This report covers:
- Long story
- UTG to the rescue
- Let’s talk
- Mounting the rings
- Droop is built-into the HM-1000X
- Align the scope
- Couldn’t see the image!
- Where did that put me?
- No alibi
Today I mount a scope and start sighting-in the RAW HM-1000X precharged pneumatic (PCP) air rifle.
I have been waiting on a new whomptydoodle Meopta scope to test with this rifle. I was signed up to receive it and I even told them to give me the writer’s pricing, in case I found it to be wonderful, which everything from Meopta so far has been. Unfortunately, the first batch hit American shores and vanished, as the dealers bought every single one!
Now, that may have been a “toilet paper” reaction to the Kung Flu that is still slowing things down at the ports, but the results are the same. No scope for BB until late October or even November. That’s my story.
UTG to the rescue
Fortunately, I have a good supply of top quality scopes from UTG in reserve. I selected an 8-32X56 with illuminated reticle and I mounted it in their two-piece 30mm high POI rings.
The RAW is meant to be scoped. Since it is considered a contender for 100-yard benchrest matches, it needs a powerful scope in a high quality mount.
Before we move on, let’s talk about mounting the scope I chose. It’s a big one and the rifle has a rotary magazine that sticks up above the top of the receiver. Both things force you to make careful choices when mounting the scope.
Mounting the rings
The rings that were on the scope were the ones I wanted to use. They have T25 Torx screws in the caps and also in the bases, so only a single tool is needed. They were not positioned correctly for this rifle, so both rings had to be moved, and moving the POI rings is a simple task. The base jaw has a coiled spring that pushes it out as the screw is loosened, so no more fiddling with a bunch of parts, trying to get them to fit. Two small bars keep the jaw parallel to the rest of the ring base, so all you have to do is loosen the screw until the ring base pops into the base on the rifle and then cinch it down. Easy-peasy!
Droop is built-into the HM-1000X
The Picatinney scope base on top of the rifle’s receiver has a 20 minute of angle (MOA) downward slant machined in. Remember — this rifle is built to shoot at long range, and pellets lose velocity as they travel downrange. Therefore they drop as they go and that built-in angle should take care of all the drop you will encounter. We will find out.
Align the scope
Once the scope is mounted you need to position it for your eye and also to get the vertical reticle straight up and down. If you don’t, pellets will move left and right as you shoot at different distances. I do this by eye, bisecting the receiver with the vertical reticle. Since I’ll eventually shoot at 100 yards, if there is any left-right pellet impact shift when I move from 50 out to 100 yards, I can correct for it then.
Couldn’t see the image!
I got the scope positioned and because it is so powerful it’s a bit fussy about having your eye aligned with the exit pupil — especially at 32 power — it was giving me fits. However, this is a RAW and the stock is also adjustable. I lowered the cheekrest about 3/8-inch and then the scope aligned fine.
This scope has an extremely fine bead in the center of the reticle, which is perfect for shooting bullseyes at 100 yards. It’s also illuminated with UTG’s 36 colors and levels of brightness, so there won’t be a problem seeing where the center of the reticle is. I just have to remember to always use the same color and brightness if I illuminate the reticle, in case there is any movement when the colors are changed or when I turn off the illumination. There shouldn’t be, but 100 yards is anal territory for pellets and air rifles.
Where did that put me?
After spending some time adjusting the position of the rings and the scope I wondered where it put me. Now I’m going to show you why high rings are necessary with this rifle.
The thousand-word picture. You can’t see it in the picture above but now you see why high rings are essential with this scope. There is this much clearance between the bottom of the scope turret and the rotary magazine. This macro shot was hand-held at 1/20 second with my Canon G11 camera, which is more proof that camera was so essential for me.
Now that the setup is complete, it’s time for sight-in. Unlike some other airguns that I limit to 25 yards, the sight-in of this rifle will begin at that distance. But before I shoot at that distance I need to make certain that I don’t shoot the couch! This is a 50 foot-pound air rifle and my couch is a new leather one that reclines. I’m taking special care of it, these days.
I used Air Arms Field Heavy 18-grain domes to sight in. The first shot was from 12 feet. I can’t even see the bullseye that clearly through the scope, so I’m not too worried about where the pellet hits — as long as it is on the paper somewhere.
And it hit the paper about two inches to the right of the aim point and two inches high. With that I am good to go for 10 meters, so I back up to 10 meters and shoot once more without adjusting the scope. The pellet moves about a half-inch to the left and remains almost as high as it was on the first shot. I crank in a little down elevation and shoot again. The pellet hits just below the last one.
Now I crank in lots of left and lots of down adjustment. Shot 4 hits the top of the bull I’m aiming at and right in line with the center. I crank in about 20 more clicks of down and the pellet is almost a pinwheel — meaning it takes out the 10-dot and touches the 9 ring all around. That’s good enough for me.
Using that last shot as the first of a 5-shot group, I fire shot two and open the group to the lower left ever-so-slightly. When looking through a 32-power scope at 10 meters the world gets really big!
I could not see the next three shots, except that shot five did seem to make the group a little rounder. Five shots went into 0.091-inches at 10 meters. Now this RAW isn’t for shooting at 10 meters, but isn’t it nice that it does so well?
Of course that group earns the coveted 13mm gold dollar for size comparison, but it dawned on me that a group smaller than a tenth of an inch really deserves its own special coin. I’m torn between a California quarter dollar gold coin (of which most these days are reproductions) or a widow’s mite (a Lepton). I’m leaning toward the widow’s mite, since it’s much less less expensive and also less counterfeited (though they are faked).
And by the way, by shooting a pinwheel on the first shot, please note that I removed my aim point. That gives me the perfect alibi for a larger group. But you’ll notice that I’m not making any excuses. Apparently with this RAW I don’t have to.
I spent a little more time explaining how I mounted the scope for today’s report. I did that because we are going to take the RAW out to 100 yards, which is beyond the distance at which I usually shoot. For shooting that far the scope needs to be spot-on, and I explained that as we went.