by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Rail Lock Compressor R8

The Beeman R8 looks like a baby R1.

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • RWS Hobby
  • Adjusted the sights
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Superdome
  • The big surprise!
  • Summary

Today we look at the accuracy of the Beeman R8 that I acquired at the Findlay airgun show earlier this month. I’m shooting off a rest at 10 meters, using the open sights. I rested the rifle directly on the sandbag, because it is shooting so smooth.

RWS Hobby

I tried RWS Hobby pellets first. I felt they might do well, given the rifle’s power, though the velocity test revealed they are substandard in this rifle. I should have remembered that, because they didn’t group that well. Ten pellets went into 0.551-inches at 10 meters. I know that’s better than a lot of rifles I’ve tested recently, but I expect more from the R8.

Hobby target 1
Ten RWS Hobby pellets made this 0.551-inch group at 10 meters. It’s not bad, but this rifle can do better.

After I had shot all the other pellets and adjusted the sights to hit the center of the bull I felt that Hobbys deserved a second chance, so I shot another group. This time 10 pellets went into 0.724-inches, so the first group was representative of this pellets’s accuracy.

Hobby target 2
A second group of Hobbys is more centered on target but it’s also larger, at 0.724-inches. Not the pellet for this rifle!

Adjusted the sights

I decided to adjust the rear sight to get the pellets close to the center of the bull. Tomorrow I will tell you about my time filming American Airgunner, where I rediscovered what most people think about accuracy. I will explain it tomorrow. At any rate, I wanted to see the pellets in the center of the bull.

JSB Exact RS

Next up were JSB Exact RS pellets that performed so well in the velocity test. They also grouped well, with 10 going into 0.37-inches. That is what I expected from this R8.

JSB Exact RS target
Ten JSB Exact RS pellets went into 0.37-inches at 10 meters. This is what I expected from the rifle.

RWS Superdome

Next I tried some RWS Superdomes. Given the low power (at present) of this R8, this is a heavy pellet to try, but I find sometimes that heavier pellets do work well at lower velocities. This was one such time, as 10 Superdomes went into 0.456-inches at 10 meters.

RWS Superdome target

Ten RWS Superdome pellets grouped in 0.456-inches at 10 meters.

The big surprise!

Last week I told you how I select pellets for tests. I told you that I never know for sure what a pellet will do, but I try to use the proven performers. The last pellet I shot in the R8 was the Crosman Premier lite. As with all the other pellets, I did not look at the target until the final pellet was fired. Actually, I waited until I had to retrieve the target. And that is when I saw it — 10 shots in 0.297-inches! Yes — this R8 can shoot!

Premier lite target
Ten Crosman Premier lite pellets went into 0.297-inches at 10 meters.


Well, now we know that the rifle can shoot. Next I think I will take it apart and we will all see what’s inside. That is another chance to see the Air Venturi Rail Lock spring compressor system in action. Then I will lubricate the powerplant with some special lube you will all want to learn about, and we will see what happens to the velocity.

I do plan on shooting this rifle with a scope, as well. I think that will happen after the lubrication. After that, we shall see if there is anything more to do.