Diana model AR8: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana AR-8
Diana AR8 N-TEC air rifle.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

  • New Diana scope base
  • Droop?
  • The test
  • Baracuda Match 5.53mm heads
  • Firing behavior
  • Better artillery hold
  • JSB Exact Jumbo
  • RWS Superdome
  • Notice all three groups
  • Conclusions

This report has taken a long time to write. I wanted to test the Diana AR8 from 25 yards with open sights, but my sighting eye has degraded to the point that I can’t do that. The AR8 is also very hard to cock and it would be too much trouble to shoot it left-handed, so I scoped it for today’s test. I used a 3-12X40 UTG scope that’s no longer made.

New Diana scope base

As you may remember, Diana changed the installed scope bases on all their spring rifles a few years ago, negating the aftermarket bases that were designed for them in the past by UTG. There are still hundreds of thousands of those vintage rifles that those bases fit, but the new base on all their spring rifles will not allow the old droop-compensating UTG mount base to be installed.
The problem is — Diana’s base on the rifle doesn’t accept a scope ring set very well. I wanted to use a base that accepted Picatinney scope rings, because of the heavy recoil of the AR8, but Diana doesn’t provide a ring like that, nor would it fit their base if they did.

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Umarex Throttle air rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Throttle
Throttle rifle from Umarex brings a lot of value to the table.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Cocking effort
  • RWS Superdomes
  • RWS Hobby
  • H&N Baracuda Match
  • Trigger pull
  • Stock flex
  • Evaluation

Today we look at the velocity of the Umarex Throttle air rifle. As a quick reminder, I am already impressed by this rifle, just from the brief handling I did in Part 1. Today should advance that. Let’s get right to it.

Cocking effort

It would be easy for me to measure the cocking effort, then “guess” in writing that it will be somewhere close to that. I don’t do it that way. When I guess, I haven’t measured it yet. Today is when we both discover what the real cocking effort is. I guessed it would be around 33-36 pounds of effort. When I measured it on my bathroom scale the number was 28 lbs. Less than I expected. I am impressed!

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Diana K98 pellet rifle: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana K98
Diana’s K98 Mauser pellet rifle is very realistic.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • Shoot left-handed
  • RWS Superpoints
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Superdomes
  • Now, for the mind-blower!
  • The underlever latch
  • Trigger adjustment
  • Evaluation

Keep him off his his computer, ladies, because today I’m the Great Enabler! Today I shoot the Diana K98 pellet rifle at 25 yards with open sights. And when he sees the results, he’s going to want one!

Shoot left-handed

Today was accuracy day at 25 yards and I absolutely could not see the bull, when sighting with my right eye — even when wearing my glasses! So I had to switch hands and shoot from the left side.

RWS Superpoints

The first pellet I tried for no particular reason was the RWS Superpoint. One shot confirmed I was on target, then the next 9 went downrange without checking. I walked down to change targets and saw the group for the first time. Ten shots in 2.32-inches! The “group” was very horizontal. Not a good start.

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Diana model AR8: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana AR-8
Diana AR8 N-TEC air rifle.

Part 1

  • Cocking effort
  • Slanted breech
  • H&N Baracuda Match
  • Air Arms domes
  • RWS Superdomes
  • Baracuda Match retest
  • Trigger pull
  • Recoil and vibration
  • Evaluation so far

Today we learn how powerful the .22-caliber Diana AR8 Professional Success air rifle is. This will also give those who wonder about the rifle a good idea of what it’s like.

Cocking effort

I’ll begin with the cocking effort, because on this rifle it is really hard! I registered 54 lbs. on my bathroom scale. That makes it a two-hand job for me. I can do it with one, but just barely and not for many shots. Because it has a gas spring, the max effort starts almost at the beginning of the stroke.

Slanted breech

A reader was curious whether the AR8 has a slanted breech block like most Diana rifles. The answer is yes, the breech does slant. Let me show you what that does to loading.

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Hakim — Egypt’s pellet rifle trainer was better than the firearm: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hakim
Hakim is Egypt’s air rifle trainer for their 8mm battle rifle.

A history of airguns

Part 1
Part 2

This report covers:

  • Shoot directly off the bag
  • Eley Wasps
  • RWS Superpoints
  • JSB Exact Jumbo RS
  • Summary

We will shoot the .22 caliber Hakim trainer today and see what the old classic is capable of. I think you will be surprised.

Shoot directly off the bag

Because the Hakim is so mild-mannered and also because it weighs 10 lbs. 7 oz., which is heavier than an M1 Garand, I rested it directly on the bag rather than use the artillery hold. I shot at 10 meters and put 10 shots into each group. The first group landed in the bull but a little to the left, and I just went with that sight setting for the rest of the test.

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Beeman R1 supertune: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Beeman R1
Beeman R1 Supermagnum air rifle.

Part1
Part2

This report covers:

  • New tune more accurate?
  • A nondescript scope
  • Various holds
  • The R1 wants to shoot!
  • Air Arms domes
  • RWS Superdomes
  • H&N Baracuda Match
  • The rifle’s feel
  • Where are we?

Today I start testing my tuned Beeman R1. The R1 has always been a twitchy spring rifle for me. I have gotten some good groups and I have also failed miserably. The rifle is not at fault, because it can stack pellets on top of one another — at least at 25 yards. But it is super sensitive to small variations in the hold. In fact, this R1 I am testing for you is the one that inspired the artillery hold, two decades ago.

New tune more accurate?

Is the rifle easier to shoot accurately, now that it has been tuned? No so far. It’s still very sensitive to slight variations in the hold, as I learned in this session.

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BSA Supersport SE: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

BSA Supersport SE air rifle BSA Supersport SE

This report covers:

• RWS Superdome pellets
• JSB Exact RS pellets
• 8-32X Aeon Classic rifle scope
• Baracuda Match pellets, 5.53mm heads
• Different hold
• Evaluation of the rifle

Today, I’m shooting the .22-caliber BSA Supersport SE at 25 yards. I’m also testing the Aeon 8-32X50 Classic rifle scope with a trajectory reticle mounted in the Diana Bullseye recoil-reducing scope mount. Those 2 products will each get their own separate reports because today I’m concentrating on just the rifle.

In Part 3, I shot the rifle at 10 meters using the open sights that came with it. From that test, I selected a couple pellets to try today. But first, I want to show you a picture of the Aeon 8-32X50 scope mounted on the rifle, because in the last report I mentioned how short it is for this range of power.

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