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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Allow me to preface this by saying: If you are able to keep a good mid caliber Firearm rifle for self and group defense, this is important.

I am living a survival situation now, having zero income for a while. In getting meet on the dinner table I have found that the pellet guns are quit adequate.

For a long time one of my hobbies has been air guns, so my choices of what to use are based on experience with many different types of air guns.

In a survival situation you are going to mostly be hunting small game, nothing bigger than a raccoon (size wise), simply because that is the range of what is most available everywhere. Pigeon, Dove, Chipmunk, Snake, Lizard, and others of the like will become the primary meet sources in a survival situation. As such any firearm is way overkill.

In hunting with air guns it is important to have an air gun you can shoot very accurately, which requires practice. There are many options of good air guns for the purpose, and many bad options.

Do to the need of trigger practice without actually firing (unless you enjoy wasting pellets), break barrel type air guns are off of the list, as with break barrel type guns you can not safely dry fire them.

CO2 guns are a poor choice do to the need of CO2.

This leaves the various pneumatic air guns. Of these I prefer the Multi Pump Pneumatic air guns, because they have the needed power, the power is easy to adjust, and they are completely self contained no extra equipment needed.

Thus the two air guns I personally use are the Crosman 1377 and the Crosman Legacy 1000. The Crosman Legacy 1000 replaced my Crosman 2100. Also note that is the Crosman Legacy 1000, NOT the Benjamin Legacy 100, these are two completely different air guns.

The Crosman 1377 is a small compact air pistol or carbine, easy to carry in a pack. I have a Crosman 1399 Shoulder Stock on mine, and it makes a great low power break down carbine. The Crosman 1377 is quite capable of squirrel, cottontail rabbit, chipmunk, and most small birds, just about anything you are going to hunt, so long as you get close enough.

The Crosman Legacy 1000 like its little brother the Crosman 2100 is a great air rifle in the high power range for .177 caliber. Mine produces more than 10FPE at the muzzle at full pumps, and is capable of going a little higher power with some over pumping.

One thing on air gun hunting, you really do need to be able to hit a target the size of a US Quarter at least 90% of the time at your hunting distances. The kill zone on most small animals is about that size, for a good clean brain shot.

When hunting with air guns you are going to want a good brain shot with almost all mammals, as well as most reptiles. A pellet is subsonic so there is no hydrostatic shock, it is all about penetration of the pellet doing the damage to kill.

On the selection of pellets, heavier weight pellets carry the most energy out the furthest. Also in pneumatic air guns the heavier the pellet generally the higher the muzzle energy. These two things together make a huge difference.

It takes very little space to store a few hundred-thousand pellets, and pellets are never going to go bad as they are just precisely sized, shaped, and weighted hunks of lead.

There are a number of good ways to cast and swag your own pellets, making them a renewable source of ammo.

My Crosman 1377 and Crosman Legacy 1000 are proving themselves to be good at putting meet on the dinner table, and that is exactly there purpose in my preps. These are also very reliable air guns, among the most reliable currently produced for under $200, both of them together, including the shoulder stock for the 1377 can be purchased for $130 total.

For stealth, air guns tend to be very quiet.

Again air guns are great for small game hunting, though you still need your firearm for self and group defense.
 

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There was a local dog hunter who ran dogs most of the year when legal. He stayed in the forest for weeks at a time. He fed himself and anyone who was in camp with small game. He used a Sheridan blue streak. Since he shot out of season he used the air rifle as it was quiet. he mostly shot tree squirrel and quail. The problem is that he cleaned out the area he camped in and really destroyed the local game there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
There was a local dog hunter who ran dogs most of the year when legal. He stayed in the forest for weeks at a time. He fed himself and anyone who was in camp with small game. He used a Sheridan blue streak. Since he shot out of season he used the air rifle as it was quiet. he mostly shot tree squirrel and quail. The problem is that he cleaned out the area he camped in and really destroyed the local game there.
Well that is an issue with those that always hunt in one place, and hunt indigenous species. I stick to invasive for the most part, with the occasional indigenous though I always hunt in different areas, not getting back to the same area for a year, and changing areas about every two weeks. My only limit is the allowance of the land owners for hunting.

And I never hunt on my own land, it may be needed in an emergency, so it remains untouched.
 

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No offense but i got to disagree with your assessment and it's likely to come down to personal preference... but i really don't agree with the bit about not looking at break barrels due to wasting pellets, personally i don't think dry fire training is of that large of importance with a pellet gun, pellets are cheap enough were it doesn't really matter how many you go through, you obviously don't want to use the good stuff, but you can get plunking pellets for like $6.50 @ 500, i say it's probably not a big deal to invest $40 and actually shot a few thousand rounds than dry firing.


The main point to all of this is, that all of my favorite air guns have been single pump break barrel types, the seem to be by far and away the most accurate type of manual pump airgun I've ever shot and i think you're really limiting yourself by over looking break barrel types due to not being able to dry fire them all because you're wasting pellets as you put it.

Beyond that, with the break barrel types you can actually get a pretty good rate of fire going with a bit of practice, as there is really no pumping involved, the pressurizing of the air rifle happens when you load the pellet, open the barrel which draws air into the chamber, load pellet into breach, close barrel which in turn pressurizes the chamber, aim, pull trigger, get ready for dinner.


seriously check out the RWS 34, Benjamin Trail Np XL or even the Crossman phantom if your a crossman fan, they are all awesome guns and the accuracy is amazing, i have a 3" square steel plate hanging up in a tree half 3/4 an acre away and i can ring that thing with boring accuracy and quickly enough to the point where it's dancing, i *really* like the RWS and the Benjamin.

again though and as i said from the start, this is probably just a difference of opinion here and personal preference, i could see why someone would think dry fire training is important on a pellet gun, i just don't think it matters enough to not shoot some of these rifles, and that's me, everything else you said was right on imo and can't really argue against any of it, so don't take my disagreement above as anything other than just not thinking the same as you, it's not good or bad, just different......that said, you should really try out some of these guns man, they're crazy accurate, lol
 

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I have several airguns in my preps, both in .177 and .22 caliber, all of them break barrel though. I don't see the point in dry firing them though. I have a "hunting range" set up in my backyard, with animal plink targets set up on various ranges, that I use for practice. This is much better and more realistic than limiting yourself to trigger practice and dry firing. After all, pellets are very cheap, and I have thousands upon shousands stored.

That said, I would really like to add a Crosman 1377 to my collection. They are small and practical to carry around in a little pack.
 

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I have one.....just because I wanted to buy a really nice one about 15 years ago. I dropped some dough on an RWS Diana. Then my kids gave me a very nice air rifle scope and mount for it a couple years later. It is a .177, but it is a flippin tack driver at 1,000 fps with lead pellets.

I am really accurate with it at 50 yards, good enough to take squirrels.

I think having an air rifle is really smart....about as smart as also having a black powder rifle.
 

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I have a raptor .17 cal one. It is "suppressed". Very nice and when you use the premium pellets it goes supersonic, although for all small game I usually use regular pellets. The supersonic crack of the SSP pellets sounds just like a .22. I don't need it for a survival situation at this point, however for varmits and plinking it is great. I don't use it for varmints bigger than a raccoon. Anything bigger that is what the suppressed 10/22 is for. For training nothing is better (or cheaper) than a air rifle.
 

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I have the Crossman 1377 just because it looks so dang cool. For fifty bucks, why not?

I just bought one of those 1377 American Classic pistols from Walmart. A quick penetration test of it got 6" of water jug penetration with the pointed pellet almost coming out the back side of the water jug. Enough penetration and accuracy to take small game. You could easily keep yourself fed if small game was available. I really like it.
I bought a Beeman Grizzly X2 rifle a while ago and with it's .177 and .22 caliber caliber barrels and double the penetration of the 1377 pistol , it's a very competent small game rifle. I think they would both make excellent pot meat pellet guns if you decided to make it so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
No offense but i got to disagree with your assessment and it's likely to come down to personal preference... but i really don't agree with the bit about not looking at break barrels due to wasting pellets, personally i don't think dry fire training is of that large of importance with a pellet gun, pellets are cheap enough were it doesn't really matter how many you go through, you obviously don't want to use the good stuff, but you can get plunking pellets for like $6.50 @ 500, i say it's probably not a big deal to invest $40 and actually shot a few thousand rounds than dry firing.

The main point to all of this is, that all of my favorite air guns have been single pump break barrel types, the seem to be by far and away the most accurate type of manual pump airgun I've ever shot and i think you're really limiting yourself by over looking break barrel types due to not being able to dry fire them all because you're wasting pellets as you put it.
Where do you get a pump break barrel? Last I checked they were all spring piston/Nitro Piston/Gas piston. Good trick finding a pump version.

The best single PUMP rifle I have is the Daisy Powerline 953 Target Pro, and it does not have enough power to do any hunting at all.

We each have our own views. I did not mention some of the other reasons I personally dislike break barrel and other spring/nitro/gas piston air guns. If I want a spring piston airgun I will not get a break barrel, I would get a way underpowered Daisy Red Rider, the true classic spring piston.
Beyond that, with the break barrel types you can actually get a pretty good rate of fire going with a bit of practice, as there is really no pumping involved, the pressurizing of the air rifle happens when you load the pellet, open the barrel which draws air into the chamber, load pellet into breach, close barrel which in turn pressurizes the chamber, aim, pull trigger, get ready for dinner.
WRONG:
In a break barrel you are compressing the spring (gas/nitro pistons are just a different kind of spring), and locking the piston against the sear, this is called cocking and happens when you break the barrel all the way open. Then you load your pellet, close the barrel, and take aim.

When you pull the trigger, releasing the sear, the piston flys forward compressing a small amount of air that actually propels the pellet down the barrel. This is why dieseling is such a big issue with Break Barrels while it is not an issue with pump pneumatic guns.
seriously check out the RWS 34, Benjamin Trail Np XL or even the Crossman phantom if your a crossman fan, they are all awesome guns and the accuracy is amazing, i have a 3" square steel plate hanging up in a tree half 3/4 an acre away and i can ring that thing with boring accuracy and quickly enough to the point where it's dancing, i *really* like the RWS and the Benjamin.
I have a few break barrels, I would never use them for hunting, and would never want to replace the mainspring if it were to break (or leak in the case of gas/nitro pistons).
again though and as i said from the start, this is probably just a difference of opinion here and personal preference, i could see why someone would think dry fire training is important on a pellet gun, i just don't think it matters enough to not shoot some of these rifles, and that's me, everything else you said was right on imo and can't really argue against any of it, so don't take my disagreement above as anything other than just not thinking the same as you, it's not good or bad, just different......that said, you should really try out some of these guns man, they're crazy accurate, lol
That is ok we all have our own opinions. I prefer what I prefer.

I also do not like having to shoot with the artillery hold in order to get good shots, as is needed with the reverse recoil of break barrels, I would rather hold my air guns like I hold my firearms. That is just me.

We have differing opinions, though that is ok.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I have several airguns in my preps, both in .177 and .22 caliber, all of them break barrel though. I don't see the point in dry firing them though. I have a "hunting range" set up in my backyard, with animal plink targets set up on various ranges, that I use for practice. This is much better and more realistic than limiting yourself to trigger practice and dry firing. After all, pellets are very cheap, and I have thousands upon shousands stored.

That said, I would really like to add a Crosman 1377 to my collection. They are small and practical to carry around in a little pack.
I do actual firing practice with my airguns every single day, it is important more so than trigger practice. Though when you get a new air gun is it really worth spending over a hundred-thousand pellets to get perfect with the trigger, an issue that will make your shots less accurate?

I shoot more plinking targets every day than most people shoot in a year. I am well aware of the importance of this practice. I also shoot some paper targets, though not as much as plinking targets.

I shoot many many times every day, all with my air guns, mostly with my 1377 and Crosman Legacy 1000.

Yes the 1377 is always worth it for anyone. I also have a number of 1322's, Crosman 140's, and other .22 caliber air guns. I just like keeping my prep air guns all the same caliber.
 

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I have a 1975 Fienwerkbau 124 Sport, a West German (Oberndorff) Break-Barrel .177 cal Springer.

I've had it since New. Just last June, the piston seal gave up. I bought new Seal, and breech o-ring, and replaced both. A matter of an afternoon's work, after nearly Fourty Years' service! Cleaned and lubed parts and places not done since New.

Easily done, with simple tools. No damages resulted to any part of the Rifle. Good for return to service.

Chrono says 8.2 grain Gamo pellet was moving along at 927 FPS, just out the Muzzle.

My Air Rifle is Noisier than a CCI .22 Short from my Remington 522 Speedmaster Semi-Auto long-barrel rifle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Just when that database crash happened I was about to say this:

I realize that I was not clear in terms of practice with my initial post in this thread.

Actual shooting practice is something that should be maintained every single day, without fail, same as we all know already.

Trigger practice is to perfect the trigger pull for each new gun, as it takes many more pulls than is cost effective even with pellets costing less than 1 cent each (9 tenths of a cent for the pellets I mainly use). Being perfect on the trigger pull can make the difference between being able to hit a 0.5 inch target every time at 30 yards and being able to hit a 0.4 inch target every time at 30 yards, and that will improve the effectiveness of your kills when hunting.

For daily practice I recommend a minimum of 20 shots at 0.4 inch plinking targets every day, with at least 5 of them being when you first awake and are still a little groggy (it helps). Now I shoot a lot more than that, I do 80 shots per day currently as I have to ration my pellets only having about 500000 (five-hundred-thousand) left.

Your plinking targets should be at varying ranges from 5 yards out to your maximum hunting distance. Any distance at which you can not hit the 0.4 inch plinking targets better than 95% of the time is a range that is to far for air gun hunting.

So practice is very important regardless of what kind of air rifle you chose, and learning the trigger will take a minimum of 50000 (fifty-thousand) pulls, not as many as it sounds, though could be very very expensive in pellets ($500 US at 1 cent per pellet). This is why I like air guns that can safely be dry fired.

AS TO THE CHOICE OF PELLETS:
Never use light weight pellets, power is more important than speed. While heavier pellets may fly slower, they will carry more energy to the target, and it is the energy at the target that makes the difference when hunting. A light weight alloy pellet will only have about 25% of its energy left at 20 yards, while a normal weight pellet would have about 60% of its energy and a super heavy weight will have better than 80% of its energy left at the same 20 yards. The muzzle energy has to do with BOTH the weight of the pellet and the speed taken together.

Often times with pneumatic air guns, like the multi pump guns, a heavier pellet will have more energy as it leaves the barrel than a lighter pellet. This is because the heavier pellet being a bit slower has more time for the expanding air to work on it and transfer energy into it before it leaves the barrel.

No matter what weight range of pellet you chose, make sure it is accurate enough in your air gun. Two air guns of the exact same model could potentially like completely different pellets.

Thankfully all of mine seem to like the same lower cost pellets.

Also I personally will not hunt with pellets weighing less than 9 grains in .177 caliber, or less than 18 grains in .22 caliber. That is my preference, as I like getting the power downrange to the prey, and maintaining better accuracy.
 

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I've done pretty good with the Crosman air gun line. As a kid, using lead pellets, we were able to take squirrels and the occasional rabbit.

My grandma would cook them, while my grandpa would tell us we shouldn't be shooting them, while winking his eye. We weren't very well off, so the extra meat was much appreciated.

When I was out on my own as a young man, I was out of work as were a couple buddy's. We would stalk the local cemetery for rabbit and pheasent. Even as a .177, the lead pellets worked quite well.

The local cop caught us hunting the cemetery, because a lady visiting the cemetery ratted us out. He knew us, and he knew we were getting by, he just asked us not to hunt when people were visiting the cemetery.

Air rifles will bag game, you just have to understand your weapons limitations to capitalize on it.
 

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The 1377 is a real sleeper of a deal. I doubt you will ever find a better deal on the market for a airgun that is as accurate out of the box as the 1377. At only $50.00-$60.00 they make great gifts if you can"t think of anything else.
What flavor of pellets are you using in your guns, you mentioned 9gr. what brand/style ?
 

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You guys realize that the 1377 is like the 10-22 of air guns. The after market parts to increase it's effectiveness are abound. I have been working on one for several years now. I have replaced the "rickity" parts (trigger, breach, bolt, etc,) with after market stuff. Click here, 1377 custom parts and enjoy.:thumb:

Al
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The 1377 is a real sleeper of a deal. I doubt you will ever find a better deal on the market for a airgun that is as accurate out of the box as the 1377. At only $50.00-$60.00 they make great gifts if you can"t think of anything else.
What flavor of pellets are you using in your guns, you mentioned 9gr. what brand/style ?
The inexpensive Winchester Round Nose 9.8 grain pellets are my primary. I also sometimes use H&N Sniper Megnum 15 grain pellets. These are for .177 caliber.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
You guys realize that the 1377 is like the 10-22 of air guns. The after market parts to increase it's effectiveness are abound. I have been working on one for several years now. I have replaced the "rickity" parts (trigger, breach, bolt, etc,) with after market stuff. Click here, 1377 custom parts and enjoy.:thumb:

Al
Yes indeed, though I like mine to stay looking stock on the outside.

I do polish the trigger/sear/hammer contact areas for a smoother pull, I install a lighter trigger spring, and I stuff the piston and shim the pump cup seal (a little better power).

For info on the stuffed piston take a look at:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/2756...drill+rod-+Stuffing+the+stock+1377+piston+rod

For shimming the pump cup seal see:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/2756...s+of+the+Stuffed+Piston+Revealed+(Surprising)

On shimming the pump cup seal, the numbers he shows are low though that is at 7000 feet above sea level, so thin air, and with 8.44 grain pellets. As long as you are below 4000 feet you should get around 600FPS on 10 pumps with a standard weight 7.9 grain pellet after stuffing the piston and shimming the pump cup, a bit more with a newer model 1377 (my new one gets 605FPS with 7.9 grain CPHP testers out of the box stock form, at 2000 feet above sea level).
 

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If you dry fire your air rifle, you are going to ruin it. If you read the instructions, they specifically tell you not to. If you have a spring loaded rifle, then it's no problem. As mentioned before, pellets are so cheap, why would you even consider dry firing? Hell, you can even make your own pellets. Wheel weights are perfectd for this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If you dry fire your air rifle, you are going to ruin it. If you read the instructions, they specifically tell you not to. If you have a spring loaded rifle, then it's no problem. As mentioned before, pellets are so cheap, why would you even consider dry firing? Hell, you can even make your own pellets. Wheel weights are perfectd for this.
ONLY FOR SPRING PISTON GUNS.

As I have said many times this is why I do NOT like break barrel air guns, as well as other spring piston type air guns. Please take the time to read what I wrote, instead of making assumptions.

If you are using a multi pump type air gun you can safely dry fire it. Same is true of Single Pump pneumatics, PCP's and most CO2 air guns. These are all 100% safe to dry fire. In fact many of the target quality versions include instructions telling you to dry fire to learn the trigger.

The reason that you CAN NOT dry fire a spring piston air gun is that there is nothing to slow down the piston if you dry fire it, and you will hammer the piston doing a lot of damage. This is also why you can NOT use a super light weight alloy pellet in break barrels and other spring piston guns (so NO SSP pellets), though must use at least a mid weight lead pellet.

If you want to have a spring piston (including break barrel) type air gun then be prepared to fire over 50000 shots ($500 worth) to learn the trigger, as you can NOT dry fire them.

If you would rather not either buy an extra 50000 pellets, or cast an extra 50000 pellets for every new air gun, then get something that IS SAFE to dry fire, like a pump pneumatic.
 
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