This month, Steph Brooks takes a closer look at two very special air pistols…..
We have 2 new air pistols to test in the office today, the Gamo GF MP9 Carbine and the Wather CP99 Special Agent. Two 177 air pistols designed for target shooting and plinking. Both air pistols use 12g CO2 capsules for maximum effectiveness and to power their semi automatic action. Both pistols are also inexpensive, with the CP99 costing £129.99 and the Gamo costing £20 more, ideal for a practice gun and certainly not going to break the bank.
The Gamo pistol is made to a tactical, almost sub-machine gun design, whereas the Walther is more of a classic tactical side arm design. Both are modern and reminiscent of something an the bad guy would carry during the opening of an Arnie movie. The Gamo in particular comes with multiple rails, a folding skeleton sock and a silencer making this gun in particular perfect for crawling through the jungle.
The Walther is more of a standard pistol shape with a textured finger grip that is finished in a Olive Drab military style colour, which looks suitably tough. The slide and front end of the gun look great and there is even an under mounted rail that is perfect for lasers and torches, although the gun lacks the serious customisation available on the Gamo pistol. The downside is the words “Special Agent” that are printed down the slide and would seem like a bad idea to have on your gun, especially if you are actually a special agent. Maybe it’s in case you forget? The large safety switch is also quite ugly and detracts from the likeness the gun has for the P99, the pistol’s live firing cousin. But having said that, I definitely prefer the classic pistol shape and with Gamo’s over use of plastic I’m going to have to give this one to the Walther.
Winner : Gamo GF MP9
When handling the guns the guns, it’s apparent that there is a difference in weight between them. The Gamo weighs in at around 1.3kg, quite a lot for a target air pistol, where as the Walther comes in just shy of the 750g mark, nearly half the weight. Both are a majority of polymer around a metal frame with the Walther also having a metal combo slide for added reliability.
Both are built around a metal frame, but the Gamo does have a lot of plastic on the outside, even when taking the price into account. The Gamo is also advertised as a blowback, but nothing actually moves on the outside of the gun when it is fired. You here the blowback and more importantly, you feel it, but it would have been nice to see something visual on the outside. The Walther has a split slide that is made of metal and feels chunky and robust in your hands, giving it the edge here.
Winner : Walther CP99
Both are CO2 pistols and shoot hovering around the 2 ft/lb mark. The Gamo comes in at 2.11 ft/lbs, with the Walther maxing in at 1.99 ft/lbs. Not much difference in power at all, but it does limit the use of these pistol to strictly target shooting or plinking, neither are anywhere near powerful enough to be suitable for pest control. It would be excellent if they made a semi automatic capable of it, but to my knowledge one doesn’t exist yet. If you are listening SMK… there is a gap in the market.
The Walther exclusively shoots .177 pellets where as the Gamo is advertised as being able to shoot both .177 pellets and 4.5mm BBs. The Gamo is also advertised as having a rifled barrel though and I imagine firing 4.5mm BBs down a rifled barrel is not much of a good idea, it’s just going to blow the rifling straight out the end. Lead pellets are soft and made to fit the rifled barrels. A steel BB is going to be just as hard as the rifling inside the barrel and is going to wear it down further and further, so I would opt for using only lead pellets in either and the choice to include a BB firing option is somewhat confusing to me. Not much between them to be honest going for a draw here.
Winner : Draw
The winner has got to be the Gamo both are nice pistols and actually pretty similar in terms of power and accuracy. The main deciding difference from me comes from the extra customisability that the Gamo offers, but the better looks of the Walther and its smaller compact size give it the edge in this head to head.