Points of You
Here’s where you have your say and ask your questions about what matters to you
MORE IS LESS?
A few words, if I may, on the subject of FAC air rifles. I am 66 years of age and have hunted and fished since my school days, a long time ago. I have rimfire and shotguns, but sub-12 ft.lbs. air rifles are my first love. I have owned FAC guns, a Theoben .20 at 30 ft.lbs., and a Daystate .22 doing 40. I no longer own these rifles because I had endless problems with seals etc., although the guns were brand new.
If you do an article on FAC, I feel that you should point out the cost, paperwork, gun cabinet and licence fees, and I can say from experience that their resale value is the pits, and they gulp air like a surfacing whale.
To be honest ,I see no reason for them because a decent hunter can do as well with 12 ft.lbs. and I never read the columns of Mick Garvey – no disrespect to Mick – people like Phil Hardman, Charlie Portlock and the late, great John Darling, are real airgunners and hunters in my view.
If I’m hunting with 12 ft.lbs., I get far more satisfaction by cleanly dispatching a rabbit up to 40 yards with my AA S400, than at 80 yards with my rimfire, which I use for pest control, not hunting. No disrespect intended to anyone; it’s a great mag’ – been reading it for years. BARRY ROONEY
Well, Barry, you have every right to your opinion, mate, and no doubt some will fully agree with you, but having used FAC-rated and sub-12 rifles for hunting, I can confirm that there are plenty of sporting challenges, and practical applications, out there for both. We’ll be doing that article, soon, and I promise it will contain all aspects of high-power airgunning. – Ed
I had been trying to track down a certain type of pellet that was recommended for my new Webley Raider 12 – Accupel FT. Not all dealers seem to stock them, but those who do vary the price by as much as 50% – from £8 to £12, so I’d resigned myself to saving up for a big mail-order delivery.
Our family has a caravan near Milnthorpe in Cumbria, and my father-in-law suggested a full-English breakfast at the Wellies Café, just down the road at Greenlands Farm Village, Carnforth. This was originally a working dairy farm, now converted into a number of units, such as wine and cheese merchants, and I noticed a large banner on one of the outbuildings – ‘Fawcett’s Country Sports’. Curiosity got the better of me so my wife agreed that I could have a look around for a few minutes whilst the bacon and sausage was being prepared. The penny soon dropped; I had been calling into the Lancaster City Centre shop for years, but hadn’t realised they had moved in March. They are not a dedicated airgun shop – they cover other aspects of shooting and fishing too – but it’s still a family-run concern and the icing on the cake was to find the Accupells at a reasonable price, so I stocked up.
I was so engrossed in chatting to the staff that I realised half an hour had passed so I hot-footed it back to the café, and the price of breakfast was covered by what I saved on
postage. If you have kids to keep amused whilst you browse, they have an open farm/play barn, too.
So the moral of the story is, sometimes you find what you seek in the most unlikely of places, and by pure chance. I would be interested to hear if other readers have come across hidden gems on their travels, be it the shops themselves or the items they contain, or those that have relocated premises. ANDREW EDWARDS
A BRACE OF BOOKS?
Congratulations to you and all the team at Airgun World on your 40th birthday.
I think that now would be a good time for you to bring out a book on your airgunning life – you already have some material from last week’s Airgun World about WH Smith, and so on.
Would it also be possible for Rosie Barham to put her Perils and Pitfalls series all together into a book? I truly hope that this would be possible. All the best to Airgun World and another 40 years STEPHEN
Thanks for the kind words, Stephen, and Rosie will read this so she can add her answer as she sees fit. As for me, yes, I will be doing a book one day, and believe me I do have more than enough material for it. I’ll reveal more as the plans are finalised and I hope you’ll like it. – Ed
Rosie replies: I wrote Perils and Pitfalls in the early ‘90s, Stephen. Dave’s antics would be frowned upon under today’s health and safety guidelines, but some of the less controversial stories are within the Delicious Vermin!
MORE ABOUT THOSE MILBROS
The answer to Adrian Harries question on page nine of your summer magazine is: Milbro Caledonian pellets are available presently from any SMK distributor. They are available in .177 and .22, on page 35 of the SMK catalogue. CLIVE
TOTALLY OUT OF LINE!
I was very disappointed on holiday, when I started to relax and read my Summer issue of Airgun World, to find that some of the pages were stapled together, out of line and with the edges trimmed off. This made it impossible to read some of the articles that were included in it. I should therefore be pleased if there is anything that you can do about it for me. R.E. BURKILL
There certainly is, Mr Burkill. Please forward your full address and we’ll send you a new magazine by return. Thanks for bringing this to our attention, and be assured we’ve already taken it up with our printers. – Ed
THAT CALIBRE QUESTION
Help, please. I want an air rifle to control vermin in my garden, mainly grey squirrels and rats. I live in a remote location and have a half-acre garden. I like the look of the Air Arms S410 carbine and it fits my budget, but I have no idea which calibre to choose – .22 or .177. Can you advise, please? RUSSELL BARLING
Russell – the ‘calibre controversy’ has raged for as long as anyone can remember, but the simple fact is, either will do the job, provided you place the pellet correctly.
After reading your article in the current Airgun World on the bullpup conversion kit, I immediately rang the helpful gang at BAR to order a kit for my Air Arms S410. It duly arrived the next day, and contained everything as you described except any form of instruction leaflet. However, your step-by-step information shown in the magazine was spot on, and the transformation from carbine to bullpup rifle was completed in under 15 minutes. I am delighted with result and it will make a fine ratting gun in confined spaces. RON WINTER
I’m glad the feature helped you, Ron, and you’re right, that S410 bullpup will be a splendid piece of kit for ratting, and for many other applications. – Ed
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
I would like to congratulate you on a great magazine and everything you have done in the world of airguns. You are a true gent! I was wondering if you could tell me what happened to Jim Wyatt, and his cousin, Carl. I started with airguns in the mid-1990s and waited avidly for each issue of Airgun World, and Jim and Carl’s latest adventures, but having only recently got back into airguns after 20-odd years, it feels like I’m a novice all over again and I cannot believe how things have come on! Please keep on keeping on with the world of airguns, Terry. It was great picking up a new issue of Airgun World and seeing your familar face again. PAUL HAM
Hi Paul, and thanks for those too-kind words, mate. As far as I know, Jim and Carl are still doing their stuff, although it’s been a long time since I’ve seen them. Welcome back to the best sport on the planet! - Ed
After reading Mr Dean’s letter, I was most surprised by your comment. I’m sure many of your readers didn’t know that you are left-handed and trained yourself to shoot right-handed. I had to do the same because I learned to shoot in the army because when using a semi-auto weapon, the spent cartridge would hit you in the face should the weapon be used left-handed. Using a PCP, it’s not too difficult, but a springer requires more practice. Now, to the point of me writing: I know you use the ‘both eyes open’ technique, and I’d never even heard of this until seeing American Sniper and then your teachings to Naylor, but how on earth do you stop your dominant eye from taking over? I can’t seem to do this. When I look through my scope with both eyes open, what I see through my left eye sort of takes over and the sight picture isn’t clear. So how do I get around this?
Also I came up with an idea recently; I was tucking into some Cadbury’s Roses, and thought that the plastic wrappers would make a good gun lamp filter – obviously, with the foil removed. They work very well, although some need doubling up. I have tried them on my Tracer lamp and I hold them on with rubber bands.
Fantastic mag’, Terry. Thanks, mate. DAN HOLME
BACK TO THE FUTURE 1
As I write, I’ve just finished re-reading your 40th anniversary special and all I can say is, wow! What a fantastic journey Airgun World has been on during its four decades! I’m a few years older than you, Terry, and although I didn’t get the magazine from the first issue like you did, I wasn’t far behind and I have been there ever since. I definitely remember the ‘cartoon’ issue and like you I wasn’t a fan, but thank goodness we’ve come a long way since then, in more ways than one.
One question if I may: If you could go back to the good old days before precharged pneumatics cost the same as a second-hand car, and scopes could be used without us needing a degree in physics, would you do it? Honest answer now.
Thanks for a great magazine and here’s to the next 40 years. GORDON MARSHALL
Hand on heart, Gordon, while the ‘good old days’ were fantastic in their own way, I wouldn’t swap them for the advancement and progress of today. Besides, those older airguns are still there if that’s what you prefer, mate. –Ed
BACK TO THE FUTURE 2
I have to say that the 40th anniversary issue is the best Airgun World I’ve ever seen. I’ve been reading the magazine for over 30 years, on and off, and the sight of those old covers features and contributors really took me back to my teenage years. My sons are keen airgun hunters, with all the modern kit, and I’m sure they think I’m kidding when I tell them I used to hunt very successfully with a Weihrauch HW35 and open sights. I was a better stalker in those days, but the fact is I brought home plenty of rabbits with that HW35. In fact, after reading last month’s issue I may well get another one. Keep up the good work and I’ll see you at the Midland Game Fair. RON MERRIWEATHER
As far as hunting with the HW35 goes, Ron, it’s a case of ‘you and me, both’, mate. I shot literally thousands of rats, rabbits and pigeons with my ’35, albeit from fairly close ranges. I’m glad of optical assistance these days, mind! Ed
It’s always more about proper placement than calibre, or even power.
Something definitely amiss, here. If any other readers see anything like this, please let us know.
This is where Fawcett’s used to be, and now it’s at Greenland’s Farm Village, Carnforth, Lancashire. If you’re in the area, pop in.
Mick Garvey uses FAC and legal limit rifles – but is one more worthy than the other?
The S410 bullpup means a ‘Winter’ of discontent for Ron’s rats!
Gordon Marshall is pleased we’ve come a long way from that ‘cartoon’ issue, but would he still prefer the ‘good old days’?
Class is permanent, as they say, and the HW35 is one classy sporter.