In Part 1 of the Ruger Talon from Umarex USA we looked at the aesthetics and function. In this segment we’ll take a look at performance, accuracy and of course our final summary.
Like the Ruger Air Hawk, the Ruger Talon is a 1000 FPS class airgun when shooting lightweight lead pellets. After a thorough break-in period our test model averaged around 995 FPS with 7.0 grain RWS hobbies which puts it right on target for velocity.
For general plinking and decent accuracy, the RWS line of pellets performed well with the RWS Superdomes and Super H Points leading the pack. Throughout my tests I noticed that heavier pellets seemed to group much better than lighter pellets and I finally settled on the H&N field target trophy pellets (8.64 grain) which were the most accurate. They averaged 841 FPS, equaling 13.57 foot-pounds. If you’re looking for a good all around airgun for target practice as well as small game hunting and pest control, the Ruger Talon has the energy, now let’s see if it has the accuracy.
Achieving consistent accuracy was a challenge. The rifle is fairly hold sensitive and the bundled optic was very sensitive to eye position. In fact the bundled optic really hindered the testing. For this reason I limited the accuracy tests to 10 yards, but don’t worry, I’m going to follow up with some additional testing once I replace the factory scope with a suitable upgrade. For now here are 3 shot groups shot at 10 yards from a rest. It’s very interesting to note the change in the point of impact between the groups. The only change I made was to change the position of my trigger finger slightly between each group.
These groups demonstrate the importance of consistent use of the artillery hold when shooting spring airguns. It’s critical that you use proper technique and put in enough trigger time so that your muscle memory just takes over and the entire process becomes second nature. It’s this part of the sport that I find so interesting because no two airguns are exactly alike. With a better optic and more trigger time, I would expect to see these group sizes cut in half.
Ruger Talon .177 – Shot Group 1 @ 10 Yards
Ruger Talon .177 – Shot Group 2 @ 10 Yards
Ruger Talon .177 – Shot Group 3 @ 10 Yards
When I’m asked to review a product, I look at the intended market base, function, and price point. Taking into account that the Ruger Talon has a suggested retail of well under $200.00, I have to curb my criticisms of the bundled optic. It certainly reduces the out of the box effectiveness of this airgun, but the low price point allows anyone to drop on a more suitable optic without raising the price too high.
The hold sensitivity is going to be an issue for some shooters, especially if they are impatient and inexperienced. However, with the proper technique you can get repeatable accuracy. While it may be hold sensitive, and the bundled optic may be inadequate, the rifle has a lot of great features and is mechanically sound. The cocking stroke and firing cycle are incredibly smooth, and the built-in SilencAIR suppressor system keeps the noise well below other airguns in this class. The trigger is markedly better than other Chinese imports at the same price point and higher. Just swap out the scope and rings and you’ll have a completely new airgun.
The Ruger Talon is priced at a point where there’s plenty of room to add a better optic and with the integrated Weaver rail you know it will stay put. I’m certainly a fan of the changes Umarex USA has made to the Ruger line.