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Author Topic: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?  (Read 1026 times))

Offline Bayman

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2021, 09:23:00 PM »
Do heavy pellets shorten spring like?

Not nearly as fast as shooting really light pellets.
My gut feeling is that this is correct. There's a noticeable harshness when shooting very light or loose fitting pellets. I'd think that harshness might be piston slam from the lack of resistance. There has to be enough resistance to slow the piston down towards the end of the stroke. Too much resistance it bounces. Too little it slams.

I think resistance is only partly created by weight. I think pellet fit is critical to. My guess is a tight fitting 8 grain pellet may create as much resistance as a loose fitting 10 grain.

If you're in tune with your gun you can feel what's hurting it. My experience is that smaller power plants can comfortably shoot lighter pellets than bigger ones. My Hw30s love 7.33s but my Hw95 makes it quite apparent it's not liking it. I stay above the 8 grain mark with 95

As for going heavier I'll shoot whatever a gun shoots most accurately. I still think accuracy has lot to do with the shot cycle. IMO part of why certain guns like certain pellets is because those pellets provide the correct resistance for that power plant. It's hard to get accuracy out of a harsh gun or one that has so much bounce the piston is pulsating the driving air pressure. Not to mention the induced vibration of bouncing piston and spring mass..
  • USA,  NY
Hw30- .177- Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw30 Laminate- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 2-7x32 AO. 
Hw50- .177- Vortek PG3, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40 AO
Hw50- .22 - Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw95- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40
Hw97SE (Green 77 Laminate stock)-.177 Vortek PG3, Hawke 4-12x40 Airmax
P1- 0.20 now .177

Offline Struckat

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2021, 10:08:51 PM »
Do heavy pellets shorten spring like?

Not nearly as fast as shooting really light pellets.
My gut feeling is that this is correct. There's a noticeable harshness when shooting very light or loose fitting pellets. I'd think that harshness might be piston slam from the lack of resistance. There has to be enough resistance to slow the piston down towards the end of the stroke. Too much resistance it bounces. Too little it slams.

I think resistance is only partly created by weight. I think pellet fit is critical to. My guess is a tight fitting 8 grain pellet may create as much resistance as a loose fitting 10 grain.

If you're in tune with your gun you can feel what's hurting it. My experience is that smaller power plants can comfortably shoot lighter pellets than bigger ones. My Hw30s love 7.33s but my Hw95 makes it quite apparent it's not liking it. I stay above the 8 grain mark with 95

As for going heavier I'll shoot whatever a gun shoots most accurately. I still think accuracy has lot to do with the shot cycle. IMO part of why certain guns like certain pellets is because those pellets provide the correct resistance for that power plant. It's hard to get accuracy out of a harsh gun or one that has so much bounce the piston is pulsating the driving air pressure. Not to mention the induced vibration of bouncing piston and spring mass..

This^^^^^
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Offline nced

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #22 on: May 11, 2021, 10:15:41 AM »
Do heavy pellets shorten spring like?

Not nearly as fast as shooting really light pellets.
My gut feeling is that this is correct. There's a noticeable harshness when shooting very light or loose fitting pellets. I'd think that harshness might be piston slam from the lack of resistance. There has to be enough resistance to slow the piston down towards the end of the stroke. Too much resistance it bounces. Too little it slams.

I think resistance is only partly created by weight. I think pellet fit is critical to. My guess is a tight fitting 8 grain pellet may create as much resistance as a loose fitting 10 grain.

If you're in tune with your gun you can feel what's hurting it. My experience is that smaller power plants can comfortably shoot lighter pellets than bigger ones. My Hw30s love 7.33s but my Hw95 makes it quite apparent it's not liking it. I stay above the 8 grain mark with 95

As for going heavier I'll shoot whatever a gun shoots most accurately. I still think accuracy has lot to do with the shot cycle. IMO part of why certain guns like certain pellets is because those pellets provide the correct resistance for that power plant. It's hard to get accuracy out of a harsh gun or one that has so much bounce the piston is pulsating the driving air pressure. Not to mention the induced vibration of bouncing piston and spring mass..

This^^^^^
Agree completely, however there is more to "accuracy" than simple group size depending on the shooting conditions. My brother got excellent accuracy at 50 yards shooting the 10.5 grain CPH, however under varying distances involved with sniping squirrels in the WV woods the trajectory had a lot to do with "accuracy at the target" depending on how accurately the holdover is guessed.

Even the higher velocity .177 CPL from my Beeman R9 zero'd at 30 yards the pellet dropped 1/2" at 40 yards, 1" at 45 yards, then 1 1/2" at 50 yards and the drop for a 10.5 grain pellet is much greater. Here is the trajectory on my .177 R9 shooting a 7.9 grain CPL at about 13fpe...........

Guessing the range plus/minus a couple yards past 40 yards is above my skill level so I personally opt for a mid weight pellet and limiting my shooting under field conditions to 40 yards.
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Offline EMrider

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #23 on: May 11, 2021, 10:45:46 AM »
Do heavy pellets shorten spring like?

Not nearly as fast as shooting really light pellets.
My gut feeling is that this is correct. There's a noticeable harshness when shooting very light or loose fitting pellets. I'd think that harshness might be piston slam from the lack of resistance. There has to be enough resistance to slow the piston down towards the end of the stroke. Too much resistance it bounces. Too little it slams.

I think resistance is only partly created by weight. I think pellet fit is critical to. My guess is a tight fitting 8 grain pellet may create as much resistance as a loose fitting 10 grain.

If you're in tune with your gun you can feel what's hurting it. My experience is that smaller power plants can comfortably shoot lighter pellets than bigger ones. My Hw30s love 7.33s but my Hw95 makes it quite apparent it's not liking it. I stay above the 8 grain mark with 95

As for going heavier I'll shoot whatever a gun shoots most accurately. I still think accuracy has lot to do with the shot cycle. IMO part of why certain guns like certain pellets is because those pellets provide the correct resistance for that power plant. It's hard to get accuracy out of a harsh gun or one that has so much bounce the piston is pulsating the driving air pressure. Not to mention the induced vibration of bouncing piston and spring mass..

Yep, the "noticeable harshness" associated with loose fitting pellets is something I've experienced often and try to avoid.  I get better accuracy with JSB 10.3s in some of my .177 spring guns and have no concerns about spring life when shooting them.  If I get 15k instead of 20k shots, no big deal. 

R
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Beeman R7, .177, P. Watts tune
Beeman R7, .177, R. Hawkins tune
AA pro sport, .177, R. Hawkins tune, 11fpe
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HW50S .177 Vortek kit 10.5fpe
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Offline Bayman

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2021, 10:51:59 AM »
Do heavy pellets shorten spring like?

Not nearly as fast as shooting really light pellets.
My gut feeling is that this is correct. There's a noticeable harshness when shooting very light or loose fitting pellets. I'd think that harshness might be piston slam from the lack of resistance. There has to be enough resistance to slow the piston down towards the end of the stroke. Too much resistance it bounces. Too little it slams.

I think resistance is only partly created by weight. I think pellet fit is critical to. My guess is a tight fitting 8 grain pellet may create as much resistance as a loose fitting 10 grain.

If you're in tune with your gun you can feel what's hurting it. My experience is that smaller power plants can comfortably shoot lighter pellets than bigger ones. My Hw30s love 7.33s but my Hw95 makes it quite apparent it's not liking it. I stay above the 8 grain mark with 95

As for going heavier I'll shoot whatever a gun shoots most accurately. I still think accuracy has lot to do with the shot cycle. IMO part of why certain guns like certain pellets is because those pellets provide the correct resistance for that power plant. It's hard to get accuracy out of a harsh gun or one that has so much bounce the piston is pulsating the driving air pressure. Not to mention the induced vibration of bouncing piston and spring mass..

This^^^^^
Agree completely, however there is more to "accuracy" than simple group size depending on the shooting conditions. My brother got excellent accuracy at 50 yards shooting the 10.5 grain CPH, however under varying distances involved with sniping squirrels in the WV woods the trajectory had a lot to do with "accuracy at the target" depending on how accurately the holdover is guessed.

Even the higher velocity .177 CPL from my Beeman R9 zero'd at 30 yards the pellet dropped 1/2" at 40 yards, 1" at 45 yards, then 1 1/2" at 50 yards and the drop for a 10.5 grain pellet is much greater. Here is the trajectory on my .177 R9 shooting a 7.9 grain CPL at about 13fpe...........

Guessing the range plus/minus a couple yards past 40 yards is above my skill level so I personally opt for a mid weight pellet and limiting my shooting under field conditions to 40 yards.
Ed I agree with you you're preaching to the choir about the effects of trajectory and range estimates have on the accuracy or results of a shooter.
My point about accuracy being influenced by the shot cycle was more about the ultimate accuracy of the rifle only. I was addressing the pure mechanics of it and leaving out the shooter.
Obviously everything you said is correct and the shooters ability is paramount.
  • USA,  NY
Hw30- .177- Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw30 Laminate- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 2-7x32 AO. 
Hw50- .177- Vortek PG3, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40 AO
Hw50- .22 - Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw95- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40
Hw97SE (Green 77 Laminate stock)-.177 Vortek PG3, Hawke 4-12x40 Airmax
P1- 0.20 now .177

Offline SpiralGroove

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2021, 11:23:41 AM »
Over the years I've seen it stated numerous times that shooting heavy pellets in "non-magnum" springers can cause spring damage or at least drastically shorten spring life.  I never really thought about it much until a little while ago, but then I got curious...

After thinking about it for a little while I realized that I couldn't really figure out why a heavy pellet would have an adverse effect on the spring.  Not saying it isn't true - just wondering about the mechanics involved...
Not sure I'm answering your specific question,
However, when I was desiring to use Crosman 10.5 heavies in my R1 back in 2020, I talked to Jim Maccari of ARH (Spring God) and he recommended I use nothing heavier than 9 grain pellets in a .177 caliber gun - irrespective of shooter hearsay .... as it reduces spring life.

If you aren't worried about lessening spring life ... then forget about it.

The weight of .22 caliber pellets doesn't affect the spring as much; slightly increased bore size helps with fatigue as compression chamber back pressure is reduced.  Obviously, very heavy .22 pellets do the same damage.

Again, springs only cost about "A 500 Tin of Quality Pellets".  If you have no idea how to change out a spring, read a few posts on the GTA and or buy a ARH or Vortek spring kit.  After the spring in the kit wears out, simply replace the spring for $20.
  • Bothell, WA
PCP's:
BSA R10 (.177) Regulated
AR2079A-HPA (.177)
AR2079A-HPA (.22)
QB79-HPA (.22)
RAW HM1000x LRT Camo - (.22)

Pumper's:
1973 Benjamin Franklin 342
1984 Benjamin Franklin 347

Springer's:
Beeman R9   (.20) - Circa 2019
Beeman R10 (.20) - Circa 1988
HW30S (.177)
HW35E (2) (.177)
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Offline nced

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #26 on: May 11, 2021, 11:48:07 AM »
Over the years I've seen it stated numerous times that shooting heavy pellets in "non-magnum" springers can cause spring damage or at least drastically shorten spring life.  I never really thought about it much until a little while ago, but then I got curious...

After thinking about it for a little while I realized that I couldn't really figure out why a heavy pellet would have an adverse effect on the spring.  Not saying it isn't true - just wondering about the mechanics involved...
Not sure I'm answering your specific question,
However, when I was desiring to use Crosman 10.5 heavies in my R1 back in 2020, I talked to Jim Maccari of ARH (Spring God) and he recommended I use nothing heavier than 9 grain pellets in a .177 caliber gun - irrespective of shooter hearsay .... as it reduces spring life.

If you aren't worried about lessening spring life ... then forget about it.

The weight of .22 caliber pellets doesn't affect the spring as much; slightly increased bore size helps with fatigue as compression chamber back pressure is reduced.  Obviously, very heavy .22 pellets do the same damage.

Again, springs only cost about "A 500 Tin of Quality Pellets".  If you have no idea how to change out a spring, read a few posts on the GTA and or buy a ARH or Vortek spring kit.  After the spring in the kit wears out, simply replace the spring for $20.
The R1 uses a spring with really heavy spring (about 3.85mm/ .152 wire) so I don't know if such a heavy spring would be bothered by a heavy .177 pellet like the HE95 with about (about 3mm/ .112 wire). It seems to me that trying to squish the large swept volume of R1/HW80 air through a .177 bore might cause be even more stress.
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Offline SpiralGroove

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #27 on: May 11, 2021, 12:03:48 PM »
Yeah Ed,
That's why I asked him.  He said using heavy .177 pellets in any spring gun will diminish spring life.
HW30S, HW35, HW50S, HW95 and HW80.

These were his words ... I was a little surprised too, but if anyone knows ... it's Jim.
  • Bothell, WA
PCP's:
BSA R10 (.177) Regulated
AR2079A-HPA (.177)
AR2079A-HPA (.22)
QB79-HPA (.22)
RAW HM1000x LRT Camo - (.22)

Pumper's:
1973 Benjamin Franklin 342
1984 Benjamin Franklin 347

Springer's:
Beeman R9   (.20) - Circa 2019
Beeman R10 (.20) - Circa 1988
HW30S (.177)
HW35E (2) (.177)
HW35E (.177) Nickel
HW50S (.177)
HW50S Nickel (.177)
HW80 (.20)
HW95 Hybrid (.177)

Offline nced

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #28 on: May 11, 2021, 12:53:09 PM »
Yeah Ed,
That's why I asked him.  He said using heavy .177 pellets in any spring gun will diminish spring life.
HW30S, HW35, HW50S, HW95 and HW80.

These were his words ... I was a little surprised too, but if anyone knows ... it's Jim.
Well.....I know from experience that shooting 10.5 grainers with .128 wire springs will shorten spring life vs 7.9 grainers, however that was proven shooting roughly 10,000 shots per year using a Maccari .128 wire spring over a couple seasons. LOL.....the factory spring in my .177 R10 deluxe went bad after about 3000 shots.
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Offline lefteyeshot

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #29 on: May 11, 2021, 07:18:07 PM »
I'm with, Don. Consumables. I have seen tight fitting pellets have a lower muzzle velocity than equal or lighter pellets that fit looser.
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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #30 on: May 11, 2021, 07:35:08 PM »
So a HW95 in 177 would have a longer life than a 20, which in turn would be longer lived than a 22, and a 25 would be shortest of all.

It is not pellet weight that matters, but sectional density.  In other words weight for caliber; or more precisely bore area.
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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #31 on: May 11, 2021, 07:51:46 PM »
I have myself dug in deep on a transfer port design thread.  Rather than repeat that here, and try to "prove" my statements, I offer this:

Whichever pellet produces the highest FPE from a given springer will yield the longest spring life: 

Too light or too heavy a pellet that produces lower FPE is reflecting the "lost" FPE back into the spring.  This "energy reflection" occurs as piston slam, or piston bounce respectively.  In both instances the front and rear of the spring have waves traveling in opposite directions.  These waves clash, producing localized stresses that are so high that they fatigue just that section of the spring more rapidly than necessary.

The worst case for "light pellet" shooting would be dry firing.  It may be anecdotal evidence that dry firing tends to break springs, but that does not change the fact that it tends to break springs (and damages piston seals).

Ed's multi-tens-of-thousands shot spring life experience with 7.9 and 10.5 grain Crosman pellets, out of two HW95s is about as good as it is going to get for data. 

My suggestion is to chrongraph a few different pellets.  If the pellets suit your bore diameter and are consistently made, the ones with the highest energy will often be the most accurate ones.  Shoot those and don't worry about spring life.  Some springs break "early" no matter what you do.

Oh yes; pellet fit in the breech is part of its breakaway pressure equation.  So, it is not just pellet weight that matters, but the force required to pop it free from the breech cone...
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Offline Bayman

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #32 on: May 11, 2021, 07:53:56 PM »
So a HW95 in 177 would have a longer life than a 20, which in turn would be longer lived than a 22, and a 25 would be shortest of all.

It is not pellet weight that matters, but sectional density.  In other words weight for caliber; or more precisely bore area.
This is correct as bore area increases there's more area for the compressed air to push against thus lowering the resistance seen by the piston. So even though the weight of pellets increase with caliber so does the bore which keeps it in relative proportion. Interesting enough Weihrauch changes nothing but the barrel to change the caliber. Piston, spring and even transfer ports stay exactly the same as every caliber within that model rifle. The 25 caliber models do require a larger breech seal for obvious reasons, but other than that everything else is the same on them too.
  • USA,  NY
Hw30- .177- Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw30 Laminate- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 2-7x32 AO. 
Hw50- .177- Vortek PG3, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40 AO
Hw50- .22 - Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw95- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40
Hw97SE (Green 77 Laminate stock)-.177 Vortek PG3, Hawke 4-12x40 Airmax
P1- 0.20 now .177

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #33 on: May 11, 2021, 08:06:17 PM »
Evidence that the larger caliber springers are not "suffering" with the heavier pellets that are typical for each caliber, is the fact that the larger calibers produce more FPE than the smaller ones.  Thus, less "stray energy" to cause mischief to the spring.

I think that if your .177 HW95 shoots any given pellet at over 800 FPS and under 900 FPS, then your pellets are neither too heavy nor too light with respect to spring life. 

You might argue that the safe numbers are 600 and 700 FPS; and you might be right, depending on platform and caliber.

I suspect that the smoothest shooting pellets, by sound and feel would probably also correlate with longer spring life...
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Offline Bayman

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #34 on: May 11, 2021, 08:30:48 PM »
I suspect that the smoothest shooting pellets, by sound and feel would probably also correlate with longer spring life...
I concur. It's a pretty simple sound concept. If it feels bad, it probably is, and vice versa. Still I think the greatest benefit of smooth shooting pellets is making the gun more enjoyable to shoot. Extended spring life is just a serendipity. After all in the grand scheme of things springs are cheap compared to the money we throw at other areas of the hobby. Shoot what's most accurate and makes close to the maximum energy and it will likely be a smooth shooting pellet by default.
  • USA,  NY
Hw30- .177- Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw30 Laminate- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 2-7x32 AO. 
Hw50- .177- Vortek PG3, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40 AO
Hw50- .22 - Vortek PG2, Williams peep sights
Hw95- .177- Vortek PG2, Hawke Airmax 3-9x40
Hw97SE (Green 77 Laminate stock)-.177 Vortek PG3, Hawke 4-12x40 Airmax
P1- 0.20 now .177

Offline Mrblonde40

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #35 on: May 12, 2021, 07:00:22 PM »
I stayed away from heavy pellets at first, but when I tried the 9.57 grain barracuda, I changed my mind.  The gun was just dead calm when it shot them.  I guess another way you could phrase it is the gun shot more smoothly.  I've been sighting in with the 9.57 hunter extreme for when serious purposes come up (red squirrel, starling) and practice with the 8.64 FTT.
  • Chesaning, Michigan, USA

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #36 on: May 12, 2021, 07:03:32 PM »
The gun was just dead calm when it shot them.

What gun makes all the difference.  Mind clueing us in about it?  HW95?
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Offline Brazos

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #37 on: May 12, 2021, 11:39:46 PM »
Shoot the pellet that is accurate out of your rifle and makes you happy.  IF that happens to be a heavy pellet and IF your spring doesn’t last quite as long then who cares because springs are cheap.
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Offline SpiralGroove

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #38 on: May 13, 2021, 07:54:12 AM »
Shoot the pellet that is accurate out of your rifle and makes you happy.  IF that happens to be a heavy pellet and IF your spring doesn’t last quite as long then who cares because springs are cheap.
+1 Brazos ;), the ultimate common sense answer...
I usually don't shoot heavy pellets as I only target shoot, however, if I found a heavier one which shot better - there would be no hesitation to use it  8).
  • Bothell, WA
PCP's:
BSA R10 (.177) Regulated
AR2079A-HPA (.177)
AR2079A-HPA (.22)
QB79-HPA (.22)
RAW HM1000x LRT Camo - (.22)

Pumper's:
1973 Benjamin Franklin 342
1984 Benjamin Franklin 347

Springer's:
Beeman R9   (.20) - Circa 2019
Beeman R10 (.20) - Circa 1988
HW30S (.177)
HW35E (2) (.177)
HW35E (.177) Nickel
HW50S (.177)
HW50S Nickel (.177)
HW80 (.20)
HW95 Hybrid (.177)

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Re: Heavy Pellets Shorten Spring Life?
« Reply #39 on: May 13, 2021, 08:07:00 AM »
Shoot the pellet that is accurate out of your rifle and makes you happy.  IF that happens to be a heavy pellet and IF your spring doesn’t last quite as long then who cares because springs are cheap.
Best reply of the thread. Shoot what you and your gun like. I would rather shoot 7000 accurate shots than 10000 so so shots.
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