Testing the Umarex HK P30 Part 1

Testing the Umarex HK P30 Part 1 Part 2

A perfect Heckler & Koch full-sized training gun

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By Dennis Adler

For proficiency training or to get a feel for handling the 9mm model, The Umarex HK P30 CO2 powered version delivers outstanding performance with a 3.35 inch rifled steel barrel. The airgun also fits holsters made for the 9mm P30 like this Blackhawk SERPA Autolock.

Heckler & Koch has always catered to a variety of end users from civilians to military and law enforcement by tailoring certain models in multiple variants, like its P30 Series which is offered in V1, V2 and V3 configurations. Adding to that selection is the new H&K licensed Umarex HK P30 CO2 model. This latest 4.5mm pellet firing semi-auto has its roots firmly planted in the first Umarex 4.5mm CO2 pistol to be adopted as a training gun, the Walther CP99. The HK model is quite a bit more advanced in its design, finish, and operating features, but at its core is the same superbly engineered internal mechanism that has made the CP99 a success for more than 16 years.

Only the left side slide release operates, the right side is cosmetic, but accurate. The HK P30 manual safety built into the back of the slide pushes from right to left to place the pistol in the FIRE mode. It operates the same on the CO2 version shown.

There are a variety of cartridge-firing HK P30 variations. As categorized by HK they include V1, an enhanced DAO with light trigger pull also designated as the LEM (Law Enforcement Modification). As required by some law enforcement organizations, a light trigger is not approved, thus HK has the V2 LEM with enhanced DAO and standard weight trigger pull. Last there is the V3, a traditional double action/single action (DA/SA) model with a hammer spur for manual cocking, and a manual decocker. This is the version duplicated by the Umarex HK P30 air pistol, which uses an 8-shot cast alloy rotary magazine loaded at the breech. Another feature shared by the 9mm and CO2 models is an ambidextrous magazine release integrated into the bottom of the triggerguard (like the original Walther P99 and CP99).

About the Gun

The Umarex HK P30 airgun is the full size V3 variation of Heckler & Koch’s P30 Series introduced in mid 2007. The CO2 model has the same style V3 trigger design, manual safety and decocker as the 9mm. The 9mm P30 model has an overall length of 6.99 inches, a width of 1.37 inches, and height of 5.43 inches. The CO2 version also measures 6.99 inches in length, comes in at 1.25 inches in width, 5.5 inches in height (base of magazine to top of rear sight) and weighs 28 ounces empty, roughly 5-ounces more than the 9mm model.

A polymer frame and metal slide contribute to nearly identical weight and balance. The dustcover rail accepts tactical light and light/laser accessories like this Crimson Trace Rail Master Pro.

Made in Germany, the airgun uses a polymer frame like the 9mm model, with the balance of the components; slide, hammer, trigger, slide release and decocker, all metal with a black matte finish; the same as the 9mm P30. The airgun also has a full length Picatinny rail to mount a weapon light or light/laser combination for enhanced training exercises. For this review it has been equipped with a Crimson Trace Rail Master Pro.

In one mode of operation the Umarex HK P30 fires an 8-shot rotary pellet magazine.

Another interesting feature of the Umarex HK P30 is the magazine, which can also be used to load 15 steel BBs. Used in conjunction with a BB adapter (in place of the rotary magazine), the P30 becomes a non-blowback action semi-auto BB pistol with a rifled barrel.

The best of both worlds is available to Umarex HK P30 owners who have the option to fire either lead pellets or steel BBs from the same rifled barrel pistol. A special BB insert (shown in position) is used in place of the rotary pellet magazine to channel BBs into the barrel.

The one drawback to the Umarex HK P30 not having a blowback action is that you either have to fire every shot double action, or manually cock the hammer to shoot single action. This is the same situation with the Umarex Beretta 92FS and Walther CP88 DA/SA pellet models.

Saturday’s shooting tests for both BBs and pellets will be done from a combat distance of 21 feet.

A word about safety

Models like the new Umarex HK P30 provide the look, feel and operation of their cartridge-firing counterparts. All arguns, in general, look like guns, but those based on real cartridge-firing models even more so. It is important to remember that the vast majority of people can’t tell an airgun from a cartridge gun. Never brandish an airgun in public. Always, and I can never stress this enough, always treat an airgun as you would a cartridge gun. The same manual of operation and safety should always apply.

22 thoughts on “Testing the Umarex HK P30 Part 1”

  1. The safety and its unconventional location, coupled with the pistols inherent chunkiness are a couple of reasons I feel these pistols will never apeal to the mass’s. But HK has never been one to embrace the mainstream.

    • H&K, as you said, has never been a conformist when it comes to design. The P30 is nonetheless a well thought out pistol. It takes a different approach to some aspects of operation, like the safety, and then more traditional features like the ambidextrous magazine releases in the base of the triggerguard, which dates back to the late 1990s and the Walther P99. If you look at current European pistol designs, like the Walther Creed and PPQ M2, there are some similarities in design, what you refer to as “chunkiness,” but this is a trend in military and law enforcement handgun designs. In that context, the P30 is exactly what Heckler & Koch would have built.

      • There are the cliques in airgun shooting just as in firearms. Those like me who like classic designs, the steel canvas of the past, and those who look at firearms as utilitarian tools , hammers that shoot. Those are the striker fired , or da polymer pistols not designed for one handed duelist shooting , but two handed combat shooting pure and simple. I have spent my shooting life with da Colt and Smith and Wesson revolvers, Colt Peacemakers, classic pistols like the 1911, Walther P38 ,Ppk, Browning High Power,Colt 1903 ,1908. I am set in my opinions ,find grapefruit gripped polymer pistols an abomination, and will probably never own one. My handguns are for , sport and self defense. I don’t carry a pistol as a LEO ,or I might have a different outlook. At the end of the day none of my handguns have let me down ,and I see no reason to change. That’s my story and I am sticking to it

  2. The next step in the evolution of this type of pistol is an integral co2 , pellet feeding magazine and full blowback function. The upcoming Sig 320 with belt fed mag is one approach, but you lose the ability to rapidly replace the spent co2 ,which will be out of synch with the ammo supply. If you carry an H&K, this will be a viable understudy, just not ideal, and as I have said , I am not a fan of the dated rotary mag pistols.

  3. I agree, the lack of blow back action is really going to limit its marketability. The fact that they included a rifled barrel makes me feel that pellet firing should have been the priority instead of what seems to be an after thought.

  4. I guess what I’m so clumsily trying to say is that HK aficionados like what they like no matter the cost. Umarex should have realized this, and provided a full feature pistol instead of repurposing an existing platform that will leave HK fans and anyone else who purchases this gun yearning for more.

    • You have to take into account nearly 20 years of successful and continuing sales of the design platform through the Umarex Walther CP99. It was intended to be a training gun, as is the HK P30, and for the most part it fulfils that role. When something has been working, and working well, for nearly two decades, it is hard to argue with the fundamentals of the design. The Umarex P30 CO2 model is an HK spin on the CP99 platform with a few upgrades. It will find its niche with consumers just as have the CP99 and CP88.

      • This Umarex HK P30 pellet / BB pistol is not new. It’s been out for a few years now. I bought mine about 3 years ago. Was the P30 CO2 pistol released by Umarex in 2007? Or was that the HK P30 firearm series?

        • According to the latest Blue Book of Airguns the Umarex-built and Heckler & Koch licensed HK P30 was first introduced in 2009, but has recently seen a big marketing push by Umarex, which is why I am reviewing it. I try to refrain from using “new” in a review unless it is really “new” like the 1875 Remington revolver, but I said new in reference to the P30. From my perspective it is new but only in a comparative sense to models like the CP99 and CP88 which have been around since 1999 and 1996, respectively. So, you’re right, not so new, just a new topic.

    • I love MGs! What do you have? I always wanted an MGA but back when they were new I could never afford one. I did make the mistake of owning a Fiat X1/9. Pretty, but dreadful car. Maybe we should swich the topic to British and Italian airguns?

  5. I have an 81 MGB, yellow just like in the ad for that year. Nothing special rubber bumpers “ugh” but at least I don’t need a degree in electrical engineering “positive ground, and driving in the wrong side of the road only in England”.

    • No, the Fiat X 1/9 body was designed by Bertone, Pininfarina designed the Fiat 124 Spider, which was the more expensive and better looking of the two. I actually knew Sergio Pininfarina for over 20 years and he was a brilliant designer. Here’s another little tidbit, Giorgetto Giugiaro (Italdesign) not only created many legendary Italian and American automobile designs, but the styling for the Beretta Neos semi-auto pistol and Beretta CX4 Storm, the latter of which is also an airgun model; so oddly enough, we have come full circle and are back on topic!

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