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Thread: Starters kit : PCP

  1. #1
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    Default Starters kit : PCP

    I am interested in what you guys would regard as the ideal "starters kit" in terms of a PCP rifle and scope. The intended use would be something like some hunting, some FT, some benchrest etc, not necessarily in that order and not necessarily in equal proportions. What would be the minimum in terms of refilling equipment? Should one go for a dive bottle straight off or buy one of these special pumps? I would like to have some comment from the real experts, because the guys behind the counters selling the stuff really knows f-all!! Suppose thats because they think a pellet gun does not suit the big game hunter image....

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  2. #2
    ice's Avatar ice


    Hi, i'm no expert, but have been shooting, tinkering with airguns for a few years.

    First of all, the sport of airguns are too spesialized to have a one does it all setup and alhough some come close, there's always some guns/scopes that's more suited for a spesific app than the other. Bottom line - There always compromises if you want to use it for "multitasking"!

    There's much to be consider when choosing a gun, but the one that fit you best (stock/looks/function), you shoot the best with, is a good starting point. Some gunshops have guns you can try out before buying. Read as much as possible about the gun you like. Stay away from new models, consider only tried & tested ones.

    Mounts is no big worry (pcp=no/very little recoil) except height - the stock and your shooting style would determine the height of the mounts.

    Scopes is another problem, i would suggest something with a medium mag- 16x maybe. You'll be able to use it for hunting/plinking/ft/hft.

    Buy a new/secondhand steel silinder for refills. The ideal would be two - one big 9/10/12 litre and one small 3litre to take on outings. I have only a 10litre alu tank, but it serves me well, because i get up to 100 shots/fill with my S400 and about 75 shots/fill with my S200 - no need for refills when hunting/plinking. It cost about R20 to fill the silinder at the dive shop and because my guns both have relative small tanks onboard, i can refill them many times before pressure in diver tank drop too low. Get a steel one if possible, they're more exspensive, but you'll have it for many moons.
    You will hear many arguements about how easy it's to carry the pump around and how cost effective it is to fill your gun , but i doubt it if any of the aformentioned "pumpers" would fill your gun for around R0.60 with a pump.So i guess cost effectiveness is no big consideration. The pumps are not cheaper than diving silinders, so the only question would be -Do i need to refill on a hunting/plinking trip and if you answer is yes - would you be prepare to carry the tank around, because my 10litre is quite heavy.

    GET THE TANK nuf said.

    I would suggest you get a AAS400/BSA Hornet multishot with refill adapter, Hawke 4-16x44 mildot scope, 10 litre tank and you're set.

    Happy hunting


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  3. #3
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    Be wary of pumps.
    I have also been looking at pcp's - some manufacturers state that if you use a hand/foot pump then your warranty will be cancelled. Think it's to do with moisture and air quality.

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  4. #4
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    As people said before, the ideal starter kit would be a kit that suits you best ... and we are all unique.

    Good starting point is to look at the AA/CZ/BSA's on the market. You can look at either the S200, S400, S410 or the Hornet. Single shots are cheaper ... and there is a 10shot magazine available for the S200 @ about R 1000. That is very good value for money.

    Mounts, whether PCP or Spring, buy good quality mounts, the tolerances are much better on the expensive ones. Nothing wrong with Lynx mounts ...

    Scope, well the choice is yours, as an all-round scope I will always recommend a good quality 6-24 / 8-32. I also "hunt" with my Tasco Custom 8-40, mostly with mag set to about 12-16x. Remember that the higher the mag the better the range finding at longer distances. The quarry that you will be "hunting" is very small therefore you have to have the mag available on longer shots. Nikko Stirling is always a very good choice. Remember you get what you pay for when it comes to scopes. Stay away from Chinese Optics, go for Japanese (check on the box).
    Look for 50mm objective, nothing wrong with 44 or 40, the bigger the objective the more light can come in ...
    Side Focus Parallax adjustment is also a plus, but will push the price up.

    Now on pumps / cylinders. If your gun gives you about 80 shots it will take about 160 pumps to fill it. Pumps are HARD work. I enjoy shooting, using a pump will start making it work ... I will never ever buy one ... period !
    Cylinders are HEAVY, but much easier to work with. Get yourself a old golf trolley, put the bottle on it and there you go ... (when you go practising), for hunting ... go the 3 litre route...

    Agreed on the guys behind the counter. RHT and Target Specialists both know about FT and Airguns ... the rest ... well I'm not so sure ...

    Suggested kit would be
    A good quality PCP, Mounts, Scope, Filling Gauge, Cylinder, Pellets, Rifle Bag and a Sling.
    That should set you up.
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  5. #5
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    it's all down to your budget/preference really............

    most of the pcp's are so accurate these days, it's hard to seperate them even off the bench (assuming right pellets are used). so it all depends on what you are looking for single/multi shot, beech/walnut/TH/synthetic stock, ergonomics, steel/titanium/aluminum cylinders, price...etc

    there was a thread on one of the UK forums......S400 vs LG-100, the general feedback is that the AA is just as accurate (in field use), although the steyr is more "dead". and the main reasons for choosing the steyr.........trigger and adjustability out the box, better resale value compare to a tuned S400 and no extra costs/waiting time for after market tuning.

    as for view's that if you are going to concentrate on FT, go big!!! get the best quality high mag PA scope you can afford. as for hunting, med mag 4-16X is pretty much perfect. under such mags the difference in quality of the optics is not as "clear". so most times one can get away with cheaper/chinese scopes. just make sure that the scope is well-made and no POI/reticle/turrets shifts....etc a standard "Box" test can be used.

    for my hunting rig, i looked at 3 scopes. leapers/ags 4-16 X 56 SF MD 30mm. good reviews, just over $100 but duties, shipping costs..etc from the us made it not so economical.

    ultraoptec 4-16 X 44 AO MD 1". from what i gathered, it's from "hawke" factory. i think it's a rebranded varmint/target model.

    nikko platium 4-16 X 50 SF MD 30mm, almost too good to be true at around R1500. only problem.........PA only down to 25m/yds? lower on low mags. so far the best option.

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  6. #6
    Sharp Shooter

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    I went the PCP route and bought me a Dive bottle and I haven't looked back, but, find a shop that will fill it before you blow a bundle of cash. One of my local shops refuses to fill it because I dont have a Divers registration card, luckily, I found one that will (and cheaper). In the long run it works out around R2.00 a fill for my PCP bottle.
    I use a 3-9x40 scope, good enough for me plus I dont particularly want to look my prey in the eye when I shoot at it, mounted on an "AIRFORCE CONDOR" that sounds like a .22 Rimfire so I'm told.
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  7. #7
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    no shop can refuse to refill because you don't have a Divers Registration Card ! Tell them to shove their air up their diving suits ... They only reason they can refuse is if the inspections on the bottle isn't up to date, but you pay ... they do and your up to date again.
    Fully agree on the PCP route ! I have never looked back myself.
    I however, like the bunny wabbit to sit "on" my barrel when I shoot it.
    Cheers and have fun
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