spinj

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    spinj
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    Zebra,

    You stated that the magazine doesn’t index all the way and cycle into the next slot completely and that you have to manually click it into place.  It could be that the ball spring tension adjustment screw (that sits on the bottom of the action below the magazine), is set in too much.  Try loosening the screw to see if it will resolve the issue. 

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    Although I commend Air Arms’ attempt to widen their PCP line of air rifles, I personally think the design of the Galahad is a slight miss.  The huge gap between the barrel and air tube looks slightly awkward.  To lessen that gap, I think AA should have increased the diameter of the air tube.  This would increase shot count and may give the gun more front-end weight (though it might be negligible) and add to a more balanced bullpup since the weight of most bullpups is biased towards the rear.  If AA chooses to leave the Galahad the way it is, then I think they’re going to need a regulator fitted as standard to achieve a decent shot count from the small air tube.  That said, given AA’s reputation for quality products, I’m certain that the same quality is inherent in the Galahad as it is on their traditionally-styled rifles.   

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    Hey all!  I was just practicing shooting some little things yesterday and today in the seated position and decided to record them.   I choose to practice without benchrests just for the purpose of continuing to hone my skills.  That’s all.  All targets were set at 26 yards from my shooting area.  I apologize for the the lousy quality as I recorded the videos with my iPhone. 

    Distance to target

    Shooting a pellet taped onto a leaf twig (fast-forward to 3:11 for the shot)

    Shooting a pellet perched on top of a twig.  I forgot to edit out the long wait and was recorded is slowmotion.  Fast-forward to 6:33 for the shot.

    Shooting a pellet through a hole on a toothpick container (fast-forward to 2:40 for the shot)

    Here’s another video of hitting a pellet.

    Shooting a leaf out of its stem.

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    spinj
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    Below is another post I’d like to share.  It contains information I posted on another forum a while back.  It concerns the elimination of parallax that exists practically on all scopes with adjustable magnification and objective lenses.  I know a lot of you here already know how to eliminate it at the different ranges you shoot at.  However, the information shared below is about correcting a problem that I believe plagues even the most high-end of scopes: a slightly blurry image even when parallax has been canceled out.

    HOW TO OBTAIN A PARALLAX-FREE SIGHT PICTURE WHEN YOUR SCOPE IMAGE IS A BIT FUZZY

    Another accuracy issue comes from scope parallax.  You probably have noticed that even though you have focused your target as clearly as you can, there still is some parallax present.  Or, if you have eliminated it completely to the point that the reticle is still when you move your head around, you see that the target is a bit blurry.  It is because both the ocular and objective lens are not properly adjusted so that parallax is nonexistent when the image (target) is sharply in focus.  This is perhaps one reason why some shooters blame their scope for POI issues.  Sure, you can minimize its effects by keeping a consistent cheek weld to counteract this issue (which is also good practice), but I think it is much better to feel confident knowing that the image is movement-free at a given shooting distance once a clear image has been achieved, especially when you do not have the means to keep the rifle very still while you do the “head dance” thing to check for it.  Plus, I think it is also beneficial for shooters when a problem such as this is taken out of the picture (excuse the pun) for the sake of getting rid of one other obstacle in the quest to increase precision in shooting.

    The common advice is to first adjust the ocular lens to a setting that projects a clear reticle to your own eyesight.  For some scopes, however, when this is done first and it’s time to focus the objective lens to its clearest at the distance the target is at, both the reticle and target are still not on the same focal plane.  I observed this on both of my Hawke Sidewinders some time ago. 

    Here’s how to correct the problem. First, you need to adjust the ocular lens until the reticle appears crisp – this is preliminary only.  Next, view an object at a specific distance, for example a flower at 25 yards, and focus it by adjusting the objective lens until the object appears at its sharpest. When you have completed this, set your rifle still and fixed to the object then move your head around to see if there is parallax error.  If there is, continue to adjust the objective lens until you no longer see the reticle move. You may find that you’ve gone beyond the setting from the one which projected a crisp image and now it is a bit blurry.  Not to worry.  Go back to the ocular lens and adjust it until the image is sharply focused then test again to see if parallax is nonexistent.  If there is no more,  you may find that the reticle has lost a bit of its sharpness/clarity (it shouldn’t be too drastic though).  But this is okay because it should be your goal to have confidence knowing that your reticle won’t be moving around when you’ve got a nice, crisp sight picture.  Once the ocular lens has been properly adjusted you no longer have to touch it, at least for the magnification level you set the adjustments at. 

    Try this test out. You may be surprised.

    Cheers,

    Spinj

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    spysir, I appreciate the links you provided and your comment.  I plan on reading up on the information from the links when I’m done with housework. 🙂

     

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    “ajshoots”I have been following this post and have already given the OP positive accuracy for a great post. I have to say even as an experienced and accomplished shooter, this was a wonderful read and great straight forward info explained in an easy to understand manner. Kudos again to spinj and look forward to your future contributions!!


    I am humbled by your statements, ajshoots.  Thank you!  Yes, I will continue to provide positive contributions to this forum as a result of my experiences. 

    Cheers,

    Spinj

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    When shooting spring-piston rifles, in my experience, the best way I shoot them accurately is by doing so off-hand.  It’s my way of training myself to shoot without the aid of shooting rests.  Shooting them bench-rest style causes the nodes (on the rifle) to deflect the movement given off by the rest and back onto the gun (especially if the rests used are bags that move with the gun).  The force, as a result of the recoil from the rifle, is transmitted to the rest, and depending on how incorrectly it is set up, gets transmitted back to the gun thus causing a sloppy up, down, or sideways movement.  A very good rest that is perfectly set up in order for this is needed to avoid such movement.  When shot off-hand, this same force gets neutralized as the off-hand (and perhaps the shooter’s entire body) acts as a suspension, in a sense.  It’s kind of like how a motorcyclist stands on his legs and uses them as a secondary suspension unit when going over a bump on the road to help the bike’s (primary) suspension components dampen the forces. 

    It’s as is uttered by many when explaining how to successfully control a machine: you have to be one with it.  Shooting a springer with the aid of shooting bags/rest takes that “oneness” away.  To add some support for stability when I shoot my TX200, my forehand just very lightly touches or “kisses” the rest (or my knees).  But a majority of the weight of the rifle is supported by my forehand.  Still, when shooting my spring-piston rifle off-hand, I follow the same technique I explained in my posts.  Anyway, just sharing.

    This is my personal-best group from my .22 TX200.  With practice I’m sure anyone can achieve this or better!  The group is a 25-shot one done at 27 yards in a sitting position with my back and knees stabilized by a wall.  It took me almost an hour just to achieve this!  With such extended time just to make a shot, it is the reason why I don’t compete.  To me, a perfect shot shouldn’t be rushed.  If it takes a couple of minutes (or longer) to make one then so be it. 
       
     

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    You’re welcome 30cal!

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    Thank you for your comments Yrrah!  Of course you can add onto this thread, and thank you for contributing to it.  Please do not delete your post!  I agree entirely on the contents of it as well.  They are indeed genuine words of wisdom, and I think shooters willing to always improve on their shooting discipline, despite their level of competency, can benefit from them.  In fact, I have changed the title of this thread to “Accurate Shooting Tips for Struggling Shooters” so that it is correlative to the information contained herein.  

    I encourage others on this forum as well to feel free to add onto this thread for the simple purpose of helping those who are struggling to shoot accurately, or just simply to advance others’ shooting knowledge.  

    Cheers,

    Spinj         

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    Ernest actually sells the entire O-ring kit for the Cricket. 

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    Thanks for the comment rockymtbiker.  

    Combined with the method of shooting as explained in the first post, I also incorporate the technique stated in the write-up below which I posted on another airgun forum some time ago.  It is intended to help new and struggling airgun shooters improve on their shooting, and I’ve decided to share it here as well.  I apply both when I’m shooting to be as accurate as I can.  Again, the contents are reflective of my shooting experience. 

    WARNING: THE POST IS LENGTHY!
                     
    ACCURATE SHOOTING TIPS FOR THE DISGRUNTLED BEGINNING SHOOTER – DON’T GET RID OF YOUR GUN JUST YET!
     

    If you are a seasoned marksman or one with a degree in airgunomics, feel free to click on the “back” button of your browser.  Nevertheless, if you are a fledgling airgun shooter looking to read on and hopefully try some of the things I would like to share here to help in shooting more accurately before reselling your air rifle, or worse, using it as a crowbar, this post is specifically for you.  Or, if you are excitedly waiting for your shiny new weapon of mass extinction (for you pest-heads) to arrive at your doorstep or are feeling frustrated because you just cannot seem to put the pellet where you want, stop thinking about the gun and relax a bit.  This post is for you too.

    Before going further, I want you to firmly establish this truth into your mindset first: the gun you have or will have is heck of a lot better than you!  I don’t care who you claim to be, but it’s the cold, hard truth.  If you think this isn’t possible because you happen to be a descendant of Annie Oakley or Bullseye Bill, they would probably feel insulted in gun nirvana right now because they know that it was purely their finely-developed skillset that made them sharpshooters.  I personally believe that if your gun has a life of its own with the capacity to shoot by itself, it would humiliate you and thus make you feel unworthy to be a part of Ms. Oakley or Mr. Bill’s lineage.

    I actually think that airguns do not need humans to demonstrate the precision they are truly capable of.  I believe they are able to put pellets on top of another if they did it themselves in a gravity-less shooting range (if such a thing were to exist) where they are suspended and can operate on their own.  That said, one of the key principles to extracting the most accuracy from an air rifle is the minimization of human input as much as possible.

    Many times I read posts about a beginning shooter excited to have received his newly-arrived and expensive masterpiece only to be disappointed later because he could not get the accuracy he had read about in the forums, reports, magazines, et cetera.  The problem is the individual himself with yet-to-be-developed marksmanship skills. Manufacturers of precision airguns should include a statement on the box and manual that states something like this: NOTE: THIS IS A PRECISION INSTRUMENT. ANY MISSES, BUYER-REMORSE, OR WOUNDED ANIMALS ARE THE RESULTS OF YOUR LACK OF SKILL AND EXPERIENCE!  How would that make you feel?

    I understand the frustration and disappointment people feel, though, when their gun isn’t doing what it is guaranteed to do because I experienced it myself before.  I felt the guilt of having spent hard-earned, musk-scented, sweat-laden, and dirt-smeared dineros on an airgun I had initially thought was going to send not three, not two, but one pellet only to flick the off switch of a sparrow at fifty yards away or etch my initials on target-paper pellet after consecutive pellet.  Because of this I kept it in storage for moths and spiders to call their high-tech home.

    My shooting skills have improved greatly since then, and I can honestly say that I have a deeper understanding today of the factors that come into play when it comes to shooting accurately.  I don’t have any military shooting background. Neither did I ever graduate in the summa cum laude class with a certification in bullseye-busting bad-assery.  I attribute my present skills to a better understanding of the physics that govern a rifle from the moment of trigger pull to the end of the shot cycle.  To go along with that, it was from lots and lots of practice and pellets.  I don’t compete though… someday, maybe.

    As a former educator, I can confidently say that the learning process, although often slow and bitter in the initial stages, always turns out to be very rewarding because it reaps pleasure and sweetness in the end.  A problem always has a solution, but for disgruntled airgunners it is the road to discovering the solution that they don’t like to tread.  They like to take shortcuts and spend more money to quickly get them where they want to be only to be even more frustrated and walk away from airgunning forever.  Furthermore, with a precision tool designed to make a pellet repeatedly land on the point-of-aim, still, they usually end up questioning its accuracy when they don’t get it from the gun.  They would then think that it should be as easy as writing a letter of the alphabet.  After all, it is labeled as a “precision instrument” (If only they thought about how much and what it took for them to write the letter “A” when they were younger.).  Shortly after, they tear into their gun, adjusting its valve, polishing a part here and there, changing spring rates, adjusting velocity, blaming the scope, and what have you (feel free to add onto the list).

    I like to put things in perspective and to the test.  I like to study mechanisms of personal interest and observe and gain insight of the dynamics that surround them in order to learn as much as I can so that I have a solid basis for their application or use in other applications.  More importantly, just because I no longer teach does not mean I have lost the desire to share what I have learned.  Conversely, I like to learn from sensible others also and the experiences they possess of the same subject matter.  So if you have something to add to this or want to share your ideas, feel free to do so.

    All right then, let’s get on with it, shall we?  Firstly, in a response to a post by bullpup airgun tuner, Ernest Rowe, titled “Mutant Shorty Shot Count in 20 and 25 FPE” in the “Taipan Mutant” forum, I stated a little bit about managing an air rifle’s recoil.  However, I did not give a detailed explanation on how to do so.  So, this post reveals a bit more information that I was reluctant to provide in that response in the form of tips.  The premise of this post is on recoil-management and on concentrating on how to effectively guide the pellet to its point-of-aim before pulling the trigger and thereafter.  Note that I stated in the response that pre-charged pneumatic (PCPs) airguns also recoil and the reasons why with respect to Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion, so I feel I do not need to discuss that further here.

    In keeping perspective of my background as a former educator, and for lack of a better analogy, launching a pellet to its intended impact point is akin to successfully preparing a child to go off on his or her own.  You have to be patient and set a straight, forward, but focused path.  In the interest of shooting, you have to take into consideration the external stimuli and their potential to derail the pellet’s intended flight path (similar to protecting a child from negative influences in his or her attempts at success).  Factors like wind strength and its direction, instability of the shooting bench, the amount of coffee ingested, heartbeat rate, scope parallax, shooting position and posture, pellet weight and the influence it has on its trajectory, etc., will affect the direction of pellet travel.  In this post, I assume you already know about these things.  So keep this in mind when reading the tips below.  Okay, I’ll end my blabbering here.

    Tip 1: Get comfortable in your shooting position
    When positioning yourself to line up a shot, it is important not to feel like you are forcing the rifle to the point-of-aim. Ignore this first tip and you can forget about proceeding any further.  I can guarantee that if you take a shot while not considering this crucial step your pellet is going to land somewhere else other than your point-of-aim (If you do actually hit what you were aiming at, consider it luck.).  The sensation you should get is one in which you feel planted and stationary and that the rifle is steady.  Make every effort to ensure that the rifle is not being torqued into its aim point, nor is your hand on the forearm and pistol grip applying any lateral pressure.  You should feel relaxed and unrestrained.  At the same time, you should have very minimal contact with the rifle.  Cheek pressure should be to the extent that your cheek is only “kissing” the cheek-piece of the stock.

    Tip 2: Find the rifle’s natural point-of-aim
    Once you have come to a comfortable shooting position, it is time to find your rifle’s natural point-of-aim (NPA).  This is very critical in establishing a steady sight picture.  NPA occurs when the scope’s reticle does not move from its aim point even when you temporarily fix your gaze on something else (without moving your head) instead of the crosshairs and aim point for several seconds and finding that the crosshairs remain fixed to the aim point when you return to view them.  When you have arrived at this juncture, you will discover that your muscles are not exerting any tension and applying pressure on the rifle at all, which is what you are after.  As stated earlier, the key is minimal contact with the rifle.

    Tip 3: Pay careful attention to the crosshairs and target
    Because you do not have superhuman vision, you cannot detect even the tiniest movement of the rifle’s barrel from the aim point.  After all, it’s the barrel that should be the reference point and tell you if you have deviated from its set position. Fortunately for you, you have your scope to aid you in your efforts to maintain a steady aim and correct sight picture. The scope should project a clear, crisp sight picture whereby the reticle is sharp and the target is clearly focused. This is important as having a clear image will help to eliminate parallax error (a phenomena in which the target appears to move away from the reticle when you move your head vertically and or laterally).  More importantly, the crosshairs should not be drifting away from the point-of-aim; they should remain still for about fifteen seconds or longer.

    Tip 4: Practice trigger control
    Practice trigger control in the middle of taking a shot, you ask?  Absolutely!  I did mention about being patient earlier didn’t I?  Don’t be too trigger-happy and rush the shot. This is one of the most critical steps to precision shooting.  When I say practice trigger control before taking the shot, it is for two reasons (This is one of a few secrets of my shooting technique).  The first one is to confirm that you have followed the first three tips above correctly.  The second reason is to prepare for the straight launch of the pellet.  So now you’re probably wondering how on Earth trigger-control can be practiced when the gun is cocked and loaded.  This is what I do.  I like to use the back part of the trigger – the curved wall directly behind it – and pretend that it is actually a trigger that is at its second stage.  I would pull that part and pay attention to the reticle and see if it moves.  If the crosshairs move away from the target sideways, up, or down, I go back to doing what is mentioned in tips 1 to 3.  Most of the time, it’s just a matter of adjusting my hand on the pistol grip, my elbows, or releasing pressure on the cheek-piece.  Sometimes I make all these adjustments.

    I cannot emphasize this enough: THE CROSSHAIRS MUST ABSOLUTELY NOT MOVE UP, DOWN, LEFT, OR RIGHT WHEN TESTING TRIGGER PULL!  Make the necessary adjustments to ensure that this does not occur.  Remember this: Any unwanted movement is going to be magnified when the shot breaks.  If the crosshairs do stay stationary when pressing on the area behind the trigger, then proceed to the next tip.

    Tip 5: Slowly and smoothly pull the trigger
    This is what I think is the most important step to accurate shooting.  All the things you did in tips 1 to 4 are riding on careful pulling of the trigger.  As practiced in tip 4, apply the same manner-of-pull slowly and smoothly while keeping an eye on the crosshairs’ movement in relation to the point-of-aim.  If you detect even a slight horizontal or vertical movement of the crosshairs, let go of the trigger and try again.  Of course, you need to make sure that when pulling the trigger you are also applying correct breathing technique.  I like to inhale fully, let out half of my breath, pause then smoothly pull the trigger in between heartbeats or pulses until the shot breaks.

    Tip 6: Freeze!
    When the rifle has fired you are not done.  Do not even bring your trigger finger forward!  This is a common mistake many shooters make. Leave your trigger position where it was when the shot broke.  Additionally, your body position must continue to remain the way it was prior to the shot.  This must all be done until the pellet hits AND until the rifle has stopped moving completely.  And don’t take your eye off the crosshairs.  Pay attention to its movement during the shot all the way to the stop.  This is essentially what is called follow-through.

    As per Sir Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion, every action has an equal, opposite reaction.  Simply stated, the rifle will impart movement that is the reverse movement made by the discharged pellet.  Your job is to keep that movement of the rifle straight backwards – the preferred type of recoil movement.  If everything has been done perfectly the reticle should appear to remain steady, but the gun has actually moved as per Newton’s law.  This is an indication that the rifle has recoiled straight back and is exactly what you want it to do.  It is difficult to see (or not see, rather), but you should be able to feel it.  Sometimes, the reticle will move vertically upwards.  This movement is also a good indication that all the steps have correctly been executed (remember Newton’s law).

    The information mentioned in these tips is what I have used to develop a technique that has allowed me to extract as much accuracy as I can from my air rifles.  Utilizing this technique has also enabled me to call my shots; before a shot breaks I can almost predict where the pellet is going to land, and if it hits an unintended part of the target I know that it was my fault and not my gun.  When doing all the steps become second nature you can almost feel the shot even when shooting in the wind.  You also become more competent in applying holdover and hold-under in a variety of distances when shooting.  It’s a wonderful feeling, and it took me a number of years to develop.  I am sure that with much quality practice time, you too can develop this feeling.  It is what inspires confidence in shooting.  And I believe it is that confidence that makes shooting more enjoyable.

    Shoot safe and have fun guys!

    – Spinj

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    “sharroff”It would be interesting to see one would bet their rifle in their shooting position against a benchrest shooter using their BR Gun and rest at a 50 or 100 yard target.  Winner goes home with both guns….
     


    LOL!

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    To use Photobucket to share photos in a post, follow the steps below.

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    3.  Click on the “share” option then (according to your share settings) choose “IMG.”  When you click on this option, the link will be copied.

    4.  Paste the link onto your post.
     

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    Hello everyone!  I’m a new member here as I joined just today.  I hope to have a positive experience, exchange helpful information and ideas, and just basically have a great time on this forum.

    Anyway, to contribute to this thread, of the airguns I currently own, I have to say that one gun I like the most is my Air Arms TX200 spring-piston rifle.  Aside from the fact that I don’t need any charging equipment to get it to shoot, the main reason why I like it is that it taught me how to really shoot and develop discipline in shooting.  When I first started shooting the rifle some several years back, I had problems doing so accurately.  I was so frustrated at the time I surmised that it was the barrel (after ruling out the other parts of the gun) that caused the problem of puzzling and inconsistent POI from a variety of pellets I tried.  I did everything to try to get it to shoot well; I swapped scopes and I tore into the gun many, many times in an attempt to diagnose the issue and try to make it the most smooth-shooting springer I could.  I even jammed a cleaning rod from the muzzle end out of desperation on more than a couple of occasions.  Heck, I even thought I damaged the crown at that time.  But I tell you, I was so disappointed in the gun.  It wasn’t until I really began to pay attention to my shooting technique and the mistakes I was making.  I practiced and practiced until I learned to develop a consistent and proper method of shooting my TX.  And then one day, it all clicked.  Not long after, I was shooting pellet on top of pellet with it. 
     
    My TX has been through hell with me, and if it had any emotion back then, it probably would’ve been crying because of what I was doing to it.  It was this gun that had taught me how to really stack pellets and account for everything that goes into a perfect shot.  To this day, whether it is shooting it, my Cricket, or Air Arms S410, I implement the same shooting technique that I had developed from the training I had gone through with it.  It is simply what I’ve gotten out of my time spent on learning how to effectively shoot my TX why I will never let it go.  It became like the one teacher I had in my middle school years whom I was very displeased with from the beginning to the middle part of the school year but later developed a huge respect and admiration for because of the important lessons I had learned from him.

    I cannot give the recognition which I have given to my TX200 to my Cricket, S410, or the Airforce Condor I used to have even though they all are also able to stack pellets.  My TX200 is the only one that deserves it.  It has remained stock all the way — no Vortek, V-Mach, or Maccari parts in it (except for longer-lasting tough-core breech O-rings).  It has gone through a total of four mainsprings and five piston seals. I think that’s a testament to how much I shoot it. :)

    Personally, I’d say that if one really wants to learn how to shoot an air rifle (or even a firearm), he or she should do so with a springer especially because of the strict shooting discipline it demands.  Bar none!  A spring-piston gun will humble a shooter who claims that it’s primarily the gun and not the person pulling the trigger.  In fact, I am more impressed with a shooter who can shoot a springer with precision at 30 yards than a shooter who can shoot a PCP accurately at 50 yards.

    Here is a photo of a 25-shot group done not too long ago with my TX200 at 27 yards with Beeman Kodiak 21-grain pellets. 

    And here’s my TX pictured alongside my other current PCPs.
     

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    Congratulations on your purchase of a .22 Cricket!  I think you are going to enjoy shooting it.  I own the same gun but in a walnut bulldog stock.  The Cricket is an incredible air rifle, although I also think all the other bullpups are great as well even if I do not own any of them as I’ve read some great reviews of them online.  Just like any high-end airgun, the Cricket will astound you with its precision if you have the skill to extract its pinpoint accuracy.  One advice: clean the barrel really good before shooting it.  It took over 20 patches to get the barrel of my rifle clean; the barrel was oversaturated with lube/gunk from the factory!

    I love how the Cricket is so simple to work on and how I can easily adjust the regulator to put out the desired power I need for it to shoot at.  Right now, my Cricket is set to shoot 16-grain JSBs at 10 FPE (535 FPS).  At this power level I can get up to 320 shots! (This is with a low-power hammer spring installed.)  The reason why I decided to turn down the power to 10 FPE is because my max shooting distance is 27 yards on my property.  Also, I am after tons of usable shots for target practice.  Even at this power level with the aforementioned pellets, accuracy is still incredible.  Below is a spreadsheet I created to process the chrono work I did back in July of last year.  

        

    This is a 25-shot group at 27 yards achieved by using only a front bag.  Please bear in mind that it took me many years to develop my shooting skills with a spring-piston rifle and thousands upon thousands of pellets to achieve a 25-shot group like this utilizing just a front shooting bag.

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