GUN REVIEW: Pyramyd Air’s S&W Model 586

Air Plinker Extraordiniare

Review and photographs by Pascal Pierme from Long ago

I was looking for a gun. Not a real gun, but something I could use for target practice in my house or studio, and safely develop gun-handling skills. I am not a shooter by trade or hobby, but I wanted my new interest to look and feel just like a real gun. I also wanted it to provide some back pressure or a bit of recoil.

PHOTO 3 Gun is case
My Model 586 pellet gun came in a case that was well padded with proper cutouts for all the extras.The S&W Model 586 looks and feels just like a real gun. The model I reviewed was the 6-inch barrel version.

While perusing Pyramyd Air’s website, which is filled with all sorts of air gun options for any gun enthusiast, from pistols for plinking all the way up to .50-caliber air hunting rifles, I settled my sights on the S&W Model 586 revolver with a 6-inch barrel. It’s a bit of a cowboy gun to me, but the simplicity appealed to my senses. When I received my package in the mail – no FFL processing is a nice benefit – the revolver came in a solid box, just like a real gun, with proper foam padding and inserts for all the components. When I picked it up, I was pleasantly surprised to feel that the weight gave it a genuine feel. The gun did not come with an orange tip, as I had somehow expected that all non-real guns had them, but this made it look even more authentic. I later learned that orange tips are only found on airsoft guns that fire plastic BBs.  Pellet guns and steel BB guns do not have this.

My new Model 586 came with two 10-round pellet clips, a CO2 cartridge, although I purchased several CO2 cases when I bought the gun, and an extra front sight.

PHOTO 4 Cartridge in grip
The CO2 cartridges are loaded into the grip by unscrewing a tensioning screw.

The grip is made of hard rubber, so it felt strong and nice in my hand. I could actually put pressure on it without slipping like you might find if it were made of plastic. After reading the instructions – and thank goodness I did – I found that the CO2 cartridges that power the gun are located inside the grip. There are specific steps to take when replacing the cartridge, such as having to put one side of the grip on first before the other and in a certain manner.  It was easy to understand once I read the directions. There is a tensioning screw that keeps everything solidly in place, which is good.

PHOTO 8 Full Target
The trap target I created was made using a wooden crate and a piece of cardboard over the front and a padded interior. 

After I loaded my CO2 cartridge and pellets, I started firing onto a target that I made. If you are using this gun inside, you will definitely need a hollow target or one that has some depth or density to literally trap the rounds as they hit. The ricochet factor is pretty impressive, so eyewear is recommended for anyone in the area. The target that I built measures 24 by 24 inches and is about 2 inches thick. I used cardboard for the fascia and on the front stuck Shoot*N*C targets, which are great because of their reactive colors, plus you can just keep sticking them on top of each other. If you want to buy a trap target, Pyramyd Air has those too. I would recommend the Leapers UTG Accushot Pellet & BB Trap to avoid all the trouble I went through.

The accuracy was pretty impressive and at an initial 12-foot range, I was achieving about 1 minute of angle shooting single handedly, and about 5 MOA at 25 feet. As for the pellets, they are powerful enough to penetrate the target and front cardboard. Don’t think that just because this is an air gun that there isn’t enough power. You would be mistaken.

PHOTO 6 Target at 12 feet

The cartridges that I had lasted for about 50 to 70 rounds, which I thought was pretty fair. The one thing I noticed was that once I started getting to the end of a CO2 cartridge and tried to continue shooting, the pellets started to jam in between the clip and barrel. This was simply from lack of force to propel them through, but something to note. Instead of counting all my rounds, I found that when I started to hear a little bit of a lag between the gun firing and the pellet penetrating the target, this was my signal to replace the cartridge. Once I did that, no more jams.

PHOTO 5 Jammed clip
After about 75 or so rounds, the air pressure to propel the round was no longer sufficient and started to cause a jam between the barrel and the clip. Knowing when this lag is likely to begin is key to avoiding this common problem with air guns.

If I have one negative thing to say, it would be about the cartridges, and this is not a negative on anything but the industry overall. I am a big recycler but I have no idea what to do with the spent CO2 capsules. It would be nice to have guidance on how to dispose of them instead of simply throwing them away. My research has shown that most places, like recycling bins and scrap-metal yards, simply won’t take them. That is a shame.

PHOTO 9 CO2 Cartridges
CO2 cartridges are very convenient and allow you to take your gun anywhere unlike a compressor-required model. Check to see where you can recycle these CO2 cartridges because many recycling places simply won’t take them.

Overall, I love this gun. I love the realistic feel, the grip, the power. Even if it is not a real gun, it did exactly what I wanted it to do. Couple this with excellent customer service and you have a winner. When I called Pyramyd Air, I spoke to Tyler Patner who not only took the time to break everything down for me, but also sent me links to all sorts of air guns that fit my requests. Patner explained the benefits of each, what I would need because I wouldn’t have known what to get, the differences between a CO2 cartridge gun and a compressor pressurized gun – there are differences and you should not assume you know what you want without talking to them. Overall, it was a really great experience. Bravo! ASJ

PHOTO 1 Smith-Wesson-586-4inch-Revolver_SW-2255000_pistol_5

Editor’s note: If you want a plinker or high-quality air gun, visit Pyramyd Air at pyramydair.com or call  (888) 262-4867.

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