Ataman BP17 Full Field Review
Several weeks ago I was shipped the new Ataman BP17 Bullpup from Pyramyd Air. This was one that really excited me because it’s near the smallest Bullpup ever made at 24″ long. The black soft touch rifle was delivered in excellent condition along with two magazines, adjustment tools and detailed manual.
Ataman BP17 PCP Air Rifle, Black Soft-Touch
- Precharged Pneumatic
- Unique Forward Positioned Cocking Lever
- Cocking Lever can be swapped to either side of the rifle
- Manual Safety
- 5.1lb Overall Weight
- 23.85″ Overall Length
- Integrated Moderator
- 25 Shots per fill
- 100cc Cylinder
- Regulated at 130 BAR
- 300 BAR/ 4,351 PSI Fill Pressure
- Weaver/Picatinny Optics Rail
- 4 magazine storage slots under the picatinny rail
- Beechwood stock with Soft-Touch Overlay
- Includes: Two 7rd magazines, two filling probes (1 Quick Disconnect, 1 threaded 1/8″ BSPP male) and user manual
The BP17 is one of Ataman’s most unique airgun creations. With the bullpup’s overall length just under two feet, the BP17 is built as the ultimate backpack gun crafted to the brand’s exacting standards. Beginning with the stock, the Ataman BP17 features all-weather black Soft-Touch coating that covers the beech wood body underneath. This ergonomic stock is ambidextrous and fits snugly and comfortably in your grasp with a rubberized buttplate and pistol style grip. Its onboard 100cc regulated cylinder is built to deliver up to 25 .22 caliber rounds at speeds up to 840 fps. The rifle includes two 7 round magazines that can be advanced with a smooth forward positioned lever action. When not in use, each magazine can be stored in a groove right below the optics rail.
To keep the rifle backyard friendly, the 14.5” Lothar Walther barrel is fully moderated. The Shroud is threaded for mounting an additional moderator. Last but not least, the BP17 features a two way adjustable trigger that allows the user to customize the pull to their liking. If you want the ultimate backpacker PCP air rifle, you couldn’t do much better than the Ataman BP17. With its convenient size, .22 caliber power, and regulated cylinder, the BP17 is destined for greatness on the range or the trail.
I immediately looked over the rifle that was obviously very tiny, almost scary short at just over 24″ long. The ergonomics of the BP17 is superb and the soft touch coating over the beech wood stock really adds to that. The first thing I did to the Ataman was to mount the HAWKE Vantage 3-12×44 SF scope using some medium rings. The Ataman has a picatinny top rail that really adds to the tactical styling of the bullpup. The scope actually went over the front of the barrel and looked kinda funny so I added a DonnyFL Tatsu moderator that quieted the Ataman down even further, and allowing me to keep the sunshade on the scope.
After mounting the scope and moderator I took several test shots to make sure it functioned well and to get a feel for it. The most obvious feature of the Ataman is the sidelever that’s located on the left side forend. This position of the sidelever makes cocking the Ataman with my thumb very smooth and easy.
The trigger on the BP17 is a two stage but came set near 6oz and felt more like a single stage. The trigger is a bit light but can be adjusted with the provided tools. After some shooting with it I had decided to leave it at the factory set point. The BP17’s cross bolt safety is simple, easy to use and to the point.
Ataman has regulated the 100cc cylinder that fills to a whopping 300 bar (4350psi). This high fill pressure gives the BP17 about 25 regulated shots at over 25fpe. The BP17’s fill port is available to use from either side of the rifle, the probe has a machined male foster that easily adapts to most all fill stations.
The Ataman comes with two 7 shot magazines that are conveniently able to be held just under the picatinny rail. The BP17 comes with a tool that’s used to adjust the magazines in the event they don’t cycle well. These are standard magazines that fit a variety of Ataman models so sometimes they need adjustment that’s fairy easy to do. The tool in short is used to advance the magazine so the pellets load smoothly, this only needs to be done once thankfully.
The following weekend I traveled several hours into the mountains to field test the BP17. Over the next few days I had planned to test a variety of pellets as to find a good match for accuracy. When we arrived to the target shooting area it was very windy and looked as though we would be in for some rain.
The shooting range I normally do all my reviews at was closed for maintenance so this was a good opportunity to test in some real world conditions. Through the chronograph I tested many different brands and weights of pellets, the two that stood out were the 18gr JSB’s as well as the 25gr JSB redesigns. The lighter weight pellets were traveling way to fast and would spit out an occasional flier. The heavier weight pellets performed with much better consistency as well as bucking the wind far better than the lighter ones. The BP17 does in fact give 25 regulated shots at close to 30 fpe, much higher than listed.
After finding what the Ataman liked to eat we moved on to shooting some 50 yard groups, by this time the wind was pretty atrocious.
I set out a moving blanket and used my Caldwell bag to rest on, shooting in the prone position. The BP17 is by no means a bench gun and gives very little room to rest with, this is a pure offhand hunting gun. My 7 shots went quick where I was able to achieve a great group at 50 yards in some pretty awful wind.
Moving on I wanted to practice some offhand shooting so I set out the RX Target System at 25 yards, great tool for hunting practice. The BP17 is a dream to shoot offhand and no doubt the most ergonomically friendly bullpups I have ever shot. The sidelever is unique in being able to cock the rifle with just my thumb, pretty brilliant design. The heavy wind was blowing me around making offhand shots ridiculously difficult. The light trigger was something to get used to as well as having near zero 1st stage, the more I shot it the more I liked it though.
One thing I started to notice was the small indent for the side lever on the right side, it’s like a finger rest.
I have gotten in the habit of keeping my finger out of the trigger area until ready to shoot, a discipline that thankfully I have followed over the years. This little rest really becomes apparent when hiking with the bullpup. Little things like this are never found from a bench and one reason I enjoy doing field reviews. After spending two days with the Ataman in the field I was ready to move on to some live targets out in some remote wilderness.
Today Marley and I traveled another several hours into some remote mountains where we would spend the next two days.
This area offers some of the best habitat for the California Ground Squirrels, as well as being one of the most beautiful places to hunt them. The elevation here is just over 5,500ft and offers thousands of acres of huntable land, most in very rugged steep terrain. The area we set up camp was in a heavily wooded forest at alpine level. This area gets a fair amount of snow in the winter months, so it’s green for most all year long. We wasted no time getting the pack ready and heading out for a full day of hunting. I had brought my new Air Venturi 100ci buddy bottle with me, this little 4500psi bottle is a badass one.
As we headed South I could hear the distant sounds of woodpeckers throughout the forest as well as the chatter of many large Grey tree squirrels. My plan was to head down a small animal trail into a more open pasture area that had many rock outcroppings and Oak trees.
As Marley and I headed down the trail we could hear the familiar BARK of the California Ground Squirrels, they knew we were coming. Marley immediately became excited and was ready to do some long range recovery if of course I could connect some lead to them. My first stop was just under an Oak tree at the edge of a cliff, I filmed a bit here for the enclosed video. After filming for a few minutes I turned around and spotted a good size adult Ground Squirrel sitting on top of a drainage culvert.
I made the shot that gave a nice THWACK sending it flipping over the other side of the drainage culvert. The Ataman shoots offhand like a dream!
Moving on down the trail we came to a rock outcropping with a whole ton of Ground Squirrels crawling around on it. I took several missed shots that ultimately spooked them all down for the next 20 minutes. Hunting Ground Squirrels can sometimes get frustrating having to wait so long in between shots. After a few started coming out I was able to take one with a perfect headshot at 57 yards.
This little BP17 really smacks them down hard loaded with the JSB Redesigns, great hunting pellets.
The wind was off and on depending on the area we were, the deep canyons acted as kind of a funnel for the wind. When hunting areas like this the wind becomes the biggest factor, the key is really to get in as close as possible. Ground Squirrels have great vision so are sometimes very hard to get close to, especially in natural habitat. This is what I call trophy Ground Squirrel hunting and nothing like pesting in large numbers. These animals are very skittish as opposed to those found in farm environments where they may be used to loud noises and people. Most of the time the shots are between 50 and 80 yards depending on how well you can hide yourself from them.
We spent the next several hours getting a total of around 10 kills with a few on camera. This was the first hunt that I had used two cameras to film with and was not sure how the shots would turn out. Please let me know in the comments of the video how you liked it?
By this time it was getting later into the evening so Marley and I headed back to the camp to film some more regarding the Air Venturi buddy bottle. This little 100ci bottle is something I have wanted for awhile and find very useful for someone like me who spends a ton of time in the field. This bottle fits so well in my pack and is the perfect addition coupled with the tiny BP17 bullpup. I’m able to fit both the gun and the bottle into my Alps Outdoorz backpack, really useful.
By being able to pack the gun I’m able to travel much easier with all my camera gear, something that does become difficult with these bigger field reviews.
The Air Venturi bottle fills to 4500psi and is equipped with a very nice large EZ fill on/off valve. The bottle has two gauges,foster fitted fill whip and weighs near nothing. After the gun is filled the line will automatically bleed when the valve is closed. Fast, lightweight, durable and simple make this thing a must have for guys like me. I set up the tent for the night as well as starting a fire to help with the now frigid temperatures in the mid 20’s. This cold really made me rethink wanting to spend the night, nonetheless we would make it work.
The following morning I could hardly wait to start up the Jeep to warm up, we drove up the mountain to try catching some morning sun. The temperature really didn’t move up till around 8:00am so we had several hours of waiting in the Jeep before heading out to hunt. This area has some amazing views and is no doubt one of the more picturesque areas I frequent.
After warming up for a bit we headed through a pasture following a faint animal trail that led towards a large rock outcropping.
The rocks had a few chipmunks frantically moving about, tiny and fast targets. Within a few minutes I was able to take several of them between 30 and 40 yards, tiny little animals that don’t stay still for very long. The Ataman is pinpoint accurate and made for a great tool on the 1″ killzones.
We continued down the animal trail for several miles encountering some deer grazing in the pasture. One of them was very interested in us and gazed for a few minutes before heading into the thick treeline. The wind was picking up pretty heavily but I was still able to connect with quite a few Ground Squirrels with the furthest out to 80+ yards. On a calm day I have no doubt the the BP17 is capable to 100+ yard shots with some fair planning. Many of the Ground Squirrel kills were either inaccessible to recover or they simply would just fall down into their holes. Marley was getting busy on a few of our stops with the total numbering up over 30 kills, most all headshots too.
Our time was almost done here in this beautiful place but was certainly pleased with having so much success. The BP17 performed flawlessly and is in fact one of the most enjoyable guns to carry into the field. The fact that is so lightweight, packable and easy to use makes it one of my new favorites. My time with the Ataman was very well spent and I can clearly say this is a winner of a rifle. Enclosed are my final honest thoughts of this rifle as well as the enclosed review in video form.
- Short (backpack friendly)
- Extremely ergonomic
- Holds magazines on rifle
- Probe has foster fill machined in
- Good shot count
- Great trigger
- Great finish
- Not easy to adjust or tune
- Soft touch picks up debris
- Threaded end cap not easy to remove
- Magazine needed adjustment
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