Monday, May 24, 2010

Webley Raider - two shot - Part One


This is taken from my notes for a guest blog I wrote for PA a couple years ago. While I would guess the original is lost or will be in the format transition, it is now preserved for prosperity. The topic is my first venture in the PCP world - a Webley Raider.

The stock on this rifle is a perfect shape

PCP No. 1, day 1 - Monday

A late appointment meant I did not get home until about 8:00 pm. I saw the box still on the front stoop. The wife and kids have learned the long boxes are for dad, so they seldom bother to bring one in, much to my chagrin.

After dinner, I opened it up, my wife commented it was different and she liked the looks of it. My youngest said I better not be spending their Christmas present money. (No, I’m not).

BG_Farmer, I would guess you would not approve. It has gold on the trigger guard and fill plug. Also, Webley Raider in gold on the side. I’m guessing that's what attracted the wife to it. I prefer blued, but I ordered it sight-unseen for $395.

An attached 2-shot magazine means you can't check to see if a pellet is loaded, so I fired it to make sure is was empty. "Dad, that's too loud. Go downstairs."

In the confines of the basement, it was even louder. So, a PCP with no shroud means getting the hearing protection out of your range bag. This rifle won't work like the spring guns for late night shooting or suburban backyard critter protection.

I forget this scope is dead, killed by my Webley Patriot years ago

I use the Tibet Almond stick that I apply to the stocks of all used guns. A heavy application hides most scratches. I put it on the entire stock and let it sit overnight. The rifle has nice blue/black on the metal and a wide, flat forearm similar to a centerfire varmint rig. Little over 7 lbs. without a scope and 37" long. Other then “new old stock” this Webley is no longer available. Best I can tell it was offered for about 7 years.

PCP No. 1, day 2 - Tuesday

In the morning, I put a quick coat of wax on the stock. With the 2-shot magazine, I can't run a couple patches down the barrel. I also give it a generous rub down with Beeman MP-5 on the outside metal. A quick wipe with an old white t-shirt reveals no rust, so I'm happy.

That evening, I decide to put a few shots over a Chrony. The rifle has no fill gauge, which means one less part to fail, but it also means I have no clue how much air is in it. The Webley manual says the maximum fill is 200 bar, but they recommend 190 bar. It really doesn’t matter, as I have no hand pump for it yet. 

I try a .22 pellet (14.5 grains according to my scale), and it averages 850 fps. My Chrony lacks the printer, so I just shoot a short string to get an idea of the charge in the rifle and its performance. The basement PC takes me to the energy calculator on the Pyramyd Air site, where I learn that the energy with this pellet is 23.27 foot-pounds.

I picked a 6-18x Bushnell Trophy scope that's too long for most of my current spring rifles but will fit fine on the Webley. It was originally on a Beeman R1, and then moved to a Patriot. My first shot at about 36' misses the Gamo trap altogether, as does the second.

I go to plan "B" old, larger Beeman quiet trap at 24". The round strikes low and left. I dial in as much up and right as I can. No use. It's at the limit of its adjustable range. I then recall the Patriot killed this scope years ago. It was late, so I’ll try again this evening.

Usual deep Webley blue, looks like the JM lubes are watching the newcomer

PCP No. 1, day 3 - Wednesday

The pump has arrived. In my search for a hand pump to fill the PCP, I learned the following:

Limited selections are available, which is further reduced by what is actually in stock. I ended up ordering an FX 4-stage pump that claims to lower the effort needed to fill the rifle. Additionally, I based my decision on not much more than I recognize the FX brand name and the unit is available immediately. Sold.

When I open the shipping box, I quickly surmise that my request for “the piece that connects the rifle to the pump” has been denied. My disappointment is furthered by a non-specific, one-page sheet for assembly and use. I have to thank the yellow forum members as they explain the seemingly extra part is a moisture filter and actually post a link to Pyramyd Air with the fill probe I'll need along with a picture of it.

I ordered the last piece of the puzzle just before midnight.

Earlier in the evening, I replaced the malfunctioning Bushnell Trophy 6-18x with a lesser Bushnell 3-9x that did light duty on a Beeman R7. The first shot is close, and I'm spot on in about 5 shots.

Lots of bling

I start with Crow Magnums. As they drop an inch below the aimpoint, I switch to JSB Exact Jumbo Express, which puts me back on target. Finally, I put H&N Match in the rifle and shoot them, starting at an inch high to more than an inch below the bullseye.

Even with hearing protection, I realize the discharge noise is greatly reduced. I take off my earmuffs, and the rifle now sounds like my Daisy 922. A quick check shows the H&N Match are down to 497 fps. I'm done until I can charge the rifle.

I shoot an HW30S as if to show the Raider the beauty of self-sufficiency.


  1. Editor's note:

    Bottom caption should read, "ugly gold accents".

    'bling' has no place in an airgun blog.

    Also can you link the Tibet almond stick to something? I wanna check it out and I'm too lazy to google it.

  2. Volvo

    Excellent post, even if it is a little long in the tooth.

    I feel bad for you, your own progeny sending you away as they did, however I must commiserate with them as well. I totally understand where they are coming from. Poor kids.

    Interesting that you should say that, "The stock on this rifle is a perfect shape." I almost agree with you. It has eerily similar to the ideal rifle shape.

    PS: I'm not going to buy the Rolex, so just forget about it.

  3. Slinging Lead,

    If you look in the one photo, the Tibet Almond stick is lurking in the background. It comes in a small red and yellow can, the link is also added.
    The Raider was not as accurate as even my Disco, but you have to hold that perfect chunk of Beech to understand how sweet it was.
    By the way, I think you would look as sweet as the AA stock with that Rolex on…

  4. Volvo,

    Bless you for that link to the tibet sticks. At first I thought it was something you were recommending to smoke ;-) but even better is that it makes scratches disappearer! I ordered it immediately.


  5. Volvo,

    While I would guess the original is lost or will be in the format transition, it is now preserved for prosperity.

    Nothing has been lost over on the original PyramydAir blog. Here's your original review:
    Part 1 and Part 2.


  6. Yes indeed-- let us hope for Volvo's future "prosperity" if not for "posterity"!!

  7. Bobby,
    During the ‘80’s we called that stealing someone’s thunder. In any case the new version will have more photos and a twist to the ending.

    I have much more concern for my posterity. : ) If you want to help the other order the Rolex, it’s too nice for Slinging Lead anyway.

  8. Volvo,
    No thanks on the Rolex; I've never gotten over my grandfather's making fun of men wearing "wist watches" -- he thought they were for, um, you know, the ladies, etc... For some reason, they quit working about 3 weeks after I start wearing them anyway:).

    This must be the rifle I was thinking about when I accused you of shooting a "Goldfinger", sorry.

  9. Volvo,

    Rolex? Ummm... sorry, no. An IWC black Spitfire? Yes!!!