My kit

Webley Eclipse Mark 1

I bought my Webley Eclipse Mark 1 when they first came out, around 1988, and after much use I finally decided in 2014 that it could do with a service. It’s still a lovely gun and it gets an outing now and again, even though I’ve bought a PCP.  The scope is a Bushmaster 4×40 parallax-adjustable objective (AO) lens. Read about this gun in my blog post Long overdue service!

Weihrauch HW100S

Owing to an unexpected windfall in 2013 I suddenly found myself able to afford a pre-charged pneumatic, and the only choice in my eyes was the Weihrauch HW100S – a beautifully engineered German gun and the flagship model of their range at the time. Here it’s topped with a Hawke Sport 3-9x50AO IR (illuminated reticle) which is no longer available – the closest seems to be the Vantage IR 3-9×50 AO. The gun is also fitted with a JB biathlon cocking lever which makes the cocking action much more instinctive, especially in the dark.

ASI Gamo Compact

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is asi_gamo_compact-1024x581.jpgI don’t remember exactly when I bought this… it must have have been in the mid-nineties or thereabouts.  Another good choice after much investigation and careful deliberation, this is a lovely smooth-firing single-stroke pneumatic pistol with an adjustable trigger, pre-carved stocks (which you can carve further to suit your hand exactly) and an adjustable palm shelf.  It has a ‘dry fire’ mode which you engage by opening the top strap part way so that the hammer is reset but the air cylinder is not charged, then you can practice your trigger action without actually firing the weapon.  I seem to recall I paid £105 for it at the time: they’re around £160-£170 nowadays.

Workshop note: the piston seal gave up a few weeks ago and I decided to have a go at replacing it myself.  Google found me a Compact spare parts list and exploded parts diagram on the T W Chambers Web site, and from there I was able to identify and order the part I needed.  If you find yourself in this position, be careful you order the correct part as ASI used two different types of piston and cylinder on their Compact and PR15 pistols at different times.  I actually had to follow the trail to the PR15 spare parts list and exploded parts diagram and order part number OR049 rather than PW020. Anyway, it arrived in a couple of days, and it was a simple job to strip and clean the weapon and replace the seal.  (The old one had become brittle and fell apart when removed.)

PARD NV007A digital night vision scope

This is a new toy I’ve ordered – a PARD NV007A digital night vision scope with integral camera.  It should be arriving in the next week or so, after which I’ll be ready to wreak havoc in the local rodent population.  For more details of the NV007A, see the product information page on the Night Vision Store Web site.

I shall post some videos when I’ve had the opportunity to use the unit.


The PARD NV007A for which I paid £399 in June 2020 – just before it went up to £449 – has since been discontinued.  The link above still shows the product information on the Night Vision Store Web site but the In stock flag has changed to Discontinued and there’s no Add to cart button.  The replacement unit is the PARD NV700V which looks identical as far as I can tell, although the product information states it has an upgraded sensor and improved weatherproofing in addition to the 1080p 1024×768 OLED display and built-in UK/EU-compliant IR illuminator which the ‘A’ model had.  The list price of this new unit is £334.95 but it’s currently being offered at a 16.7% discount, so £279.00 including free postage & packing.  Bargain!

Hawke LRF400 Pro laser range finder

Hawke LRF400 Pro
2014 Hawke LRF400 Pro

I thought I was semi-competent at judging distances but experience proved I was only moderately accurate up to about twenty metres.  Estimating distances becomes critical when you’re aiming at a spot barely 10mm in size, so I decided to invest in a decent range finder.  After much Googling, the Hawke range seemed to stand out with the two ‘Pro’ models good for 400m and 800m respectively.  Obviously as an airgunner I didn’t need to range anything more than about 40m away, so the lower spec LRF400 unit at £125 seemed to be the one to go for.  Adjusted for inflation, this represents about £164 in 2024 money.  In fact this model appears to be discontinued, the nearest equivalent being a more ruggedised-looking LRF400 which seems to be aimed specifically at hunting and golfing rather than surveying, with the Standard, Beeline, Height, Height Difference and Angle modes being replaced by Standard, Rain (ignores raindrops), Flag (identifies where the pin is ion the green) and Hunt (ignores long grass and vegetation). This currently sells for around £119.

You can compare the 2014 LRF400 Pro and the 2024 LRF400 on the Hawke Web site.

The unit comes complete with neoprene carry case, lanyard, lens cloth and printed instruction manual (which Hawke have conveniently made available via Google Docs). It takes a CR2 3v battery which costs around £3-£4 and seems to last for ever.