After responding to a post on the “Yellow Forum” I realized that I had not written much about my Beeman R7. Here is my attempt at a review.
The R7 is perfect for the backyard. It is quiet, it is unbelievably accurate, and extremely easy too shot. It probably does not make the neighbors very comfortable, but I think rifles with scopes have that effect on folks.
The R7 has enough power to get the job done for me – I have taken several squirrels, plinking, and paper punching. I put a Leapers 6×32 Bug Buster 2 scope on the gun, which is perfect for my backyard. I typically shoot at 15-20 yards, but the squirrels in the pecan tree can easily put the shots at 25 or so yards.
I have tried 10-12 different pellet types, but the R7 seems to do OK with pretty much everything I shoot. If I had to pick some favorites, Gamo Hunters (8.4 gr), Beeman H&N Match wadcutter (8.09 gr), and Beeman Trophy Lightweight Round Nose (7.88 gr) work well.
Before I got the R7, I remember seeing posts about this or that grouping. I did not understand what everyone was talking about until I started seeing my own results. I am not saying that my shooting is very good, but I can put a pellet where I aim my R7, which is simply amazing and very rewarding.
In short, I think you will not regret an R7 for backyard shooting. I cannot speak for tuning, or other guns similar to the R7, but I can speak for fun, which the R7 delivers. Sorry for all the gushing, but I guess I recommend the R7 based on my experiences.
I mounted my Leapers scope with 1″ B-Square (25020) see-thru high rings after reading a post on the Pyramyd Air Blog that this combination of scope and mount would work great with the R7. I assumed that I would be able to use the iron sights or the scope, but mounting the scope pretty much renders the sights useless. I will write about the solution in a future post.
There seems to be a lot of debate about using the R7 for “humane” hunting, with an equal number of opinions that the gun is not powerful enough to take down critters in a humane manner, and just as many opinions that the gun has the accuracy to get the job done. If I do my part right, I have found that my R7 takes down squirrels at about 20 yards with very little dancing. The Bug Buster allows me to zoom in to make the perfect kill zone shot (heart, neck, and head area). If there are any concerns, it is the lack of take down power allows little room for mistakes. I know I have “missed” a couple of targets, which is to say that I had hits, but not in the kill zone. With the R7 I have learned that I have to only take shots when I am sure I can reach the kill zone.
As far as plinking goes, I can blow out the end of a beer can at 20 yards. From about 30-35 yards, I can still hit the end of the cans, but it is hit or miss on landing a puncture. Paper punching is equally as gratifying. I immensely enjoy trying different positions (not those kind silly) and different pellets to see what sort of results I can produce.
For those of you just getting in the adult airgun hobby, the Beeman R7 may seem a bit pricy (mine was $325.99; add the scope for $59.99 and scope mount for another $15.99), but I think it is the perfect gun my purposes. In short, I would be hard pressed to not recommend an R7 for backyard shooting – it is accurate, easy to shoot, fun for plinking and paper punching, and it is a good squirrel deterrent (if you are competent enough for well placed shots).