We’ve been looking at how to transition to airguns from rimfire and center fire guns. The transition is frustrating if you don’t know what to expect. We’ve looked at some entry level break barrels and while I can get them to shoot OK at close range, I can tell you that you’re not going to see repeatable 50 yard accuracy, even in the best shooter’s hands. So what is the most affordable and easy to shoot airgun that CAN give firearm folks reliable 1″ 50 yard accuracy? That’s easy. It’s the Benjamin Discovery AKA, “The Game Changer.”
The first thing that I want to clarify is that there have been many Game Changers in the airgun industry over the recent decades so Im not trying to detract from all the previous contributions made by other products over the years. With that said, in my opinion the Benjamin Discovery has been the single most important leap forward for the average airgunner since I got into the business some 7 or 8 years ago, and heres why.
When I started shooting ariguns back in 2005/2006 I was dazzled by velocity numbers printed on the sides of airgun boxes. I purchased product after product trying to find something that would deliver power AND accuracy while having the same shootability as my rimfire rifles that I was so accustomed to shooting. My first ray of hope came in the form of the Bam B50 .22 cal PCP air rifle. Being new to the whole concept of PCP, I felt a bit like a NASA engineer trying to gather together all the necessary parts and pieces to make this thing go. Fortunately I had a client that was a dive instructor for the U.S. Navy and he hooked me up with all the necessary parts. By the time it was all said in done, I had compiled over $1000 in parts just to fill the rifle, let alone the cost of the rifle itself.
When I pulled the trigger for the first time I realized I had found the answer I had been seeking for so long; an airgun with power, accuracy, and ease of shooting similar to, if not easier, than any of my rimfire rifles. This thing was simply amazing. If you could put the cross hairs on the target, consider it gone, done, end of story, d.e.a.d. - DEAD. The only thing I did not love about this setup was the price. It was certainly well over my budget and after I finished reviewing everything, it all went back to the respective providers. Now, I was left struggling to repeat the same experience with my spring airgun arsenal. And then, everything changed.
I had the privilege to spend a weekend with Tom Gaylor at the Roanoke VA airgun show. Talk about an education! I met the folks at PyramydAir, Predator Pellets, and so many more. As Tom and I were talking about my struggles, he casually mentioned that there was something coming out soon that was going to change everything. He could not go into details as it was a confidential project, but he gave me hope that something was about to make airgunning a lot more exciting.
It may have been six months to a year later when I got the first bits of information on Benjamins new Super Gun, the Benjamin Discovery. This rifle was promising up to 900 FPS in .22 with extreme accuracy. Ok, I had that with the Bam B50. But, what made the Discovery so different was the price point. The Benjamin Discovery was going to cost only $400. This was not $400 for just the gun, but $400 for the gun and the means to fill it, i.e. a high pressure hand pump. $400 was about what youd spend on a decent breakbarrel. To see a $400 price point on a PCP airgun bundled WITH a hand pump and promising so much, was it too good to be true?
I first got my hands on a Benjamin Discovery Kit back in late 2007/early 2008. In short, the Benjamin Discovery met and exceeded all my expectations. As promised, the Disco as its been affectionately named, can shoot 14.3 grain pellets at close to 900 FPS with 1 or better accuracy out to 50 yards consistently. And, it does it with ZERO drama. Its a point and shoot powerhouse of an airgun that opened up the world of PCP airgunning to those that would otherwise never have considered it even a remote possibility. This is why I call the Benjamin Discovery The Game Changer.
In this series, we will take a journey that starts with the bear Discovery Kit and works our way through various options for accessories, fill systems, optics, shooting environments, etc. Im not sure that the series will ever truly end as there is always something new that you can do with the Disco. In the next installment will go through all the pieces and parts and talk about what it takes to put the first pellet down range. Be sure keep your browser pointed at our Airgun University for regular articles and information on this series and so many other airgun topics and products.