Air Arms S510xs TDR Full Review/Hunt
This year Air Arms had released the New version of the classic S510 Take Down Rifle. The new version of the rifle is modeled after the S510xs that is now a regulated sidelever TDR. The older classic model TDR’s were non regulated bolt action, this is a wonderful step up to it’s design.
Pyramydair sponsored us to head out into the field and review this beautiful rifle. Through this review I hope to show all the features and how they may apply under heavy field use.
Air Arms S510xs TDR Stats
Built on the tried and true S510 action, the XS TDR (Take-Down Rifle) packs all of the features that small game hunters want into a highly maneuverable and transportable package. Able to break down in seconds, the S510 TDR is built to go anywhere you can. The addition of an internal regulator, means more shots per fill and unparalleled consistency from shot to shot. The ultra-lightweight stock features a finely grained walnut fore-end with a removable rear stock that fits together to form a compact carbine. For convenient transport, each S510 XS TDR comes with a hard case with custom cut foam that will fit the action with added space to allow a scope, buttstock, and even spaces for magazines and a tin of your favorite pellets. Each of these rifles is available in .177 and .22 caliber, with two of Air Arms standard ten-shot magazines in each package. Fill up the gun to 250 BAR to achieve speeds as high as 1,035fps. Each S510 XS TDR includes an 5 step adjustable power wheel for finding the ideal balance between long shot strings and power. It’s super accurate and super quiet due to a fully-shrouded Lothar Walther barrel with an integrated Q-tec suppressor. Follow up shots are quick and easy with the smooth side lever action. While shooting your first mag, keep your extra ready on hand with a built-in storage compartment on the underside of the cheek piece. An 11mm dovetail rail is included for mounting optics, and a 2-stage adjustable trigger makes superbly accurate shots within reach. If you want the world-class quality with premium accuracy only Air Arms can provide, the S510 XS TDR answers the call with a PCP that’s built to travel.
|Max Velocity||950 fps|
|Muzzle Energy||32 ft/lbs|
|Suggested for||Small game hunting/target practice|
|Max Shots per Fill||25|
|Fixed/adj. power||Multiple settings|
|Cylinder Size||115 cc|
The Air Arms TDR comes packed in a very nice travel case that includes the rifle, fill probe, two 10 shot magazines and a users manual.
The well made hard case even includes a nice cutout for a tin of pellets as well as enough room for a mounted scope. When traveling down bumpy roads as I’m known to do I felt this was a great case to keep things secured. The TDR’s removable buttstock is easily installed and removed using a very unique clamping type system.
This system ensures that the butstock wont twist or move under strenuous field conditions. The TDR will not fire with the buttstock removed, this is an added safety that’s definitely nice when traveling. The butstock itself has a built in “tightening” knob that will thread into the receiver of the rifle.
The butstock and receiver both have pins as well as notches to lock everything together very securely.
On the underside of the TDR’s butstock is two spring clips that hold the magazines during field expeditions.
Out front of the rifle is a 7″ Q-Tec moderator that quiets the gun down while keeping the elegant lines in place.
Under the end cap houses some precision made aluminum baffles, this is a very well made moderator and fits the gun very well cosmetically. Just behind the moderator is the vented shroud that houses the 15.55″ LW barrel, a very accurate one from my experience. The metal finish is done very well on this barrel system, nice thick smooth finish.
To secure the shroud to the airtube the TDR has a barrel band that fits snug and is secured in two places with set screws. The 115cc airtube can be filled out front via fill probe, this is located under the nicely machined end cap.
I’m not a fan of any type of fill probes because I have lost them in the field and have always favored foster fittings since then. This probe slides on and turns to lock in place while filling to 250bar, very easy to use and works as intended. Moving on I took a look at the sidelever, very well made and as buttery smooth as they come. Air Arms always has impressed me with attention to detail right down to the hardy pins that hold everything together.
The TDR is regulated and with a 350bar fill we can expect close to 30 shots per fill.
The rifle does have a power adjuster knob with 5 increments of adjustment, the lowest being about 12fpe up to 32fpe. This is a nice feature to have when working in a barn for rats or when we just want some lower power for backyard use. This adjustment is more of an air restrictor and does not adjust the regulator or hammer spring. I have grown to enjoy this feature and have found it to be helpful under certain conditions. Down underneath the forend of the TDR is the fill pressure gauge, this shows the fill pressure up to 250bar.
I really like this gauge, large and easy to read with a well machined protective cylinder. Small details like this are what makes for a great field rifle. Just in front of the gauge is the M-Loc that allows the rifle to be fitted with accessories such as a bipod, sling etc, To mount these accessories the appropriate adaptor will be needed. Unfortunately I had not received the correct one in time for this review. The Air Arms TDR has a two stage adjustable trigger that was set out of the box just under 1.0 LB
The trigger is very easy to adjust and has a very nice comfortable feel to it. For an out of the box trigger this was set just perfect for me, for those looking for a more “target” feel some adjustment may be needed. I will say I don’t like the exposed spring just behind the trigger blade, I say this because it may be open to getting jammed with field debris. The walnut stock on the TDR is beautiful and very ruggedly built.
The stippling on the grip area feels very nice and adds to the overall feel of the rifle. The butpad can easily be adjusted up and down to fine tune the rifle to each user.
The receiver of the TDR has 11mm dovetail rail, plenty of room to mount a scope with some room for adjustments.
I have mounted an MTC Optics Mamba Ultra Lite 3-10×40 SF scope, this is a nice fit to the rifle and is secured with the BKL mounts. I really like this model scope due to having such low magnification, keeping it at 3 power allows for a nice wide field of view. One thing to note about the magazines is that they are simple design and have no spring to fail. Air Arms hasa mechanism to the right side of the breech that will advance the magazine each time the rifle is cocked. This is an excellent and reliable system that is unique to Air Arms rifles. The next day would be spent at the range to set the rifle up for a hunt and to film for the enclosed video.
Marley and I spent a good portion of the day in the mountains where I did some target shooting and testing of various pellets. Over the day I spent some time shooting the rifle out to 65 yards with a variable 5/10mph wind. The TDR gets 26 regulated shots at a 250 bar fill putting out 31 fpe using the 15.89gr JSB’s
The wind was not helping my groups but I was still able to get the gun to shoot very predictable.
I was able to get a nice 10 shot group that to be honest surprised me considering I was using such lightweight pellets. Normally I like the 18gr JSB’s but the 15gr were much more predictable even out to extended ranges.
The TDR shoots very well off bags in the prone position as well as offhand. The overall feel of the rifle is a joy to shoulder and carry. After spending the day setting up the rifle and getting familiar with it’s features I was ready to get it out in the field for some real world hunting use.
The following day CA had several brush fires that broke out making traveling very difficult throughout most of the state. After the fires had cleared the following week Marley and I packed up the Jeep and headed several hours North to a familiar location in the very rugged mountains.
This location is one of my favorites for hunting the California Ground Squirrels, great habitat with the many Oak trees and rock outcroppings. Normally Spring and Summer months are the best time to hunt these areas, now that the temperatures have dropped the hunting does become slower. During late fall and winter these varmints are much less active and really make us work hard to find them.
Marley and I headed down a small cattle trail into the lower portions of the valley that offer a larger population of Ground Squirrels. The temperature was in the high 70’s as we hiked down through the tall dry grass. I was not seeing much activity until we came to a more wooded area, from here I was able to spot a good sized adult at 70 yards. I used a tree stump as a rest and was able to make a perfect headshot.
Marley excitedly made her way out to where the squirrel had fallen and we did a little bit of filming for the enclosed video.
The TDR in .22 caliber is ideal for most all small game and varmint hunting, it’s lower power keeps the gun quiet with a good shot count. The Q-Tec moderator works very well on this rifle and brings the noise level to a minimum. After our short filming session we moved along the cattle trail and were able to spot several more Ground Squirrels with one connecting at 43 yards.
Through the day I was able to capture most of the action using a new camera from TactaCam. The TactaCam 5.0 with the FTS mount is a new product soon to be offered by Pyramydair. This HD camera allows me to mount to a variety of scopes and capture the video. This camera can be WiFi directly to my smartphone, this allows me to make adjustments as well as to play back in the field. I plan to do a more detailed review sometime very soon. Moving down the trail we changed directions and moved diagonally along a hillside under a large oak grove.
These Ground Squirrels blend in so well, perfect camouflage for the backdrop of dry grass and rocks. Many times I can sit and spot them with careful scanning of the terrain. Usually all that’s visible is the head or eyes, this can sometimes get frustrating when looking for an open shot. During the heat of the day the Squirrels can usually be found sunning themselves, during fall and winter months they seem to be a bit more hidden.
This hunt definitely felt like a trophy type hunt where we are after the smarter adult Ground Squirrels. Most of this area had been hunted so all that’s left are those stragglers that have been elusive to both humans and natural predators such as birds of prey, Coyotes and Foxes. As the day moved on I had managed to take about 8 Ground Squirrels at ranges out to 75+ yards. The TDR was a joy to carry and hit near everything I aimed at as long as I did my part. Marley and I made way back to the Jeep and moved to a more wooded location that gave us some shade for a nice lunch break. After lunch we headed in a Northern direction in underneath the many trees.
This area was thick and had many fallen logs and branches to maneuver through.
Being able to store the magazines under the cheek of the butstock was a nice feature and one I was happy to have. With my fingers I bent the clips a little tighter as I was worried one of the magazines may get snagged on my clothing or some branches as I moved through the bushes. After the adjustment the magazines fit much more snug into the clips. Things like this are what you would never find from a typical bench review and one of the reasons I love doing this job. As Marley and I made our way through the field of fallen debris we came to a log that gave a nice rest looking upward onto the hillside.
I was able to make a perfect headshot at 62 yards that sent out a loud THWACK that echoed through the canyon. I wanted to retrieve the Ground Squirrel but the area was much to thick for even Marley to retrieve. After spending another 30 minutes here with no action we headed back to the Jeep where I filmed a few more segments for the enclosed video.
The several weeks spent with the TDR was an absolute pleasure, I learned a lot and was happy to have a successful hunt. Air Arms has done an excellent job building a mid level hunting rifle, worked very well under heavy field use. I will enclose my final honest opinion of this rifle along with the review in video form. I want to thank Pyramydair for sponsoring me to get out in the field and bring you this review.
- Good Shot Count
- Adjustable Power
- Nice Trigger
- Carry Case
- Magazine Holders
- Very Nice Sidelever
- Great Finish
- Sturdy Stock
- Fill Probe
- Need Adaptor For M-Lok
- Exposed Spring On Trigger
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I really enjoy your videos. You actually take all the rifles out to the field and use them in hunting situations. this is real life to me. Thanks
Thanks Steve, glad that you enjoy