Mat Manning advises a Shooting Times reader on what might be best

What’s the best way of filling a PCP airgun?

I recently received the following question from an airgunner which got me thinking about filling a PCP airgun, particularly if you live somewhere fairly remote without a bottle filling service. He wrote:

“I want to buy a PCP airgun, but I’m concerned about keeping it filled. Most people seem to use a diving bottle, but they are expensive and, even if I invested in one, there is nowhere close to my home that offers a bottle-filling service. Are there any other options?”

Here’s my reply.

To avoid having an air bottle refilled you could buy a compressor of your own (see below for a selection), but this would be costly. The affordable option is to buy a manual stirrup pump. These purpose-made devices enable you to pump air straight into the airgun reservoir. The best ones have special filters to keep moisture out of the gun’s internals. Filling with a manual pump can be a bit of a workout, especially if you have an airgun with a large capacity and make the mistake of running it very low before refilling.

The best method is to go for regular, small top-up charges. Utilise the full length of the pump’s stroke and use your bodyweight to bear down on it. Read here for a step by step guide on charging your PCP airgun safely. 

Options for filling a PCP airgun

1. HOOMYA 300BAR 30MPA 4500PSI High-Pressure Electric Air Compressor Pump, PCP Compressor Inflator for Rifle Pneumatic Airgun Scuba Paintball Tyre £259

Best for easy set up and use

  • Quick filling
  • Safety guaranteed
  • Stable performance
  • Easy to use
  • Versatile

2. HPDMC 220v 300bar Portable Air Compressor Paintball Fill Station for PCP Game £359

Best for portability

  • Quick filling
  • Quiet
  • Easy to use

3. The Spartan MK2 Hill Pump £92.99

Spartan Hill Pump

Best for budget

  • Lightweight
  • Portable
  • Durable
  • Reliable