Hatsan Speedfire Vortex multi-shot breakbarrel air rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hatsan Speedfire
Hatsan Speedfire Vortex breakbarrel repeater.

This report covers:

  • Breakbarrel repeaters
  • So, what’s new?
  • Outside the rifle
  • Pellet feed
  • Trigger
  • Power
  • Cocking effort
  • Tests
  • Summary

Once more I’ll remind you that I am suspending the historical reports for awhile to catch up on several things I have been putting off. There are also many new airguns I want to test. Some tests of complex guns like the Air Venturi Seneca Aspen PCP have taken me many more than the usual three reports, and this has led to the current situation. The history section will be back soon, I promise.

Breakbarrel repeaters

Today I start looking at the Hatsan Speedfire Vortex multi-shot rifle. It’s a breakbarrel spring-piston gun that uses a gas spring (this one is a contained unit that Hatsan properly calls a gas piston) for the powerplant. It comes in both .177 (12 shots) and .22 (10 shots), and I am testing the .22. read more


Webley Mark VI service revolver with battlefield finish: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Webley Mark VI
Webley Mark VI service revolver with battlefield finish. This one is rifled and shoots pellets.

This report covers:

  • History and new together
  • The firearm
  • Field strip
  • Differences between firearm and pellet gun
  • Disassembly of the pellet gun
  • Loading the pellet gun
  • The rear sight
  • Summary

History and new together

This is Monday when I usually write an historical report about an airgun or something. Well this is about the pellet revolver called the Webley Mark VI with battlefield finish, which is a modern air pistol, but today’s report will also be historical. Remember — I own both the pellet gun and the firearm it is patterned after.

Normally Part 2 is the velocity report. Today, though, we will be looking at some things we don’t usually get to see in an airgun report. Let’s begin with one of the big ones — field stripping the revolver. read more


2019 SHOT Show: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • Synergis
  • Gamo USA
  • The story
  • It gets better
  • AirForce Airguns
  • Diana Mauser K98 PCP
  • Summary

Synergis

We were in the Umarex booth in the last report, so we’ll start there. The one other airgun that caught my eye in that booth was the new Synergis underlever repeater. Yes, this is yet another spring-piston rifle that repeats!

Umarex Synergis
The Synergis from Umarex looks exciting. Photo courtesy Umarex USA.

This rifle has a gas piston/spring, yet is quite easy to cock. I am guessing it’s between 25 and 30 pounds of effort. It gets 1,000 f.p.s. with .177-caliber lead pellets and 1.200 with alloy pellets. It has a 12-shot rotary magazine, so it’s another spring-piston repeater. But this one has an underlever, so the mag is lower than usual with a springer that repeats. It has a shrouded barrel for quiet shooting and comes bundled with a 3-9X32 scope and rings. But wait for it — the really big news is the price. The Synergis retails for $169.95! When Umarex marketing manager Justin Biddle told me that I said, “What?” I expected $100 more. read more


2019 SHOT Show: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Media Day — Velocity Outdoors and Sig
  • American Airgunner
  • New compressor
  • Fortitude Gen II
  • Crosman barrels?
  • Crosman Night Stalker
  • Benjamin Mag Fire
  • Sig Day at the Range
  • MPX PCP
  • ASP Super Target
  • P365
  • Summary

Media Day — Velocity Outdoors and Sig

I usually attend Media Day the day before the SHOT Show opens, but last year there were no airgun manufacturers there. So this year I decided not to go to Media Day, but to go to Sig Day at the Range instead. It’s held on the same day. That left me with some time on Sunday, the day before. And Velocity Outdoors, the corporation that owns Crosman and all of its various holdings, hosted a media presentation of its products at Machine Gun Vegas — an indoor gun range where you can shoot fully automatic weapons. On this evening the place was all ours.

American Airgunner

When I arrived I saw nobody I recognized, for Velocity Outdoors has many other companies beside just Crosman. But then Rossi Morreale of American Airgunner came in with his film crew and we did an impromptu show segment while looking at the new offerings from Crosman and Benjamin. read more


Tuning Michael’s Winchester 427: Part 6

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
Part 5

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Assembling the ball bearing cages
  • Two cages — inner and outer
  • The real sear
  • Trigger assembly
  • Finish the assembly
  • Trigger adjustment
  • Test the rifle
  • Summary

And I’m going to pick it up right where we left off on Friday. A reminder that I am in Las Vegas at the SHOT Show today and will not be able to respond to comments as easily as normal. Let’s get started.

Assembling the ball bearing cages

We have come to the most daunting part of the assembly — assembling the trigger unit. You have to put a swarm of loose parts into the spring tube under tension from both the mainspring and the trigger spring. First, put the lubricated spring guide into the rear of the mainspring. I forgot to do that the first time through and I assembled the rifle without the guide. Got the rifle all buttoned up and said those famous last words, “I hope I never have to do THAT again!” Then my eyes fell on the guide sitting on the table. It was smiling at me, and I’m pretty sure I heard God laugh a little! read more


The Beeman P1 air pistol: Part 12

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11

Beeman P1.
Beeman P1 pistol.

This report covers:

  • The test
  • Sight adjustments
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • H&N Finale Match Light
  • Crosman Premier Light
  • What is happening?
  • Discussion 2
  • Summary

Today we will look at the accuracy of the Beeman P1 pistol on high power with the UTG RDM20 Reflex Micro Dot sight that Pyramyd Air doesn’t currently stock. This sight is quite small and light and I thought it would be ideal for the P1, which we proved in Part 11, when the pistol was shot on low power. Today’s test on high power will test both the accuracy of the pistol as well as this sight’s ability to remain in one place. Dot sights that are larger have to be butted against the front sight to stay in place, but so far this one doesn’t have to be. read more


Sig ASP20 rifle with Whiskey3 ASP 4-12X44 scope: Part 7

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Sig ASP20
Sig ASP20 breakbarrel rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

This report covers:

  • The Whiskey3 reticle
  • The test
  • Couldn’t get the rifle to group!
  • The double group
  • Sandbag rest
  • Wraith Ballistic Alloy pellets
  • I can do this!
  • Air Arms domes
  • Air Arms Falcons
  • Last group
  • Summary

Today I start looking critically at the accuracy of the new Sig ASP20 breakbarrel rifle. Until now I have only shot 5-shot groups. They are okay for quick work but do not tell the whole story. Today I will shoot 10-shot groups and we will learn the accuracy of this new rifle with some precision. I won’t get into the statistical reason that 10 shots are better than 5, but here is a good bottom line — anybody can get lucky, and it is far easier to do it 5 times in a row than 10.

The Whiskey3 reticle

Before we get into this test report, reader Bimjo asked this. read more