The Beeman R10/HW 85: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

HW 85
Weihrauch HW 85.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Crosman Premiers
  • RWS Superdomes
  • H&N Baracuda Match with 5.51mm heads
  • Top speed?
  • Hobbys
  • Firing cycle
  • Cocking
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation so far

Today we learn how powerful this smooth-shooting .22-caliber HW85 is. You may remember from Part 1 that I bought this rifle because of its super-smooth tune. So, let’s get right to it.

Crosman Premiers

The first pellet to be tested was the 14.3-grain Crosman Premier. These loaded easily and averaged 678 f.p.s. The range went from 672 to 693 — a spread of 21 f.p.s. At the average velocity this pellet produces 14.6 foot pounds. This was so close to the “magic” velocity of 671 f.p.s., where the weight of the pellet in grains equals the muzzle energy in foot pounds. I mention that because it’s just a handy thing to know.

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The Diana model 50 underlever: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 50
Diana model 50 underlever.

Part 1
Part 2

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Before we begin…
  • Rear sight conversion
  • Accuracy — the test
  • RWS Superdomes
  • H&N Finale Match Light
  • RWS Superpoint
  • RWS Hobby
  • Things I did wrong
  • Summary

We start looking at the accuracy of the .177-caliber Diana model 50 underlever today. I say start because I want to shoot this rifle a lot more. I will look for interesting ways to do that.

Before we begin…

However, before I jump into the accuracy there are a couple things I need to clear up. Reader Halfstep asked about the loading tap. It was shown in the closed position in Part 2 and he asked if I could show it open. He also wondered how far into the tap the pellet falls, so I’ll show that, too.

Diana 50 tap open
The tap is open.

Diana 50 pellet in tap
An RWS Superpoint has been dropped into the tap. See how deep it is?

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The Diana model 50 underlever: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 50
Diana model 50 underlever.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Loading tap
  • Rear sight
  • Pre-test preparation
  • Fastest way
  • Velocity RWS Superpoints
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Hobby
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation so far

Today we will learn the velocity of my new/old .177 caliber Diana model 50. But there are several things I need to clear up before we get to that. Let’s start with the loading tap.

Loading tap

The Diana model 50 is an underlever spring-piston air rifle. That means the barrel doesn’t open like a breakbarrel, so there has to be another way to load a pellet. On some underlevers the entire compression chamber slides back, exposing the breech, but others like the model 50 use a loading tap. A tap sits behind the barrel and rotates open to load the pellet and closed to align the pellet with the breech.

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Diana model 5V pellet pistol: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 5V pistol
Diana model 5V pellet pistol.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • Update on the Hakim
  • The Diana 5V air pistol
  • The test
  • Sig Sauer Match Ballistic Alloy pellets
  • JSB Exact RS
  • RWS Hobby
  • A different hold
  • Summary

Update on the Hakim

On Friday I took the Hakim to the range to shoot it again. This time I listened to my own advice about adjusting the gas port and was able to begin with the rifle not ejecting the spent cases. It kicks like a 98 Mauser that way, but the cartridges are reloadable.

Then, with the gas port open as small as it would go, the rifle extracted and ejected factory rounds softly enough to be reloadable. I caught them in a cartridge trap I use for a lot of my semiautomatic arms. The cases were still dented, but not so much that they wouldn’t fit in a resizing die, so this fixes the problem I told you about last Friday.

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Diana model 5V pellet pistol: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Diana 5V pistol
Diana model 5V pellet pistol.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • RWS Hobbys
  • JSB Exact RS
  • What is dieseling?
  • Sig Match Ballistic Alloy
  • Cocking effort
  • Trigger pull
  • Next
  • Observations

Today we look at the power of my old Diana model 5V air pistol. I expected to see results in the same class as the BSF S20 and Webley Hurricane, but perhaps a little slower because of the age of this airgun. I reckoned somewhere in the high 300s, at least.

RWS Hobbys

The first pellet I tested was the RWS Hobby, which is often the standard for velocity in an airgun. In the 5V Hobbys averaged 397 f.p.s., which I think is a pretty healthy result. The low was 387 and the high was 408 f.p.s., so the spread was 21 f.p.s. At the average velocity, this pellet produced 2.45 foot pounds of energy. I will add the Hobby fit the bore pretty tight.

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Millita breakbarrel rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Millitia rifle
Millita air rifle.

Part 1

A history of airguns

This report covers:

  • An important lesson
  • RWS Hobby
  • JSB Exact RS
  • Air Arms Falcons
  • Cocking effort
  • It’s been lubricated
  • What have we learned?

Today we look at the power of the Millita rifle I bought at Findlay. The numbers will sound slow, but please remember this rifle is from the 1930s. It’s not a youth rifle, despite the velocity.

An important lesson

We will also learn something important from today’s test. I will show it to you in a little bit. Let’s get started.

RWS Hobby

The first pellet I tried was the venerable RWS Hobby. At 7 grains the Hobby is the quintessential high-speed pellet that gives the top velocity numbers that can be believed. Yes, there are lighter lead-free pellets that get thrown into the mix, but everyone knows they do not represent an airgun very well. Many manufacturers have taken to quoting two top velocity figures, one for lead pellets and the other for lead-free pellets.

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Checking out a Diana RWS 34P: Part 5

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Diana 34P
The Diana RWS 34P is a classic breakbarrel spring-piston air rifle.

This report covers:

  • How to tell if the mainspring is broken
  • Tight piston seal
  • JSB Exact RS domes
  • RWS Hobbys
  • RWS Superdomes
  • Where are we?
  • Did the rifle smooth out?
  • Cocking effort
  • What are the advantages?
  • The rest of the story

Today we look at the results of yesterday’s tune on Geo791’s .22 caliber Diana RWS 34P. I talked to Tom Gore, the owner of Vortek, and asked what kind of results I could expect from this kit. He said this one was designed to make the rifle perform at the factory spec, but with much longer spring life. When I told him how the rifle had tested before he said he felt it was right on spec already. I felt so, as well. And of course that was with a broken mainspring.

How to tell if the mainspring is broken

Several of you have asked me whether it’s possible to know when a Diana mainspring has broken and I said no. If just one end of the spring is broken the gun will shoot smoother than before and will have the same velocity. I think the broken piece winds itself into the new end of the mainspring (it always does) and helps dampen vibration. Unless you are observing the performance of your rifle very carefully and watching for this you’ll never see it.

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