You know how a kind word from a friend can change your outlook on an entire day? Well, the RWS 350 Feuerkraft did the same kind of thing for me.
Let me explain: I had been feeling a bit gloomy about my springer shooting skills after testing several .25 models. I simply couldn’t master shooting them really well at longer ranges, and I thought perhaps I had lost my springer shooting “mojo” altogether.
But then came Brown Santa (the UPS guy) with a long slim package with the RWS 350 Feuerkraft in .22 caliber inside. I pulled it out of the box, slapped a scope on it, and went outside to give it a few shots. We’ll get back to what I discovered in just a little while, but first let’s take a walk around the RWS 350 Feuerkraft (350F for short).
The 350F is a long air rifle, 48.375 inches from muzzle to butt pad, and it weighs 8 lbs without scope. It has a slim hardwood stock that is fully ambidextrous and unadorned by any checkering on any other decoration. At the extreme aft end of the stock is a black rubber recoil pad attached to the stock by a black plastic spacer. Moving forward, ahead of the pistol grip is the black plastic trigger guard which encloses a black plastic trigger that is adjustable for first stage travel.
Forward of that, the long slim forestock encloses the breech block and cocking linkage, giving the 350F a very clean, finished appearance. Ahead of that is the barrel which has a plastic muzzle brake that serves as a mount for a red fiber optic front sight. Moving back along the barrel, you’ll find a green fiber optic rear sight mounted on top of the breech block. Moving back again, there is a dovetail on top of the receiver for mounting a scope, and at the extreme aft end of the receiver is the push-pull safety which is resettable.
To ready the 350F for shooting, grab the barrel near the muzzle and pull it down and back until it latches. This takes about 33 lbs of effort. Next insert a pellet into the breech and return the barrel to its original position. Take aim, flick the safety off, and squeeze the trigger. On the sample that I tested, at 1 lb. 5 oz. the first stage came out of the trigger, and at 3 lb. 14.7 oz., the shot went down range. The 350F was launching 14.35 gr. JSB Express pellets at an average of 722 fps, generating 16.6 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle.
Now we can get back to what I discovered when I went outside to shoot the 350F. The first thing I found out was the 350F has a very nice shot cycle – just a quick snap with no buzz or twang. I heard perhaps a tiny bit of vibration, but I didn’t feel any through the gun. The report is also surprisingly subdued for an air rifle of this power — not dead quiet but not raucous either.
The second thing I discovered is that if you plan to scope this air rifle, you will definitely need the RWS one-piece “drooper” mount. The first scope I tried had conventional scope mounts, and I simply ran out of elevation adjustment. So I popped back inside, swiped a scope with drooper mount off another RWS rifle, and mounted it on the 350F.
Within a few minutes, I was happily blowing the center out of a target at 13 yards, and I found that I could hit exactly the spot that I wanted. Encouraged by this, I set up a target at 35 yards, and, from a sitting position, was able to put 4 out of 5 shots into a 5/8 inch edge-to-edge group. I yanked the last shot, which opened the group up to 1 inch edge-to-edge, but even so, that’s pretty much minute-of-squirrel’s noggin.
In the end, I found I really liked the 350F. It has no bad manners; it has a decent trigger; it’s commendably accurate, and, like an old friend, it cheered me up about my springer shooting skills. If you’re looking for a no-nonsense air rifle that suitable for hunting or a day afield, the 350F should put a grin on your face.
Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.
– Jock Elliott