Diana model 30 gallery gun: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana model 30 gallery gun
Diana model 30 gallery gun.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Description
  • Caliber 4.4mm
  • The fix
  • Power was intermittent
  • Rifled
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Apparently there have been three Dianas model 30. Blue Book of Airguns calls them out and tells us the differences. Last week there was some confusion about which Diana model 30 airgun I was referring to in a comment, and when I clarified it one of our readers asked for a report. It happened that I then visited a friend who has a model 30 gallery gun, and he told me it wasn’t working. I said I would try to get it working again if I could test it for the blog, so here we go.

Description

The Diana model 30 gallery gun is a spring-piston rifle that uses a bolt to cock the mainspring. It’s similar in function to a great many other bolt-action airguns like the Schmeisser model 33, the Anschütz model 275, the Haenel model 310 that copies the Anschütz, and even the Czech models VZ35 and VZ48. All of those airguns are rifles like this one, but if we expand the list to include smoothbores we have to acknowledge the Mars models 85, 100 and 115. There are probably others I haven’t mentioned. read more


Crosman 102 multi-pump pneumatic repeater: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman 102
Crosman’s 102 is a .22 caliber multi-pump repeater.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Clearing the jam
  • The jam
  • Assembly
  • Accuracy
  • Re-sighting
  • Crosman Premiers
  • Crosman wadcutters
  • 10-shots
  • Discussion
  • Summary

You may recall that the Crosman 102 jammed last time I tested it and I had to clear it before continuing. I did that and today we will shoot it at 25 yards. First, let’s clear the jam.

Clearing the jam

Crosman designed the 102 to be easy to clear, but without a manual I had to discover it for myself. The rear peep sight slides to either side, revealing a hole through which many jammed pellets can be removed.

Crosman 102 jam hole
Pull the bolt back and rod the pellet out of the breech. It will fall out this hole.

My jam was more involved, though, and I had to partially disassemble the action to clear it. The top receiver cover is held on by one shoulder bolt that has a large thumbscrew head. Remove it and the top cover slides back and off the receiver. The peep sight is attached to the cover by a rivet and comes off with the cover. read more


My day at Sig Sauer: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

ASP20
Sig Sauer’s new ASP20 gas spring breakbarrel air rifle breaks ground in many areas! The safety is on both sides of the stock. Photo provided by Sig Sauer.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • Update
  • Sig Super Target pistol
  • Sig X-Five
  • M17
  • It’s over!
  • Dinner
  • Summary

Update

When we closed Part 3 I said I was done with the ASP20 until the test, but I overlooked a couple very important things. Several of you asked me where the safety is and it is shown in the pictures several times. It’s on the right side of the stock. And also on the left side! Yes, the ASP 20 is 100 percent ambidextrous. The safety is manual and slides forward and back.

I also forgot to mention that the rifle comes with a Picatinney rail welded on top, so scope mounting will be a breeze. This type of scope base is replacing the 11mm dovetail rail and most new spring guns have one. read more


My day at Sig Sauer: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Sig Sauer at work
  • The tour
  • Security
  • Ground rules
  • Rapid change
  • The big deal
  • Finishing
  • Test firing
  • ASP20
  • The engineers
  • Ed Schutz takes over
  • Laser-welded parts
  • Precision fixtures for every process
  • The cocking shoe
  • Summary

Last week a number of airgun writers and editors were invited to Sig Sauer in New Hampshire, to witness the start of the ASP20 production line and to tour the Exeter facilities. Those who attended were Tom McHale who writes for American Handgunner, Shooting Illustrated, Concealed Carry Magazine and too many other publications and website to list. Kristen Voss from the digital side of the NRA’s American Rifleman magazine was also there. Terry Doe and Dan Chart were there from Archant Limited, the publisher of Airgun World and Air Gunner magazines in the United Kingdom. John Bright of Highland Outdoors, a worldwide firearms and related products distributor in the UK was also there. I was there representing this blog and Firearms News in the US. read more


It’s always something!

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Don’t dabble
  • Retail sales
  • Prisoner joke 49
  • Mr. Fix-it
  • Success — sort of
  • Sell your skill
  • Build a better mousetrap
  • What am I saying?

Today I am writing to those readers who think they would like to have a business that deals with airguns. I hear from people all the time who think they would like to be involved in the airgun business. Sometimes they ask for advice. Here it comes, whether or not you asked.

Don’t dabble

The first thing I look for in a person who wants to get into the airgun business (or any business, for that matter) is passion. Do they have passion for what they say they want to do? If a person tells me they are retired and just want to dabble in airguns I tell them that’s like dabbling in skydiving. At some point you have to jump, and then you DEFINITELY have to pull the ripcord! Skydiving gets real serious real fast. read more


Daisy Model 99 Target Special: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

Part 1

Daisy 99
Daisy Model 99 Target Special.

This report covers:

  • Leather seals
  • Back to the 99
  • Velocity Daisy BBs
  • Velocity Air Venturi Steel BBs
  • Velocity Air Venturi Dust Devils
  • More on the Dust Devil
  • Other BBs
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation so far
  • Coming up

Today is velocity day for the Daisy Model 99 Target Special and I have prepared for it. When I started Part 1, I oiled the gun with a healthy dose of Crosman Pellgunoil. The synthetic piston seal on the plunger (in a BB gun the piston is called a plunger) needs the oil to seal the compression chamber. Lack of oil in a BB gun will cause temporary low power until the seal is oiled. Then the gun will return to life and act like new. It happens so fast and dramatically that it will surprise you the first time you encounter it.

Leather seals

Older BB guns had leather plunger seals that take longer to renew — maybe 15-20 shots. But they do come back in the same way after oiling. The oil needs time to soak into the seal. The most dramatic example of this I ever saw was an 1880s BB pistol that my wife Edith bought at a flea market in the late 1990s. After a breech plug was fashioned for it the gun shot like it did when new, only the spring and leather seal were at least 110 years old. If that isn’t surprising I don’t know what is! read more


Daisy Targeteer shooting gallery: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

Part 1
Part 2

Targeteer shooting gallery
Daisy Targeteer shooting gallery.

This report covers:

  • Velocity
  • Ebay comes through!li>
  • Target
  • The test
  • First 10 shots
  • What about Daisy steel shot?
  • Bottom line

Today is accuracy day for the old Daisy Targeteer I’m testing. In Part two I showed you how I solved the feeding problem and got my pistol back to operational condition, though “operational” is a stretch. It’s weak and there is nothing that can be done about it. Today I will show you how I made a target to test the accuracy of the Targeteer.

Velocity

This is just a reminder of what we are dealing with. I have to shoot either original Daisy steel BBs, which are collectable in their own right, or number 6 birdshot. The birdshot is easy enough to get, but it has to be sorted by dropping it through the shot tube. If you don’t you’ll get one stuck and have to deal with it. The Daisy BBs go about 120 f.p.s. and the birdshot goes about 105 f.p.s., so neither one is powerful enough to go through a paper target. I will address that in a moment, but first let me tell you what I did about the shot. read more