RWS Diana model 54 recoilless rifle: Part 3

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2


The RWS Diana 54 recoilless air rifle, also called the Air King, is big, beautiful, powerful and accurate.

Today, we’ll test the RWS Diana model 54 Air King for accuracy. Before I show you the targets, however, let me mention a couple of things.

Some observations
First, I shot this rifle for today’s test rested directly on a sandbag. There was no artillery hold. As I mentioned in the earlier reports, the Air King anti-recoil system acts like an artillery hold and is able to do so perfectly. There’s no reason to rest this gun on the palm of your hand. That’s not because the rifle is recoilless, but rather because of how the rifle handles recoil.

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RWS Diana model 54 recoilless rifle: Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1


The RWS Diana 54 recoilless air rifle, also called the Air King, is big, beautiful, powerful and accurate.

There’s certainly a lot of interest in this RWS Diana model 54 Air King rifle. We heard from many readers, including some surprises. We also saw a lot of interest among those who have considered buying the rifle but have not yet taken the plunge. Also, I heard a few disturbing things.

Light-duty barrel?
The first disturbing thing I heard was a question about whether the 54 really does have a “light-duty” barrel. Since I never raised that issue in this report I have to assume the reader read it on one of the forums. The RWS Diana 54 does not have a light-duty barrel, but I think I know where this comes from. The rifle has a metal jacket surrounding the barrel, and if it’s removed the true barrel does look out of proportion with the large proportions of the rest of the airgun. But it isn’t too thin for the job it’s asked to do. In fact, it’s a normal barrel diameter, but that fat metal jacket makes it appear thin in comparison. Since you don’t cock the rifle with the barrel, it’s plenty strong.

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FWB 150: Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Part 1


The FWB 150 is a classic target rifle from the past. It’s also the father of the FWB 300.

Today, I’ll get to play with an old classic. This is our second look at the FWB 150, so of course we’re looking at velocity. As I told you in Part 1, this rifle was rebuilt by Randy Bimrose, so we can expect it to perform like a new rifle.

The other day I was interviewing Robert Beeman for the May podcast, and I asked him which modern airgun was his favorite. He said he couldn’t pick just one, which makes him a true airgunner in my book, but the four guns he said he would not want to do without are the Beeman R1, the Beeman P1 pistol, the Beeman R7 that he liked to shoot just because it was so light and easy, and the FWB 300. When he talked about the 300, you could hear the smile in his voice. He went on and on about the recoilless sensation and the trigger that’s so light that you “think it off.” It was reassuring to hear a man who has owned most of the airguns in the world talk about the ones he didn’t want to part with — one of them being the offspring of today’s rifle.

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RWS Diana model 54 recoilless rifle: Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier


The RWS Diana 54 recoilless air rifle, also called the Air King, is big, beautiful, powerful and accurate.

Recent interest among our readers in the Beeman P1 pistol has given me cause to revisit some of the other classic airguns I’ve tested in the past. If the guns are still available for sale, I’m taking a look at the old reports to see if they stand up to our current standards. Today’s rifle, the RWS Diana model 54 recoilless rifle, was the first classic airgun to be considered, though it did struggle with the Beeman R1 to get there. I read the old reports on this classic recoilless spring-piston air rifle and was surprised to see how different they are from what I do today. It’s time for an update.

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Feinwerkbau 150: Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

Photos by Earl “Mac” McDonald

A couple months ago I told you that I lucked into another FWB 124 during a transaction at a gun store. The salesman owned it, but the seals had finally failed, as all original 124 seals will do. So, I bought that gun and resealed it as a report for you. Well, one of our readers happened to mention in passing that he had recently acquired an FWB 150 target rifle, but he really wanted a sporter to keep the squirrel population down. His gun was in good condition except that, like the 124, its seals had finally rotted.

I took the initiative and contacted the reader, asking if he would like to trade for an FWB 124. After I resealed it, it would be a fine gun again. With a modern seal, he would probably never have to worry about fixing it again. I reported on the results of that job in part 15 of the 124 report that has become the longest report I’ve ever done. Not only are modern seals made from everlasting material, but I installed a Maccari mainspring in the rifle that will probably last for the next 20 years. So, I hope the reader was happy with his new rifle, because I sure am pleased with the 150 he sent me.

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Testing 4 vintage 10-meter air rifles

by B.B. Pelletier

Well it’s Friday again, and it’s time to have some fun. When I tested the TF 79 competition air rifle, I mentioned that I also shot several vintage 10-meter rifles the same day, just to make sure I was still able to shoot a good group. Well, we heard from a lot of readers who apparently like these oldsters just as much as I do, so I thought I would take today and report on how they all did.

I’ve owned most of the better-known classic 10-meter target air rifles over the years, but I didn’t hold onto them because I was always chasing some other dream. Long-range accuracy or big-bore prowess were always competing with these quiet target rifles, and there’s only a finite amount of money to go around. So, over the years I’ve both shot and given up some real vintage beauties.

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RWS Diana 75 10-meter target rifle – Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Photos and testing by Earl “Mac” McDonald

Part 1

Before we begin I have a word about my health. Next Tuesday I’m going to have my pancreas repaired. This is hopefully the final operation I will have to undergo. It will be a major operation where they open me up rather than going in laprascopically, so I’ll be in the hospital for a week or possibly longer to recover. I have written blogs to cover the time I’ll be away, plus I’ll probably have my laptop at the hospital, but I may not be as easy to reach next week. If everything goes according to plan, I should get the drain out of my side and the stent out of my pancreas by the end of this year. And, while I’m away, I’d like to ask the veteran readers to help out the new guys, as you always do.

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