Faced with a chal­lenge from a friend, the editor seeks hard proof about strip­pers

Air Gunner - - Contents -

Phill takes up the chal­lenge to strip - or not to strip?

Last month, Neil Price threw down a chal­lenge. He claimed that an air strip­per on the muz­zle of your pre- charged pneu­matic will im­prove your group sizes and re­tain more en­ergy in your pel­let. I like the the­ory and un­der­stand that it could well be cor­rect, but I’m the kind who likes to see for him­self. Neil built me a strip­per to fit my Air Arms S410 which looks lovely, so it was time to head to the range to get the hard facts. He has run tests at 45 yards, which is the max­i­mum dis­tance in an HFT com­pe­ti­tion where he’s seen pel­lets re­tain a whole foot pound more en­ergy when shot through a strip­per com­pared to a bare bar­rel.

The the­ory goes like this: As the pel­let leaves the muz­zle, the high­pres­sure air be­hind it blasts out and around the pel­let’s skirt. This upsets its flight, caus­ing it to wob­ble rather than fly true, adding drag and slow­ing it down. The true fly­ing pel­let gets to the tar­get quicker, so it’s less af­fected by the wind, which means tighter groups. As I said, I liked the idea, but could I prove it? Luck­ily, I had a Cald­well chrono­graph in on test that works well out­doors, no mat­ter what the light con­di­tions, so the first job was to fill the 410’s reser­voir to 180bar and then fire 10 pel­lets from a bare bar­rel, and then re­peat with the strip­per fit­ted. Keep­ing the reser­voir topped up elim­i­nated a vari­able. I used pel­lets from one tin of Air Arms Field Di­ablo, un­weighed, but vis­ually in­spected for dam­age.

Main: All set up and ready to test

Be­low:Some groups were tighter than oth­ers

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