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A perfect Heckler & Koch full-sized training gun: The HK P30

Heckler & Koch has always catered to a variety of end users from civilians to military and law enforcement by tailoring certain models in multiple variants, like its P30 Series which is offered in V1, V2 and V3 configurations. Adding to that selection is the new H&K licensed, Umarex built HK P30 CO2 model. This latest 4.5mm pellet firing semi-auto has its roots firmly planted in the first Umarex 4.5mm CO2 pistol to be adopted as a training gun, the Walther CP99. The HK model is quite a bit more advanced in its design, finish, and operating features, but at its core is the same superbly engineered internal mechanism that has made the CP99 a success for more than 16 years.


There are a variety of cartridge-firing HK P30 variations. As categorized by HK they include V1, an enhanced DAO with light trigger pull also designated as the LEM (Law Enforcement Modification). As required by some law enforcement organizations, a light trigger is not approved, thus HK has the V2 LEM with enhanced DAO and standard weight trigger pull. Last there is the V3, a traditional double action/single action (DA/SA) model with a hammer spur for manual cocking, and a manual decocker. This is the version duplicated by the Umarex HK P30 air pistol, which uses an 8-shot cast alloy rotary magazine loaded at the breech. Another feature shared by the 9mm and CO2 models is an ambidextrous magazine release integrated into the bottom of the triggerguard (like the original Walther P99).

About the Gun

            The Umarex HK P30 airgun is the full size V3 variation of Heckler & Koch’s P30 Series introduced in mid 2007. The CO2 model has the same style V3 trigger design, manual safety, and decocker as the 9mm. The original P30 model has an overall length of 6.99 inches, a width of 1.37 inches, and height of 5.43 inches. The CO2 model also measures 6.99 inches in length, comes in at 1.25 inches in width, 5.5 inches in height (base of magazine to top of rear sight) and weighs 28 ounces empty, roughly 5-ounces more than the 9mm model.

Made in Germany, the airgun uses a polymer frame like the 9mm P30, with the balance of the components; slide, hammer, trigger, slide release and decocker, all metal with a black matte finish; the same as the 9mm model. The airgun also has a full length Picatinny rail to mount a weapon light or light/laser combination for enhanced training exercises. For this review it has been equipped with a Crimson Trace Rail Master Pro.  

Another interesting feature of the Umarex HK P30 is the magazine, which can also be used to load 15 steel BBs. Used in conjunction with a BB adapter (in place of the rotary magazine, the P30 becomes a non-blowback action semi-auto BB pistol with a rifled barrel. The one drawback to the Umarex HK P30 not having a blowback action is that you either have to fire every shot double action, or manually cock the hammer to shoot single action. This is the same situation with the Umarex Beretta 92FS and Walther CP88 pellet models.  

The double action trigger pull on the HK P30 airgun is 11 pounds, 10.5 ounces average. Single action, the trigger pull drops to a refined 5 pounds, 2.5 ounces average. The 9mm models average 5 pounds, 8 ounces single action and 11 pounds, 4 ounces double action, so the airgun’s trigger is nicely matched with only 0.375 inches of travel fired single action, a crisp break and minimal over travel. The latter is irrelevant since you have to manually cock the hammer again before you can shoot single action, although with a two-handed hold you can cock the hammer with the support hand thumb pretty quickly. Either way, this is an easy pistol to handle.   

Carry Options

            An important part of arms training for law enforcement, military, and concealed carry, is learning how to carry, draw and re-holster quickly and correctly for safety. The HK P30 airgun fits the same holsters as the 9mm models, including the traditional pancake-style Galco Combat Master, one of the most practical belt rigs on the market. The Galco is a contoured premium steer hide holster formed to the shape of the gun allowing an open top design that keeps the pistol securely held in place but quick on the draw. It also has an advantageous butt forward cant and full slide and barrel coverage.

The Umarex HK P30 also fits the Blackhawk SERPA Autolock concealment holster used by many law enforcement agencies. This is a carbon fiber Level II retention design that securely locks the pistol into the holster by engaging the triggerguard. In order to draw the gun, the trigger finger must hit a release pad on the side of the holster as the weapon is withdrawn. This is an essential repetitive training skill that can be practiced with the airgun. The Blackhawk can also be worn either as a belt holster or a paddle holster by changing back plates. Muscle memory skills learned with the Umarex are all applicable to carrying the 9mm (and .40 S&W) H&K 30 models.

 

 

Hands on Operation

            The medium size backstrap panel is what the airgun uses and its fits most hand sizes perfectly. The P30 has superb balance with the back of the frame resting firmly over the web of the shooting hand, and fingers solidly engaging the front strap grooves. The curved, serrated front edge of the triggerguard provides a solid resting place for the support hand’s index finger if you employ this type of hold. (This works best using an Isosceles or Strong Isosceles Stance).

Among other P30 features that carry over to the airgun are the elongated, ambidextrous slide releases. On the CO2 model only the left release operates and is used to open the slide, which separates allowing the front half to move forward and the 8-shot rotary magazine to be inserted. To close, just grasp the front slide serrations and push the slide back until it locks.

For the range test I selected Meisterkugeln Professional Line 7.0 gr. lead wadcutter pellets and Umarex 1500 steel BBs. This is a fast handing gun from the holster to the target and is remarkably easy to point. All tests were shot single action from 21 feet (pellets and BBs) using a Weaver stance and two-handed hold. I fired two 8-shot groups on each target for pellets and 10 rounds for BBs. Factory rated velocity for steel BBs is 385 fps, and 360 fps for pellets.

The .177 caliber steel managed a best group of 10 shots in the 10 and X rings measuring 1.81 inches; the best 5-shots, with a triple in the X, covered 0.875 inches. Stepping up to the 4.5mm Meisterkugeln wadcutters, a total of 16 shots (two rotary magazine loads) 13 out of 16 rounds obliterated two sections of the 10 and X for a total spread of 1.74 inches and a best 5-shots, all overlapping, at 0.68 inches.

Considering the pistol’s internal barrel length is 3.35 inches and does not have the 9mm’s white dot sights, or even just a front sight white dot, at 21 feet the rifled barrel delivered very tight groups just slightly above POA. Even without the 9mm’s sights, the CO2 model remains a well thought out pistol, just all Heckler & Koch handguns, and the P30 air pistol with its combined BB and pellet-firing capabilities certainly adds another notch in HK’s grips.

For more information visit umarexusa.com.

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