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ccarlson

best air rifle for kids to start

12 posts in this topic

I'm looking at getting an air rifle (BB/Pellet combo) for my daughter who will be turning 8. I looked last night at fleet and I see the two types I am considering are either single pump or multiple pump. Which is better for the kids? I would lean to the single pump but I am concerned that it could be more difficult to pump than the multiple pump types. Is this true?
Any preferences for Crossman or Daisy?
Thanks,
ccarlson

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If you are really interested in getting a quality air rifle, and teaching your children firearm safety and marksmanship skills, I would skip over the crossman and daisy arms, and get something a little more quality and accurate. Cabelas had some nice .177 pellet rifles in their Christmas catalog, ofhand I cannot remember the brand name, possibly ACI and not too unreasonably priced for what you get. As a youngster, I was given a .20 Sheridan, and it is still in excellent condition and very accurate. I am not sure if Sheridan is still in bussiness, but if they are I would recommend it. I can tell you with confidence that it is highly unlikely to get that kind of service life from a crossman or daisy.

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I bought my boys the multi-pump Crossman. The BB's still come out with only one pump, too. When more punch is needed, we pump it up more.

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CC & Coldone

A couple of caviats regarding air guns....

There is nothing wrong (for the price) w/ the BB/pellet combo guns, as long as you use pellets in them. They have rifled barrels, and the BB's (steel) will take out the rifling.

Daisy makes some high quality air guns - we have two Daisy 853's at home - mine and my sons. Wood stock, single pump pnematic (air). Son's has a set of peep sights, mine has a 4x scope. My gun is 15 y/o, son's is closer to 20. Neither has needed any form of service over the years.

We got these years ago when the my older kids and I were involved in the 4H Shooting
Sports/Wild Life project. We both still shoot them from time to time - they are great for some plinking in the basement in the middle of the winter.

I've shot both air and CO2 guns. The Crossman CO2 guns (repeaters) allow for the faster 2nd shot, but the air driven guns are best for teaching marksmenship.

Air driven guns are cheaper to operate.

UG

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I've had a Daisy Powerline (880?) for more than 20 years that has killed many crows, rabbits and squirrels. Never a repair needed, and maybe $40(?) in today's dollars. Not a premuim rifle by any means, but it's reliable, fairly accurate and hits pretty hard with 10 pumps behind a blunt .177.

FLB

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I didn't say that crossman or daisy didn't make good air rifles in the past, What I am saying is the stuff that they are selling today is mostly junk, cheap plastic, ill fitting parts, made overseas, and sold at walmart and other quality arms retailers, give me a break. I am merely suggesting that to present a quality air rifle that will last a lifetime, for a few extra dollars is a better way to introduce your children to the world of sporting arms.

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CCarlson:

I think it really depends on just what you'll want the rifle for.

If it's simply to teach your youngster how to responsibly handle a rifle, range safety, familiarity with open sights, bullet drop and all that stuff, and if you plan to graduate her to a .22 in a couple years, why waste money on an air rifle to last a lifetime? If it's going to sit in the closet for the next 20 years, buy inexpensively.

If, however, you think you and your child will keep coming back to it year after year, or will use it in winter down the basement to plink in each other's company and such, then it seems to make more sense to buy one to last.

Not everyone can afford $75 to $150 for a solid lifetime pellet gun. I used the inexpensive Daisy Powerline 880 for several years, and sold it to a relative when I'd grown past it. If I still used a pellet gun regularly, I'd want a nicer one. grin.gif

Anyway, while we may all not agree on what type of gun is best, I'd bet we're all in your corner when it comes to spending cool time with your daughter and ushering in another youth to the world of responsible firearms. Have fun while she's young. She'll be dating and married before you know it. frown.gif

[This message has been edited by stfcatfish (edited 10-31-2002).]

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stfcatfish,
You hit it about right, I'm just looking at something that will take my two kids through a couple years until I get them into a .22 and light shotgun loads. So, you could say just the basics for now. Thanks for the info though from those that offered othered alternatives.

My main question is whether people like the multi pump or the single pump types. I'm leaning towards the single pump but am concerned it my be harder to pump as it may have more pressure to build in one pump. Can an 8 year old girl do this without too much trouble? I don't want frustration to be a problem. Anyone who may have one, let me know. So far I seem to hear that many used the 880.

Yes, it has been fun getting my two daughters into outdoor activities. The 7 year old can hit a paper plate with a wrist rocket slingshot pretty well. Time for the next level while she still shows interest.

thanks,
ccarlson

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I'd go for the multi-pump. One pump will do it when you're starting them out, but most people who shoot eventually fall in love at least to some degree with the power of the shot, and if you want to impress them and instill caution about the power of air rifles (and how that's NOTHING compared to even a .22 LR) you can pump it up 10 times.

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I went through this a year ago when looking for a plinker for my son.
Looked at every conceivable model available in trips to Cabelas, Gander, Wal-Mart, K-Mart......
I ended up finding a Benjamin Model 397 (.177 cal pellet) in Sportsman's Guide for less than $80.00. It was factory reconditioned, and is a nice little shooter. Wood stock, blued barrel, multi-pump. What sold me was the maximum of 800 fps, which means it can handle small game cleanly. Right now, Zebich Jr. mostly just pumps it twice, for plinking. I would really recommend it.
It is not the easiest to pump, but for my 10 yr. old son it works out OK. A slightly built child might have difficulty.

[This message has been edited by Pete Zebich (edited 10-31-2002).]

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CC,

Looking for a good entry BB/Pellet Gun. Here are my Recommendations. The Daisy 880. Sells for about $38. It is a multi-pump and shoot both BB's and Pellets. It is a great entry gun and is not very expensive. Plus it is very light for the youngsters. The 880 pumps very easy at the lower pumps (1-3 pumps). As you get higher it gets harder but also shoots faster. There are also other guns. Red Rider BB gun sells for about $30. It is a lever action single pump BB only. The Crossman Scout which is crossmans version of the Red Rider by Daisy. Sells for $35. Also single shot lever action BB gun. If you wanna know more about BB guns drop me a line. I know alot about them. chev_trucks501@yahoo.com

Thanks
Happy Fishing smile.gif

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Had to go look at the Crossman my boys have. It's the 760 "Pumpmaster". Yea, it's only plastic handle but they're 7 & 9. They can pump it by themselves. I teach them to take care of their 'weapon' so it's in great shape. And, if a whoops happens, I'm not out a lot of money.

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