The New Blue Book Of Airguns. It’s Huge!
The new Blue Book of Airguns just arrived at the HAM offices. First impression? It’s huge!!!
Yes, this latest, thirteenth edition weighs-in at no less than 4 Lbs 3 Oz for its 1,008 pages and soft cover. The airgun market has certainly grown over the years and so has the Blue Book.
To emphasize that fact, let’s compare it to the fourth edition, dating from 2004…
The new, thirteenth edition has 1,008 pages. That’s more than 2.6 times more pages than the the 2004 version.
It’s also great value! The 2004 edition was priced at $24.95, that’s 6.05 cents per page. The new Blue Book of Airguns has 1,008 pages and sells for $39.95. A quick calculation shows that the price per page is now just 3.96 cents. How’s that for improved value for money?
Owners of previous editions will see familiar-looking content. There’s seemingly-endless pages of an amazing variety of airguns listed, together with pricing estimates for them in various conditions.
Some manufacturers are given particularly thorough treatment, for example H.M. Quackenbush, as we can see below…
This new Blue Book of Airguns is right up-to-date. In fact, it’s so up-to-date that there’s the occasional model listed that’s not even in U.S. retail sale yet! For example, the Beeman 1357/1358 underlever PCP air rifles that you’ll find on page 197.
And talking of Beeman, your reviewer was surprised to find that the classic QB78 CO2-powered air rifle is listed as “new in 2016” in the Beeman pages (actually page 206).
As many people know, this gun has been manufactured since the 1990s by the Shanghai Airgun Company. Presumably that’s why there’s a “SAG Model QB78” reference in the same product entry. The same gun is – it’s true – listed briefly as the Tech Force 78 on page 865. So maybe that covers it if you know that they’re actually the same air rifle…
And then, the photograph of the Benjamin MagFire on page 21 is not of the actual shipping product but a previous prototype, as explained in this HAM story.
So it is possible to pick holes in this vast work. But, of course, that’s inevitable in such a monumental effort. Like the examples above, they’re pretty small holes and they don’t impact the overall value of the book.
The only other possible gripe is that many of the black-and-white illustrations are very flat, some amount almost to silhouettes. But again, it’s a relatively small issue – and the publishers can only work with the material that’s available.
You can order your copy directly from the Publisher’s website. The price is $39.99, including free USPS Media Mail shipping.
If you have any interest in the history of airguns and don’t have a recent copy of the Blue Book, you need it!