Gamo P-25 air pistol: Part 3

by Tom Gaylord, a.k.a. B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2

Gamo P-25 air pistol
Gamo P-25 is a 16-shot blowback pellet pistol.

Today is accuracy day with the Gamo P-25 air pistol. I inserted a fresh CO2 cartridge into the gun, loaded both of its 8-shot rotary clips and then slid the magazine into the grip.

I shot the pistol at 10 meters, which seems appropriate for a gun of this type. I shot it rested with a two-hand hold and my arms resting on the sandbag but the pistol free to move.

The pistol has open sights that are not adjustable. They have white dots, both front and rear, but that was cancelled by lighting the target brightly and shooting from a dimly lit place. I used a 6 o’clock hold, and the sights were very sharp and easy to align.

Because each rotary clip holds 8 pellets, I shot 8-shot groups instead of the usual 10. I don’t think it makes a big difference; and when you see the targets, I think you’ll agree.

The P-25 has blowback, so every shot except the first is single-action. I therefore cocked the hammer for that first shot, so all shots were single-action. It’s the most accurate way to shoot any handgun.

RWS Hobby pellets
The first pellets I shot were RWS Hobbys. Because they’re wadcutters, they left good holes in the target paper that were visible from the firing line. The pistol shot Hobbys to the left, as you can see, but the elevation was pretty good. The pistol’s sights are not adjustable, so to move the shots means you have to either aim off or use some Kentucky windage.

The group isn’t very impressive — 8 shots in 2.169 inches at 10 meters. Perhaps one of the other pellets will do better.

Gamo P-25 air pistol target with RWS Hobby pellets
Eight RWS Hobby pellets went into 2.169 inches at 10 meters.

Gamo Match pellets
The next 8 pellets I shot were Gamo Match wadcutters. These pellets will sometimes be very accurate in a particular gun, but the P-25 I’m testing isn’t one of them. Eight shots went into 2.894 inches, though 7 of them are in 1.846 inches. Still, neither group size is especially good. They did go to approximately the same point of impact as the RWS Hobbys, however.

Gamo P-25 air pistol target with Gamo Match pellets
Eight Gamo Match pellets went into 2.894 inches at 10 meters.

Crosman Premier lites
Next, it was time to try some 7.9-grain Crosman Premier lites. These domed pellets are sometimes the very best in certain airguns. And this was one of those times. Eight of them went into 1.624 inches, though they also went way over to the left.

Gamo P-25 air pistol target with Crosman Premier lite pellets
Eight Crosman Premier lites went into 1.624 inches at 10 meters. This was the best group of this test.

Gamo Raptor PBA
The last pellet I tried was the lead-free Gamo Raptor PBA. We know from the velocity test that these pellets go the fastest in the P-25, but now we’ll see how accurate they are.

And the answer is — not very. Eight PBA pellets made a shotgun-like pattern that measures 4.036 inches between centers. Interestingly, they did tend to group in the center of the target — the only pellet of the 4 tested to do so.

Gamo P-25 air pistol target with Gamo Raptor pellets
Eight Gamo Raptor PBAs went all over the place, making this 4.036-inch group. I had to reduce the size of the photo to get all the holes into it.

Shooting behavior
This was one time I found myself hoping for greater accuracy from the test gun because it was so much fun to shoot. The blowback action is quick, crisp and comes as close to the recoil of a .22 rimfire pistol as I think I’ve experienced in an air pistol. Although the trigger is long and full of stops and starts, it’s also light and can become predictable after you learn its quirks.

Bottom line
The lack of adjustable sights means you have to find a pellet that shoots to center and is also accurate. Good luck with that. If Premier lites had shot to the center, they would have made this test end on a higher note. Because it shoots lead pellets from a rifled barrel, I’d hoped for better accuracy than this. Had I seen it, I would have rated this Gamo P-25 a best buy.

47 thoughts on “Gamo P-25 air pistol: Part 3

  1. B.B.,

    A few things about this pistol…

    How deep are the rifling’s?
    How does this air-pistol compare with others of similar barrel length in terms of accuracy?
    (Was this what one could typically expect?)
    Your groups were shot at 10 meters. That’s a pretty long distance for a gun like this.
    Wouldn’t someone normally practice with a pistol like this at a closer range of between 5 and 15 feet?
    I’ve shot firearms, like my wife’s 38 Special that couldn’t group this well at 10 meters.

    What I’m getting at is, wouldn’t a gun like this suffice as a practice gun for self-defense?

    Victor


    • Victor,

      I’m sure the rifling is a standard microgroove that most airgun makers use.

      Does this pistol have any use as a practice gun? I suppose it’s better than nothing. But I think an accurate BB gun that has blowback is of greater practicality.

      No, I don’t think 10 meters is too far for a rifled pellet pistol to be asked to shoot. If it was a smoothbore then perhaps, but this is a rifled handgun.

      As for the snubbie that can’t group — I used to think that, too. Then I read Elmer Keith and started shooting snub-nosed revolvers at distances to 80-yards. While that is an extreme and the target was an American football-sized dirt clod, once I found the range I hit it every time. Barrel length has nothing to do with accuracy, except how it affects sight separation. And Keith tells us how to overcome that.

      B.B.

      B.B.


      • Another firearms writer of the past the late Don Zutz used to say he could teach folks to shoot a snubbie easier than a longer barrelled revolver. I have the book titled “The Snubby Revolver ” by Ed Lovette, ISBN13:978-1-58160-571-6, copyright 2002-2007, that goes in depth of the tactical advantages of the short gun. Good read if you think that a 1911 is not the only answer for concealed carry , which I for one ,don’t. My old man who I learned one or two things about personal defense weapons from, carried a Charter Arms .38 undercover for many years as his go to concealed weapon.


      • Really? So, how do you overcome sight separation? I know about Keith’s method of holdover, but I don’t see how you can compensate for sight separation with a physical quantity that can’t be changed.

        Matt61


      • B.B.,

        Aside from the sight radius, the ammo makes a huge difference. 38 Special is much easier to shoot accurately than 38+P. I’ll have to play with it some more at a longer distance. My sons Glock (forget the model) has a fairly short sight radius, and I know that I can shoot it pretty accurately at 50 yards.

        Just bought a couple boxes of 38 Special. Guess it’s time to take it out again. It’s been awhile.

        Victor


  2. Edith

    “You’re comparing apples & monkeys”

    You gave me a HUGE belly laugh. We are now even.

    I was reluctant to invest the hours and effort needed of the weekend debate, but I must say that your written thoughts perfectly articulated my own unwritten ones. So I must say, “Quit reading my mind, you don’t want to know what else is in there.”

    And please remember to always take a break to play with your kitties. Mine supply me with a multitude of belly laughs!


  3. I would love to own one of these pistols but sadly, all replica pistols are illegal in my neck of the woods.

    Pete


    • The government goes even farther here in The Netherlands, this Gamo is (to my knowledge) not a replica of an existing firearm and it is still illegal over here. If you have to look twice to see if it is an airgun then it is illegal. Bummer….


      • Well, seems that you are S.O.L. on most airguns then since they all look pretty much like a real gun nowadays. What you need is someone that can get the guns where they are not restricted and ship them to you that doesn’t know that they are forbidden or that doesn’t care they are forbidden.


  4. Victor.
    I could be wrong but I seem to remember reading in this blog one time that shooting a pellet gun closer than 30 ft. is not safe due to potential ricochets.

    However, I do not have much luck shooting these action pistols at that range. 20 to 25 feet is much better. I enjoy collecting the replica action pistols ( I have about 15 of them) and a few of those will shoot well at 10 meters. The Smith and Wesson 686 and the Walther CP88 are two that immediately come to mind. But generally speaking I have to move in some for the bulk of them.

    At this point I should admit that the above is probably due more to my lack of ability than the pistols themselves. Anyway I’ll keep shooting them and I’m sure I will improve in time.

    G&G


    • G & G,

      I definitely would not shoot a BB gun, except in an open field, but there are traps that work well for BB’s. B.B. has talked about the one that he uses.

      Pellets don’t ricochet as much, but even then (if I were shooting in my home surroundings) I’d use some kind of backing so that they don’t ricochet at all. I have several pellet traps, including one Champion trap that will stop rim-fire bullets.

      But what I was referring to, as I’m sure you know, was combat pistol training, where you’re shooting at a large target. If you’re shooting for speed and starting from a non-aiming position, you’re not likely going to keep all shots within a trap (until you get really good). It’s the strays and ricochets that concern me. It’s this kind of shooting that I would take out to a field or range that would allow it (not all do).

      Victor



  5. Sorry for the off topic question but can you answer the following:

    1. Can Ballistol be used to clean the barrel of a PCP without the risk of ignition?

    2. Do you still suggest not using JB non embedding compound on a PCP with rotating magazine? Is there anything that can be done to keep it from gumming the mag up?


    • Rob,

      Yes to Ballistol in the barrel. Don’t care about ignition OUTSIDE the reservoir. It won’t happen.

      I’ve never heard the JB paste and rotary magazine question before but I’d be very careful of it.

      B.B.


  6. Looks like this gun is getting a “C” or “D” grade from B.B. for the price of the gun I would have expected it to perform better too. Seems to me Gamo is slipping in the quality department a bit. They might want to look into this. The gun looks good, but the shots aren’t grouping very well and I know B.B. is a good shot. I have seen him do much better here. So It must be the equipment, not the shooter.


  7. Not such great groups from this one. Keep searching for a better pellet, or send it back and ask for a replacement? I don’t know, but even my $35 p17 shoots rings around this. P17 is a single shot? Sure, but I expect better accuracy from a rifled barrel no matter what else it may have.

    /Dave


  8. BB
    I saw your comment yesterday about the smg-22! that thing looks awesome do you think PA will sell it at some point?


    • Cole,

      I don’t know. Pyramyd Air was interested, but the folks who make the gun have no price structure. So PA would compete directly with the manufacturer.

      That is the kiss of death for business.

      B.B.


      • Oh that stinks. I feel that that is a bad idea on the companies part because more people will hear about it and buy it if they see it on a website like PA but if it isn’t then people won’t know it exists. I think PA should still sell it because some people will see it and never even visit the companies website and also PA is BBB a+ rated and has other bonuses like free shipping unlike the company that sells it. I would rather get it from PA for those reasons along with 10 for $10 test even if I didn’t save any money. Do you know what pellets shoot best out of it?


        • Cole,

          While the gun functions perfectly on CO2 (but not on high-pressure air, because I tested it that way, too), it isn’t very accurate. It’s a 10 meter or less gun and expect groups in the 5 to 10-inch range even that close. I tried many different pellets in the test, and noting worked well for accuracy.

          It’s a .22, and you must use pellets that work in the belt. I tried about twice3 as many as worked. Wadcutters seemed to work the best.

          It’s a shame you don’t subscribe to Shotgun News, because I did a big feature article on the gun that would have answered all your questions, I think.

          B.B.


  9. The inaccuracy of these pistols kind of removes them from the game for me. Pellet guns have ruined me for anything that is not very accurate.

    Regarding the debate about the gun rights movement, I think it unfortunate that this subject has become near-toxic. It seems like discussion has reached the point where it is moving the sides apart and entrenching ideas rather than finding common ground. This is doubly unfortunate since I don’t believe the two sides are as far apart as seems. As PeteZ pointed out awhile ago, there are some things that come under the name of “arms” or “weapons” that I don’t believe anyone thinks should be publicly available. They represent too much destructive power that poses too much of an immediate threat to other people living in an interconnected society. Maybe if someone wants to live on a desert island with his radiation bomb that’s up to him, but in a society, that represents an unacceptable threat. By the same token, I don’t believe any reasonable person wants to ban all guns. Nobody has mentioned banning rimfires or bolt actions or revolvers or shotguns or handguns or the vast majority of guns. The debate is really focused on assault-type weapons or whatever you want to call them. It’s true that they are a popular weapon type, and there is a lot of strong feeling. But after all it is just one type among a whole spectrum of different kinds of guns. So, it seems like it would only help everybody if that specific subject could be debated without talking about the end of our society and the elimination of all guns which is not on the table as far as I can tell.

    In response, there is the school of the slippery slope which says that if you give up any right everything will be threatened. And related to that is what Edith mentioned about the need to pursue your beliefs to the full. “Compromise is the language of the devil!” says a preacher in the film Chariots of Fire. I can see that point of view too. Abolitionists were considered fringe lunatics, freaks and seditionists prior to the Civil War, but they were responsible in spite of tremendous opposition, for eliminating a hideous blot on American history. The abolitionis William Loyd Garrison wrote: “but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest – I will not equivocate – I will not excuse – I will not retreat a single inch – AND I WILL BE HEARD.” There is a place for absolutism.

    That would seem to leave us at an impasse about how to talk about an issue where the views are so divergent. I would just offer in addition a distinction between absolute truth and our perception of it. There are things that are absolutely true. Unfortunately, in our fallen state, as the Apostle Paul said, “We see through a glass darkly.” Whatever our intentions are, there’s no guarantee that we might not be wrong in just how the divine truth appears. So, my general response is that the complexity of the world is such it is not common that the absolute truth of something is fully revealed. There’s always another point-of-view and another nuance and it’s generally wise to tread carefully and listen to the other side rather than assuming the worst about them. The genius of Abraham Lincoln, widely considered our greatest president, was in pursuing principles to the limit–even to the sacrifice of his own life really–while adopting just about any method to get there and even evolving his own understanding as he went along–particularly in the case of slavery.

    Matt61


    • Matt61,

      I remain resolute. I shall give no quarter to scare tactics aimed at putting limits on my freedoms based on the acts of others. It is illogical and has been proven to not be effective.

      The slippery slope is real: Germany, UK, Canada, Australia, Japan. I’m sure there are others.

      My parents were twice caught in countries that massacred their own citizens (and anyone else who happened to be there). Imagine how history would be different if guns had been freely available in Germany. For me to say it’s okay to give up some of my rights because someone else is doing something wrong is the most absurd argument anyone could make.

      My mother was not a kind and gentle woman. It wasn’t unusual for me to be physically punished because my brother did something wrong…but he happened to be out of the house at the time the deed was discovered. So, because a violent person shoots up a school, the gun owners who had nothing to do with the onerous act are being punished. Apparently, these people knew my mother.

      Edith


      • Losing the smallest bit of one of your rights shouldn’t be an option. Those rights were given to you by your constitution.
        Like Matt mentionned those who want to strip you of these right use some scare tactics and that is the part I don’t like. I don’t like these tactics and I would have prefered the NRA wouldn’t lower themselves to use those tactics.

        J-F



    • The big issue with all this gun control legislation is simple. My second amendment rights are very clear in what they are and they are not negotiable. If I choose to defend myself and my home with my Hungarian AMD65 (which by the way those have never ever been used in a crime), and I feel the need for an 87 round drum magazine, That right was given to me by those who wrote the constitution. Simple as that. And I reserve the right to use as many shots as I think I need to stop a criminal. Liberal politicians want to steal that right. We will not let them.



  10. Victor, as to your mission to persuade people of the value of a gun range, I wonder if some sort of demonstration would be better than talk. In the film Billy Jack, the recalcitrant municipality is convinced about some issue of integration by a sort of charades act which involves the various members. Might we do something similar by rolling up a little shooting gallery? As another supporting example, rigorous studies have shown that when a fly is painted near the drain of a urinal, there is less of a mess. The urge to aim is intrinsic. And maybe even women can appreciate that if not exactly identify. However, the demonstration part would be kind of difficult…

    Matt61



      • Definitely. They are good sport as well. I have a bug-a-salt gun so to me they are a fun skeet target. I love blasting them out of the air with this gun. I wish Pyramyd air would carry the bug-a-salt gun.


      • /Dave,

        I once took a fly and stuck it dead-center through a hole on a target a shot it at 50 feet. I must have been bored, or irritated by it.

        Victor


        • I can see that. Flies are quite irritating! Love to shoot them, swat them, stomp them, or anything else that I can think of to get rid of them….!


    • Matt61,

      There are many factors involved with the range issue.

      1. Fear of guns. My argument is that there is probably at least one gun per household, so it would be beneficial if there were a place for residents to be educated and trained for safety purposes.

      2. Fear of kids with guns. My argument is that in the context of competitive marksmanship, few sports offer the kind of opportunity for kids to develop sophistication, a sense of responsibility, practice in setting and achieving goals, and high standards for gun safety, among other things. The city is low-income, and few kids go to college. The percentage of kids who actively participated in our program and went to college is very high.

      3. Ignorance of what competitive marksmanship is all about. I tell them that in all the years in which I competed, I never saw any of my 5 guns as “weapons”. Rather, because of the fine nature of their use, I saw them more like musical instruments. I also made the point that women are at least as good as men, so what the program offered was NOT a mindless macho activity.

      4. Money. About 5 years ago, the city started to feel the effects of our economy downturn. Gradually, cuts were being made across the board. A couple years ago, long-time employees were forced into early retirement. But in the past, the range had a history of almost being self-sustaining. Unfortunately, when the staff that I knew retired, so did a lot of the smarts that went with managing and maintaining the range. My coaches use to also do all fixes to the range. It was a very modern range, so lots of the fixes were electrical. They also solicited business from many of the local law enforcement agencies, including the FBI and rapid transit district. Our range also hosted all state and local indoor championships, along with things like weekly club pistol matches. It was a full-time job for the staff, and they worked very hard. Over time, a lot of that effort to solicit and maintain business declined, and the range could no longer argue on that front. Truly high quality people are hard to find.

      5. Environmental fears. I can’t say too much about this because there is still an ongoing law-suit relating to this, but in a nutshell, a range master claimed that he had been made sick because of lead poisoning. Even worse, he created a scandal about this, and claimed that the local residences were living under a hazardous environment because of the range. There are other details which seem to indicate that he had an ulterior motive for this scandal related to his personal finances.

      6. Decisions and Plans. At present, the range and all of it’s assets are still in place. But everything is in a dormant state. The elected officials and city administrators have all heard my arguments. I have their ear so long as I don’t blow it with politics. I’m doing exactly as I was taught by my coaches and mentors. They hear and understand the substance, namely, why the range and marksmanship programs are special and completely positive. I’ve explained the cost of what they have in current dollar terms, and why they would have little hope of starting over from scratch, should they sell everything. In a nutshell, they own a treasure trove that would be the envy of any other range or marksmanship program.

      We are actively, but slowly, communicating about how we might eventually move forward. There are real concerns about the range and it’s location at the basement floor of a recreation building that sits within a residential area. At present, the city is in a state of financial crises, so they don’t have the resources to take any hard actions, which buys time for me. I make suggestions, and they listen and discuss them among themselves. I know this because I get feedback from different individuals. We are all on the same page. They are limited in terms of what they can wrap their heads around because of budget issues, but there does seem to be serious consideration of at least moving forward with some kind of airgun program. They can envision that much. The cost is optimal, and they know they have the space, somewhere. That’s why I keep harping on low cost precision airguns.

      You see, my goal is to keep the city from liquidating their inventory for as long as I can. I’ve seen too many economic downturns to know that everything can turn around. The minute the city liquidates it’s inventory, it’s all over. They have promised me that when the time comes to take some kind of concrete action, they will involve me in some way. Regarding the liquidation, my point to them is that IF they are going to sell everything off, then at least sell it to a worthy organization, like another established junior marksmanship program, of which there is one very good one in southern California. I believe that they own at least 15 Anschutz target rifles, and about 10 Remington 500 series target rifles (I forget the model number). In addition to this, they’ve got everything else you could possibly need for a high-end junior marksmanship program. I’ve also offered to buy their entire Anschutz inventory, and sell it back at my cost, should they decide to reopen.

      Victor


  11. B.B., my groups with the PT-85 look like the photos in today’s blog. I still like to take it outside now that the weather is warmer. ~Ken


  12. Dave
    If you look under Accessories, Miscellaneous, Other you will find the Air Venturi Fly Shooter. I have no idea if it is the same thing but it looks like fun to me.
    G&G



  13. B.B.
    Not sure where to post this question – way off topic I know.

    I’m thinking about getting a Benjamin 392 because of its great reputation. I’ve not read any recent reviews of it. Can I expect the same quality and build of the older 392′s – that I hear such great things about?

    Thanks,
    Jeff


    • Jeff,

      Yes, today’s 392 is just as well-built as the older ones. The trigger is stiffer, but that’s true of a lot of airguns.

      I don’t know what you are looking for, in terms of a recent review. What kinds of things do you want to know?

      B.B.


      • B.B.,

        You answered my main concern. I remember reading that the 392 is made of mostly wood and brass and are very accurate. I was just concerned how some manufacturers change the materials over time to remain functional and to keep costs down, but potentially may not have the longevity of their predecessors of the same model. For instance, my Daisy 880 air rifle from the mid 70′s had a lot more metal parts on it than those of today. Just had a better feel.

        I just want to make sure that a new 392 will last over time (with proper care of course) as the older models. I think what really sold me is hearing reviews about the 392′s purchased in the ’70′s that are still functional and accurate today. That’s impressive.

        Thanks for your help.

        Jeff


      • B.B.

        I do have one more question… I currently have a Daisy 953 I got about 4 years ago and it is my most accurate air rifle – at 10 yards, at least. How does the Benjamin 392 compare in accuracy to the 953 at 10 yards and beyond.

        Jeff


        • Jeff,

          You are asking questions that everybody wilol want to know the answers to, so I am scheduling a full test of the 392.

          I would guess at this point that the 953 will be more accurate at 10 meters than the 392, but not by much.

          B.B.


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