Gamo Swarm Fusion 10X Gen II air rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gamo Swarm Fusion
Gamo Swarm Fusion 10X Gen II rifle.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Well!
  • Another breakbarrel repeater
  • Easy loading
  • High velocity
  • Gamo Platinum PBA
  • Cocking is easy
  • Trigger adjustment
  • Trigger pull
  • RWS Hobby
  • RWS Superdome
  • H&N Baracuda Magnums
  • Gamo Platinum PBA — again
  • Pellet feeding
  • Summary

Well!

When I started the report on the Gamo Swarm Fusion 10X Gen II I didn’t know I was kicking a Texas fire ant mound! Part 1 of this report lead to a report on the history of Gamo, and that brought the show to a screeching stop! I won’t get into all that transpired, but you can read the comments if you are interested.

Another breakbarrel repeater

I’m not going to defend or criticize anyone in this report. All I’m doing is testing another breakbarrel repeater for power, accuracy and overall quality as it pertains to airgunning. With that in mind, let’s start the show.

Easy loading

Reader Yogi mentioned that one advantage about breakbarrel repeaters is they make it easier for people to load the rifle. My brother-in-law, Bob, got an Umarex Synergis underlever repeater for exactly that reason. He is now shooting it with an airgun club and having fun with it. I can tell you this Swarm Fusion 10X magazine is very easy to load. You don’t even have to remove it from the rifle to load it, which means you can treat the rifle as a single-shot if you like. The pellet still has to be fed into the barrel from the magazine by the feed mechanism, but you can change pellets on every shot if you want to.

High velocity

Gamo has long been a proponent of high velocity, and the advertised speed for this .177 caliber rifle I’m testing is 1,300 f.p.s. No doubt that is with lead-free Gamo Platinum PBA pellets. I will test it, of course, but it also tells me the powerplant is set up to handle heavy pellets. So I will test with those, as well. But let’s address the elephant in the room first.

Gamo Platinum PBA

This pellet is advertised to weigh 5.1 grains. I weighed 3 and got a range from 4.9 to 5.0-grains. Let me show you the string and then I’ll discuss it.

Shot……Vel.
1………1168
2………1172
3………1183 fastest
4………1175
5………1127
6………1161
7………1168
8………1114 slowest
9………1148
10……..1124

The “average for this string is 1154 f.p.s. but you’ll notice that no pellet went that speed. What we have here is a bimodal distribution, with 4 pellets going between 1114 and 1147 f.p.s. and 6 pellets going between 1161 and 1183 f.p.s. Either the gun is so new that it’s still breaking in, which is absolutely possible, or this rifle doesn’t like this pellet. That also seems possible, but I’m going to do a second test after I’ve tested all the other pellets to see which it is.

The velocity spread was 69 f.p.s. At the average velocity this pellet (using 5 grains as the weight) generated 14.79 foot-pounds at the muzzle.

At this point I have to say the rifle does not reach 1300 f.p.s. Not that it’s important — that’s not a velocity I want to reach. But it doesn’t.

Cocking is easy

I mentioned in Part 1 that the SwarmFusion is easy to cock. And it is, but even better, you don’t have to slap the muzzle to break the barrel open. It opens easily.

When I tested the rifle on my scale I was surprised to see the effort rise to 35 pounds. I would have bet money it was 10 pounds less. However, right after reaching that peak, the effort rapidly dropped back to less than 20 pounds. Then it hit me what is happening. Gamo has designed the cocking effort to peak at the point where you have the most strength and drop where your strength becomes less. It’s a geometry thing. That long cocking stroke has been engineered to help the shooter. I have to tell you — it really works!

Trigger adjustment

The two-stage custom action trigger (CAT) trigger is adjustable — HOWEVER. I wanted to adjust stage two to have a shorter pull, and that adjustment is made with a tiny Phillips screw located behind the trigger blade. The slot through the trigger guard to get on that screw straight is too narrow for any of my Phillips screwdrivers that have heads small enough to work. It measures 5.14mm wide.

My drone screwdriver fits the screw head that I’m guessing to be zero-size, but the blade is too short to reach through the slot, and the handle is too wide (6.85mm) to pass through the narrow slot. There is a larger hole behind the narrow one, but it’s for removing the action from the stock. Attempting to use it with the Phillips screwdriver makes the angle of the screwdriver too far off what it needs to be for the driver head to bite into the screw head. Since Phillips screws are so easy to bugger I won’t adjust the trigger today, but I did order a set of precision long shank screwdrivers that should allow me to adjust it the next time I test the rifle. Shame on Gamo for not including a tool for this adjustment — or for not selecting a fastener that wouldn’t have this problem!

Gamo Swarm Fusion trigger
The slot the second-stage trigger adjustment screw has to pass through is too narrow for any of my Phillips screwdrivers. Going through the larger hole behind that hole puts the screwdriver tip at a bad angle.

Trigger pull

Like the evening political news, however, all my complaining is meaningless because the CAT trigger pull is just delightful. Stage two has a long smooth travel. Just pretend it’s a single-stage trigger and you’ll be fine. The trigger broke at 2 lbs. 10 oz.

RWS Hobby

With lead-free lightweights out of the way, time to test the Swarm Fusion with a real lead pellet. Next up was the RWS Hobby — the lightweight pellet standard of the world. First the string. Don’t get used to this. I’m only showing it today because I need to talk about it.

Shot…..Vel.
1………971 fastest
2………955
3………962
4………962
5………949 slowest
6………963
7………969
8………951
9………955
10……..960

The average for this string is 960 f.p.s. and, as you can see, this string is a LOT tighter than the first one. The extreme velocity spread here is just 22 f.p.s. At the average velocity this pellet generated 14.33 foot-pounds at the muzzle.

RWS Superdome

Now let’s bump the pellet weight up a bit and shoot the 8.3-grain RWS Superdome. First the string.

Shot…..Vel.
1………863
2………876
3………877
4………863 slowest
5………866
6………did not register
7………878
8………did not register
9………875
10……..868
11……..871
10……..881 fastest

The average for the 10 shots that registered was 872 f.p.s. At that speed Superdomes generate 14.02 foot-pounds at the muzzle. The extreme spread for them was 18 f.p.s. The rifle may be breaking in, but as the pellets get heavier the velocity spread goes down.

I actually shot 12 pellets because of the two that didn’t register. Loading the extra two pellets was so simple, thanks to that magazine.

H&N Baracuda Magnums

The last pellet I will test is the super-heavyweight H&N Baracuda Magnum. The box says they should weigh 16.36-grains, but the four I weighed varied between 15.4 and 15.8-grains. That’s a pretty big difference — both in the spread of pellet weights and also from the weight that’s listed on the tin! Three of the four weighed 15.8-grains.

Because this pellet is so heavy it is also very long. This gave me an opportunity to see if they would both fit into and cycle through the circular magazine. And, they did! Not a bit of trouble! Here is the string.

Shot…..Vel.
1………502
2………495
3………495
4………505
5………500
6………497
7………492 slowest
8………501
9………515 fastest
10……..498

The Baracuda Magnum generated 8.77 foot-pounds at the muzzle, based on a weight of 15.8-grains that most of them weighed. The velocity spread was 23 f.p.s. I don’t think this is a good pellet for this rifle.

Gamo Platinum PBA — again

Now I wanted to test Gamo Platinum PBA pellets again. Remember they gave a bimodal distribution in the first test. First let’s look at the string.

Shot……Vel.
1………1181fastest
2………1167
3………1154
4………1124 slowest
5………1147
6………1158
7………1139
8………1136
9………1168
10……..1157

The average for this string is 1153 f.p.s. — only 1 f.p.s. slower than the first string. The spread was 57 f.p.s. That’s better than the 69 f.p.s spread on the first string, but still way more than any of the other pellets. There is less of a bimodal distribution this time, but I now believe that it is the pellet and not the break-in that’s responsible for what we see.

Pellet feeding

The magazine functioned throughout the test without a slip-up. Fifty-two pellets fed smoothly through the gun. Have no concern there.

Summary

This test turned out differently than I expected. I expected the rifle to get over 1,300 f.p.s., because when Gamo says that they usually do. However I do like the trigger, and the rifle cocks easily despite the weight that I saw. The rifle is lightweight yet doesn’t  slap you when it fires, like many gas spring guns do. And the pellet feeding was flawless. I sure hope this rifle is accurate, because if it is, it’s a winner!

35 thoughts on “Gamo Swarm Fusion 10X Gen II air rifle: Part 2

  1. Even if I like or do not like something,…. I love to see new, innovative products. The 10/35# cocking effort is impressive. The loading mech. is a marvel it and of itself. No “slapping” despite the advertised speed,…. that is good too. I do like the vertical grip with the thumb/hand hole stock.

    Good Day to one and all,………. Chris


  2. Things seem to be looking up for Gamo
    B.B.,

    Siraniko

    PS Section Gamo Platinum PBA again. Last paragraph last sentence: There is less of a bimodal distribution this time, but I now believe that it isa (its) the pellet and not the break-in that’s responsible for what we see.


  3. BB,

    Well now, it sounds like Gamo is winning you over. As for this particular model I would have to say it is b’ugly. Admittedly Gamo does not seem to be concerned with appearance as much as performance although they do have a few models that I do like the looks of. It also sounds like they have been paying attention to what the customers say. I have seen at least five different attempts by Gamo to create a sproinger trigger the customer will like. I do not think TCFKAC has changed their basic trigger design in like forever.

    The lightness is nice if you are carrying it any distance, but as you and others have noted it can create its own issues. They seem to be paying attention to those and working on them also.

    Back to the trigger for a moment. From what you are saying it sounds as if it does not have a crisp break, but is it predictable? Can you feel when it is about to break or do you just learn where it breaks?

    Is the pivot pin a pin or a screw?



    • GF1,

      I think that I’ve read here that Gamo claims that they dry fire all their designs repeatedly to assure that they won’t be damaged by it. I don’t know if I believe it or not though.

      Half





            • Thank God.

              Oh but wait a minute. What about light weight pellets in a springer that can shoot them above 900 fps. Heck even below 900 fps. I bet that piston seal is getting hammered. And don’t dare lube the piston seal and shoot the light weight pellets. I bet you’ll be thinking someone is frying bacon.

              I just think that’s bad practice and I’m sure time will tell.


          • Half
            I hope that was just a test gun. You would think that anyway. I hope that gun don’t get out in a box and one of us unlucky air gunners get it.

            I don’t want it that’s for sure. Maybe that is what was wrong with the Gamo I had about 7 years ago. It was definitely not worth buying. I guess that is why I still don’t like Gamo springers to this day. I can go on about other things I don’t like about them right now but I’ll just drop it.

            Anyway my comment was that I (as in me) would stay away from light pellets in a spring gun no matter what brand it is. As it goes anybody can do as they wish. Not this somebody.



  4. I received mine in 22 mid last week. I have to say I’m very happy with it, to the point of already ordering more magazines. As a carefree, grab and go walk around and shoot stuff gun, it is a joy! The magazines are easy to load, use, and swap out. The open sight works as well as any fiber open sight I have. That “no worries plastic” goofy looking stock is surprisingly comfortable. Its very vertical grip has the pleasant side effect that you don’t have to re-position your trigger hand at all while cocking the gun. The shroud noise suppression system works very well, and also makes the barrel very comfortable to grab when cocking. I know from working on my Mach 1 that the trigger responds very well to a modification discussed online. I reached the screw behind the trigger with a screwdriver from a cheapo jeweler’s screwdriver set. But I’ll add there’s no point in messing with that screw, as the gun comes with the 2nd stage set as short as the lawyers allow. That said, even stock, the trigger is completely usable. I just shortened that very long first stage.

    In short, for how and when I use it, this gun is just about perfect! Kudos, Gamo!


    • NTOG,

      Well, it sounds like they have at least one cheerleader on their squad.

      As I have stated before, my experience with Gamo was not really that bad. They did take a serious dive soon after, but they have been working their way back up. As of right now I would have to say that Gamo is producing the best sproingers in their price range, with the possible exception of Hatsan. That Quatro trigger is real nice.


      • Yeah, I guess I’m a bit of a fan. I think I have some of the last of the good older ones, skipped the bad years, and now have some from the newer good designs.

        Funny you mention Hatsan. Years ago I got a 125 Sniper. It is a good springer to learn with, they said. *snort* Well, I’ve had quite an interesting ride with that gun. It taught me all about stock screws backing out, and about addressing hold sensitivity etc. When I finally got on good terms with it, the piston died. Then it taught me about building spring compressors and how to work on springers. The rebuild was successful, but there was still some nagging issue I wasn’t able to sort out. Just couldn’t get it to hit reliably. Then I bought that Gamo Whisper Fusion, almost out of desperation. It turned out to be so much more what I wanted a spring gun experience to be. Suddenly I could hit things, repeatedly, and from much further than I managed with that Sniper. I’m not really trying to put the Sniper down. When everything was right, I did enjoy shooting it. But maybe it is almost like pellet selection for a gun, the Gamos lately seem to fit me and my style.

        And I’ll agree that the Quatro is a very nice trigger, and I don’t think the Gamo trigger is quite that nice. But with careful tinkering, it gets pretty close.


        • NTOG,

          I also have a 125 Sniper, but mine has the gas spring. I am not too sure if I love it or hate it – I guess that it depends on the day. It is hard to cock, slaps your face when firing, has fiber optic sights, demolish scopes and is very hold sensitive. On the plus side, it is quite precise (when I do my part), has a good trigger and delivers considerable power. I measured 26 fpe using 18 gr Exact Jumbo Heavy pellets.
          After reading what I just wrote I think that it will have to leave soon to make room for something like the ASP20.

          Henry


          • Yep, mine is a gas spring too. And I was in exactly the same boat.. some day love, some day hate. I was amazed how much more fun my next break barrel was. I have a hunch you will be too.


        • Boy, these are mirror experiences to my intro to air gunning via the Benjamin Trail guns. I ate up the marketing. Fast, quiet, accurate, inexpensive (we’ve established the rare and elusive unicorn). I loved them when they were on. When they were off I learned a lot about airgun powerplants, hold, breath, pellets, trajectory, seals, stock screws, estimating distance, rifle vs. airgun scopes, reticles, barrel cleaning, triggers etc. I learned a lot about air gunning trying to get my early guns to live up to what I believed they would do. It seems absurd in hindsight to expect so much from entry level gun. But, I learned everything I know about mechanics from a 1968 VW bug that at 17 years old I was convinced could be a stock car. Had my first car been a new Lexus, I don’t know that I would have learned how to change the oil, let alone adjust valves on the side of the road or splice shoelaces to a broken throttle cable to make it home. I understand that love/ hate relationship. I have learned a lot from problematic hopefulness. I’m sure I am a better shooter because of it.


          • That all sounds so familiar, down to the first car being a VW Bug! And I definitely agree, the journey might be longer, but the experience gained makes it pretty much worth while.


            • Well said. I am a carpenter by trade. I was once hit upside the head by a hard piece of wisdom from an older carpenter when I was just starting out. He said, “If you can learn to learn from other people’s mistakes you are going to save yourself a lot of sweat and blood and tears and look like a real smart guy. If you are like me and learn them the hard way, they tend to stick. You don’t forget a lesson when it cost you some skin. But to be fair, I don’t know which way is faster.”


        • NTOG,

          I have a Webley / Hatsan Tomahawk. It has a real nice stock and the Quatro trigger is awesome. It does have some quality control issues though. I think it may have been assembled from parts rejected for the Hatsan air rifles. These were outrageously priced when they came out and most were returned because of the quality control issues. I paid about $30 for mine new. I think I will keep it.



    • For me, one of the Gamo Swarm repeaters, or a Synergis or whatever, would make sense. I use air rifles with a mounted red or green oed flashlight for night ratting. Since most of my guns are multi-pumpers, and most are single hots, I havd to turn on a regular flashlight to reload. Don’t have to do that with my Crosman 760, as it has a 5 round magazine. I can pump it and advance the magazine in total darkness.This Swzzrm would be great for my purposes.

      Gamo is coming out with more Swarm models. The latest is the Swarm Fox. The Fox is a springer, and doesn’t have the CAT trigger, or the RRR recoiling recucing rail. The Foxis a budget Swarm at around $100-$125.


  5. B.B.,

    This air rifle seems to present an important advance, and it has nothing to do with it being a repeater. I am intrigued by the cocking design that reduces the effort required. THAT is a potentially big deal, I think.

    Michael


  6. B.B.,
    I would be interested in seeing you try a more common/typical heavyweight pellet such as those in the 10.34 grain range such as the JSB and Baracuda match.

    Regards


  7. Group,

    To anyone that’s interested in the Aspen multipump PCP, it’s on sale at Airgun Depot for $320 with free 3 day shipping. That’s a considerable savings on a gun that I have always found was excluded from discount coupons. I have wanted one and took this opportunity to buy at this price.

    Half


  8. B.B.,

    These new innovations are very interesting, especially about the pellet loading. I saw you brother in law last Saturday. I knew him because Jerry said, “there he is now” and because he was carrying the Synergis, which I would love to see up close. I intended to introduce myself and say “hi”, but got so focused on my new purchase he was gone before I looked up (as were four others).
    As for my new purchase, I have to get used to the fact that the barrel does not break open and it is not a multi-pump.

    ~ken


  9. “That long cocking stroke has been engineered to help the shooter.”
    B.B.,
    I could overlook the trigger adjustment screw issue; back in my [firearms] gunsmithing days, I learned you can never have too many screw drivers; I’ve got drawers full, and I know I have a Phillips that would fit this; if not, like you did, I would just buy one. But the good engineering on the cocking stroke, now that is something not to be overlooked or easily dismissed. Hmmm…a company that listens to their customers and actually uses sound engineering practices…my how refreshing! I wish more companies, of all types, would do likewise. =>
    Hoping you and all other readers here get something good (airgun-wise, that is =>) for Christmas,
    dave


  10. I watched a vid on the .22 Gamo Swarm magnum, and the comment on the cocking effort there was that it was hard. The easy cocking does not extend to the 26 fpe big brother apparently. There is also a vid comparison of the Swarm Magnum and the Hatsan 135 QE .30 cal for breakbarrel power supremacy that was interesting to watch. (Spoiler, Hatsan won).


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