Specialized weapon shops are now full of an unimaginable variety of pneumatic weapons. Today you can freely choose a rifle for sports shooting, underwater and ground hunting, fishing or airsoft. However, any pneumatic weapon has its own technical parameters, which must be guided by when choosing.
The first technical characteristic that people pay attention to when buying pneumatics is the caliber. Today the market offers three options: 6, 35 mm, 5, 5 mm and 4.5 mm. To use a 4.5 mm weapon, no permits are required; for the operation of other types, a license is required. Rifles with the largest caliber and 5, 5 mm are used most often for hunting small animals and birds: ducks, geese, hares, marmots, etc. Weapons with a caliber of 4, 5 mm are used for recreational or sports shooting.
Unfortunately, many manufacturers prefer not to specify this parameter. Instead of muzzle energy, expressed in joules, manufacturers brag about the muzzle velocity of the bullet. Nevertheless, among air rifles there is a classification according to muzzle energy or power:
- up to 7.5 J: low-power rifles, marked with the letter "F". The stamp is usually placed on the receiver. These products are in free circulation and are mainly used in sports.
- 7, 5-16, 3 J: marked with the letter "J". A more powerful weapon used for shooting at targets at a distance of up to 70 meters. In this case, the bullet can cause minor damage to the target. Weapons of this power require registration.
- up to 28-30 J: designated as "FAC". They can be used for hunting, incl. and underwater, because their performance depends little on environmental conditions. After hitting the target, significant damage is inflicted.
Air weapon systems
The most common type is spring-piston. This is a well-known rifle from Soviet shooting ranges. The source of energy in it is a powerful spring that pushes the piston. The latter, in turn, compresses the air and, as a result, the bullet flies out. PP weapons are simple and reliable. Charging takes place by "breaking" the barrel. In addition to the spring-piston system, there are a number of others:
- with a side (underbarrel) lever (PPP): here, instead of "breaking" the barrel, a special lever is bent from below or from the side, and the bullet is inserted into the socket. The advantage of such a system also lies in its simplicity and reliability; the disadvantage is that you need a decent effort to load, besides, the accuracy of fire of these rifles is low.
- multicompression (MK): differ from previous models by the presence of a storage tank and a pump for air injection. It is enough to make a few strokes with the pump - and the weapon is ready to fire. In this case, you can adjust the power: the more air accumulates in the drive, the more powerful the shot will be.
- on liquid carbon dioxide: the rifle works only with a CO2 cartridge. The available carbon dioxide, getting into the chamber, passes from a liquid to a gaseous state. As a result, the volume increases, excess pressure is created and the bullet flies to the target. The weapon is characterized by the lack of recoil.
- with preliminary injection (PCP): the most promising version of the pneumatic weapon. By the method of firing the shot, it resembles the previous system with cans. The only difference is that instead of them, the rifle has a special reservoir into which air is pumped under pressure up to 300 atmospheres.