With increasing delays reported on applications for and renewals of firearms licences, the canny retailer in England and Wales is increasing his stock of licence-free airguns. But which to stock? Here’s our selection from under £100 to over £3,000.
Air Arms S200 PCP Sporter Air Rifle
Accuracy and top performance are the cornerstones of all Air Arms’ rifles, and the S200 Sporter Rifle has everything it takes to produce exceptional results at a lower cost. Perfect for juniors, ladies or those of smaller stature, the S200 Sporter has a deserved reputation for introducing airgunners to the rewards of top-level shooting.
The bolt-action S200 Sporter offers ambidextrous simplicity, smooth handling and the options of a multi-shot magazine and a dedicated moderator, clearly illustrating that great design by Air Arms and production by world leaders Ceska Zbrojovka is the perfect partnership.
Great springer – Weihrauch HW 95 K Hunting Air Rifle
The Weihrauch HW95k is a stunning break barrel spring rifle. The quality hardwood stock is robust and lightweight and the styling will remind you of the airguns of your youth.
The metalwork and bluing is high quality too. The HW95 is a full powered air rifle and is—without doubt—one of Weihrauch’s best-selling rifles.
The rifle comes with a fully-adjustable trigger and is fitted with the regular, and extremely effective, Weirauch moderator.
Great value – Hatsan 1000S Striker Edge
This single shot break barrel action might remind you of the air rifles of your youth, with its simple, rugged construction and straightforward, no-nonsense action.
A real back-garden plinker that will bring many hours of fun and enjoyment to children of all ages, it is available in .177, .22 and .25 calibres, is ambidextrous and features a rubber butt pad for recoil reduction. There’s a grooved cylinder for 11mm scope mounts and an adjustable trigger. Everything you need to get started in a great value package.
Best for competition – Anschutz 9015 ONE BASIC
A precision target rifle for field target disciplines based on the successful and unique model 9015 ONE, designed for top-end competitors in airgun sport.
The newly developed high-power barreled action offers absolute precision and accelerates 10.5 grain diabolo pellets without recoil to an average velocity of 690 feet-per-second. Combined with the numerous adjustment possibilities of the stock, the 9015 Field Target is the perfect rifle for this challenging sport.
Umarex Legends Cowboy Rifle
Forget the fact that what really powers these gorgeous-looking air rifles is a CO2 canister and look instead at that wonderful lever action that loads the next pellet into your chamber. This rifle from Umarex Legends features a firing cycle that realistically mimics the real thing—perfect for an authentic shooting experience.
The rifle is chambered in 4.5mm BB and uses CO2 capsules to fire at around 6 ft/lbs of muzzle energy. In this lever-action rifle, shells are loaded and ejected, just like the real thing.
The Cowboy Rifle is also a winner when it comes to accuracy. It’s easy to grip and has convincing design features, including an all-metal frame. With its combination of advanced CO2 technology and nostalgic charm, this rifle is sure to offer plenty of fun.
023 9224 5350
Webley & Scott Stingray Quantum
The Stingray is a high powered spring rifle. It’s ergonomic design features a pistol grip and a cheek rest on the stock to ensure you’re positioned in the optimal way to shoot.
The gun also has a checkering located on the pistol grip and forehand. This non-slip surface prevents you dropping and damaging your rifle even in wet conditions. The stock has a ventilated rubber butt pad.
The break barrel on the Webley stingray has been fitted with a Quantum Silencer. The .22 spring rifle also features a 3/8” grooved Dovetail allowing optical accessories such as scopes to be attached as no open sights are fitted due to the Quantum silencer fitment.
The two-stage trigger provides a sharp, clean shot time after time making the rifle very enjoyable to shoot. Scope and Mounts not included.
0345 099 0252
Best for drawing stares – FX Wildcat MKII Compact
Featuring all of the hallmarks of the Wildcat MK II, the Wildcat Compact bridges the gap for those wanting the power of a .25 caliber in a package similar in size to the .22 caliber Wildcat standard. The 500mm barrel and 250cc cylinder combine to bring the overall length of the Wildcat Compact to a short 30”.
Refusing to compromise on power, the Compact is still putting out the same 48 FPE that the longer 700mm barrel version does. With the shorter air cylinder, users can expect about 30 good regulated shots per fill. Speaking of the regulator, the Wildcat Compact features the AMP (Adjustable Match Precision) Regulator, allowing shooters to make output pressure changes externally.
This rifle also comes with the Smooth Twist X barrel system, providing users the ultimate in accuracy and the unique ability to change liners that are made to favor specific ammo options. To minimize the sound signature, FX employs their stackable moderator system to keep the bullpup backyard friendly.
RRP from £1,159
Sportsman Gun Centre
01392 354 854
GBSA Airgun of the Year – Air Arms S510 Ultimate Sporter
The award-winning S510 Ultimate Sporter features a fully-adjustable cheekpiece and butt pad working in perfect harmony with the semi- match design of the waterproof, non-warp, laminate stock to provide a sturdy and steady base for your shooting. This rifle promises to give the hunter a degree of control never before available to sporting airgunners.
The gun boasts the usual attention to detail and top-notch build quality that airgun shooters have grown to expect from this leading British gunmaker. It also comes in a variety of stock options including walnut, laminate and black-soft-touch, and the ambidextrous handle boasts a huge amount of adjustment to ensure good fit.
Combine that with an excellent match-level two-stage trigger, a ten-shot magazine system driven by a super-slick side lever action and the very efficient Q-Tec silencer and it’s no surprise that this airgun has quickly established itself as a favourite with hunters.
Deben • 01394 387762
Great fun bullpup – Cometa Orion BP
Measuring just 70cms, this hefty, good handling Bullpup is a lot of fun. The stock is superb, with a rubberised pistol grip that feels great to hold and offers plenty of attack on the trigger, and even features some storage space inside. The attention to detail on this reasonably-priced rifle is superb. The Cometa-made barrel is highly accurate and the moderator works well.
A 200lb fill of air will give you up to 150 shots and with 13 (.22) and 17 (.177) rounds per magazine, you’ll be able to get off plenty of shots before needing a reload of any kind.
ASI 01728 688555
Great quality – Daystate Red Wolf
Amazing high-end air rifle that delivers regulated air from its carbon fibre bottle to make sure your shots are consistent. Both elements of the trigger are adjustable.
Its sculpted stock sandwiches soft red undertones between its black laminates, and a walnut version is available for traditionalists. However it’s dressed though, its ambidextrous design caters for a perfect gun fit courtesy of a butt pad and raised cheekpiece, both fully adjustable.
The fully-shrouded carbon barrel helps mute the muzzle report in the field. And, of course, the Red Wolf’s new side lever design marries effortless cocking with speedy loading courtesy of Daystate’s latest generation, auto-indexing magazine.
Great value – Gamo HP-Ami .22
This outstanding carbine has arrived to set a new standard in the tactical airguns market. Featuring an extremely silent Whisper Maxxim barrel, a last generation recoil-free power plant and an (optional extra) compact folding bipod, it will be ready to shoot whenever you need it, turning the trickiest spots into safe and steady shooting places.
Gamo’s HPA Mi is a 24-joules tactical-looking air rifle composed of a Whisper barrel and a last generation polymer stock, which features Gamo’s IGT™ Technology, an innovative system that replaces the traditional main spring by a last generation pneumatic cylinder, improving its terminal velocity, providing a more consistent power level, reducing cocking efforts and lessening undesired vibrations.
The custom trigger can be adjusted in two independent phases, and there’s an adjustable cheekpiece. A lot of air rifle for not very much money.
BSA • 01217 728543
SIG MCX Virtus PCP
This latest iteration of the famous MCX is arguably a little less fun than its predecessors, due to its 30 round rapid-firing mechanism having been hampered—you now need to push the trigger forward before taking a second shot, —and it has taken the move away from bottled CO2 and into the world of PCP.
Despite all that this excellent air rifle continues to deliver simulated performance and handling of the law enforcer’s favourite, the SIG MCX rifle.
Its suggested use is ‘training; or varmint control, and it will perform well at both target shooting and being out in the wilds. Look to pick up stock with scopes—the bundled ones are excellent value.
RRP: £499.99 (inc. scope)
0345 099 0252