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Need some pellet gun recommendations

Discussion in 'Air Guns' started by Sniper66, Apr 11, 2019.

  1. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    Recently watched a youtube video of "ratting" in the UK....shooting rats with a super accurate pellet rifle. The shooter was only taking head shots and killed a dozen or so. The rifle he was shooting was phenomenally accurate. I have a Diane or Diana...don't recall at the moment and too lazy to go look. It's an OK barrel brake .177cal with a scope and shoots pretty good. I've killed lots of backdoor squirrels, rabbits and grackles, but cocking it and dropping a single pellet in it each time is laborious and a nuisance along with inconsistent accuracy.. I'm considering a big step up in quality, but am unfamiliar with really good pellet rifles. Can you guys recommend some in the, say, $1,000 range + or - along with a suitable scope for eyeball shooting rats. I just need a few options to explore
     
  2. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    They are using magazine-fed pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) airguns, probably with suppressors.

    The good news is that you don't need to spend $1000 to get a good PCP & scope. The bad news is that you will need to buy other accessories to run PCPs in the field and that will run the price up some.

    Bad news is that suppressors are a complicated topic for airguns in the U.S. because if they are removable, they can probably be put onto a firearm and that makes them regulated devices unless you care to take your chances in court. The good news is that airgun manufacturers know this and offer integrally suppressed airguns which have non-removable suppressors built right into them.

    Bad news--if you want to hunt at night, you're going to have to get some kind of night vision scope and anything decent is going to cost a bit. Good news--for that kind of short range work, digital night vision with an IR illuminator is an excellent option and going that route can keep the cost down.
     
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  3. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    A decently accurate multi-shot PCP is likely to cost you a thousand or more - the Brocock Bantam Sniper for example is on sale at AoA for over $1,300, without a scope. And of course you'll need a pump or a S.C.U.B.A. tank to fill it. And for ratting you'll also need to consider what scope works with what night vision setup, with the most basic DIY-type infrared behind-the-scope viewers starting around $200. You could go to thermal, but you're looking at minimum $1,000 for that, and a few thousand for a really clear image. Ratting can be done on a budget, but the more you spend the less they see and hear, so the more rats you can shoot without spooking them too badly.

    I'm sure you could put together something on a budget with some good research. $1,000 is probably possible for everything you need. But it's going to be tricky finding a multi-shot with good accuracy within that. Probably single shot is a safer bet in planning if you don't want to run over budget, unless you can find something used for a bargain price. The FX Streamline is a very slick and accurate multi-shot PCP with impressive precision, but it's well over $1,000 before scope etc. Maybe a Hatsan? With a TKO22.com suppressor? Tuned down for ratting, as you don't need more than 5 to 10fpe for rats... and a decent pump, either a Hill or an FX.
    https://www.pyramydair.com/s/m/Hatsan_AT44_10_QE_Air_Rifle/3389
    http://www.tko22.com/
    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Hill-Pump-MK4-Up-to-4000-PSI/976849688
    https://www.airgunsofarizona.com/pcp-accessories/fx-4-stage-turbo-pump/

    And then one of these, to go behind whatever low-powered cheap scope you pick:
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Rifle-Scop...hash=item1a3617ce71:m:mOKzD3Xhjk_E-oY9KHHbhGw

    But even with that setup you're well over the thousand dollars, so it's kind of easy to see how ratting becomes an expensive, if necessary hobby.
     
  4. stringnut

    stringnut Member

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    Pyramidair.com Benjamin Marauder starting at 499.00. PCP , 10 shot magazine, suppressed, 177 caliber. Pump will add 200.00. Need a set of rings and a scope. PCP rifles do not need a special air gun scope. Parallax adj is a good feature for an air gun scope. You can be set up for under a thousand easily.
    Mine groups about an inch at 25 yards with just about any pellet and some around half an inch. 30 accurate shots between pumping. Very accurate and quiet.
     
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  5. fpgt72

    fpgt72 Member

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    Ok...OP as you are new to the world of airguns you need to buckle in as this will be a very rough ride. You are going to find a great many people that are....well cork sniffers. And just incase you don't know what I mean by that, they must justify their $1000+ air rifle by talking down everything else. For anyone to say you need to spend over a grand to get an "accurate" (whatever that means) is full of what my horses left all over the pasture.

    The days are LONG GONE that you have to do that.....and with that I will leave it there.

    As everyone else has said you are going to want to go to PCP, this is going to give you about the same shooting.....ahh style I guess I will say....as a 22 rim fire. You are going to need some kind of tank to hold the air, or love a work out. Scuba tanks will usually hold around 3000psi, and SCBA (think hose draggers....oops firemen) will hold around 4500psi. Before you go too far down this road check out a local dive shop and see if they will fill for you....some places are getting picky and will not fill tanks if you are not PADI certified....or a scuba diver. Find the costs for fills, the costs for a used tank (should be around $150 give or take) and how long that tank is good for....they do expire...they all do....and 3000 psi is not something you want to fool around with.

    Now the gunz.

    In the PCP world you can boil them down to two basic types...regulated and not regulated. What regulated means is that the same "amount, force, volume" of air is let out with every pull of the trigger. This will give you a much more stable shot count while the gun is "on the reg" meaning till the pressure drops below the regulator setting. In even inexpensive....notice I did not use the word cheap...guns you will see FPS readings drift perhaps 5-10 fps. There are a few guns in this category.

    Then the non regulated guns....these usually have a bit of a curve and a sweet spot where they shoot best. And you will see the fps numbers drop as you take more shots. Up close say under 30 yards or so this usually does not matter much....but if you are shooting an unregulated gun at greater distances....say 75 yards or more you will see the point of impact change as the gun "runs down on pressure". These guns are usually a little more inexpensive as they do not have that extra bit....the regulator.

    As the above poster pointed out, Marauder is a good gun, and they now have two versions of it, regulated and not....gauntlet is another very good inexpensive regulated rifle.

    As to quiet goes, having a "silencer" does make a HUGE difference.....HUGE. You can go from is that guy shooting a 22 rim fire to, what was that....they make that big a difference, just like they do on a fire arm. But just like with a fire arm you need to keep the pellet below the sonic speed limit....for sound and really how accurate the gun is really goes south if the pellet busts the speed of sound....just like most good target 22's are subsonic same with pellets.

    If you stayed with me this long I will tell you I live out in the boonies, had animals and had a real mouse/starling problem....like most in the air gun world I shot them when I was a kid, and really did not want to be shooting even a sub sonic 22 around my buildings....in my buildings and around the livestock...it would flat spook them....so I started looking into air guns....and really it is down hill from there.

    You can get there for under 1000 REAL EASY for a good gun, tank, and perhaps even a Heng Long compressor to fill yourself.

    I have rambled enough but trust me do not get suckered into a $1000+ air rifle....you don't need it, it is a waste of money for your stated use....hell for 90% of the peoples stated use.

    Air guns are a great big world on their own, and have all kinds of things and as you have seen people....good luck.
     
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  6. fpgt72

    fpgt72 Member

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    OOPS.....I did leave out one thing as I read over my post. There is a good multi shot CO2 rifle that I would say is good for a critter the size of a rat.....Hammerli 850, this is one of the....if not the most powerful "common" CO2 rifle out there. And is a really fantastic rifle....I shot field target with it for years before I went to the dark side and did PCP....Fantastic rifle. CO2 comes with a set of issues like not doing well in the cold, 88gram cartridges are flippen expensive, the 2 12 gram cartridge adapter is expensive, and 2 cartridges would likely do you for a pesting session, but you are really going to have to watch that shot as the co2 cools your shots will drift....

    anyway another option.
     
  7. Hasaf

    Hasaf Member

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    I keep thinking of a Benjamin Discovery. It is a very well regarded low/mid grade PCP (Pre Charged Pneumatic) rifle. However, you need a plan for charging it. There is the floor pump (a bike similar to a bicycle pump in appearance). There are also some high-pressure electric pumps in the 350-500 range. Of course, as was mentioned, you can also get a high-pressure tank and have it filled locally if that is an option for you.

    Concerns about the Discovery are that it is not magazine fed, so follow up shots will be slower. The necessary un-shouldering between shots, to reload, as compared to just working a bolt, may also impact group size. It is also considered quite loud for an air rifle.
     
  8. theairgunman

    theairgunman Member

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    Like others have mentioned, you don't need to spend $1000 to get what you are asking for. The Marauder is a great choice, they have refurbished ones at Field Supply for cheap: https://www.fieldsupply.com/airguns...etic-stock-177cal-air-rifle-black-refurb.html

    Benjamin/Crosman products are great because the company will sell you parts directly. On top of that, there is a huge aftermarket for them. You'd probably want to tune it down for your intended use. That'll give you a lot more shots per fill, so the hand pump route wouldn't be too bad. Tune it to shoot 10 to 12 fpe at the top end of its working pressure and it'll be super quiet with the built in sound moderation.

    I know you mentioned not liking the longer loading cycle of a break barrel, but if you want really good accuracy for the money, I'd also recommend taking a hard look at a Walther LGR. It is a 10m rifle, not terribly loud, and super easy to scope. I have a LGR and it will shoot 1 hole (not cloverleafs) groups with very little effort on my part. Mine isn't pellet picky either. You can pick them up used for under $600, sometimes much less if you can get one that lacks target sights or needs to be resealed. I have $250 in mine, including duplicate seals for future use.
     
  9. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    WOW....you guys are so helpful. You have answered a ton of questions for me. I've asked several of my gun buddies, but like me, they know very little about air rifles. Most of them have a Gamo behind the back door they use to shoot pests or to miss if it's not shooting well that day. To further clarify, the ratting video I watched got me thinking about the quality of air rifle I might purchase and the amount of money I might need. And I'll try to avoid being a "cork sniffer" and spend money needlessly. That phenomenon exists in all aspects of the gun world. I may have place or two to shoot rats, places to shoot starlings, and the occasional opportunity out my backdoor and with the right gun, other possibilities emerge. Several issues compete for what is most important....accuracy, quality of the product (fit, finish, accuracy), cost, availability, noise, ease of use (loading), add-ons, ......these are not the only issues, nor is my list in order of priority, but you get the drift. Thanks again guys, you have been vetry helpful.
     
  10. LoonWulf
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    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    Lemme defend the cork sniffers for second.
    1k won't buy you a more accurate or powerful airgun, but it will "usually" buy you better fit, and finish, and often some creature comforts.
    Same as the difference between a 400 dollar center-fire, and a 1k+ center-fire.

    Personally most of my guns (of any propellent type) have started out as "budget" offerings, and over time have all evolved into much the opposite.

    I enjoy the tinkering, but I'd probably have saved money in the long run if I'd bought what I wanted right off the bat.

    For pcps I think the Benjis, and a few others, are very good deals and well worth the money. I don't think they have the fit and finish, handle, or shoot as nicely out of the box as your average Daystate or similar.
    When I get back into pcps (yeah, it's only a matter of time, still got my buddy bottles) I'll probably get a 1k+ gun, as I already know they offer what I'm personally looking for, and at this point I'm willing to pay for it.
    Until then I'll keep shooting my qb78 repeater.

    My point I guess, is spend what you need to, to get what you want, as long as you can afford it. Top it with decent glass too, you'd be surprised how much time you may end up spending behind your airgun.
    At the same time don't feel like you HAVE to spend a ton to get a decent, good shooting, airgun.
     
  11. SharpDog

    SharpDog Member

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  12. skeeterfogger

    skeeterfogger Member

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    Just curious. Has anyone shot the .177 that uses 209 primer?
     
  13. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    I think I may take my own advice which is to buy something and get started learning....maybe cheap, learn a lot in the process, then get rid of it as I learn and upgrade. I've gone through several such iterations with shotguns and rifles and rifle scopes. Not sure what I'll end up with, but am eager to get to it............after I pay for the river boat cruise my wife wants.......(sigh)
     
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  14. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    Looked at the Field Supply site and found several that would be a good start. The refurb Marauder at well under $400 might be a very good starting point. Several other refurbs at different price points to consider. I can sell or give away my cheapie and get under way. Thanks again.
     
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  15. fpgt72

    fpgt72 Member

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    This is really true....I wondered into the "adult" air rifle world about 30 years ago.....PCP was not a thing at the time like it is now.

    It is FOR THE MOST PART true that the more "inexpensive" guns do not have the fit and finish of the more expensive brands, but not always. And really I would bet if you with a $299 Beeman Chief and your buddy over there with a $3200 Daystate are spending the evening putting holes in anything from paper to mice you are going to see zero difference in the holes in the paper or dead mice.

    For (ME) air guns are more of a tool then a "real" rifle....or pistol for that matter. I hate plastic stocks on my fire arms, on an air rifle I just don't care as long as it shoots well, and puts the holes where I want them.

    I would be interested in knowing what your Diana is....those are usually some of the top of the line spring guns out there.

    I also want to say about your comment on the Gamo and it not shooting this day.....now for starters if this comes out harsh that is not my intent....sometimes I guess I just type like that and I do not mean to....so here we go.

    Spring powered guns are the single most difficult thing to shoot and shoot well time and time again. Bottom line, end of story, done. And then any gun that is classified as a "magnum" springer has that difficulty cranked up to 11. Here is why....that spring is moving and moving very fast....and in both directions.....this is why you see scopes that are "air gun" rated....they are setup to take that "double" recoil...forward and backward. You do not hold a spring gun like any other rifle....you just let it sit...and it is very sensitive to hold....you need to hold it the EXACT same way EVERY time. That means your for hand has to be in the same spot on the rifle, your fingers in the same way...bla bla bla....they really react to the hold. Any spring powered gun is like this, but some are a bit worse then others.....If you have a 600fps gun that weighs 8lbs that will be very easy to shoot....I have one of those. If you get a light weight airgun that "says" it shoots 1400fps on the box....that thing is going to be real hard to shoot well.....REAL HARD. And it does not matter if it is a gas spring or a metal spring, they both do the same thing...push the piston forward....and when you push that air that fast it heats up real quickly.....so quick in fact that Daisy made a (sorta) 22 that had the powder ignited by the hot air....I want to say they are called VL rifles....they also made 22 rimfire for a while.

    Krap I am all over the map again....but chances are it is not the spring gun that is not shooting well it is the user.....they do take a very long time to master, and this is why air guns have gotten so popular now....for years we had a few choices, spring CO2, and MSP...multi stroke....think your old daisy...more pumps more power......PCP is very close to a firearm shooting experience....and this is why it is so popular.

    I see you are in Kansas....I am in KC basically....if you are ever in the area I have a few different PCP's you can try out or we can just get together for coffee one day.....but I do warn you, once you start down this path there is very little chance you will turn back.....I really think they are worse then powder guns....they are fun, cheap, and really really accurate.
     
  16. LoonWulf
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    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    I've never learned to shoot magnum Springer's worth a damn.
    Also one of the issues with spring guns recoil is the sheer mass that's moving around. Those big, heavy mainspring assemblys are probably 1/4 the weight of the rifle.

    My inability to shoot springers means I'm limited to "pre charged" propellent types. IE stuff that released via valve, rather than generated by heavy compression at the shot.
    I went with co2 this round, as I'm happy with 10-15ft/lbs of energy (I can hit 20 with heavy pellets and bulk fill), live in a warm climate, and getting the 4500psi fills I used on my buddy bottles got difficult for a while. It's the easiest source of propellent to procure, short of a pump n pop, or pumping a PCP (which sucks Imo).
     
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  17. fpgt72

    fpgt72 Member

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    I have a rough time with powerful spring guns as well....and really with everything at walmart saying it will shoot at 1000+ fps really puts people behind the 8 ball from the get go. They buy that gamo, they can not shoot it for anything, hop on forums and see that brand bad mouthed, then go out and buy a PCP by FX or Daystate and back on the forums they go to bad mouth gamo. And that really ticks me off to no end. Gamo make darn fine guns. Not darn good guns for their price point, just good guns.

    You can not look at a PCP vs a spring gun, you are looking at apples and a rib eye stake....yea you can eat both but that is about where it ends. It is not a cost thing that so many fools think it is, the deal is you can't shoot, or will not take the time to learn to shoot a spring gun. Today we want perfection right out of the gate and if we do not get it then that item sucks.

    Eh I will get off the soap box.
     
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  18. a_canadian

    a_canadian Member

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    Well it's a rare thing for one of those "1000+fps" airguns to actually shoot a proper pellet that fast. Much more likely the numbers are coming from shooting lightweight alloy pellets in the vicinity of 4.5gr weight at such a speed, or even the plastic pellets with a steel insert, the 'ultra-velocity' type nonsense. Neither will hit more accurately than a barn door at 30 yards as they tend to corkscrew and then shoot off in some random direction after 20 yards, though inside 10 yards they can perform reasonably well for tin can plinking.

    A proper airgun pellet around 8gr will likely drop the velocity of such Gamo and other Walmart-sold spring-piston airguns to the neighbourhood of 750fps, if that. Which is perfectly reasonable for varmint control. But I'd still recommend doing a bit of research, then opening them up (WITH A PROPER CLAMP SETUP TO RESTRAIN THE SPRING ON DISASSEMBLY!) and cutting off a coil or two from the spring, grinding the end level, polishing it, lubing it, and reassembling the gun. It'll drop 100fps or more, and shoot like butter. I've got an Industry Brand springer like that. Shot like a hellcat out of the box. Tamed it down to around 550fps with a 13gr JSB pellet in .22" and it's decently accurate and not nearly as hold-fussy. Chevota's words on the subject were a big help with the various modifications done there. I gave up on sleeving the spring, but did enough other work that it's smooth as can be and decently quiet, very comfortable to shoot, delivering 1" groups at 20 metres with a dot sight. Not going to win any competitions but a springer is a satisfying thing to shoot once mastered. I've tried other guys' magnum springers. No thanks. A properly tuned PCP will out-perform those every time. There's a guy winning trophies on the UK HFT circuit with a spring-piston air rifle but it's tuned beautifully and a recoil-compensating model where the action slides back on firing, letting the pellet get clear of the muzzle before the barrel rises at all. A megastore airgun isn't going to shoot like that.
     
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  19. BLB68

    BLB68 Member

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    Not to mention that you don't really want pellets going supersonic if you're looking for accuracy. Just marketing hype.
     
  20. fpgt72

    fpgt72 Member

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    That much is very true, high FPS numbers sells guns, and IMHO really does a dis service to air gunners. I have gone on this rant before....and will not again.

    Those high numbers are just numbers....if you want to hit anything you need a fat heavy pellet to slow the thing down....then, again IMHO it is just a band aid. I have a few old Gamo rifles, and old expo, and a couple 440's both are fantastic guns, but are not that fast....they shoot well and I would stack them up against any new "expensive" air rifle inside of 30 yards.....30 yards is where I run out of talent with spring guns.

    Really what you want is FPE on target....and we all know the rules for that.....is fast and light putting more "punch" into the target over slower and fatter. You get the same arguments in the fire arm world.....is a five seven better then a 9mm.....well we all know how those discussions go.
     
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