An air rifle can provide you with years of enjoyment and give you a powerful enough weapon for hunting small game or just enjoying a bit of target practice in the backyard. Getting a good quality rifle doesn’t require you to spend a lot of money. Some of the best air rifles on the market can be had for under $100…if you know where to look.
The most important thing is finding a high quality air rifle that will last for years to come, without breaking down.
To make things easy for you, we scoured the web and compiled our 3 Top Picks for best air rifle under $100 so that you can skip the comparison shopping and get right to the fun. Enjoy!
Crosman Optimus .177 Break Barrel Air Rifle
The Crosman Optimus .177 features a hardwood stock, fiber optic front sight and an adjustable rear sight for extremely accurate shooting. The is the one of the best air rifles under $200 dollars for an advanced user who doesn’t want to blow their entire paycheck. The gun provides an impressive 1200 feet per second shooting speed with alloy pellets, and it shoots 1000 feet per second with lead pellets.
Overall, it’s not a very heavy gun at 7.13 pounds and comes in at 45 inches from stock to the end of the barrel. This is an ideal gun for people who need to control pests and for those that want to enjoy a day of target practice. The optimus is an elegant gun that is powerful and attractive. The trigger features a two-stage adjustment and the high-quality materials mean that this gun will last you a lifetime.
According to some users, the Crosman Optimus can be loud until you break it in. Some actually compared the sound to that of an actual .22 caliber rifle. That being said, you’re not going to want to go for your first target practice in your backyard, unless you want to attract the attention of the neighbors.
The professional quality design will convince most people who you’re carrying a standard rifle. It’s not an automatic rifle, and you must break the barrel with each firing. This could pose a problem for those that want to shoot multiple targets in quick succession. However, the pump action is smooth and relatively easy to use. The gun does provide room to mount a scope, provided you mount it high enough to clear the built-in sight. Though, you might not feel a need to mount a scope since the built-in sights work very well.
The type of ammo you use has an effect on the loudness of the gun. If you use Premier Hollowpoints you won’t get that loud popping noise that occur when the pellets break the sound barrier. With a gun this powerful, it’s inevitable that it’s going to make some noise when you shoot. However, this is an amazing gun for this price range and you won’t regret making this purchase.
Crosman Vantage Nitro Piston Air Rifle with Scope
The Crosman Vantage NP provides a very good value and boasts pellet speeds in excess of 1200 feet-per-second. This rifle is the best air rifle under $100 for an intermediate user. It features a quieter high-powered mechanism that won’t disrupt your neighbors. It uses Crosman’s Nitro Piston technology that reduces the noise level of the rifle. It comes with a built-in scope in addition to a front and rear adjustable sight. The rifle shoots .177 caliber pellets and has a wood stock. It’s a bit heavier than some of the higher quality rifles at 8.6 pounts and is approximately 48 inches from stock to the end of the barrel.
The rifle is good for taking out small rodents, but it might not meet your needs if you have racoons and other larger animals. The gun is relatively loud, but it does get quieter the more you use it. The scope is suitable for an intermediate user, but if you want greater accuracy you’re going to need a better scope. In tests, this rifle can shoot through approximately a 3/4-inch piece of plywood at about 20 feet. You can also find the rifle by itself without paying for the scope. For those that want to save some money, by using your own scope, this is a good option. Of course, a scope isn’t necessary since you can use the front and read sight and adjust them to your needs.
If you want a good training gun, the gun’s weight is a plus. The rifle’s weight provides extra stability and the pumping action is a bit stiffer than some of the more expensive rifles. The gun features a very smooth surface with no sharp edges or uncomfortable design issues. The gun requires about 100 shots before you can really adjust the scope or sights for accuracy.
Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun
This gun has been around for a very long time and it’s surprisingly accurate for a beginners rifle. The gun shoots a maximum of 350 feet-per-second and is a good choice for a younger child. The gun uses a pump action and holds up to 650 BBs. It does not shoot pellets, but that’s to be expected with a gun designed for the younger crowd. The stained solid wood stock and forearm give the gun a sophisticated look and provides some weight to the piece.
The gun is extremely reliable and gets our vote for the best air rifle under $100 for beginners. It rarely ever has issues with jamming and the feeding mechanism is very smooth. You can mount a scope on the rifle to provide a greater degree of accuracy. This is an elegant, simple and unfettered gun designed for fun. It’s extremely accurate for it’s price range when shooting targets within about 30 feet. If you need to teach gun safety to a child, this is a good way to start. The gun is extremely rugged and will stand up to years of abuse. Just give it a little oil now and then and you’re good to go.
The gun can shoot through cardboard, aluminum and cans at short distances, but it is not suitable for hunting game. The low-level gun provides enough of a punch to make beginners want to treat it with respect, but it isn’t so powerful that it would cause serious injury in an accident. Overall, this is an excellent rifle for someone who wants to save a lot of money and purchase a fun BB gun for basic target practice and training.