Tuesday, April 08, 2008

RWS Diana Schutze - Part 3

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Today, I'll finish the report on the RWS Diana Schutze, which is marked on the gun as the model 240. We'll look at accuracy in this report.

I had a head-start on this final report because I already shot a few groups at 21 yards while testing another air rifle. I just wanted to get a sense of how much work I'd have to do to get the Schutze on target. As it turned out, there was nothing to do.

In part 2, we saw that the velocity is right on the specification. With a rifle that shoots below 600 f.p.s., that means light- to medium-weight pellets will probably be best. I chose RWS Superdomes, RWS Hobbys and JSB Exact domes for this test.

Shooting style
I used a modified artillery hold with the firearm laying across the backs of my fingers while my hand was resting on a sandbag. The trigger is still heavy with some creep in the second stage. The creep is entirely predictable, so I pull through it and then the rifle is set to fire. The firing behavior is somewhat abrupt and harsh, though no vibration lingers after the shot.

The first target was shot with RWS Superpoints. They all landed in the black, which was a pleasant surprise. They also showed signs of wanting to group, which was encouraging. Next came the RWS Hobbys. They shot to almost the center of the bull and were even tighter than the Superpoints. The JSB Exacts were last and four out of five were in the black but not as tight as the first two pellets had been. It was time to get serious.

RWS Hobbys went to the right place with no sight adjustments. That's always a good way to start things.

I've mentioned this before but it bears repeating. I seldom shoot as well at the start of a session as I will after some warmup groups. Knowing this, I always try to concentrate when I think I've found the right pellet and hold for a particular gun. It was time to go back to RWS Hobby pellets and get serious.

The rifle holds very neutral without the sensitivity normally associated with a breakbarrel. Perhaps the low power has something to do with it, but I think the Schutze is a natural shooter. The next group of Hobbys was encouraging but not as good as the first group. Then, I realized I had to concentrate on the front sight blade. As much as I shoot, you'd think that would come naturally to me, but it doesn't.

For the next group, I did concentrate on the front sight blade and let the rear notch and bullseye go fuzzy. That's all it took. The group was exactly what I was looking for.

This is what I was looking for. The Schutze can really shoot. This was done by a 60-year-old man who wasn't wearing his bifocals while using the gun's open sights!

Have you spotted what's different about this test, yet? I'm using open sights. The concentration I mentioned is on the front sight blade. I didn't install a scope, and the target shows none was needed.

The Schutze is pretty much what it should be: a light, accurate youth air rifle. It has neutral handling characteristics, so special techniques aren't as critical to accuracy, though they do have to be employed. The trigger could be lighter by half and the cocking effort could also be a few pounds lighter and the gun would be even nicer, but those things don't detract much from a very nice air rifle. I'm glad because I now have one more model I can recommend to parents and to those looking for a smaller, lighter spring rifle for themselves.

If this were my personal gun, I'd tune it to remove the harsh firing cycle and do something about the trigger. I wouldn't mount a scope, because it isn't needed.


At April 08, 2008 6:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

B.B. At what distance did you do your shooting at? When firing a springer I hold the rifle lightly and let if jump natually the way it wants to,but when it does sometimes it jumps of target. How do you keep alight grip,and still hold on target for your follow through. Thanks

At April 08, 2008 8:38 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...

I'm sorry. This shooting was done at 21 yards. I didn't say that, did I?

I used the artillery hold. It's probably the light hold you also use. Here is a blog about it.


By resting the rifle in the backs of your fingers, it isn't going anywhere, so it's easy to follow through.


At April 08, 2008 8:58 AM, Anonymous Scott298 said...

B.B.--Scott2988--I saw the picture of the Beeman muzzle break-rws also makes one specific for the 350, are you familiar with this one? In both cases is there filling involved where the front sight was located-I believe you have to shave off a little metal on the dovetail where the front sight is located-if this is done, at some point is it possible to go back to using the front sight or is this a one shot deal? As always tell your wife I was asking about her and I hope all is well. Can't wait for the next holiday so the "family can get together again"--thanks for the input, Scott298

At April 08, 2008 9:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Both targets pictured today have 4 black rings, plus the center bull. Could you please give me the measurement (outside dia.) of the fourth (largest) ring, so that I can tell if my monitor is showing it in correct size? Yes, I'm trying to compare my shooting to yours, and NO, you have NOTHING to worry about! Thanks, JR.

At April 08, 2008 9:35 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


I've never had to file the dovetail, nor have I heard of it. If you do, however, and you leave enough meat to grab on to, the dovetail would still work.


At April 08, 2008 9:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Got a progress report on the rws improved mount yet?


At April 08, 2008 9:51 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


The smaller group measures 0.40" C-T-C. The larger group measures 0.606". The bull measures 1.573" across the black.


At April 08, 2008 9:52 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


I heard from Leapers it should be here in June, which is a month later than I have been predicting.


At April 08, 2008 10:17 AM, Anonymous Scott298 said...

B.B.--Scott298--In the description of the Beeman muzzle break Pyramyd says that some filing will be required to attach the muzzle break-but with your experience your saying all I have to do is slip it on and tighten the screws? Pyramyd even recommends having a gunsmith do the instalation-I,m confused? Also no comment on the rws muzzle break made for the 350? I'm not questioning your judgement by any means but when you read it in black and white your still saying -no filling involved? Thanks again -Scott298

At April 08, 2008 10:25 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


Here is the problem. You ask the techs at Pyramyd Air who do this sort of thing every day and they tell you their experiences. Or that's what is written on the website. Then you ask me, who may have done this a couple of times years ago. As a matter of fact I have never installed any muzzle brakes on a 350 Magnum barrel.

In my experience with these muzzlebrakes, whose manufacturer changes every two or three years (and so the specs change with them), I have never filed a dovetail. I have also noted that Weihrauch barrels are larger than Diana barrels, but not when the Diana barrel has a sleeve.

When I searched for muzzle brakes on the site, the Diana brake never came up. It still doesn't. And I don't see it linked with the 350 Magnum rifle I checked.

But if there is one, why wouldn't it be best?


At April 08, 2008 11:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, you confirmed my suspicions. I'm a lousy shot! But the good news is--practice is lots of fun, JR.

At April 08, 2008 11:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Let's hear it for RWS Hobby pellets, now my favorite--and so cheap.

I had always assumed that a scope was an improvement over iron sights. The monster scopes used by field target shooters seem to suggest that there is no limit to how much power you want. But is it possible that at sufficiently short ranges or with sufficiently high power, the scope is actually a liability because the jumping of the reticle is distracting and demoralizing? Or is this just a matter of perception, and you are really holding tighter with a scope regardless of what it looks like? My indoor range is too short and I haven't shot enough different kinds of rifles with scopes and without to tell for sure.


At April 08, 2008 12:12 PM, Anonymous BG_Farmer said...

Looks like it shoots pretty well. If it likes Hobby pellets, I bet it would love RWS MK (8.2gr).

You won't get any argument from me about shooting open sights -- much more fun and relaxing, up to about 25 yards.

At April 08, 2008 12:55 PM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


As the range increases, the advantage a scope has over open sights increases. At close range, there advantage isn't very noticeable.

HOWEVER - and this is a very big deal - a field target shooter is concerned about hundredths and even thousandths of an inch. You may not care that your pellet hits 0.080" to the right of where you intended, but someone shooting a .177 pellet through a hole 0.250" in diameter who doesn't want to touch the side of the hole certainly does.

When a pellet touches the side of the target face at the kill zone, it pushes the target face backwards and locks up the target's trigger. When the rest of the pellet breaks off and passes through the kill zone to impact the trigger of the target, it cannot move the trigger, because it is now locked. This condition is called a split.

So, if the object is to hit somewhere on the bullseye at 10 yards, open sights are fine. If the object is to hit exactly where you want to with very little margin for error, a scope may be necessary, even at close range.

It all depends on what you are trying to do.


At April 08, 2008 3:42 PM, Anonymous BG_Farmer said...

Your proviso about scopes for field trial highlight why it holds no attraction for me! On the other hand, I got some AR silhouette animals the other day and found it to be quite relaxing to knock them over (open sights seem more than fine at the recommended ranges).

At April 08, 2008 3:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


That Shutze looks like a nice little rifle. Great groups, by the way.

I got a couple new rifles today; a walnut .22 cal AA ProSport and a .22 cal Beeman R1. Both went through Pyramid. After looking at the beech stock version of the ProSport vs the walnut, there was no hope of going back.

I tried to get a Weihrauch 97 MK3 in .20 cal also, but there were none to be had. Seems Beeman is feeling the dreaded Weihrauch waiting period. And now so am I.

Being the 10 meter pistolero that you are, do you know anything about either the Air Match 600 pistol or the FAS 604? Both are SSP guns. Ever shot either? Preference? I'm shooting an IZH 46M now, but I haven't competed in several years.

Thanks as always!


At April 08, 2008 3:57 PM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


A friend of mine owns both the FAS and the AirMatch. He is also a 10-meter shooter. He says they are quite accurate, but of course not as adjustable as top pistols today.

I have seen both but never shot either. They fall into the Walther LP III category for me. If I ever own a single-stroke for serious competition, it will be the FWB 103 or whatever replaces it.


At April 08, 2008 4:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I have had to remove displaced metal from the barrel on several rifles when installing muzzle brakes. It really just depends on how close the slip fit is. If the inside diameter of the brake is just a thousandth or so bigger than the outside diameter of the barrel, you'll be filing displaced metal from the sight groove. If the brake uses a separate shim, you'll likely be OK.


RWS "Barrel weight Stabilisator 16mm for mod. 34-45 and 350 Magnum .0620"

Beeman Drilled (Ported) new style 0.566"

Beeman Original (ribbed) old style .672"

The Beeman original came with 3 sizing shim inserts to sleeve it down for smaller barrel diameters. Shims can also be made from a pop can in a pinch or brass tubing available at hobby shops works especially well.

Sorry for such a long post. I bought several brakes over the years only to find they didn't fit after I got them home.


At April 08, 2008 4:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Your friend isn't in Hungary currently is he?


At April 08, 2008 4:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I may grab the FAS as it just fits my hand so incredibly well and I'm a sucker for anything well made. (and the price is relatively reasonable) Only problem is it won't compress even a bit of air. I can probably fix it. Remembering your LGR story here...or was it the LGV???

Derrick yet again

At April 08, 2008 4:22 PM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


No. He lives in NYC.

I repaired an LGV. Much easier than a single stroke.


At April 08, 2008 5:34 PM, Anonymous nate in mass said...

Hi BB,
Im in the market for a new scope and i like the Leapers brand. However i want this scope for target shooting and i want a duplex reticule. Do you know of any Leapers with a duplex? Im thinkin in the 4-16x range. Thanks

Nate in Mass

At April 08, 2008 9:05 PM, Anonymous /Dave said...

Doggonitt again BB,

My patience broke last night. My Izh 46 isn't here yet. I asked you about the HW57 a few days ago, and after you reminded me that the Weirauch HW57 has a Rekord trigger (something I'd conveniently forgotten), my resistance broke down entirely and I ordered the used one from PA. Maybe this one will get here shortly. So many guns, so little time and money...


At April 08, 2008 9:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I'm jealous of your silhouettes. That does sound like fun. My chances to shoot tin cans were one of life's highest thrills as far as I'm concerned.


At April 09, 2008 5:41 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


You can always go to the Leapers site where the reticle types are given.


I looked for you and this model is a modified duplex, where the center has mil dots:



At April 09, 2008 5:45 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...




At April 10, 2008 1:35 PM, Anonymous BG_Farmer said...

I highly recommend the silhouettes -- even if you have to put them all at 20 yards, they're good practice, more challenging than cans, but with the same gratifying action on impact. When I've pushed my 10m targets to the day's limit (past the point of improvement), a few cans or the silhouettes are a good way to wrap up, too.

At April 15, 2008 9:59 PM, Anonymous dragonslayer said...

Nice report B.B. I expected no less from you. Thank you so much for your kind words to me regarding my last post here,regarding my fps post from my own Diana 24.(I posted 535 fps shooting Super Points). I must agree with you on all of your report on the new "24". It is a well behaved little springer that is VERY accurate,& not so hold sensative as to turn off a newb. to springer accuracy issues. A fine gun indeed! I recently had the chance to shoot an R-7,Man what a nice gun! I must say however, a Diana 24/240 is also a must have! Hope all is well Mr. Tom,Sorry I have been away so long,Nice to come back here & see all the familiar names again.This is the site that really got me started.A Big hello to my old friends here,Tim (Dragonslayer)

At March 31, 2009 4:59 AM, Blogger Manish R. Karnik said...

B. B.

I am a proud owner of a Diana 24. Its a 1986 model in .177 which I recently bought second hand at the usual premium we pay here.

The gun was misused. Using your excellent tuning guide here, I opened it up to discover loads of oil in the compression tube (the previous owner had warned me about it)AND a few tack nails (no word about those)!!!

The synthetic washer was charred to little pieces and the piston head dented and chipped. I filed it to the required profile and fit a local make synthetic washer which did the trick. Slicon oil and Moly grease as usual and she shoots beautifully. Does 510 odd fps with local match wadcutters. I managed a 1cm, 5 shot group from a rest with it.

It has a non adjustable trigger which is unitised, not sure if its a TO3 or 4.

Very happy with the acquisition.


At March 31, 2009 5:26 AM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...


Finding tacks and nails in the compression chamber is always a shock the first time, but it is a universal thing. Many people thing when shooters run out of pellets they improvise, and I agree with that. I have dug out plenty of them over the years.

Isn't it a source of pride when you restore a fins airgun to working status? Making a synthetic washer isn't easy, so you have done something few other airgunners have had to do. Good for you!


At June 22, 2009 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you use a six o' clock hold?

At June 22, 2009 2:52 PM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...

Yes, I did. If the light it right, the front post goes black and is just a post.


At July 04, 2009 3:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there an actual store that you can buy RWS Hobbys at?

At July 04, 2009 4:07 PM, Blogger B.B. Pelletier said...

Most good gun stores also stock better European airguns like Beeman HW brands and RWS. Also, some larger sporting goods dealers sell RWS brands. They would stock Hobbys.


At September 05, 2009 9:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Diana currently has a great mid-power rifle called the 280, which also comes in a professional version. It is available in germany/europe, but Umarex USA does not carry it! I think this is an oversight and a gap in the RWS line, but they seem more focused on super magnum super expensive guns....but Diana Germany has the full line. It, and others can be seen here:

the 280 is a wonerful gun with a little more power than the HW30s. In .177, it is listed at 810 fps, in .22 it has 640 fps. It weighs just 6.6 lbs/7.7 in the pro version. Its a shame we dont have this in the US. It would be great for younger shooters, and those who want a lighter rifle with mellower shooting characteristics, but the schutze is not quite up to par--from the research i've done. I think it could use a better trigger and a little more power.

I was wondering if this is something pyamyd could special order form Germany/Diana?? I will also check with Umarex about this. I love RWS and have always bought from them, but right now, they just jump from schutze to the very heavy 34/52/54/350's, and I know its probably mostly capitalist reasons for this/marketing etc., but what a great gun this would be for the line. Can it be special ordered??? Thanks.


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