This report covers:
- First thing
- The fill
- JTS Dead Center
- Loaded hard
- Muzzle report
- H&N Baracuda
- JSB Exact King Heavy
- Shot count
- Trigger pull
Today we look at the velocity of the JTS .25-caliber Airacuda Max, plus a couple other things.
Reader Mister AP noticed a small hole in the end of the screw-on cap that covers the male Foster fill connector on the front of the reservoir tube. I said I thought it was possibly there to relieve air pressure, should a leak develop there. I don’t know if that’s correct, but here’s that hole.
There is a small hole in the removable cap that covers the fill connector.
The Airacuda Max is filled to 3200 psi, not the 3000 shown on the outside of the box and in the manual. I checked with JTS on this. So I filled the reservoir and then set the rifle aside and proceeded to fill the circular magazine. The magazine is quite easy to fill because there is no spring-loaded cap to fool with. But the bolt still works after the last pellet has been loaded. Sorry, Yogi, but either you have to count the shots or risk shooting blanks.
After filling the magazine I checked the rifle’s pressure gauge once more and was shocked to find it had dropped to 2200 psi in the brief time it had taken me to fill the mag — perhaps 3 or 4 minutes? I then listened for leaking air but couldn’t hear any. After that my eye came to rest on the reservoir’s pressure gauge that still read 3200 psi.
Ooops! Yes, there are two gauges on this rifle and the second one that’s located back by the triggerguard is for reading the pressure to which the regulator is set. I noticed the two gauges as I set the rifle down.
Reservoir gauge. I took this picture slightly from the side so the needle appears to register higher than 3,200 psi.
The regulator gauge. This is another angled camera shot. This one reads lower because I shot it upside down and flipped the image for you. The needle is really sitting over 2200 psi. I have to photograph off-axis when I use the flash or the image will flare out on the gauge’s glass.
JTS Dead Center
Okay, let’s start testing. The first pellet is the JTS Dead Center. You’ll recall that I tested this pellet for accuracy in my Benjamin Marauder, which is my only other .25 caliber repeater. I also tried to use the Labradar Doppler Chronograph for that test and that was the one in which I learned that I can’t both shoot for accuracy and chronograph the pellets when I shoot from 25 yards. So as far as I’m concerned that velocity test is bogus, but the accuracy test after I shut down the Labradar is valid.
In the Airacuda Max 10 JTS pellets averaged 878 f.p.s. That’s good for a muzzle energy of 43.47 foot-pounds at the average velocity. The spread went from a low of 874 to a high of 882 f.p.s., a difference of 8 f.p.s. That’s slightly slower than the 900 f.p.s. JTS advertises, but I haven’t tried every pellet on the market, either. I would call their estimate correct.
I noticed that the JTS pellet was hard to load, even with the sidelever. The resistance was quite uniform, shot-to-shot, so I got used to it. I could still chamber a pellet with the butt on my shoulder.
Of course the whole reason I have the Airacuda Max is to test this pellet. I also shot them in my Marauder, just to see how they went. And later I may try them in an AirForce single shot to round out the test.
Obviously this rifle is powerful. How loud is it? I tested the third shot from the first string and got a sound meter reading of 96.3 dB. That’s loud enough but not that bad.
That’s louder than conversation but not too loud for use in a large back yard.
The next pellet I tested was the 30.86-grain H&N Baracuda. Ten of them averaged 826 f.p.s. At that speed the muzzle energy is 46.76 foot-pounds. The low velocity was 824 f.p.s. and the high was 828 f.p.s. That’s a 4 f.p.s. difference. Remarkable!
Baracudas loaded quite easily. If they also prove accurate they will be a pellet for this rifle.
JSB Exact King Heavy
The final pellet I tested was the JSB Exact King Heavy that weighs 33.95 grains. If you’re concerned whether a pellet this heavy will fit into the rotary magazine, don’t be. It fits with room to spare. They were also the mama bear pellet — loading slightly harder than the Baracudas but not as hard as the JTS Dead Centers.
Ten Kings averaged — well, we have something to discuss.
I checked the air that remained before starting to shoot this pellet and I saw that the reservoir was down to 2,200 psi. That’s the pressure the regulator is set to, and even if the two gauges don’t agree exactly, we are pretty close to the last shot.
After 22 shots this is what the reservoir gauge read. I tried very hard this time to point the camera as straight down on the dial as possible.
I need to tell you now that I also got one super-slow reading on the very first shot of today’s test with JTS pellets and I didn’t include it in that string. That pellet went out at 768 f.p.s. I also shot one blank shot, Yogi, so there you go. BB can’t count either. What that means though is at this point in the test there are 22 shots on the fill. Now let’s look at each shot in the next string of JSB King pellets.
Obviously the Airacuda Max has dropped off the power curve on this string, but where? Was it at shot 4 (in this string)? Shot 5 or 6? The only way to know for sure is to refill the reservoir and shoot another string. Let’s do that.
Well, that was a surprise. The slowest shot in this string was almost as fast as the fastest shot in the previous string. Does that make all shots in the previous string too slow? Does it give us a shot count of 20, which is two magazines’ worth? I don’t think it does. And the real shot count depends on what you are doing. Are you shooting groups at 100 yards or are you just plinking?
The average for this string is 788 f.p.s. At that speed this pellet develops 46.82 foot pounds of energy at the muzzle. The lowest velocity in this string was 784f.p.s. and the high was 793 — a 9 f.p.s. difference. The Airacuda Max is consistent!
Unless you are shooting groups beyond 50 yards I would say there are at least 25 good shots on a fill. The website says to expect 40, but that seems optimistic. I say 25 good shots and no fewer than 20 shots for anything you want this rifle to do.
The two-stage trigger requires 1 pound 2 ounces to get through the first stage and exactly three pounds to fire the rifle. Stage two has an abrupt beginning and I could only feel an ever-so-slight bit of creep in that stage.
I did not try to adjust the trigger because it’s extremely nice right now. In the past I have attempted to adjust triggers only to mess them up. This one is too nice to fool with.
This was a nice long test of the Airacuda Max. For several reasons I want to take a closer look at this rifle. First, because it offers so much at what I believe is an affordable price. Next, because the company has gone out of their way to introduce a new line of premium pellets, and we can always use more of those. And finally because this rifle is made in China. I know that chaps some readers and I understand why, but I’m giving the devil his due. If the Airacuda is accurate and if it holds up during testing we will have another fine lower-cost precharged pneumatic.
62 thoughts on “ The .25-caliber JTS Airacuda Max: Part 2”
I believe that the hole at the cap is just to allow ease of removal since it is only a friction fit (I think) and not screwed on since it will be difficult to remove the cap with a partial vacuum behind it.
PS: Section Summary 5th sentence: “I know that chaps (chafes) some readers and I understand why, but I’m giving the devil his due.”
Maybe in the rest of the world people simply get “chafed”, but in America, especially in the South, we manage to get “chapped” as well. It’s usually linked to the area where a baby would get diaper rash, if you take my meaning, but I think BB was trying to be “gentlemanly” by not using the entire expression. You couldn’t have known, and now you have a new vulgar American phrase to add to your repertoire! LOL
Hope you’re well, Half.
That was it. Thanks,
And here I though Chap Stick® was to be used on the lips!
Makes me wonder what a Chafing Dish is for?
It’s where you store your ChafeStick.
And I thought that chapped would only refer to lips!
I thought he might be referring to the same phenomena that here, in my area, at least, is referred to as being chafed. It is the result of one getting “one’s panties in a twist”.
I think there is likely a similar word or phrase in every area and in every language to describe the condition humorously.
So you put panties in the chafing dish?
Received my Western Airguns 22 Sidewinder Semi/Full-Auto PCP this afternoon. Very impressive. Precision engineered.
It has been something I wanted for over 15 years. A high powered, select fire, tactical pellet rifle. Had to wait for the technology. Noticed it has a large ‘regulated air’ holding tank to ensure rapid fire air pressure does not drop off too quickly.
Came in a very nice soft padded scoped rifle case instead of a box. It was inside a shipping box as well. So well balanced I could actually shoot is as a pistol. Arm straight or shouldered with one hand.
I dismissed the idea of getting a full auto PCP earlier, thought it would be a waste of money on pellets and better off left for BBs, but considering it as an ‘operating option’ on a semi-auto PCP I can accept it. Evidently it is controllable down to a two-shot burst. And I’m sure I may enjoy a quick adrenalin rush now and then.
I mentioned that I would provide some sort of review of it but to be honest I am too busy dealing with life, people, car, home and rainstorm problems right now. Another one coming.
But I just did a quick check of the internet, and this rifle has a complete review by HAM, AoA and the Western Airguns, to name a few, with many you-tube videos covering it already.
No rest for a partially brain-dead old man.
And now I see in HAM gun show coverage there are new and wonderful high-tech PCPs about to come out of the woodwork. Even a collapsible bug-out springer. What a great time to be an Airgun enthusiast.
There is a data sheet in the Pic if you care to enlarge it.
Out of focus a little. If anyone wants a better look at the data sheet that came with it, under it, I can try to photograph it better separately. But I think everything is already out there in print.
In 22, Min 890 fps, Max 902, spread 12. Average of 10, 894 fps. 45.88 Ft/lbs.@ 902 shot 6. Standard deviation 4. Looks like a 5 shot single cluster hole at 20 yards. 1/2 ” with JSB Jumbo Monster Redesign pellet. 1205 fps is possible with certain pellets.
Erased that second picture but it showed up again?
This Sidewinder and the LCS out of Florida are based on the Huben air rifle. The valve is remarkable and is a true advancement in airgun technology.
Or is it? Hmm. I will have to explore further, but a step back in time just might reveal something. Hmm.
P.S. Nice air rifle.
Nice indeed. Will have to look at the LCS – after all it is in FM’s home state; support local industry. As Bob M pointed out, there are good things coming out of countries other than China. The Czech Republic is one of them. Will add that perhaps a smart airgun company might want to speak to the Taiwanese about marketing their PCPs here also.
I have a Friend, Jordan Chen, in Taiwan.
He runs Listone Industry.
Who among many things makes and sells airguns.
Quite nice airguns.
They sold them here in the USA, and Canada at a very affordable price, then they got into bed with a single importer, who promptly tripled the Price.
Does anyone remember the sales strategy bout widgets?
I would rather sell 10,000 products and make a small profit from each one Than to only sell 1000 products and make a large profit off of each one..
Now their American sales are near zero…
I liked their Victor and other airguns..
When we could get them..
But for the last year or so their industrial output has turned towards homeland defense items we might say, with the political winds blowing from the mainland…
A shift in production may be wise at the moment.
Hmm, that Victor looks very familiar.
There are some real nice airguns out there that I am afraid are a bit overpriced because of importers/distributors/dealers. They can keep their high priced toys. I refuse to pay their outrageous prices.
I am afraid there are too many folks here in the good ol’ USA who are dreaming of retiring very quickly. The outrageous profit margins are killing us. I will stick with the “old gals”.
I’m aware it’s not the first, but the reviews got to me, and it was time. Liked the removable, stainless, mag.
Nice one Bob!
I’ll check out a couple of the reviews.
Thanks for thinking of me! Is it possible to visually check the number of pellets left in the magazine while the magazine is installed? Like Bob M, counting pellets is a pain when there is so much else going on.
I can’t see how you could count the pellets unless you removed the magazine.
Maybe there is a different sound the rifle makes when the magazine is empty? My Air Ranger does the same thing, but if I listen for it when I cock the gun I can tell if it has shot the last pellet, as the sound is different as the mag won’t index anymore – it stops rotating and just sits on the last slot and dry fires.
Just something you could check out next time you shoot it.
I will listen for that next time but I tested it this time. No el-worko.
Was the feel of the lever different? On the DAR Gen 3, the feel of an empty slot is different especially when not closing the bolt quickly or hard.
Some folks consider the Airacuda Max to be the Gen 4 DAR. The look of the front ends of both, especially the cap with the hole, the barrel band, and the fore end shape and fit, are quite similar.
The Airacuda (not Max) looks like a dead-ringer for the DAR Gen 3.
I painted a white line across my magazine on the outer part it does not rotate in the inner part that does rotate when the two lines matchup I know I’m empty
As BB and many others here know, I am one of those who is “chapped” by these Chinese air rifles. The truth is, I find it hard to not cheer on the advancements I have seen with this and other things coming out of that country. It shows that someone is paying attention and learning what it takes to truly compete in the world market.
The main issue I have is with the PRC government. Anything made in China, supports them. It is also pretty easy to keep the price down with slave labor. If they would just forget about world domination and put their energies elsewhere, they could really go far.
Of course, I am not too thrilled with what Joe and his cronies are doing in this country, but people are starting to wake up. I just hope it will not be too late.
OK, enough of the soapbox. Let’s get back to airguns.
“If they would just forget about world domination and put their energies elsewhere, they could really go far.”
Yep. Unfortunately, the do not seem to have yet learned that lesson from others in the past who failed to learn that lesson. They’re not alone in that, unfortunately. And now, back to airguns, which are a lot better for our youth than Tik Tok. “But you’ll shoot your eye out, kid!” Maybe, but Tik Tok will eventually get your brain looking like swiss cheese.
This is as close to “social media” as I can stand. Somewhere I have a Facebook page, but I very, very rarely check it out. It would not bother me if Ziggy was to start charging like that Musky fella with Tweety Bird. None of them there Lefties like what I have to say, anywho.
At least here y’all put up with me, most of the time.
Decksniper, RidgeRunner and others with similar views, I wonder if you can guess what my opinion is (yes, I’m opinionated too) of the government of the United States of America (a clue to my views are the writings of Caitlin Johnstone)?
I agree that the Chinese government likely does not represent the Chinese populace, but, is there any government that truly represents the people in it’s decisions and actions?
I struggle to even imagine a society in which all public servants serve only (!) the public. 🙂
Good points. While there are no perfect country examples at least the USA by its actions has not shown any interest in taking over some other countries land and populace via conquest in the last 100 years. If I am wrong I am open to being educated.
If anything, in the last 80ish years, starting with Yalta, we’ve facilitated bad hombres and actors taking over other countries’ land and populace with ongoing consequences for us and the victim countries.
FM needs to get off the soapbox and concentrate on the next airgun or related accessories to acquire.
I’m looking for some ideas for a birthday present from me to me other than another airgun. A small electric compressor is always in the back of my mind. A reader recently said they overcame poor quality issues with a cheap Chinese compressor by using the cord as the on/off switch. Anybody care to comment?
That was me. It was just a cheap electric dual tank Harbor Freight portable 125 psi garage air compressor. When it filled and auto shut off it slammed a rubber seal inside over an air passage to retain the air inside. The edge of that air passage was extremely sharp and eventually started cutting a hole in the flat rubber seal preventing it from filling. That rubber was very soft also. Substandard in my opinion. That seal is under the red on off switch on top.
I needed another one fast with 20 vehicles needing tires serviced so I got another on sale and decided not to let that seal get cut again so I unplug it before it reaches 125psi and shuts down automatically. The second compressor eventually bleads down but at least it fills for use.
It was just an example of how some China companies will copy someone else’s product but use substandard material and cut corners everywhere given their own will. It’s simply, you get what you pay for.
A lot of their tools are considered use once, if you are lucky, then, throw it away. Nothing appears to be hardened properly or protected with quality paint or packaging. It all smells funny. ‘Caveat Emptor’
Note: I changed the company name above.
There is a Chinese company that has been selling a cheaper version of our equipment in South America. They even use our paint color and logo on the equipment and sell it for about 1/3 of what we would. The customers get fairly irate when we will not service it.
A while back Gunfun had suggested a Vevor compressor; have not gotten the required Round Tooit so have not bought one. FM is still doing the hand pump routine with the PCPs. As for using the cord as a “switch,” reminds me of an Operations Research prof once who suggested that method to reboot a computer. That was back in the ’80s. Mrs. FM had the same guy for her OR class when getting her computer science degree around that time. She did not think much of that suggestion.
I know there have been a lot of small compressors hit the market lately. Both Hank and I have the bigger compressors that can fill tanks. I personally prefer carrying my 100 CF carbon fiber tank in the back of my vehicle than some small compressor. Yes, all of this costs more as an initial investment, but in the long run when you start shooting PCPs a lot or if you go big bore, it is so much better to fool with.
Ask Vana2 what he thinks about this.
P.S. I used a hand pump exclusively until I started shooting .357 or larger. That is a lot of pumping. For .177 and .22, keep on pumping.
Saw RR’s post (below).
If you shoot PCPs it’s great to have a compressor and not have to worry about how much air you have.
The smaller (115/ 12volt) field units are convenient but I prefer the larger models that are designed to fill a carbon fiber tank. They’re heavy so I put a set of casters on mine to make easy to move around.
Decksniper, upon my original tumble out of the tree, I managed to avoid every single ‘gift of the gab’ branch, twig and leaf, ie I am unable to properly explain myself, despite your invitation, “…open to being educated.” 🙂
Therefore, let me just say that my views are different to yours. And you know what, I’m happy (!) at that. 🙂
Yes, but democracy is the least imperfect form of government that exists!
Benevolent dictator is the best, but the successor usually is the worst.
This is true. The shame of it is that we have a Republic and it still does not work.
As far as benevolent dictatorships, really?
We can always “throw the bums out”, but at the ballot box not the Capitol Building.
Nice thought, but when have you seen an honest politician?
you must be talking about the US
How can they?
Kingdom of Ancient China. From 221 BC (BCE) to 1912 AD (CE) China was a single great kingdom. The people’s name for China was the “Central Kingdom,” because to them it was the center of the World. China kept to itself for most of that period ignoring when other countries tried to establish relations and for many years remained mainly untouched by outside influences through ruthless crackdowns on any outsiders and internal activists for change. There were book burnings of external literature and internal opposition literature whenever and wherever it was uncovered. And finally how the Chinese have always felt about the rest of us.
They look down on any foreigners since they are not of the Central Kingdom; currently replaced by the People’s Party Members.
Do you really want to do business with a Nation State that is based on that kind of history? That sees nothing wrong about holding a companies property hostage until they submit to after the fact changes to signed agreements? Then goes on to steal their Intellectual Property outright?
And Finally, uses vast quantities of SLAVE LABOR?
I would rather pay more for my stuff and NOT contribute to the Chinese Communist Regime. Notice how the rest of the World’s MEDIA and Politicians have stopped identifying Totalitarian China as a COMMUNIST Country!
I’m with you. Unfortunately, Shootski, the vast majority would rather buy cheap, use it once before it falls apart crap, and then go buy it again. Also unfortunately, we as a species seem to be rapidly outgrowing the carrying capacity of this rock, leading to more competition/conflict over limited resources.
Well said and unfortunately I believe will ultimately doom the human race on this planet.
B.B. and Readership,
Everyone always forgets Republic as the form of government that works best for larger States (Countries) because Democracy in the pure form requires all of the people to vote on every issue, question, law, and action taken by the (State) Country.
Republics can be Democracies, Oligarchies, Parliamentary, elected King/Queen, or Royal and deposed by ballot. The election method of leadership/Representatives is far to often mistaken for democracy. politicians often don’t know themselves or choose to share the truth of the democracy/republic matter.
I am wondering, which county has had the most immigrants. Might be a good proxy for best form of government?
If you mean recent voluntary imigrants then that could work well at identifying the types of government that are best.
I say that because we are almost all imigrants of one type or other in the longer term from somewhere.
I believe that would be the United States. Other than the indigenous people, we are all immigrants.
“I have to photograph off-axis when I use the flash or the image will flare out on the gauge’s glass.” If you have a diffuser for your flash it might could help. If you don’t have a diffuser a rubber band and tissue paper (Kleenex®) can be used especially a split ply to make it slightly less opaque.
Pyramydair popup poo!
Am I the only reader who recently has to suffer pyramydair’s “SPIN FOR A CHANCE TO SAVE!” popup window when first navigating a blog page? I use an ipad.
Or am I just the first to moan?
Maybe there’s a benefit for me that I have yet to discover?
All I know is, so far it is making me more than annoyed… 🙁
First to moan…at least it only takes one click to BE GONE! IF they (Marketing/IT) are stupid enough to go to multiple step to remove I will start SPAMMING Val’s mail box.
(Marketing/IT types N.B. when you read this:
I go to the HOME Page IF i am looking to buy something NOT the BLOG! And, I will SPAM Val’s email if you persist!)
It is quite annoying. Especially when it interrupts typing in the search bar or other navigation. And I’d love to have the code behind it analyzed too—it pretty much defaults to $10 off.
I want to chime in on the dang spin the wheel pop up too, annoying is the only description of that thing.
On another subject, has anything come up in the Airacuda discussions that include clipping issues when using a LDC? I see it is under discussion in other boards. Some say it is clipping, some say the rifle just isn’t as accurate with an accessory installed on it.
Perhaps it is due to a combination of the floating barrel and the fill valve cap bearing down on the barrel band, and then the additional accessory weight.
I have no clue about the Airacuda and accessories of any kind screwed or clamped onto the muzzle end of the barrel/shroud.
From extensive experience with Brakes, Air Stripers, and Suppressors (Silencers/Mufflers/LDC [Lead Dust Catchers] and by other names frequently used.) the through openings diameter chosen by buyers is often too small because of a number of factors.
The most typical fault is caliber matched diameter on the bore and the accessory; that almost never works especially the more through openings and the greater the distance from the bore end of the openings. The reason is simple in that once clear of the bore ALL projectiles (to include ball) begin to Yaw, Nutate, and Wobble.
Next fault is mounting accessory off axis to the axis of the Bore. Which can be caused by the barrel or barrel shroud exterior not radially matched with the Bore axis. The thread(s) on the Bore, Shroud, accessory not being perpendicular to each other. Using set screws Grub Screws) with mismatched ID/OD slip fitting components and also over torque caused misalignment.
And finally: poor precision caused by the airgun. The easy test to determine which is the problem is to shoot a projectile without the accessory and determine the Standard Deviation (SD) of POI (Point Of Impact) in a large enough sample that with each p+1 (p = projectile) the SD does not trend significantly. Then install the accessory using Best Practice Methods and try to match the previous shooting test as closely as possible.
The SD change or the PROVEN physical evidence of clipping are the only way to be certain what is really happening.
Just looking at this rifle i would suspect the LDC quality first. Many of the “LDC” are, politely put, JUNK in my opinion.
Next suspect the Shroud to Barrel axis alignment as causing the fault in accuracy or obvious clipping. I have a strong bias against shrouded barrels (based soley on experiences with misalignment of muzzle accessories) on airguns and firearms.
Is sound reduction the main goal of shrouded barrels?
Just an opinion but it is most often for looks first.
Less Metal and keeps the total weight down. Once all that happens then somebody says hey! Dump some air in there and make it a little quieter.
Sounds like FX is trying to use it to tension the barrel and also use it as a plenum for the regulator and the valve on their PANTHERA for increased consistency of the air charge for each shot cycle by reducing the flow velocity that generates turbulence that kills flow (nice vicious circle that!) but still delivering the required volume (Mass) through the Exhaust Valve and Transfer Port to the barrel.