Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 3

Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 3 Part 2 Part 1

Where it all began 22 years ago

By Dennis Adler

I had a fairly calm day for the shooting test and a temperature in the mid 80s. Both CP 88 models (the Compact is in the holster at my waist) functioned perfectly and I was able to shoot an average of eight rotary magazines on one 12 gr. CO2 at optimum velocity. All tests were shot from 10 meters (33 feet) fired off hand as pictured.

I suppose it is fair to ask why I would spend a week reviewing air pistols that are 22 years old, and the answer to that is simple; after 22 years they are still being manufactured, and precious few pellet-firing, multi-shot air pistols are built as well. Newer air pistols can out perform them in terms of capacity, loading system, and blowback action, but when it comes to hands down manufacturing quality very few modern air pistols can touch them. Those of you who have the Walther CP 88 know what I am talking about, and those of you reading this and wondering if you should get one of these old pellet models, are beginning to realize by this third installment, that these late 20th century Umarex Walther models are tangible proof that “new and improved” can be highly overrated. read more


Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 2

Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 2

Where it all began 22 years ago

By Dennis Adler

The Walther CP 88 4-inch Compact and 6-inch Competition (which is the Champion barrel length) models have been around for 22 years, so they are not newcomers to the precision CO2 airgun field, but rather 21st century standard bearers, with a long enough production history to have become somewhat iconic (and if you happen to have a nickel model even rare) in the airgun world. The latest matte black oxide finish on the current CP 88 models has the same great design and can still be fitted with factory optional hardwood checkered grips.

There’s an Old West story I like, and I have probably told it before, but it seems appropriate for the Walther CP 88. It is about a young cowboy who rides into town after getting paid for a cattle drive and decides that in addition to a hot bath, a shave and haircut, he wants to buy himself a new handgun. He goes into the local gun shop, asks the proprietor what he has, and is shown the latest .45 caliber Colt revolver, a Model 1878. “How do you like this? Newest thing out; a double action forty-five” he tells the young man. The cowboy handles the gun, looks at the trigger and turns up his nose. “Ain’t worth a row of beans,” he says, “no man ‘cept a tenderfoot wants that kind of thing? Ye see, a man that’s used to the old style is apt to get fooled, not pull her off in time, and then he’ll be laid out colder’n a wedge.” He hands it back and tells the shop owner, “Give me an old reliable all the time.” A lot of airgun owners can relate to that, “…Ye see these new fangled blowback action pistols don’t always work right, shoot slower, ain’t as accurate and might even wear out. Give me an old reliable all the time.” In the world of CO2 powered, pellet-firing, multi-shot semiautomatic pistols, an “old reliable” happens to be the Walther CP 88. read more


Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 1

Umarex Walther CP 88 Part 1

Where it all began 22 years ago

By Dennis Adler

In 1996, Umarex and Walther began a new chapter in the history of airguns with the innovative CP 88; a 4.5mm pellet-firing, CO2 powered semiautomatic pistol available in two versions based on the 9x19mm P 88 Compact and P 88 Champion (Competition). These latest CO2 models remain identical to the original 1996 versions.

If I were to go back to the very first pellet-firing air pistol I owned I would have to go back to the 1960s when I was in my early teens and had a Marksman MPR, a single shot pellet pistol (it also had a 20-shot spring fed BB magazine making it a repeater, if you call having to pull the slide back to cock it for every shot “repeating”). Pellets, however, had to be inserted individually at the breech. In a lot of ways not much has changed in that respect with single shot pistols and air rifles. The Marksman looked like a Model 1911 and was a good BB/pellet gun for the time, and I have to say, it was also what got me interested in both air pistols and small caliber revolvers and semi-autos. By the time I was in my 20s I was already a collector. I still have the very first .22 caliber rimfire semi-auto I ever owned, an Erma Navy Luger that I bought in 1972. As for the Marksman, it got lost somewhere along the way but amazingly Marksman still manufacturers a version of this same gun, the Model 2002. The MPR was built from 1958 to 1977. More to the point, at least in my case, is that one very interesting or groundbreaking BB or pellet gun can lead to a lifetime of collecting and shooting. In 1996 that happened for many Americans with a company named Walther, (yes that Walther) and an innovative CO2 powered, 8-shot pellet pistol accurately copied from the 9x19mm semiautomatic Walther P 88 model. When it was introduced in 1996, the Walther CP 88 was the first of its kind and the beginning of a new era in air pistol design and manufacturing. read more