Over the year we've had plenty of people visit the shop wanting to upgrade from their old break-barrel rifle. Clearly technology has moved on hugely over the years and the choice of rifle can be confusing.
First of all you need to consider what type of shooting you want the rifle for - are you a back yard plinker, or are you thinking of getting competitive?
And do you go PCP (Pre Charged Pneumatic) or Springer?
A springer gun is generally less cumbersome for a shooter to operate, all you do is cock it, load a pellet and you’re ready to go. With a precharged gun, there’s the complexity of the gun, itself, which is pretty much on par with the springer in most cases. Only the repeaters are more complex because of how their magazines or clips are loaded with pellets and then how they’re loaded into the guns.
But a precharged gun brings with it the need to put air into the gun at some point. And this is where things can get very complex, although the new quick couplings make this process pretty simple these days. However clearly there is an extra cost to a PCP, with air refills required either by buying a pump or a divers' bottle.
As for handling, you need to consider the some skill in holding the gun when it fires. A PCP shoots accurately regardless of how it’s held, but a spring gun can be very sensitive to slight changes in the hold.
As for size, .177 or .22? Well .22 is always going to be more powerful, a .22 delivers about 20% more punch in any given airgun. But when considering velocity, the .22 is always slower - it's a heavier pellet of course. Our advice? If you are target or range shooting, the .177 will be best, if you are regularly hunting, a .22 is probably the one for you.
And then of course, what scope to choose!.......
As always, if you are thinking of a new air rifle, pop in for a chat and we'll help you buy the ideal gun for you!