The difference between strikers and hammers

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • What are firearms?
  • What is an explosion?
  • What starts the burning?
  • Ignition
  • Smokeless powder
  • The hammer-fired system
  • Evolution
  • Hidden hammer
  • Striker
  • On the airguns
  • Valve stem
  • Summary

Today I want to explore a gray area in airguns. It’s gray because airguns operate differently than firearms, so we will begin our discussion with firearms for better understanding.

What are firearms?

Firearms are devices that launch projectiles by means of a chemical explosion. To start the explosion there needs to be some kind of initiator. In the beginning, when the gunpowder that we call black powder was in use, all it took was a spark or a hot coal to start the explosion.

What is an explosion?

An explosion is a violent expansion of gasses. Pop a balloon and it explodes. Anything that burns can explode under the right circumstances — even dust. The flour that bread is made from can explode so violently that it can kill people and even level huge buildings. read more


Diana 35: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 35
Diana 35 pellet rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Disassembly
  • Trigger pin
  • Mainspring and guide out
  • Dry inside
  • Out comes the piston
  • Cleanup
  • Assembly and lubrication
  • Mainspring
  • Gettin’ it back together
  • Assembling the trigger
  • Done
  • The difference
  • How does it work?
  • Summary

Today we do something that’s been on my mind for months. This Diana 35 was part of a deal I made with reader, Carel, from the Netherlands. I bought it because I wanted to turn a larger Diana into a sweet-shooting rifle like reader, Michael’s, Winchester 427/Diana 27 that turned out so nice. The Diana 35 is larger than the model 27 and I thought it was quite similar in the powerplant, which would allow me to tune it the same. It turned out there are significant differences between the two rifles that I discovered as I did the work for today’s blog. We are now going to disassemble, clean, and lubricate a Diana 35. read more


FX Dreamlite precharged air rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

FX Dreamlite
FX Dreamlite PCP.

This report covers:

  • Unique features
  • The manual is a problem
  • Transfer port adjustment
  • Trigger
  • Fill
  • Fill probe
  • Regulator
  • Transfer port adjustment
  • Keep the baby
  • The rifle
  • Free-floated barrel
  • Smooth Twist barrel
  • tock replacement
  • Summary

Today we begin looking at the FX-Dreamlite precharged air rifle. It’s been several years since I tested an FX rifle, and I’m curious to see what has changed. The last rifle I tested was very accurate.

The Dreamlite I am testing is a .177 at my request. The rifle also comes in .22 and .25 calibers, and the barrels can be swapped. So can the butts.

The Dreamlite is part of the FX Dreamline series that includes their lower-priced PCPs. I say they are priced lower, but we are still looking at $1,180 for the Dreamlite, so they aren’t cheap!

Unique features

The Dreamlite comes with a bundle of desirable features that I’d like to mention first. It’s a repeater with a sidelever bolt action that’s very light and smooth to cock. The .177 I’m testing has a spring-loaded circular magazine that holds 21 rounds. I think that’s a record for this kind of magazine. In .22 caliber the mag holds 18 and in .25 it holds 16. I would think that should suffice for a day of hunting! Of course this mag does stick up high above the top of the receiver, so 2-piece scope rings are a must. And no, there are no open sights. read more


Aligning a scope with the axis of the rifle bore

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Texas Airgun Show
  • The question
  • The bad news
  • Details
  • The barrel
  • Is the scope base parallel to the axis of the bore?
  • What about side-to-side?
  • Scope mounts
  • The answer
  • Greater precision?
  • However…
  • Close enough
  • What is meant by tweaking?
  • Never perfect
  • Summary

Texas Airgun Show

The 2019 Texas Airgun Show will be held on Saturday, June 22. Here is the website with information. This year they will offer FREE TABLES for people bringing a few airguns to the show! In the tent outside the entrance to the hall there will be several tables that are available to people who bring several of their guns but don’t have tables. These are the guys who normally walk the show holding onto airguns they want to sell and trade. You can now put those guns on these tables for free. There will be lots of table sharing going on, and you need to bring everything you need, because these tables are bare. This has never been done at an airgun show before and the promoters are hoping it will help those carrying their guns around to lighten the load. read more


Umarex Legends Cowboy Lever Action BB gun: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Umarex Lever Action
Umarex Legends Cowboy Lever Action BB gun.

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Umarex Precision Steel BBs
  • Loading
  • Hornady Black Diamond
  • Avanti Precision Ground Shot
  • Smart Shot
  • Dust Devils
  • Discussion
  • Summary

Wow, wow wowey, wow, wow, wow! Have I got something for you today! I saw all those fantastic targets posted to Part 2 of this report by our readers, but I still didn’t believe it. But, it’s all true! The Umarex Legends Cowboy Lever Action BB gun is super accurate. And it cycles perfectly every time.

The test

Being a doubting Thomas, I decided to test at the standard BB-gun distance of 5 meters, even after seeing all those superb targets. Besides, if it’s really that accurate, might it even come close to the Daisy Avanti Champion 499? If it tested out I could always run another test at a greater distance. Well — I guess I will, because this one is not going back to Pyramyd Air. I only shot BBs today because I want to give pellets a thorough workout of their own. read more


AirForce Edge 10-meter rifle: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Testing Baracuda FT pellets — Part3

AirForce Edge
The AirForce Edge target rifle.

This report covers:

  • 18-inch Lothar Walther barrel
  • Leak!
  • Accuracy
  • The test
  • No sight-in
  • How do velocities compare between the three barrels?
  • What you see
  • Next
  • Summary

Well, RidgeRunner — this one’s for you! Today we look at the AirForce Edge target rifle that reader RidgeRunner had Lloyd Sykes modify into a fancy plinking/sport air rifle. Lloyd boosted the power at the cost of 3/4 of the shots, by adding an air chamber after the built-in regulator. It is an elegant solution!

A normal Edge set up for target work gets about 110 shots from its tiny reservoir. This one gets 25. A normal Edge shoots target pellets at 500-525 f.p.s. This one shoots heavier RWS Meisterkugeln rifle pellets at an average of 713 f.p.s. (estimate — read Part 2 of this report) for 9.31 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle. read more


Air Venturi TR5 Multi-Shot Target Air Rifle: Part 6

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

TR5
Air Venturi TR5 repeating pellet rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

This report covers:

  • “I’ll eat my hat!”
  • We talked
  • Hobbys
  • The solution?
  • The test
  • Eye-opener!
  • Magazine 2
  • Next time?
  • Summary
  • Summary

“I’ll eat my hat!”

I had a conversation with Val Gamerman last Friday. I never told you, but before I started my tests he told me the Air Venturi TR5 Multi-Shot Target Air Rifle would put 5 pellets in 3/4-inch at 10 meters or he would eat his hat. The last time Val said something like that to me was in 2012, and he said it about an IZH 60, oddly enough. He trusted me to shoot and that time it was 10 shots in a quarter-inch at 10 meters. I almost did it but not quite, so he kept his word and ate his “hat.”

Hat
This was the “hat.” read more