Over the past two decades, pellet rifles have become more accurate, durable and technologically advanced, but the recent shortage of ammo seems to have been the catalyst that stirred many shooters to begin giving these air-powered guns a harder look.
Since the 1960s, Gamo has been producing pellet guns in Spain. The company has long been on the leading edge of design and technology in the airgun field, and today Gamo is one of the largest names in the industry, selling its products in more than 50 countries around the world.
One of the standout products in its current line is the Whisper Fusion Pro series pellet rifle, which has all of the features you expect on a Gamo rifle minus one thing-noise. While all airguns are quieter than firearms, the Whisper Fusion Pro drops the noise level even farther by adding features like the Whisper Fusion Double Integrated Noise Dampening Technology and a Fluted Polymer Jacketed Steel Barrel. This system helps reduce noise by surrounding the barrel in a double layer of polymer, effectively eliminating the vibrations and noise generated by the shot. Unlike traditional firearms, which create noise through the burning of smokeless powder, airguns are naturally quiet except for the vibration caused by the firing spring, and even though there is no muzzle blast these vibrations can still create considerable noise that could potentially scare off varmints. Gamo’s exclusive barrel, with its multiple layers of sound-deadening technology, absorbs the shock and reduces the sound generated with each shot. A pair of Integrated Sound Moderators, as Gamo calls them, prevent sound waves from expanding by way of a rifling system that deadens vibration and noise. Sound waves are captured and absorbed, preventing excess noise from escaping the barrel during the shot. Whether you are a serious varmint and small-game hunter who doesn’t want to scare off game or simply a target shooter who doesn’t want to disturb the neighbors, this system is highly effective in reducing the rattle and vibration caused by shooting the gun.
Besides being quiet, the Whisper Fusion pro has many of the other features that consumers have come to expect from Gamo rifles. This break-action rifle has a 33 mm cylinder that is re-cocked with 41 pounds of force. The barrel is fully rifled, and the metal work is tight-fitting and well-constructed so that this gun will last for thousands of shots. The large sound-dampening barrel also acts as a solid platform for cocking and offers a sure grip for quick reloads. Since Gamo manufactures all of its components in-house, quality control is very high, and this attention to detail comes through every time you cock and fire the rifle. With PBA pellets the maximum muzzle velocity is an impressive 1,400 fps, making this a dedicated varmint rifle that is capable of taking squirrels, woodchucks and other game at moderate ranges.
The Whisper Fusion Pro utilizes Gamo’s Smooth Action Trigger (SAT), which is a two-stage model that breaks at a factory pre-set 3.74 pounds. Gamo understands that a precision air rifle requires a smooth, consistent trigger for optimum accuracy, and this gun has a crisp trigger pull with very low creep. The manual safety is located just in front of the trigger, and if you’ve never used a Gamo rifle it may seem like an odd placement. However, after a while it becomes second-nature and allows the shooter to turn the safety to the “off” position without losing sight picture. In addition, it is one of the quietest systems on the market.
The stock of the Whisper Fusion Pro is made of black, molded synthetic material that is impervious to weather. It won’t warp, and the non-glare finish won’t spook small game when hunting. Large textured panels offer a sure grip, and a raised Monte Carlo-style cheekpiece naturally aligns the eye with the sights. The Shock Wave Absorbing recoil pad is soft and comfortable, and Gamo claims it reduces recoil by up to 74 percent. This is a great aid in learning to control trigger squeeze, and even though the shock generated by a pellet gun is low compared to rimfire and center-fire rifles, vibrations can cause a flinch, leading to problems of jerking the trigger, especially among new shooters. Gamo understands this, and the company has worked to eliminate the noise and vibration that can cause a shooter to lose focus on the target. With the SAT trigger and the SWA recoil pad, this gun greatly reduces the vibration that the shooter feels and allows for a clean, smooth trigger pull. This, in turn, leads to consistent accuracy.
The iron sights on the Whisper Fusion Pro are among the best in the industry, and the large rear sight is adjustable for both windage and elevation. Both the front and rear sight have high-visibility fiber-optic inserts, and the front sight is hooded to reduce glare. The gun also comes with a 3-9X Gamo scope with adjustable parallax and large windage and elevation knobs that are easy to set by hand. The scope has a large duplex reticle with surprisingly good glass for a scope in this price range. This made it possible to shoot 1-inch, three-shot groups from 25 yards, and at that same distance it was possible to keep 10 shots under 2 inches shooting offhand, due to the gun’s balance and the excellent stock and trigger.
One of the best features of the Gamo air rifle is that it is entirely ambidextrous, and a left-handed shooter doesn’t have to worry about manipulating controls that were designed with right-handed shooters in mind. My wife is a new shooter and a southpaw, and the Gamo’s low noise and recoil levels made this a gun she was comfortable shooting almost immediately. In addition, shooting tight groups helped build her confidence. If you are teaching a new shooter how to handle a gun the Gamo is ideal no matter if they are left or right handed.
I received the test rifle in September, which marks the beginning of Ohio’s squirrel season. Ever since I was a kid I’ve loved hunting squirrels, but I don’t like the idea of firing a shotgun or rimfire rifle in the same woods I plan to deer hunt the following month. With the Whisper Fusion Pro I felt better about hunting in my favorite spot, and on the first morning I took the pellet rifle to the woods I saw a half-dozen squirrels working on hickory nuts within 30 minutes of sunrise. I was shooting Gamo’s new .177-caliber Quiet Pellet ammunition, and I felt confident that I could kill squirrels cleanly without the noise associated with bigger guns. I had my chance when a gray squirrel hopped up on a moss-covered stump at 15 yards. The squirrel dropped without a twitch at the shot, and I sat back against the tree watching two other squirrels pause momentarily and continue feeding.
There’s a lot to like about the Gamo Fusion Pro. It’s quiet, well-built, accurate and accommodating for both left- and right-handed shooters. Whether you’re buying a pellet rifle for hunting, plinking or training a new shooter (or all three), the Whisper Fusion Po is worth a look. It’s cheap to shoot and very accurate.
Gamo’s Quiet Pellet
Gamo has long produced air rifles that were quieter than the competition, but the company now offers ammunition that further reduces the amount of noise generated with each shot. The new Quiet Pellet has a lead core, with layers of copper and black nickel along with a pointed dome and a long skirt. The outer layer of the pellet is smooth to the touch, and this exterior coating helps minimize friction and noise. To test Gamo’s claims that its new pellet is quieter than the competition, I fired both Gamo Quiet Pellets and standard .177 lead hunting pellets in the Whisper Fusion Pro rifle, and the Quiet Pellets created virtually no noise while the standard pellets, though aided by the sound-deadening technology in the rifle, created an audible pinging noise when fired.
Gamo didn’t want the new Quiet Pellet to sacrifice accuracy for silence, and the long skirt helped in stabilization and overall accuracy was good. On the target, there were no signs of the pellets tumbling or turning in flight, and the performance on game was excellent. Gamo sells the Quiet Pellet in 150-count blister packs, and when combined with the Whisper Fusion Pro I found that these pellets generated an average muzzle velocity of about 1,240 fps over my chronograph.