Thoughts on electronic PCPs?

Forums PCP Airguns Thoughts on electronic PCPs?

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    elh0102
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    bubblerboy64

    By the way.  Who even sells Anschutz and Steyr guns ?   

    I bought my Steyr from Krale. Anschutz North America handles them. Pilkington specializes in 10M rifles, but can work on anything. Champions Choice handles Anschutz. My Steyr is a single shot, no shroud or moderator, very simple. And arguably the best trigger in the world. I bought the adapter for silencer, as it is very loud. I could even hunt with it. No safety,  but just lower the lever on a pellet to uncock, and it's safe. The Red Wolf is kind of the opposite profile, but it sure shoots great. And where the Steyr is a cylinder rifle with modest shot count, the Red Wolf goes forever.

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    STO
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    Typically electronics represent a significant decrease in complexity as well as cost and increase in reliability as well as performance. Concerns about such guns and water for example are probably unfounded, as a simple conformal coating on the board would protect it and such coatings are ubiquitous in the electronics industry. 

     

    The problem arises when you look at the airgun market, which in reality has only one major electronic gun on offer: the Daystate Redwolf. I don't take issue with anyone buying it, but my point would be I don't see any advantage in buying it either. Reading through the thread so far, the comments in support of the Redwolf and its predecessor can be pretty much summarized as "great trigger" and "haven't had any problems with the electronics." That is great and all, but the integration of electronics haven't really been taken advantage of either. The guns are no more accurate than their all-mechanical counterparts, and are considerably more expensive. They also don't take advantage of the electronics to offer any special features. Sure you can select between a couple pre-set power levels, but mechanical guns have hammer power adjusters as well. Daystate missed the opportunity to integrate bluetooth to allow you to do complete tuning from a cell-phone app, maybe even linked with a chrono. They don't allow greater adjustability. They didn't integrate a chronograph into the shroud to continuously monitor gun performance and adjust accordingly or even warn you that the barrel is being fouled or that there is some other issue with the rifle. Basically they had the opportunity to make the gun "smart" but instead made an electronic gun with no significant benefits in performance.

    I really don't mean to upset anyone, that isn't why I wrote any of this. My point though is that an electronic rifle shouldn't be just as good as all the other mechanical guns out there, it should leverage electronics to be much much better. And in the case of the Redwolf just doesn't do anything significantly better. In my eyes it is damned by its own mediocrity, if that makes any sense. And that is why I didn't buy one.

     

    To be clear, I love electronics and technology. I work with them all the time and have great faith in their ability to improve things. Two issues with the Redwolf are that it is closed source, and that it is so expensive very few people own them. This means that there isn't much in the way of after-market for them, so with a few exceptions you're pretty much stuck with the software and hardware. I very much look forward to the day when other more popular manufacturers start making electronic rifles and the feature sets start to explode. Who knows what sorts of capabilities those rifles will bring, things I haven't even imagined, and some of it will be due to companies competing and some of it will be driven by users designing upgraded hardware and software for the rifles. It'll be very exciting when it happens. 

     

    That is my take on it anyway. :) 

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    FredAZ
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    Electronics  => Low Lock Time => Better Accuracy unless you are exceptionally stable.

    This is in addition to the GREAT trigger. 

    And, super-stable velocity without a traditional regulator that creeps.

    Plus, programmable power levels that are available at an instant and ALWAYS the same.

    What's not to like?

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    elh0102
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    STO

    My point though is that an electronic rifle shouldn't be just as good as all the other mechanical guns out there, it should leverage electronics to be much much better. And in the case of the Redwolf just doesn't do anything significantly better. In my eyes it is damned by its own mediocrity, if that makes any sense. And that is why I didn't buy one.

     

    I appreciate your comments. All I know is this; my Red Wolf has delivered everything I need. If I'm damned by its mediocrity, then, I guess I'm damned….. but very happy! One can always wish for better, but it need not be at the expense of failing to enjoy that which is very good, and in your hands now. 

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    bubblerboy64
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    I pretty much agree with all opinions expressed.   You can buy a SUPER nice mechanical gun for a grand less then a Red Wolf.   That’s a fact.  The rest is opinion and personal preference.  I think I could say as a fact that they ARE nice to shoot.   Steak and lobster or both?   

    I think we’ll see more electronic guns.  I too think Daystate could have done more with their electronic guns.  I’d be surprised if they don’t .  Needing to buy a $400 programmer is a turn off .   They also should offer a choice of colors in their laminate stocks.  Reds ok but when you are asking that money you should be able to pick . 

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    mtnGhost
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    I'm pretty much in the same camp as @sto – and I suppose that for me, quantifying any advantages of the electronics wouldn't be substantial enough for me to trade off with simplicity. PCPs are not perfectly simple, and I get that. For me though, that's part of the fun.

    I think the other part of it for me is the fact that I have been engaged in the tech industry for over 20 years. Certainly long enough to become both cynical and skeptical of electronics from a reliability perspective. I'm also the type of person who is not in front of a computer when I'm not working.

    I've also considered a PCP to take with me on long off-grid vacations, if I had one with electronics that failed – I'd regret it a little more than if I had a purely mechanical platform that suffered some mechanical failure. 

    Some folks enjoy electronics more so than others, so I can see the attraction. I'm not judging by any means, so don't get me wrong. I do expect a level of reibility from my PCPs that I'm not so sure that I'd be able to expect with one that has as much additional functional complexity.

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    DellaDog
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    Eventually sold every PCP I’ve owned, except one.

    Daystate AirWolf. I’ll always have it. 

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    ctshooter
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    It's not the electronics that keeps me away from the RedWolf. I have not read one thread where Daystate's electronics have gone bad. I also have a 2006 Lexus RX that's been through of a hell of a lot more than an airgun would ever go through and never had an electronics problem in that either. 

    Working in IT for 20+ years I've seen everything electronic your could imagine from $200 Blackberries up through $500K servers and the electronics in these has rarely ever failed. It's usually a mechanical part that will fail before an electronic one.

    So the one part I would be worried about failing is the solenoid that drives the valve.

    So to answer the OP, would I own an electronic gun? Sure, no reason not too. I just haven't seen one that I want – the RedWolf is nice and all but I don't want to be lugging around a 4' gun and there's lots of other option I'd prefer over the standard.

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    ctshooter
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    Oh – I wanted to add one other thing. When electronics fail – it's usually early on. If they don't fail after 6 months to a year (when you're still under warranty) it's unlikely that it will fail.

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    elh0102
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    mtnGhost

    I'm pretty much in the same camp as @sto – and I suppose that for me, quantifying any advantages of the electronics wouldn't be substantial enough for me to trade off with simplicity. PCPs are not perfectly simple, and I get that. For me though, that's part of the fun.

    I think the other part of it for me is the fact that I have been engaged in the tech industry for over 20 years. Certainly long enough to become both cynical and skeptical of electronics from a reliability perspective. I'm also the type of person who is not in front of a computer when I'm not working.

    I've also considered a PCP to take with me on long off-grid vacations, if I had one with electronics that failed – I'd regret it a little more than if I had a purely mechanical platform that suffered some mechanical failure. 

    Some folks enjoy electronics more so than others, so I can see the attraction. I'm not judging by any means, so don't get me wrong. I do expect a level of reibility from my PCPs that I'm not so sure that I'd be able to expect with one that has as much additional functional complexity.

    I find this interesting. I'm attracted to my Red Wolf for precisely the reason you seem to have an aversion for electronic rifles. The complexity of the electronics has provided a level of options, reliability, and simplicity of operation that I have not found matched in a mechanical rifle. Will it last 10 years? Don't know. If it breaks, can I fix it? Hell no! I remember similar doubts in the automotive market when computer controlled engine management systems were new. Everyone thought, let me manage the air/fuel mixture with carburetor jets, and let me manage ignition with the points and condenser and spark plugs.  What? Who would even consider such outdated technology today? Every type of technology has its strong points, along with its limits. I don't think we have defined either with regard to electronic rifles. My guess, based on my limited experience with the Red Wolf, we will see the electronic technology advance to the point of replacing mechanical systems in most high-end air rifles. I just see no reason to believe otherwise. When a mechanical system can be replaced by one requiring much less maintenance, which should mean greater consistency, and yielding a nearly instant lock time, why should that system not advance? 

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    Macros
    Participant
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    STO

    Typically electronics represent a significant decrease in complexity as well as cost and increase in reliability as well as performance. Concerns about such guns and water for example are probably unfounded, as a simple conformal coating on the board would protect it and such coatings are ubiquitous in the electronics industry. 

     

    The problem arises when you look at the airgun market, which in reality has only one major electronic gun on offer: the Daystate Redwolf. I don't take issue with anyone buying it, but my point would be I don't see any advantage in buying it either. Reading through the thread so far, the comments in support of the Redwolf and its predecessor can be pretty much summarized as "great trigger" and "haven't had any problems with the electronics." That is great and all, but the integration of electronics haven't really been taken advantage of either. The guns are no more accurate than their all-mechanical counterparts, and are considerably more expensive. They also don't take advantage of the electronics to offer any special features. Sure you can select between a couple pre-set power levels, but mechanical guns have hammer power adjusters as well. Daystate missed the opportunity to integrate bluetooth to allow you to do complete tuning from a cell-phone app, maybe even linked with a chrono. They don't allow greater adjustability. They didn't integrate a chronograph into the shroud to continuously monitor gun performance and adjust accordingly or even warn you that the barrel is being fouled or that there is some other issue with the rifle. Basically they had the opportunity to make the gun "smart" but instead made an electronic gun with no significant benefits in performance.

    I really don't mean to upset anyone, that isn't why I wrote any of this. My point though is that an electronic rifle shouldn't be just as good as all the other mechanical guns out there, it should leverage electronics to be much much better. And in the case of the Redwolf just doesn't do anything significantly better. In my eyes it is damned by its own mediocrity, if that makes any sense. And that is why I didn't buy one.

     

    To be clear, I love electronics and technology. I work with them all the time and have great faith in their ability to improve things. Two issues with the Redwolf are that it is closed source, and that it is so expensive very few people own them. This means that there isn't much in the way of after-market for them, so with a few exceptions you're pretty much stuck with the software and hardware. I very much look forward to the day when other more popular manufacturers start making electronic rifles and the feature sets start to explode. Who knows what sorts of capabilities those rifles will bring, things I haven't even imagined, and some of it will be due to companies competing and some of it will be driven by users designing upgraded hardware and software for the rifles. It'll be very exciting when it happens. 

     

    That is my take on it anyway. :) 

    Don't forget the phenomenal lock time, which makes these guns more forgivingly accurate, all else being equal.

    The two electronic guns I've owned have effortlessly out shot my numerous mechanical guns which include a crown, vulcan and HW100 among others. That been my experience at least.

    Regarding your wishes for a chrony in the shroud and constant feedback etc – they did that in 2009 or so. Research the Airwolf MVT (not MCT). Inbuilt chrony and infinite adjustability within its power range by simply setting your velocity on the side screen. and firing off a few rounds for the feedback mechanism to kick in.

    People can be foolish though and regularly broke the inbuilt chrony wires taking off the shroud. They also failed to clean the chrony of lead dust regularly (came with a pipe cleaner type brush) and then complained when the chrony stopped picking up velocities. The gun was smart enough to revert to MCT mode at the selected velocity when either mess up was made so it's not like it failed or stopped shooting. Mine worked perfectly with not so much as a blip.

    Nevertheless, there were many sermons from the top of Mount Stupid, so the MVT was discontinued and Daystate just worked on MCT – more idiot proof I guess.

     

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    AirSupply
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    Both mechanical and electronic airguns are ajustable but very different. For instance if you change the velocity on a mechanical gun buy adjusting just the HST you haven’t really got a perfect “tune” as to do that you also need to adjust the regulator pressure. To do it properly you also need a chronograph. 

    On the RedWolf in seconds you change from a perfect tune at one velocity/pellet to a perfect tune at another velocity/pellet  Having done it both ways in my opinion the ease of doing on the electronic gun is incomparable  to the mechanical gun  

    The other thing I love about the RedWolf is there is never any chance of regulator creep  Take a look at the forum and there is nearly always talk about regulator  issues  Something you can forget with an electronic gun  

     

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    FredAZ
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    Don't forget the Pulsar – nearly the same gun as the RW except as a BullPup. (yes, I know the barrels are different)

    GREAT gun and not 4-feet long!

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    edosan
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    Member

    I guess it all depend on the Goal, STO point of view is very similar to mine.

    I love tech, specially applied  tech, but today I do not see clear advantages on electronics pcp, and I do see a BIG disadvantage, that is dependability. Been a DIY guy, I hate to depend on third parties. If something electronic fails I am obligated to send the gun to repair (meaning weeks or months). Today if something in my airguns fails, I can fix it myself. (meaning just minutes or hours)

    More than electronic pcp, I am following for a while into electronic scopes, I think that is really cool (as ATN), they still need more development (they have some issues) but every time I saw this video…my devil inside say BUY IT MF!! :) (I have been with my mouse in the PAY NOW option)

    In that area I can see advantages over traditional scopes

     

     

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    STO
    Participant
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    Macros

    STO

    Typically electronics represent a significant decrease in complexity as well as cost and increase in reliability as well as performance. Concerns about such guns and water for example are probably unfounded, as a simple conformal coating on the board would protect it and such coatings are ubiquitous in the electronics industry. 

     

    The problem arises when you look at the airgun market, which in reality has only one major electronic gun on offer: the Daystate Redwolf. I don't take issue with anyone buying it, but my point would be I don't see any advantage in buying it either. Reading through the thread so far, the comments in support of the Redwolf and its predecessor can be pretty much summarized as "great trigger" and "haven't had any problems with the electronics." That is great and all, but the integration of electronics haven't really been taken advantage of either. The guns are no more accurate than their all-mechanical counterparts, and are considerably more expensive. They also don't take advantage of the electronics to offer any special features. Sure you can select between a couple pre-set power levels, but mechanical guns have hammer power adjusters as well. Daystate missed the opportunity to integrate bluetooth to allow you to do complete tuning from a cell-phone app, maybe even linked with a chrono. They don't allow greater adjustability. They didn't integrate a chronograph into the shroud to continuously monitor gun performance and adjust accordingly or even warn you that the barrel is being fouled or that there is some other issue with the rifle. Basically they had the opportunity to make the gun "smart" but instead made an electronic gun with no significant benefits in performance.

    I really don't mean to upset anyone, that isn't why I wrote any of this. My point though is that an electronic rifle shouldn't be just as good as all the other mechanical guns out there, it should leverage electronics to be much much better. And in the case of the Redwolf just doesn't do anything significantly better. In my eyes it is damned by its own mediocrity, if that makes any sense. And that is why I didn't buy one.

     

    To be clear, I love electronics and technology. I work with them all the time and have great faith in their ability to improve things. Two issues with the Redwolf are that it is closed source, and that it is so expensive very few people own them. This means that there isn't much in the way of after-market for them, so with a few exceptions you're pretty much stuck with the software and hardware. I very much look forward to the day when other more popular manufacturers start making electronic rifles and the feature sets start to explode. Who knows what sorts of capabilities those rifles will bring, things I haven't even imagined, and some of it will be due to companies competing and some of it will be driven by users designing upgraded hardware and software for the rifles. It'll be very exciting when it happens. 

     

    That is my take on it anyway. :) 

    Don't forget the phenomenal lock time, which makes these guns more forgivingly accurate, all else being equal.

    The two electronic guns I've owned have effortlessly out shot my numerous mechanical guns which include a crown, vulcan and HW100 among others. That been my experience at least.

    Regarding your wishes for a chrony in the shroud and constant feedback etc – they did that in 2009 or so. Research the Airwolf MVT (not MCT). Inbuilt chrony and infinite adjustability within its power range by simply setting your velocity on the side screen. and firing off a few rounds for the feedback mechanism to kick in.

    People can be foolish though and regularly broke the inbuilt chrony wires taking off the shroud. They also failed to clean the chrony of lead dust regularly (came with a pipe cleaner type brush) and then complained when the chrony stopped picking up velocities. The gun was smart enough to revert to MCT mode at the selected velocity when either mess up was made so it's not like it failed or stopped shooting. Mine worked perfectly with not so much as a blip.

    Nevertheless, there were many sermons from the top of Mount Stupid, so the MVT was discontinued and Daystate just worked on MCT – more idiot proof I guess.

     

    Several people have now said lock time. Has anyone actually quantified this yet? Not a criticism, just asking. Part of my skepticism here is that, whatever technical improvements the platform does bring, it is clearly not enough that Daystate shooters are dominant. It seems like there are a handful of companies, all on about the same competitive level, despite using wildly different technology. 

    I did vaguely recall something about an integrated chrono in the shroud. Unfortunately, by y our description, Daystate did a poor job engineering it. Trying to use a light sensor based system inside a shroud is a recipe for trouble, what you'd want is a magnetic chronograph which won't be affected by the lead dust fouling like a light based one. *shrug* 

     

    None of this is to take anything away from the people who own and love their Daystates, I'm just expressing my personal disappointment in Daystate's execution. After all I picked up my Crown brand new from UA for less than 1.5K. A new Redwolf with a programmer will cost you about twice that. I'm not against electronic guns in any way shape or form, but I would want something more that what Daystate is offering for that kind of price premium.

    Let me put it a different way: for the price of a naked Daystate and programmer (a tool I see as necessary to actually use the gun) you could also buy another brand of pretty premium gun, and a nice scope, and rings, and maybe even have enough leftover for a tank or nice little compressor. It is just a lot. If Daystate were down in the same price range as the Vulcans, the FXs, the Edguns, etc. I like to think I'd be singing a very different tune. I hope that doesn't seem like an unfair comparison. 

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    bandg
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    "I hope that doesn't seem like an unfair comparison"

    It seems like a perfectly valid comparison.  But I would look at it in a different way.  At the high price they carry it seems that they still sell pretty well.  Something about them is desirable to those who want them.  

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    elh0102
    Participant
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    It's not an unfair comparison, it merely demonstrates the personal preference involved. Regarding lock time, I seriously doubt anyone on the forum has the equipment to measure it. But, my goodness, all that is needed is a few pulls of the trigger. The only mechanical rifle I have that feels even close, is the Steyr. Is the difference going to matter on the target?  Probably not. 

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    dan_house
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    Member

    Batteries are my biggest issue with the Thomas L.

     

    as in, I forget to turn it off……..  Nothign to do with the gun

     

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    elh0102
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    dan_house

    Batteries are my biggest issue with the Thomas L.

     

    as in, I forget to turn it off……..  Nothign to do with the gun

     

    Had mine 2 months, charged it at first, haven't charged it again, and haven't gotten the low power warning. And you can't forget, it turns itself off.

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    Deleted Account

    Paintball guns have been electronic since 1997. We play in the rain. We dive into big puddles of mud. You really have to drench the boards to fry them but it does happen.  The technology is solid. Trouble shooting issues can be more complex. 

    I don't consider the electronics a problem until you see more semi auto airguns. Then the firing modes can get outragous. Ramping is a big issue. I don't think we need .30 cal airguns that can shoot 15 pellets a second. 

     

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