Umarex Legends “Ace in the Hole” Part 3

Umarex Legends “Ace in the Hole” Part 3 Part 2 Part 1

Shooting from the hip and aiming with the sights

By Dennis Adler

Aiming the “Ace” with the drop-in front sight puts the shots a little lower on the target so you can really set tight on a six o’clock hold under the bullseye. Of course, for this test using a full-size silhouette target at 21 feet, my aim was dead center on the 10 ring. Trigger pull on the “Ace” is also considerably lighter than the 5-1/2 and 7-1/2 inch Peacemaker models. (And yes, before anyone asks that is a copy of the Charlie Prince jacket worn by Ben Foster in 3:10 to Yuma).

Today we call it instinct combat shooting, or point shooting, a close quarters technique where drawing and presenting the gun is abridged by the need to get off a quick and accurate shot in self defense. It is taught in shooting schools and law enforcement training, and it is one of the skills that that can effectively be practiced with air pistols. I recently completed an article for an upcoming issue of Guns of the Old West using several of the guns pictured in Part 2 of this article and shooting live ammo at 10 feet and 21 feet to hit a full-size silhouette target. With the .44 and .45 caliber cartridge guns I used a modified point shooting technique necessary since two of the guns didn’t even have front sights. Using a cross draw holster similar to the one pictured with the “Ace in the Hole” at 10 feet I was able to hit the upper chest area of the target with all three guns using a technique similar to what is pictured in this article, although I did not fan cock the guns but rather thumb cocked them. This is harder to do with the “Ace in the Hole” due to its fanning hammer design.

In the Old West, most men drew at close range and shot in similar fashion thumb cocking the gun as they brought it up. Those few robust individuals skilled in fanning may even have been faster. Bat Masterson wore his 5-1/2 inch Peacemaker cross draw style but was also a big proponent of using the gun’s sights. (Many who wore their pistol cross draw did so to give the gun better cover and prevent it being taken from behind, not to improve speed or accuracy). The “Ace in the Hole” presents certain advantages to practicing this drawing skill, particularly of you want to fan it. So my first test was a good old fashioned standup cross draw, fan cock and fire, shot at 10 feet from a full size silhouette target. This was followed by a series of aimed shots using the drop-in front blade sight.

Using the high-speed camera I shot several sequences cross drawing the “Ace” from the Chisholm’s Trail Sheriff’s Model holster. I don’t have a shot timer but using the time stamp on the photos, the elapsed time from this shot until I fired the gun was 1.45 seconds. Not quick draw competition fast but fast enough for cross draw and fanning the hammer. The “Ace” actually makes a great quick draw practice gun.
Clearing leather the gun comes up, my finger rests on the side of the triggerguard and my left had is in motion to align with the hammer as I rotate the gun around…

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Handing and Accuracy

Trigger pull on the “Ace” is a very light 1 pound, 12.5 ounces average, with 0.125 inches of take up and 0.125 inches over travel. Unlike the other Peacemaker models the “Ace” has some discernible creep in the take up before the trigger delivers a crisp break. It does not affect accuracy or speed but it is something you can definitely feel in this trigger that you will not experience with the other Peacemaker models. Of course, if you are fanning the hammer, this is barely relevant. Average trigger pull on the 5-1/2 inch and 7-1/2 inch Umarex Peacemaker models is 2 pounds, 6.5 ounces, so trigger pull on the “Ace” is a significant 10 ounces lighter. You can also fan the regular Peacemaker, but not quite as smoothly and with the combination of the hammer and trigger the “Ace” is a much faster gun to shoot.

…as I begin to bring the gun up I am also turning into the target and my hand is on the hammer spur as my finger begins to slip inside the triggerguard.

Even with its shorter 3-1/2 inch barrel (actually 3-1/4 inch internally) the “Ace” averaged 344 fps with 7.0 grain lead wadcutters, which is right up to spec with the manufacturer’s velocity figures for this model, and around 40 fps slower than the 7-1/2 inch Peacemaker.

At this point I have turned into the target, my arm is close to my side, the gun is leveled at the target and my hand is cocking the hammer.
As my hand slides off the hammer I pull the trigger.
It was just hot and humid enough for the CO2 to vaporize as it left the barrel, so you get to see one of those rare wisps of CO2 in this shot. This was my practice set for the actual test which was repeated step by step. There’s more than one way to do this, my style works for me, you may find something that is similar that works better. The CO2 model makes practicing very affordable.

Shooting from 21 feet, aimed shots using a two-handed hold put six rounds at 1.0 inches grouped around the 8 at 12 o’clock. Using a one-handed hold my group opened up to 1.75 inches around the 9 at 11 o’clock. The balance of 12 shots on the target were all fired from a gunfight distance of 10 feet and are a combination of cross draw point shooting with most in the 10 ring, and six fanned shots from the side as shown in the drawing and firing photo sequence with a spread of 5-inches across the target’s center mass including the 10 and X rings. Stepping back to 10 meters the Sheriff’s Model barrel length doesn’t quite measure up to the 5-1/2 and 7-1/2 inch pellet firing Peacemakers, but with aimed shots and a two-handed hold still managed to keep six rounds under 2-inches at 33 feet.

I shot a total of 24 rounds on this target from 10 feet to 21 feet, two sets aimed with the drop-in front sight, one set cross draw single action, and one set fanning. The smaller circle at the 8 is 1.0 inches for six rounds fired aimed and using a two-handed hold at 21 feet. The larger circle is six rounds from 21 feet shot using a one-handed hold as in the opening photo. The spread is 1.75 inches. The widest spread of remaining shots was fanned from 10 feet and measures about 5-inches across the center mass of the target. The tighter set, just above the gun, were cross draw single action point shooting for each shot. This group measures about 3-inches.

This is not a target pistol for sure, but if you consider the “fun” factor of fanning a Colt Single Action, this new Umarex rifled barrel Six-Shooter is definitely your “Ace in the Hole.”

Next week the new Webley MKVI rifled barrel pellet-cartridge firing model goes to the firing line!

15 thoughts on “Umarex Legends “Ace in the Hole” Part 3”

  1. Nice revolver , accurate too . Short barrel revolvers are fast handling and more than accurate enough . The Sheriff/Shopkeeper Colts as well as percussion versions were popular and practical . Hopefully, the Ace will pave the way for standard hammer and nickel versions. Having a second revolver like this gives a rapid reload in the form of another quick 5 shots. It also when carried in a cross draw holster allows quick access with either hand. A welcome addition . Only things I would change if making the revolver from scratch rather than modifying the movie revolver, true Colt barrel and sights, standard hammer, possibly with add on hammer extension, and bright blue and nickel finish options.

    • I can see that happening down the road, only seems logical since 90 percent of the tooling is already in place. Not sure about the hammer extension. One could do a little custom work and make a slip hammer like Colt’s did for some customers, which is similar to the modified hammer on the copy of the Bass Outlaw Colt.

  2. The Ace In The Hole may not be intended as a target pistol, but as you reported, 1″ 6 shot groups at 21 feet using a two handed grip is really good. I shot my Ace In The Hole last weekend using a bench rested two handed grip at 18 feet. I started with a 6 o’clock hold on an orange 2″ shot spot on the bulls eye of NRA 10 meter air pistol targets. Those first shots hit level at 6 o’clock about a half inch to 1 inch to the right. I switched to an aim point at the center of target. After about 18 to 24 shots, my 6 shot groups were more evenly centered. So far my best 6 shot groups were 0.69 inch using RWS Hobby and Supermag pellets. I really like this revolver.

    My new Webley MKVI pellet revolver was delivered yesterday. I just unboxed it this morning. It just seemed appropriate to play the Raiders Of The Lost Ark soundtrack as I opened the box. I got the nickel plated exhibition finish. This revolver is a beauty. The leather Webley holster that I also purchased is also remarkable. This belt holster feels really sturdy. It will take me some time to get used to the flap closure though. The other holsters I’ve purchased are all open top.

    Unfortunately I’m feeling a little peeved with Webley & Scott. Inside the box was a little round warranty note advertising 1 year warranty on air guns and rifles with registration at Then I made the foolish mistake of reading the fine print. “Warranty applies to UK residents only.”

    • Your 0.69 inch groups are excellent. Try shooting from a Weaver stance with the two-handed hold from 15 feet and when you get tight groups, back it up to 21 feet. You should be able to get 1-inch groups with that pistol shooting off hand, and you certainly have proven capable from the bench rest. As for the Webley, it has a Pyramyd Air guarantee and so far I have not heard of any issues with the Webley. It is built like the originals, like a tank.

      • Most of the revolver airguns are built like tanks. Even though they are alloys, Colt was able to build thousands of alloy framed 22 Sa Scouts. ThePeacemakers and certainly the big Webley would make for sturdy and fun 22 lr revolvers. Umarex has done this with ARrifles, 1911 and UZIs . Just saying

        • Oh, you are bad, a .22 LR Webley MKVI? I think that would generate a very long waiting list! Several of the .22 LR models are made by Umarex including the 1911 so lots of potential for more spin offs as market demand increases. The Webley, however, is actually made by Webley, so only Webley could do a .22 LR version. I’m just glad we are finally getting the rifled barrel pellet models now.

          • Was a long wait for the Webley rifled barreled revolvers . Looks like it had been worth the wait . Got the nickel version , and it may not take much arm twisting to add the battlefield finish model

  3. The Webley is a beautiful revolver. To complete your rig , go on eBay and you will find matching repro ammo pouch . Just received mine. They should include 6 extra shells and a speedliader. I already have extra shells and the speedloader from the b version works . So far you can only buy spare shells no loader. Would love to see a bull dog version of the Webley.

    • The Webley Bulldog wasn’t a topbreak, but there were shorter barrel version of the MKVI (and earlier) models, mostly in smaller .38 caliber. They had different grip profiles, too, so that could be a fly in the CO2 ointment, but even a limited edition MKVI with just a short rifled barrel and weathered finish would be nice. Who knows?

  4. Looking at the size of the Nagant, with its’ small grip frame , I could see a Colt Lightning/Thunderer, da/sa airgun as possible. There is certainly demand for more Western airguns. A short barrel Webley would be nice as well .

    • I can see that too, but different manufacturers are involved between the Colts, S&Ws, and the Nagant. The Nagant’s grip design absolutely proves that it can be done. Question is who would do it? Colt and S&W designs are licensed to Umarex; the Nagant is built for ASG. As with everything in the arms making industry, whether guns or airguns, a lot of what gets done and doesn’t get done comes down to tooling costs and market potential. There are a lot of models we would all like to see being made.

        • There were some interesting variations of the Webley topbreak design in .38 and .455 calibers. The “potential” to modify the CO2 model MKVI is there if Webley sees an interest. That can be hard to convey but reader feedback is always a good starting point. It helped bring the rifled barrel pellet models to the U.S. so it does matter.

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