Sheridan Blue Streak: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

A history of airguns

Sheridan Blue Streak
My Sheridan Blue Streak was purchased new in 1978.

This report covers:

  • The trigger
  • The test
  • Beeman Silver Jets
  • Crosman Premiers
  • Sheridan Cylindrical pellets
  • Final assessment

Time to test the accuracy of my 1978 rocker safety Sheridan Blue Streak. You may recall that in Part 3 we paused to get the rifle powerplant rebuilt and then retested the velocity. It is now performing like new. Today the question is, how accurate are these things?

The trigger

The trigger on a rocker safety Blue and Silver Streak is single stage, but can be pretty crisp. The one in my rifle certainly is. I guessed it was breaking at around 2 lbs., but was surprised to see the electronic scale go all the way up to 4 lbs. 6 oz. It sure feels lighter than that.

Keep your files and stones away from these trigger parts as they are just low carbon steel that’s been casehardened for wear. The trick with one of these is to shim the parts to cancel any sideways wobble and lubricate the contact area with moly grease. My trigger benefits from 38 years of use, which means it’s been broken-in.

The test

We looked at power last time. Let’s now look at accuracy. I shot the rifle rested on a bag off a bench at 10 meters. I decided on 4 pumps per shot for all pellets. Wearing my new glasses, I was able to see the front sight blade sharply against the rear sight notch. The bull was a little fuzzy, but nothing too dramatic.

Beeman Silver Jets

I started the test with Beeman Silver Jets that were popular back in the 1970s and ’80s, when this rifle was new. I assumed the sights were on and used a 6 o’clock hold on the 10-meter pistol target. Within three shots I could see a dark pellet hole appearing in the orange (?) paster in the center of the target. I never looked through the spotting scope. Just shot my 10 shots and walked down to change the target.

Ten Silver Jets went into a single hole at 10 meters. The group measures 0.519-inches between centers. I can’t even do that well with some modern sporting rifles! I was more than satisfied.

Sheridan Blue Streak Silver Ace target
Ten Beeman Silver Ace pellets went into 0.519-inches at 10 mewters. Not bad for an obsolete air rifle shooting an obsolete pellet!

Crosman Premiers

Next up were Crosman Premiers. Until recently Crosman made this wonderful pellet in .20 caliber, but it is no longer around. I have a stash of them, though, and since I don’t shoot .20 caliber that often, they should last a long time. That’s good, too, because 10 Premiers from this Blue Streak went into 0.322-inches at 10 meters. This is almost getting to the level of accuracy seen by target air rifles. Remember that I’m shooting with the open sights that came on this 38-year-old multi-pump.

Sheridan Blue Streak Premier target
Ten Crosman Premiers went into 0.322-inches at 10 meters. This is fantastic. The next stop is 10-meter target rifle accuracy.

Sheridan Cylindrical pellets

I would like to be able to tell you that the vintage Sheridan Cylindrical pellets made the smallest group of all, but they didn’t. In fact, it was the largest group, as I imagined it had to be. It is well-known that Sheridan Cylindrical pellets are just not as accurate as good diabolos. So let’s see how they stack up.

Ten Sheridan Cylindrical pellets made a group that measures 0.872-inches between centers. That’s over twice the size of the group made by the Premiers, but it’s still not that bad.

Sheridan Blue Streak Sheridan Cylindrical target
Ten Sheridan Cylindrical pellets made this 0.872-inch group at 10 meters. It’s larger than the first two, but still not that bad for open sights.

Final assessment

This 1978 Sheridan Blue Streak is is pretty fair shape for its age. I know a lot of airgunners who would like to have a multi-pump gun this powerful and accurate today.

After its first overhaul by Jeff Cloud, my Blue Streak soldiers on. It will probably go strong for another 30 years, at which time it will be another airgunner’s job to restore. Normally I test guns I acquire used for the history section, but this one I bought brand new.

Now that you know what a Blue Streak can do, you can make a direct comparison with the Sheridan Supergrade I am also reviewing. That should prove interesting.

In the future I plan to review the Benjamin 392 pump-assist air rifle for you. I won’t tell you about it now, but rest assured, it’s an interesting air rifle that’s no longer available.

34 thoughts on “Sheridan Blue Streak: Part 4

  1. Hi B.B
    This is awesome accuracy for an old pumper! Just shows how well made most vintage guns are Sir. You’re so lucky to own this beautiful gun. Looking forward to the series on the 392 cos I had a borrowed gun for years in my teens before I returned it to the owner. Had some good times with it!!
    Errol


  2. Nice report.

    I have never personally owned one of these, but have shot many that friends have owned over the years.
    As recently as 3 months ago, a coworker and I stopped to visit his parents, his dad was sitting on the back porch with a blue streak and a beverage, guarding the garden from raiders.

    Un touched, well used, and still going strong.

    I had to bring my Crosman mark 1 from the car, and spend some time rolling a can, while making new friends..

    On the 392 pump assist, didn’t you do a report on that back in 07 or 08?(yes, I have been lurking here on here for a while before I started posting.)

    Funky linkage, but sure helped the pumping effort.
    At one time I refinished the stock on one for a friend, and had to shoot it a little.


  3. BB,

    Sweet little pumper. Many nowadays have to have ubermagnummultishotwhatchamacallits, but these little jewels help you to slow down, relax a bit and make each shot count.


  4. B.B.,

    Glad the Ol’ Gal is back up an running. 10 meters,…… spotting scope,……??? Really? I do not know about 5 and 10 meter shooting, so I had to ask. I suppose in competition that it might come in handy in spotting if a shooter was to shoot the wrong bull by mistake on a multi-bull target.

    Chris


  5. Thanks for the blog B.B.!

    I have a soft spot when it comes to pumpers and need to get back to my 101 reseal project.

    Do you have any idea what the chamber pressure might be at full power on a typical pumper? Was just wondering how it would compare to the Maximus 1000>2000 psi working pressures.

    For decades I have been thinking about a multi-pump/several shot rifle… still thinking about it 🙂

    Hank


  6. Thanks, BB, for this report.
    It was reports like this that encouraged me to get a “vintage” Bluestreak when and if the opportunity would arise. And when it did, you better believe I did; now the proud owner of a gun as old as me! *grin*
    Then, last year, a newer model found its way in to my gun case. I enjoy shooting them both but the older one, well broken-in, for some reason shoots just a little better. 😉
    I’ll let my sons shoot the newer model.

    But I had never experimented with other pellets and so I appreciated this report.
    Is the .20 cal really going the way of the dodo or do you think one of the manufacturers will resurrect it? If not, should I be stockpiling pellets now??



    • Javagonzo,

      Once upon a time in the not too distant past, .20 pellets were almost impossible to find. Now JSB, H&N and Predator Polymag make pellets in this caliber. Weihrauch offers several of there sproingers in this caliber also. There seems to be a quiet revival in progress for the .20.

      Previously, I would have shied away from a Sheridan or others for that reason, but now it looks like the .20 is going to be around for some time.


  7. B.B.,

    That Sheridan is sweet, for sure. I love mine, and I find there is no comparison between it and my Benjamin. The fit, balance, trigger, cocking smoothness, everything is just better.

    Too bad about the Crosman Premiers. I find the JSB Diabolo Exacts are accurate in my Streak, but I might have to hunt down some NOS Premiers.

    Michael


    • Nice report, B.B.; thank you!
      And Michael, I have found the same; the JSB Diablo Exacts are the most accurate pellets I have found to date for my vintage Blue Streak…love that gun! =)



  8. Pingback: Sheridan Blue Streak: Part 4 | Airguns: Air Rifles and Pistols

  9. Loved those Beeman SilverJets and the other special Beeman pellets (Silver Arrow, Ram Jet, Silver Ace, and others) back in the day. Have about 1/2 a tin of Silver Jets and just a few of the others from a sampler pack left.
    In a number of guns the Silver Jets were very accurate. Kind of a shame they are no longer produced. But, I am sure many others have eclipsed them in technology and performance.

    SIlver Eagle


  10. B.B., I bought my Blue Streak new in the fall of 1976. The only pellets I ever had for it are the ones in the yellow plastic box, and Beeman Silver Jets. I still have some of both, and my Blue Streak stands forlornly in the corner, in need of refurbishing. I won’t part with it, regardless. The only thing I ever wanted to change was the stock, but not so much as to actually do anything about it.

    ~ken


  11. I wonder how good it would be with graded pellets, a single pump, maybe two and a quality diopter sight from Anschutz or similar, I bet it would give at least a Feinwerkbau 300S a run for its money, especially if a bit of trigger polishing was undertaken


  12. I have an academic friend who had a collectors permit for squirrels. As he was collecting in some areas where he didn’t want to draw attention to himself, he cut the stock off of a Sheridan just behind the grip, and could keep it down his pant leg. He walked around like a cripple when anyone was present!
    I shot a scoped Sheridan in an early Field shoot and did well against the spring air rifles of that time. I was using five pumps and frankly got a little tired in this fast paced match.


  13. BB–In a recent post, I said that that the bb,s from my Gletcher MN 1944 were curving to the left, when the co2 was almost exhausted. I set up a test to find out if I was correct. I put 4 empty plastic medicine bottles ( 2″ x 4 ” @)on a string, like beads on a string. I hung them at 10 M. When the co2 pressure began to drop, I aimed at the top bottle. Each shot hit the bottles, dropping lower with each shot. The “curve” to the left was an optical illusion. —-Ed


    • Ed,

      That’s a good test for a curving projectile. I will have to remember that. Whether i remember that I heard it from you is another story, but at our ages, you probably won’t remember that you told me, either! 😉

      B.B.


    • Ed
      Probably won’t happen with a smooth bore barrel and bb’s.

      You should try that same test with a co2 gun that shoots pellets and has a rifled barrel. I would use a small diameter bottle though at that close distance. Or use the same ones out at maybe 25 yards or so.

      And heck why not use a plane piece of paper on your target board or stop. Draw you a dot at the top of the page and draw a straight line down to the bottom of the page and aim at the dot. That would probably be more precise than bottles.

      If you try it with a rifled barrel and pellets let me know what you find. Of course on a calm day if your trying it outside.


  14. I’m most impressed at getting those groups with iron sights. Your vision must be coming along.

    Meanwhile, I’m starting to wonder about this knife-throwing idea. It’s taken me about 10 years to learn how to shoot guns. Knife-throwing might take 50. i can see what needs to be done, but it is so subtle and hard to repeat. That’s consistent with more information on the superiority of primitive man. I’m now studying the Chinese longsword that first appeared over 2000 years ago. There was a saying that competence with the sword takes 10,000 days of practice. That’s 30 years. And according to one commentator that assumes practicing all day long. With more modern practice times of a few hours a week, it would take about 300 years.

    Matt61



  15. Hi. I am new to this blog so please forgive my ignorance. I wanted to ask if any of you know where I might be able to send my 1970’s Blue Streak 5mm and I would like to restore it. It still seems to work but the wooden pump is cracked with a piece missing. I could do the work myself with some instruction or send it to someone to have it worked on. Any ideas?


  16. B.B.

    I have a 1960’s era multi pump Benjamin Sheridan that looks just like this one. It takes 5mm pellets and worked just as you described until recently. It now does not hold air when we perform the pump action. After receiving the repair kit from Pyramyd Air, I started looking into how difficult it would be to do the repair myself. It looks rather daunting and I would like your opinion. Should I attempt this with my father in law, or should I take the kit to a professional to do the work? How much should I expect to pay for the work?

    Thanks,

    J.K.

    P.S. I am happy I found this blog because I’ve learned how valuable this rifle is. I look forward to getting it firing again.


    • JK,

      Welcome to the blog.

      What you have is called a Sheridan. Benjamin didn’t buy them until the 1980s, and Crosman didn’t purchase Benjamin until later than that. So it’s just a Sheridan.

      Before you have the rifle rebuilt — and I recommend sending it to someone — try oiling the pimp head with Automatic Transmission Sealant. I have been having remarkable success with it. Read about it here:

      /blog/2016/01/a-proven-co2-fix-for-leaving-guns/

      In that report I say that I haven’t had success with multi-pumps like yours, but since then I have fixed several that way. So, it works.

      By the way, here is a guy who can fix your gun like new:

      Rick Willnecker in PA. Contact him at http://www.airgunshop.net/ or call 717-382-1481.

      B.B.



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