The Ruger BlackHawk is not a Canadian version of this gun with a pathetic 450 FPS limit and a double price ripoff, this one is one heck of a beast that promises to deliver up to 1000 FPS. Besides, it is imitation of Diana RWS 34 with a much cheaper price tag. Let’s find out why it’s one of the best 5 air rifles under $100 in this detailed review.
Table of Contents
Ruger Black Hawk is a spring-piston gun. As the name suggests, there is a coiled spring and a piston inside the chamber. When you cock the gun, you make the spring compress until the little hook of the rear of the piston engages into the sear. When you pull the trigger, you release the hook and make the spring decompress. The decompressed spring move forward and apply the pressure on the air inside. As a result, the pellet is pushed out of the barrel due to the propellant force form the compressed air. Spring piston gun is simple to use, self-contained and have impressive accuracy. You can read more about spring piston gun’s pros and cons in this post.
Ruger BlackHawk is a break barrel gun which means that you to cock it every time you want to shoot. Break barrel gun is the easiest of all air guns to load because the breach is exposed when it is opened. Besides, it gives you the unlimited shooting capacity and is easy to repair because it is simple mechanism. Finally, a break barrel gun is easy to clean since you have a direct access to the barrel.
This gun is a single shot gun: you can only shoot one shot at a time. Single shot gun gives you control over ammunition and makes you a better shooter because you know you have to make your first shot count.
The rifle barrel and receiver are blued steel. The barrel has a caliber(the internal diameter of the bore) of .177 inches (4.5 millimeters). .177 gun uses .177 pellet which is the most popular in the market: there are lots of kinds of .177 pellets to choose from, and they are twice as cheap as .22 ones. If you are a seasoned shooter with lots of shooting hours, .177 is a go-to caliber for target shooting and plinking.
The barrel is rifled steel barrel. Rifled barrel has helical grooves inside the bore that make a pellet spin. Spin stabilizes pellet, improves accuracy and enhances shooting range.
The stock is synthetic. Unlike wood stock which is heavy and easily affected by moisture and temperature, synthetic stock is lighter and performs reliably no matter what how cold, hot , humid or dry it is outside. Synthetic stock is best for hunters hunting in the field with different kinds of weather like rain, snow, etc or for shooters who don’t want to bother with stock preservation. Furthermore, the stock is black matte finish that gives you the quality of a durable gun.
This stock has rubber buttpad that helps reducing kickback . Also, it has beautiful textured grip and forearm that add friction to your hands when shooting, prevent slippage from shooter’s sweat and increase stability in aiming.(Tips:You can make the gun feel solid without weighing it down by putting rags in the buttstock)
Ruger Blackhawk uses .177 as the main source of ammunition. .177 pellet is the cheapest in all kinds of pellets. If you look at the pellet count box, you will see that you’ll get exactly twice as many .177 as .22 for the same price. Thus, .177 is your best bet if you plan on doing lots of target shooting and plinking.
The trigger is metal and adjustable: you can adjust it light or heavy. Besides, it has an automatic feature: just flip the auto safety and you are ready to rock.
The trigger is two stages: 2 stage trigger has a break wall that separates the first stage and the second stage of firing. You can feel the difference when you apply the pressure on the trigger and you know when you hit the second stage. As a result, 2 stages allow more timing in shooting because you know when you have to apply more pressure before the break wall period.
You hit the break wall, you know you are 99% ready to shoot and another little more pressure is required to fire
Benefit of 2-stage trigger over the one stage trigger: with one stage, you need lots of muscle effort to break it but with 2 stages you need a lot less because the first stage is there so you can just apply a little more force on the second stage to release the sear. And with lighter trigger full, less force equals more accurate shot.
Unlike other guns with boring iron sight, Ruger BlackHawk comes with beautiful fiber optic sights .The front sight is fiber optic: it uses optical fibers for the dots and channels the ambient light to the rear sight in the way that it’s brighter than dark surrounding. Fiber optic sight is great if you don’t have 20/20 eye vision or if you are shooting in the low-light conditions like dusk and dawn. Besides, it provides fast target acquisition and more accuracy in normal condition. What’s else? The rear sight is fiber optic, too. It is fully adjustable for windage (allow you to adjust left and right) and elevation (allow you to adjust up and down). Having this handy fiber optic sights makes shooting sport more fun when you hit more accurate shots with ease.
As if the fiber optic sight is not enough, Ruger added the 4×32 scope in case you get bored with the iron sight. 32 is the diameter of the front lens, measured in inches. 4 is the magnification capacity of the scope: It magnifies the picture 4 times bigger than the image you see without it. The scope is decent for backyard shooting but I suggest you upgrade to better scope if you want to go hunting.
Velocity, Accuracy and Power
Out of the box, the Black Hawk has the following velocity results: 7.9 gr Crosman Premier Hollow Point has a low velocity of 962.54 FPS(16.24FPE) and a high of 979.68FPS (16.83 PFE), 890 FPS with Crosman Premier Hollow Point, 1000 FPS with RWS Wad cutter.
For Ruger Black Hawk, different shooting tests performed by lots of shooters give us positive results. The common shooting groups are: bull’s eye at 15 m, dime group at 25 yards,1/2” at 25 yards off a bench all day long, ¼” at 30 yards, 1” at 15 yards, ¼” at 90 feet, , nickel at 20 yards, ½” at 20 yards, 1” – 1.5” at 30 yards, dime size at 50 yards with crosman hollow point hunting pellet, 1” at 25 yards with 7.8 gr Gamo hunting pellet, 5-cent size group at 25 yards, 10-cent group at 25 yards, quarter size at 30 yards, 1” at 55 yards, 1-2” at 60 feet, ½” at 10 m, ¼” at 10 m, ½” at 22 yards with polymag pellet, 1.5” at 50 feet with crosman destroyer, 1” at 10-15 yards, quarter-size at30 yards, quarter size at 25 yards, hit dead center bull’s eye over and over at 35-40 yards, ¼” to dime size at 25 feet with Crosman Premium Ultramag, quarter size at 22 feet with RWS super point extra ammo, 1” at 25 yards, 20 cent size group at 25 yards, ½” at 25 yards with flat head pellet, zero in 25 yards. This gun is extremely accurate with the effective shooting range up to 50 yards.
The above numbers are impressive , but how about power of this gun? Well, it can hit a bottle cap at 100 meters with Diabolo, tear apart a redbull can at 10m completely with Diabolo, blow a beer can at 50 feet, blow car’s window at 15 yards like real gun with crosman destroyer , go through both side of an unopened coke can at 30 yards, hit coke can at 50 yards, hit tree rat at 50 yards, blow a fat squirrel at 20 yards, shooting an empty beer can at 75 yards, penetrate 5/8” cardboard, 1 shot 1 kill at 7 skunks, plink gong at 75 yards casually, 1 shot kill squirrel at 30-50 yards, hit birds at more than 50 yards, quietly drive 10 .65 gr crosman domed pellet through 5/8” plywood, kill rabbit and mole out of its hole and skunk, pierce through ¼” plywood at 60 yards, shoot 4 squirrels in 15 ms after open the box, headshot 15 squirrels at 40 yards, pick off squirrels and rabbits at 50 yards consistently, take out a bird at 50 yards, kill groundhog in 50 yards from firstshot, hit a wagon, 2 liter coke bottle and a board at 175 yards, hit a hornet’s nest at 125 yards, barely hit a fishercat at 143 yards, go through ¾” piece of plywood at 35 feet. Despite of .177 caliber, the Air Hawk hits hard and gets the job done in clean shots.
Customers love many aspects of Ruger Black Hawk: A man said that he has Ruger Black Hawk for 3 years and it still shoots strong, the spring has excellent quality and remains still dry after 2-3k shots. They also love the synthetic stock that feels light but balanced and easy to acquire target fast. The trigger is great: smooth slide into crisp click. No significant trajectory drop below 50 yards . Although made of composite synthetic, most users agree that it is not a toy , it’s a solid rifle with serious weight to it and feels good in your hands.
An owner of 3 ½ acres in Lousiana with loads of trees and loaded with squirrels tells the interesting story: Last year his family had 6 ½ pound of treats and enjoyed their awesomeness in late spring and early summer. This year they got 5 cherries,ouch. The words are out in animal kingdom: they have goodies. His desperate wife said: these thieves must die. And being a loving hubby as he is, he found the solution: Ruger Black Hawk – a pop gun for varmint. The result? He restored the order in his property and made his wife proud, hehe.
The mounting rail is designed in dovetail style:It only allows shorter-style 1 piece mounts but doesn’t allow larger-based 1 piece mounts.
This thing needs no kit: remember to clean the bore thoroughly,it not only cleans all the dirt but also gets rid of rust inside the barrel, tighten all the screws before shooting, experiment with different kinds of pellet(run different 10 rounds of each kind of pellet to find out what works best with your gun, every gun is different) , lube with molly, put back together and enjoy.
- Lightweight but solid and feel good in hands
- Eye-catching stock with beautiful textured grip
- Mind-blowing accuracy
- Superb power
- Shiny, attractive fiber optic sight
- Little-to-none maintenance required
- Limited dovetail scope rail
- Made in China
- .177” (4.5 mm)
- Max velocity :1000 FPS
- Loudness: 3- Medium
- Barrel Length: 18.7″
- Overall Lenth: 44.8″
- Shot capacity: 1
- Cocking effort: 3lbs
- Barrel: Rifled
- Front Sight: Fiber Optic
- Rear Sight : Fiber Optic
- Scopeable: 11mm dovetail
- Trigger: 2-stage adjustable
- Safety: automatic
- Buttplate: Rubber
- Suggested for: plinking/target practice/ small game hunting
- Trigger pull: 3.3 lbs
- Action: Break barrel
- Powerplant: Spring – piston
- Weight: 6.95 lbs
- Scope specs:
- 4x magnification
- 32 mm objective lens
- 1″ tube
- 1/4 MOA
- Duplex reticle
- Parallax setting: unknown
- 29″ field of view at 100 yards
- 3″ eye relief
- 8mm exit pupil
- 13.23 oz (with mount)
- 12.9″ long
- Include 11mm dovetail ring
- Shock proof
- Fog proof
- Water proof Multiple lens coatings
- Matte black finish
Price of Ruger BlackHawk
The price for Ruger Black Hawk is a little less than $100. It’s damn cheap price that for the gun that gives you small groups, hits very hard and can handle common pest such as squirrels, rabbits and skunks.
There are a couple of different listings online with different prices but the listing I found with the lowest price is the cheapest among online e-commercial sites like Amazon, PyramydAir, Walmart, etc
This gun is a well-executed copy of RWS 34 :It’s a great tool to correct your flinch, grip and shooting habits . Besides, it won’t tire you down in the long day shooting season and doesn’t seem picky about pellets either. If you have varmint problem, instead of paying $95 for the first animal and 45 $ for additional one for the pest exterminator, save yourself a fortune by grab Ruger Black Hawk and have fun with it. At the end of the day, you will find out what Mama Voodoo said is true: No squirrel here, just plenty of stew.