by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- I am impressed
- Kral and I go back
- Adjustable power
- Adjustable trigger
- Dual scope base
- Fills with a probe
- Word on the street
Today I’m starting a test of the new Kral Arms Puncher Pro PCP rifle. This one is serial number 161101 6372, and is in .22 caliber. It also comes in .177 and soon in .25. It has a walnut stock that fits me almost like a glove! The woodwork is dynamite! The one hangup I have is an edge that doesn’t fit at the thumbrest, and if I owned this rifle I would sculpt away some of the wood there.
I am impressed
To quote the 18th century British seaman — I’m impressed! Kral has written on the receiver the fill pressure as 200 bar or 2900 psi. This is the first time I have seen an airgun company get it right! They usually write 200 bar/3000 psi, which is just like calling a BB a 4.5mm projectile, when it’s 4.3mm all day long.
Kral and I go back
I’ve tested other Kral airguns in the past. They were breakbarrel springers and were crudely made. And, they fired when the safety was taken off, so I was asked to destroy them. There is a new crop of Kral spring guns at Pyramyd Air, but it will take some time before the bad taste leaves. Their PCPs, on the other hand, are a different proposition. Now that I have one (several, actually) in hand and can examine them closely, I can see why Pyramyd Air is so excited. The workmanship appears top-drawer, leaving me to wonder if Kral perhaps has two different factories.
Okay, the Kral Puncher Pro is a 12-shot (.22) repeater that retails for $550. Let’s see — are there any other repeating PCPs that sell for about the same money? Hmmm!
Yes, there will be comparisons made between the Kral Puncher Pro and the Benjamin Marauder. And I guess I will be making some of them. It’s hard not to; the Marauder has been the standard for so long. So, let me get started.
The rifle I’m testing is a .22 caliber. It has a slender Turkish walnut stock (there’s a difference) with a finger groove on either side of the forearm. Nobody else offers Turkish walnut on a basic rifle. The bottom of the forearm is deeply stippled, with the logo and name of the rifle in high relief. The pistol grip has a deep thumb groove that feels wonderful to me. The woodwork is flawless. On a premium European PCP, this stock would add at least $200 to the price.
The rifle weighs 8.6 lbs. Overall length is 41.3-inches, which isn’t long for a full rifle. The barrel is 22.8-inches long. The length of pull is 13-3/4-inches. The action is a bolt and the magazine is spring-loaded to advance to the next pellet (there’s a similarity).
A knob on the right side of the receiver allows the shooter to adjust power. The knob on the test rifle is hard to turn and doesn’t have detents. There are power markings on the left side of the receiver. I will test several settings in the velocity test.
The trigger is 2-stage and adjustable. After reading the manual I have no clue exactly what adjusts, but I will look into it for you.
Speaking of the manual, it’s written in broken English, but it’s also very comprehensive and even thoughtful. For instance, they tell you what pellet was used to test velocity of the .177 version. They also include several pages of an illustrated parts breakdown that hobbyists will enjoy.
And they sent a test report with the manual that is serial-numbered to this rifle. It has a graphic (not a picture) of the test target and 6 shots with the velocities. It shows 6 shots in a 4mm center-to-center group at 10 meters. That’s pretty good news, I think.
Brass female screw threads in the forearm are there for a bipod. I will try to find out what fits.
Dual scope base
Of course the rifle needs some kind of optical sight (a scope), so the top of the receiver is dovetailed. But on this rifle there are dovetails for both 11mm and Weaver scope ring bases. Either one will fit. The receiver is divided for the magazine that sits proud, so 2-piece rings are a must.
The rifle comes with two 12-shot magazines and a single-shot tray! Those things are options with most PCPs.
Fills with a probe
On the negative side, the rifle fills with a probe. A probe is quick, but if it is proprietary like this one, you need to change your fill hose each time you fill. I wish companies would just standardize on the Foster fitting that is so fast and easy to use!
Word on the street
So far the Kral PCPs are getting great ratings. Pyramyd Air can’t keep them in stock, and when you consider the huge price differential between this rifle and the top end European airguns that offer equivalent features, the reason should be clear. The .22 caliber gun appears to be the one to get. So for once I’m testing a rifle the public wants.
I see a lot to like in this rifle, and if the reviews of the Kral PCPs are any indication, it’s a good one. This will be an interesting test.