Air Venturi Dust Devil BBs: Part 3

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
Part 2

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Daisy 499
  • Colt Single Action Army
  • Loading problems
  • Red Ryder
  • Conclusions
  • Summary

On Monday I got my right eye laser cleaned, so now it is back to as good as it will get. That means I can start doing accuracy testing again. For today’s report I tried the AirVenturi Dust Devil frangible BBs in three BB guns with three different feeding systems.

The test

I shot at 5 meters seated and used the UTG Monopod as a shooting rest. I shot five shots per target only because this test was very long. Let’s get started.

Daisy 499

The first gun was the Daisy Avanti Champion 499, which we know is the world’s most accurate BB gun. With this gun I used Avanti Precision Ground shot, because it is made especially for the gun. The use of any other premium BB in a 499 is a waste of time and money, because only this shot allows the gun to do what it does. Predictably, five BBs went into a group that measures 0.202-inches between centers. The group is high and left of the bull, so I must have bumped the rear sight. But I did not adjust the sight during the test. read more


SHOT Show 2018: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • The big news
  • Benjamin Fortitude
  • Marauder Field and Target
  • Akura
  • Traveler
  • SigASP20
  • Tight breech and no droop
  • The trigger
  • AirForce E-Pump

I will start the third day on the SHOT Show floor with Crosman. They always have loads of new products and this year was no exception. I actually had to visit the booth two separate times to get what I am about to tell you.

The big news

So — what’s the big news at Crosman? I guess that depends on what interests you, but since I am defining this year’s show as the battle of the price-point PCPs (precharged pneumatic rifles with upscale features selling for under $300), let’s start with the Fortitude.

Benjamin Fortitude

Benjamin’s new Fortitude PCP is regulated, a repeater and has a shroud. It is positioned between the Discovery and the Marauder. read more


A vintage Daisy Number 25: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Daisy 25
Vintage Daisy Number 25.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • SHOT Show
  • A great find!
  • My interest
  • My collection
  • This BB gun
  • Cocking
  • Takedown
  • Number 25?
  • Sights
  • Summary

SHOT Show

I am at the SHOT Show in Las Vegas this week. Today I am at Media Day at the Range, where I get to shoot any airguns that are there. Not every dealer attends this event, but about 200 of them do and I get to shoot not only airguns, but any firearms I want. Imagine 200 firing ranges, side-by-side, a quarter-mile long with 2,000 shooters.

Having said that, when I return, I have to write tomorrow’s blog with pictures and get it up before I go to a hosted dinner at 6:30. The blog publishes at 9 pm, here on the West Coast, so I’m getting crunched on both ends. My reports will be slim and telegraphic this week. I’ll have more to say when I’m back in the office next week. read more


The Beeman R10/HW 85: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

HW 85
Weihrauch HW 85.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Lead Sled
  • Rifle rested on sandbag
  • The artillery hold
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today I will shoot my vintage HW85 at 50 yards for you. One thing I’m testing is whether resting the rifle on a Caldwell Lead Sled will improve accurate. Reader Bob from Oz says it will. We’ll see.

The test

The day was perfect for a test like this. It was 34 degrees with just a hint of a breeze. I shot in three different positions that I’ll describe as we go. The rifle is still sighted in for 25 yards, so the pellets dropped about 3 inches at 50 yards. And I used the Crosman Premier pellet that has worked so well for this rifle in the past. read more


Weihrauch’s HW55SF: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

HW 55SF
HW 55SF.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Rob velocity?
  • H&N Finale Match Light
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Qiang Yuan Olympic
  • RWS R10 Match Pistol
  • Discussion
  • So, what?
  • Cocking effort
  • Firing cycle
  • Summary

Today we look at the velocity of the HW 55SF target rifle I tuned back in November. If you read Part 4 you’ll see that I just applied Tune in a Tube grease (TIAT) to the mainspring and got great results. Some readers ask me to use TIAT over and over again on different airguns, apparently not convinced that it works as well as it does. But when they break down and try it, they see for themselves. This stuff really works!

Rob velocity?

But what does it do to the velocity? This is a low-powered spring rifle and we know that thick grease can rob velocity. We have the baseline velocity data I gathered in Part 2 to compare to, so today I will re-test the rifle with the same pellets. Let’s get right to it. read more


The Beeman R10/HW 85: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

HW 85
Weihrauch HW 85.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Premiers are best
  • By the triggerguard
  • Extended hold
  • Resting on the bag
  • Getting tired
  • Evaluation
  • Summary

Today will be something a little different. In the previous report reader Siraniko asked me why I changed my artillery hold when I moved from the 10-meter accuracy test to the 25 yard test. Reader GunFun1 picked up on that question and wondered how we would know which hold was best. That made sense, plus I enjoy shooting this rifle, so I promised to do another 25-yard test in which all I change is the hold. That’s what I’m doing today.

Premiers are best

Without question Crosman Premiers turned in the tightest group in that last test, so they were the only pellet I used for this test. I began the test with the same artillery hold I used in the last report — my off hand held under the middle of the cocking slot. No particular reason for holding it there last time, except the farther out I hold it the more stable the rifle seems. By that I mean that the crosshairs don’t dance all around the target. It makes the rifle easier to hold, which is as good a reason as any, I guess. read more


Owning vintage airguns

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Only new for me!
  • The RidgeRunner story
  • Kevin’s story
  • Whacky Wayne
  • Hey, BB — where are the airguns?
  • A lot of them can be fixed
  • Vintage pneumatics
  • Shaving is the best test
  • Blade shape and thickness
  • Don’t forget CO2
  • Summary

Reader Michael gave me the idea for this report when he made a comment to yesterday’s blog, referring to my discussion of the bent versus unscragged mainspring.

“I suppose, too, that if a particular air gun is firing or cocking abnormally, a bent mainspring is one of the usual suspects.”

That comment is so true that it started my brain firing on both cylinders! The bottom line is — what’s it like to own a vintage airgun?

Only new for me!

Some of you steadfastly refuse to look at vintage airguns, for fear you will encounter some problem that can’t be fixed. Does that ever happen? You bet it does! Have a look at my greatest failure — the pogostick repeater. Read that report and look at the pictures. After I wrote that I gave the rifle to former reader Vince, who attempted to put it back to being a vintage Diana. He failed, too, and today it’s just a pile of parts somewhere. read more