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Education / Training Norica Titan breakbarrel air rifle: Part Two

Norica Titan breakbarrel air rifle: Part Two

Norica Titan
Norica Titan.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Breech seal
  • Air Arms Falcon pellets
  • Air Arms 8.44-grain dome
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Surprise
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger
  • Summary

Today we look at the velocity of the Norica Titan breakbarrel air rifle. This is a rifle several readers have expressed an interest in, and today we start finding out if that interest is justified.

The question we have is this — is the Titan a rifle for beginners? Is it for those just getting into airguns and perhaps even into the shooting sports, altogether? We aren’t asking if it’s a youth rifle, though that avenue will be explored as we proceed.

Breech seal

I showed you in Part 1 I discovered when I broke open the barrel the first time that the breech seal was delivered to me damaged.

Titan breech seal
As you can see, the breech seal that came with the rifle was damaged. Fortunately it is a simple o-ring.

I hoped it was just an o-ring and it was. I have a large assortment of metric rings and a number 10 seemed to fit well.

Titan breech
With the seal out you can see the breech is made for an o-ring. Yes, I did clean off the crud before installing the new seal.

Titan breech seal
A number ten metric o-ring seemed to fit the Titan breech well.

Now let’s test the velocity.

Air Arms Falcon pellets

The Titan is advertised as having a maximum velocity of 620 f.p.s. No pellet weight is given, but we assume a lightweight one, because that’s how most manufacturers test their guns. My first pellet was an Air Arms Falcon dome. At 7.33-grains it’s on the lighter side. I will show you the entire string before summarizing.

Shot……….Vel.
1…………….666
2…………….656
3…………….655
4…………….656
5…………….644
6…………….639
7…………….643
8…………….647
9…………….638
10…………..639

The average for this string is 648 f.p.s., but see how the velocity is dropping? The Titan is rated to 620 f.p.s. and I think it’s breaking in before our eyes. I believe the velocity will continue to drop for a bit. That’s why I’m not giving you the muzzle energy yet.

At this velocity the Titan is on the cusp of dieseling. Most breakbarrels diesel with every shot, but when the velocity drops low like this it becomes intermittent. Let’s try another pellet.

Air Arms 8.44-grain dome

The Air Arms 8.44-grain dome is another medium-weight pellet that the Titan could shoot. Let’s look at their performance.

Shot……….Vel.
1…………….583
2…………….579
3…………….568
4…………….565
5…………….552
6…………….560
7…………….540
8…………….545
9…………….527
10…………..523

Okay, we see the same sort of performance with this heavier pellet. I don’t think the rifle has sorted itself out yet, but it seems like it’s getting closer. The average for this string is 554 f.p.s.

Sig Match Ballistic Alloy

Next I tried an alloy pellet to see how fast the Titan would go. The first shot went out at 587 f.p.s. That surprised me because it was slower than the Falcon. True the pellet did fit tight in the breech and of course tin is harder than lead, but this was a surprise.

Shot two went out at 538 f.p.s. Another surprise! I expected it to go faster, not slower.

Shot three went out at 509 f.p.s. and I was really puzzled now. Had the piston seal blown?

Shot four didn’t go out at all. I cocked the rifle and the pellet was still in the breech where I loaded it. So I closed the barrel and shot again. Not only did the pellet not go out, I felt a secondary vibration about a half second after the shot that felt like the action was loose in the stock. But it wasn’t.

Stock up on Air Gun Ammo

Surprise

Know what that secondary vibration was? It was the piston finally settling forward on the end of the compression chamber. That’s a good thing because it means the piston seal is still good (because it compresses air) and so is the breech seal (because it takes time for the compressed air to leak out.

But this also means the Titan will not shoot alloy pellets. I never saw this before with any air rifle. Just to check that the breech seal was still okay I shot another four Air Arms Falcon pellets.

Shot……….Vel.
1…………….546
2…………….572
3…………….582
4…………….577

Okay, this string is slower than the first string. It appears the rifle is settling in, but is that number 10 breech seal I installed the right one? I removed it and installed a number 11 metric o-ring that’s just a little larger and thicker. Then I shot the following four shots with Falcons.

Shot……….Vel.
1…………….596
2…………….612
3…………….609
4…………….608

It seems the number 11 o-ring seals the Titan’s breech a bit better than the number 10. And this Titan wants to shoot Falcon pellets around 600 f.p.s. That would be a muzzle energy of 5.86 foot pounds at the muzzle. That’s Diana 27 territory.

Cocking effort

The Titan has a ball bearing barrel detent. It’s harder to open than a Diana 27 breech, but not so hard that you have to slap the muzzle to break it open.

The rifle cocks with 29 pounds of effort. That’s the high side of where it should be for the power, but it is acceptable. Once the rifle is cocked the barrel remains in place at every point you place it. The cocking link is one piece and once cocked the barrel comes back just a half-inch or less.

Titan barrel open
The barrel is broken open.

Trigger

The trigger is two stage and not adjustable. Stage one pulls with 6 ounces of effort and stops against a solid wall. When you pull harder there are two crunches then stage two releases at 4 pounds 15 ounces. It’s a crisp stage two, once the two crunches are passed.

Summary

That’s where we are with the Norica Titan. So far I would say that it makes a good rifle for a new airgunner, but perhaps they need to be 16 years or older.

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.

16 thoughts on “Norica Titan breakbarrel air rifle: Part Two”

      • I assume at this price point it is a starter gun for pre-teens.
        How many 12 year olds can pull a 5 lbs trigger pull without pulling their shot?
        Great way to turn kids off of shooting!!!!!

        -Y

        Yes, dull knives are more dangerous that sharp ones.

      • Can only hope for improved operation after a breaking in. If reasonable accuracy is demonstrated this could be a decent choice for a budget-conscious consumer. Plenty of adults and older teens looking for value in a backyard friendly (hopefully) air rifle Would be nice to see a winner in the budget low-power category.

  1. “Know what that secondary vibration was? It was the piston finally settling forward on the end of the compression chamber. That’s a good thing because it means the piston seal is still good (because it compresses air) and so is the breech seal (because it takes time for the compressed air to leak out.”

    My Diana 24c did this with H&N alloy pellets in general. There would be a dull ‘thud’ and you could hear a puff of air blowing past the pellet and down the barrel.

    I think my Weihrauch HW75 was fine with the H&N alloy wadcutters (Match Green), but would do the same thing with the dome and pointed alloy pellets (Field Target Green and Barracuda Green).

    In both cases, it seems like the guns were too low powered go drive the pellets into the rifling. Sometimes a second shot would work, but seating the pellets deeper until I felt it engage the rifling also solved the issue.

    Nathan

    • Nathan,
      I agree. The first thing I thought of was that this gun needs the alloy pellets to be seated into the rifling. The leed may wear in but probably needs a good polishing. Even some lead pellets may need seating for optimum performance.
      Don

  2. Tom,

    I thought the answer to dieseling rifles while breaking in was to use heavy pellets? This would probably be a good time to use those pellets that you have consigned as sinker larvae.

    Siraniko

    PS: Section Sig Match Ballistic Alloy 1st paragraph 2nd sentence: “The first shot went out at 587 f.p.s. That surprised me because it was flower (slower) than the Falcon.”

      • Thanks, I was wondering if something might be wrong with the rifle (or what). I think I would be disappointed if I ordered a rifle with a specified cocking effort of 15-lbs and it actually was 29-lbs when I tested the gun. I have been wondering how to measure the cocking effort on my guns and found the following video:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mV1I-H_irF4

        I noticed the video shows that you are the designer of the Bronco rifle. That’s very cool.

        • Elmer,

          “I noticed the video shows that you are the designer of the Bronco rifle. That’s very cool.”

          You are correct. It is very cool. I can assure you from my personal experience that the Bronco is very cool, too. ;^) If you ever see a used one for sale, which doesn’t happen often, buy it. They are powered for backyard plinking, quite accurate, effortless to cock, sport decent sights, look cool, and their triggers are light and smooth (albeit unique and require a bit of practice to master).

          Michael

      • Tom,

        “Because I tested it and they just wrote what was printed in an email?” You had me chuckling aloud at that one!

        Do you think that with the #11 o-ring the Titan would expel the alloy pellet?

        Like everyone I am eager to see 10 meter accuracy.

        Michael

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