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I am thinking about getting a PCP, my first one sort of. I have a Crosman 2250 and it's a fun little gun but the little powerlets seem to always be empty when I go to shoot it which is not super frequently.
Do the larger PCP rifle tanks seal better and will they hold a charge over a few weeks of inactivity? If the tanks would hold I would shoot it a whole lot more often so it's a little of a catch-22 I guess.
Can you "top off" a PCP tank or does it have to go all the way empty to fill it?
How long does it take to fill one full with a hand pump? Is it just a few minutes or more like 10,000 pumps?
I know they use special airgun pumps, not bicycle pumps and I know they are not cheap. I am referring to the special airgun hand pumps.

How many refills can you get from a scuba tank?
I know they come in different sizes but a ballpark for any size scuba and airgun tank would be fine just to give me an idea.
There are several scuba stores around town so I can probably find a used tank for a reasonable price but not sure if it would be what I am after. The scuba stores are not real close to home so it would be a special trip to fill one, the hand pump would be most convenient.
Thanks in advance for any info.
 

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Rodgervich:

Try posting this question at the forum for pilkguns.com It's a serious airgun site for competition shooters.

I use a PCP target pistol and charge it with what looks like a fancy bicycle air pump. This type of pump, in addition to attaining the necessary pressure, also traps moisture that could corrode the gun's air cylinder. For my pistol, it takes about two minutes of pumping to charge it at an easy pace. A rifle will probably take 3 times as long, but as someone who knows. BUTCHER45 on this forum hunts with a PCP and should be able to tell you.

A PCP is (thankfully) in no way similar to the CO2 powerlet guns. Mine is a match gun of very good quality. It holds a charge and loses only a little pressure after sitting unused for the summer months during which I do not use it. I cannot vouch for guns of different quality levels. Maybe some of the lower end models leak more, but I seriously doubt that they would ever leak as much as a CO2 gun.

I top mine off every 70 shots or so. It will shoot about 250 if I shot from full to empty. Number of shots varies greatly depending on the model of gun and velocity.

PCP guns are also not as susceptible to shot variation due to temperature changes, as are CO2 guns.

One important thing I've observed about PCP guns is that they are surprisingly loud-- both pistols and rifles. So if you're shooting indoors, you'll need ear protection.


I cannot tell you much about the SCUBA tanks except that if you live in a humid climate, you should use the SCUBA tank instead of the pump. This is because SCUBA air is dried, and that will prevent water and subsequent corrosion of the gun's cylinder. I live in a place with low humidity during Winter when I shoot, so the hand pump is a good option.
 

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An option for those that prefer the cost-effectiveness of the hand pump or those that live in climates with "wet air", the Hill Pump with the Dry-Pac moisture removal system has a pretty good reputation for removing the moisture from the air. It is also the most serviceable pump with readily obtainable replacement o-rings and such.

http://www.airriflepump.com/html/product.asp?id=2214

I live in Oregon. It is usually pretty wet here and I use that pump a lot in the field within mountain bike distance where I don't take my scuba tank (like I'll be doing in the morning). Also at the range when my scuba tank is empty, and to top-off the reservoir when the scuba tank won't fill it up all the way. With a .22 or .25 PCP you will get a pretty good number of shots even with the higher-power types as those are very efficient air rifle calibers by nature.
When my factory small-bore pcp was set up in .22 it was producing about 56fpe which is plenty good power for rabbit, squirrel, and does a dandy job on wood-chuck and nutria sized game with a head shot. With it's large 500cc air reservoir; I was getting around 30-40 powerfull shots at the POA before feeling the need to re-fill. Pretty efficient set-up.
I will have it up and running in .25 very soon and will let you know the shot count and power when I test it.


BUTCHER45
 
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