Shooting the Benjamin Marauder

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It’s been a while since I got my Marauder finished up and I’ve been jonesin’ to get it out and shoot it.  The weather hasn’t been good for anything other than building an arc lately so I had to wait for the right day.  I was lucky enough to get a day with no rain and more importantly, no significant wind, so I took full advantage of it.  I know what the Marauder can do up close, so it was time to stretch it out a little bit.  

The biggest thing to remember about air rifles is they shoot like a rimfire up close but when you start putting a little distance on the shot, that’s where the differences become apparent.  The two main differences in this .22 caliber air rifle and a .22 long rifle are projectile weight and muzzle velocity.  The 14.3 grain Crosman Premier pellet I was shooting is almost 25 grains lighter than a .22 long rifle projectile.  It is way more susceptible to wind drift.  I cannot understate this.  The speed of the pellet is also about 300 feet per second slower than a 22. LR.  Couple this with a light projectile and bullet drop becomes something else to deal with.  While the amount of wind drift and bullet drop can become quite great at long distances, it’s also the reason your scope has a mil dot reticle.

Once I realized where I had to hold to make the shot, the actual shot itself was not difficult.  I had hoped to get all the way to 100 yards but the wind proved too difficult deal with as it began to whip across my shooting area at a pretty good clip.  Starting at 50 yards, I placed a 4 shot group within an inch after making the proper adjustment for windage.  I shot between wind gusts and only had a small sustained breeze to deal with.  The compensation for the wind drift was roughly 2 inches.

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The top group was at 50 yards with the bottom two being shot from 75 yards.

At 75 yards, the groups opened up a little bit and the compensation for wind drift increased to a little over 5 inches.  While the groups opened, all the shots fell within one square inch.  I was extremely impressed by this and it made me realize that with a steady rest, even a chipmunk sized animal isn’t safe within 75 yards of this thing.  Pretty impressive.

Soon, I want to spend some time behind the rife and make a proper ballistics chart.  I don’t really know what this thing does much past 75 yards so it will be beneficial to find out.  In all, I can’t say enough good things about the Marauder.  It has a fantastic trigger and I’m really starting to get comfortable behind it as my experience with it grows.   It is just a much fun as shooting a big bore centerfire at 800 yards and a hell of a lot cheaper too.

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