither anticipated nor wanted, unexpectedly cleared the way for me to meet the magnificent mother of the children I would otherwise never have had. As well, it was only as an adult that it occurred to me that I could also play music rather than just listen to it, despite having grown up with a mother who was a piano teacher and choral singer. If she’d pushed that when I was a kid, would I have been hit so hard with the bug as I was later, and would I still get the childlike joy out of it all the way I do now? I’m not sure I’d want to change it, even if I can recognize it as an opportunity missed.
All I know is that I am now a happy airgunner, a happy musician, and a happy father and husband, and I am grateful for the paths that led me here. 🙂
Prayers for Edith’s recovery.
Had a Crosman 1400 add my first airgun shot it until the seals broke down.
Wishing Edith a speedy diagnosis and recovery. Said a quick prayer the second I saw BB’s comment.
Daisy 1894 “Spittin’ Image”. Love to see ’em bring it back, but in a better built pkg. with a bit more power.
Here is hoping for the best for Edith and you. As to my first airgun, it was in 1967 and it was the wooden stock Crosman M-1 Carbine. Being the son of a WWII veteran, I grew up listening to his experiences in the war and his familiarity with the small arms he was trained with. However I was recovering from an appendectomy at the time and had trouble cocking it unless placing the butt on the ground and pressing down on the barrel. My dad had a gunsmith install a hard rubber Winchester recoil pad to prevent marring the butt until I was strong enough to properly cock the gun. Sadly, I had the gun until about eight years ago when discarded the rifle (with the faux magazine!). This was before I started reading your blog! I have been kicking myself since reading about it in your article.
Praying also for Edith`s healing
First air rifle Diana 25 made in UK, very toy like but still works about 450 fps
One can never get enough prayer, so I too am, and will be, praying for Edith and you. I do pray for something easy to fix.
My first air gun was a Red Ryder when I was a kid. My fondest memory is of two or three of us putting a kite in the air 20′ to 30′, laying on the ground below the kite, and shooting it till it fell to the ground. But the gun that got me going as an adult was the Crosman 357W revolver. I haven’t looked back since. That was roughly 3 years ago now.
My very best thoughts for you and Edith.
First airgun was a Daisy of some description, all i can remember was the cocking mechanism, it was a part tinplate, so i suppose it was a Daisy. Next, a Baikal .177 breakbarrel, then a Relum ‘Telly’ (a 200 i think) and finally I graduated to a Crosman Medalist 1300, which i adored. I saved and acquired a shoulder stock and a scope for it. I always wanted a Gamo Paratrooper, but never had the cash, and would have loved a Webley Vulcan, but that was just dreaming. I never liked the BSAs, though I now know they were better air rifles and the Airsporters one of the most innovative guns ever produced, it was the little curly trigger guards which made them look like shotguns, and they are now a favourite.
Our prayers are with you both.
Wishing Edith a speedy and complete recovery.
My first completely my own airgun was Gamo R77 revolver. It is still with me, works perfect and I take it “to breathe some air” 3-4 times a year.
My first air rifle was MP-514 – a failure of an engineering, reworked into “Gator” single-shot.
Thoughts and prayers for you both, B.B.
My prayers go out to both of you.
My first owned airgun was a red ryder. The airgun that I actually used the most was my father’s crosman 160.
My best wishes to Edith and you!
My best wishes and prayers to you both. This strikes VERY close to me as I just bought my own wife home after emergency surgery for a twisted bowel, it manifested out of nowhere and does not allow much time for a good out come. My first BB gun was the Daisy Spittin’ Image 1894 Rifle as well, how I loved that gun!
Kevin in CT
Kevin in CT,
That was my first also. 🙂
Hiya Chris, how are you keeping?
Kevin in CT,
Doing well. Just got a used LGU from Gunfun1. He says it does better than his .177 TX. It’s a .22.
Darn it man,…drop in more on the blog and more important,….shoot that thing ! Just hit 2400 shots with the TX and did a 12fpe tune and now a HO tune on it. Still getting data from the HO tune.
How are you and your TX doing?
To tell the truth, for all the use it’s getting I may as well sell the darn thing.
Kevin in CT,
Sorry to hear that. Maybe things will change where you can use it more. If you decide to sell it, throw it out on the blog. Gunfun1 buys and sells quite a bit. As for shipping, GF1 shipped the LGU for 20$ so that’s around what you would be looking at for shipping. At least on here, you would know that it went to a “good home”. 😉
I would be all over it, at the right price,…..but…darn it, I got one in .22…still,…at a real low price, it’s sold.
My first airgun was a Daisy BB gun, similar to what I’ve seen labeled online as a Model 60-ish or Model 100-ish. It had a brown plastic stock and lever-action cocking like a Red Ryder, and fixed sights. If fading memory serves, my Dad bought it for me at a yard sale for $1.00. I was 12. I was deadly with that thing out to about 15 feet, and no lizard around the house was safe. It got taken away from me for two long weeks when I shot a house sparrow, an amazing 25-foot shot that I was proud and horrified to have actually made.
Two years later I scrounged my quarters and got a Crosman Pumpmaster 760. They had rifled barrels in those days. I probably spent more time with that airgun than any other I’ve ever owned.
Mine was a lot like the one you got but mine was bought with $13 worth of dimes saved from extra chores and anything else I could come up with that put another dime in the Kitty. My Dad made me read that book for about a week before finally cutting me loose at a dumpground.
You do what you have to as we will still be here when you can get back to the blog but right now Edith is number ONE, not us.
Hope and prayers for her well being and swift recovery.
My first air gun was a 1968 model 1400 Crosman 22 caliber pumper that I still have today and still shoots just as good. I had used for my go to hunting air gun when out camping and hunting on the thousand islands of Cocoa Beach, Florida. it was and in my opinion one of Crosman most rugged and durable air gun they ever made as I no I put it thru it paces as young kid into my teen years and it never saw the care it deserved yet kept on working despite my best effort to break it with minimal care or servicing.
My first airgun was a Winchester reproduction by Crosman. A BB gun given me by my dad. I had a lot of fun with that in Eastern Oregon. Unfortunately, many years later, I moved to California, and even then I knew it was a gun-hating state, so I sold it for $5. Sure wish I had kept it, if only for the memories.
Michael in Georgia
Oops, that rifle was made by Daisy.
Here is hoping that Edith’s condition is minor and temporary. Please keep us informed, Tom.
As for my first air rifle, I’ve told this story before and it’s pretty amusing. There was a woodpecker attacking the cedar shakes on my home. Nothing I could did would get rid of it. It had developed a taste for cedar, I guess, since there were no insects under the shakes. In desperation, I decided an air rifle was my best bet plus I always wanted one. So I after doing some basic research, I purchased a Benjamin 397. The day I got home and planned for that darned woodpecker’s demise, it stopped showing up. Somehow, it knew! That started me on the road to, depending who you ask, not enough air guns (me) or too many (my wife).
Fred, I find the same thing with squirrels here in NE Georgia. They are all over the place out of season (yes, there is a hunting season for them), but the DAY hunting season starts, they are gone. My poor Brod then just sits. 8-(
Michael in Georgia
Edith was admitted to the hospital last evening. She will be there a couple days at the minimum. They are testing her for an immune deficiency disease that is very serious.
Please pray for her.
Dear Lord, Please bless Edith Gaylord with Your loving care, renew her strength and cure what ails her in Your loving name.
Thank you. We receive that!
You and Edith don’t deserve this, B.B. Thinking of you both. Please send Edith our best wishes.
Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you focus on what’s important. Guest blogs? Moderation help? If nothing else, I’ll chip in on those few reader questions I might be knowledgeable enough to help with.
Thanks for the kind thoughts. Edith has never been sick a day in her life, so she it now learning what that’s like. She is adapting faster than I did.
I’m real sorry & shocked to hear about Ms. Edith. I just prayed very hard for her & you. Don’t worry Sir, she WILL be OK. You are good people & God is with you. God Bless you both.
My Mom has something similar, (immune). She has an “infusion” which last several hours once a month. She is tuff. In truth, she out does me, age considered. I am sorry, …I do not know many specifics of her condition.
If it is the same thing, the treatment’s do well. With Mom, she has had a couple of spells where it took her down quickly within 8 hrs. or less. with no heads up. So be carefull and keep a watchfull eye.
Feel free to e-mail direct, if interested, I will find out what I can. Hopefully it’s a one time thing. With the P.A. owner being a previous doctor, (I believe you said), hopefully you have a full set of resources at hand.
Group prayer is powerful! I just added mine.
Holding you in my heart as I pray for your quick recovery.
Hoping for a speedy recovery of Edith.
My first airgun was a Crosman 2240 about 6 years ago. I knew nothing about what I was buying. I liked the look of it, and the price was right.
My prayers and thoughts are with you both.
Kevin, said it best.Amen to that.
B.B., I must agree with buldawg76; Edith is your top priority. Certainly, you still have to deal with other things. However, it may be reasonable to run “the best of B.B” for a while or as needed. Just as with this post, you have a wealth of material. I do pray the cause of Edith’s suffering can be determined and treated. ~ken
Thank you. I will consider running at least a few of them until I get things under control here.
We will still be here and we expect you to put your Wife first as any of us would do so please do what you must for her and we will handle the prayers and be here when you can resume your duties here.
May her illness be found and treated swiftly and completely with success
She is in our prayers as well as you.
“A few”,….? Run as many as you need. END of story.
For me,…I started out reading past articles and comments. As time , (and life) has progressed,…I rarely do it any more. That Sir,…would actually be a (plus).
You pick em’, you post em’,….work done. Back to Edith. Simple as that.
Really sorry to hear this. Prayers to follow.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.
As Ken says…we can get easily get by with some ‘best of’ posts.
Your place is beside Edith.
My first air gun, I was 10, was a Daisy 1894 BB gun. I shot it to junk. It still hangs in my garage today. The next was a Sheridan Blue Streak. That was like moving up to a jet fighter from a biplane!
I wish you a good recovery!
Praying for your wife. I’m in the hospital with my wife right now.
Dad wouldn’t let me have an airgun when I was a kid. 22 only he was afraid I’d shoot my eye out.
So in 1982 at the old age of 25 I purchased a beeman C-1. I’m thinking the beeman catalogs did me in. Now 13 air guns and counting.
Love your blog B.B.
Thank you. I also bought a C1 around the same time. That’s where the Bronco’s stock came from.
I hope your wife’s hospital stay is a pleasant one.
After exhaustive research, I am now ready to conclude that my first air gun was a Daisy Model 102 with plastic wood stock, circa 1963.
Here is a site page not to be missed regarding Daisy air gun model history.
I meant to mention that I didn’t have another air gun until August of 1976, when I purchased a Sheridan Blue Streak. I still have it; I have no plans to part with it. ~ken
Prayers for Edith and for you too B.B. Hoping they find out what is wrong and a speedy recovery!!
Sorry to hear that Edith is not well – hope that she is better soon!
My first rifle was a .177 calibre Slavia 618 that I got in the early 60’s – I considered it to be the ultimate weapon and compared to a slingshot, it was.
Bottle caps hung on bit of string and mini-sniping for grasshoppers and wasps accounted for most of the pellets expended. Between 500 and 1000 Milbro pellets a day was typical for the whole summer holidays. I hunted mice and rats around the corn cribs. The farmer gave me a cent per mouse and a nickel per rat which helped me buy more pellets.
Cottontail rabbits and squirrels were “big game” and taught me about stalking and the importance of precise shot placement. I also developed the discipline to wait for the perfect shot and the wisdom to pass up marginal opportunities. These skills have benefited me my whole hunting career.
The 618 is NOT a high-powered weapon (around 400fps when well tuned with a fresh spring) but would do the job within its effective (energy) range. I still class weapons and users by their effect range.
I still have that original Slavia 618 and shoot it frequently with my granddaughter. It’s not for sale, not for any price – too much “history” in that little gun.
As survivors of cancer and stroke, exotic disease and just bad luck, we know how difficult the trials can be.
How much worse is it for those without their Tom/Edith or David/Louise?
But that’s why we’re blessed with each other, isn’t it?
We send nothing but the best wishes.
David & Louise
(It was a mid-1950’s Red Ryder and the immediate lesson taught came from bouncing the almost first BB off no less than four concrete walls and three bounces off a concrete floor before unimaginably gently and painlessly tapping my brand new right contact lens…audibly. And yes, I was wearing it at the time.
An event like that makes one very, very thoughtful.)
I never heard of a contact lens being hit by a BB!
Yeah, I was probably about ten or eleven or so and one of the first kids to get the then very new, very high-tech hard plastic contact lenses, ca 1957-58. Not too long before they had actually made of glass. In my collection of obsolete lenses, I may still have one of the hard plastic ones all frosty and scratched up and way more than a half century old. Whoa! Call the Smithsonian!
Aside from learning just why it’s a poor idea to enter a 5 out of a possible 6 sided concrete box, (our basement) for target practice. Being a nearly perfect BB reflector, guaranteed to return a BB to sender, it was the beginning of true wisdom. In other words, before you run off chasing the Apaches it’s wise to look around and just imagine what could go wrong… And maybe what could be sneaking up on you from behind, semi-animated, reptilian, or fang equipped,… or worse.
True wisdom does not necessarily arrive all at once but rather a bit at a time but I can recall one fellow I was acquainted with in the army that had a perfect .22 caliber hole in his left earlobe due to similar near escape. He was a little gun shy after that. But lucky.
(Note to self; Do not hang-out with people nicknamed “Lucky.” Research the phrase “collateral damage” to see why.)
While you’re at it, explore the quote, “I’ve met the enemy and it’s me!
Anyway, I do not claim contact lenses are bullet or even BB proof. That puppy was 99.999 percent spent to the point a where a minor headwind would have stopped it, but yet still powerful enough to have made a more than half-century impression on me.
Happily not a literal one on my eye.
I appreciate all your good wishes for Edith. She will read them this evening, when I take her computer to the hospital.
They have given her something that slows the advance of the disease she may have and it seems to be working well. Let’s hope they have nailed the diagnosis, because this disease can be stopped.
I am busy writing tomorrow’s blog and don’t have time to answer everyone’s comments, but I do read them all.
And again, you’re in it together, so the “Best Wishes” are for you both.
My prayers are with you and Edith. May she have a speedy recovery.
Thank you. I just heard from Edith that her neurologist agrees that she more than likely has what they thought she had. It was caught in the nick of time and they believe she will be coming home cured in 5 days. If it had gone any longer, the outcome would have been much worse.
Nothing is certain until tests come back, but I talked to Edith on the phone today and she is able to stand with the aid of a walker. My hope is that in a few days she will be walking unaided.
It’s a good thing she’s strong!
A few laps around the floor and some rest and hopefully all will be well.
Best wishes! 🙂
My thoughts and prayers are with Edith and you and your family. I hope that Edith’s recovery is swift.
If the nerosurgeon is right, it will be. Five more days of an IV of a certain medicine and she should be cured. That’s assuming she has what the nerosurgeon believes.
I’m going into a blackout now. Gonna visit Edith at the hospital.
“Gonna visit Edith at the hospital.”
That’s the most important thing for you to do right now; I am praying for Miss Edith! Lord-willing, she’ll be home soon!
take care & God bless,
BB and Edith
The beginning of todays blog was quite a shocker to read. Take all the time you need to be there for Edith. I hope her recovery is a speedy, and permanent one.
B.B & Edith,
Praying for Edith’s recovery and for you to have strength to support her in her time of need. She was there for you 24/7 100% of the time; now it’s your turn to be there for here. Edith should be your # 1 priority. We will all be here when you return.
May the LORD’S loving grace be with you both always.
BB & Edith, you have our prayers! I hope she will be fully recovered soon.
I hope and pray that he is spot on with his diagnosis and she is back to her spunky self in a few weeks and it will all be behind both of you.
We are all behind both of you providing the prayers and support for her complete recovery.
Get well soon lady!
There are a legion of fans out here who love you and are praying for you, Tom and your doctors. God bless you and heal you.
I’m sure I speak for most if not all when I say that I am more than happy to read re-posts from the archives or reports from The Airgun Letter for as long as it takes.
Edith and Tom,
Our prayers and best wishes to you both.
My first airgun was a Crosman 1377 American Classic with the brown faux wood grips. For those unfamiliar with the gun, it is a single shot, bolt action, multi-pump pistol in .177 caliber. I kind of prefer the newer style black grips and forearm that are available now, but I will leave it at that because no one likes a whiner.
Not long after purchasing the pistol I found that I wanted to customize it to make it more to my liking, so I went on the internet and found some blog written by some guy named BB Pelletier, and the rest is history. And when I say “rest”, I am of course referring to my disposable income. But I will leave it at that because no one likes a whiner.
The 1377 has seen modest upgrades and customizing. It wears the ubiquitous 1399 stock, a forearm from a 2289 (huge ergonomic improvement), 18-inch barrel in .22 caliber along with the requisite bolt, front sight from a Benjamin Discovery, metal breech from Crosman, a nice wide trigger shoe, and a Leapers bugbuster scope. I also polished the trigger and sear contact surfaces to improve the trigger feel. All told, my upgrades have cost many times what the pistol originally cost me. But I will leave it at that, because no one likes a whiner.
All in all, it is a fairly pedestrian customizing job compared to many I have seen. But just the same, I like it and posted a pic in the ‘customer images’ to the 1377 page on the PA website. For some reason whenever I drag out the airguns for friends that come over, they are drawn to this one. It is also Mrs. Slinging Lead’s favorite, despite the fact that I bought her a Discovery of her own. But I will leave it at that, because no one likes a whiner.
When I was young, my dad bought a Crosman 1377 (the one with the cocking knob on the back of the tube, not the one with the bolt action) to attempt to control the woodpeckers that were destroying the cedar siding on the house. Not knowing anything about airguns, he purchased BBs for ammo instead of pellets, which would likely have been much more accurate. Of course, I wasn’t allowed to shoot the darned thing because my folks were over protective, and I was “too young”, and because I would shoot my eyes out and the eyes of everyone around me presumably. But I will leave it at that, because no one likes a whiner.
I wish a speedy recovery to your dear wife.
My first airgun is a Slavia 618. Still have it. Indestructible. Got it a a gift from my Dad in the early 70s. My prized possession. Lots of fun memories. I always smile when I pick it up.
Praying hard for Edith! Get well soon!
BB and Edith,
I don’t pray often but you’re in my prayers this evening for a swift and complete recovery.
My first air gun was an Air Venturi Bronco because of this very blog! I’m still new to air guns and can’t seem to get enough shooting and I learn so much by reading this amazing blog which really feels like a community.
Jim In Chapel Hill
Daisy 25, about 1965 shot it and shot it and shot it, finally the trigger sear was so worn out that it fired on pumping, if you held the trigger forward you could shoot it with the trigger but it was a hair trigger for sure. Made it a repeater of sorts, pull the slide and move it forward and it fires.
Reminds me of my old model 12! Great guns!
I think my brother is still holding that old 25, got to get it back perhaps I could make it shoot safely, it sure was fun back then.
Sounds like fun at an action shooting event!
First two guns, got them right around the same time, were a benji 312, and a crosman 71? saddle pal. best wishes and prayers to Edith!
That’s a couple nice classics you had there! I wouldn’t be surprised if the saddle pal gave up a while back but how’s that 312?
I’ve got a3120 repeater I gotta get going again.
First time in here. Hang tough and take care of yourself foremost. She’s in good hands hopefully.
My first was the Daisy Spitting Image. Tore through 2 barrels and thousands of BB’s learning to hit toothpicks at 20 feet. It finally fell apart from use.
Daisy BB gun of course. Actually up in the mountains where I grew up nobody had ever heard of anything else, and I don’t believe anyone even knew of pellets. Have no clue what model it was as it was passed down to me by my older brother when he got a real .22. I do remember pouring BBs into a tube – bit like a 30-30 – and I think I had to pull a sort of lever/pump thing back towards me before I could fire. Wasn’t a quick shooter. Wanted a Red Ryder so bad it hurt, but it never happened.
As I grew up ranching in the high country, we all (boys and girls) moved to single-shot bolt action .22s about age 11-12. It wasn’t done causally as rifles were serious tools. My old man’s instructions were simple: “Don’t point a rifle at something unless you are going to kill it. If you kill it, you eat it.” Wasn’t any of this “concealed carry/personal protection” BS. I suppose if any of our family had been in danger my father would have stopped it with lethal force if he found no other way. He was a veteran. I didn’t learn how to kill a man until I got drafted at age 18. Odd how many of us mountain kids got drafted when there was a small city full of kids 30 miles away – few of them seemed to get the call.
I think I was 15 when I inherited a 30-30 Winchester and got my first buck that autumn. It was a sort of rite of passage to manhood at the time. Times change. We would drive the ’39 Chevy ranch truck to school with a rifle or two in the rack. Many kids did the same and we even went out and looked guys’ rifles over at lunch. I imagine a SWAT team would arrive promptly if someone tried that these days.
I was pretty good with that Daisy. Could hit a #10 tin can at 30′ – 40′ 9 out of 10 times. I don’t hunt as I don’t need the meat to supplement the diet. Killing things never seemed like a “sport” to me. When I stumbled into the modern air rifle I was blown away at how sophisticated my BB gun had become. I got one to drive off rock squirrels. After “humanely” trapping and transporting 18 of them last year, it was no more mister nice guy. There’s no way to keep a squirrel out of the garden which is important to our food.
Got to admit that I’ve deviated from my father’s original instructions. I’d have to be real hungry to eat a rock squirrel, so I dump them in the arroyo. Coyotes love ’em. What’s much more fun is trying to regain my shooting skill in the backyard. Springers feel very different than a rifle. The double whammy recoil and the need to hold it lightly is certainly a challenge. Still it’s a blast. Can’t quite grasp the PCP thing. Lugging an air tank around seems like a lot of work. Besides where would I find a scuba shop here in the middle of the Sonoran Desert?
Crosman 760 Pumpmaster for me. Still have it actually, its all rusty and feels rough but it still shoots just fine. Got it when I was about 8-9, I’m 26 now. Used to destroy pop cans at 30′-40′. Always used BB’s though. Didn’t use pellets til I got me a Daisy 880 when I was 23. That 880 is what got me into airguns. Now I have a collection of spring, gas ram, multi pumps, single pumps and co2 guns. Surfing MidwayUSA’s website is how I found that 880 and the world of air rifles.
My first air rifle was a Daisy Powerline 990…. Pump and CO2(12g cartridge). I loved that gun so much, I wish I could find another one. Many of soda cans fell victim to that bad boy