Umarex Gauntlet: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Gauntlet
Umarex Gauntlet.

This report covers:

  • A price-point PCP
  • Two calibers
  • Features
  • Trigger
  • Sling swivel studs
  • Description
  • Fill
  • Overall evaluation

Yes, Jonah, it is the Umarex Gauntlet on which I will test the Bug Buster 3-12 scope with sidewheel! I had planned on reviewing this rifle last summer, but things happened on the production side and that window closed. Then I wanted to review it before Christmas, but that never happened, either. So now I’m starting my report on an air rifle that’s already in many shooter’s hands.

A price-point PCP

The Gauntlet is not just a price-point precharged pneumatic (PCP). It’s the rifle that defined the class. A price-point PCP has to have a lot of desirable features and retail for less than $300. Umarex drew that line when they announced the Gauntlet last year, but while they were getting the first rifles ready several other manufacturers got their offerings out first. They all stuck to the under-$300 retail price and the features differ from gun to gun. I will test several other price-point PCPs for you but today is all about the Gauntlet. read more


SHOT Show 2018: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • The big news
  • Benjamin Fortitude
  • Marauder Field and Target
  • Akura
  • Traveler
  • SigASP20
  • Tight breech and no droop
  • The trigger
  • AirForce E-Pump

I will start the third day on the SHOT Show floor with Crosman. They always have loads of new products and this year was no exception. I actually had to visit the booth two separate times to get what I am about to tell you.

The big news

So — what’s the big news at Crosman? I guess that depends on what interests you, but since I am defining this year’s show as the battle of the price-point PCPs (precharged pneumatic rifles with upscale features selling for under $300), let’s start with the Fortitude.

Benjamin Fortitude

Benjamin’s new Fortitude PCP is regulated, a repeater and has a shroud. It is positioned between the Discovery and the Marauder. read more


Kral Puncher Breaker Silent Synthetic .177 PCP repeater: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Kral Puncher Breaker rifle
Kral Puncher Breaker bullpup with synthetic stock.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Magazines are easier to load
  • Crosman Premier Lights — low power
  • Crosman Premier Lights — medium power
  • Crosman Premier Lights — high power
  • Discussion
  • High velocity
  • Max power
  • Trigger pull
  • Next

Today we test the velocity of the Kral Puncher Breaker Silent Synthetic bullpup rifle. Let’s begin.

Magazines are easier to load

I found the two magazines that came with this rifle MUCH easier to load and manage than the mags I tested with the.22 caliber Kral Puncher Pro rifle last year. That one gave me numerous failures to feed in the velocity test. This one was perfect! And, when I say one, I mean that I tested both mags. It also loads easier, because I think the spring in the mag may be lighter. At least that’s how it feels.

Crosman Premier Lights — low power

I used the Crosman Premier Light pellet, to test the range of power adjustments. I started with 10 pellets at the lowest setting. They averaged 356 f.p.s., which is very slow. The low was 349 and the high was 365 f.p.s. — a spread of 16 f.p.s. That’s pretty tight for the absolute lowest power setting. read more


Kral Puncher Breaker Silent Synthetic .177 PCP repeater: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Kral Puncher Breaker rifle
Kral Puncher Breaker bullpup with synthetic stock.

This report covers:

  • The big question
  • Description
  • Synthetic stock
  • Single shot tray
  • Fill
  • Adjustable power
  • Discharge sound
  • Sights
  • Bipod mount
  • Evaluation

Today we begin looking at the Turkish-made Kral Puncher Breaker precharged pneumatic (PCP) repeater. The one I’m testing is a .177, but they also come in .22 and .25 calibers. In the caliber I’m testing the magazine holds 14 pellets. The price is the same for all three calibers, at $500, which pits this rifle against the Benjamin Marauder.

The big question

Okay, let’s address the big question that’s on every reader’s mind. Where do they get these outlandish names?!!! Puncher Breaker? Are they kidding? It has to sound better in Turkish, don’t you think? read more


Hatsan Hercules QE .45 caliber big bore air rifle: Part 2

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hatsan Hercules 45
Hatsan Hercules .45 caliber big bore rifle.

Part 1

This report covers:

  • Magazine problem
  • Relative size
  • .Magazine works fine
  • Filling
  • Lots of shots
  • Hatsan bullets
  • Power
  • Cocking
  • Useful power?
  • Cowboy Action bullets
  • Use of air
  • Trigger pull
  • Evaluation so far

Today I will test the velocity and power of the new Hatsan Hercules .45 caliber big bore air rifle. Because this is a big bore, I have to take it to a range to test the velocity. No shooting big bores inside my office!

Magazine problem

I actually had the rifle out for testing a couple weeks ago, but at that time I was unable to load any of the bullets Hatsan provided into one of the 7-round circular magazines. That ended that test. I was actually testing three other things that day, so I didn’t spend any time looking into the problem, but after talking to Hatsan about it online I tried the other magazine that came with the rifle and it worked fine. Apparently I just got one bad magazine. read more


Feeling the Christmas spirit yet?

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • What do you want for Christmas?
  • What’s the point?
  • So — what do you want for Christmas?
  • You are the key
  • Speed sells
  • Accuracy
  • PCPs
  • Handguns
  • One last thing
  • Summary

Well it’s upon us, that time of year when everyone’s thoughts turn to… avarice! Last Friday was Black Friday — originally named for that shopping day when retailers count on their bottom lines turning from red to black for the year. In the beginning, it was whispered behind closed doors, to keep from informing the public of the delicate nature of business. Today it’s shouted through every advertising media channel for weeks before the day arrives — in the hopes of whipping up a buying frenzy. And it does. Some stores that are known for their deeply-discounted loss leaders have lines that form hours before the insanely early hour that their doors open. read more


Hatsan Bullmaster PCP: Part 4

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hatsan Bullmaster
Hatsan Bullmaster semiautomatic bullpup PCP.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

This report covers:

  • The test
  • H&N Baracuda
  • Trigger
  • Field Target Trophy
  • H&N Sniper Light
  • JSB Exact Jumbo Heavy
  • Bug Buster performance
  • Summary

Happy Thanksgiving to my U.S. readers! I hope all of you have lots to be thankful for!

Today we complete the first accuracy test of the Hatsan Bullmaster. Let’s get right to it.

The test

I told you how I sighted in in Part 3. Today I set up at 25 yards and started shooting with the H&N Baracuda pellets that were used to sight in. The first round landed on paper, and 3 rounds later I was sighted in. I normally don’t like to hit the center of the bull because it destroys the aim point, but the reticle in the UTG 3-12X32 AO Bug Buster scope is so clear and sharp that I could guesstimate exactly where the center of the bull was. read more