Today’s blog comes from our Man on the Road, Larry Piercy, who came back last Monday with a story so grand it had to be shared here with everyone! Enjoy!

A funny thing happened (funny after the fact!) to me at our cabin this past weekend. I arrived in the late afternoon after spending several hours working on the backyard at our house in Mesa, AZ trying to catch up after traveling for 2 ½ weeks in the Precision Airgun Distribution van. Since I was planning to attend the Airgunners of Arizona Field Target Match on Saturday morning I had driven the van to the cabin.

Precision Airgun Distribution Van

Precision Airgun Distribution Van

I unloaded the van, put things away, and started dinner. I had noticed some rodent droppings, which isn’t all that unusual, but they seemed more prevalent this time. Since it had been a long tiring day I decided to retire early. I had no sooner turned out all the lights than I started hearing the tell-tail sounds of something running through the attic storage area and the kitchen.

Hoping to identify the type of vermin – we have an abundance of squirrels and chipmunks along with a few mice around the cabin – making all the noise I grabbed the Hawke LEDRay flashlight I had brought in from the van and slipped out to the kitchen. Our cabin was built in 1918 of full-dimension lumber and a couple of knot holes have fallen out of the ceiling planks over the years. I shined my flashlight up at a couple of them to see nothing but an empty hole. Good! I checked the counter and noticed that one of my two bananas was totally missing! Okay. It isn’t a mouse!

I checked the knot-holes again and this time I am about four feet from a rat peering through the hole at me. The rat isn’t nearly as alarmed as I am! A chipmunk or a squirrel would be allowed to spend the night and I would find how they got in the next day while they were out gathering food, but not a rat! Immediate action was required!

I remembered that I have a rat trap out in one of my storage spaces so I go out and get it. I slather it with peanut butter, gingerly set it (after 3 attempts-talk about a hair trigger!), open one of the doors to the attic storage area and slide it into where this rat had taken up residence. I close the door and latch it. I go back to bed hoping that I awaken to the snap of the trap in the night and not the rat staring me in the face in the morning!

I get up the following morning, eat a banana-less breakfast, and get ready to work on a cabin project. Since I had not been awakened by the snap of the trap through the night I decide that the trap needs to be checked. Before checking I decide that it would be a good idea to utilize the Weihrauch HW45 .22 Silver Star air pistol just in case I need to dispatch the rat caught in the trap.

Weihrauch HW45 Silver Star

Weihrauch HW45 Silver Star

I go to the van, load the air pistol with a JSB Express 14.35 grain pellet. A little heavy for the pistol, but it was the lightest pellet I had on board. I find a dirt clod at about five yards away and fire. Okay. Now I know where it is hitting at very close range. I think I am ready to face “the rat” that is hopefully caught in the trap.

Now sliding the trap into place in the attic on my tip-toes last night was no problem, but to really check the trap this morning I had to take off my shoes and climb onto the wobbly bed in my sock-feet. With the LEDRay flashlight and HW45 in hand I carefully open the attic door and latch it open. I am now at eye level with the attic floor and the trap. My light immediately goes to the rat trap while holding the pistol at high retention and trying to maintain my balance on the bed.

As I inspect the trap it is clean! Not a morsel of peanut butter remains! How is this possible! As I stand there in disbelief, wobbling on the bed to maintain my balance, I raise the flashlight beam slightly and there is the rat staring back at me, wiggling his whiskers at not more than five feet from my face!

With all the composure I can muster I very slowly raise the HW45 pistol from high retention to eye level. I align the silhouetted sights so that the top of the front blade is level with the top of my nemesis’ head, all the while trying not to panic. As I fight to keep the LEDRay from shaking I begin pressing the trigger and ………… POP, the air pistol goes off.

When the HW45 discharged Mr. Rat jumps six inches straight up in the air. When he landed he is going full speed toward my face! Fortunately the rat trap was between my face and the aggressor! The rat runs over the trap, tripping it. His tail and back leg are caught in the trap and the trap keeps the rat from jumping into my face or onto the bed. Rat and trap fall about seven feet to the floor where the trap releases enough for the rat to escape and run off into the corner under another bed.

After I catch my balance and stop shaking, I reload the HW45 and begin searching under the beds. This is not what my instinct told me to do since I had nearly fallen off the bed trying to get away, not to mention nearly dirtying my drawers. But my sense of duty forced me to do it since my wife and daughter were coming to the cabin to join me on Saturday. Nothing returns your system to calm like laying on your stomach on the floor moving storage boxes under the beds looking for a wounded (I hoped!) rat. I find no sign of the rat so I go back to the attic opening and search to see if I can find blood or a hole in the wood indicating that I had missed. Again I found neither.

Now I am wondering if I hit the rat hard enough to kill it. Just in case the rat shows up again I left the HW45 loaded, after I regained my composure, and lay it with the LEDRay on the living room end table so I am prepared for round two, if there is one.

A few hours later I found a blood trail on some of the cabin foundation stones. The following day I found the rat, dead on his back, feet toward the sky. What a relief to know that we won’t have a rat crawling across our bed through the night, but if another one shows up I know just how to resolve the problem – a Weihrauch HW45, a Hawke LEDRay flashlight, and a JSB pellet. Forget the rat trap!

Larry Piercy

Larry-1

Umarex Colt .45?...Let's skeedadle!!!

Umarex Colt .45?…Let’s skeedadle!!!

Having a problem with empty soda can desperados? Have BB gun – Will travel.  Wire Gordon; Denver. 

For those of you too young to make a connection to the “Have gun – Will travel” reference, it comes from the opening of a weekly horse opera of the same name.  The show aired on CBS from 1957 through 1963 and starred Richard Boone as the title character, Paladin.  Paladin was a gun for hire and that gun was his trusty Colt Single Action Army.  The new Umarex Colt SAA would look right at home in Paladin’s fancy black holster with the silver knight chess piece embellishment.  Flat out – this is one well designed and awesome replica!  When I first laid eyes on it at the SHOT Show, I had to have one.  The size and weight are very close to the original and the operation is identical to the Colt SAA, right down to the individual cartridges that the shooter loads with a single BB and then places into the cylinder through the loading gate on the right side of the revolver.  CO2 cartridges fit under the left grip panel which contains a really nice design feature of a permanently mounted hex key for turning the piercing screw.  No more misplaced hex keys!

They currently come in 2 flavors: a nickel-like finish with faux ivory grips and a “blued” finish, also with the ivory grips.  The 4 ¾” barrel has an enclosed ejector rod underneath that is used just like on the original powder burner.  The smooth bore BB barrel ends about ¾’ from the muzzle and Umarex saw fit to put “rifling” into that last ¾’ to add even more realism.  The individual metal cartridges are a nice touch as well, but do make it a bit tedious to load, so you may want to order up extra cartridges from www.airgunsofarizona.com for quicker reloads.

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A most handsome tribute to Col. Colt’s invention

I like everything about this licensed replica and it would make a fantastic training tool to introduce a new shooter to proper safety/loading of single action revolvers.  The action is so smooth and easy to cock and there is even a half-cock position of the hammer for loading and unloading that blocks the trigger, just like the original.  To meet modern liability requirements, there is also a manual safety located on the bottom of the frame in front of the trigger guard.  It is a very unobtrusive sliding switch that locks the trigger movement and doesn’t spoil the lines of the gun.  The left side of the frame carries the original Colt markings and the right side has the obligatory warnings and safety messages seen on all airguns plus a unique serial number.

In a side-by-side comparison with a real Colt SAA, about the only telltale giveaway on the Taiwanese made replica would be that the hammer does not fully seat into the recoil shield when uncocked.  It is a minor thing and takes nothing away from this fantastic replica in my opinion.

The approximately 400fps velocity produced by this revolver is plenty for decimating those no-good, low-down soda can desperados as well as any other plinking targets you can come up with.  As a backyard shooter this gun is second-to-none, right down to the fact that you could line up six targets and take ‘em out like Clint Eastwood in “Hang ‘Em High” by holding the trigger down and fanning the hammer.

If you appreciate fine firearm replicas like I do and have a hankerin’ to practice the art of fast draw, or just want a really fun plinking gun, connect with the folks at Airguns of Arizona and they can fix you up pardner.  Umarex has a pretty extensive line up of realistic firearm replicas as well as their own brand of BBs and CO2 and in the near future I’ll showcase another of their historic guns.  Until then, I’ll just saddle up my old stick pony and ride off into that sunset.  Take care y’all.

If you visit Airguns of Arizona’s physical location at 1970 W Elliot Rd., Suite 109, Gilbert, AZ 85233, you’ll likely run into Kip Perow.

Kip is often found in the AOA showroom.

Kip is often found in the AOA showroom.

“I do a little bit of everything,” Perow says, “but mainly I take care of the showroom so that the other guys can stay on the phone all the time. In addition, when a gun has a glitch, they often come to me to help sort it out.”

Perow, it seems, has been an airgunner since he was a youngster. “When I was seven, I had a Daisy 22 SG. It was a pump-up, super easy to pump, and I took it everywhere, hunting birds and lizards whenever I could.” Later he would acquire a Benjamin in .177.

Perow’s Dad would take him hunting, and as he grew older, he became more interested in firearms, and he and his Dad would build guns together.

Eventually Perow got married and started a successful landscaping company and continued to shoot doves at dairies with airguns. Jump ahead several years, and Perow runs into Robert Buchanan at one of the dairies. Buchanan was holding an attractive-looking rifle. “You getting ready for deer season?” Perow asked.

“It’s an airgun,” came the reply. A conversation ensued and Perow visited the AoA store, then located in Mesa, Arizona. “I was intrigued by an FX Tarantula, with a Hakko scope. What’s it cost?” Perow asked. Buchanan told him. “You’re crazy,” Perow said. “Show me something in my price range.”

“He sold me a Mendoza in .177 with a thumbhole stock,” Perow says. “I fell in love with that gun. Next, I bought a used Korean precharged. My Dad was so impressed that he bought one. About that time, AoA moved to Gilbert, AZ, which is closer to me, and that didn’t help my growing airgun addiction (Perow now has over 70 precharged guns).”

By this time, Perow’s landscaping business was big enough that he was supervising crews on various jobs. “The Lord works in mysterious ways,” he says. “In, 2006 I was becoming very ill, and no one could figure out why. At the same time, Buchanan needed help wanted me to work for him 2-3 days a week, so that’s when I started working at AoA part time.”

Perow’s health got worse, and still no one could figure out why. His wife took him to the Mayo Clinic, where it was discovered that he had a massive sinus infection that was actually attacking the bone under Perow’s eye.

“With the right treatment, in three days, I felt like a million bucks,” Perow says. “But the doctor told me that I had to get out of the dust and dirt of landscaping or I would die. I started working more days for AoA, sold my business, and by 2008, I was working for Robert full time.”

When competing, Kip shoots for Team AOA.

When competing, Kip shoots for Team AOA

Because of his gun building experience, and some specialized equipment AoA has purchased, Perow can now help solve really tough airgun repair problems. “Now we can make some parts if we can’t order them, make valves for old guns, and fit smooth-twist barrels on guns,” he says.

Talk to Perow for a few minutes, and you realize that he loves what he is doing. But there is more to it than just airguns. He says, “The bond that is between all the guys here at AoA is well beyond just a bunch of guys working together. This is our family away from family. We’ve been through trials and tribulations together, and we put them in the Lord’s hands.”

Here is Kip in his first AOA Product Review video.

Here is Kip in his first AOA Product Review video.

Along the way, Perow has done a number of product review videos and a number of hunting videos, including hunting wild hogs in Texas, spearfishing with an FX arrow gun, and hunting for a couple of weeks with Jim Chapman in Africa. Perow has been a pioneer in airgun hunting in Arizona, now that it has been legalized there, taking two Javelinas, black bear, and – after three weeks of weekend hunting — a mountain lion.

Kip more recently, living the dream of hunting professionally!

Kip more recently, living the dream of hunting professionally!

In addition, Perow has been helping with AOA’s development and design of its new big bore airgun.  His knowledge of hunting and firearm ballistics has helped direct the design and direction of the Western Big Bore ‘.45 Bushbuck. In fact, Perow used the prototype of the Bushbuck for his hunting in Arizona.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

  • Jock Elliott

Hawke Airmax 30 6-24×50 Scope

Hawke is changing, adapting and improving their line continually.  We recently added the Airmax 30 series, and apart from the name similarity these are nothing like the standard Airmax lineup.

Hawke Airmax 30 excellent packaging!

Hawke Airmax 30 excellent packaging!

When you first inspect the Airmax 30, you are expecting the same old scopes in a 30mm tube rather than the 1 inch models currently in the lineup.  What you see when you actually open the box is a real surprise!  First off, the packaging.  The Airmax 30 comes packed in a nice rigid cardboard box with beautiful color print on the outside.  Inside the scope is secured in dense foam cutouts with careful placement of the included 4-inch sunshade, the 4-inch sunshade, interesting little tools (more on that later) and a bag containing the manual, battery for the illuminator, and a nice cleaning cloth to wipe down the lenses.  As you dig through the layers and get to the optic itself, you instantly see the quality and attention to detail.

Hawke Airmax 30 Turrets Lock!

Hawke Airmax 30 Turrets Lock!

The turrets jump out at you, as they have a smaller ring on top, which actually locks the turret.  So no longer will you bump your gun in the field and turn your scope by accident!  If you have ever done this before, you know exactly what we are talking about here, and you can recall how frustrating it can be!  A slight twist counter-clockwise, and you are able to turn the turret for 1/4″ MOA adjustments, which are crisp and clear clicks as you turn.  Once you are dialed in, simply twist the lock down and you are set.

The zoom ring is clean and tidy, set into the curve of the eyepiece bell, and has got to be one of the most discreet designs we’ve tested.  The ring turns with a silky smooth motion.  Ours tested here goes from a simple 6x for close range work, all the way to a massive 24x for long range target shooting.

Hawke Airmax 30 Illuminator.

Hawke Airmax 30 Illuminator.

Behind that is a dial illuminator located 45 degrees off center.  This allows for a clear view of the elevation turret while sighting down the scope.  The adjustment knob turns with little effort, and goes from a barely on state up to full intensity with infinite settings in between.  Very handy for varying light conditions.  Ours came with an installed CR2032 3V battery, and a spare was also included in the box. Not a huge deal, but still a very nice attention to detail!

Hawke Airmax 30 Flip Covers.

Hawke Airmax 30 Flip Covers.

Moving back to the eyepiece, and the objective bell as well, you find the coolest feature yet.  The flip up covers are built in to the scope design!  These all aluminum flips covers are clean, and very low profile.  They are attached with lock rings, which means you don’t have to keep track of them.  If you ever had a set of the rubber banded plastic covers, you know how frustrating it can be and how quickly they are lost!  (Heck, here at AOA we find it difficult to remember to include the rubber band covers with all the new rifles purchased because they get tossed aside so easily when we test each combo!) Hawke addressed this issue with these cool flip-covers.  And for those who prefer not to use them, or prefer they flip sideways or off at an angle, Hawke’s got you covered!  Those little tools in the box, the half-moon shaped ones, are spanners to loosen the lock rings to remove or adjust the flip covers.

The side focus is super smooth and low effort.  You can twist from 10 yards to infinity with 180 degrees of adjustment.  The standard turret is easy to use, but if you prefer easier grip, or more detailed spaces between markings, throw on the included 4-inch wheel and off you go!  Ok, so it isn’t that simple, but close.  By removing the sealed cap (yep, there’s a tool for that too!) you can insert the wheel to the clocked grooves, and tighten it back down.  This makes the side wheel a part of the scope, and prevents it from slipping off or getting out of adjustment.

Inside the 1-piece, rigid tube are the most important features, the glass and the reticle.  In the case of the Airmax 30 scopes, the reticle is etched in the glass, so it is cleaner and more sturdy.  Check out the reticle:

Hawke AMX Reticle

Hawke is using their own design AMX reticle, which combines the greatness of a true 10x Half Mil-Dot with the ballistic advantages of the Christmas tree bars for reference and the brackets around the outside.  They have designed a reticle that is extremely useful and surprisingly uncluttered and not distracting.  A feature unique to etched glass is the clear view around the edges.  This makes target acquisition easier and takes away distractions.  For you target shooters, it also allows for a clear view of the perimeter area, where little leaves and twigs may be obstructing your shot.  Clarity is very good with these Airmax 30 scopes.  At full magnification, the 50mm objective lets plenty of light through, and the clear image stays clear all the way to the edge.  When focusing at different ranges, the reticle snaps into clarity, which is very helpful when using the scope to determine accurate range to target.

Overall, Hawke has a real winner in the Airmax 30 range of scopes.  They provide all the features wanted/needed in a field or target scope, and they have managed to keep the price down in the $350 to $450 range depending on the magnification. If you are looking for a scope built to be the best all around, the Hawke Airmax 30 6-24×50 is a great match!

 

Until next time,

Get out and shoot!

New for 2015, Umarex is expanding the Walther lineup. When we first laid eyes on this new Walther Terrus, we were sitting at the Umarex USA booth in Las Vegas. First impression was great. The rifle looked well made, and fully featured. At first glance we thought that the rifle was just another LGV, but upon careful examination, we saw some differences. The Walther Terrus is based around the LGV and LGU family of spring guns, but geared towards a lower price point and higher sales volume. What we were amazed by, however, was the price tag on this cool little gun! Umarex USA was telling us it would retail for well under $300!

Fast forward to now, and we just received the first shipment. So we are now able to test the rifle and see if it is as cool as it looks!

Terrus Threaded Muzzle

Terrus Threaded Muzzle

First things first, we have to go over the rifle itself! Starting at the back, the Terrus has a rubber recoil pad. It is nicer than most though, and has nice grip pads and a small Walther Logo. Nice touch and attention to detail. Forward, the wood stock has very nice lines, 4 panels of diamond checkering, ambidextrous shape, and a few extra details like another Walther logo and a flat fore end lower. The safety is automatic, and located very conveniently on the rear of the action. The trigger is simple and clean. Up top, the barrel is the perfect length for cocking the rifle, and the fiber optic sights are a nice touch as well. The front and rear sights are completely removable, so scoping the Terrus is clean. Another nice touch is the threaded muzzle, capped by a nice thread protector. Overall, a clean and simple rifle.

Where the Terrus shines is when you start to use it. Start by cocking the ultra smooth spring piston by breaking the barrel with a clean snap. The rifle is very easy to cock, and engages with a solid “click” at the end of the stroke. Nice! Load up the barrel with your choice of pellet, and the barrel is returned to battery. You know the barrel is closed because it gives a solid and defined “click” again! Very nice! If that were the end of this test, one could walk away happy! The rifle is already better than most inexpensive springers in its class. But, there is more!

Walther Terrus Safety

Terrus Safety Catch

Shouldering the rifle is comfortable and well balanced. The grip position and length of pull is perfect, and the safety is exactly where you want it for quick disengagement. A flick of the thumb forward disengages the safety and the rifle remains comfortably on target. Taking up the first stage requires a solid 10 ounces of smooth effort and you are met with a firm wall. The 2nd stage breaks at 3 pounds 8 ounces, firing the rifle. With a smooth snap the rifle fires with very little noise and no felt vibration to report. Very enjoyable. Over the course of the next 50+ shots taken for testing, that feeling of pleasure never wore off!

Velocity testing showed that the rifle would deliver 725 fps with RWS Hobby pellets and 640 fps with H&N Field Target Trophy pellets. (.22 caliber) Accuracy over the test held inside ¾ inch at 20 yards, but we feel the rifle will only get better as it settles in. Most spring guns need several hundred pellets through them before they balance out, and accuracy should be reserved for a much longer test period. Judging by how smooth the rifle fires, we are confident to report that this rifle (with the correct ammo) will out-shoot its price tag!

If we had to criticize a feature, the trigger seems like it could be better. It has a definite feel of that heavy “lawyer spring” design. Oddly, despite the feel when looking specifically at the trigger, and the fact that the trigger scale reads a bit high, you really do not notice it when shooting the Walther Terrus. Maybe you are too busy loving the smooth cocking stroke, or the crisp snap without vibration, but the new Walther Terrus Wood is an excellent all around spring gun and the trigger is consistent and predictable. At the $225 price point, this gun deserves a strong recommendation!

 

Until next time,

Get out and shoot!

Brocock XL G6Last month I did a walk around this .22 cal. Brocock and “kicked the tires”.  In this installment I’ll share some observations from my shooting sessions.

First, I really liked the “soft touch” coating over the wood stock.  It was comfortable to the touch and gave such positive grip it made this little lightweight carbine even more pleasant to shoot.  No special instructions on care for the coating came with the airgun, but my guess is it could be cleaned with mild soap and water should it be needed.

It would be preferable to have an on-board pressure gauge; however, Brocock’s focus is on providing top value in quality and price for a British made airgun.  With import duties and costs of making this precision airgun, it must have been considered expendable to keep the price down.  This PCP will take a full 200 bar charge, but without a gauge, I never went more than 5 magazines (holding 6 pellets) without recharging the cylinder.  For the U.S. market it is set up with the Foster quick connect fill valve, but the instruction sheet described filling with a male probe.  Additionally, as these are export guns, they avoid the U.K. 12 ft-lbs. power laws and these G6s are rated up to 23 ft-lbs.  Loading was easy and pellets are retained by a rubber ‘O’ ring around the circumference of the magazine.  A large boss protrusion on the rear face and a smaller spring loaded ball on the front face prevent incorrect insertion of the magazine.  No misfires of any kind were experienced, but pay attention during shooting sessions as there is no mechanism preventing double-loading of pellets.  Trigger pull averaged a very nice 3.3 pounds right-out-of-the-box and both pull weight and length of pull is adjustable.

I used H&N Barracuda Hunter pellets (18.21gr.) and Excite Spikes (16gr.) and it digested them with excellent accuracy when I did my part.  The Nikon PROSTAFF Target EFR scope was a great pairing with the G6 and worked well without tweaking, other than adjusting the objective bell for parallax distance.  Testament to the prep my friends at Airguns of Arizona do prior to shipping products to their customers.  (www.airgunsofarizona.com)  Accompanying the G6 was a picture of the test target showing a ragged hole created by 5 shots from 23 yards.  Also included was a chronograph tape indicating an average velocity of 755fps for 6 shots using JSB Heavy pellets.  From a standing position I was consistently hitting the 1/2” kill zone of a Remington reactive crow target at 16 yards right-out-of-the-box.  The Huggett suppressor worked like a charm and this little gem could probably be used in a suburban setting without raising the ire of the neighbors if the user was so inclined (and it was legal to do so…)

Of course, no one airgun will meet all of a shooter’s criteria (I don’t know why my wife doesn’t understand this, and my need to own so many) and so here are a couple of items that I feel are necessary to mention.  Already discussed was the lack of an on-board pressure gauge.  Not a showstopper for many shooters, just nice to have; especially if you are taking the G6 afield.  I found the indexing of the rotary magazine to be a little sticky and had to play with it sometimes to get the next chamber aligned with the bolt.  It lessened during my testing so was probably just a break-in issue.  At this price point I also would like to see an extra 6 round rotary magazine included with the G6.  No manual safety – again, a cost saving measure I’m sure — but I missed not having one, partly because of the warning in the instructions that the gun can be discharged while the bolt is locked back in the open position.  The instructions indicate this would not necessarily harm the gun but there is a good chance the breech seal could be blown down the barrel.  That being the case, it is just another caution for the shooter to keep your wits about you every time you take it out shooting – good advice whenever handling any lead slinging device!

All-in-all, the G6 was a pleasure to shoot; very accurate with that Nikon scope.  A of A retails this carbine for $739.00 and Brocock warrantees them for 2 years.  Many thanks to them for lending this great little shooter to me — good things really do come in small packages.

Every so often a company comes along with a product that makes a huge wave in the airgun industry, and when you have been around as long as we have, you get a sense for it when you first see it!

FX Wildcat .22 with optional FX Scope

FX Wildcat .22 with optional FX Scope

A couple years back, FX Airguns was pressured into the bullpup market by the shouting mob of American customers! Prior to that, FX had no intentions of building a bullpup because they already had some extremely short and compact models like the Verminator Mk2 and the Ranchero Carbine. So FX took to their best design at the time, the Royale 400, and began to design a bullpup around this platform. What they came up with was the Bobcat, which was met with mixed opinions and over the years has been a popular model! It was and IS a great rifle, but never was a true bullpup. Even FX’s owner, Fredrik Axelsson, called the Bobcat a semi-pup from day one. The Bobcat was a quick response to a need, while FX continued to grow and develop a true Bullpup design.

In the fall of 2014, we had a small team from AOA visiting the FX factory in Sweden, and we looked over the design that would eventually become the FX Wildcat. We knew from that moment how great it would be and gave our input into the cosmetics and features needed for the US. FX went to work and by March of 2015 at IWA in Germany they had produced a final prototype that took the show by storm. The rifle had amazing features, compact and slim design, and what shocked everyone was how FX was able to produce this model at a much lower price point than everyone expected. Those in attendance left the show buzzing about the new Wildcat, and we all waited for production to prove out just how the rifle really would perform.

So today, we are going to run through the results and see if the new Wildcat lives up to all the hype that everyone has been hearing! We’ll start with the outward specifications:

The Wildcat in .22 caliber weighs in at just 6.1 pounds and measures only 29.9 inches long! The barrel is 19.7 inches, and is concealed inside a full length shroud that not only looks cool, but it reduces the noise down to a quiet “puff”. The most obvious feature to a bullpup fan is the location of the side lever cocking arm. It is right where it should be, up in the middle of the action near where your hand is already positioned when shooting. This makes for easier use when cocking and loading. The magazine is dead simple to load as well, and holds 8 pellets in a rotary wheel. The air tube is 230cc, which will allow the Wildcat to give a full count of shots expected from a proper length rifle. How many shots? Lets find out:

Wildcat .22 shot string with pellets taken straight out of the tin.

As you can see in the chart above, this amazing little bullpup is giving a full 75 shots at an average of 894 fps with a JSB Exact Heavy .22 pellet weighing 18.1 grains. And it does this with an extreme spread of less than 20 feet per second across the whole fill. That is over 32 ft/lbs on average for 75 shots! So does the Wildcat .22 perform? You can decide for yourself! We have seen popular full length rifles that cannot get half as many shots as this Wildcat, and nowhere near the consistency like this regulated airgun is showing. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the fact that the FX Wildcat is fully regulated, and that is a standard feature, not an upgrade!

Ok, so it looks great on paper…but how does it shoot…on paper? Before we look at that, we should say that the Wildcat sports the proven FX Smooth Twist barrel, so accuracy will likely match everything else in the FX range. Let’s go straight for the real test…50 yards:

WildcatTarget2

5 Shots @ 50 Yards

WildcatTarget1

5 Shots @ 50 Yards

As you can see from these quick groups shot at 50 yards, the FX Wildcat .22 holds up in the accuracy department as well! On the day for testing, the Arizona heat was already breaking over 100 degrees and there was a bit of a gusting breeze. So, these groups could likely improve with better conditions and a cooler head behind the scope! But even as shown here, the rifle is performing exceptionally well. When you consider that the Wildcat as a bullpup was never intended to be locked down on a bench, it is exceptional for a hunting rifle with design around being compact and discreet. These groups are more than acceptable for any hunting application, and the rifle will do its job in the field.

So, as far as bullpups are concerned, FX has a real winner of a design in this new Wildcat. It will quickly become a favorite amongst shooters. Both for its features like shot count and accuracy, and for its lower price point in the category of high quality bullpups.

Until next time,

Get out and shoot!

It’s pretty easy to make the case that Larry Piercy has the coolest job in the world.

Larry-1

Larry working as Range Master at the 2014 EBR.

We’ll get to the details of this innovative venture in just a little while, but first a little background about Piercy. “As a kid, I had a Daisy 1894 lookalike. I’ve known Robert Buchanan, president of AoA, for thirty years, but I didn’t really know about adult precision airguns until he and I got involved starting the Airgunners of Arizona field target club.”

He adds, “I started field target with a Slavia 631, a seven-foot-pound gun. I think I dropped only four targets in that first match. After that, I bought a Beeman R1 in .20 caliber and did better. Larry has been heavily involved with airguns and field target ever since and is currently president of the Airgunners of Arizona field target club.”

Piercy is also an NRA-certified firearms instructor and a Certified Range Officer for the United States Practical Shooting Association.

Early in 2015, Piercy retired from Boeing after 26 and a half years, and within a month Robert Buchanan phoned. He wanted to discuss an idea he had been thinking about for some time. The next day Larry and Robert met for breakfast to discuss their visions for the project, and within a couple of days, Piercy was on the AoA team.

So here are the details on “the coolest job in the world”: as this is being written, within a few days Larry will begin touring the country in a custom van that is tricked out as a mobile showroom for Airguns of Arizona and Precision Airgun Distribution, which is the distribution arm of AoA.

Larry-Van-2

“This project has four goals,” Larry says. “The primary goal is to establish additional dealers in the Precision Airgun Distribution network. The van will be a mobile showcase for adult precision airguns. We’ll have 10 long guns – everything from an HW30 to an Air Wolf – and 2-3 pistols. We’ll take the latest airguns to them, let them see them, touch them, and, if there are the facilities, shoot them.

The second goal is to help existing dealerships to be more successful. A third goal will be to interface with the airgunning public, which means that Piercy and the van will be visiting the National Field Target Championships, the National Airgun Benchrest Championships, and similar events. The van is equipped with an Omega electric compressor and a Daystate gas-powered compressor for refilling tanks and a workbench “in case somebody blows an o-ring.”

 

Van-Rear

A fourth goal will be to do some outreach to provide some relief for people in need, and Piercy’s son-in-law, who has a master’s degree in counseling, will be a resource for that effort.

The plan is for Piercy to go out on the road for up to three weeks, then spend a week or two at home, then repeat the process. “When I’m home, I’ll be visiting local ranges in the Phoenix area. Already there is one range planning to build an airgun facility, and I can help with supervision as well as shooting and safety instruction.”

Robert Buchanan will accompany Piercy on the first trip, a 7-10-day sweep through Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. Piercy says, “I’m finding that in some areas, they know that airgunning is really growing in popularity, but firearms dealers are somewhat reticent to get involved. It should be an interesting trip.”

Buchanan adds, “We’re going to learn a lot.”

After they return, it should be very interesting to find out what they have learned.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

  • Jock Elliott

We would like to start today by wishing you all a safe and relaxing Memorial Day!

When AirForce Airguns improved their trigger/safety design recently, they altered it enough to make our old-style AirForce SuperSear incapable of fitting. But, the newly designed trigger still lacked the refinement that people wanted, and we received enough feedback to warrant the redevelopment of the design and the custom parts engineer was put to task to work his magic…enter the AirForce Super Sear 2!

You can download the installation instructions HERE to get a general idea of “HOW” to install, but we wanted to do a quick write-up to give our experience as to “WHY” to install.

Taking a new-style Condor SS out of the box, we tested the trigger and found it to be nice, but a tad heavy. More over, the feel was good but not great. In testing the trigger on our digital scale, we found the 1st stage to take-up at 1 pound and 12 ounces before stopping at the 2nd stage wall. With just a slight amount of creep, the trigger broke at 2 pounds and 14 ounces. While safe and predictable, we understand where most PCP shooters would find this to be too heavy. And since it is not adjustable, you are basically stuck with this design. We try not to recommend any customizations which compromise safety, so simply replacing the springs with lighter parts is not good advise. So we opened up the trigger assembly to swap out the sear with the new Super Sear 2.

Following the detailed steps in the guide, we removed the pistol grip, fore end, trigger shoe and safety shoe to expose the trigger assembly.

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Removing the front screw under the block allows access to the springs and sears.

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Carefully drifting the Sear Pin and removing the factory sear, it is simply a matter of installing the new sear in the same orientation and reversing the steps from here. It is recommended to add light lubrication at this stage.

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As you can see, the design is different between the factory sear and the Super Sear 2.

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When assembling, the instructions say to use the spring provided in the kit in place of the striker latch spring and to remove the trigger return spring because it is “unneeded and unused”. Our tests proved this statement to be true, as the trigger functioned properly without this spring and was reliable in our testing.

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As you work in reverse, make sure the roll pin is inserted the correct direction, and when finished, you should only have 3 parts left over, 2 springs and the original sear.

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And by now, you are anxiously waiting for the big reveal! WHY go through all this work?

Following the installation, the trigger results were much, much better! The first stage take-up tested at 3 ounces. And the trigger breaks clean and crisp at 8.8 ounces! So, is it worth the time and small price tag? That is up to you to decide! Meanwhile, we will be out shooting this Condor SS with its much improved Custom SuperSear 2 trigger!

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Until Next Time,

Get Out and Shoot!

New Brocock Contour G6

New Brocock Contour G6

In this first of two parts I’m going to introduce you to this new little carbine by doing a “walk-around” and “kick the tires” so to speak.  Next installment, I’ll get into the “test drive”.

Brocock is a British manufacturer that has been in business since 1989.  They were known for their high quality, realistic revolvers that fired a pellet from a pressurized, self-contained cartridge.  They were basically a niche player in the British airgun scene and not well known or widely available outside of that country.  Their guns were so well made and resembled the real firearms so closely that some of their products were being converted into firearms.  To put a stop to that, Brocock airguns and cartridges were outlawed in Great Britain in 2004.  A company almost put out of business by the government because of a few rotten apples… could never happen in the U.S. right?  Luckily, Brocock had also been making PCP guns and were able to stay afloat.  Last year the Diana group out of Germany purchased Brocock.  Diana also owns Daystate now so this move provides Brocock with access to share designs, technology and processes as well as expanding their market exposure outside of Great Britain.

My sample arrived in a long cardboard box securely inside another shipping box.  I knew the G6 was a carbine and wondered what extra things might be accompanying the airgun in that large box.  Alas, no extra goodies other than a Foster female quick connect adapter and paperwork was in the box.  It just goes to show you how well our friends at www.airgunsofarizona.com package their products to protect them in route to the customer.

Once I opened the lid and removed the top piece of 1” thick foam I was able to gaze upon this little 6-shot rotary magazine fed gem.  I wondered for a moment about the color selection for the Minelli designed stock.  I’m sure Brocock did their due diligence with market research, etc. when they made the choice of forest green (which is really more olive green) for their “soft touch” stock treatment.  It could be they were just attempting to make their product stand out among the crowd; or perhaps the green is the natural color of the material used in the “soft touch” coating.  For the purist, Brocock also offers a model stocked in walnut as the model Contour S6.

Removing the G6 from the box, you immediately get a feel for its lightweight nimbleness.   The ambidextrous skeletonized stock keeps the weight down while the “soft touch” overlay gives the shooter a comfortable, slightly sticky tactile feel.  This is enhanced by a checkering-like treatment on the forearm and grip.  The trigger is a wide metal unit surrounded by a plastic trigger guard having access holes to allow adjustment of the trigger pull and first stage length of pull.  Notably absent was a pressure gauge to indicate how much air remains in the reservoir and no apparent manual safety (confirmed upon reading the instructions accompanying the gun).

My attention then turned to the Nikon Prostaff 3-9x40mmAO Extended Focus Range (EFR) scope mounted on the gun.  It is a great looking scope with an adjustable objective lens for handling parallax.  It should prove to be a great pairing with the G6.

The Lothar-Walther barrel is capped by a permanently affixed Milbro Huggett suppressor.  This gun is made for the U.S. market where there are very few restrictions on airgun power and my understanding is that it is capable of up to 23fpe.  Even so, in my experience with Huggett suppressors, I expect this to be a very quiet shooter and viable for urban backyard shooting/pest control.

As the saying goes: good things come in small packages, and I’m expecting good things from this attractive little package!  I can hardly wait to get outside with it!  Stay tuned for part two next month.