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Big Bore Airguns?

Discussion in 'Air Rifle & Pistol Discussion' started by BoringCruffler, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    First; let me say that I've always been a fan of what you can do with compressed air and a projectile. I think I was three when I got to shoot my dad's Benjamin pistol for the first time. I was given a .22 Crossman CO2 rifle when I was eight (and promptly did things I wasn't supposed to, and it spent the next four years in Dad's closet), and a Marksman target pistol when I was ten. From when I was 13, I still have my (twice rebuilt) 1377 Classic with the pistol grips and rifle stock. These and many more over the years have been great.

    About nine years ago, I very briefly met Dennis Quackenbush at a gunshow where he was showing his .30 caliber 'Outlaw'. There were pictures there of a feral hog that had been taken with the gun. At the time, $450 seemed a lot of money (to me) for an airgun, but the pictures just wouldn't leave my imagination.

    Ever since, I've been poring over the different big bore airguns. I've been so close to buying one of the Samyangs that I could taste it, but I'm just not convinced that the design is going to hold up over time.

    After years of either trying unsuccessfully, or missing the deadlines, I'm 'on the list' to get one of Mr. Quackenbush's guns. There are days where the pure strain of the wait seems like it is killing me. Other times, I'm not quite sure that I believe it.

    Does anyone local have experience shooting any of the big bores? Experience with the Samyang? Quackenbush? Have one I might meet up and play with?

    I look forward to your info.
     
  2. cyclesarge

    cyclesarge Eugene OR, DUH! We're ALL in the NORTHWEST Well-Known Member

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    I don't have any info but am also interested. I read somewhere that Lewis and Clark had a .50 caliber air gun with them on their expedition and have been interested ever since.
     
  3. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    That image might also have started my own big bore interest. When I was (much) younger, I saw the .50 cal airgun displayed at the Ft. Clatsop memorial, and was actually allowed to handle it once. I read the journals with interest and saw the added notations about how 'this rifle' was capable of up to 20 shots without recharging, and how it took a deer at 50 yards without spooking the rest of the herd.

    Even at 15 I could clearly see that the 'rifle' I was holding was smoothbore, and the ranger patiently explained that no one really knew what rifle L&C had taken with them.

    Fast forward to 2004, and read about the Girando rifle now in the Beeman collection New Page 1 . It is pretty certain that this is the exact rifle that L&C had with them. I've never seen one in person, but a member of this forum owns one, and I keep hoping that if I eat all my poridge, some day he'll let me see it up close.

    Until then, I keep looking for others excited by these things.
     
  4. jeffery_1965

    jeffery_1965 Vancouver, Wa New Member

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    What is your approximate delivery date? I would love to hear how you like your Quackenbush. Which model did you sign up for?

    Jeff
     
  5. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    I still don't have an expected date of delivery, but Mr. Quackenbush has listed on his site that he expects to have completed all deliveries this time around by late August.

    I ordered the 30-cal in 'standard grade' as I really do expect it to be a working gun. I don't have a charger yet, and haven't decided which one I want to use. Lewis and Clark had 57 men and a dog to put 2500 to 3000 pumps into their airgun... I'll probably have to do it myself, but I love the idea of an airgun, a pump, and a bullet mold. ...and the survivalists think their black powder guns make them self sufficient...
     
  6. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    Yep; its a saga. The boldfaced truth is laid out here for those interested (boring to the rest, I'm sure)

    So... I received confirmation that my rifle was done on Sept 16th. This is a full ten months after sending the original request. I'm not unhappy with that.

    I sent off the requisite $685 to cover the rifle, postage and insurance. After a couple of weeks more, I received the rifle--just before heading to deer camp.

    Wow! It looks great. The attention to the stock; the finish on the bolt, receiver, and charging handle... Truly a piece of art.

    I had to find a way to charge it, and I had to get some appropriate projectiles.

    I was planning to buy a hand pump from Pyramidair.com, and had prett much decided on the Air Force PCP pump. I had looked at it on their website many times since the confirmation that I was on Mr. Quackenbush's list, and it had always shown 'in stock'. You've got to know that with what seems to be my luck on this line that when I went to order one, they were out of stock with an unknown restock date...

    I went to the online chat session, and while their tech was available and friendly, he (first) could not help me make sure that the fittings on the pump would fit the DAQ rifle (they do) and second, could not assure me that the pump would be back in stock in time for me to take it to deer camp. I decided that I would take a chance on the fittings, but would only order when they showed stock.

    The following Monday, they showed stock again, so I ordered the $190 pump.

    The same day; I also ordered projectiles/pellets/bullets from Hunter's Supply as recommended by the DAQ site. I ordered one hundred each of three weights including the 79 grain, 118gr, and 171gr. Being somewhat impatient, I also picked up a hundred Speer 100gr jacketed hollow points at the local Warehouse Sports.

    The pump arrived one day after the bullets did. This was all of two days before I headed for deer camp.

    I couldn't wait. This rifle should have at least the power of a .30-30 with older shells. It should be as accurate as a Remington 722 in .308.

    I don't have the space in my home to feel safe with the 3200PSI that the DAQ rifle is rated at, but wanted to make it go 'bang'.

    At 30 feet (the length of my hallway into my utility room) I set up a couple of phone books and pumped the rifle to 1000 psi.

    Let me digress and note that I didn't have any sights on the rifle yet. It comes with Weaver style mounts screwed to the receiver, but no other sights, and I hadn't yet bought a scope or rings for it.

    The first shot was with the 118gr bullet, and while pretty far to the right of my 'best guess' aim, penetrated the phone book about 3/4 inch. I was excited. A few pumps to bring it back up to 1000psi and the 79gr bullet penetrated 1&1/4 inch almost in the bulseye. I packed up the gun, pump, and bullets to take into the woods with me.
     
  7. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    A quick note after re-reading my post:

    Yes, I know that it is not legal to hunt deer in Oregon with an air rifle (though it should be), and I had no intention of doing so. I just wanted to get the gun out to where I could safely charge it fully and test (read 'play') with it, and deer camp is a great place to show it off to family and friends.

    Ron
     
  8. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    Get a scope or some sights on that puppy and update us as to your progress please.
    I wanna see some pictures of groups!
    (a few pictures of dead critters wouldn't hurt either!)
     
  9. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    I keep hoping to have better info before posting again, but have a few min and thought I'd throw this in.

    I'm quite disappointed. I mounted up a 4X scope hours before heading out to hunting camp. A couple days later I had it out and was working on pumping it up.

    I started out with the 118gr solids, 3000psi at about 60 yards. 20-inch target on a down tree about ten feet in front of a berm that was twenty feet wide and six feet high.

    Couldn't find the first shot. Rechecked the pressure (down to 2600psi), chanbered a second while having a friend watch the target for me. He saw dirt fly about three feet left and well below the berm. Cranked the windage on the scope about forty clicks to the right, and tried another shot. Still way off the target.

    Pumped the gun back to 3000, and tried one of the Speers at about 25 yards. The jacketed bullet stuck in the chamber, and I had to tap it out with a cleaning rod. While doing that, I had a different view of the rifle, and could see that the scope was pointed well to the left of the barrel. I don't mean a little bit. I'm talking about the scope being off a good (bad) 7 or 8 degrees. I pulled the rings and looked closer at the bases. They are not in a straight line! The rear mount looks to be in line with the top of the receiver, but the front is 'rotated' around the receiver a bit.

    My options at this time: I can redrill the receiver and move the front mount back and around. I can make some shims, roatate the front scope ring and offset it that way. Or, I can send it back to DAQ.

    I've been meaning to try to reach Quackenbush about it, but have been really busy at work, so haven't made the time to call during business hours. Maybe this afternoon I'll write a letter and get it into the mail. Most of the rifle is very pleasing, but it is VERY disappointing that a $700 airgun can't be useful out of the box.
     
  10. HansC

    HansC Portland Member

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    Just found your thread. Sent my request to be put on the Quackenbush list a few days ago. Worried now, I requested the nicest grade in 458. When I think about it, I've only heard about his airguns through his website. Please post how this gets resolved. It seems like he really cares about the quality of his work. I hope this works out for you. They are nice looking guns. I really don't have any airgun experience, but these sure look a thousand times nicer than the Korean big bores, and the power is impressive. If you have good or bad impressions of your air pump, I'd be grateful if you'd post those, too.
     
  11. arjunki

    arjunki Beaverton Active Member

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    First off, congrats on your new purchase! Sounds like a dandy setup. Might I suggest, you may wanna give one of the hand pumps a try before you buy. I had one years back and it was a work out to say the least. With a setup like the one your looking at I would consider a carbon fiber tank or two and have them filled over at seven seas scuba in Vancouver. They are the only local shop I know of that fills to 4500psi. Cabelas started carrying Benjamin tanks reasonably priced. I bought one. Cabela's: Benjamin PCP High-Pressure Tanks You gonna hunt hogs with it? I've also been intrigued by the bigger bores for some time, Air has always been the issue with em though. They are simply put "Air Hogs" But as of recently I have really been impressed with what others have been saying about the FX Boss. Have you heard of that one? It's also a 30 cal. but that crazy Fredrick, the owner of FX has really spent some time designing this thing. I'm kinda waiting to see how well they hold up because if they do I will most likely have to get one. I mean, 78 ft/lbs, 9-shot magazine, 44 consistent shots launching JSB's Boss 46.3 grn. pellet at like 875 fps average. Oh, & it's even quiet. Whats not to like?
    So, can't wait to see your setup when it arrives. You are posting pics right? :thumbup:
     
  12. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    I never did get 'hold of Mr. Quackenbush--my fault, not his. I kept being so busy during his open phone hours that I missed the window day after day. When the itch to shoot it got too hard, I went to Dick's and bought a set of Weaver 'Windage adjustable' scope rings to put on the rifle. I ended up machining an additional 40 thousandths off of the one I put on the front in order to line the rings up with the receiver. With everything lock-tighted down, and the .22 Mag boresighted, I took the gun and pump and headed for the hills.

    It was about 25 degrees and a half foot of snow when I found a place that I could try it out. Not wanting to put the pump or rifle in the snow, I pumped it up in the truck. For what its worth; I didn't see *any* loss of air in the two months that the rifle had been sitting, and indeed moved around the state and taken over the mountains. It took about forty pumps to bring it back up to 3000 PSI.

    I set my target at about 50 yards, and used the 118gr bullets for three shots with the scope on the bullseye using the hood of my truck as a rest. The group was about 1.25 inches across and four inches right of the center, but I suspect the gun is tighter than that, my hands were starting to shake, and it was snowing again. I climbed into the truck, pumped it up again, and spun the scope adjust 32 clicks left (remember, that I had tried to adjust it when it was way-way off before, so 32 clicks isn't like from out of the box). Back out, I loaded and fired one more. It is in the upper left of the 1" bullseye. I can see it through the scope.

    That's all I've shot it so far. It was cold, and the humidity was very high, so I probably wasn't getting perfect power out of the gun, but the bullets were punching through the 3/4" OSB I had the target on like it wasn't there. The air cylinder developed frost on the surface after each shot, but it disappeared within ten or fifteen seconds.

    To address a couple of the items brought up above: For the price, I'm very happy with the Air Force pump. I've probably put a couple of thousand pumps on it so far, and it feels just like it did new. If I had one complaint, it is that the fill line is just too damned short. I understand that they are trying to save you the work of filling the line, but sitting in the passenger seat of a truck, with the rifle hanging over your knee to get within a foot of the base of the pump is as difficult as it is undignified. I do plan to get a bottle, but I'm hearing bad things about the aging of the carbon fiber bottles, and will probably stick with aluminum. I also don't want to deal with Hydro testing, etc., so am planning to buy one of the ShoeBox PCP compressors. The hand pump, though, will still be my primary field power source.

    I haven't shot the SamYang or Career, but I've held both, and they just felt 'tinny' to me. I had heard way back that Quackenbush was the best at reasonable prices, but at different times that I missed the DAQ list, I've considered the Jack Haley guns or even one of the other Koreans. I wasn't aware of the FX, but they look nice; just outside of my price range any time soon. I think if I were to buy another today, I'd go with the Evanix Rainstorm in 9mm. 7 rounds in a magazine quite reminiscent of my old Crossman 620, 800fps, and a good looking stock.

    Yes, I'll eventually post pics. It will probably be late March before I can get out and really break in the rifle and see what kind of groups I can get out of it, but I figure that anything under two inches at 50 yards will let me shoot anything I'd want to eat. Maybe I'll have the shoebox or a bottle by then, and can shoot all day without burning 1500 calories.

    I'd love to hunt pigs, but so far, they aren't easy to find in Oregon (yes, that's a good thing). Right now, my plans for the rifle include white tails in Mississippi late season this year, but it will be all about time and work schedules.
     
  13. Butcher45

    Butcher45 Eugene Member

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    Can't say enough good things about my tuned Sam Yang 909.....I've put many thousands of rounds thru it, and taken several species of game with it.

    MyFirstHog.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2014
  14. Butcher45

    Butcher45 Eugene Member

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  15. Butcher45

    Butcher45 Eugene Member

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  16. HansC

    HansC Portland Member

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    It's always impressive to see what a real hunter can do. I've spent a huge amount of time in the woods, but I've only seen bobcats a half-dozen times, and never while holding a rifle. Congratulations, man. Most of us lack the patience and ability to stalk that well.
     
  17. BoringCruffler

    BoringCruffler Boring, OR Member 2016 Volunteer

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    Also impressed as always.

    Since the DAQ, I did pick up a very nicely modified and tuned Shinsung .50. I still can't decide which I like better.

    The Shinsung definitely pushes more energy out of the barrel, and you can feel it in your shoulder. Its also quite heavy, and the trigger was made in Russia during the cold war. The DAQ is a light touch and is just easy to hold on target, but shoots two-inch groups at 50 yards if I use heavy pellets (about 5/8" with lighter ones).

    Still nothing bigger than a raccoon on the trophy shelf from the big bore airguns.

    Still interested in getting my hands on a Sam Yang, but that loading gate/breech design just leaves me cold. It is pure prejudice, though. I have no first hand experience. It just seems clumsy--too muck like a Crosman pistol from the 70s.
     
  18. Butcher45

    Butcher45 Eugene Member

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    The simple loading port could be considered somewhat "clumsy" in operation, I suppose. Takes a bit of getting used to for sure. I'm used to it, and like the simplicity. I much prefer it to an extra bolt to operate. Another bolt would add complexity, and weight to the design. I rather like simple.....and the Samyang is just that. With a relatively short barrel to boot! Nice to have when hunting the thick stuff that is the coast range of Oregon. Super accurate rifle, too. The EPP/UG is IMO the standard boolit for the Samyang 909/909S.
     
  19. Qjay

    Qjay Vancouver, not BC, Washington, not DC Active Member

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    I'm waiting for the next round to open up and get a .50 Bandit from Mr. Quackenbush.
    Sadly, I check the website pretty much daily.

    Is it weird to want an air rifle more than a powder gun?