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Education / Training RWS Diana model 45 – Part 1

RWS Diana model 45 – Part 1

by B.B. Pelletier

Photos and testing by Earl “Mac” McDonald

This is a special report I asked Mac to make for you. The RWS Diana model 45 that was made until very recently is not the gun you are about to see here. This rifle comes from the decade of the 1980s, when the 45 was entirely different from the other Diana breakbarrel rifles. You’ll see some of those differences in this report as it unfolds.

In 1988, Diana dropped the older style model 45 we’re looking at here and used the model 34 action in a different stock to represent the model 45 that lasted up until 2004. That was the Diana model 45 TO1.

The rifle we’re about to see predates that one and is its own special design. Mac’s rifle has a date stamp of 07-83, which means it was produced in July 1983. But, the Diana 45 goes back much farther than that. In a moment, I’ll document the history, but first a word about the name RWS Diana.

First, a short history lesson
RWS is a large manufacturer of industrial and sporting goods in Germany. But, they don’t make airguns; and, as far as I know, they never did. Instead, they’ve partnered with the much smaller firm of Dianawerk GmbH & Co.Kg, which sometimes called Mayer & Grammelspracher. They’ve made airguns since the early part of the 20th century…at least since 1901. RWS acts as their exporter, and they carry the RWS brand name (along with Diana) in the U.S. So, Diana is the maker, and RWS is the exporter/importer.

Now, on our side of the pond, RWS USA services all the Diana guns they sell. Your recourse for parts and for service is RWS USA, which is co-located with Umarex USA in Ft. Smith, Arkansas. However, there’s more. Pyramyd AIR bought out Airgun Express a number of years ago, and at that time Airgun Express had been the RWS Diana service station for Diana guns for many years. So, Pyramyd AIR has many parts on hand for obsolete models of Diana guns that even RWS USA cannot support. It may seem a bit confusing, but the RWS importation branch of the company has changed hands so many times in the past 15 years that things are not 100 percent straightforward. The point is that, if you read this blog, you can always start your search for something here and we’ll probably be able to help you find what you need.

Back to the story
Now, back to the tale of the model 45. First, there was a model 45 that was an underlever rifle that loaded via a tap. It was produced from 1927 until 1940. The model 45U, as the Blue Book of Airguns lists it, is a pretty rare sight here in the U.S. It was later followed by the Diana model 58 that was somewhat more complex and sold for more money. That model is better-known in the U.S. because Stoeger imported a few of them. Retailing from $35 to $75 before WWII, they certainly didn’t sell many.

After the war, the Diana company had to reorganize. They also lost machinery and their designs and even their name to the Millard Brothers of Scotland (branded as Milbro) as part of war reparations. That’s all I’m going to say about the company history, except to fast-forward to 1978. In the decade of the 1970s, the airgun world was held captive by the thought of propelling a pellet faster than 800 feet per second for the first time in history. I think the honor for the first to do it probably goes to Feinwerkbau, whose remarkable model 124 was a worldwide success. But, other airgun manufacturers also competed at this level. BSF out of Erlangen, Germany, had the model 55, a small carbine-sized rifle that could sometimes break the 800 f.p.s. “barrier.” And, Weihrauch had an old rifle — the 35, which they modernized — that almost made it to 800 f.p.s.

So, in 1978, the Diana company threw their hat into the horsepower-race ring with a completely new model — the 45. That’s the rifle we’re looking at today. That model lasted with a great many changes from 1978 until 1988, when the 45 name was consolidated into the easier-to-manufacture and even more powerful model 34.

Mac’s RWS Diana 45 is a real classic from the days of the great horsepower races. It was at one time one of four different models that could sometimes deliver velocities in excess of 800 f.p.s. in .177 caliber.

I’m going to talk about Mac’s rifle, specifically, and I’m mentioning that because there were a huge number of cosmetic changes made to the 45 during its decade-long run. Mac’s rifle is 45.50 inches long, so it’s somewhat large. The length of pull is 13.75 inches, which BG_Farmer has convinced me is a more average adult LOP for a rifle. The barrel is a long 20.50 inches, which is needed to help manage the cocking effort of 40 lbs.

Mac’s rifle is a .22 caliber, which isn’t nearly as common as .177. Back in the day when it was made, the horsepower race was on full force and people really wanted velocity, so .177 was the caliber of choice most of the time. Mac’s rifle has a real walnut stock, which was rare for the decade of the ’80s.

Three things make Mac’s 45 stand out in appearance. First, it has an overly large and squarish triggerguard that’s obviously made of sheet steel. It always stood out among the air rifles of the time, and I think you’ll agree that it still looks different today. Second, is the long, straight trigger blade that looks like no other air rifle trigger I know. The strangest of all is the transverse pin that holds the compression tube to the stock. It runs through the trigger housing; for many years, I thought the trigger was suspended by the stock, which made no sense at all. This pin will sometimes be hidden by stock inserts that have to be removed to get at the fastening screw for disassembly. On other rifles, like Mac’s, the hardware is in plain sight.

Here, you can see the overly large triggerguard, the long straight trigger blade and the crosspin that attaches the spring tube to the stock. The two-stage trigger is fully adjustable.

The safety is automatic and is a plastic cap that is the full inside diameter of the spring tube. It slides back when the rifle is cocked and is taken off before shooting by pressing in. The large plastic slider has a scallop on either side for your fingers to grasp in case you want to pull it back on.

The automatic safety is the large cap at the rear of the spring tube. It sets automatically on cocking but can be pulled on manually at any time. In this image, you can see the date stamp between and slightly above the two disassembly crosspins.

The sights are all-metal, both front and rear, which was standard for the day. Because this is a 45, which was considered an upscale model, the front globe accepts interchangeable inserts. Of course, the rear is fully adjustable.

Diana 45 — an opportunity missed
Mac has always had a special place in his heart for this model. Whenever he sees one at an airgun show, he reacts the same way that I do when I see a BSF model 55. He’s owned several of these over the years, but this .22 is such a wonderful shooter that he loves it too much to ever turn it loose.

For the same reason he likes it, I do not, or at least I didn’t before Mac taught me about the gun. I knew it was an early mega-magnum (sounds funny today, but in its time that is exactly what it was), and I hated the harsh feeling of vibration when such guns were fired. Of course, of the four I’ve mentioned — the FWB 124, HW 35, BSF S55 and this one — I only had experience with the 124 and the HW 35, so what I was doing was projecting my feelings of misgiving on the gun without ever trying it. I do now own a BSF S55N which is another very smooth shooter, so my feelings about this gun have hampered me from ever experiencing it.

According to Mac, his 45 is a smooth shooter! We know that it has a leather piston seal and that the power is quite low by today’s standards, but still, I would not have believed that a Diana 45 could ever have been a smooth shooter. So, for all those years through this very day, I’ve never owned one. Yet, I note that they’re almost universally accepted as smooth shooters that inspire a great deal of loyalty among their owners.

We shall see if that loyalty is deserved in the next two reports.

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.

129 thoughts on “RWS Diana model 45 – Part 1”

  1. BB:
    LOP (Length of pull) ahh I see what it means now.
    it’s not very nice when a rifle feels like it is pushing away from you.
    One of my few criticism’s of the Logun S16 was because the Air bottle doubled as the butt.,the LOP was quite long.

  2. RWS is a large manufacturer of industrial and sporting goods in Germany. But, they don’t make argues; and, as far as I know, they never did.

    Is that a spell checker-induced replacement for airguns?

  3. BB,
    This one reminds me of the first real springer I ever saw or shot. It was mid-late 80’s, a Diana that shot 500 fps — that’s about all I can remember about it; if it was a .22, maybe it was this one. I do remember that the quality was awe-inspiring for an airgun in those days and it was a little hard to cock (which 40 lbs. would be), but we had few references for air rifles of this type back then. I also remember that it was more accurate at close ranges (I guess 50 feet, which was common plinking range with open sights) than a Ruger 10/22, or at least we thought so, but I don’t know how we shot it that well, might have just been lucky :). Fun to remember those days, even if it wasn’t exactly this rifle — I would remember more details, except that the price of such things was so far out of my range at that time that I didn’t torture myself finding out too much about it.

  4. B.B. Pelletier,
    I just picked up a 1988 Diana Model 45 in .177 caliber.She was at a garage sale here in Michigan.After a little persuasion I was able to purchase it for $75.A good price to me!
    Yes she’s a little rough,it looks as though it may have been a barn gun,meaning it was probably used in a fellows barn for Pigeon control.It also appears to have been kept in the barn year round.
    No rust or patina,but the bluing is blotchy at best and completely missing in spots,the protective coating on the beech stock has seen better days also but has no nicks or serious scratches.
    It is my job to bring back the glory of this once beautiful rifle.Being a 1988 it was the last year for the 45.It was also the only year Diana used a synthetic piston seal in the Model 45.
    The first time I shot over my chrony using 7.9 grain Crosman HP pellets I was amazed at seeing a 820fps show on the F-1 chronograph.I even replaced the battery in disbelief.Next shot was a 817 followed by a 822.
    It is my belief the old farmer who owned this rifle appreciated the job it done for him and in turn maintained the internals very well.By the looks of it she has never been opened.
    Now that winter is here I will start the restoration process,a fresh blue job and stripping of the stock and a complete refinish.
    Thank You for a wonderful article
    And a merry to you and the Misses.

    BBGun Bob(age61)
    SE Mich.

    I have the globe front sight which was missing in the picture

    • BBGun Bob,

      Great to see you posting here!

      That’s an incredible find on your diana 45. $75.00??!! Looks just like mac’s with the crosspin. Sure doesn’t look like it needs a restoration in your photo’s. BTW, once I dropped the (IMG) from the beginning and end of your link I was able to access your photos. Thanks.


  5. On the Crosman 1377, what kind of plastic is the breech made of? I plan on buying one, and I don’t mind if the breech is made of delrin or engineering polymer or something like that, but I don’t want cheap chinsy plastic.

    Thank you kindly in advance

  6. This brought back some memories.

    When I started shooting a specific pest at my place in the mountains with airguns and talking about airguns it amazed me how many guys sheepishly admitted that they had a pellet gun stashed in their cabin somewhere. Everyone has at least one firearm and many are openly displayed for ease of access. To also admit to owning an airgun in that setting is akin to proudly wearing your cowboy hat and then shyly confessing that you also have a pink bonnet that you wear occassionally.

    One of the guys that admitted to owning an airgun said that he had used it for years to eliminate the same problematic pest around his cabin that I have around mine. He went on to say that he can’t hit the broad side of a barn with it anymore and it must be his inability to hold steady or failing eyesight. Old age ya know. I asked what kind of gun he had. He didn’t remember, “Bought it new 25-30 years ago.”

    I’ve got a shooting range alongside of my cabin and a built in shooting bench on my deck. I suggested he bring his gun over and together we could try to diagnose the problem.

    Jack pulled into our driveway the following weekend and stepped out of his jeep carrying his Diana 45 with a bushnell sportview scope atop in mounts I’d never seen before. He handed me a gun that looked brand new but the rear scope mount was leaning against the cap at the back of his gun and had a crack in it. I looked through the scope and the crosshairs would bounce. Mount shot, scope shot.

    I told him he wasn’t the problem but his scope and mount were. He still had the fine Diana open sights on the gun and asked if he just wanted to use those. “No”, he said, “I need a scope”. Told him he needed the new leapers utg base, a good set of rings and a new scope. Probably run $70-$80 and I’d be happy to do it for him. He said go ahead.

    Ordered everything from Pyramyd AIR when I got back in town late Sunday night. Shot his gun over a chrony and it was shooting to spec. During that week I spent a few nights working on his stock to remove the aged, crackled finish and used ballistol on the bluing. Gun looked great afterwards. Scope, mounts and rings arrived on Friday from PA. I quickly mounted everything up and shot a few different pellets through the gun. I think at my City elevation it liked the crosman premiers best (7.9gr). When I got up to the cabin (another 4,000 feet in elevation) and started shooting the gun it liked jsb’s the best (or vice versa, I don’t remember). Jacks Diana 45 was jumpy especially at the higher elevation but with a light hold it was very accurate.

    Jack stopped by to retrieve his gun and when I handed it to him his face lit up. Looks like a new gun!
    Went out to the deck and he shot the jsb’s at 25 yards off the bench. 5 pellets into about an inch group on his first attempt! Leapers UTG $20.00, weaver rings $10.00, Leapers 3-9 $40, pellets $10, look on his face, Priceless. That Diana 45 with a little work made Jack realize that although he’s in his 70’s he’s not old because he can still shoot accurately.


  7. Old eyes.

    I have a friend that works for an eye glasses company. They make and sell a shooting lens. He says this is what they will need…

    “We can help all iron sight shooters- the five things I need when we talk, are

    1 the shooter height

    2 the shooter weight
    this is to help find a frame- a frame that will fit someone 5’2″ and weighs 100 LB’s will not fit someone 6’11” and 375 LB’s our goal is to put the right frame on the right face with the Correct Prescription

    3 The current Prescription

    4 the Pupil Distance (PD) the metric distance between the shooters eye’s- this is to be taken by an Optical professional

    5 I need to know the distance between the Cheek ( under the shooting-aiming dominant eye) out to the Front sight.
    Then I can calculate the Reduction in power of the Bifocal prescription- Most bifocals are set to read at 15- 18 inches and most front sight are out- 20-30 inches- So I have to reduce the Power of the bifocal .25 or q/4 of a diopter for every three inches further out one needs to focus- I also make glasses for some older pool players also, with a bifocal inverted on top of the aiming eye.”


    The shooting eye lens will have the bifocal on its top, not the bottom like most bifocals. This is so we don’t have to tilt our heads back to see through the bifocal. The bifocal will allow us to see the front blade, the non shooting eye will be open to see the target. Yes, we have to use both eyes, which will take some time to get used to with some.

    I have not done this yet partly because I am 6’4″ and to use most iron sights I have to really contort myself to get low enough to see and aim the iron sights. With the right rifle, I will get the shooting glasses.


  8. I would like to thank BB and our blog for all the help they have offered me. This time last year Daisy, inc. just got my old 822 and was fixing it. I googled “air rifles” and I now have 14 BB guns and pellet rifles/pistols. I have learned alot in these 12 months.

    One thing I learned is how a scope works, the pics of the old single tube scope was worth a 1000 words. Yesterday I was shooting a springer and the groups really opened up, vertically. I checked the stock and trigger screws, they were tight. A couple brushings of the bore. Neither helped. BB talked about the scopes tension springs not holding the inner tube correctly. I adjusted the elevation up about 10 clicks, I then lowed it the same 10 clicks. Bullseye. I picked up another springer and the same thing, click up some 10 clicks, and back down, right on target. This last scope was a 100$ scope, before the sale price.

    Is this common? The first scope is a cheap one, 20 something dollars, but the second scope is my best scope and it has the same issues. I really like that I can at least temporarily fix it, but I know it happen again, and who knows when.

    • Gene,

      From what you describe, both those scopes are adjusted too high and the erector tube is floating. To fix them permanently you need to angle to scope down, so the elevation can be adjusted down, putting some tension on the erector springs.


      • Gene,

        on the rare chance you’re not sure what BB is referring to, you should put a shim under the scope tube at the front mount. Many folks will use a piece of film strip but you’ll have to experiment for the proper thickness to get the scope to shoot to POA when it’s adjusted close to the center of it’s adjustment range. When I got a defective scope from Crosman/ Benjamin with my Nitro, I used two pieces of paper cut from the heavy cardboard box that my checks are mailed in. That worked fine but then I sent the scope back and Crosman/Benjamin returned a brand new scope that worked correctly.

        Fred PRoNJ

        • When I said I picked up another springer, it is the same model as the first rifle, both Walther Force 1000s(I think that is what they call them). So it makes since that both have the same issue.

          Thanks again.

          • I mis-read Gene’s problem and thought he was stating that the elevation adjustment was at the bottom or close to the bottom of it’s range. “I adjusted the elevation up about 10 clicks, I then lowed it the same 10 clicks. Bullseye.” Well Gene, if your elevation adjuster is turned all the way or nearly all the way up, it’s the rear scope mount that needs the shim, as our Guru states.

            Fred PRoNJ

  9. Great write up. I especially enjoyed the history that you include. These blogs are the first things i read in the morning!
    i have several Dianas that i love ,and have an opportunity to buy an RWS 300R. its a repeater rifle. They were discontinued for some reason,and i noticed are hard to find. Do any of you own one of these, and is it worth purchasing for its rarity? Also is it worth more or less than the 350.00 im thinking of buying it for?
    Thank you

    • RickR, The Diana 300R is a gun of extremes.

      As typical for Diana fixed barrel guns, it is extremely accurate. And the rotary mag repeater mechanism is (relatively speaking) a precision piece of engineering that is also very delicate. Handled properly it can last for years. But be a little forgetful – and I mean just a little – and you’ll break it.

      There’s a very thin and brittle pin that goes through the rotary mag. When you cock the gun it pulls back to let the mag rotate. Returning the lever to the firing position will move the pin forward, pushing the pellet out of the mag and into the breech. There’s also a spring-loaded air transfer tube that seals against the back of the mag when the cocking lever is in the firing position.

      Now here’s the rub – if you try removing the mag with the gun uncocked, you’ll bust that pin and you can’t get the mag out. If you then cock the gun so that you CAN get the mag out the pin might wind up inside the compression tube and the gun has to be disassembled to remove it. And you’ll also break the indexing tang in the magazine because it can’t rotate with that pin stuck in it.

      If you have the presence of mind to NOT cock the gun but rather reseat the mag with the muzzle pointed downward you might coax the pin into just falling out of the barrel. At that point – believe it or not – in my experience (and I’ve worked on a few) – the gun works just as well WITHOUT that pin. The air just blasts the pellet out of the mag and down the barrel, just like a Crosman 1077.

      Service parts, I believe, are getting hard to come buy. A couple of years ago Wayne and I bought several replacement feeder pin/transfer tube assemblies as well as a handful of those indexing tangs for the magazines (the mags are serviceable). I got the impression that Glenn wasn’t restocking these parts as he sold them off. But I could be wrong.

      Also, there’s no indicator for shot count count, so the occasional dry fire is almost inevitable.

      Beyond that, however, it is a joy to shoot, especially after a minor tune-up. Not overly powerful, but well good enough to reach – accurately – out to 60 yards or more. But it isn’t a gun you casually plink with. Like I said, a few moments of brain fade and you might very well wind up with the need for a teardown. And certainly not one to toss into the hands of your buddy to try out for a while – unless you make sure YOU load it for him every time.

      Anyway, I believe $350 is an insane price. And if it’s a used gun, there’s a REAL good chance that the feeder pin is broken. If I remember right about 2 years ago Glenn was dumping refurbs for around $90. If you really want one, I’d suggest putting up a “WTB” on the airgun classifieds. I’ve found that this works quite well.

      And if you DO get one, I strongly recommend you ask me for a copy of the ‘tip sheet’ I wrote for them after servicing, breaking, re-servicing, re-breaking, studying, and imagining anything that might go wrong with this gun.

      Hope this helps.

      • Vince,
        That was a great rundown of what to expect with this 300r. I actually enjoy machines that require some thought. i dont necessarily shoot guns for their ease of use. i rather enjoy having to get used a certain hold for one or having to use the right pellet for another; or in the case of this gun having to use the proper loading technique. I even enjoy lightly modifying guns to work better like the RWS 460. i shimmed the rear scope rail to accommodate for the barrel droop.(this was before the scope mount base had come out) In any case i look forward to owning one of these if anything for the challenge of keeping it alive.

        I will post a WTB add as you suggested but the one im looking at is new from a store, so i may still go that way if i cant get one off of classifieds. at least it will have not have anything missing and i could measure and fab some replacement parts for the inevitable.

        I will ask you for a copy of that “care” sheet you made. it sounds interesting, and thanks again for the great info. You should do a Blog about it. i think we would enjoy seeing pictures of the mechanism and reading about this interesting different gun even if very few of us own one.
        rick r

  10. rick r,

    Never owned a Diana RWS 300 R.


    They apparently had a lot of problems with seals and the 7 shot rotary mag system. They were discontinued quickly and many retailers deeply discounted the guns in 2006-2007 to get them off the shelves.

    Don’t have any idea of what one would be worth but I would suspect not much even if it was in great condition.


      • Kevin
        Thanks for the research. ill have to use that sight for gun searches as well as using gunbroker.
        Even though it was discontinued for mechanical reasons that you mentioned Im still not dissuaded from the 300r just for the fact that it has an interesting mechanism in it that makes it different than the other airguns. Though it maybe not very reliable, i still am thinking it might be fun to own. thanks again for assisting me on this decision.

          • Kevin, Similarly, you don’t here much about the Theoben SLR (self loading rifle) and the Theoben site is terrible in it’s lack of detail about ALL of it’s guns, and all of the retailers just copy and paste the Theoben ad copy.

            Do you or anyone here know much about the SLR?

  11. I’m a fan of RWS rifles by way the of the B30 imitation, so I’ll be interested to see how this one does. By the way, do pcps require a firm grip? They don’t recoil like spring guns, but neither do they recoil like firearms. Would a firm grip give you any advantage?

    Slinging Lead, the SA80 was the paradigmatic bullpup that I was thinking of. As per DaveUK’s link, I had heard that it was a fiasco orginally but had been improved by, I think, Heckler and Koch. Exactly what the status is now is not clear. I hear some bad reports. On the other hand, the Royal Marines won the accuracy portion of some shooting contest among the world’s special forces with their SA80’s. The Israeli Tavor is another bullpup that gets good marks, supposedly superior to the AR-15 in all categories. So, it’s hard to know whether the problem with the trigger linkage in the early models is intrinsic to bullpup designs or a developmental problem.

    I often calculate prices now in terms of their equivalent in airguns. So, a Bronco is half a parking ticket for you? Remind me not to ask you for a ride to the shooting range. 🙂

    Volvo, there may be a holster out there for the Marauder pistol. You could use one designed for the scoped Smith and Wesson .500 magnums. They look just like regular pistol holsters in everything but size. I believe that I’ve seen the new generation of .500 SW magnums. If anything, the pistol looks even larger. Maybe that’s to make it more controllable.

    Jane, good to hear from you. How are the woodchucks? Have you made friends yet? Or can we summarize things with a clip from Star Trek.

    Superbeing (addressing Kirk and a Klingon): In time you and the Klingons will become friends.

    Klingon: Never!

    As I recall the discussion of pointed projectiles vs. domed, the pointed won handily as having superior aerodynamic properties. The explanation of the teardrop shape and the falling water droplet make a lot of sense. But while submarines may be shaped approximately like tear drops, fighter planes and rockets definitely are not and neither is the example that carried the day–the spitzer shaped bullet that contributed to the success of the Mauser rifles. So what, if any, is the quick answer to why domed pellets would be superior? Is is that the spitzer shape only excels in the supersonic realm?

    B.B. did you not say that it is almost impossible to wear out a modern 1911? I read somewhere that the receiver of this pistol is rated for 150,000 rounds–or was it 250,000? In any case, while this may be beyond the reach of some people, it is not for everyone, especially the super-serious shooters who fire 50,000 rounds a year.


    • “pointed projectiles vs. domed, the pointed won handily as having superior aerodynamic properties.”

      This reminds me of a nature show on TV not long ago. The show was about how nature helps man design things. An example is Velcro and how its like how a cocoburr(sp?) sticks to clothing. Then they talked about the nostrils of hawks. Apparently they have a little “bump” in the nostril that makes them more aerodynamic. With this info, jet engines also have that hub in the middle. Maybe this is why pointed are more aerodynamic. ??

      • a couple google searches…

        1. The air pressure from a 200 mph (320 km/h) dive could possibly damage a bird’s lungs, but small bony tubercles in a falcon’s nostrils guide the shock waves of the air entering the nostrils (compare intake ramps and inlet cones of jet engines), enabling the bird to breathe more easily while diving by reducing the change in air pressure.

        2. Question: “Clocked at over 200 mph, the peregrine falcon probably is the worlds fastest bird. How does it breathe at such speed and the ram air pressure without damaging its lungs?

        Answer: There is a small protruding cone in the openings of the peregrine’s nostrils that is similar in design and function to the inlet cone of a jet engine. These cones, called tubercles reduce air pressure entering the nostrils.

    • Aerodynamics and hydrodynamics are very complicated subjects. A first cut difference between subs and planes is that water is (effectively) incompressible, while air is not. If you want low drag coefficient at transsonic and supersonic speeds, clearly you go with a pointy nose. But drag is not the only thing that influences a pellet’s flight. Unlike a conventional bullet that is only aerodynamically stable because it spins, a pellet has the center of mass in front of the center of pressure and is inherently stable (but we still spin them to increase stability).

      Passenger planes are inherently stable, but a modern fighter is either unstable or very close to it. That’s why it requires computers to keep it flying properly. Why? Because a stable aircraft doesn’t want to turn quickly, whereas an unstable or metastable plane is much more maneuverable.

      A note: before the jet era fighters could have either a pointed nose (Hurricane, Spitfire, Mustang, Lightning, etc) or a fairly flat one (Thunderbolt, Hellcat, etc.), but once speeds picked up, reducing drag became paramount along with slipping through the transsonic region; a beautiful expression of that was the F-104. And wasp waists were used beginning roughly with the US F-100, again to ease the transition between sub- and supersonic.

      I’m not even sure whether a subsonic pellet with a pointed nose has a smaller Cd than a domed pellet, but it does seem as if domes are more accurate than anything except a top-end wadcutter.

    • Matt,

      Yes, you cannot wear out a modern 1911. There are plenty of guns with 300,000 on the clock and they’re still humming along. Armchair enthusiasts like us never need worry.

      No special grip is required for a PCP, but good followthrough will always be rewarded.


  12. B.B. or a anyone else,

    In a previous post, when you were describing how to diagnose a problem with the scope, you mentioned that you need to dial down the elevation to put tension in the spring.

    I just want to confirm that this means raising the front of the optical tube and thus lowering the point of impact and that this is applicable to all modern scopes.


    • TE, if you can’t adjust your scope high enough so that the point of aim corresponds with the point of impact then the rear mount needs to be shimmed. Likewise if the adjustment is within a full turn from the end of it’s adjustment, you should shim it to avoid reticle float. If it’s the opposite, you can’t get the scope low enough so that POA corresponds with POI, or your scope elevation adjustment screw is within that one turn margin, shim the front. A small piece of film negative or paper or plastic from a coffee can lid, placed at the very base of the scope ring is the trick. The idea is to get the scope adjustment as close to the center of it’s range as possible so that you have plenty of adjustment available for windage or elevation without worrying about exceeding the workable adjustment range.

      Please someone else say I got this correct?

      Fred PRoNJ

      • Fred,

        Yes, raising the REAR of the scope makes it look down , so that it will be shooting too high. The fix is to dial out some of the elevation.

        The reason I knew Gene’s problem was this is because if the scope is adjusted too low the POA will never move. It will be under too much spring tension.


    • Loren,

      Yes, the rifle was shooting too low and by adjusting the scope up high the erector tube began to float. Then the POA moved around. So raising the rear of the scope allows us to put some tension on the elevation knob, which in turn tensions the erector tube return spring.


  13. For what it’s worth, most Bull Pup type rifles have issues with the trigger pull due to the long linkage needed for that design. It can be good but needs more attention than standard designs.

    Also, my DPMS 5.56 AR style carbine shoots 1 MOA out of the box. That’s hard to beat by other designs. Also, my rifle is not special, others will do the same.

    I also like Diana guns, I have two 52’s one in .177 and one .22. The .177 was purchase new for about $250 (Some time ago). The .22 was purchase used but in like new condition for $75.00. It pays to check out used guns when you can! The .177 is scoped with B Square mounts.


  14. BG_F

    I spent some time today fooling with pellets again.
    Used cp14.3 boxed .22. Weighed out a bunch. Weighed each at least three times. Sometimes more if they were borderline. Weighed into .1gr increments. Limits set this way for example… 14.3gr had to be from 14.30-14.39.
    Could have used 7 different compartments to sort into, but only had 5 in the storage box. Compartments were from 14.1gr to 14.5gr. The 14.6 and 14.7 were thrown into the 14.5 compartment so the three heaviest sizes were lumped together.

    Most were in the 14.2-14.4 compartments. The 14.2 and 14.4 were about equal, the 14.3 had a few more than either. Not many in the 14.1 and 14.5(combined with 14.6 and 14.7).

    Caliper go-no go test….
    Set for 5.51mm for head to catch, 5.52mm for head to fall through.
    The lightest pellets (14.1) nearly all passed, with just a few being smaller. The 14.4gr nearly all passed, with just a few being larger. The heavier 14.5-14.7 were nearly all larger. All of the 14.3 gr that I checked passed .

    I can conclude that to some extent there is a relationship between weight and head size, but I would only say that it is with this particular box of pellets. I would not say that this is a universal thing.
    I can say however, that the weight to head size relationship seems to show up to a noticeable degree at the extreme ends of the weight distribution….particularly at the high end.

    Once again….this is THIS box of pellets.

    If I wanted to be really picky I would weigh first, then check head size. However there is just no way that I am going to that much trouble.


    • Additional…
      Forgot the 14.2gr. I think that all I checked passed the size test.

      Since there were very few pellets in the extreme end compartments, I would probably just throw them away and keep the 14.2-14.4 pellets. In this particular case anyway.


        • Sorted this precisely I don’t know. I am not steady enough from a rest, and very seldom have calm air so it is hard to say.
          I will say one thing however…..
          I have found that pellets that fit a little tighter than average do not seem to shoot much worse than the average fitting pellet, but the ones that are noticeably looser are extremely unpredictable. They go all over the place. This is based on a kind of pellet that shoots good and I have gotten the feel for how it feels when seating.


    • TT,
      First, that proves that boxed premiers are pretty good. Second, you’re guilting me into buying a scale and running some tests on the Copperhead points :). It might be interesting to mix the 14.1 and 14.5..7 ones and comparing to groups of the ones in the middle. It might also be interesting to put “too small”/ “too big” head diameters against “just right” and see if that has more or less effect on group size than the weight disparity. I also suspect that the differences don’t show up well until 20 yards or so out. As soon as I build my 50 yard indoor range and get a PCP, I’ll try it!

      • Depends a lot on the rifle. Some can stand a fairly wide deviation in size better than others.
        I am sure that a weight deviation alone would not bother too many rifles except at very long range.

        The time I sorted the copperhead fields and the tin of cphp that was really bad by head size, the result was obvious . In my living room, the ones that passed the size test shot one hole. The ones that failed went into groups of almost 3″. Rifle- 853. Size test was that a pellet had to be at least a certain minimum size.
        Can’t shoot undersize in this rifle. At all!


      • If you build a 50yd indoor(heated by god!) I might join you.
        It’s 9degrees and blowing like heck out there right now.

        Thats 9degrees F for you metric guys who have the funny numbering systems. Friggin cold. 9 degrees C would be chicken feed.


        • twotalon,

          Where do you live? 9 degrees is obviously cold and is now way too much for my nicotine ravaged circulatory system. The 24 degrees here in Riverdale, MD is more than my hands can stand. At least they are no longer nicotine stained. Quit 5 years ago, but had smoked for 40 before that blessed day in August.


          PS How have you been feeling health wise?

          • I’m in northwest Ohio. Makes shipments from PA pretty fast. Next day after they ship.

            Feeling pretty good. Lost a lot of weight so pumping the talons is harder. Still manage the 180bar fill without a problem.
            The 97K is still kicking my butt with the weight and cocking effort. Was easier before the Maccari kit.
            I can cock and hold the D48 pretty easy now.

            Sensitivity to heat and cold is not as bad as it was a year ago. Getting more saliva back slowly and food is tasting better so eating is getting easier. Still smoking some. If I could fear cigarrettes as much as I fear fp-10 I could have quit a long time ago.

            I could see testing the Talon with the failed pellets from my sorting experiment . Yeah. 1070fps with maximum leading with or without lube (Condor tank). It might even get a cp hollow point to expand at that velocity. They sure won’t at 900fps (medium groundhog-soft tissue only).


  15. A couple of years ago I bought a used Beeman 250 (rebadged Diana 45) for $60… one of those snatches off the yellow classifieds you can get when you’re in the right place at the right time. It was a cosmetic disaster – bluing stripped from the barrel and from about half the compression tube, and the stock had been taken down to the wood and refinished ‘blonde’. I cold-blued the bare metal and re-finished the stock (rather poorly, I ain’t much of a wood-worker), but from a distance (and if you squint) it sorta looks like it’s supposed to.

    But man – is it a sweet shooter. I believe it’s my most accurate powerful breakbarrel, or at least the easiest to shoot accurately. My HW30 might best it at short ranges, but at 60 yards it rules.

    • Vince,

      Sure is good to see you posting. It always seems that it’s the “red headed step children” of airguns that brings you out. Hope all is well. Happy holidays!


  16. Evening B.B.,

    Thanks for your response to my question this morning. The reason I asked about the automatic safety was because my Diana 35 made in 1985 doesn’t have one. It got me thinking about how Diana numbered their rifles.


  17. Re: PT-85
    “Hey B.B.
    Could you maybe do a review on the new PT-85 from Gamo? It seems to be one of the fastest CO2 pistols on the market and has blowback action. It seems to be a Gamo version of the Beretta PX4 Storm, but improved in terms of velocity. I’m interested to see if it’s accurate and if it fits well in the hand.”
    Glad your back!

  18. Scope shimming and adjustment for mounts (if you have adjustable mounts!)

    It’s easiest for me to remember which direction to “make a scope look” if I remember that I want the crosshairs in the scope to match the point of impact on the target. In other words if the point of impact is below the point of aim, then the rear of the scope needs to be shimmed to look downward toward the point of impact and vice versa.


    • That’s exactly it. Think of it as keeping the point of impact (where the barrel is pointed) the same and moving the point of aim (where the scope is pointed) to coincide with it. From a rest, you can zero a scope that way too, as long as you can hit paper, i.e., fire a shot and then move the crosshairs over it without moving the rifle (why you need a good rest device).

  19. Gene let me add my two cents on scope adjustment.

    The easiest way to look at shimmig scope rings is: move the rear of the scope in the direction you want the pellet to go. Or move the front of the scope in the opposite direction you want the pellet to go.

    If the scope is adjusted as far as it can go then it must be shimmed to bring the cross hairs back to zero. For best results and least parallax effect a scope should be as close to zero as possible. Zero is when the scope adjustment knobs are approximately in the middle of their range. I say approximately because the adjustments are not that precise on any scope (so I hear).

    BB has a very good blog article on how to zero a scope. So, zero your scope and shoot. If you’re shooting too low, add shims to the back ring to bring it up, if it’s shooting too high after zeroing add shims to the front ring to bring it down.

    I hope this doesn’t complicate things more. I mean it all seems clear to me, eh?


  20. Dang it let me rephrase what “it” is:

    If you’re shooting too low, add shims to the back ring to bring THE PELLET up, if it’s shooting too high after zeroing add shims to the front ring to bring THE PELLET down.

    It’s nearly impossible for me to say what I mean sometines!


  21. Kevin
    I received the tawn 30mm scope mount that will take up to 44mm lens, but not the AO. Yes they are too short with the AO. I tried to look back at old blog to see your suggestions, but could no fig er how to go back.I have e-mailed twan to find out about return unless some one wants them.

  22. I have a DIANA model 45 T05, cal .22; bought in 2008 from AL Syed in DUBAI,do you know how much power in terms of Joules this machine can deliver

    • Muhammad,

      The Diana model 45 can be made as a European-power gun (7.5 joules or less),. a UK-legal rifle (16.27 joules) or a full-power rifle made for the U.S. market. The latter would be around 24.5 joules. You will need a chronograph to determine which model you have.

      If it is a European-rated rifle it will shoot a 14-grain pellet at around 400 f.p.s. If it is a UK-rated rifle it will shoot the same pellet at 621 f.p.s. The U.S.-rated rifle will shoot the same pellet around 761 f.p.s.

      You can do the conversions of all of this information on the Pyramyd AIR website here:



  23. Dear Sir,
    Thanks for yourr reply,what do you mean by chronograph ?,If you mean the serial Number of the unit, then it is “50160110”.THanks for the info.Do they have any SITE,where we can punch in the serial number an we can have the specs of the AIR GUN.
    The owners manual or the Pdf on the SITE does not have the spec of Energy.

    Muhammad Aman.

    • Muhammad,

      A chronograph is a device for measuring the speed of projectiles. Read this article and watch this video to see how they work:


      There is nowhere to punch in the serial number of your rifle and get the specs. The best thing to do is the chronograph it.


    • Muhammad,
      Welcome to the blog. BB gave you a good answer about the chronograph. The first thing I realized when I started with air guns is that there is more money to be spent for really cool gadgets to go with them than I ever dreamed of. I hope you will tell us how you have fun with your Diana.

  24. Thanks all of you,who have replied to my questions,well they do not have a chronograph meter available at AL SYED,neither do they have silencers,we have to go on long drive to find a place where there is NO MAN’S Land and then we shoot with the GUN.We are not allowed to shoot in the vicinity where we live.
    Please tell me is it advisable to purchase MAGNUM 350 of Diana and how it is in terms of precession.

    • Muhammad,

      The Diana 350 Magnum is a wonderful air rifle, but it’d difficult to shoot well in the powerful version that is imported to the U.S. If the rifle was shooting pellets at 800 f.p.s. instead of 1150 it would be a lot nicer and easier to shoot.

      I don’t know whether you are able to buy the full-power version of the 350 or the one that is made for the UK and only shoots 800 f.p.s. If you can find out, the the 350 might be a nice gun for you.

      All rifles precess, so I don’t understand your question about that in this context.


  25. i love the m45,i had one first at age 14 in 1982,it was big for me then and i so desperatly wanted a vulcan by webley.im glad my dad bought the m45.quality was much better as was accuracey.over the last 4 years i got back into shooting and have collected some.i love the 45 most of all as its so user friendly and accurate,it has a great firing cycle too.ihave 177 cal special editions,.20 cal model and plenty of .22.s.i just cant help myself.in the uk we have ide say more .22 models as this was the cal of the 80s.and when they come up forsale its usualy .22.i am a diana original nut.i also love the m54.48/52. m35s and one i have model 228 which no one can identify which seems to be a junior rifle from the 80s era too.

    • Martin,

      I have never heard of a Diana model 228. I looked for it in the Blue Book but didn’t find it there, either. It sounds like something European. Perhaps it’s a variation of the Model 22, which is a youth model that was made from 1953 to 1985.


  26. .hi bb.its date marked o8.82.measures 42″ total barrel 17 half “forestock profiled as m45,i put poor pics on dianawerkcollective but no one identified it either,made in west germany stamped clear and spaced correctly mod .228 original its in 177 cal accurate and powerfull.bearing trigger .the butt has no pad.but has a very comfortable shoulder shape cut in with nice grouving cut in .it has a slightly raised cheek piece too .serial number 635135.it also has a scope rail simular to m35 models.i am sure its a variant of the m22 but as i have never seen a late one i cant determine it.if i was better with i t ide put pics up again.maybe my partner will assist me once i take some better pics.im hoping to secure a deal today for another m45 in 177 cal.we will see.are the diana m45s in .20 cal common in usa as in uk we are ignorant of its versatile cal.i happen to like the cal.own a .20 m45 and would love another.i still await a walnut model too in antisipation.i also as a child have great memories of the healthways top score 175.bb ,that was fun and pretty accurate.recently i have bought a daisy model 99 repeater and this morning from a forum a daisy 922.most my stuff is either german ,austrian,and british asides from an early elgamo paratrooper repeater .i have no pcp and find alot of pleasure in the old school stuff.im sure i need to expand on daisy,crosman and get a little knowledge on pump ups as im limited.however love rebuilding springers and improving on them without making unchangable improvements.i do have some custom venom rifles a .20 cal weihrauch 97 and a fwb 124.these are pree venoms sale to webley and are extreemly nice rifles..and highly collectable in the uk.atb.love macs m45 walnut model and the write up.an oldie but a legend and a very capable ft rifle once fettled.i had steve pope of vmach tune mine leaving the leather seal inplace ,it produces 11.9 ft lbs and accuracey is fantastic as is consistancey .it was great prior but now its more consistant .im sure very little grease was used on air weapons pree 90s.

    • Martin,

      Years ago German Dianas were called Original because the Scottish Milbro company was also making them as part of World War II reparations. So the German company used the name Original to differentiate their products from those made in the UK.

      The buttstock you describe sounds very much like the one they used to put on the Diana 34. It was plain wood with grooves to help hold it on your shoulder.

      You mention the ball-bearing trigger, which is from the earlier models (27 and 35). Even though your gun has an August 1982 date, it seems to come from an even earlier time. So it was perhaps at the end of its model run.

      The .20-caliber Diana 45s are just as hard to find here in the States as they are in the UK.


  27. I picked up a Gecado/Diana 45 in .177 with the cross pin receiver pin arrangement.It’s still in the mail on it’s way but I read you recommended using the RWS 48 style UTG mt as opposed to the RWS 34 UTG mt. Any reason why? Not sure if I have the leather or synthetic seals at this point? Does the rear pin drift out to the right or left? Hope it is a decent piece……………Thanx

    • Harold,

      The model 48 base was recommended because it droops less. The 45 wasn’t a bad drooper like the 34 and others.

      Pins almost always drift left to right, if they have a specific orientation. Most of the time they don’t, but it’s a good practice to do it just one way in case you encounter one that does.


  28. Hi,
    I own a similar RWS Diana 45 as Mac’s and have recently replaced its main spring with a new one but after this replacement the gun has gone haywire and is shooting every where but the target.
    Can you please help.

    Awaiting your reply

    • Omer,

      First I must ask, is the barrel clean? If you shoot a lot of Premier or other Crosman pellets, it may need to be cleaned with JB Bore Paste.

      Next, is the barrel pivot bolt tight enough to hold the barrel in any position, once the spring has been cocked. That’s the test for how tight it should be.

      Finally, are the stock screws all tight? I had that problem with a gun just this week.

      I am betting the barrel needs to be cleaned with JB Paste, but please let me know what you find.


      • Hi,

        I cleaned the barrel of my gun completely and checked the bolts that you suggested but the problem still persists, it never shoots at the same spot twice. Please tell me any other solutions if possible.



        • If you have open sights but have been shooting with a scope then pull the scope off and try it with the opens. A scope can go to crap very fast.


        • Omer,

          twotalon spotted it for us. I bet you have the scope’s elevation run up high, don’t you? The erector tube is probably floating and moving with every shot.

          You can test for this without dismounting the scope. Just run the vertical adjustment DOWN about 60 clicks and shoot a group. If it is tight, but low, the erector tube was floating. The solution is to get a scope mount that compensates by angling the scope down. It’s called a drooper mount. UTG makes several of them. Try the one for the RWS Diana 48.


          • Omer,

            one last thing to if what BB and TwoTalon suggested solution doesn’t work – try testing different pellets and see if one works for this rifle. While I don’t believe just changing a mainspring will change the rifle’s “taste” in pellets, I guess it’s possible.

            Fred PRoNJ

  29. I have a RWS DIANA Model 45 .177 bought in the 80’s. It has developed a problem. The Gizzmo behind the trigger wants to fall out. I can work it back into place and the gun works great but I can’t find what looks like a missing part or loose screw. What could it be ?

    Another problem. I bought a RED-DOT BSA Scope. After about 10 shots the scope moved backwards about one half inch. The mounting screws were as tight as I dared to torque them. Is there a solutuion?

    Sorry for the stupid questions. I just love the gun and want to keep it in super shape. The gun is very accurate with the iron sights but I’m now with glasses and the Red Dot seems to be a great solution. Thanks to anyone who takes the time to help. Paul

    • Paul,

      I don’t know what the gizzmo behind the trigger might be, unless you are referring to the safety. The early 45 had a faulty safety that had to be replaced. It was longer than the safety shown in this report.

      As far as anchoring your red dot sight, you need a solid scope stop — something these powerful Diana guns have always lacked. Many of them have now sheared off the big-headed screw at the rear of the scope rail, because people butted the scope or dot sight against it and it sheared the screw during recoil.

      What you need is a mount base to attach the sight to that incorporates its own scope stop, like the UTG scope bases I designed for Leapers.



  30. Bought this gun around 1981 for my 10 year old son ( yea I know, it was a little big for him) any way if I remember paid around $250.00 then. He used it until his untimely death in an auto accident just before his 17th birthday. My three other sons never got interested in it but I still shoot it today , as a matter of fact I shot it this morning at a squirrel on by bird feeder, sadly to say, I missed . Not the gun’s fault, as I’m pretty sure he moved as I shot. I have a laser sight mounted now, ( second one) as the scopes I have used were not able to take the constant shock of the action. Every time I have a couple of misses I check the gun and usually find it still shoots where it is aimed. The only drawback is the noise. I’m in a residential area and I worry the neighbors are going to turn me in some day for shooting in the borough. I wish there was a silencer I could mount on the barrel. This has been a great gun and I plan on keeping it and maybe my grandson will own it some day. I’m up to around 45 squirrels shooting hunting pellets. It is a great gun. Only problem I ever had was a time 20 years ago when the ball bearing that helps seat the barrel when closed, popped out, and rather than send the gun back to the factory ,I just dimpled the edge of the of hole it set in, with a center punch and it has been ok since then. The only other thing is, I replace the o-ring once in a while.

  31. hi B.B,

    I’ve got one of these magnificent rifles, inherited from my dad. it jumps like crazy and i have yet to learn how to control it BUT the safety is busted..i don’t know why or how, i once had it serviced and the guy said he couldn’t repair it.

    Do you know where to find a PDF with detailed exploded views etc so i can have a look myself? I think the shopowner wasn’t really interested in repairing it 🙁

    • Jay,

      Welcome to the blog.

      If you can just be patient, I have a gun just like this on hand that I plan to tune for the blog. I will show the disassembly in detail, as I have on numerous other guns.

      It will be posted on the current blog, which is located here:



  32. Arshad,

    What does “best” mean to you? If I can get the 45 I am tuning right now to be as smooth as I hope, then I will say that a leather seal is best. If the gun has a good leather seal, I would not change it.

    But if the leather seal need to be replaced, then I think I would go synthetic.


  33. Regarding scope mount shims.
    The best shim material is an aluminum soda can.
    The thickness is consistent around 0.020 inches
    The material doesn’t expand with humidity the way other materials do.
    You now have a permanent stabile mount.

    The aluminum forms to the scope mount geometry.
    The material is coated both sides, one “painted” the other impervious to the acidic effects of Coca Cola. This prohibits galvanic corrosion due to aluminum against steel. Add a non conductive grease, silicone or such to prevent moisture intrusion.
    Choose which mount needs the shim, front or rear.
    Sand mount thinner if needed.

  34. Regarding scope mount shims.
    The best shim material is an aluminum soda can.
    The thickness is consistent around 0.020 inches
    The material doesn’t expand with humidity the way other materials do.
    You now have a permanent stabile mount.
    The aluminum forms to the scope mount geometry.
    The material is coated both sides, one “painted” the other impervious to the acidic effects of Coca Cola. This prohibits galvanic corrosion due to aluminum against steel. Add a non conductive grease, silicone or such to prevent moisture intrusion.
    Choose which mount needs the shim, front or rear.
    Sand mount thinner if needed.

  35. I inherrited a Diana Fixed Barrel Luftgewehr (airgun) with under cocking lever from my godfather who passed away in 1988 at the age of 86. He received it as a boy.
    W B 27964 is engraved on the barrel. Weight: 3.5 kilograms. Height: 116 cm. No Model number.
    DIANA Mayer & Grammelspacher GmbH & Co KG sent me a photocopy of models and think it is Model 45. I am not utterly convinced. Can someone help me.

    • Selma,

      Welcome to the blog.

      You may have a Diana model 45U. If it has a loading tap that is rotated to load the pellet, that’s probably it. That rifle was made from 1927 to 1940.

      It could also be either a model 26U or a model 58. Both are also underlevers with loading taps. If the butt ends at the rear of the action (system) it’s probably a 26U. If it extends to just under the loading tap it’s probably a 345U or a 58.

      At any rate, you have a fine old airgun. It has leather piston seals that need oil. Drop 10 drops of oil into the open loading tap, then close the tap and stand the rifle on its butt for a couple hours to let the oil penetrate the leather.


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