by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7

Beeman P1
Beeman P1 air pistol.

This report covers:

  • Disassembly
  • Cleaning
  • Lubrication and assembly
  • Velocity — RWS Hobby pellets
  • RWS R10 Match Pistol
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Crosman Premier Light
  • Discussion
  • What comes next?

Today is a big day. I cleaned the Tune in a Tube (TIAT) grease out of the Beeman P1 we are testing and lubricated it with plain white lithium grease. This will tell us whether TIAT is wrong for an air pistol like the P1 and also whether the pistol I’m testing is still in good shape.

Disassembly

I had the pistol apart and ready to clean in 15 minutes. The directions I gave you in Part 4 work perfectly. I’m not showing any pictures of that today because Part 4 nailed it.

Cleaning

I will say this, TIAT is very sticky stuff! It took longer to clean than I anticipated. Everything had to be wiped dry. That stuff really clings! All I did was wipe it all away with paper towels so the gun was dry and ready for the new grease.

Lubrication and assembly

Cleaning and assembly took 40 minutes, with cleaning and lubrication taking half that time. I used the same hand held trigger clamp that I used the last time, instead of the drill press idea we learned from Gene Salvino. The reason? I didn’t want to take the time to learn a new way. This time I was able to get the mainspring back in the powerplant and secured with the pin in two attempts that took a total of 5-7 minutes.

As the parts went back into the pistol I lubricated them with white lithium grease very sparingly. This grease spreads out very fast and covers everything. I was surprised at how little was needed. I have been using a military grease that was made for for the M1 Garand rifle. It’s lithium-based, but it is a formulation that is thicker than the stuff I used on the P1 today. I will have to get familiar with this grease.

Velocity — RWS Hobby pellets

Okay, the pistol is back together and I will shoot the same pellets as both times before, and in the same order. I will show all three sets of velocities, with today’s tune numbers on the right, under the lithium column. The first pellet tested is the RWS Hobby .

Before………………..After…………Lithium
Hi…..Lo……….…..Hi…..Lo………..Hi…..Lo
541…423…………436…336…….…536…424

As you can see, the P1 is back! I really don’t need to test any further to know that TIAT grease is not necessary for the Beeman P1 pistol. It fixes a problem that doesn’t really exist. But you readers paid for a complete test and that’s what you will get.

The velocity spread on low power was 17 f.p.s. — from 418 to 435 f.p.s. On high it was 15 f.p.s. — from 531 to 546 f.p.s. That’s a tighter spread on both power settings than with TIAT, which were 38 on low and 24 f.p.s. on high.

RWS R10 Match Pistol

Next up was the RWS R10 Match Pistol pellet that was the fastest lead pellet in all the tests. Let’s look at the results.

Before………………..After…………Lithium
Hi…..Lo……….…..Hi…..Lo………..Hi…..Lo
578…457…………474…382…….…574…468

Same as the first time, before the TIAT. Yes the numbers are slightly different, but they always will be. The P1 is right back to where it was.

The velocity spread on low power was 9 f.p.s. (462 to 471 f.p.s.) and on high it was 8 f.p.s, (570 to 578 f.p.s.). With TIAT the spreads were 7 and 14 f.p.s., respectively.

Sig Match Ballistic Alloy

The next pellet to be tested was the Sig Match Ballistic Alloy. These lead-free pellets are lighter and will always be faster than lead.

Before………………..After…………Lithium
Hi…..Lo……….…..Hi…..Lo………..Hi…..Lo
649…478…………469…328…….…612…471

These velocities are slightly slower than the first time but significantly faster than when the gun was lubed with TIAT. The spread on low was 10 f.p.s. (466-476 f.p.s.) and on high it was 20 f.p.s.(602-622 f.p.s.). With TIAT the low spread was 86 f.p.s. and the high was 25 f.p.s. The P1 is slightly slower than on the first test but a good deal more stable than it was with TIAT.

Crosman Premier Light

The last pellet I tested is one I didn’t try before lubing with TIAT — the Crosman Premier 7.9-grain pellet. I don’t have the numbers from the dry pistol. However, given the results of the other three pellets I think those numbers in a dry gun would be pretty close to what I got in this test.

Before………………..After…………Lithium
Hi…..Lo……….…..Hi…..Lo………..Hi…..Lo
NA…NA…….……393…291…….…478…364

Although there are no velocity figures from the dry gun to compare to, we can look at the spreads since switching from TIAT. This time the low spread was 15 f.p.s. (357 to 372 f.p.s.) and the high was 21 f.p.s. (464 to 485 f.p.s.). With TIAT the low spread was 23 f.p.s. and on high it was 16 f.p.s.

Discussion

I will summarize the entire test by saying it was right to just remove the TIAT and lubricate with lithium. Getting any deeper into all the numbers doesn’t help very much when all we have are these few data. I think everyone will agree the P1 is back to normal.

TIAT grease is miraculous in many ways, but when a spring gun like the P1 is already running at its ragged edge for performance, it’s not the way to go. As I said, it solved a problem that didn’t actually exist.

So, how does the pistol now shoot? Well it’s a bit harsher when it fires, but that’s understandable. It does not buzz, and we now can rest assured that the piston seal and breech seal are doing their jobs. It’s just quicker when it fires now than it was when lubed with TIAT — especially on high power! Cocking seems a bit harder than before, but it’s not that different than my other P1. This one always was just a bit harder to cock.

Next

Now I can test those things you readers asked for — accuracy with sorted pellets and others. There is more in store for our P1. Stay tuned!