The other day I was running some errands when I saw one of those miniscule “Smart” cars. They are about half the length of a normal car, and every time I seen one, I can’t resist the urge to look underneath to see if there are feet pushing it – Fred Flintstone style – down the roadway.
When I got behind the Smart car, I found the owner had taken his or her visual statement to the max: the vanity plate said “2KYOOT.” Get it – too cute.
Well, I’ve gotta say my initial reaction to the Weihrauch HW25L was the same: 2KYOOT. I looked at the tiny air rifle inside the Weihrauch box and thought: “You’re kidding, right?” After all, I had been conditioned by years of cracking open HW boxes. Out of them come manly, stalwart air rifles, and here was this diminutive version of one. It was as if someone had gone to the Weihrauch factory and said I like everything about your air rifles, but I want one smaller and lighter, and the Weihrauch folks said, Okay, we’ll do it.
The result is a very nice small air rifle. The HW25 stretches just 37 inches from end to end, weighs only 4.4 lbs, and the length of pull is 13 inches.
The HW25 has a completely unadorned hardwood stock. At the aft end, you’ll find no butt pad, just a butt plate formed by the end of the wooden stock. There is the slight swell of a cheek piece for righthanded shooters, but lefties ought to be able to shoot this rifle equally well. The comb of the stock is very low, so even guys with wide cheek bones (like me) can get themselves in position behind the sights.
The pistol grip has no checkering, and ahead of that is the wide black trigger guard, inside of which you’ll find a rolled black sheet metal trigger. Moving forward, there is a screw under the forestock that helps to hold the action in place. At the end of the forestock is a short slot that allows room for the cocking linkage.
Moving forward again, you’ll find the breech and the 15.5 inch .177 caliber barrel. At the end of the barrel is the front sight, which houses a red fiber optic rod. Moving back along the barrel, you’ll find the breech block, on top of which sits the micro-adjustable rear sight, which is fitted with green fiber optics.
On top of the receiver, toward the back end, there is a dovetail for fitting a scope, but there are no holes for anti-recoil pins. At the very aft end of the receiver is a push-pull resettable safety.
To get the HW25L ready for shooting, grab the barrel near the muzzle and pull it down and back until it latches (I estimate this requires about 20 lbs of effort, and you hear a tiny bit of spring noise when cocking), insert a .177 pellet into the breech, and return the barrel to its original position. Take aim (put the red dot between the two green dots and put the sight picture on the target), push the safety forward to click it off, and squeeze the trigger. It takes about 1 lb of effort to pull the first stage out of the trigger, and at about 5.5 lbs, the shot goes down range.
Despite its small size, the HW25 doesn’t skimp on velocity. It will launch very light pellets at nearly 600 fps and 7.9 grain Crosman premiers at 487 fps average. I did not test the HW25 for ultimate accuracy, because I feared that, lacking anti-recoil holes in the receiver, a scope would slide backward off the dovetail and ruin the finish on this loaner rifle. I did try shooting at some silhouette targets (pigs, rams, turkeys, etc.) scaled for 10 yards, and found that I could hit what I was aiming at most of the time. I suspect the accuracy will prove to be comparable to the HW30S.
In the end, my “you’re kidding, right?” attitude toward the HW25L changed to one of solid admiration. It seems to be the nearly perfect rifle for an afternoon of plinking in the back yard. It’s light, easy to cock, and won’t wear you down in a day of shooting. Yet it has the power and the accuracy to defend the birdfeeder and eliminate pests in the garden at modest ranges. Best of all, it has Weihrauch quality built right into it.
Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.
– Jock Elliott