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History Daisy’s Red Ryder: Part 5

Daisy’s Red Ryder: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

A history of airguns

Daisy Red Ryder
Daisy Red Ryder.

This report covers:

  • Scoped
  • Hornady Black Diamond BBs
  • Avanti Precision Ground Shot
  • Discussion
  • Umarex Precision Steel BBs
  • Results

I said I would come back to the Brice scope base for the Daisy Red Ryder BB gun, and today is the day. As you may recall from Part 4, the spacer under the rear of the base I am testing is too tall for the gun and it makes the gun shoot too high. I trimmed about a third off the height for today’s test.


I also mounted a vintage Leapers Accushot 3-12X44 SWAT mil dot scope that looks like the scope I linked to, except it doesn’t have the etched reticle or illumination.

Daisy Red Ryder scoped
This Leapers scope is an oldie, but it still works great. Looks big on the Red Ryder, doesn’t it?

The gun still shot high, but I was able to use the mil dots in the scope’s reticle to hold under and get a good point of aim. I also understand that the Brice bases that are being sold now have much lower spacers, so you shouldn’t have this problem.

I shot from 5 meters, seated and using a UTG Monopod rest to steady the gun. I was able to shoot right-handed today, which made this test go easier.

Hornady Black Diamond BBs

First to be tested were 10 Hornady Black Diamond BBs. They were the most accurate in the last test and I thought they would be a good place to start.

In Part 4 with a red dot sight, 10 Hornady BBs went into 1.867-inches at 5 meters. Today, 10 went into 1.272-inches. That looks significantly better and I will say that the scope did make it easier to see the target and to hold more precisely.

Daisy Red Ryder Hornady target
Ten Hornady Black Diamond BBs went into 1.272-inches at 5 meters.

Avanti Precision Ground Shot

For the second BB I loaded 10 Avanti Precision Ground Shot. I secretly hoped they would do surprisingly well. Nine of them did — going into a group that measures 0.991-inches between centers. But that last shot, which came in the middle of the string, opened the group to 1.768-inches. I’d like to say it was a pulled shot, but I can’t. I did have one pulled shot that I called, but not in these 10.

Daisy Red Ryder Avanti target
Ten Avanti Precision Ground Shot went into 1.768-inches at 5 meters. Nine of them went into 0.991-inches.


From the results of these first two targets I am seeing that the Brice scope base and a good scope really do help the Daisy Red Ryder shoot more accurately. But I wished it was better. And, then it was!

Umarex Precision Steel BBs

Sometimes you luck into the right ammunition by accident. That’s why we try so many different rounds when testing for accuracy. Apparently this Red Ryder loves the Umarex Precision Steel BBs, because it put 10 of them into 1.327-inches at 5 meters. Nine are in 0.925-inches and 8 are in 0.61-inches! This is the BB for this gun.

Daisy Red Ryder Umarex target
Here we go! Ten in 1.327-inches, 9 in 0.925-inches and 8 in 0.61-inches at 5 meters.


What this demonstrates is the modern Red Ryder can be reasonably accurate. It’s hard to hold such a light gun steady, and the overly heavy trigger doesn’t help matters, but the Brice scope base does bring out the accuracy potential. It’s no Daisy 499, but we never expected it to be. This one is shooting better than I thought they ever could, thanks to the Brice base.

I will do one more report on the Daisy Red Ryder. That one will be a velocity test of this new gun. I tested the velocity of my vintage model 111-40 in Part 2 of this report, but switched to the current Red Ryder when I discovered the Brice base will not fit a vintage gun. So I will close the loop by testing the velocity of the current gun and comparing it to the vintage gun. It should be interesting.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

34 thoughts on “Daisy’s Red Ryder: Part 5”

  1. B.B.,

    Nice test of the product. I’ll bet that you never thought you would be mounting a scope of that size on a Red Ryder.

    I did look into making a mount and just buying a cheap Daisy scope with the objective lens “tweaked”. I was not able to find some “off the shelf” 3/8″ bar stock. I will not give up on the idea though.

    A nice “upgrade” to the mount would be an adjustable rear with thumb wheels to raise and lower,.. and lock down. Yes, washers would be easier. Even C or E clips. Even different height spacers. Without the benefit of mil-dots, I would want to try and get the cross hairs “on” at a fixed range. Just some ideas.The idea of using a mil-dot scope really allowed the mount to show it’s best.

    Nice test again and one that is definitely out of the norm. I would have thought that the short LOP and eye relief would have been a problem. Could you actually shoulder it?


    • Chris,

      As you often do, you just “invented” a scope that has been around for half a century. The Daisy 300 scope has an adjustable mount withy a cam in the rear that allows the shooter to raise and lower the scope, just like you describe. The 300 was available on the No. 25 and the 111-40 BB guns. It came in a boxed target set.


      • B.B.,

        🙂 Well, without knowing what all has been done through the years,….. it was a fresh idea.

        Like you said many moon’s ago,….. when inventing a new product, one would be served well to research what has been done prior. Especially if Patent infringements could arise.

        Really though, it should include the means to vary the height in the kit. Plastic or metal washers are cheap.


    • Uuuggg! C/E clips – *shudder* 🙁

      Struggle to get them off, struggle to put them back. Then its *ping*… and you hear them ricochet several times before they are hopelessly lost somewhere in the workshop. They should be outlawed LOL!

      Don’t mind me – just a pet peeve 🙂


      • Hank,

        C washer maybe? Not something that would “clip”,…. rather,.. to be put on without removing the screw. Still, looking at the picture,.. getting at the screw would not be that easy anyways with the scope in the way. Opposing thumb screws/nuts would be the ticket. A wood-to-machine screw would need to be employed for it to be ideal, with a 3rd lock nut for next to the stock.

        I am with you on the E-clips. For what they are, the purpose they serve and where they are usually located,…. not much else would work most times.


        • Chris,

          Agreed, when E-clips are used not much else would work.

          Makes it even more frustrating when they abruptly vanish – I don’t have a stock of them so it means a special trip to the hardware store, hopefully with one as a sample to match.

          For the scope mount adjustment, how ’bout a rubber spacer that could be compressed to the height required. A stack of washers would do the job as well. Its not like it was something that needed adjusting often.


          • Hank,

            Yes, that would work! Near perfect I would say. Plus, that would only mean 1 top adjuster wheel.

            Of course, the “Squishability” would have to be just right. That is a not heard often, “highly technical” term. 😉 Heck, even a fairly stiff spring would work.

            Oh well,….. I think we have given Mr. Brice a few points to ponder on a “Gen. II” model,… maybe?


            • “Squishability” eh? How would you measure that – by force or distance compressed or both? …Grams per millimetre? 🙂

              Time to go home! Have a great evening!


  2. BB—-The Gletcher m 44 is a surprise when it comes to accuracy. You really have to test one to appreciate it,s accuracy. Gletcher should make a scoped 91-30 sniper version. ——Ed

    • Zimbabweed
      Ed – Now wouldn’t that be something, a full size 91/30 Mosin Nagent Sniper with the 3.5-power PU fixed focus scope shooting BB’s.
      I think there might be problems with the barrel length. The M1944 has a 16 inch barrel which is about the maximum length for the engineering in that gun. Anything longer might decrease performance drastically. Keeping the BB barrel at 16 inches maybe it wouldn’t affect the BB at all having to travel the extra 8.8 inches of fake barrel.
      I know that on the .22 cal rifle I built out of spare parts the extended shroud – 6 inches – does not affect the accuracy at all.
      Or you could by a PU Scope, (available on eBay), and mount it on your M1944.

  3. Just received my Brice mount for my Red Ryder. Haven’t mounted it yet, but will soon. I ordered mine directly from Mr. Brice. They can also be bought from the Daisy Museum.

  4. I must say, for about the millionth time, that the Daisy Red Ryder is one of my all-time favorite airguns. I own some really nice ones, but I always come back to old blue (much to Black Bart’s chagrin). I have two of the danged things, and one is of the ubiquitous “special edition” variety, the other is garden variety, but with a METAL underlever. I can’t hardly miss a beer can at 30 feet with open sights– depending on how many beer cans I have already shot at.

    I scope almost everything because my eyesight is not great, but my RRs are a notable exception. But with this mount I am thinking of giving it a shot. Don’t know if I would mount one of those 3-12×44 telescopes on it though ;^)

  5. I would love one of these for my son when he’s big enough, can’t wait.

    Thanks BB as always.

    Ive joined a UK forum, an been invited to a shoot in November! Few nights an days of shooting an beers. Camping in November might be a bit rough, but hey. Can’t wait.

  6. Redrafter. —I will put a scope on my M44 when I get a second one. Since I will use a scope mount that replaces the rear sight, I would want one with the original iron rear sight as well. I have been able to get a few good air rifles at gun shows. I just bought a Crosman M1 carbine ( with the original magazine) for little more than what some people are paying for the magazine alone. A used M44 will probably show up in the near future. —–Ed

  7. Like what I’m seeing regarding the accuracy using the scope! And also looking forward to the velocity testing. I have recently finished testing a new production Red Ryder for muzzle velocity (along with a new Model 105 Buck, a new Model 25, a new Sheridan Cowboy and two Red Ryders I modified) using Daisy Precision Max (common WM sourced zinc plated), Daisy Avanti, Umarex steel, Hornady Black Diamond and 1980 vintage Crossman Copper Head. I’ll wait until you post your results. I haven’t yet gotten to any accuracy testing as I just had eye surgery done on my non sighting eye but it still is a little distracting.

    I bought a Daisy 499B sight ($3.00) and mounted it to one of my Red Ryders, used the top stock screw. Actually works surprisingly well but is slow to acquire the target.


  8. Been using my 75th Anniversary RR on pop cans up to 20 paces (convenient distance for me). Usually as soon as I’ve pulled the trigger I know whether or not I’ll hear a “ping”. Shoot with a guy who had been using a vintage Daisy Buck. He liked my Red Ryder so much he bought a new one at Walmart. @#%$&^!! now he out-shoots me. Using Avanti BB’s.

  9. Yesterday I did the first round of accuracy testing, used the WM sourced Daisy zinc plated BBs from a 6K canister. And for what it’s worth, it proved to me once again that tests have to be done because going by what “should be” ain’t always the case.

    All targets were shot 5 times each at 10 meters from a seated position using an informal rest- folded towel on the railing of my deck. The center “bull” is 1.050 inches in diameter. Each gun was given a ‘fouling’ shot before testing began. I did my best, but it must be said that I have had no formal training, no experience in BR or competitive shooting sports. Just a plinker…

    RR #1 and #2 have drilled air tubes and preload spacers added to the springs. The others are as-delivered.


    Biggest surprise of the day! The Buck has the shortest buttstock, shortest barrel and shortest sight radius of the bunch. I can’t shoot it very well at all offhand, but in THIS test…

  10. Umarex vs Avanti ( in a 499)


    Umarex Precision Steel BBs outperformed the Avantis in this test with the Red Ryder.

    Any thoughts on the same two competing in the Avanti 499?
    Are the Avanti BB’s so`well matched to the 499 that whatever is different about the Umarex Precisions would be a disadvantage?

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