Hatsan Galatian QE Air Rifle Test Review .177 Cal
Hatsan Galatian III Carbine QE
Supplied by Hatsan USA
Very accurate with all tested pellets.
Double feed prevention.
Pressure gauge location.
Clip requires a knack to load.
VALUE FOR MONEY
On the basis of features for the price paid, the Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle has to score very highly. As HAM tester Stephen Archer wrote, “This gun includes everything but the Kitchen sink!”. (That’s an English expression, I hope it makes sense to US readers).
Here we have a powerful, quiet, PCP air rifle that’s extremely accurate. It has a high capacity clip (16 shots in .177 cal.) and easy side lever cocking. The ambidextrous synthetic stock has adjustable cheek piece and buttplate.
For those who want to add lamps, lasers, bipods and similar accessories, there’s no less than three Weaver/Picatinny accessory rails on the forend of the stock
The Galatian is supplied complete with two clips, a sling and a good hard carrying case. There’s a range of tools, O rings and other small parts supplied too.
Although the Galatian is not a cheap air rifle, HAM feels that the combination of features, performance and included accessories makes it very tough to beat as a great value for money package.
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SPEED AND ACCURACY
The Hatsan Galatian QE tested by HAM demonstrated outstanding accuracy with the full range of standard HAM test pellets.
Surprisingly, accuracy was very good, even with ultra light weight alloy pellets that often give poor results in other powerful PCP air rifles. Best accuracy in the HAM tests was achieved by the H&N Baracuda Match heavies. These gave excellent, almost “one hole” accuracy that gives great promise for accuracy at the longer ranges at which the Galatian will normally be shot.
Maximum muzzle velocity was 1203 fps. This was achieved with both the Gamo Raptor PBA and H&N Field Target Trophy Green alloy pellets, as would be expected. But what is very interesting is that the difference in muzzle velocity between the lightest and heaviest pellets tested was less than 100 fps. This is most unusual!
The Galatian fired 10.65 Grain H&N Baracuda Match heavies at 1011.64 fps. As the muzzle velocity was so similar, what we see is an ever-increasing muzzle energy produced as the pellets become heavier. Muzzle energy was just over 15 Ft/Lbs with the Raptors, yet over 24 Ft/Lbs with the Baracudas.
As is the case with most PCP air rifles, the muzzle energy – or knock down power – of the Galatian was highest with the heaviest pellets, as the table shows. This, together with the reduced noise level and greater accuracy, makes heavy pellets the best choice for the Galatian, even though the gun tested by HAM showed a remarkable lack of pellet pickiness!
|Pellet||Average Muzzle Velocity||Average Muzzle Energy||Accuracy|
|Gamo Raptor Platinum 4.7 Grain||1203.07 FPS||15.10 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy Green 5.56 Grain||1203.31 FPS||17.88 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|RWS Hobby 7.0 Grain||1145.81 FPS||20.41 Ft/Lbs||Good.|
|Crosman Premier HP 7.9 Grain||1077.00 FPS||20.35 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|JSB Exact Diabalo 8.44 Grain||1088.14 FPS||22.19 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy 8.64 Grain||1067.62 FPS||21.87 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Baracuda Match 10.65 Grain||1011.64 FPS||24.20 Ft/Lbs||Excellent. Best Tested.|
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TRIGGER AND COCKING EFFORT
The two-stage Quattro trigger of the Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle tested by HAM was very consistent, although the pull weight was extremely heavy at around 6 lbs! The HAM team understands that the Galatian’s adjustable trigger can be set to a much lower pull weight, but we test guns “out of the box” as they come to us and that’s what we found. Hatsan tells us that the Quattro trigger can be adjusted to a pull weight of not much more than 1 lb, while maintaining its crisp release, but they ship from the factory set “heavy”.
The trigger on the Galatian tested by HAM had a very short pull length, which made the heavy pull weight less objectionable. It certainly did not stop this gun from shooting very accurately.
The safety is automatic – unfortunately – but it’s easily accessed just in front of the trigger blade and has ambidextrous operation.
Cocking is pleasant and low effort, as you would expect from the side lever action. The cocking lever springs back smartly to its part-open position. Pulling back to full open requires about 13 Lbs of force.
COMPARISON TO MAKERS CLAIMS
Hatsan claims a maximum muzzle velocity of 1130 fps for the Galatian with .177 caliber lead pellets.
In HAM testing, the maximum achieved was 1145.81 fps with RWS Hobby light weight lead pellets. Muzzle velocity peaked at 1203 fps with both of the lightweight alloy pellets in the standard HAM test suite. So, Hatsan’s muzzle velocity claim is slightly exceeded by the HAM test gun.
Hatsan also claims a maximum of 24 Ft/lb muzzle energy in .177 cal. The highest muzzle energy achieved in the HAM tests was 24.20 Ft/lbs with H&N Baracuda Match pellets.
Another claim is that the Hatsan Galatian QE achieves between 32 and 48 “good” shots per fill in .177 caliber. Although this is a very general claim, it’s clear that the Galatian will achieve this claim in some way – depending on the Extreme Spread in muzzle velocity that the shooter is willing to accept.
Hatsan also claims that this Quiet Energy (QE) model reduces shot noise by 32% or more compared to an unsilenced Galatian. Without an anechoic chamber, this claim is very difficult to prove, but HAM believes this to be true, given the quietness of the Galatian QE. At least it’s true so long as you don’t shoot pellets weighing 7.0 grains or less, as described in the NOISE LEVEL section of this HAM review below.
Consistency was definitely a strong suite for the Hatsan Galatian air rifle tested by HAM.
This Galatian was certainly not pellet-picky. It even shot well with the lightest alloy pellets tested – a surprise to the HAM test team – although heavier pellets are to be preferred, as expected.
As remarked above, the Galatian’s consistency of muzzle velocity – almost irrespective of pellet weight – was remarkable and pretty well unique among the air rifles tested by HAM to date.
The trigger pull weight was also extremely consistent – varying only a couple of ounces above and below its average value in HAM’s testing. It’s unfortunate that its weight was so heavy.
With a fully shrouded barrel and integrated silencer, the Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle is very quiet with all subsonic pellets.
Subjectively, the HAM team considers that the Galatian is a little noisier than the Benjamin Marauder. But not a lot. That’s excellent news for owners looking for a quiet, powerful PCP air rifle.
But there’s one exception to this quietness. If you fire light lead or lead-free pellets, with a muzzle velocity of over about 1100 fps, from the Hatsan Galatian QE, you’ll hear a loud crack, the shock wave as these pellets exceed the speed of sound. In HAM testing, the two PBA pellets – and also the RWS Hobby pellets – all gave very loud reports.
Of course, this effect is found with many other air rifles too. But it highlights the issue that many people’s craving for maximum muzzle velocity in .177 caliber is not compatible with the quietness that they also usually value! Sticking to heavier pellets tamed the noise level: as you would expect.
SIGHTS AND SCOPE
The Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle is a scope only model. The choice of scope is left to the buyer.
No iron sights are fitted, but excellent long scope dovetails are cast into the top of the breech. This provides firm scope mounting, together with a wide range of positioning possibilities to accommodate various scopes and eye relief requirements.
An unusual feature of several Hatsan PCP air rifles – including the Galatian – as with all other PCPs – is the provision of a combo scope rail that accepts scope mounts with Weaver/Picatinny and standard airgun dovetails. This eliminates any issues over scope ring fittings. They all fit the Galatian!
For the HAM tests, we fitted a Leapers 4-16 x 40AO scope. The Hatsan Galatian QE felt fine and balanced well with this scope.
HAM scoring for this section is based on our standardized rating structure. We assume a typical price for scope and mounts fitted to the Gaqlatian at $250.00 and the score at 100%. (Obviously no-one will spend $800 on a Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle and then waste their investment with a scope costing much less than this).
The Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle offers many shootability benefits to its owner.
High among these is the positive double feed prevention system that will not allow two pellets to be loaded into the barrel. Many other multi-shot PCP air rifles, both cheaper and more expensive, will allow this double-feeding if the shooter loses concentration and operates the bolt or lever cocking action twice without pulling the trigger in between. This is a really BIG practical benefit for the Galatian!
Another unique feature is the ability to load pellets into empty slots in the clip while it’s still in the gun. Given the higher-than-usual capacity of the Galatian’s clip (16 pellets in .177 cal.), this might not often be required. But it’s more proof that Hatsan’s designers obviously were encouraged to take an “out of the box”approach to design of this air rifle.
But it has to be said that there’s a”knack” to loading the clip into the Galatian. Somehow it’s not just a simple snap-in operation and HAM Tester Stephen Archer usually fumbled loading a little, although he always loaded the clip correctly in the end.
The side lever action is convenient and easy to use, while the multi-adjustable stock design allows pull length and cheek weld to be adjusted to almost any shooter’s requirements.
The main disadvantages in shooting the Hatsan Galatian QE are the heavy weight of the gun and the lack of a shot counter on the clip.
The heavy weight (it can easily approach 12 Lbs with a scope in place) means that the Galatian is best shot from a rest, using a bipod for example, if the inherent accuracy of this air rifle is to be obtained in practice.
And although the Galatian’s double feed prevention system is great, there’s no indication of the number of pellets remaining in the clip. This will lead to blank shots unless you’re very conscientious about counting. Almost all other multi-shot PCP air rifles incorporate a counter of this type, so its omission in the Galatian is a little disappointing.
The Hatsan Galatian QE also offers interchangeable HPA tubes, together with a degassing capability. This is a great idea, and it would be even better if the Galatian’s instruction manual explained how to operate it!
In fact a pressurized tube can be removed from the Galatian simply by unscrewing it from the gun. There’s no drama, hissing or fuss and no need to bleed air first – even if the tube is under full operating pressure. A replacement tube can then be screwed into place and the gun fired.
This behavior indicates that the Galatian’s valve must be located in the replaceable tube, rather than in the body of the gun itself. This is confirmed by the operation of the degassing capability. There’s a removable brass cover supplied with each pressure tube. This cover has a setscrew in the end. Turning the setscrew with the supplied Allen wrench will allow pressure to be bled down from the tube, “degassing” it. Easy and convenient when you know how!
APPEARANCE AND FINISH
The Hatsan Galatian QE has an appearance that impressed the HAM test team. HAM tester Stephen Archer felt that it looked more like a shotgun than an air rifle and would have preferred the wood stock version (He’s a traditionalist). But all agreed that the Galatian is a distinctive-looking air rifle that combines a stylish appearance with practicality and the black, tactical, look that’s so popular right now.
Finish of both metal and synthetic parts on the HAM test gun was great.
The Aluminum receiver is beautifully finished in a gloss black with clear, sharp, wording. Steel parts, primarily the shroud and HPA tube were well finished also with strong, deep bluing.
The black, synthetic stock showed a complete absence of mold marks. It felt particularly good to the touch, with a tactile, almost rubbery feel that HAM testers found very pleasant and practical. This stock material is unlike that of most other synthetic air rifle stocks. It encourages you to maintain a good grip and there’s molded checkering in just the right places to provide even more grip.
Overall, the Hatsan Galatian QE air rifle avoids looking “flashy”, yet is good looking, stylish and gives the appearance of quality.
BUYING AND OWNING
Buying and owning the Hatsan Galatian QE is a combination of good – really good – features and some unfortunately poor ones.
As described above, the Galatian ships with a variety of useful parts and accessories. That’s very good.
In particular the sling will be of great value to any user who needs to carry the Galatian for any time. And shipping this air rifle in a solid, sturdy hard case is a great idea to prevent damage in shipping. All manufacturers should do this!
And the provision of interchangeable HPA tubes could be a big advantage for many shooters. This is a relatively light and compact way to carry more air with you when shooting, without the need for a large HPA tank and fittings, or pump.
The maximum fill pressure is 200 Bar – that’s 2,900 psi – which means that hand pump filling is practicable for many users.
But there’s also a flip side…
The Hatsan Galatian SE uses a probe to connect an air tank to the gun. The HAM team would prefer to see a quick disconnect system as we feel that the probe system requires more protection to prevent dirt from being attracted to the probe and entering the gun during filling. Also, most users will need an adapter to connect the probe to their HPA tank.
The Galatian’s pressure gauge is calibrated in Bar, the International Standard measurement system for pressure. This is unfamiliar to most US users, but it’s easily mastered. Just stop filling before the needle reaches the red line on the gauge.
More importantly, HAM really does not like the position of the pressure gauge in the end of the air tube. This requires the user to read by looking down from the muzzle end of the gun!
Although this gauge location is also used on some other PCP air rifles, this has to be an obvious safety hazard. Be VERY SURE that the Galatian is not cocked or loaded and that the safety is engaged before checking the pressure. Again, users will become used to this, but a gauge in the more normal position in the underside of the stock has to be a better solution.
Spare parts for Hatsan air rifles are available from Hatsan USA, through theonline Customer Service Form process.
The Owner’s Manual for the Hatsan Galatian QE is a big area for future improvement. The English-only manual is well written and illustrated. But the issue is that it completely fails to describe many of the features of the Galatian. For example, there’s no mention of how to remove the interchangeable HPA tubes, nor how the degassing feature operates. Also, the configuration of the adjustment screws for the Quattro trigger is different in the manual from that on the gun.
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