I think most air gun shooters that surf the net and visit the forums are aware of Metal Work Designs, an outfit that has been turning out some really interesting guns built on the modified Crosman 2240 platform. Recently Matt Parker, owner and airgun craftsman, has started building custom rifles. I’ll have a full write up on his work published elsewhere in the not too distant future, but on this web page I’ll give a quick review of my first hunt

This picture shows the gun wearing a very nice custom stock. This particular gun is a .20 caliber. It is a powerful and accurate gun, and takes advantage of the 6-24x scope mounted on it.

This is a rifle of substantial dimensions, but not enough to diminish it as a great hunting gun. Matt is working with a custom stock maker to dress his rifles in a fashion befitting the excellent mechanics designed and built into his guns.

I’d like to get a thumbhole stock to try out on this gun, as I find I shoot better, and this gun deserves a shooter that is on his game

MWD guns can be fabricated using a wide variety of materials. This one uses stainless steel for the barrel shroud, air reservoir, and receiver, and the endcap and barrel band are brass.

The gun uses a male Foster adaptor fitting that works with the same charging equipment I use for my Daystate and XS-B50. Matt has made a simple cover using a female foster fitting.

I found that the gun was very shootable and I really enjoyed hunting with it. There was not a sling, as you’d have to be crazy to drill into the nice exotic hardwood stock to install the hardware! Still, I did a fair bit of hiking and the gun was easy to carry.

In this picture (left) I take aim at a large fox squirrel at approximately 30 yards, using a nearby tree to brace myself. My first shot anchored my quarry.

This gun is very quiet; the sound of the pellet hitting and the squirrel meeting the ground was louder than the actual report on firing..

This was a great hunt! The gun worked flawlessly – I was three for three on the day. The combination of accuracy and power, the flat trajectory, the overall ergonomics were all outstanding.

My longest shot of the day was approximately sixty five yards, and the squirrel dropped like a sack of very dead potatos. I was hitting squirrels way up in the trees, which sometimes is a problem for me … but not on this day and not with this gun!

I’ve always like the .20 caliber for small game, you get the benefits of both the .177 with respect to its flat shooting characteristics but delivers almost the same terminal performance of a .22.

So at the end of my first hunt with a MWD custom rifle what can I say? It was a pleasure to shoot with very nice ergonomics, it delivered the performance one would expect out of a gun built by a true craftsman, and it almost looks too nice to drag out into the woods ….. but I’m glad I did! This gun cost a bit more than a production gun, but you get a great rifle and the satisfaction of knowing it was built for you

Leave a Reply