Feinwerkbau’s Awesome P44 Pistol

Monday, May 31, 2010

Back when Beeman Precision Airguns was still a going concern, Beeman sold Feinwerkbau (FWB) precision air rifles and air pistols for 10-meter international competition. At that time, Airguns of Arizona was Beeman’s number one dealer when it came to selling FWB match rifles and pistols.

So it should come as no surprise that FWB management has selected Airguns of Arizona to become a factory-direct distributor of FWB’s excellent gear in the United States. This means that if you need an FWB air pistol or air rifle for 10-meter competition, or you simply want a superb example of the airgun maker’s art, you can get it from Airguns of Arizona.

Recently, the good folks at AoA sent me a sample of the FWB P44 match pistol for examination, and I’ve got to tell you that it saddens me greatly that I have to send it back.

The P44 doesn’t just show up in a box, it shows up in a fitted plastic case. Inside the case is the pistol, a spare air cylinder (extra cost), a filling fitting, and some tools for making adjustments.

Also in the case is a manual, and an integral part of the cover of the manual is a target. This target shows the results of five shots fired at 10 meters with the pistol that’s in the case. The “group,” if you can call it that, is a barely egg-shaped hole. In other words, each FWB P44 pistol comes with proof that it is a one-hole gun at 10 meters.

It also means that when you purchase one of these pistols, you have entered the Land of No Excuses. In short, if you miss, shoot a crummy score, or otherwise embarrass yourself with this pistol, it’s your fault. It’s no good saying, “Well, ya know, if I had a better pistol, I coulda . . .” Nah, that won’t wash. Man up, brother (or sister), step to the line, shoot your best, and accept the results.

The P44 stretches 16.33 inches long weighs just 2.09 lbs. It’s a .177 caliber, single-shot, precharged pneumatic match pistol. The hand rest, rotation of the grip, and grip angle can all be adjusted. The sample I shot had a beautifully sculpted right hand grip that fit as if it had been molded for my hand. Left hand grips are also available.

The trigger shoe can be adjusted from side to side; the trigger can be moved fore and aft; and the trigger stop can be adjusted. The trigger is set at the factor precisely to 500 grams (the minimum standard for international and Olympic competition), but the weight of the trigger can also be adjusted if desired. There is an “absorber” built into the P44 that helps absorb the recoil of the pellet being launched down the barrel, and you can dry fire with the P44 if you don’t feel like launching pellets.

The manual states that the velocity of pellets has been adjusted to 492 feet per second, and you should be able to get 160 shots from a 200 bar (2900 psi) fill. The rear sight is, of course, micro adjustable for windage and elevation, but you can also adjust the width of the rear notch, and you can even swap the front sights with optional front sights of other widths if you feel you need to.

Shooting the P44 is simplicity itself. Flip up the lever on the left hand side that opens the breech by pulling back the bolt. Slip a pellet into the breech and return the lever to its original position. Now, take aim, squeeze the trigger, and the shot goes down range. If it gets better than this, I don’t know how.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

– Jock Elliott

25 Comments

  1. Don Mason says:

    Jock,

    I shure you like to see what you think of the FX Royale. Any chance you are going to get to review that gun in the near future. If so, I would love to hear about your thoughts on accuracy, design, etc. as well as how quiet the gun is. Maybe a comparison with the Benjamin Marauder.

    Love your stuff,

    Don

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Don,

      I’ll see what I can do about having a look at the Royale. Thanks for the kind words.

  2. e says:

    the rws M -10 is also wonderful and the fwb rifle 124

  3. hossain says:

    dear sir
    a want to buy pistol air p44 50pcs
    would you please send prices me
    with best regards

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Hossain,

      Please contact Airguns of Arizona directly at mail@airgunsofarizona.com

  4. Roy Calzada says:

    The FWB 44 looks awsome for pistol silhouette shooting I am fortunate that years ago
    I was able to purchase and still have in my safe my FWB 55-P. My pride and joy
    these air pistols seem to price themselves into an elite group of folks. This was purchase from the fine folks at Airguns of Arizona during my last event at the local
    match. This FWB get’s many looks of ohhhh and awwws one bozo didn’t realize that
    without the 5 shot or single shot clip it’s empty.

  5. Robert Jackson says:

    Dear Jock,
    I have read your article with interest. It was most informative.
    But what prompts me to write this reply is because I am somewhat confused by the poliferations of very similar products. Well at at least a casual observation would suggest that these are similar. No doubt the manufacturers would disagree. However, having the appearance of being similar is not borne out by the variety of price tags that are being placed on these various products.
    I shall list these to show what I mean.
    But before I do that, what I would really like is to find out what exactly differentiates these pistols? They all look beautifully presented with what appears to be excusite finishes in metal and anodised aluminium….some may have fancy handle stocks…..but essentially they are tubes of air with a valve release opened by a trigger mechanism, which releases a charge into an unsupported barrel. All I want to know is which models are superior in performance?
    Maybe this is something you could put to a test….although it might impinge on your loyalty to FWB perhaps?
    One would normally assume that you pay for quality…in other words what you get is what you pay. But in the case of these various pistols I am not so convinced that this is necessarily the case. … am I being hoodwinked into thinking that it is necessary to shell out more than 1,000.00 £ sterling…for what would seem to me to be simply a case of diminishing returns?
    Here is the list:-
    note: the prices are in UK sterling….so you will have to convert, sorry.

    Air Arms Alfa pistol £ 508.00
    Brocock AimX £ 295.00
    Falcon FN8 Raptor £ 352.00
    Rohm (sorry can’t seem to suss out how to attach the umlaut over the “0”)
    Rohm Twinmaster Allrounder £ 356.00
    Rohm Twinmaster top £ 433.00 / 469.00 / 479.00 (variety represents prices
    as seen advertised)
    Rohm Twinmaster Sport £ 569.00
    Rohm Twinmaster Match £ 604.00 / 654.00 / 669.00
    Steyer LP2 Match Pistol £ 955.00
    SteyerLP10 £ 1,269.00 + 241.00 for electric trigger…whatever that is?
    Steyer LP50 £ 1,366.00
    Steyer LP Silhouette £ 1,358.00….presumably that high price is to cover the
    cost of an “Anschutz ” barrel ?
    Walther LP 300 XT £ 1,153.00

    all the above seem to be adopting a similar style or appearance, but maybe the below three could also be included as being similar…if not exactly the same….:

    Benjamin Maurauder 390.00 US $
    Crossman Silhouette
    and finally the Evanix Hunting Master @ 570.00 US $….having a very powereful velocity
    of 1000ft/sec……. might
    therefore place this as a hunting
    pistol rather than a target one?
    I would be interested to hear which particular characteristics separates the above items. The visual differences are obvious, but what separates them as far as accuracy is concerned?
    Regards Robert.

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Robert,

      You raise a darned good question: what exactly do you get for a kilobuck or, in your case, a kilopound?

      The short answer is that all ten meter target pistols — including very inexpensive ones like the Daisy 747 — are going to have very similar accuracy, presuming you have found the pellet that the individual pistol “likes.” And all ten-meter pistols have a lower limit — by international competition rules — of a trigger weight of 500 grams.

      Further, the last time that I checked, no one had shot a “possible,” that is, perfect score in international 10-meter competition. What this tells me is that it has more to do with the shooter’s skills than the quality of the air pistol.

      So, what do you get as you spend more and more money? First, you generally get a crisper trigger that breaks like a glass rod. Second, you get more adjustability to configure the pistol to suit the shooter’s anatomy more perfectly. Do you really need that adjustability? I know of one Olympic level shooter who went to a match, borrowed a Daisy 747, and shot a very respectable score (within a few points of the top shooters).

      Since I suspect you’re from the UK, my advice to you would be to visit airgun shops and try out the pistols in question and see which ones feel best to you. And, yes, the Evanix is basically a hunting pistol, and the Marauder pistol does not have target sights.

      I hope this helps.

      1. Paul says:

        I used to shoot international air pistol for many years. I started with a Daisy 717, graduated to a Daisy 777, then a Feinwerkbau 80. After shooting that for a few years, I bought a Walther CP3, a CO2 pistol. I could never look back at the previous guns that I have shot. The precision of a top air pistol, the trigger, sights, etc are just superb. Sure, I could shoot a pretty good score with the Daisys, and better with the spring piston FWB. However, once you achieve a certain level and want to improve your scores, the top air pistols are the only way to go. Once you get to that level and want to improve, your scores may only improve by a few points, but the finer features of a good air pistol make the difference. If I went back to international shooting again, the FWB P44, or similar, would be my only choice. Unfortunately, I’m too old and my competitive edge is not what it once was.

      2. Gary says:

        Jock, You make what appears to be a common US centric comment, “First, you generally get a crisper trigger that breaks like a glass rod. ” This is/was the ideal US trigger since at least the 1970s and probably even further back.

        There is a very different trigger that I have gotten to like, and it is called a “rolling trigger.” The trigger MOVES as you pull it, vs no movement and a sudden break when it fires (the glass rod trigger).

        Neither is best, and there are argument for and against both. Bottom line is, they are different and it is up to the shooter to adjust to it or change to a different pistol with a different trigger.

  6. Alex Suisse says:

    Maybe having a comparative matrix with all the bells and whistles each precision air pistole has, will put the facts on the table for us all to decide which air pistol suits which type of shooter and at waht cost and professional level.

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Alex,

      That might be doable at some point. In the meantime, with match pistols what you generally get as the price rises is more adjustability to suit the shooter’s style and anatomy.

  7. Peter says:

    Hi

    I’m left-handed and currently (as a new member of the local pistol club) using club guns or borrowing others where possible. The club air 0.177 is a FWB sidewinder. It has a left-handed grip but in all other respects it is right-handed.The sights are difficult to adjust but accuracy is improving with practice.I have used a CO2 walther but there are ongoing problems with the cylinders and the number of shots per fill. Does the P44, being air, have any adjustments and / or seals problem? Taking your point that with most pistols the problem is more likely to be the shooter and not what gun is being used, is there a case fore the sidewinder technology over the rechargeable cylinders? Does FWB (or other manufacturers)make pistols with the single stroke technology? Other than grips, are there any fully genuine left-handed pistols made?

    Thanks

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Peter,

      The best place to get detailed advice about modifying Crosman guns is here: http://www.network54.com/Forum/275684/

  8. Patrick McGuire says:

    Hi Jock,
    I’m looking for some advice. My son 14 has taken up 10m target shooting looking for a spot on the Nova Scotia team in the up coming canada games in 2015. So far using club guns, we are now ready to buy him his own gun and wondering if we should go strait to the best?”P44″ or would there be something that would be more appropriate?
    Hope you can help with a few choices.
    Thanks

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Pat,

      I am by no means an expert on 10-meter pistols.

      What I would suggest is trying to go to some matches where your son could try various high-end guns.

      The real point is: what gun does your son feel most comfortable shooting? Further, if he has a coach, perhaps the coach could watch your son shoot and make some recommendations.

      All of the high-end 10-meter pistols are really good, really accurate, and will shoot better than any world-ranked pistol shooter. The “best”
      one for your son would be the one that he feels most comfortable with.

      I realize this doesn’t directly answer your question, but I hope it helps.

      Cheers, Jock Elliott

    2. Gary says:

      Patrick
      Depending on the size of your son’s hand and his strength, It might be better to go to a junior pistol. The junior pistols are a bit lighter and smaller than a full size pistol. Some of the full size pistols do not have XS grips, nor can the grips be ground down beyond a certain point, before you hit the frame. In my limited experience, the German/Autrian pistols (FWB, Walther, Steyr) have a larger grip than than Italian pistols (Morini).

      BTW, all the tier 1 APs are essentially equal; Steyr LP10, Morini 162, FWB P44 and Walther LP400. The difference being the human interface, IOW how it feels in YOUR hand, and which feels better to shoot.

  9. Rob says:

    Hello,
    Read the review of the FWB 44 with much interest. But do FWB still you on the sample target group that you mentioned, what size .177 pellets where used to achieve that group? Makers like Steyr tell you if they used 4.49, 4.50 or 4.51 head size.

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Rob,

      Sorry, I don’t know what head size pellets were used on that sample group.

  10. Aaron says:

    I recently picked up a P44 but the trigger has been disconnected or is broken is this a common problem and ball park figure how much will it likely cost for the trigger or the repair.

    Thanks.

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Aaron,

      Contact the good folks at http://www.airgunsofarizona.com by phone or email.

  11. ramzan jani says:

    I need this pistol plz inform me in pakistani price list

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      Ramzan,

      Please contact mail@airgunsofarizona.com

  12. Steve Minning says:

    I just ordered this pistol and was told that I need a DIN adapter to charge it. As I’m going to buy a scuba tank with valve, if I specify a DIN valve vice a K-valve will I still need the adapter? I guess my question is, does the charging system that comes with the gun screw directly into a DIN valve or do I need a quick-disconnect adapter too?

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      According to the good folks at http://www.airgunsofarizona.com: “The FWB comes with an adapter to DIN. If he has a DIN style tank valve, no adapters are needed. However, no bleed valve or gauge will be present, so he will have to use the tank gauge to fill. He will also have to unscrew the cylinder to “bleed” the union, but this should not be a problem on the FWB.”

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