The Umarex Gauntlet
It’s looking like 2018 is shaping up to be the year of the pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) airgun.
If you're new to airgunning, PCP guns are those that carry a supply of highly-compressed
air ready to go. No cocking or pumping required, at least until your tank runs out.
Why now for PCP?
First, the guns themselves are coming down in price. Way down. Several rifles are on the market
this year in the sub $300 range. We’re even seeing regulated models at those price points
- a feature that was only available at much higher price points not long ago. If you don't
know what regulating is, hold that thought, we'll come back to it.
While it may look like a bike pump, it's heavy duty and cranks out 3,000 pounds per square
inch of compressed air.
Second, the power sources to drive these air-hungry beasts are becoming more affordable by the
month. Sure, you’ve been able to get a hand pump in the $100 to $200 range, plus or minus
a Jackson. Hand-powered is just fine if you’re shooting smaller calibers like .177 and
.22 because the number of shots per workout ratio is still pretty good. When you get into big
thumper calibers like .357, .45, and even .50, the insatiable thirst for lots and lots of high-pressure
air makes for a lot of work. Who needs a Planet Fitness membership anyway?
That’s where the new compressors come to save the day. Companies are finding new ways to
bring the cost of compressors well below the $1,000 range. For example, AirForce has introduced
the E-Pump Compressor which will hit the market at about $850. The folks over at Crosman recently
announced the Benjamin Traveler. That one carries an MSRP of just $649. We’re talking about
stand-alone compressors here, not boosters. We’re also talking portability. Both of these
offerings can run on household AC or car / ATV 12-volt systems so you can use them just about
The Umarex Gauntlet is bolt-action and magazine fed.
For those who are pondering adding PCP to their airgunning, we decided to look at the new
Umarex Gauntlet. Available for $299.99, it breaks the $300 barrier by a full penny, and you
know what they save about “pennies saved.”
Available in both .177 and .22 calibers, the primary features between the two models are the same,
except, of course, velocity and the caliber-specific magazines. With this product, Umarex threw
down the proverbial glove by making available features typically only present in high-dollar