Smell the roses!

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Price-Point PCP
  • Silencers
  • Lookalikes
  • More lookalikes
  • $100 PCP
  • More than just guns
  • Hand pumps
  • Compressors
  • Airgun technology
  • Big bores
  • There’s more

Today’s report came to me as I was planning to test the accuracy of the Umarex Legends Ace in the Hole revolver. I have so many tests waiting for my time, but today’s report had to come first.

Gentlemen — we are living in airgunning’s Golden Age. I know I have written that many times, but today I would like to reflect on all the good things that are happening in our world. Let me start with the Price-Point PCP.

Price-Point PCP

When I got into precharged pneumatics in 1995, I was dragged into it kicking and screaming. No PCP rifle cost less than $600 in that day (think $900 today) and the high-pressure hand pump had just been invented. I had to use a 3000 psi aluminum scuba tank that cost an additional $120 and I had to beg the local dive shop to fill it for me. I actually created a release form that I signed and left on file with them to absolve them from all risk of selling air to a non dive-certificated person! That might sound extreme in 2018, but in 1995 that was the way it was done, and plenty of dive shops refused to sell us air. read more

The Right Now pellet and BB trap

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier*

This report covers:

  • The project
  • Attach the pan to the board
  • Now the duct seal
  • Finished trap
  • Put trap inside a box
  • Time?
  • Bottom
  • Future of the trap

I know that many of you readers are craftsmen, so today’s blog may disturb you a bit. You see, old BB is going to build something. I had a problem and found a very good (read that as cheap) way to solve it. I call it the Right Now pellet and BB trap.

One of the pastors at my church has a 9 year-old son who is very interested in guns. He’s a shy kid until he starts talking about guns. Then his eyes light up and he gets excited. I feel like I am looking at myself, threescore years ago.

I have been giving the boy my old gun magazines and he is soaking them up like a sponge. I also gave him a couple gun books that he and his father read together. His dad is not a gun guy, either, so I’m really working with two pupils here. 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

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

Air Venturi Dust Devil BBs: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Dust Devil box
Air Venturi Dust Devils will hit the market in a few months.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Daisy 499
  • Colt Single Action Army
  • Loading problems
  • Red Ryder
  • Conclusions
  • Summary

On Monday I got my right eye laser cleaned, so now it is back to as good as it will get. That means I can start doing accuracy testing again. For today’s report I tried the AirVenturi Dust Devil frangible BBs in three BB guns with three different feeding systems.

The test

I shot at 5 meters seated and used the UTG Monopod as a shooting rest. I shot five shots per target only because this test was very long. Let’s get started.

Daisy 499

The first gun was the Daisy Avanti Champion 499, which we know is the world’s most accurate BB gun. With this gun I used Avanti Precision Ground shot, because it is made especially for the gun. The use of any other premium BB in a 499 is a waste of time and money, because only this shot allows the gun to do what it does. Predictably, five BBs went into a group that measures 0.202-inches between centers. The group is high and left of the bull, so I must have bumped the rear sight. But I did not adjust the sight during the test. read more

Where are airguns today?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Spring-piston guns
  • The price-point PCP
  • High-pressure air compressors
  • Action air pistols
  • It’s been done before
  • Airgun shows
  • Hunting
  • They’re listening now!
  • Summary

After writing 6 reports on the SHOT Show I thought it was time to look at all that has happened in airgunning in recent years. We are in a golden age of experimentation and refinement, and it’s good to stop and reflect on that for a moment.

Spring-piston guns

If you had asked me what the future of the spring gun was before I attended this SHOT Show I would have told you that everything that could be done had been done. Then, at the show, I saw not one but two novel new breakbarrels.

Crosman has their new Akura breakbarrel with the Precision Barrel Lock or PBL. It is a novel new way of locking the breech at the shot by using some of the compressed air to push a pin back into the spring tube. The rest of the rifle is a straightforward gas spring breachbarrel, but the question we have to ask is why they felt it necessary to lock the breech this way. A few other airguns use mechanical locks that are operated by the user, so there must be an advantage to locking the breech, but will we see it when I test the Akura? read more

A vintage Daisy Number 25: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Daisy 25
Vintage Daisy Number 25.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Getting used to the Number 25
  • Not a double feed
  • Settling down
  • The test
  • First target
  • Second target
  • Third target
  • Fourth target
  • Conclusion

I’m skipping the velocity testing on this Daisy Number 25 pump gun because I already did it in Part 2 of the report on the Dust Devil BBs. The two BBs I will use today are the Daisy Premium Grade BB and the Dust Devil. The Daisy BB averaged 360 f.p.s. in the vintage Daisy 25 I’m testing and the Dust Devil averaged 365 f.p.s.. That’s really too close to call.

Getting used to the Number 25

It’s been some time since I shot this BB gun and I forgot a number of things. The first was that the 50-shot forced feed magazine always fires two BBs on the first shot. They aren’t a double feed. One is already in the breech when the shot tube is installed and the other loads when the gun is cocked. read more