Gamo PBA Platinum pellets
Gamo PBA Platinum .177 Pellets
Approximate Retail Price: ~ $11.00 (2 packs of 50 as shown)
I recently acquired a supply of Gamo PBA Platinum for intensive ballistic testing. As the PBA pellets are made of a lighter-weight, lead-free alloy, I have been keen on the idea of using them for practice in my hi-tech garage range and to deal the occasional rodent that tries to take up residence underneath our home. See The Rodent Chronicles for more info on that.
The most interesting thing about these pellets is the increase in velocity resulting from their lighter weight. Gamo claims that most airguns will shoot PBA Platinum pellets up to 30% faster than traditional lead pellets. Since it’s Super Bowl Sunday and there is not a chance I will drift more than 26 feet away from a TV set, I decided it would be a good time to run the Gamo PBA Platinums through the extremely rigorous My Gun Culture testing regimen.
Well, maybe the My Gun Culture testing regimen could use just a little improvement. You see, our test air rifle is an aging Beeman 1783 Silver Bear. Fresh from the factory, these are supposed to launch a standard lead .177 pellet at about 500 feet per second. Ours is just a bit worn, and manages about 360 fps on average. But hey, the Gamo ammo advertises a percentage improvement right?
So out came my shiny new Shooting Chrony Beta Master to check out the velocity performance claims. And yes, ‘she’ thought I was absolutely nuts setting up chronograph equipment on our back deck. It’s probably a good thing that we don’t have neighbors on either side or we might be writing a ‘man with a gun!’ arrest headline. I was multi-tasking with other productive work though – smoking a turkey for Super Bowl snacks in our Big Green Egg. Anyway, between hardwood charcoal maintenance, I ran ten rounds of Daisy .177 Precision Max lead pellets through the chrony and found that my old Beeman was putting them out at an average of 360 fps. Repeating the same test with the Gamo PBA Platinums yielded an average of… are you ready… 467 fps! A velocity increase of – you guessed it – 30%.
I felt it unfair to do any formal accuracy testing with my battle-worn Beeman. It’s a good rifle, but has seen better days. Suffice it to say, even with my well-ridden pellet popper, the ammo shot with Minute of Rodent accuracy. Or, in everyday terms, all shots would have been covered by a quarter at 30ish paces, even with the turbulent meteorological conditions in my garage.
The real purpose for the Gamo PBA Platinum ammo is of course pest defense. Given recent cutbacks in our testing lab due to economic conditions, we were forced to substitute a couple of apples and an egg in place of suitable rodents. In fairness to our methodology though, eggs are among the most dangerous and irritable of foods. And rodents come from eggs right? Some do anyway.
In summary, the Gamo PBA Platinums were pretty impressive. If I hadn’t done such a thorough job of pest elimination with my stash of .22 Colibri’s, I might have more opportunity to test them against real live critters.