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Education / Training Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle: Part 1

Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Springfield Armory M1A.

This report covers:

  • What is the  M14?
  • M14 magazine 
  • M1A
  • The pellet rifle
  • Underlever
  • Cocking and the safety
  • Safety is manual
  • Loading
  • Summary

The Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle is here! This is the air rifle many of you have been waiting for, and mine just arrived. Let’s take a look.

What is the  M14?

The M14 is a U.S. battle rifle that was the primary personal rifle from 1958 until 1968. It was the successor to the M1 Garand (U.S. Rifle caliber .30 M1) that was the U.S. battle rifle from 1936 until being replaced by the M14 in March of 1958. Where the Garand was semiautomatic only, the M14 was made to be a select-fire rifle, though not that many of them were ever set up that way. It took some training and skill to control the rifle in the full-auto mode, because the recoil of the 7.62X51 mm cartridge was substantial. Because of the rifle’s look many assumed it was another BAR, but at only half the weight, it wasn’t.

It just so happens that old B.B. Pelletier qualified expert on the M14, which gave him the opportunity to qualify (expert again, mostly due to luck) on the brand-new M16. Most M16s and their ammo were being sent to Vietnam in 1968 when I qualified in basic training at ROTC summer camp in Fort Lewis, Washington. They had limited rifles and ammo, so only those who qualified expert with the M14 got to qualify with the M16.

From that experience I can tell you this — the M14 was a real battle rifle. The M16 that I shot was an underdeveloped toy — at least at that time! Time and further development have turned the M16 platform into a proven battle rifle, BUT — the M14 lingers on in U.S. military service as a special rifle when certain things are required. Its 7.62X51 mm round (military version of the .308 Winchester) hits harder and more accurately at longer ranges than the 5.56 mm round of the M16.

M14 magazine 

The biggest difference between the Garand and the M14 was the M14’s 20-round magazine. The Garand has an 8-shot magazine that’s built into the rifle. It is very difficult to add cartridges to that mag while it’s still loaded. When the last round is ejected the en bloc clip — a steel spring that holds the eight .30-06 rounds together, also comes out of the rifle with a distinctive ping. There is a rumor that the enemy would wait to hear the ping and then attack, knowing that the soldier was reloading, but that was just a myth. Nobody could hear that ping in the noise of combat unless there were extraordinary circumstances.

The M14’s 20-round magazine can be removed at any time and topped off. Or leave it in the rifle and load it with stripper clips that connect to the top of the rifle’s receiver, similar to the way the K98 Mauser rifle is loaded. Either way it’s far easier to top off an M14 than reload the Garand. Oldtimers can tell the difference between the Garand and the M14 by the magazine of the latter that hangs down.


So why is there an M1A? It’s because American civilians cannot own fully automatic weapons without going through special legal procedures and I’m not certain that an M14 ever qualified for those. Since any M14 could potentially be converted to full auto, it was a special case that had to be dealt with individually. To satisfy the need for a civilian rifle to compete in military matches, the M1A was born. It’s almost identical to the M14, except it cannot receive the parts to make it full auto without modifications.

The M1A pellet rifle

And that background brings us to today’s topic, the Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle. It is licensed by Springfield Armory, but it was developed under joint cooperation with the folks at Air Venturi. Springfield Armory is the company that brought the M1A to the world in 1974.

Springfield Armory offers the full-sized M1A firearm with a walnut stock. And that is the first difference knowledgeable shooters will notice about the pellet rifle. The stock on this underlever is made from some kind of Asian hardwood that resembles beech. The finish is a very matte dark brown. The upper handguard is a brown synthetic that resembles the fiberglass handguard on the firearm.

Hunting Guide


This is an underlever air rifle, and no, it’s not a reskinned Diana 460 Magnum. You would never get it for a retail of $200 if it was. It’s similar to the Diana in several ways because both rifles are underlevers, but it’s also far from a direct copy.

M1A underlever
The underlever pulls down and back to cock the rifle and open the loading port. Note that the upper handguard slides forward to expose the loading port.

This rifle comes in both .177 and .22 calibers. I asked to test the .22 because of the power output (1,000 f.p.s. in .177 and 800 f.p.s. in .22), as well as for easier loading. More on that in a bit.

I sat in on a design discussion with Air Venturi at the SHOT Show this year. The rifle was almost complete, but I was asked for my input.  I have to admit I was blown away by the realism of the rifle! I was told they wanted to keep the retail price at $200, so the folding metal buttplate that is so characteristic of an M14 was not an option. It looks like the buttplate on this rifle folds, but it doesn’t. Shooters unfamiliar with the M14 won’t miss it, and there are more of them around than us old silverbacks. There is a rubber pad on the butt to keep the rifle firmly on your shoulder.

The underlever has an extension rod that pulls out to increase the leverage. And, what is so neat is you can leave it pulled out because the designers made the extension fit into the bottom of the muzzle brake/front sight assembly when the lever is stored.

M1A lever in
The cocking lever can be pushed in like this.

M1A lever out
… or it can be extended and still used and stored that way. Genius!

Cocking and the safety

The M1A cocks with 35 lbs. of effort, according to the description. You know I will check that for you. I do use the extended lever to cock the rifle.

But there is more to cocking. I test-fired the rifle the first time and it shot well. But it wouldn’t cock for me on the next try. I tried it many times. Each time I felt the sear slipping off as I relaxed pressure on the cocking lever. This was confusing until I looked at the safety. It works in the reverse direction of an M1A, M14 or M1 Garand safety. Pull it back into the triggerguard to make the rifle ready to fire and push it forward through the triggerguard to make the rifle safe. I had been working it backwards! And that was apparently what kept the rifle from cocking.

M1A safety
The M1A pellet rifle safety works in the reverse direction of the M1A firearm safety. Push the safety back into the triggerguard to make the rifle ready to fire and forward to make it safe.

Once I cycled the safety on and off again several times and then pulled it back towards  the trigger to make the rifle ready to fire, the cocking problem was gone. I tell you this in case anyone who is familiar with an M1A, Garand or M14 makes the same mistake.

Safety is manual

The safety is manual. It stays where it’s put until you move it. And that’s the way we like it! Let the shooter be responsible for his own safety. With the cocking effort it’s unlikely that a child will cock this rifle. So long as the shooter has been trained in proper gun handling techniques and practices them, everything should be fine.


When the rifle is cocked the upper handguard slides forward to expose the loading port. I have normal-sized hands for an adult and I find this rifle somewhat difficult to load. The trick is to balance it on your knee or on a table with the muzzle pointing straight up. The pellet can then be balanced on your thumb for loading. It isn’t perfect, but you soon grow accustomed to it. I suspect that loading will be more difficult for people with sausage fingers.

M1A loading port
The upper handguard slides forward as the rifle is cocked. This exposes the loading port.


I will end this report here but there is much more introduction to come in part 2. At that time I will discuss and show the sights, the scope mount that comes with the rifle, the trigger and more details about this fascinating new spring-piston air rifle. We will start testing velocity in part 3.

The Springfield Armory M1A pellet rifle is many things. It’s a lookalike airgun. It’s a spring-piston rifle that’s hopefully very accurate. It has good power so it can be used for some hunting. It has adjustable sights plus a scope mount. And all of this comes to you at a fantastic price! With the holidays coming I would watch this blog and perhaps put this one on my short list!

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.

124 thoughts on “Springfield Armory M1A Underlever Pellet Rifle: Part 1”

  1. B.B.,

    When you said scope mount at the last paragraph I was wondering if it had built in Picatinny rails, until I went over to the PA site and saw that like the M1A it required a proprietary manner of attaching a scope mount.


      • rr,
        i see what you mean. still, when u gaze at them long enough with an open airgunner’s heart, the necessities of pcps make their pcps look cool as well. they have their own special physical appeal; just let ur heart look at them instead of ur eyes, let’s see if that would make any change.
        one of the reasons i wouldn’t buy the m1a up there is because it tries to look like a firearm. how about we have firearms try to look like airguns, right? that’s y i’d pick a synergis over this m1a or a 460 over a k98 any day.

        • Fish,

          I myself would look at other things than looks. Of course I have looked at other things for quite some time. I do not need uber magnum sproinger performance. I have always looked to accuracy, no matter what the power level.

          You must always look at what you want, not what is shown to you. When you do such you will fill your desire. Most of my airguns are antique. This is because of the power level and the accuracy. I have long sense abandoned the power level and searched for the accuracy.

          Most of the new airguns (sproingers) are meant to appeal to the powder burners. They think they want high velocities to match that of their powder burners and cheap prices. They do not understand the laws of physics and are usually upset because they cannot hit what they are shooting at over 100 yards away.

          They are idiots. Once they pull their heads out, then we can teach them about airgunning.

          • RR,
            Well, we had talked about fashion; that was why I mentioned all that BS. 🙂
            I cannot agree with you more; accuracy comes first. If an air rifle is accurate, then my eyes will learn how to fall in love with it.
            Ah, I thought the laws of Physics changed when a springer got stronger!? 🙂
            ‘Trillions of flies eat p..p. Hmm… Let’s go eat p..p then…’ That’s how marketing trends work.

            • Fish,

              This is one reason all of my airguns do not look like firearms. I am far more interested in performance than looks, most especially when it tries to look like a firearm. With Hatsan though, I am not sure what kind of drugs the designers are on, but they could use a sober moment to look at what they have designed.

              • RR,

                Without noting specifics,… I do remember commenting several times over the years that I have been been impressed with Hatsan’s “innovations”. In the end,.. yes, it has to work/last/prove results.

                I am a bit ?,… disappointed with Crosman turning to Turkey to fill stock. Good, bad or otherwise,.. give me USA made.


                • Chris,
                  Hey man, it’s been a while we didn’t say hi to each other. I hope you’re doing well.
                  I wouldn’t worry about where the product is made as long as it’s good quality and priced reasonably. International trades go both ways; they buy a lot of products from us as well. Trading with Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, France, Greece and such European countries, it’s well balanced. If we don’t buy theirs, then they won’t buy ours – we don’t want that either. US do a lot of export, and most trading treaties are benefiting us. What you should worry about are the ones that cause budget deficits on our end on a continues basis, the ones that only sell and never buy…

                  • Fish,

                    Doing just fine. Yes,… I understand it works both ways. It needs to be free and (fair) trade though. No country is exclusive/an island.

                    Theft of tech. (and other stuff) is not good and neither is exporting the jobs of your fellow countrymen. You can toss in political and humane factors if you want to as well.

                    The best we can do is speak with our dollar.


                    • Chris,
                      Actually, it does not work both ways; it is not free or fair either. It only works in our advantage; every single international trade in the world is done in US dollars. The financial world is turning around us, under our control. What you want would only isolate us.
                      With the countries I listed above, there is no theft of tech, political, or humane factors. Also, remember, there are Toyota, Honda, even Volkswagen assembly plants in the USA.

                    • Chris,
                      Fair trade? Think of NAFTA and what a disaster that was (is). Other countries like Mexico and China do not have the labor laws and environmental restrictions that the US has. China is killing their own people with pollution. Remember when the Olympics were held there and China had to shut down the factories in the surrounding area? Mexico dumps everything but the kitchen sink, and maybe that also, into the Rio Grand. Here in the US we try to do the right thing and not pollute the air and water. We have labor laws, OSHA, and such to protect our workers. Mexico, China, and others not so much.
                      Here in Michigan, we have lost several manufacturing companies such as Brunswick, Electrolux, and even Whirlpool has move some divisions to Mexico. Locally, I worked for Parker Hannifin making hydraulic pumps and motors. They moved our entire gear pump line to Mexico and even sent some of our people down there to instruct them on manufacturing. Within two years they had killed the product with their poor quality.
                      Level the playing field? That’s a big joke! No way can our workers compete with workers in those countries…unless….we lower our wages, safety, and environmental, to equal theirs. I can say from experience in the QC field, I have seen nothing good come from Mexico. China on the other hand has made good progress in their quality efforts, but still pollution is a big problem.

  2. B.B.,

    I personally was hoping more for a Garand than an M1A, but I’m guessing the M14’s fiberglass upper handguard worked better with their ideas on how to expose the loading port.

    Now, how do we go about attaching a dummy magazine to complete the look?


  3. I’ve been waiting on this review for a while. The realism combined with a spring piston has had me interested. Just wondering how difficult the loading port is to deal with. I don’t have sausage fingers but have a trick thumb. That is interesting about experience with the safety on the original causing the mysterious issue with cocking– some things get to be so second nature that it’s almost like trying to figure out a magic trick.

          • B.B. and Readership,

            I have been trying to think of some other firearm or airgun with a manual SAFETY that FORWARD Isn’t FIRE and REARWARD isn’t SAFE (I know of a few that move side to side or up and down) does anyone know of another example that works the wrong way (my opinion) like this?


            • Shootski,

              I thought the same thing. “Forward” = ” Fire”. Or at least it does on each of mine.

              I suppose with practice, one can get used to the reverse.

              But not ideal, if you are used to the standard way. Especially for a safety feature. Thats one of those movements you’d like to be automatic/ muscle memory.


            • Shootski,

              I wonder if there’s a mechanical reason for it. I suppose we’ll have to wait for someone to do a teardown to find out.

              The SKS and MAS49 safeties do work on a forward is safe/rear is fire basis.


              • RR,

                No issue/offense here. They will undercut and dominate any way they can. That is clear.

                For some reason,…. the TV slogan of,… “Coming soon!!! To a theater near you!!!” comes to mind,………. not sure just why,….. 🙁


            • Shootski,

              This is Umarex backwards stuff, to put it nicely, these Germans working with the Chinese just do not understand how a safety should work. They do not really care that this is screwed up as long as you spend your money on it. Umarex and Wang Po industries can bend over and take it as far as I am concerned. This ain’t right and they should pay for the stupidity.

              • RidgeRunner,

                Interestingly i think i have experienced German business owners that were good people and really smart and knowledgeable about their trade. I have also known some of the World’s greatest crooked, street smart, and knowledgeable about swindle German Titans of Industry! Adding that knowledge to the Chinese (Oriental) Character flaw of knowing better how to do ANYTHING and we have a binary explosive! Of course Americans have an equally worrisome Flaw bred typically by making do with little starting on the trip from all nations of the World to the USA. Even once the luckiest become hyper wealthy they still squeez every penny HARD especially if it belongs to some other SCHMOE!

                If history is any indicator of the future the good people in both countries will eventually take it in the kiester! Once Again.


              • Siraniko,

                I think Chanman819 has the right idea that we won’t know the why of the SAFETY until we view the insides and perhaps not even then. Automatic would not be authentic but might have kept from being so obviously backward to the powder burner.


      • Fish
        I was going to say that the other day when me and Chris was talking about his 880 he messed with trying to shoot arrows. I said to bad Minute of Something didn’t have his spaghetti shooter back then. Well tell about it anyway back then. He could of had I guess.

        But anyway I mentioned I have a modern blow gun some where. But I think I did get it through PA back then.

        But yep I knew they sold them at one time. Now I wonder how long ago that was.

        • Gunfun1,

          Yep it would be interesting to know when they were selling… I don’t think it would have been too long ago based on being from Gamo, but I might be wrong on that. I started slinging spaghetti about 3 years ago. That sounds interesting on the 880 arrow shooter. I’ve seen a video or two on Youtube with something similar. I like the idea of a pump-up pneumatic arrow launcher. I feel like the arrows would need to be on the lightweight side to get good trajectory with 880 volume of air.

          • Minute of Something
            Chris tried some different things with his 880. He was close to getting something to shoot pretty good. I think it was BBQ skewers.

            And I’m getting ready to mess with a 499 barrel on 3 of my Crosman guns. A 1377 pumper, the 2260 Co2 rifle and one of my Maximus I have. I think I will try your spaghetti shooting idea on one of them. Or who knows maybe each one of the guns.

            I think the pumper will be the way to go though. That way the power can be controlled. Fun stuff.

            • Gunfun1,

              Yeah, that’s a great idea to try the 499 barrel on all of those. After you mentioned trying spaghetti in one or more, I remembered a Taofledermaus video I saw where he tries shooting spaghetti out of a breakbarrel pellet rifle. He caught some interesting high speed footage, but the thing is he didn’t use a stabilizer to keep the spaghetti flying straight until impact. Also it looks like it would have had a rifled barrel– I think a smooth bore is a safer bet with the spaghetti. Someone in the comments suggested backing it up with a felt cleaning pellet, which could be a way to add a stabilizer. Not sure if the felt pellet would be too tight for the 499 bore though. Here’s the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wCXYiDsi80

              • Minute Of Something

                I got the 499 barrel yesterday. Had to work overtime last night so I took it with me so I could use the Bridgeport and the lathe but was too busy at work to do anything on it. I’ll have to do it this week at work sometime.

                And what I got thought up to do is I have a old 2240 barrel and I’m going to cut it off the length of how much fits in the steel breeches. The I’m going to drill it out so the 499 barrel fits inside. Then I’m going drill through the transfer port hole and into and through the 499 barrel. Going to super glue the 499 barrel inside the drilled out 2240 barrel. Then that assembly will fit in any Crosman/Benjamin steel breech or even the plastic breeches like is on the 2240’s and 1377’s.

                Still can’t wait to get it done to see what happens.

      • Fish,

        You’ve got good research skills, that is an interesting find. Looks like it was from Gamo. A few years back I would see some blowgun offerings from Gamo in brick n mortar stores, but now it seems like I only see darts from them in the stores, but not the blowguns. Funny to see that it is legal in *most* states, and has a max velocity of 0 fps… hee. Well, that counts as a foot in the door, I believe!

        • MOS,
          Gamo sells it on its website for $12, but the shipping is $15. If I knew for sure it was one piece, I would buy – in case a free shipping coupon worked.
          I heard some states are gonna make spaghetti illegal too!? “Sir, are you licensed to carry that spaghetti?” 🙂

  4. I like the gun so far.

    But one thing I don’t like is the cocking cover. That being the color. To me it stands out like a sore thumb. I would have to paint it black or something.

  5. Very nice history lesson, and a very interesting air rifle. I thought I was done with springers in this power level (I’ve moved to PCPs in this range), but this one has me interested again. I look forward to the next report.

  6. BB,

    Flashback! Now this is a battle rifle! Sorry folks, I drift into another world. I was a member of the ship’s Self Defense Force Team and the M14 was our rifle.

    I would indeed enjoy the opportunity to play with this air rifle some, but owning one…naaa. I am one of those who is not really fond of replicas. I do like a good many of the features on this air rifle.

    Once upon a time I owned a Garand. It was an awesome battle rifle. There were prototypes made for it to take the BAR magazine and selective fire, but the rifle just was not up to it. You really need at least a BAR if you are going rock and roll with that cartridge. Later there were prototypes and a few issued Garands that were chambered for the 7.62 NATO, but it was more rifle than was really needed for that cartridge. Along came the M14.

    Where does the safety need to be set at to cock this bugga. Inquiring minds want to know.

    If I am not mistaken, I see a touch of Umarex and / or Wang Po Industries in there. 😉

  7. I’m not in to military rifles and even less so replicas of them but I know that a lot of people are. Still, I have owned a couple of military powder burners and find this one appealing. Glad to see that is a “real” airgun and not just a Co2 platform skinned over.

    I am curious if the rifle will perform or if it is just a pretty face. By the velocities it appears to have a decent power plant, looking forward to the accuracy reports. I am not expecting 10 meter match accuracy or MOA at 100 yards but it needs to be able to do sub one inch 10 shot groups at 25 yards to hold my interest.


  8. Mildot52,

    They really were some clunkers, weren’t they. The American car companies sure did have a difficult time transitioning from the muscle to the mini. Personally, I still do not think they have it right.

    • RR
      If you truly hot rodded the old cars and new cars like I have you would know the difference.

      And I’m talking serious hot rodding. Not just playing in your drive way.

      How I will leave the conversation is how do you know what you don’t know. I’m always interested in learning. Lets see what we know. 😉

  9. They nailed the look!
    The cocking extension is neat, I wonder what the difference in cocking effort is with it in the short position.

    The safety being backwards will mess with us that have muscle memory when using one.

    This being a springer, I would have normally read the blog as it evolved, and enjoyed the photos, and discussions.
    (I am historically not a springer guy.)

    But I have been shooting a Pro-Sport for a couple of months now, and actually have been shooting it more than my other guns.

    B.B. please report on the weight and FEEL of the rifle compared to the real rifle.
    And what the shot cycle is like.
    If it’s accurate, maybe a tune or tune in a tube article.

    A wood stocked air rifle with good sights, provisions for a scope, and absolutely stunning looks for $200?

    Dude, that’s a winner..


  10. BB
    While your showing a picture on the next report of the sliding breech cover let us know if a scope can go on this gun.

    Does it accept I guess its called the mil spec scope mount? I have a Daisy M14 semi auto type pellet shooter. I have a mil spec scope mount for it.

    If it will go on this M1A I might just get one.

    And by the way that M14 that I have has the best 2 stage semi auto/double action trigger that I have ever shot. It’s so smooth and controllable that I wish some of my other guns triggers was like it.

  11. Very realistic for $200. It also looks like the scope mount that Air Venturi designed for their M1A is respectful of the one designed for the firearm. The only difference looks like the bushing and lock nut on the M1A airgun scope mount is one piece? Hope that doesn’t matter with this powerful springers recoil.

        • Kevin
          Yes that is the mount I have.

          And the Daisy M14 I have is the Winchester pellet shooting model they list on that link you gave.

          What I want to know and what I asked BB above is will this scope mount work on this M1A BB is reporting on today?

          • The M14 and M1A mounts are interchangeable on firearms (although you shouldn’t interchange since once the bushing and lock nut are in place properly they only fit the gun they were installed on well) and the one I linked is interchangeable on their airguns. Look at one of the comments in the link I gave you. He’s used his on an M14 and M1A although he did have to shim his scope on his M1A.

            • Kevin
              Ok then that’s good.

              And if I remember right the scope was pretty high with even low scope rings. It was not a comfortable cheek weld and line of sight.

              And what I found for the shooting I was doing which was kind of rapid fire plinking. The factory open sights worked the best.

              So I guess the scope mount is irrelevant but nice to know that it would work on this gun BB is reporting on for someone that wants to scope theirs.

              • Even on the firearm once you put the scope on, you had a “chin weld”, more than a cheek weld on the stock.

                They made many aftermarket cheek pieces that attached to the stocks to give a better cheek weld.

                They should work on here as well.


  12. BB said the rifle comes with a scope mount, it does not. It comes with provisions for a scope mount. A slight communication mishap perhaps. Two brass screw inserts accommodate a side mounted rail assembly.

    The AV scope mount suggested is solid metal. It looks like it was originally intended for some airsoft M14’s and carried over to the rest. The ‘Chinaglish’ instructions, on the box, says to attach the support block where the ‘clip guide’ dovetails on to the receiver. Perhaps required for some but not this rifle. It is not even the same size dovetail. It’s not even needed here.
    Just tighten up the front mount screw, adjust the hollow spacer nut to contact the receiver, ( After installing it on the side mount itself …tight fit in the mount) then install the rear mount screw through it.

    I see a bit of fluff through the peep sight … that’s not there, so I need an alternate sighting device. Old eyes.

    The imitation flash hider has about a 21/2″ void space between the tip and barrel muzzle inside and some say it quiets the sound some.
    I put a ported muzzle break on my Evanix AR6 and it really helped with that. It just disburses the sound to reduce its impact. I am strongly considering drilling a few holes in the flash hider on this M1A1 to see if it works better. Can’t hurt the looks.

    The rubber butt stock pad is actually inserted into a hard plastic butt pad. I like that. It protects the rubber pad edges.

    And yes it looks like a cheek riser of some sort would be helpful with a scope.
    Bob M

      • BB
        I’ll bet you know somebody ! If not, don’t mention again they might want it back 🙂
        Probably in anticipation of testing it for accuracy with a scope.

        Mine was in the outer shipping box but I paid extra for it. Did it have a green label with mounting instructions on the box itself? if so its another product they offer.
        Bob M

      • Had two M1 carbines, both stopped working after a couple of mags. Magazine spring flew out of one mag , others stopped working. Ended my ownership after second one. If I get another WW2 replica will be a Thompson

        • Michaelr
          Check out the Air Ordinance .22 SMG full auto pellet gun. It kind of looks like a Thompson with a drum.

          I have one of the Air Ordinance SMG’s. It’s a fun gun. And it will also shoot semi auto by how far you pull the trigger. And rate of fire is adjustable with a flow control. I have mine set up with a 3000 psi HPA regulated 13 cubic inch bottle. It will do a 50 round belt from 3000 psi down to around 1700 psi. The drum will hold a 200 round belt though which does come with it and you get 100 additional links if I remember right. Maybe 200 links. But then you need a bigger capacity air bottle. But pretty fun to shoot though.

          Just thought I would mention it after you said the Thompson.

      • Thank you Gor asking Tom! It seems I have, at least temporarily, beat the prostate cancer. My PSA has held at less than .06 for two years now after two years if lupron, one laser surgery, and 40 radiation treatments. I’ll be 67 on Sunday. After all this, I had Been working out at home. I had worked up to about a 50 minute routine, when I suddenly got a hernia. I go see a surgeon on Dec. 11th.Had to quit the exercise routine so as not to make the hernia worse. I’m walking every day now. That and telling friends that, for my birthday, I got a shiny new hernia!! Eventually, I’ll have to fly to Oahu for the surgery, because Kaiser Permanente doesn’t”t do high tech stuff on the big island. And a blown right knee.

        Now, all this doesn’t mean I’ve turned into a cantankerous old geezer. Well, the geezer part is true. My wife and I are helping our daughter and granddaughter. That keeps us busy. Daughter is a single mom, divorced. Taught her to shoot an air rifle and am giving her my Umarex APX NPG, which is a good shooter with RWS Meisterkugeln rifle pellets. I check in here to your blog every day, and have for years.

        Don’t know much about hernias. I believe it’s an inguinal. Sorry to inflict you all with this, but, even during the worst of the dancer, I stayed positive. I’d like to be around to see my ten year old granddaughter graduate from college. I still shoot my airguns in my back yard on our acre about 12 miles from Hilo.

  13. I really like the looks of this rifle. And I for one hope it doesn’t weigh a ton and has a decent shot cycle.

    Can you tell us if it looks easy to take apart so it might be “tuned” if the owner was so inclined?


  14. BB,
    You have started testing a rifle that I really admire! My formative years wearing the OD green started with Mattie Mattel’s favorite plastic poodle shooter (my basic training rifle was made by GM, HydraMatic division). Much later, I was fortunate enough to join an Army Reserve rifle team, and had the opportunity to shoot a NM model of the M14. Such a revelation, especially at 600 yards!
    If this replica can shoot with reasonable accuracy, I may have to raid my piggy bank to get one.
    Do you think that an ‘original’ butt plate might fit on this one? (M1A’s are a little rich for my blood, but this might just be a cheaper to own and fun alternative).
    Once again, thanks for my favorite moments of the day.

  15. I have to chime in with others here who question the logic of the backward safety. And I apologize in advance as I find it really frustrating, as a consumer; try as I might, I’m probably going to sound irritable.

    Frankly, I’m impressed with how polite most people are, in tolerating what I see as ultimately a dangerous lack of concern–or maybe the equally dangerous lack of even a functional understanding–on the part of the gun’s designers, of why any manually-disengaged safety feature is even there in the first place.

    If nothing else, I’d want Air Venturi and/or SA to know that this “detail” is an INSTANT disqualifier for me. You go to that much trouble for cosmetic replication–it is indeed beautiful–and then take a critical, functional, ergonomic component (a safety component at that) and make it functional, but backward?

    And not just backward, in this case. That would be merely annoying on ergonomic and training grounds. No, this actually looks to be another case of “stick your finger into the trigger guard to make the gun ‘safe'”,
    about which I’ve felt compelled to write before. Are you listening, designers? To dismiss this objection as trivial is to “absolutely, totally, and in all other ways” misunderstand the nature of the objection.

    Seriously, can someone help me understand how this sort of derp makes it through legal? Because even if I put aside my (strenuous) distaste for design decisions taken for fear of liability over excellence of design, how can anyone not see the massive liability potential of any “safety” that requires putting your finger into the trigger guard to engage? There’s a reason you don’t see crap like that on actual firearms, and yet don’t we labor to insist (properly!) that airguns are no more toys than their noisier, range-ier counterparts? WTH?

    Holy cow, I want to like rifles like this one. It looks splendid. Sights look good. I bet you could even figure out how to get a Langlois Rhodesian sling to work with the underlever. If the trigger and accuracy are good enough, it would seem to be nearly perfect for working precision singles. But the safety, alone–even aside from the liability thing–pooches the entire deal, because the manual safety is part of the firing stroke, no less than trigger or sights. Even if the safety isn’t ever engaged, you still train to disengage it every time the gun comes to the shoulder. And here we have a lovely, looker “replica” that will actually turn the lights OFF, when the user makes the correct stroke to turn them ON.

    This mystifies me. I know I’m “outside the demographic” in pretty much everything, but still.

    Sorry, vent off now. I know I can just ignore such designs, and I seriously appreciate that B.B. is the sort of reporter that makes discovering those details before purchase, possible. I admit I’ll still be curious about how the accuracy, sights, and trigger turn out here, but this is a no-go before it ever got started.

      • Thank you for that, B.B. I am sure you quite graciously walk more than one line like this, just given your position and breadth, and truthfully I’d not expected that you would address this specific question one way or the other. I’d not have judged you for if you didn’t, but here you seem to validate several of the very best things I’ve come to believe of you.

        I really hope some of those “little” things do get sorted out, in the larger scheme of things, because man, I get jazzed about the
        of modern replica airguns for education and training, both for ourselves and for new generations (of all ages) of enthusiasts.
        I’m ready to shout real design excellence from the rooftops! (My own meager reach, of course, may never be all that great,
        being so often off-the-demographic as I am, but I like to think that my loyalty to faithful design and principle would make up for that. 🙂

    • Kevin,

      The lawyer is not a gun user. He just looks at the paper specs which state that the trigger pull weighs so many pounds and that there is a safety and thus gives the corporate OK. That is all that matters in their legal minds. Never mind that the safety is actually making the item unsafe.


      • Sure, that’s probably what it is, an entirely re-active rather than pro-active attitude, but once you see the problem for what it is you can hardly un-see it. 🙂

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