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TX200 Mark III: Part 1

TX200 Mark III
The TX200-MkIII is a legendary underlever spring-piston air rifle.

This report covers:

  • The ideas
  • Velocity
  • Disassembly
  • The trigger stays in the end cap
  • Stand the action upright
  • Sliding compression chamber
  • The piston
  • Discussion
  • Summary

When BB Pelletier gets blessed he is very appreciative. But sometimes the blessing is special β€” very special. Sometimes it’s a blessing in disguise! This series, which promises to be long, is such a blessing.

The ideas

Several months ago I told one of our readers that I would “tune” my TX200 Mark III. I say, “tune” in quotes because TX200s seldom need anything done to them beyond shooting. It was on my short list of things to do when another reader reminded me the day before yesterday and I acquiesced, which is a snooty word that means I caved.

I have several things I want to do. Today I will baseline the rifle’s velocity, so we know where we started, and then I’ll disassemble it for you. Then I will clean it out, re-lubricate and assemble it and then test it again to see if there were any changes. Then I want to mount my brand new Meopta MeoPro Optika5 4-20×50 RD BDC3 scope and shoot it for accuracy. Yes, that is a new Meopta scope I haven’t mentioned before! Lucky BB now has three Meopta scopes in his possession! The TX200 is the most accurate spring-piston pellet rifle being made today (with challengers like the Walther LGU coming close) and BB has spent entirely too long away from this fine airgun.

TX200 Meopta 4-20X50 RD
BB will mount the Meopta MeoPro Optika5 4-20X50 RD on the TX and test it for accuracy β€” the rifle, not the scope. The scope is a Meopta and we know it does what it is supposed to.

Velocity

I remember this TX shooting Crosman Premier 7.9-grain domes at just over 1,000 f.p.s., like maybe 1030, or so. Let’s see where we are today.

I had chronograph problems today, but let me show you the 8 velocities I was able to record.

852
841
881
796
826
825
850
839

This isn’t the rifle that I remember. It’s still very smooth, but the velocity is off and the extreme spread is way too large. Let’s disassemble it and see what we have.

Disassembly

Like every spring-piston rifle I know of, the barreled action has to come out of the stock first. There are two triggerguard screws and two forearm screws to be removed.

TX200 barreled action
The barreled action is out of the stock.

The trigger stays in the end cap

In the TX the trigger stays with the end cap, so if it doesn’t need anything you can leave it alone. Mine is fine so that’s the last we will see of it until assembly. I will show you the end cap in a moment. If you wanted to remove the trigger, the cross pins are in the end cap, and you can see them, once the cap is out of the rifle.

There is just one more thing to do to disassemble the rifle. The threaded bolt that receives the forward triggerguard bolt also holds the end cap in the rifle. Remove it and the rifle comes apart as far as we need.

TX200 threaded bolt
The threaded bolt (arrow) holds the rifle together. Remove it while restraining the end cap and the rifle is disassembled.

This bolt has two flats that don’t need a metric or SAE wrench of any kind. They are made to accept the jaws of a Crescent wrench. Air Arms must know something about airgunners. Yeah, the jaws also fit a 10mm open end wrench, but if you use one I will have to suspend your man card for a week.

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Stand the action upright

We need to restrain that end cap as we unthread that bolt. Stand the barreled action up on the end cap (padded to keep from scratching) and press down on the action lightly as you remove the bolt by hand.

TX200 restrained
That bolt is now loose. Press down on the barreled action lightly and unscrew the bolt the rest of the way with your fingers.

TX200 bolt out
The bolt is out and that’s all the farther the end cap comes out! The rifle is now disassembled.

If there is a spring piston air rifle that’s easier to disassemble, I don’t know what it is. You can now slide the end cap out of the rifle and the mainspring and piston will also come out on their own. Ain’t life grand?

TX200 end cap out
The end cap comes out and carries the trigger with it. As you can see the trigger assembly is pinned inside the cap. If you wanted to get the trigger out, now is your chance.

You can now pull the spring guide and mainspring out of the rifle. 

TX200 mainspring and guide
Oh, oh! That’s black tar. Apparently it has been a LONG time since I was in here!

Sliding compression chamber

The TX200 has a sliding compression chamber that is linked to the underlever by a cocking link. The piston isn’t hooked to anything and is therefore free to come out. And it does at this time. If it wants to remain in the chamber, just tap the open end of the barreled action on a padded surface and it should slide right out.

The piston

One part of the tuneup is to check and even renew the piston seal, if needed. Is that the case for this rifle? Let’s see.

TX200  piston seal
Oh, oh! You don’t have to be an airgunsmith to spot the broken piston seal. 

In fact the piston seal had hardened and broke into small pieces as I touched it. It was only a seal in shape, not operation.

TX200 piston
The TX piston has a ring at the rear that also has a bearing. It rides inside the spring tube to keep the piston centered in the compression tube bore. You can also see the central piston rod that engages the trigger when the rifle is cocked.
No matter how the piston rotates the rod is always ready to catch and hold it.

Discussion

This TX really does need some work. Why didn’t you guys hound me to get this done? Just joking, but it’s a good thing that I opened this gun up.

The black tar may have cost the rifle 30-40 f.p.s., but that broken piston seal is the reason the velocity was so low and also all over the place. It’s remarkable that the rifle still shot smooth, but I lay that to the design of the powerplant. Now there is even more to be done when I tune the rifle.

Please note that I used moly grease when I tuned the rifle the last time. So much has changed in the years since I last lubed this powerplant. Tune in a Tube was created and Krytox is used sometimes in place of moly.

This rifle needs a LOT of cleaning! That job will take some time because the black tar is sticky stuff. I won’t bore you with the details, but the next time I write about the rifle I will bring you up to speed.

I ordered a new piston seal from Pyramyd Air. I could have gone with another Vortek kit, but I thought spending $25 ($12 plus tax and shipping) instead of $100+ was the best way to go. Besides, TX 200s don’t vibrate, so what is there for a special kit to do?

Summary

As I said in the beginning, today was a blessing in disguise. Now you know why. It means there will be even more for you TX200 lovers to pore over. And it means I will get my baby back to where she belongs!

91 thoughts on “TX200 Mark III: Part 1”

  1. B.B.,

    Looking forward to the TX200Mk111 cleanup.
    But more so the Meopta scope review. I have been reading up on their add-on night vision unit.
    Scope Caption:
    “BB will mount the Meopta
    (M) PeoPro
    Optika5 4-20X50 RD on the TX and test it for accuracy β€” the rifle, not the scope.”

    shootski

      • Gunfun1,

        As I’m certain you already know Night Pesting doesn’t require NV (Night Vision) aids most of the time. Normally just using the correct type/method of illumination for the prey. There are some night dwellers that are much more wary of illumination of any brightness level, color, motion, or spotlighting. I have used various issue NOD (Night Optical Devices) so I’m just interested in the first civilian NV product from arguably the World’s largest maker of NV products. I’m not all that impressed by most of the civilian mountable targeting devices. Since Meopta’s system can mate with various scopes it is of interest.

        shootski

  2. B.B.
    Is it certain that your rifle was shooting that fast with said pellets?
    I considered 1030 quite high so I searched your relevant posts and it seems that they went 930~ fps.

  3. BB
    How old is your TX? This black grease nightmare is not a good sign regarding quality. Or was it molybdenum grease? Then it might look like this. The piston seal – was it the original one? This is not ok that it’s broken like this. Even after 50k shots it should not brake.

    • tomek,

      My TX is getting close to 20 years old now. The seal was original.

      The black tar was something we used to use to smooth out our airguns. Nobody has any, anymore.

      BB

      • BB

        Uuuuu… now I understand. After so long time it is not unusual.
        Why I’m asking about the grease – I was also using some black molybdenum evil grease to smooth out the vibration years ago and it was disaster each time when I did the re-grease action later. Never again πŸ™‚

        • tomek,

          Yeah, moly doesn’t block vibration at all. That’s not why I used it on the piston. It’s there to reduce friction where the piston could contact the walls of the spring tube and compression chamber.

          BB

          • Agree – vibrations will not be damped by any grease. At the time, there was some “urban legend” about Moly’s secret powers. πŸ™‚
            What I use now is bearing grease and it works fine. It doesn’t get dirty, reduces friction like hell, and doesn’t significantly change its specification over time. In any case, I’ve learned not to use too much lubricant in the end. It took me a while to learn…

        • Hi Tomek, A belated welcome to the best Airgun blog in the world! I guess our secret is now out. I also use wheel bearing grease to quiet the vibrations from a spring – not much of it as I have found not much is needed. I do use molybdenum on metal to metal contact where the load is very high but very little.

          Fred formerly of the Peeples Demokratik Republik of NJ now happily in GA

  4. Good morning!!

    What a beautiful air rifle. Can’t wait to see all its secrets revealed.

    B.B., if you ever need help keeping your collection properly fed and exercised, I volunteer my services!

  5. Jane, what happens when a woman has too many airguns? I need a pithy answer because I got my 2 tween daughters airguns for Xmas, and they think I spend too much time thinking about airguns.

        • RG
          So how young are you and how old are your daughters if you don’t mind me asking.

          Me and my wife had our 2 daughters when I was into my mid 30’s.

          If you don’t want to answer I perfectly understand.

        • RG
          Yep your a bit older than I was when that family life happened for me.

          And by no means any regrets at all for me.

          I got alot of that kid liv’n out of my way (sort of) before the kids came. Definitely a good thing.

          And I love my daughters like I have never loved before. Well till my wife and me met. (Had to say that or I would be in big trouble).

          But I still live Iike there will be no tomorrow.

          What Gunfun1 lives by is just what I said. Life has to many interruptions. I live for happy. Really. Bottom line that’s what you have to strive for.

          If your involved with your kids. That’s a big plus. If your wife gets involved too. You will never go wrong.

      • RG
        Sure.

        And if it all don’t come off give it some flame and burn the rest off.

        Remember doing marshmallows on the bonfire when you hold it in the fire. Yep like that. πŸ˜‰

        I really hope there ain’t to many old air guns our there like that. But as it goes old Gunfun1 is exaggerating. I’m sure it will wash off when BB gets into it.

        Now all that gunk on the piston. That’s just ridiculous. How did that get there?

      • Roamin Greco,

        I doubt it will require a bath in kerosene since a soaked rag should do just fine. I don’t think anybody would need to get that anal to get rid of every trace of the black tar. An initial cleaning with paper towels ought to be enough before wiping the remainder off with some kerosene.

        Siraniko

    • FM
      Had 3 different Tx 200’s. They are the coolest airguns in many ways. Especially how easy they disassemble and assemble.

      A person has to own at least one in their life. Oh and a FWB 300s. Just love them.

        • RG
          Seriously better now than later.

          You will love the Tx and 300.

          And your kids will become pro’s with a 300. They are great airguns. Not only for 10 meter but plinking and even pesting with the right distance unmodified. Modify them and they stretch out to sport gun distances and beyond. They will always show how good you are shooting for that day.

          • GunFun1, I need to recover from Christmas shopping first. I have a Beeman AR2078 for the 13 year old, a Daisy 753s for the 12 year old who is interested in target shooting, and a Daisy Red Ryder and some frangible bbs for the 8 year old, which they re-released the Christmas Story movie version with the sundial and compass in the stock that I saw at WallyMart and for $25, I couldn’t resist. I have also purchased a few Crosman Mark I and II pistol’s on B.B.’s advice and with the help of this blog and 45Bravo’s help, have learned to reseal them. The 13 year old mentioned that it would be interesting to shoot a pistol and I agree. It’s fun!

            Before Christmas, I have to expand the basement shooting range from 1 lane to at least 3, and add a few reactive targets. I have 3 or four bags or rubber mulch stocked up and Lowes is down the street.

        • RG
          Go get um.

          You keep going. I have seen your posts. Keep those kids shooting. Make it exciting. Why? When ole dad starts getting old those girls and your boy will keep ya going.

          The famous words. Dad…. you remember when….

          • On tomorrow’s blog, early in the am, so the most readers will see it (I hope), I want to ask for suggestions for reactive, BB-safe, indoor targets. My goal is to make this as fun as possible for my short attention span 8 year old. I will use the frangible BBs but still want to be as safe as possible. I’m thinking, knocking some marshmallows off a cardboard plank.

        • Yogi,

          The only way you are going to find a used one is if you go to various forums and advertise for one. Unlike GF1, most people do not turn loose of their Air Arms sproingers.

          • RR
            I still have a beautiful walnut left hand stock Tx 200 that is so smooth you would swear it was a pcp when you shoot it. Maybe a little exaggeration. But yep it’s a nice one.

            It’s not going anywhere. Oh and it’s scoped and I shoot it right handed and it’s very easy to shoot and very accurate.

      • Looked at PA website yesterday – there were a couple refurb’d TX 200s for sale; no new stock expected until late February. FM needs to stop doing this kind browsing before he gets in more trouble.

  6. Hello everyone, I have an off-topic bit of news to share. So I was trying to install a peep sight on my Beeman R7 and my father in law’s R9, but the peep sight kept walking back on me. I have an AirForce Peep Sight on backorder at P.A., but I was getting impatient. You all provided tips on preventing the peep from walking back, and I tried many of them: degreasing the dovetail and the clamp on the peep, rosin, etc. The issue is, on the relatively inexpensive Air Venturi Peep that I want to use, there is no room to add a scope stop. So I asked my local gunsmith if he could drill and tap the peep sight to add a scope stop, and he did a wonderful job. He drilled from underneath within a few thousandths of an inch of the top surface so that from above, you can’t tell there is a screw tapped in there. The screw matches up with the scope stop holes in the dovetail. The screw is almost the same diameter as the scope stop hole. No need for locktite because once the peep is on, there is nowhere for the screw to go, and if I want to install the peep on another rifle with no holes, I can easily remove the screw. After 50 shots from the R7 and the R9, each, everything seems to be holding well. Here are some pictures. The first one shows the peep installed and how there is no room for a scope stop behind the peep.

  7. SO, Since the TX200 and the Prosport share the same basic design, I ASSUME (we know what that word breaks down to mean)
    Does the prosport disassemble the same way?

    I have not had the need yet to take the prosport down, as it shoots great and consistent, but when it fires, there is a slight NERT sound.
    I had thought it would eventually work its way out with use, but it hasn’t.

    To me, it detracts from the rifle that an airgun as well made and beautiful as the Prosport would make that sound.

    It could probably do with a tune in a tube treatment,

    Ian

  8. BB,

    Thank you for starting this series. It sure looks like it will be a good one. I am glad to read you seem excited to work on your TX200, and I am eager to learn all about it and follow your example.

    Incidentally, I am waiting on an order for some lubricants from Air Rifle Headquarters that includes β€œheavy tar”, which he describes as, β€œbest basic spring tar for all guns.” I assume this to be a similar product to the black tar which coated your spring. So, it is still marketed. I had been considering using it on my Tx200 spring, but will have to reconsider.

    The lubrication package I ordered also includes β€œclear tar” which he recommends for the outside of the compression chamber, calling it, β€œRequired for side-levers and under-levers.” I am curious to see if you will use any such product or have any thoughts on this product.

    Anyway, thank you for being so responsive to the interests of us readers. I will follow this series closely.

    -Airman of the Board

      • BB
        I had good results with the lighter viscosity white lithium grease with spring guns.

        Especially with the good shooting tuned Tx 200 and FWB 300s guns I have done.

        So do a sticky Tune in a Tube and let’s see what happens.

        Here is where I’m going. Both guns I’m talking about don’t buzz or vibrate. Both have a easy cocking and shot cycle. They don’t need the thick and sticky Tune in a Tube.

        The lithium is light. It lubricates mainly but also does dampen.

        So perfect saying here. Different strokes for different folks. But in this case different strokes for different airguns. It don’t rhyme but you get what I mean.

        Just incase not. Different guns need different lube tunes too.

        • Gunfun1 and BB, I am always interested in staying on top of the best lubricants and maintenance products. There are so many choices these days, its hard to tell what the best product is and for what application.

          • RG
            That’s why real world is always important.

            It would be nice to know what lube to use for a paticular gun. But I think I’m going to be afraid to say. The best is see for yourself unless someone had collected that data.

            And as it goes. There is always that certian product that will kind of suffice. But is it really the best. How do you know?

          • RG,

            I have used both lithium and TIAT. The lithium will break down and liquify much easier than the TIAT, most especially with a little heat.

            It does not take much TIAT. Though it can be applied with the syringe type pack you can order, it is easy to overdo it with such. It has a high viscosity and does not take much.

            I bought a grease gun tube of Lucas Red ‘n’ Tacky (same stuff) for about $6. This will probably be a lifetime supply for me.

            Lithium is great for lubrication and TIAT is great for spring vibration dampening.

  9. BB, I do have to take exception to and correct one statement. If you use a Crescent wrench when a proper size wrench is available in your tool box, THEN your Man Card needs revoked. Also, I am sure you are aware, Air Rifle Headquarters has custom, hand made seals that are MUCH better than any OEM.

    • MH,

      Thanks for the tip on ARH. I looked over their site and they do have a lot of seals.

      One thing they don’t have is LEATHER replacement seals. Anybody have a good source for those? Or do most people hand-cut their own leather?

      StarboardRower

      • SR,

        Most hand cut their own. Many who need them have dies to cut what they need.

        Having said that, sometimes you can find preformed leather seals. Sometimes these folks will have what you need.

        An alternative is some of the piston seal folks have adapters to convert the leather seal airgun to new type seals.

        • RR,

          Thank you for that.

          I will think more about getting a die. I can see how that will help form new (home made) leather seals. I think I will need to make one for an old gun.

          BB had an old blog post from about 15 years ago about making your own. I’ll try it.

          StarboardRower

  10. B.B.
    Great stuff. I rember your appearance on Airgun Reporter. A few days ago I read one persons comparison of the TX200 and the HW97. Definite differences but both very good. I also looked at an article about the BAM 40, the one Air Arms apparently prevented Crosman from importing. The most interesting part of the article was the contrast between the pistons and ports.
    I look forward to your continuing run over your TX200.
    Love you, brother.
    ~ken

    https://www.airgunforum.co.uk/community/index.php?threads/just-stripped-a-bam-b40-chinese-aa-tx200-mk3-copy.222344/

  11. BB,

    Most awesome! I sure enjoyed mine (.22). Wish I still had it,…… but the older I get,… the more I did not like things sitting around unused. (after getting into the PCP’s). Looking back,…. I put a 12 fpe kit in and also an HO kit. In retrospect,….. I maybe should have just shot it and done a TIAT tune,.. when that came about.

    Be well BB,.. and all,…………….. Chris

      • Gunfun1 – I found this sentence so amazing. I will make me a custom T-shirt with it if I may! πŸ™‚ really!
        I have now 3 PCP’s after a “lifetime” without any. And I have just 2 new springers on their way to me… PCP is great if you have at least 4 springers. I would even say you need 6 springers to see the PCP is ok.

          • Gunfun1
            I never had any PCP, first contact was on one big airgun blog meeting where I could touch many airguns. I found PCP… boring. But now I think a bit different – PCP is very good if you have some springers. At least 4 πŸ˜€ I bought a relative cheap PCP family (Diana Stormrider 0.177 and .22 and Diana Bandit .22). This equipment is simple, easy to tune and accurate. For this money – well done. Now I think about this Diana Skyhawk in laminate stock. It would be a good-best-enough PCP system. It is actually all “China stuff” – PR900W, P35… but it is good quality controlled by Diana.
            Now I have HW50 full custom, waiting for HW30, the new Comet220 is very nice, some cheap tuned china .22 stuff which is very accurate actually, some old HΓ€nel I don’t use anymore, few piston pistols… one of them is an old Gamo match pistol which kicks like hell but is accurate. I have also HW40PCA, some CO2 pistols I don’t actually use anymore… Unfortunately I sold many toys some time ago. Man should not resell any airguns. The best would be to hide them πŸ™‚
            I will buy more springers anyway. With some age gained I like it to be smooth and accurate. The power and heavy weight is not so important anymore πŸ™‚

          • Gunfun1 – I think I just had to experience something different too. To have this reinforcement to what I already know well. The Diana family was not expensive, good price-performance ratio, and easy to tune. The 0.177 rifle with the “F” (7.5J) limit is good for paper, especially at short ranges, very accurate. And you have over 90 shots from a single pumping action that are very similar regarding energy. You can shoot even more with some energy loss just for fun. Likes almost any type of pellet. 0.22 at full power is quite strong (plus 25 FPE) without the noticeable recoil which a springer would have in this energy range. Both are very light, very accurate. The 0.22 pistol which has 15 FPEs is also nice to smash some cans etc as it is accurate as well. All after a few tuning steps, which was also fun to carry out. So I guess my PCP end will be a P35 system or similar. I just don’t have to go to the “high-end” for PCP.
            The magazine is also an advantage for plinking. It consumes much more pellets than a springer πŸ™‚

            My generation was not familiar with PCP in the beginning. It’s popular now, and especially young people who never use a springer will have some problems with it at first – how to control the recoil, etc. It’s a different story for shooting.

            So for me it makes sense to have some of these PCPs just to change the usual way sometimes πŸ™‚

        • tomek
          I grew up on a farm with firearms. Mostly shotguns and .22 rimfire and some centerfire rifles. But also air guns.

          My air guns was multi pump guns but I did shoot some high end springers back then.

          My next step in air guns was pcp’s. And alot of different ones I should add. Then I got into the better higher quality high end springers and other springers too. Pretty much how I learned to tune springers was from the lower end springers I tried.

          So I kind of went backwards. But no regrets yet. πŸ™‚

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