Air Venturi V10 Match pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Air Venturi V10 pistol
Air Venturi’s V10 Match pistol.

This report covers:

  • Why test the V10?
  • Description
  • Effort
  • Accuracy
  • Grip
  • Trigger
  • Dry fire
  • Sights
  • Construction
  • Left hand grips available
  • Summary

I had planned to start the accuracy test of the Air Venturi Seneca Aspen today, but I ran into too many issues while attempting to mount the scope. II will tell you everything that happened when that report runs.

So today a new airgun that was on my list was moved up. It’s the Air Venturi Match pistol. It’s a single stroke pneumatic that’s based on the Gamo Compact that I have tested in the past. But why test a target pistol at all?

Why test the V10?

Glad you asked. A couple years ago the Russian IZH 46M stopped coming into the U.S. and many airgunners regarded that as a major loss. Ten meter target pistols are on very few airgunners’ short lists, but whenever something is no longer available people do take notice. Most shooters consider a target pistol to be an expensive plinker with a good trigger.

On the other hand, I am one who holds any legitimate 10 meter target pistol in high regard, because that was my sport. It’s as boring for spectators as watching paint dry, but for competitors it is the chess of the target shooting world. And the Air Venturi V10 is a very nice beginner’s pistol with which to learn the sport. Once you learn the basics it’s accurate enough to continue in competition up to but not including the national level.

I see this pistol a tool that can take a shooter up to the national level for a very small investment. When I competed years ago my Chameleon target pistol was no more accurate, nor did it have a better trigger, and when I stopped competing I was poised to become an expert in the national standings.

Description

The V10 is a single stroke pneumatic pistol. That means you pump it one time for one shot. If you try to pump it more than once, the air from the first pump will escape. The velocity will be low (right at 400 f.p.s.) but for 10 meter target that’s fine.

Air Venturi V10 pistol open
The V10 in the open position. This is when you load it. Closing it pressurizes it.

Effort

Single strokes are hard for some people to pump. One of the nice things about the IZH 46M is the ease with which it is pumped. The V10 does take a little more effort, but it isn’t that much. I think most women and older children will be able to do it.

Accuracy

When we talk about the accuracy of a 10-meter target pistol, most airgunners have no frame of reference with which to compare. This is a pistol that will out-shoot most of your accurate pellet rifles, as it must to hit the target repeatedly.

A world-class 10-meter pistol will put five pellets into less than one-tenth-inch at 10 meters. In fact they all come from the factory with test targets that show the groups that were shot with the specific gun the after final assembly. My own FWB P44 came with the smallest test group I have ever measured — 0.018-inches between centers at 10 meters!

FWV P44 test group
My FWB P44 came with the smallest test group I’ve ever measured — 0.018-inches between centers for 5 shots at 10 meters.

I don’t expect the V10 to match that, or even to come close. But we should see some good accuracy from it at 10 meters. You should not lose points in a match because of the pistol until you are averaging 540 points in a 600-point match That’s an average of 9 points out of every 10. When you get to that level small things start to matter more than before. I have shot against competitors who were shooting Daisy 777s, Crosman Skanakers and even a Walther LP53! Most of them were hanging right in there with me at the 535-540 point level. But that was where I needed a better pistol to go much further and I just didn’t have the money to invest. So I stalled out and finally quit competing.

Grip

Another feature found on a real 10-meter pistol is an adjustable grip. The V10 has this. The shelf at the bottom right can be raised to squeeze your hand tight. When your arm extends in the normal shooting stance, this shelf helps you hold the pistol tight.

The grip is two separate panels of walnut. The surface you touch is heavily stippled to help you grip tight. Of course no factory grip will ever fit a hand perfectly without extreme luck, so the shooter is expected to use a rasp and wood putty to custom-fit the grip to his hand.

You may wonder why the grip is not more form-fitting than it is. After all, Olympic free pistols have grips that fit the hand like gloves!

free pistol grip
A free pistol grip wraps around the hand to support it much more than a 10 meter air pistol grip.

What isn’t appreciated is that the 10-meter pistol has to fit inside a box that’s 50mm deep. That limits the width (thickness) of the grip. This explains why 10-meter pistols don’t have wide thumbrests on their grips — because there isn’t enough room for them. That’s a restriction similar to the 10-meter pistol trigger pull that cannot be less than 500 grams (17.637 oz.). [Note: I have been writing the weight in ounces as 18+ oz. for years and not until I wrote this report did I learn my mistake.] A free pistol trigger can be set with no lower limit. The lack of restrictions is what makes the free pistol free.

Trigger

I will weigh, adjust and test the trigger on the V10 and give you a detailed report. I will also share some secrets how to make the trigger pull of this pistol as light and smooth as possible, within the limits of its design.

There is an adjustment screw accessed through the rear of the grip for adjusting the pull weight. I will try it and give you a report.

The trigger blade also rotates around a central post. It can be positioned for maximum comfort within limits, though there is no fore and aft adjustment for pull length. You do that by reducing the thickness of the grip where the trigger finger rests.

Dry fire

One thing a 10 meter pistol has to have is the ability to dry fire the gun. You need that for practice, because for every pellet you shoot you should shoot 4 or 5 dry-fire shots, at least. That gets you used to the trigger and the gun in general. After several hundred hours (yes — THAT long) of practice, you will start sensing when the gun is about to go off and you can align the sights perfectly. When you can do that your brain will fire the gun and your score will rise dramatically.

Did you notice I said your score and not scores, plural? That’s because when you get to this level of training, your score won’t vary by as much as 10 points from match to match. Mine was always within 8 points. The only thing I could hope for was an upward breakthrough that sometimes came. Then you might advance 15 points and remain at that level from then on — as long as you continued to practice.

The dry fire on the V10 is a little clumsy in practice because you have to open the top strap and lift it a little to set the trigger. But it’s there and its something you have to have.

Sights

The V10 rear sight is adjustable in both directions, as it must be. But the rear notch width also adjusts to suit the shooter. The only complaint I have regarding the sight is the front blade is thin for a target pistol and there is no easy fix that would pass a technical inspection in a match. The manual does not show how to widen the rear notch. It only addresses the possibility of doing so in the text, leaving the shooter to figure it out for themselves.

Notch width is adjusted by a small screw on the left side of the rear sight. The large screw on the right side is for windage and it has detents that can be felt.

Construction

This is one time when engineering plastic is the best material for construction because it is super strong and also lightweight. This test pistol weighs 2 lbs. 0.4 oz., which is roughly 921 grams. That makes it light enough for most shooters. The cocking (pumping) effort of 21 lbs., which I will test, should be easy enough for most shooters.

There isn’t a lot of metal on the outside of the gun. Nevertheless I think the pistol looks attractive and right for the job.

Left hand grips are available

The V10 comes in either a right hand version (shown) or a left hand gun for $60 more. Because of the ambidextrous placement of all controls, either gun is perfectly suited to the shooter.

Summary

The V10 a lot of pistol for the money. Is it the absolute best? No. You will spend thousands of dollars for one of those. But, if you have never shot a target pistol before this gun is one that will shoot better than you do for a long time.

33 thoughts on “Air Venturi V10 Match pistol: Part 1


    • I haven’t shot the Air Venturi model, but have owned a Gamo Compact, and a Izh46(the predecessor to the 46m)

      Personally, having owned and shot both in competition, I say no, it’s not a replacement, the 46 cocks easier due to the long cocking lever.
      They “hang” differently, the 46 is more muzzle weighted, the Gamo is weighted more over your hand.
      Their sight radius is different.

      And at least with my guns, the 46 was more accurate, not by a huge margin, but enough to give me more confidence in my equipment, and up my score by 2-3 points.

      I started with the Gamo, then bought a used 46 from a fellow competitor when he upgraded to a 46m: and then I sold my Gamo, When I got a Skanaker, my 46 became my backup gun.

      I never considered having a backup target pistol, until I owned a Skanaker. (That should tell you something about the Skanakers)

      The Gamo ant the Air Venturi look a lot alike, we will have to wait and see how deep the similarities go..



      • I own the Gamo P-45, my very first air pistol. After 10s of thousands of rounds and more than 25 years or so, the seals were toast. I owed me absolutely nothing.

        Sent it in to Air Venturi after a couple of phone calls, and they finally agreed that they could fix it as the V-10 is a P-45 in fancier dress. Sure enough, my P-45 is back as a shooter.

        It is almost too light for shooting despite the zero recoil. I guess us old guys have a bit of a nystagmus problem (we weave a bit). However, if one relaxes and concentrates. it is still a very accurate shooter.

        The thing on learns, early on, is to close the over-lever with a flat hand (not unlike giving a treat to an horse). Failure to keep the hand flat will learn you not to with your first blood blister.

        Lance


  1. B.B.,
    This gun looks pretty sweet; I’m guessing it will be a notch or two above a Beeman P3 in accuracy.
    (Or my P17. =>) I look forward to the rest of the testing of this pistol.
    Have a great day,
    dave


    • it COULD be more accurate, we will see.

      But getting a handle on them is different.

      Until you have shot a target gun with grips that fit you, you won’t believe the difference in your score.

      The short of it?
      The Beemans don’t have the grips or the sights, or the trigger..


      • “Until you have shot a target gun with grips that fit you, you won’t believe the difference in your score.”

        I hear you on that; a friend of mine let me try his 46; even though it was fitted to his hand, it was a very close fit to mine; it felt great and shot great. =>


  2. B.B.,

    I can’t believe they overlooked the detail about the front sight width. If I recall correctly the width should present itself as wide as a 10 meter target when looking through the sights. Maybe they were thinking 5 meters instead of 10?

    Siraniko


  3. BB and Fellow Airgunners
    Thanks for creating a report about this pistol. I’m not in the market for this beautiful air pistol, but I do admire not only its shape, but also the “bang for the buck” when it comes to price, and accuracy. I opted for the Weihrauch HW75, which is also a single stroke pneumatic pistol. I see I paid about twice as much 9 years ago. When I was in the market for a pneumatic air target pistol, I wrongfully assumed the “plastic” described in constructing the Gamo Compact, as it was then known, was not going to last long, so I shelled out twice the money for the all steel, and ambidextrous walnut handled HW75. I hadn’t yet discovered BB’s vlog, and there were precious few Youtube videos to glean information from. All’s well that ends well though, as the HW75 has been a joy to shoot accurately with minimal practice time, or maintenance. A drop or two of Pelgunoil through the small hole in the air chamber above the piston seal after each session ensures the seals, and o-rings remain supple, and the pistol holding air. Add a half hour of practice 2 or three times a week to the mix, and you’ll have an accurate 10 meter target pistol, as well as a soda can plinker out to 25 meters. I’m sure the same holds true for the Air Venturi V10. Oh, and I now read BB’s vlogs, and readers comments almost everyday.
    Ciao
    Titus


  4. B.B.,

    I can tell you are excited about this pistol. Looking forwards to learning more on something I know little about. From the comments already,… it would seem that we have some serious pistol shooters in the crowd. From the way you describe it, this sounds to be an incredible value. $270 to take you (to) the national level is quite an endorsement.

    Good Day to one and all,….. Chris


    • Chris,

      I do not know if you own any air pistols, but if you do not you should buy this NOW! This is a little less than what I paid for my Izzy in 2010. There are no more new Izzy’s in the U.S. The last of the new ones were selling for over $600. I would not take that for mine. My Izzy shoots better than I can ever hope to. To shoot an air pistol and know that if you miss, it is you is nice.

      To buy an air pistol that will shoot better than this one you are going to literally pay thousands more.


      • RR,

        In general, I do not do well with opens and at the same time have never really done some serious effort to learn them. I like scoped rifles for the precise picture and control. When I do something,.. I like/tend to go all the way. To the point of obsession? Good? Bad? 😉

        Limited time dictates that I stick to scoped rifles for the time being. I have the 2240 I got last year and have shot very little. So,… if I want do some indoor plinking,…. I can practice with that for opens.

        My go to indoor shooter is the 499,…. which is just plain awesome! Period.

        As a side note,…. when trying to remove the Co2 cart. from the 2240,…. it would (not) come out. After (much) thumping,… it did come out. If that is the norm.,….. I will NOT put up with that. Maybe I did something wrong or there is a “trick” I am not aware of?

        Chris


  5. BB,

    I am glad you are finally taking a look at this air pistol as it has been on my short list for some time. I would really like to own another interesting air pistol.

    At this moment I own one air pistol, my Izzy 46M. I do not know if you remember, but you and Mac were there when I bought it at the Roanoke Airgun Show in 2010. I came back to your table and asked you what would be the best pellet for it and you told me R10s, which it loves.

    The reason this is the only air pistol I own is nothing else shoots like it. I have owned a few others, some of which were pretty nice shooters but this pistol will shoot better than I am capable of without many hours of practice.

    I am certain that I will end up with a couple of the older gals moving into RRHFWA but Izzy would like to have a playmate.



  6. The V10 looks like a very interesting pistol!

    Match quality for a reasonable price – think that many people would see the V10 as the ideal plinker. If I didn’t have my FWB 100 I would definitely be buying one of these!

    As is obvious from the pictures above, target pistol shooters know the importance of a properly fitting grip – the grip is the main interface between hardware and software (shooter 🙂 )!

    The rifle crowd is not so concerned with the grip as they have four points of contact with the gun (both hands, cheek and shoulder). Personally, I feel that the grip on a rifle is very important as it can strongly influence the position of the trigger finger and arm.

    In-between household chores (installing a new UV water purification system today) I am writing a guest blog on stock making. Attached is one of the pictures from the section on grips.

    Cheers,
    Hank


  7. B.B.,

    I have a version of this pistol with Gamo branding, although it is full-sized and not a Gamo Compact. As a lefty I had to purchase a left-hand grip. It is sweet, even as a plinker, which is how I use it. I have not messed with the trigger because it feels crisp and light as it is.

    Another thing is that this is one quiet air pistol. Unless you have very thin walls, this should be apartment-friendly.

    Michael


  8. B.B.,
    It is good that you have a back up plan as this is not the first time you needed it.
    This is not on my want list as I picked a different pistol. I will still be reading this report with interest.
    Gerald


  9. Thanks BB for a very interesting, even if unplanned, blog. I do not compete but I feel a strong attraction for all sorts of precise air guns.

    You mentioned the Izzy as no longer being imported. I was about to purchase one when they disappeared from the shelves. I waited for a few months but the ‘backorder’ sign was replaced by “unavailable”. What happened to it? Did Baikal stopped making it or it is not being imported for some legal reasons?

    Thanks,
    Henry




      • Thanks RR, I guess I missed the opportunity. (sob). 🙂
        I will wait to see how the V10 performs, I am sure much better than what I can do. The problem is that for some reason I do not like much the single stroke pneumatics that use the top frame (slide?) as a lever. Perhaps I should start looking for a good used Izzy, although prices are still on the high side. We’ll see.
        Best,
        Henry


        • Henry,

          Unless you are really lucky the prices are likely to stay on the high side. I have seen some used ones going for $450 and thought that was quite reasonable. The value is most likely only going up.


  10. Hi all!! Tom, I’m really looking forward to your tests of this pistol. With Winter coming, I won’t be able to get to the range as often and this look like it might be just the thing for keeping me sharp (or semi sharp as the case may be) 🙂

    And after all i can’t go blasting around the house and yard with my usual selection of handguns! BTW, this little jewel just joined my stable today!!!



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