Air Venturi Tech Force M8: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Ari Venturi M8
Air Venturi M8 is very much like the Bronco.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • The assumptions
    Premier lites
    Artillery hold
    Deep seated pellets
    Artillery hold
    The test
    Air Arms Falcons
    Directly on the sandbag
    Conclusions

Today we begin looking at the accuracy of the Tech Force M8 pellet rifle — a breakbarrel that we have discovered is very similar to the discontinued Air Venturi Bronco. Because it is so similar, we can take what we already know about the Bronco and apply it to this rifle — the results will probably be the same, or similar, though we have to watch for anomalies that could crop up.

Today is accuracy day — the first of two such days we will have with the M8. Today I’m shooting the rifle at 10 meters. That gets me on the target and gives a chance for the rifle and scope to settle down.

The M8 comes without sights, so I have mounted a scope, and I think my selection will surprise you. I didn’t choose a whomptydoodle monster scope that costs three times as much as the rifle. Instead I’ve mounted a Gamo 3-9X40 scope with fixed parallax. This scope is nothing special — it probably came with a bundle deal on some other airgun. It’s reasonably clear and sharp, and size-wise it is well-matched to the M8. I shimmed the rear ring of the 1-piece Gamo scope mount that came with the scope, just to offset any possible barrel droop.

The assumptions

Now let’s look at the assumptions I made when starting this test. These are based on results when testing the Bronco.

Premier lites

When I looked back over the 11 blog reports I did on the Bronco, I found that Crosman Premier lites stood out as the most accurate pellet. The M8 has the same thin steel inner barrel inside a metal outer tube that the Bronco had, so there is no reason to suspect this is anything other than the same barrel.

Deep seated pellets

Another thing I discovered in researching for this test is that my Broncos like their pellets seated deep. I used the Air Venturi Pellet Seater that allows adjustment for the seating depth. I will start the test with deep seated pellets and only change if that doesn’t seem to hold true for the M8.

Artillery hold

I also discovered that the Bronco does not like being rested directly on a sandbag. In fact it liked a specific type of artillery hold that I talked about in Part 5 of the original Bronco report, back in 2010. So that is how I will begin testing the M8 — with Premier lites and with the special artillery hold.

The test

Well, the best-laid plans… A lot of my assumptions did not work out. First, I couldn’t get Premier lites to group no matter what I did. I tried deep seating, flush seating and 3 different hand placements of my off hand, but nothing worked well. The best group of 10 Premier lites I got at 10 meters out of 3 targets measured 0.929 inches between centers.

Ari Venturi M8 Premier lite group
This is the best of three 10-shot groups shot at 10 meters with Crosman Premier 7.9-grain pellets. It measures 0.929 inches between centers. I don’t think the M8 likes the Premier lite.

Air Arms Falcons

I then switched to Air Arms Falcon pellets and the groups tightened up. The first group of 10 was shot with a conventional artillery hold. That means the off hand was back on the stock touching the front of the triggerguard. Ten Falcon pellets seated deep went into 0.587 inches at 10 meters. Now, that’s a group!

Ari Venturi M8 Falcon group
This is the first 10-shot group shot at 10 meters with Air Arms Falcon pellets. It measures 0.587 inches between centers. This is what I was hoping for from the M8.

Then I slid my off hand out to the end of the stock. This makes the rifle very stable, but it also proved to be quite twitchy. Nine of the 10 deep-seated pellets went into 0.858-inches, but one shot that was actually shot number 5 in the string, went wide left — opening the group to a whopping 1.644 inches. That was due to a variation of the hold and I felt it before the trigger broke. I cannot recommend this hold for the M8.

Ari Venturi M8 Falcon group 2
This is the second 10-shot group shot at 10 meters with Air Arms Falcon pellets. It measures 1.644 inches between centers, though 9 shots are in 0.858 inches. What a huge difference the placement of the off hand made!

Directly on the sandbag

I finished the test by placing the rifle directly on the sandbag and seating the pellets flush with the breech — things the Bronco didn’t like one bit! But the Bronco was shooting Crosman Premier lites at the time I tried it, so it was worth a gamble to try the M8 rested this way.

Ten pellets went into 0.581 inches, which is very close to the size of the first group of Falcons. I think Falcon pellets are good in the M8 and I think you can either use a conventional artillery hold or rest the rifle directly on the sandbag.

Ari Venturi M8 Falcon group 3
This is the third 10-shot group shot at 10 meters with Air Arms Falcon pellets. The rifle was rested directly on a sandbag. The group measures 0.581 inches between centers, and is the smallest of the test, though it’s really too close to the first Falcon group to call. Falcon pellets perform very well in this rifle when it is rested right!

Conclusions

The Tech Force M8 appears to be very similar to the Bronco in many ways, but it also has enough personality that you have to treat it as a different airgun. The scope I used is not a top model, yet it performed as well as could be expected.

I plan to back up to 25 yards for the next test, which will also be the last. Obviously Falcons will lead off, but I will probably try one or two other pellets, as well. I would have tried them in this test, but 60+ shots on a breakbarrel that’s hold-sensitive is quite taxing.

I think the M8 is turning out about like I expected. For the money you get a lot of desirable features:

Easy cocking
Light trigger
Nice stock
Nice finish
Decent accuracy

We are still going to test the accuracy at 25 yards because that’s the distance we expect an air rifle in this power range to function. But I am already sold on the Tech Force M8. If you want one act now, because there are a limited number in stock. After they are gone there will be no more.

46 thoughts on “Air Venturi Tech Force M8: Part 3

  1. How does “.. you can either use a conventional artillery hold or rest the rifle directly on the sandbag.” translate into something that is hold sensitive? I thought if a Springer can be shot off a sandbag, like the TX 200 Mk III, it would not be that hold sensitive. I do understand that the term hold sensitive is used if the left hand should always be placed in a particular position with the butt barely touching the shoulder and the trigger gently squeezed in a line until it breaks.



      • Siraniko,

        This air rifle seems to prove my theory about air rifles in general: all air rifles are exactly the same except in that they are all different.

        Another way to think of it is this. An experienced airgunner can always predict how an individual air rifle will behave. Unfortunately, he will often be wrong.

        Michael

        Michael


  2. BB
    My M8 before the barrel loosened up was shooting JSB 8.44s at 20 yards in 1/2 to 3/4 inch groups and was a very pleasing rifle to shoot all off a lead filled bag that is used when you have a heart cath done and is used to apply pressure to your femoral artery in your groin area. that is what most all my spring guns are shot off of as I have two from my two heart caths and they somehow went home in my clothes bag by mistake.

    Unfortunately my guns barrel loosened up after 100 shots and was sent back so it was nice while it lasted but I just wish the barrel had a screw retention instead of the press fit pin as at least I could have tightened the screw up to fix the loose barrel.

    BD


    • BD,

      I think you mean the breech loosened — not the barrel. The barrel is held in by two screws that you could tighten at any time. You are referring to the pivot pin, aren’t you?

      I tightened a barrel pivot when I tuned and rebuilt the BSA Meteor. It seemed to work well. Maybe that would also work here?

      B.B.


      • BB
        Yes you are correct as it was the breech block that loosened in the actions fork that pivots on the pressed in pin ( at least I assume its pressed in ) not the barrel in the breech block and on mine it appeared to have roll pins holding the barrel in the breech block not screws but I may be wrong on that as my memory is not what it used to be.

        I was not going to try to tighten it myself on a brand new gun since it would have voided the warranty.
        So it got sent back because it was loose enough to allow for a 1/16 side to side movement when holding the stock at the breech area and grasping the muzzle brake with the other hand and applying just slight pressure sideways on the barrel and the initial excellent groups opened up to all flyers after 100 shots.

        I was fortunate enough to be offered a deal on a mid 80s model FWB 124 in excellent condition that I just could not refuse and it is the M8s replacement as an all day shooter with a much better pedigree. No it is not the 1974 model I built for a friend two years ago as I still have my eye on that one as well.

        BD


  3. BB
    I know you usually don’t go with heavier pellets in lower powered springers.

    But can you try the JSB Exact 10.34 grain pellets at 25 yards with the M8 just for the heck of it. Deep seated and normal.

    I will have to say the different pellets I tryed I did not deep seat them. So I am going to try that this weekend.

    I would like to see what results you get with your gun with the 10.34 JSB’s. After all we just got through learning about how their made you know.
    🙂


    • GF1,

      I had that pellet on the bench this time. I just got too tired to hold the gun steady enough for the test.

      Sure, I will test it at 25 yards. I see nothing wrong with using heavier pellets in lower-powered springers. I’ve had mixed success, but it’s always worth trying.

      B.B.


      • BB
        Ok thanks.

        And here’s a question about tiring when shooting. When do you usually feel like your best shots happen. When you take your first shots or in the middle of your session or if you take a break for a half hour or so and come back to it. Or if you feel yourself tiring do you take a break and come back to it if you have more shooting to do.

        I usually feel like my first shots aren’t as good as my shots in the middle of a session. And notice I said shots not groups. I’m talking about how I feel when I’m setting at the bench. Not the groups I’m shooting. And I definitely have to take a break and come back like if I’m shooting all day on the weekend.

        I find myself feeling different when I set down to shoot throughout that all day weekend end session. Some times it just feels right and sometimes it feels like I’m struggling to keep the gun held right. And the funny thing about it all. I can have good groups or bad groups throughout the day.



          • BB
            That’s kind of what I’m seeing. It just seems to be what frame of mind I’m in or something.

            Some times it just comes together naturally. Like no matter what I do or don’t do I hit good. Other times a complete opposite.

            I think I need to be in a mood if you will that allows me to be more relaxed. It’s just to complicated to explain.


    • I have tried 10.34 g JSB’s in my gun but found 8.4 g JSB’s are a little more accurate, I tried alot of different pellets but the JSB 8.4 g are the best I have shot over a 1000 pellets through it.


      • David
        I have shot several pellets through mine so far including the 10.34’s.

        I haven’t tryed deep seating any yet though. So this weekend I’m going to run through them all again deep seating.

        What I want to see is how the 10.34’s do in BB’s M8. Deep seated and regular seating. I tend to get different results for some reason then other people. So its just one more fact that I can look at from his results.

        And thanks for your results also.



  4. B.B.,

    Concerning holds and rest,…would it be fair to say, that while testing different pellets,…your hold/rest should remain the same ?

    Once a “best grouper” is determined/selected,….I would think that it would be THEN to start playing with holds and rest as a refinement.

    This is (not) a reference to the M8 article, but rather the selection process that I am currently doing with the TX and 10 pellet types.

    Thanks, Chris



      • B.B.,

        Well, I am not sure I have found the best hold/rest, yet. The basis of the question is,.. when experimenting with different pellets, such as in a new gun, should the hold remain the same ? (Even if you have not experimented much with holds and rests.)

        Or, are you saying that it’s best to shoot 1 pellet type, find your best hold/rest/group and THEN start playing with types and weights ? With the TX, I played with rest as I learned the new gun. My focus was more on comfort/steady rather than finding the best group for the rest/hold.

        To put it simple,….find best grouper first, with different pellets, while keeping the same hold/rest….OR……find the hold that works for the best group with (1) pellet type and then move on to different pellet types.

        I did the first option.

        Thanks, Chris


        • Chris,

          I wish there was a simple answer, but there isn’t. I’m always experimenting with new holds or pellets to find what works best. Only with a few airgiuns like my R8 and my Talon SS do I have things locked down, more or less.

          B.B.


          • B.B.,

            Thanks. Will proceed as currently doing. Airguns and pellets,….tricky little suckers, eh. Lucky we got you and this blog.

            On the side, I have got a few people at work interested in airguns. They are amazed at the selection that is now available and how many things are similar to firearms. Most had 0 idea. The biggest shock comes when they find out that there are airguns that cost more than ANY firearm they got. And, they like to shoot and the “shooting on the cheap” is a big draw.

            Thanks, Chris


        • In my opinion a gun will tell you pretty quickly what it likes if you try the standard artillery hold(offhand touching trigger guard vs under hingepoint and working between and it shouldn’t really matter about the pellets so long as they are consistent.


  5. BB

    I thought for sure that you would mount the Hubblebrothers Sunswallower 6000 16-80 x 56 with the womptydoodle ballistic reticule on this M8. But I’m going to defer to your judgement.

    If I didn’t already own a Bronco, I would order one of these babies.

    Looking forward to part 4.



  6. Hi BB,

    Nicely detailed article above. It always is interesting how little changes of the hold interface can affect accuracy results, particularly in recoiling airguns. Each one seems to be different in subtle ways!
    Thanks for the encouragement last week regarding the return to service of my old AA TX200 Mk2. I had suspected that the lubricants that J.M. used would still be OK, given the way it was stored for all these years. I just received my new chronograph from Pyramyd this morning, so I am looking forward to choosing pellets and performing a break-in on this gun while being able to actually view ballistic results in real-time. I hope to keep a detailed log.
    Completely off the subject, I have been spending a lot of time reading older articles and posts. Wow! there is a lot of really interesting info available. Specifically, I am recently interested in Crosman’s 2300 series of CO2 air pistols. I have read much of your work on the subject, as well as done by some of the other readers. I have an older (2009 vintage) 2300KT from Crosman’s custom shop in .22 cal., with a 10.1″ barrel that I enjoy shooting in my basement.
    I had an urge (I guess we all get them on a regular basis) after reading some of the articles and posts here to experiment with an extra barrel in .177 cal. and began looking for a Lothar Walther choked barrel in the 10.1″ length (not all that easy to find), along with the required hardware for the calibre change (primarily the .177 bolt). Well, last week I chanced across a very unexpected “price roll-back” at an on-line mega-mart I am sure we are all familiar with. Frankly, I could not believe my eyes. I exited and went back to the site just to be sure, but it was true. Somebody apparently made a mistake and listed new Crosman 2300S air pistols for $91.72! I thought there must be something wrong, because I could not see how they could achieve a profit margin at that price! Anyway I ordered one, and it was exactly as advertised and I now have a .177 2300S that (except for grips, calibre, power adjuster and a choked barrel, is nearly the same as my 2300KT in .22 cal.
    I noticed right away that the 2300S was less powerful than the 2300KT, even with the power adjustment turned to maximum. Specifically, the 2300KT seems to have more gas available per shot. In reading previous posts, etc. I find references to this power difference in these guns, however when I look at the schematics for both guns, the difference is not readily apparent. I am assuming that the difference has to be in the valve assembly or transfer port, because you have described the added evidence of increased shots per CO2 cartridge.
    Also, everyone who has posted test results apparently agrees that the model 2300S seems to perform best (at lest as far as accuracy and consistency goes) at the full-power setting. I noticed too that results with the same barrel at higher velocities in the 2400KT also give very good results. Has anyone had negative results with the Lothar Walther barrel at increased velocities beyond the stock 2400KT? I am thinking of replacing or modifying the valve, spring and transfer port to bring the performance of my 2300S up to the level of my 2300KT or even a little higher, if possible; but I would rather not negate the accuracy gain (although the KT is really close) of the .177 cal. choked barrel in the S.
    Have you done any work with this type of combination in the past at increased velocities with CO2? Data seems to indicate that results should be good, up to the capabilities of CO2 in this particular barrel length.
    Do you or the readers have any advice on such a project?
    Thanks everybody for sharing your experience!

    Dave


    • Dave,

      Have I done any work on upping the power of a CO2 gun? Not directly, but indirectly, yes, I guess you could say I have.

      I’ve tested wide-open Philippine air rifles that pushed as much CO2 through as is physically possible. In .22 caliber these guns topped out in the mid 800 f.p.s. range with light to medium weight pellets.

      The difficulty with CO2 is iut is a molecule, instead of the various atoms of the gasses in air. Air expends rapidly. CO2, not so much. And you reach the point of diminishing returns very fast.

      So I’m saying that a velocity boost is possible, just don’t expect the moon.

      B.B.


      • B.B.,

        Well, I’m gonna find out with the 2240 conversions I am doing just how much velocity you can get with these CO2s. If it says it will help improve velocity I am putting it in one of these guns. In addition to that I’m working hard on trigger improvement and accuracy all while making them as attractive as I can.

        If between the two I don’t get the right combo of elements put together I’ll pull them apart and start over. All the while I am learning and having great fun.

        G&G


        • G&G
          The components from a Marauder pistol and a 1720T trigger will work inside a 2240 pistol grip assembly.

          I believe that you can get the part numbers from the diagrams on the Crosman website and order from them. Unless they changed things around on there website. It’s been awhile since I have been there.

          But then you will have true 2 stage trigger.


        • Good luck with your new projects! Someone earlier said they got a 2300 for under $100 which would be a nice start, the trigger parts Gunfun was talking about could be the best fix but it takes legwork.


      • B.B.,

        Thanks for the reply, I understand the physics of the difference in flow rates between CO2 and air, and the limited pressures that CO2 guns operate at vs. PCP. That all makes perfect sense and of course any increases in velocity that may be possible in a CO2 gun via modifications will be limited by things like bore diameter, flow rate, temperature and barrel length. Still, as any engineer (or hot-rodder for that matter) will say: “anything designed by man can be made better/faster”, I have always found this to be true.

        In your article on the Crosman 2300S from September 11, 2006: “Crosman 2300S Target Pistol – Part 3 Accuracy!” you stated near the end of the test review that “When I dialed the power from midrange all the way up as far as it went, the groups shrank to just over dime size with most pellets.”
        I find this very interesting, in that it seems to indicate that when you did your testing, you might have run out of velocity adjustment range before you actually ran out of accuracy improvements available from that barrel.

        My question really was:

        Has anyone checked to see if there was even more accuracy available from a 2300S if there was a bit more velocity adjustment available than on the stock gun?

        I have a 2300KT (.22) and a 2300S (.177); I realize that comparing the two is not exactly comparing apples to apples because of the calibre difference and choked barrel, but they are very close in most every way and the 2300KT is clearly using more gas and is noticeably more powerful (also the KT is getting a lower shot-count per CO2 cartridge). That indicates to me that there may/must be a physical difference in the valving, spring or transfer port that accounts for the power difference. While I don’t have a problem with increased efficiency in the 2300S (the extra shots are nice); at the same time, I would give-up a few shots per cartridge for even better accuracy if it were available.
        I gather from reading posts that some folks have converted from CO2 to air in these guns, and there are PCP guns and springers that use choked barrels and operate at higher velocities with (apparently) no ill effects.
        Also, I see that there are a lot of folks that modify their CO2 guns for increased performance. I shoot targets with my air guns, so I am not really looking for “knock-down power” for hunting, etc.
        However, the passage that you wrote describing accuracy that varied positively along with the velocity caught my eye. With all of the talent and experience available here, I wondered if there was any more information available from you or the other readers focusing on accuracy that went a little further beyond your test of the stock/unmodified 2300S while still using CO2. I feel sure that some of the 10-meter guys have looked carefully at this at some point in the past, as determined shooters rarely leave any stone left unturned in the search for better accuracy!

        Also, is there a potential accuracy increase that can realized in a short choked barrel like this if the propellant is switched to air at higher pressures (PCP)? As you have mentioned, compressed air has better flow characteristics than CO2 gas. Could that better flow characteristic factor affect accuracy all by itself through different pellet acceleration rates? If I am not mistaken, the Air Arms TX200 Mk3 Hunter’s Carbine springer (for example) uses a shrouded and choked barrel of a similar length (around 10 inches) at much higher velocities to very good effect (air vs. CO2 again, but applied in a different way/different pressure curve)! Or, is there just a minimum/maximum velocity for a given pellet in a given barrel that will achieve the best accuracy for that combination?

        Sorry for such a long post and so many questions!

        Thanks to everybody for sharing experience, that’s what makes this blog special.
        Dave


        • Dave,

          As many people are experimenting with Crosman pistols I’m sure someone has explored that avenue. But I don’t know who, or where they documented it.

          As for the conversion to high pressure air, here is a report I did on that:

          /blog/2014/08/crosman-2240-conversion-to-air-part-4/

          That was a 2240 pistol, but I did change the receiver and barrel.

          B.B.




  7. B.B and all
    I read and re read all that there is on the web about the Diana 35. I tuned up my recent acquisition, the 435 Winchester just this evening. After straightening the barrel, It received a good cleaning, new moly in all the right places, and l white lithium on the leather seal. The original spring was reversed to put the bent end forward, and got some JM tar. The guide I shimmed with beercan aluminum. It is as really smooth now without any vibe. It was clocking in around 680 before and now is at 700. But I will keep it away from a chronograph, because its so pleasant to shoot and so far 10 yd single hole groups. Thanks to you and all who contribute to this blog the info made it all possible.




        • Mr. Rob

          I tryed a bunch of different magnum springers and nitro piston guns when I started back into air guns. Never could get them to shoot like I thought they should.

          Then done pcp’s, then some milder springers. Was definitely more happy with the results.

          Tryed some magnum springers again thinking maybe it was just me and not knowing what I was doing at first when I started back. Nope I still wasn’t happy with the magnum guns.

          Now this M8, my tuned Tx and the LGU I had and the FWB 300 are definitely my most enjoyable spring guns to shoot. And I will say that I liked my Diana 54 Air King I had. I do see myself getting another one of those.

          But yes there is a time I believe when it clicks. And person realizes what you thought was good really ain’t after you touch something that does work nice.

          As they say you got to have the proper tool to do the job right. Well my air guns are my shooting tools if you know what I mean. I want the right one for the type of shooting I’m doing.



  8. Good evening BB.
    I shoot in my basement at about 35 feet and was looking at the M8 as it is advertised right now at PA for 139.00 I love the look of the stock and at almost 60 now I kind of need more than open sights. The one advertised comes with a scope (4×32 AO scope) At the 35 feet would this scope be good for me? I also read about the scope needing to be shimmed and the pivot pin becoming loose both of these are things that I have no knowledge of how to do. I shoot paper targets,metal food cans,army men stuff like that. If this M8 is not good for me,what pellet rifle with a wood stock in the 100 to 200 hundred dollar range would you suggest for a person with my abilities to modify. I get very confused on my need of a scope because of my lack of keen eyesight and the close distance of my range. Any help and or advise with all of this I would be very thankful for.

    Be blessed
    ELLICOTT


    • Ellicott,

      The M8 is perfect for what you want. That or a good used air rifle. But the scope it comes with isn’t one to use. It will work, but you’ll want a better one soon.

      As for shimming, that is different with each rifle. Adjustable scope mounts and mounts that slant down will also take care of that.

      B.B.


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