Testing your new rifle
The picture attached shows pellets that were fired from a Top manufacturerís air rifle.
pellets were fired into ballistic Putty to identify an issue related to
poor pellet grouping. As you can see some defect in the barrel is
gouging a modest portion of lead from the pellet head and skirt of each
pellet. This is believed to contribute to the rifles grouping issue.
- It can be clearly seen that lead is gouged out on Pellets 2, 3 and 4 in the picture
- In Pellet 1 the gouge is at the lower side and the rest of the Pellet shows only normal rifling marks
I can not name the manufacturer or model
here at this point in time. But what I can say as is serves as a lesson
when purchasing a new air rifle - That even though a gun looks perfect
on the outside (And cosmetic appearance certainly is a purchase
motivator), it's more about what you often canít see directly on the
inside that affects a guns performance.
first gun (which we will call gun No1, purchased June 2008) was
discovered with the above defect. The defect is believed to be the
result of a CNC controlled machine being set incorrectly resulting in a
drill hole slightly piercing the barrel bore and rifling, during
manufacturer, at a point approx. 5cm down the bore from the breach.
- A full replacement rifle sent directly from the
UK distributor and was found to have the same barrel defect. Based on
the fact that it is not unusual for rifles to be in shop stock for 12
months before being sold then this issue could affect many customers
guns already in circulation.
- The manufacturer could not supply a further
non-defective replacement from current batch holdings! This potentially
widens the time that rifles could have been on sale with the barrel
defect and therefore the number of customers who unknowingly have a
Although this experience is related
to a particular example of a manufacturing defect (With much
disappointment has not been communicated by way of "Recall notice" by
either the distributor or UK Importer! since highlighted to them in
June 2008) there are always the "Monday morning" guns that roll off the
production lines too. You would be surprised at the variation in power,
consistency and grouping potential from "identical" rifles even from
the same batch.
as many of your new guns performance factors as practical as soon as
you purchase a gun because it becomes progressively more difficult to
prove issues, the longer it is left from date of purchase.
Any Rifles that are found defective - If
you can't reach a reasonable remedy with the retailer/manufacturer then
you have every right to "Reject the goods" under the "Sale of goods act
1979" (And itís various amendments etc) - itís good to know your rights
in these situations and a good summary / further links can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sale_of_Goods_Act_1979
- Consistency and Power
- Chronographs are becoming fairly common place and cheep starting at
£39 (e.g. Combro Chronograph) or alternatively most good air rifle
clubs or gun shops have a chronograph these days. Good further advice
is available from airgunforum.co.uk
- Grouping - quite a science in its own
right and there are so many factors which influence the ability to
check your rifles grouping that it could be a whole article in its own
right (Including a little known phenomenon called Pellet Spiral).
But what you can influence is the physical characteristics of your gun
such as the barrel in the example above. - Fire some pellets into
ballistic putty (A substantial chunk of plasticine or playdo may be a
suitable alternatives - but do this safely!) check for visible defects
scored onto the pellet over and above the normal rifling pattern that
is imparted to the pellet by the rifling.
Have you had any personal experience dealing with a defective air gun problem? How did you solved the problem?
If you would like to summarise the experience in the form of your own article for publication on erifle then please feel free to submit idea proposals or article text its self to firstname.lastname@example.org - all contributions will be gratefully received and duly credited to you.