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Air Guns We want accuracy

We want accuracy

Bullseye

This report covers:

  • Self-enabler
  • One accurate shot
  • And airguns?
  • The cost
  • Pellet rifle
  • Affordable target air pistols
  • Any others?
  • Summary

If you’re a shooter you know about accuracy. In fact, accuracy is probably one of the things you value most about shooting. I know it is for me.

Self-enabler

I have to admit when I was younger I liked style and flash almost as much as accuracy, but that changed as I grew up. A 4,000 f.p.s. bullet that misses its target isn’t half as impressive as a 1,200 f.p.s. bullet that connects! I just acquired a Trapdoor Springfield that I plan on blogging soon. It was the recent peep sight report that did that. You see? I even enable myself.

One accurate shot

Some day I hope to see a movie in which the bad guys are fighting with full-auto guns, sprayin’ and prayin’ as fast as they can. Then, the hero drops them with a single bullet each. The movie Quigley Down Under was something like that, wasn’t it? John Wick certainly wasn’t.

And airguns?

So, what’s accurate and affordable in an airgun? Well, how about a BB gun that can group 10 shots on the end of a pencil eraser at 16 feet? That’s with the shooter shooting in the offhand position! If you think it’s easy to do, try it some time.

I’m talking about a real American BB gun, not some pricy German gallery rifle, shooting precision lead balls through a rifled barrel. Daisy makes such a gun and has for many years. The Match Grade Champion 499B is billed as “The World’s Most Accurate BB Gun,” and I haven’t seen anyone refute that claim.

The cost

Is it expensive? I don’t think so. Any time you can buy a precision target gun for under $200 and have enough left to take two adults to a matinee, I think it’s cheap! Daisy created this unique single-shot MUZZLELOADING BB gun for the national BB gun championship program that they co-sponsor with the Jaycees. Millions of young boys and girls have competed in this program and most of them used the identical 499 BB guns that you can purchase for less than one month’s gas money.

At the national level competitors of many sports get special equipment that the public can’t buy at any price. You don’t think stock car racing is done with stock cars do you? But with the 499, you can own the same level of performance that this year’s champion will be shooting, and you can do it for about what some families pay for a month’s worth of television packages. 

Stock Up on Shooting Gear

Pellet rifle

You can have an affordable and accurate pellet rifle too. Daisy’s Match Grade Avanti 753S target rifle is available for $300 and it comes to you with a rifled Lothar Walther barrel. It’s a single stroke pneumatic (SSP) that’s a trifle too hard to pump for young kids, but adults should have no problem. The velocity of 495 f.p.s. makes it an ideal in-the-home target rifle — as long as your domestic companion has no objections. Couple it with a rubber mulch pellet trap and you rival Hollywood’s version of silenced firearms.

To make certain what I just told you about the sound level is correct, I got my now-discontinued Daisy 853 (same rifle with a different stock and sights) out of the closet and fired several shots into my rubber mulch pellet box/trap. Because it’s an SSP, I oiled the pump piston head with ATF sealant before pumping. Yes — it is that quiet!

Affordable target air pistols

There are a few affordable target air pistols like the Air Venturi V10 Match pistol leading the list. At $270 it’s probably the best deal in town because it costs less than a set of grips for the Olympic-Grade 10-meter target pistols. But I still say — DAISY I THINK YOU ARE MISSING A BET BY NOT MAKING A TARGET BB PISTOL THAT’S EQUIVALENT TO THE 499! I’ve been saying this for years but the crickets are chirping. If I said it about a Crosman product I know they would at least consider it. It may not be a profitable venture, I don’t know, but I’d sure buy one.

Any others?

Oh, sure, if you can find an IZH 46 or 46M for less than $600 it’s a bargain, but try to find one! I was going to put my 46 on the table at the recent Texas gun show held at the Shilen barrel plant, but I was sidelined by a urinary tract infection that sent me to the hospital, instead. Maybe the next airgun show?

I guess the Beeman P17 would be my second choice for someone wanting a target air pistol. It’s accurate and has a decent trigger, though not the equal of the Beeman P3 pistol it copies. And this one sells for less than a weeks’ groceries. Forty-six bucks, guys! I think buying used is the only way to beat that. It doesn’t have a target grip like an IZH 46, or even like a Gamo Compact/Air Venturi V10, but it’s accurate and the price can’t be beat.

Summary

You can sit on the sidelines and hypothecate as much as you want or you can bite the bullet and buy an accurate BB or pellet gun. The choice is yours.

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.

52 thoughts on “We want accuracy”

  1. B.B.

    Unfortunately there is an example. That confused person who attacked their school, in Tennessee I believe.
    He/she used 164 bullets to kill 6 people. Two police officers used 4 bullets to kill the perpetrator.
    Tom, if you delete this I understand.

    -Yogi

  2. “The movie Quigley Down Under was something like that…”

    BB,
    Yes, it certainly was! I love that movie; I’ve seen it at least a dozen times (got the DVD =>).
    I’ll third the [accurate!] BB pistol idea!
    Accuracy is one of the things I value about airguns…quiet accuracy that draws no attention…nice!
    Let’s face it, missing stuff is just no fun. 😉
    Blessings to you,
    dave

  3. “American Sniper” is a movie that demonstrates what accuracy is all about. Who else other than Clint Eastwood could produce this movie about a true story so well? Also, there is an article on the American rifleman.org website titled “The ‘Big Fifty’ Sharps Rifle” that describes some of the details of those rifles that the old buffalo hunters experienced. It will not let me share the link to the article. But you should be able to look it up via google, etc. Looking forward to your blog on your new Springfield.

  4. My Daisy Avanti 747 has a Lothar Walther barrel, is single stroke, has nice squared open sights, a manual safety and accurate enough for entry level 10 meter competition. It sold for well under $300. Yet Daisy discontinued it. Lack of buyer interest?

    I also have the Daisy Avanti 753S and Daisy 499B. They all get exercise in the shooting rotation.

    Deck

    • Deck,

      That is the most likely reason. Also, better came along at similar costs. I used to have a 717 I had picked up at a yard sale. I always wanted a 747.

      • RR

        A widow gave me her husband’s 717 which my grans now have. It was just like my 747 except for that German barrel’s accuracy. But for popping feral soda cans there is little difference.

        Deck

        • Deck,

          The 717 came along relatively early in my RidgeRunner days, but after I had already acquired my Izzy. It very quickly found a new home. I also foolishly sold a Webley Tempest as it did not compare to my Izzy. I have since learned that though I like good accuracy/precision, it is not everything.

          • RR

            I resemble that. My Izzy 61 is not an accuracy queen but it’s so fun to shoot. The function design, looks, weight and feel are as good as it gets.

            Deck

            • Deck,

              I would very much like to have a good 60 or 61. Have you seen the PCP version of such? Baikal makes/made a kit to convert them from sproinger to PCP. I saw one at one of the NC airgun shows a couple years back.

              • RR

                I was not aware of a PCP conversion kit for the IZH 61. Maybe that would enable the supposed legendary accuracy of their barrels.
                You should go ahead and get one or both because they are a different cat. Lots of ‘em are out there. I got mine for a reasonable price last fall. It will happily remain here.

                Deck

                • I will need to get a table at the next NC show to be there early enough to pick one up. They usually disappear before the show even starts. Other airgunners selling stuff usually snatch them up before the doors open.

                    • Deck,

                      We shall see. Being there early enough to scarf up some of those great deals before the doors open can be worth such. Time away from home is prohibitive though.

    • Decksniper,

      I am happy that my Daisy 747 fits my hand, despite the plastic grip panels having a slight and audible movement. However, operating it’s plastic bolt, is a displeasure to me.

      So, maybe it’s toylike qualities contributed to a “Lack of buyer interest?”.

      • hihihi

        The 747 bolt is not my favorite either. The easiest way for me to cock it is with the heel of my left hand. As for accuracy it can beat my P17 but not by much. I’m giving some praise for P17 accuracy but it’s a hand bruiser to cock unless you use a golf glove.

        Deck

        • Decksniper,

          I am always interested in- and enjoy comparisons. Thanks. 🙂

          As for your hand bruiser, and anyone else who may find themselves handicapped by being miles away from a golf glove supplier, may I suggest you close your hands as if to pray they don’t get jammed. 🙂

          I too have been bitten by my hand- clamp -gun! 🙁
          But no more! 🙂

          Pictured below is how I place my left hand when I push-pump close my pistol…

        • Deck,

          I love shooting my P17. It is not only accurate, but it has the best trigger of any gun I own, firearm or air-powered.

          For me, the biggest challenge with this gun is not cocking it (although I did have to come up with my own method, which doesn’t require gloves fortunately), but loading a pellet. Not much room to work with and I have poor fine-motor control with the fingers. But I can!

          I would be interested in comparing it to a P3, but that will never happen unless someone sends me a free one. Too much money for my budget.

          But I heartily recommend the P17 to everyone. What a joy to shoot.

          MiTurn

          • MiTurn

            Yes for the P17 and for the money it’s the #1 best air pistol I think. The golf glove I use for cocking sometimes helps loading pellets. I have to pick up a pellet the same way each time but the glove holds on well for hunting the hidden chamber tucked away in the upside down receiver. The only pistol I have that is a lot more accurate is my golden gun Ataman P16 I was lucky enough to win. But that one holds its own against anything I shoot. As Tyler Patner said “if you miss with the P16 it’s your fault”.

            Deck

          • MiTurn,

            what a great mini-review of the Beeman P17! 🙂

            I imagine you already know, but some readers may be interested to learn that Weihrauch make the HW40, which is a very similar pistol, in three calibres:
            5,5mm (.22″),
            5,0mm (.20″),
            4,5mm (.177″)

      • 3hi,

        I myself am unfamiliar with a “plastic grip” 747. It must be one of the very early versions. The 747 that I am familiar with has the LW barrel, a real nice trigger and the wood grips. If I am not mistaken, Daisy had the 717, 727 and 747. I will not guarantee this though. Sometimes my rememberer does not function as good as I would like.

        The Izzy, IZH Baikal 46 and 46M is a far superior air pistol and when they first hit the market were priced about the same as the 747. Air Venturi tried to bring it back, but it did not last long. It probably ran afoul of the Russian importation ban.

        • RidgeRunner,

          pictured below is my Daisy 747 with it’s grip panels removed. Like I said, they’re not perfect but fine, well, the grip certainly feels fine in my right hand! 🙂

        • The Daisy 7×7 series was the 717 base model,
          the 747 with a LW barrel, and an adjustable trigger,
          the 777 with the LW barrel, adjustable trigger, more ergonomic wood grips, and a greatly improved rear sight.

          Ian

          • Ian,

            Thanks! I knew there was a real nice one in there somewhere! The 777 was the one I was thinking of.

            I considered converting my 717 to a 777, but since I already had my Izzy and I was in the very early stages of RRHFWA, I moved it on instead.

  5. BB,

    I have my Izzy. I would not give her up for the world. I have a couple of pretty accurate “old gals” hanging around here, but that is not the priority around RRHFWA. I will say that helps though.

    I have always had a soft spot for those old timey “buffalo rifles”. I used to have a reproduction of a Remington Rolling Block. I used to have an “Aussie Cadet” also. I would really like to have a “Trapdoor”. If a “Sharps” was to show up here, it would likely find a place to live.

    Tom Seleck did several westerns featuring various of those old timey “buffalo rifles”. “Quigley” was the best, but not the onlyest.

  6. BB

    Just wondering if you are really talking about accuracy vs precision . I did like the comparison to the German gallery gun but I think that is more of a replication experience. Sometimes we shoot to re-experience a moment in time. I think that’s why Daisy is near and dear regardless of accuracy. 499B is the exception but most of us in our 60’s never bonded with that BB gun in our youth..

    Just a thought
    jda001

  7. Over the years, I have owned several single shot rifles that have ranged from .22 short to .45-70. That also includes a couple of Ruger Number Ones, one of which was chambered in 7mm Remington Magnum.

    Only one airgun here at RRHFWA is magazine fed. I guess I am just a single shot kinda dude.

  8. I picked up a FWB 65 at an action. Shortly after shooting the FWB 65 I sold my IZH 46. Which shined in some area’s but overall like the FWB 65 much better.

    Speakski

    • speakski,

      I have been trying to talk Vana2 out of his FWB pistol, but can only get his promise to will it to me. Even if that should happen, I will keep my Izzy. You cannot have too many accurate air pistols. 😉

      By the way, nice find.

  9. Some of my personal thoughts:

    Oh dear, accuracy and steel balls? Hehe, not in my hands! 🙂

    For steel ball accuracy, I regret every single one of my smooth bore airguns! Their redeeming features lie elsewhere, eg in replicating some aspects of a firearm, like looks, handling, blowback, etc… 🙂

    ——–
    Cost – oh dear! (Sounds like a pun, doesn’t it?) 🙂

    Remember tomek’s “denial to the trash”? Let’s not join the scurrying in that heap. 🙂

    Let’s let the sellers worry about cost and reserve our judgement on quality, you know, how well things are built, perform, their longevity, etc…

    I believe, repeatable results come from precise products and that of course, leads to accuracy. 🙂

    • 3hi,

      You are onto something there with the precision, accuracy thing.

      As for steel ball shooting, my 1959 Daisy 99 is accurate enough to shoot carpenter bees at up to 10 paces. As for replicating firearms, what a waste of plastic, etcetera. I noticed BB bought a REAL Trapdoor, not a bb gun.

      • Being Devil’s Advocate here, RR. Not all of us are fortunate to live in jurisdictions where you’re allowed reasonable access to real, historically-significant firearms so a non-firearm replica has to substitute. FM would not mind if someone made a nice-quality working PCP replica of an MP40 or Thompson, PPSh41, Sten or any other WWII-era submachine gun – in .177, .22 or even .25.

          • hihihi, own one and it is a fun replica – surprising range/accuracy for a CO2 bb shooter. One of these days will “chrony” it but believe it will sling out bbs at 400+ feet-per-second, depending on ambient temperature, of course. Around here that tends to be Hot, Hotter and Hottest.

            A closer experience to an original MP40 is the semiautomatic 9mm version made by German Sports Guns. That is another fun one and pretty accurate, more so since FM installed a modified trigger bar in it, which shortened trigger travel by close to 50%.

        • FM,

          Those would be better, but likely would be made of unaffordium and still not very practical.

          I have played with a 712 and a few other bb guns that were replicas. Fortunately for me, I did not have to spend the money one of those things cost.

          As for the jurisdiction issue, it would not be the first time I have moved.

  10. Speaking of John Wick, there are a lot of narcissistic, virtue-signaling “Hollywoodies” who love to trash firearms, firearm owners and shooters and the 2nd Amendment, but they sure don’t mind earning a buck or two making movies displaying excessive and mostly inaccurate gun play with buckets of fake blood being tossed around, setting fine examples of “safe and responsible” gun-handling for some of the too-easily-influenced-by-nonsense audiences of this era.

    Some of these “actors” need to instead be kept as far away from anything that shoots as possible, Mr. Baldwin being a prime example. “Common Sense Warning: Standing next to a Hollywood actor playing with a gun may be hazardous or lethal.” That’s all, folks! FM’s Rant Magazine is empty.

  11. B.B. and Readership,

    Accuracy is a system concept that eludes the Many.
    As we age one of the big three killers of accuracy is the hand, the other two are eyesight defects and of course the ageless one is lack of proper training.
    Here is something for readers who are having hand issues and those who are going to have hand issues:
    https://www.physio-pedia.com/Effects_of_Ageing_on_Hand_Function

    If you do the recommended exercises it will delay/mitigate some of the effects of growing older.

    More accuracy to you!

    shootski

  12. Before I sold my last 853 if I wanted to get someone hooked on airguns, I would hand them an 853 with a red dot or a bug buster scope on it.

    If you miss its you, not the gun…

    I guess I need to pickup another one from the CMP.

    Or Pyramyd AIR.

    Tom blogged the 853 back in 2016.
    But that was the wood stocked version, and who knows when it was made.

    Maybe its time to visit the new 853 and see how it stacks up against the older one (ie, has Daisy cut any corners over the years).

    Ian

  13. What is the name of the German gallery rifle, shooting precision lead balls?

    Is there any documentation of mods for the Daisy 499 that airgun smiths do for the national BB gun championships?

    I have also been wanting an olympic style bb target pistol that uses the 499 barrel and ammunition.
    The closest thing I have are 2 airsoft guns from Maruzen. The APS-3, a single pump pneumatic and the APS-1 a spring piston airsoft gun. They are supposed to use special ammunition made by Maruzen, a 5.97mm diameter bb compared to typical 5.95-5.96 airsoft ammunition. I had no luck trying to source the special ammo from online airsoft retailers in Asia.

      • From what I remember its about $20 for 500 BB’s. I don’t have a link to reference that price, not to mention shipping and import costs. I wish daisy would pick back up the project to convert the APS-1 and APS-3 to .177 using the 499 barrel and the matching ammo. It would be a good project for someone with a lathe to convert one of these to shoot .177 bb’s. I have both the APS-1 and APS-3 but no lathe. Japan has a similar BB gun competition using these models like the daisy national BB gun championships.

  14. Tomashi

    How do you like the airguns. May be something to play with at 5 meters in the garage. I would think they would sell the targets. I’ll need to research. Would be nice to see one offered with a 4.5 mm barrel. ASG sells plastic 4.5 mm BB but at .13

    Kind Regards
    jda001

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