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Gun test: Gamo Superpower

PUBLISHED: 16:51 02 August 2017

With my trusty range dog Georgie watching on, I studied the acuracy potential.

With my trusty range dog Georgie watching on, I studied the acuracy potential.

Archant

Phill Price looks at a top value springer with attitude

Gamo’s selection of airguns is truly vast because they try to offer something for everybody and the differing needs of shooters from all over the world. Naturally, not every model is imported into the UK, but every now and then something that’s not usually offered here comes along. The UK importer has a limited quantity of the Superpower and until they sell out, they’re going to be on offer at a special price in your local gun shop.

The ‘pack’ includes a G-Magnum rifle with open sights fitted, a 3-9 x 40 scope, mounts, and a tin of their Pro Magnum pellets. This is a big rifle and as the name suggests, it was originally designed for the high-power markets, such as the USA. Of course, these ones have been mechanically adjusted to stay safely below our 12 ft.lbs. legal limit.

Marmite

The near vertical pistol grip aids trigger controlThe near vertical pistol grip aids trigger control

It’s certainly a dramatic-looking gun, with its vertical pistol grip and thumbhole, all moulded in a tough, synthetic material to create the ‘ErgoGamo’ stock. Gamo has engineered grippy panels into the moulding that offer a little extra security when needed, although as we know, springers should be allowed to recoil freely for best accuracy. I think that you’ll either love the looks or hate them – it’s that kind of gun. I found the handling very positive and the rifle came up on aim quite naturally, despite the slightly longer than average pull length (14¾”). Combined with the very grippy butt pad, this caused a few snags against my shooting jacket, but made for a really locked-in feeling when on aim.

I thought the cheek piece was adjustable for height, but I was disappointed, because it’s fixed, but it’s ideal for open sight use and a little low for use with a scope, which is true of the majority of guns.

On top of the extra-long cylinder, Gamo has fitted its RRR (Recoil Reducing Rail) that has elastomer inserts built in. This clamps onto the dovetail machined into the cylinder and then your scope mounts bolt to it. I was happy to see that there are two holes in the top to accept the recoil arrestor pin that’s built into the mount. The mount supplied is a three-bolt, one-piece unit that appears well up to the task of holding the modestly sized optic.

The RRR system is intended to tame the mighty recoil.The RRR system is intended to tame the mighty recoil.

Simple is best

The scope is as simple as can be, which makes perfect sense to me. Do we really need extra bells and whistles, or will a nice clear sight picture and a well defined reticle do everything we need? For me, they did and I was impressed with the image quality, even on a really dull, rainy day. The windage and elevation adjusters have screw-on weather caps under which you’ll find finger friendly turrets, meaning tools are required.

When Gamo launched its CAT (Custom Action Trigger) they believed that they’d become market leaders in offering such a fine unit in modestly priced rifles. The blade is a very stiff, yet lightweight aluminium alloy casting, rather than the plastic ones you often find at this price point. This helps to offer good feel and control. Directly in front of this is the manual safety, which makes it ambidextrous, just like the stock. Some people question this position, worrying that you might accidentally touch the trigger as you disengage it, but I’ve never had a problem, nor have I been told of one.

Gamo's CAT trigger is one of the best in the class.Gamo's CAT trigger is one of the best in the class.

The trigger action was a little long in the second stage, but very smooth and predictable so I feel that Gamo has made a good step forward in trigger performance in the price range.

Big beast

I mentioned that this rifle is based on a design for high-power use and cocking it shows that clearly. This is a man’s gun and you need a good grip and some decent strength to cock it. The cocking stroke is long, so don’t run out of muscle halfway through. The firing cycle matches it with a proper kick and noise to match. This is no namby-pamby, silent pre-charged pneumatic, it’s a beast!

Fibre optic enhancement makes the open sights superbFibre optic enhancement makes the open sights superb

The average muzzle velocity was 580 fps using the Gamo Pro Magnum Penetration pellet (15.42grains) with just 19fps variation shot-to-shot, which for a brand-new gun, straight from the box is very impressive. I noted very little dieseling smoke or smell, which tells me that Gamo has their internal lubrication application well applied. 11.5ft.lbs is just right for a rifle like this because if it produces a bit more power as it runs in, it will stay safely on the right side of the law.

Of course, power is nothing without accuracy and I was able to produce a ¾” five-shot group at 25 yards from the bench, which is probably about as good a group as I can make with a spring-piston rifle like this.

Let’s be clear; this isn’t a gun for everybody. It’s big, needs some muscle power to cock and good technique to get the best from its inherent accuracy, but it is something special.

It’s a bit like a muscle car – not for its subtlety and refinement, but for its noise and excitement. If that sounds like your kind of gun then get down to your nearest Gamo dealer and get one now because at this price, they won’t be on the shelves very long.

Specification:

Manufacturer: Gamo

Web: www.gamo.com

Model: Superpower

Type: Spring-piston

Action: Break-barrel

Length: 48” (122cm)

Weight: 7.2lbs (3.24kg)

Trigger: Two-stage

RRP: £199.00 including 3-9 x 40 scope and mounts

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