Benjamin Discovery Shines in .22

Monday, November 17, 2008

Where I live in upstate New York, this is the time of year when the window of opportunity for 50-yard airgun testing begins to close, at least for me. The days are shortening; the weather is cold and damp; and once the serious snow flies, I won’t be able to get to get to the 50-yard range at the gun club at all. Once that happens, the longest range that I can conveniently manage at home is about 39 yards. (Besides, I rarely do my best work when my teeth are chattering.)

But every once in a while in November, we get a nice warm day like last Friday (November 14, 2008). As the temperature headed toward 60, I called my friend Dick Johnson (an excellent centerfire benchrest competitor). We agree to meet at the range at 2 pm. He brought his Oehler printing chronometer and his “professional” bench rests, and I brought three .22 air rifles.

The first, which I won’t mention here until I get some more time to sort it out, didn’t do so hot. The second was an RWS54 in .22. It turned in entirely worthy performance, and I will be writing about it here in a future blog. But the big surprise of the day was the Benjamin Discovery in .22.

The Discovery delivers worthy performance for a surprisingly modest price.

The Discovery is Crosman Corporation’s inexpensive pre-charged pneumatic air rifle. By inexpensive, I mean it can be purchased with a pump for less than $400, and without a pump for less than $250.

Weighing just 5 lbs 2 oz and stretching 39 inches end to end, the Discovery is a bolt-action, single-shot rifle that is available in either .177 or .22. It has the capability to run off either compressed air or CO2. You can fill it with compressed air from a hand pump or tank or with CO2 from a paintball tank using an optional filler hose. In addition, the Discovery is a low-pressure PCP, which means you have to fill it only to 2,000 psi, not 3,000 psi or higher, as is common with other pre-charged pneumatic air rifles.

After mounting a Leaper 6-24 x 56 scope and sighting it in, I pumped the Discovery up to 2,000 psi and settled it onto the rests. I tried 5-shot groups with Discovery .22 hollow points, Dynamic SN-2 pellets, and JSB Jumbo Express Exacts and got mediocre results. Admittedly by this point in the afternoon, conditions were deteriorating. A front was moving into the area; the wind was gusting intermittently; the temperature was beginning to drop; and the sun was dropping toward the horizon.

Then I switched to .22 Crosman Premiers, and magic happened. Five shots landed in a group measuring 1 inch edge to edge (that works out to .78 inch ctc). After the first two shots, there was a lull in the wind. The next three shots really got my attention: they created a single hole in the target measuring .375 edge to edge. That’s .155 ctc. Not too shabby.

Shot at 50 yards, the first two shots are just above the quarter. The last three shots are just below the center circle.

Considering that this was an absolutely box-stock, unmodified, factory fresh .22 Discovery, I am very impressed with the results.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

- Jock Elliott

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4 Comments

  1. Darrell vaughan says:

    What the volcity use a 14gr pellect and what the volcity on the 177cal use a 10.5gr peect. i going get the discovery this b my first pcp

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Darrell,

      If you re-read the various blogs, you will discover all the information that I have. I think you will like the Discovery.

  2. Kelton says:

    How long do you think the discovery will last if I shoot about 2000 pellets through it every month? I have had many spring guns and none have lasted more than six months. I think because I shoot so much I wear out the spring and seals.

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Kelton,

      I will be doing my best to answer your question in next week’s blog.

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