Author Topic: AR1000 first impressions...  (Read 20979 times)

Offline vinceb

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AR1000 first impressions...
« on: November 22, 2006, 01:24:11 PM »
This is the first Shang-Hai (Industry brand) gun I've bought in quite a while, after (somewhat) learning my lesson with a QS35, a QB25, S2's, B2's, and a B1. And actually another gun I sorta bought (because I sent it back) - the Beeman SS1000 1050H which, as I suspected, was also made by Shang-Hai.

Still, I'd heard rumors over the past couple of years that Industry was trying to clean up its act... and while the TF25 WAS a dissappointment in many respects, it obviously had some potential. At roughly the same time I noticed both the AR1000 on Shang-Hai's website and a non-descript "1000fps" gun listed on Dauven's for about $82. I checked with the seller, and he confirmed that yes, this was the AR1000. So I decide to give it a shot.

To begin with, while the gun balances well it is certainly on the heavy side at between 7.5 and 8 lbs. The wood is OK for an $82 rifle, stained a dark brown with a hint of maroon. This is apparently a good color for covering flaws... mine has a knot smack dab in the middle of the shoulder piece that would hardly be visible if it wasn't for the shallow bump it caused! It doesn't look as good as the wood on a Legacy, 440, B20, B19, or Quest - but it is a nicer finish than the last 220 I'd seen!

Beyond that, the metalwork is pretty much in line with what you'd expect from a brand named "Industry". The metal parts are not finely finished by any stretch (although the barrel isn't as rough as the sandpaper-like Legacy 1000), and some parts almost give the impression that they were chiselled out of a solid block of steel. There doesn't seem to be a lot of hand finishing after the parts leave the milling machines.

But if there are any metalwork deficiencies, they certainly don't seem to apply to dimensions or clearances. The breach lockup is nice and positive, no hint of a weak latch that will let the barrel move while shooting. When closed the barrel does aim a little high compared to the receiver, but it is barely perceptible - and only when you look for it.

Despite the strong latch, breaking the gun open is by no means difficult. There's no stickiness or catching... as you apply pressure to open the breach it doesn't seem to move at all until you're pulling hard enough; at that point it just pops open very smoothly and without a fuss. The rest of the cocking stroke is a bit stout... definitely requiring more muscle than a Quest, Gamo, or B20. And it does require a little extra "oomph" right at the end. But it's not as bad as a Powerline... the cocking action has a longer travel than the Daisy rifle, that's the tradeoff for a lighter pull. And it's worth it.

The sights are not fiber-optic, but they are metal front and rear. The rear sight I especially like - it's tight (no freeplay to speak of), it's solid, and the adjustment knobs are a little hard to use: the elevation wheel is enclosed by the sight with only the edges peeking out either side, and the windage adjustment requires a screwdriver. Which is just fine, because there's very little chance of them getting bumped out of adjustment during normal handling - which has happened to me with other rifles. The detents are also solid and smooth. Overall it seems superior to just about any other sight that I've seen on any other rifle in its price range - and relatively speaking the plastic junk found on the Legacy and Quest are laughable.

Actually firing the gun brings a number of pleasant surprises... beginning with the trigger. The automatic safety is inside the trigger guard, it is very easy to pop it off. I dislike automatic safeties in general, but I don't mind this one at all. The trigger is a genuine 2-stage (not a pseudo two-stage like the Gamo) - and if you bail out during the first stage pull the mechanism actually resets itself properly... it doesn't stay "half fired". The second stage does take a bit of a pull... but not nearly as much as either the Legacy 1000 or the Powerline. The effort is more in line with a Gamo, but the actuall feel is superior. The second stage breaks very cleanly for a cheap rifle... no mushiness to speak of. Overall a very decent trigger for a sub-$100 rifle, bested (in my experience) only by a properly adjusted B20. And I haven't done ANY adjustments to this trigger yet, and it feels like it's getting even better as it breaks in.

The second treat is the firing cycle. Factory dieselling and smoke? Nope. Twang? No thank you! This thing puts Gamo to shame in this last regard. It doesn't have the solid thunk of a well-lubed rifle fitted with custom delrin guides, but nobody can call it buzzy by any stretch. It does kick a bit, but it's not nearly as harsh as the Powerline.

The third treat is when you take a peak at the chrony. CPL's at 1000fps? Repeatedley. The one thing that Shang-Hai never did was exagerate velocity claims on the factory website. This rifle is indeed listed at 1000fps... so I expected 1000fps. And that's what I got - and not with Beeman Lasers, either.

That's about it for first impressions right now. I can't really speak to accuracy, since it seems to be scattering even at 10 yards - but it also seems to be improving noticeably within the space of a few dozen shots. I'll have to really break it in before passing judgment on the gun in that regard.

At this point, this rifle seems to be a very decent piece for $82. I have been told (and I believe it's true) that this is the better grade SS1000 that Beeman sells for about twice as much. And it is almost certainly the same gun as the "Tech Force Contender 89" - which, granted, comes with an upgraded stock - and a pricetag of $190.

The only questions that remain are these: Will it hold up, or will the powerplant deteriorate and lose some of that wonderful power? Can we get parts for it? And will it prove to be accurate?

It would be a darned shame to see a negative outcome to any of these questions... the gun really has a lot going for it. It's not smooth and slick like a Gamo - but frankly, the better trigger and smoother firing makes up for a lot there. And it's far more civilised than the Powerline - which, up to now, easily had the best power for the money.

Oh, and one more thing. It's available in .22 - which is getting rarer and rarer these days...

Offline Gene_SC

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2006, 03:32:33 PM »
Great Review Vince.

Very interesting about the FPS. It looks like it would be smoother air gun if you could do a good tune and lube on it. Interesting point also about parts availability. Do you know what size the barrel O/D is? Does the barrel have decent rifleing? :) Asking allot for $82.00  hehe.

Thanks again for a supurb objective review and will be looking forward to see what ya end up with on the accuracy.

Gene
THE ONES I SLEEP WITH: BSA Lightning XL, AA TX-200, AA ProSport, BSA Ultra, HW-97K, Crosman NPSS .177, FX Cyclone, HW-30 Nicle Plated, AA-S200, Crosman Marauder, CZ-634, R-9 DG, Webley/Scott UK Tomahawk, Benji Kantana, Benji Marauder, Benji Discovery.....
....

Gene\'s Tunz n Toyz
Springer Tunin

Offline vinceb

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I get .575 on the barrel OD, and a couple of other things...
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2006, 04:12:40 AM »
I measure 105mm on the stroke.

I can't say for certain, but it appears that the bore is 26mm... I'm showing about 30.4mm on the OD and about a 2.2mm wall thickness. So it would appear that the powerplant is close to 15% bigger than the Gamo or Quest... which would also bode well for it's performance in .22 cal.

Also, the front two stock-to-receiver screws are 6mm instead of the more common 5mm (a trait it also shares with the Powerline). Even though that's only 1mm difference, that translates into something like a 50% increase in cross sectional area and a 20% increase in thread area. Should be harder to booger up.

Offline -=ed

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RE: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2006, 05:59:25 AM »


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Pics?????

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-=ed..................... \"...and in our dark despair, against our will... wisdom comes...\"

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Offline Gene_SC

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2006, 11:54:29 AM »
Ed, Vince posted link on earlier thread. Here is a pic of the production picture.

http://www.airrifle-china.com/Product/EN/product_detail.asp?productid=101

Gene
THE ONES I SLEEP WITH: BSA Lightning XL, AA TX-200, AA ProSport, BSA Ultra, HW-97K, Crosman NPSS .177, FX Cyclone, HW-30 Nicle Plated, AA-S200, Crosman Marauder, CZ-634, R-9 DG, Webley/Scott UK Tomahawk, Benji Kantana, Benji Marauder, Benji Discovery.....
....

Gene\'s Tunz n Toyz
Springer Tunin

Offline vinceb

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Trigger particulars....
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2006, 03:01:13 PM »
Here's a diagram of the trigger assembly, scanned from the owner's manual.

You'll notice that it's a bit more involved than the Theoben, in fact it is conceptually very similar to Rekord trigger. The exact position and geometry of the various levers isn't identical, but it's the same basic idea.

Also, if you notice - there's 3 adustment screws... first stage engagement, 2nd stage engagement, and spring tension. Even if the spring tension is set very light, the trigger doesn't stay half-tripped if you release it partway through the pull... it resets to where it should be.

I'm really beginning to like this rifle - if only it'd shoot consistently. Tomorrow I'm hoping to touch up the breach with a tiny file - there might be a bur that's damaging the pellet upon insertion. I'm also planning to touch up the crown while I'm at it.

I'm really hoping I can get it to shoot accurately. I'd hate to end up disliking the gun when it gets so many things right...


Offline Gene_SC

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2006, 06:35:11 AM »
I tried to emai those people from the link you gave us Vince about purchasing one, but have not recieved any reply yet. That was on Monday. Did it take a while to get an answer? Did you actually order it from them or another vindor?

Thanks
Gene
THE ONES I SLEEP WITH: BSA Lightning XL, AA TX-200, AA ProSport, BSA Ultra, HW-97K, Crosman NPSS .177, FX Cyclone, HW-30 Nicle Plated, AA-S200, Crosman Marauder, CZ-634, R-9 DG, Webley/Scott UK Tomahawk, Benji Kantana, Benji Marauder, Benji Discovery.....
....

Gene\'s Tunz n Toyz
Springer Tunin

Offline vinceb

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2006, 08:25:34 AM »
Here's where I bought it. But don't be too anxious just yet... read my "2nd Take" first

http://dauvensfishinhole.com/8046564.html

Offline vinceb

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2nd Take....
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2006, 08:39:06 AM »
Well, I've put a couple of hundred rounds through the gun over the past couple of days, and it's turning into something of a disappointment.

First, the minor irritation. The gun tends to pull right, which of course necessitates shifting the rear sight to the left. Trouble is, bring it too far over and it starts hitting and gouging the stock on the cocking stroke. I could address that very easily by shaving some metal from the side of the site.

Now the major one - I can't get it to settle down and consistently do 5-shot groups at under an inch at 10 yards. Often it'll put 3 in one hole, then send the other 2 elsewhere. Or they'll space themselves rather evenly over a 1+ inch circular area. Does the same with CPL's, Crosman Copperhead wadcutters, Gamo Hunters and Match, and Daisy Precision-Max.

Once, with CPL's, it did shoot a nice group, <.4 inch. But it only did it once.

I dressed the crown to no avail. I pushed a pellet through the barrel and found several tight and very rough spots, which I tried to address with valve grinding paste (it was that bad). I tried it on a nylon brush, a flannel, and putting some paste ahead of a pellet and firing it. I was able to improve things a tiny bit, but not enough to bring it into the "acceptable" range.

We'll see if the vendor is gonna do anything about it. If worse comes to worse, I might actually remove the barrel and see if it might be possible to adapt another barrel to it - perhaps an old Gamo barrel.

It's a shame. I really wanted to like this gun.

Offline Gene_SC

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2006, 12:02:39 PM »
Thanks Vince for the heads up. Maybe a nice Walther barrel could be adapted to it? How much does it weigh?

Gene
THE ONES I SLEEP WITH: BSA Lightning XL, AA TX-200, AA ProSport, BSA Ultra, HW-97K, Crosman NPSS .177, FX Cyclone, HW-30 Nicle Plated, AA-S200, Crosman Marauder, CZ-634, R-9 DG, Webley/Scott UK Tomahawk, Benji Kantana, Benji Marauder, Benji Discovery.....
....

Gene\'s Tunz n Toyz
Springer Tunin

Offline vinceb

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About 7.5lbs...
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2006, 03:02:30 PM »
...and yes, if I'm stuck with it I do wanna rebarrel it. Or sell it, but I ain't gonna tell someone that it shoots terrific if it don't.

Offline vinceb

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RE: 2nd Take....
« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2006, 01:22:55 AM »
That's what I tried doing with the valve grinding paste - although I didn't do nearly that many, maybe a half dozen.

Offline -=ed

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RE: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #12 on: November 25, 2006, 03:08:21 AM »


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I know you can look for tight spots pushing a pellet down the breech of a breakbarrel, but how can it bee done with a pcp?



If you push it up the muzzel, it will size down to the choke right away.



Any way around this problem. I might be missing something obvious.



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-=ed..................... \"...and in our dark despair, against our will... wisdom comes...\"

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Offline vinceb

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AR1000 trigger
« Reply #13 on: November 26, 2006, 05:54:31 AM »
I took the liberty of disassembling the AR1000's trigger, and much as I expected the rubbing interface between parts 2301 and 2308 weren't even machined. They were "as stamped" rough. I smoothed out and polished the rubbing surfaces, and a decent trigger just got better. And it also resets itself more completely if you release the trigger after the 1st stage pull. It turns out that before, it would come back almost all the way, but not quite.

I REALLY hope I can figure out how to shoot this thing accurately, or find someone who can rebore the barrel.

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Re: AR1000 first impressions...
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2007, 12:07:00 AM »
Maybe you just had a bad one...
I played around with a AR1000 the other day. I was quite impressed. It pretty much hit everything I was aiming at... and it hit HARD.
The best part is that the recoil was surprisingly low.