Hellboy semiautomatic BB gun: Part 1
by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- Carry handle
- What’s it for?
Today I start testing the Hellboy-BB-gun from Hellraiser — an Air Venturi brand. This is a semiautomatic BB repeater in the form of an M4 tactical rifle. Several readers have been waiting for this review, so here we go!
Yes, the Hellboy is semiautomatic. Despite having a selector switch that has the Safe, Semi and Auto positions, the Auto position does nothing. The gun will still fire semiautomatically when the selector is in that position. The selector is located in the right place for anyone who has used an M16, M4 or AR-15.
The Hellboy’s maximum velocity is 495 f.p.s. which is below the Canadian limit for an airgun. However, because the Hellboy is a replica airgun that copies the M4, I am pretty sure it is a prohibited item under Canadian law.
I must comment how realistic this BB gun is! I looks and feels like an M4 in most ways. Only the weight difference gives it away. The Hellboy weighs 5.2 lbs. and the M4 weighs 6.5 lbs. empty and one more pound when a 30-round magazine is loaded.
The receiver is metal that feels like the aluminum of an M4 receiver, and the stock, forearm and pistol grip are made of the same plastic as the M4, or very similar. The metal is finished in a matte black that copies the military finish perfectly.
The rear sight adjusts for windage and elevation. It has a flip peep with two apertures — a large one for the battlesight and a smaller one for precision aiming.
The front sight looks like it adjusts in the conventional way by pressing down a pin and rotating the sight post. The pin presses in easily, but I couldn’t get the post to rotate. The manual only addresses the rear sight adjustments.
The carry handle comes off the top of the receiver easily, via two thumbscrews on the left side. The handle lifts off to reveal a Mil-Std 1913 Picatinney base for mounting optics.
The stock adjusts to one of six positions for changing the pull. Pushing it all the way in gives a pull of 10-1/4 inches, and all the way out is 13-1/2-inches.
There is an ambidextrous (swivels from side to side) sling anchor attached to the butt, and a sling swivel at the front of the handguard. I should mention they have installed a large round handguard to feels very full.
Like many repeating BB guns, the magazine is where both the valve and the CO2 cartridge live. To load the gun you first take the magazine out of the gun, then disassemble the top of the mag from the hollow bottom.
The BB magazine follower spring is quite easy to compress and the follower locks out at the bottom. Up to 18 BBs go through the same hole they will come out of when shot. It’s a deliberate loading system, but not tedious.
When you put the mag back in the gun it takes a slap to seat, just like an M16 or M4. That’s not surprising because the hardware all looks the same.
One person said his CO2 cartridges took a long time to seal when he pierced them, so I installed a cartridge to check it out. It did take longer than I expected. That means more gas escaped. The gun comes with a large Allen wrench to tighten the piercing screw, so I recommend you get ready to twist that wrench fast when you install the cartridge — especially the first one. I do wish the wrench were somehow stored inside the hollow magazine shell so it would always be with the gun. I suppose I could do that myself, wrapping it in a rag to stop the rattle.
What’s it for?
If you are asking what this Hellboy is for, it’s not the airgun for you. It’s for the guy who can’t wait to start rolling cans across the lawn. Please bear in mind that this is semiautomatic, only. The trigger must be pulled for every shot.
I’m going to test it for accuracy at 5 meters, and if it’s accurate I will try a little farther. I can see shooting this gun at 25 feet.
This is the start of yet another great lookalike airgun. I have high hopes for it!