10 Best Air Rifles – Which One Should You Get?

barimagelogo

Do you need to get rid of some pests around the place? Do you need to tune up your aiming and shooting accuracy? If you answered yes to either or both of these questions, then you might consider the purchase of an air rifle.

For us, the Bear River TPR 1200 (Check Price on Amazon.com) is a solid choice for an air rifle and deserving of your consideration. It meets quality and common preference requirements and provides plenty of features which add to it being a valuable purchase. Choosing the perfect air gun is somewhat a matter of choice or preference, but here are a couple of basic questions and some common features to help you decide which model is right for you.

How to Choose The Perfect One

How are you going to use your air gun?

Most airgun users use their air rifles for one of two purposes: varmint control or target shooting. Using an air gun for either of these purposes provides a safer alternative to higher powered firearms, but still allows the user to work on accuracy and the necessary force to get rid of pests. The size of the pests you need to be rid of and distance you will be able to encounter them will determine whether an air gun is what you really need.

At what range do you intend to be shooting at your target?

Range and killing for varies from one air rifle to the next. There are basically four different categories of air guns:

• Light. These are used for plinking, target shooting and close range pest control.
• Medium. The range of these firearms increases from 35 to 50 yards and allows for a little bit more aggressiveness in kill force.
• Magnum (high). This higher range air gun can reach an additional 15 yards than the medium range and has more power behind     it.
• Super magnum. At 75 to 80 yards, these specialty air guns reach the maximum range of an air powered weapon.

Additional Considerations

In order to narrow down your selection further, let’s examine some additional considerations. Keep the following in mind as you make your decision:

Type of force.

To hurl the projectile you are firing down range, there are 3 different types of air guns.

• Lighter range airguns actually make use of the power of a heavy spring to provide the necessary force behind the projectile.
• A gas ram is used to provide the force in a medium range air gun and typically makes use of a manual pump to build up air to drive the ram.
• Pre-charged Pneumatic (PCP) air rifles use compressed gas in a cylinder to provide greater pressure in magnum and super magnum models for firing the weapon.

Trigger Quality

Trigger sensitivity and quality makes a big difference when it comes to quality as well as accuracy. A trigger which requires a heavy pull has a tendency to cause the shooter to pull off target slightly when firing. Higher quality air guns have a lighter trigger sensitivity or the capacity to adjust the sensitivity.

Finish

The finish of an air gun has little to do with its performance in most cases. Some finishes make the air gun lighter than others while other finishes are more durable or attractive. Though this is a matter of personal taste, a well-finished gun can provide some indication of the craftsmanship and quality built into the weapon as well.

Open Sights vs. Scopes

Given the range of an air gun, open sights are considered adequate to most users, but those who prefer greater accuracy tend to favor a scope. Because of range, a scope on an air gun does not need high powered magnification, which tends to blur close targets.

Calibers

Air gun calibers tend to go from 0.177 up to 0.25 calibers. The speed and range of the projectile are directly related to the power behind launching the projectile and the weight of it. Heavier calibers will have more kill force, but their range and speed will be limited.

The air gun characteristics which add the most value and best fit your personal preferences will justify your investment. To help you make a solid decision, let’s examine 10 top airguns.


Top 10 air rifles


Rank Product Review Score
1
BEAR RIVER TPR 1200
9.9 Check on Amazon
2
VARMINT .177 CAL
9.8 Check on Amazon
3
MAGNUM
9.7 Check on Amazon
4
WHISPER FUSION MACH 1 .22 CAL
9.6 Check on Amazon
5
UMAREX 3-9X32 RUGER
9.3 Check on Amazon
6
CROSMAN CFRNP17SX
8.8 Check on Amazon
7
HATSAN 95 COMBO
8.6 Check on Amazon
8
DAISY MFG POWERLINE 35
8.4 Check on Amazon
9
RUGER MAGNUM COMBO
8.3 Check on Amazon
10
BENJAMIN PROWLER NITRO PISTON
8 Check on Amazon

top picks on the market


1. Bear River TPR 1200 

Bear River TPR 1200

The Bear River TPR Hunting is a quality, multi-purpose air rifle that is loaded with basic quality design and some pretty impressive features. It comes with a synthetic stock with a pistol grip handle, a rifled steel barrel and a high quality scope mounted on a 6” picatinny rail.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177
• Speed: 1300 fps
• Sight: 4×32 scope

The Bear River TPR Hunting has a little higher velocity, which adds a little bit more power and accuracy at longer range, the pistol grip handle and the higher quality scope and mounting rail are what put it above the rest of the field. It is fully capable of be used for all three types of uses, but it won’t cost you to have all of those added features.

pros

  • Durable, quality stock with pistol grip handle.
  • Quality scope and mounting.
  • High accuracy and velocity.
  • Capable of being used for all applications.

cons

  • Some may think the 0.177 caliber is a little too light for some small game hunting.

2. Varmint .177 Cal

Varmint .177 Cal

The Varmit is a spring piston type of air gun with a single cock breaking barrel action. It features a shockproof and fog-proof scope, synthetic stock and a rifled steel barrel.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177
• Speed: 1250 fps
• Sight: 4×32 scope

It is best suited for shorter range pest and varmint hunting. Because it is only a spring action firearm, it is not really suited for competitive target shooting. It does have a decent scope that isn’t too high powered for sensible use.

pros

  • Works well for pest and varmint hunting.
  • 1 year warranty.
  • Decent scope.

cons

  • A little overpriced.• Limited usage.

3. Magnum

IGT Mach 1 gas piston of the Magnum

The IGT Mach 1 gas piston of the Magnum is what provides the power behind the projectile with this firearm, which comes in two different caliber options. The trigger sensitivity on this gun can be adjusted and it has an all weather stock, rifled steel barrel, a scope and comes backed by a 5 year warranty.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177 or 0.22
• Speed: 1650 fps (.177) or 1300 fps (.22)
• Sight: 3-9×32 variable scope

Hunting and target shooting are both options with air gun. It has enough range and force to deliver what you need in either situation. The scope is a little over done and is probably the reason it is priced as high as it is. It does carry a solid warranty, which it should, given how much you are paying for it.

pros

  • Powered for multiple uses.
  • Solid construction and design.
  • 5 year warranty.

cons

  • High scope magnification not necessary.
  • Pretty pricey.

4. Whisper Fusion Mach 1 .22 Cal

Whisper Fusion Mach 1

The Whisper Fusion Mach 1 also makes use of an IGT Mach 1 gas piston to provide the power behind either a .22 caliber or .177 caliber projectile. It makes use of the most advanced noise reduction technology patented by the manufacturer. It has a stock built out of synthetic material and it also features an adjustable trigger as well as a variable powered scope.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177 or 0.22
• Speed: 1420 fps (.177) or 1020 fps (.22)
• Sight: 3-9×32 variable scope

Hunting and pest control are both good uses for this firearm. The Whisper Fusion does not have quite as much velocity as the Magnum  above, so it isn’t quite as accurate at a distance as competitive target shooters prefer. Again, the scope is overpowered for this gun and it is still a little too much money to invest in an air gun (you are probably buying the scope), especially when it cannot be used for competition shooting.

pros

  • Powered for medium range and a little beyond.
  • Solid construction and design.
  • 5 year warranty.

cons

  • High scope magnification not necessary.
  • Not really suited for competition shooting.

5. Umarex 3-9X32 Ruger 

Umarex 3-9X32 Ruge

A quiet, spring-loaded air gun with a breaking barrel single cock action is the Ruger Targis Hunter .22 Air Gun. It features an all-weather, synthetic stock, a variable power scope, noise suppression system and a two-stage trigger.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.22
• Speed: 1000 fps
• Sight: 3-9×32 variable scope

This air rifle is backed by a solid name in firearms. With a 0.22 caliber projectile, it is best suited for small game at close range. If you need something to plink with and shoot small game around the house, this would be a good option, but it would be best without the scope and probably cost more than half as much.

pros

  • Good caliber for small game.
  • Well built air gun.
  • Backed by a solid name in firearms.

cons

  • Limited range and usage.
  • Way too much scope for its range, which is probably at least half the cost of the firearm.

6. Crosman CFRNP17SX 

Crosman CFRNP17SX

The sleek, modern design of the Crosman Fire Nitro Piston draws your eye to it pretty quickly. This model features nitro piston technology, an all-weather, synthetic stock, a rifled steel barrel, a two-stage adjustable trigger and a scope.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177
• Speed: 1200 fps
• Sight: 4×32 scope

This is a medium range air gun which not only has an attractive design to it, but also has some quality features. It is a far cry from your dad or granddad’s Crosman BB gun and can be a pretty serious weapon for small game hunting and pest control. The scope isn’t overpowered for this firearm, so it keeps the cost down and it is also backed by a pretty solid name in air guns. Some users say that grouping shot is pretty difficult with this gun, so its accuracy might be questionable.

pros

  • Attractive, durable design.
  • Decent speed and range for small game and pests.
  • Decent scope.
  • Not too pricey.

cons

  • Not suited for competitive target shooting.
  • Some question concerning its accuracy.

7. Hatsan 95 Combo

Hatsan 95 Combo

If you favor a more traditional stock design for your air gun, then this Walnut Stock Hatsan 95 might be the right fit for you. This is also a breaking barrel spring piston model. It features a 2-stage, adjustable match trigger and includes rubber recoil pad and a variable scope with mount.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177, 0.22, 0.25
• Speed: 1300 fps, 1000 fps, 650 fps
• Sight: 3-9×32 variable scope

The Hatsan walnut stock is attractive and well crafted. The variations of available calibers are a plus as well. It is also best suited for small game hunting and pest control, but not so much where it comes to competitive target shooting. The scope and mount option is available, but you would be well advised to leave such an expensive scope off of this firearm as well. A wide selection of users note that this gun is very accurate.

pros

  • Wide variety of calibers for various small game and pest control needs.
  • Solid craftsmanship.
  • Accuracy.
  • 1 year warranty.

cons

  • Limited range in higher calibers.
  • The 3-9x32 variable scope is overkill.

8. Daisy MFG Powerline 35 

Daisy MFG Powerline 35

The first BB gun for a lot of people was a Daisy, a manufacturer who understands air gunss. This MFG Powerline 35 isn’t an ordinary BB gun. This is a medium range, a pneumatic multi-pump model with a durable, synthetic stock, a steel smooth bore barrel and adjustable open sight.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177
• Speed: 690 fps
• Sight: adjustable open sight

This isn’t going to have a great range and won’t have a lot of uses beyond plinking and pest control. It is a safer option to have on hand for younger shooters who are learning how to handle a gun safely. You aren’t going to pay a lot for the Daisy air gun, but you are going to get pretty good quality for the price you pay.

pros

  • Durable and safe for younger shooters.
  • Budget priced.
  • No high dollar scope added on.

cons

  • Limited to plinking and pest control.

9. Ruger Magnum Combo

Ruger Magnum Combo

Another high quality designed Ruger air gun, this Magnum Combo is one to keep an eye on when it comes to making a quality selection. It features a high powered spring piston, breaking-barrel, single shot cocking, a 2-stage adjustable trigger and a mounted scope.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.22
• Speed: 1200 fps
• Sight: 4×32 scope

This is a solid air gun with plenty of potentials when it comes to small game hunting or pest control. Its speed and range also make it a decent gun for some target shooting. There is quality behind the Ruger name and it has that quality built in for a decent price because it doesn’t have an over-powered and expensive scope. Its accuracy and balance are features to keep in mind.

pros

  • Quality rifle backed by a well-known manufacturer.
  • Decent speed for a 0.22 caliber air gun.
  • The scope isn’t overdone.
  • Moderately priced.

cons

  • Not ideal for competitive target shooting.

10. Benjamin Prowler Nitro Piston

Benjamin Prowler Nitro

This Benjamin Prowler Nitro Piston is 70% quieter than your typical spring powered air gun. It is a high quality product with a high quality, synthetic stock, a rifled steel barrel, a 2-stage, adjustable trigger and a mounted scope. It is a part of the Crosman line of air guns, so it is backed by Crosman quality.

Specs:

• Caliber: 0.177
• Speed: 1200 fps
• Sight: 4×32 scope

The Benjamin Prowler is the one model in the group which brings together all of the best features and variety of uses. It is powered well enough for small game hunting, pest control and competitive target shooting. It has a sensible scope on it and won’t cost you an arm and a leg. The accuracy of this gun is second to none as well.

pros

  • Durable, quality construction.
  • Can be used for all purposes.
  • Sensible 4x32 scope.
  • Backed by quality manufacturer.

cons

  • Some might consider 0.177 caliber too light for some small game hunting applications.

Final Verdict

Bear River TPR 1200

When it comes down to what most users are looking for in an air rifle, there are several considerations to keep in mind. You need the necessary speed to hurl the projectile as accurately as possible at the target and in some cases enough power to make a kill on various small game and pests. Those who use an air gun for multi-purpose functions can hardly go wrong with the The Bear River TPR .

The higher velocity of this model adds a little bit more power and accuracy at longer range, the pistol grip handle and the higher quality scope and mounting rail set it from the rest of the field as well. It is fully capable of be used for all three types of uses, but it won’t cost you to have all of those added features.

Hunting or target shooting with an air gun can be a rewarding experience. Regardless of which model best meets your needs, pick out a quality air rifle and embark on a new firearms adventure.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hT8JYjWitz0