GAT’S NOT THE WAY
I now live in the Middle East, but whenever I come back home to the UK – twice a year – I purchase a copy of Airgun World. In the August edition, I was thrilled to see features on two airguns I owned when I was growing up in the ‘80s – The Harrison GAT and the BSA Lightning. The GAT was my first airgun (like so many others!) and I put thousands of pellets through it. Interestingly, I used to load it by putting the pellet in backwards and ramming it down the barrel with the rod supplied. Only years later did I realise that I was supposed to unscrew the bolt on the back and load the pellet in forwards. However, no regrets – my way of loading was much faster and I noticed no lack of accuracy or power by ramming the pellet in backwards.
Concerning my BSA Lightning – that was a real joy to shoot until one day my older brother pulled the trigger whilst the gun was cocked open and that was it. It slammed closed and the barrel was bent, ruined in a second. My sister-in-law did a similar thing with my BSA Magnum and broke that, as well.
During the ‘80s, I owned many airguns that I’m sure some readers will fondly remember; the Panther, Panther De-Luxe, BSA Magnum, Crosman Medalist, Walther P88 in CO2 were among my favourites.
I’d like to finish by telling you that in my security profession I carry a 9mm Smith and Wesson M and P pistol 24/7, and train regularly on the firing range with some of the finest special forces operators in the world. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that all my years of practice with air pistols in the UK provided me with the most solid background for shooting real firearms skillfully and competently – experience that is envied by my special forces mates on the range. Indeed, I feel there is no difference in shooting an air pistol or shooting the first shot of a handgun, as far as accuracy and skill is involved. If you hold the handgun as tightly as you do when shooting an airgun, you won’t even notice the recoil. If you’re good with an airgun, no doubt you’ll be just as good with the first shot of a real firearm. Thanks for your great mag!