The Seneca Dragonfly multi-pump pneumatic rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Seneca Dragonfly
Air Venturi Seneca Dragonfly multi-pump air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Information
  • Irony
  • First impressions
  • Sights
  • Lubrication
  • Shot it immediately
  • Trigger
  • Reader’s comment
  • How hard to pump?
  • Nostalgic
  • Summary

There are always things at the SHOT Show that I am excited about testing, and today’s rifle is one of them. The Seneca Dragonfly is a new entrant into the multi-pump world. That’s a world that doesn’t get many new guns. It’s certainly not like the spring gun world! And yet the multi-pump camp has a host of dedicated followers who love it above all other airgun powerplants. I am excited to get a chance to test something new.

Information

The internet is both a blessing and a curse for every new product. On the positive side it gives broad exposure to each new offering. On the negative side it allows for uncontrolled gossip and innuendo. People can slander something they have never seen or will never see, and many who are gullible will believe them. read more


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


Beeman R9 with Vortek center-latching air piston: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Adjust the pressure
  • Filling
  • R9 disassembly and assembly
  • JSB Exact
  • Predator Polymag
  • H&N Field Target Trophy
  • H&N Baracuda
  • Crosman Premier
  • Benjamin Cylindrical
  • Discussion
  • Trigger
  • Cocking effort
  • Evaluation

Today we look at adjusting the Vortek Center Latching Air Piston, which I refer to as the center-latching unit (CLU). It went faster and easier than I imagined.

Adjust the pressure

To adjust the air pressure in the unit I had to disassemble the Beeman R9, to get the unit out. That procedure is described in Part 1. Once the unit is out, the piston seal has to be removed to reveal the air port.

Beeman R9 CLU port
Looking down into the fill port of the CLU we can see the ball valve.

To adjust the pressure in the CLU, first release all the air. That way you start from zero. The unit fills very fast from a hand pump and this is the best way to ensure accuracy. read more


Beeman R9 with Vortek center-latching air piston: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Today’s fill
  • JSB Exact
  • Predator Polymag
  • H&N Field Target Trophy
  • H&N Baracuda
  • Crosman Premiers
  • Benjamin Cylindricals
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Firing behavior
  • Summary

Today is velocity day for the Beeman R9 with the Vortek center-latching gas piston that I’m calling the center latching unit (CLU). Bear in mind as you read today’s test, that this unit allows the owner to adjust the pressure inside the gas piston — raising or lowering the velocity and cocking effort. So, this is the first of several tests of the unit.

Today’s fill

I filled the CLU to 675 psi when I installed it. So that’s how it’s set up today. I will test it with 6 different .20 caliber pellets — one more than Pyramyd Air carries, if you don’t count the felt Beeman cleaning pellets. Let’s get started. read more


Gamo’s Urban precharged air rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Gamo Urban
Gamo Urban.

This report covers:

  • Fill probe
  • Pellets
  • Shot count
  • Air Arms Diabolo Field
  • H&N Baracuda Match with 5.51mm heads
  • Evaluation
  • Trigger pull
  • Summary

Today we look at the velocity of the .22 caliber Gamo Urban. And the first string will be an interesting test, because I know the Urban is a BSA design. BSA PCPs do not use their air the same as other precharged air rifles. The Urban fills to 232 bar, which is 3365 psi. Normally that would present a challenge to anyone wanting to use a hand pump, because pumping to that pressure level is difficult for most adults. But testing done by Tyler Patner (watch his video on the Urban webpage) confirmed what I suspected from the start — the BSA-based powerplant in the Urban doesn’t use the pressure above 3000 psi efficiently. It only becomes smooth when the pressure drops below 3,000 psi — the same as the BSA Hornet I used to own. Tyler found the best string of shots was between 2900 psi and 1500 psi. If I find the test rifle performs similarly I will constrain all my tests to that lower maximum pressure. It won’t make much difference at 25 yards, but it will at 50. read more


Umarex Gauntlet: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gauntlet
Umarex Gauntlet.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

This report covers:

  • JSB Exact Heavy
  • H&N Baracuda Match with 4.50mm heads
  • Decision time
  • Crosman Premier 10.5-grain heavies
  • Another decision
  • JSB Exact Heavies
  • H&N Baracuda Match
  • Summary of this test
  • Bug Buster scope and P.O.I. mounts

Today we start looking at the accuracy of the new .177 caliber Umarex Gauntlet. I think this report will be interesting to many of you. Let’s get started.

JSB Exact Heavy

The rifle was already sighted-in from the last report, so I loaded 10 JSB Exact Heavy pellets into the magazine and started shooting from 25 yards. Yes — I said 10 pellets. I forgot about skipping pellet number 2 and loaded the entire magazine. Shot one went fine but the mag jammed on shot 2. I didn’t force it. I just pushed it out and resumed shooting. This target has 9 pellets instead of 10, and they made a very vertical group at 25 yards that measures 0.704 inches between centers. 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.

Wait

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