Author Topic: Blerk's Progress  (Read 35005 times)

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Offline IceBlerk

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #590 on: January 30, 2018, 09:02:30 AM »
Yes, Baggy, I had heard some stories about the Brocock aftersales service being less than impressive too. But the reviews of the Bantam and the high shot count (and the bargain price I got it for) swung me round.

If the weather wasn't as bad and I weren't enjoying my Hatsan as much I'd be very annoyed at this point. BUT ... the weather has been putting the mockers on my opportunities to get out and the Hat HAS been delivering the goods so I'm persevering. Also, the folks at Redbeck have been very polite when I've been chatting to them so it's difficult to get annoyed with them.

I will grit my teeth and struggle through.

Having said that, when I finish this post I'm going to email Brocock and find out what's going on (Brocock won't accept telephone calls from non-dealers so email is the only route).

Anyway, Mrs. Blerk pulled an extra shIft on Saturday so my plan was to go out to the Unicorn Farm to see if I could get any tree rats or spots any rabbit activity. Unfortunately that pesky weather I've mentioned was putting out too much wind so I went to the range instead.

I took my mate's BSA Improved Model D with me. When I whipped it out (oo-er!) it got a fair bit of attention.

As a manly man I didn't have any .177 pellets so I cadged a few and loaded it up.

Cocking the BSA was a challenge at first until i realised how I could tell that the spring was engaged and actually firing the thing was weird; the trigger is very, VERY heavy AND I felt a little unclean with it being .177.

A few of us shot it. I don't think anyone managed to hit the target we were aiming for but the pellets did reach the back wall which was 45 yards away.

I put it over my chrono.

Brace yourselves .................

5 ftlbs!

Yes, you read that right, FIVE.

As far as I know this rifle has had no tuning or servicing since it was bought and yet the 107 year old bugger WORKS and produces 5 ftlbs.

I'm no expert in air rifles or antiques but if I reach 105 years of age and I'm still fully functional AND I've got 5ftlbs of power I'll be a happy man.

So then I washed my hands and moved back to my .22 Hatsan.

Ahhh ............ that's better.

After a little plinking an checking my zero I decided to worth through some ten shot groups.

Here's the target card :



First point to make is that the shot that has clipped the edge of the top right target is from the BSA.

Second point : the card was at 25 yards.

Third point : Mrs. Blerk went shopping at the weekend so I didn't have enough money in my wallet to be able to put a coin next to the fifth group!!!!

So, I started at the top left target.

I'd just filled the rifle so I think we can make allowances for the first group as the power settled to the optimum level. I've noticed that, with the Hat, I have to shoot 10-15 pellets after a 200bar fill before it settles.

The second group (left, middle target) was a little better (but not much) and I tweaked the zero slightly before shooting the third group (bottom left target).

I'm very proud of the three groups from this point but that one on the bottom left made me smile. I often worry that I might "over think" my shooting and I made real efforts to find the right level of focus on my breathing, crosshairs, trigger technique, parallax, eye relief, etc. etc. etc. I think the results were worth the effort.

I now need to transfer these thought processes to "the field" AND take into account windage and remove the "heat of the moment" when one has a kill on the end of the gun.

Thinking of the differences (apart from wind) between indoor range shooting and outdoor hunting I came up with the following (What, Blerk? You're going to do one of damn lists again? Good grief!) :
  • Shooting from a bench is comfortable
  • The rifle is rock steady when shooting off a bench
  • The targets don't move when shooting at the range (mostly true unless one falls over!)
  • The pressure when hunting is all "self-inflicted"
  • Using night vision is a game-changer when it comes to range estimation
  • Shooting at the range is all on one level

And I'm sure there'll be more differences that I haven't thought of yet.

I'm thinking that I need to split my time at the range into two "disciplines"; target shooting and hunting practice.

Target practice would incorporate practicing my consistency and technique to get the tightest possible groups and hunting practice would involve shooting from different positions both free-standing and off my monopod/stick.

I've put my name down for membership of my local field target club (thinking that target shooting outdoors might be a better simulation of hunting) but space are VERY limited so that might not come off.

Next time I'm out at the Unicorn Farm I may set up some targets and make a small outdoor range for practice/warm-up purposes and see how that goes.

If anyone else can offer any advice on how to translate indoor range skills to the field I'd be glad to hear it.
..........so I packed up and went to the pub.

Offline Gambo

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #591 on: January 30, 2018, 08:23:42 PM »
Three quid on that target card Blerk........almost enough for a pint!! ;)


remove the "heat of the moment" when one has a kill on the end of the gun.

Tiz widely referred to as 'Buck Fever'........the jitters/excitement/nervousness a hunter gets when an opportunity to take live quarry presents itself. Target shooters don't get it....well, coz targets don't move, are always there...unlike wild critters.

If anyone else can offer any advice on how to translate indoor range skills to the field I'd be glad to hear it.

When at the range, try to get the 'mechanics' of shooting to be second nature....stuff that you would do whether shooting both targets or quarry. Things that you've already mentioned, stance, hold, breathing, trigger control, eye alignment etc etc. Once those things are second nature, there'll be less to think about when out in the field.........which will then allow you to focus on skills needed for hunting. Stuff like range estimation, taking note of which way the wind/your scent is blowing, concealing yourself in the shadows or by keeping below the skyline, moving quietly and stealthily to go unnoticed by your quarry. Those type of things can't be learned/practised or replicated on a shooting range.........they can only be mastered by learning from the mistakes you WILL make out in the field. Identifying and rectifying those mistakes can only come from experience....and the more experience you get, the less mistakes you'll make. Funny that innit?


Anyone else got anything to add please? ???

Offline IceBlerk

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #592 on: February 01, 2018, 12:02:17 PM »
I've had word that my Bantam has been sent back to Redbeck and it should be with them tomorrow.

If all is good I may go to pick it up on Saturday.
..........so I packed up and went to the pub.

Offline Gambo

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #593 on: February 01, 2018, 08:09:38 PM »
Good news Blerky.

Fingers crossed the accuracy issues have been sorted. ;)

Offline IceBlerk

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #594 on: February 05, 2018, 11:14:51 AM »
The Bantam is back!

Sort of ................

I spoke to Alex at Redbeck on Friday evening.

"We have your Bantam back from Brocock," he says.

"Great!" says I.

"But we're still not happy about it," he says.

"Ah.........." I said. At this point I was about to kick my "Plan B" into action. This was to combine polite disappointment with a demand for a refund.

"But we've got another two Bantams from them in the same delivery and we're going to test those to see what they're like. If they're OK you can have one of those." says Alex.

"OK," I said. Bear in mind that I like the specification of the Bantam and the feel of the gun, the only issue has been consistent accuracy.

So, early Saturday afternoon, I trotted up the road to Redbeck. There's my stock with a new "gun" in it.

Alex said he'd tested it and was happy with its performance but I was welcome to try it myself.

Using JSB Heavies and the Hawke scope that they'd fitted to it I went to their range and put 30-40 pellets through it both with and without MY moderator and their stumpy moderator (which they were willing to swap for my Weihrauch moderator if I wanted). The groups were great. Sooooooo much better than the previous gun. And, if anything, it was better with my Weihrauch mod than the stumpy thing (but that could have just been my shooting).

So I left Redbeck with a feeling of satisfaction. Let's hope that the whole saga is behind us all.

I think I should say a little about the service I have received from Redbeck and Brocock.

Negatives:
  • The gun shouldn't have been sold if it was that bad.
  • Brocock's communication has been "blunt" and thin on the ground throughout the whole story.
  • Brocock's test result are very, VERY dubious. Even if the test sheets were genuine it's no good being able to get consistency when the gun is clamped to a bench and no moderator is attached if the real world demands that it is shouldered and a mod is used.
  • Redbeck's communication was, initially, thin on the ground.

Positives:
  • Every one of Redbeck's employees has ALWAYS been polite.
  • Redbeck unilterally took the decision NOT to accept my rifle back from Brocock after they'd tested it and found it wanting. I appreciate this action.
  • Redbeck's communication improved as time went on and I believe that their professed frustration with Brocock was genuine.
  • Redbeck's ultimate solution to the problem (effectively a new gun) and their offer to swap my moderator for one they had used in testing was quite satisfactory. Some may say it's the least they could do but, still, it brought what could have been an unpleasant saga to an end.

So ....... Thanks to Anthony, Becky and Alex at Redbeck Shooting Supplies.

Would I buy a Brocock again? Dunno.

Would I use Redbeck again? Yes.
..........so I packed up and went to the pub.

Offline Gambo

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #595 on: February 05, 2018, 02:36:21 PM »
Great to hear it's sorted for ya Blerky. 8)


I'm a great believer that if You're courteous, it's more likely to be treated well........go steaming in with an attitude right from the off and it's likely no-one will want to bend to make you happy. Politeness goes a long way, IMHO.

Offline seagate

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #596 on: February 05, 2018, 09:47:58 PM »
''Politeness goes a long way, IMHO.''  seconded.

I've never had anything other than great service from Redbeck .
I plink , therefore I am.

Offline IceBlerk

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #597 on: February 12, 2018, 12:38:11 PM »
I got a shooting pass from Mrs. Blerk on Saturday. She was off to a friend's "baby shower" (which sounded a lot like a dangerous cocktail of prosecco, hormones and brooding) so I went to the range to do some "laboratory condition" tests of my Bantam.

Upon arrival I filled her up to 200bar and checked my zero with my Weihrauch moderator fitted.

Then it was on to the targets. Here's the first :





The left-hand column of targets are shot using JSBs, the right-hand column using AAFs.

The top and bottom rows were shot with the moderator fitted, the middle row with it removed.

I shot each 10 shot group working from top-left to bottom-right (i.e. alternating between the JSBs and AAFs) and at a distance of 25 yards.

Those are 2 coins on the right-hand targets (Mrs. Blerk had left me some pocket money this week!).

I did no zeroing once I'd started the card.

Observations (feel free to make your own) :
  • The gun appears to prefer the JSBs over the AAFs.
  • Adding/removing the moderator appears to affect zero but NOT grouping.
  • 2 coin sized groups at 25yards are good enough for me for hunting. 20p coin sized groups are even better!
  • My shooting has plenty of room for improvement and I'm pretty sure the stray JSB pellet on the bottom-left target was my fault.

Then I had a bit of a plink.

If you want to see footage of me taking three of the 4th Plaster of Paris Battalion out you can find it here. There would have been more of that (and at better quality) but I left my memory card in the car and the "Action Camera's" internal memory filled up in less than a minute. (Yes, I COULD have gone back to the car for the memory card but the stairs to the range are a killer and I couldn't be arsed.)

Then I refilled the gun, plinked a little more and then shot two 10 shot strings through my chrono.

JSB (15.89gr) results:
Ft/sec : Min. 528, Max. 541 , Avg. 535
Ftlbs   : Min. 9.9 , Max. 10.4, Avg. 10.17

AAF (16gr) results:
Some pillock didn't record the results so I can't provide these! Grrrrr ........... I'll have to do them again.

I'm a little surprised by the power. I thought it would be higher. I'm going to shoot through half the bottle and then test it again. Perhaps it was just on the beginning of the "power curve" when I tested it.

And so, with a little air out of the gun I decided to shoot some more targets.

This time I shot 3 groups of 10 JSBs from top-left to bottom-left followed by 3 groups of 10 AAFs from top-right to bottom-right. All with the moderator in place.

Here are the results:





1 coins on the left, 2 coins on the right.

Observations (again, jump in and make your own if you want) :
  • The grouping seems a smidge tighter which could be because I was settling into it more or because the pressure was better than my first card.
  • The first JSB group (top-left) is a cracker.

Summary:
  • I believe that the Bantam I have now is performing the way it should (WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYY better than the Bantam I had originally) and the use of a moderator is NOT affecting performance.
  • Given the performance differences between the two pellets I had at hand I'm very keen to try more to see if I can find even more gains.
..........so I packed up and went to the pub.

Offline airgunnut

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #598 on: February 12, 2018, 01:28:39 PM »
Blerk, you have way too much money, the cash you have on the bottom card is about the same as my weekly food shopping budget! im on ESA and after ive payed all the bills i have about 15 for food for me and the dog per fortnight :(
"Men occasionally stumble on the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened"
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Offline IceBlerk

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Re: Blerk's Progress
« Reply #599 on: February 12, 2018, 01:34:35 PM »
Blerk, you have way too much money.........................

If only that were troo! The combination of too many kids and a fun-loving wife depletes the coffers incredibly quickly.

(And I've probably spent more on air guns and associated paraphernalia than I should have done too!)
..........so I packed up and went to the pub.