Welcome to the second of our weekly list of airgun top tips running throughout July!
This week, Mike Morton is sharing 29-20 of our key tips month, with tricks and techniques to help raise your game and be top of the ‘hit’ parade when you release your next shot.
29. Use The Right Rifle
If you have a choice of rifles, or are buying your first airgun, use the right one for the job in hand. Look at a couple of shooting scenarios – HFT guns benefit from a deep forend or hamster, while a short hunting rifle is ideal for shooting from a hide, or around farm buildings. It can be longer and heavier if you’re going prone with a bipod.
28. Keep It Clean
Cleanliness may or may not be next to godliness, but it’s definitely next to reliability.
Airguns are precision instruments, and it only takes a bit of grit to ruin your day if it gets into the bore, breech or magazine. Pay attention to bolts, sidelevers and linkages too.
27. Where To Aim
Learn your holdover and holdunder points. Make up a chart showing fall of shot at various distances, and the corrections you need to make to compensate for this. This is a topic we’ll be exploring in much greater detail in a future issue.
26. Wear Suitable Clothing
You don’t always have to wear dedicated shooting clothing – a pair of nicely worn-in jeans can be brilliant for the indoor range or outside on a dry day when plinking.
But whatever you choose to wear has to be comfortable, while offering full range of movement for all your intended shooting stances.
25. Discard Dropped Pellets
If you happen to drop a pellet – and it doesn’t matter whether it’s in the field or at the range – it’s picked up muck. Even if it looks clean, it’s not worth the risk of fouling your bore with grit. Just dispose of the pellet and shoot a fresh one instead.
24. Err Against Error
Use your parallax control effectively. Unless competition rules to the contrary apply, adjust parallax for the target you intend to shoot at. When the image snaps into focus, parallax error will have been eliminated.
Another way to get rid of parallax error is to ensure your shooting eye is concentric to the ocular lens – being off by even a small amount can induce parallax error.
23. Which Pellet?
With the exception of some target competitions, where flatheaded ‘wadcutter’ pellets must be used, airgun shooters can choose from an array of designs including hollowpoint, pointed and ballistic tip.
But most of us here at Airgun Shooter prefer the classic domehead: it’s not just a good all-rounder, it excels in almost every way.
22. Sealed, Not Peeled
Keep a new tin of pellets sealed until you’re ready to use them. It’s tempting to open a new tin to take a quick peek inside, but you’ll be letting in fresh air, and that can lead to oxidation.
If you intend to store your pellets in the original tin, it can be a good idea to reapply the seal, especially if the lid is a simple push-on type, which is liable to fall off.
21. To Lube Or Not?
Lead will oxidise when exposed to the atmosphere, forming a natural protective patina. This layer of insoluble lead salts gives lead its typical dull grey appearance.
When lead comes into contact with moisture, like rain or condensation, powdery white deposits can form, which will harm accuracy. A thin layer of pellet lube will protect both the pellets in the tin and the lead that gets deposited down the bore when they are fired.
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