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Take your power down a notch to experience an excellent hunting rifle

By B.B. Pelletier

Power, power power! That’s all you hear airgunners talking abou. Are you one of them? If so, you may be overlooking one of the greatest advantages airguns have: accuracy!

While not the most powerful air rifle around, the R7 is a favorite of many!
The Beeman R7 is a classic spring air rifle and based on Weihrauch’s HW50, which has been around for several decades. The R7 has an American-style stock that fits in with the rest of the R-series rifles. Underneath, it is a wonderful intermediate-powered gun with a lot going for it.

“Only accurate guns are interesting”
Townsend Whelen hit the ten-ring when he said that accurate guns are the only interesting ones! And, accuracy is the R7’s strong suit, which is common with lower-powered spring-piston rifles. You don’t fight the recoil characteristics nearly as much. Oh, accuracy still requires a good technique, but the lower-powered guns are much more forgiving of how you hold them. As a result, you hit your target more often. That’s what it’s all about!

When you can hit your target, hunting with an airgun becomes more practical and a smart choice. Instead of flying away as though your shots never touched them, birds will now fall where they are hit! I’m not kidding – you’ll experience remarkably good shot placement. The R7 is good to about 30 yards. It’ll stretch farther than that, but 30 yards or less is where it’s strongest.

Besides accuracy that will earn you bragging rights, the R7 has a wonderful, crisp trigger. An added bonus is its light recoil – and, yet, it hits as hard as the biggest 1960-era magnum spring rifle! If you need another good reason to buy this nifty rifle, here it is: it’s not even expensive!

Scoping an R7 is a no-brainer in my book
The best way to get every last bit of accuracy from the R7 is to install a Leapers Bug Buster scope. The Bug Buster is bright, focuses closer than any scope on the market, has a mil-dot reticle and BOTH red and green illuminated reticle, which makes it PERFECT FOR HUNTING. The Bug Buster is so bright you’ll have ample light in the early morning or twilight hours.

Good scope rings are essential, and B-Square’s two-piece rings are just the ticket. Positioning won’t be a problem, and they have a recoil stop pin, which you’ll need for the R7. It’s a perfect match.

How to match the right caliber with the right job
Use .20 caliber if critter control is your main task. If you generally prefer .177-caliber air rifles, use heavy pellets. If you stay with my suggestion of keeping the range under 30 yards, you’ll discover that Beeman Crow-Magnum pellets are accurate enough, and they’ll certainly do the job if they connect! Otherwise, try Beeman Kodiaks or JSB Predator pellets – a new type of hollowpoint. Before using them on a hunting trip, test them in your gun to see if you like their performance. If you can reliably hit a quarter at 30 yards, use them.

Power to the people – and the crows, squirrels & other marauding critters!
Now, crows that tear open your garbage bags, gophers and chipmunks that love to dig up your property and squirrels that dominate your bird feeder will answer to a higher power…make that a lower power! The Beeman R7 is more than capable of doing its part. All that’s left is for you to do yours.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

11 thoughts on “Take your power down a notch to experience an excellent hunting rifle”

  1. I agree with your suggestion about trying lower powered guns. I shoot a 20-year old Sheridan in 20 cal. for all my small game hunting. I found that i can kill squirrels and starlings just as reliably under 20 yds using only 5 pumps for about 500 fps instead of 8 pumps for 675fps. The gun is just as accurate, but over penetration is not a concern any more.

  2. Hello whoever reads this:
    I have a Weihruach HM50 kal 4.5 that I’ve had for 30 years.

    The breech seal has degraded to nothing. I’ve been having a real tough time getting one for it. The OD of the seal is about 12mm, the ID is about 7.5, and it insets into the recess about 3mm.

    Anyone here know anythere that I can get the proper seal that will fit this rifle?
    Thanks very much.

  3. For informal target shooting and field target, is there any actual difference between the R7 and HW50? I am wondering which to buy as their specs are similar and price is the same. Is either one easier to shoot? Thanks.

  4. The R7’s stock is shaped for the western market. The HW50 stock has a European shape. And that is about the only difference. Of course the prices are the same, too.

    I’m going by the guns on the Pyramyd AIR website. You can order a Weihrauch that came through Canada that would have completely different specs and would not be equivalent at all. Several of the smaller American and small internet dealers sell that model. My remarks only apply to the American version of the HW50S.


  5. Thanks for the information about the two guns. Even though this is an old post, it is one of my favorites, because it makes so much sense. I started out with the same unwarranted focus on high-powered springers (for what reason, other than machismo, I don’t know) that a lot of guys fall into. Fortunately I never acted on the impulse and now that I’ve thought it over and some time has passed it I can’t think of a single reason I need the extra power. I don’t even hunt. Thanks.

  6. I like you! You think things through, which so many of us (including me) don’t do.

    Be sure to read my more recent post on spring gun tuning, where I take a 20 foot-pound Beeman R1 and de-tune it to 13 foot-pounds. I am coming back to that rifle to show everyone what a joy it can be to have a smooth-shooting, accurate air rifle.

    Either the R7 or the HW 50 can be tuned so amooth the owner cannot believe it. They are wonderful air rifles.


  7. B.B,

    This is a little off-topic….maybe. Anyhow, are you saying it is not uncommon to miss the target (1″ circle @ 25 yards let’s say) with higher powered rifles with recoil such as the CF-X? I have to say I’ve been missing a good bit, even tho I try to replicate my successful shot, sometimes it just misses, not by alot but I end up with 1.5″ spreads in 5 or 10 shots with 3 or 5 of those being less than .2″ depending on the number of shots in the group. Of course, I have not been able to sort pellets by weight and this is my first springer so…I guess what I’m asking is how accurate should I expect to be, I have read the post you made about that but I’m still a little unclear. Just when I think I’m doing good i shoot an inch left and it drives me crazy. I have also missed both squirrels I have been able to shoot at so far 1 at 35 yards and one at 40 yards, so im not to upset about those.


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