The Most Powerful Air Pistols

Air pistols are not the most powerful handguns out there, however, they are a popular choice for target shooting and hunting. But which air pistols pack the most punch? Find out below.

Calibers Of Air Pistols

Air pistols are available in a number of caliber sizes, including:

  • .177 Caliber: This is the most popular caliber air pistol. These air pistols are used for plinking, target practice, and small-game hunting.
  • .22 Caliber: The next most popular air pistol caliber is the .22 caliber air pistol. These air pistols are used for plinking, target practice, small game hunting, and pest control.
  • .25 Caliber: The least popular air pistol caliber is the .25 caliber air pistol and it may be difficult to find a model in this size.
  • .357 and .45 Caliber: These are larger calibers that are typically found in air rifles rather than air pistols. They are used for hunting larger game, such as deer or boar, and have more power and impact than smaller calibers.
  • .50 Caliber: This relatively large air pistol fires pellets or bullets with a diameter of 0.50 inches (12.7mm). These are capable of delivering high levels of energy and are typically used for hunting or long-range shooting.

It’s essential to choose the right caliber for your intended purpose. If you’re using the air pistol for target shooting or plinking, a .177 caliber would be suitable. However, if you plan to use it for hunting small game, a .22 or .25 caliber would be more appropriate.

Caliber size is just one factor affecting air gun ballistics. For more information about this, see our post All About Air Gun Ballistics.

How Are Air Pistols Powered?

There are different types of air pistols available on the market. These include:

  • CO2 cylinder or cartridge
  • Spring-piston
  • Pump-action
  • Pre-charged pneumatic (PCP)
  • Battery powered

The most common type of air pistol is CO2 powered. However, the PCP or compressed air types provide the most power.

The higher the stored air pressure or C02 in the cylinder upon release, the higher the velocity of the pellet or bb will be. But, the stored air pressure will eventually run down as more shots are fired, which will lower the power of the pistol.

For more information, see our post How Do Air Pistols Work?

What Is The World’s Most Powerful Air Pistol?

The Benjamin Marauder .22 Caliber PCP Air Pistol is one of the most powerful air pistols on the market. It has a .22 caliber providing a good-sized shot. Its high-powered compressed air storage tank sends rounds up to 700 FPS toward the target.

However, air pistols are just one type of airgun. For more information, see our post The Most Powerful Air Guns.

Automatic Air Pistols

Believe it or not, you can purchase automatic air pistols. These use compressed carbon dioxide (CO2) gas to propel pellets or BBs out of the gun’s barrel.

How Do Automatic Air Pistols Work?

Automatic air pistols typically use one of two power sources: CO2 or compressed air. The power source is stored in a reservoir or cylinder within the air pistol, which is used to propel the pellets or BBs out of the barrel.

When the trigger is pulled, a valve opens to release a burst of compressed gas, which propels the pellet or BB out of the barrel. In automatic air pistols, the valve is designed to open and close rapidly, allowing multiple pellets or BBs to be fired in quick succession.

Most automatic air pistols use a blowback system, which means that the force of the gas is also used to cycle the slide or bolt, which ejects spent casings and loads fresh pellets or BBs into the chamber. This allows the air pistol to fire multiple rounds without the need for manual reloading.

It’s worth noting that not all air pistols are automatic, and some air pistols use other methods of propulsion, such as a spring or pneumatic pump. Additionally, the specifics of how an automatic air pistol works can vary depending on the manufacturer and model. They can also switch between full or semi-automatic. Automatic air pistols require a larger magazine of course.

An example of an automatic air pistol is the Crosman A4-P Full Auto C02 BB Pistol.

How Fast Can Automatic Air Pistols Shoot?

The rounds per second (RPS) of an automatic air pistol can vary depending on the specific model and design of the air pistol.

Generally, most automatic air pistols have a cyclic rate of fire between 4 and 10 rounds per second, although some models can fire at higher rates. For example, the Crosman A4-P Full Auto can shoot 10-12 rounds per second and it performs well.

Automatic Airgun Velocities

Automatic air pistols usually shoot at lower velocities and can quickly run out of stored energy (if they are C02 powered). Generally speaking, automatic air pistols can shoot at velocities ranging from around 300 feet per second (fps) for lower-powered models up to 600 fps or more for higher-powered models.

The Benefits of More Powerful Air Pistols

The more powerful an air pistol is, the more benefits it offers. Here are some of them:

  1. Greater Accuracy: More powerful air pistols tend to have a longer effective range and are less affected by wind, making them more accurate than less powerful models.
  2. Better Hunting Capabilities: More powerful air pistols can shoot farther and are better suited for hunting small game, such as squirrels or rabbits. They can take down animals more effectively and with less suffering, compared to less powerful air pistols.
  3. Improved Self-Defense: In some situations, a more powerful air pistol may be a viable tool for self-defense. While they may not be as effective as traditional firearms, they can still deter attackers and provide a means of self-protection.
  4. Enhanced Shooting Experience: Shooting a more powerful air pistol can be more satisfying and enjoyable for some enthusiasts. The greater recoil and noise can add to the realism and excitement of shooting.

    Also, the more powerful the air pistol, the better it can be during survival situations. For more information see our post The Best Survival Air Pistols.

    However, a more powerful air pistol will produce a louder sound, which can alert the neighbors or spook any nearby wildlife.

    Do You Need A License For An Air Pistol?

    In the U.S., the federal government does not require a license to obtain or use an air pistol. However, each state may issue ordinances related to air guns.

    For instance, New Jersey requires the user to obtain a permit before purchasing a bb or pellet pistol. In the UK, a person must be at least 18 years of age to buy, use, or receive an air pistol as a gift.

    These laws exist because air guns can be quite powerful and inflict serious injuries or cause death to victims. However, it is normally against the law to fire any type of projectile using any power source within an urban area.

    Overall, it is best to follow your state’s air gun laws and only fire them in rural areas away from neighbors.

    To Close

    Air pistols can be powerful weapons that must be handled responsibly. It is best to never underestimate the power of any type of firearm and use the best safety practices at all times.

    Lawrence the Airgun Ranger