Gamo Viper Express Review
Today I'm going to be reviewing a really innovative airgun from Gamo. The Viper Express Shotgun is the first ever of its kind. It is a true shotgun that fires Gamo's new shot shell ammo. The shot shell has #9 shot inside its plastic shell.
Pictured above is a Gamo Shot Shell with the shot removed for illustration purposes.
As you can see the shot shell contains a bunch of #9 shot steel bbs. To see the Gamo Viper Express Shotgun in action take a look at our video review of this product. . At about 10 yards you will get about a 12 inch spread pattern. The further you move back the larger the spread. The shotgun ammunition is great for close range varmint control. The max effective range of the Viper Express is probably around 20 yards. At distances further than that the shot disperses too much to be very effective. However, the nice thing about this shotgun is that you don't have to be very accurate. You don't aim a shotgun, you simply point it at your target (and lead it if the target is on the move) and shoot. The Viper Express is a true shotgun. It comes with a bead front sight and no rear sight because it is not needed on a shotgun.
The Viper Shotguns comes equipped with a front bead sight.
The Viper Express Doubles As a .22 Caliber Rifle
A really cool feature of this shotgun is that it can also fire any .22 cal pellet by simply inserting the included pellet adapter into the breech and then loading a pellet into the adapter. We found this to be very easy to use and it's a snap to switch between using shotgun shells and pellets. For a detailed look at how this works see the video review of this product.
The gold adapter above allows standard .22 cal pellets to be fired from the Viper Express shotgun.
At 10 yards we found the rifle to be pretty accurate, however, since the Viper Express does not use standard sights it would be hard to be extremely accurate using just the front bead sight. If you plan to use the .22 cal rifle feature a lot we suggest adding a scope to it. The Viper Express has standard dovetail rails that can accommodate a standard air rifle scope. We had no problem hitting a Daisy Shatterblast target at 10 yards with this but we suspect that at longer distances a scope would be required for better accuracy. The Viper Express will shoot .22 cal pellets at a respectable 750 FPS.
The Viper Express is a well made rifle. The guts of the rifle are based on the proven Shadow 1000 power plant that Gamo has been using successfully for many years. The gun is extremely easy to cock and requires only 30 lbs of cocking effort (it actually felt lighter than that to us). This is good because you won't wear your arm out cocking the gun. The gun also has a great weight. It weighs 5.5 lbs and has a very good balance and feel to it. The stock is made out of a high quality, all-weather composite material and it has rubber non slip grip pads that add to the great feel of this gun. Below you can see the detail of the grip pads and the ventilated rubber recoil pad.
Ventilated rubber recoil pad and non-slip grips are well thought out features of this rifle.
The trigger on this rifle is very smooth and light. It is also adjustable which means you can adjust it to your personal preference. There is also a manual safety that is well placed and easy to use. Overall we really liked the trigger of this rifle.
Two stage adjustable trigger with manual safety
The forearm of the rifle features more non slip rubber grips.
The barrel of the Viper Express is a precision bull smooth bore barrel with full vent.
We really had fun testing out the new Gamo Viper Express shotgun. It was cool to be able to take out multiple targets with one shot. If you are looking for a gun for small varmint control at close to medium range then this is the gun for you. This gun is also a great backyard plinker. You can take several cans, shatterblasts or bottles with one shot or you can switch to .22 cal pellet mode for larger pest control .One downside is that the shot shells are pricey but they sure are fun to shoot :) The fact that you can also shoot .22 cal pellets makes it possible to shoot this gun affordably. Overall this is a great innovation from Gamo and good addition to any airgun collection. Happy Shooting!