Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Impractical
  • So what?
  • No hip shooting
  • Got me thinking
  • Pattern for the fine salt at 3 feet
  • Five feet?
  • Back in the game
  • And the SHRED-ER?

Today we look at the practicality of the BUG-A-SALT SHRED-ER, and some other neat stuff.


What is an example of impracticality? How about an automobile that takes 20-30 minutes to start? How about the Stanley Steamer? In its day it wasn’t that bad because most cars were impractical in one way or another. The Stanley took a long time to get up some steam and also got about one mile per gallon of water, unless it recirculated the steam, which some did but others did not. The water tank held 30 gallons which was good for about 30 miles or so in the cars that didn’t recirculate. Today’s equivalent would be electric cars whose mileage is limited by battery technology. Like the Ferrari that gets 16 miles to a charge that we recently discussed.

So what?

So — a CO2-powered bug swatter that you have to depressurize at the end of the day will never be ready for that fast-moving water beetle that just ran across your living room floor. Or that large spider that came out on your front walk this morning. Unfortunately for him (or her — do insects still retain their gender without offense?) I am an airgunner, and when faced with impossible instructions I just do what I want. So I had installed a CO2 cartridge a couple days before today and had loaded a fresh clip for just such an occasion.

I actually had gone on safari over at my neighbor, Denny’s, house next door a few days ago, because he has a persistent batch of wasps that hang around his garage door when its open. But whenever I show up with the SHRED-ER, they never come around. Same thing for houseflies in my garage. It’s like they know.

No hip shooting

So, after my brief safari I went back to my own house and, lo and behold, there was a wasp hanging around my front door. She was hovering and moving so I fired two SHRED-ER shots at her by just pointing the gun in her direction and I missed both times. These were hip shots. Then she landed on my front door and I took careful aim. Bang went the revolver and down she went. She wasn’t dead but she’ll never fly again with the holes I put in her wings. She skittered out of sight before I could stomp her.

Guys — this is why “they” don’t shoot handguns that shoot shot at trap and skeet ranges. Or at least why B.B. Pelletier doesn’t need to shoot them.

Got me thinking

That wasp encounter got me thinking. Each time I shot at her by just pointing I could see the white pattern of salt for just an instant. It was round and dense, and I could also sense that it missed the wasp by just a little each time. That’s why the sights are so important.

Going back to the pattern test I did for Part 2, I was reminded of how uniform it was, but only for the SHRED-ER. The pattern from my BUG-A-SALT 2.0 was very open, with large fly-sized holes where there was no salt. I wondered if I shot salt that was finer would it make the pattern denser?

Shredder 2 three feet
This was the pattern my BUG-A-SALT 2.0 gave at three feet the last time I tested it.

So I dumped out the coarse salt that was in the 2.0 and loaded some sea salt. It’s a little finer than what was in the gun, but it’s still coarse.

BAS 2.0 sea salt
This is the sea salt I loaded into the BUG-A-SALT 2.0.

Then I shot another pattern at 3 feet.

BAS 2.0 3 feet
And this is the pattern that sea salt shot from the BUG-A-SALT 2.0 gave at 3 feet. It’s still way too open to hit flies reliably. In fact, it is more open than the pattern made by the coarser salt I replaced. You are looking at about 3 inches square in the center of the pattern.

Remember, guys, I’m not shooting the SHRED-ER now. I’m shooting my 6+ year old BUG-A-SALT 2.0. It’s the yellow long gun that cocks by pumping the sliding forearm. There is a reason I’m doing this and it does relate to the SHRED-ER.

So, I suppose I should be shooting finer salt in my 2.0? I looked around my kitchen and found some Himalayan Pink salt. I love salt on things and Edie kept a wide variety of salts around for me. Since she passed I haven’t gone through them all.

BAS 2.0 fine salt
I loaded this finer Himalayan Pink salt into my BUG-A-SALT 2.0.

Build a Custom Airgun

Pattern for the fine salt at 3 feet

Then I shot a pattern of the fine salt at three feet. Wow! What a difference!

BAS 2.0 fine salt pattern 3 inches
This is another roughly 3-inch square pattern of the finer salt made by the BUG-A-SALT 2.0.

Five feet?

This nice pattern made me wonder whether I could back up to five feet with the 2.0. So I did and shot a third pattern.

BAS 2.0 fine salt pattern 5 feet
This picture is of an aluminum sheet of about the same size as the others. The salt impacts are denser than the pattern made at 3 feet with the sea salt, but there are still some places in this pattern where a fly could slip through.

Back in the game

I think I’ll try to limit the 2.0 engagement distance to three feet. But hey — today’s test got the 2.0 back in the game. Since it doesn’t use CO2, I can use it on the one or two flies that bother me in the house and save the SHRED-ER for when things become more serious. Now, THERE is a reason to leave the SHRED-ER without a CO2 cartridge installed. And life is back to normal at Casa de Pelletier!

And the SHRED-ER?

Well, I just learned that finer salt works best for what these guns are doing. So, when it comes time to load the SHRED-ER clips, I will use the finest salt I have. From what I have seen so far, those BUG-A-Salt guys have figured this out very well. 

And I also have the work you guys have done on loading to follow. So, we are in good shape for Part 4!