by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
FWB model 2 target air pistol.
This report covers:
- Too slow!
- My first Harley
- H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
- RWS R10 pistol pellets
- The test
- Sight picture
- H&N Finale Match Rifle
- Qiang Yuan Olympic
- H&N Finale Match Pistol
- Qiang Yuan Training
- RWS R10 Pistol
This will be a special report that combines both velocity testing and accuracy testing of the FWB model 2 10-meter target pistol. After I published the last report and made the pistol look bad because its velocity wasn’t very stable, reader Carel told me I might have the power set too low. Carel is the man I bought the gun from, so I took his advice and dialed the velocity up. After two full turns on the power screw I got an average velocity of 534 f.p.s. with the Qiang Yuan Training pellets that had given me fits before. This time the maximum spread was just 10 f.p.s. with the same pellet that previously gave a 98 f.p.s. spread.
If you read Part 2 you’ll see I was arbitrarily trying to set a velocity in the 460 to 480 f.p.s. range to save gas. I didn’t even check the reservoir volume before choosing that speed, but it’s 53 grams, which is enough for hundreds of shots at high velocity. In a false quest for economy I was trying to force the pistol to shoot at a speed slower than its powerplant was designed for.
My first Harley
This experience reminded me of my first Harley Davidson, back around 1967. It was a 1947 panhead that is a nominal 74 cubic-inch machine. I met the owner as we both rode home from pulling a swing shift in Santa Clara, California in the 1960s — me at National Can Corporation and him at Kaiser Permanente. He caught up to me on a long stretch of deserted road at 12:30 in the morning and we rode together back to Campbell. His motorcycle was backfiring and even belching fire out the carburetor that didn’t have an air cleaner, so I kept slowing down until we were going 35 m.p.s. I normally rode 55 on that stretch, but his bike just didn’t seem to be able to do it.
He waived us into an all-night bowling alley in Saratoga, where we introduced ourselves and got a cup of coffee. He asked me if my little Benelli 125 could go any faster because it turned out he was driving in second gear to go as slow as I was going! His bike was bored out to 1500ccs and had a hot cam. It did not like going slow.
I ended up buying that bike from him about a month later and owned it for a couple years. It really did not like to go slow! I laid rubber on every start, just to keep from stalling. That was when I learned my lesson about going too slow. Some things just don’t like it, and this model 2 Feinwerkbau pistol is one of them.
When I started this test today the first 3 shots were with the same Qiang Yuan training pellets, to see where they would be from a cold gun after a week’s layoff. Those 3 shots registered 533, 531 and 530 f.p.s. — so the gun is extremely consistent. Now I could complete the test. No repairs are required, thank you very much.
H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
Next I tried some H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets in the pistol. They averaged 551 f.p.s. with a spread from 541 to 564 f.p.s. That’s 23 f.p.s.
RWS R10 pistol pellets
The last pellet I tested was the RWS R10 pistol pellet that averaged 571 f.p.s. from the model 2. The spread went from 558 to 583 f.p.s. That’s a 25 f.p.s. spread.
As hot as this pistol is, I may try some rifle weight target pellets in the accuracy test that I’m about to do. This is almost like shooting a target rifle. But before we go there I want to say a word about this velocity test. This test demonstrates that numbers chosen arbitrarily may not be the best way to adjust an airgun. In this case, I was trying to make the gun do something it wasn’t designed to do. A precharged pneumatic with a regulator might be able to shoot slower, but this pistol runs on CO2 and it isn’t as forgiving. You have to take the gas into account when setting up the gun.
I’ll shoot at 10 meters, using a sandbag rest. I’ll shoot 5-shot groups rather than 10, because if this pistol groups like it should, 5 shots should tell us what we need to know.
I started the test and got groups that were way too large for a pistol like this. I shot a group with every pellet, which was 25 shots. Then I got a wild hair and shot a 5-shot group offhand. I did throw some shots, but I also did better offhand than some of the pellets did shooting off the rest.
The problem was the sight picture. When shooting from the rest I had been holding the pistol a couple inches closer to my eye than I do when I shoot one-handed. So I devised a way to rest the gun and shoot one-handed. The point of impact changed upwards, but I didn’t bother correcting it. The groups that follow are all shot one-handed off a rest.
H&N Finale Match Rifle
First up were H&N Finale Match Rifle pellets with 4.50mm heads. They were the worst pellets in the pistol, producing a group that measures 0.717-inches between centers.
Qiang Yuan Olympic
The Qiang Yuan Olympic grade pellets put 5 into 0.515 inches at 10 meters. That’s better, but still not as good as I hoped.
H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets
Next up were H&N Finale Match Pistol pellets with 4.50mm heads. Five of these made a 0.403-inch group at 10 meters. This group looks like I should explore this pellet more.
Qiang Yuan Training
The next pellet I tried was the Qiang Yuan Training pellet. Five of them went into 0.654-inches at 10 meters. While it might look okay standing on its own, it looks bad in comparison to some of the other groups.
RWS R10 Pistol
The last pellet I tried was the RWS R10 pistol pellet with a 4.50mm head. Five of these made a 0.456-inch group at 10 meters. This was also the pellet I shot offhand and I am pleased to say I was able to cut a 10 on the first shot. What the rest of my shots scored I won’t say, except to note that most of them were lower than I ever shot in training or in a match when I competed. A lot of water has flowed over the dam!
The FWB model 2 can shoot! I didn’t doubt that it could. What needs to get better is me, and I am working on it.
Having a 10 meter pistol that can always outshoot you is a joy, because you always know where you stand. I have a lot of training to do if I want to get back some of my former ability, and this pistol is good enough to take me there.
I learned that a CO2 target pistol is not as infinitely adjustable as a similar gun in a PCP. With CO2 you have to acknowledge the limitations of the gas. But the pistol has a Feinwerkbau trigger and most of the ergonomics of the newer PCPs, so it is still worlds ahead of my ability. And I paid less than you would for a new gun with less features.