by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Mauser 300SL
Mauser 300SL. There are three finger scallops along the cocking lever.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Bug Buster
  • Trigger adjust
  • The test
  • Qiang Yuan Training pellets
  • JSB Match light weight
  • Qiang Yuan Olympic pellets
  • Conclusions

I tested the Mauser 300SL target rifle with open sights last time and I wondered if I got everything the rifle had to give. Today I will try to shoot it as accurately as I can. The original plan was to install the best peep sight and front sight element I could find, but that plan didn’t work out. The front sight on the Mauser doesn’t fit any of the target inserts I own, so I can’t change the post and bead that’s there. Without a target element up front, no peep sight will make any difference. I have already tested these sights to their limits.

Bug Buster

I decided to install a UTG 3-9X32 Bug Buster scope instead. Running it at 9 power, nobody can say I didn’t give the 300SL every chance to show its best. I discovered some considerable droop in the barrel when this scope was installed, so I took measures to correct it. As a result, all my groups landed high on the target. Normally I like to zero a target rifle better than you see here, but this one was too much trouble.

Trigger adjust

Just to see what affect they had, I adjusted the two screws in the trigger. As I thought, they affect the length of stage one and the location of stage two. If that sounds like it’s the same thing, it can be. But the screws had been adjusted to remove stage two entirely, which on this trigger made stage one a long and confusing pull with lots of creep. I adjusted them so stage one was not as long. The creep remained in the stage one pull, because the trigger is so crude. But the trigger blade then stopped at stage two, which now breaks relatively crisply. When I say relatively, I mean compared to the vague way the trigger broke before. It’s still way heavier than I like for a target trigger, but it will have to do. I can’t disassemble this trigger to smooth the parts because I would have to destroy the fasteners that hold the pins in place and I don’t know where to get replacements.

The test

Like I did in the last test, I shot off a sandbag rest at 10 meters. The rifle was rested directly on the bag, which didn’t seem to cause any problems with pellets scattering.

Qiang Yuan Training pellets

The best pellet in the last test was the Chinese Qiang Yuan Training pellet, so that was the one I selected to start this test. With open sights I put 10 of these pellets into a group that measures 0.658-inches at 10 meters. With the scope, my 10-shot group measures 0.522. That’s more than a tenth of an inch smaller and is significant, but it’s still in the same ballpark as the group shot with open sights.

Mauser 300SL scope Chinese training pellet
Ten Qiang Yuan training pellets went into 0.522-inches at 10 meters when the rifle was scoped. It’s significantly better than the open-sight group, but still in the same size range.

JSB Match light weight

Now it was time to try some different pellets. I shot some JSB Match light weight pellets next. I linked to middle weight match pellets instead, because the light weight pellets are out of stock. JSB calls most of their pellets match pellets, but only the wadcutter shape is allowed in 10-meter matches. They are either referring to other types of competition like field target, or they are using the term match loosely.

Ten of these went into 0.527-inches at 10 meters. That’s so close to the Chinese training pellets that it’s really too close to call. The difference could be a measurement error. If I were to shoot several groups with each pellet, the winner might switch back and forth.

Mauser 300SL scope JSB Match light group
Ten JSB Match light weight pellets made this 0.527-inch group at 10 meters.

Qiang Yuan Olympic pellets

The final group I shot was with 10 Qiang Yuan Olympic pellets. These are the top pellets made by this manufacturer, and we have seen them out-perform other world-class target airguns in past tests. In the Mauser 300SL they put 10 into a group that measures 0.577-inches between centers. That is the largest group of this test, and it demonstrates why you have to test a lot of pellets in your target airguns to find the best. In this rifle the Chinese training pellet shot better. That might reverse in another test, because these are very close. But even so, it shows you don’t need to spend a lot of money to be accurate with this rifle. Of course “accuracy” is a relative term.

Masuser 300SL scope Chinese Olympic group
Ten Qiang Yuan Olympic grade pellets made this 0.577-inch group at 10 meters. It is the largest group of the test.

Conclusions

This is the last test I will do on the Mauser 300SL target rifle. I think we have now seen its full potential. It is an interesting side road for a target rifle to take, and I hope this test has revealed the full potential of the model.

Is it worth it? Maybe to a collector of 10-meter target rifles, it is. Just as the Haenel models 311 and 312 are both “target” rifles capable of similar accuracy. You don’t buy them to compete; you buy them for their unique mechanisms.

It’s also a good informal shooter when you just want to have some fun. But keep your expectations low, because a Daisy 753 will out-shoot it.