Diana RWS 48 Air rifle Review

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diana rws 48 air rifle stock

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Not designed for the faint-hearted, the Diana RWS 48 air rifle is an impressive gun.

Built with beautifully crafted German engineering, this gun stands out both in performance and presence.

It fulfills its purpose as a potent, full-sized sporting air gun suitable for small game hunting, pest control and plinking.

diana 48 specification

Diana RWS 48Gun type

This is a spring piston gun.

A spring-powered gun is easy to use and has impressive accuracy.

(For more on 5 types of air rifles you need to know before buying, see this post)

Diana RWS 48 is also a side lever gun.

So in order to cock it, you need to pull the lever downwards while holding the gun upwards.

After that, you insert the pellet, push down the lock to release the lever and put it back up.

diana rws 48 is a side lever gun

It may seem complicated at first but after a couple of times, you’ll be able to work it perfectly.

The RWS 48 allows you to shoot as much since you won’t be worried about running out of gun powder like some of the other rifles.

shooting with diana rws 48 air rifle

Wooden stock

The stock is made of a beautiful beech wood.

Beech stock provides a lot of advantages compared to synthetic stock, see more in this post

Diana RWS 48 Air rifle stock is made of a beautiful beech wood

The Diana RWS 48 has an ambidextrous stock, so whether you are a lefty or a righty, you will have no problem shooting it.

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Comes with impressive sight

diana rws 48 air rifle has a very cool sight

The Diana 48 has a very cool sight.

The front sight rides are on a dovetail and are held down with a dove screw.

The dovetail is sleek and appealing, and it allows you to aim directly at your target.

The rear sight has standard RWS all metal and it has a spring loaded ball bearing that helps it to stay put.

It also allows you to adjust for windage (allows you to adjust sight left and right)

And for elevation (allows you to adjust the sight up and down).

If you like extra magnification then you’ll love that the Diana 48 comes with a standard RWS brand scope to provide extra magnification and improved accuracy.

(For more on how many types of air gun sights out there and which one is suitable for you, see this post.)

diana 48 comes with a standard rws brand scope

Equipped T05 trigger

This two-stage adjustable trigger is made of plastic (weapons-grade plastic).

So don’t worry about the trigger snapping back on your fingers in cold weather.

the rws diana 48 comes with a t05 two-stage adjustable trigger

With a trigger pull of two pounds 13 ounces, it’s probably the best trigger for an air rifle.

The T05 is adjustable so you can be sure to modify it to your liking, even though I don’t see where any changes would be necessary.

Velocity, accuracy and power

Velocity: the maximum velocity of the RWS Diana 48 is 1100 FPS (feet per second) for the 0.177 cal and 900 FPS for the 0.22 cal.

These are high-end velocities compared with other air rifles on the market.

rws diana velocity, accuracy and power test

Chrony tests gave us the results as follows:

In 0.177 calibre :

.177 Pellet FPS
6.60 gr Baracuda Green Lead free pellet 1141
7.10gr Super H-point pellet 1094
7.00 gr R10 Lite pellet 1083
7.10 gr Hobby pellet 1104
7.00 gr Meisterkuglen Pistol pellet 1075
7.00 gr Silver Bear pellet 1075
6.90 gr Meisterkuglen Pistol pellet 1075
7.30 gr H&N Match Hs pellet 1039
7.90 gr Premier Lite pellet 1050
7.90 gr JSB Express pellet 1014
8.20 gr JSB Predator pellet 989
8.30 gr H&N Match pellet 1003
 8.20 gr SuperPoint pellet 1029 
8.20 gr R10 Heavy Pellet 1036
8.30 gr Meisterkuglen Rifle pellet 1031
8.20 gr Superdome pellet 1035
8.40 gr JSB Exact pellet 983
8.40 gr Silver Sting pellet 984
8.00 gr Spitkugel pellet 1006
8.60 gr Field Target Trophy (FTT) pellet 990
8.60 gr Field Target Special (FTS) 986
8.70 gr FTS Double Gold pellet 970
8.10 gr Crow Magnum pellet 978
 8.10 gr Super Mag pellet 938
10.40 gr Kodiak Double Gold pellet 879
10.30 JSB Exact Heavy pellet 886 
10.50 gr Baracuda Hunter pellet 899
10.50 gr Premier Heavy pellet 899 
 10.10 gr Kodiak Match Pellet 897
 10.10 gr Kodiak pellet 904
11.50 gr Silver Arrow pellet 832 
13.30 gr JSB Monster pellet 779
15.60 gr Baracuda Magnum pellet 603 
diana rws 48 air rifle specification

In 0.22 calibre :

.22 PelletFPS
14.40 gr Super H Point pellet886
14.30 gr Crosman Premier pellet886
14.40 gr JSB Express pellet818 
14.50 gr Superdome pellet884
14.40 gr SuperPoint pellet863
14.80 gr FTS pellet856
14.80 gr FTS Double Gold pellet840
15.20 gr Napier ProHunter pellet834 
16.00 gr Silver Sting pellet817
16.00 gr JSB Exact pellet767
16.30 gr JSB Predator pellet811 
16.30 gr Silver Arrow pellet779 
18.20 gr JSB Exact Heavy pellet762
18.10 gr Crow Magnum pellet747
21.30 gr Kodiak pellet659
21.40 gr Kodiak Double Gold pellet648
25.40 gr JSB Exact Monster pellet597
diana rws 48 air rifle pellets

The velocity of the RWS Diana 48 differs by the calibre size but is consistent between pellet grain size, which is a very impressive quality.

So be sure to choose the calibre and pellet size that best fits your usage.

(For more on the differences between .177 & .22 and which jobs they do best, see this post.)

Accuracy: The RWS Diana 48 has a great reputation with accuracy.

Shooting from rest at 25 metres, five JSB Exact pellets as a group measured 0.875 inch edge to edge (just under 0.7 inch centre to centre).

That’s certainly good enough for defending the garden and hitting small hunting targets.

Fun fact: the Bullseye Airgun club in Louisiana used to have a huge contingent of shooters who shot 48s and 54s in field target competitions.

air rifle bullseye

Power: on testing, I registered a high of 22.73 foot-pounds of muzzle energy on a new 0.22 cal model 48 when shooting 14.3 grain Crosman Premiers.

Noise: The RWS Diana 48 is very quiet.

Throughout all of the customer reviews, not a single user complained about the noise.

This means that it won’t be too loud for indoor target practice and can be taken out to the hunting field for a nice stealthy hunt.

Features and Benefits

diana rws 48 air rifle review feature

Here are some of the main features of the RWS 48 and their benefits:

Features:

  • Ambidextrous stock
  • Automatic safety
  • Side lever cocking
  • Two-stage adjustable trigger
  • Beechwood stock
  • Standard RWS rear sight with spring loaded ball bearing
  • Single shot rifle

Benefits:

  • Ambidextrous Stock: The ambidextrous stock is nice because it allows both lefties and righties to use it conveniently with no awkwardness.
  • Automatic Safety:
    • Another exciting feature about the RWS 48 is the automatic safety.
    • The automatic safety assures that you only shoot when intended to, thereby protecting you accidental pellet discharge and potential injuries.
    • The automatic safety engages immediately once a pellet is inserted and the side lever is cocked back into place.
  • Lever Cocking:
    • the side lever cocking allows shooting to be more accurate because it’s less sensitive to handling.
    • It also accepts longer scopes for better magnification because the barrel doesn’t tip up and get in the way.

Two-Stage Adjustable Trigger: the adjustable trigger allows you to manipulate the amount of force it takes for the trigger to break and the shot to go off.

  • Beechwood Stock:
    • the beautifully finished beechwood stock on the RWS Diana 48 had high hardness, is heavily packed and has high resistance to abrasion.
    • So you don’t have to worry about the stock wearing out.

Standard RWS Rear Sight with spring loaded bearing: the spring-loaded ball bearing on the RWS Diana 48 holds the setting of your site so it stays where you put it.

There’s no need to worry about losing your previous sight.

It also allows you to adjust for windage and elevation.

diana rws 48 air rifle standard rws rear sight

Single shot: the RWS Diana 48 is a single shot rifle, meaning it only allows you to shoot one pellet at a time.

The single shot helps with accuracy because you’ll always want your first shot to count.

Shooting Ability

The effective shooting range of RWS Diana 48 is up to 50 yards.

Some customer reviews said that it can take out squirrels with one shot from 40 yards.

It is suitable for target shooting, small game hunting and pest control.

diana 48 shooting range


Unbelievable warranty

As of this date, the Diana 48 has a limited lifetime warranty.

Diana 48specs

  • Calibre: 0.22/0.177
  • Velocity: 884 FPS with 0.22, 1,100 FPS with 0.177
  • Stock: beechwood
  • Barrel length: 17.0 inches
  • Overall length: 42.13 inches
  • Barrel: rifled
  • Front Sight: blade and ramp
  • Rear Sight: adjustable for windage and elevation
  • Buttplate: rubber
  • Suggested for: small game hunting/ pest control
  • Trigger pull: two pounds 13 ounces
  • Action: side lever
  • Safety: automatic
  • Powerplant: spring piston
  • Function: single-shot
  • Body Type: rifle
  • Weight: 8.5 pounds
  • Cocking effort: 39 pounds

Customer review

There are lots of customer reviews on the Diana RWS 48.

The majority of users love its accuracy, power and fantastic design.

Shooters also emphasize the smooth cocking action of the RWS 48.

Its barrel gives enough space for your thumb so you don’t have to struggle when inserting the pellets.

The bluing on this rifle is dark and even, and the overall metal finish is perfect as well.

Many reviewers also boast about how the Diana 48 stands the test of time.

One owner stated that he has been using the rifle for 20 years, of which he never needed any extensive repairs.

And after years of constant use, the gun still fires as well as it did when it was new.

diana rws 48 air rifle customer review
ProsCons
  • Beautiful beech stock
  • Impressive German engineering
  • Awesome trigger
  • Consistent velocities with different kinds of pellets
  • Remarkable Accuracy
  • Stands vigorously the test of time
  • Excellent customer service from the manufacturer
  • Impressive power
  • At 39lbs cocking, it is a bit stiff; it would be nice if the cocking was smoother.

RWS 48 Price

diana 48 specification

The RWS 48 has a price range of about $400.

It is a reasonable price for a gun that provides attractive design, extreme accuracy and can last for generations.

There are a couple of different listings online with different prices, but thelisting I found below is the most reasonable deal amongst e-commercial sites like Amazon, Pyramyd Air, and Walmart.

click for the lowest price

Diana RWS 48Conclusion

With its remarkable numbers on power, accuracy, and velocity, the Diana RWS 48 is one of the best rifles on the market.

RWS has really delivered with this masterpiece.

The Diana 48 is certainly a gun any shooter would be proud to have and watch your shooting buddies get knocked off their socks.

1 COMMENT

  1. If you would like a long time user report, here it is.

    I have had a .177 model 48 since it was about aa new model. My best accuracy is with Beeman “Ram Jet” 9.6gr pellets. I bought 5000 of them after I tried the first box, and under 1/2 inch groups at 25 yards. I don’t think they are still available. My chronograph shows 906 fps varying from 901 t0 911. With Daisy 7.2 gr pellets, I recorded 1089 fps, but the accuracy wasn’t good. Grouping was about 1 1/4 inch at 25 yards.

    I am using a Bushnell Banner 2 1/2 power shotgun scope, in weaver rings on an adapter that I installed with loc-tite as well a the friction screws to stop it from ‘walking . One summer, I eliminated 41 thirteen line ground squirrels from my rear deck at ranges from 15 yards to just over 50 yards.

    I did not think I needed more than 2 1/2 power magnification as beyond 50 yards, a .177 air rifle is not a very effective weapon.

    All in all, I am very happy with this rifle, and would recommend it to friends. I purchased mine from Gander Mountain, and it was then $189 and change. (About 1984 or 1985). At the time, I thought that expensive for an air rifle.

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