Monday, June 1, 2009

Diminishing Marginal Returns

This past week I sold the very nice set of Enkei RPF1 wheels I was running on my RX-8 for its magazine stories. I liked them. They were lightweight, looked fantastic, and most importantly very durable. Unfortunately, they're 19" wheels, and all of my spare tires were for 18" wheels. Buying new tires simply to drive around on fancier wheels is the very epitome of "diminishing marginal returns". The more the price goes up for the tires, the less of a return you get on your money (in this case miles traveled). Since I'm no longer showing my car at events, it's not necessary to have the 19" wheels...

On the other hand, the money has been recycled into another "writing hobby"; a new airgun! Not just any air rifle, mind you, but a new-to-the-market Benjamin Marauder! Suffice it to say that the boys at Crosman were tired of hearing how the US simply couldn't compete in the manufacturing of a quality PCP (pre-compressed propellant) rifle. The Brits, the Germans, even the Koreans were simply cleaning our clocks, at all sorts of price points. First, the introduced the very-affordable Benjamin Discovery which looks like a boat oar with two metal tubes attached to the narrow end. It's an impressive hunting rifle with good accuracy, no recoil, metal construction (except for the trigger area) and great velocities. It as sold, as they say, very well! Released just last year it's out-sold all other PCP models. Instant classic! I'm planning a "Discover-M" project with a stock from James Linthicum and a Discovery I'll have to obtain later. When I somehow finally get paid more money...

In the meanwhile, Crosman listened to what users said they wanted (better stock, adjustable fill pressure, adjustable velocity, match-grade two stage adjustable trigger, floating barrel, multi-shot) and this May kicked the doors down with the new Marauder. Since everyone was nearly out of the first batch, I grabbed a .177 Marauder today from They've still got one left if you hurry! I don't have a pump at this point, and when it arrives, I won't be able to do anything more than simply look at it. Heh. But I'll have one... It's like a quadraplegic buying a limited-edition Harley-Davidson... he can't ride it now, but hopes to one day! Carrot in front of the horse, that sort of thing.

If you're into air rifles, and you're American, and believe in tryin' to buy America-made products, THIS is going to be your next major purchase. I'm anxious to see if it lives up to the hype. The Discovery did so I have my hopes for the Marauder.

At the same time, more of my reviews have been posted at Cruise over there and take a look at "Hammerin' Hank", "Wadcutter Weapon", and "Weapons-Grade Fun" for examples of my writing, if you're curious. If you happen to learn a little about air rifles along the way, well, that's not a bad thing, is it?

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