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Walther Reign M2 - Little Gem!

Walther Reign M2 - Little Gem!

Umarex released the Walther Reign a while back, which was the company’s first Walther-branded bullpup and one that definitely had character and an identity all of its very own. Now discontinued, Umarex launched a second-generation model - the Reign M2. Initially, you notice very few differences. However, upon handling, you begin to realise it’s shorter, omits the barrel shroud of its predecessor, and a major feature of the rifle is manufactured from a different material, but more on that later. Anyway, let’s check the M2 out.

Shell shock
Due to the barrel being shortened, the stock completely dominates the rifle, but that’s a bonus for those who prefer short bullpups. The synthetic, ambidextrous stock pretty much remains the same and like the original, fully encases the action and buddy bottle. As some know, the stock is actually a matte black polymer shell assembly. It’s two identical halves that are secured together with 13 star-head screws that are recessed.
So, yet again, and all things considered, you could say the M2’s stock still remains quite a controversial feature of the rifle. However, there are some advantages, as there is no risk of banging the bottle against something in an enclosed space, creating noise, as it is protected within the shell. Also, because the action is fully enclosed, you don’t have to worry about feeling cold metal against your cheek.

Gimme a raise
The Reign M2 doesn’t have a conventional cheekpiece because the top of the butt section is only slightly raised. However, it does expand in width at the top to run back parallel to the generous, well-curved hard black rubber butt pad. Now, because it’s quite low, when shouldered for sighting through an optic, the sighting system needs to be very well considered. This is because if you use a scope with a big objective lens in high mounts, your cheek will almost hover above the rifle’s butt section. Choose wisely and it proves surprisingly efficient for correct head/scope alignment.
The M2 also features an enlarged thumbhole with a steep drop-down pistol grip. It has a generous palm swell and forward contouring which provide a comfortable grip.
Moving forward, the forend stands out, as it has a bulbous profile with an outwardly rounded underside, and this levels out to an integrated Weaver/Picatinny accessory rail. This is ideal for mounting accessories such as a laser, light, or bipod. The forend offers a chunky area for the leading hand, plus the accessory rail will double up for some shooters as a natural hand stop.
To further aid grip, the M2 has the now-familiar moulded grip panels along the forend and on either side of the grip, as found on the Rotex RM8 range of PCP rifles.

Filling up
Instead of the aluminium buddy bottle found on the original, the M2 uses a steel one for holding the compressed air, and once again it’s neatly housed out of sight within the stock. However, the fill procedure is the same as before, with the fill point being positioned right next to the air gauge that’s on the right-hand side of the stock. When not in use, the inlet port features a push-fit grommet to keep out dirt and grime. Using the fill probe supplied, the Reign M2 takes a recommended 232bar fill and returns 140 regulated shots in .177 and 180 in .22 calibre, as per the test rifle.
The steel buddy bottle benefits the shooter, as it adds more forward weight. This helps with the weight lost from the shorter barrel and lack of shroud. Additionally, it improves the balance and handling of the rifle once scoped up.

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Smooth side-lever
A very smooth and precise biathlon-style side-lever runs the action, and importantly, it can be fitted to either side of the stock, making the M2 ambidextrous. However, it’s recommended you request this be done when ordering, or you should take it to a registered dealer for adjustment.
Incidentally, the manual safety can also be reversed.
A nice feature of the side-lever is that it has two magnets on the inner side that hold it to the internal metal action slide bar, resulting in the lever being held very securely alongside the rifle when in the closed position.
It’s also worth noting that the M2 has quite a short cocking stroke, making it ideal for fast action shooting, like culling feral pigeons or some ratting situations.

Ambidextrous magazine
The block-shaped magazine is sprung, has a 10-shot capacity, and can be inserted into the left or right side of the action. To remove from either, you pull the side-lever rearward to its natural stop point, then pull the magazine out from the side it was inserted into. It’s well positioned on the top upper edge of the rifle’s butt section and doesn’t protrude above the cheekpiece. Full marks on this alone.
The magazine casing also has a sprung ball bearing and raised/rounded lateral bar on the outer (forward) face. This helps locate and fully secure it into the action.

Load up
Loading the magazine couldn’t be easier. First, you need to drop a pellet into the first chamber you can see through the faceplate. Next, turn the inner rotor anti-clockwise against spring tension until the next empty chamber appears. It’s then simply a matter of repeating this process until all ten are filled. Importantly, the magazine has a large arrow on the outer edge and the word ‘Front’, clearly indicating the way it should be loaded. Incidentally, the magazine supplied with the .177 calibre rifle will hold 11 pellets.

On the rails
The raised, reach-forward Picatinny scope rail is a lengthy one and accommodates the fitting of any size optic you desire. Now, I will once again stress the importance of choosing a scope that suits the rifle’s build and design. For the test, I decided to keep it in the family and fitted a Walther ZF 3-9x40 AO IR scope. If you choose a long eye-relief scope of this spec’, then you’ll be able to fit it in medium mounts, which I found gives a comfortable head position on the stock, plus correct eye-scope alignment.

Tried & tested trigger
The rifle uses the same 2-stage adjustable trigger unit as before, which is no slouch when it comes to configuration and performance. The polymer trigger blade sits within the integral trigger guard. It’s nicely curved and also has a broad forward face for assured trigger contact. There’s a manual push button ‘cross-block’ safety positioned directly above the trigger blade, which is also recessed into the body of the stock for ease of use.
The trigger came pre-set from the factory and released predictably, so I saw no reason to adjust it. If you decide you want to tweak the trigger, then you’ll have to disassemble the stock from the rifle using the star key provided. The Allen keys required for adjusting the trigger are also supplied. Although I didn’t need to make any adjustments, I feel that upon releasing a second-generation model, the company might have considered modifying the unit so that trigger adjustments could be made externally.

Quality tube
The free-floating match-grade Lothar Walther tube is much shorter than before and still has a ½” UNF screwcut muzzle to accept all popular cans. This thread is now protected by a stylish vented muzzle brake, which, incidentally, is the same that is used on all the Rotex RM8 family of PCPs.
Obviously, a compact can is the ideal choice for any bullpup, however, the rifle’s discharge isn’t too loud, but to lower the report, consider installing the superb Umarex K3 Neo silencer. As for accuracy, the .22 calibre test gun had no problem creating sub ¾” groups right out to 40 yards, from a rested position.
The Reign M2 is a little gem of an air rifle, and it will fulfil many hunting duties. Also, for those with a firearms certificate, there is an FAC version that is available in .22 and .25 calibre.

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gun
features

  • Name: : Walther Reign M2
  • Type::  PCP
  • Calibre::  .22 on test, .177 also available
  • Barrel Length:: 19.7”
  • Overall Length: : 26.1”
  • Weight::  6.4lbs
  • Price: : £764.95
  • Contact: : John Rothery Wholesale - www.bisley-uk.com
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