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October 30th, 2008

Report from Australia on the Biathlon Basic

Last year we did a quick field test of the Izmash Biathlon Basic. You can read the report in the Daily Bulletin Archives, or on the main website. We concluded that the gun was a true bargain. It will outshoot most rimfires in the price range, it has a smooth trigger, it comes with a built-in Weaver-style scope rail, and the toggle action is fun to use, if a little stiff at first. This writer concluded that the gun would be an nice short-range varminter.

Australian reader David from Canberra agrees that the Izhmash Biathlon makes a great varmint exterminator. Here is David’s report:

“We have [a Biathlon Basic] on our farm in NSW (near Sydney). It has given four years of faultless service in vermin control so far! We have two 5-round and two 10-round mags and have fitted it with a quality 4 x 44mm scope. The only problem I identify is that with lubricated Winchester sub-sonic ammunition a build-up of lubricant on the front lip of the mags can cause feed difficulities.

There is no one who has used this firearm who does not rate it as the most user-friendly and ‘marksman hero’-making rifle they have ever used. The rifle remains on the sighting plane while the action is cycled… [a quality we miss] from the now-prohibited self-loaders. [Editor’s note: most semi-automatic rifles, even rimfires, are now banned in Australia.]. The Izmash is a rugged, modern, good looking, easy to use, and UNFAILINGLY accurate … rimfire farm or target rifle that costs about $1200 in Australia. The CZ452 would be farm choice #2 (I reckon if you ask me)! You cannot do better than the Izhmash [considering] the low price in America of this Soviet-Legacy gem.”

Izhmash Biathlon

The Biathlon Basic is offered by MTGuns, (805) 720-7720, for about $395.00 (call for current pricing and availability). The current U.S. distributor is Russian-American Armory,, (877) 752-2894.

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October 30th, 2008

New 3-Position Air Rifle Rules Issued

Air Rifle position rulesThe 2008-2010 7th Edition of the National Standard Three-Position Air Rifle Rules, with changes approved by the National 3P Air Rifle Council, are now available in printed version or as a downloadable file. The complete new rules (in .pdf format) can be downloaded via the CMP website. Printed copies of the new rulebook may be ordered from the CMP at a cost of $2.00 each.

CLICK HERE to download new Air Rifle Rules

The 2008-2010 rules are effective immediately and will remain in effect until September 2010. There are not many major changes this time, although a Council decision to cap prices on approved sporter air rifles is potentially significant. The Council has already adopted a policy mandating that no sporter class air rifle may be used in sanctioned competition unless the Council approves that specific model. The current approved sporter list includes the AirForce Air Guns Edge, Daisy M853/753/953/853CM (pneumatic), Daisy M888/887 (CO2), Crosman M2000 (CO2), Daisy XSV40 Valiant (compressed air) and the Air Arms T200 (compressed air) with NON-adjustable cheek-piece and butt-plate. The Council decided that if the price of any approved rifles rises above $525.00, that air rifle will lose its approval (but if you purchased such a gun before the price rose too high, it would still be legal.)

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