How the Price-Point PCP (PPP) has changed the face of the airgun world

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gauntlet
Umarex’s Gauntlet was the first PPP to be announced, but several others beat it to the marketplace.

This report covers:

  • Gauntlet dropped!
  • For Hank
  • For the manufacturers
  • What is a PPP?
  • Cost
  • Required features
  • Nice features to have
  • Caliber
  • ALL BOATS ARE FLOATED!
  • Compressors
  • Other PCPs
  • Sig
  • AirForce Airguns
  • On and on
  • Summary

Gauntlet dropped!

When Umarex announced the new Gauntlet air rifle the savvy airgunning world was stunned. A precharged pneumatic (PCP) that was a repeater, was shrouded with an active silencer, had an adjustable trigger and stock, was accurate and came with a regulator — all for less than $300. They named it appropriately, because it was a huge gauntlet to drop on the airgun community. I’m sure this is exactly what Umarex had in mind, though the particulars of how it has and still is unfolding I’m sure have been as much of a surprise to them as they have been to others. read more


Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Seneca Aspen PCP
The Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Today’s test
  • Beeman Kodiaks
  • JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy
  • Air Arms domes
  • Discussion
  • H&N Baracuda Match with 5.53mm heads
  • Second discussion
  • High power
  • Field Target Trophy pellets with 5.55mm heads
  • Last discussion
  • Summary

Today I move back to 25 yards and shoot some groups with the Air Venturi Seneca Aspen PCP. Before I go there, though, I promised reader Decksniper I would show him the shim I used to tighten the scope mounts on the Aspen’s small dovetail. You need to remember that I used the UTG P.O.I. scope rings to mount the UTG Bug Buster 3-12X32 scope on the Seneca. That’s important because of the extremely tight tolerances those rings have. They fit so well that only a single shim was required. Look where I put it. read more


Scoping problematic airguns

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • The problems
  • Problem 1 — All rifles are droopers!
  • Problem 2 — horizontal alignment
  • Problem 3 — scope eyepiece is in the wrong place
  • What is the solution?
  • Clearance
  • Summary

Today’s report was partly inspired by reader Decksniper, who asked this about the Seneca Aspen rifle:

“I am interested in the shim you used to mount the Bugbuster on the too narrow dovetail. A closeup picture would be helpful.”

I told him I would photograph the shim in the next part about the Aspen, and I will, but this morning (yesterday for you) I was faced with scoping another rifle — the Diana Stormrider Generation II PCP, and it suddenly dawned on me that scoping airguns is one of the biggest challenges I face in writing this blog. As I pondered that it occurred to me that scoping guns is a challenge for all of us. Some may not have realized what a challenge it is because they have become adept in avoiding the problem altogether, but a challenge it is. read more


Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Seneca Aspen PCP
The Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Trigger adjustment
  • Scope mounting
  • Accuracy test
  • Air Arms domes on high power
  • H&N Baracudas with 5.53mm heads on high power
  • How is it going?
  • JSB Jumbo Monsters on high power
  • Low power
  • Air Arms domes on low power
  • Screamer!
  • JSB Monsters on low power
  • Impressions
  • Summary

Today we begin testing the accuracy of the new Air Venturi Seneca Aspen PCP with a built-in pump. I am so glad I did the extensive velocity test in Part 3, because it set me up for today’s test. There are almost limitless combinations I can test with a multi-pump that is also a PCP and has two power levels. By the time you factor in different pellets and distances, the possibilities are staggering. I need to test the rifle for accuracy but eliminate most of the peripheral possibilities. I need to find an accurate pellet, which power level it works best on and the distances at which the rifle will perform. read more


Benjamin Fortitude precharged rifle: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Benjamin Fortitude
The Benjamin Fortitude precharged air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Setup
  • Pellets selected
  • The test
  • JSB Exact Heavy
  • Cocking and trigger
  • Discharge sound
  • Air Arms Falcons
  • Crosman Premier light
  • Discussion
  • Summary

We start accuracy testing the Benjamin Fortitude today. Sometimes I begin this test at 10 meters and other times at 25 yards. I’m starting at 10 meters today because the Fortitude is a significant precharged air rifle that I want to test very thoroughly.

Setup

I mounted a vintage UTG 8-32X56 SWAT scope on the rifle. The scope was so old it only parallax adjusted down to 25 yards, so I ran it at 8 power for this test. The bull was a little blurry but easy enough to see. When I get back to 25 yards the image should be crystal clear. read more


Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Seneca Aspen PCP
The Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Multi-pump
  • High power
  • Power
  • Coolest test
  • What you do
  • Low power with Kodiaks
  • Summary

Well, well. Lots of interest and discussion of the Air Venturi Seneca Aspen PCP with a built-in pump. As well there should be. This is a ground-breaking air rifle that offers many features never before seen. However, it has confused people a little. For example, many readers are focused on the “PCP” part of its title, when it is the multi-pump aspect that dominates.

Multi-pump

Did you notice that I never filled from a tank in Part 2? I won’t today, either, and today is a continuation of the velocity test. It just is not that convenient to use a tank for the few shots that you get. I will fill from a tank at some point, but that will be after I learn the power curves of the rifle. And I did say curves, with an “s,” because every pellet you use has the potential of changing the maximum and minimum optimum fill pressure slightly. read more


Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1

Seneca Aspen PCP
The Air Venturi Seneca Aspen precharged pneumatic air rifle.

This report covers:

  • Does this test rifle loose air pressure?
  • How many shots per fill?
  • First test
  • Test 2 — Full power shots
  • Discussion
  • Test 3 — Number of shots on low power
  • Gauge is not precise
  • Trigger pull
  • Summary

I guess you could say there is some interest in the Air Venturi Seneca Aspen PCP with a built-in pump. Many of you had things to say about this new rifle and a few of you own one like it. What I saw in the comments was a lot of curiosity. Let’s start satisfying that today.

Does this test rifle loose air pressure?

Reader Kevin asked me to watch the air pressure in the rifle over time, as he said that leaking was one issue owners were reporting. I pumped the rifle to 3,000 psi last Monday at the end of my test and today the onboard needle reads 3,000 psi on the nose. So, this one holds fine. [Note: in a little bit I will admit that it actually reads 3100 psi. I will explain then.] read more