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

SHOT Show 2018: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

This report covers:

  • Traffic was down
  • Sig
  • Sig magazines
  • Hatsan
  • Crosman
  • Umarex USA
  • ASG
  • Conclusion

Today I will give you the final report on the 2018 SHOT Show. Did I save the best for last? That’s for you to decide.

Traffic was down

Every SHOT Show is larger than the previous one, but not this year. I would estimate attendance was down by 10-20 thousand, based on how open the aisles were on the first 2 days. Some booth holders lamented about it, but all of the ones I talked to who actually write business at the show (take orders for the year) told me business was up. I think the tire-kickers stayed home and only the serious buyers came. Let’s get started!


The new Sig breakbarrel is a landmark air rifle, but it wasn’t all that I saw in their booth. The next exciting thing was the new Sig Super Target single stroke pneumatic target pistol! When I pumped it I was surprised by how easy it is! This may be a target air pistol that many women and older children can cock. That is a landmark achievement, because I had been holding out for the Daisy 499 to be made into a pistol for the same purpose. If a Daisy 747 single stroke pistol takes 20 lbs. to pump, this pistol takes 10 or less. I was told that the velocity is around the 300+ f.p.s. mark, which is in the Daisy ballpark. The trigger is very nice and I can’t wait to test one! read more

The Golden Rule

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The foundation
  • Airgun Breakfast
  • How things developed
  • Next year
  • Undaunted
  • Progress
  • AirForce
  • Time marches on
  • Back to Crosman
  • Challenger PCP
  • Summary

I’m using the history section for a special report today. It’s history, but also very recent. Last Thursday when I started the report on the Diana Stormrider, reader William Schooley asked me the following question.

“Thought this might might be an interesting 3P juniors PCP rifle until you reported the 20 FPE and 26 FPE numbers. Something tells me that this rifle will exceed rule 4.1.7 limit of 600 fps muzzle velocity.

Will someone please explain why there are no sporter class PCP’s on the market that have been submitted for inclusion on the approved rifle list (Rule 4.2.1) at a $200 price point?

When that happens, that will be a PCP rifle a junior can purchase with their own allowance and odd job money and shoot at 3P and 4P matches. read more

2017 Findlay airgun show: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Here we go
  • Wire-stock Daisy
  • What is Findlay?
  • 10-meter airguns
  • Sold some stuff
  • What about a big bore?
  • Were modern airguns there?
  • Toys, too
  • The Larc
  • There is more

Here we go

Yesterday’s report was just a lead-in. Today I want to tell you about the show. First — it was large. It was held in two rooms, with hallways and out-of-the-way nooks also being used. And every table was filled! This was a show you could spend many happy hours seeing just one time. And the tables changed over time, so your second time through things were different. People bought stuff from the public that attended, plus they brought out some of the stuff they didn’t unpack in the beginning. It was an all-day affair!

Findlay crowd
This is a long shot of the main show room. The floor of this room is an indoor soccer field, and it was filled! read more

2017 Findlay airgun show: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Stupid me
  • The show
  • Pyramyd Air
  • William Schooley
  • Crosman — this is for you
  • Stuff at the show
  • Remington model 26 BB gun
  • IZH 46M
  • Pyramyd Air — again!
  • Best for last

Stupid me

Well, the verdict in in — I’m stupid! I have a case of ignorance for which there is no cure. I just drove 2,400 miles to attend a one-day airgun show that I had hoped to report to you, and forgot to take my camera! Took the charger and some flash drives so I could transfer the images — just didn’t take the picture-taker thingy!

Fortunately for me, I live in an age where there are safety nets everywhere for people like me. My smart phone has a better camera built into it than the first digital camera I owned. Let me show you how good it is.

I was in Illinois, flying down the road at 6 a.m., when I saw one of those tractor/trailers that has aerodynamic flaps on the rear of the trailer. It reminded me of a diabolo pellet, except the purpose of these flaps is not to create drag, but instead to smooth out the air behind the trailer and lower the drag. That gives the tractor pulling the trailer better fuel mileage. The flaps can be deployed, as shown here, or folded flat and out of the way. read more

Am I alone…?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • The questions
  • Some answers
  • The risk
  • The good news
  • Sheridan Blue Streak
  • The point

I received this comment to an older blog yesterday.

The questions

“Am I alone in wanting a Single-Stroke Pneumatic with more authority than a 10 meter or Canada-friendly option [power/velocity]? The gun I want the most would be:

1. A side lever or forearm lever single stroke pneumatic, to eliminate the need for the artillery hold and the kick of a springer and the barrel alignment issues of a break barrel.

2. Powerful enough to hunt small game humanely. Since the current 10 meter offerings seem to top out at under 5 ft./lbs. I would probably buy anything over 2/3 the muzzle energy and of comparable quality and price to the Diana 350 Magnum or Gamo Whisper Fusion 1300 springers I currently own. read more

The eclectic collector

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • 10-meter airguns
  • Motivation
  • Sometimes things stick
  • Guns I’ve had my fill of
  • Guns I can live without
  • Airguns I have no desire to own
  • Do my tastes ever change?
  • I like funky!
  • Virtual collection

When I tell people what I do for a living they invariably say, “Oh, you collect airguns?”

I really don’t collect airguns in the traditional sense. A collector is someone who amasses a collection of some sort. It may be large or it may be quite small, but it has a definable theme that is foremost in the collector’s mind and heart. And the true collector never parts with a piece unless it gets replaced by a better one. I don’t do that. I own certain airguns for a while, then part with them to make room (in both the house and the budget) for others. Let me give you an example. read more