.180, air rifles, antiques, bb guns, CaliAir, Carbines, Collector, Daisy, history, No. 25, Picking A Daisy, Picking A Daisy Show, Pump Action, Rifles, Video, Vintage

Daisy No.25 1919

[Correction: I mistakenly refer to this gun as a 1917. It’s actually a 1919.]

Today I have for you the gun that started my obsession with Daisy BB guns. Last year for the first time ever I bought a new Daisy no. 25. The new models are made in China – but the build, fit and finish on the gun is pretty good and regardless of the plastic trigger and lever – the new 25 is an excellent backyard plinker.

img_6031

I couldn’t believe how quiet and accurate the gun was for a dang BB gun. Previously I’ve always scoffed at BB guns and thought of them more as children’s toys. I bought the gun on a whim only to discover that the thing was an excellent shooter. Over the years I had invested in many types of firearms, break barrel gas pistons, pcp’s, spring piston, airsoft and multi-pump pneumatics. Don’t get me wrong, I have fun using all of those various shooting platforms.

img_6032

But the Daisy BB gun offered so many things that NONE of the others did. Most importantly – capacity. No other shooting platform gives you 50 to 1000 shots one after another. If you are a shooter you know that most of your time is spent loading the gun. The less time you spend loading the more time you have for a thing called trigger time!

img_6037

I couldn’t believe this gun existed since 1914 and I was only now getting hip to it. I started wondering if it was possible to find an early original version of the gun and sure enough they were available on the internet. I purchased a 1936 variant for this was what was considered the most desirable of the No. 25’s. I am also a big WWI buff and it turns out that the history of Daisy and The Great War are profoundly intertwined.

img_6039

WWI broke out in 1914 which is the very year that Daisy began manufacturing the Fred Lefevere designed No. 25. This is what led me to seeking a 1st variant no. 25. Currently I still have not been able to get my hands on a 1st variant. Between 1914 and 1979 there have been about 54 variants of the gun produced. What we have here is what some call a 3rd variant . Other sources place this as a 6th variant.

img_6040

This gun was bought at a premium from Dennis Baker over at Daisy King as a 1919. This variant has the short throw and non adjustable front sight. The variant we are looking at was produced between 1917 to 1926. By 1927 the easier to cock long throw lever was introduced. For the exception of the non adjustable front sight and the finish on the barrel – this is what a 1914 1st variant would look like. It has the barrel claw, the 5 groove pump handle, smaller rear sight, straight trigger, squared off rear trigger guard, large take down screw, a reinforcement rib and a straight stock.

What distinguishes the first variant from all the others is its “black nickel” finish. The first variant was never sold in bright nickel. Of course the flagship no. 25 was the 6th (sometimes referred to as the 7th) variant that included fancy etching on the receiver. I’ll be showing you those variants in a future episode. This particular gun came to me in weak shooting condition and could definitely benefit from a good seal job. The finish on this rifle is very good with little rust. It does shoot fine at close range and it is very quiet. The shot tube is functional but challanging to lock back the spring while loading the bb’s. This was a common issue with he earlier shot tubes.

I’m looking forward to reviving the seals on this gun to see how well it can shoot. For a gun over a 100 years old its still in great condition.

View all the Pump Action Carbines here.

Check out the entire CaliAir Collection here.

.180, air rifles, antiques, bb guns, Break Action Barrel, CaliAir, Carbines, Collector, Daisy, history, King, Markham, No. 17 King, Picking A Daisy, Picking A Daisy Show, Rifles, Video, Vintage

Markham King No. 17 1917

The Markham King No.17 was produced between 1917 to 1932. It is a carry over from his original wooden Chicago Model from 1887 and continued production even after Daisy fully acquired King from Markham in the 1920’s.

img_5995-1

Markham had some unique designs. The 1900 Queen Take Down (1900-1907) was capable of breaking down into 3 pieces. The No. 17 had the handy feature of shooting 3 different types of projectiles: bb’s, pellets, and darts! The older guns such as this require lead bb’s and not the modern steal bb’s we use today.img_5985-1.jpgimg_5986-1

This gun was acquires through Dennis Baker of “Daisy King”. I paid a premium for it due to first time buyer naiveté. The gun had been restored and is in fine shooting condition and the stock and receiver are nice and tight with no wobble. 

I’m not certain that Dennis Baker actually did the work on this lil rifle or how much work he did on it. The esthetic of the gun remains intact regardless.

The leather seals are still holding out on this 100 year old plus youth carbine. It requires the .180 cal ammo but does ok with the standard .177 – just stay away from the steel bb’s and pellets. img_5993-1img_5994-1

This gun is my all time favorite close range multi ammo shooter. Well, it’s the ONLY multi ammo vintage carbine in the collection. Even though I paid a bit too much for this gun I was not disappointed and remain happy with my purchase. The No. 17 and the Daisy No. 25 from 1917 were sold to me as a pair. We also paid a premium for a No. 103 Model 33 Super Buzz Barton Special. These three guns will be in the collection for a long time.

I’m still on the lookout for: King Chicago, Daisy No. 25 1st var, and a Daisy No. 95 Model 32 Buzz Barton Special (modeled after the King no. 55).

Check out all the break barrels in the collection.

air rifles, antiques, bb guns, Break Action Barrel, CaliAir, Carbines, Collector, Daisy, history, Model C, Picking A Daisy, Picking A Daisy Show, Plinking, Rifles, Video, Vintage

Daisy Model C 1910-1914

So far this Daisy Model C from 1910 is the oldest gun in the CaliAir collection. The Model C was produced between 1910 to 1914. It represents the pinnacle of the break barrels that Daisy first began producing with Markham King in 1886. By this time the lever action guns were gaining popularity and the new pump action No. 25 was soon to make its appearance in 1914 thanks to Fred Lefevere’s new design.

This Model C is in pretty good condition. After 100 years or so the wood is bound to shrink and this creates a wobbely stock to reciever connection. Since they are put together via rivets instead of screws it is not a simple matter to tighten.

The groupings from 15-20 feet away weren’t too bad.  The pre 1933 guns are supposed  to take a slightly larger .180 caliber  however this gun is listed as taking the standard .175 caliber. In this demo we used vintage lead no.2 air rifle shot from Winchester.

The shot tube appears to have been remodeled using solder but the workmanship is good. It functions as it was intended. The black sleeve on the table is silicone impregnated and keeps the gun safe from moisture.

The old Daisy design stamped on both sides of the receiver. There is little rust and the nickeling is about 70-80% intact. Check out the cast iron trigger!

The etching on the receiver is hard to make out but is still readable. This gun is kept well oiled to keep it preserved and only shot on special occasions about once a year. 

The basic design from the early wooden Markham rifles seems to be carried over to the Model C. In fact Markham had released his Model C, Model D, and Model E – all before 1910. The Daisy Model C could very well be a rebranded King as many of Daisy’s guns were.

View more Break Barrel guns here.

View the entire CaliAir Collection here.

air rifles, antiques, bb guns, CaliAir, Carbines, Collector, Daisy, history, King, Lever Action, Model no 155, no.102, no.105B, Picking A Daisy, Picking A Daisy Show, Plinking, Rifles, Video, Vintage

Model 155 the Post War Daisy

World War II was over and Daisy had a few new tricks up their sleeve. With the interupted release of the Red Ryder in 1940 Daisy was ready to go back into production with several models. The 102, 105B, 111, and the “new” Model 155 1000 Shot all are very similar to one another in design. The main difference was shot capacity and barrel finish.
img_5934
The Model 155 intitialy came out of the gate in 1946 with an iron lever. In the video review there was question if the specimen we acquired had a cast iron lever. Test result are in. It’s not cast iron. The black paint is a dead give away that it was aluminum. A magnet confirmed all suspicions.
img_5936
The cast iron lever was only used in the 1946 run and replaced in 1947-1949 with the more common aluminum lever painted black (and typically worn off the lever).
img_5938
The Model 155 was reintroduced in 1952 and by 1953 came with the now standard painted barrel.
img_5937
For perspective consider this. The similar Model 102 first came out in 1933. It has a 500 shot capacity with a blued barrel and was produced until the no 102 Model 36 took its place in 1936 up until 1940. The War broke out and interrupted manufacturing of all BB guns including the Model 102. The Model 102 was officially out of production from 1947 to 1949. The Model 155 with its 1000 Shot capacity took its place on the shelves.
Of course this may have been in due part to the availability of the Markham King Number 55. The Number 55 Repeater 1000 Shot was first manufactured in 1923 til 1931. The King 55 was actually the last of the Daisy manufactured Kings which saw a few iterations (55-32, 55-33, 55-36) until all Kings were discontuntued in 1941.
This was not Daisy’s first 1000 Shot repeater. There was the Bennet from 1903 and the Model 3 in 1904 and the Model B from 1910. Since Daisy “acquired” many of the early BB gun manufacturers it makes a fascinating study discerning what design truly belong to whom.
air rifles, antiques, Collector, Daisy, history, memorabilia, Picking A Daisy, Rifles, Sticker, Vintage

“Stand & Deliver” Stickers are Here!

IMG_0267IMG_8629

First come first serve only 50 made! $4 free shipping. Be sure to include your mailing address! I’ll ship them priority 48 business hours upon receiving your order.

I can currently accept Paypal ! Simply send $4 bucks to pickingadaisy at the gmail and include 1) a US address you’d like me to ship to and 2) the product code (#E000111618).  Also contact me here and let me know you have ordered so I can personally make  sure the sticker gets out to you ASAP!

Or send 4 bucks to:

Picking A Daisy

P.O. Box 1681

Fair Oaks CA 95628


Check out the entire CaliAir Collection here.