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Education / Training RAW HM-1000X precharged air rifle: Part 7

RAW HM-1000X precharged air rifle: Part 7

This is the new chassis system of the RAW HM-1000X

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

This report covers:

  • What went wrong?
  • Flustered
  • JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy
  • Air Arms 18-grain dome
  • Baracuda 18
  • Baracuda 15
  • Why show all this?
  • The final humiliation
  • BB goofed up!

Today I will tell you about a failed 50-yard accuracy test of the RAW HM-1000X. There are several lessons in this for everyone, so listen up.

I didn’t intentionally set up the RAW for failure. But as it turned out, there wasn’t much more that I could do to ensure it — other than shooting from the bed of a moving truck.

I’m not telling you this tale because the test rifle is a RAW. Any airgun that was unlucky enough to get into today’s situation deserves a break, and I would give it.

What went wrong?

Here is a picture of me shooting. See if you can identify what’s wrong.

RAW 50 yards 1
This is me shooting the RAW at 50 yards. What’s not right?

For starters I forgot to bring my sandbag rest. So I had to improvise. I opened my range box and put a half-full box of facial tissues on top. Ahead of that there is a spongy bag supporting the reservoir. The rifle was not that steady. But that was not the biggest problem.

The wind was almost zero on this day. That’s why I tested the rifle when I did. A couple times the breeze kicked up to perhaps two m.p.h., and that was it. I waited that out and shot in the dead calm.

Anyone who has shot benchrest or field target should be able to look at the picture and spot what went wrong.  See where the sun is? It’s in my face. That means it’s also coming in the objective lens of the scope, which creates a muddy, hazy image. It was so muddy I couldn’t even focus the scope on the target because it just looked like a big black dot. The rifle is scoped with a UTG 8-32 scope and I can usually see the white lines in the bull at 50 yards, but not on this day.


I was so flustered that I forgot everything. I could have wrapped a paper target around the objective bell of the scope to make a tube and fix the sun problem. But I didn’t. I just shot and shot, hoping for some luck. Luck I had, but all of it was bad.

JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy

The first pellet I shot was an 18.13-grain JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy dome. At 25 yards five of them made a 0.103-inch group. I loaded 12 into the RAW circular magazine and I expected to see 10 of them go into 0.375-0.40-inches at 50 yards, after I refined the point of impact with the first two shots . Instead the first shot hit just to the right of the bull I aimed at, so I shot all 12 without adjusting the scope. My group of twelve at 50 yards measures 1.519-inches between centers. Not good.

RAW JSB Jumbo group 1
Twelve JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy pellets made a 1.519-inch group at 50 yards. The RAW can do so much better than this.

I couldn’t believe the first group so I shot the same pellet again. Before doing that, though, I adjusted the elevation up 4 clicks, which would he a half-inch at 50 yards.

This time 10 JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy domes went into 1.345-inches at 50 yards. It’s an improvement, but hardly what I expected. I was pleased to see that the group did rise by about a half-inch.

RAW JSB Jumbo group 2
The second group of JSB Jumbo Heavys went into 1.345-inches at 50 yards. It’s better, but only slightly.

Air Arms 18-grain dome

The next pellet I tested was the 18-grain Air Arms dome. This one was surprising, because they all seemed to be going into one hole. But of course I couldn’t see the target that well. This time 10 pellets went into 1.04-inches at 50 yards. It was quite an improvement over the first two groups, so I think I will test this pellet again, when I do it right.

RAW Air Arms 18 group
Ten Air Arms 18-grain domes made a 1.04-inch group at 50 yards.

Stock up on Air Gun Ammo

Baracuda 18

The next pellet I tested was the H&N Baracuda 18. I never tested them in this RAW before and I wanted to know how they might do. Ten went into a 0.992-inch group at 50 yards. This was the smallest group of the test. And by the way, at the end of this group I had fired 42 shots on the fill, so it was time to fill again. 

RAW Baracuda 18 group
The RAW put 10 Baracuda 18s into 0.992-inch group at 50 yards.

Baracuda 15

The Baracuda 15 was the last pellet I tested. Ten of them went into 2.613-inches at 50 yards. All bad things aside, this is not the pellet for the RAW.

RAW Baracuda 15 group
Ten Baracuda 15s made this 2.613-inch group at 50 yards. This is not the pellet for this RAW.

Why show all this?

You might ask why I showed all this — and I haven’t even brought up the final wrong thing I did in this test. So, why show it. I think there are a couple good reasons to show this. First, that business about the sun on the objective lens is something that will mess you up every time. You have to be aware of it or you’ll think your scope is broken when it isn’t.

Then there is the thing about resting the rifle on a half-full tissue box. Guys, my goal is to take as much of me as possible out of the test, and this wasn’t the way to do it. That’s a note to myself as much as it is one to you.

Then there is the retest — when I have all these things under control. We should see a dramatic improvement in the grouping of the RAW when the right things are done. I know I’m talking a real chance when I show you things that go bad, because some readers are spring-loaded to build their universe around failure, when the RAW HM-1000X just might be the most accurate precharged pellet rifle I have ever tested.

And lastly, I want you to see what it looks like when things go bad. Because they sometimes do. That’s why I shoot 10-shot groups instead of five.

The final humiliation

I didn’t even test the RAW with the most accurate pellet. I completely disregarded the JSB Monster and JSB Monster Redesigned that was shown to be the most accurate in Part 6. Would those pellets have done better on this day? Well, they probably would have been closer to the performance of the Baracuda 18 than to the performance of the JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy.

BB goofed up!

There’s no other way to put it — BB Pelletier messed up in every possible way on this day. And so there will be another 50-yard test coming. I know you guys want me to shoot the RAW at 100 yards and I plan to, but first I have to get the 50-yard test right. ‘Till then.

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.

43 thoughts on “RAW HM-1000X precharged air rifle: Part 7”

  1. We all have our days, that day was yours.

    But look on the bright side, you shot an almost textbook example of Free Gun fire with the Barracuda 18’s.

    You will get it next time.


  2. B.B.,

    At least you didn’t take it out on the cats!

    The crystal ball sees a Range Gear Checklist and a STRONG streak of excellence in your near term.
    I have a paddle checklist i’m using for my Cherry Blossom paddle this morning and I will leave a Float Plan with my better half. Boat is already loaded on car, MVHF radio is on charge, drysuit, PFD, safety gear are hanging in the mudroom.

    Going to bed!


  3. BB: Last year you were kind enough to give me your best advice on setting up a Field Target/Bench Rest shooting range. Well . . . a fine group of us older guys have worked on your model for these last “post Covid” months and will be having our initial “Fun Day at the Gun Range” this Friday, March 25th. Although we’re set up for a modified Field Target/Bench Rest shooting, Friday will just be a fun day to come and shoot air guns. We’ll have air rifles and guns for anybody who’s willing to give it a “shot”. We will observe strict safety rules which are printed for all to observe. We’ll have rotating range monitors throughout the day. Let me tell you a bit of what we’ve accomplished this past year. We’ve re-surfaced an old RV pad and built an aluminum awning over our wooden bench rests. We have scrounged up a few bucks to purchase targets, placed out to 150 yards (hitting any of those beyond about 85 yards is quite optimistic for me. I’m not much good past 50 yards, or 35 yards on paper). I hope to have some pictures of our exciting opening festivities to share here on the blog. Ya’ll may not be as excited as we are, but I’ll share anyway. We are excited and hope to have a good turnout for sharing our passion. By the way, we have had a zero cost for labor, and materials were funded by a taco salad luncheon we put on. We all love to eat and, of course. . . SHOOT! Tom, you’ve been instrumental in this not so fancy build of ours, and I can’t thank you, the Godfather of Airguns, enough. I hope that you, or any of my fellow blog readers might come shoot with us one day soon. We’re located in the High Desert region of Southern California at Aguanga, not far from Temecula, California. Thank you again, Orv Hazelton.

  4. Hey guys,

    While we’re on the subject of things gone wrong, I could use some advice. I’m new to the world of PCP’s, and I’m astounded by their accuracy as compared to the springers and multi-pump that I have used since I was a child, but with sub-MOA potential comes a host of little worries: in this case, pellet selection. In the past I knew only that Crosman Premiers were the way to go, and Daisy pellets couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn, but when it became necessary to rebuild my Benjamin 397, I discovered Pyramyd AIR and a plethora of different pellet options. So it came about that when I purchased an HW 100 in .22 cal., I was prepared to embark on a perilous quest for the “golden pellet.”

    Initially, JSB Jumbo Exact 15.89’s proved to be exceptional, yielding a 1/4″ ten-shot group at 30 yds and a 5/8″ group at 50 yds. The Jumbo Exact Heavy 18.13’s could match them in accuracy, but as the trajectory was a bit inferior, I went with the 15.89’s. Who could ask for better? My first delve into the “dark side” wasn’t so perilous after all, now was it?

    Here’s the catch: I tested these two pellets on a warm day (for winter), and having achieved such adequate results, I believed the journey to be over quite as soon as it had begun. But soon the temperature dropped to a daytime high of 20 degrees, and suddenly I discovered that my once-fabulous groups were pushing 2 MOA. This sent me into a scramble to discover the cause, and finding that the JSB 18.13’s shot nearly as before – indeed, a bit faster based upon the P.O.I. – I thought “Ah-ha! The gun has broken-in and specified its pellet preference.”

    Skeptical, however, I tried four other pellets, of which the H&N Baracuda 18 showed promise. Further tests gave 0.249″ and 0.236″ ten-shot groups at 25 yds with the Baracudas, and a few days later (as wind permitted), I put ten shots into 0.475″ at 50 yds, beating out the JSB’s by a significant margin. Therefore, I ordered a number of the Baracuda 18’s, only to discover on the very next day that as the temperature rose to 40 degrees, it became difficult to keep five shots under 0.270″ at 25 yds, and my ten-shot groups grew to 0.380-0.580″. Now the JSB 15.89’s shoot nearly as well as at the first, and 18-grain Air Arms domes top everything.

    It is also worthy of note that the Baracuda 18’s gave an extreme spread of just 5 fps over a ten-shot string in 20 degrees, and in 40 degrees that spread became 10-12 fps. The JSB 15.89’s have stayed steady at a 10-15 fps spread; the JSB 18.13’s remain with a spread of 4-6 fps; and the Air Arms 18’s currently show an extreme spread of 6 fps. (Unfortunately, I did not shoot the Air Arms over the chronograph in 20 degrees, so I don’t know if their velocity would be uniform or not.)

    So, my questions are: Has anyone else seen an airgun change its pellet preference depending on temperature? And could there be contributing causes that are unrelated to temperature?


    • Hi Daniel,

      I shot in winter at -18°C and in sommer at 36°C in the shadow. There are differences. That is the reason why the field target shooters always make a zero check directly before the contest starts.
      The system is working in a different way due to grease viscosity change, the air humidity, pressure, the metal / plastic / different material parts also have their extensibility functions… etc. The barrel will have a slight different cal. when temperature delta is high enough. It all matters.
      I would like to give you a small tip regarding the pellet check: if you try to find the right pellet please shoot 30 times first before the final grouping check. After changing the pellet to a different type also, even 50 times. If you are shooting something very accurate it does matter also.

      What is underestimate: your influence depending on ambient conditions 🙂 It is a different story to shoot accurate when you are freezing and don’t feel your fingers. Or when you try to drink all cold beer you have to make this shooting session at 100°F. 🙂

      Welcome to the world of unlimited experience. I call experience when I do something wrong and take a lesson afterwards. Then I do this particular thing correctly and come directly to another experience 🙂 I guess you know what I mean 😀
      There is nothing better then to learn your airgun in all possible ways. Keep on testing 🙂 and remember to have some fun at the end.

      • tomek,

        30-50 shots before the final group! You give me the excuse I need to get a carbon fiber tank and a compressor. Thanks.

        But what is your theory for why a bore must be “seasoned” with a certain pellet before that pellet will show its best accuracy? I have heard of such, and often I’ve seen the first shot or two go wild when I change pellets, but I can’t satisfactorily account for it.


        • There are many theories. I’m talking only facts – often it is unstable for a few shots after pellet is changed. In a springer there is additionally the system behavior change which affects the shooter (different mass of the pellet, different shot characterictics). In general I observed this phenomenon too many times to ignore it (PCP and springer). I think each pellet sort leaves their own “trash” in the barrel and it needs to be calibrated first after the change. It has something to do with pellet sealing in the barrel, how it leaves the crowning, the friction stabilisation… small things making big difference.
          You will see many strange things shooting a very accurate equipment. It is the most interesting and challenging thing to understand it.

    • Daniel,

      Wow! A blog in the comments! Thanks.

      When the temp changes the velocity also does — just a little. What else changes in the density of the air. And, as Tomek points out, your lubricants also harden and soften with temperature changes.

      It’s a complex sport — no? 😉


    • Daniel,

      Sadly, this might not all be just temperature. I have experienced the same kind of variation between tins of pellets – one tin might shoot noticeably better than its replacement. Small changes seem to matter greatly.

      Also, wind is never the same, and it is always there even on calm days, and with pellets it has a huge impact on relative group size. I think it is often the biggest factor, even when we think things are the same.

      That said, we are talking about the results of fine shooting guns – ones that shoot so tight to begin with that we see the impact of these small changes in the results, and that then drives us nuts because we don’t want it in our results. But even the “bad groups” are usually pretty darn good. It’s best not to lose sight of that.

      I am blessed to have 21 yards to shoot indoors, thus having almost identical conditions for testing different pellets at least to that distance. I always get more consistent results there than I do outside even at the same distance. I go back to the indoor tests when I think something has gone wrong, and usually it ends up being shown to be environmental.

      Good luck with it!


      • Alan,

        You’re absolutely right about inconsistencies between tins; however, I saw this variation even within the same tin.

        As to wind, you would laugh to see the war I’ve been waging with it these past weeks. Even my best group at 50 yds had to overcome a 2-mph breeze, which was comparably almost dead still. Windy days are when the heavier pellets really shine.

        Thanks for your help,

        • Daniel,

          There is always some inconsistence, especially in the pellet mass. You would have to weigh and check the head size of each pellet with very accurate equipment to make this variation very small.
          About the wind – if you are able to try long range indoor shooting please do. Then it is going to be very clear how much the air movement affects our results. Outside there is no “no wind” condition for airgunners.

    • Daniel,

      First, congrats on your HW100! I have a pair of them (.177 & .22) and the accuracy and consistency is the same as what you are seeing. I see the HW100 more as a plinking/pesting/hunting rifle than a bench gun but it will sure print nice groups on paper. I don’t know why the HW100s aren’t more popular in North America.

      Excellent advice in the posts above! I’ll add a couple of things that I do when testing for the golden pellet(s)… I do a quick cleaning of the barrel between tests (couple of passes with a pull-thru) and top off the reservoir before shooting one magazine to settle everything down before running the actual test.

      The barrel band is another variable that can affect groups. Changes in temperature (expansion/contraction) can cause changes in the POI but more importantly can affect the harmonics.

      As previously mentioned, groups from highly accurate rifles will show variations that aren’t even noticeable on less accurate guns. My recommendation is to find a suitable pellet and don’t worry too much about the groups unless you are seriously getting into Field Target or Bench shooting.

      BTW, I’m shooting the 15 grain JSB Hades pellets when pesting/hunting and the regular diabolos for general use.


      • Hank,

        The HW 100’s are beautiful air rifles, but unfortunately, it seems that their traditional look isn’t well appreciated these days. Mine is the TK version that Pyramyd AIR carries; the stock is very comfortable, and the gun’s report is remarkably quiet.
        What models are your .177 and .22?

        Your advice to shoot a number of shots after filling the reservoir and before shooting the test group is something I’ll try. I certainly have observed that the first shot after a fill tends to be at the extreme edge of that pellet’s velocity spread. In your opinion, what causes this?


        • Daniel,

          Yeah, the HW100 is a superb airgun in every way. 🙂

          I prefer traditional walnut stocks and full length (not carbines) rifles, My .177 is the standard FAC version and the .22 is also FAC rifle with the FSB (Full Shroud Barrel).

          I’ve seen the first post-fill shot on many PCPs be a bit faster that normal. I’m guessing that is caused by the surge of air as the tank-valve snaps open because of the higher pressure in the hose. I suspect that some of that surge gets past the regulator making the pressure in the plenum higher than typical, bumping the velocity up a bit.

          My .177 was shooting too hot so I adjusted the reg and hammer and am now getting 70 shots on a fill. The .22 is shooting pretty hot as well and getting around 40 shots on a fill. I was thinking about trading some velocity for increased shot count but hesitate to mess with something that is shooting so well. 🙂

          The HW100 is not a rifle for the casual tuner to play with, you have to go inside and it’s easy to knock it out of tune. That being said, I’ve collected quite a bit of information on the HW100s that I can send you if you’re interested.


          • Thanks, Hank, but I’d better not start dreaming about all the ways in which I can “improve” a gun that shoots so well already. I need the velocity more than the shot count anyway.

            However, my trigger’s second stage has a wee bit of creep that I wouldn’t mind taking out, but according to the manual, the screw that shortens the second stage travel also increases pull weight, and then the stock must be removed in order to access the second screw and decrease the weight.

            Have you performed any such adjustment on your HW 100’s? Is it worth the effort, and how much better can the trigger actually get? As it is, I only notice the creep when drawing a fine aim off a solid rest.


        • Daniel,

          I’ve left the HW100 triggers as the factory set them. They were excellent right out of the box.

          Most (but not all) triggers are easy to adjust. Be sure to take notes so you know exactly what was adjusted where and can return to the original setting if I need to.

          I suggest drawing a clock-face for reference and make small changes noting where the slot is oriented (on philips screws I scratch a reference mark on the screw head).

          When making adjustments I’ll fire a couple of shots to let the trigger springs settle before making further changes.

          The trigger screws interact, changing one will affect both. I prefer to make small changes to both rather than just focusing on one.

          Last thing : do a bump-test (thumping the rifle butt with your fist or a rubber mallet) to confirm that the trigger is not set too light.

          Hope this helps!

    • Daniel Krebs,

      Welcome to the World of long range shooting done at relatively short (as measured) distances. Say WHAT!
      If you consider only TOF (Time Of Flight) compared to firearms even a very tame round shot from a firearm rifle is going to be close to 3,000FPS. So the projectile gets from muzzle to target four times faster.
      I’ll toss in a few more esoteric things just to get you thinking beyond temperature and the many other common things that cause changes in POI (Point Of Impact) with regularity.
      My assumption is that you are shooting outside. Your scope, barrel, and stock will heat up differently from direct Sunshine on them depending on ambient temperature, Sun angle, wind, clouds, shading. That differential heating of the shooting system is what snipers train on constantly to account for and mitigate if possible for those Cold Bore Shots the job typically requires. That’s NOT all.
      Depending on if you change the direction you are shooting the Earth plays with you with the approximately 900 MPH rotational velocity; positive toward the East, negative toward the West; those cause higher or lower POI. Then there is the right-left curving trajectory depending on if you are shooting North or South and in which hemisphere. Those are just a few of the items that need to be understood, noted in realtime, and recorded in a Shooters Notebook.
      The SN gets thick quickly.

      Only If you want to be serious about your shooting results. If you don’t want to work that hard some folks apparently after years of shooting learn some of that by osmosis and repetition.

      Please remember to Have Fun!
      Regardless of the Path You Choose to walk.


  5. BB,

    It simply turns out you have an off day that you graciously shared with us. Shootski is right about a checklist. Even if you had a mental checklist the time interval between occasions you have a 50 to 100 yard shoots are far between that bringing some items are not yet a habit. By the way does your portable shooting bench have a way to fit an umbrella for sunny days?


    PS Section Why show all this? 2nd paragraph 1st sentence: “Then there is the thing about erasing (raising) the rifle on a half-full tissue box.”

      • I saw that erasing comment about 1 am and thought- ‘resting’ or maybe ‘raising’. And then ‘terrorizing’ popped up on the radar, no doubt due to some pain meds taken earlier. Didn’t comment at the time, but perhaps a high zoot gun like a RAW would be discomfited by a lowly makeshift rest.

  6. BB,

    It’s great you shared this experience with us. It just happens as we are not machines. Without it you will not know as much as you know now. 🙂 Mistakes or just “missfits” conducted sometimes may be very refreshing.

  7. We do not learn anything when we get it right. It is our mistakes that teach us. Forgot your sandbags? I do not think I have done that one before, but I have done quite a list of other things.

    As Shootski has suggested, perhaps you should have a range day checklist.

  8. BB,

    Looking at your first picture, I’d have to say a baseball cap would likely help greatly – worn making sure the rim of the cap covers the gap between the scope and your eye. I find in similar situations that much of that hazy image is from the reflection off my face in the eyepiece, and the hat helps greatly by putting a shadow on my face.

    I also use a sunshade extension on all of my scopes as standard practice – having the approximately three inches of added length has never caused me a problem, and certainly would help in that situation too.


    • Shooting into the sun is very difficult especially with a scope.

      This is the reason that sun shades for the scopes objective and an eye cup or eye cuff for the ocular end of the scope are so popular.

      I don’t have sun shades and/or eye cups on all of my scopes. For this reason I have an adjustable/tilting umbrella with a built in C clamp that easily attaches to my shooting bench. It sits by my portable shooting bench and range bag ready to go to the range when I am.

  9. The day wasn’t a total waste. You were able to learn from the day and produce a teachable blog post.
    My range always points into the sun in the afternoon. I am thinking about extending my patio roof to try to get me out of the sun.
    David Enoch

  10. Methinks you’re being too hard on yerself, BB. FM’s best groups at 25 yards are worse that your worst groups at 50 with your HM-1000X. Of course, FM was trying to shoot into a 17 mph NE wind last Sunday which did not help, but the opportunity to have some shooting fun on a beautiful day presented itself and so, carpe diem – not gonna carp about it! 😉

  11. A tilting large umbrella is quite useful. Not only does it shade the objective lens, it shades me from a hot summer sun, gives me some privacy from a neighbor, and helps support a styrofoam sound baffle.

    Good shooting Daniel! Welcome to the land of confounding variables.


  12. BB
    Another day in the office. I expect this stuff to happen. Happens at work. Happens when I would go to the flying field with the rc planes. Happened when I raced moto cross. Happened at the dragstrip. Happened when I went fishing and Happened when I hunted. And even happens when I shoot at home.

    Just got to be glad it don’t happen everyday is all I can say. Time to regroup and go at it again. Live life happy. 🙂

  13. Thats why I dont care for the UTG objective end with the little curve, it wont take a threaded extension for that glare issue. The army crush hats are nice for the ocular end, but any type of big brim hat will work. Even a towel works. You dont even need a fancy bipod, I made a bipod out of a ryobi weed wacker handle, makes a graet hamster too. Superlight, supercheap. Not milspec.
    This is the thing inexpensive guns like the Crosman pumper could do with plastic, offer features and functionality that dont cost much to add to the already low price. Yes you will want a nice gun rest for the HMX!

    • Rob
      I always shoot with a cap on. I have the outer sides of the brim bent down so they kind of shield around the scope. I always shoot in the sun facing me at this house I’m at. I usually rest the brim of the hat down on the ocular lens and I will keep it level or tilt it to the right or left depending on the time of day it is for where the sun is. And if it is a bright, bright sun shiny day I will take my off hand and cup it over the top of my objective lens. Works pretty good actually. Only thing is you got to watch for eye burn shooting in bright sun when the sun is in front of you. If it’s real bright out I have some clip on sun glasses for my prescription glasses to help the eyes to be shaded. It don’t take long to get the target and reticle burned in your eyes when you close them. I do not like that at all.

    • RidgeRunner,

      Interesting concept. I hope it flaks your Carpenter Bees and flys!
      I survived my paddle! Saw the Tidal Basin at first light after launching from my alternate Put In at Gravelly Point. Columbia Island Marina on Pentagon Lagoon parking was already FULL with walkers and bycycle riders! The blossoms were okay but show a great deal of neglect and damage from the unruly peepers in the past decade or so. I then rode the Ebb down to Mount Vernon. Landed and ate my lunch on George’s Beach in the Sunshine. Paddled back to the Tidal Basin for a look at the Cherry Blossoms in the afternoon light.

      No pictures :^( …forgot my GoPro and Smartphone…NOT on my checklist.


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