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Seneca Dragonfly Mark 2 .177: Part Four

Dragonfly 177
Seneca Dragonfly .177.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • The test
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Superdomes
  • Air Arms 8.4-grain domes
  • Trigger
  • H&N Baracuda Match 4.50mm heads
  • RWS Superpoint
  • JSB Exact Heavy
  • Discussion
  • What pellets shall we pick?
  • Summary

Today we start seriously looking at the accuracy of the  .177-caliber Seneca  Dragonfly Mark 2. We did look at some targets in Part 3 but I said I wanted a more detailed look in future tests. Today we discover which pellets are accurate in preparation for the Pumps Versus Accuracy test that’s coming up.

The test

I shot five-shot groups so I could test more pellets. I rested the rifle directly on a sandbag at 10 meters and of course I shot with the open sights that came with the rifle. I chose five pump strokes for no particular reason other than it was quick. The rifle was hitting the target inside the bull with Premier Heavys in Part 3 so I resolved to not adjust the sights today. I wore my +1.25 diopter reading glasses to see the front sight sharply.

I had a good idea that Crosman 10.5-grain Premiers were grouping well from the tests that were done in Part 3, so today’s good pellets will be added to the list. 

JSB Exact RS

First to be tested were JSB Exact RS domes. They hit the target to the lower right edge of the bull and five of them made a group that measures 0.405-inches between centers at 10 meters. That’s not too bad.

Notice that these pellets hit the edge of the bull. I didn’t adjust the sights because other pellets may wander.

Dragonfly RS
The Dragonfly Mark 2 put five JSB Exact RS pellets into a 0.405-inch group at 10 meters.

RWS Superdomes

Next to be tested were five RWS Superdomes. They hit closer to the center of the bull. Four grouped together and one stood off by itself. This group measures 0.494-inches between centers.

Dragonfly Superdome
Five RWS Superdomes made a 0.494-inch group at 10 meters.

Air Arms 8.4-grain domes

I tried five Air Arms 8.4-grain domes next. They hit out to the lower right side of the bull in a 0.363-inch group.

Dragonfly Air Arms 8.4
Here we see five Air Arms 8.4-grain domes that the Dragonfly Mark 2 put into a 0.363-inch group at 10 meters.

Shop SIG Sauer Airguns

Trigger

I noticed that the Dragonfly’s trigger is still single stage. The pull is long and smooth. I can’t anticipate where the release is, but that doesn’t upset me as much as it sounds.

H&N Baracuda Match 4.50mm heads

The next pellet I tried was the H&N Baracuda Match with a 4.50mm head. These moved back to almost the center of the bull and five of them made a 0.363-inch group. It’s just as small as the Air Arms pellets we just saw but this group is spread more vertical.

Dragonfly Baracuda Match 4.50
Five Baracuda Match 4.50mm pellets made this 0.363-inch group at 10 meters.

RWS Superpoint

The fifth pellet I tested was the RWS Superpoint. Five of them went into a 0.498-inch group that was the largest group of the test. It’s centered in the bull quite well.

Dragonfly RWS Superpoint
Five RWS Superpoints went into a 0.498-inch group at 10 meters. It’s the largest group of the test.

JSB Exact Heavy

The last pellet I tested was the 10.34-grain JSB Exact dome. Five of them made a 0.493-inch group at 10 meters.

Dragonfly JSB Heavy
Five JSB Exact Heavys went into 0.493-inches at 10 meters.

Discussion

It’s impressive how consistent this Dragonfly Mark 2 seems to be. No one pellet stands out as either great or bad. And that is with open sights. I have a feeling that when I scope the rifle it’s really going to shine.

The pumping remains easy, which I expected all along. The .22 Dragonfly taught me that and I see no difference in how this one operates.  After today’s session I oiled the pump head, but it appeared not to need it. I did it just because I hadn’t done it since the rifle arrived.

What pellets shall we pick?

I’m thinking that the Air Arms 8.4-grain dome is a great possibility, along with the Baracuda Match with the 4.50mm head. The Premier Heavy is also good because the group I got with them in Part 3 was with 10 pellets that went out of the bore in a string that had an 85 f.p.s. difference.

Summary

I’ll probably select one of these three pellets to use in the Pump Strokes Versus Accuracy test. And at this point I have to say this .177 Dragonfly Mark 2 is holding up just as well as the .22 did.

90 thoughts on “Seneca Dragonfly Mark 2 .177: Part Four”

  1. B.B.,
    She’s looking good so far; I’ll be curious to see how she does at 25 yards with a scope; I think she’ll prove to be just as accurate as the .22 caliber version…great rifles! πŸ™‚
    Blessings to you,
    dave

  2. Tom,

    I wonder how much of a factor the scope will be in keeping the group sizes small? A 5 or 10 shot group at 25 yards with open sights followed by a 10 shot group using a scope should make a nice illustration. Then again the reverse can be done. Just shoot a 5 shot group each with a scope mounted at 10 meters using the Air Arms 8.4-grain dome and the Baracuda Match with the 4.50mm head.

    Siraniko

  3. About viewing distances: I find that my eyesight varies.

    Sometimes I need to be closer to my target than normal, ie I am surprised at a blurring where I would normally see it clearly. And at other times I can see clearly, further.
    By times, I mean days not time of day because I try to avoid shooting during fading light (like twilight, for which I would require extra illumination of target and sights).

    For example, I recently went to plink with an old airgun that only has iron sights, set my shooting table up at the usual 25 metres marker, but failed to clearly see my usual aim point. So I moved 5 metres closer and all was good again. πŸ™‚

    I wonder who may have noticed a similar thing?

    PS And then there is the change in target perception when raising the gun, ie actually taking aim.
    For me, the type/design of iron sights can greatly affect the sharpness of what I’m trying to line up. Peep, vee, u-shape, rectangular, fibre optics, etc and the various elevations and eye reliefs (distances to sighting eye) that describe just the rear sight!
    What a profusion of perplexing possibilities to plinking perceptions. πŸ™‚

    • hihihi,

      I’ve “seen” (ha ha) the same thing.

      Seems that I have “dry eyes” and the optometrist recommend that I should use eyedrops (at least) twice a day. Found that helps.

      Hank

      • Vana2, the last time I went to an optician, he asked me to leave when I told him that I was not interested in purchasing any of his glasses.
        But now I am in France. And maybe, just maybe, they might be interested in their customer’s health… ? πŸ™‚

    • hihihi,
      Yogi and Hank have provided excellent things to rule out as eyesight issues.
      Unfortunately one of the big problems is that our eyes lose the ability to Accommodate:
      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accommodation_(eye)
      This business of how our eyes actually get the job of seeing done should be of great interest to every shooter.
      “I am surprised at a blurring where I would normally see it clearly. And at other times I can see clearly, further.”
      If you have the front sight in focus you may find the target will be blurry to some degree. As we get older it will take a much more brightly lighted target to increase a sharp target image as well as that front iron sight.
      What the general and background lighting conditions (Lux) are is also in play

      Hope the Link as well as this brief answer helps you find the X in the 10 Ring more often!

      shootski

      • Thanks shootski, I have started to read the linked website, but I’ll have to work my way through it in small doses, because descriptions of bodily functions make me feel nauseous.
        Reminds me of the First Aid refresher courses that I used to attend, every one of which, had me ‘pop to the toilet’ before I would pass out! πŸ™‚

    • Yogi,

      My wild guess is that he feels he is able to hold POA through the long, smooth pull. You must keep in mind that he pulls a bunch of different triggers all the time. Personally…ugh, but hey, I’m a trigger snob.

    • >>> Not knowing when the trigger will release sounds terrible to me <<<

      Yogi,

      Interesting as I don't consciously/deliberately "pull" the trigger… my subconscious does that when the sight-picture is correct.

      Any trigger that is consistent works for me as long as it's not too heavy. A heavy trigger requires that I consciously press it and that disrupts my whole shooting cycle – my attention shifts from the target to the trigger and without focus, accuracy goes out the window.

      I was explaining my aiming/shooting style to a friend and he compared it to a laser guided missile… marking the target with the laser is my conscious aiming and the missile finding its way to the target is the unconscious part. I consciously decide to shoot and my subconscious takes care of the details. My subconscious "knows" each trigger so I don't have to be aware of them… not my job LOL!

      I may be wierd (but you already know that) but I'm rarely aware of what compensation (for range or wind) I use because I'm focused on the target. It's like what you do when instinctive shooting with a bow or shooting flying targets with shotguns. I find bench-shooting difficult because it requires that I try to manually do (deliberate aiming and breaking the shot) something contrary to my normal style.

      Trigger snob? No… well maybe – I really do appreciate the triggers on my 10 meter airguns! πŸ™‚

      Hank

  4. Tom,

    This makes me even more eager to get my next Dragonfly Mk2. I sent the bad one back for an exchange, so I hope to have #3 soon. With exchanges I was told there is no formal way to select and pay for a 10 for $10. One just has to call after a while, and try to add it then. That portends it will be like the second one and not have the 10 for $10 I want. Oh well. What are the odds I will receive 3 lemons in a row?

    Michael

    • Michael,
      Ditto what Decksniper said. PA Customer Service was very helpful with getting me the hardware to get my pump arm pumping properly. These are great rifles; but you need to ensure that you get a good one in order to see that. πŸ™‚
      Blessings to you,
      dave

        • Yes Sir, it certainly should be; but after a while, one of the screws in the forearm fell out on mine (and it was outside, in the grass; hence, I couldn’t find it!); I only noticed because the rifle got hard to pump; then I saw it was because the pump arm was askew (due to lack of proper mechanical support). Once I noticed that the missing screw was causing an issue, I called PA Customer Service; they patched me right through to AirVenturi Customer Service; and despite that it was a holiday weekend, they had parts (2 new screws and a bushing) in the mail the next day. That’s what I call excellent customer service…but I’m hoping you won’t need that. Anyway, the rifle has been great since then; however, I would advise you to check all the screws on the gun; mine have all been removed and then replaced, along with a drop of Blue Loctite (the thread-locking, yet removable type), and she’s been fine ever since; with a UTG 4X scope on top, she’s a one-large-ragged-hole shooter at 25 yards. I hope your new rifle works out as well as mine has. πŸ™‚
          Wishing you great shooting,
          dave

  5. >>> I didn’t adjust the sights because other pellets may wander. <<<

    BB,

    Guessing that some of the vertical change of POI can be attributed to different pellet weights/velocities but the wandering of the POI would be from harmonics.

    Good reason to keep to one brand/weight of pellets when shooting for accuracy even if the airgun is not particularly pellet picky.

    Happy Friday all!

    Hank

  6. BB
    No-one else mentioned this,, so maybe it’s just me,, but:
    “I tried five Air Arms 8.4-grain domes next. They hit out to the lower (left) side of the bull in a 0.363-inch group.” I’m pretty sure those holes are to the lower right side of the bull.

    I have more airguns than I should and use them all less than I should,, but you are definitely tempting me to spend some more money. Is it wrong to want to have something even if I know I won’t use it much?
    Ed

    • >>> Is it wrong to want to have something even if I know I won’t use it much? <<<

      Absolutely not Ed!

      Lots of people collect them and don't use them at all!

      But don't listen to me…
      My name is Hank and I have an airgun addiction πŸ˜‰

      Cheers!

      • Hank,

        My Christmas wish list includes a request for a Clone to take care of maintaining my airguns and another to do my chores for me!
        That way I will have more time to shoot. If the clones are quick and do a good job i might even allow them to get in some trigger time!

        Sshootski

          • Hank,

            Canadians need to stop this over regulation of what they can and cannot do!
            So my wish for Canada is a New Year ROLL BACK of the Liberty lost to government overreach.
            I have the same wish for the USA and that people stop drinking the Biden Aid (a very Kostly Kool Aid substitute) forever.

            shootski

    • Ed,

      Apparently you were never in the US Army. I meant my other left, which of course is my right. πŸ˜‰

      Fixed it.

      As for wanting something you don’t need, please keep doing so or I will be out of a job. I mean the blog, not the airguns that you simply have to buy! enable, enable… πŸ™‚

      BB

    • To help someone who frequently got their right and left mixed up, I said to remember that we always read from left to right (of course I omitted to mention Arabic, Hebrew, etc).

      That seemed to work better than my previous advice, that the ‘L’ shape is formed by the thumb and index finger of the left hand, you see, she held her spread thumbs and index fingers up like I am in the picture, ie facing the palm side of her hands. πŸ™‚

  7. B.B. and Readership,

    A long time ago I was given a copy of Small Bore Target Shooting, by: W.H. Fuller. I loaned that hardbound 1st edition to a fellow shooter and never got it back :^( . I have a copy of the
    revised 3rd edition in hardback….NO I never let it out of my hand on loan!
    This is a Link to a portion of one of the better parts about grouping; without all the MATH i usually throw at all you all. If you get it you will understand how good of a shot B.B. is and the fact that most rifles, ammunition, and shooters are actually 3+ MOA systems.
    https://www.rifleman.org.uk/Fuller_group_diagnosis.html

    shootski

  8. Some of FM’s Small Rules of Life:

    1-if you never buy anything you don’t need, you’re probably very boring and your name is Ebeneezer Scrooge.
    2-never lend a treasured book – you will likely not get it back. Give it away or keep it close.
    3-Blue Loc-Tite is a good friend, as FM found out when he lost the globe sight to his HW95.

    Enough boring the audience, FM – tend to your bores and keep working on your shooting accuracy.

  9. hihihi,

    There are many theories on the Internet and in books about the passing the Port to Port and most all are incorrect. Some speak of needing to keep your sword arm free and others allude to the symmetry of saying Port to Port just as passing ships normally pass Port to Port; which is also incorrect. The Scots have the reason that best fits: you need to keep your hand free to reach for your Dirk in your Cummerbund! A Gentleman would never wear his sword to a Formal Dinner!
    How on Earth does shootski know all this? He is the proud owner of a Dirk, a Cummerbund, as well as a Toledo Sword forged with a “Soul of Iron.”

    shootski

    • shootski, a Dirk in a Cummerbund, really?
      I assumed the dagger got shoved into the top of the right sock.

      Thanks for educating me. I wonder how you would safely place your Dirk in the Cummerbund?

      Also, ships passing red to red has always been my understanding of the rules of the watery road, and yet, I might be mistaken? Surely not !

      • hihihi,

        Dirks and Swords have Sheaths and Scabbards made of Leather and/or metal to avoid those problems. Edged weapons can be secreted about the body in many places.
        A proper Cummerbund can be made with a harness or pocket to hold the Dirk Sheath.
        You are correct for Ships confined to a narrow channel that are passing head-on for the Inland Rules.
        That is why Fridays Toast includes a request for SEA ROOM which negates most all of the cumbersome Inland Rules of Navigation.

        shootski

  10. BB,

    I know this waaaay off subject, but I am really super interested in a Benjamin Fortitude Gen 2 in .177 moving into RRHFWA. Back in June of 2020, you said you were going to get another one to try out, but we have not heard anything more concerning this. Did this fall through the cracks? I hope this will remind you and you will bother PA to send you another .177 Fortitude Gen 2 to test for us. Then we can talk about you sending it on to me. πŸ˜‰

  11. 2023 could be the year for you…to become an airgun shooter!
    Yes, as Christmas approaches, the New Year is just around the corner.
    To those who read B.B.’s blog, and are pondering all the information here, but have yet to take the plunge, I have a suggestion for you: buy an HW30S…you will never regret it!
    For quiet backyard plinking, casual target shooting, and close range hunting of SMALL game (head shots) it would be hard to top this little rifle. My only “regret” is that I got stupid, and sold my first one (.177). But I rectified that with this second one (.22). Both were excellent, high-quality arms, a pleasure to own and a pleasure to shoot.
    With a 6X BugBuster scope, old .38 SPL hulls are a favorite target on the 15-yard range; however, if you got the new 3-12X BugBuster, you could likely shoot .22 hulls at that distance (at 6X the reticle covers them, but I can see the .38s OK).
    I never knew of anyone who regretted buying one of these little gems; I truly believe your only regret would be not to buy one, LOL! Fortunately, they are still available, and the high level of quality is still there.
    (I love this rifle as much as B.B. loves his .22 Diana model 27…which is a LOT!)
    That’s it for my 2 cents. πŸ™‚
    Blessings to all,
    dave

        • FawltyManual,

          The Thirth Floor may have HW30S for sale but on the 10th Floor they have videos of the FX PANTHERA showing! WOW! It almost feels like someone at FX was reading shootski’s posts about the possibilities of airguns built on platforms. I’m certain it is all just like minds and similar experience going in the same direction to get to the airgun future! I’m going to try an experiment to see who might just be reading.
          I have long thought about multiple Transfer Ports arrayed in a ring about the barrel to decrease the onset time to maximum pressure behind the projectile. That multi TP could also be paired with multiple small valves which would have less Mass to accelerate to the full open position.

          Wonder if anyone will be interested enough in the concept to spend a little to do an experiment?
          Perhaps it might/could work for Benji-Don and his Extremely Low Pressure (ELP) Airgun testbed?

          shootski

          • Shootski,

            Interesting thought, multiple transfer ports, I am guessing 12 3 6 and 9 o’clock positions? I think that you would need some plumbing to get the air to all ports at the same time. For sure an interesting thought.

            Mike

  12. BB

    Hope you do a best of 2022 report at year end. We know what rifle wins the multi pump category. I have a best tool winner in mind but will wait before naming it.

    Merry Christmas to you and all readers!

    Deck

  13. Mike in Atl,

    Just like in multi valve engines four or five valves of the same diameter result in maximization of area purely based on the geometry. Valve lift is the other part of the flow issue since it really isn’t just a round hole but a cylinder shaped opening formed for the gas to flow through. The hammer/Stryker could hit a forked stem to open the multiple valves simultaneously. On the FX the plenum is already around the barrel so multiple valves to Transfer Ports around the barrel could be done.for direct dump behind the projectile. That type of arrangement will further reduce the handicap of “cold” gas propulsion compared to hot expanding gas in cartridge generated pressure. The FX PANTHERA design would reduce the plenum to bore plumbing to a minimum; which is one of the critical components to achieve short lock times. It could provide a really fast pressure rise and optimized flow to keep acceleration going until the optimum distance down the bore or exit the muzzle is achieved.
    One last thought is that a gas spring might be faster than a metal spring at pushing the hammer/stryker.

    shootski

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