Author Topic: Pellet Guns?  (Read 4746 times)

Ben

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Pellet Guns?
« on: October 18, 2021, 12:59:36 PM »
Any of you guys have pellet guns? I'm wanting to get one to stop a gopher invasion in the backyard*. I would use my .22, but the direction is too iffy for potential ricochets.

I haven't had one since I was a kid and don't know what to look for in modern air guns. I want something better than my old Crossman 760, but I'm seeing some of these dang things go for as much as $600! For this under 25 yards plinking from the porch rocking chair, I was thinking no more than $100. Is that possible for something that will kill gopher sized varmints? I think I've got an old .22 scope sitting around to use for my old eyes, though I don't know mounting options on modern air rifles. I see some of them come with scope included. Maybe that's easier?

*Obviously I'm using traps as my main plan of attack. This is just something fun to keep next to me if I'm hanging out on the porch and happen to see one pushing dirt up.
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Nick1911

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2021, 01:02:46 PM »
I'll be following this topic too.  From what I've heard, cheap pellet guns were just a mess - all over the place accuracy wise.  I'm not sure how true that is.

When I was a kid, we settled on super colibri 22 rounds for that purpose.

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cordex

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2021, 01:11:42 PM »
I've been thinking about one as well.  I'm interested to see what you figure out.

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2021, 01:19:45 PM »
I just went over and checked the pellet gun I use for pigeon control at the shop.  It's a Gamo Big Cat 1200. https://www.sportsmansguide.com/product/index/gamo-big-cat-1200-air-rifle-break-barrel-177-caliber-4x32mm-scope-1-round-refurbished?a=2099038

It works well enough on pigeon, even the big dock fed ones we get here.  I can make 25-30 yd shots with it, but you'll need to learn holds for that far. (or zero there).  Mine will drop 2 in or so in 25 yds.  It also rarely gives a clean one shot kill, even though I have enough power for to go through a some of the birds.  I think, unless you hit the brain, a DRT shot is asking a lot for a .177 pellet.

I found while on pigeon duty that it was vitally important to get the expensive, pointed "hunting" pellets.  The regular flat nosed ones won't penetrate feathers. (dunno about gopher fur.)  If your gophers are bigger than a big pigeon, or medium seagull, I don't think an airgun is what you are looking for.

It looks like Gamo renamed it in the decade or so I've had it.  This seems to be the current version: https://www.gamousa.com/product/varmint-177-cablier-break-barrel-air-rifle/
« Last Edit: October 18, 2021, 02:40:00 PM by dogmush »

BobR

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2021, 01:21:35 PM »
Here is my question of the day and then I will quit.

Why a pellet gun? You still have to worry about ricochets don't you?

When I did collared dove control at a friend's wheat farm in WA I would use a bolt action 22 and either shorts or CCI Quiet from about 35yds away to pop their little heads off. The CCI Quiet are only moving around 700fps, slower than most pellet guns.

I used a Marlin bolt with a Cabelas rimfire scope on it. It was one of the most fun and useful guns I have. When doing gopher control for a friend near Calgary or in MT and WA I would use a 17HMR, Although fast with only a 17gr bullet moving as fast as it does I think the potential for ricochet may be lessened by the bullet fragmenting if it hits something. That is just a guess as I can't recall ever getting a ricochet wit the 17HMR.

bob

HankB

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2021, 01:23:41 PM »
Buy a cheap pellet gun and you'll probably be looking for something better in a year or so.

I have an RWS M48 .177 pellet gun that's going on 30 years old now. Works well, breaks 1100 fps with light pellets, and gives me dime sized groups at 40 yards with RWS "Superdome" pellets. Enough power to kill rabbits and armadillos, so its overkill for gophers. It's a side lever gun with a fixed barrel rather than a "break barrel" gun so that helps accuracy. However, its more expensive than what you're looking for - and that's without the 'scope.

Depending on where you live and local laws, .22 Colibri or Super Colibri ammo (if you can find it) might be worth trying out of a .22 rifle.
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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2021, 01:26:59 PM »
Single shot .410
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Ben

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2021, 01:32:23 PM »
Here is my question of the day and then I will quit.

Why a pellet gun? You still have to worry about ricochets don't you?

Yeah but, and I may be way off, not nearly what you have to worry about vs a .22, or no? I have a neighbor's house directly in the line of fire 1/4 mile away. I know a .22 can make that distance, but didn't think even a 1000fps pellet would be an issue at that distance. Obviously there could be close range ricochets, but if I break a window on my house, that's all on me.  =)
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tokugawa

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2021, 01:34:37 PM »
I have a Beeman R-9 in .20 cal. With a Hawke 4 power airgun scope. Very accurate, and powerful- even after I bent the barrel and straightened it on the press. At 35 yards, it will easily hit a tin can and punch through both sides. 

Note- a barrel break spring piston airgun is cocked by pulling down on the barrel- if it slips from your hand while doing so, it will snap back and bend the barrel and likely crack the stock at the wrist. I ended up wrapping the muzzle with skateboard tape.


There is a tendency to regard airguns as a toy, but some of them are very fine indeed, and sometimes they get used a lot more than firearms. A good one is it's own reward.

Ben

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2021, 01:35:56 PM »
Buy a cheap pellet gun and you'll probably be looking for something better in a year or so.

I have an RWS M48 .177 pellet gun that's going on 30 years old now.

Those are nice. I think that's the same one a friend has and I have handled it (I know it's an RWS, unsure of model). Real firearm quality. But a quick gazoogle indicates ~$450, which is way out of my price range for my uses.
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BobR

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2021, 01:38:20 PM »
Yeah but, and I may be way off, not nearly what you have to worry about vs a .22, or no? I have a neighbor's house directly in the line of fire 1/4 mile away. I know a .22 can make that distance, but didn't think even a 1000fps pellet would be an issue at that distance. Obviously there could be close range ricochets, but if I break a window on my house, that's all on me.  =)

I know pellets are very soft (or I think so) so that may help keep the ricochets down. But then again what do I know? It sounds like you need a shooting tower so you can take your shots into the ground to minimize the risk of ricochet. I have seen people with them when they are out predator hunting but mainly to get better visibility. An elevated shooting position would help you spot the little bastiges and then you could use whatever gun you wanted it seems.

bob

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2021, 02:11:13 PM »
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lee n. field

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #13 on: October 18, 2021, 02:44:59 PM »
Any of you guys have pellet guns? I'm wanting to get one to stop a gopher invasion in the backyard*. I would use my .22, but the direction is too iffy for potential ricochets.

I haven't had one since I was a kid and don't know what to look for in modern air guns. I want something better than my old Crossman 760, but I'm seeing some of these dang things go for as much as $600! For this under 25 yards plinking from the porch rocking chair, I was thinking no more than $100. Is that possible for something that will kill gopher sized varmints? I think I've got an old .22 scope sitting around to use for my old eyes, though I don't know mounting options on modern air rifles. I see some of them come with scope included. Maybe that's easier?

*Obviously I'm using traps as my main plan of attack. This is just something fun to keep next to me if I'm hanging out on the porch and happen to see one pushing dirt up.

$600?  Oh, my man, it's possible to spend way more on an air rifle.

For cheap, maybe Gamo.  Or maybe tart up a Crosman CO2 pistol.  "Da Man" donesn't care one whit if you put a shoulder stock on one of them.

if you were close by, I'd let you use my RWS 34.  I'm unlikely to get much use out of it.  Or the Daisy Avanti I picked up for cheap at a gun show.

--edit to add--

Just looked up the RWS 34 aka Diana 34 on airgundepot.  Amazing how high that is now.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2021, 04:16:51 PM by lee n. field »
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Ben

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #14 on: October 18, 2021, 02:55:31 PM »
Well, as I research more websites, all I can say is that it has been very eye opening regarding cost. I really had no idea on the prices.

https://www.airgundepot.com/
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Kingcreek

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #15 on: October 18, 2021, 03:21:48 PM »
You might find a .410 shotgun but hood luck finding a box of birdshot for it.
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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2021, 04:05:09 PM »
I picked up one of these back in the late Spring to assist with lagomorph control in the garden. I zeroed it at 35 yards and it did well enough.

https://gamousa.com/product/wildcat-whisper-22-caliber-break-barrel-air-rifle/
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MechAg94

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #17 on: October 18, 2021, 05:04:19 PM »
Here is my question of the day and then I will quit.

Why a pellet gun? You still have to worry about ricochets don't you?

When I did collared dove control at a friend's wheat farm in WA I would use a bolt action 22 and either shorts or CCI Quiet from about 35yds away to pop their little heads off. The CCI Quiet are only moving around 700fps, slower than most pellet guns.

I used a Marlin bolt with a Cabelas rimfire scope on it. It was one of the most fun and useful guns I have. When doing gopher control for a friend near Calgary or in MT and WA I would use a 17HMR, Although fast with only a 17gr bullet moving as fast as it does I think the potential for ricochet may be lessened by the bullet fragmenting if it hits something. That is just a guess as I can't recall ever getting a ricochet wit the 17HMR.

bob
IMO, a lot of people live in neighborhoods where a 22 rifle would be frowned on while an air rifle would not get that reaction no matter how powerful it was. 
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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2021, 05:35:18 PM »
Pellet gun?  Piker.

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2021, 06:37:34 PM »
IMO, a lot of people live in neighborhoods where a 22 rifle would be frowned on while an air rifle would not get that reaction no matter how powerful it was.

In suburbia absolutely. But Ben is removed from that particular malady. As long as the axe throwing hipsters don't take his land to grow hops he should be OK.

I shoot pigeons in the back yard from inside the house with a Red Ryder BB rifle, it probably makes as much noise as my .22 with CCI Quiet ammo. I would use the .22 but the wife just wants them gone, not dead.  =|

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #20 on: October 18, 2021, 06:45:38 PM »
I have this, although when I bought it, it came with a wood stock: https://www.crosman.com/product/benjamin-392s-22
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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2021, 06:52:16 PM »
A pellet gun is not a humane kill. I gave up on super colibris as contact range dispatch too. If a gun will stabilize them the 60gr aguila 22 hits like a hammer, is quiet and slow. Any shotgun with light shot would be a preference if I was worried about stuff leaving the yard. My groundhog gun was a 22 pistol, 9mm pistol or a dog. Yeah Steve, a dog. I mostly killed groundhogs to keep my dog from hurting himself. He killed them instantly, broke their necks but he tore himself up pretty good diving under my truck to get one.

The 60gr 22,usually needs a fast twist barrel but I found that marlin microgroove does good with it. Or modern problems require modern solutions there can’t be a ricochet if there isn’t a bullet. 220 swift of a 40gr 223.
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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2021, 06:53:08 PM »
$600?  Oh, my man, it's possible to spend way more on an air rifle.

For cheap, maybe Gamo.  Or maybe tart up a Crosman CO2 pistol.  "Da Man" donesn't care one whit if you put a shoulder stock on one of them.

if you were close by, I'd let you use my RWS 34.  I'm unlikely to get much use out of it.  Or the Daisy Avanti I picked up for cheap at a gun show.

--edit to add--

Just looked up the RWS 34 aka Diana 34 on airgundepot.  Amazing how high that is now.

 :O  I think I paid $189 for my RWS 34, but that was probably 15 years ago.  It will easily kill rabbits and gophers, but it's usually not a fast kill like the same gun should be with .20 or .22 pellets.  Pellet selection is key to hunting with .177's, the wrong ones tend to punch straight through and not do enough damage.

Even tho' it's an air gun, it's pretty loud.  You won't need hearing protection, but the neighbors are going to hear it.  OTOH, they won't recognize the sound.
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Ben

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #23 on: October 18, 2021, 07:10:55 PM »
A pellet gun is not a humane kill. I gave up on super colibris as contact range dispatch too. If a gun will stabilize them the 60gr aguila 22 hits like a hammer, is quiet and slow. Any shotgun with light shot would be a preference if I was worried about stuff leaving the yard. My groundhog gun was a 22 pistol, 9mm pistol or a dog. Yeah Steve, a dog. I mostly killed groundhogs to keep my dog from hurting himself. He killed them instantly, broke their necks but he tore himself up pretty good diving under my truck to get one.

The 60gr 22,usually needs a fast twist barrel but I found that marlin microgroove does good with it. Or modern problems require modern solutions there can’t be a ricochet if there isn’t a bullet. 220 swift of a 40gr 223.

As Bob said, as far as general shooting, no worries out here (I hate the damn hop growers!). If this were killing them in the pastures I'd just use the .22 or the shotgun. As I said, my big worry is what's behind my target in this location. And I guess I can consider the shotgun for the backyard. The areas they are digging up are thankfully away from the lawn, in a 1/4 acre or so that I'm looking to turn into native grasses and plants. Right now it's mostly still weeds and dirt.

Steve kills rockchucks, no problem, but I am trying hard to give him an aversion to gophers, because my one neighbor up at my top pasture uses a combination of traps and poison, and he piles the dead gophers for the coyotes. I don't want Steve ingesting poison. I have a gopher lady for that top pasture, and she piles them up too (no poison) and Steve has gotten into those piles. I don't want him mixing up poison and non-poison piles. Really, I don't want himn eating gophers at all since he just barfs them up an hour later. Barney the barn cat usually helps a lot, bringing several per week to the door in Spring and Summer. Right now she doesn't seem to be catching as many and it shows from all the new mounds.

I'd still like to get a pellet gun anyway just because I don't have one, but I will give the shotgun serious consideration for the current issue.
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Jim147

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Re: Pellet Guns?
« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2021, 07:13:10 PM »
I'll look and see what I have. It is a .17/.22. I have never used the .17. It hits hard and is very quiet.
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