Progress comes along in one of two primary forms for products—improvements made to existing products and completely new products. Two years ago when we released the CO2 powered AirJavelin to the world, we did the latter– that is we broke the mold with the first mass produced CO2 powered air archery gun. The AirJavelin, in case you forgot, is an affordable, fun, convenient air archery rifle powered by easy to access CO2 cartridges. The AirJavelin was developed as a fun gun, something you could take out to the range and play a game of darts on a Morrell Yellowjacket archery target with the family. The energy level the AirJavelin produces wasn’t really in the acceptable big game range, but it was certainly capable of harvesting javelina, smaller hogs, and coyotes. But at the end of the day, the “fun” category was taking up the biggest majority of the pie-chart of typical uses for it.
In fact, one of my favorite memories from the 2020 Industry Day at the Range, one of the first public displays of the AirJavelin, was when a lady who worked for one of the bigger names in retail sales came by our shooting lane. She had never shot a gun of any kind (I forgot to ask her about water guns). She was very apprehensive about the matter, but when I demonstrated the AirJavelin to her and then prepped it for her to shoot- that apprehension turned into joy!
All of the things she was concerned with, recoil, difficult to use, excessive noise– none of those things are present with the AirJavelin. At that moment I likened the device as a gateway tool that could be effective in bridging the gap between shooters and non-shooters. I mean, who could resist a CO2 powered game of darts?
The Original AirJavelin CO2 Arrow Gun
So here we are in 2022. So many metric tons of water have gone under the bridge from 2020 until today. In fact, so much water that there was no 2021 Industry Day at the Range event preceding SHOT Show– There was no SHOT Show in 2021 either! During that time, the skunk works at Umarex USA, headquartered in Fort Smith, Arkansas, started playing around with the AirJavelin. For those of you old enough to remember Tim Allen’s sit-com Home Improvement, you probably also remember the oft quoted phrase, “More Power!” We, too, remember that phrase and we know that it resonates with our consumer base. But there is only so much power that you can wring out of a CO2 cartridge. CO2 naturally compresses to a maximum of about 850 PSI (this does vary with temperature, so don’t hold fast to that number as gospel for everywhere and every time). You can regulate it down, but you can’t amplify it up from that figure. Some other medium must be used to create more pressure.
The New AirJavelin is a PCP!
Since we are in the airgun business, we knew exactly what to do next and that was to slap a high-pressure air tank onto the AirJavelin. Given the compact nature of the AirJavelin and the optimal velocity for the “more power” fan club in conjunction with that tank, it was decided that a pressure increase to nearly twice that of CO2 would give the arrow a big jump in power without compromising the integrity of the arrow or the AirJavelin. Therefore, the tank design that won out was an ingenious 7.4 cubic inch unit that is regulated to 1,500 psi. Not only that, but it fills directly through a male Foster quick disconnect fitting to a pressure of 4,500 psi! We managed to keep the shot count up to 25 effective shots on one fill of the tank!
As of this writing I have not had the opportunity to introduce a non-shooter to this new version, the AirJavelin Pro. One thing is certain, the new Umarex AirJavelin Pro is a different animal than its predecessor, the AirJavelin. With this extra power, the AirJavelin Pro is spitting out the same 170 grain arrow at 370 fps, about 70 fps faster than the CO2 powered version. This extra 70 fps translates into 52 ft-lbs of energy in total for the AirJavelin Pro. This is a full 18 ft-lbs more than the CO2 powered unit.
In many areas, the lowest energy level produced by a traditional bow used for hunting large game is 40 ft-lbs. The AirJavelin Pro is easily above that threshold, making it capable to do work on game animals like whitetailed deer. While this and other air archery devices can produce the energy level required to humanely harvest big game, there are only a handful of states where devices like the AirJavelin Pro can be used for deer hunting. To gain clarification on the rules for air archery hunting in your state, click on this link to the Airgun Sporting Association’s interactive map.
While the base body of the AirJavelin Pro is virtually identical to the original AirJavelin, there are some visual differences between the two separate products. First, consumers will notice the AirJavelin Pro has a slimmer profiled FDE colored adjustable stock and a similarly colored forend and trigger blade. Next the eye is drawn to the high-pressure air tank and the fill port extending from its end. Yes, the AirJavelin and the AirJavelin Pro do share many features such as basic ergonomics, trigger pull, and reversible charging handle. However, if you have recently jumped on the PCP bandwagon, you seriously need to consider adding the AirJavelin Pro to your airgun collection. It’s still fun. It’s still accurate, but it’s much more powerful and powered by high-pressure air!