Umarex Throttle air rifle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Throttle
Throttle rifle from Umarex brings a lot of value to the table.

This report covers:

  • General information
  • Weaver bases
  • Differences
  • Description
  • Affordable rifle
  • Easy to cock!
  • Pivot bolt
  • Sights
  • General
  • Trigger
  • Fly on the wall

General information

Before I start today’s report I have a number of things I want to cover. First, I realize I am behind on a number of reports from the 50-yard line. I’ve been unable to get to the range for many weeks for various reasons, and when I did get to go before that, the wind was too high for airgun testing. I want to test the pellet shapes at 50 yards, the .25 caliber Marauder I had tuned, a new AirForce .357 Texan (I have a lot of things to do with that one), and now guns like the Galahad will soon be stacked up.

I have received the adaptors for shooting pellets in my AR-15 and that’s another one I think will have to be done outside because of the noise, though they say the report is quiet. I also got an adaptor to shoot .32 pistol rounds in my Mosin Nagant rifle, which I thought would be a nice addition to that report on adaptors.

Then there’s a question that keeps coming up, no matter how many times I answer it. People don’t understand the difference between Weaver bases and the military standard 1913 Picatinney rail. So here goes.

Weaver bases

Weaver bases are older than the Picatinney rail. They have the same width (0.617-inches) across the dovetail as the Picatinney rail. If there is any difference in dimensions it is so small as to not matter. And yes — despite what some people say, Weaver bases ARE dovetail bases, so calling 11mm airgun bases dovetails, is confusing

Differences

Weaver bases have cross slots that hold a bar on the bottom of a scope ring, to keep it from moving during recoil. I have always believed that these cross slots are 3.5mm wide, but while researching this report I found a Wiki page that claims they are 4.7mm wide. Picatinney rails also have cross slots, but they are 5.23mm wide. Fortunately, a firearm moves in one direction when recoiling, so once the bar hits one side of the cross slot, it will not be able to move farther.
Weaver cross slots have no specification for the location of the slots. Picatinney rail slots are evenly spaced every 0.394-inches, center to center. Let’s look.

Throttle Weaver Picatinney base
The Weaver cross slot at the top is narrower than the Picatinney cross slot, and is not evenly spaced. Weaver bases are simply installed wherever they will fit on a gun.

So, Weaver rings will fit and work in a Picatinney base, but rings made for Picatinney bases may not fit in Weaver bases. I say “may not” because, if the rings were made with crossbars small enough, they would work.

Okay, enough general info. Let’s look at the Umarex Throttle air rifle.

Description

The Umarex Throttle air rifle is a breakbarrel rifle with a gas piston. The spring and piston are built together in a single unit that Umarex calls the ReaXis gas piston. They have turned the piston around so the weight of the part of the unit that moves when the gun fires is kept as low as possible. Weight that doesn’t move is weight that doesn’t have to be damped, which reduces the potential vibration. And, with the Throttle Umarex has done one additional thing. They have installed the first STOPSHOX anti-recoil system that I reported on in Part 2 of the 2016 SHOT Show report. I have been waiting for this product to come to market all year so I could test it and report it for you.

Throttle STOPSHOX
The STOPSHOX device was seen at this year’s SHOT Show, but the Throttle is the first air rifle to have it.

Affordable rifle

I had no idea of what the Throttle would be or cost until now. Justin Biddle, the marketing manager for Umarex USA told me it would be powerful, but he didn’t tell me much more. I think that was because even he did not know all the Throttle would be until the German engineers finished developing it.

What we have is a $200 air rifle that is supposed to send .177 caliber pellets out the spout at 1,200 f.p.s. and .22 caliber pellets will go as fast as 1,000 f.p.s. I have the .22 to test and I’m hoping to find a heavier pellet that’s accurate but limits the velocity to somewhere in the 800s. Not because velocity harm accuracy — we know from testing that it doesn’t. But I don’t need 1,000 f.p.s. from a breakbarrel .22. Of course, the Throttle is a brand new air rifle that might change my thinking.

Easy to cock!

Given the potential power I expected the Throttle to be the bow of Hercules, but it’s not. My calibrated left arm estimates the cocking effort is around 33-36 lbs. I will test that in Part 2.

Pivot bolt

The Throttle has a pivot bolt instead of a plain pin. That means you can adjust the pivot joint to as tight as required to get rid of all slop. Accuracy will only improve with this, and it’s a major concession that Umarex has made to the saavy airgun market.

Throttle pivot bolt
A pivot bolt means you can control how tight the barrel joint is.

Sights

The Throttle comes without open sights and there is no easy way to mount them. But it does come with a 3-9X32 scope that has an adjustable objective. Normally scopes that come bundled with inexpensive air rifles are good for tent pegs and little else, but this one appears different. I looked through it with both eyes and, though it is not marked closer than 20 yards I would say this scope adjusts down to about 8 yards. The image is clear, and I think this might be a fine scope. As in, but the Throttle and all you need are pellets! If so, this will be the first time I’ve seen that happen. It’s almost as though someone at Umarex is reading this blog and knows what airgunners want! But how they do all this at $200 is beyond me!

Yes, the Throttle is made in China. I know that will be plastered all over the forums, if it isn’t already. This time, though, it seems that someone from Germany may have been inspecting what the Chinese produce and have made sure it’s good. We shall see!

Also, the Throttle comes with a Picatinney rail mounted on the rear of the spring tube. So mounting a scope that has Weaver rings will be quick and easy.

Throttle scope rail
A Picatinney scope rail on top of the spring tube makes scope mounting quick and easy.

General

The rifle sits in a black synthetic ambidextrous stock that is shaped well and ribbed for better holding. The pistol grip is both thin, which I like, and also very vertical, which I also like. The pull is 14.5 inches and the rifle weighs 7.5 pounds without the scope mounted. Pyramyd Air shows the weight at 8.3 lbs. which I assume is with the scope mounted.

There are other plastic parts like the end cap that has windows cut in it to show the end of the STOPSHOX anti-recoil device. The triggerguard is cast into the stock, so of course it’s made from the same material, but both the trigger blade and the safety are metal. The buttpad is soft grippy rubber than will hold onto your shoulder well. The only other synthetic part is the large SilenceAir muzzle brake/silencer. Yes, it has baffles. The barreled action metal parts are finished to a semigloss sheen that’s a grade above matte.

Trigger

The Throttle trigger is two-stage and the length of stage one is adjustable. The weight of the trigger pull cannot be adjusted. I did adjust the first stage length already and it works as advertised.

The safety is automatic and does need to be pulled to the rear to release it. I think both of those decisions are mistakes, but pulling the safety off by pulling it toward the trigger is a safety concern.

Fly on the wall

I would love to have been a fly on the wall when Umarex designed the Throttle! This is so much more than an exercise in how cheaply a Chinese factory can manufacture a spring-piston air rifle. Real though has gone into designing and building this rifle. I wonder that it doesn’t carry the Walther name, though I suppose its origins mitigate against that.

I didn’t know what to expect when I opened the box and so far I am impressed. If the Throttler is accurate, Walther may just have given Diana a run for their money!

37 thoughts on “Umarex Throttle air rifle: Part 1

  1. BB,

    Finally! I have been waiting to hear about this thing since your Show report on it. If they can tame the uber magnum gas sproinger slap-you-side-the-head recoil, they will have a real winner. I even like the looks of this thing.

    I do have to also express my concern with the backwards operating safety lever. I guess they did not want anyone confusing one of their air rifles with a Gamo. If I do happen to get one of these, I may have to see if I can fix that.


  2. BB
    Watched the video on the Umarex site, seems to have a bit of torque twist on firing, but then again perhaps all powerful break barrels have it. Only it’s not part of, or covered up with, the recoil action now. StopShox works in both directions too. Almost looked like a CO2 rifle firing. He mentioned 800FPS with .22 lead and up to 1100 with light weights. This will be interesting.
    Please be sure to mention something on the amount of play in the action and if you think it has any affect on the accuracy. Perhaps it’s consistent enough to be negligible.



  3. Gimmicks galore !!! Move over, Gamo .

    Is that adjustable hinge bolt really adjustable, or is it the typical Gamo/crosman/Chinese shoulder bolt with the plastic washers that does NOT really adjust ?

    tt


  4. :BB—Ridgerunner——-The CZ rifles also have a “backwards safety”. For that reason, I never bought any of their otherwise excellent big bore hunting rifles. I chose Mark X, F N Mauser , and savage rifles for my big game bolt action hunting rifles. I have 2 CZ .22 cal rifles ( and 4 Norinco copies), but I want the safety, s on my center fire rifle ,s to work in the same direction. Usually, I do not use a safety while hunting. I hunt with an empty chamber. When hunting in South Africa, my guide had me hunt with a round in the chamber of an uncocked rifle. But there are times when you need to use the safety. That is when I want all of my safety, s to work in the same direction. I think that the ” backwards ” safety was designed by people who learned to shoot with guns that had hammers. Pulling the safety back ( off) is like cocking a hammer. ——-Ed


  5. This will be an interesting one to watch. From the Stop-Shox to the ReaXis piston to the sliding action,… there is a lot coming together. Price and power seems good. Scope is nice,…. even nicer if it works good. Perhaps a tad on the heavy side. 5# trigger pull? I am not even sure what to say to that. I guess some pull weight adjustment might be a good thing. No open sights was quite surprising. I thought that was a standard on rifles at this price point. The option for open sights should be on (all) rifles regardless of price points. The back is easy enough and the front could be a simple hex key screw in post. I like the Piccatinney rail. It looks to be add-on to what looks like an 11mm. 2 options? Pivot bolt,… real or faux on tensioning?

    The single shot shown in the Umerex video looked anything but smooth. Mmmmm? I will say this,… it appears someone is listening to us and attempting to address the needs and wants. Speaking of wants and needs,…. just design the stock with a cheek riser right out the gate and be done with it. The top picture looks like I could achieve a real nice neck weld. Looking forward to future reports.


    • Chris,
      Looking over all the gadget trade mark names it would seem that they decided to spend the money from open sights on their “All Metal LockDown” scope mounting system.


    • Chris, if they are listening, then it’s selective hearing. No open sights!!! PLEASE. They can’t cost much. The gun looks promising, save for the open sights. I’m willing to even pay more for the option of open sights if they are priced right. What I mean by that is I don’t want to pay as much money for Williams quality open sights and get cheap plain plastic sights. Anyway, looking forward to the rest of this review.

      Doc


      • Doc,

        I feel the same on adj. cheek risers. On plastic stocked rifles it would be just a matter of design from the start. A couple of post and some bushings with set screws. Skip the post and use a solid block. Or front and rear dovetails. Any number of things. I think that designers and new shooters just do not know how nice they are and what it adds to the scoped shooting experience. Oh well. I was in Wally World the other day and did see a air rifle with adjustable cheek riser. I was in a hurry and made no note of the make, model or price,…. but it was good to see it showing up more at any rate.


  6. B.B.,

    I hate to be the one to say it,…. but you might want to very seriously consider replacing the top picture. The gun,… despite having a rather “ghostly” look,….. looks like it has been outside in a shed,…. complete with dust and a healthy dose of mold,…. for 20 years.

    It may look good to your eyes and I know that you alter pictures to bring out detail,…. but in this case it did not work.

    Sorry,…. Chris



    • Chris,

      Your description “outside in a shed,…. complete with dust and a healthy dose of mold,…. for 20 years” conjured images in my head of treaure finds: an all-original ’63 Corvette with 150 miles on it, long abandoned under a tarp in a barn . . . a twice fired Sheridan Supergrade in the box with all the paperwork and a pump of air still in the reservoir, right where the first owner put it on a shed’s upper shelf before forgetting about it.

      Sorry, that put me off into a reverie.

      Michael


      • Michael
        You wouldn’t believe all the muscle cars I came across when I was a kid. Never no Corvettes. But all kinds of others.

        Made me think of some good old memories of car finding. Loved that as much as fix’n them up and drive’s em.


  7. Pingback: Umarex Throttle air rifle: Part 1 | Airguns: Air Rifles and Pistols


  8. B.B.,

    First, I have to say I impressed that such a low-priced air rifle includes an AO scope. As long as it doesn’t turn to dust with this powerhouse, Umarex is to be commended for that.

    Also, the innovations in this air rifle are intriguing. It will be interesting to see how well they work.

    Michael


  9. B.B.,

    I admit with a bit of shame that it did not occur to me that you are often held up in your testing schedule by having to go to the range and by the weather.

    At this stage in its growth couldn’t Pyramyd Air buy a lot very near your home and put an air conditioned pole barn up with a 25 yard indoor range? Without considerable extra expense, it would have to be air-gun-only, but just think of how much more efficient your testing routine would be with that setup.

    Michael


  10. Tom, I hope you can provide more info on that ReaXis piston. I’d have thought that a powerful piston gun, be it spring or gas, would need a heavy and fast moving piston, the inertia of which would be capable of generating high pressure.

    May be they got the piston and compression chamber to both move so the inertia cancels out, but there’s plenty of it, a bit like the GISS guns and their opposed pistons?

    Regards ~ Gary


  11. BB

    I am intrigued by this rifle. Love the absence of glow-ee open sights that are useless at 10 meters. Will likely order one in .22 depending on your accuracy tests and your comments about the trigger. I can live with the backwards safety if it requires significantly less force to pull than the trigger. My firearms have many different safety designs. Just need to pay attention to each one.

    Congrats on your new soon to be dedicated range! Nice Christmas present. Merry Christmas to you and all your readers!

    Decksniper


  12. Well I did not win the big contest. 🙁 The names are posted on the P.A. site. Congratulations to those that did win. And,…. a HUGE “hat’s off” to P.A. for offering such a fine contest. 🙂 I hope they keep it up.


  13. BB

    You may want to include a heavy pellet (.17 gr or more) in your test to see if velocity drops steeply. A Utube video warns about this for the .22. Maybe this has been corrected.

    BB


  14. B.B.,

    What are those plastic looking caps that are in the 3rd picture? Close ups at the Umerex site show 2. There is also micro grooves as if something was to mount there. This is the place where rear barrel mounted sites would be. Is this a case of using a barrel off of another model that did have rear sites?

    Chris


  15. Hey B.B. I know this might be the wrong blog to post this on but I’m new to airguns and I just bought a new Walther terrus. Is it necessary to clean the bore? I know some need cleaning and some don’t but is it necessary for the Terrus to get cleaned out of the box?



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