I have a Hatsan Gladius Long precharged pneumatic (PCP) air rifle in .22 caliber that I use to dispatch garden pests and have written a number of posts about it. It’s extremely effective because it has power, is accurate and relatively quiet. The one challenge I have with it is over penetration. It does have adjustable power settings but I find that I can’t go below the “3” setting (out of five) to have the range I need and enough power for a humane kill. The problem is that the domed JSB Diablo 18.13gr pellets I’ve used since the start shoot right through a squirrel if I am going for a heart shot vs. a headshot and really wanted to reduce this so I started reading on pellet types.
First off, I really like JSB pellets. They are made in Czechoslovakia and are really uniform. I shoot them in both my PCPs and have no complaints. I saw an advertisement for their new “Hades” series of pellets and started searching on what people were saying about them.
Basically the Hades are a form of hollow point that really need the power of a PCP to mushroom. The ones I bought at 15.89gr and have a very intriguing shape to the head.
My Real World Review
There are guys out there with chronographs, blocks ballistic gelatin and what not. I’m not one of those guys. However, I can tell you want I’ve noted after about 150 real world shots.
Most of my pest control happens within 60 feet – yes, feet. I set up a target at 30 feet and zeroed my scope. In firing groups, it seemed consistent enough.
Did I see anything different with garden pest control? Not really to be perfectly honest. I can tell you the exit wound was bigger than what the Diablos would leave and it was somewhere around half again the diameter of the pellet.
I still have over-penetration with the Hades and the need to be very careful is still true. Both tree and ground squirrels are small and soft. There’s simply not a lot of mass there to stop a pellet. If you have bigger pests, you might see a difference.
I did one close range headshot of a racoon at the rifle’s highest power setting and did not see a difference over what Diablos would do.
For my use as described above, I did not see a big difference between the Hades and the Jumbo Diablos. The Hades seems to be a decent pellet as long as you have accurate shot placement. I bought a ton of Diablos way back when so I’ll use up my Hades and then go back to my supply of Diablos.
I hope this helps you out.
9/18/23 Update: I am now using Hades pellets in my .22 Leshiy 2 and I do think they make a difference when it comes to dispatching tree squirrels for pest control. It may be the Hatsan just didn’t push the pellet fast enough – I’m not sure.
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