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Ammo Air Venturi Dust Devil Mk2 Frangible BB: Part 2

Air Venturi Dust Devil Mk2 Frangible BB: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Dust Devil
Dust Devil Mk2.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Daisy 499 shooting Crosman Black Widows
  • Daisy 499 shooting Precision Ground Shot
  • Daisy 499 shooting Dust Devils
  • M1 Carbine shooting Crosman Black Widows
  • M1 Carbine shooting  Precision Ground Shot
  • M1 Carbine shooting  Dust Devils
  • The verdict?
  • Summary

Today we look at the accuracy of the new Air Venturi Dust Devil Mark 2 BB. From this point on I will just refer to them as Dust Devils.

The test

I shot from 5 meters, using the UTG Monopod as a rest. I was seated, and using the monopod is almost as stable as a sandbag rest.

I only shot 5-shot groups today, so I could test more BBs. I decided to test accuracy with the two most accurate BB guns I have — the Daisy 499 Champion and the Springfield Armory M1 Carbine. When you see the results I think you will understand why I picked them.

I shot three BBs today. The first was a conventional premium BB, and I selected the new Crosman Black Widow for that. The next was the Avanti Match Grade Precision Ground Shot that’s made exclusively for the 499. You guys always want to see how they do in tests, so I almost always include them. And finally I shot the new Air Venturi Dust Devil Mark 2 BB — the one this report centers on. 

We have already seen how the new Dust Devils stack up in one BB gun. The Lil’ Duke put 10 of them in 1.348-inches at 5 meters. The best it shot with BBs that are still available was 10 Smart Shot in 1.148-inches.

The two BB guns I’m shooting today are the most accurate I have, though the Lil’ Duke is certainly very accurate. Let’s start shooting.

Daisy 499 shooting Crosman Black Widows

The 499 put five Black Widows into a 0.44-inch group at 5 meters. That’s some shootin’! The group is high and left, but I didn’t want to fool with the sight on this test.

499 Black Widow group
The 499 put five Black Widows into a 0.44-inch group at 5 meters!

Daisy 499 shooting Precision Ground Shot

Next to be tried was Daisy’s own Avanti Match Grade Precision Ground Shot. This is the BB that’s made for the 499, and we expect it to be the best. Five went into 0.25-inches at 5 meters. That’s exactly a quarter-inch, and it is the best group of this test!

499 Precision Ground Shot
The 499 put five Precision Ground Shot in 0.25-inches at 5 meters. This is the smallest group of the test.

Daisy 499 shooting Dust Devils

The 499 put five of the new Dust Devils in a group that measures 0.564-inches at 5 meters. It’s actually two smaller groups, as you can see.

499 Dust Devil group
Five Dust Devils went into 0.564-inches at 5 meters when shot from the Daisy 499.

Stock up on Air Gun Ammo

M1 Carbine shooting Crosman Black Widows

Now it was time to see what the Dust Devils could do when shot from an accurate BB gun that is not a target gun. The Springfield Armory M1 Carbine is the most accurate non-target BB gun I own.

The M1 Carbine put five Crosman Black Widow BBs into a 0.38-inch group at five meters. Yeah — that’s an accurate BB gun alright!

Carbine Black Widow group
The M1 Carbine put five Crosman Black Widow BBs into this 0.38-inch group at 5 meters. This is the second-smallest group of the test.

M1 Carbine shooting  Precision Ground Shot

Next I tried five Avanti Precision Ground Shot in the M1 Carbine. Many of you think this is the most accurate BB there is, but in my experience the gun it is shot in is just as important. In the 499 it is the most accurate and the 499 is more accurate than any other BB gun, but in other BB guns this may not be the most accurate BB.

Five Precision Shot went into a group that measures 0.651-inches between centers. That is larger than the Black Widow group, but it’s still extremely good for a BB gun.

Carbine Precision Ground Shot group
The Carbine put five Precision Ground Shot into 0.651-inches at 5 meters.

M1 Carbine shooting  Dust Devils

Now it was time to test the Dust Devils, which is what this report is all about. The other two BBs were just to give us some perspective on the Dust Devils.

Five Dust Devil BBs went into 1.15-inches at 5 meters. It’s the largest group of the test, but it’s still not bad for a BB gun.

Carbine Dust Devil group
The Carbine put five Dust Devils in 1.15-inches at 5 meters.

The verdict?

I have to say that Dust Devils have decent accuracy. In the two guns I tested them in they were not as accurate as the other two BBs, but that isn’t the question. Dust Devils are a frangible BB that won’t bounce back at you from a hard target. Given that role, is the accuracy seen today okay? I would say yes. I plan to shoot them at the Bada Bang target, using the M1 Carbine, because they were made for something like that — rapid-fire at a hard target with safety.

And there is one more thing. The Dust Devils fed through the M1 Carbine’s magazine and semiautomatic action perfectly. That was one more test I intended running and there is more of it to come. I plan on shooting them in the Umarex MP40 submachinegun to see how they do there, as well. Given that the purpose of that gun is to shoot at targets of opportunity, a Dust Devil BB is as ideal as it gets.


The new Dust Devil Mark 2 BBs are holding up well. Let’s keep in mind they are one of only two BBs that are safe to shoot at hard targets, and that feature will be tested next time, as well. I think we have a winner here.

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.

68 thoughts on “Air Venturi Dust Devil Mk2 Frangible BB: Part 2”

  1. BB
    BB I’m glad you have an accurate M1 Carbine. I am just a bit surprised by it. I never really shot the two I have to test for accuracy. When I took one apart to convert it to full auto I noticed there is an ‘O’ ring installed around the inner barrel near the muzzle end. I assumed it was there to compensate for the larger diameter airsoft barrel it was originally designed for.
    I put a pencil down the barrel and discovered it had a lot of play inside the outer barrel. I just assumed that would prevent it from being accurate and shimmed it up with some aluminum tape. It seems to help with spring loaded movable inner barrels.
    Be interested to know if the inner barrel is loose in all the M1 Carbines.

    I think these BB’s are great for full autos when your aim is a little off target at times and may hit some unintended objects.
    Bob M

  2. BB,

    Fine shooting there. You sure do like that Monopod don’t you? I made a very nice homemade one but found myself to be too unsteady with it. In all fairness,… I did not stick with it much after that so maybe I would grown accustomed to it. I much prefer rested. You are good with it,.. I will give you that.

    Is a 5 or 10 meter rest something that you must set up and tear down each time and the Monopod is just more convenient?


  3. BB,

    Maybe you answered this before,…. but is there any difference at all in the packaging (box), words or graphics, or are they exactly the same?


    • Kevin,

      I looked at it a bit. Gave it some serious thought. I decided that I would just wait until someone on this blog decides their Diana needs to retire to RRHFWA. 😉

  4. BB,

    Other than the cost, these really will likely be the best choice for the full auto gang.

    Maybe a slo-mo close up view of a long burst hitting a metal plate?

    • That would be cool, and you could extrapolate how far apart the projectiles are in flight.

      That I am aware of, most smartphones or tables can only shoot at about 240frames per second max.

      While not really slow motion, it is better than watching it at 30frames per second.

      I don’t know if Tom has access to a true high speed camera, but he does know a lot of people.

      Maybe we can get the slow mo guys from YouTube to do a video.


      • BB,

        I didn’t see anything.

        What I was talking about is a slow motion camera set up a short distance from a steel plate to film a full auto stream from something like the MP40 hitting the plate. All they showed was an animated recreation and a dust cloud spreading behind the box. I want to see 30-40 Dust Devils in slow motion hitting a steel plate in succession with the camera about 2 feet away.

        That would be impressive.

  5. I just checked the Canadian Patent office, I do indeed have a patent application pertaining to a frangible air gun pellet.
    I have a few ideas as to how to improve my previous invention though.
    I have been working on a malleable steel shot for waterfowl hunting as well.
    Had great success using this steel shot goose hunting in Canada last October. This malleable steel shot looks very promising as per the usage in older doubles that is not designed to shoot steel shot loads. More testing is required though but looks very good so far.


    • What ever happened to the Bismuth shot movement?

      I am not a waterfowl hunter, (the last time I went duck hunting you could still use lead shot).

      But I do know some states were trending toward lead free projectiles for all shooting.


      • Ian
        It’s out there still.

        I think I would rather use it than steel in my shotgun. I haven’t yet though.

        You should see the sparks coming out a barrel when using steel shot. I’m thinking it can’t be good for a shot gun at some point in time anyway.

        • I have shot steel shot a couple of times with some friends when we were out shooting skeet they were prepping for duckhunting

          tried it just to see, and to me the flight time was off I don’t know if it’s because it’s lighter than lead shot, but I just couldn’t connect with the targets as often as with lead shot.
          the flight time was just off ever so little for me properly lead the target.

          And I’ve never shot any of it at dusk or at night to see the sparks that you were talking about.

          • Ian
            We was shooting in the afternoon and standing in the shade. Had no problem at all seeing the sparks.

            And didn’t have any problems leading the shot. I do have the steel shot. I’ll have to see what size and load it is. Maybe distance was messing with you.

    • Russell,

      Frag pellets would be awesome. I would really like to try them out in my HM1000X .357. I do realize that swaging a diabolo pellet to fragment does present quite a challenge.

  6. Bismuth/tin shot is still used as a non-toxic shot but somewhat expensive.
    All waterfowl hunters in the US, Canada and Mexico must use a non-toxic shot., steel shot being the cheapest and tungsten based shot being the most expensive.

    • Aspenparis
      A hunting fragmenting pellet would be good. But also it would be nice for plinking.

      Of course I’m sure it would be bit of a challenge to make the pellet fragment in certian instances.

      But does the pellet really need to be made out of metal to fragment and maintain shape in flight. I guess weight would be the next thought.

      • GF1,

        I would like to see a 33.95 (as a random example) slug in .25 that is maximized in length,… BUT,… also made of lighter material (which allows the extra length).

        Lighten material, keep same weight, lengthen projectile, better BC, still same or better fpe at target.

        That seems to be the issue,…. elongate the slug too much and it gets too heavy for a PCP when using conventional lead.


        • Chris
          We got what we need already in .25 caliber.

          If we could get a frangible pellet the same weight and dimensions/shape as the JSB 33.95 pellet we would have a heck of a effective pesting round.

          When you shoot the JSB 33.95 pellet out of a gun with a quality barrel at 950 fps or so you have a pretty flat shooting round that is very accurate.

          No need for any of that bullet shaped stuff. Use what we know is proven and copy that for a fragmenting round. That will be the winner. The bullet shape rounds for them aren’t proven yet. They are surfacing. But pellets are what is proven so far.

          • GF1,

            I am not sure who it was,…. but they said,… “In one word,…. plastics”.

            I am definitely not in a position to speak of what is out there in the way of plastic tech. If I had to guess,.. the capability already exist. In the big scheme of things,…. us air gunners and our pellets are on the low end of the food chain.

            We shall see. I do love to see the innovation though.


            • Chris,

              It was Mr. McGuire to Ben (Dustin Hoffman) at his college graduation party.

              Mr. McGuire: I just want to say one word to you. Just one word.

              Benjamin: Yes, sir.

              Mr. McGuire: Are you listening?

              Benjamin: Yes, I am.

              Mr. McGuire: Plastics.

              Benjamin: Exactly how do you mean?

              It’s amazing how succinct wisdom can flow through someone after three scotch and sodas.


              • Michael,

                It could have well been you that said that. You are good with the references. The Graduate. I always make a point to watch it if it is on. TCM is pretty good with the older movies,… many times,.. real old.

                I was thinking more air gun related,.. but that works too! 😉


            • Chris,

              You talking about plastic pellets? I can see that the speed of these could be huge, but the light weight of plastic pellets could prove totally inaccurate.

              Don’t know, the only way to find out is to try.


              • Mike,

                Concept,…. in general. We have metal lighter than lead. Tin, aluminum, etc.. For frangibles,… what could be mixed? Steel/tin, lead/tin, tin/alum., some metal and some plastic??? What exists for plastics? Delrin, Teflon, etc.. Something dense yet slick, etc..

                We know what (weights) work in PCP guns. So how can we (keep that weight) and (lengthen the projectile) significantly,… all by using a lighter material?

                How do we shoot something with a high speed bullet (profile) and do it from an airgun?

                Concept. Same weight yet longer. Longer by use of lighter material. (Just a concept). If I had some dense plastic rod and a lathe, I would have to give something a go.

                Hope that better explains where I was coming from? Or not? 😉


                • Chris,

                  I see where you are coming from, but to continue this experiment you would need an expert lathe operator and very accurate measurements of the barrel in question.

                  As to weight, plastic is so much lighter than lead that to equal the weight may make the projectile too long to load into the breach.


                  • Mike,

                    I did some quick research this morning. Lead to Nylon is about 10:1, so yes, length increase, yet same weight does cause a usable length issue. I started with this link:


                    I then found this link which I (highly recommend) for a short read. “Heavy” plastics are already well under way. They can equal and in some cases surpass lead.


                    (Towards the bottom,… you will find specific mention of ammunition). Lead free, yet same or better performance than lead. So, my idea is already being done. For airguns, the projectile can be 2x or 3x the length, yet still be the same weight as lead. By adjusting the specific gravity of the mix, the projectile could be the new, longer 2x, 3x, but be made slightly lighter,.. which would allow a PCP projectile the ability for higher fps,.. if that is desired.

                    I hope you take a minute to read the second link and let me know what you think.


                    • Chris,

                      That weight calculator is real cool.

                      On the weight added plastic, why did I not think of that? Cost does appear to be a factor but it does look like it could work.

                      The main problem I see is getting the right size and quality to match current lead pellets and slugs.


                  • Mike, (Out’a room below)

                    Glad you read it. Check out the other conversations and links today. Getting a fast twist (1:6) seems to be the key to a longer projectile in air guns along with a gun that is capable of putting some serious fps behind it. Bullet weights, shapes, length can all be easily played with (bought). Changing twist rate in order to “experiment” is far above you and me or the average Joe.

                    At any rate,… just stirrin’ the pot. 😉 I am always the one asking, “why not”. I also need to remember that there is already other people and companies that are WAY ahead of me,.. already “on it”. I am however not sure that the air gunning community is being (fully) exposed to all that is out there in ballistics. Just a hunch.


                    • Chris,

                      Saw the other comments as I read them all, but for my money I think that lead is the best game in town.

                      And yes indeed why not, I can see it now Chris’ plastic pellets and slugs.

                      It could work.


  7. Been there for a long time at that price. I thought about getting one during the Black Friday sales but I don’t like the unsupported barrel. I’m too much of a klutz sometimes

    • Brent
      Why on the barrel.

      If your thinking Marauder their barrels are unsupported but have the barrel band but they still float in the band.

      So are you talking accuracy because of a floating barrel or incase of a fall or bump?

      And I thought the later versions of the Gauntlet are suppose to have the barrel band too. If anything it was the .25 caliber if I’m remembering right.

      • Gunfun,
        I’m always bumping the barrel of my Maximus but it doesn’t change the POI. I’d rather just save a some extra money and get the Marauder but I’m going to have to buy a bigger tank also so you’re looking at about a $1000. Maybe when I finally retire I’ll gift myself but I’m happy with the Maximus for now. Beware of the man with one gun

        • Brent
          I totally like my modified Maximus. I got that Air Venturi regulated bottle on mine.

          I have had several Marauders and no doubt I like them. But also had the Gauntlet. And I have to say I kind of like the Gauntlet a tad bit more then the Marauder. The only reason being is it comes with the regulated bottle like I have on my Maximus. Great shot count and very consistent.

          Now if the Marauder would come out with the regulated bottle from the factory I would be all over one of them. If that was to happen the Marauder would no doubt in my mind be the winner over the Gauntlet then. Just me though.

  8. Using the technology I invented to manufacture the Dust Devil Mk2 BBs, I am confident I could manufacture
    an accurate .25 cal diabolo type frangible pellet.
    That said, a frangible lead equivalent pellet would probably be more expensive than a lighter pellet.
    Something I need to think about a bit more.


  9. Russell,

    If it is generally accurate in .25 they will come.
    The Twenty-five is difficult to Pest with because it typically does too much damage on a pass through or a clean miss. If a frangible of any shape, pellet or bullet, showed reduced pass through or damage on a clean miss it would bring a number of .25 airguns into Pesting.

    just my two cents,


      • Russell
        Either or. I would try them if you come up with something. I’m sure I would get some if they work out.

        I’m thinking that once they hit it would fragment into something similar to a shot gun blast inside. The initial energy at impact would either penetrate or break up and penetrate some. As it goes distance would be the big thing you would have to learn to make them work how a person wanted.

        Again I say go for it. Make them.

      • Russell,

        I have no idea on California and the need for no Lead projectiles for Pesting. I suspect that Pesting in barns and other outbuildings will eventually have no Lead as a requirement in almost all your markets.
        To include anywhere in the USA as well as the rest of the World.


  10. MORE on my Rem. Summit 17 cal: Well, the gun did get assembled and it WORKS, but, sadly, no better than before its mainspring broke. Yesterday, using 7 pellet styles of GOOD quality, it gave 2′-1.2″ 5-grps at 50 ft, though ONE did tighten up to 0.9″, despite more wind than I wanted… I took GREAT pains to do the mtce perfectly, hoping to get better groups out of this one, but no joy. I am now considering a) another VERY thorough bbl cleaning b) crowning the muzzle LIGHTLY c) servicing the trigger to decrease pull & travel d) pre-weigh ALL pellets (Exacts and Cuda’s too) e) POSSIBLY a bit more interior lube f) donating it to RidgeRunner’s Home for Wayward TIre Irons. Any thoughts or helpfull hints, guys?? —Barrika

    • Barrika,

      How did you conduct the barrel cleaning initially? What did you use? Without knowing the answers to those questions I am veering towards re crowning the muzzle.


    • Barrika,

      If you haven’t already used it…JB NON embedding bore paste? B.B. and many shooters swear by it. Or was that swear at it?



      • Three years into this gun I performed a bbl cleaning per BB’s info: yes it WAS JB non-embeddiing bore paste. And I did extra efforts to get ALL traces of it out after the cleaning. Sadly, I felt no big drag reductions in the process, and group sizes were not impacted at all, back then. Still, it’s not that hard to do, esp IF it might help. So, per your hints S&S, I will do BOTH again: re-crowning (LIGHTLY!) and JB cleaning. With Missouri now joining the ranks of entire states going into STAY-AT-HOME rules though, it’ll be a while before I can test the results. I don’t want my neighbors to see & hear me shooting what LOOKS like a more powerfull gun than it really is… 🙁 —Barrika
        AND: thanks for the tips, guys! I’ll let you all know how it turns out.

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