FX Impact .22 PCP
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- Last updated: 19/05/2017
If there is one thing that I must give FX ten points for, it’s for their radical designs and innovation! You really have got to give them credit. This little beauty is nothing short of radical in every sense of the word! So where do I begin with the FX Impact? Well, firstly, as you can see, it has an AR-style look about it. Very tactical and somewhat modular in design, it’s a look that you are either going to love or hate, yep, I have another Marmite gun! Now, firstly, this is an FAC version in .22 running at around 38 ft/lbs of energy so a very good choice for a pest controller or airgun hunter looking for a bit more range ability.
Let’s take a closer look at this beast. Taking it from the back end then, the butt pad is rubberised yet not too grabby on clothing and very comfortable in the shoulder. L-shaped, it offers a rear hold position for the supporting hand; so, if you are target shooting off a bench for example, you are able to really pull the rifle into your shoulder. Now, the Impact is not an ambidextrous rifle, so me being a lefty, I had to put up with the opposite ergonomics! But to be honest though, it wasn’t too bad to shoot southpaw, but if you are a lefty like me and you fancy one of these, then opt for the dedicated left hand version.
The cheek piece is fairly comfortable although with it being metal, it can be a little cold on the cheek in winter months! At first glance, you don’t realise it is a bullpup rifle (well, I didn’t anyway!) until you see where the magazine is located at the rear, on the opposite side of the cheek piece. The mags are a cassette-type and are the standard version that FX seem to be using in all of their airguns these days apart from the 8-round drum of their Wildcat Bullpup. They are a pain to load but feed reliably when filled correctly. Just try loading one with cold fingers!
When loaded into the rifle, they do protrude a little but this is needed so that you can keep an eye on how many shots you have left through an in-set Perspex window. Once you see where the mag is located, you realise how long the barrel is, which by the way has a telescopic shroud that when fully extended is 920mm and makes the Impact quite a bit quieter. Push the shroud in and it takes the length down to 760mm but noise reduction is less efficient.
The barrel has FX’s patented Smooth Twist rifling form, which is basically a smooth bore with a bit of rifling at the muzzle. The idea is the pellet gets an easy trip up the smooth section of the bore with no deformation and is only spun up by the last few inches of rifling and it certainly seems to work! Talking about the barrel, we may as well jump in and talk about accuracy. Two words, LASER BEAM! Yep, this rifle makes even my shooting look good, yeah, really! At 30 yards I was getting more or less one hole groups with Bisley Magnums and at 50 on paper the groups only opened up slightly. I also set up a steel gong at 80 yards and the Impact was nailing it with no problems at all.
Now here is the really good bit, once you have purchased this rifle, you can get different calibre barrels for it, thus turning it in to a multi calibre gun or modular shooting system. It makes the Impact very versatile for the hunter who wants to quickly swap out the barrel for a different calibre or a specific role. There are four barrels available - .177, .22, .25, and .30. You could say several rifles for the price of one but an extra barrel will cost you around £200, so not mega cheap by any means but it does give you some useful options. Chances are you’ll only add one extra, as that will be all you need; say a .177 for competition and hunting and a .25 for close range heavy hitting etc.
It is very quick and easy to change calibres, simply make the rifle safe, take the magazine out and pull the cocking lever all the way back. Then, unscrew the barrel retaining screw and gently pull the barrel forward out of the action. It is then just a question of changing the pellet probe to the desired calibre (obviously the same as the barrel that you are putting in!) which is an easy job and then just put it all back together again. It is not a mega fiddly job at all. Slide the new barrel into the action and line up the small indentation level with where the retaining screw is and then just push in gently.
Tighten the barrel screw up and you are ready to rock! It’s then just a case of re-zeroing for the new calibre.
As I mentioned earlier; the pistol grip is AR15-style and rubberized, also the fitting is a common one with a bolt up through the base, so any other style of AR grip can be substituted, so you have plenty of choice from a basic A2-type up to even a full match style with palm shelf etc! The cocking handle is FX’s standard one that you see on all of their multi shot PCPs. It’s good, solid and doesn’t rattle with my perfected shake test!
The receiver is all metal (aluminium) keeping things tough and light weight and there are plenty of Picatinny rails dotted about here and there with two on the sides for accessories. Because of the buddy bottle (which by the way holds 480cc and will give you around 60-shots per fill in this high power model there is a small bit of rail in front of the trigger guard to bang on a forward facing bipod. There is plenty of Picatinny rail to mount an optic of your choice to. It is raised slightly, so depending on your build, you may or may not need high mounts for your scope.
The trigger is fully adjustable and the test rifle that I had was pulling 2 lb 9oz straight out of the box, very nice. The blade is a target style and is adjustable for fine tuning of your trigger finger position. The trigger guard offers plenty of room for a gloved finger in the winter months. The nonautomatic safety catch is AR-style and is located just above the trigger. It’s very simple and easy to operate.
Power-wise, the impact has a carbon Fibre wrapped 480cc buddy bottle that will give you plenty of shots, no; bloody loads in a sub 12 ft/lb gun. In FAC-rated mode, the count is lower as I have indicated and will differ slightly as to the calibre you have opted for. You can adjust the power of the FX with the power setting wheel on the left-hand side of the action, which is handy if you are just plinking or target shooting. You can even fine-tune the buddy bottles’ valve for maximum efficiency and control how much air is actually going into the rifle. To keep an eye on things, there are two pressure gauges, one that is for the buddy bottle and the other for the regulator.
All in all, a great rifle, if you like the look of it! The Impact feels great to shoot and is very well balanced and even a left handed shooting can use a right handed one! Build quality is second to none. My only gripe is that there are lots of nooks and crannies for crap to get in to but apart from that, a great looking rifle that not only looks amazing but shoots the same too! I think airgun manufacturers need to keep a close eye on the multi calibre option that FX offers; they might just be setting the new standard in high end airguns! Safe shooting! - Rack.