by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
This report covers:
- Ballbearing detent
- Picatinny rail
- Scope included
- Open sights
- Where is it made?
- Many good things
Today we begin looking at an air rifle I have been waiting to review since first seeing it at this year’s SHOT Show. Every SHOT Show has dramatic new products that all writers scramble to review. Then there are the quiet new products that don’t seem to attract as much attention. But some things I am always looking for fall into this quiet group, and the Forge from Umarex is one such gun.
The Forge is a different breakbarrel. For starters, although it develops an advertised 1,250 f.p.s. with lead-free pellets, it’s relatively easy to cock! Of course I will measure the effort in Part 2, but I’m estimating something around the specified 30 lbs. For a gas piston, that is remarkable! Easy cocking is one thing I am always looking for.
At present the Forge comes only in .177 caliber.
Ball bearing detent
The breech is held shut by a ball bearing. It’s got a powerful return spring, so you do have to slap the muzzle to open the breech, but it closes smooth and easy.
The breech is held shut by a ball bearing.
Pyramyd Air shows the Forge as a 1,050 f.p.s. rifle, while the box states 1,250 with lead-free pellets. I guess I will have to sort that out for you in the velocity test. Really, with this kind of power available, I’m more interested in what it will do with heavier lead pellets.
Then there is the all-wood stock. Yes, at a retail price of $150 the Forge has a wood stock, and it’s not what you typically see on a rifle at this price. Typically a wood stock on a $150 rifle is smooth and has an opaque finish over some nondescript hardwood. The Forge stock is dark beech with some grain showing, and the forearm is a semi-beavertail (flares out). There are panels of sharp checkering on both sides of the forearm and pistol grip. This stock has some shape to it, and it feels nice when shouldered.
The Forge weighs 7.8 lbs., according to the specs. The rifle I am testing weighs 7 lbs. 10 oz., which is close to the advertised weight. The overall length is 44-5/8-inches long. Those dimensions make the Forge a large air rifle, but not a heavy one.
A full-length Picatinny rail that runs along the top of the spring tube. Actually the spring tube sits inside what Umarex calls the Nucleus Rail System. This will make mounting a scope much easier because these days Weaver rings (that fit a Picatinny base) are very common.
The rifle is sold as a combo, so a 4X32 scope is included with the package. It may not be the last word in optical sights, but it comes bundled with the rifle, so you have a head start on scoping your new airgun.
The Forge also comes with adjustable open sights! That’s another thing I look for in an inexpensive air rifle. And these sights appear to adjust very precisely. They do have fiberoptics on both front and rear, but the profile of the front blade is square, so with the right lighting (to kill the glow from the fiberoptics) I think I will be able to do some good work. We will find out in the first accuracy test. Open sights are another thing I want on an inexpensive air rifle.
The rear sight is precisely adjustable.
The 2-stage trigger has an adjustment for the length of the first stage, but nothing for the pull weight. I will test the pull for you in part 2 and report on the trigger in greater detail in the accuracy tests.
The safety is automatic, unfortunately. But it is easy to release by pushing the lever forward, so it’s not a big distraction.
The gas piston in the Forge is something called Turbo Nitrogen Technology, or TNT for short. The name tells me they used nitrogen (instead of plain air) to pressurize the gas-spring piston unit and that’s what reduced the cocking effort.
There is a lot of synthetic material on the outside of the Forge. Besides the scope base rail that encloses the spring tube, the barrel ends in a huge synthetic muzzle brake that’s an easy grip for cocking. I looked inside the brake and I think I can see baffles. The sights are mostly synthetic and the triggerguard is, as well. The trigger blade is metal however.
I think the synthetics on the Forge are well done and suit the rifle very well. But I know there are some who will not tolerate any plastic on an airgun, so I’m telling you what’s there.
The buttpad is the strangest one I’ve ever seen. It is triangular in shape and occupies a significant portion of the rear of the stock. It’s covered with thin rubber that’s very grippy, so it accomplishes everything we want from a buttpad. And I think it looks sharp!
Where is it made?
To come in at this price the Forge has to be made in China. That used to be the kiss of death for an airgun, but in recent times airgun importers have learned that price doesn’t sell guns by itself. They have to work o0r they will tank. I won’t cut the Forge any slack in the test, but on first examination it appears someone who knows the market has had a hand with this development.
Many good things
The Forge has a lot going for it. The price is great; it has adjustable sights; the power is good; cocking is easy and the feel and aesthetics of the rifle are very stylish and nice. It looks and feels like a lot more than the retail price. There is just one more thing this rifle needs.
If it also turns out to be accurate, I think Umarex will have knocked it out of the park! I’m rooting for it!
78 thoughts on “Umarex Forge combo: Part 1”
Your summary under Many Good Things has me interested in this rifle. Let’s hope that it is accurate.
Is the two toned appearance of the stock in the opening picture an aspect of the lighting? If not, the appearance of the stock is unique.
Yep, that’s just lighting.
Could it be true? You stated that the safety lever is pushed forward to release it, unlike most other Umarex safety levers. Are they listening? Now if we could just get them to forget about glowy thingy sights…
This rifle really looks good for the money. I would like to know if the cutouts in the Nucleus Integrated Rail Platform are exposing the actual gas piston assembly or the cylinder that contains the gas piston like a normal set up. Descriptions are a bit vague.
In other words, is that a forged housing, with a rail, that replaces the cylinder that normally contained the spring piston assembly or new gas piston?
If it is then is it safe to assume the barrel is attached to the forging with a pivot bolt or is it just a regular brake barrel set up slid into the forging?
Seems like shock system installed behind it would make it operate like a small piece of artillery eliminating the need for the artillery hold ?
No. The cutouts expose the outside of the spring tube.
Don’t know about the barrel attachment yet. Have to remove the stock to see it.
We will see how the Forge likes to be held.
Looks like the stock from the Ruger Impact. That airgun is one Walmart always shows on the website. The stock looks great. The Impact is only available in .22 caliber.
I should have said that the Ruger Impact is a spring piston model.
In a Umarex video that I believe was filmed at SHOT or one of the other major gun shows, the presenter explains that they have “forged” a connection between the wood stock and the dissimilar polymer rail system, “hence the name” as he puts it. Kinda lame, IMO.
Figured it out ……Reread your description and watched a u tube on it, must be tired or something, the rail top is not metal at all so it is the piston tube showing through, not the piston. Perhaps the name Forge threw me off ?
Must be a tight fit in there to keep a scope accurate.
Who said it was accurate?
I see what you mean. We have not determined the accuracy of the rifle yet and the scope that comes with it may be looked at by some as nothing more than a basic alternative for those with a visual impairment unable to use open sights effectively. Useful and adiquet for the job but not outstanding.
It was just an offhand statement that if any scope were used with this rifle the piston tube would probably have to be tight in the rifle to get any accuracy. However in hind sight both it and the upper rail cover would both have to tight in the stock to stay in alignment.
Interesting. Wonder where they are going with it exsposed. Maybe to lube the piston with a little RWS silicone oil. Maybe a better way to lube the piston seal than in through the transfer port hole where dieseling or detonation can happen. Lube behind the compression seal and there should be not as much chance for that to happen.
Maybe the designers are starting to listen. But repeatable quality and shooting results will tell the story.
For some reason early on I thought the rifle was some new breakthrough that replaced the spring tube with a railed metal receiver that contained a gas piston and it was exposed for dramatic reasons. I think I was fanaticizing while reading.
To be honest I think the openings are just a cosmetic thing dramatizing the fact that the spring tube is fully enclosed, with a little hint of an ejection port.
Are you talking about that area under the scope rings in the main tube?
I wish I had one in hand just to see.
Sorry for a delay I don’t use my phone with this blog, bad reception, I just check my laptop every once in a while.
Yes I was talking about those two openings. Also looks like the railed top goes deep into the stock looking at pictures on the PA site. That also misled me.
The nitrogen piston is not exposed. Its the tube the piston rides in. Don’t believe there are any openings in it, just the railed cover.
It’s ok on the response.
And ok I see what you mean now.
It looks like a big plastic peice that fits over the air tube and those are just cut outs.
If that is plastic that the scope rings will mount on. It will get tore up. Almost every spring or nitro piston gun I had that was on the upper power end will knock the rings back. Not a good combination.
Good point but a good long UTG slim metal riser, a multi screw one piece scope mount or better yet the new Bullseye ZR shock absorbing mount might take care of that possibility.
Probable some space age polymer that may stand up anyway?
I had a Tech Force M8. It’s not even a magnum gun.
I walked my Tasco red dot right of the back of the dovetail and smash d the back plastic end cap amost off. I didn’t notice till the safety started binding.
I ended up drilling and tapping a hole in the tube in front of where the plastic end cap was and putting a set crew in for a stop.
And don’t know if you remember when Crosman came out with the nitro piston 2’s that the picatinny rail was breaking the welds and the scope and rails were falling off.
Alot more force is going on with a spring or nitro piston gun than you can imagine.
And I just really can’t see some body buying the ZR mount for a $149 gun.
Anyway it’s just all speculation right now. But maybe not something that would be thought of when buying this type of guns.
Your right on top of things for sure. Light weight pellets probably just add to the problem too. I wont use them in high powered break barrel airguns on a regular basis.
Dovetails are notorious for letting scopes slide. Don’t think they will come on high powered airguns much longer. Time will tell.
Dove tails ain’t bad as long as there is a hole for a stop pin or set to go in from the scope rings.
But the whole thing about the Crosman guns is that it broke the welds that held the picatinny rail to the guns main tube.
Like I said alot of force going on there with recoil.
I alway thought that from cheap, accurate, nice trigger; pick 2. Hope I am wrong on this one.
I assume that you could put a weaker spring in the ball bearing detent to make it less “slap happy”. Hurts my hand after awhile.
Any idea what the stroke of the TNT is? I guess they can be made much shorter than springs(for the same power).
The whole gas strut got me thinking, alway dangerous! Has anybody ever made a rearward firing piston?
I would think you could make a double decker, underneath a rear ward firing receiver and then the barrel on top.
Could make on interesting underlever cocking bull pump. Could the transfer port difficulties be gotten around?
Man I wish I had an office to go into and just think….
PS Why do manufactures flirt with the sound barrier? For us suburban plinkers, that crack is a MAJOR annoyance. On one hand they advertise super sonic speeds and then they try and sell us barrel shrouded noise suppressing devices?????
Webley air pistols and their original air rifles have rearward traveling pistons. The issue is with sproingers you have a limited volume of air at a limited pressure. Such a configuration requires a long transfer port that also has multiple angles which will limit the power. There is no getting around the Laws of Physics.
Here is BB’s Webley.
As for flirting with the sound barrier, that is what they think we want. Reality is the only way to get there is using super light pellets which tend to be very inaccurate. None of my sproingers have suppressors on them and I do not have an issue with supersonic cracks. The rifle itself makes most of the noise.
Too many questions! 😉
The Beeman P1 piston comes backward.
The sound barrier sells airguns. And we learned in 2011 that it doesn’t affect accuracy.
I’m getting old. Remind me of what your talking about.
This 11-part test showed that the sound barrier isn’t an accuracy problem.
Oh yeah. Harmonics.
I like your idea…
Mounting the barrel on top of the spring chamber instead of at the end of it would knock a foot off of the length of the rifle. The transfer port and breech could be the same as seen on a lot of PCPs.
Fixed barrel and under-lever would be nice but barrel cocking with the pivot point at the muzzle would work as well.
Like I told Yogi, the transfer port will kill the power.
The transfer port could be changed to accommodate the design.
I had the idea the other day to drop the compression chamber below the barrel,.. add a 90/90 transfer port like on PCPs,.. and then use the top portion, behind the barrel, to incorporate a magazine like the M-rod uses. I did add a long bolt to the idea to advance the pellet into the breech. That would get away from the Swarm design. Since the upper “breech” portion would only house the long bolt, it could be made of lighter plastic. Sure, it is an extra step,… but is a self contained repeater design. I think that the concept has some merit any way’s.
Some interesting thoughts.
It would be awesome if we had the time, equipment and money to convert our ideas into the physical item eh.
… in the mean time, speculating is fun!
Happy Wednesday to you!
Well guys I got one as soon as they were avaiable……..I just can’t get past how hard the trigger pull is…..Bought a project I guess……Trigger needs help
I see it get talked about each time an air gun has fiberoptics or as Ridgerunner calls them, “glowy thingy”. There is a simple cure for them that is to paint the end you look at with a sharpie. I would think that most people already have one packed with their range supplies.
The Forge has some nice features for the price, will be interesting to see how accurate it is.
If it can develop that kind of power with a reasonable cocking force it might make a good “hunter” though I would much prefer to trade some of that velocity for a .22 caliber version.
Why do you believe nitrogen in the gas piston would reduce cocking effort? Air is 78% nitrogen, so I am wondering how much difference that last 22% percent makes and why.
I don’t believe; I know. Nitrogen is well-known for reducing the compression effort required for gas springs. In the 1990s Beeman offered it in their Crow Magnum as “wonder gas.” And look at what Crosman used — nitrogen.
Of course it’s also dry, which has benefits too, but ease of cocking is the number one reason it’s used.
What is the reduction if the pressure in the piston is maintained at the same psi and the same volume?
Ask a chemist. I don’t know. I only know that it is.
So then you have tested a ram filled to the same pressure with both gasses?
I am just trying to figure out how you know this. It sounds like you have heard marketing claims, and seen reduced cocking effort that could have been the result of anything as far as you know.
I know it because I have tested numerous gas piston airguns, but filled with air and with nitrogen. And I have talked to Ben Taylor (Theoben), Davis Schwesinger (Air Rifle Specialists) and Tom Gore (Vortek) who all told me that nitrogen reduces the cocking force. I believed them.
N2 is also effected less. PSI Wise to temperature change.
Wow. That’s a great looking rifle. Love the shape of the stock. Not excited about having to slap the muzzle to open the breech. That gets old in a hurry and is a draw back for me. It seems it would be best in 22 cal. with all that velocity. The scope base is plastic? argh….ugh. It will be an interesting report though.
Yesterday I posted about Rick Eutsler at airgunweb.com. I’m sure most of you are familiar with his reviews. In any case, no one commented about my post so I am going to re-post it here again today. Rick is a victim of the Affordable Care Act and his family could really use some help with medical bills.
BTW, I am sure many of the folks here in the forum have been to airgunweb.com and watched Rick Eutsler’s reviews. Rick has had some medical issues and ended up in ER with no medical insurance coverage. A “Gofundme” page has been set up for anyone wishing to help Rick out with these exorbitant hospital costs. I think we as airgun people should help Rick out if possible. Here is the link to his story and the page: https://www.gofundme.com/rick-eutsler
I sent you a reply before coming to today’s blog. No need to tell me Rick’s story now that I know it,s on gofundme.
Have a good morning!
Yeah, it’s a pretty sad story too and I think too many people may be getting caught in this snare. Why can’t the politicians get this health care thing figured out? I think we should fire the whole bunch of them!
I don’t really understand the Affordable Care Act very well because I have always had good coverage as part of the many contracts that my union negotiated with my company for. In a few years I will be faced with Government Insurance in the form of Medicare. Not looking forward to that Circus.
You are fortunate to be working for company with a strong union. I was a union organizer years ago and tried several times to get a union into our plant but the vote never passed. I had very good insurance there when I started but as time passed the deductibles got bigger and the coverage was less. It makes me cringe when I hear the government talking about vouchers. I know how that works because our company began a voucher (credits) system in 1986 when they made the decision to become self insured. From 1986 until 2011, when I retired, those credits never got any larger but the premiums sure did. So every year our cost of insurance went up and the amount they allowed to purchase it stayed the same. Great program for the company…not so much for the employees.
Now that I am on Medicare I purchased a Medicare Advantage Plan. I have dental and vision and my costs are actually much less for medical than when I was still working. My advantage program is through Priority Health and for extra dental visits, hearing, and vision, my cost is $32 a month. If the Republicans don’t muck it up, you will be fine on Medicare. Everyone’s situation is different though and if one has a lot of chronic health issues, the choices would be different.
I’m even more fortunate to be RETIRED already from a company with a strong union ! My costs went up like everyone’s did over time, but the union at least gave us a voice and minimized those cost increases or traded them for benefits in other areas. I’m sure it would have been much worse without them. Maybe I’ll seek out your advice when the time comes to make Medicare decisions. (still over 3 years down the road)
I made a donation to Rick’s fund and thanks again for the heads up.
Speaking of heads up, you should look at PA’s review of the Diana “Stormrider” PCP if you haven’t already. After seeing Tyler’s accuracy results I think I now want to see BB review it instead of the QB Chief ! Or both! ( hint hint, again)
Just finished watching Tyler’s review video. Wow! An entry level PCP with a multi-shot mag and exceptional accuracy for $199. It looks very promising and I will be watching for more reviews on it. It is a Chinese rifle, as is the QB Chief, so quality may be questionable. On airgun nation, in Steve’s review of the QB Chief he said that the bolt and breech were as rough as a porcupine’s butt and the bolt was sloppy. But those things did not affect it’s accuracy. Maybe the Stormrider will have better fit and finish. The 7-shot mag in .22 caliber makes it a standout in this price range. I wonder if it would be difficult to fill with a hand pump being that it is a 230 bar fill? The shot curve was not the best over 25 shots.
I think Tyler says it should be hand pump friendly owing to the 100 cc air tank. Also why the curve is so curved. The JSBs were shot in two consecutive strings starting at about 180 bar with no refill.
I just received mine and it is a very nice rifle for the price, wood looks good and fits well. Will break in with the fiber optic sights. I have said it before , but one more time. Would like to see rifles sold with out scope or with bundles that offer high quality scopes
This looks like one heckuva air rifle for the money.
And it comes with a picatinny rail! Yay Umarex! These days air rifles, especially springers, should have rails as standard equipment. And this also has iron sights. Gotta love that.
Which reminds me, rifle and scope packages should always include an AO scope. Either that or just don’t include a scope and lower the price accordingly.
Is the scope AO?
No, it’s not. AO is usually found on scopes with more magnification, so the target can be seen more clearly.
At this price, I suppose that would be too much to ask for.
I very much hope this one shoots well and is accurate. If so, it would present remarkable value.
It appears to me that the primary target market for the Umarex Forge is a first time airgun buyer. A firearm owner that needs an inexpensive solution to be able to shoot in his/her backyard, maybe he/she has a pest problem. A father that wants to buy his boy an airgun to learn how to shoot, etc.
Umarex has done all the right things to increase the odds of the Forge being a marketing success:
It has a traditional look
It has a wood stock with checkering
It has an advertised velocity of 1,250 FPS!! (you can’t do this in .22 caliber so the gun has to be .177)
It has open sights
It comes with a scope!! A combo package!
The trigger is adjustable
It has an automatic safety
It has a noise dampener
It has TNT (Turbo Nitrogen Technology gas piston)!!!!!!!!!!
All this for a price of $149.95
This is a first time airgun buyer contender for sure.
All the posters on this blog are well beyond this “first time buyer” point in their airgunning experience. This is why the chorus will complain about caliber, included scope, unknown accuracy, plastic, etc. Your points are valid, from your seasoned perspective, but it’s also important to understand the target market for an airgun, its’ pricepoint and then temper criticism from that perspective.
Well said. I remember contributing to the blog years ago saying just about the same thing and I believe it accidently went to junk but was retrieved.
A basic simple tactical looking air rifle received a lot of what I considered unwarranted criticism from those who have moved on to finer airguns. Made note that this blog is on a web sight that sells airguns of all types to all types of air gunners . Some where along the way Edith enlightened us all and made it clear, everything has a place.
If it will stay together. I’m thinking there is plastic in the wrong places already.
But yep very true. Pretty much what a first time air gunner would buy.
Does it have screws to tighten the breech block if tightening is needed?
I already answered this. I have to remove the stock to see.
Ok I see up above where you said barrel attachment.
Anyway if there is screws or bolts there. Then maybe this gun does have a chance at being accurate.
But then again how accurate should a gun like this be and at what distance.
For this money I would like to see 10 in an inch at 25 yards.
Sounds respectable if it will do it.
I know this will never happen. Bt I would like to see the results of more than one of the same guns you get to test.
I really would like to know if the higher cost German and English guns and so on higher quality guns perform with repeatable results. And what the other China based guns and so on can do from one gun to the next.
Like I said probably would never happen.
Hm. That adjustable rear sight looks remarkably similar to the rear sight on my B30 that broke after a very short time. Still, the rifle deserves a fair test. I’m eager to see how they made the cocking effort so easy. Perhaps they incorporated my idea of a counterwound spring on the cocking mechanism of my Gladius spring rifle…
Hank, I saw your offer of targets. Thanks. With so few variables to work with, I’m definitely up for new targets. You can contact my at firstname.lastname@example.org. To continue my research into the reticle/target interface, I’m warming to the idea of painting a square with a one inch black border that will inscribe a circular target the size of the bull on the official NRA target. This should work much better for my Garand post sight than the bull. I continue to wonder at the logic of the post sight. Since it was intended for combat, that’s how it should be judged. But if you are firing quick shots, you would seem to be better off with the triangle sight of the Mauser or even the thin post of the Enfield which seem to concentrate the vision on the aiming point. What do you get out of a broad post? I suppose you get a simple sight picture by using the post to divide the target in half for a center of mass shot, but that doesn’t seem consistent with any precision…
I saw Dunkirk and was not overly impressed, but there were great shots of the period gear which was what I was interested in. In particular, there is a prominent scene with a rimjam in an Enfield rifle. But I think that gives the rifle a bad rap. Provided one loads the rifle properly, especially by not forcing the 10th round into the magazine, you shouldn’t have this problem.
My RWS 34P was delivered this afternoon at 3:30 PM 7/25/17. It was scheduled to be delivered on 7/22/17 but I just missed the FedEx guy by a few minutes so I had to wait until today.
I took a picture of the BKL scope mount. The rifle must have been jarred around a lot because the back ring appears to be slanting backwards. It is not loose so it must have taken a good jolt to move it. I will have to loosen the ring adjustments now so they can be realigned to my scope tube again. Darn shipping guys anyway 🙁
Yep, it took a hit. Just loosen the screws at the base of both rings and then mount your scope. The scope tube will help you align the rings, then you can tighten them again.
The elevation in the rear shouldn’t have moved.
I may have to move the mount back on the dovetail too. I can’t be sure until I try mounting the scope and see if the eye relief is good for me.
Do any of the screws require blue lock-tite to keep them from loosening? I didn’t notice yet if there is any sticky tape inside the rings.
The screws don’t require it, but it won’t hurt them.
Looking forwards to you getting it back up and running again. I wish you the very best on shooting. I had not noticed before, but I like the way that forearm grip line “sweeps” back into the trigger guard. That was a design feature that I had overlooked. The aggressive looking grooved grip(s) are interesting too. I like rifles with fine lines and some curves.
Eagerly awaiting your first shooting report.
Mattr61—-The M1 Garand front sight post is designed to be visible in poor light. Thin and triangular front sights are harder to see in dim light. In particular, the pyramid front sights are prone to vertical stringing. If the M1 sight is too broad for you, replace it with the thinner national match sight. —–Ed
Busy past week and had a hard time keeping up with the (great) blogs, so this one hearkens back to the Gamo Swarm . . . I’ll apologize because I’m sure you’ve answered this before but what’s your take on using super lightweight alloy pellets in springers like you did for that gun? I’ve heard repeatedly that such low-inertia pellets start moving down the barrel sooner than heavier pellets, reducing the gas resistance that the piston encounters at the end of its stroke and essentially resulting in a dry fire. Since you used such pellets I assume you don’t think they’re an issue.
At the other extreme, I’ve heard that extra heavy pellets can damage guns with the opposite effect–essentially plugging the barrel because inertia keeps them there longer than average weight pellets. Thanks for your thoughts–I’ve seen a wide range of pellets tested but couldn’t recall (or find) your commenting on this.
No on the heavy pellets and yes on the light ones.
Think about it.
Heavy a cushion of air.
Light a hard slam into the metal piston cylinder chamber.
I just picked up at WM what looks to be the same AR as the Umarex Forge in what is called the Ruger Impact Max.
Has many of the same updated features and is in .22 weighting in @ 6# 1oz.
Welcome to the blog.
Thanks B.B. , been a lurker for a while and thought I would just dive in. Always enjoy your Blog. Can’t wait to read part 2 of the Forge!!
Me, too! 😉