Blog 28. Choosing a spring airgun at Gunroom in Brisbane.

 

Buying a new spring-piston airgun.

Getting a new airgun, whether it is your first gun or an additional rifle, still takes some forethought. Jump this step and you are likely to walk away with an airgun that the dealer stocks and not one that fills your need.

Here in Australia, the majority of gun dealers tolerate air rifles and stock a cheap line up so as to satisfy the novice buyer to the world of airguns. If this describes you as a ‘newbie’ into air rifles, then you are on the right website, we ONLY deal in airguns, ones that we know and service.

The entry-level spring powered airgun.

Most of us who shoot air rifles started off with a spring-piston airgun, commonly called a “springer”. From the small springers, we moved up to larger springers or made the transition to a PCP air rifle. Not to get ahead too quickly here, I will cover the spring powered airguns to begin with.

If the new air rifle is for a youngster or a woman, the priority would be to get a correctly sized rifle by weight, length, power and comfort. In saying this, I am not advocating buying a cheap gun or an expensive one, but a rifle that will be both accurate and reliable. You seldom see these two words in the same sentence as a cheap airgun.

We currently stock 2 brands of spring-piston airgun and will shortly be adding another 2 brands of air rifle to the mix. In the meantime, the cheapest of the entry-level springers we sell is the Cometa and from their line-up, we only stock 4 models. These models I consider value for money as they are cheap, shoot pretty well and so far have proven to be reliable. Cometa has been around for a long time and is a well-established airgun manufacturer from Spain. The best value for money from Cometa, in my opinion, has to be the synthetic Galaxy model that is light, powerful, ergonomically comfortable and very accurate.

Cometa Galaxy Airgun

Cometa Galaxy Airgun

Moving up from the Cometa range of airguns, we are now looking at Weihrauch from Germany. Often described as over-engineered and heavy, but always reliable and accurate. The ‘heavy’ description does apply in fact to the more powerful spring air rifles such as the HW77, 97K and 80 models, so please bear that in mind if looking at a larger Weihrauch.

In the entry level, I would probably recommend the Weihrauch HW30s for someone with a slight build or young, followed by the marginally larger Weihrauch HW50. Neither gun is as powerful as the Cometa Galaxy but both are ahead on quality, reliability and market acceptance.

Weihrauch HW30s spring Airgun

Weihrauch HW30s Airgun

Larger spring air rifles.

Presently, the only large spring airguns we have are the Weihrauchs, being the HW77, HW97K and HW80. Of these three springers, the HW80 is commonly referred to as a “break-barrel”. Simply put it means that one has to pull the barrel down towards the action to cock the rifle, while the HW77 and HW97K have fixed barrels. To cock these two models, one has to release the under-lever by pressing a button just under the muzzle. This releases the detent and the loading lever comes free, ready to be cycled in the cocking the gun.

The HW77, HW77K and HW97K share most of the same parts in the action and compression cylinders. The only difference is the HW77 comes with a 470mm barrel, the HW77K with a 370mm barrel and the HW97K with a 300mm barrel. By default, the longer barrel of the HW77 lends itself to target work with the HW97K more popular in hunting circles due to the shorter overall length and slightly lighter gun.

If you are new to the air rifle sport and physically capable of carrying around one of these heavy guns, they come well recommended with a solid following and a reliable history. Further to this, if you are looking for a powerful spring-piston air rifle without going to the expense of buying a Pre Charged Pneumatic rifle (aka PCP), the HW77, HW97K or HW80 could fit the bill.

Weihrauch HW97K Blackline spring airgun

Weihrauch HW97K Blackline Air Rifle

What makes any of the above airguns a good choice?

Starting with the Cometa Galaxy, this airgun is simple and easy to maintain and service. It has minimal moving parts and compatible spring and seals making parts readily available. Best of all it is $100 cheaper than the HW30s which should appeal to those on a budget.

The Weihrauch spring-piston airguns are well supported by after-market suppliers such as Vortek and Maccari, both of whom make tuning kits that further enhance the already enviable accuracy of the Weihrauchs including the HW30s and HW50.

Conclusion.

The brief above tells you why the airguns are considered suitable as entry-level air rifles but I haven’t covered why you should by from Gunroom.

Air rifles are all that we do, no powder burners or shotguns, just the good old air gun. We do the warranty on all the air rifles that we sell, including the 3 year extended warranty that is often taken up. We have a fully equipped Service Centre where we tune, service and rebuild air rifles, both spring-piston and PCPs. Alongside is a 25 metre Test Range with chronograph and a SIUS 25/50 Target System where we test fire and conduct a pellet selection test on every airgun sold at Gunroom.

Brocock Compatto Cut-away

Blog #27. Air Rifle Warranty

Blog #27. Extended Air Rifle Warranty.

New air rifle purchases at Gunroom, may have the option of an extended warranty to 3 years. This includes our main agencies, Daystate, Brocock, Kral, and Weihrauch, and also includes air rifles such as AirForce, Marauder, Sam Yang, Eun Jin and Air Arms that are purchased on what is commonly called, the “grey” market: that is we are buying directly from a Wholesaler in the USA.

Daystate Red Wolf Gunroom

Daystate Red Wolf PCP Air Rifle

There is a Caveat, and that is we ONLY warranty, Factory or Extended warranties of air rifles sold by Gunroom. There are exceptions, and these apply to Weihrauch where we will do the factory warranty of 12 months on any Weihrauch, regardless whether we sold it or not. All other air rifles have to have originated from Gunroom, such as imports of Brocock, Daystate etc., that may have been on-sold to a Dealer. In a nutshell, we warranty ALL of our imports.

What is covered on a spring air rifle Extended Warranty?

On a spring air rifle, such things as a broken spring, busted seal or trigger issue is all covered. All you need do is call Rob at Gunroom, and he will send you a Booking in Form, that you fill in and return by email. You will then be advised to send the action and barrel, (everything except the scope and stock) to us and we will do the repair at no cost of parts or labour. The gun will then be tested and returned to you at your cost using the cheapest freight we can find.

Weihrauch HW77KSE

Weihrauch HW77KSE Spring Air Rifle

You need to understand that the air rifle will be repaired to shoot as close to the default speed as possible. It will NOT be tuned or accurised, just repaired to shoot safely and at the design speed. This warranty is good for 3 years providing your purchase has qualified you for an extended warranty. If you have purchased your air rifle with no pellet selection test, then you will not be offered an Extended Warranty period.

Extended Warranty conditions on a PCP air rifle.

PCP air rifles require more TLC than the average spring powered air rifle as they are generally more complex and require some maintenance. General issues we find with PCP air rifles are air leaks, corrosion issues and factory settings dropping out for one reason or another. This issue applies to all models of PCPs, from Brococks through the high-end Daystate PCPs.

Before you go charging off an send us your PCP under warranty, please call first because, in a large percentage of the time, we can affect a repair over the phone. In the event that this cannot be done or you doubt your ability to make any adjustment or repair, please refer the matter to us.

Warranty issues on a PCP include air leaks, faulty triggers, loss of power or general inaccuracy that may have developed. Providing you haven’t dicked about with the gun, please contact us and arrange for me to look at it and do the repair.

Brocock Compatto Cut-away

Compatto Cut-away showing internals.

If you have been “at it” to some degree, all is not lost as long as I am told what you have done, I will in all probability still cover it by warranty. Just make sure you send ALL the parts if you have disassembled the gun.

The timeframe for warranty and repairs.

During the first 16 months that I have been in Brisbane, air rifle repairs have overwhelmed me, many of which were just sent in without prior notice. As I was on my own during this time period, I struggled to match the demand, but that has now changed with the addition of Rob Marx joining Gunroom as a partner.

Further to this, Lewis Reinhold who many of you would remember from times gone by is now doing the spring air rifle repairs. I am now only doing PCP repairs of air rifles that we have sold or those belonging to established customers.

All warranty work and repairs are now booked in and done in a ‘first come, first served’ basis, with the intent of minimising the time the air rifles are in our care. Spare parts are of course an issue and that is something beyond our control. With spring air rifles, we do carry a large range of Maccari and Vortek seals, springs and service kits to suit most airguns.

In summarisation guys, I am posting another article shortly describing what maintenance can be done at home on your own air rifle. Many of you are getting this wrong and dosing your springers with oil that leads to ‘dieseling’ and the early destruction of the piston seal. In PCPs I am seeing quite a few homegrown repairs coming in and quite a number of these guns with corrosion issues leading to an early retirement of the air rifle.

Author

Ian McIntosh

 

Blog #26 Air Rifle testing of new spring and PCP air rifles in 2019.

Air Rifle Testing at Gunroom.

Testing each air rifle sold has always been our goal here at Gunroom, but with the increase in sales, I have found the transfer of data in hard-copy a time-consuming exercise. What is also evident is that many new air rifle buyers do not follow or take notice of this data.

As most of you are aware, the testing is done using a SIUS 25/50 Target System that provides extremely accurate shot placement and together with our CED Chronograph, they provide a complete ballistic report.

The only caveat here is that as the air rifles are new when tested, their performance will change to some degree once the barrel has ‘leaded up’ and springs together with seals have settled in. That said, when the air gun is handed over, the new owner will be given the best performing pellet for the air rifle as it is in its’ present form.

The new Air Rifle Testing Regime.

Until further notice, new air rifle purchases will receive the following pre-delivery and testing format, regardless of the cost of the air gun. I will test fire each gun using a minimum of 6 pellet types and based on grouping, will select the best performing pellet.

The pellet will be expected to achieve what I consider to be the anticipated speed for the given weight and ballistic coefficient of the selected pellet for the given rifle. A 6-shot group will then be shot and the chronograph results will be recorded and plotted to a Microsoft Excel Spread-sheet File that has the following information:

The Target results from the SIUS will be provided as follows:

H&N Extreme Target

H&N Extreme Pellet Test Target

Note that the image is zoomed to 300% with the actual grouping at the bottom right of the image, in this case, CLD: (Outer Diameter) 8.4mm. These results will be emailed to the buyer and not reproduced in hard copy.

Optional Testing Results.

Now there are going to be a number of you who want more than what I provide above and for that Gunroom offers the following service at a cost of $60:

A full 6 shots of 6 pellet types on a Spread-sheet as below:

The Spreadsheet comes together with the following graphs for those of you who prefer the visualisation of results:

Pellet Speed Graph

Average Pellet Speeds                                                            

Pellet Energy Graph

Pellet Energies

 

H&N Power Target

H&N Baracuda Power

 H&N Hunter TargetH&N Baracuda Hunter

 H&N Extreme TargetH&N Baracuda Hunter Extreme

 H&N Sniper TargetH&N Sniper Magnum

 H&N Terminator TargetH&N Terminator

 JSB Test TargetJSB Exact Jumbo Heavy

So we are clear here guys, a ‘Pellet Selection Test’ is just that, a “test”. It is NOT a tune-up, though if the air rifle was shooting below its’ rated capacity, then I would retrofit it with a Vortek or Maccari spring and seal at no cost to you.

The idea of a Pellet Selection Test is to short-circuit the time and expense that it would take for you to do the same task. We are well equipped to handle all types of air rifles, from springers to PCPs, with the equipment and experience to do the job. By testing the air rifle prior to delivery, you can immediately start shooting with the results that you would expect for the outlay that you have made.

With most of the calls I get about guns not performing, the customers blame the supplying Gun Dealer, when in fact, the problem is that the gun has not been tested. I do not know of any Gun Dealer who pre-tests the air rifles before they are shipped out and that is the main cause of problems when the customer cannot hit what he is aiming at.

PCP Air Rifles.

I would seriously recommend buyers of Brocock, Daystate, Kral and Weihrauch PCPs who buy from Gunroom, to get the full Pellet Selection test done. Given the higher costs of these PCP air rifles, you need to squeeze out everything you can that will give you accuracy and power: a full pellet selection test is a good start.

For those of you who decide to get the full Pellet Selection test, let me know what you intend to use the PCP air rifle for and that will affect the pellets that I test. I will probably make some minor adjustments that I consider beneficial for the intended use of the air gun.

Air Rifle Testing Summary.

By testing your new air rifle here, I can also adjust your trigger for you if required. All you need do is let me know what pressure you want it to ‘break’ at and I will set it up for you. There is no cost for this.

If you have purchased your air file from another dealer and it is not performing, providing it has originated from Gunroom (i.e. Brocock, Daystate, Kral etc), then I will look at it and fix the issue for free. You will need to pay the freight back and forth.

However, if the air rifle is another brand or one purchased on the ‘grey market’, you are basically on your own. I can look at it, but please call me first and do not just send it to me. I will price the task for you and you can then decide what you want to do.

At the time of writing this, Lewis Reinhold is tasked with looking after most of the springers that come through here while I do the PCP air rifles and machining/polishing work. When sending us an air rifle, please call first and it HAS TO BE LICENSED, OK? Seriously guys, please don’t send me anything that is not licensed. It is not me that has an issue with that, but Weapons Licensing here in Queensland are not the most congenial public servants that I have ever met….

This brings me to the issue of testing springers that have been worked on. Unless you have specified that you want your springer tuned after a repair, it will only get a test fire to check the speed and energy. Changing a spring and seal is just that, a swap out with some polishing and shimming. It does NOT include a tune-up, please realise this, guys. We will always do the best we can to keep pricing down and affordable in an effort to promote the air rifle fraternity in Australia.

Author

Ian McIntosh

Storage Safes at Gunroom

Safe Keeping of Firearms and what you should know

Safe-keeping of Firearms in Australia.

The term Safe-keeping of Firearms refers to the storage of firearms, air rifles included, for a prolonged period. Having recently received two air guns that were stored in a safe for just under a year, the owner was surprised to see the rust on them; to the point that even ‘breaking the barrel’ to insert a pellet was difficult. So, what went wrong?

One problem was humidity and the resulting damage that moisture can do. Another problem was the safe was situated in a basement area with poor ventilation and a damp atmosphere. Now, these air guns had been kept in this safe for years without any problems since they were used regularly, moisture was minimised by handling and outdoor activities. Then once they were left for a long period in a damp container, rust got hold of them.

The regular use of your firearm(s) and placement in a safe etc, may not alert you to the potential damage that humidity can do, so don’t let that fool you into leaving your guns unattended for a lengthy period. To show you just what I mean here, I placed these 2 disposable humidity canister traps (below), one in each 66-gun safe at my shop in Brisbane, for 6 weeks. Now my safes each were nearly full of guns and there were no large void areas, yet the following images show you just how much water was pulled out of the inside of each safe, and no, the doors were not left open for any prolonged periods of time.

Those of you living in Queensland who want to know more about storing your guns go to the safe-keeping of firearms Qld Police.

Disposable Humidity TrapsHumidity Traps with approx. 50mm of trapped water[/caption]

Yup, I know Brisbane gets humid but so do other places, some less and some more. Humidity can also be formed in warm weather in cooler areas of the house, such as a basement, so don’t overlook that possibility. Cold climates can also produce air-borne moisture producing rust within a gun safe, so don’t for one minute think that because your guns are locked away, they are potentially safe from rust.

The correct Safe-keeping of Firearms and Air Rifles in general.

Guys, while many of us look after our guns and wipe them down after use, the vast majority do not! Fingerprints containing oils and moisture are often visible on guns coming through Gunroom with the resulting breakdown, minimal at first, of the bluing.

Dust and dirt are other issues as some of these absorb moisture and transfer the resulting chemical action into and through the bluing. Bluing incidentally, for those of you new to guns, is a controlled oxidisation (rusting) of the steel. It is imperative to wipe down the bluing after use with a clean cloth or one that has a small residue of oil in it to take off marks. The gun does not need to be dripping in oil, a light smear polished back is sufficient.

There is another element to protecting your firearms and that is the correct safe size. As most safes are made in China, their method of calculating how many guns a safe will store, is bizarre, to say the least. In my opinion, a 7 Gun Chinese Safe will hold 5 guns at a squeeze and 3 or 4 comfortably, allowing you to remove them without scratching or marking the neighbouring firearms on each side.

It appears to me that the Chinese have not allowed for the rifle bolts sticking out the side nor have they allowed for scopes that seriously risk getting damaged when packing a gun safe to the marked capacity. I have 66 capacity gun safes that will hold around 40 air rifles without scopes and around 36 guns with scopes. Go figure….

Long Term Storage and Safe-keeping of Firearms.

Those of you considering Safe-keeping of firearms need to take storing them one step further than the above. That is, you need to wipe down the gun and put it in a heavy plastic tubular bag welded at one end, then squeeze out the excess air and wrap it tightly around the barrel securing it with a heavy rubber band. You can pick up a bag(s) free of charge when visiting my shop or when ordering any products online.

 

Storage Safes at GunroomStorage Safes at Gunroom[/caption]

Guns placed in a firearm safe without being crammed tightly together with sufficient air space between each firearm will minimise puncturing the bag and the possible frictional damage between guns. The safe used for Safe-keeping of firearms should also contain an efficient humidity trap to further reduce the risk of air-borne moisture.

Be careful with rags that have been soaked in oil or kerosene or similar as these can self-ignite when bundled tightly together. I put kerosene rags in an open coffee tin and oiled rags in a separate open coffee tin. I also place them where they will do little if any damage should ignition take place.

So, to summarise, long term air rifle storage or the safe-keeping of firearms for an extended period, you need to:
ensure the guns are wiped down,
place them in heavy tubular bags,
seal and store them in a moisture controlled gun safe with sufficient air space between each gun.
At Gunroom we individually check each air rifle, handgun or high powered rifle that has to be stored, prior to following the above 3 steps. The safe-keeping of firearms requires some attention to detail and due diligence if you are to avoid some of the above-mentioned pitfalls.

BLOG #25. Brisbane Air Rifles Gun Room

Hi again guys, the move is hopefully still on to 9/32 Spine St, Sumner Park in Brisbane where we will sell our air rifles and operate out of a small shop that has a warehouse behind it. That is once I have managed to get through all the red tape and bullshit that has been put in place by bureaucrats that know SFA about firearms and even less about small businesses. Anyway, providing I don’t cut my throat before I get these bloody permits, I will get there.

The move will allow us to do tuning and testing indoors, regardless of weather: an issue that really affects us at present in Yanchep. I anticipate working Tuesdays to Saturdays with time out on Sundays and Mondays, let’s see if I can get that to work….

Business online will not be affected and with the improved ADSL/NBN in the Sumner area will allow us to capitalise on our integration of a Cart into the website. Effectively it will free us up from writing invoices and spending hours trolling bank records trying to decipher those of you who do not write anything on their payments through the bank. (Thanks Guys, I need the extra work…)

There will be a change in the website landscape over the coming months as we will add all our products together with our air rifles and prices. Navigation will be easier and I shall be updating all my articles to bring them in line with current air rifle development. Product research covering Huma Regulators, Vortek Tuning Kits, extensive Pellet Testing together with video clips on new PCP air rifles will be featured as I will have more time. We also have some new scopes on the horizon that will be featured, so watch this space.

Payments will be made through PayPal or direct debit using a Card, this will update our MYOB accounting and speed up the order through to shipping process.

Daystate Air Rifles.

It is early October 2017 as I write this, so I am pleased to tell you that the Daystate Wolverine2 PCP range of PCP air rifles are now available with a few units in Customs at present. Those of you who have asked about the Daystate Wolverine2 in the past will shortly be able to view the full test results.

Daystate Wolverine2 HiLite HP

Wolverine2 HiLite available in FAC and HP (High Power)

I have both the Wolverine2 in FAC mode and in HP (High Power) mode in this stock order. As I am getting a lot of requests for larger calibres, you can be assured that I will be carrying the Wolverine2 in .25 and .303 calibres.

Daystate Pulsar HP

Daystate Pulsar HP – Note the longer barrel.

I will also be testing the Pulsar HP .25 calibre Bullpup shortly before I depart for Brisbane. I have also included in my next order a Pulsar HP in .303 that should be enough to make your eyes water.

Air Rifle Tuning.

I will still be tuning air rifles, only now I will have a lot more space and hopefully be better organised. Tuning offered will cover the Weihrauch range of springers from HW30 throughout to the HW110 PCP. Brococks and Daystate air rifles will be able to be tuned and serviced as I have a comprehensive range of parts and after-market accessories for these PCP air rifles. The Ataman PCPs will be here soon (expected date mid-December, 2017) and parts and service kits are expected to follow shortly after. I anticipate Ataman PCPs developing a sound following here in Australia as these are a quality air rifle fitted with non other than the Lothar Walter barrels.

Ataman M2R Carbon Stock Carbine

Ataman M2R Carbine with a Carbon Stock

Air Rifle Testing.

We will be testing ALL the air rifles we stock, tune or sell on behalf of, only this time Peter shall not be the only one doing the tests along with myself. My niece, Jane Mann, will be working full-time and be doing the bulk of air rifle testing and assist me in the photography side of the website as well.

While we have tested all the air rifles we sold in the past, we recently had a software glitch that cost us some 40 test results over the busy January/February period. I am hoping that the introduction of the SIUS HS25/50 Hybridscore Target system integrated with our current program will not only provide a superbly accurate diagnostic of each shot in a target, but be a reliable platform as well. As Jane will be doing the update into the computer after each test, the likelihood of losing bulk records is negated as she will have the ability to retest any suspect results immediately. You can view the SIUS handbook here.

Air Rifle Sales and Office Management.

The counter air rifle sales will be handled by myself and my partner, Dusanka Owczarek, that should raise the efficiency of what until now has been virtually a ‘one man show’. I will also do the website the articles and social media that is mandatory for websites these days together with the photography along with Jane.

Dusanka will assist with the Website Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), After-Market Product Research and the Accounting/daily finances. With the 3 of us working here I think that you will see a positive impact on service with a massive shift in website material, structure, images, videos and articles in the near future, that until now was done mostly by myself. The website management will now be handled by Naresh Kumar in India.

So there you have it, a new shop and new team and I welcome any suggestions or comments that can ultimately assist in providing a competent sales and service business for you and your interest in air rifles.

BLOG #24 Ordering Air Rifles

When we order in air rifles from overseas, we wait until we can have a reasonable number to send as that reduces the air freight substantially. Air freight basically relies on economies of scale, so air freighting in 1 air rifle will cost substantially more than bringing in 15 on a pro rata basis. In our air freight orders, I also bring in Pellets, Spare parts and Accessories, again to reduce the cost of freight pro rata on all the goods.

Ataman Soft Touch M2R Bullpup

Daystate Tsar

The delays getting Air Rifles.

With more expensive PCP air rifles such as Daystate, Brocock and Ataman, many of the orders need to be built or at least assembled. Because a model of Daystate for example, appears on You Tube in the USA, that does NOT mean it is available in Australia. The Daystate Wolverine2 is a classic example where this PCP air rifle was tested on You Tube weeks prior to the Las Vegas Gun Show. Why? So they can create demand prior to the show where in all likelihood more air rifles are sold to dealers in a few days that all of Australia in a year. Supply and Demand, simple.

Brocock Compatto

Ataman M2R Type 2 Bullpup

So those of you who gave me static about the Wolverine2 not being available in Australia now know that the ones coming here this month (May, 2017) have only just been built. I cannot get them quicker than that.

Then there is the fact that I am required to supply serial numbers to the Police prior to them issuing me a B709 import permit, even for air guns. Then some of these air guns have to be built first.….. Then it takes a week or three before the permit arrives wherein it is sent to the UK (or Russia or the USA) and the order is actioned. I have also had air guns sitting in Customs in the UK for 3 weeks for reasons unknown. These issues guys, are beyond my control and annoy me more than you; I can assure you of that. The world as we knew it 10 years ago has changed dramatically and legitimate firearm owners, including air gun enthusiasts, now find themselves on the pointy end of bureaucratic bullshit.

Air Rifle Parts.

Ordering in air rifle parts is a slightly different situation due to the size and quantity ordered. I have received a bit of static in the past because I couldn’t find some small part for various customers who have obscure guns. I think you need to be realistic here guys, if I email my 5 main suppliers about some obscure part, then if they do not reply I think you can be assured that they don’t have it. I could of course call them and get put on hold for 15 minutes only to be told that they don’t have it: problem here is that the call costs more than the part.

So to fix this, I am only ordering in parts for air rifles that I represent or actually sell, that way I can mostly guarantee a quick service at a cost effective price. There is only one of me and I am time poor to put it mildly, so servicing MY customers who frequent Gun Room and owners of guns I represent are my priority. That comes at the expense of someone who buys some oddball air rifle and gear elsewhere. Sorry about that. So if you have an air rifle that I stock or bring into Australia, then by all means I will source the part(s) for you but they will need to be paid for prior to ordering unless you have already purchased an air rifle from me.

Customers new to Gun Room however, should you order a part for an air rifle, you will be asked to pay for it in full prior to us doing so. Simply put guys, I have a heap of small orders here that have not been paid for or picked up for reasons that are beyond me. Once you establish yourself as a customer at Gun Room, be it for an air rifle or just pellets, then I am open to credit terms whereby I will order in for you prior to payment.

Gun Room in Brisbane.

If you don’t know by now then please be aware that I am moving to Brisbane in the coming weeks and will get established at 9/32 Spine St, Sumner Park, 4074, and should be trading there by July 1, 2017. Don’t expect my shop to be finished as that will be a ‘work in progress’ but I will have on hand a reasonable stock of Daystate, Brocock, Ataman and Weihrauch PCP air rifles together with MTC Scopes.

With more room and 2 people to assist me in the office, sales, testing and air rifle tuning, the service can be expected to improve greatly. One of the biggest improvements will be seen in ordering and supply as I will have an internet service that is more stable than where I am presently in Yanchep. I am working with an internet service (Telstra) that is off-line more than on, drops out consistently in 2 minute frequencies and is slower than Dial-up the majority of the time.

Those of you who have ordered parts, MTC Scopes and even air rifles and received no response, this is the reason. The last few months we were off line so much that we had over 2500 emails when we finally got them through and I am still working on them. I am even receiving emails over the last few weeks that were sent months ago, it is a nightmare service though I am not sure that “service” is an apt description.

MTC Viper Pro Scope

MTC Viper Pro 5-30×50

I will follow up this Blog with another that will over-view the Brisbane business and give you a better understanding of how we hope to improve your experience with us. I will also start the new shop off with a range of Special Deals that I am getting supported by the Suppliers and these will include Daystate, Brocock and Ataman PCP air rifles, so I hope to see or hear from you then.

BLOG #23. Testing New Air Rifles Explained

Hi once again guys, I want to cover testing of new air rifles, that is Weihrauch spring air rifles and PCPs by Daystate, Brocock, Weihrauch, AirForce and Special Order PCPs.

Due to the fact that 95% of my customers buy on-line, they do not have the luxury of trying out the air rifle of their choice, let alone testing it and sorting out any teething issues that sometimes accompany a new gun. Further to that, many firearm dealers do not have air rifle experience or interest in air rifles, therefore they bring very little to the table other than price.

On the other hand, air rifles are all that I do: OK, I sometimes do buy in a Weihrauch HW60 or HW66 but that is a rarity and an ‘order in’ only.  Air rifles are my passion and as I shoot almost daily they are a very large piece of my lifestyle and hence my knowledge base.

Why I test each Air Rifle when selling one.

There is seldom a week goes by that I do not get a call that goes something like this: “Hi, I just bought a XYZ air rifle and it shoots like a scatter gun, all over the map. It is a piece if junk (not actually that word)”.

OK, so that is another dealer’s problem and not mine you say, except if that was you. I cannot afford the time or cost in sorting out a gun across the width of Australia having just sold it. So that I exactly why I test them and over the last few years I have expanded the testing and customised some software to make the recording and transfer less painful and a lot quicker.

No matter what make of rifle, there are problems that arise on occasion and it is better if they become evident here with me than when they arrive into the customer’s possession. OK, so some of the problems are only minor and in most cases only adjustment issues but if you had just spent $3k or $4k on an air rifle, should YOU have to adjust it?

Then there is the case of accuracy as all air rifles including PCPs have a preferred pellet that shoots somewhat better than other types. The testing we do will select one of the better types of pellet and while it may not be the best performing pellet for that rifle, it will be up there with the best as we have access to 30+ different types.

Spring air rifle tests.

Spring powered air rifles are the most inconsistent type of rifle to test due in part to the fact that they are not ‘run-in’ with the spring ‘setting’ its’ self, the seal bedding in, barrel leading and the high occurrence of dieseling in new springers.

These factors make it difficult to say with 100% certainty that the rifle is performing at its best and so we have modified the testing to factor this in. As the dealer margins are very small on Weihrauch spring air rifles there is little room to move in regards to a more sophisticated testing procedure and so we concentrate on ensuring that the rifle delivers the correct speed and from there we select the best performing pellet.

Unlike the PCP air rifles, springers do not perform their best until at least 1500 shots have been put through them, at which point the owner should then start experimenting with different pellets in an effort to increase the accuracy. The following test sequences are now done with spring powered air rifles below $500:

As you can see we have only tested the rifle using 1 pellet type although I generally shoot 2 or 3 types through it first to get an idea of what to expect. In this case the Baracuda Hunter showed some promise and actually grouped better than the Baracuda so I used it to do the test. By the time I finished this test I had used around 25 pellets. When we are dealing with margins on these cheap springers of  $50 and less there is no room to move.

For Spring powered air rifles costing over $500 the following test sequence is done:

Here we test the rifle using a minimum of 6 pellet types that are selected by target grouping results.  If one of the above pellets had abnormal grouping then it would be dropped and an alternative pellet selected to replace it.

As with all our tests, either springer or PCPs, we start off with the H&N Baracuda as this pellet is available in .177, .20, .22 and .25 calibres, making it a good base level pellet to compare to.  The rifles are test fired to get rid of any dieseling and to let it settle down, this can take anything from 20 to 50 pellets in some cases. Once the airgun is zeroed and is starting to establish a consistent group, it is then we begin the Chronographing results you can see above.

Total pellets used in this test will range from 50 to 100 and on occasion more. Obviously there is no way I can put a time on this testing as it depends entirely on the gun in question. If I have to pull it down and do some polishing and replace a seal or whatever it takes, then before long the day is gone as I have to answer phone calls in-between all this. All this for a springer that quite often ends up costing me money to sell it. All the tests come with Target scans, be it springers or PCPs.

PCP Air Rifle Tests.

Due to the higher costs of PCP air rifles like the Daystate models, we test them to a greater degree with a more complex graph results as these include power, speed, Standard Deviation (SD), pellet decay, shot count and of course accuracy. This is done when we first receive a new model and we test it fully like this Brocock Compatto test.

The following test results are the current templates that Gun Room is using for the present and no doubt will get further improved once I have caught up with the data logging – currently running at around 3 weeks behind though I expect to have most completed with a week or two from now.

The following graph set is what to expect with a PCP purchase (these are actual results):

This graph gives you the actual Chronograph results that we take and place into graphs to make visualisation easier and quicker, allowing the eye to make immediate comparisons in the data results.

From this graph above we can derive much of the following data:

The graph above has the Stand Deviation results at the top in light green bars where the lower the reading the better as it shows that the Hunter Extreme has the closest matching pellet speeds. The middle results in blue show the maximum power in Foot Pounds of Energy (Fpe) and you can immediately compare the results this way. The lower bars in red show the difference in speed measured in feet per second.

As we fired each string of 6 shots the speeds rose and then fell as can be seen in Graph #2 and these results have then been redefined in Graph #3 to demonstrate the Pellet Decay fall. When looking at the Graph #3 it should be noted that we started the chart with a full tank of air and with Baracuda pellets. After the final pellet test that was JSB Exact Jumbo Monster, we reverted back to Baracuda (Shot #37>) where we continued to shoot until the speed dropped below 500 F/s, what we call the ‘Plinking Limit’ for accuracy.

This is the Standard Deviation chart and probably the least understood of all the data collected. Rather than write a book about SD I will explain it this way for you guys new to Chronograph readings.

When a string of shots are fired through a Chronograph their speeds are measured and the Chronograph list them under Extreme Spread. This is the difference between the lowest speed recorded and the highest speed recorded in a shot string. So if we take the graph above we will see that the first string of 6 shots returned an Extreme Spread of 10.8 feet. Literally speaking, if you fired all 6 shots at once and froze them in flight after 1 second, the slowest pellet would be 10.8 feet behind the fastest pellet.

The Standard Deviation is a formula based on averages that gives us an average between each shot that is worked out by formula as each shot is not consistent with the last or the nest shot. Suffice to say here, that if we have a SD of below 5 then we are getting close to similar speeds between each shot. I have had SDs of .8 and once we had a SD of 0 where the pellet speed difference over 6 shots was an Extreme Spread on just 8 inches!

The point I am making here is that the closer the speeds are with a particular pellet in a specific air rifle, the better as the trajectories, energies etc., are going to be very similar. The more similar the pellet behaviour the better performance can generally be had in accuracy and grouping. The better quality the air rifle and the pellets the better chance you have of achieving consistent results. You need to also be aware that ALL rifles vary and you can get 2 air rifles, 1 serial number apart, using pellets out of the same tin and yet they have markedly different results.

Air Rifle Testing Summary.

The idea of testing is to fault find (if any) before the air rifle leaves our possession, and to provide the new owner with the results that allow him/her to start shooting using a tested pellet type that will provide immediate results. These are not said to be the best results obtainable with that particular gun, because we do not test every type of pellet, but it allows the owner to jump start the pellet selection process without the unnecessary additional financial pain.

So there we have it guys, that is what pellet selection is all about. I can usually complete a pellet selection test and adjustments in a couple of hours but on occasion it has taken many hours to get the gun shooting correctly. In saying this, you can see that it is difficult to predict how long it will be before I finish testing a specific gun as the test procedure is often interrupted by phone calls, messages, customers walking in and numerous other interruptions. So please, before you ring me and chew me out over the delays, understand this, I am doing my best and want YOUR gun OUT as much and probably more than you want to receive it; and as is usually the case, there are other air rifles ahead of yours….

Blog #21. Brocock Compatto and MTC Scopes

The Hawke Sidewinder ED 10-50×60 Scope.

This Hawke Sidewinder ED scope is the latest release that we have purchased from Hawke and it is every bit as good as they claimed, in fact I think it is better. This is one large scope with 60mm objective in a 30mm tube that houses the new TMX reticle.

Hawke Sidewinder ED 10-50x60 TMX showing the Airmax 30SF style Illuminator and Dust Caps

Hawke Sidewinder ED 10-50×60 TMX showing the Airmax 30SF style Illuminator and Dust Caps

Hawke have learned lessons from the Airmax 30SF as one can clearly see some of the same componentry used in the Sidewinder ED. Some of this is no doubt due to the benefits derived by economies of scale and commonality of parts but also because these components work well in the 30SF. The adjustable illuminated step-less angled turret and the alloy dust covers that are locked in with the help of ‘C’ tools that are supplied, are already used in the Airmax 30SF.

A Hawke Sidewinder ED on Packaging Box

A Hawke Sidewinder ED on Packaging Box

What rifles would use the Sidewinder ED?

There are going to be those who react and say ‘who needs a scope that powerful?”. Answer, me for one, my eyes aren’t like they were 40 years ago….. However, I like shooting out at distances of 100 metres or more using a PCP and at the end of the day, magnification, clarity, an excellent thin etched glass reticle and a large objective all contribute to accuracy and visible shot placement.

Hawke Sidewinder ED fitted on a Weihrauch HW100TSE with FX Air Tank and Air Shredder.

Hawke Sidewinder ED fitted on a Weihrauch HW100TSE with FX Air Tank and Air Shredder.

Try hitting a 5 cent coin at 100 metres with a wire reticle scope as used on some cheaper designs and you will find the coin is eclipsed by the thickness of the reticle. Not so with this scope as the optics are first class and makers of established scopes should be looking over their shoulders as Hawke scopes are fast coming of age and quality.

As I predominantly sell air rifles/PCPs this scope is perhaps too large for a majority of them; but if you own a quality PCP like Weihrauch, Brocock, Daystate or AirForce, and you intend shooting out to the next level where a degree of skill is required, then maybe you should look at the Sidewinder ED. Anyone reading this who has a centre-fire will immediately see the advantage of using a x50 ED scope on distances out over 400 metres. I wouldn’t fit it to a springer due to the limited range of a spring gun and the cost ratio of the scope versus the cost of the spring air gun as this is not a cheap scope in price or construction.

Weihrauch HW100TSE with Sidewinder ED

Weihrauch HW100TSE with Sidewinder ED

The Scope un-boxed.

As can be seen from the image below, the scope now comes in a well made cardboard box and not in the Aluminium box of the past that used to house a the Sidewinders. In the box there are two ‘C’ tools for adjusting the flip up alloy dust covers and a 2 pin knob used for tightening up the low profile knurled nut that secures the side-wheel. There is also a sunshade extension and a 100mm side-wheel that can be fitted to allow very small adjustments to be made taking out parallax, due in part to the large diameter of the wheel that also hosts distances in yards.

Hawke Sidewinder ED un-boxed.

Hawke Sidewinder ED un-boxed.

There is no point in fitting the side-wheel if you are comfortable just using the turret cap to focus but serious target shooters have come to realise its advantages. In some of these images you will see that I actually fitted the optional side-wheel that is 150mm in diameter, as this allows even smaller adjustments to be made with pin-point accuracy.

Note: Due to the size of the 150mm side-wheel, care must be taken not to load the side-wheel by leaning it against something while attached to the rifle or lying it down whilst under the rifle. Due to the leverage effect that the wide side-wheel can impose on the turret shaft when supporting a rifle’s weight, damage may result. The same can be said about protecting the scope’s objective, especially when fitted with a sunshade: this poses a long unsupported scope tube that will transfer any load on it by several multiples that can’t be good.

Side view of the Hawke Sidewinder ED

Side view of the Hawke Sidewinder ED

The Sidewinder ED Reticle.

The etched glass reticle harbours some very fine lines and numbers not found on many other scopes. Buying a scope of this quality and expense dictates that you should understand the reticle and just how to use it to the best advantage possible.

The Sidewinder Ed comes with ¼ MOA geared turrets and optional 1/8th MOA or 1/10th  MRad can be purchased separately for those guys who shoot to 5 decimal places.

Replacement Geared Turrets

Replacement Geared Turrets

Suitability of the Sidewinder ED.

This Hawke Sidewinder ED will in all likelihood find its’ niche with bench-rest shooters of PCPs and centre fire rifle owners who participate in extreme range targets. For myself, shooting a good group at 100 metres takes skill, a good PCP and a great scope in that order. I know quite a few of my customers who will dig deep to buy one of these scopes for the advantages it offers apart from cosmetic.

As for the zoom factor, one doesn’t need to run around all day with the scope zoomed up to the max as 10 power if quite OK for much of the shooting done today as it is.

Summary.

At the end of the day the Hawke Sidewinder ED fitted with a 150mm side-wheel makes an imposing sight that is in fact in keeping with its impressive performance. Having not fired too many shots using this Hawke Sidewinder ED scope I can say this, ‘what I have fired has impressed me no end’, to the point I will buy one for myself.

Brocock Commander facing right

BLOG #20. Air Rifles Australia

Supplying Air Rifles Australia wide.

Reading this blog you will know that I supply Air Rifles Australia wide, in fact, West Australia is one of my lowest sales areas due to our over-zealous gun laws and those that enforce them. That is why I moved to Queensland. What I want to get across in this blog are the hurdles we face both as an air rifle retailer and an air rifle consumer (you) and work out how to get around these obstacles.

Air Rifles and Accessory Orders.

I have installed new software for ordering air rifles, airgun parts, scopes and accessories etc. All that needs to happen now is that I have to learn how to use it. That said, can I please ask that you order by email only as I am getting orders verbally over the phone when I am driving, orders by text, orders on voicemail even orders on ‘Comments’ under articles, etc., etc.  The problem here is that my phone is always constantly busy and I receive heaps of texts etc., and with the outcome that some orders fall through the cracks.

Example: The other day my wife answered a phone call from Ben Thomas as I was driving. He wanted to order something and asked that I call him back and was his phone number visible? My wife told him his number was visible and that she would get me to call him back within an hour. Straightforward? It should have been but Ben Thomas’s mobile phone number (ending in ***910) gave this response when I called; “Thank you for your call, this is an outbound number only, have a great day….” No doubt Ben Thomas thinks I have better things to do than call him back…

The same thing has happened with texts where I have replied and yet get no answers. My order page will send the order to a different address we have and to yourself, if you do not receive a copy of your order then you have entered the wrong home address.

New orders will get a response from myself or Rob with any queries that I may have and an estimated time if I have to order it in. You will be updated using my new software as to where your order is in the queue. Presently I have taken orders verbally by person and by phone, by texts, emails and smoke signals and the result is leading to confusion to put it politely.

Orders ONLY for Air Rifles Australia wide.

You guys reading this from overseas, please note we can ONLY supply air rifles Australia wide and NOT overseas.

Ok guys, I know some of you are getting pissed at waiting so long for your air rifles, namely Weihrauch, Brococks, Daystates, AirForce and Marauders etc. So here it is for you: Weihrauch only sends to the Australian wholesalers 2 and sometimes 3 times a year. However, to get an air rifle in the stock order, Weihrauch has to have it already made and if they do not have one in stock, (which happens quite a bit), then your air rifle has to be built. Daystate and Brocock are all made to order! There has also been a recent hold up getting permits to export air rifles out of Germany and I can only see things getting tougher as gun laws get tightened.

Air Rifles Australia Kral Puncher S model

Kral Puncher S Bullpup in a Synthetic Stock

Understand this, they will not build just one air rifle, so it goes into a queue and is built on a schedule which can mean that your air rifle doesn’t leave in a timely fashion. In fact, I can tell you that I have waited 2 years for one HW30 a while back. The problem is not me (this time…) but the fact that Australia is way down the pecking order and getting air rifles, parts and accessories is a frustrating task.

Brocock Commander Air Rifle

Brocock Commander 480 Black Right Facing

At the time of writing this, I had around 9 people waiting for Weihrauchs, 2 for AirForce Texans, 3 AirForce Condors, 2 AirForce Talons, 3 for Evanix Blizzards and 2 for Eun-Jins. Guess what, some of these orders were placed 8 months ago! Once I place the air rifle order it is out of my hands as I am sure you can now realise, so don’t shoot the messenger.

Pricing Orders.

I am buying in some orders that are then cancelled once the air rifle gets here, so if you don’t want to put a deposit on an order, then I will only order it if it is a normally stocked air rifle, like any of the Weihrauchs, Brococks, Daystates, Cometas, AirForce PCPs or Krals. To save me repeating myself, the ordering system for air rifles is on Blog #16. If you order in a rifle like a Hatsan then I will need a 50% deposit so I know the order is serious and not some whim where I get left with an unusual air rifle with a limited market.

SamYang Sumatra Air Rifles Australia

Samyang Sumatra 2500 500cc

Air rifle parts are a particular problem as locating the correct part is only part of the equation, getting it sent here is where the problem lies. Example, I have just ordered a seal from the USA that costs US$5.30 and US$33.50 USP express post as this is the only postal service they use. That is $52.41 landed here, who wants to pay that for a pissy little seal?

As a result, when I get orders for some accessories or parts I will ask you if you want to pay Express rates or if you are prepared to wait until I order additional products from the supplier so that postage is reduced (economies of scale…).

I am stocking MTC Scopes from the UK whereas Hawke Scopes are available locally. This includes the Hawke Airmax range that I sell a lot of but even they are quite elusive to get at times.

New Air Rifles.

As you know by accessing this website, the air rifles I carry are Brocock, Daystate Cometa, Weihrauch, Kral, Samyang, Benjamin and AirForce. If you want to see other air rifles carried by myself then please get back to me. I am looking at stocking some big bore air rifles but have yet to see any real interest from my customers or website readers.

 Air rifles Australia model Kral Puncher One

Kral Puncher One Bronze PCP Air Rifle

The same goes for pellets and accessories including Tuning Kits that are now in stock by Vortek. I get some products from Air Venturi so if you want to browse their site first and then get back to me via the Order Form we can take it from there as they stock a large number of different air rifles. Please note that air rifles Australia wide vary in compliance, that is an air rifle like the Benjamin Marauder is legal in Queensland and illegal in West Australia where I am not even allowed to stock it as a Dealer (when I was one there) for sale over east. Total BS.

Air Rifles Australia Summary.

So please use the online ordering panel as much as possible under the category STORE/BUY NOW/ Order Form, where you can also ask a question and be assured that we will get back to you. What I am trying to do here is to supply accessories, parts and air rifles in a speedy manner and follow the order through software but I need you guys to please USE the Order Form. This is the best way for us to supply parts, accessories and air rifles Australia wide in an efficient manner.

BLOG #19. Leapers Bug Buster and Airmax Scopes for controlling Vermin

With many of my customers buying an air rifle for vermin control I have researched and found 2 very suitable scopes for this exact purpose, they are the Leapers Bug Buster 3-9x32AO and the Hawke Airmax 2-7x32AO. Both these scopes are compact models and rated for spring air rifles with both being guaranteed for life.

The Leapers Bug Buster.

This little Leapers Bug Buster scope (Pt #2505) has grasped my attention like no other scope over the last year as it is full of features. To start with it has an Adjustable Objective to eliminate parallax error with crystal clear focusing. This is done at the front objective bezel rather that the now very common side focus turret. Zoom is a very usable 3-9 with a 32mm objective lens that allows sufficient light entry due to the scope’s short overall length.

Leapers Bug Buster Scope From Above

Leapers Bug Buster 3-9×32 AO Top View

The Bug Buster has Mil Dots with a step-less adjustable illuminated reticle in either red or green for low light conditions. However, the best feature of this little scope is the focusing ability from 3 yards (2.74 metres) to infinity. Yup, that is correct, focus down to 2.74 metres that will allow you close up focusing within sheds or around machinery chasing rats. The 10 metre minimum focus on most scopes has always been a contentious issue with guys shooting rats and other vermin within sheds etc., well now you can overcome that hurdle at a price that won’t break the bank.

Leapers Bug Buster 3-9x32 Angle Image

Leapers Bug Buster 3-9×32 AO Angle View

The construction of this Leapers Bug Buster scope is rugged to put it mildly, it feels every bit a working scope. It comes with 2 piece Leapers UTG mounts that are proving to be very popular with their sharp and effective dovetail claws that limit scope ‘walk-back’ on most springers. The Leapers Bug Buster is manufactured by Leapers UTG who manufacture literally hundreds of shooting accessories and are marketed out of the USA.

Leapers Bug Buster Scope Facing Forward

Leapers Bug Buster 3-9×32 AO Forward Facing

The Leapers Bug Buster comes packaged with Picatinny mounts that are swapped out for Leapers UTG 2 piece mounts without price adjustment. The weight of the Leapers Bug Buster is 492 grams with an overall length of 209mm. As far as dedicated scopes go, I give this scope 9.8/10 with negatives being non-etched glass reticle when put alongside the Hawke Airmax.

Leapers Bug Buster Scope

Leapers Bug Buster 3-9×32 AO Side Facing

The Leapers Bug Buster is shown below on a .25 cal  AirForce Talon for scalability.

AirForce Talon with Bug Buster Scope

Leapers Bug Buster on AirForce Talon

The Hawke Airmax 2-7x32AO.

The smallest of the Hawke Airmax scopes is the 2-7x32AO (Pt#13 100) scope that I thought was really small until I received the Leapers Bug Buster above. Not to detract from the Hawke Airmax, it is a great scope, rugged chassis for heavy recoiling ‘springers’, and top quality optics.

Hawke Airmax 2-7x32 AO Side Image

Hawke Airmax 2-7×32 AO Side Facing

The Hawke Airmax comes with a quality glass etched reticle to withstand sudden recoil redirection with an AMX reticle. The AMX reticle still has Mil Dots but also comes with lower windage bars as below. Focusing is 10 yards (9.14 metres) minimum that is a bit restrictive when shooting small vermin in confined quarters such as sheds.

AMX Airmax Scope Reticle

AMX Reticle on Hawke Airmax

Unfortunately this little scope does not come with an illuminated reticle or side focus that seems to be on the ‘must have’ list of new scope buyers. That aside, adjusting the objective is no big deal as the scope is very short with a well within reach without having to reposition your hold on the rifle.

Hawke Airmax Scope Front Objective

Adjustable Objective on Hawke Airmax

The weight of the Airmax is 564 grams with mounts and an overall length of 272mm. As with all Hawke Scopes, these come with a lifetime warranty and are not packaged with mounts. I give this scope 9/10 with the negatives being no illumination, 10 yards minimum focus, weight and length when compared to the Leapers.

Hawke Airmax Scope Angle View

Hawke Airmax 2-7×32 AO Angle Image

Compact Scope Summary.

My ratings are based on the key features of each air rifle scope and a prospective buyer should take this into account. For example, if a non illuminated reticle is what you prefer and if you can work with a 10 yard minimum focus then I say you should buy the Hawke. However, if 3 yards minimal focal distance is what you want then you will need to consider the Leapers Bug Buster.

Hawke Airmax and Leapers Bug Buster Scopes

Hawke Airmax Top and Leapers Bug Buster Lower

Overall, both the Hawke Airmax and the Leapers Bug Buster are damn good scopes and that is the reason I carry them.