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Do you like to “Go Big or Go Home?”

Sometimes you go home because you went too big...

So I’m in the middle of Part 2 of my tests with the new Gamo Whisper G2 and I get a phone call. Time passes and now I’ve got the topic for my next article, i.e. this one. Shooting the G2 has actually been a good diversion from the PCPs and the big springers that I normally shoot. It’s a medium powered (by today’s standards) airgun that may be the better choice for a lot of new airgun shooters that think more is better.

More power (velocity) is not the answer to accuracy or hunting efficiency

When it comes to airguns, “going big” may actually be exactly what you DON’T want to do. Most folks I chat with who are after more power, are doing so based on the assumption that it’s going to give them some sort of advantage in range or taking game in the field. There are times when this is absolutely correct. And, there are times when it is simply not the case at all.

I would say that 85% of the folks I speak to during the week want an accurate airgun that will be easy to shoot and sufficient to put down small game out to 30 to 35 yards. Essentially a back yard plinker and pest eliminator that needs to be quite and suitable for a semi-urban environment, i.e. not downtown, but not the corn fields either. This is where the Gamo G2 may really shine.

Let’s talk performance details.

The G2 Gamo Whisper .22 cal has been a great shooter so far. I’ve added a riser rail and Gamo a 3-9×40 AO scope because the bundled scope didn’t let me get all the accuracy that I know the gun can produce. The bundled 4×32 optic sits very low. Generally that’s what you want, but the Whisper has very high front and rear sights that obscure the site picture. It will get you by in a pinch, but look to get something different right away. Any variable powered AO Scope will do as you’ll be able to increase the magnification thus reducing the field of view to beyond the iron sights and they won’t be in the way anymore. I added the rail because I like the way it looks and Gamo had sent me one a while back so why not? It also gave me a little more elevation for my scope which came with very low rings. I like the way it’s working now.

Gamo Whisper G2 .22 Caliber

Gamo Whisper G2 .22 Caliber

I’m shooting the H&N Field Target Trophies that weigh in at 14.66 grains. They are coming in around 680 FPS which is exactly what I’d expect out of this gun. By comparison an RWS 34 .22 will generally shoot around the same velocity with the 14.66 grain H&Ns. While a few years back these would have been called “Magnum Powered” springers, I’ve personally re-classed them as “high powered” springers. A magnum springer would be something like the Hatsan Model 125 Sniper .22 which pushes the same pellets at an amazingly stout 925 FPS. Having come into this game when 800 FPS (with 11.9 grn pellets) was a lot for a .22 springer, seeing guns pushing 1000 FPS is really something. But, let’s get back to the point at hand. The G2 Whisper is pushing a medium weight pellet at 680 FPS which gives me a respectable 15 foot pounds.

What can you do with 15 FPE and 680 FPS?

That’s a pretty good question so let’s run some numbers. I’m going to use one of my favorite apps, Hawke’s ChairGun Pro. It’s free from www.hawkeoptics.com and it provides a wealth of information for airgunners. Below you’ll find a printout of the projected shot curve from my G2 Gamo Whisper. I’m looking for optimal hunting accuracy with a 1″ kill zone. The task is to find the optimal zero point of the scope so that I keep my pellet in the kill zone for the longest possible range, i.e. how flat can I get it to shoot. It happens to be that 13 yards as a near zero gets me pretty close to optimal, and something that I dont’ have to go down to the range to sight in. 33 yards as a far zero is optimal, but I can’t shoot that far at my place, so I’m going to stick with the 13 yard zero range for now. What this graphs shows me is that from 8.1 yards all the way out to 36.4 yards I’ll be inside my 1″ kill zone.

Whisper G2 ChairGunPro Ballistics Chart

Whisper G2 ChairGunPro Ballistics Chart

In theory, I shouldn’t even have to adjust my point of impact to be sufficiently accurate for 85% of the folks that I talk to. But do I have enough energy past the muzzle? The short answer is “yes.” This next chart walks through the projected values for this pellet out of this gun. Given that most small game only requires up to 8 FPE, the G2 Whisper is more than adequate, retaining 9.69 FPE (64%) of energy all the out to 50 yards.

Whisper G2 Hawke ChairGunPro Ballistics Table

Whisper G2 Hawke ChairGunPro Ballistics Table

Time for some field work?

It’s time now to put all this to the test with a little field work. On paper it shows we should be golden. The rifle’s shooting great here in the shop with ragged 1 hole groups at 10 yards. I just need to see if that is going to hold true as I increase the distance. I also need to get back to demonstrating how I got the groups to shrink simply by finding the right hold for the gun. I’ve still got a log of ground to cover with this project, so stick with me here as I continue with the G2 Gamo Whisper in .22 cal.

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