RWS Diana 350 Feuerkraft in .177: Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

Photos and test by Earl “Mac” McDonald


The RWS Diana 350 Feuerkraft is a budget version of the 350 Magnum powerplant. It still comes with open sights, so nothing more to buy.

This test has been requested many times and for over a year. I reported on the RWS Diana 350 Magnum in .22 caliber way back in February 2006. Although that report was an early one with only one short part, the real objection has been that I tested the .22 caliber rifle. Those making the request for a retest wanted me to test the .177.

For rifles in the 350 Magnum’s power class, I feel that .177 is a waste of energy. They shoot the lightweight pellets too fast for accuracy and they waste a lot of potential power because the .177 bore is too small to transmit the energy. But, people kept right on asking; and when you wore me down, I finally saw the light. So, here’s the test you’ve asked for.

We selected the 350 Feuerkraft model for Mac to test, but the performance will be the same for all 350s, regardless of the name. The powerplant remains the same, regardless of how long the barrel is, what’s attached to the metal or what stock it sits in.

The Feuerkraft 350 is the lowest-priced of all the 350 models. If you plan to build up a custom rifle, this would be the place to start. The one advantage a .177 has over a .22 is a flatter trajectory. Although the .22 owners of the 350 praise it for having a flat trajectory already, there’s no denying that the faster .177 pellets will go farther and flatter. That’s something a hunter will value.

I told Mac that my impression of the 350 was very different from other Diana air rifles. The stock is slender and feels very different than the fatter stocks on the sidelever models or even the stock on the 460 Magnum underlever. It feels long and slender — a rifleman’s stock, if you will. I’m most reminded of shooting a 1903 Springfield whenever I hold a 350 Magnum. It has that long, slim, purposeful feel, as though you know it’s going to shoot okay before you fire the first shot. I asked Mac to see what he thought, and he reported that the feeling was the same for him.

All 350s are large air rifles, make no mistake. They’re not plinking guns! They’re made for hunting and pest elimination and whatever other shooting leads up to those endeavors. It’s 48.3 inches long, with an almost 20-inch barrel. The pull measures 14.25 inches.

The T05 trigger breaks at just 32 oz., and Mac reports that the firing behavior is dead calm. The first-stage pull has a definite stop point where stage two begins, and the let-off is as crisp as one could hope for. The cocking effort is a whopping 54 lbs., so, again, it’s not a plinker. That sort of flies in the face of the advertised specification of 33 lbs. cocking effort, and we wanted you to know before buying. Also, be aware that the barrel comes through a very long arc when the rifle is cocked. It goes way beyond 90 degrees and reaches a point where the geometry no longer helps in the cocking effort.

The wood is beech, without figure and finished a medium brown. The wood work is well done except the cocking link scrapes the clearance slot cut in the bottom of the forearm. The Feuerkraft has a fully ambidextrous stock without a Monte Carlo comb or raised cheekpiece, so it works for everybody. The stock is also uncheckered, which is why this is the lowest-priced model in the 350 lineup. The buttpad is solid black rubber and well-fitted to the stock. Mac commented that the comb is low enough to accommodate a low-mounted scope, if such a thing still exists in the world of airguns.

Mac wanted to test the rifle with open sights and then with a scope. But, as we were talking about the test, he discovered that he could not remove the front sight, so he added a test with a Mendoza peep sight. You may remember that sight from the time I did the Bronco test and tried to mount it. It was too high for the Bronco, but Mac thinks it’ll work okay on the 350 Feuerkraft. At least, it’ll work good enough for us to compare regular fiberoptic open sights to a peep sight.

Mac’s observation of the fiberoptic sights that come with the rifle are that the fiberoptic rods grow larger in strong light and cause problems with sighting precision. He’d prefer plain open sights, but I told him a trick I use when shooting with fiberoptics. I keep the rifle in the dark, so it cannot gather any light. If the target is then brightly lit, the sights look like a simple post and notch without any fiberoptic light. I told him that after he shot the rifle for record, put in time to use my technique when shooting with the peep sight. So, we shall see what kind of difference there is between fiberoptics and unlit sights.

Mac says the sight radius of just over 19 inches is long enough for great precision; but, with both sights so far from the shooter’s eyes, the sights look like they’re mounted on a carbine instead of a rifle. That’s another area in which the peep sight will have the advantage.

Customer reviews of the 350 Magnums are relatively high for spring rifles. People remarked that the build quality is excellent and accuracy was well above normal. In fact, even those who rated the rifle as average gave it high marks for accuracy.

So, lovers of magnum .177s, you’re finally going to get your wish as Mac dives into this rifle. He’s going to shoot it with fiberoptic sights and a peep sight, then he’ll mount a good scope and test it again. By the time this report is completed, you should know whether the 350 is for you and which caliber to get.

86 thoughts on “RWS Diana 350 Feuerkraft in .177: Part 1

  1. Dear BB,

    Hope all is well,

    I really need your urgent help. I know this is off topic, I have the 350 Diana in .22 and I love it. Although I prefer open sights and the one I have does not have that so I strapped it with a scope. Brilliant quality. Anywho, I have come across a webley patriot. I’ve done my research and found out that originalbritish webley patriots are no longer made in the UK, but Turkey. The one that I have my sights set on is used, haven’t seen it but obtained pics from the buyer. I want an open sight rifle that packs power like the 350 and has similar quality. How does the webley compare ? How can I tell if it’s the British version. It has the Webley & Scott LTD Birmingham England on the gun. Is it the British one ? Got a few pics I can send over for confirmation if you like. I would really appreciate your response. It’s in .22 (5.5) cal.

    Faris


    • One easy way to tell the difference between British and Turkish Webleys is by the forearm screws – the British guns will have angled screws (they point up and in) while those on the Turkish guns are horizontal.

      Paul in Liberty County


    • Faris,

      I think all the Turkish Webleys have a strange scope rail atop their spring tube. The slots are Weaver-width but look uneven, as if they were filed by hand.

      The UK gun looks smooth and properly finished, by comparison. Of course if you haven’t see both, how can you compare?

      Follow this link to a genuine UK-made Webley Patriot:

      http://www.pyramydair.com/blog/2007/01/new-webley-patriot-part-1.html

      In the text I call this a “new” Webley Patriot, but that was because Webley lied about it. I found out later that they shipped UK-made parts to Turkey and simply assembled them there. So that is what a UK Patriot looks like.

      A Turkish Patriot is a much uglier, less-well-finished rifle.

      I hope this helps you.

      B.B.


  2. B.B.

    That is some really brutal cocking effort for a long barrel and cocking stroke. Does this rifle have a very long power stroke?

    twotalon


    • B.B.

      Forget the question about the power stroke. I read the other review you mentioned, and I see that this is a long stroker.

      twotalon


  3. B.B.

    My Titan is still hang firing if I leave it cocked overnight. Click….delay (around 1 second)…..bang.

    Not leaving it cocked too long would be the easiest soultion. Do you think it will eventually quit doing this, or am I going to have to case harden the sear?

    twotalon



      • Not on the piston catch. Only around the edges of everything in case of rubbing against things,. And with a stone, not a grinder.
        The only part where power was used was on the bottom of the first sear where the trigger roll pin runs against it (it was rough). That was done carefully with the fine polishing stone on a dremel.

        I have re cocked it and am going to see if it screws up after 6 hours.

        twotalon


    • TwoTalon: Send it back to Crosman if it’s under warranty, otherwise it’s new parts time. I’ve had a similar problem with a couple steel spring Quests I’ve worked on. Some won’t stay cocked or won’t fire. It doesn’t get better, and they aren’t up to staying cocked for a long time either. Take care,Robert.


      • I will get a new sear if I can, and if I need to …provided I can get a part number. Doubt if it will be any better than the present one.

        Depends on how the thing works over time. If it gets to hanging up after a couple hours, then it gets some work.

        twotalon


    • twotalon,

      You definitely need to have a closer look at that trigger mechanism. Whether it’s hardening or a burr or even if a piece of dirt has slipped in with the pivot pins, it needs to be fixed.

      B.B.


  4. B.B.,
    I have always been intrigued by the Diana 350 magnum series, as I’ve been a Diana fan since I got my 54 years ago. Good quality all the way around. BTW, you recommended the 54 to me way back in the beginning before we ever met, and it has played out well. I am finally back at home in the cold weather again and plan on being around more. The Shot Show experience was mind boggling and I’ve got a little report, from a different perspective, in the works.
    Lloyd


  5. Interesting. My first air gun was a Diana. Probably like maybe 35 years ago? Maybe a Model 34 I think! Then I moved up to a Model 3X (I want to say maybe a 36 or 38 Magnum?) “Magnum” The other one just wasn’t powerful enough. Plus I let some neighborhood kids shoot it, and one cocked it and pulled the trigger even though I had instructed them not to do that.

    Man I was so angry I could have beaten him to death with the butt of the gun. I bent it most of the way back and it shot fine but ruined my enjoyment of the gun and I sold it.

    Also owned a Diana 5G and it was a real nice shooter but very hold sensitive. Now I have no Diana guns and since they are mostly springers don’t anticipate getting one either.


    • pcp4me,

      We need to tell the newer readers that by firing the rifle with the barrel broken open, the neighborhood kids bent the barrel. You allude to that, but you never come out and say it. That practice can also crack the stock.

      B.B.


  6. The 350 was my second spring-piston rifle. What a beast as respects recoil. Probably the hardest of all my rifles to shoot accurately due to that recoil. I picked mine up as a return at a large box store – great price – with scope. I found out why it was a return – every and I mean every screw was loose – scope mounts, scope rings, stock screws. Previous owner probably couldn’t hit anything after a dozen firings. This rifle really benefited from a Lock-tite or equivalent treatment. Plus mine is .177.

    Fred PRoNJ



      • Yep and responded on yesterday’s blog. I want to do a bit more research so I don’t mess things up but the key question I am wondering is am I trying to make this rifle into something it was not intended to be? Even if I successfully re-crown the barrel, is the rifling and breech up to providing better accuracy?

        Again, thanks for that great tip, Brian.

        Fred PRoNJ



        • Fred,

          If you are open to advice from a non-technical person who doesn’t own a chrony, here’s my two-cents :).

          The crown job may or may not help — most of the time they have no effect, but you’ll know it is not likely the problem if you do it. Except for some really cheap Chinese guns and old abused firearms, crown wear and defects are vastly overstated on the net. If its really bad, best just to cut it off and recrown.

          More importantly, push a few pellets through the breech and bore — if resistance is consistent, maybe a little more at the muzzle, you’re good, although you can probably get a little better consistency by polishing the bore — esp. if you can see machine marks or hints thereof. If it is tight at the breech, loose in the middle and whatever at the muzzle, it is unlikely to shoot well. In the case of a tight breech, first chamfer the edge (you could even ball lap it like the crown if you want, although it is not as critical), then check again. If it is tight ahead of the “loading area”, you could try selectively lapping the tight spot with some more aggressive compound. If it is tight there, you’re likely to do little harm, as it most likely won’t shoot well at all. None of this will turn it into an LW barrel, but you might learn a little about what is going on, and the risk is less with a rifle like than than a nicer one. If the loose spot is at the muzzle end, its pretty much hopeless, unless you can cut off the barrel :).

          Some of the best pellets for checking are the heavy, soft lead ones, like SuperDomes and Meisterkugeln. Even better if you can get some of the JSB’s with marked head size. The smaller pellet you can get better results with, the more likely you are to shoot a wide variety acceptably.


          • Another great idea and something I should have done to begin with! Thank you BG and you can borrow my Chony anytime you want.

            Fred PRoNJ


    • I don’t think the manufacturers either read these blog comments or, if they do, they ignore them for the value they could bring to their products and literature. Then again, they might not care about a 10% – 15% return rate on products?

      I visit the “Bargain Cave” at Cabelas nearly every time I am there and without fail, there are between 10 to 20 magnum springers in the product return racks. I wouldn’t touch them with a 20 foot cattle-prod, as most have been shot empty chamber, or barrel snapped or worse. Those that were shot properly, were shot loose as Fred mentioned.

      How hard would it be for spring gun makers to print in LARGE letters on page 1 of their instruction manuals… THIS IS A HIGH POWER SPRING OPERATED AIR GUN. DO NOT EVER SHOOT IT ON AN EMPTY CHAMBER OR WITHOUT A PELLET. DO NOT EVER PULL THE TRIGGER UNTIL THE GUN HAS BEEN COCKED AND LOADED AND LOCKED IN PLACE (BREAK BARREL) WITH THE SAFETY ON. AFTER THE FIRST 100 SHOTS, CHECK ALL OF THE EXTERNAL SCREWS IN THE STOCK AND TRIGGER GUARD, ETC, AND FIRMLY RE-TIGHTEN ANY LOOSE SCREWS INCLUDING ANY SCOPE MOUNT FASTENERS.


      • Brian, Brian, Brian. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

        Where in the world did you get the idea that instruction manuals are read? Like retread tire carcasses on the highway, instruction manuals are cast aside the minute the airgun box is ripped open. In fact, most shooters probably think they know everything. Plus, it’s JUST an airgun, so why would you need a manual in the first place?

        Sarcasm meter on high, please.

        Edith




            • Heck, my wife never read a new car manual in her life. Last week, a trouble light came on and she called me at work to tell me the car was out of oil 500 miles after I had changed it! Turned out it was the “check engine light” aka malfunction indicator lamp. It came on because she was low on fuel! I know, it shouldn’t have but it did. It went out when she filled the car up.

              I think most of the World doesn’t read instruction manuals.

              Fred PRoNJ


              • No wonder she doesn’t read them… Have you seen the size of those things!
                I helped translate some of them and it can get BORING.
                I remember one we did for big rigs, I think it was Western Star where they were explaining what to do in case of a fire in the truck(seems quite natural to me: GET THE F*** OUT) I wanted to change the procedure they wrote to “quickly get out and run around the truck with arms in the air screaming like a school girl” just to see if some one was reading this stuff.
                The things we want to write in those things sometimes.
                I love automotive stuff almost as much as I like airguns yet those owners manuals get sooooo boring, no wonder no one reads them but then again if they did maybe more people would use the turn signals ;-)

                JF



            • Your unbelievable… We can’t pass one by you can we? How could you tell by reading just a few sentences over a computer screen…

              OK I read most part of most airgun manuals…

              OK, ok, I read some part out of some airgun manuals, how’s that?

              I also take a look at the nice little drawings and/or pictures inside the booklets and if there’s a part in french I’ll read it to see how’s the translation and if they list service centers I’ll look where they are to see if there’s one in Canada.

              Oh you’re good, you’re really good.

              JF


        • I do read every manual, and read it first. I often download the manual and study it as part of the decision on what to buy. I know I’m a nerdy geek or a geeky nerd. The warnings ought to do their (legal) job just by being in the manual, but maybe they should be printed on a box seal that was reasonably difficult to remove. Maybe the carton should have one of these Hallmark Card style players in it from which a suitably scary deep voice reads them aloud to the carton opener, every time the carton opens from any side or end, for the first ten tries.

          You can lead people to intelligent safe behavior, but you can’t force them to put it into practice.

          But it would help if the drawings were better done and accurately and correctly labeled. I won’t name any names, but some aren’t.

          pz


  7. Morning B.B.,

    I’ve had a Diana 350 Magnum in .22 caliber for about 3 years now and it is my go to springer hunting gun. If I do my part, it’s a one shot napper–spring goes twang and target takes a nap up to raccoon and possum size critters.

    Bruce


  8. Hello BB
    I have this Feuerkraft in 22 and love the stock for its unique slender, simple look as well.

    Im curious to know why the front sight is not coming off. Im thinking of buying an RWS barrel sleeve to replace the front sight in conjunction with a scope. Im wondering what was preventing you from removing it .

    Also is it true that we wont need a barrel droop compensator for this gun when using a scope?


    • Riock R.,

      I think Macs rifle may have the front sight held on with epoxy. In which case a heat gun will be needed.

      Yes, the 350 alone, of the Diana breakbarrel line, has the reputation of not needing a drooper scope mount.

      B.B.


  9. B.B.

    This version of 350 really looks like an old trusted military rifle. I lilke its shape – really slender, just like Mosin, Mauser or Springfield. Maybe just a bit more space between the trigger and the butt, as common 350′s stock feels a bit short for me.
    We call usual 350 “mare” because of its kick. Does this new stock make it somewhat different?

    duskwight


  10. I think the worst thing about a lot of the RWS rifles are the cheesy plastic foresights they fit to their rifles. The fiber optic sight has no foresight protector, so be careful not to break the tru-glo foresight blade. They should offer the metal globe foresight, as fitted to the RWS 34 as the standard fitment to this otherwise fine rifle.




    • Interesting, my B30 has not only not broken my scope but not even moved its zero while shooting at 900 fps. Moreover, this scope is a cheap Leapers 4X32. I understand that the B30 is a slavish copy of the RWS 48, so I wouldn’t expect any serious structural differences.

      Matt61


      • Matt61, the B30/B21 aren’t really copies of the Diana sidelevers. Most parts don”t interchange, and there’s a variety of design differences. The triggers aren’t even close to being a similar mechanism. It follows the general layout and can use the same seal and spring, but that’s about it. More of an imitation than a copy, I’d say.

        That’s different from the B20/B26 vs. R9 comparison… despite dimensional differences those guns are quite close.

        The AR1000/Beeman GS1000 (Norica Marvic, if I’m not mistaken) takes that to a different level. That’s more of a clone, I think all the parts interchange.


  11. Hey B.B. & Mac,
    When do you think you’ll get to the last part in the R-7 test? I’m hoping the accuracy wil be on par with the FWB 124 from part 11. We are on pins and needles…well, some of us anyway.
    hm


    • hankmcrae,

      I am sorry, Hank, but Pyramyd Air has asked Mac to send that rifle back to them, so they can examine it. There won’t be another report on it.

      B.B.



  12. Off subject question here, but which is better: Daisy Powerline 15XT, or the Crosman P10? They are both the same price at Wal-Mart and the same fps.

    Conor


  13. I have the 15XT. I don’t shoot it much. It is BB only and in my garage that is a no no. The barrel is not rifled and with BBs it is not too accurate.


  14. Isn’t there a parable about imploring the judge until he just gives in for his piece of mind? I’m a little confused about the performance of .177 at magnum power. Too fast for accuracy is not good but flatter trajectory is. Do these add up to a net positive or negative? I’m a great fan of the RWS 350 series and even better disposed towards a budget model.

    Victor, years of competition experience eh? Fill me in. What model Anschutz did you shoot? And in cleaning targets at 100 yards, you’re talking about prone right????

    Chuck, yes, you’ve made me see that my criteria for most dangerous predator was rather crudely anthropomorphic and based on size, strength, and speed for which I make no apology. Here the mosquito would fail badly while doing a great deal of damage. But it is true too that nature has evolved all sorts of competitive attributes besides the obvious ones I was thinking of. I understand that hippos in addition to capsizing boats and trampling victims also bite them in half. There is a reason that crocodiles do not mess with them. The crocodile is also an interesting contestant. I was watching a video of a Thai circus where the guy was supposed to put his arm in a crocodile’s mouth and quickly withdraw it. He tested very carefully by rapping the croc on the snout several times with its mouth open. No movement. So he smiled to the crowd, bared his arm, inserted it into the mouth, and Whammo. The jaws snapped down. Then, the “death roll” occurred as the croc rolled wildly which they do to drown their victims and remove limbs. By the way, have you ever seen crocodiles mating. They stroke each other with their little armored legs. Very bizarre. It was also funny to watch a polar bear attacking a herd of elephant seals. You would think this would be paradise for the bear with those slow-moving 12,000 masses waddling slowly towards the ocean. But the seals were so huge and round and had such thick blubber (4 inches) that the bear could not get purchase and slid off. Even obesity can be a good thing.

    Mike, I hear the UP is very pristine and quite the ideal place to have fun with guns. Three AK’s! I’m jealous. But I did find the AK that hits the spot for me: the SGL 23-61, a California-legal AK in 7.62 X 39. I’d say that’s a monument to the Second Amendment and ingenuity. It has a magazine lock kit.

    On another subject, I was watching the trailer for the new red riding hood film. Beautiful girl and premodern village terrified by a werewolf in a creepy forest. I don’t enjoy being scared and have never liked horror films probably for that reason. Could the vigor behind the Second Amendment lie partly in the way a gun in the hand can set these fears at ease? Stretching the Amendment a bit, I can see myself in the woods with an AA12 automatic shotgun. A silver bullet would not be a consideration. It would be more like: “Why grandmother, you’re all over the scenery.” However, the Werewolf disguises itself in human form, and naturally keeping your AA12 pointed the right way is a concern.

    Matt61


    • Matt61,

      Yes, it was prone. Of course, I did also shoot 4 position (50 feet and 50 yards), and I also shot 3 position ISU. The only other position that I could clean targets in was kneeling. My last year at Camp Perry, under rain and wind, I shot a 399 (obviously a 200 and a 199) in the kneeling position. I was pleased with that because of the conditions. Of course, indoors, cleaning in the kneeling position was much easier. I used Anschutz 1411 prone, 1407 standard, and 1413 freestyle rifles. I mostly used the 1413, and with it became a member of the NRA’s 1600 club. I used Eley Tenex (Red) exclusively for prone matches (NRA and ISU). I used Eley Black for 50 meter (ISU) practice, and Remington Target ammo for everything else. I also experimented with Winchester Target ammo and had decent results. Within 50 yards, the type of ammo didn’t make much of a difference to me. Cleaning 50 yards was almost easy. 100 yard and 50 meter targets are more difficult. As I’m sure you know, the 50 meter targets are not only further away than the 50 yard targets, but the scoring rings are also smaller.

      Victor


    • The UP of Michigan is ready and waiting for you. Lots of state land and few people. While the winters can be long and cold, the summers are mild and pleasant. Also, the winter weather tends to keep the Rif Raf away. So what to do all winter? Well, when it’s not too cold, our local Rifle Range is open all winter. The staging area has a wood stove so you can have heat, just start a fire. Rabbit season is open all winter so you can get out on snowshoes when ever you feel like it. Also, lots of us also run snowmobiles which is great fun. I have a Ski-doo MXZ 500 I bought used three years ago. I also load a lot of the ammo I’ll shoot next summer during the winter. I also keep an airgun ready to keep the Red Squirrels out of the bird feeder. Right now I’m using a scoped Diana 52 in .177. I even find some time to work some too. Got to pay the bills!

      Mike



  15. I’ve owned a .22 RWS 350 Magnum now for a few years. At the time I thought I was purchasing the last airgun I would ever need or want. A few years and a few airguns later I still have the 350. Overall it is a nice airgun, but as mentioned above anyone looking to buy one should realize this is a big heavy long airgun. Add a scope and you have even more weight. The trigger and finish are nice. The recoil is heavy. In fact my gun came as a package deal from PA and my first scope mount sheared the bolt off at the back of the scope rail. I have since purchased the RWS Lock Down Scope Mount and the problem seems fixed. The scope is currently experiencing some problems holding zero and will not adjust properly, so I’m in the process of remedying that problem. It’s above my pay grade to decide whether the recoil caused the scope problem or whether it was a scope issue. Overall shooting the 350 with open sights seems almost more enjoyable. Without the scope the gun seems to balance better and shoot smoother, plus the iron sights on the 350 Mag are quite nice. Bub


    • I think if the recoil sheared the bolt off, that same recoil will break scopes too. Basically, many of us have been down a similar road…1) out of the box mounts fail very soon on, b) get stronger mounts and transfer recoil further into the scope, c) further “bomb-proof” the mounts and start buying scopes that are also bomb proof, d) sell or return the RWS and find a PCP or Weihrauch gun without the above characteristics and issues.

      Too much good money after bad for guns that are harsh shooters, hard cockers, heavy, full of plastic sights and triggers and with barrels that DROOP? Something is wrong when a company (RWS/Diana) actually sells a scope mount to compensate for barrel droop in it’s own guns!?


      • Brian, you summed up my feelings quite well. It’s just too much gun for me to shoot well for any meaningful amount of time. Plus problems with scope etc only add frustration. My current favorite airgun is the little Discovery, I even use the hand pump most of the time. It’s odd you mentioned Weihrauch, I’ve been trying to talk myself into buying one their HW30S models. That one looks like a great backyard gun. Bub


        • My experience with the HW guns has always been a good one. Fit, finish, overall quality, Rekord 2 stage triggers with precision parts, etc.

          I have and have had, models 77, 97, 30 etc etc. All were great shooters and worth the 10%-20% more than their RWS/Diana counterparts. The original Beeman/HW guns were indicative of this quality too. You can also email Mr. Weihrauch on the German website and actually get a reply! He’s a great guy, and has helped me with various odd’s & end’s and factory info over time.



  16. BB,
    I do like the stock, although it could loose a little more wood — but its definitely more attractive than most air rifles which have way too much wood, as you said. I bet the 350 would be a really nice shooter if it was detuned a bit. My guess is that they shoved every bit of spring they could in there to win the horsepower race and that it is seriously oversprung, and that most of the preload is probably contributing something pitiful like 25fps (or even 50fps) at the expense of high cocking effort and excessive recoil.


  17. BG and Brian,

    just pushed a pellet down the barrel of the Nitro – I used the pellet which up to now has been the most accurate for me, the H & N Baracuda heavy (21 gr). There was moderate resistance about 1/2 way down the barrel then turned real light until the very end of the barrel where resistance was greatest. Distance here was less than 1/2 inch before pellet popped out. Another thing on this rifle I discovered, the brake is threaded on with an internal Allen or hex socket to install and remove on the brake. Of course the barrel and rifling do not run to the end of the brake. While I would have to remove the brake to see what type of crown the barrel has, the brake does have a chamfer cut into it. Brian, I ran a Q-tip swab around the brake and then around the muzzle. No grabbing, no fibers left on either.

    Suggestions? Do I live with the rifle for what it is?

    Fred PRoNJ


    • Fred,
      Assuming the loose part isn’t that terribly loose (can feel some resistance), I would try to loosen up the area past the breech to match and leave the “choke” at the muzzle. Short of a fancy variable diameter slug (a buddy of mine made one — really neat, but wouldn’t fit an air rifle barrel), the easiest way would be to “short-stroke” with abrasive from the breech. It’s not very scientific, but you can get pretty decent results by focusing your efforts on the tight area, varying the lenghts of the strokes, so that hopefully you get a nice transition from larger to smaller — try not to brush the loose area much at all; maybe even put length marks on the rod and do 4x as many strokes at the breech as near the transition, 3x farther up, etc., or something along those lines. It sounds pretty noticeable from your description, so you may see a nice improvement, although I can’t promise anything. It is possible to ruin a bore, but I think you would have to work really hard at it if the abrasive is something reasonable.

      My only proviso is that if the most accurate pellet currently is _very_ accurate, I would just live with it.


  18. Perhaps I have been lucky. My .177 Diana 52 has a RWS 400 scope, a 2X to 7X which is still working so far. I don’t know who made it for them. The scope mounts are from B Square and seem to work fine too. They are also adjustable. I had heard that the Diana mounts were not the best so I never did try them. My other Diana 52, bought used and at a low price, is a .22 and I have been shooting it with the factory open sights.

    Mike



  19. I saw an old post about disassembly of Daisy Red Ryder with a diagram of a disassembly tool. The diagram was a little vague. Is there a more detailed version?


    • tdon,

      No, that is all there is. These tools are homemade and are drawn after the fact. If you were to disassemble several Red Ryders without as tool, you would see how the tool has to be made and could build it to suit yourself.

      All it does is take tension off the mainspring so the spring anchor can be pulled or inserted. But the pusher has to be forked to get around the end of the spring assembly.

      B.B.


  20. Hey, BB, I’m very new to this realm of airguns. Used to own a crossman 10 pump cheapie, and could his the ear off a squirrell with normal sights (then again, I was really used to the gun and shot it incessantly…with BB’s). Moved up to a Beeman, and now I’m not happy with that either. I had no idea the airgun realm was this complex. I’ve been reading a dizzying amount of info on airguns, and I have to admit, I’m more confused than ever, but I’ve enjoyed reading through some of your blogs. My question to you is this: Since settling on the RWS, I can’t decide between the 350 magnum and the 460, and, since reading your posts, I’m now undecided on the .177 and the .22. Can you please offer a beginner some insight on gun selection, and perhaps whether I should purchase it with/or without the scope package (should I go on my own and find a scope mount and scope?). I’ve also been reading another blogger about taking apart and lubing this gun (this guy is a sargeant so he probably knows far more about gun assembly than I do), but that scares me. So, can you recommend some beginner maintenance/lubrication practices that will help this gun work to its potential? Sorry about all the questions and I know you’ve probably repeated this info many times but I could use your help. Take care.


    • Newshot,

      welcome to our Blog. If you want information, you’ve come to the right place. We hope you’ll hang around. Now as to what to buy, what do you want to do with the rifle? Hunt, plink or punch holes in targets.

      Next, it’s typically better to buy the rifle with open sights first, learn to shoot it with the sights and then get yourself a scope and mounts. Note that Dianas (RWS is the importer) are notorious for drooping barrels. However, UTG makes a compensating mount in a Picatinny rail. This is a “must have” for many RWS’s/Diana’s. Supposedly the 350 can do without http://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/UTG_Scope_Mount_Base_Fits_RWS_Diana_34_36_38_45_Compensates_for_Droop_Stops_Scope_Shift/2298

      I own an RWS350 in .177 and followed my own advice, buying a Leapers 3×9 x 40 AO scope with a UTG scope mount base designed for the 350. Mind you, the 350 has a very strong recoil and will require lots of technique to shoot accurately.

      If you go to the PA website here: http://www.pyramydair.com/cgi-bin/need_advice.pl

      you can guide yourself to the type of rifle that will suit you. Just as a point of interest, most folks will get the 350 and 460 in .22 for hunting. They aren’t the best plinking or target rifles so .177, normally chosen for these two activities, are not folks’ first pick.

      Hope this helps you out a little. One last thing. You posted to a blog that’s several days old and few of us monitor or go back to the older blogs. If you want more comments, repost on the current blog. You can get there by: http://airgun-academy.pyramydair.com/blog

      Fred PRoNJ


    • Newshot,

      Of the two rifles you mentioned, the 350 Magnum feels the best. It’s slim and very comfortable to shoot. The 460 Magnum, in contrast, feels much bulkier when you hold it.

      As Fred from the People’s Republik f New Jersey points out, the 350, being a breakbarrel, requires a lot of shooting technique, a la the artillery hold. The 460 is more neutarl in this respect, though it also requires some technique, as all spring rifles do. But if you learn to shoot the 350 well, you will become a better shot for it.

      As far as caliber goes, I always favor .22 in powerful spring rifles. The larger caliber is so much more efficient at extracting all the power the gun has to give.

      And concerning maintenance in a spring gun I have just one word–DON’T. They don’t need any maintenance or cleaning, so just shoot it until you get to know it well. The best maintenance is to keepa you hands off!


  21. hey everyone,
    i bought the 350 magnum classic just a little while ago..September 2010…and i got it with a defective fiber-optic front sight…cause when aiming, the red dot and the black piece on which it sits, is bent over to the left.I informed the dealer of the problem that I’m having and they couldn’t care less…they said they cant do anything about it,so I’ve made up my mind to buy it on my own.I even asked them to source the sight and I’ll buy it from them and they said “the company doesn’t have”.So if anyone has a link to a site that has or knows otherwise feel free to hit me up and let me know.
    Thanks a lot.


    • Richie,

      Sorry to say this, but this is exactly why we don’t do business with small-time airgun dealers. They just don’t care, plus they lack the knowledge of what can be done.

      Here is what you need to do. Get on the phone to RWS USA out in Ft. Smith, AR, and tell them your problem. I bet you will get a lot better response from them than you did from your dealer. RWS USA is operated by Umarex USA.

      http://www.umarexusa.com/catalog/RWS,43.htm

      And in the future, do business with a reputable dealer who stands behind what they sell.

      B.B.


  22. Hey,

    Thanks for your response Mr.B.B.

    But unfortunately for me, I’m from Trinidad and Tobago out in the Caribbean.And the dealer that i bought the gun from is pretty much, as big as it gets here.

    http://www.sportsandgames.co.tt/#

    So that’s why I’m tying to locate the sights on my own.It sucks..i know…Although i can’t shoot myself even if i tried with that gun i still like my 350 magnum..and besides i paid over $6,000 for it, i can’t afford another anytime soon.Once i locate it I’ll eventually save up and replace the sights and hopefully it’ll make the gun less frustrating to use.


    • Richie,

      Okay, calling them is out. So email them. I bet they would help you just because they are good guys.

      B.B.



  23. I just bought an RWS 350P magnum and found the same problem with the fiber optic front sight. When I removed the front sight from the barrel I saw this:
    The internal flat inside the muzzle end of the front sight is not parallel with the top flat on the sight. When the sight is properly indexed to the barrel with the flats against each other (internal plastic sight flat against the flat on the top of the muzzle) the sight is rotated to the left (when viewing from behind). It is actually clearly visible when on the gun. The result is that to sight the gun in I had to move the rear sight to the left extreme adjustment position and also the elevation adjust was about 2 clicks from the lowest position. It seems obvious in looking at the removed plastic sight that the mold the thing was made in was not designed right. It would be pretty tough to get one out of the mold that was different from others unless they run more than one mold design for part fab so I assume that all the current 350Ps have this problem. Maybe most customers just crank the adjustments to the max positions and call it good.
    I wrote to Umarex USA about it but nothing heard yet. Maybe there is a fix under way on it , or will be.


  24. ericw,

    It sounds like this is a fundamental manufacturing problem. Those can be exasperating, because the factories seldom like to admit them and only a few makers like AirForce will do anything about them when they occur.

    I am forwarding your comment to the technical staff at Pyramyd Air, so they can watch for this.

    Thanks you,

    B.B.


  25. I thought I’d mention that my Feuerkraft takes 32lbs to cock, not the 54 you mentioned. Obviously a HUGE difference. I’m curious if you used a bathroom scale for that, my experience is those are inaccurate at low measurements. I measure using a small accurate scale perfect for measuring pull, cocking effort etc. I measure at several points to get a better idea, the first measurement is just after the detent which is 6lbs, then at half stroke it’s 18lbs. When the barrel is perpendicular to the tube body it’s 25lbs, then peak pull which is a couple inches before it catches is 32lbs. Not bad considering it’s over 23ftlbs energy. I plan on tuning it so when I’m done I’ll post what I hope is lower cocking effort and higher power.


    • Chevota,

      Yes, we seem to have a large difference in our two guns. Yes, I test all cocking effort on a bathroom scale, and Mac said that he tested this one that way, too.

      B.B.


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