Mendoza RM-200 Final report

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 3
Part 2
Part 1

I finally completed the accuracy test of the Mendoza RM-200. The day was breezy, but the wind was not a problem. I shot at 25 yards, which I felt was in keeping with this type of rifle.

Scoped!
One of our readers suggested scoping the rifle with a Bug Buster, and I had one already set up in rings, so that’s what I used. It was a Bug Buster 2, 6x32mm scope. It fit the rifle very well and the small size of the scope compliments the rifle, but shooting from the bench made the eye relief a little too long. I managed, but it would have been much nicer shooting offhand.

Pellets
From the first test, I knew that neither Crosman Premiers or JSB Exacts would shoot in this rifle. It seems to need a fatter pellet, which is why RWS Hobbys did so well. For this test, I chose pellets that are either fat or have thin skirts that can be blown out into the rifling. The first pellet was a 5.6mm Eley Wasp that is, unfortunately, no longer available. It grouped well. Since it can no longer be purchased, I won’t tease you. It did tell me that the rifle was accurate and that it probably did need bigger pellets.

I also tested RWS Superpoints, Beeman Silver Bears, RWS Hobbys and Logun Penetrators in the 16-grain weight. Well, the Superpoints were a complete bust. The Silver Bears were not much better. Both pellets gave 2.5″ to 3″ groups at 25 yards. Since the Wasps worked so well, I knew the rifle could shoot.

RWS Hobbys shot groups of about 1.5″, which isn’t horrible but isn’t as good as I expected from this rifle. However, I had an ace up my sleeve. One of our readers, powermacsc, got half-inch groups with his new 200 shooting the 16-grain Logun Penetrators, so I saved that pellet for last. And, it did perform well. I got groups between 3/4″ and 1″ for five shots. That’s close to what the Eley Wasps were doing, but the Loguns were ever-so-slightly better.

Technique, technique technique!
Then, I went to work on my shooting technique. I tried all kinds of holds and I balanced the stock at various critical spots. My conclusions are these:

  1. The RM-200 is very sensitive to hold.
  2. It likes the forearm to rest as far out as possible from the triggerguard.
  3. Pellet seating pressure is very critical.
  4. Being a carbine, the rifle wants to be held as loosely as possible.*

*This needs some explanation. When you hold a spring rifle, and especially a breakbarrel springer, you want the gun to move freely when it recoils. However, there is one final trick that the RM-200 really likes. After you have your sight picture, relax and see if the reticle moves. Your goal is to relax with the reticle remaining on target. If it moves when you relax, the rifle will throw the pellet in that direction. I found the RM-200 very sensitive in that respect.

Ambidextrous?
A reader asked about the stock, because I neglected to mention anything about it. The stock is not strictly ambidextrous, having a low comb on the left side, but the shape of the butt is ALMOST symmetrical. A lefty could use the rifle with no problem. The automatic safety is completely ambidextrous, with a lever on both sides of the receiver.

The bottom line
I think the Mendoza RM-200 is a wonderful little .22 sporting rifle. Expect it to shoot groups of 3/4″ to 1″ at 25 yards with good pellets. I suspect that as you become more familiar with your rifle, the groups will shrink because this rifle is very sensitive to how it is held. I don’t know how you could do any better at the price!

39 thoughts on “Mendoza RM-200 Final report

  1. BB,eley wasps are still made in the uk, and in good supply here in .22/.177-5.5mm or 5.6mm,why not in the USA,and they have just started makeing the 30grain magnum for high powerd air rifles to



  2. Nathan,

    Believe it or not, the Eley importer for North American dropped all Eley pellets because they did not know why they should carry them! They were interested in Eley target .22 lr ammo, only.

    That would be okay except that the Eley company will not deal with any other party. I have asked them repeatedly to sell their airgun pellets to Pyramyd Air, and they have always refused.

    Eley Wasps in 5.6mm size are very good pellets for old BSAs, Webleys and other British pellet guns with large bores. And they would also be good for these Mendozas.

    I am happy that you can still get them in the UK. If you ever import .22 caliber Mendoza rifles, try them.

    B.B.



  3. Off topic question…just got the Diana 350 magnum package deal from here where they install the scope for you. It was installed with the mount sitting against the screw which from what I’ve seen in my reaserch might shear off from recoil. I’m new to the sport so appologies to all if this is a stupid question or not the place to ask it but I would appreciate your oppinion. Should the scope be remounted with the pin hanging over the front as suggested in other posts or has this been resolved and stick with the way they have “professionally” mounted it. Thanks


  4. bb,

    in a lot of posts u say that pellets shouldnt really go above 900-950 fps, and if they do, theyre not heavy enough to stabalize. however, there are guns that shoot much faster than that…is it a correct assumption that in the more powerful airguns(gamo hunter extreme, condor .177, rws 350 magnum) the only pellets that would be acceptable are the eun jin pellets? are there any others that will work in very powerful guns around 900 fps?

    dave


  5. 350 Magnum,

    Since you don’t mention the particulars of the type of mount or scope, I will assume a medium-sized scope and a 4-screw one-piece mount. Many people feel that type has enough clamping pressure, and the big screw is all the extra restraint that’s required.

    There may also be a stop pin in one of the small holes in the ramp. You wouldn’t be able to see it with the scope mounted. Use a magnet to determine whether the scope base that comes on the rifle is steel or aluminum. If steel, the mount may work as installed.

    I prefer to hang the stop pin in front of the mount base, but that is personal. Some readers have reported success with the new steel bases by just using the small pin stop holes in the base.

    B.B.


  6. Dave,

    What I say about velocity and accuracy is based on my observations over the years and by the reports from top field target shooters. I have heard reports to the contrary, that pellets can be accurate at 1000 f.p.s., but every time I have tested for accuracy, all pellets have failed at that speed.

    Eun Jins and some other heavy pellets that are no longer available seem to do best when shot at 1000 f.p.s., and I attribute that to their weight. But nothing is absolute. You should test for yourself.

    B.B.


  7. what is up with pyramid air service,there is no accountably for anything they do. they are quick to say sorry, but it does not fix there lack of attention to detail. from the largest airgun site i would expect more, it’s a diservice when they miss important details that cost lots of time to the paying customers.


  8. BB – a while ago, I believe you referred to the AR1000 as being a very good rifle – comparable to the much more expensive R9.

    The AR1000 seems to be a clone of a Norica rifle (Beeman GS1000). My Norica-built Beeman S1 (a close relative of the GS1000) is almost identical to my AR1000, with the exception of a smaller powerplant. The trigger mechanisms look to be identical, and the barrel assemblies are in fact interchangeable.

    May I then assume that the Beeman GS1000 qualifies for similar accolades?

    I’ve had some QC issues with my AR1000, – especially the barrel. Right now, it has a Gamo Shadow barrel fitted to the original breach block (which fixed the accuracy problem).



  9. B.B. I wanted to let you know that I finally bought the Leapers scope and mounted it on my Beaman GH150. I wrote an article about accuracy and have some photos of the groupings on my site.(http://www.airgunweb.com) Let me know what you think if you have time to take a look.

    Thanks for all your advice and expreience!

    Rick in SC


  10. Vince,

    I think you made too many assumptions. Where you lost me was in the build quality. The AR 1000 has an exceptional build quality, which is why I made the association to more expensive rifles.

    Just because the parts are there doesn’t mean they are put together the same way. No, I cannot agree that the Beeman S1 is the equivalent of the R9.

    B.B.


  11. Rick,

    Great groups! I started out buying everything, like you. Eventually, you’ll attract the attention of airgun dealers who will be happy to provide you with guns to test.

    Got to work on the spelling, though. Beeman won’t get ranked in the search engines if you write it as Beaman.

    Keep up the good work.

    B.B.





  12. Field Targetier,

    No, this scope has the adjustment for parallax on its objective. The side knob is the adjustment for the reticle.

    The low price is the reason I keep touting Leapers scopes. If it had a sidewheel adjust and a 30mm tube it would be more, but not that much more.

    B.B.


  13. BB,

    I have a blue streak rifle with a SN 8691E. I know it was made after 1972. Does the letter “E” help date my gun?

    Thank you,

    George



  14. bb,

    I removed the barrel from my Talon SS for cleaning and noticed that the barrel’s exterior is covered in fine powder. What is that? Lead dust? Isn’t it kinda hazardous to be shooting indoors as you recommended when you turn the power all the way down?


  15. BB, I didn’t ask about the S1 being comparable to the R1, but the GS1000 – which I believe to be the “original” from which the AR1000 was copied.

    Your comment about the “exceptional” build quality of the AR1000 does have me a bit confused, though – the one I got last fall certainly was an OK gun for the money (except for the bum barrel) with a very nice trigger mechanism, but the overall workmanship on the rifle certainly wasn’t exceptional. Not even up to my Gamo’s….


  16. Vince,

    Well your experience runs contrary to mine. The two AR1000s I have seen put all Gamos except the CF-X to shame. They are fully equivalent to the R1 in quality and accuracy. Only the trigger and stock wood lag behind, and the wood is pretty close.

    B.B.


  17. Talon SS,

    Yes that is lead dust. I wouldn’t lick it, but no, it doesn’t represent a hazard if you handle your gun correctly and wash your hands.

    As I have reported many times in this blog, I shoot thousands of pellets every year, plus I reload firearm cartridges with lead bullets and I cast lead bullets. Yet my measured blood-lead levels are low for my age group.

    B.B.


  18. B.B.

    Did you have the opportunity to test the oil port? Does Mendoza have any specific oil recommendations?

    Thanks,
    Springer John


  19. Springer John,

    The oil port is easy to use but I didn’t use it because the gun I tested is already over-oiled. I may come back to this rifle and try to reduce the dieseling by oiling later on. High-flashpoint oil may dilute whatever Mendoza uses to the point that it doesn’t burn as readily.

    B.B.


  20. Ya know, maybe I’ll give the AR1000 another shot, I’ve been kicking around getting another gun in .22, and considering the fact that they sell for under $100 it’s not much of a risk.

    One problem I DID have was finding any sort of support (again, this was late last fall). The vendor didn’t respond to emails. I actually called the manufacturer in China, and they gave me the phone # of the importer in Texas. I called THEM, and THEY told me that 1) they didn’t even have any guns yet, and 2) no parts were yet available.

    So where did mine come from? I have no idea!

    The one you tested – was that procured through a regular retail channel or was it a factory sample?



  21. Thank you very much for this great multi-part review of the Mendoza! The barrel sizing that leads to pellet sensitivity is for me a disappointing issue that gives me pause. Otherwise it would make a perfect choice for me and I’ll keep it in mind. Thanks again for the great write-up.


  22. B.B.

    Hey there B.B. I’ve been out of it for the past couple of days. My wife and I just had our first child and I’ve been trying to keep up with work and baby. Anyway, I was at a friends today fixing their computer and since their property is filled with squirrels or “tree rats” has he calls them, I took my new Mendoza over. By the way, upgraded the scope to a 3x9x40 AO, Mil-Dot.

    Once the computer was fixed, I stood at the back door and spotted me a squirrel on a limb about 30′ in the air at 25 to 30 yards away. A single shot took him out of the tree. Unfortunately I had to follow up with a second shot even though the first seemed to hit him pretty hard.

    I wanted to post this because I don’t know that I’d recommend the RM200 for hunting as it don’t think it delivers enough power at distance. 25 to 30 yards is not really that far out and it seems to tempting to take shots that injure rather than expire. I know shot placement is important as well, but I’m not quite good enough to take a head shot off hand at 25 to 30 yards. I kind of wanted your opinion on this matter, so let me know what you think.

    Another question that I have was regarding pellets for the Mendoza rifles. I know the Logun pellets are a good fit but I wanted to know if you had tried the Mendoza magnum pellets or their solid base pellets mentioned on the product page for the RM-2000? I need to place an order soon and wanted to know if they were worth trying.

    Last thing, I’ve added a Contact Us page to my site (http://www.airgunweb.com) with all my contact data. Hope to hear from you!

    Rick


  23. Rick,

    As you have learned, a lower-powered rifle like the RM-200 has to hit the squirrel in the head. Limit your shots to the range at which you can do that with certainty.

    I prefer a domed pellet for the reasons of accuracy and penetration. The Logun pellet seems like a good one for this rifle, but there are many I did not try. I’d look at Gamo pellets next..

    B.B.




  24. B.B,

    This looks like a nice rifle. What type of stock do you prefer generally, wood or synthetic? Are there differences between the two, besides looks?

    Thanks,
    Ethan



  25. bb,

    i recently bought a mendoza rm-200 and im thinking about getting the gel shooting support. i was wondering how does the gel pad affect accuracy?

    Kyle


  26. Kyle,

    As I reported in the blog, on some guns the gel pad is the finest support you can use. On others it doesn’t work as well as your hand.

    I didn’t test it with the RM 200. Great rifle, by the way.

    B.B.


  27. bb

    i have several things that concern me first, my rm-200 is sometimes firing on the first stage of the trigger not the second stage, it only happens once every couple hundred shots. is just my rifle or does happen to anybody else?.also the owners manual says to lubricate every 200 shots with silicone based chamber oil, is crosman’s pellgun oil the right type?Thanks alot

    Kyle


  28. Kyle,

    I didn’t have the trigger problem so no comment there. But DON’T lubricate your rifle. It has way too much oil in the chamber as it comes to you. Put not less than 5,000 shots through before thinking of lubricating, or lube only if the piston seal starts squeaking.

    B.B


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