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Ammo Beeman RX-2 Elite Series combo air rifle: Part 2

Beeman RX-2 Elite Series combo air rifle: Part 2

by B.B. Pelletier

Two new airgun videos have been posted. Both are about cleaning airgun barrels, how to do it correctly and which products are safe for airguns. Part 1 reviews when you should consider cleaning, and part 2 shows you the mechanics of cleaning.

Now, on to today’s blog.

Part 1

Beeman’s RX-2 is a handsome air rifle. The brown laminated stock looks perfect.

Today, we’ll test the power and velocity of the Beeman RX-2 Elite Series combo air rifle. Remember, this rifle contains a gas spring instead of a coiled steel spring, so the cocking effort is entirely different. A gas spring doesn’t increase in effort as you advance through the cocking stroke. It starts out at the maximum force and maintains that same force until the gun is cocked. But the leverage of a breakbarrel rifle is poor in the beginning of the cocking stroke, so the gas spring feels like a lot more effort.

I measured the force needed to cock this rifle, and it came up an even 44 lbs. That was actually lighter than I guessed, but heavy enough that everyone will notice it. Of course, this isn’t a plinking rifle, so the effort it takes to cock it isn’t a problem. Hunters can cock their rifles and leave them cocked for hours while they hunt, because the gas spring doesn’t degrade from being compressed. Just don’t buy this rifle for its power without being aware that the cocking effort is quite high.

Alas, this rifle is a .25 caliber, and that caliber has long suffered from a lack of accurate pellets. Shooters buy the .25 because it offers the heaviest pellets on the market, but they fail to realize that none of these pellets are particularly good. And when I say “good” I mean in comparison to what a quality .22-caliber pellet can do at great range. Almost anything will shoot well at 10-15 yards, but when the range stretches out to 25 yards and farther, most .25-caliber pellets can’t keep up with what a good .22 can do.

The H&N Baracuda (Beeman Kodiak Extra Heavy) was about the best pellet available up to the present time and they were only okay — not spectacular. However, this situation has recently changed. I asked for the rifle in .25 caliber because, during the test of the TalonP PCP pistol, I found two new pellets that are quite accurate.

The JSB Exact King pellet is a medium-weight .25 that delivers phenomenal accuracy at long distance when everything is done right. It weighs 25.4 grains, nominally, which puts it in the lightweight to middleweight range among .25-caliber pellets. That means it gives you the best velocity you’ll get from a superior pellet in .25 caliber. You can waste your time shooting sinker larvae, or you can pony up and buy the very best. As long as you’ve gone to the trouble to buy a .25-caliber air rifle, doesn’t it make sense to buy the pellets that make it shoot the best?

The other good .25-caliber pellet we have is the Benjamin dome. This one came out over a year ago, probably to support the .25-caliber Marauder, but the rest of the market also benefitted. I think it should be called a Premier, because when you stand it next to the other three calibers of Premiers, it looks very similar. But it has no special name, other than diabolo, which references the shape. This one weighs 27.8 grains, so it’s a little heavier than the JSB and definitely in the middleweight range. It offers reasonable velocity with good power — especially when used in precharged guns! It also happens to be quite accurate, which is a plus for the quarter-inch bore, so I definitely included it in today’s test.

I included the H&N Baracuda just because it was once the favorite. Who knows what it might do in this rifle?

First up were the JSB Exact Kings. They averaged 556 f.p.s. and ranged from a low of 545 to a high of 560. That’s a span of 15 f.p.s., but it looks larger than it is. All but a single shot out of ten were at or above 551. At that speed, the rifle generates 17.44 foot-pounds at the muzzle. You may remember that the test certificate sent with the rifle had placed it at 17.4 foot-pounds with a lighter pellet, so this is pretty stable performance.

Next up were the Benjamin domes. They averaged 507 f.p.s. and ranged from 499 to 514, so again a 15 foot-second spread. At that velocity, they averaged 15.87 foot-pounds.

Finally, I tested the H&N Baracudas. At 31.02 grains, they’re definitely among the heavyweight .25-caliber pellets, though the bar has been raised to over 43 grains by Eun Jin. These pellets averaged 494 f.p.s. in the RX-2. The range went from a low of 487 f.p.s. to a high of 499, so the spread is 12 f.p.s. At the average velocity they delivered 16.81 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.

The trigger breaks at 2 lbs., 1 oz., which is more than light enough. My only complaint is that the second stage is so creepy. I went on the internet and attempted to find instructions on how to adjust this Elite-series trigger. Imagine a dark night with a train whistle in the distance and a lone dog barking! There are a lot of folks asking the same thing, but I’m darned if I can find any instructions on how this trigger works. Just a lot of plaintive inquires that date back to 2005.

So, I grabbed a screwdriver and found out how to do it on my own. The adjustment screw is the one in front of the trigger blade. When you turn it counterclockwise, the trigger-pull becomes lighter, and the first-stage travel length increases at the same time. I was never able to remove all of the second-stage creep, but I got about 75 percent of it out with 1.5 revolutions of the screw. The pull then registers 1 lb., 11 oz., which is too light on a sporting rifle, but it is safe and reliable.

The picture worth a thousand words. Turn this screw counter-clockwise to reduce the pull weight and lengthen the first-stage travel — clockwise to do the reverse. The length of the first stage is tied to the pull weight (apparently), so that’s all I was able to do.

What about the power?
Are you as surprised as I am that the velocity, and power are as low as this? The specs say it should get 725 f.p.s., but I don’t know with what. If Pyramyd AIR tested it with the H&N Field Target Trophy pellet that weighs 20.06 grains and only got an average of about 626 f.p.s., what sort of trick pellet would get another 100 f.p.s.? I think what we’re seeing is the rifle’s true potential in .25 caliber.

This is not that surprising; because when a spring-piston rifle is upgraded to .25 caliber, the maximum power it generates often falls off. The RWS Diana 48, which generates 22 foot-pounds in .22, will make about 19-20 foot-pounds in .25 on its best day. That’s probably why they don’t make them in that caliber anymore. And other guns perform about the same. The only spring-piston air rifles that seem to perform up to spec are those that start out in .25 caliber, and they usually have a much longer piston stroke. Now you can see why I was so impressed with the power of the TalonP air pistol.

What’s next?
Don’t be discouraged with the RX-2 just yet. We still have to test the accuracy. If this rifle can lob them one on top of the other, we won’t care what energy it develops. As many have noted, a heavy .25-caliber pellet will buck the wind and deliver its payload to the target better than any other smallbore pellet around. So, let’s give the rifle the chance to perform.

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.

63 thoughts on “Beeman RX-2 Elite Series combo air rifle: Part 2”

  1. In your picture of the trigger I notice a hole in the trigger itself. Is there an adjustment hiding in there?

    I do hope this is an interesting rifle. It does look right nice.

      • BB,

        I’m pretty sure the screw in the trigger blade adjusts where the second stage is. It’s the “adjustable, second bump” on the trigger blade. I think if it’s in too far either the sear won’t engage or the blade will be too far forward.


      • Turning the screw inside the trigger blade counterclockwise lengthens your first stage. It is basically the screw that makes contact for you second stage bump like the adjustment screw in the blades of the FWB124 or English made Patriot/Kodiak. It’s best to adjust this last after you get the pull weight like you want. The earlier RX trigger units and some of the RX1s had a sear adjustment screw like the Rekord trigger unit that was accessible when the trigger guard was removed but newer rifles have a completely different unit than the earlier models.

        The velocity figures you are getting are on the low side. Your rifle may have issues? My HW95 in 25cal is right around 630fps with FTT pellets and was right at 600fps when it was new and untouched. The RX1s and RX2s I worked on and owned in the past typically shot 690-700fps when they were at 23bar pressure. Even running 20bar to lower the cocking effort they were still in the 650-660 range.

  2. My recently acquired BSA Supersport in .25 which has had about 1500 pellets through it now, has about the same velocity as this Beeman, and it has a regular factory spring inside. I get 518 fps with the JSB kings, and 600 with the H&N FTTs. I also found that the JSB’s and H&N ‘s were about the only accurate pellets in .25 for distances beyond 10 meters. JSB needs to bring a 20.0 grain pellet here for the .25 cal springers. I have only shot two squirrels with mine out of three shot at this season with the Supersport and the H&H FTT were used. My observations were that the .25 cal pellets did not penetrate the squirrels body completely like the JSB Jumbo’s in .22 cal from my Model 48 did at the same ranges. The one squirrel was shot at about 35 yards, and the other at around 15 yards with the .25 cal gun. The pellets did not expand either and I retrieved them from the squirrels when I cleaned them for the table to see about that. I could have shot those pellets again, but both animals were killed cleanly and dropped on the spot. The one at the longer range was facing me and shot through the chest.

    • Robert,

      Thank you for this report. Mac tested the Supersport for us in .25 caliber and got velocities in the high 400s. We never completed the test.

      I think the variability of the rifle is too great to recommend it. Mac owned an earlier .25 Supersport that was more like yours, so they are apparently all over the place.


  3. Looks like this one holds to the diminishing .25 cal performance rule too. My HW90 (same gun, interchangeable parts) gets about 18-19 ft/lbs in either .177 or .22, depending on the pellet. With the .22 barrel, it pushes a 14.3gr CP at about 765 fps or so at 5500 ft msl. Been a while since I shot it with the .177 barrel on it, so I’ve forgotten which pellet it was (I think Meisters), but I remember it was doing right around 1000 fps.


    • I think that there is potenial for the springers in .25 , but we need pellet wts for the springers. With PCP being so popular the pellets seem to be geared to them. It’s the available pellets ,not the guns that diminish the performance of the .25 in these springers.

  4. B.B.,

    My guess is that the 725 fps number was with the 17.7 grain Laser pellets. That would be about 20 ft lbs muzzle energy so this gun may be a little slow.

    If you have some of the Field Target Trophy / Field Target Special pellets, please include those in your accuracy test. In my .25 Patriot they are by far the most accurate pellet – dime size groups at 25 yards and quarter size at 50 yards.


    • Paul: Is your Patriot the UK version or the newer Hatsan effort? I’ve been waiting for a review I could trust about the re-vamped Turkish made Patriots with the Quattro trigger and SAS system. The first versions seemed to have their issues. How about an updated review BB on a latest version of the .25 cal models?

      • Robert,

        I really dislike going into a test with a huge negative impression, which is what I have of all Hatsan spring guns. Those guys unerringly take the wrong path each and every time, and when I review them I feel like I’m sniping at children.

        But perhaps it’s time to revisit their designs once more, to see if they have learned anything.

        By the way, I don’t think it’s Hatsan, per se, but the people who contract with them to built guns (i.e. Webley).


        • BB: I understand, hopefully they have learned something. The Turks make some very fine shotguns and I have shot their Mauser rifles in the past. According to some research I’ve done, the Hatsan 135 which I believe is the patriot model that PA stocks now ,has a 30mm bore, and has 84.8 stroke /volume. The old UK Webely Kodiak had 30.2 mm bore and 79.4 stroke/volume. The Hatsan should have the potential to move 20.0 gr pellets in the mid 700fps range, and at a price that is better, and in a new gun. Personally I won’t pay the usual very high used price for an original kodiak whose parts have become un-obtainium. BTW, you are right in recommending a .22 in a 18-20 ft/lb rifle for tree squirrels .They are tough, and not every shot can be a perfect head shot. The ones I hunt are not set up pest elimination shots at the feeder, though I do, do that too, on ocassion.

  5. B.B.

    A question about laminated stocks…
    Do laminated stocks tend to be less resonant and less noisy than solid one piece wood stocks?
    Are they less subject to warping than a solid wood stock?
    I suspect that the answers to both will be “yes”, but I want your observation.


      • Makes sense to me.
        My old 521T liked to crawl all over the place over time, and needed a periodic zero again. I refinished it and soaked the stuff in everywhere. Including under the butt plate. That fixed it.


          • The stock on my 521T was not laminated. Just plain one piece.

            Don’t remember what I used on it. Been a long time ago. Got all the holes and inletting. May have been tung oil or Birchwood Casey finish.

            A wood stock can soak up moisture anywhere that it is not sealed up.

            Noticed that my 97K likes the screws a certain tightness. Changes in moisture content is going to affect this. Likes them not too tight or too loose.


            • twotalon,

              Ah, I misunderstood. Thought you had variances with a laminate stock. Which is the reason I went to laminate in the first place. Though you got me thinking, sealing unexposed areas might not be a bad idea.


            • I used Birchwood Casey too, and also I’ve used some water based ploy that I use for residental wood trim. It is made by the Benjamin Moore company, and has proven very tough. Lowes has it. Good for plywood products which is what a laminated stock really is made out of. Also paste wax your areas around the inletting in a gun to be used in the wet. Helps.. a lot

            • twotalon

              That is fascinating. How did you narrow the problem down to wood warpage? I can usually fix something, if I know what the problem is. My problem is diagnostics drive me up a wall. I would have never thought of that.

              • Would have got back sooner, but have been working on a rifle.

                The 521T is bedded with one screw at the front of the reciever, and with upward pressure at the tip of the forend against the barrel. NOT free floated by any means. If the wood is not stable, then the zero won’t be either. Change was slow. All indications were that it was a change in the wood.


    • twotalon,

      The answer to both questions is yes. Laminated stocks are much superior to plain wood because they are stronger and far less likely to move under any conditions. Their two drawbacks are they are much heavier and they generally cost more than plain wood unless the wood is figured.


  6. BB,

    I like this rifle. Maybe in .22cal, though. I am starting to see the difficulties with larger calibers and spring powerplants. There just doesn’t seem to be enough air behind them for proper performance. I am also seeing the advantage of PCP. (ahh… the dark side is calling…). I laughed over “…Imagine a dark night with a train whistle in the distance and a lone dog barking!” Good one!


  7. Never shot an RX2 but that may change soon. A fellow airgunner introduced me to another local airgunner yesterday via the internet and this gent has an RX2. Promised to bring it over to my next hosted airgun shoot. I really enjoy shooting new guns that I don’t have to buy.

    The two new videos on cleaning airguns are very well done and sorely needed. On every airgun website I visit at least once a week there’s a question about cleaning airgun barrels. Nice to be able to point these guys to the videos. I have two minor criticisms of the videos though.

    Although a coated (dewey?) rod is used in the video I don’t think enough emphasis is placed on the importance of using a coated rod vs. a bare metal rod. I really like the dewey rods since they’re coated and have a ball bearing at the handle to aid in ease of rotation of the cleaning rod while traversing the inside of a barrel. At about 6 minutes into the Part 2 video on cleaning airgun barrels the young gent says that cleaning rods are caliber specific. Although technically correct, dewey makes an adapter (part no. 17A) that can convert a .177 cal dewey rod to be able to accept .22 cal cleaning brushes, jags and loops. This adapter has a male thread to insert into the end of a dewey .177 cleaning rod with a female 8/32 on the other end. Considering the cost of dewey rods I think everyone should know that you only need to buy one dewey rod even if you have guns in both calibers. I like the shorter 24″? dewey rods for airguns since the longer rods are unnecessary and awkward to use on airguns.


  8. So where is this rifle made anyway? Is it from China? I lose track with all of the Beeman guns.

    Herb and BG_Farmer, while the pellet spiraling is chaotic I persist in believing that the point at which the chaos starts is due to some threshold that can in concept be explained through physics even if the details get complicated. As to what this mechanism is Herb’s cone and hemisphere looks promising, but I’m afraid I don’t follow. If you explain how the cone and hemisphere are connected and which way the assembly is going, I would have a better shot. I tend to think that increasing spin rather than decreasing spin would tend to stabilize a pellet although there is a point at which the pellet will be over spun. As far as the importance of an apex, the video seems to show the pellets getting chaotic significantly after the apex. Also watched a video of Marine snipers in training where an infrared lens showed the flight of the bullet out to targets 800 yards away, and it was quite stable on a pronounced downward trajectory. But the dynamics of bullets are different from pellets.

    That reminds me of another question. Given that a projectile because of its arc will cross the sight line at two points, at what distance does one begin zeroing for the far point rather than near? The Marine snipers were obviously using the far zero. My first impulse was that the answer would depend on what distance was being shot and how the rifle is elevated. However, I suspect that the elevation is fairly small even out to significant distances. For the Marines, the rifles’ elevation was not perceptible to the naked eye. The answer would be caliber dependent, so we’ll say 30-06. My guess from intuition and watching the Marine sniper video is that you would change zeros from near to far around 500 yards. In other words, anyone except a real long range shooter uses the near zero. What about for pellets? I’m guessing for high-powered airguns that anything short of 50 yards uses the near zero.


    • Matt,
      Enough spin stabilizes the pellet after a fashion just like a bullet, but it works to maintain a constant attitude parallel to the boreline. Pellets are primarily drag stabilized, which makes them always “point” along their trajectory. I think the apex may normally be where you start to see the problems because the angle of difference between the two modes of stabilization becomes greater more quickly around there. If the spinning pellet is a gyroscope, think of the drag-induced torque as a push on the spindle — the harder the push, the more wildly the pellet will precess, “trying” to maintain/regain its original orientation.

      • BG_farmer

        RE: Apex as critical point

        Harry’s video though seems to show that there is some “critical point” in flight at which there is some sort of drastic change which I have called “chaotic.”

        But again the apex is a red herring. If you shoot perfectly horizontally (or downward) there is no apex. So how can the apex be at the critical point?

        To understand chaos, think of a knuckle ball in baseball. The catcher knows the pitcher is throwing a knuckle ball but it is still a hard pitch to catch because the catcher doesn’t know where the ball is going. “All of it sudden” it jumps up, down, left or right. It isn’t that the pitch violates physics, it is just that the subtle differences between two different knuckle ball pitches cause the ball to do different things on different pitches.


        • Herb,
          Isn’t apex simply the highest point in the trajectory, in which case it is at the muzzle when you shoot level or down? Actually, I agree about it not being strictly a “critical point” as far as when the pellet goes crazy, but I was simply agreeing with Matt that it seems likely to be a good region to start looking for problems with most trajectories, if that makes sense. I agree with you that all pellets (and even bullets for that matter to a much lesser degree) precess from the muzzle, it simply doesn’t become remarkable in magnitude until some threshold is exceeded. I would note that bullets do stay stable and at the same angle throughout their trajectory, because their drag is minimized and not used to stabilize them. You may have something with the critical angle in terms of the spiral becoming excessive. Perhaps where we differ is that I don’t see the spiral as “chaotic” in itself, but the natural product of two incompatible forms of stabilization. It can become chaotic easily, however, in the presence of addition factors (e.g., wind). This is interesting because it might explain very well at least in part why pellets are so bad in the wind — much worse than their simple BC’s would predict.

          • BG_Framer,

            I am using “chaotic” in mathematical sense to describe a greater level of unpredictability. A “chaotic system” doesn’t violate any laws of physics. So a Gamo pellet at 70 yards isn’t suddenly going to be 50,000 feet in the air. Physics would still bound where the POI could be.

            In Harry’s video he stacked the first set of pellet one on top of the other even though the flight path was a 3-D curve not a straight line. So the POI is highly predictable. You could use a range card to correct the POI.

            On the other hand the POI for Gamo pellets is very “wild.” So for the Gammo pellets a range card would be near useless to correct the POI past the critical point. That is what I mean by chaotic.

            Chaos is all sorts of other little changes which individually would cause a small change in the result, but when combined create a very large variation in the result. So I’m objecting to the notion of a “continuous predictability” before and past the critical point.

            This help?

    • I totally agree that the “critical point” in flight is a matter of physics. It is a matter of trying to visualize the right model to try to simply all the equations to a model which we can fit with a much more limited number of parameters.

      RE: cone and hemisphere

      Sorry to have been obtuse. I was really just thinking of a pseudo-pellet made out of cone and hemisphere. Image hemisphere first and then with the nose (point) of cone pointing towards back (flat side) of hemisphere. Overall I’ve been thinking about the Barrowman equations for the drag of a rocket and how the drag of a pellet could be calculated from its “parts.” See:

      As part of this idea, I’ve been trying to figure out for a while why there would some critical yaw angle for a pellet. I’m convinced that;

      (1) BC isn’t really constant over velocity from 300 – 1000 fps.
      (2) Pellets precess out of muzzle.
      (3) BC of pellet is increased by yaw angle, so precession of pellet greatly complicated trying to define BC. (Different precession angles is why different rifles would have different BCs for same pellet at roughly same muzzle velocity.)
      (4) Spin of pellet and aerodynamics cause a “gyroscopic yaw.” (So for given pellet design and given pellet velocity, a greater spin causes a greater yaw.)
      (5) Drag of pellet is such that pellet won’t tumble.
      (6) At least some pellets can be shot backwards and will remain stable for some distance. (For some most pellets probably some point at which drag stabilization would decrease such that pellet would flip. This would be a very complicated interaction of aerodynamics, gravity, and initial elevation of shot. However there is probably at least one pellet which if shot straight down would never flip.)
      (6) There is some critical yaw angle (instantaneous precession angle) at which the pellet’s flight becomes unstable (for most if not all pellets).

      Critical Yaw Angle

      Imagine a pellet on a sting in a wind-tunnel. What happens to the drag as the pellet is turned so that it is yawing?

      At first the drag increases but then there is some point at which the wasp waist will allow the air flow to separate into parts. One part flowing around the head, another flowing over the waist, and a another part flowing over the tail. Depending on pellet design, the yaw angle to expose the waist seems to be between about 20 and 30 degrees for the pellets that I checked.

      It seems that at this critical angle that a sort of irreversible situation is created. Once the “separate” flows for head and tail have been created, it is quite impossible for the angle to become smaller again. In fact I’d guess that as the flow separates that the yaw angle increases by 10-20 degrees in an “instant”. At that point the precession rate slows greatly, and the pellet can starts to fly in a chaotic spiral.


      I’d guess that part of the confusion is my emphasis on the word “chaotic.” Think of a linear relationship which is not “chaotic.” a small change in X results in a small change in Y. Now think of a the seed in a random number generator. A small change in the seed results in a vastly different output. The point that I was trying to make was that at the instance that the pellet flight goes whacky you don’t know if the pellet is going left, right, up or down. In reality the group size would start to increase exponentially at this point. The pellet obviously though isn’t going to start flying backwards. So physics still rules.


      • Re: Critical Angle

        Last night I measure the angle between the edge of an edge to the head and the middle of the base. It was between 20 and 30 degrees for the various pellets. All in all this seems a bit too much of an angle. I started to wonder of the aerodynamics are not even more complicated.

        If you think of a round head pellet, it is fairly easy to create an analogy where the head of the pellet is a hemisphere and the tail of the pellet is a cone. Since the head cuts the air first, the head is flying in a laminar flow. The air in the waist of the pellet is trapped in eddy currents, so most of the flow goes “around” the tail, and the overall flow around the “body” of the pellet is fairly laminar.

        However if you start to yaw the pellet, then the flow behind the head which is actually contacting the tail becomes turbulent. So the head would be flying in a laminar flow, but the cone behind would be mostly flying in a turbulent flow from the “wash” of the air displaced by the head. So the overall drag would go down, which would allow the yaw to increase to some greater angle until the drag was the same.

        So the angular momentum of before and after the yaw angle change is preserved. With smaller yaw angle the pellet is precessing faster, and after the angle change the pellet is precessing much more slowly.

        Obviously if you increased the yaw greatly, then the head and the tail are flying through a laminar flow. (Think of the pellet flying fully sideways.)

        The gist is still the same. There is an interaction between aerodynamics and yaw angle. Yaw increase to some critical angle at which point the yaw angle increases greatly (another 10 degrees or so) and the pellet’s precession rate slows greatly. At this point the precession rate is slow enough that the pellet’s flight turns from a tight helix into a chaotic spiral.

        The difference with the new notion is that the yaw angle can be much smaller.


        • Herb,

          It is far from simple, I agree. Messing up the turbulence a little and inducing more laminar airflow, do you think that the ridges caused by the rifling marks on the head of the pellet act as micro vortex generators, causing the airflow to adhere to the pellet waist more than if it were either shot out of a smoothbore or out of a polygonal rifled barrel?


          • RE: ridges caused by the rifling marks on the head of the pellet

            No, I don’t think that the ridges would make the airflow past the head laminar. I’d think that the sharp edges would make the airflow more turbulent. Overall I think that the ridges are so small that they would not dominate the aerodynamics of the pellet.


            • After posting that and thinking some more on it (backwards, as usual), the ridges would be at the wrong angle to act as vortex generators, and even if they did, the effect would be miniscule… You’re right, being parallel to the airflow, they probably just create more turbulence.

    • Matt61:

      “That reminds me of another question. Given that a projectile because of its arc will cross the sight line at two points, at what distance does one begin zeroing for the far point rather than near? ”

      1) You do an initial zero at the first trajectory cross, and always confirm at the second. A typical center-fire rifle zeroed at ~25yds will be +3″ at 100 yds, and on again at 175 – 250yds. The reason for ground-truthing at the further point is that near-imperceptible aiming deviance can result in very substantial error at the second crossing. Airguns can be a minor exception; see below.

      2) It depends on the kill zone of the animal sought. An elk’s heart is about 9″ high counting aortic arch. The bullet must be no more than +/- 4.5″ which means (postulate a generic scoped .30-06 with a 180 or 200-grain bullet) a second zero at about 285 – 300 yds and a point blank range (where the bullet falls below the -4.5″ line) of about 320 – 350 yds. The first crossing was at about 22 or 23 yds. A scoped .22 used for rabbits can have a first crossing at about 15 yds, be on at about 55 yds, and an inch under at 65 yds. With airguns – nice, feeble spring piston airguns – if you zero at 25 yds your second crossing is about 35 yards and you are never more than about 0.5″ above the line of sight while the pellet is between the two crossings. Since the deviation between 25 and 35 yards is so small, it doesn’t make much difference whether you zero at the first crossing or the second.

  9. Aaarrggg! Can’t shoot worth a damn today. Best to stop torturing myself now, and quit wasting pellets.

    Playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare on PS3 would be much more productive.

  10. Hello B.B. I think this gun is one fine looker. There is a place up here that sells Theobens. In fact, they have three Eliminators in .25 cal. One thing I am curious about though. I was under the impression these guns could be pumped up for more power. Is this true for the Beeman?

    • Titus,

      This one has an access screw in the rear of the receiver tube, so it possibly can be pressurized. But Ben Taylor advises against it. He says most owners over-pressurize these guns and they beat themselves to death, while generating less power than they should.

      Besides, it’s already hard to cock.


  11. RE: Mythbusters & cannonball

    Hope about this for unknown unknowns? Mythbusters was shooting some sort of cannon and had a cannonball bounce off a berm and fly though a neighborhood hitting several houses and a van. Good news is that no-one was hurt, just property damage.


    The cannon ball evidently ended up two miles from the range where it was shot. Guess they won’t be using that bomb range again?


  12. Anyone have any experience with the RWS 34 Pro and 34 Pro Compact ?

    Which is easier to shoot accurately / consistently ? ie: Shorter barrel vs less recoil (barrel rise) from the longer (front heavy) barrel…

    Do both have the T-06 trigger ?

    Is the shorter barrel noticeably harder to cock ?

    Also, wood vs synthetic (panther) stock: Does the wood version noticeably change zero in humid / rainy weather ?


    • JohnG10,

      Yes, the shorter barrel is noticeably harder to cock. The guns that have the T06 trigger will say that in their descriptions. It’s usually in the title in the new website.

      Shooting consistency should not vary from one gun to the other. Both will be moving before the pellet leaves the barrel, so the artillery hold is essential to best accuracy.

      There is no measurable difference in the recoil (muzzle rise). Spring-piston guns that operate in the normal way have a two-way recoil, and the final and most prevalent muzzle deflection is a drop, due to the piston stopping suddenly. Muzzle rise is only in firearm that have a one-way recoil pattern, or in backward actions like the P1 pistol, where the piston travels to the rear.

      But the deflection is still unimportant if the right hold is used, because the pellet will always leave the muzzle at the same point in any movement.


  13. Well the shutdown of the Internet proceeds apace.

    The site shtfplan dot com is now down. This was a large site! Sort of like Survivalblog, or Tickerforum, they discussed the economy, gun laws, political changes, mostly from a “prepper” standpoint, fairly innocent. Guess a SWAT raid got ’em.


    RIP, one good source of information.

    • Update: They’ve just had a massive attack, tons of files wiped out, but are fighting back to the surface. James Wesley, Rawles is already anticipating this kind of attack and coming up with alternate hosts, SHTFplan will have to think up something along these lines too if they want to stay online.

      Of course in 10 years, “online” may be a memory….

      In other news, Does this gun sell for the same price as a Hermann Weirauch 90? Because if so, frankly, the Beeman name’s been on so many different guns of varying quality, I think I’d prefer the German name to be on it …

  14. Hello, Tom/B.B.,
    Sorry for the delay, if you remember me from May, I posted a question about the RWS LP8 Magnum pistol that I have, as it was below the average velocities you got in your tests, in the comments section of the Beeman P1/HW45 pistol part 3 article.
    I sent the gun to Umarex for a repair, and they allegadly changed the main spring and piston seal under warranty service.
    I finally bought me a chrony and tested the gun, now with the same pellets you used, exception for the crosman silver eagles, and am quite disapointed of the gun and Umarex, the gun performs just the same that before, when not worse.

    This are the results I got in this order: LO-HI-AV-ES
    Crosman Premier 7.9gr: 415.6-454.4-442.2-38.80 fps Your results: 523-533-528
    Gamo Match 7.6gr: 440.2-470.5-455.9-30.26 fps Your results: 553-571-561
    RWS Hobbys 7.0gr: 485.5-527-510.6-41.58 fps Before: 530fps Av. Your results: 575-591-581
    Gamo Raptor Gold: 550.1-597.6-582.7-47.47 fps

    The resutls I got from other pellets before and after service were:
    RWS 8.2gr Before: 459fps Av. After:461.9fps Av.
    Crosman regulars 7.4gr Before: 494fps Av. After:475fps Av.

    I don´t know what to think about this. My Diana Guns have always performed very close to what is reviewed here or elsewhere, if not always to what is advertised. But 70 to 105 fps less than reported velocities seems too much, specially for a gun advertised as the fastest, not to mention the high spread. It is performing just a little less than my 1377. I already spent 40 more dollars just for shipping of the gun for service, and don´t know if I should be content whit it, ask for an exchange rather than a repair, or find a suck..–I mean another person who may want to buy it. But at this price range, potential buyers use to know what to expect.
    Is this a lemmon? And how yellow is it?

    • Ricardo,

      Yes, your pistol does sound a little slow to me. But what it does with lightweight pellets is all that matters. And I’ll bet yours is in the 600s somewhere. And that is what RWS Diana will go by.

      Is it a lemon? Hard to say that, but it is just a little yellow.


  15. B.B.,

    Thanks for the review on this great gun. I own an RX-1 in .20 cal and a Beeman/Theoben Crow Mag III in .25 cal. Although I didn’t nearly have the same experience with the Crow Mag like you did. I’ve owned both rifles since 1997 and they shoot a little harder today than the day I bought them (my chronograph records show it). I remembered that I had the RX-1 gas changed back in the day by Beeman where they replaced it with some other inert gas to make it more efficient. I do remember very well that the cocking effort went down a bit (enough to notice right away) so the gun shoots smoother and a little faster. According to my old notes I was getting in the low 900fps with H&N Match pellets (11.87g) and energy was slightly higher than 21ft/lbs on avg. Not bad at all considering the cocking effort is nothing to me, especially compared to the Crow Mag 😉 I say that with a wink because I have no trouble cocking that beast, in fact when I take the Crow Mag out for a spin it’s usually for about 50-60 rounds. My Crow Mag does in fact get 33ft/lbs with the H&N Match with velocity into the 830’s but we all know how well that energy gets retained after 15 yds.
    Anyways, I was responding to this thread to tell you about my experience with the JSB Exact King’s in .25 cal – they changed the way I feel about this caliber and I’ll be shooting it more often now since there’s finally a good pellet. The JSB’s were chrono’ing for me on avg @ 721fps (29.3ft/lbs) on the Crow Mag and the accuracy was staggering. I was able to make a single hole (5 shot) group at 20 yds.

    Thanks again for this great write-up!

  16. I have an RX-1 in .25 and it makes 21.5 ftlbs with any pellet from the Laser to the Kodiak and has never been opened or even oiled for that matter (hasn’t been used enough yet). And considering the Germans don’t exaggerate their velocity numbers like everyone else does, I think your review gun must’ve had a problem of some sort. But even my 21.5 seems a bit low imo considering the cocking effort and high quality here. My cheezy (in comparo) $75 chinese Crosman guns hit 18.5ftlbs with almost half the cocking effort, so I’d think for the effort the RX should be at least 25. Where the energy is lost I don’t know… Don’t get me wrong, I love my gun which is one reason it’s been used so little because it’s like a work of art that I don’t want to risk scratching, but there is an efficiency problem imo. Maybe something is in need here, maybe there’s air space left when the piston stops making pressure lower, or the transfer port is the wrong size or needs some shaping, I don’t know. Maybe I’ll break down and open my gun up for a look-see, if I do I’ll let you know what I find.

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