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Education / Training Chinese B3 underlever: Part 8

Chinese B3 underlever: Part 8

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

The B3 underlever from China.

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

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The test
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS R10 pistol
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today I conduct the 25-yard accuracy test of the Chinese B3 underlever air rifle. Before shooting this particular B3 I had never shot any Chinese sporting spring rifle at this distance and I didn’t think there were any that could manage it.

The test

I read Part 6 to learn which pellets did best in the rifle. All shooting was off a rest, using the artillery hold. And I have to use the open sights on the rifle, as there is no easy way to mount a scope. Later B3s do have dovetails for scopes but this early one does not.

I knew from the last test at 10 meters that the rifle would do okay at 25 yards, so I wasn’t really afraid of testing it. Many times I get scared when I move back to 25 yards because a lot of spring guns are not that stable — especially the ones from China. This one isn’t just from China, it’s a model designed by the Chinese and only sold here because they wanted to. Nobody asked for the B3 — it just came as it was.

JSB Exact RS

The first pellet I tried was the domed JSB Exact RS. I shot the first shot and checked where it hit through the spotting scope. It landed at the top of the bull, which I thought was okay, so I continued shooting without checking further. The last shot hit the binder clip that was holding the target, and I knew the rifle had been shooting too high.

Sure enough, when I changed the target I saw that the first shot was the only one low enough to hit the bull. All the rest had climbed a couple inches higher. Because one pellet had hit the clip there weren’t even 10 shots in the group. So I adjusted the rear sight down as low as it would go and shot a second target. This time I got a decent group that was well-centered but still high on the target. Ten pellets went into 1.549-inches at 25 yards.

JSB RS group
Ten JSB Exact RS pellets went into 1.549-inches at 25 yards.

You might think that group is large, and you would be right. But for a B3 I think it’s a nice group.

RWS R10 pistol

Next I tried some RWS R10 Match Pistol pellets. As wadcutrters they are about at the limit of their accurate range at 25 yards. Sometimes I see great groups while other times they open up something fierce. This was one of those other times. Ten shots landed in a loose pattern that spread 2.09-inches between the centers of the two holes farthest apart. Notice that these shots landed significantly lower and to the left than the JSB Domes.

RWS R10-group
Ten RWS R10 Match Pistol pellets made this 2.09-inch group that looks more like a pattern. You can see that the pellet on the left was tipped when it hit the target.

I had hoped for better groups than this with this B3 rifle. It did so well at 10 meters.

Sig Match Ballistic Alloy

The last pellet I tried was the Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellet that has surprised us with its accuracy so many times. This time was no exception. The first shot hit low and left, so I adjusted the rear sight up and to the right.

Sig pellets turned in the best target of the test. Ten went into a group measuring 0.983-inches between center. Not only is this the smallest group of the test, it’s also the roundest. I know it doesn’t compare to some groups I have shown you, but for a B3, I think it’s wonderful.

Sig match group
Ten Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets made thin s 0.983-inch group at 25 yards.


The lube tune I did to the B3 is still paying dividends. The rifle fires smoothly and cocks with the greatest of ease — compared to before. The sights adjust well enough and the trigger is crisp, if a bit too heavy. All in all this is a very surprising air rifle.


We have now looked at this B3 rifle in the greatest detail. We have gone inside and seen the inner workings, and we have tested the rifle thoroughly. We learned how to fix a leaky breech seal with a fawcet washer in 15 minutes. We learned how Tune in a Tube corrects a host of sins.

In short, I think this excursion with the old B3 I found in a pawn shop was most entertaining and enlightening. It was a trip that was well worth taking!

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.

44 thoughts on “Chinese B3 underlever: Part 8”

  1. B.B.,

    Good shooting with opens. As for groups, that last one is very nice. If I can’t stack them,.. at whatever range,… I at least like to see a group like that.

    Good Day to you and to all,…. Chris

  2. BB,

    Who’d a thunk? You could use it to hunt feral soda cans and get them most of the time, that is if you are willing to spend more for two or three tins of the best pellets for it than the air rifle cost.

    I seriously doubt I will make room for a B3 at RidgeRunner’s Home For Wayward Airguns, but I did enjoy your showing it to us. When you look at this and what is coming out of China now you see an almost amazing progression. Reminds me of Japan.

    • RR
      Yep same here about Japan.

      And don’t know if you keep up with cars nowdays. But here’s one from Korea that’s been kicking butt.

      The KIA Stinger is upsetting the car world with it’s performance. It’s beating alot of high dollar cars right now.

      But the question is. How long will it hold together. And it’s not exactly cheap car. I mean price wise.

        • RR
          Think they are trying to compete with the 4 door BMW’s and Mercedes that cost about twice as much.

          If they offered it in the mid 20’s they just might have a winner. High 30’s I think is stretching it a bit.

          But it sure does run. It’s beating them pretty hard right now.

      • We bought a new Kia Soul for my wifea couple years back. Great little car. Best warranty in the business too. But, the car (and maybe all Kias) doesn’t include a spare tire, etc. They give you a battery powered air pump. What good is that going to do you on a flat in the middle of nowhere? I told them I liked the car, but would not buy it unless they threw in a spare tire and wheel with jack etc. They did.

        • Birdmove
          Yep with you on the Jack and spare tire. That is one of the most ridiculous things that car manufacturers have done lately

          Hopefully people have complained enough and the manufacturers are taking note. Hopefully.

          • GF1,

            I will second that,… about a ba-zillion percent! 😉

            Although,…. at 4:30 AM and having a blow out from hitting something steel,… having a full size spare,… having it jacked up,… and lug nuts off,…. I STILL could not get the rim off. AAA to the rescue along with a 10# dead blow sledge. 12 whacks. The hub on rim is too tight to the disc hub.

            Never-seize recommended.

            But yes,… I agree 1000%,…. keep a full size spare. Then again,…. how many people these day’s even have a clue?????

            Ridiculous?,… I would argue,.. stupid!

            • Know what you mean about the wheel being frozen to the rotor. The first time I rotated the tires on our Volvo S40 every wheel was frozen to the rotor. I had to take a dead blow hammer and pound each one to get it off. I cleaned up the wheel and rotor and put some anti-seize compound on the rotor where the wheel mounted. Never had an issue after that. Aluminum wheels tend to stick to steel rotors.

              I agree…no spare tire is RIDICULOUS!

          • Gunfun1,

            I do not think they actually care, they care about meeting the mandated fuel efficient rules and find they can save fuel by reducing weight, the spare has to go.

            Here is a list of cars with and without spare tires.

            A kind of lame move on the part of the car industry, what you get instead is a bottle of tire slime and a pump, not so useful for most road hazard blowouts.


  3. B.B.,

    Considering it came from an age where the Chinese were just learning how to make these things that is acceptable accuracy. Good enough for plinking. The lack of telescopic sights will deter long range shooting and keep the target within realistic minute of tin can ranges.


    • Siraniko
      I think you hit the nail on the head. They made the gun so you would have to try to shoot it in closer.

      Although some guns shoot good open sights at even greater distances.

  4. BB

    I am still intrigued by the Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets. I just read your previous posts over the last 2 years on this Sig (by H&N) pellet. You said up front you were going to praise this pellet if it deserved it. I had said I would spring for the $35 if you could validate its 6 shot group with the Ace In A Hole back on April 19, 2018. But I became even more excited looking over your earlier post with your FWB 300S and Walther LGV Olympia. The Sig Alloy groups were 5 shots at 10 meters and there were a number of reader comments wondering if that pellet would perform at 25 yards. Well I own a tuned up FWB 300S and the Walther LGV Olympia that may want to try these pellets at 25 yards. Perhaps you have tested it at 25 yards and I overlooked it.

    BB, I know this pellet is designed for 10 meter competition but I’m too old for that. I do like to compete with myself everyday shooting 10 shot groups at 25 yards which is the maximum my property allows. It would be nice to know I could bring out these pellets if I had to and shoot some eye opening groups.


      • Wow that is astoundingly good for a b3.

        I have never owned one, my brother has, and some acquaintances have brought them out over the years to show me or ask what can be done to make it more powerful.
        My brother’s and most others have died a quiet death standing in some forgotten corner, slowly rusting. ( saw his last year in the corner of the laundry room rusting )

        So if you are still on for the Texas airgun show I would like to buy it.

        It is a sleeper, no other way to put it.
        And for that alone I would like to give it a home.

        Yes, the pellets cost more than the rifle does, but that’s the price of seeing the look on people’s faces……

        So, just to add another testing aspect to your long list of how you test/tune Spring guns.
        How many shots do you think tune in a tube will last?

        I know the rifle will tell you when it needs it again by the feel.
        But was wondering if anyone out there has run the course of a tune.


      • BB

        Yeah, I’m hoping you do. Your Walther LGV Olympia likes the Sig pellet and should have no trouble at 25 yards. It may be fun to get that old Olympia out and enjoy once again that ultra smooth shot cycle. If the pellet doesn’t perform at 25 yards, so what, it performs at the 10 meter distance it is designed for. But for me I would have to buy them if it likes 25 yards.


    • Decksniper and BB

      It is nice to know there is green pellet finally that performs. Some states only allow them if I got my story right.

      They do coat. But if it’s all you can shoot then I suppose they are worth the money to do so.

  5. And BB
    This is a gun in this particular instance that I wish it had a dovetail.

    Reason being I would love to see if it would shooter better groups with a peep sight.

    Darn anyway. Too bad.

  6. Does anyone have any experience with shooting sticks? I am a little shaky and need something to rest my gun on in order to steady it. If any are recommended, please post a link. Thanks.

    • Geo,

      I made one using an adjustable/telescopic paint roller stick/handle. Look at your local big box home improvement center and see what they have. I drilled and tapped a 1/4″-20 thread and made a cradle. Look at the existing retail options too. I even drilled lock holes in-between the stock holes and made it even more adjustable. I prefer rested, so I have not used it much. It is very much the same as the Mono-pod that BB mentioned.

      Something like that would be ideal for woods walking and sitting,.. but it does not really compare to a good bench set-up.

    • Geo
      Yep definitely use shooting sticks. Mine has adjustable legs and the yoke swivels. And yes mine has the two legs that swing open.

      You’ll have try a shooting stick and see. I will interested in what you think.

  7. B.B.,

    I do so wish I had been able to read your report while I still had my B3. I wasn’t smart enough to see a solution to the breech seal problem, unfortunately.

    By shear coincidence I happened on a link to one of you reports I missed along the way. It’s your report on pneumatic arrow shooter from 2015. It is still a good read.


  8. George,
    Many others have tried all kinds of sticks. For me, the Primos BiPod works. I bought 2; short (sitting) and long (standing). I cannot, however, rest my springer directly on the cradle. I still interpose my hand to get a decent group. PCP and CO2 could probably rest directly on the cradle.

    Lots of purchase options for sticks. One link as requested:


    • Ken,

      I have “played” with that. Your link did not show a gun, but rather a cross bow looking “thingy”. Mine was an aluminum shaft design on an 880 multi-pump, arrow shaft over barrel design. Arrow shooting, ballistics, building and design is very interesting. It really takes a PCP with a powerful valve dump to make it work. It did work, but did not have enough power. Air fired darts are interesting too and much of the same theory carries over. Then there is bolts. Not the thread and nut type. 😉

        • Ken,

          I only gave it a quick look. Foreign language sites give me the “willies”. The first link was interesting. Very good looking. I have never done archery at all seriously, but have shot some bows. I would be more inclined to do cross bows.

          You are right on dart like objects from a springer. Pneumatics are much better. The springer/break barrel is ideal for loading ease though. Make it fit tight with the ability to expand whatever you are using for a skirt/tail.

    • Ken,

      A bamboo BBQ skewer works well too. Wrap tape to fit the bore. Break barrel is best. One word of advice though,…. have a (big) target and do not stand too far away. 8 yards may yield a 12″ group and they are almost always a 1 use item. Very fun though. I recommend giving it a go if for nothing else than pure entertainment purposes. 😉

    • Kenholmz,

      Google Translation:
      Spring-block bow “COBRA”, on the gas spring has exceptional parameters, compactness, power, ease of maintenance, the ability to adjust the tension force and the length of the draft.
      The use of a gas spring as an elastic element made it possible to maximally improve the preload and maximum tension characteristics.
      The design of the unit allows the archer to adjust the tension force in the range of 22 kg. up to 27 kg., while using one and the same spring. The length of the string can be made up to 500 mm. and up to 600mm.
      The degree of strain relief, at the end of stretching, varies from 50% to 80%.
      Thus, the bow is suitable for both a beginner archer and a more experienced one.


      dimensions 360x60x500mm.
      weight 2kg.
      adjustment of tension force from 22kg. up to 27kg.
      adjustment of the length of the string pull from 500mm. up to 600mm.

      This is an eccentric compound bow to say the least.


      • Siraniko,

        Thanks. I hadn’t thought of using Google Translation (although I often do).
        I was amazed at how long that fellow held at full draw, and equally amazed at how accurate each of the three shots was.


  9. BB,

    That’s some mighty fine shooting. I guess I was too quick to dismiss the old B3 as a piece of junk. This series has indeed been entertaining and enlightening and you managed to complete it while retaining the full compliment of fingers and thumbs. All’s well that ends well.

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