They have the wrong twist rate!: Part 2

usby Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Been awhile
  • New airgunners
  • A better way
  • Doing what works
  • The point
  • Sharpening straight razors

Been awhile

Part 1 of this report was written way back in the beginning of February. I think the reason it’s taken me so long to get back to it is I titled it wrong. I will discuss that as we go, but first let me define who “they” are. In the words of comedian, Red Green, “They” are everybody who is not us. Now that that’s clear we can continue.

Part 1 was a treatise on twist rates and how they affect accuracy. As many of you are aware, I use this blog to school both new airgunners and also airgun manufacturers — who are often as ignorant of the facts as new airgunners, but cannot or will not admit it. No engineer who has just been hired by an airgun company is going to admit there is something he doesn’t know about guns! Heaven forbid! And neither is any CEO or owner of a company, because in their minds they are in a position of authority and should therefore know!

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How to sharpen a straight razor: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Dealers matter!
  • Let’s resume
  • Sharpening
  • All blades honed
  • Something new
  • Results
  • Care for the stones
  • Dress all waterstones?
  • How does it shave?
  • Proof of sharpness
  • Summary

Note to readers: This report was written over time and I was learning as I went. Parts 1 through 3 were written before I had done enough research to know what is right and, more importantly, what isn’t. Read them for enjoyment, but begin with Part 4 for the serious information of sharpening straight razors.

Boy, there were a lot of questions and discussion on Part 2 of this report! Today I will tell you how to both hone the razor and also how to take care of the waterstones that are so essential. And I have some things to clear up and correct.

As you recall, I’m writing this report to put myself in the shoes of a new airgunner. What is it like to not know what you don’t know, and don’t even know who or where to ask? That’s what it was like for me, learning how to sharpen a straight razor!

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How to sharpen a straight razor: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The goal
  • The proof
  • My mistakes
  • What had I learned?
  • Things to avoid
  • Sharpening a straight razor
  • Sharpening stone grits
  • After honing — the strop
  • What was wrong?
  • Research pays off
  • Summary

Note to readers: This report was written over time and I was learning as I went. Parts 1 through 3 were written before I had done enough research to know what is right and, more importantly, what isn’t. Read them for enjoyment, but begin with Part 4 for the serious information of sharpening straight razors.

I started this series so I could experience coming into a hobby as a new guy. That would make me more sympathetic to the thousands of readers who are either new to airguns or new to shooting altogether. It certainly did that, as you will learn today!

The goal

When I started this project, I had what I thought was a simple and straightforward goal — learning to sharpen a straight razor. That’s not any different than the guy who buys an air rifle to eliminate pests. But I completely underestimated the scope of the project — again, not unlike many new airgunners. And that’s a good thing because today you get to watch me make all the new-guy mistakes.

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Checking out a Diana RWS 34P: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Diana 34P
The Diana RWS 34P is a classic breakbarrel spring-piston air rifle.

This report covers:

  • The breech
  • Velocity JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Superdome
  • RWS Hobby
  • Firing behavior
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Next
  • Next
  • Evaluation

Today we are back with reader Geo791’s Diana 34P, and we’re looking at the velocity. This is a .22, and a fresh one should produce velocities and power in the same neighborhood as the Beeman R1, but not quite as powerful. George was never concerned about the power of his rifle — only the accuracy that he thought was sporadic. But I do plan to tune his rifle with a Vortek kit that was donated by Vortek for this series, so either way, he wins.

Power has little affect on accuracy. Sometimes if a shot cycle can be smoothed a lot you may see tighter groups, and other times if a weak powerplant is restored to new or better the airgun might shoot better. But typically I tell people that accuracy lies in the barrel and not in the tune. However, just because I say it doesn’t make it so. We shall see.

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Answering GrandpaDan — the biggest blog ever!

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

    • GrandpaDan
    • BB’s response
    • What can you do?
    • Velocity is not at fault
    • GrandpaDan continues
    • Staying with the brand name doesn’t always work
    • Back to GrandpaDan
    • BB responds
    • The solution?
    • GrandpaDan concludes
    • BB sums up
    • Geo791
    • BB’s last word to GrandpaDan

    You readers tell me you like it when I write about general topics. So, when I get a question from a reader, I try to answer him in this blog. Today’s report will be the biggest report I’ve ever written, because I’m going to include much of what the new reader has asked as the lead-in to my answers. I’ve also included another reader’s comment from the experimentation he has done to achieve more-or-less what the new reader is asking.

    Here we go.

    The new reader’s handle is GrandpaDan, and he signed-into the blog this past Monday. Here is his situation.

    GrandpaDan

    “I’ve been reading and researching airguns for a while. This grows out of frustration with my Gamo Hunter 440 in .22 cal. that I bought about 4 years ago to kill chipmunks. That year we were overrun with the critters. I had been running a trap-and-release program and had trapped 21 chipmunks when the state game folk told me that was illegal. Oh well, I’ll just get a spring gun and shoot the pests.

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Ballistic coefficient: What is it? Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Last week I republished Part 1 of this discussion about ballistic coefficients because I was out of town helping my sister. I’m back in the office, but Part 2 of this report is necessary to close the loop. So here we go.

This report covers:
• Review
• Today’s discussion
• Round balls
• Conical bullets
• Smokeless powder
• A big point
• Shape
• Round balls — again
• The bottom line

I’ve taken 11 months to return to this subject of ballistic coefficients (BC). That was in spite of some tremendous interest in Part 1 of this report last May.

I’m purposely avoiding all discussion of mathematics, which is difficult, since ballistics is a discipline that heavily employs mathematics. But I’m not qualified to write about the math; and, more importantly, I know that 99 percent of my readers would be turned off if I were to write the report that way.

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Why own a chronograph?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • No preaching
  • Evaluate an old airgun
  • Test pellets
  • Evaluate a tuneup
  • For detailed tuning and product development
  • What it isn’t

Today is my cataract surgery. I don’t know how well I will be able to function online for the next several days, so will you veteran readers please help the new guys? I know you always do, but I’m just telling you what’s happening.

If you have read this blog for very long you can answer the title question for yourself, because I write about chronographs all the time. I use them for big things like testing the health of a new acquisition (the Sharp Ace Target and the Sheridan Supergrade), and things more subtle (testing the Air Arms Galahad).

No preaching

I used to preach about when to use a chrono and when not to, but I’m not going to do that today. Use it whenever you like and for whatever reason suits you.

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