Pioneer model BB76 BB gun: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Pioneer BB gun
Pioneer BB76 BB gun.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • 1976
  • Getting ready to shoot
  • This is a big gun!
  • The firearm
  • And the key!
  • Look for them new in the box
  • Broken
  • Summary

I’ve got a strange one for you today. It’s a copy of a copy! This must be one of the strangest lookalike airguns ever made. And it copies a firearm that is itself just mimicking an era, without copying anything in particular.

1976

The American Bicentennial in 1976 was a gala year-long celebration. Grand parties were held and everyone was euphoric that the nation held together for 200 years. There were no end of special bicentennial commemorative items available. Even the airgun community had one — today’s topic gun, the Pioneer model BB76 BB gun. It is a 50-shot repeating spring-piston BB gun that cocks via a concealed underlever. It looks like a percussion rifle from a century earlier, and I think it was supposed to resemble a flintlock rifle of one additional century earlier. I guess most people don’t know the difference between a flintlock musket and a percussion rifle. read more


Remington 1875 BB and pellet revolver: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Remington 1875
Remington 1875 pellet and BB pistol.

This report covers:

  • Remington revolver
  • The start of single action cartridge revolvers
  • 1875 Remington
  • The Remington air pistol
  • .44 Remington cartridge
  • Pellets and BBs
  • CO2
  • Blister pack
  • Manual
  • Is this a REAL Remington?
  • Loads through the gate
  • Sights
  • Cylinder removes
  • Safety
  • Hammer stands proud
  • Summary

Remington revolver

Today I begin a review of the 1875 Remington revolver from Crosman. It is a smoothbore, but has 6 cartridges for shooting BBs and a second group of 6 cartridges for shooting pellets. They know you’re going to shoot both anyway, so why not do it right?

The start of single action cartridge revolvers

Colt came to market in 1873 with their Peacemaker, which was the first time they could legally make a firearm with a bored-through cylinder. That allowed the convenient use of cartridges, but had been blocked for years by Smith & Wesson, who made the first cartridge revolver in 1856 (the S&W website says 1857, but I have always heard 1856). When the S&W patent expired, other firearms manufacturers piled on fast. read more


Hellboy semiautomatic BB gun: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hellboy BB gun
The Hellboy BB gun is a realistic semiautomatic repeater.

This report covers:

  • Features
  • Realism
  • Sights
  • Carry handle
  • Stock
  • Magazine
  • What’s it for?
  • Summary

Today I start testing the Hellboy-BB-gun from Hellraiser — an Air Venturi brand. This is a semiautomatic BB repeater in the form of an M4 tactical rifle. Several readers have been waiting for this review, so here we go!

Features

Yes, the Hellboy is semiautomatic. Despite having a selector switch that has the Safe, Semi and Auto positions, the Auto position does nothing. The gun will still fire semiautomatically when the selector is in that position. The selector is located in the right place for anyone who has used an M16, M4 or AR-15. 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


Sheridan Supergrade: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sheridan Supergrade right
My new Sheridan Supergrade is in fantastic condition, despite the wood check at the butt.

Sheridan Supergrade left
The cheekpiece makes the Supergrade stand out!

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Adjustable trigger!
  • Trigger-pull
  • Courage arrives!
  • Safety
  • Adjust the bolt handle position
  • Velocity
  • Test 1.
  • Test 2.
  • Test 3.
  • Pump effort
  • Summary

We’re back at it with the Sheridan Supergrade today. I will get to the velocity testing, but there are still a couple more surprises before that.

Adjustable trigger!

That’s right; the Sheridan Supergrade came with an adjustable trigger! Imagine that — an airgun from the 1940s with a trigger that adjusts.

The trigger adjusted in a unique way — by changing the location of the sear spring on a notched bar. To do this the rifle has to be out of the stock, which is not as straightforward as it is with some guns, so I won’t do it today. But I may work up the courage to try it at some point in our test. read more


Air Venturi Dust Devil BBs: Part 2

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

This report covers:

  • How to test?
  • Test 1. A single-stack forced feed BB gun
  • Daisy BBs in the Daisy 25
  • Dust Devils in the Daisy 25
  • Power in the Daisy 25
  • Test 2. Gravity feed with a magnetic breech
  • Daisy BBs in the Red Ryder
  • Dust Devils in the Red Ryder
  • Power in the Red Ryder
  • Test 3. A CO2 gun with cartridges
  • Daisy BBs in the SAA/li>
  • Dust Devils in the SAA
  • Power in the SAA
  • Velocity comparison
  • Feeding
  • What’s next?

Today I begin testing the new Air Venturi Dust Devil BBs that you read about in Part 1. To say the interest is high is an understatement.

How to test?

How do you test something that’s so new that there isn’t much precedent? I decided on the following. In Part 1 we learned that the Dust Devils weigh about 4.35 grains, so they will go faster than conventional steel BBs that weigh about 5.1 grains. I thought that was the place to start, but with a twist.
Instead of just doing a velocity test, I thought I would select three different kinds of BB feed systems and also see how well Dust Devils feed in each of them. There are more than three types of BB feeding systems, so we won’t cover everything today, however, once we see how the Dust Devils compare to standard steel BBs we may not have to test their velocity any further in the future. We will see as this test unfolds. read more


Sig Sauer Spartan BB pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sig Spartan BB pistol
Sig Sauer Spartan BB pistol offers a lot of pistol at a budget price.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Install the CO2 cartridge
  • Velocity with Daisy BBs
  • Recoil
  • Air Venturi Copper-Plated BBs
  • H&N Smart Shot lead BBs
  • Trigger pull
  • Shot count
  • Evaluation so far

Today we look at the velocity of the Sig Spartan BB pistol. The specs rate it at 410 f.p.s. Today we find out. I will also comment on things like the blowback and the trigger. Let’s get started.

Install the CO2 cartridge

The first step is to put a fresh CO2 cartridge in the gun. It goes into the grip, of course. Lift off the left grip panel and then pull the mainspring housing from the back of the grip. That is the lower flat part of the grip that’s has a coarse raised pattern in the metal for a better grip. In the 1911 firearm, it houses the mainspring, but on this BB pistol it’s the lever that pierces the CO2 cartridge. read more