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Air Rifles for Prepping and Survival

This an an updated guide on air rifles for preppers first written several years ago by a member of the TruePrepper team. We continue to update posts for relevancy and as we learn more about prepping topics.

The Benefits of Air Rifles for Preppers

A practical prepper needs to know how to shoot. That means target shooting. To learn to shoot and do it well, you need to buy a gun, join an outdoor range, pay range fees, buy ammo, targets, gun cleaning supplies, and more. That can really add up and it takes a lot of time.

The solution is to shoot a world-class air rifle at home! You can shoot whenever you want in your own space. The ammo is cheap and you can limit distractions. It's not practical as a hunting tool, but it can help you hone your accuracy and instincts.

The Olympic Sport of 10-Meter Air Rifle Shooting

Did you know that 10-meter air rifle is an Olympic sport? Did you know there are many clubs in the U.S. shooting 10m air rifle? While in the U.S. it is more of a youth and young adult sport, in Germany it is enjoyed by boys, girls, men, and women of all ages. That's why the best air rifles and gear come from Germany.

Air rifles have come a long way. Good ones are not just toys! Older rifles use a single pump mechanism employed before each shot. Newer ones use compressed air like a paintball marker. This is what a real Olympic 10m air rifle looks like:

Choosing the Right Air Rifle

If you have up to $3,000 to plunk down for a brand-new rifle, go for it and it will last forever! On the less expensive end, the Hammerli AR20 Pro goes for $905 new, which is the high end of the used market for a single-stroke pneumatic German match air rifle. But finding a used rifle can be a great adventure!

You'll pay $650-$1200 for a good to like-new used one. That sounds like a lot, but it is no more than a rifle you would use at an outdoor range and it will probably last a lifetime. And if you decide to sell your used air rifle, it will bring just about what you paid for it.

Look for a used air rifle made by Anschutz, Feinwerkbau, Walther, Diana, Steyr, or Hammerli. Mine is a Feinwerkbau 601 single-stroke pneumatic. It is the same model that won Gold in the 1988 Olympics. Oldie but goodie.

Where to Find Used Air Rifles

Looking at the reputable brands we mentioned above, you can find good deals on used models online:

  • Anschutz air rifles
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