The importance of bullet-to-barrel alignment and fit: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Balls
  • Patched balls
  • Results of patching
  • Conical lead bullets
  • Pellet head
  • An experiment
  • Pellet skirt
  • Summary

Before I begin, I am enroute today to the Sig factory, here in America. They are bringing in a number of writers to show us their airguns and see their factory. I will take lots of pictures and tell you all about it when I return.

But I will not be able to attend to the blog the way that I normally do. I ask those readers who have been here awhile to help the new readers, just like you always do. I will be back in my office in Texas on Friday and things will hopefully return to normal.

Today I will finish the discussion of bullet-to-barrel fit and alignment. I will begin with bullets and then transition to pellets. read more

Hatsan Hercules QE .45 caliber big bore air rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hatsan Hercules 45
Hatsan Hercules QE .45 caliber big bore rifle.

This report covers:

  • Big gun!
  • Description
  • .45 bullets and “pellets”
  • 1000 cc reservoir capacity
  • Onboard air gauge
  • 250 bar fill
  • Adjustable stock
  • Adjustable trigger
  • Barrel
  • Sights
  • I shot the Hercules
  • Sound
  • Evaluation

Big gun!

I’m starting a report on the Hatsan Hercules QE .45 big bore air rifle. First let me observe that this rifle is BIG. And I mean big in all ways. It’s 48.4 inches long and weighs 13 pounds before a scope is attached. I was surprised by that number, so I put it on a balance beam scale, and the rifle I am testing came to exactly 13 lbs.

The Hercules rifles come in the following calibers: .22, .25, .30, .357 and .45. Some of the specifications like magazine capacity differ by caliber (the .22 magazine holds 14 pellets), but the length and weight remain the same throughout the range. read more

How does BB select pellets for a test?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Don’t I wish?
  • What’s the criteria?
  • Brands first
  • Choosing a pellet
  • Target guns
  • Action airguns
  • Hunting airguns
  • General purpose airguns
  • Trick pellets
  • How should you do it?

This blog was requested by reader Cobalt 327. And the answer is simple. BB gets paid by the pellet manufacturers to promote their products — the same as for the airgun manufacturers. The more they pay me, the more I talk about their pellets. I get a very healthy stipend from Crosman for writing about their Premiers, and from H&N for touting their Baracuda Match pellets. JSB actually sends me on all-expense paid vacations to the Bahamas several times each year, in addition to a very large check each month! Pocketa-pocketa-pocketa…

Don’t I wish?

I know that’s what some people think. There are no kickbacks that I am aware of in the airgun industry. If there are, whoever is paying them is fooling themselves, because we writers do this because we love it. I do get paid to write this blog, but no one tells me what to write and I have never been told to give a product anything but an honest report. read more

Some talk about airgun lubrication: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

This report covers:

    • Pneumatics
    • Single-stroke pneumatics
    • Multi-pump pneumatics
    • Other pump gun lubrication
    • Precharged pneumatics
    • Other lubrication needs
    • Lubing pellets
    • Keep the barrel clean
    • PCPs differ from spring-piston guns
    • What lube for your pellets?

    This is a continuation of our discussion about lubricating airguns. Part 1 is basic for spring-piston seals. We don’t need to cover that material again. Today I will look at some different lubrication applications for pneumatics.


    Pneumatic airguns are those that use compressed air to propel a pellet or BB. They may compress the air as they are used, such as single-stroke and multi-pump pneumatics do, or they may be guns that use compressed air from a separate source — guns we refer to as pre-charged pneumatics or PCP. I will address all three types, starting with single-stroke pneumatics. read more

Beeman Double Barrel air rifle: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Beeman Double Barrel air rifle
Beeman Double Barrel air rifle.

This report covers:

  • The test
  • RWS Hobby pellet
  • Falcon pellet
  • JSB Exact RS
  • Which is which?
  • Summary

Today I shoot the Beeman Double Barrel air rifle with a quality red dot sight mounted. I will tell you now that I learned a lot from today’s test.

The test

This was an accuracy test using a Tasco Pro Point red dot sight. I shot rested at 10 meters and I shot left-handed because my right eye is not working well. I’m not looking to hit the target in this test. I’m looking at the groups I get with different pellets, plus I have a couple surprises to share with you.

After mounting the sight I fired one shot and saw that the pellets were hitting about where I wanted them. I left the sight as it was and moved back to 10 meters. read more

The influence of shooting galleries

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

A history of airguns

  • The 15th century
  • Why?
  • Gallery guns were weak
  • Airguns and galleries
  • Different ammo
  • Repeaters
  • What killed the airgun?
  • Feltman

Shooting galleries have been a major influence in the shooting sports for close to a century and a half, and airguns have had their day in galleries. Reb, our most outspoken reader, once ran a traveling shooting gallery that featured the popular “Shoot out the Red Star” game. I’ll discuss that at the end of the report, but right now I’m going back to the beginning of shooting galleries.

The 15th century

And, who can really say when that was? We know from documents and from tapestries that shooting events were popular in Europe in the 1400s. But those were sporting events that came and went — they weren’t the galleries I am discussing today. The crossbows and guns that were used at those events belonged to the shooters. They were not rented by the gallery to the general public. read more

Air Arms S410 TDR precharged pneumatic pellet rifle: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Air Arms TDR rifle
Both side of the Air Arms S410 TDR.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

This report covers:

  • Airgun Academy videos are back!
  • The test
  • Here we go
  • Notice what is happening
  • Shooting at higher power
  • Still tipping
  • Conclusion

Airgun Academy videos are back!

The Airgun Academy videos are back and number 35 — The artillery hold — is ready to be viewed!

Look for more videos each week. Now let’s get to today’s report.

Today I take the Air Arms S410 TDR Classic out to 100 yards, to see if the accuracy we saw at 50 yards in Part 4 continues. This will be an interesting report for all who think that going from 50 to 100 yards means simply doubling the size of the groups.

You really should read Part 4 again, because that was where I finally learned how the test rifle wants to be operate and what pellet it likes best. When I started today’s 100-yard test, the rifle was set exactly as it had been for 50 yards and I was careful to fill it to 2900 psi with the Air Venturi G6 hand pump. read more