by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- BB’s eye
- You liked it
- JSB Exact RS
- RWS Hobby
- Crosman Premier lite
- The trigger
- Cocking effort
- Evaluation so far
Just an update on my eye that had the cataract removed. It is now more acute at distance than the other eye. I see the doctor who did the surgery this Friday and am expecting that she will pronounce it fixed. I can now aim with open sights once more. Now, on to today’s report.
You liked it
Just an observation from the comments to Part 1 of this report. Many of you like this Diana 240 Classic air rifle for the same reasons I do. You like the small size, easy cocking and the general classic styling. Today we begin discovering how it performs, and I have to admit that I have high hopes. There aren’t enough airguns like this one in the market anymore, and I think that’s a shame. Because this is where the heart of airgunning lies — not in .22 rimfire power and accuracy, but with guns that are fun and easy to shoot.
JSB Exact RS
Let’s get started. The first pellet I tested was the JSB Exact RS dome. In .177 caliber these pellets weigh 7.33 grains, making them lightweights. Let me show you the string I fired before I explain what happened.
The DS after the velocity means I deep-seated those pellets. I thought I might get lucky and be able to get two bits of data from a single test, but all I got was an indication that the 240 Classic doesn’t like deep-seating. At least not with JSB Exact RS pellets.
The average of the other 10 shots that were seated flush was 528 f.p.s. The spread of just those shots went from a low of 511 f.p.s. to a high of 541 f.p.s. That’s 30 f.p.s. At the average velocity this pellet is putting out 4.54 foot-pounds of energy at the muzzle.
The next pellet I tried was the RWS Hobby. At just 7 grains, the Hobby is one of the lightest lead pellets around, and is usually used in velocity tests by manufacturers. In the 240 Classic I’m testing Hobbys averaged 548 f.p.s. with a spread from 544 to 551 f.p.s. That’s just 7 f.p.s., which is remarkable in a brand new spring-piston airgun! At the average velocity, Hobbys generate 4.67 foot-pounds of muzzle energy.
Just to be consistent I did deep-seat two Hobbys after the string was shot. They went 540 and 525 f.p.s., respectively. No advantage there.
Crosman Premier lite
The last pellet I tested was the Crosman Premier 7.9-grain dome. This pellet is made from lead that’s been hardened with antimony, so it might perform differently than pure lead pellets in a lower-powered rifle like the 240 Classic. Ten of them averaged 524 f.p.s. with a low of 511 and a high of 533 f.p.s. That’s a spread of 22 f.p.s. At the average velocity, Premier lites are generating 4.82 foot-pounds at the muzzle. That makes them the most efficient of the three pellets tested.
I did seat two Premier lites deep. Their velocities were 518 and 513 f.p.s., respectively. What that tells me is deep-seating isn’t beneficial with the 240 Classis. Maybe there is one pellet that will do better when seated deep, but it doesn’t look like it’s worth the effort to find out. We now have a pretty good handle on the power and consistency of the 240 Classic. It’s in the same category as the vintage Diana 25. But what about the trigger?
There is no denying that the old ball-bearing trigger that’s found in the vintage Diana 27 and some Diana 25s can be adjusted to a razor’s edge. The question is — how good is the T05 trigger that’s in the 240 Classic? I happen to think that it’s very good. The second stage breaks cleanly, and the straight trigger blade only enhances the feel.
The trigger on the test rifle is set to release at 2 pounds on the nose. While I was testing it I noticed a tiny bit of vibration in the shot cycle. If Tune in a Tube did not exist I wouldn’t pay this slight vibration any attention, but it does and I think I’m going to treat the mainspring. Accuracy testing will then be a delight.
The 240 Classic has a ball bearing detent that is a trademark of Diana breakbarrels. It’s stiff, but not so much that you need to slap the muzzle to break it open. The rifle cocks with 13 pounds of effort, which makes it very easy to cock.
Evaluation so far
The 240 Classic is stacking up to be the classic Diana I had hoped for. All that remains is the accuracy test, and I’m betting that will go very well. We shall see.
If this rifle tests out as I hope, it’s going to be a world-beater in my book! Remember what I said about this being a more affordable alternative to the HW 30S? If it is accurate, it will be just that, in my book.
76 thoughts on “Diana 240 Classic:Part 2”
The title of still showing up as the Diana 240 Classis.
This definitely is a modern version of the classics. Do you think a nine year old can handle this or should the parent wait until the cold is about thirteen years old? The power may not be there but I certainly hope the accuracy is.
I fixed that plus the double signing of my byline.
BB et Al..
Well, it’s been a while since I did the first shooting of the new Hassan Torpedo 155. That was 2 weeks ago and I found out that I didn’t have any suitable scope rings on hand. Ordered a new set and am still waiting for delivery. In the meantime I found another set that was sort of suitable. Only single screw rings but long threaded screws and quite heavy scantlings otherwise.
The scope mounted with no problems and first shots were nearly dead on at 10 meters. My gimpy left wrist was bothering me today so the first 5 sightings shots were all that got done today. I’ll refine the sighting in a day or so when my wrist isn’t bothering me so much. From what I’ve seen so far I think the gun with scope is going to be a fine shooter.
All for now.
Cheers – Dave
Great news about the eye Sir. Our prayers have been answered. Now let us see some incredible groups!
Reading about the Tune in a Tube grease, it sounds like something that might improve my twangy, vibrating Gamo Shadow 1000. I have considered replacing the main spring for a lighter one, I read a Crosman 500X spring fits but that remains to be verified. But the TiaT sounds like a place to start.
Tune in a Tube is a wonderful product. After reading BB’s positive comments, I ordered a tube for myself. I had a twangy old Diana 27 which was not pleasant to shoot. The spring was dry as a bone. After using Tune in a Tube, the twang is gone and it is an absolute joy to shoot. I can’t believe it’s the same gun.
Dan Wesson Fan,
Good for you! In the future, though, it might be better to just sell me all your old Diana 27s. I can take them off your hands and you’ll never have to suffer with one again. 😉
That’s really funny. The one man on earth that might have too many airguns to shoot is angling for another that he already owns.
I suppose that after hearing that response several thousand times, you couldn’t help but to use it yourself, eh Tom?
I won’t sell you my Diana 27 BB, so just forget about it.
Hey! You got a license to psychoanalyse on this blog?
Hey, just because the state revoked my license, doesn’t mean I can’t practice for free!
Thanks for your feedback, DWF. I’ll give it a try- the way it is now it’s just not enjoyable to shoot. Power is okay according to my chronograph so I don’t think anything’s broken, just too harsh and twangy.
Haha I see what you did there, B.B.! lol
Great news on the eye. It does not get any better than that. This rifle is stacking up to be a great first time youth pellet rifle. Looking forwards to the accuracy testing.
I just may have to put this one on the short list. I know a certain young man who would be delighted with this when he is ready to graduate beyond his Daisy Buck.
Congratulations on a successful surgery! Get the other eye done and you will be able to shoot laser beams! LOL.
Does the 240 have a slanted breech block? Many Diana’s do, my 340 N-Tec does….
The leede on my 340 was so tight that I used JB Non-Embedding Paste and really scrubbed it. Now pellets fit fine, just the top of the pellet skirt fits about 1-2mm into the leeds and the bottom of the pellet skirt fits just flush with the opening.
Does this 240 suffer the same problem?
Yes, the 240 Classic does have a slanted breechblock.
The 240 has the same breech as all other Dianas. I wouldn’t call it a problem, since the Diana 34 is one of the most accurate breakbarrels around.
I can’t get my used Diana 34 (T05) to group under 2″ at 25 yards.
Tried domed JSB (18gr), rws, crosman premier, and H&N baracuda (5.53 mm) pellets.
Some perform better but it is the difference between 1.5″ and 2″ @ 25 yards.
Given the consistent underperformance I ordered J-B bore paste and 2 bronze brushes. Being used I have no idea how many or what was shot and am hoping cleaning the bore will bring in the groups.
Other than breach to muzzle, anyone have any do’s or donts to offer when cleaning a barrel?
If your rifle is a very old one with a wood stock, that could be the reason. If it was made in the early 1990s, the barrels weren’t as good then. A late ’90s 34 should be quite accurate.
Cleaning the barrel will probably help. Use a brass brush and scrub in both directions with JB Bore Paste.
Seller said 2004, but I have not verified.
Good to know both ways.
How much paste?
Just fill a brass brush with paste one time and then 20 strokes each way should do it.
First good news about the eye. Glad to hear that.
And wow! 13 pounds of cocking effort. That sounds like it’s in the FWB 300 category of cocking. Bet it’s going to be a good shooter. I’m liking what I see more and more about this gun.
And you mention the slight noise and the tune in the tube. I would shoot it as is for the tests so we know how it performs from the factory.
Oh and speaking of the tune in a tube. You say you were going to try some in it. Does that mean your buying it? 😉
No, I’m not buying this rifle. Whoever gets it after me will just get a smoother air rifle. Tune in a Tube doesn’t permanently alter the airgun, so I feel confident in using it.
Tune in a Tube has been working well for me. I ordered because of your report BB. It really made a difference with the FWB 124. I just treated the Diana 34 with it and it is looking good.
I wondered how it would work in a 124. That would be one of the first guns I would recommend it for.
where did you order tune in a tube . I went on rick eustlers site but when I try to order it does not go thru
That’s where I got it. Try using a different browser. Sometimes websites won’t fully work with some browsers.
I just remember from past comments you made that you didn’t want to mess with a gun that wasn’t going to be yours.
And I guess if I order one of these 240’s and it’s got grease in it was BB’s tune in a tube gun he tested. And then that brings me to this. I wonder if PA sales the guns you test as open box guns or do they just go back on the shelf as new. You should autograph them. Maybe they could sell them for more.
Anyway still on the comparing thing we seem to be doing. I’m still drawn to the HW30s a little more. It’s a little shorter. Plus I like that it does have a bit more power. I know that helped out the FWB 300’s I had out at the 50 yard mark. The little bit more power thing. But it seems to me that I might just have to get a 240 and a HW30s. So far I’m liking them both. Tune in a tube or not. 🙂
The guns I test are sold as used guns.
On the HW 30S thing, I think each person will have to decide for themselves. I’m just glad there is such a nice rifle available for those who want one.
Agree with you there. Those FWB 300’s I had were a dream to shoot. You don’t need high velocity to have fun with a air gun.
And would much rather see these type of guns being made instead of those high velocity springers that certain company’s keep trying to make.
The FWB 300 series the best spring guns made never to see it again. they defy the laws of physics as accurate as the best PCP to 40 yds. I have one with a scope and other with irons and at 40 yds and no wind shoot tiny groups with both. up to 30 yds one .35 hole
I had one that was factory original and one that had a different spring and I used a o-ring in place of the cast iron ring to seal the piston. Both were scoped.
They both shot good. But the modded one shot a little hotter and seemed to help with a windy day verses the unmodified gun.
And yes I shot both guns out to 50 yards and the modified gun shot better groups than my .177 TX. And my TX shot very good. 🙂
Mine shoot 610-630 FPS with JB’s. I shot at 50 yds also with great results. With a FWB 602 SSP I cannot outshoot the 300 spring guns just match them. I think I will sell the 602
What weight JSB’s did you use. I used the 10.34’s. The hotter gun was around 700 with them if I remember right. The factory gun was low 600 with them.
Just wondered what you used the 8.44’s or the 10.34’s. The 10.34’s did better with the wind in my guns.
I used the 8.44’s. tell you what any heavy pellet I used in either 300 they made a weird clunking type sound. I felt I might damage the rifles. unless I am shooting 20 yds I wait for no wind if I shoot 40-50 yds. the most pleasant easiest shooting spring guns
Hmm that’s weird. Usually the heavier pellet will make more resistance in the barrel as it’s starting to move. Usually will vision the piston with the air building up like shock absorber in a sense.
Kind of opposite of how people use that high velocity lightweight PBA pellets in guns. That would be like dry firing a springer. And we all know dry firing isn’t good.
But I have always had a much quieter sounding shot cycle with a heavier pellet in a springer. But as it goes I guess there is a balance with how heavy or light and fit to barrel and all.
And suppose to say cushion not vision.
You know I believe GF1 has a great suggestion. You should autograph them and let PA sale them as BB tested! They could probably set up an auction and sale them at a premium. Of course, you should get a cut.
There is a youtuber, Hickok45, that started dating and signing his paper target for some some of the guns he reviews. He then sales the target on ebay with the proceeds going to some charity. Some of them fetched crazy prices. You could do the same. Just a thought.
a B.B branding iron
I can just picture someone accostomed to shooting magnums buying a 240 for his child to shoot. To test it out the dad decides to shoot it a half dozen times before presenting it to his kid. Half a tin of pellets later Dad is still shooting.
“Dad, when can I shoot it?”
“In a while. I’m still making sure it’s O.K. It cocks too easily and shoots too smoothly. Something might be wrong. I better take another couple hundred shots first.” :^)
I know I never done that. 🙂
Hi BB, great to hear you are seeing well!! nice, open sights again….did they put in a telescopic lens? 🙂 all the best this Friday and please take care.
I am glad your eye seems to be on the mend.
You need to talk Diana into making a straight wristed version.
The 240 sounds a lot like the Bronco.
Funny you should say that. I thought so, too. Too much money, though.
Awww hell, looks like BB is going to be just like Steve Austin with his new eye!
(that would be Six Million Dollar Steve Austin, not Stone Cold Steve Austin)
You already could shoot better than I can, even with cataracts, Now medical technology has seemingly augmented your already super-human abilities. It just isn’t fair.
But I sure am happy for ya!
That’s right. Great news about the success of the eye surgery and not just because we get to have more great gun reports. I’ll be interested to hear the accuracy results. The word is that the HW30S accuracy is outstanding.
As the rain continues to fall in California, it has raised a question in my mind. Just how long can centerfire ammo be expected to function in wet conditions? It is designed for combat, so surely it can stand some moisture, certainly more than loose powder in the old powder horns. But what about a drenching non-stop monsoon in Vietnam or Bougainville or immersion in one of those creeks where you see Marines wading up to their necks?
Mi-spec ammo can remain submerged for years and still function. Both the primer and the bullet are sealed with waterproof lacquer.
The ammo you reload doesn’t have such precautions. It will last, just not as long.
Now that is a very clever idea. And it explains a lot from pictures of soldiers in very wet environments to the lacquer film on a lot of my surplus ammo. I mentioned Bougainville which is an island in the Pacific because reports were that people would be sweating in the midst of the monsoon-type rainstorms.
I have some .308 Win. handloads that were made 30 years ago. They were stored under dry conditions. Last summer I used some of them for 3 gun competition. They all worked like I loaded them yesterday.
I won’t ask about your reloading schedule that has you using 30 year old reloads, but, clearly, you are well-supplied. 🙂
It was ammo in emergency storage. But, it was time to start shooting it up!
BB et al..
So here I am, the day after mounting the new scope on the Hatsan Torpedo 155 and and just don’t feel up to shooting the beast today. Instead just finished an easy mod to an older Daisy pellet rifle, a Daisy 450 lever action that I bought in a pawn shop almost 30 years ago. The gun is still in beautiful condition, excellent unmarred wood stock and foregrip and paint in perfect condition except for normal wear around the lever fulcrum. It still shoots 7gn wad cutters really hard. I believe it’s rated at 490fps. I will crony it next summer. It came with 2 – 5 shot pellet clips and a very simple peep sight. The rear sight was primitive, consisting of a slot in which you could move the aperture in elevation. Windage was by loosening the angled base and swivel left or right. As I said, primitive with coarse machining. I was never able to get the sight zeroed properly.
About 10 years ago I found the Daisy 5899 peep sight that looked like it would fit with the included interface adapter for the original Daisy Avanti 499 BB gun. Not so as the adapter is not included anymore and I’ve been unable to find one anywhere. Earlier today though I was able to mount the sight using just the receiver screw and a few small washers. It ended up being a good solid install and doesn’t look like it will move. These are nice, mostly metal sights with positive click adjustments.
Before finishing for the day I did a rough zero at 10 meters and will fine tune over the next few days.
It’s a nice little gun and I hope it turns out to be accurate. If it is it might become my first parlour gun. It just looks that good!
Will let you know how it turns out.
I really like the Diana 340. Would love to order one but I’m saving money to purchase a 2003 Mustang Cobra this summer. 🙂
Now what the heck you gonna do with that. 😉
But I know what you mean. I’m actually getting ready to buy another 4 wheeler for me and the kids and wife. Notice I said me in there with the wife and kids. Otherwise it probably wasn’t going to happen if I just said me. 🙂
BB and Fellow Airgunners
When I recommended the Diana 240 Classic as an affordable, accurate airgun to the son of a good family friend two years ago, I was immediately impressed with the ease of cocking, accuracy, and workmanship. Where else can you get such a deal for a wood,and mostly steel airgun for about $200.00 Canadian? He recently brought it over for a good cleaning, and general checkup. The latest Crony numbers are in the ballpark with the numbers you obtained from shooting the JSB Exact RS pellets weighing 7.33gr. My ten shot average was 546fps, with only a 7fps spread. His 240 Classic has gone through about two tins of Exact RS pellets, so is well broken in. I was going to suggest you try this pellet in your first report, so I’m glad to see such good initial results from a new model. You can be confident the Diana 240 Classic only gets better with time.
I’m also happy to hear about the good results from your eye surgery. Having any surgical procedure done to your vision is a scary proposition. I have heard others having similar positive results with excellent, long lasting prognoses. I’m also looking forward to your accuracy test next, being confident the results will be a true test of the gun only.
I would like to also congratulate you on your successful eye surgery, I am very happy for you. But I have a problem that I thought maybe you could help me with. I was shooting my Diana 350 Magnum this past weekend and while I was downrange looking at targets it started pouring rain, so I ran back and grabbed my rifle to take it inside. unfortunately it had gotten pretty wet, so I took out the two screws in front and the two on the trigger guard and removed the action from the stock to dry it off. When I put it back together the first time I tried to cock it, it made a funny noise like something was binding inside. So I took it apart and put it back together again and it still makes a clicking noise about every inch or so. Anyways I still have not pulled the barrel more than half way down to cock it fully because I am afraid to. Is this in any way normal? Should I go ahead and cock it and shoot it? Just thought I’d ask the most knowledgeable person about airguns I’ve ever met.
I guess I should say “I’ve never met”, even though I’m beginning to feel like I do know you.
That’s a tough one. It sounds like the spring coils are bumping across the cocking linkage. but who can tell? Dianas are notoriously dry.
If it was mine I would grease the mainspring with Tune in a Tube and shoot the gun.
As long as I’m on here asking questions, I might as well keep going. I have been shooting airguns lately now more than ever especially at targets. I used to just shoot blackbirds and squirrels and sparrows and called it hunting when it was really more just killing. The strange thing is that I really enjoyed it. The older I get the less I like it, in fact am starting to dislike it… anyway this shooting at paper is a real eye opener. I can hit a dime all day long with my Diana 34 and 350 at 10 yards, and at about 25 yards somewhere between a half inch and three quarters of an inch, but at 40 yards which I have been trying to shoot at lately the groups really open up. Like to almost 2″ with the 25 year old Model 34 and I am lucky to put 10 shots inside of 2″ with the one year old 350 that has not been shot that much. Is this normal?
Of course I have just been using cheap pellets and only one or two kinds. I have just ordered about 10 different brands and weights so more results will follow. I have a feeling reading your blog is making me a better person in some sort of fashion. At the very least I am having a whole lot more fun with airguns than I had ever imagined.
Oh and I don’t call three shots that are on top of each other a group. I don’t think you are really testing the accuracy of a gun with three shots, I always shoot ten. And I also don’t really think concentration or being tired is what causes the loss of accuracy. I think it is more the action shifting in the stock or the stock moving around on the sandbags and affecting the vibrations of the gun. Although I do have to admit the first two shots I shoot are almost always extremely close to each other, no matter the distance.
You should of been shooting targets before you as you call it was hunting your black birds and squirrels and sparrows. And should I say that again?
And then the thought comes to mind. Why did you call it hunting? And you say you were just killing?
There are other words that kind of shooting is called. And it usually just ain’t to kill. While I’m at it. There are problems or pests and sometimes they do get in a place that is dangerous for them and others. And usually in most cases they do more damage that meets the eye. There are ways to try to deter the pest before other means are introduced also. But really. Just to kill and enjoyed it?
And I think that’s the most questions I ever asked in one post here on the blog.
With the 25-year-old 34 that is normal. Diana revised their barrels in the late ’90s to get the3 accuracy they have today.
I wonder about that often myself, why I called it hunting I mean. My father was a large animal veterinarian and I rode around to farms with him when I was a very small child in the 60’s. It was a lot of fun playing with horses and stuff most of the time… but If a cow or hog cost more to fix than it was worth, than it was going to die because farmers are businessmen. Oftentimes when my dad was asked to put the animal to sleep as they call it he would say I will do that for $50 but for 2 cents you can put a bullet between its eyes. The drugs they used to put animals down then were pretty bad from my experience. It would take the animal a few minutes to die, and it would roll around acting like it was in agony and it was horrible to watch. A bullet in the brain dropped the animal instantly and seemed much more humane. Plus I would say that I saw more animals killed before I was 7 years old than 99% of the people in the world ever see. That is probably why it never bothered me to see “pests” die. Plus I was raised hunting quail, pheasant, deer. You know, real hunting where you eat what you shoot.
So now that your shooting targets. What did you expect it would be like? I’m thinking you already know if you did hunt as you just mentioned.
I guess you never rabbit or sqerrial hunted and ate them. You know there’s hunting season for them too. That is real hunting too ain’t it?
Anyway glad you found a way to be happy shooting now days.
Hi BB. That is really great news about your eye! It sounds incredible to go from 20/100 to what it is now.I’m going to steal a page from your & Slinging Lead’s playbook………if you send me that Meopta spotting scope I will diligently keep it dusted off for you.With the bionic eye the spotter will be just clutter on the bench.:) Frank
Ah! You are turning into the next Great Enabler — with a touch of larceny! 😉
Doc R & Gunfun just gave me a great idea! Make the paper targets from Kale,so the vegans can have the satisfaction of “huntin'” dinner! LOL to myself.
Gunfun….you will appreciate this.Right now on my work bench waiting for new bumpers and breech seals are three FWBs that I am looking foreward to compairing and contrasting.A one owner FWB 150 (in other words NOT a worn out club gun),a FWB 110,and a FWB 300 S Universal type II that was competed with for 20 consecutive years in Germany.I think it will be really cool to find out how the 110 & 150 shoot against each other.Recoiling vs. non.
Good subject change. Thanks. And you know I’ll be interested in those results.
And really I do get tired with blabbing about what I’m always tinkering with.
And a gun that was competed with. That sounds like a interesting story.
Please don’t get too tired of it.There are intelligent people out there benefitting from those posts.Lots of little AND big questions get answered by them through context.Not to mention inspiration for them that lack the confidence to tinker.I like to read the posts more than make my own.Typing is a painful chore because of my back,and because I agonize over how some posts”might”read to others.Usually I just delete those.It can be easy to sound “braggy” though nothing could be further…..I think you know what I mean.
Yes you are right. It is best to share information if it can help someone out. Thanks again.
That 110 sounds interesting. Please keep us informed.
I have two HW30s and a recently acquired Diana 240 Classic. My 240 is very pellet picky, RWS Hobbys work as well as anything. The trigger: It’s light enough but I can’t seem to get the hang of it shooting offhand. I do better with an almost jerk pull than I do with a deliberate squeeze. As a result I can hit better with my HW30 than I can the 240 even though the 240 is as accurate as the HW30. And of course I prefer the “iron” sights of the HW30. Guess I have to shoot it more.
Welcome to the blog.
And thanks for telling me about Hobbys. I will be trying them in the test 240 Classic.