Power Tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter Air Rifle
One interesting feature of the T200 Sporter is the ability for this gun to have its power level significantly increased. However, power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle is not explained in the gun’s instruction manual. Only fairly sketchy instructions are available elsewhere on the web.
So, as a follow-up to the Hard Air Magazine test review, here’s comprehensive, easy-to-follow instructions for power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle.
We’ll show how to increase the power from the regular 5.5 Ft/Lbs level directly to the maximum 13.8 Ft/Lbs level. Of course, intermediate powers are attainable by varying the adjustments shown here.
Note that, if you want to open the T200 to full power, following these instructions will give that result.
If you are aiming for a specific power level, or precise muzzle velocity, you will need a chronograph to measure the muzzle velocities being generated by the gun at various settings.
SAFETY FIRST. Before beginning any work on the T200, ensure that it’s safe! First fire the gun in a safe direction to make sure that there is no pellet remaining in the barrel. Now remove the HPA air tank by unscrewing it from the action.
Air Arms provides some tools with the T200 Sporter. These are shown below.
In order to complete the job, you will also need a slothead screwdriver and two additional metric Allen (hex) wrenches. One 2mm size, the other 1.5 mm.
Remove the Stock
First step when power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle is to remove the stock.
To do this, use the 2.5mm Allen wrench supplied to remove the front stock screw in the underside of the accessory rail. This frees the barrel band.
Next, remove the rear stock screw in front of the trigger guard. Again use the 2.5mm Allen wrench.
Now remove the nut from the stock bolt. This is visible through the hole in the underside of the pistol grip. Use the special tool and tommy bar supplied with the air rifle.
Finally, remove the slothead screw in the right side of the breech.
Now the action can be wriggled out of the stock. Be careful and patient, it’s a snug fit!
With the action out of the stock, tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle can begin.
Increase Hammer Spring Tension
There are two ways to increase the power of the T200: increase the hammer spring tension and increase the airflow from the valve. Let’s look at hammer spring tension first.
The factory adds a dollop of red paint across the hammer spring tension screw and receiver. This shows the original factory setting. It’s also a useful guide to count the amount we will rotate the screw.
Rotating the hammer spring screw clockwise increases the hammer spring tension. This means that the hammer hits the valve stem harder, allowing more air to pass through with every shot. (More air = more muzzle velocity = more power).
To achieve maximum power when tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle, the hammer spring tension screw should be rotated a maximum of 4 turns clockwise from the factory setting. You can try to rotate it further (I did!), but you’ll then discover that the T200 will no longer cock. So 4 turns is the maximum.
Note that increasing the hammer spring tension increases the force required when you pull the trigger. The trigger sear now has more pressure to overcome when releasing the hammer to fire the gun. In the T200 tested by HAM, this increased the trigger pull weight from 1 Lb 15 Oz to 2 Lb 5 Oz.
Increasing the hammer spring tension also makes cocking the gun harder. Pulling back on the bolt handle now has to compress the hammer spring more tightly.
Adjust Air Flow
The second way to power tune the T200 is to increase the flow of air out of the valve.
To do this, use a 2mm Allen wrench to remove the dome head cover screw on the right side of the breech. Don’t loose it – I nearly did!
This gives access to a second setscrew that’s inside the valve. This setscrew can be rotated counter clockwise using the 1.5mm Allen wrench to increase the air flow from the valve. Doing so allows more air to pass out of the valve every time the gun is fired. Again, more air = more muzzle velocity = more power.
I found that 3 turns counter-clockwise on the valve setscrew gave the maximum increase in muzzle velocity.
So, that’s it. Reassemble the gun and carefully test fire.
Of course, you will now get less shots per fill as more air is used for every shot. And the higher air usage means that your T200 will now be MUCH louder when fired.
But hey, there’s no free lunches when power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle, or any other airgun!
If you have a chronograph and don’t need maximum power, experiment with different combinations of hammer spring tension and valve setscrew position. Doing this will enable you to find the combination of settings for your T200 which give the required power, together with best air use efficiency. You may also find a sweet spot for accuracy when using a specific pellet.
Expect to see quite different numbers of shots per fill as you experiment with different settings when power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle.
Have fun power tuning the Air Arms T200 Sporter air rifle. Note that making these changes involves no irreversible alteration to the gun. We’ve only adjusted two screws that are intended for adjustment to match the power specifications published by Air Arms.
Now you know how to do it…