by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- Install the CO2 cartridge
- Velocity with Daisy BBs
- Air Venturi Copper-Plated BBs
- H&N Smart Shot lead BBs
- Trigger pull
- Shot count
- Evaluation so far
Today we look at the velocity of the Sig Spartan BB pistol. The specs rate it at 410 f.p.s. Today we find out. I will also comment on things like the blowback and the trigger. Let’s get started.
Install the CO2 cartridge
The first step is to put a fresh CO2 cartridge in the gun. It goes into the grip, of course. Lift off the left grip panel and then pull the mainspring housing from the back of the grip. That is the lower flat part of the grip that’s has a coarse raised pattern in the metal for a better grip. In the 1911 firearm, it houses the mainspring, but on this BB pistol it’s the lever that pierces the CO2 cartridge.
You will notice that there is a roller bearing at the bottom of the CO2 compartment. When the mainspring housing is pulled out, that moves out of the way. Once the cartridge is in the gun, the mainspring housing is pressed back in place — flat against the gun. The roller goes in and forces the cartridge up into the hollow piercing pin. Just be careful with this because it can be a pinch point.
The piercing pin is a hollow tube that a lot of CO2 pistols use these days. The face washer, however, is very thick and robust-looking. It looks like it should last a long time. Just remember to put a drop of Crosman Pellgunoil on the tip of each new cartridge, when you install it.
Velocity with Daisy BBs
First to be tested were Daisy Premium Grade BBs. As I loaded them I noted some things about the stick magazine. First, there is a notch at the bottom to catch and hold the spring-loaded follower. Some BB mags don’t have this and you have to use one of your hands to hold the follower down during loading.
The other thing I noticed is there is a loading hole on the back side of the mag. A lot of stick mags force you to load them at the top where the BB will come out. This is a great feature!
Ten Daisy BBs averaged 376 f.p.s. I waited a minimum of 10 seconds between shots, but the velocity still dropped continuously from the first shot at 403 f.p.s. until the 9th shot at 362 f,.p.s. That one was a 1 f.p.s. increase over shot 8. The total spread went from 351 to 403 f.p.s, so a max of 52 f.p.s.
The recoil ranged from very aggressive in the beginning to average as the velocity decreased. At its most aggressive I would rate it as the same as a .22 rimfire pistol, which is very heavy for an airgun.
Air Venturi Copper-Plated BBs
Next up were Air Venturi Copper-Plated BBs. They no longer seem to be available, but I’m sure they aren’t much different than Air Venturi Zinc-Plated BBs. The pistol didn’t record on the first shot, so the first number I recorded was 390 f.p.s. I think the gun was still cool from the first string. There is no reason this BB is any slower than the Daisys.
As before the velocity dropped steadily with each shot. This time there was no rebound. Shot 10 went out at 339 f.p.s. So the spread went from 339 to 390 f.p.s., a range of 51 f.p.s, over 10 shots. And I waited 10 seconds minimum between all shots.
H&N Smart Shot lead BBs
Last to be tested were H&N Smart Shot lead BBs. They are about 50 percent heavier than the steel BBs so we expect slower velocity from them and, indeed, we got it. From the first shot at 333 f.p.s. to the last at 267 f.p.s. the velocity declined with each shot once more. The spread was 66 f.p.s.
I told you in part one that the trigger pull feels like two stages, even though this is a single action pistol that should have a single stage trigger. That first stage is undoubtedly just a little slop in the trigger linkage.
The trigger releases at 5 lbs. 13 oz. The release is reasonably crisp and I think I can do good work with this one. It’s very reminiscent of the trigger on the 1911A1 firearm — especially if it’s a Series 80 pistol.
By this point in the test I had fired a total of 37 shots from the CO2 cartridge. I then loaded a full magazine (16 shots) of Daisy BBs and registered the velocities. Here is that string.
1……………..326 (this is shot 38 from the start)
6……………..Did not register
11……………201 Failed to cock
I stopped the test at this point. I got about 40 useable shots from one CO2 cartridge in this test. That will vary a little from cartridge to cartridge and will also be affected by the temperature at which you shoot. My office was 73 degrees.
Evaluation so far
I purposely did not read the review of the Max Michel pistol, as we acknowledged this one is so close. But after the velocity test I did go back and see that the two pistols are practically identical. I even said the same things about the trigger!
The Spartan seems to use a lot of gas per shot. That must be to power the heavy metal slide for blowback.
I like the crispness of the trigger and the feel of the grip safety. I don’t care for the extra button on the manual safety, though.
Next it’s accuracy. If this pistol can shoot it will move up higher in my ratings.