The HW45 is loosely based on the looks of a Colt 1911A1 pistol. From the slide rails down, it has almost exactly matched the dimensions of the full-bore pistol; even the cut chequered walnut grip plates can be replaced by anything that is marketed for the 1911. Both the front & rear areas of the grip-frame are deeply grooved to prevent your hand from twisting around the grip. It should be noted that there is no grip safety. On the HW45, the "slide" is far bigger than is found on any Colt clone, it looks more like the size of an IMI Desert Eagle. The
HW45 is made from an aluminium alloy that helps to keep the weight manageable & is finished in an excellent satin black coating that refuses to wear off, despite plenty of handling. The sights consist of a square post foresight & a notch rearsight that is micro adjustable for windage & elevation. The sight picture is nice & deep, but the rearsight notch is a little too narrow. The pistol has a dovetail groove for the fitting of an optical or red-dot sight.
Loading & Firing
You first thumb the "hammer" back a few degrees to release the top lever/barrel assembly. It is best to use your other hand to prevent the assembly from chattering in its released state as it bounces up & down for a while. Then pull the lever/barrel assembly in an arc, forward of the pistol until the sear engages. The .177" version has 2 sears to permit 2 power levels. Load a pellet directly into the barrel breach. Return the lever assembly to the firing position. Pressure on the trigger will now fire the pistol.
There is an ambidextrous radial lever mounted behind the trigger that blocks the trigger from moving. It is convenient for both your thumb & trigger finger to operate. There is an anti-bear trap device that prevents you from discharging the pistol if the lever/barrel assembly is not in the firing position.
Velocity (fps) : 350 - 420 depending on pellet type.
Muzzle energy (ft/lbs) : 3.8 - 5.5 depending on pellet type
The HW45 is sensitive to changes in grip hold. Any variation in your hold will result in changes of where your shots will impact. The low power setting on the .177" version will produce group impacts considerably higher than when set on full power. There is a shoulder stock available for the HW45/P1 Magnum. If this is to be used, you will also need to fit an optical or red-dot sight, as the rearsight notch is not suitable for close eye relief.
The HW45 is among the best of the recoiling air pistols available, ever. The rearward moving piston provides firearm type recoil similar to a .22"LR. It is quite powerful for an air pistol and is capable of better than average accuracy. The build quality is excellent; the pistol will last for a Century or two if it is properly maintained and all this has been achieved with such a good-looking package.
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