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FX Gladiator

FX Gladiator

The FX Gladiator was one of the ‘bunch’ of Swedish built FX air rifles that was ‘lost’ in the pack. This high shot capacity PCP didn’t rely on a big buddy bottle, instead it used a clever double air reservoir. The design positions the air tanks front and rear, which helps to evenly distribute weight and in theory should improve balance.

The Gladiator shows a synthetic stock, which is reasonably short in the forend as the forward reservoir does rather dominate this area. At the back end the rear reservoir is in fact a buddy bottle that doubles up as the butt. Sensibly FX also designed an ambidextrous, slip-over cover that offers a rubber recoil pad and cheek piece/comb. To a degree this is length and angle adjustable as it can be positioned longer or shorter left or right of the bottle. Here I have one gripe!

Small Niggle

Obviously the gun was not new when I got it as it had done the rounds as a ‘tester’. There is just one tiny grub screw that threads through the butt cover to locate it on the bottle. This is cut from the synthetic and was worn to such an extent you could not really position and keep this section in place. A metal insert would be better instead!

With that out of the way, I can say that when adjusted to suit, the Gladiator is surprisingly comfortable to handle and shoot. This is certainly due to its separate pistol grip with finger grooves and stippling on its sides, and the short flat forend section. The synthetic material has a nice, non-slip feel to it too.

Inset into the underside of the stock, just forward of the integral trigger guard is a relatively large air gauge that will indicate fill status from both reservoirs. Filling is ‘on-gun’ via a push fit probe that simply locates just to the rear of the forward air tank behind the barrel band. Due to the abbreviated forend the reservoir seems very exposed and lengthy although the rifle only measures 36 ½” from butt to muzzle.

To The Max

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The rifle takes a maximum fill of 200-bar. On the side of the action is a 3-stage power adjuster lever, which allows you to vary the power output and capacity accordingly: 500/450/400 shots per charge at the settings of 7, 9 and 12 ft/lbs respectively in this .177 test rifle. In .22 calibre you can add approximately another 100 shots more in each power setting.

The Gladiator uses the familiar FX side handle with drop down grip. This cycles the action/feeds the pellet and also indexes the detachable, 8-shot, rotary magazine. The barrel is from Lothar Walther and threaded ½ x 20” UNF. barrel. The cocking and loading procedure for the FX action has been detailed many times before, there’s no need to do it again apart from to say it’s now starting to look a tad dated, but as basic as it is, it does work efficiently.

I took advantage of the ½” UNF muzzle and fitted a Logun CCFC Silencer up-front, which pushed the rifle to nearly 43 ¾”. However, though quite long, it didn’t feel unwieldy due to the clever distribution of weight. Scoping up with a Hawke Map Pro 4 – 16 X 50AO I set about getting a 30-yard zero. As well as using FX’s own brand pellets, I tried my usual favourites and the rifle was not overly fussy about what it was fed and shot pretty much as well as most other PCP’s – certainly kill-zone accurate at my zero, but considering the price you’d expect nothing less. The adjustable 2-stage trigger unit has a broad nicely curved blade and releases shots cleanly without creep. The safety catch is handy, situated directly above the blade on the right of the action. A red dot shows when the lever is pushed forward to visually indicate this is now in the live fire position. So after testing what are my opinions of this mega-shot monster?


Well, I’ve no doubt the FX Gladiator was designed with every good intention and the onus on producing an air rifle with a high shot count per fill has definitely been achieved. I’ve also just as much respect for the ingenuity and innovation that must have gone into the design of the internal valving, that allows it to use this ‘double’ compressed air storage. Especially after testing it through its ‘flat spot’, when it showed how consistent and accurate it could be for so many shots in comparison with a more conventional designed PCP. However, for the price, there are plenty of other FX rifles to choose from that in my opinion are far more attractive propositions for the hunter.

We Reckon:

Unusual and different
Overall a bit dated
Maybe better FXs around for hunting

PRICE: £799

  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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  • FX Gladiator - image {image:count}

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gun
features

  • Model: FX Gladiator
  • Type: Side-Lever action, Multi-Shot PCP
  • Calibre: .177 on test .22 available
  • Stock: Synthetic
  • Sights: N
  • Grooved for scope mounting: Y
  • Barrel: 19.75”

5 Comments

  • Hi Abdallah,

    If you are using a UK spec, sub 12 ft/lb rifle you should get a velocity of around 560 feet per second. I'm not sure how many shots you'll get per charge though, the easiest way is to use a chronograph to check the speed of your pellets and note down the readings. If you then fire 9 blank shots (remove the mag) , then record every 10th shot, you'll be able to tell when the power drops off.

    Alternatively, you could just carry on shooting at say 30 yards and see when your pellets start to drop low. You can then charge up as normal and just shoot that number of pellets before re-charging. Combro chronographs are very good and inexpensive.

    Shooting at long range will really show up when the pellets are running out of power due to low pressure in the rifle.

    Let us know how you get on.

    Default profile image
    Troll Hunter
    09 Dec 2015 at 11:52 AM
  • Hi
    I have FX gladiator and i am using JSB Exact 15.90 Gn pellet and kindly arrange to provide me the information about the velocity (ft/s),and how many shoot can be done in 180 bar to 200 bar.Is there any different in shooting in full charge cylinder and low charge cylinder while shooting log distance(0 to 100 meters) .


    Thanks & Regards

    Default profile image
    Abdallah
    08 Dec 2015 at 08:13 AM
  • have the fac gladiator, found it to be very accurate, high shot count,great to shoot ,would be better if it had a bigger mag 8 is not enough, agreat gun to own,would not be without it,well worth th money. Irate it as one of the best guns ive owned.

    Default profile image
    rick baker
    16 Sep 2012 at 08:55 PM
  • Take a look at the other FX articles on this site (see below) to see which would best suit your requirements. Some of them have an adjustable power selector, but to be honest, I prefer to leave it on 'full' all the time, so I get used to it's aimpoints and the high/sweet/low spots of the air charge.

    If it is available where you are, you should also take a look at the FX Independant - the first multi-shot pump pneumatic - which lets you operate at variable power if you want, and without the need to have access to a diver's air bottle. We haven't reviewed it yet, but it looks good.

    FX Verminator

    FX Cyclone Walnut Stock Standard

    FX Cyclone Standard

    FX Airguns Typhoon T12k Synthetic

    Default profile image
    Pat Farey
    10 Nov 2010 at 03:45 PM
  • Good review - you mentioned better FX rifles for hunting.
    I have a small property in Australia, and guns are scarce.
    Which FX would you recommend - I am looking for a variable velocity to target / hunt with.
    Best regards,
    Michael

    Default profile image
    Michael D
    10 Nov 2010 at 01:39 PM


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