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Definitive Guide to JTS Airacuda Max

The world of affordable, feature-rich PCP air rifles continues to grow, and today's definitive guide is no exception. The JTS Airacuda Max PCP air rifle comes in at the astoundingly affordable price of $420 (at the time of this article). Affordable PCPs are nothing new, but once you start to learn about the build quality, features, and performance of the Aircuda Max, you'll begin to understand why it grabbed our attention. Let's get started.
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Detailed Review

Basic Anatomy

The action of the Airacuda Max pellet rifle is set in a gorgeous ambidextrous thumbhole wood stock. It has an adjustable cheekpiece, checkering on the grip and forearm, and two gauge holes visible through the bottom. We'll get to what each of those does later.

The overall length is about 41.5," and it weighs about 7.9 pounds. There will be some very slight variances due to the nature of wood stocks, but each rifle will be very close to those numbers.

The JTS Airacuda Max's build quality showcases well above its price tag. The all-metal build, tight tolerances, and smooth operation lead you to believe you are shooting a much more expensive airgun.

Setup and Operation

We've grown accustomed to having a lot of features, even in entry-level PCP airguns. The key is how they are implemented into the design and how they perform in action. Let's get into the long list of features and how they get along in the Airacuda Max.

The rifle ships with robust metal magazines that cycle flawlessly. They have a unique design that puts them slightly to the left of the center of the bore. This allows shooters to use lower scope rings which gets the scope closer to the bore for a better, flatter shooting trajectory. Why don't more companies do this?

The 18" barrel is fully shrouded with an integrated moderator. For those that want more, there's a 1/2 UNF threaded endcap for "accessories." As we've come to expect from modern PCP airguns, the Airacuda Max air rifle is regulated and fed from an air cylinder with a max fill pressure of 3200 PSI. Shooters can expect to get about 40 shots in .22 and about 30 shots in .25. Our test rifle was chambered for .25 cal pellets, and we can confirm you will get 30 shots on the reg, provided that you top the rifle off to a full 3500 PSI. If you can only fill to 3000 PSI, you will get about 20 shots on the reg in .25 and about 28 to 30 on the reg in .22.

The trigger is a two-stage, fully adjustable trigger. We prefer a trigger with a crisp second stage. We can handle a little weight on the trigger pull, but having to pull through a lot of second-stage creep is not enjoyable, and we find that it makes getting consistent accuracy harder than it should be. Fortunately, the trigger can be tuned exactly as we like. It's adjustable to under a pound, and you can easily take out all the second-stage creep, leaving you with a positive, clean break. It's very nice.

Other key features are the side lever action, weaver/Picatinny rail, and an impressive 3-year warranty. We can attest to how all these features come together to deliver an exceptional airgun that delivers value well above its price.

Operating the Airacuda Max is very straightforward. There is a quick disconnect at the front of the cylinder for filling the rifle. Two gauges on the bottom show you your fill and regulator pressure. For those that want to tinker, and we know that we will get folks wanting to know, Yes, you can adjust the reg, but it's not externally adjustable. It's better to use the adjustable hammer spring to make fine adjustments to the power output. Shooters will need to remove the Airacuda from the stock to make hammer spring adjustments, but it is adjustable, which is a plus.

The stock output for the .22 cal JTS Airacuda Max pellet gun was about 900 FPS with medium lead pellets. The average output in .25 was about 840 FPS. You can increase and decrease these numbers somewhat if you work with the regulator and hammer spring. This, of course, will also change your shot count. So, you should know what you are doing before turning any screws. One point of note regarding the regulator, our average extreme spread was between 10 and 15 FPS for a full 30 shots. The standard deviation also fluctuated between 3 and 6 FPS depending on the spread.

The magazines load very easily with the typical "drop in the pellet, rotate, hold, and drop in the next pellet" method. The integrated spring rotates the mag to the next pellet when the pellet pusher is pulled back as the gun is cocked. It's very smooth and worked flawlessly in all our tests.

Performance & Accuracy

The traditional shape and feel of the Airacuda Max really lends it to benchrest shooting. For those that want to add a bipod or other accessories, the wood stock has some meat to it, so adding rails or swivel studs should not be an issue.

We found the shooting experience to equal that of guns costing much more, so we guess that's a bit of a theme here. But, the experience certainly made an impression, and we want to ensure that we properly convey that to our readers.

We shot at both 25 and 50 yards. Our first groups at 25 yards spread a bit, but that was us getting used to the gun and all the parts settling in. So here's what we got with the JSB Kings and JSB MKII .25 cal pellets right out of the box.

Next, we moved to the MKII heavies and got these results at 20 yards.

Lastly, we took our 25.4-grain JSB Kings out to 50 yards and shot the following 2 groups.

Here is the final group, which was not quite as good as the first group but still very respectable.

Our first 50-yard, 10-shot group easily measured under 1" CTC. Our second group was right on the edge but just slightly over. There is no doubt in our minds that in the right conditions and with a little time behind the trigger, the Airacuda, at least our test .25 cal model, could deliver consistent sub 1" groups at 50 yards most of the time.

Summing Up

The JTS Airacuda Max air rifle delivers power, a solid 40 FPE on average, and accuracy at range without drama. While some airguns make you work to see consistent accuracy, the feature set and build quality of the Airacuda come together in a way that just makes it almost too easy. We don't think it quite elevates to "boringly accurate," but it's pretty darn close. JTS is another company showing the modern airgun market that accuracy, build quality, and adjustability don't have to come with a high price tag.

For more information about the JTS line, please visit our website, and please don't hesitate to give us a call if you have questions about JTS or any of the airguns we carry. We are always here to help.