The Beeman P1 air pistol: Part 11
by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- Good things happen
- The test
- The “Holy Cow!” group
- Adjusted the sight
- Second group of Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets
- Discussion 1
- H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
- Discussion 2
- Crosman Premier Light pellets
Good things happen
Sometimes everything works as it should. No, even better, things sometimes work like you think they are supposed to. Today’s report is such a day.
This report is now 11 parts long, so I will summarize. I’m testing a Beeman P1 pistol that someone traded to me at an airgun show. He included the parts I needed for a rebuild, so I did that for you in Parts 4 and 5. Then I tested it for accuracy again in Parts 6 through 9.
In Part 10 I introduced you to the UTG RDM20 Reflex Micro Dot sight that Pyramyd Air doesn’t currently carry — but they had better do so! Because I am about to show you a dot sight that was made for the Beeman P1!
I shot the pistol from 10 meters off a sandbag rest. I will describe how I held the pistol as we go, as there was a significant change that revolutionized the entire test. I think people are going to come away from this test with a different opinion of the Beeman P1 when I am finished.
I shot all targets on low power only, as I learned in past testing that low power is the most accurate setting most of the time — or at least that was how it looked when I shot with open sights. Also, the point of impact shifts down by several inches when you switch to high power, and I didn’t want to re-sight the pistol in today’s test.
My aim point was the center of the bullseye. I will have more to say about that, but a dot sight allows you to do that, where open sights do not.
The “Holy Cow!” group
I didn’t bother sighting-in the gun. I simply started shooting at 10 meters, and I began with Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets. I held the pistol in two hands, with my forearms resting on the sandbag. That supported the weight of the pistol and still left it untouched by the sandbag. The first shot hit the target slightly left of the centerline and about 2.25-inches below the aimpoint. Shot number two landed close enough to the first one that I knew I could safely finish this group without changing the sights. So, I tried an experiment. What if I rested the butt of the pistol directly on the sandbag? Would that move the shots too much? I wanted to do that because hand-holding wasn’t as steady as I wanted to be.
Shot three, which was with the butt rested on the bag, landed close enough to the other two that it looked as if I was holding the pistol the same way. Then I fired the fourth shot. Holy cow — the hole made by shot three just got slightly larger! Could this really be? The next shot proved it — a 5-shot group measuring 0.682-inches, with the last three — all with the butt rested directly on the bag — measuring 0.134-inches between the centers of the two shots farthest apart!
My gosh! The best group in Part 6 on low power with open sights and this pellet was 0.912-inches at 10 meters. On high power in Part 6 five of these pellets went into 1. 138-inches. This time was significantly better.
Adjusted the sight
Since I could do it easily enough I now adjusted the sight 9 clicks up and by pure chance it was almost the perfect amount. Maybe I could drop back down by a click or two, but since I will be testing two other pellets I will leave the sight where it is set.
Second group of Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets
This time all five shots were with the butt resting directly on the sandbag. And this time all five shots went into 0.524-inches at 10 meters. Compared that to the 0.912-inches with open sights and you can see it is a significant improvement.
I was elated at this point. The UTG dot sight was doing exactly what I had envisioned it might when I first saw it. And it clearly is not moving on the gun. You wouldn’t get groups like this if it was.
H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
Next I tried a pellet I had not tested in the past — the H&N Finale Match Pistol pellet that weighs 7 grains. It’s no longer available. The closest you can come to it today is the Finale Match light pellet that weighs 7.87-grains. Five of these pellets went into 0.619-inches at 10 meters. This group is slightly lower and more to the right than the last groups of Sig Match Ballistic Alloy pellets. This is why I didn’t adjust the sight again.
The pistol keeps right on performing. That sight seems to have a magical ability to put those pellets exactly where you want them. And, with the butt of the pistol rested on the bag, the P1 is a cinch to shoot.
Crosman Premier Light pellets
Last to be tried were some Crosman Premier Light pellets. In Part 6, using open sights, 5 of these went into 1.19-inches with 4 of them going into 0.478-inches. Using this dot sight all five shots went into 0.896-inches with the closest 4 going into 0.497-inches. From these two sets of results I would say the Premier light is not the pellet for this pistol, though you would be hard-pressed to find a sporting air pistol, that could do better. Note that this even heavier pellet is still lower on target and has moved right to the centerline.
What a test! The UTG RDM20 Reflex Micro Dot sight is a winner on the Beeman P1 pistol. And this P1 that I got in trade and overhauled has turned out to be a fine shooter. I’m just sorry I can’t leave the sight where it is, but there is more testing to be done.
I need to test the sight with the same pellets on high power, too. Will it remain in place under the harder recoil? I believe it will but we shall see.
Then I want to test the sight on the Diana Chaser pistol as well. So it isn’t going to stay on one airgun for long. It’s now one of my best test dot sights and you will see it on other airguns to come.
The bottom line is — this is the dot sight for the P1. I have been looking for a lightweight dot sight for a Beeman P1 for years and now I’ve found it. Pyramyd Air needs to stock this sight for you, because I have a feeling it’s going to work on a lot of airguns.