This report covers:

  • The airguns I love
  • Multi-pump pneumatic
  • Spring piston
  • Sig ASP20
  • Any CO2 guns?
  • What is it?
  • What about you?

What if you could only have one airgun? What would it be? As Rod Serling used to say at the start of the Twilight Zone, “Imagine a world…”

This exercise is useful because it strips away all the surface things and gets you down to your core. It tells you who you are.

The airguns I love

The first considerations are the airguns that I love. I can only have one, so which will it be? Of my precharged pneumatics I enjoy my Air Arms S510 XS the most. Yes, my Marauder is more flexible and more powerful. It’s also lighter, slimmer and far less costly. The S510 is more accurate, but only by a slim margin. It also has the better trigger, though the Marauder has a trigger to conjure with, as the archaic saying goes.

Marauder
Benjamin Marauder.

Air Arms S510XS
Air Arms S510XS.

So why do I place the S510 above the Marauder? I don’t know. I just know that whenever I shoot the S510 XS I’m going to hit what I’m aiming at. But that doesn’t matter. The Air Arms S510XS is not the one airgun I would keep if I could only keep one. What is?

Multi-pump pneumatic

My Sheridan Blue Streak is a wonderful air rifle. I bought it new in 1978 and it’s been with me ever since. It was rebuilt a couple years ago by reader Cloud9 (Jeff Cloud, the organizer of the 2022 Texas Airgun Show that happens on Saturday, September 24, followed by a field target shoot September 25). Today the Blue Streak operates as it did when it was new.

Who knows how many thousands of shots that rifle has fired? It’s the air rifle I used to teach my wife, Edith, to shoot. Then she went on a hunting safari and killed mice and rats by the score. She wrapped a yellow twist tie around the triggerguard so she would know which pellets it used. That was back in the day when the only .20 caliber pellets I had were Sheridans that came in the yellow box.

Sheridan Blue Streak
Sheridan Blue Streak.

Of course then there is my Sheridan Model A, which is also known as the Supergrade. I have owned three of these rifles in my lifetime and I remember the day, not so long ago, when $450 would buy a nice shooter at an airgun show. At that time a collector grade rifle went for almost double that. But times change and so do people. A lot of the old silverback airgun collectors have passed away, releasing the guns from their collections into the world again. I was fortunate enough to snag one that’s a shooter plus, right here on this blog. It was found by a reader in an attic and I got it for a reasonable price that was about double what they went for just a few years before.

Sheridan Supergrade right
Sheridan Supergrade.
Even with the check in the buttstock it’s still a highly desirable air rifle.

But as nice as both my Blue Streak and Supergrades are, neither one is the rifle I would keep, if I could only keep one. So — what one is?

Spring piston

Many of you are thinking I would keep my Air Arms TX200 Mark III. That’s the rifle I recently tuned with Tony Leach’s 22mm piston kit. After that tune I had a springer that put five pellets into a 0.030-inch group at 10 meters.

TX200 Mark III
TX200 Mark III.

TX200 Leach AA group
This may be the smallest 5-shot ten-meter group I have ever shot. Five Air Arms 8.44-grain domes are in 0.030-inches at 10 meters.

I even said at the end of that series:

“This TX200 Mark III is now my favorite spring-piston air rifle. I am confident of where it will shoot and it has a perfect trigger. The scope is also perfection and, in a rare moment of good decision making I have decided to not remove this scope from this rifle. That makes two air rifles that have dedicated Meopta scopes — the other one being my Air Arms S510 XS.”

So, if this is now my favorite  spring-piston air rifle, why isn’t it the one I would keep if all the others had to go? I don’t know. But I know that it isn’t.

Sig ASP20

Then there is the Sig ASP20. I have done nothing but sing the praises of that rifle ever since I first tested one, and yet despite all that, it isn’t the one airgun I would choose to keep.

Sig ASP20
Sig ASP20.

Find a Hawke Scope

Any CO2 guns?

Sorry to say I don’t have any favorite airguns with a CO2 powerplant. Ever since one let me down in a match by running out of gas and making a perfect 10 drop down into the 6-ring I have had very little use for them.  I do like the Crosman Marks I and II, as well as the S&W 78G and 79G target pistols. But nothing that uses carbon dioxide gets on my final gun radar.

What is it?

As some of you have already guessed the one airgun I would keep if I had to give up all the others is a Hy Score 807 that is actually a .22-caliber Diana 27. It’s a lower-powered breakbarrel spring-piston rifle with a good trigger that’s not great. The accuracy is just average and I would never think of mounting a scope on it, even if it was possible.

I haven’t even shot that rifle in a long time. So what makes it that keeper? I don’t know, except it’s lightweight, easy to cock, it always works and it’s such a neat old airgun that I could spend my autumn years with just that one. Thank goodness I don’t have to!

What about you?

This report seems simple — until you try to answer the question, which one airgun would you keep if you could only keep one. Do you know why it’s the one? Please tell us.