2019 Texas Airgun Show

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • S&W Pistols
  • Big mouth pays off!
  • S&W 77A multi-pump
  • FWB 124?
  • Outside
  • RAW
  • Raffles and door prize
  • Larry Hannusch
  • Show was smaller this year
  • Walk-ups
  • Summary

The Texas Airgun Show was held last Saturday. The weather was good — no rain, and a mild breeze to keep us cool outside.

S&W Pistols

Every airgun show has a unique personality and this one had several. I’ll start by telling you that I saw more S&W 79G pistols at this show than I can remember seeing at any other airgun show. It started with my first walk through the tables during the set up. A dealer on the far side of the hall had a 79G on his table that was marked as a 78G. It was also marked as .177, which is the 79G caliber so I examined it and it turned out to be a 79. I left it there because I hadn’t sold anything yet, but when someone told me that reader 45Bravo might come to the show, I rushed over and bought the pistol. 45Bravo told me he buys every one of these that he finds. Well — there were at least 7 at this show — five 79s and one 78 with an adjustable trigger. Ron Robinson got that one. A walk-in 79G in the box completed the count.

One guy had three 79Gs in addition to the 78G in the box that Ron got. One of his 79s was also in the box. Later in the morning the 79G in the box walked into the show and that one was pristine with nearly everything. I think some CO2 cartridges were missing from the box inside the pistol box.

79G box
This boxed S&W 79G walked in the door in the morning.

The pistol I bought is just a beater that’s holding gas and has the mark that says the factory resealed it. I have shot it and plan to report on it soon. But on Friday of this week, 45Bravo will show all of us how to reseal one of these pistols. It isn’t that hard, plus he shows you where to buy the seals for a good price.

Big mouth pays off!

I was whining and crying aloud about Ron Robinson getting the 78G with the adjustable trigger, so another reader told me when he gets back to his home on the east coast he has an adjustable-trigger 78G in the box. It doesn’t hold CO2, but like I said, on Friday we will all learn how it’s done. So we will talk and I may get another very nice air pistol.

S&W 77A multi-pump

I also saw a Smith & Wesson model 77A multi-pump rifle on the same dealer’s table where I bought the pistol. I would have bought it right then but I had just bought the pistol, plus I thought he was a little high on the price. As luck would have it, however, later in the morning he came by my table and fell in love with a Falke model 70 breakbarrel that I had also priced a little high. Guess what? Our two guns were the same price! So I gave him my $5,000 dog for his $5,000 cat and we were both happy. That multi-pump is holding and will also be a future test.

S&W 77A
We will be testing an S&W 77A rifle later this year.

Gamo 126 SSP target rifle

How many Gamo 126 single stroke target rifles have you seen at airgun shows? How many that work? This one was in the box with everything. I came very close to buying is, just to test it for you.

Gamo 126
This working Gamo 126 wore the Daisy label.

FWB 124?

A reader asked whether there would be an FWB 124 at the show. I saw one and heard about a second one, and were both for sale. Another one walked into the show, but it wasn’t for sale. It was in need of a new piston seal. It still had the original factory piston seal which dry rots and fails. The guy telling me this was standing with his back to Dave Slade’s tables. When I told him that Dave is the top spring gun tuner I know, he got excited and went over to talk to him. I heard them talking but I didn’t hear how it turned out. But when I went over to Dave’s table — guess what? There satANOTHER FWB breakbarrel. Only this one wasn’t a 124. It’s the much harder to find .22-caliber 127!

FWB 127
It looks like an FWB 124 but costs like two of them! The FWB 127 is a rare sight!

Outside

The Texas show is one with a lot of shooting. There is a range just for the public to test airguns they are considering buying. Then there are several manufacturers who host shooting benches with their products. And the 4-H club has some kind of shoot each year where the public buys tickets for shots, and the tickets also enter the holder into a drawing for airguns toward the end of the show.

We were short several manufacturers this year. Crosman wasn’t there and Sig wasn’t there as well. Umarex and Hatsan both had smaller showings this year.

On the other hand AirForce was there in spades and they had their new 600 foot-pound .45 caliber Texan on the range. This was the first time the public has seen the new T2 valve that now comes on all Texans. It still runs on 3,000 psi air. This is now the world’s most powerful production air rifle, and when it fires everybody nearby knows it.

Texan
The new Texan with the T2 valve produces 600 foot-pounds at the muzzle.

Most powerful sticker
The new T2 valve boosts the Texan output to 600 foot-pounds in .45 caliber. Everyone who shot the rifle got a sticker.

Umarex did have their Hammer big bore on the range, too, and they shot it all day, as well. I have heard no word yet on when that one will be available.

RAW

Old BB got to shoot a .25-caliber RAW rifle that is now in production. I shot at the 75-yard action target that was made for a .38 Special revolver (it’s my target) and hit it every time. It’s called a red light/green light target. Hit the red and the green takes its place and so on. The paddles are 3-inch steel plates.

Tom shoots
I couldn’t miss with the .25 caliber RAW.

Raffles and door prize

The Texas Airgun Show has more raffle prizes and door prizes than any other airgun show. I estimate the total value to be over $5,000. The door prize that was free and open to everyone with an admission ticket was a .257-caliber AirForce Texan with a 4-16 AirForce scope with accessories valued at over $1,300. Not bad for a freebie!

Raffle prizes
This is just half of the raffle prizes, plus the door prize in the foreground. There had to be well over five thousand dollars in prizes at this show! As the show progressed, other prizes were donated spontaneously.

Jeff Cloud
Show promoter, Jeff Cloud, gives away another raffle prize.

Larry Hannusch

There were plenty of dealers with vintage guns this year, but Larry Hannusch was able to attend for the first time in several years and you never know what he will bring. I saw a very rare military style bolt action round ball-shooter on his table and promised myself I would buy it if I sold enough guns. Well, toward the end of the show I had the money and trundled down to his table, only to find him packed up and heading out. He had to leave early for a family reunion nearby this weekend. He was under domestic duress for blowing off the reunion to attend as long as he did.

The good news is we struck a deal and you will be seeing a test of the Tell 1708 ball shooter (BB gun) later this year. But that wasn’t all Larry had. He walked around the show, showing off a very unusual outside lock pistol. It is mostly brass that I offered to polish for him but he declined for some reason.

Hannusch pistol
Larry Hannusch’s outside lock pistol is neat, no?

Hannusch pistol apart
The pistol butt has been removed. Larry shied away from the deflowering device, as he was already in the domestic doghouse

Show was smaller this year

Despite all I have told you, this year’s show was smaller. There were fewer dealers and fewer attendees than last year. That said, people drove in from the east coast — Massachusetts, North Carolina and South Carolina. There were a lot of folks from Oklahoma and Kansas and a whole bunch came up from Huston. Brother-in-Law, Bob, your informal shooting group was there, but I didn’t talk to the pastor who runs it. I did tell them about you and they know who you are. You do need to get a better gun than a Hakim to shoot with them (that’s from me, not them). I recommend a Benjamin Fortitude Gen 2.

Walk-ups

I missed that boxed S&W 79G that was walking around the show, but I did get a walk-up. A guy pulled a .177-caliber Beeman C1 out of a sleeve and offered it to me at a good price. The barrel is tight, so I bought it to test for you. The C1 was the rifle I used to develop the artillery hold. It was also the inspiration for the Air Venturi Bronco.

Beeman C1
This Beeman C1 walked right up and jumped into my lap.

Summary

The 2019 Texas Airgun show was smaller but every bit as fun as in past years. We missed several manufacturers but were blessed with several new private dealers. I don’t think anyone who attended had any regrets — other than the fact that it had to end. I hope to see some more of you there next year.

51 thoughts on “2019 Texas Airgun Show



      • The SMLE .177-Steel-BB airgun from Lee Enfield Guns of Staffordshire, England, will be available this summer. Pyramyd Air will be the distributors in the USA. We aim to get one of our SMLE airguns in the hands of B.B. as soon as possible.



          • We look forward to getting your opinion of our SMLE. Photos of the SMLE, the sling, the box artwork and the instruction manual are available online. The manufacture of the guns is taking place now but it is not a quick process. It will be a high quality product that will give pride of ownership and lots of shooting pleasure.


            • Mike,

              I went to your website, saw the gun and I’m impressed. It’s hard to evaluate an airgun from pictures, but the fact that a distributor takes the time to comment on this blog is what impresses me. I look forward to testing the gun! And, I am a big fan of the SMLE!

              B.B.


    • Was at the show and met BB.
      I bought the BSA Meteor Mk1 in .22 that he wrote a blog on..

      It’s a fine shooter, Sir. Light and handy, but substantial. Clocks Hobbies at an even 600 fps. Glad I bought it, be suffering from ‘non-buyer’s-remorse’ right now, if I’d passed.

      Saw/lusted after the 127 myself, but wasn’t exactly flush with cash (told my buddy that if I tried to spend more than $300, to throw a bag over my head and drag me back outside).

      Anyhow, enjoyed the event and glad to have met you!



    • Edw
      Really I’m with you. Don’t know if you was joking or serious.

      But if someone gets into seeing what the Hammer is about I think they will see Umarex went beyond and above again.

      They use a high pressure bottle to feed a regulated 3000 psi bottle that is what gives the valve it’s air for the shot.

      As said. They can keep on teasing. I’m all for it. All I know it’s a bad boy. In my opinion they need to release it. Maybe they are not releasing because someone that don’t really know pcp’s will get ahold of it and not use it right. And that’s a guess. And I mean not understand how to operate it

      What I do know is that if this gun was released it would definitely be on my radar for a survival gun. And I’m thinking you know what I mean in more ways than one.


      • I’ve been following it for a long time now. I’m really just curious as to what the delay is. I’m really hoping they don’t nerf it.

        My best guess is either reliability issues or ammo issues.

        I spent hours trying to find any info on the loads they were using, poured over all the avaiy moulds by weight and couldn’t even guess what they used in the cast results.

        My other 2 Umarex rifles are pretty solid, the .22 gauntlet definitely needed more help than the .25. but both were pretty well thought out. Both needed a Donnyfl treatment as well though. But no helping that with the hammer.


        • Edw
          Yep hope they do release it. And totally like my Gauntlet especially with the thumbhole QB wood stock and their target trigger. It’s a nice built and good shooting gun. And of course the interchangable regulated bottle is nice too.


  1. B.B.,

    Thank you for the fine re-cap. I look forwards to making it to one of these someday.

    That outside lock pistol is just too much! What a beauty.

    Good Day to you and to all,……….. Chris


  2. BB,

    I am sooooo glad I was not there. That pretty little gal that Larry was showing off would have had to move into RRHFWA.

    You folks that have not been to an airgun show really need to take the time to do such. It is an experience you will never forget. You will drive halfway across the country to attend a family reunion, so why not spend a day or two doing something you like? 😉

    October 18th and 19th there will be a pretty big show in Newton, NC. The shooting range will not be as nice a setup, but it will take you over an hour to have just a quick look around.



  3. Thanks for sharing B.B.! Would love to attend one of these shows!

    Can see how it could be very expensive though – price be darned, that FWB 127 would have come home with me.

    Hank


  4. Missed the show this year. After my back surgery at the end of March, just couldn’t spend the day walking around. Operation was a success, but I still get too tired without being able to sit quite often.

    Probably just as well with all the S&W 79Gs there. I’d have wanted to buy another one. Already have two 79Gs and one 78Gg. But I guess one can’t have too many. What were the asking prices of the S&Ws? Just interested to know.

    Missed seeing Tom and Joe.


  5. Good morning from the Brother-in-law,
    I had every intention of attending this airgun show as I have for the past many years, but a childhood friend of my wife’s passed away, and we had to drive to the funeral in Louisiana on Friday. Things happen in life beyond our control.

    I told Tom that I have been eagerly awaiting his test of the Umarex Synergis underlever repeating air rifle which originally was due to arrive at Pyramyd Air in June. Then moved to July. Now October and maybe for Christmas???? I want a repeater to add to my Hakim and don’t think a break barrel is what I’m interested in. Tom’s suggestion of a Benjamin Fortitude as a PCP would require additional purchases of an air compressor and a carbon fiber tank. All I hear is kaching, kaching, kaching. I’m just going to wait on the Umarex airgun and hope it actually arrives for Tom to test before year end. I don’t plan on any purchase without a rigorous test by the expert in the family.

    I also joined the Bayou Rifles range club in Houston earlier this year and understand that they had a booth at the range at the show. I was hoping to contact the fellow airgun enthusiasts but missed the opportunity. Maybe another time or opportunity later?

    Hopefully we will all be around next year for the airgun show. hope to see you there then.

    Bob


  6. B.B.,

    Sweet Pro-Elite sitting next to the FWB 127. If it had been a lefty, I would have done a spit take with my coffee :^)

    Nice 77a there. I look forward to your report on it. I’ve decided that of my two sick multi-pumps, the S&W 77a is the one I would perhaps send off to be fixed and even hot-rodded. Do any multi-pump repair/modifier folks come to mind?

    Michael


  7. I wish I could have made it this year.
    I am sorry I missed it.

    The pistol in the first photo of this blog today now belongs to a very good friend.
    I was bringing him a Crosman Mk1, yes I am the enabler, he delivered my last 78g I bought, as he lived close to the seller, and it was a word of mouth deal, not an online sale.

    He tried the 78g and was hooked, he never knew they existed, now he owns a 79g, and is looking for a 78g.

    On Thursday, even with one employee calling off for Saturday, I was set to go, and had trades and a couple of gifts ready to go.

    On Friday, one of our employees we were about to endorse to be a General Manager at another location, decided to be a no call no show.

    With 2 people dropping out at the last minute, I had no alternative but to work.

    I guess it wasn’t meant to be either, as I didn’t have enough airgun cash to buy all the S&W’s I would have wanted.

    I have a standing alert for S&W airguns on gunbroker, eBay, and armslist, for any that match my search.

    I don’t buy every one I see online, but if it is not one I want, I do pass the listing to others I know that are looking.

    Tip: Look for possible misspellings also, or incomplete titles. (B.B. did a blog on this a year or so ago.)

    You can tell the blog readers from the non blog readers on the sale sites.

    Since B.B. started the S&W series on here, for the most part the asking prices have risen over the past month.

    The non readers start their auctions at a lower price.

    Anyone looking, there is a clean non adjustable 78g with no box, starting at $50 on gunbroker, no I am not bidding on it, I am just throwing it out there.

    It will be interesting to see where it goes.

    My next one to keep is to get a boxed low numbered 79g.


    • 45Bravo,

      You were missed. You are what drove me to buy that 79 as quick as I did. When your friend told me you were coming I knew I’d better get mine before you arrived. But it’s a nice pistol and I am glad I popped for it.

      B.B.


  8. Hi BB,
    You noticed S&W 78s and 79s. I noticed P1s. Dave Slade had three, you had one, and there was at least one other there. And, prices are not as high on them as in the past. I also noticed a lot of high end springers at the show. There were TX200s, Pro Elites, a Diana 54, several FWB 300 series, and at least one Theoben. This year there may have been a few less people there but I think there was more selling and buying going on. I had asked Jeff if I could put some of my Dad’s reloading equipment on my table. My dad passed away a year ago and I am tasked with going through his stuff and selling what I can for my mom. I did very will with that. I bought two scopes and a steel resettable target. Due to bad shoulders I had to back off from buying a C1, an RWS 54, and a Nova Freedom, all of which were really tugging at me. I did show the Nova Freedom to a friend of mine that was looking for one and he bought it. So, at least I will get to shoot it.

    See everyone next year,
    David Enoch


  9. Tom,
    I was the “dealer” with the S&W guns. I always feel like a fraud at the air gun show as I am just a hobbyist with too many airguns. There are some great folks with a lot of knowledge at these events. I had a table next to 45Bravo’s friend. Absolutely some of the best folks you can meet.

    David Slade was my neighbor behind me. I purchased a R7 in 20 cal. from him that must have been brand new from the way it is shooting. It is starting to settle down very nicely. I also found a Daisy 250 in 22 cal that was made in Scotland. Nice plinker in good condition.

    But the highlight for me was selling a gun and trading another with the Godfather of Airguns himself. Just having brought something to the show that he found of interest made my day. The Falke 70 that I got in the trade is a great rifle. I did not realize that it was a rifle Tom had reported on until after I was at home. Everything he said about the rifle is (of course) exactly how it performs. I had been shooting the rifle before reading his report. The way the cocking effort builds as you go through the cycle is something new to me. But Tom described it very well in the blog. It is tempting to open this gun up and see if it might be a little over sprung, but it shoots so nice I may do like Tom and leave it be.
    As always in closing I can’t say enough good things about Jeff Cloud for putting this together and the fine folks at the event that make us feel welcome at the show.
    Pat


    • Pat,

      Welcome to the blog.

      I appreciate the guns I got from you as well.

      That Falke was lube tuned by the guy I bought it from years ago. I felt he did a good job, so even though it’s a little hard to cock I never opened it up. But a little less spring wouldn’t be too bad.

      B.B.


  10. B.B.,

    Good write-up on the show. It was great seeing you, as always. Thanks for “haggling” with me on the Model 26, and the P1. I am very happy to have those in my “Tom Gaylord collection”, along with a copy of each of your books, and that full set of newsletters I happened to find a couple of years ago. Now, if George would only sell me that other Diana of his that you tuned and wrote about…. ( Smile! )

    The show was smaller this year, but I think better attended than last year. The hurricane / storms kept many from making it last year. The absence of SIG, Sun Optics, and several smaller vendors, all made it noticeably smaller this year — but I still enjoyed the day. We need to petition SIG and Pyramyd Air to be there next year. If I’m not mistaken, next year will be the fifth year at the Arlington Sportsman’s Club. That’s a “milestone”, and having both of those outfits come would make it a big event, I feel certain.

    Jerry Cupples — If you are reading, it was great seeing you again as well. I enjoyed meeting up with everyone after, albeit briefly.

    Thanks.

    Jim M.


  11. This was my first year attending the Texas Air Gun Show. Or any airgun show, for that matter!

    I can’t recommend it enough. It had a little of everything. I enjoyed taking my time to do it all.

    Loved the opportunity to demo some of the Umarex, AirForce, and Hatsan models. Those .45 and .50 cal PCP’s… what a kick! And my thanks to the Houston club that let me demo some of their finely tuned precision shooters. I realized just how much my own skills fell short of the hardware. 🙂 Best of all was walking the floor and soaking in the variety of guns, and shaking hands with all the people. Including… our very own B.B!

    Thanks for letting me introduce myself. Love the blog, and all you do to share your knowledge. I’m finally coming out of the shadows with this first post.

    And like I said in person at the show… hoping we’ll be seeing a M1 GARAND sometime soon! Would pay good money for a fine, quality replica.

    StarboardRower



      • BB
        Yes a pcp, spring gun and even Co2 is fine with me for a Garand. Although a semi-auto pcp would be the you know what. But then again a semi-auto Co2 rifle would be nice that could be converted to hpa.

        And just to say I’m on a semi-auto rifle kick right now (and to note some are smooth bores). Matter of fact to add to the collection is a Sig MPX and yes it’s going to be converted to a 3000 psi hpa regulated to 1200 psi bottle instead of the 88 gram cartridges. It’s suppose to be here today.

        Let’s see here what I got.
        1) WildFire
        1) 1077
        2) Daisy 74’s (the smooth bores)
        1) Daisy/Winchester M14 pellet gun (or should I say rifle since it has a rifled barrel)
        1) Hatsan Bullmaster

        And now the Sig MPX. I think you see what kind of shooting I’m into now days. Almost forgot how much fun it is to slam cans. 🙂


  12. BB:

    I have a FWB Sport 121 with the deluxe stock. It has the Freimark emblem. I know they are scarcer than the FWB 127, but are they more valuable?

    Thanks, Traveller9


    • Traveller9,

      The problem with the 121 is the same as with the FWB 110. It’s a rare airgun that not too many people know about. I have never seen one that I know of.

      I think it would take a serious collector to know enough to offer a premium for one. Most would consider it just an early 124, which it is — sort of.

      B.B.


  13. I wish I had not read this as I now want to throw up. I have been to every one of the TX airgun shows hoping to come across a 79G (the pistol I grew up with as a kid). I have yet to see one. I could not make this show as I am finishing up my new house, trying to move, etc. Of course the show I did not make there were seven 79G pistols. The very first TX Airgun Show, at the Parker County location, I went with cash in hand to find a 79G. None were there. I get home and look at the yellow classifieds and a buetiful 79G was posted and sold while I was at the show. One day it will happen. With all the expense of the new house, moving, etc. it probably was not a good time to start the “bought another airgun” fIght with the wife anyway. I guess God was looking at my best interest.


    • Brazos,

      Oh, my! I wasn’t trying to poke you in the eye on this.

      Like you, I haven’t see this many 79s at any show. I see them more at the eastern shows than out here in Texas, but after last week I know they are obviously here.

      B.B.


  14. B.B.,

    Like Bob, I am a member of Pastor Jerry’s informal group. He has been more than gracious to provide time and place for getting together an shooting air guns. I haven’t made in a couple of months, possibly because I felt so demoralized after shooting Jerry’s Daystate (I felt like a cat on catnip). And Gail has that Red Wolf. I can’t say enough about that, either. I am really happy for them that they made it to the show. Also happy some of them got to meet you.

    ~ken


  15. I really need to travel on down to Texas and visit this show asap!!
    The Midwest Airgun show was the weekend prior, I just couldn’t swing it this year.
    Looks like y’all had an epic time, nice turnout.

    BB, I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Hannusch at the Toys that Shoot show in Findlay this last April. His table was one of the best among many top notch dealers.
    Co2 charged tilt barrel, old bellows, unique youth springers, and many other oddball airguns, I was in total awe. I found a nice Japanese springer from the early 50’s, it went home with me 🙂
    He also happened to have a bulkfill converted Crosman MK2? Larry mentioned it is the original prototype LD?………..A few years ago Larry was at a pacific coast show, had the pistol on display……Larry Durham happens by and says, hey, that’s my old prototype MK LD!! Numero Uno !!
    So by Larry’s words, I know own the original “LD” pistol :0
    It shoots well, will be a good backup HFT pistol 😉


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