BAM XS-B3 The “little rifle that could”
Today we take some time to look at the “little rifle that could.” These are the types of finds that I really enjoy coming across. BAM, or Xisico USA, as you may find it on-line, has several unique little rifles. I’ve had the chance to take a look as several of their “niche” rifles over the last couple of weeks and the B3 stands WAY out above the rest. At an average retail price of only about $55 to $65, you get a very accurate and neat shooting rifle.
The rifle ships with open sights only. The rear site is much like what you’d find on an AK-47 or SKS rifle and adjusts for elevation only. The front site is were you adjust for windage. Seeing as I did not have the front sight adjustment tool, I just mounted a compact 4×32 scope. On paper this rifle is rated at 540 FPS in .177 so 15 yards is about as far as I plan to shoot.
One of the things that makes this little rifle so neat, is that it has a fixed barrel which should help it shoot accurately. The BAM-B3 is a spring air rifle with a side cocking lever and a folding stock to boot. The loading port is easy to access and the lever has a anti-bear trap mechanism to spare your fingers from being squashed. For such a small air gun it is rather heavy at about 7.0 LBS. The cocking force is fairly light and you can definitely shoot this all day.
As mentioned above, the BAM-B3 is rated for 540 FPS in .177. If you will indulge me for just a moment, I’d like to talk about the marketing claims of certain air guns and air gun manufacturers. It is VERY disappointing to purchase a product based on inflated marketing claims. I’ve recently looked at several air guns and not a single one has lived up to their rated FPS. As a rule of thumb, decrease the rated FPS by at least 10% and usually more. In fact if an item is only 10% off, I consider that great! Most recently I looked at a rifle that was rated at 750 FPS. On the chronograph I could only get 450 FPS with my lightest pellet. In contrast I’m happy to say that this “little rifle that could” was one that fell pretty close to its rated velocity.
Before I started shooting for the best accuracy, I went through my pile of pellets to find those that showed potential. I found that the Crosman Field Point, the same ones that proved most accurate in our G1 tests, and the Crosman Premier Hollow Point proved the best options. Here is how each performed on our chronograph:
Crosman Field Point
High – 512, Low – 499, Average – 505, Difference – 13 FPS
Crosman Premier Hollow Point
High – 506, Low – 494, Average – 498, Difference – 12 FPS
As I settled down for the accuracy tests, I set up at 15 yards and tried my MTM Predator Shooting Rest. While this is not the best shooting rest for most spring air guns, it proved to be just right for the BAM-B3. Most of our the pellets were grouping between 1/2″ and 3/4″. Then we hit pay dirt with the Crosman Field Point pellets. As you can see below these are a pretty nice groupings for such an inexpensive gun.
OK, so let’s wrap up this review. As mentioned above, you should be able to find the BAM-B3 on-line for about $55 to $65. It would be a great rifle for shooting in your indoor range or where noise is an issue. The BAM-B3 shoots very quietly and even better it shoots accurately. With the fixed barrel you can expect this to continue to shoot true for years to come.