You are on page 1of 4

An Introduction to Tuning the Gunpower Stealth

By Bob Craske

The Stealth is an innovative and enormously efficient airgun due to a design which is free of all but the most basic valving and triggering mechanisms, and which possesses an air path which is free of bends, restrictions and convoluted metering systems.

The Gun is cocked by means of the cocking handle A which is screwed into the Breech Cover. The Breech cover, which incorporates 2 ‘O’ ring seals, is tubular in design and slides around the barrel’s periphery. It is pushed forward which in turn pushes the Hammer Slide D against its spring F which is compressed against the Barrel Mounting Ring G. As the rear edge of the hammer slide passes over the Trigger release Sear E, the sear pops upward under spring pressure locking the hammer in the cocked position. The Cocking lever is manually drawn backwards by the firer to the rearmost position when the two ‘O’ rings shown at C, form an airtight seal between the breech end of the barrel and the Air Bottle Release Valve B. When the gun is fired, operation of the trigger causes the Trigger Release Sear to rotate about its pivot in a clockwise direction causing the release of the Hammer Slide. The Hammer Slide, propelled by its spring impacts with the front face of the Breech Slide transferring its energy through the slide and directly onto the face of the Air Bottle Release Valve. The Valve is momentarily forced from its seat against the air pressure in the bottle. A charge of air passes through the opened valve and through a longitudinal hole drilled in the valve body and impinges directly on the rear of the pellet which is pre-positioned in the rear of the barrel’s breech. Once the energy from the Hammer Slide’s impact has been dissipated, the Air Bottle Release Valve, acting under the influence of the high pressure air in the bottle and a small internal spring, returns to its sealed position shutting off the air supply. The cycle is repeated for each shot. Tips, Tweaks and Sneaky Snippets Even with such a simple mechanism, there are factors which can effect the firing cycle of the gun and cause erratic accuracy and power.

. This chatter will dissipate a surprising amount of the hammer’s energy which is required for opening the air valve. It will also cause the valve to remain open for fractionally longer increasing power delivery. Note: On American guns there is a ‘Power Adjuster’ which simply preloads the hammer spring by means of a movable spring packing device on a thread. they are listed below. Any alteration in the pressure generated will effect not only the trajectory of the pellet but also its stability due to the spin imparted by the barrel’s internal rifling. The Top Hat assembly . rather weak for the task it is required to do. its job is to knock the air valve fully open as quickly as possible after trigger release and it often fails to do this for the above mentioned reasons. Steel or Brass washers of a suitable internal and external diameter are the most suitable items for use as shims and usually packing to a depth of approximately . for the sake of brevity. A slight more complex improvement is to have an exact copy of the hammer made up in a heavier material. A dry slide will also travel rearwards more slowly. This will normally increase the muzzle velocity of the weapon and care should be taken in readjusting the gun back down to legal energy limits. Basically. The hammer spring is. The pellet relies entirely on the blast of high pressure air generated during the ‘valve open’ phase of firing to not only expel the pellet from the barrel but do so at a known and consistent velocity.25” is sufficient to achieve a marked improvement.It should be understood at this point that accuracy and power in the gun are very closely related. Increasing the preload on the spring has been shown to have a dramatic effect on the consistency of the valving system and is easily achieved by packing the spring it its foremost end where it abuts the rear Barrel Mounting Ring. A heavier hammer will suffer less from countering forces and will more effectively deliver energy from a correctly tensioned spring to the valve during impact. Incorrect Air Bottle Pressure (Too low or too high) It has been demonstrated that a dry hammer slide will ‘chatter’ as it travels rearwards during the firing cycle. 1. in the opinion of the author. There are several crucial factors which can affect the delivery of air into the breech of the gun and. thus. Worn Breech Seal ‘O’ ring seals 4. Unlubricated hammer slide bearing surfaces 2. Unlubricated breech seal surfaces and ‘O’ rings 3. brass being the obvious choice because of its weight and corrosion resistance. This is often heard as a muffled report from the gun and a shot which passes wide of the target. Unlubricated breech seal surfaces and ‘O’ rings will also absorb Hammer Impact Energy and can also allow air leakage at the ‘O’ rings. It is advisable to regularly grease the assembly with a silicone based lubricant to both prolong ‘O’ ring life and maximise efficiency by reducing wear. the valve receives an insufficient impact to fully open and a ‘short charge’ results. Loose Air Bottle Valve Stem 7. Dirty or Damaged Air Bottle Valve Stem 6. Weak Hammer Spring 5. The Air Bottle Release Valve The Air Bottle Release Valve neck is threaded to accept a small ‘Top Hat’ adapter which engages with the Breech Slide ‘O’ ring seals to form an airtight join during firing. especially with the heavier ammunition this gun prefers.

Early guns had a proprietary barrel which gave less than ideal results. A nice touch which will (marginally) improve accuracy is to get the plastic barrel mounts remade in brass or steel at your local machine shop. The Hammer spring and spacers should come out with the barrel. Removing the Barrel Turn the Gun onto its back and undo the single Allen screw securing the plastic foregrip to the rifle body. The single most common problem with the Stealth barrel is mounting. Locate the 3 grub screws securing the barrel and muzzle end cap assemblies to the rifle body. by so doing. the application of a small quantity of thread sealing compound is highly beneficial. Now.Stealth Schematic. Sharp. Gently release the pressure and. As the screw is released the barrel assembly will jump forward slightly against your finger . Undo the rearmost screw first and set aside.75” and 5. See diagram 2. gently withdraw the barrel as a unit with the other. with a finger inside the front of the muzzle housing holding the barrel against the Hammer Spring pressure. The further out the greater the opening and vice versa. However. affect the amount by which the valve is struck open during hammer impact. Further to the rear of the weapon at 1. after setting-up the gun in conjunction with the other adjustments described here. I’ve found loose barrels.25” respectively are the 2 screws which secure the Barrel Mounting Rings. The Barrel The barrel plays a crucial part in the delivery of the projectile and a worn. One of the most common causes of erratic firing with this gun is a loosening of the Top Hat Collar. a clean. later Stealths (Stealth 2000 for example) have a Walther match grade barrel which produces almost frightening accuracy. bent or damaged barrel will produce at best. There have been threads on the various BBS’s which have recommended drilling out the valve stem for more power. holding the gun in one hand with the muzzle pointing downwards. a small recessed securing screw is set into the outer collar of the Top Hat and tightened by means of an Allen Key (Hexagon Wrench).5 turns out from the fully home position. undo the second grub screw. In order to prevent the adjustment being lost during the rigours of hammer impact. solidly mounted and firmly secured barrel in good condition WILL deliver accurately. Starting from the muzzle. detaching it from the gun. hard and abrasive objects should never be introduced into a Stealth barrel as this could damage the rifling and adversely affect projectile control. The default setting from which to start calibrating is approximately 1. With the silencer attached (if fitted) remove the grub screw and gently pull the compete insert forwards. I’ve shot 32 Foot Pounds over my chrony using just the tweaks described above. On the bench and in test conditions.may be screwed in and out on its stem and. especially in conjunction with the optional bipod. Screwing in the Top Hat will reduce the rifle’s Muzzle Energy while screwing it out will increase it. Secondly it weakens the stem and Thirdly it’s not necessary. barrels mounted at an angle due to foreign objects inside the gun body and even barrel support rings missing or damaged. the first screw secures the steel insert which bears the thread on which the end cap and/or optional silencer are screwed. if not return the barrel slightly into the gun body and tap the gun gently to dislodge the Hammer slide. DON’T DO IT! Firstly it’s irrevocable. indifferent results. . Put simply. The grub screw used for securing purposes is rather inadequate for the job and.

slide it onto the barrel and introduce the barrel assembly intro the gun body aligning the screw holes in the barrel locating rings with the holes in the bottom of the barrel housing. Do not tighten fully at this point. These spacers. Now tighten both barrel mounting screws equally and in stages until firmly finger tight with a 3” Allen key. Thoroughly clean all components and grease liberally with silicone compound. Do not tighten fully at this point 5. 2. 4. Now. remove excess grease from the weapon with a clean lint-free rag. Now insert the second barrel ring screw finger tight only. Fit the required spacers against the rear barrel locating ring followed by the Hammer Spring 3. Secure firmly with its grub screw. should be fitted at point A on the above diagram unless you wish to increase the Hammer’s effective mass when additional spacers may be fitted adjacent to the hammer’s front face. Be aware that increasing the hammer’s mass and spring tension will dramatically alter the performance of the gun and may make it illegal. whilst holding the barrel assembly in with the finger against the muzzle. Gently locate the barrel’s breech into the Breech Cover against the Hammer Spring’s pressure and. As previously discussed. after greasing the Hammer slide liberally inside and out. and any further packing. align the rear mounting screw hole with its mounting ring and secure the barrel ring with a grub screw. 5” thick. Take the end cap/silencer threaded insert and. adding to these will improve the situation further. Test fire the gun in a safe manner for 20 or shots until the valve mechanism has ‘seated in’ and check the safety and trigger sear are operating correctly with no ‘slip’ or unintended release. push it gently into the front of the barrel housing. Adjust Muzzle Velocity using a Chronograph as detailed earlier. aligning the securing holes.Depending on the weapon you have you may find several small plastic spacer ringsapproximately . Check the cocking and safety action for correct operation and work 20 or so times. When satisfied. To reassemble the barrel Proceed as follows WITH THE AIR BOTTLE DETACHED: 1. 6. 7. Back to Alpinetek's Talon Page . These are Hammer Spring preload spacers and are factory fitted to bring Hammer Spring tension within tuneable limits.