Winchester 422: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Winchester 422
Winchester’s 422 is another lower-powered breakbarrel from the 1960s and ’70s.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

History of airguns

This report covers:

  • Told you!
  • The test
  • RWS Hobby
  • RWS Meisterkugeln Rifle
  • RWS Superpoint
  • RWS R10 Match Heavy
  • RWS R10 Match Pistol
  • RWS Superdomes
  • What to do?
  • H&N Baracuda Match with 4.50mm heads
  • Summary

Today we test the Winchester 422/Diana 22 with the new front sight attached. Reader Breeze was kind enough to donate this sight to the cause.

422 front sight
Reader Breeze sent me this new Diana front sight to replace the bent one. Thank you, Breeze!

422 sight installed
The new front sight looks great on the rifle!

Told you!

It’s a day for reader GunFun1 to put on his , “Told you so!” shoes, because the barrel is definitely bent up. But what I didn’t know until today is it may also be bent a little to the right. Looking at the front sight through the rear notch, it seems off to the right a little. We’ll see what happens as the test progresses. read more


Walther LP2 target pistol: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Walther LP2 left
Walther LP2 single stroke pneumatic target pistol.

Part 1
Part 2

History of airguns

This report covers:

  • The test
  • H&N Finale Match Light
  • Adjusted the rear sight
  • Second Finale Match Light group
  • The trigger
  • Gamo Match
  • H&N Match Green
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • RWS R10 Match Pistol
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Today  we look at the accuracy of the Walther LP2 single-stroke-pneumatic air pistol. We saw the test group that came with the pistol in Part 2. It’s serial-numbered to this pistol, so we have a good point of comparison.

You will remember that this pistol was resealed by Scott Pilkington for the velocity test in Part 2. With lightweight target pellets the pistol averages 330-350 f.p.s. That’s not blistering, but a 10-meter pistol doesn’t need to be. What it does need is a good trigger, good sights and a good ergonomic set of grips. Let’s see what this LP2 has. read more


Walther LP2 target pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Walther LP2 left
Walther LP2 single stroke pneumatic target pistol.

Part 1

History of airguns

This report covers:

  • LP2 valve weak?
  • Differences between the LP2 and LP3
  • Velocity
  • RWS Hobby
  • Gamo Match
  • H&N Finale Match Light
  • Trigger
  • Pumping effort
  • LP3 velocity
  • Accuracy
  • Summary

As you learned in Part 1, my new/old Walther LP2 target pistol did not work when I got it. So I sent it to Scott Pilkington for repairs. Scott had to disassemble it first to see what it needed and then order the parts. I received the pistol back this Wednesday and it is now working fine — thanks, Scott!

LP2 valve weak?

I have always heard that the LP2 has a weak valve that’s subject to failure. It was apparently corrected when the LP3 came out. Whether that is true or not I can’t say, because this is the first working LP2 I have seen and handled. I have owned two LP3s in the past. The first was the model that had the full target grips and the second one had the sporter grips that look like the grips on this LP2. I have seen several LP2s at airgun shows but they were always non-functional. read more


Crosman Mark I and II reseal

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Today’s report is a guest blog from reader Ian McKee who writes as 45 Bravo. He’s going to tell us about the Crosman Mark I pistol he recently acquired and what he did to fix the leak it came with.

If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me.

A history of airguns

Over to you, Ian.

Crosman Mark I and II reseal

by Ian McKee
Writing as 45Bravo

This report covers:

  • Just kidding!
  • Four major changes over the years
  • I got this one cheap
  • It’s mine!
  • Bringing it back to life
  • BB’s end cap
  • Resealing both caps
  • How did it go?
  • Outer barrel removal
  • Wrong o-rings

Back in December 2018, and January 2019, B.B. reviewed a classic Crosman Mark I pistol in .22 caliber.

There were many comments about how it worked internally, and how the power adjuster worked, so today I thought I would give you a little peek inside the gun.

Mark II disassembled
Here is your peek of a disassembled pistol. This is actually a Mark II I photographed some time back. The parts of the two pistols are identical except for those pertaining to the caliber.

Thank you, that concludes today’s blog.

 

Just kidding!

I could not do that to you. Here is a synopsis to refresh your memory.

The Crosman Mark I and Mark II (.22 and .177 calibers, respectively) pistols are airgun versions of the classic Ruger Mark I and Mark II .22 rimfire pistols. They share the same grip angle, sight profile, and overall profile of the iconic Ruger rimfire pistol.

Ruger Marl 1
Ruger’s Mark I pistol.

All Crosman Mark air pistols retained an adjustable trigger throughout their production run, which was 1966 to 1986, but had other changes in their design over the years.

Four major changes over the years

The flip-style piercing cap was changed to a button-style piercing cap, similar to what’s found on the Smith & Wesson 78/79-series air pistols.

The metal bolt guide that was secured in the frame by a screw on either side below the rear sight was changed to a plastic bolt guide that is retained by 1 screw that’s hidden under the rear sight blade.

The power-adjusting screw that was located under the barrel was eliminated.

And to hold the grips they changed from using screws with countersunk heads to screws with flat heads, as shown.

Mark I grip screws
There are two different grip screw head profiles and grips that match them.

If you use the countersunk screws on grips made for flat-head screws, you will crack them, and it is not easy to find replacements.

There were some other minor changes over the years, but these were the big ones.

I have been a big fan of these pistols over the years, and have owned and resealed more of these than I have of the Smith & Wesson 78/79G series. In my opinion, the adjustable triggers of the Crosman guns are better than the adjustable triggers of the S&W guns. The engineer that designed these air pistols later had a hand in the design of the Smith & Wesson guns.

I got this one cheap

I saw this pistol online with a $50 or best offer price tag, and no photo. These two things together usually tell me to run away and let someone else take the chance.

I got to thinking I could always use it for parts, so I took the bait and contacted the seller. I found out he lived not too far away, and decided on a face-to-face look at the pistol.

He sent some fuzzy photos by text, that didn’t help my feelings about the deal.

In the ad he said the gun had leaks. When I finally saw it, it was one of the roughest Mark Is I have ever seen. It had been repainted several times, and at some point, someone had covered the bare spots with a permanent marker to make it all black again.

Mark I right
Right side.

Mark I left
Left side.

I put a CO2 cartridge in it and it vented all of the gas out of the piercing cap while I shot it a few times. [Editor’s note: Doing this in front of the seller is a big negotiating tip, because it emphasizes the fact that his gun doesn’t work!]

From this short examination I knew 3 things:

1. This was an early model Crosman Mark I in good mechanical condition.

2. All of the parts were there.

3. It did NOT leak out of the barrel, when it vented the gas.

It’s mine!

I made a ridiculously low offer, and he accepted. When I got it back home and on the bench, I started by cleaning off the permanent marker with alcohol.

I knew it was an older model, but did not realize how old, as in serial number 000659! There is not even a date code.

Mark I serial number
This is an early Mark I.

I now own one of the first ones made and also one of the last ones made.

Bringing it back to life

I put a second CO2 cartridge in it to check it out on the bench. It vented the gas in about 30 seconds and it all came from the piercing cap. That told me the valve seal was still good.

I shot it over the chrono as it was venting. The gun was cold from the CO2 cool-down, but it still registered 485 f.p.s.

Most times the leak is because the tiny o-ring in the piercing cap deteriorates. The piercing pin moves up and down in the older models by a lever. You flip the lever one way to pierce the CO2 cartridge, then return to its normal position to let the CO2 into the gun.

Some online disassembly guides say you have to remove the snap ring at the bottom of the cap and then drive out a roll pin. That is the hard way. The easy way is to use a 3/8-inch wide (9.5mm) screwdriver blade in the slot inside the piercing cap. Use it to unscrew the cover that contains the 006-sized o-ring.

This cover is threaded and acts as a screw to hold the small o-ring in place. It looks in the photo like the piercing pin will prevent unscrewing it, but the end of the pin is actually below the screw slots. Remove this cover. In a moment I will describe and show a newer style end cap that has some different parts and comes apart differently.

With the cover off, use a dental pick to remove the old o-ring. It is probably hardened and will break into fragments when you pick at it. It may not even look like an o-ring, but it is tight around the base of the piercing pin.

Once all the small pieces are out of the cap and the o-ring groove is clean, lightly lubricate the new o-ring with your choice of lube, center the new o-ring over the piercing pin, and push it into its recess. Then screw the cover back into place over the o-ring.

Mark I cap 1
The screwdriver fits into the slots on either side and unscrews the cover. The tip of the piercing pin is below the slots. The cap looks brassy in this photo but it is really steel.

Mark I cap 2
This picture with a different angle shows how the o-ring sits at the base of the piercing pin. read more


Walther LGV Olympia: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Walther LGV Olympia
Walther’s LGV Olympia is one of the last recoiling spring piston target rifles.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Background
  • Several versions
  • Heavy
  • Locking barrel
  • Tight breech
  • Light cocking
  • Top Olympia
  • Sights
  • The plan

Background

During the 1960s, spring-piston target air rifles reached their high water mark. There was the Anschutz model 250, the FWB model 150/300, the Weihrauch HW 55 and, in 1963, the Walther LGV joined the fun. The LGV was the last in a long line of target breakbarrel rifles from Walther that started in the 1950s with the LG 51.

The immediate predecessor of the LGV, the Walther LG 55, is well-known as a fine European club gun. The LGV took that one step farther — the final step for recoiling Walther target air rifles. Although it’s a recoiling spring-piston rifle, the LGV is so smooth and heavy that it is almost recoilless. It was produced in one form or another from 1963 until 1972.

Several versions

There are several different versions of LGVs, and mine is the first model called the Olympia that has rounded corners on the wood. I owned another Olympia LGV years ago that had a matte finish on all the barrel jacket to cut the reflection, but this current one is probably an older model that has all deeply polished metal finished in a deep black oxide. The polish is fully the equal of a Whiscombe or a Colt Python with the royal blue finish.

Heavy

The forearm contains a lead weight to make the rifle decidedly muzzle-heavy, as target rifles are supposed to be. The rifle weighs 10.5 lbs., or just about one pound more than a 1903 bolt-action Springfield battle rifle. It’s very muzzle-heavy, not only from the lead weight in the stock but also from the heavy steel jacket that surrounds the barrel.

 

Walther LGV Olympia barrel nut
The heavy jacket around the barrel is for added weight up front. A large nut holds it tight to the barrel.

Locking barrel

Casual observers will spot the barrel latch immediately. Like Weihrauch’s HW 55 target rifle, Walther provided the LGV with a special latch to positively lock the heavy barrel closed. The LGV was the only breakbarrel target rifle Walther did this for. The LG 55, which is quite similar in size and power, does not have a barrel latch.

 

Walther LGV Olympia barrel latch
The barrel latch is easy to reach during cocking. It locks the barrel tight!

Tight breech read more


Tuning Michael’s Winchester 427: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 27
Michael’s Winchester 427 is a Diana model 27 by another name. The rifle pictured is my Hy Score 807/Diana 27

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • SHOT Show
  • Today and Monday
  • New parts
  • Scragging?
  • Lubricating the mainspring
  • Rust removal
  • Lubrication
  • Putting the piston into the spring tube
  • Pull the trigger!
  • Attach the barrel
  • Break

Many of you have been reading this series in which I tune reader Michael’s Winchester 427 that is actually a Diana 27. This is not an air rifle for beginners to learn on! The mechanism is too complex for first-timers for a number of reasons that should become clear today.

SHOT Show

I have to tell you — this is a very lengthy report. I won’t get it all done today, so Monday I will finish up. And on Monday I will be in Las Vegas at the SHOT Show. I won’t see your comments as frequently as usual while I’m there next week, plus after I walk out of the show every day I have to go back to my room, write the next day’s blog and have it ready to publish by 9 p.m. which is midnight on the east coast where the WordPress server publishes the blog. So please don’t ask me any lengthy questions. I am not going to have dinner with anyone this year, so I can do my work without being whipsawed!

Today and Monday

Today and Monday could be called, “Putting her back together,” because that is what I am going to do. In Part 4 you read and saw how I cleaned the major parts. They were rusty, but by soaking them in Ballistol for many days the rust loosened and came off quite nicely, revealing a gun that really has not been shot or used that much. I have certainly seen others that were a lot more worn.

Several readers asked me to show how I lubricate the gun parts as they go back together, and that is a big part of what I will do today and Monday. I will also pass along some tricks of the trade that will help you in the assembly process. Let’s get started.

New parts

I have already told you that I’m installing a new piston and piston seal assembly. You can see both of those in Part 4. Michael also sent me a new mainspring that he obtained from Chambers in the UK. It is not yet scragged (shortened by compression), so it will be harder to install than the old spring would be. The old spring is in good condition and would be fine in this rifle, too. But Michael bought the new one and that’s the one going in.

Diana 27 springs
The new mainspring (bottom) is longer now because it has never been scragged. After being inside the rifle a few days it will become about as long as the old spring.

Scragging?

Should I have scragged the spring before installing it? It would have made installation much easier. To learn more about scragging, read this report.

Lubricating the mainspring

Many of you wonder how much lube to put on a mainspring. Some also wonder what lube to use, but a regular readers knows I recommend Tune in a Tube (TIAT) grease that’s available here at Pyramyd Air. If you are an overseas reader or if you want a lifetime supply of the stuff it is Almagard 3752 grease. I have written a lot about how well it works — now let’s see how much we should use.

Diana 27 lubing mainspring
Here you see the lubed spring on the right and the dry spring on the left. This is lubing “sparingly”, which is all the Diana 27 spring needs.

The Diana 27 is neither powerful nor is it notorious for vibration, so the spring doesn’t need that much grease. And Tune in a Tube is probably different than any grease that most of you are used to. It’s extremely tacky and doesn’t vibrate off. It doesn’t take very much to quiet any vibration, so use it sparingly. Because of its nature, you’ll use more than you intend, so apply it lightly and spread it around.

You will note that I did not lube the inside of the mainspring coils. But I did lube the spring guide and the piston rod with TIAT. They will transfer their grease to the inside of the spring coils as the rifle is cocked and fired. If I was using white Lithium grease I would have lubed the inside of the spring coils.

I lubed half of the spring, then stuffed it into the piston that was already inside the rifle (I haven’t discussed that yet). That held it so I could lube the other half and not get too much grease on me.

Rust removal

I mentioned using Ballistol to remove rust from the parts. The other thing I used was steel wool. I used OOOO wool on the inside of the spring tube and I used a stainless steel pot scrubber on the other parts. The parts were coated with Ballistol when I rubbed them. I will show just one so you get the idea.

Diana 27 spring guide before
The spring guide was rusty before the cleaning. It’s not bad, but look at what can be done.

Diana 27 spring guide after
After cleaning the guide with Ballistol and a stainless steel pot scrubber, look how clean it is.

Lubrication

All the other parts were cleaned in this same way. That gave them clean surfaces for the lubrication. Like I said — TIAT on the spring guide and piston rod, as well as the mainspring.

The inside of the spring tube was coated with a thin coat of Moly grease. Now, molybdenum disulfide is not grease. It’s a dry compound that bonds with steel to form a low friction surface. The grease is the vehicle that the particles are mixed in that allows the moly to be applied more easily. To apply it to the inside of the spring tube I use a thin wooden dowel that’s wrapped with a bit of paper towel at the end. I can then swab the moly on the inside of the spring tube like using a giant cotton swab.

Diana 27 moly
Coat the paper towel with some moly and then spread it all around the inside of the spring tube. read more


Crosman’s Mark I Target pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Crosman Mark I
Crosman Mark I target pistol.

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • History
  • Mark II
  • The pistol
  • Two power levels
  • Grips
  • Sights
  • The trigger
  • Power
  • The pinnacle of its time
  • Ergonomics
  • Modified guns
  • How long do they hold?
  • Summary
  • read more