Getting Right On Target
Mark Camoccio concludes his review of the new Brocock Compatto Target rifle
Last month, we took delivery of the brand new Compatto Target, a special model from Brocock aimed specifically at hunter field target shooting. It largely follows the format and profile of the standard Compatto, but comes pre-fitted with the highly regarded Huma-Air regulator. It’s an exciting concept for sure, and this month we’ll get hands-on to see how it performs where it matters.
Charging the Compatto Target is very straightforward, and utilises the push-probe system, which is arguably the quickest, but still requires some care in the routine adopted. First, twist the valve cover at the front of the cylinder to expose the inlet valve, then fully insert the filling adaptor from the air line. I would always recommend using Best Fittings, Quick Couplers now because they make charging pneumatics, especially several different makes, very simple and hassle free. The adaptor supplied from the manufacturer is simply screwed onto a coupler, using a Doughty seal, and thereafter, the adaptor just needs to be plugged into the bayonet Forsterstyle end on the airline. Set up a number of adaptors in this way, and a quick change over is done in a second; plug-in, plug out – with not a damaged thread in sight. The Compatto Target needs 200bar of fill pressure, and with this on board, remove the probe, close the valve cover, and we’re nearly ready for action.
I can’t help thinking that a competition rifle is probably best as a single-shot, but this Compatto Target comes with the standard ten-shot rotary magazine system as used in the standard model. The magazine has a nice solid feel to it, but there is a fair bit of play between the mag’ and its slot within the breech block.
We now need to load up the magazine, so first pull back the cocking bolt to the rear, slide the magazine free of the action from the left, and then drop pellets nose first into each chamber, gently seating each one with the finger before rotating the drum to ‘catch’ its next spring-loaded position. With the mag’ full, slide it back into the breech block from the left side and close the bolt. This indexes the first shot. Subsequent cycling of the bolt will cock the hammer and index the magazine each time.
Before the action can start, it’s worth spending time adjusting that butt pad. It only takes a second to slacken the large Allen bolt at the rear; then the pad can be slid up or down on its axis, ideally with a small amount of resistance, so it will hold its desired position, before we finally tighten it in place. Take the time to set it gently in one position, then see how the scope lines up with the gun mounted. Make adjustments to the pad, a little at a time, and when the setting is bang on, and the head falls into place naturally on the stock without straining, you know you’re getting close. Once all this happens, and a full sight picture is easily achieved through the scope, tighten the bolt, and everything will be locked into place
My initial aim was to sight-in the scope, an MTC Viper Pro that came with the test rifle. With this completed, it was time for some serious grouping, and with this in
mind, I moved straight to 35 yards, to push the Compatto Target that little bit more. It is important to adopt a positive boltaction when cocking because the system will revolve the magazine yet not cock the hammer, if done very gently, which isn’t ideal. Be positive and all works well.
The stock feels great, I have to say. Of course, personal shape will dictate just how effective it all feels, but my large hands were immediately at home. The fore end might look like it comes up a little short, but in the aim, I didn’t touch the cylinder either, which is all you need to know.
Initial results were reasonable, but I did notice the occasional flyer, that ruined some otherwise really good groups. No such problem with my standard Compatto on a previous test, so maybe I was just unlucky with the magazine. As it stood, Webley Accupells managed a little under three- qaurter-inch best groups, and Air Arms Diabolo Field and Sovereigns both posted sub half-inch - a level of accuracy that would please in most circumstances, admittedly, but those occasional flyers were bugging me. It suddenly dawned on me, though, that there’s sufficient clearance within the breech block cut out, to single feed this model, so that’s what I did. A revelation, in fact; no more flyers, and instead, some deadly accurate groupings. Sovereigns reduced to sub quarter-inch, centre-to- centre over 35 yards, and just a quarter inch centre to centre over 40 yards – simply superb, and off a beanbag to test potential fully, and relatively easy to come by. Rowan Engineering also make a single-shot loader for this model, and with this fitted, I replicated my best groups all round. It’s a super-neat and safe option too. A sweet two-stage trigger helps of course.
Next stop, the chronograph, and with Brocock fitting their Compatto range with a three-level power adjuster, I was keen to check these levels to start. High power clocks in at around 11.5 ft.lbs., medium came in around 9.7 ft.lbs., and switch to low, and you can expect around 6.6 ft.lbs. These figures are a little higher than the early Compatto I tested, but the principle works really well, bringing great versatility.
OK, it’s time to see how effective that Huma regulator is, and how it compares with the standard model. Over the chrono’, using Air Arms Diabolo Fields, I clocked a text book average velocity of 789fps, with a total variation of 16fps. Not quite the single figures hinted at, but in a real-world ‘pellets from the tin’ scenario, you’ll never notice a total spread of 16fps, believe me! In terms of shot count, I hit 86, before velocities went dramatically south, and whilst that’s lower than the factory claim, again in the real world, it’s plenty.
Glancing back at my shot statistics from the standard Compatto test, I managed 80 shots within 17fps with the standard Slingshot action, so I have to conclude that I have experienced little discernible difference on test. That said, this Target model shoots particularly well single-loaded, and that for me, would be the way to go; incredible accuracy and great consistency, to the point where I’d definitely feel happy competing with it.
As previously mentioned, it should be noted that Huma-Air regulators are not available from Brocock as a retro fit for existing Compattos. However, existing Compatto owners can still contact Huma directly, and
Shooting the Compatto Target is a rewarding experience
The Compatto Target performed well over the chronograph
Of course, this model is equally at home in the field
Just rotate the valve cover to expose the inlet
Note the three- stage power adjuster, just behind the mag
Using Best Fittings Quick Couplers, makes life easy