I'm just going to "fiddle" with this one, but I need to maybe speak to you about the real thing!
Ok...the plot thickens here.
Warrick very kindly gave up his family time on Saturday afternoon and invited me down to his place to try out some custom made baffles that he had made for me. This didn't go as planned! The rifle had been sighted in the previous weekend (without silencer) and was grouping beautifully at 20m. When we fitted the silencer however, the POI had changed drastically! To cut a long story short, no matter what we tried (even new hand-turned baffles) the rifle was not consistent. We tried the other silencer that I was given, with pretty much the same effect. We even tried on of Warricks own silencers (which worked on his rifles)
When we opened the two silencers of mine, there was evidence of clipping on the baffles and innards. I then remembered that the previous weekend I was lent a .22 rimfire silencer which also caused a HUGE POI shift!
The chances of four silencers doing precisely the same thing are very slim indeed. I'm leaning towards a barrel/barrel thread issue with my rifle as I cannot see any other reason for the huge variations I have seen ....I know that silencers can cause POI shift, but surely not +\- 500mm elevation and around 300mm windage shifts???
Where to from here?
The barrel and bore are not in line you will probably need a gunsmith or an airrifle smith with a lathe to cut new threads in line with the bore. A lathe with a 4 jaw chuck is needed to center the bore and not the barrel. It will look like a bad fitting silencer but will shoot straight. Some barrels you can see how far the bore is out of center if you look down the barrel from the crown side, you will see that the bore center is not centered in the barrel.
Also check when you screw the silencer all the way till the "stop"at the barrel, check if there is any gap between the back end cap and the wall of the barrel where the end cap of the silencer stops. Also, any small gap on the end caps and the tube of the silencer should align.
Also as stated the barrel crown. The spacers and washers also must be straight inside the tube, make sure that the sound damping material doesn't overlap the spacers, not to cause turbulence in the tube.
So....I took my rifle with me to Johannesburg when I went to visit with mates up there with the intention of buying a new silencer to see if that would solve the problem. I tracked down Rashaad and with his great help and advice, purchased a new Tula.... only to discover that when I got back to mates and fired a test shot that it too was clipping the pellets!!!!!! Needles to say I was now very grumpy, after being assured by the retailer of the rifle that "It could not possibly be the gun" !! He arranged that I take the rifle to pellet-guns.com (the importer and distributor) for them to have a look at, which I duly did on Thursday (2nd Jan). We set up a target on their shooting range and I shot a decent group WITHOUT the silencer, the tech guy then fitted an o-ring on the threads ( has this happened before??) and I shot another decent group, albeit an inch to the right, we then fitted the silencer without the o-ring and could not hit the 1x1 meter board that held the target!!! The techie agreed that this was a barrel/thread issue. He then called the rep for business who came and had a look, and took the silencer apart and saw all the splattered lead inside the baffles and he too agreed that there was an issue with the threads or the thread collar on the barrel!
They have now booked the gun in and wanted to send it to a local gunsmith to "cut new threads" ??? on the barrel..!! I was not at all happy with this and have told them not to do this and I would ask that they consider either fitting a new barrel, replace the rifle or re-fund me as this is an obvious factory/manufacture issue and the rifle is just over a month old, and is still in pristine condition. I have, in the interim, had to return to Pietermaritzburg, rifle-less, and now have to wait for the manager/owner of the business to return from holiday in two weeks time, in order for him to assess the rifle and make a decision from there....
Needless to say, I am not thrilled. I had even taken an extra weeks leave so that I could get some shooting in!!!
So, just like the army....Hurry up and wait!!!