Monthly Archives: October 2007
I’m very excited to welcome a new manufacturer to AirGunWeb.com! Daisy has provided us with one of their Powerline 1000SB break barrel air rifles to review. I’d been asking them for several months and they gave us a call a few weeks ago to let us know that it was on the way.
I’ve had the opportunity to put some pellets through this rifle over the past couple of weekends and I have to say that I’m VERY impressed. What initially caught my eye about the Daisy line was the fact that it was manufactured in Turkey and not China. I’ve been eager to really see if there is a difference.
Daisy Powerline 1000SB rifle with 3x9x32 Scope
Upon first glance, the Daisy Powerline 1000SB is built very much like all other break barrel rifles. It has a nice set of open fiber optic sights, scope stop, adjustable trigger, automatic safety, and composite stock. This particular model was shipped with Daisy’s Powerline 3x9x32 air rifle scope. I like this scope, for the most part, but this rifle NEEDS a high powered scope with adjustable objective to get the most from its potential accuracy. Below are some more photos of the Daisy Powerline 1000SB rifle.
Close up of mounted scope.
Another angle of the scope mounted on the rifle. Notice the scope stop and the safety.
Daisy’s micro-click adjustable rear sight with fiber optic inserts
Fiber optic front sight
Notice that this is made in Turkey
From the first shot, I noticed this was not like most other entry-level break barrels. There is a significant “thump” when the spring is released. The next thing I noticed was how fast this rifle shoots. I was so curious that I decided to go grab my chronograph and check the velocity. Now when most manufacturers put 1000 FPS on the side of their rifles, they are talking about a “maximum” velocity and that with very light pellets. The Powerline 1000SB shot regular pellets, in the 7.9grn range, at 970FPS! When I switched to lightweight RWS Hobby Pellets that climbed to over 1000 FPS. This is truly a 1000FPS rifle.
As with most rifles in this price range, the trigger was less than stellar. While there is an adjustment screw, I could not see where it made any difference in the firing of the rifle. The trigger is stiff and unpredictable, which makes it hard to get all the accuracy this gun could deliver. I did get sort of used to it after a while. I’m going to ask Daisy if I can keep this rifle for a while to see if, after a few thousand pellets, it gets any better. Hopefully they will let me. Another thing that I was not crazy about was the hollow feeling of the stock. It tends to exaggerate the sound of the recoil in your ear when you are shooting.
Daisy’s trigger with adjustment screw.
Very unique “clamping” feature. Rather than just expecting pressure to hold the
barrel in place, Daisy crafted a means of gripping a stop bar between the spring
and the notch you see above.
Daisy’s “stop bar,”for lack of a better description, ensures that the barrel
returns to the same position every time. I’ve never seen this on a rifle before.
When it comes to power, the Powerline is by far the best I’ve seen in this price range. On average it sells for $149 as a combo. The only other rifle that comes close would be the BAM B26 .177 and it retails for about $180 without a scope.
Once on the range it only took a few shots to find the right pellet. I settled on the Crosman Pointed Pellets after trying several different types. Generally speaking, pointed pellets worked better than wadcutters, hollow points and domed pellets. While the velocity was way up there, we did get some variance, something that I was not expecting. Now I know that shooting through the chronograph at slightly different angles can cause variances, so I’m planning on taking another look at a later date. In the mean time, here is what we got today.
Crosman Pointed Pellets
High – 973, Low – 933, Average – 951, Difference - 40 FPS
(I was not expecting to see a 40 FPS difference.)
When it came to accuracy, this rifle did not disappoint. The first group was shot using the PowerLine scope from about 12 yards. The second group was shot from 20 yards with my Leapers 3x9x40 AO scope. The difference between using the included scope and the Leapers scope was very dramatic. I forgot just how nice Leapers scopes are. With an AO scope and Mil-Dot reticule, you could really get the most out of this rifle.
5 Shot group shot with Crosman Pointed Pellets
at 12 yards with Daisy’s Powerline scope
5 Shot group shot with Crosman Pointed Pellets at
22 yards with Leapers 3x9x40 AO scope.
Ok, to summarize, the Daisy Powerline 1000SB far exceeded my expectations. I was hoping that the “made in Turkey” would make a difference and it did. The rifle lived up to its 1000 FPS claim and exceeded it with RWS Hobby Pellets. Not only does this rifle live up to its velocity claim, it does it with excellent accuracy to boot. The trigger leaves a lot to be desired, but I’m hoping it will smooth out over time. It is fairly hard to cock, one of the hardest, but I’m guessing that is why it can generate the velocity it does. The open sights are quite nice and useful for those close quarters needs. With the scope, you should be able to hit a quarter at 35 or 40 yards if you are a steady shot. I’ve got some more testing to do before I can know the full potential of this rifle, but I’m very impressed.
Next up will be some more BAM Products starting with the long overdue B26 .177 update and the B40 .177 update. Please visit often and don’t be bashful about dropping us a note!
I don’t know about you all, but I’ve often wondered what the deal was with Soft Air products. I see them all over the place, and I know that they are used for paint ball like games. But never having put my hands on one, I’ve been very curious to see what all the fuss is about. Well, thanks again to Crosman, they have provided me one of their Soft Air Sniper 38s for review.
Crosman Sniper 38 with accessories.
The first thing that you notice is just how heavy this rifle feels. It has a really nice feeling stock. The accessories are, also, really nice. It comes with 2, 25 round clips, speed loader, rail mounted bi-pod, and 500 .20gram soft air 6mm pellets. This rifle does not have any open sights, so you need to add a scope before you can start shooting.
Seeing as this rifle has standard rail mount, I picked up some medium height scope rings at Wal-mart to try and mount my BSA 4×32 AO scope. Well, the mounts did not fit right, as the rail was just a little too small. Also, the mounts were not high enough, so make sure that you get high mounts for your scope and not low or medium mounts. I finally found that the sniper scope from my AR-15 fit pretty well, so I used that for the review.
Not knowing what to expect, I started the testing with my expectations rather high, hoping for accuracy on par with what I get from some of the air rifles in the same price range. The Crosman Soft Air Sniper 38 retails for about $109 putting it the same category as the TechForce? 97. What I came to realize in a VERY short period of time, is that you can’t compare Soft Air products to anything but other Soft Air products. You’ll see what I mean when we get to the shooting tests.
Loading, cocking, and firing the Crosman Sniper 38 is very much like loading, cocking and firing any high-powered rifle. There is a clip that holds the plastic bbs and a bolt that you pull back to cock the gun. The trigger is actually a pretty nice trigger and does not make you work to pull off a round. The gun is spring powered and very quiet. Follow up shots are fast and easy with a simple working of the bolt. After a little research I found that the Soft Air craze is more about getting the feeling of going through realistic motions than driving dime sized groups at 20 yards. This rifle mimics the motions and feel quite well.
Cocking bolt for the Crosman Soft Air Sniper 38
Bolt, fully pulled back to cock
Bolt returned and ready to fire
After firing a few shots I learned very quickly that Soft Air products are “accuracy optional.” You are shooting PLASTIC bbs down a SMOOTH bore barrel. The Crosman Sniper 38 does come with a “hop-up” system that puts a spin on the plastic bb and that does help. But, when it comes to accuracy, keep your expectations reasonable.
Adjustable “hop-up” system for additional accuracy
Before we look at the accuracy tests, here are some specs from our chronograph. We only had the Crosman 20gram bbs, so keep that in mind when looking at these tests. You may get better velocity and accuracy with different ammo. Crosman represents this rifle to propel a bb up to 400 FPS. It came very close. With the Hop-up system off, we got close to the 400 FPS. The results below were with the Hop-up engaged and adjusted for best accuracy.
Crosman Night Stalker 20gram BBs
High – 361, Low – 345, Average – 351, Difference – 16
Crosman Sniper 38, 25 shots from 20′, while adjusting Hop-Up
Crosman Sniper 38, 25 shots from 20′ with Hop-up
adjusted. Notice the occasional flyers.
Now the summary, the Crosman Sniper 38 retails for about $109 and it is an interesting rifle. I’m not sure that it is up my alley, but I bet it would be a good fit for some. I guess it would be really nice for a young shooter learning about proper gun handling and anyone that wanted to shoot indoors. I was able to get some accuracy and, maybe with more time and some different ammo choices, I could have gotten it even better. As a Soft Air skirmish weapon, I would leave it at home. If you could hit with accuracy at distance, then it may give you an advantage, but I’ve seen some fully auto Soft Air rifles that shoot at 300+ FPS with equal accuracy. Trying to re-cock and focus through a scope would leave you completely vulnerable. I know Crosman has some fully auto Soft Air rifles. At some point maybe we can revisit the line.
Well, I know it has been about a month since my last article, but I’ve been real busy with my “real” job. Believe me, I’d rather be shooting and writing about air guns all day! The good news is that I’ve got 3 reviews ready for the site, so stay tuned.
We are going to start out with the Crosman T4-Opts with Red-Dot Scope and Light. (I want to send a special THANK YOU to Crosman for sending us this pistol to review.) The first thing you will notice about this pistol is just how nice it feels in your hands. All the accessories make it a little heavy and the trigger pull takes some getting used to, but it certainly lived up to my expectations.
As you can see from the photo above, the pistol comes with a lot of goodies. While the Red-Dot scope is a little small for my liking, the flashlight is great. Also, the pistol comes with a unique loading “clip” for the CO2 and a small 8 shot cylinder that holds either pellets or bbs. For this review, we will only be using pellets. The next several photos will show how you load the pistol. Then we’ll get to the good stuff, how this thing shoots!
First you load the CO2 in the bottom clip and slide it in the pistol’s grip.
With the clip installed, the back of the grip opens and
acts as a lever to engage the CO2 cartridge.
Once the grip is closed we are ready to load the pellet cylinder.
As I mentioned above, the cylinder can old either pellets or bbs.
The pistol ships with two cylinders.
There is a sliding cover that opens with a spring-loaded lever on the opposite side
of the pistol. It is in the same position where you’d normally find the slide lock.
Notice the small lever above the grip? Pulling this down will open the cover.
With the cover open, the cylinder simply drops into place.
The back slide mimics the cocking of a semi-automatic pistol. By pulling back
the “slide” you close the cover and lock the cylinder into place.
Fully charged and loaded. Now we can do some shooting!
When it came to shooting the T4, we had a few initial problems but we managed to get them sorted out. The Red-Dot scope would not come into alignment so it took some playing with the rail mounts to get them straight enough. To make a long story short, the molding for this set of rails was off. Also, with the rail system on the pistol, you have to use the Red-Dot scope because it covers up the front sight. When I was trying to resolve the first problem, I removed all the “goodies” and shot the gun in its bare form. It shot VERY well, so I knew that once the issues were resolved, I’d have a decent shooting pistol.
It did not take long to find the right pellet for this pistol. I shot several Crosman pellets, from premium wadcutters, to Hollow Point Premiers, and finally settled on the Crosman Pointed pellets. They seemed to produce the best groups. The velocity was on par for this class of pistol. When shooting any repeating CO2 airgun, remember to wait several seconds between shots or you will see velocity drop off significantly as shown below.
Here is what I got from my Chronograph:
High – 376, Low – 338, Average – 355, Difference - 38
8, not the normal 5, shots from 20′ using a predator shooing rest.
Notice the top group shot earlier with different pellets.
In summary, the T4-Opts was a really fun pistol to review. It is a great plinking pistol, and with some practice, can produce some exceptional groups. Each CO2 cartridge produced about 48 solid shots before it started to drop off. We had some problems with getting the Red-Dot scope on target, and would ask Crosman to double check the alignment on their rails. The gun retails for about $140 to $180 depending on the site. At $140 it may be a nice air gun to have around, but $180 is more than I would want to spend. While it is underpowered for anything other than target practice, the stiff double action trigger will help train your pistol hand to be steady. Being more of a purist, I may rather just want the T4 without all the accessories. Maybe Crosman will send us one to review as well.
Next we look at the Crosman Sniper 38 Soft Air Rifle. It will be my first extended look at a Soft Air rifle and I’m eager to see what all the buzz is about!