Introducing the HW30 Elliott Edition

Monday, June 6, 2016
HW30 Elliott Edition

HW30 Elliott Edition

LX100 EE card 015-001

It all started innocently enough. Greg Glover of www.airgunsofarizona.com sent me an email announcing the availability of a new model of Weihrauch HW30 with a laminated stock. I took a look it and thought: “Wow, that’s pretty neat!”

But then I had a thought and sent Greg an email:

You know what would be an absolutely fabulous HW30 model? How about the stainless action in the laminate stock? Maybe it could be the Jock Elliott autograph model . . .

Greg replied:

Jock,

A good idea should never be ignored.

I have placed an order for 20x HW30 laminate .177 in stainless finish. Weihrauch will not do special markings on small batches, so we will get creative. We will be installing a rear peep sight on each of these and package each with a small hard sided case. If I know you, this setup is the most ideal by your standards! I need you to write up a signature card paragraph endorsing the rifle in some fashion, and then I will make it into a professional printed card for you to hand sign and return for insertion with each as 1 of 20. These will be marketed as Elliott Editions, and I will send you one to write a blog. We will then time the release with that blog. Sound like a good plan?

Following this, we will make a standard version available without the add ons.

To which I replied simply: Perfect!

And that brings us to where we are now.

The HW30 Elliott Edition just arrived at my door. Like a kid at Christmas, I couldn’t wait to unzip the long slim package to view it firsthand.

LX100 HW30 Elliott Edition 003

We’ll get to my impression of the HW30 EE in just as little bit, but first, let’s back up a couple of steps: Why the HW30?

That part is easy. The HW30 is one of my favorite air rifles of all time. It’s small, light, easy to cock and wickedly accurate. When I first began writing about airguns, I had a conversation with a famous airgun tuner. I suggested that he build me a particular spring-piston air rifle with skeletonized stock. “Why would you want to do that?” he asked.

When I told him I thought it would look neat, he patiently explained that reducing the weight of the air rifle (by cutting away all unnecessary wood in the stock) would make it harder to shoot accurately. The closer you got to one pound of rifle weight for each foot-pound of energy at the muzzle in a spring-piston air rifle, the easier it was to shoot well. That’s why the Beeman R7/Weihrauch HW30 is such a tackdriver – just about six pounds of weight and six foot-pounds of energy, he explained.

LX100 HW30 Elliott Edition 004

I would later test this theory in several different air rifles and prove its veracity. The final straw came one afternoon when my brother-in-law was dropping more targets with his HW30 that I was with my more powerful, more expensive air rifle. “My rifle is just easier to shoot well,” he said. We switched guns, and I promptly outshot him. That was when we hatched The Great Plan. When we went to the next field target match, we would each shoot HW30s. “We miss the long-range stuff anyway,” was the thought, “but with the HW30, we can be sure of knocking down the short to medium range targets.”

And it worked! We didn’t win, but we did pretty decently in our classes. Great minds must work the same, because around that time there was a small group of field target enthusiasts who were voluntarily choosing low-power air rifles, doing well, and most importantly, having fun. We were never formally organized in any way, but collectively, we referred to ourselves as Team WIMP. WIMP is an acronym, standing for Weapons of Intentionally Modest Power.

LX100 HW30 Elliott Edition 007-001

There are a couple of additional factors that contribute to the configuration of the HW30 Elliott Edition. The first is the stainless finish receiver. I chose this because one day I was shooting at a friend’s house with a well-known German air rifle when it began to mist lightly. I didn’t have any gun cloths with me, so I stuck the rifle in its hardshell case and brought it home. The next day, I pulled it out and found out that some of the surfaces on the receiver had already acquired a very light patina of rust. A few minutes work with a silicon-impregnated gun cloth cured the problem, but I was outraged: “You would think that an airgun designed for use outside, where it might occasionally rain, would be finished in such a way as to resist moisture!” So I chose the stainless finish for moisture resistance.

LX100 HW30 Elliott Edition 009

The second is the laminated stock. Because of the way laminate is constructed, I believe that will confer additional moisture resistance on the HW30EE, but the real reason I chose the laminate was because it is about .5 pounds heavier that the conventional wooden stock. Back in my Team WIMP days, when I was campaigning the HW30 (it was actually a Beeman R7, but the models are virtually identical), I often wished that the rifle were just a bit heavier. I actually contacted a custom stock maker to have him build me a laminated stock for the HW30, but he believed what I really needed was a lighter walnut stock. Bottom line: the project didn’t work out.

LX100 HW30 Elliott Edition 011-001

So now we have the Elliott Edition, a weather-resistant, slightly heavier version of the HW30, tricked out with a peep sight and a hard case. It’s light enough to carry all day and powerful and accurate enough to defend the garden at short range or the bird feeder or even to campaign in field target. I doubt that you will achieve top score, but I virtually guarantee that you will have fun.

So what are my impressions of the HW30 EE?

First, it’s absolutely gorgeous. If you look closely at the photos here, you’ll notice a couple of things: the buttstock has a modest cheek piece of either side, which is good news for left-handed shooters, and the full length fore end extends to cover the cocking linkage, which give the HW30 EE a more finished appearance. A couple of other items worthy of note: the front globe sight comes with interchangeable inserts, and the rear peep sight has clicker knobs for adjusting windage and elevation.

Even better, when I shot the sample that Airguns of Arizona send to me, I found that the half pound of extra weight seems to dampen out any twang or vibration when the shot goes off.  There is a muted pop, and that’s it. By bottoming out the Williams peep sight, I was able to zero the EE at twenty yards and regularly hit an inch-and-a-half target at that distance, even with the slightly astigmatic view out of my uncorrected right eye.

Finally, toting the “EE” around for a bit, I find the weight is just right. As I think back, it reminds me of the Daisy BB gun that I loved carrying through the woods and fields of my boyhood. In my heart, the HW30 EE is the grown-up successor to that Daisy. It’s heavier, certainly more powerful, more accurate, and a ton of fun. The HW3 EE is an air rifle that virtually begs for an adventure in the outdoors.

Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.

–           Jock Elliott

PS My brother-in-law says if you absolutely have to put a scope on an Elliott Edition, make sure it is a silver scope. In his words, “That would be bad *ss.”

10 Comments

  1. Tom King says:

    While I like the silver finish on the metal. I’ll have to wait for the regular stock. I would not mind a synthetic stock though.

  2. William Jones says:

    I have already created the exact same gun. I had an HW30s Deluxe Stainless and an HW30 Laminate from AOA. I swapped stocks and actions and came up with the same gun featured here. I even have a Williams peep sight installed. Maybe I should have copyrighted my creation 🙂

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      William,

      I hope you are enjoying yours as much as I am enjoying mine!

  3. RidgeRunner says:

    It must feel good to know you are thought enough of by someone to have a special edition air rifle named after you.

    Although this is not one I would want for myself, I can see this would be a very nice plinker to have on hand when the feral soda cans need to be thinned out and look good while you are doing it.

  4. Stan Miller says:

    It is missing the one thing that I have been looking for – a sporter stock with a vertical grip.

  5. Peter Koch says:

    It looks really great. Can you please tell me the model no. of the williams peep sight?

    1. Jock Elliott says:

      It’s one of these, but I am not sure which one. http://www.airgunsofarizona.com/WilliamsGunSights.html The folks at http://www.airgunsofarizona.com know the exact model number.

  6. Peter Koch says:

    Thank you very much for your answer!

  7. William Jones says:

    Peter, it is in fact the Williams FP-AG-TK sight. I have a simpler version of that sight on my gun. “TK” refers to the Target Knobs on the sight. Mine is FP-AG sight without the TKs. I don’t feel they are necessary, and the sight looks cleaner without them. My sight has screw adjusters.

  8. Steven Griesmaier says:

    Jock – Your review influenced me to purchased a HW30S Urban Pro. My intent is to dispatch a lot of Chipmunks around the house. What would you recommend is a good pellet for this application? I sincerely appreciate your thoughts.

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