Hammerli Storm Combo
The Hammerli Storm is a Spanish-made gun from the long-established Norica firm located in Spain. Norica, not to be confused with Norinco (which is China North Industries Corporation), has been making airguns for nearly a century, starting around 1917. And making arms of some sort or another in this part of Spain can be traced all the way back to 1482, before Columbus made his historic voyage.
I have been shooting the Hammerli Storm in .177 with a synthetic stock for the last week or two. A truly ambidextrous gun, it is at home for both the left-handed and right-handed shooter. Break-barrel in design, the gun used a ball detent to lock the action firmly in place after loading and cocking. The synthetic stock is stippled on the forearm and on the pistol-grip area just behind the trigger, aiding in maintaining your grip when holding the gun under wet or otherwise inclement conditions. Featuring a 19 ½ inch barrel, the entire gun measures out at 45 ½ inches from stem to stern.
The sights on this gun are fiber-optic, with a square notch outlined in green for the rear sight, and a round dot that is red for the front sight. A nicely adjustable click-by-click feature is also to be found on the rear sight, while the front sight is covered by a hood. If you are interested in mounting a scope, there is an 11mm dovetail cut into the receiver to facilitate the scope of your choice. The manufacturer thoughtfully included a scope stop at the rear of the receiver as well.
This particular gun uses a ball detent for the latching mechanism. The seals are synthetic as most lately-manufactured guns are, and cocking this gun requires around 25 lbs. pull to accomplish the cocking maneuver. This is a gun that you could shoot many times during the day without over-tiring your muscles, especially if you are used to cocking some of the more powerful springers available today.
The trigger and safety are simple affairs, with the trigger pull coming in around 4.5 pounds according to the manufacturer. I don’t have a means to accurately measure the trigger pull on the example I was testing, so I’ll have to go with what the manual and website info at Umarex claims is accurate. The safety is mounted within the trigger guard, just in front of the trigger, and is easy to reach and operate. I could not reset the safety once I placed it in the firing position. Once cocked, the gun will need to be fired unless you are fond of trying to catch the barrel with your free hand while working the trigger to uncock it. It makes an unpleasant sound when the trigger does release, and it can’t be good for the gun to do it that way. I imagine the anti-beartrap device places this gun in the “once loaded, must fire” category.
Available in both .177 and .22, I received the .177 version to test. The claimed velocities are well within reach for this gun. It claims 1000 fps in .177, and when using average-weight pellets such as RWS Superdomes, I was still getting in the mid 900’s. So with a lighter pellet, which is usually used in testing velocities, this gun is quite capable of achieving that 1000 fps.
The accuracy of the Hammerli Storm is right up there with other guns in the price range of $199, but this particular offering comes as a combo, so you get the added bonus of a 4x32 RWS scope and rings to sweeten the deal. And the scope rings have a nicely padded surface that assists in not marring the finish on your scope tube…..a nice addition, I thought.
If I were to offer criticism of any kind on this gun, it would be the trigger. It is simple, and as such, does not offer an easy means to fine tune or lighten the pull down from the 4.5 lbs. it currently is set at. This strong of a trigger pull does little for improving accuracy, but even with this stiff of a trigger, I was able to get sub-3/4” groups at 20 yards. Shooting well within range of the advertised velocity, and coupled with the acceptable accuracy I was able to achieve, I would not hesitate to suggest this gun to the airgunner whose needs include casual plinking and pest control of the small variety.
So, $199 for a gun that shoots at the advertised velocity, with an all-weather stock that is ambidextrous, and which comes with a 4x32 scope and rings, all in one package? Not a bad deal at all.