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Ammo Barra Cowboy Series 1866 BB and pellet rifle: Part Five

Barra Cowboy Series 1866 BB and pellet rifle: Part Five

Barra rifle silver
Barra Cowboy Series pellet and BB multi-pump pneumatic.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

This report covers:

  • The test
  • First BB — a Daisy Premium Grade
  • Crosman Black Widow
  • Air Venturi Dust Devils
  • Observations
  • Summary

Today we look at the accuracy of the Barra Cowboy Series 1866 BB and pellet rifle while shooting BBs and I have to tell you there is a surprise coming. At least it was a surprise to me!

The test

I shot the BB rifle — and let’s remember this really is a rifle — from 5 meters. I supported the rifle on a UTG monopod. And I did one more thing that will make me return to test the accuracy of pellets once again. I shot wearing my reading glasses with the +1.25 diopter correction. I found I was able to see the front sight more clearly than if I wore my regular glasses that I wore when shooting pellets.

I shot 10-shot groups with all BBs. And the rifle was pumped five times per shot. I loaded all 10 BBs into the internal magazine and let the magnetic tip on the end of the bolt feed them one at a time. Feeding was flawless.

First BB — a Daisy Premium Grade

First to be tested were the Daisy Premium Grade BBs. At first I thought I was going to have a screamer  to show you but after shot five the group grew. In the end 10 Daisy BBs went into a group that measures 1.472-inches between centers. It’s not a great group but it did form around the bullseye.

Barra Daisy BB group
At 5 meters the Barra Cowboy put ten Daisy Premium Grade BBs into a group that measures 1.472-inches between centers.

Crosman Black Widow

Next to be tested were Crosman Black Widow BBs. This is the surprise I told you about. This time ten BBs went into a group that measures 0.854-inches between centers. And note how well-centered this group is. Also note that seven of the ten BBs are in the bullseye in a group that measures 0.327-inches between centers! As far as I am concerned — this group is worth a scream! Other than the three outliers, this target looks like it was shot with a Daisy 499B.

Barra Black Widow BB group
The Barra Cowboy 1866 rifle put ten Crosman Black Widow BBs into a 0.854-inch group at 5 meters. Seven of the BBs are in 0.327-inches!

Air Venturi Dust Devils

The last BB I tested was the Dust Devil from Air Venturi. Ten of them went into a group that measures 1.967-inches between centers. The 10th shot is the highest one on the paper and opened the group from 1.321-inches.

The Barra Cowboy 1886 air rifle put ten Dust Devils into a 1.967-inch group at 5 meters, with nine in 1.321-inches.

Stock Up on Shooting Gear


I find the Barra easy to shoot, each to pump and  quite accurate with BBs. As I said earlier, I found that wearing my reading glasses enabled me to see the front sight more clearly, and that may have made a big difference, so I’m going to rerun the pellet accuracy test a second time.

I find the Barra easy to pump and it feeds steel BBs reliably. the trigger is nice and crisp, if not that light. The only detractor I see is how difficult it is to load pellets. But I’m not going to let that deter me from running as second pellet accuracy test.


I find the Barra Cowboy Series 1866 BB and pellet rifle to be a well-made airguns and worth consideration by those wanting a multi-pump that shoots both BBs and pellets. And, there is at least one more report to come.

45 thoughts on “Barra Cowboy Series 1866 BB and pellet rifle: Part Five”

  1. Tom,

    If your reading glasses have a +1.25 diopter correction, what is the diopter correction of your shooting glasses? Is there a rule of thumb that may be hidden there regarding shooting glasses? I know that we should focus on the front sight so how much of a difference is there between your shooting glasses and your reading glasses?


      • BB,

        I could be wrong and usually am, but I think he was referring to your “normal” glasses.

        Perhaps you should update your “shooting” glasses. I may need to invest in a pair myself.

        • Speaking of glasses, couple days ago when doing the HW90 sighting, was trying different “eyeballing techniques,” such as shooting with both eyes open, or only the right one with varying results. Then tried 1.75 diopter glasses, which helped a bit but not much. At that point FM got one of his many deranged notions popping into his head. “Why not put the progressive prescription pair on top of the 1.75 readers?” Well, that focused things well enough to get the sighting job done. Won’t claim this crazy system will work for anyone else; maybe best to get dedicated shooting glasses made.

          Believe will call this sighting technique “The FM Loco Ocular Sighting System.”

    • Siraniko,

      That’s something I’ve been wondering too since developing “50 year old eyes” right around my 50th birthday.

      I use +1.75 reading glasses and notice the rear sight is sharp when wearing them, but the front sight is blurry. It’s the opposite with them off.

      RidgeRunner might be right regarding progressive glasses, though they can be very expensive.

      I think peep sights are a good compromise for us old guys, as you only need to focus on the front sight and the depth of field is greater due to the narrow aperture.

      • I finally gotta round tuit on getting progressive lenses for my severely nearsighted (myopic), old (presbyopic) eyes that are full of floaters. I like that I can focus by tilting my head up incrementally, but I am wondering how they will work long-term shooting off hand and shooting from a bench where you are looking through the top half of your glasses. Will I have to tilt my head back to see the front sight? Time will tell.

          • Thanks, FM. I don’t take anything concerning my vision lightly. The floaters have been with me since high school. I have one of those graphs taped to my bathroom mirror and check each eye for changes every morning.

            I hardly notice them except when looking up at the sky. However, once I started airgunning, I found one detriment to using a peep sight. The depth of focus with a target peep is so great that it allowed me to see the floaters in more focus. They would sometime swim right in front of the front sight obscuring the most central point of my vision. That was break time until they swam away again.

            • Did not believe you would; FM learned more than he wanted to know about troubling signs of retina problems after the retina in his left eye “went South” about 6 years ago. He then understood why the opthalmologist asked about “floaters” at every visit. Here’s another fun fact learned at the time – nearsighted people are more prone to experiencing retinal detachment than others. That is because our retinas are thinner, more fragile.

  2. BB,

    I have progressive glasses. You may give them some serious consideration.

    As for the Barra, it is not for me. I have a dedicated bb gun (Daisy 99) and a multipump (Crosman 101). May the twain never meet.

    Now, my grandson was given a new 760 last year. This year he was given a 2240 carbine converted to HPA. I lost my Hill hand pump. I will either need to fix my old AirForce hand pump or pitch it and get a new Hill.

  3. Guys,

    Recently I bought the Umarex Legends Cowboy Rifle. It is a Wichester 1894 replica with shells. Smooth bore. You can shot BB (designed for it) and pellets. AND WOW! It is accurate as hell! I would say almost no difference at 10 meter compared to “normal” riffled barrel plinker. The resuts tested above are worse than cowboy rifle 10m results, I was amazed. And there is up to 6FTE energy there (with pellets), BB are somewhere at 5FTE which is 650fps damn fast BB. Need to check it at 25 yards, hopefully in the Xmass brake it will be conducted, I let you know.
    Now I understand what is all about this Winchester stuff. This is just amazing rifle, just perfect beeing simple and complex in one form.

    • tomek,

      There is a considerable difference other than looks between the Umarex and Barra besides price. This Barra is a fancy looking Crosman 760. It is a multipump, not a CO2 gun.

      As for myself, I would prefer the Umarex.

      • Ridge – I know, it is clear, what I mean is that I first realized and understood “this whole Winchester stuff” 🙂 It is not just some “wild wild west and cowboys” – this rifle it is all about.
        It is a “new sensation” for me, I had to share it with you 🙂

        • tomek,

          Don’t you feel like shooting some groups and writing a guest blog?

          It sounds like Umarex has some in-house competition to the pricey but apparently quite good Walther Lever Action.


          • Stephan, mein Bester,

            I will think about it, why not? Anyway, almost daily since I have it I generate gallery destruction and some groups with it. This blog should have the title “This whole Winchester stuff”…

            I would never think about it, to buy this Walther Lever Action before I came to this cowboy UX. Now it is not impossible 🙂 This real-like shells you don’t need all the time and the Walther accuracy and quality in general is superb.

            • Tomek, I have encouraged you to write a guest blog in the past as well, and I encourage you to share your perspectives in more detail. It’s rewarding. If you have even a fleeting concern about something getting lost in translation, I would happy to assist you by reviewing and editing a draft (or three) for you

              • Decksniper, Roamin, Stephan… outch now I’m motivated, even a bit committed.

                Roamin – I would really appreciate your support to make the “lost in translation meanders” a bit more humanitarian. I discovered a good translation tool (my wife is also a PL/DE translator with “rubber stamp”) – it is “deepl” translator: https://www.deepl.com/translator
                So far one of the best available (actually only checked with PL/DE translation). As I’m sure you’ve already noticed I’m not using it on the blog so far 🙂
                But seriously now – I know how hard it is to translate or correct some text, especially in terms of time consuming. I can’t promise, but if I (tomorrow) will generate text about some pellet accelerator I will really try to make it readable.

                  • Roamin – I appreciate it a lot! I send the text already to Tom, I’m sure he will find some mistakes and make them “round”.
                    BTW thinking about how it would be for someone to write a text in my primary langauge (polish), who was not borne with it – hahaha it is not possible to do it correctly.

                    • I would not even attempt such a feat. Greek, maybe, but not any other language. You multi-linguists always impress me. I knew a man who could hold a conversation, read, and write in 7 languages (not at the same time). Awesome.

                  • Roamin,

                    There is one guy in my company where I work since 2016. He is comming from Greece. I can say we are friends now. Perfect match, strong character, self thinking beeing.
                    Actually I only can articulate in 3 languages. I was trying to learn Spanish language but there is one big problem about my learning – it has to be pragmatic. When I’m not using something it does not come just like that. I came to Germany because of my wife (girlfriend at that point in time) – I decided to chose love and not what I would better doing somewhere else than in Germany. It was not my goal at all! You know I refused to learn German language for almost three years? 😀 And I was at the university studing information technology! I just didn’t like it. One day I became so tired trying communicate using English and Polish that I decided to let it go. I defined this language as “communication protocol required for a calm ass of mind”. Now I think I’m able to share my thoughts also in German without missing this complex part of it. At the end I could understand better this mentality learning this “c.p.r.f.cassm”. It revealed what I was affraid of … hahaha I should not follow this path!

                    • You are hilarious. Tomek, don’t stop being Tomek. We love Tomek.

                      Denial to the trash.
                      C.P.R.F.C.AssM: Communication protocol required for a calm ass of mind

                • Try ChatGpt if you can access it – there is a free version. FM has used it for tranlating English to Deutsch and possibly soon to communicate with vehicle parts vendors in E Europe.

    • Have you tried a Daisy #25 ? Loads of fun and unlike Red Riders you can keep it shouldered and stay on the sights while shooting it. I never had a 25 as a kid but have a new China one now and am very happy with the smiles per dollar.

      • Singleshotcajun,

        My 10yo Philip received Daisy RedRyder 4 weeks ago. After one week it was broken, I send it back on warranty (of course I tried to repair it by myself but… it is broken). I think OK fun and better accuracy than expected.
        Daisy 25 – hmmmmm. Looks interesting. Unfortunately it is not available in my two favorite online airgun shops. I will research a bit anyway, thank you for advice!

        • What did the boy break? I had a Crosman 760 multipump as a little boy. Dad had to pump it for me past 5 pumps (the max was 10), but eventually I built up my pumping muscles. It shoots bbs or pellets. The fewer pumps would give less power, anyway.

  4. Let us go waaay off subject here.

    I personally like the “low” pressure PCP airguns that used to be offered. I bemoan the fact that most PCPs these days require a fill pressure well above 3000 PSI. What happened? Once upon a time, 1000 PSI was high. Nowadays, many are over 3600 PSI with a couple pushing 5000 PSI.

    I do understand that with shorter barrels, higher pressures are required to get the pellet up to the high speeds many require. The requirement for silencers also comes into play.

    I guess my curmudgeonism is showing. I have no problem with a Kentucky Long Rifle.

    • RR
      I believe it all depends on each one’s expectations. My Evanix AR6 K now has a soft hammer spring and works at its best between 1000 and 2000 psi. Real easy to pump up to this pressure after five or six cylinders. By the way each cylinder is making one 0.30″ group at 10 meters with 3X magnification. Ah, around 15fpe.

    • RR,

      Think that it’s chasing specs – just like the velocity wars.

      More airguns are being powered up to be able to shoot slugs and having a higher shot-count looks good in the advertising. That uses more air and increasing the fill pressure is a way of helping achieve those goals. It’s not surprising to see manufacturers jump on the 300 bar band wagon.

      I don’t see a problem with a 300 bar airgun fill capability. Think it’s safer than the risk of accidentally over filling a 200 bar airgun from a 300 bar carbon fiber tank or compressor.

      If the airgun (reservoir, regulator and valve system) is robust enough to handle the pressures then why not? You don’t HAVE to fill to maximum, my Dominator 1250 is 4500 psi capable and has never been filled to that. Anything above the reg set pressure works fine.


      • Vana2 and RR

        Really good safety tip made and I hadn’t thought of it until now.

        Both my Ataman P16 and Gamo Urban have sweet spots in the lower pressure range thanks to adjustable hammer spring tension. I can fill both with a hand pump without undue difficulty and I sometimes do that just to keep the pump happy.


      • Hank,

        My first Talon SS had a vavle that was set to 1900 PSI. I later picked up an Edge. I did not buy a compressor until I bought my .35 HM1000X. I just like low pressure. If the manufacturers wish to chase the higher pressures, so be it. I just do not buy them. To each his own.

  5. Hey BB,

    We have coins that we use to describe a group size by, what about the larger groups?

    How about using balls? Most everyone can relate to golf balls, tennis balls, soft balls… basket balls. 😉


  6. Replies in Junk Mail
    Found 5 replies to me in the junk mail about setting up a shooting bench. Don’t know why, but If you expected some sort of acknowledgement, I apologize and will pull them up and look into them.

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