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New PCP air rifle for rats and chickens....

 
pollinator
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Got a new Benjamin Marauder that comes without a pre-mounted sight. Some issues before purchasing a sight:

1) My dominant (right) eye has developed blurred central vision that I'm getting checked soon. But I have determined that I can shoot left if I need to. With a scope and magnification, I may still be able to use my right eye, but only in bright light.

2) Much of the shooting will be done indoors at a range of ~15 - 50 ft. This will be done often in rather poor light. Sometimes rats, sometimes roosters.

3) I'm new to laser and red dot sights, but also hear that there can be combinations with scopes for flexible uses. Many say they like the red dot sights over scopes for quick work in tighter areas.

Opinions on this? If something combined the red dot sighting with rapid magnification of the target, that might allow me to still shoot from my dominant eye.
(The air rifle is a .177 pellet gun with a rotating magazine and bolt action between rounds.)

Thanks.
 
Posts: 293
Location: Carbon Hill, AL
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I have an iscope mount for teaching my son to shoot. It attaches to a scope and you mount your iPhone to the scope. You're able to see using you phones view screen 2x3.5or so I guess.

But that's all dependent on

1. You having an iPhone or whatnot.
2. Your willingness to go over the top to shoot rats.
 
Posts: 33
Location: Dubuque, ia
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I would get a EOTech red dot.
 
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You are correct that telescopic sights are pretty much useless at close range on a moving target.

Red dot sights can be better, but I have found that they are very sensitive to the range of the target since they sit so much higher than the bore. This is a parallax problem.

This means that a red dot sight might shoot 1 1/2" low at 8', and dead on at 30 feet. For a small target, that can make a difference.


It is also worthwhile to say this out loud: it is unbelievably difficult to hit a moving target the size of a rat or a chicken with any sight.

It can be done, but it take a tremendous amount of practice.


So realistically, a scope at 40' with a stealthy shot is going to be far more productive than a closer shot at a moving target with any sight.

.177 pellets are going to be a little marginal to kill a rat or a chicken. It will take good shot placement to get the job done reliably and not just wound them and have them run off.


hth,

troy
 
John Weiland
pollinator
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Thanks for your comments on this issue. As it was Friday and I had some time, I brought the rifle into the local gun shop and after some discussion, had a 4 X 32 Gammo scope mounted on it to take home and try: http://www.pyramydair.com/product-all-reviews/a/Gamo_Varmint_Hunter_Kit_4x32_Rifle_Scope_Laser_Flashlight/528

But my concerns while it was being mounted were born out.....that single, continuous support rail (seen in the weblink photo) that holds the scope mounts goes right across the gap where the magazine is supposed to fit. (see mag positioning here: http://www.topairgun.com/files/2019619/uploaded/Benjamin_Marauder-air-rifle_BJ-BP1763_air-rifle_zm6.jpg ) So I will be returning it for something more compatible. As an aside the salesman made a comment about red dot not being a good choice due to the "double recoil" of an air gun??? Something about it would need to be re-adjusted frequently??? I don't know enough about red dot sights nor about the difference in recoil between air and standard firearms.

Any additional comments would be welcomed as I will be returning this scope for something else which I'm still open to suggestions on.
 
Jay Kepple
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Location: Dubuque, ia
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That is why you need a tough red dot like a EOTech.
 
Troy Rhodes
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Many "air guns" use a big spring to make the air pressure to push the projectile down the barrel. This is a relatively large mass that moves suddenly and powerfully. It causes "recoil" in the exact opposite direction that a true firearm experiences.

Most scopes are designed to withstand "normal" recoil, like in a firearm. They are -not- designed to resist this "reverse recoil" from a powerful spring gun. That's the difference between a scope designed for air guns, and a scope designed for firearms. Even relatively expensive and robust scope for firearms can be damaged in just a short time if used on a spring gun. They are just not designed for it.


Of course, what your sales person neglected to mention is that your pre-charged pneumatic gun experiences virtually none of this "reverse recoil" because it doesn't use a big powerful spring AT ALL.

So, you can use anything you want, with no fear of it being damaged by "reverse recoil".


Get what you want and what suits your needs.


troy


 
gardener
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Many red dots have minimal magnification and a secondary magnifier is mounted for that magnification.
The beauty of the red dot is rapid sight picture aquisition with your blurred dominant eye issue it could make learning non-dominant sight picture and shot placement far easier. The Maurader doesn't have that heavy spring recoil associated with other air rifles I have used, so I don't necessarily agree with the salesman. Some reticle scopes do have problems with the heavy recoil associated with spring air rifles.
I've used red dots on large caliber firearms with no issue and no need to re-zero. The Eotec is an excellent sight but many of the, television style screen, are robust enough to handle the recoil associated with your Maurader.
Have you considered just a laser for your shooting? If your shots are all going to be taken in that 30-50 range a laser would help with that central blur you are coping with and again also help with non-dominant learning that you might deal with if the sight issue is not correctable. For daylight shooting consider looking at green lasers there is a considerable difference in projection quality over red. But again if your are working in that relative short range a red would probably be just fine. A good quality laser will probably be less expensive than an Eotec.
With the expense of and current unavailability of .22 long rifle ammo I have the Maurader in .22 caliber and find that it is an accurate and quiet alternative for target shooting and the pellet speed approaches that of the .22 long. We haven't had any snow this year so I'm not sure how it will compare to my biathlon rifle in the cold but it has been a fun gun to plink with. The trigger is actually pretty crisp and I haven't fiddled with it because it was so good out of the box.
 
Jay Kepple
Posts: 33
Location: Dubuque, ia
 
John Weiland
pollinator
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Thanks all for excellent, in"sight"ful (no pun intended), and helpful replies. Based on your experienced comments and the following review ( http://www.gunnoob.com/GeneralGuides/IntrotoRedDotSights.aspx ), I'm leaning at the moment toward one of the holographic (open-type?) red dot sights of higher quality. They may cost a bit, but for my ailing eyes and specific needs, it could always be changed over to a different fire-arm if needed. And if for some reason I really end up not liking it, many good standard scopes can still be had with or without laser attachments for a lower price. I also like the reduced bulk of this type of red dot sight, even if nothing compares to standard, old fashion open sights for lack of extra hardware. Thanks again!......this continues to be a great education.
 
John Weiland
pollinator
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One last bit of confusion. I'm looking at the EOTech 512 for my new Benjamin Marauder: http://www.eotechinc.com/holographic-weapon-sights/model-512

The salesman that I'm working with at a store that is a dealer for EOTech mentioned something about a "rimfire version" of the sight that might not need an adapter to mount on that Marauder. The only thing I see on EOTech's website is the XPS2-RF which sits on a traditional dovetail rail (see http://www.eotechinc.com/holographic-weapon-sights/model-xps2-rf-rimfire-sight ). Jay Kepple if you read this, is this why you posted the link to the dovetail-to-weaver adapter? I did not see a rimfire version of the 512.....my interest in the 512 is the tradeoff between cost/performance, the fact that it uses AA batteries, and also the idea that I could upgrade to the laser battery cap down the road if I desired to do so. So I'm assuming that if I really want the 512, that I would need the adapter between the gun rail and the sight, yes? Is this a bad idea in terms of how high the sight will be sitting? Also, for those with experience with the Marauder, the salesman was concerned that such a sight might still need to straddle the breech area where the magazine is positioned....seems to me that the whole assembly would sit forward (barrel side) of the breech (see stock photo here: http://www.archerairguns.com/v/vspfiles/photos/MarauderLeftBoltService-2.jpg ). In the end, if those here feel it would be better to keep it simple with the XPS2-RF, I might go that way.

Your advice would be appreciated.....Thanks!
 
John Weiland
pollinator
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Decided to finish off the entries on this project. After talking to the salesman at the local gunshop, and seeing that he had an EOTech XPS2-RF on hand for $250.00, I decided go with this sight. Removing the previous scope that I will be returning was a snap, as was installation of the holographic sight. The first paired photos below show how the scope was mounted and how it would have interfered with the magazine clip made for the airgun. The EOTech sight fits nicely on the barrel-side dovetail rail....no adapters were needed with this sight. The second pair of photos shows the positioning of this sight. I'm eager to get the sight adjusted for our needs. With the sight at least in place, I pressurized the gun to 2000 psi, loaded the magazine, and just plinked a few rounds from the deck at a tin can in the yard. (It's around zero F. or less right now and windy and not too nice to be out.) At least no problem hitting the can at ~60 ft with the assembly right out of the box. It will be good to put it through its initial paces. As a side note: My wife is keen to try it, but she's older and having some pain in the shoulders.....she's concerned about the weight, so that might be something to consider if shopping for a general household airgun.

Thanks again for all advice here.....
Marauder1-2.JPG
[Thumbnail for Marauder1-2.JPG]
Marauder3-4.JPG
[Thumbnail for Marauder3-4.JPG]
 
Jay Kepple
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Location: Dubuque, ia
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Hey! that looks really nice and seems like a good price!
 
John Weiland
pollinator
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One more quick update to this thread.

I've been pleased with the purchase of a Benji Marauder PCP air rifle for knocking down our roosters. The EOTech red-dot sight has been a great addition to that rifle. On my first time with it, 3 shots dropped 3 roosters quickly and this with the .177 caliber.

So impressed with that gun, but a bit surprised at its weight, I decided to add its spry nephew to the family. So I got the pistol/carbine version in a .22 caliber (the only caliber available for that model) sporting a synthetic, light-weight stock. I transferred the EOTech red dot sight to that unit and have now sighted it in properly on its new home; will be getting a standard scope for the Marauder rifle with the wood stock and longer barrel. The lighter weight and shorter length of the carbine will be perfect for my wife and we can used the same hand-pump from Benjamin for pressurizing both airguns. So far all-in-all, an impressive technology and good complement to standard firearms. Photos below.....
MarauderSet1.jpg
[Thumbnail for MarauderSet1.jpg]
MarauderSet2.jpg
[Thumbnail for MarauderSet2.jpg]
 
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