Which weapon should I choose for the shooting range?

A gun range is not only a good way to have fun and enjoyable time, but also a great opportunity to improve your shooting skills. Before opening a shooting range, however, a logical question often arises: What is the best weapon to choose for the shooting range?

Air guns for shooting ranges

A gun range is not only a great way to have fun, but also a great way to improve your shooting skills. However, before opening a shooting gallery, a logical question often arises: What is the best choice of guns for the shooting gallery?

Based on our experience, we’ll take a look at the most popular air rifles that are most often found in shooting ranges in this article.

The most common air rifles for shooting ranges are those with a maximum power of 3 Joules. Due to its low price and quality, products of the Izhevsk plant are often found in shooting galleries.

The MR512 and its modifications

The MR-512 is an excellent rifle suitable for both sporting, recreational and target practice shooting. “The Murka is manufactured by the Izhevsk Mechanical Plant. In 2004 it was awarded the Diploma of the contest “1 best product of Russia”. Indeed, this product is very popular in our country and is one of the best models in the price-quality ratio. The MR-512 belongs to the class of spring-piston rifles, the source of energy is a spring. The rifle is cocked by breaking the barrel. The housing is made of plastic. Stock and forearms are ergonomically designed to provide left- or right-handed operation. Barrel is made from steel and features 6 right-handed rifles. Ammunition type is 4.5mm lead bullets. Velocity of the bullet is up to 155 m/s. Rifle is fitted with automatic safety, located near the trigger. Standard sights are adjustable for elevation and windage. Standard sights are adjustable vertically and horizontally.

Modifications of the MR 512

There are several modifications of the rifle from the IJ-MEX. Let’s get to the bottom of it. All these models are technically identical, differing only in the stock material.

#1 МР512-22

The simplest rifle in the range, the stock and buttstock are made of plastic.

#2 МР512-24

Combination version. The stock and fore-end are made of wood, with plastic inserts near the trigger.

#3 МР512-26

Model with full wooden stock, no plastic inserts.

#4 МР512-36

Made of plastic. The design is more modern than previous models. The stock is fitted with rubberised inserts.

#5 IZH-60

The rifle is very widespread on the territory of the modern CIS. Sometimes it is referred to as the mr60. Such a trend can be easily explained. The cost of the Izh 60 air rifle is hard to call a cost, just a budget-price of some kind. Really very affordable weapon. Today people think that all that is suspiciously cheap came to us from China, but because of its quality is suitable only for one-time use. But the Izh-60 is made in Russia. Although it is a budget model of the rifle, but its quality is decent. Of course, no mahogany or any other expensive materials are used in its finish, but the rifle performs its function perfectly. Namely, IZh-60 is excellent for learning the basics of shooting, as well as for everyday recreational and sport shooting.

The design of this model air rifle is ergonomic. Overall length of the Izh-60 does not reach the figure of eight tens of centimeters, and its weight is two thousand and a hundred grams. The gun is quite compact, comfortable and absolutely easy to operate and maintain.

All that is needed to maintain the excellent condition of the air gun is a careful attitude, regular cleaning of the muzzle from dust, dirt and lead crumbs that remain from bullets, and periodic lubrication with gun oil. It was found in practice, however, that many models of IZh rifles have a remarkable longevity even without any maintenance. But still, it is better not to neglect the elementary rules of operation.

Speed of shot from IZh-60 is equal to one hundred and fifty meters in one second. This is a little less than half speed of sound propagation. This speed is enough for the air gun to fully cope with its tasks. It is a piston-spring rifle, cocked with a special side lever. To ensure safety during use, prudent designers have equipped the gun with a simple but effective trigger locking system.

#6 IZH-61

Thanks to its unpretentiousness it is a very common model. The rifle is designed in such a way that no pellets need to be installed after each shot, but the IZH 61 will have to be reloaded.

The rifle is designed for training shooting with “DC”, “DC-M” or other 4.5mm calibre bullets used in pneumatic weapons. The žh rifle was originally developed as a low cost sporting rifle. The Izh air rifle is used mainly by beginner shooters, in plinking and crouch shooting. The IZh-61 air rifle in 4.5mm caliber is referred to as a fixed-barreled piston-spring rifle. The bolt has a separate cocking lever. The barrel is steel rifled. The IZh-61 air rifle (pneumatic rifle mr 61) is to be fired using bullets only. The Izh 61 air rifle barrel is 450 mm long.

The weapon is five-round with a longitudinal sliding breech. The IZh 61 air rifle is fitted with an 11 mm dovetail mount to accept a telescope sight and a collimating telescope sight. The sights consist of a front sight and a diopter-type rear sight. The front sight is detachable. The IZh-61 air rifle is well suited for firearms training and practice. The trigger stroke and trigger pull are adjustable from 0.5 to 2.5 kgf. The stock is made of plastic. According to the owners, IZH-61 air rifle gives 0.5 g bullet muzzle velocity at an average of about 132 m/sec at normal atmospheric conditions. The stock is retractable. The minimum length of the gun is 790 mm. Mass is 2.0 kg.

The difference between this air rifle and the IZh-60 is that the pellets are manually loaded into a five-shot magazine. There is also a six-shot version of the magazine. The magazine width allows the use of bullets up to 7mm in length. The ejection port automatically feeds the pellets into the breech ring when the lever is pulled. An upgraded IZh-61 air rifle is usually limited to the use of silicone or molybdenum grease, polishing of the cylinder and piston, installation of a more powerful spring, sealing of the choke, replacement of the piston rod with a heavier one, installation of the guide, replacement of the cuff with a leather one and fine tuning of the muzzle chamfer. This results in a 30-40 m/s increase in muzzle velocity.

#7 MP654K-20

The Makarov pistol from IZMEK is the most popular air pistol model sold in Russia, despite its rather high cost. What is the secret of such high sales figures for this pistol?

Unlike Chinese, Taiwanese, or American-made replicas, the gas pistol made by IZHMEKH is the most popular Makarov pistol. The PM pistol is manufactured in the same factory where the original Makarov pistols rolled off the assembly line for over half a century. This is why many parts of these two guns are interchangeable.

The MP654K-20 gas pistol is made entirely of weapon steel. The disassembly and assembly of the pistol is completely identical to the Makarov pistol. Not many people know that the MP654K-20 pistol has a bolt delay. The bolt carrier of this gun is stationary and has no blowback mechanism, but in spite of this fact the bolt hold can be set manually. To do this, the bolt carrier is retracted and the flag on the gun housing is depressed. This is exactly the position a real live pistol receives after firing the last cartridge, but the air gun has this function as a dummy. It requires a great deal of effort to release the gas pistol from the bolt hold: it is not immediately possible to do so with one hand.

For ease of loading, the 13-round magazine is fitted with a spring that locks in the down position. For this gun it is possible to shoot the BB 4.5 mm pellets only.

We measured the muzzle velocity of three pistols. Keep in mind that this figure was calculated as an average of 10 shots for each gun.

Here’s what we got:

  • Gun 1: 87 m/sec.
  • Gun 2: 86 m/sec.
  • Gun 3: 76 m/s.

Speaking about IZHMEK’s pneumatic pistol, we would like to point out some shortcomings of this weapon. The cocking handle is located at the bottom of the receiver, and often the bolt carrier is rotated back, with the bolt body unlocked. To remove the burrs, the firing pin must be flicked several times, and then the rear part of the firing pin will be polished and the burrs will disappear. As with the original PM pistol, the safety flag cuts a “groove” in the bolt carrier when the gun is cocked and released repeatedly.Despite the typical flaws inherent in domestically made weapons, the Makarov airgun remains the most replica of a military pistol. This gun is an excellent model for recreational target shooting, both outdoors and indoors.

#8 IW-53M

Every air gun enthusiast is familiar with the MP-53M air pistol. It is with this pistol that most of us started our ‘airgunner’s journey’. The MR 53M pistol is manufactured by the Izhevsk Mechanical Plant under the Baikal trademark. The main use of the pistol is training and recreational target shooting. This model is excellent for outdoor and indoor shooting, as well as for mastering primary skills in weapon handling.

This pistol is a continuation of the Izhevsky Zavod IZH 53 range upgrade. The latest modifications include upgraded ergonomics of the grip, which now allows the gun to be handled by right-handed shooter only. Unfortunately, left-handed shooters will have to switch to another pistol, as the IZH 53M’s grip makes it almost impossible to fire with the left hand. These are not all “surprises”, however. Unlike models produced a decade earlier, the sleeve, to which the barrel is attached, is made of plastic, not steel as it was before. Frame and grip are also made of plastic. Barrel is made from steel.

Sights are adjustable. Aiming is adjustable on two planes: horizontally and vertically. Firing position of the front sight is typical for IZHMEKh products. Trigger mechanism is easily upgradable: the trigger guard can be adjusted for better trigger pull.

IZH-53M pistol is designed to fire 4.5 mm lead pellets only. The muzzle velocity of the bullet, according to the data sheet, is 120 m/s. The muzzle energy of the gun is 3 Joules, but it can be almost doubled if the gun is upgraded. The pistol is cocked by “kinking” the barrel.

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