Chinese B3 underlever: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

The B3 underlever from China.

Part 1

A history of airguns

  • Condition
  • Velocity test
  • Hobbys
  • What would you do?
  • Seal crumbles
  • Beartrap!
  • Safety first
  • Next time

Here we go! Today is the day we find out the health of that rusty old B3 underlever I found in a local pawn shop several weeks ago.


I’ll start with a description of the condition of the rifle. It’s rusty all over and looks like every Chinese B3 I ever saw. When the rifle is cocked and the sliding compression chamber is pulled back, you can see the breech seal. On this rifle, it looks bad, actually destroyed. So the velocity testing that we’re doing today will be very interesting.

B3 breech seal
The breech seal is toast!

B3-1 breech seal
This is what a B3 breech seal should look like. read more

Umarex Gauntlet: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Umarex Gauntlet.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • Other items I’m testing
  • Mounting the P.O.I. rings
  • Precision is challenging
  • P.O.I. rings are precision-bored
  • Bug Busters are difficult to position
  • Perfect scope for the Gauntlet
  • Sight-in
  • Shim under the scope
  • Second sight-in
  • Magazine problem!
  • Found it!
  • Summary
  • Evaluation

What a report this is going to be! So many landmark issues resolved and explained!

Other items I’m testing

Although today is about the Umarex Gauntlet, I’m also going to cover the UTG P.O.I. rings for airguns, the new Bug Buster sidewheel and the new UTG 3-12X32 Bug Buster scope. This won’t be just another test day, either, because I had to solve numerous problems to get this far. In fact, although I will show you a target today, this isn’t accuracy day. That comes next time. Today we have issues to resolve. Let’s get started.

Mounting the P.O.I. rings

UTG makes the most precise scope rings I have seen. Although I have seen other scope rings that retail for $500, I have never seen a set that are any more precise as these. I wanted to use them for the remainder of the Gauntlet test, which is going to be a long one. read more

How to treat a new airgun

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • New airgun — what do I do?
  • Be careful!
  • Lube it?
  • CO2
  • Pre-charged Pneumatic (PCP)
  • Multi-pumps and single strokes
  • Spring piston guns
  • Do I need to clean it?
  • What about disassembly?
  • How should I protect my new airgun?
  • The most important thing

Every so often I am inspired to stop and cover the basics for our readers. Many of you who have been with me off and on over the past 13 years (yes, this blog turned 13 this month) will find the things I am about to say rudimentary, but each of you went through them in your own way. My recent encounter with the Sub-1 crossbow made it clear to me what it’s like to have something about which you know very little. And, as I was in the midst of my discoveries, reader Johncpen asked this.

“When lubing the bolt of a PCP like a Benjamin Maximus would you use silicone oil on the O-ring and Remington oil behind that or just silicone oil on the whole thing?” read more

Hatsan Hercules QE .45 caliber big bore air rifle: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hatsan Hercules 45
Hatsan Hercules .45 caliber big bore rifle.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Sight-in
  • Trigger pull
  • Sight adjustments
  • Only one bullet
  • First target
  • Second target
  • Air still good
  • Third target
  • Summary

Wow! This report has taken a long time to write. Today we will see the accuracy of the Hatsan Hercules .45 caliber big bore air rifle.

Several things conspired to make this one take so long. The gun gave me a couple problems in the beginning. One (the fill port cover) was due to my not having a manual, but a faulty circular clip caused another one. I have had this rifle out to the range no less than 6 times, but my forgetting to bring the proprietary Hatsan fill probe caused one of the delays. And the Texas winter this year was a hard one that cancelled many range days. However, I finally got the Hercules out for an accuracy test, and today you will see the results. read more

Sub-1 crossbow: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sub-1 crossbow
Sub-1 crossbow.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Airgun shows
  • Crossbows
  • A lot to learn
  • Read the manual
  • Lightbulb!
  • Just like an airgun
  • Fire
  • Confidence
  • Shot 2
  • Shot 3
  • Arrow management
  • Summary

I am not writing a history report today, because there are too many things on my backlog. Not all of these reports are about airguns, as you can see by today’s title, but they are all pertainent to the subject at hand. This one more than most!

Airgun shows

First, here is a list of the airgun show dates that I know about.

Flag City Toys That Shoot airgun show April 14

Malvern Airgun Extravaganza — Arkansas — April 27 & 28 (For more information email

Gene Curtis Memorial Fun Shoot and Airgun Show — This one is not well publicized. It’s at the Tri-County Expo Center in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas May 18-20. I have no phone number or email address link yet. read more

Old versus new

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

  • Wait
  • Old airguns
  • Pistols?
  • Broomhandle Mauser M712
  • Lookalikes
  • Get it?
  • The moral

Are old airguns better than new ones? “Yes!” says the guy who likes them for their wood and steel. He doesn’t want any plastic on his guns. It bothers him that the firearm handguns of today are made from as much plastic as steel.


Hold on, brother! That plastic Glock that offends you so much has been test-fired 30,000 shots without a major failure. The 1911 you love so dearly was praised in 1910 for shooting 6,000 shots  with the same results. The Glock endured 5 times the punishment as your venerable Browning design.

The Glock is also built for ease of manufacture. It’s so simple that a guy can build one in his workshop, starting with a plastic frame that’s 80 percent finished. All it takes is a file, a drill and some time. Oh, and a lot of money! When it’s finished he will have about as much tied up as if he had bought the gun over the counter. But it is possible. read more

Crosman 2400KT CO2 Air Rifle — Part 14

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This is Part 14 of the Hiveseeker guest blog on the Crosman 2400KT. Today is titled Modding the Crosman 2400 family — Primer 3.

This is the most popular guest blog series we have ever published. Hiveseeker says it is the last in the series, but I think it might not be. You readers will help him decide.

If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me. Now, over to you, Hiveseeker.

Crosman 2400KT CO2 Air Rifle – Part 14
Modding the Crosman 2400 family — Primer 3
By Hiveseeker

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11
Part 12
Part 13

2400KT cover photo
The 2400KT CO2 Air Rifle that I modded for this report is only available directly from the Crosman Custom Shop. It is shown here disassembled with a mix of stock and modded parts. For scale, the background grid on all photos is one inch square. read more