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Old October 25, 2004, 11:29 AM   #1
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Recoil of an air rifle

i have a question; if someone hase experience with air rifles, i'd like to kow, extley how strong is the reciol of a high power air rifle (in my case the RWS Diana model 54 air king which is the one with no recoil to the shooter,but the scope feals the reciol)? is it stronger or weeker than a big caliber fire arm rifle (the kind you kill elephants with) many people have said to me, that air rifles are very tough on scopes and nikon sent me an E-mail saying if the recoil dose not exeede the one of a big cal. rifle, i should be ok with a Nikon Buckmaster 4.5-14x40 scope. so how strong is the recoil of an RWS model 54?
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Old October 25, 2004, 07:26 PM   #2
Danindetroit
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I have heard that is not the recoil it is the fact that the gun recoils one way wwhen the spring relases it energy, and then it recoils the oppisite way when the air cylincer reacts. So it is like being in a car that is standing still then hit from hehind then jit rom the front. Rifle scopes deal with energy like they are hit from one direction only. Have heard that rifle or .22 scopes can be damaged by this type of recoil. Do not know if it is true.
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Old October 26, 2004, 08:41 PM   #3
Dave Markowitz
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Spring piston powered air rifles like the RWS 54 have a two-stage recoil. The felt recoil to the shooter is like a .22, but there is a second stage to it that is hell on scopes not designed for this.

As spring piston air rifles go, the RWS 54 is quite powerful and has a heavy spring. The recoil impulse it imparts to a scope will be severe and if you put a regular scope not meant for air rifles on it, you'll probably destroy the scope before you get through your first tin of pellets.
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Old October 27, 2004, 09:28 AM   #4
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Ok this is bad news for me because i alrey fell in love with the Nikon Buckmaster 4.5-14x40 and now il have to look 4 another one but anyway thanks.
have you got an advice for high quolity air rifle scope similar to the Nikon?
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Old October 27, 2004, 11:43 AM   #5
Dave Markowitz
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I'm not sure it's up to the level of a Nikon, but I had good results with a Bushnell Trophy 6-18x scope on an RWS Model 34, another magnum springer.

By the way, something else you'll want is a scope mount with a little pin that protrudes into a matching hole in the scope rail on your rifle's receiver (if it has such a hole). Failing that, get a scope stop to clamp on the rail behind your rear scope ring. Either of these will prevent the scope from "walking" off the rear of the rail under recoil. Been there, done that, and it was during a match.
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Old October 27, 2004, 12:21 PM   #6
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the thing is i'd like a very high quality, accurate scope with zoom and mildot.
well i laready have a scope-stop with a pin that fits the hole on the rail and the scope that i had before, didn't moove but i'm more concirned adout buying a scope for $279 and then breaking it after two days because of the reciol.
and by the way ; do you know anything about the brand gamo (its a spanish brand)
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Old October 27, 2004, 12:32 PM   #7
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1 Shot, here's the deal. I've done a fair amount of research into what optics are suitable for magnum spring piston airguns.

2 prime considerations: (1) Ability of the scope not to break under the recoil (as well as whether the warranty will cover same if it does break), and (2) general suitability, including magnification and most importantantly, adjustable objective for the ranges at which you'll be shooting, to eliminate parallax. Also, one minor consideration, that being (3) a scope stop or pin as described for you, to keep the whole unit from creeping back on you. First, recognize that magnum spring piston airguns are extremely harsh/hard on scope, due to both the recoil's strength/sharpness and its 2-way nature (the rifle recoils first rearward, then forward...as a result, the reticle must be fully supported on both sides). Next, recognize that (IINM), your model 54 will have LESS recoil than most magnumish springers, with the recoil reduction system - yes this applies to the forces exerted on the scope just as it does to your felt recoil, so this is slightly less of a concern for the 54 than for other magnum springers.

(1) Durability. There are two approaches you could take. One is to find out which scopes for sure will handle the recoil, in order to head off any problems from the get-go, or two, simply study each manufacturer's warranty CAREFULLY, and if there is NO specific EXCLUSION as to air rifles, then use it, and if it does break, simply enforce the warranty, over and over if you have to, until they refund your money. I would do a combination of both. I would not use any scope that the warranty has any kind of arguable exclusion for airguns. No, an email assurance from Nikon is not enough to overcome an exclusion if it exists, but it's just not the important factor - the warranty is - read the exact specific warranty for that Nikon Buckmaster, carefully. Now, after checking the warranty for exclusions, then take a look at which companies go above and beyond, to make a specific statement or claim that their scopes will definitely handle the recoil of spring pistons. Three manufacturers specifically state (IINM) that ALL of their scopes will handle the recoil, and I don't mean in just an email, but on a website or some other more clear manner:

1. Leupold
2. Burris
3. Bushnell

First, Leupold...yes, I would believe them when they say that all their scopes would hold up, BUT leupolds are expensive, particularly the ones that are suitable for airgun use, which are the EFR models (extended focal range, aka adjustable for parallax). But, with no budget considerations, the 6.5-20x50 (or is it 40mm?), would be the ultimate airgun scope for a largish/target gun like your model 54, but it's $600 or so new.

2. Burris, yes I also believe them when they say that, but again, only a couple of models have adjustable objective. I have the 3-9x33mm AO Burris Compact on my model 350 RWS, and it works fairly well and hasn't broken yet. I usually leave it on 3 or 4 power. It was over $200 I believe.

3. Bushnell...Generally speaking Bushnells are your best bet for magnum springers, because (a) they state unequivocally that all their scopes are suitable for airguns, and (b) they have quite a few models available with adjustable objectives. Now, personally, I would trust the Elite 4200, Elite 3200, Legend, and Trophy lines, but not the others, except that I would also trust a Banner line Bushnell on a medium-powered springer (like the ones that generate 700-900 fps with .177 pellets). Sportsman - I wouldn't try it. The Bushnell Trophy models with AO are a great economy choice for a springer scope. The Elite 3200s and 4200s are said to be tested to "10,000 of .375 H&H mag recoil", for what that's worth. An elite 4200 4-16 would be my second choice for a no-budget or mid-budget target/precision heavy springer.

Now, there are also other good choices. Certain Simmons models are designated for "airgun" and have an adjustable objective. The Weaver Grand Slam and Weaver V16s with AOs are also good choices. The Grand Slam 6-20 would be my 3nd place no-budget or mid-budget choice for a model 54.

(2) You do want an adjustable objective (AO) so that you can eliminate parallax - different brands and models will focus down to either 7, 10, 15, or 20 yards. Get one that focuses (eliminates parallax) at least down to 20 yards, preferably 15 or better, for sniping birds/squirrels at close ranges, or for targets for that matter. I must say that my Burris is unimpressive, in that the AO, while it works, does NOT correlate with the marked numbers on the AO dial - it may be set on 40 or 50 yards, in order to focus at 15 yards, on 4 power, for example.

Nice treatise huh? PM with any further questions. I *would* try the Nikon on it IF there's no exclusion on the warranty, and if you're willing to send it in and enforce the warranty if it breaks - the Nikon should be strong enough - and worst case scenario, you could print and send in that email with warranty repair, if they hassle you on it.

I just remembered that we already had this discussion awhile back - lol - my memory is so bad - well maybe there's a twist on your question or maybe I offered up something helpful that I didn't before...

As for scope rail stops, as I said when we discussed this before, if you find one for sale, let me know - I can't find one anywhere. But what I did is use that built-in stop-pin thingy on the rear of the stock RWS 11mm scope rail as the scope stop, by mounting it in such a way that the rear ring rest right up against this rear "pin". I mentioned that when we discussed this before.
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Old October 28, 2004, 09:36 AM   #8
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well once agian thank you very mutch.
the question i asked a wile ago was actualy just about brands as i had no idea of what to buy. Now know roughly what i want but as someone told me about this second recoil that is said to be an scope-killer i wasnt quite shure anymore.
my three choices now are this ultimate springer scope for $600,the nikon buckmaster 4.5-14x40 and the bushnell elite 4200 4-16x40.

i think it is a bit stipid to spend the same amount of $$ on the scope as you did on the gun so that eliminates the $600 scope

i'm not shore abaut the reciolproofe of the nikon.

the bushnell seames perfect so that is my favorite but all i know is that it dosnthave mildot and i realy prefere mil dot so do you know if there is also a mildot version of the elite 4200 4-16x40 ?and if yes; were can i buy it on-line because here in spain they seam not to sell to mutch of bushnell.

thanks again and i'm sorry that i'm beeing a bit thick its just that i want to be realy shure when i spend so mutch mony on something.

Last edited by 1 shot, 1 hit; October 28, 2004 at 10:37 AM.
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Old October 28, 2004, 10:28 AM   #9
FirstFreedom
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1shot

Yeah, look here:

http://www.bushnell.com/products/rif.../42-6242m.html

That's a nice choice for you - high magnif, mil dot reticle, and adj. obj. I'd like to see a bigger objective lens with that much mag, but with your young eyes, and in bright light, you should be able to utilize all 24x for precision shooting. Gonna be on the higher price side of that line.
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Old October 28, 2004, 11:34 AM   #10
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thats exactly what i thought when i looked at the bushnell website
the onely thing that i'm not sure of is will i be able to see clearly on about 15-20m of schooting range aswell?
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