The Hy-Score 800C “Target Model” air pistol is a U.S. designed air pistol that was manufactured by the Hy-Score Arms Company from 1948 to 1961. Although production ended in 1961, it was still available to purchase until about 1970.
The Hy-Score 800 Target model is a single shot air pistol of a concentric design piston and barrel. That is to say that the barrel runs through the piston all the way to the breech. Thus, rather than the piston moving forward in the usual conventional manner, the piston moves rearwards forcing the air towards the breech and then into the barrel. At the rear of the pistol is a knurled end cap. Turning this anti-clockwise causes the breech cover to open to allow a pellet to be dropped into the barrel. Turning the end cap clockwise causes the sliding breech seal to close. It’s quite a unique mechanism!
To cock the pistol, the release catch on the right-hand side is slid forwards. This releases the combined compression chamber from the grip. The pistol is then “pulled apart” using the grip and barrel which causes a lever to compress the mainspring until it locks against the sear. The pistol is then closed, pellet loaded and it is ready to fire.
There is no safety mechanism although the trigger is not connected to the sear until the two halves are closed together.
In all, there were three versions on the 800. The 800 “B”, “C” and “BB”. The B and C models were blued or chrome-plated respectively and were available in .177 or .22 rifled barrels. The BB, as you’ve probably guessed, is the BB model which was blued with a smoothbore barrel.
There were a variety of plastic or tenite grips fitted to the 800 including brown, walnut, petrified wood, ivory, onyx and mottled white. The most common being brown found on the blued pistols with ivory fitted to the chrome variants. Any models fitted with grips other than brown are very rare along with the chrome model.
Remarkably, this pistol is in incredible condition, shoots well and fits into the collection nicely!
Until next time, happy shooting!