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So let it be known that I am a bit of an airgun snob. I like piston and single stroke pneumatic guns and I prefer them to be of German or English pedigree. I prefer drinking my tea with my pinky out and I sniff my brandy deal with it. :P
Seriously though I do have a thing for airguns and I by in far prefer German and English guns. So what did I pick up recently a well a..........Chinese made thing.... Yeah I'm not happy with myself either but hear me out.
I picked up an Air Venturi branded Chinese made M1A under lever spring air rifle.
I picked it up for two primary reasons.
1-It appeared to be a fairly nice looking replica that appeared from pictures and specs to mimic an M1A at least somewhat and that intrigued me.
2-After using my Discover card points it was cheap. I have about $120-$130 bucks in this at this point. Retail is around $199 IIRC.
To everybody's joy I am not going to go into a long winded review of this, at least not yet.
I just wanted to quickly point out a couple things about this rifle after owning it for about a week and shooting the bejezzus out of it.
First the bad.
-The first shot out of the rifle must have been going like 2500 fps. I have never had a rifle diesel so loudly on the first shot. It was so loud I was starting to think that this rifle might even settle in to being too loud for my normal comfort level of shooting. It did not and settled in just fine after the first shot but that first shot was LOUD!!! AND SCREAMING OUT OF THE BARREL.
-The cocking stroke, while very easy, is CRINGY as all get out. A little squeak, a little groan, doesn't feel good, a little gritty and just......wellYUCK. I mean it does the job but does so a little bit like your average DMV worker, with complete and utter disdain for you.
-The safety, while stylistically just like the safety on an M1A or M1 Garand etc. is backwards. Pull INTO the trigger guard to fire.....push out to safe. It is not an automatic safety so its really not all that intrusive in any way but for such a nice looking replica that seems a mis-step to me.
Now the MEH.
-The trigger is very smooth but even though it is listed as a two stage trigger feels more like a long 6lbs single stage trigger. Its hard for me out of the box to get a feel for it. This is as much learning curve as anything else. I have certainly felt WAY WAY worse triggers but this one is going to take some getting used to. I will say after a lot of shooting it is breaking in nicely but is still more of a pull straight through affair vs. a nice to stage affair.
-The anti bear trap release is the bolt stop button. It works fine its just in a different location that I am used to and is a little awkward at first.
-The stock feels thicker/beefier then an M1A/M14. I suspect this is simply a concession to the mechanics packaging.
-The butt plate "shoulder thing that goes up" HA!!! see there is an actual gun part for that, but I digress.....at any rate the recoil shoulder plate is for show only. It is not functional. No big deal just pointing it out. I don't use it on the real rifles.
-She was shooting WAAAAAAYYYYYY LEFT out of the box.
Now The Good
-By God this thing looks and feels like an honest to by God M1A. It's about a 9lb rifle.
-The stock is pretty darn nice. Has a nice walnut look to it and mine has a nice subtle tiger striping in it. I have to say the stock looks and feels good. Better then I expected.
-The cocking effort is very light. The cocking lever is the "gas tube" and can actually be extended out should you want more leverage. I don't find the extra leverage is necessary.
-The shot cycle and noise signature is very pleasant. After that first shot that came out like a railgun everything is just a nice satisfying thunk. Its not very loud at all. Actually much quieter then I expected given it is "RATED" as a 1000 fps .177 springer so even dropping that down a couple hundred FPS its a fairly powerful springer yet quieter then I expected.
-The sights are just like M1A/Garand peep sights. Adjustments are similar, sight picture is identical and you would be hard pressed to tell you were not behind the real rifle to be honest. Now that is a bit of a double edged sword as the front sight post is a little thick and makes precision air rifle shooting a little difficult. That said I don't plan to scope this rifle and I got it simply "to shoot an M1A in my basement" and it will do that in spades.
-The cocking handle moves. It does nothing but you can pull the charging handle. I know, know.....Its my monkey brain going "oooo button....oooo shiney."
-Packaging was secure and excellent.
-There is an optional scope mount that is functionally similar to the real deal M1A scope mount. I will not be scoping this but that is kind of a cool detail.
So all that said my biggest take away from this is that once you nestle in behind this rifle for all intents and purposes you are behind and M1A. I mean it REALLY does a great job of "feeling" like an M1A right up to the PFFFTsnap instead of the BOOOOM!!!!. I mean its kinda remarkable that once you are behind it.....your brain can easily think real M1A.
My other take away is that this thing has been BUCKETS OF FUN!! I mean I get to shoot an M1A in my basement and with the thick sight blade and iron sights I am really more focused on pure fun plinking than any kind of "serious" group work. I just run cheap pellets through it and have ball of a time.
So I guess when buying a toy I can talk about precision or craftsmanship or lack thereof but the real measure of a toy is how fun it is and you know what......this cheap Chinese rifle with the janky internals is boatloads of unadulterated fun and I highly recommend one to anybody looking for a cheap(ish) airgun replica of a legendary firearm that they can plink all day in their basement with. I have put a ton of pellets through this thing in a very short time and it is simply a giggle every time.
As always, take care, shoot safe....and don't shoot your eye out.
"Guns are tools. The only weapon ever created was man."
My hovercraft is full of eels.
That is really really cool. I want one. Also impressed that you have a 19 yard range in your basement...
"Careful man, there's a beverage here!"
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Yeah I have somewhere between 50 and 60 feet from my mechanical room wall to my living area wall. Basically the length of the house. So somewhere around 18 or 19 yards. It really doesn’t feel that far but it’s super nice. Turn the TV on for some background noise and plink away. I had about 34 feet in the last house so this is a nice bit of extra range.
Actually I just measured it off. From my back to the wall to the face of my target I have 57 feet almost to the inch. So 19 yards exactly. I could probably Squeeze another foot out if I really wanted to but I am super happy with 18-19 yards.
"Guns are tools. The only weapon ever created was man."
|Raised Hands Surround Us|
Three Nails To Protect Us
I have bought 2 air guns in the last month.
A cheapo Crossman 2100 for the boys and a Gamo Whisper Fusion Mach 1 .22.
Picking up the Gamo from my LGS tomorrow.
I want a multi shot BB only if they exist. I’ll start another thread on that not to muddy up your thread.
Everybody’s got a blank page. A story they’re writing today. A wall that they’re climbing. You can carry the past on your shoulders.
Or you can start over.
Regrets, no matter what you goin’ through. Jesus, He gave it all to save you. He carried the cross on His shoulders. So you can start over.
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