Walther Terrus Air Rifle Test Review .177 Cal
Aug 9, 2016
Supplied by Umarex USA.
Not pellet picky.
Unprotected front sight.
VALUE FOR MONEY
At a Street Price of around $250, the Walther Terrus air rifle offers quality, accuracy and a sophisticated shooting experience. This is an unusual combination of benefits at this price point. For the discerning shooter, this makes the Terrus outstanding value!
Yes, most break barrel airguns in the $240 to $260 range offer more power and a bundled scope. Lots of them offer gas ram power plants, too. But many of these guns recoil heavily and are tough to shoot well. And most of those bundled scopes need to be replaced with a higher-quality optic to achieve better accuracy.
We’ll say it again… Lots of FPS is of very limited value if the pellet doesn’t hit the target! The ability to achieve accurate results fairly easily is what differentiates the Walther Terrus air rifle from competitive break barrel models at this price.
HAM tester Paul Manktelow summarized it perfectly in his testing notes. “This rifle has it all together.” He wrote.
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
BUY FROM AIGRUN DEPOT
Walther Terrus Air Rifle, Wood
SPEED AND ACCURACY
The Walther Terrus air rifle tested by HAM provided a peak muzzle velocity of 1,105 FPS when using very light, alloy, Gamo Raptor Platinum pellets. A peak muzzle velocity with lead pellets was achieved using 7.0 Grain RWS Hobby pellets.
In both cases, accuracy was better with the Terrus than we normally find using these pellets with other air rifles. There’s no doubt that the Terrus is a very accurate air rifle in the right hands and that this accuracy is demonstrated across a wide range of pellets.
|Pellet||Average Muzzle Velocity||Average Muzzle Energy||Accuracy|
|Gamo Raptor Platinum 4.7 Grain||1105.16 FPS||12.74 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy Green 5.56 Grain||1063.52 FPS||13.96 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|RWS Hobby 7.0 Grain||915.27 FPS||13.01 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|Crosman Premier HP 7.9 Grain||865.03 FPS||13.12 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|JSB Exact Diabalo 8.44 Grain||817.53 FPS||12.52 Ft/Lbs||Excellent. Best Tested.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy 8.64 Grain||839.85 FPS||13.52 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Baracuda Match 10.65 Grain||726.87 FPS||12.49 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
HAM tester Paul Manktelow achieved best accuracy when using JSB Exact Diabolo 8.44 Grain pellets. But, as you can see from the test targets below, excellent accuracy was also obtained with 5.56 Grain H&N Field Target Trophy Green alloy pellets. In fact, it was a very close call which pellet gave the best accuracy.
All of the pellets in the standard HAM test range gave “Very Good” or better accuracy. This is not a common achievement, as regular HAM readers will know!
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
JSB Match Diablo Exact pellets, .177 caliber
BUY FROM AIRGUN DEPOT
JSB Diabolo Exact .177 Cal, 8.4 gr – 500 ct
TRIGGER AND COCKING EFFORT
The trigger of the Walther Terrus air rifle gained high praise from HAM tester Paul Manktelow. In his testing notes, Paul wrote: “I find it a very nice trigger. It brakes nice and clean”. Paul also liked the wide trigger blade and praised the overall feel of the trigger action.
At an average pull weight of 3 Lbs 6 Oz, it’s not exactly a light trigger. Although it is lighter than many competitive break barrel air rifles in this price range.
And it’s certainly not a “Match trigger” (see the next section, Comparison to Makers Claims). But it is very serviceable and most shooters will find little to complain about. At the Street Price being asked, the HAM team doubts that there is a better trigger on any break barrel air rifle!
Cocking effort for the Walther Terrus air rifle tested by HAM registered 32 Lbs. This is quite manageable for most people and won’t feel like it’s too much effort. This allows the Terrus to be used for casual shooting and plinking over an extended period. Yet the power level is sufficient for small game hunting, if required.
The cocking action is smooth and quiet. That’s different from many break barrel air rifles and is another indication of quality construction for the Terrus.
Although the safety is of the automatic type, it’s position at the top rear of the compression tune is convenient. The safety is simply slid forward to disengage and allow the rifle to be fired.
COMPARISON TO MAKERS CLAIMS
The Walther Terrus air rifle is claimed by the manufacturer to give a maxiumum muzzle velocity of 1,050 FPS with alloy pellets in .177 caliber. The Terrus tested by HAM easily exceeded that claim with a maximum of 1,105 FPS using Gamo Raptor Platinum alloy pellets.
Another significant claim for the Terrus is that it features an “adjustable Match trigger”. HAM agrees that the trigger is adjustable – there’s screw adjustment for the first stage pull length.
However, the trigger pull weight for the gun tested by HAM averaged 3 Lb 6 Oz, and that’s definitely NOT what we would expect from a “Match trigger”. There’s no documented way to adjust the pull weight and no external screw do do so. So we removed the stock. Still no way to adjust the pull weight!
It has to be said that the HAM team really liked the trigger of the Walther Terrus air rifle we tested. But it really doesn’t qualify as a Match trigger in our experience.
So we checked with Umarex USA. Marketing Director, Justin Biddle, explained that there had been an error in the trigger description. The Terrus actually has a Walther XT trigger. These triggers have pawls made of hardened steel. They operate without stressing other parts, thus minimizing the trigger weight. The XT trigger (T for Target) allows adjustment of the first stage travel.
The Terrus has a “Target trigger”, not a Match trigger. That we can agree with…
“Made in Germany” is another important marketing claim for the Terrus. Yip, it’s definitely manufactured at the Walther factory in Germany!
Consistency was also a strong suit for the Walther Terrus air rifle tested by HAM.
The Terrus produced very good accuracy – or better – with the whole range of standard HAM test pellets. It’s definitely not pellet-picky.
Unusually, the muzzle energy (knock down power) produced by the Terrus was also very consistent. Spring/piston air rifles generally give their highest muzzle energy with light pellets and that falls with increasing pellet weight. (It’s the reverse for PCPs, by the way).
The Terrus produced effectively the same muzzle energy with all the pellets tested. The variation was less than 1 Ft/Lb from the average figure on test of 13.03 Ft/Lbs. Combined with the consistent accuracy, this means that the Walther Terrus air rifle will give good, consistent performance with a wide range of pellets.
Standard Deviation – the measure of variability in muzzle velocity from shot-to-shot – was also very consistent at an average of 4.93 FPS. This is a very low figure for ANY air rifle and is another indication of the outstanding consistency displayed by the Walther Terrus air rifle tested by HAM.
Trigger pull weight was again extremely consistent. It showed just 4 Oz or less variation either side of the average TPW of 3 Lb 6 Oz. This level if consistency is – again – outstanding. There’s very few among us who would be able to detect such a variation in actual use.
The Walther Terrus air rifle is not silenced. So, it’s not a silent airgun. Yet the noise level was agreed by the HAM team to be moderate – about what we would expect for a spring/piston air rifle of this power level.
The front of the barrel is threaded for an aftermarket silencer and provided with a knurled cover to protect the threads. In England and across Europe, everyone would be sure to attach a silencer to the Terrus, this being encouraged in those countries. However, laws are different in the USA. Here, it’s illegal to fit a silencer to this gun – or any other airgun – unless you have the appropriate Federal approvals and have paid to get them. So don’t be tempted to add a silencer to the Terrus, you’ll be breaking the law big time in the US, even though the presence of those threads looks so tempting…
HAM tester Paul Manktelow found little to no spring noise when firing the Terrus. As he wrote: “There is just a very solid thunk – just like it should be”.
Paul did find that the Terrus on test did suffer from some additional noise when using the heavy 10.65 Grain H&N Baracuda pellets. His opinion was that this could be due to piston rebound and so he recommends using a somewhat lighter pellet with the Walther Terrus air rifle to be on the safe side.
SIGHTS AND SCOPE
The Walther Terrus air rifle is fitted with a set of standard, perfectly-serviceable iron sights. Windage and elevation corrections can be achieved with click adjustments of the rear sight. One disadvantage is that the fiber optic element of the front sight is completely unprotected. Although the front sight itself is a sturdy metal casting (unlike most which are plastic) and very securely attached to the barrel, we’d feel a lot happier if the red fiber optic was not exposed to unintended damage.
Of course, few owners will want to shoot the Terrus with open sights. A scope really is necessary to deliver the down range accuracy this gun is capable of achieving.
There’s a pair of long, 11mm wide, dovetails machined into the compression tube of the Terrus. These accept standard airgun rings and mounts. A scope stop pin hole is also provided to arrest any movement generated by the gun’s recoil.
Unlike many air rifles in this price range, choice of scope is left to the owner. At additional cost, of course!
HAM feels this is a good decision by Walther. The majority of scopes bundled with air rifles – even at this price level – have relatively poor optics and require replacement for good shooting. By buying the Terrus, you choose the scope quality and specifications you feel suitable. And the vast majority of scopes sold as separate products will give better results than anything bundles with the gun.
HAM fitted a 3-9 x 40AO Nikon Prostaff scope for this test. It showed excellent sharpness and contrast. It’s not too big or heavy and balanced well on the Terrus. We loved it – except for just one thing. No Mil-dot reticle!!!
HAM recommends that a quality, one-piece mount is used to fit the scope to the gun. This is our advice for any spring/piston or gas ram air rifle.
Although the Walther Terrus air rifle is fairly heavy at 7 Lbs 5 Oz, it balances very well. The weight is centered directly above the natural position of the shooter’s forehand – ideal.
The stock itself is fairly thin and comfortable to hold. The rubber butt pad gives a useful amount of grip against the shooter’s shoulder. And the comb of the ambidextrous stock is of just the right height so that the user naturally achieves a good cheek weld when looking through the scope. Consistent cheek weld is an important aspect of accurate shooting: the stock of the Terrus is very well designed to help achieve this.
Pull length (the distance from buttpad to trigger) is 14.25 inches. This also worked well for the HAM testers.
A further aid to shootability is the smoothness of the shot cycle. It’s not fierce and shuddering, as can be the case with some high powered break barrel air rifles.
APPEARANCE AND FINISH
Metal finish and bluing of the Terrus are good: certainly very good for the price. There is not the mirror finish and deep blue-black color to the metal seen with some much more expensive air rifles. But – as with other aspects of the gun – the perceived quality is there and owners will not be disappointed. Wood-to-metal fit of the Walther Terrus air rifle is excellent, also.
The wood stock itself is well shaped and has small areas of checkering that are applied to allow grip but are not too aggressive. Wood finish is very smooth – indeed flawless. Probably the only letdown is the fine, close grain of the beech wood stock. There’s no figuring in the wood at all and that makes it look a little uninspiring.
Overall, the HAM team likes the appearance of the Walther Terrus air rifle. We feel it looks stylish, sophisticated and has classic, simple lines. There’s a version available with a somewhat more curvaceous black synthetic stock if you disagree!
BUYING AND OWNING
The Terrus is available widely from most of your favorite online dealers such as Pyramyd Air and Airgun Depot. It’s also available in physical stores from some big box sporting goods chains. So it’s quite easy to buy.
The Walther Terrus air rifle has a limited lifetime warranty which is offered by Umarex USA. Wear parts, such as seals and mainsprings are warranted for 18 months from the date of purchase. There’s a clear, well-illustrated instruction manual that provides comprehensive coverage of the gun’s functions. This is in English only.
The product packaging for the Terrus is not covered with pretty, colorful print. In fact it’s just a plain brown card box. But it’s strong, durable and the internal packaging parts hold the gun firmly in place for shipment. If you’re buying online, this means that the Terrus is likely to arrive in one piece and undamaged from shipment – not an insignificant benefit!