Best BB Gun Rifle for the Money

So what’s the best BB gun rifle for the money?

You just can’t beat the Crosman 760 Pumpmaster BB gun.

So why is it the best BB gun rifle for the money?

…lots of great features for a very low price. (Get one now at Amazon.com)

The Crosman 760 Pumpmaster BB gun has been around for over 40 years and remains a best seller among pump action BB guns.

The 760 is a pump action bolt BB gun rifle that can fire BBs and .177 pellets, so it’s quite versatile. You can vary the power by pumping it as much as you want up to a max of 10 pumps. So if you’re shooting in your backyard, 3-5 pumps is plenty of power and at the same time quieter than 10 pumps, so you don’t disturb your neighbors.

The Crosman 760 features a rifled steel barrel and is very accurate when shooting precision pellets like H&N and JSB. The great accuracy makes the 760 ideal for hunting small game and target shooting.

The Crosman 760 BB gun has an all polymer/plastic stock and forend making it light weight and easy to carry around all day. The plastic stock is also very durable and will not break under normal usage. Wood stocks look nice but they are too heavy.

Reliability has always been great with the 760 Pumpmaster. The bolt action is positive and durable and will last many years. If the pump mechanism is maintained and oiled periodically, it will function for 10 years or longer with no issues.

The price of the Crosman 760 Pumpmaster BB gun is amazing….under $50. You get a great BB gun for just a little bit of money. It’s definitely a best buy.

Ruger Targis Hunter Air Rifle

The Ruger Targis Hunter is a break barrel air rifle manufactured by Umarex Airguns under license from Sturm, Ruger & Co, Inc.. The Targis Hunter is a high velocity hunting air rifle. It’s available in .177 and .22 caliber. Velocities can approach 1200 fps (in .177) with alloy pellets.

The Ruger Targis features the SilencAir Dampening System which helps to reduce noise so you can get a 2nd shot off before game is spooked. It also helps when shooting in your backyard. Your neighbors will appreciate the low noise. The Ruger Targis Hunter is 25% easier to cock than most magnum air rifles. It comes with a 3-9×32 scope, an all weather composite stock and a 2 stage adjustable trigger.

It retails for just under $200. Here’s link where you can save $30…Shop for Ruger Targis Air Rifles at Amazon.com

Light Weight Lead Free Pellets

H&N makes some of the highest quality pellets for airguns. If you are looking for some light weight/high velocity lead free pellets that are accurate then check out the H&N Prometheus Excite pellets. They come in .177 and .22 calibers.

Lead free pellets are great for target shooting or just backyard plinking. You don’t have to worry about lead laying around where animals/people might come in contact with it. H&N uses a non-lead alloy of Tin and Zinc plus a plastic base. The Prometheus pellets are light weight and only weigh 6.48 grains in .177 caliber. They will not ricochet like steel BBs either. So they are pretty safe for backyard shooting.

If you are interested in H&N pellets, here is a link….Shop for H&N pellets at Amazon.com

Best Air Pistol for Self Defense

Can you use a air pistol or pellet gun for self defense?

Some say NO but let’s talk about this with some logic.

If I had the choice of an air gun or no weapon…I would naturally choose the air gun. I would chose an air gun over a knife also. But I would much rather have a firearm. Multiple shots from a medium powered air gun will definitely stun an intruder to say the least. If nothing else, it will give you some time to escape and call 911. The ideal target is the face and particularly the eyes. Eye shots will blind the intruder and most likely kill them immediately. Once the brain is penetrated, it’s almost always “Lights Out”.

Air guns or pellet guns are limited in power which is why most people say you cannot use one for self defense BUT some have enough power to stop a human if shot placement is correct. A heart or lung shot with most pellet guns is useless however a Temple or Eye shot could be fatal. Steel BB’s traveling at 400-500 fps will penetrate the human eye and hit the brain. A temple shot will most likely hit the brain also resulting in a stunned, disabled or dead target. If you look at some gelatin air gun penetration tests, you will see that pellets and BB’s will penetrate about 5-6 inches. That much penetration in the human brain will be fatal or serious paralysis. Some pellet guns can penetrate 1/4″ plywood.

If you’re looking for a great selection of BB and pellet guns for self defense, target shooting or hunting then check this link out…Shop for self defense BB guns and pellet guns at Amazon.com

There are a few considerations to think about when choosing a pellet gun for self defense.

  1. Rifle or Pistol
  2. Semi-auto or bolt action
  3. Single shot or repeater

Ideally you want multiple shots in a semi or fully auto mode. The size of the gun is up to you but smaller is handier and easier to bring into action. More powerful air guns are better but you have to also consider if they are multi-shot and semi-auto. A break barrel air gun might not be the best choice since you will only have one shot. Break barrel pellet guns have enough power to easily stop an intruder with a single shot. But do you want to bet your life on that one shot? I prefer to have 4 or 5 + shots available in short order.

Pump, Break Barrel, PCP or CO2 Air Guns for Self Defense

So what type of air gun is best for self defense?

Let’s look at pump air guns. Pump air guns certainly have the power to stop a human and are available in .177 and .22 calibers. They shoot steel BBs and lead pellets which are great ammunition against soft targets. BUT they are a SLOW 2nd and 3rd shot. You have to pump them 10 times and then load a pellet or BB. This takes too long in the heat of the moment. If your 1st shot does not stop the threat, you may be in for some hand to hand combat real quick or dead if the threat has a gun.

Break barrel guns fall into the same category as the pump guns. Break barrels are slow to reload but do have plenty of power.

PCP or Pre-charged Pneumatic guns are a little faster to reload than pump guns and break barrels but are basically a single shot gun. A 2nd shot will not be as fast as you would like. PCP guns are however very powerful and available in calibers up to 12 gauge.

CO2 guns are just about ideal for self defense with the exception of power. If CO2 air guns had velocities of 800 fps, they would be perfect. Most CO2 air guns are in the 400-500 fps range with .177 BBs or pellets. 450 fps will provide about 3-4 inches or so of penetration in ballistic gelatin. This is ample to penetrate the human brain with an accurate shot. Small game are easily dispatched with a BB or .177 pellet at 450 fps. And the advantage of multiple rapid fire shots can really “put the brakes” on a would be intruder.

So what are the best air pistols for self defense?

  1. Crosman SR 357 CO2 6 Shot BB Revolver  – 450 fps
  2. Winchester Model 11K CO2 Pistol – 410 fps
  3. Crosman PFAM9B BB Air Pistol – 450 fps
  4. Daisy Powerline CO2 Air Pistol – 520 fps

Crosman SR357 CO2 Air Pistol for Home Defense

Winchester Model 11K CO2 Air Pistol for Self Defense

Crosman PFAM9B CO2 Air Pistol of Self Defense

Daisy Powerline CO2 Air Pistol for Self Defense

Here is why I would choose one of these for self defense. They are the most powerful air pistols and offer multiple shots with the pull of the trigger. These 4 are also very reliable and well made. To make these ever more formidable would be to add a laser sight. This makes it very easy to make a fast and accurate/lethal shot.

Best Air Rifles or Pellet Rifles for Self Defense

The same requirements go for air rifles for self defense. They must be a multi-shot semi or fully auto gun and be powerful enough to penetrate the human skull. Let’s look at some good semi-auto CO2 air rifles with multi-shot capabilities. I’m looking for velocities of 400 + fps.

  1. Sig Sauer MPX ASP CO2 Airgun – 30 round magazine, .177 pellets, short assault type air gun, up to 700 fps with hyper-velocity alloy pellets, semi auto platform.
  2. Crosman Comrade AK CO2 Air Gun – 22 round magazine, short assault type air gun, up to 600 fps with BBs and semi auto operation.
  3. Crosman RepeatAir 1077 CO2 Air Gun – 12 sot rotary pellet clip, compact traditional rifle style, up to 625 fps with hyper-velocity lead pellets, semi-auto operation.

Sig Sauer MPX ASP CO2 Air Rifle

Crosman Comrade AK CO2 Air Rifle

Crosman RepearAir 1077 CO2 Air Gun

H&N Piledriver 177 Lead Pellets

Looking for a super heavy weight .177 pellet for long range hunting or target shooting?

…how about a .177 lead pellet that weighs 21 grains?

…with a boat tail for low drag?

…and super precision tolerances?

Take a look at H&N’s 177 Piledriver Pellets.

These pellets are the ultimate for long range air rifle shooting. The barrel design with a recessed boat tail provide a very low drag coefficient. They are recommended for PCP rifles only because they are very heavy and take some serious power to propel them. H&N pellets are made in Germany and are very high quality.

There are 250 Piledriver pellets in a tin for about $22.00. If you hunt with a PCP rifle, these pellets will provide the ultimate in knock down power and deep penetration on small game.

Non Ricochet BBs – H&N Smart Shot

If you shoot BB guns then you know about ricochets and how dangerous they can be. I once shot a BB at an old stove I ran across in the desert. I shot at the glass oven door from about 30 feet and instantly got hit in the forehead by the BB. I never did that again. I’m lucky I didn’t lose an eye!

There are 2 lessons I learned from this incident.

  1. Don’t shoot steel BBs at hard objects
  2. Wear eye protection when shooting

Some BB guns will only shoot BBs like the Daisy Red Ryder. So you don’t have a choice of lead pellets. So what do you do?

…only shoot soft targets?

…use lead BBs?

I like and prefer shooting lead or copper coated lead BBs. Actually the copper plated are better for the simple reason there is no exposed lead. Lead is hazardous to most life on Earth.

Anyway…so who makes copper coated lead BBs?

H&N Excite Smart Shot BBs are lead core BBs with a copper coating. These BBs expand and flatten when they hit a target or any hard surface without ricocheting. They are much safer than steel BBs. Since the core is lead which is heavier than steel, Smart Shot BBs are heavier and weigh about 7.4 grains. Steel BBs weigh about 5.1 grains. BB gun velocities will be lower with Smart Shot BBs but penetration maybe greater because of the increased density.

Here are some samples of the H&N Smart Shot BBs….un-fired and fired. You can see how they flatten like a lead bullet. These are excellent for backyard plinking or hunting with a BB gun. If you are interested in these, here is a link to buy them online…H&N Smart Shot BBs at Amazon.com

Posted in BB

Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun Review

The Daisy Red Ryder BB gun has been around for a very long time and it’s still available. I remember shooting frogs at a pond in New Jersey when I was a teenager. It sure was a lot of fun.

Turn the clock ahead 40 years and here I am 54 years old and just bought a Daisy Red Ryder BB gun. It’s a classic that will never go out of style.

Here it is in the same box as it was in the 70’s. It still has a wooden stock and leather lanyard tie too. It’s a really cool BB gun!

Here’s a link if you want to shop online…Daisy BB Guns at Amazon.com

Here’s the Red Ryder signature engraved in the wooden butt stock.

Lever action BB guns are a lot of fun. Just fill the reservoir with BBs and cock and shoot all day.

…350 fps with steel BBs…not bad for frogs, birds and targets.

I pulled off the outer box, which was kind of a pain. Now all I have to do is cut the plastic zip-tie.

Here’s the action and forend. It’s still very much like the one I used back in 1975.

I love this stock. It’s a youth type stock meaning it’s about a 12-13″ length of pull but it still works for a full size adult. It shoulders nicely and the sights align up easily. The wood stock will take some serious abuse where plastic may not.

Here’s a closeup of the action. The sides are metal along with the bolts/screws. The lever and trigger are polymer/plastic. Operating the lever is unique in that it ratchets 7 times before hitting full cock. Then it swings smoothly back in place. The lever is very easy to cock and any 10 + year should be able to cock it just fine. Now it’s ready to fire. The trigger is also polymer/plastic and feels nice on the index finger. The trigger pull is about 5 lbs. This is a good trigger pull for a BB gun.

The stock fits the receiver very well. There’s no slop in the fit. Everything was smooth and tight. Again…I like it!!

The lanyard ring and leather thong look cool even though they are not very functional. It’s the “Old West” look.

Here’s a closeup of the lever and trigger and safety. The safety is a cross-bolt type and works perfectly. The plastic/polymer lever snaps in place via the metal clip. The trigger is wide and very comfortable and not too heavy.

Here’s a closeup of the cross-bolt safety. If the red is showing, that means Fire. If there’s no red showing then the gun safety is engaged.

The forend is wood and fills your hand. It’s smooth and fits the barrel nicely. The open sights are basic but very functional and easy to align. They are adjustable for elevation. These sights work great for backyard shooting where the distance is only 15-20 yards.

The bottom of the wood forend is smooth and fits in your hand nicely. a single metal screw secures it in place. The forend was tight with zero slop.

Top view of the rear sight. You can see the elevation adjustment ladder and the push button release.

The rear sight and barrel look like they’re from a real gun. The glossy finish looks fantastic!

The barrel on the Daisy Red Ryder is a bull barrel. It’s not solid metal though. It appears to be a polymer/plastic shroud around a steel smooth bore tube. It looks great. I don’t care for those skinny barreled BB or pellet guns. They look like toys. This looks like a real gun. The front sight is a good one and works just fine. The tube below the barrel is the BB reservoir.

Here’s the BB loading port located on the left side of the barrel muzzle (don’t mind the dust on the muzzle). You push the button in and then slide the door downward. Then pour in the BBs. It’s simple and works great. I love BB repeaters…just cock and shoot. A funnel wood be ideal when pouring BBs in the loading port otherwise the BBs can go all over the place unless you’re really careful.

Here’s the loading port in the open position. It operates smoothly and closes positively. The barrel sure shines nicely.

350 count of Daisy BBs for $1.50. You can’t beat that!! Remember steel BB will ricochet off of hard objects like wood, bricks, metal, hard plastics and stucco. Only shoot steel BBs at soft targets like cans, watermelons, apples, clay pigeons, thin plastic objects and BB traps. There are BBs that are low ricochet. They are made by H&N and called Smart Shot.

Smart Shot BB’s are copper plated lead BB’s and will expand upon impact instead of bouncing off. Each BB weighs 7.4 grains compared to 5.1 grains for steel. Smart Shot BB’s will have a lower velocity but will hit harder which is great for hunting small game.

The Daisy Red Ryder BB gun is a great value at about $35. It’s a great BB gun for youths just starting to shoot or adults who just want to have a blast with an inexpensive BB gun. Lever actions are fun and fast. The 350 fps velocity is deal for backyard pinking or frog pond hunting. The spring air action is SUPER QUIET. There is no need to worry about neighbors getting upset from a loud BB gun. This gun won’t disturb anyone. My neighbors are very close, about 15 feet from my exterior walls. I shoot from my patio in my backyard all day. It doesn’t even disturb the neighborhood dogs or birds for that matter.

The Daisy Red Ryder reservoir holds 650 BBs. You can shoot all day or even 2 days (maybe a week) without reloading. Now that’s fun!

The Daisy Red Ryder BB gun weights about 2.2 lbs which is a good weight for any BB or pellet gun. My Daisy Powerline 880 weights about 3 lbs. The light weight makes it easy to shoot it all day and pack around. There are many air rifles and pellet rifles that weigh 8 lbs. I think that’s too heavy. My Gamo Hornet Maxxim with scope weighs about 7 lbs. That’s my limit with pellet guns. Anything heavier and I’m not shooting it too often.

Daisy Red Ryder Specifications

  • Weight: 2.20 lbs
  • Action: Lever cocking spring-air
  • Sights: Blade and Ramp front, adjustable open rear
  • Safety: cross-bolt trigger block
  • Muzzle Velocity: 350 fps with BBs
  • Overall Length: 34.5 inches
  • Caliber: .177 BBs or 4.5 mm
  • Stock/Forend: Stained solid wood with lariat logo and burnished forend band
  • Barrel: steel smooth bore shrouded with polymer/plastic
  • Maximum Shooting Distance: 195 yards
  • Capacity: 650 BBs
  • Receiver: Stamped steel, saddle ring and leather thong
  • Model: 1938
Posted in BB

Daisy Powerline 880 Review

The Daisy Powerline 880 is a multi-pump bolt action pellet gun with a maximum pellet velocity of 670 fps with lead pellets and 800 fps with BBs. The Powerline 880 is composed of both plastic and metal components. The barrel is steel with a resin shroud and is fully rifled. It is a very handy pellet gun (overall length is 37.5″) and is comfortable to shoot all day. It is also a lot of fun.

I bought this Daisy Powerline 880 at Walmart about 6 years ago for $35. Ever since I was a kid, I wanted a Powerline 880. It’s a great pellet gun for people of all ages. It’s accurate, powerful and light weight. The Powerline 880 weighs a little over 3 lbs and is made mostly of plastic. It is very easy to pump since it has a long pump lever/arm. For target practice 3 – 5 pumps are great and for hunting 10 pumps produces the maximum velocity.

A great concern I hear a lot is, “How loud is the Powerline 880?”

So I used an app on my Android phone to measure the noise level at various power levels. I placed my smart phone about 18″ from the muzzle of the 880. Just remember that I am measuring the noise level very close to the gun. Your neighbors will be much farther away and noise levels will be a small fraction of this measurement.

3 Pumps – 61 dB

5 Pumps – 63 dB

10 Pumps – 65 dB

Here are some comparisons of common noises.

  • 134 dB – .22 LR
  • 120 dB – Fire engine siren
  • 140 dB – Jet plane takeoff
  • 25 dB – Background noise
  • 42 dB – clap hands together
  • 35-40 dB – humans talking

The Daisy Powerline 880 pellet gun features a plastic receiver with metal internal parts and bolt. The plastic receiver is finished in a non-glare metal like bluing finish. It looks very much like metal. The bolt handle is plastic and pulls straight back to load BBs or pellets. The trigger guard and pump handle are also plastic.

The Daisy Powerline 880 has a simulated wood Monte Carlo stock with white line spacers. It is very attractive and shoulders very nicely even though the LOP is much less than a real rifle. This Monte Carlo stock works well with open sights and a scope. I have used both with great success. The plastic stock is very durable and water-proof. It will last a long time if you are careful with it. If you drop it off of a cliff, it will break. Just be smart.

The finish on the 880 receiver is a flat black and is great when shooting outside in direct sunlight. The bolt handle is very comfortable to pull back and then push forward. The trigger is metal and wide. It feels very good on your index finger. I really like how the pump handle blends in with the trigger guard. Very nice design.

The forend is also plastic with a simulated wood grain. The white outlined diamond is a very nice touch. The forend is checkered and provides a very good non-slip grip even in the rain.

The 880 forend is nice and wide and gives your hands something to hold on to. The pump arm is located in the center of the forend. It’s also flat on the bottom which makes it ideal for bench rest shooting. It will sit flat and not rock.

The Daisy Powerline 880 comes with open sights. The open sights are adjustable for windage and elevation. The rear sight is easy to line up with the front optic sight and proved to be quite accurate.

The front blade sight is red fiber optic and lights up in the sunlight. This makes it very easy to line it up in the rear sight. These open sights are quick to align and accurate.

The trigger guard features a button safety that engages when you push the button to “Safe”. It engages positively with a click and disengages as easily and securely. The trigger is all metal. The trigger pull is a little on the heavy side, most likely around 6 or 7 lbs. I am still able to get some really tight groups though.

Here’s a better photo of the trigger. It’s pretty wide and grooved. I like it.

Here is one of the many 5 shot groups shot with the Daisy Powerline 880 pellet gun….and with open sights.

The Daisy Powerline 880 will shoot both BBs and .177 pellets. It has a magazine that can hold 50 BBs. Once full, all you have to do is cycle the bolt and pump it up. Pellets are loaded one at a time.

Here is a close up of the bolt. You pull it straight back then load 1 pellet and then push it forward to load the pellet into the chamber. It is a little tricky to get a pellet loaded properly. You have to get it aligned correctly otherwise it will jam. BBs load easily and quickly.

Here’s the loading port. It’s a little tight for pellet loading, at least for my hands and eyes. I would like a little more room but for $35 you can’t get everything. I have to drop the pellet in and then move it to align it correctly and then slowly push the bolt closed.

Here you can see the bolt partially closed. It’s steel and magnetized to hold steel BBs. It pushes pellets into the chamber. The rear of the pellet slides over the bolt head.

The pellet is loaded and aligned with the barrel chamber.

The multi-pump handle is long with a really good grip handle. The long arm gives you more leverage to pump it. The 880 is very easy to pump 10 times. The pump handle snaps into place when the stroke is completed. The pump arm/handle is plastic and not very rigid. Care must be taken when pumping so the long arm does not break. It is however pretty flexible.

The pump handle is large and will accommodate small or large hands.

Although the pump arm/handle is all plastic the connecting arm and pump actuator are metal. These parts should last for a very long time.

Here is the fully open pump position. It is a rather long stroke but makes for easy pumping.

Here’s another 5 shot group from the Daisy Powerline 880 pellet gun. The Copperhead pellets are not known for accuracy like the JSB pellets but they still grouped very well.

This is my bench rest setup for pellet gun testing. The utility trunk is ideal for bench resting airguns. The Powerline 880 proved to be accurate with most pellets with the exception of the very light hyper-sonic pellets.

JSB pellets are most likely the moist accurate you can buy. They fit tighter than most other pellets and are available is several weights including heavy weights for hunting. Although the Powerline did really well with standard Crosman pellets.

Here’s the JSB pellet grouping of 5 shots. This is about a .60 inch group from 35 feet and with open sights. Oh yea and from a $35 pellet gun.

I would give the Daisy Powerline 880 pellet gun 4 stars out of 5 stars. It’s powerful, accurate, easy to operate, durable and inexpensive. Wow!

If you are looking for a pellet gun or even the Daisy Powerline 880, then check this link out for discounts….Shop Airguns at Amazon.com

 

Accuracy Test – Crosman SSP .22 Cal Pellets

Are Crosman SSP high velocity pellets accurate?

I test them in my new Gamo Hornet Maxxim air rifle.

I test all pellets at the same distance which is around 15 yards and in my backyard. I use a rolled up towel as a bench rest on top of a storage trunk.

Let’s take a look at my shooting/testing setup.

Here’s my pellet gun bench rest setup. It makes holding a rifle steady very easy.

Crosman SSP Supersonic Pellets in .22 cal. They weigh 9.5 grains.

Here’s a closeup of the SSP pellets.

Now let’s try a five shot group at 30 feet.

Here’s the 5 shot group from 30 feet. It’s about a 1.75 inch group. The heavier JSB pellets are much more accurate.

Lighter pellets most often are less accurate. The JSB 25 and 18 grain pellets will group in less than 1 inch.

What is a Break Barrel Air Rifle?

I had some readers ask the following question…”What is a break barrel air rifle?”

A break barrel air rifle or pellet gun is a gun in which the acton is cocked by “breaking” the barrel in a downward motion from the action. This process cocks the trigger and charges the gun, making it ready to fire.

Here is an example of a break barrel pellet gun…

To cock or charge the rifle, simply grab the end of the barrel and pull it down.

Here is the Gamo Hornet Maxxim pellet gun with the barrel “broken”. Now it can be loaded with a single pellet. Once a pellet has been loaded into the barrel, the barrel is then pushed back to its original position. Now you’re ready to fire.

Break barrel pellet guns are quick to reload and shoot compared to variable pump pellet guns.