Basement shooting of .22 rimfire....


May 14, 2004, 10:52 PM
Okay, I have a question or two to ask.

One, Aguila primer only .22lr rounds, are they as quiet as a CO2 airgun or a breakbarrel .177 pellet gun?

Two, CCI CB longs, CB shorts, are they as quiet as a CO2 airgun or a breakbarrel .177 pellet gun?

The reason I ask is that I want to plink with .22 rimfire in my basement, but I wish to do so without disturbing anyone too much. The CO2 airgun I have bothers no one, ditto the breakbarrel. I realize that none of my three choices would work in a semi-automatic, but since I'm thinking of a lever action Marlin/Winchester/Henry/Whatever, it doesn't matter. I just can't have loud gunfire from the basement. Populated area and all.

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May 14, 2004, 11:13 PM
Years ago, I tried CB Caps in the basement. If I remember correctly, they were made by CCI (I could be wrong on this). I was shooting them out of a pistol. The noise was more than I expected, but probably not enough to bother anyone outside your house. The real problem was the air pollution - smoke and odor. If the noise isn't a problem, you would still need a good ventillation system.

May 14, 2004, 11:45 PM
There is a much bigger problem than just smoke and odor. You are going to have lead dust and vaporized lead (from the heated lead). This will be even more of a problem since you will not be shooting jacketed bullets. Then you have lead styphnate, barium nitrate, mercury and/or antimony sulfide from the primer.

If you are going to do this, make sure to install a good ventilation system and bullet trap.

May 14, 2004, 11:53 PM
Out of a medium length rifle barrel the Super Colibres are not as loud as some pellet guns. The regular Colibris are no longer made and can get stuck in rifle(s) that have real long barrels but they were real quiet.

I have shot a considerable number of both but I was not real impressed with the accuracy. The regular Colibres also bounce back if you choose the wrong kind of backstop and are too close to it. Don't ask how I know. Wear safety glasses for sure.

I'm not sure a powderless 22 round gets hot enough to atomize much lead when fired or when it hits the backstop IF you pick something to shoot at that allows the bullet to embed in it.

Over time, however, you might get lead dust building up in the area,which if you have kids that spend time in that area is not safe. Lead does adults no good but is a much more serious issue for kiddos.


May 15, 2004, 12:04 AM
If you are using a hard, deflection style backstop you may have to worry about lead particles.

That is NOT, however the main danger from lead. The main danger is inhaling lead from the smoke. There are lead compounds in the primer and that goes into the gases which exit the muzzle upon firing. Not only will you inhale it, it's going to settle on every surface in the shooting area. If you live alone, own the building and plan to stay, go ahead. If you have kids or are renting or planning to move, don't do it.

If you really want to shoot indoors, get a soft backstop (using ductseal or ballistic putty) and get a good quality airgun. The soft backstop will eliminate lead particles from the pellet impacts, and I've never seen ANYTHING that suggests that airguns put an appreciable amount of particulate lead into the air during the firing cycle. As long as you wash your hands after handling the pellets and refrain from eating or putting your fingers in your mouth while shooting, you should never have trouble with lead. Most importantly, you will not contaminate your living area.

May 15, 2004, 08:40 AM
The reason I compared to CO2 airguns and breakbarrel pellet guns is that I already have/use both with a carpet lined .22 bullet trap. I'm not really worried about lead exposure, plenty of ventilation. I'm just worried about noise.

It looks like the Super Colibris and the CB longs by CCI would both be as quiet as my pellet guns? They should both cycle in a lever action .22 as well, correct?

May 15, 2004, 08:50 AM
In that case, buy a suppressed Ruger 10/22. :)

May 15, 2004, 09:00 AM
I live in MA. Suppressors are a no-no... which leads me back to the Super Colibri and the CB longs.

May 15, 2004, 09:24 AM
They should cycle fine in your lever gun. The only way to learn the noise level is to pop off a few rounds in the basement. Most likely, no one outside will hear a thing.

May 15, 2004, 09:25 AM
I figured I'd have to do as much, I wanted a basic noise level before doing that though. Looks like I'll be buying a box of CB longs and a box of Super Colibri to test out.

Randy in Arizona
May 15, 2004, 09:43 AM
One other thing you might want to do - -

Put in a closed circuit TV camera and monitor. That way you can see the holes in the target and not have to disturb your stance between shots as you would with a spotting scope.

By the way make sure you use a WIRED circuit not a wireless setup as the wireless would be broadcasting evidence that some JBTs might find interesting. :evil: :evil: :evil:

May 15, 2004, 10:03 AM
Nahh, I'd be shooting at 50 feet maximum. Probably just some 25 foot plinking.

The reason I want to do this is that I don't belong to any range, range fees cost more than my ammo, and why not do it in my own home?

May 15, 2004, 12:18 PM
Ive fired one break barrel rifle, and I have a wally world special pump.

Out of my stock 10/22, the hummingbirds are much quieter.

May 15, 2004, 01:11 PM
A guy I shoot Highpower with practices in his basement with the Super Colibri in his AR .22 upper.

When his wife asks he tells her, "It's a pellet rifle, Honey". :evil:

As far as accuracy with the Super Colibri, he sez... "Minute of Rosie O'Donnell's butt".

Best to all,

May 15, 2004, 02:27 PM
Yeah--but a minute of Rosie's butt is STILL a margin of error of 200% of a chipmunk...

May 15, 2004, 03:03 PM
I've fired some Super Colibris in my basement out of my bolt and lever actions. I've done it mainly to function test or to get a preliminary sight-in. Noise is not a problem. Just as quiet as my Gamo pellet rifle. The smoke and smell is very noticable indoors however. I'd highly recommend a fan blowing across your firing line and an exhaust fan venting to the outside.

Chuck Dye
May 15, 2004, 05:30 PM
From rifles, both Colibri (still catalogued by Aguila and available where I live) and Super Colibri are more than quiet enough to keep the neighbors blissfully ignorant. From my 6" Ruger MkII, they might be (barely) noticeable if you live cheek by jowl with the next house, but should not be bothersome. For what it is worth, the Colibri has always cleared the 19" barrel of my Ruger 77/22, but you should test thoroughly and with caution in your own rifles. Can’t speak to the accuracy except to report that at 4’ to 6’ the MkII is three for three, one round, one mouse from the porcelain throne (ah, the joys of rural life!)

May 15, 2004, 10:25 PM
I'll be buying a box of Super Colibris and CB longs on Monday, I'll see how quiet they really are.

Hopefully I'll be able to do some shooting in the basement with a fan airing it out as well.

FYI, I got yet another high-powered pellet rifle, this time a .22 bolt action CO2... 650 fps. And seeing as that'll be shooting a 15-20 grain (depending on the type) of projectile, that may as well be a CB cap or Colibri.

I'll compare on Monday though!

May 15, 2004, 10:52 PM
Ventilation will minimize the problem, not solve it. There's still going to be residue left on surfaces in the room.

But, it's your room, I guess...

I'm thinking that if I ever buy a house with a basement, I'm going to test it for lead first. I wonder how much it costs a homeowner to do lead abatement on a basement? Bet it's not cheap!

May 16, 2004, 08:24 AM
I don't have any experience with CBs, but I shot bricks of Colibris and Super Colibris. Between the two I can't tell the difference in the noise level. And I've already shot up a few hundred rounds in my living room and kitchen. The Supers are more accurate and consistent than the regulars. I'm glad to hear the Supers will continue to be manufactured. I have a little 25 yard firing range behind my house which consists of cans stuck on the limb tips of alder bushes allowing me to shoot from an open bedroom window. There's a pile of spent Colibri brass under the window.:D

La Pistoletta
May 16, 2004, 09:01 AM
Aren't there any 100% lead free .22's? Bismuth?

six 4 sure
May 17, 2004, 12:49 AM
I sympathize with your dilemma, not wanting to disturb the neighbors and all, but I personally wouldn’t suggest shooing in your basement. That is of course if you reside within city limits. I sure hate to see you get busted for “discharging a firearm within city limits” if someone found out what you were doing. If that doesn’t apply, have fun and shoot safe.


Master Blaster
May 17, 2004, 08:20 AM
my suggestion:

If range time is soo expensive that means that you are going to a commercial range. I would suggest contacting the NRA and finding out about joining a private shooting club in your area, the NRA has information on affiliated clubs on their website.

I belong to two different private clubs in my area, the annual membership cost for both is a total of $200, $125 for the very nice outdoor club, which has several rifle and sporting clay/ skeet/ trap ranges, and a pistol range. There is no per visit fee, shooting is unlimited. My indoor pistol club costs $75 per year and has 9 lanes and 25 yards, I have a key and can go shoot anytime. Both are NRA affiliated clubs.

May 17, 2004, 09:14 AM
I live in MA, so even firing a pellet gun is discharging a firearm....

However, according to state law, if it's being firing INSIDE of a building, and you have the OWNER's permession, it's not "within city limits". I live in a relatively small town anyway, so that's not a problem either.

I'll be off to the store soon to pick up the cartridges.

May 17, 2004, 10:07 AM
I've shot many thousands of CB longs in handgun and rifle over the years. They are accurate and quiet and cheap. From a rifle the sound will be anything from something like a staple gun (long barrel, .22 match rifle) to a distinct crack (18'' bbl ). From a handgun they are definitley loud enough to require hearing protection, which I use anyway shooting anything, even air pistol.

Occasional shots from a pistol in a basement will not be recognized by passers by, but steady, repeated shooting will be noticed and lead to questions. Rifle fire is not noticeable from outside the house. So it depends on barrel length, and on how likely anyone is to be walking within about 25-50' of your basement.

For a backstop I make a plywood box with removable lid and target-sized opening in the front, with a Bulldog clip above it to hold the target. I fill the box with glossy magazines standing up with their spines at the back and the edges of the pages facing the shooter. Bullets wedge between pages and it is a silent trap. Need to clean it out it outdoors, there'll be lead dust from bullets striking one another. Also, in addition to good ventilation, wet mop the floor from the firing line to around the target from time to time to get lead dust up.

May 18, 2004, 04:04 PM

I finally got around to trying out the Super Colibris alongside CB longs and standard Win rimfire.

Using hearing/eye protecting, the Win seemed louder than a 30-06 when I shot it after the CB, and even the CB seemed rather loud compared to the Super Colibri.

Looks like I've found a new ammo! :D

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