The ed­i­tor shows us how his friend de­vel­oped his CO2 hand­guns

Air Gunner - - Contents -

The ed­i­tor knows of a su­perb cou­ple of Walther CP88s – and they’re for sale

Ihave a pal who can never do any­thing by halves. If he’s go­ing to do some­thing then it’s all or noth­ing, and when I was Iron Plate Ac­tion Shoot­ing ( IPAS) Nige came along to see what it was all about. Within days, he was buy­ing CO2 pis­tols, sights, pel­lets, mag­a­zines and work­ing on his tech­nique. He works with a spe­cial ef­fects team in movie mak­ing and has a work­shop that would be a com­plete dream for any­body who likes to make things. Ev­ery pos­si­ble piece of equip­ment is on hand to cut, shape or weld al­most any ma­te­rial you can think of, so when he wants to work on his guns he’s as well equipped as any gun­smith.

His first pis­tol pur­chase was a Walther blued CP88 in the stan­dard length – a lovely lit­tle gun, and a fine choice for IPAS. It was soon stripped, pol­ished and pre­cisely lu­bri­cated be­fore be­ing very care­fully re­built and hav­ing the rare wooden grip pan­els at­tached. The trig­ger’s ac­tion was im­proved and ev­ery­thing moved with a slick ac­tion that made it all the more plea­sur­able to use. Like me, his eyesight isn’t what it was and he soon asked me about the Nikko Stir­ling red- dot sight I was us­ing on my Colt 1911. Hav­ing tried my gun, he felt that he’d like to try a red- dot him­self, so in true Nige fash­ion, he bought a se­cond pis­tol to wear one.


His eye was soon drawn to the com­pe­ti­tion ver­sion of the CP88, avail­able in a bright nickel fin­ish, which was right up his street. He liked the long ‘muz­zle brake’ and ex­tended bar­rel and the high­per­for­mance looks, so he bought one. This re­ceived all the same touches as the first pis­tol be­fore in­ves­ti­gat­ing just how a red dot could be at­tached.

We searched for CP88- spe­cific mounts, but we couldn’t find any­thing suit­able at that time, so Nige made the de­ci­sion to mill the slide to be­come a Weaver rail, a dif­fi­cult and po­ten­tially dam­ag­ing process. If he cut too deeply, the slide could be ru­ined, but with care­ful mea­sure­ments, it looked like it would be a suc­cess. A se­condary ben­e­fit of at­tach­ing the sight di­rectly to the slide was that the sight would be as low as pos­si­ble to the bore, which helps the pis­tol’s han­dling.

Af­ter clamp­ing the slide into the vice of the mill, the cut­ter came up to speed and metal be­gan to fly. Tiny cuts were made and the width mea­sured again and again and the rail be­gan to form be­fore my eyes.

With the fi­nal mea­sure­ment taken, he slid the sight onto the rail and we breathed a sigh of re­lief. It was a suc­cess and the com­pe­ti­tion gun wore a holo­graphic red- dot sight for the first time.


Nige found the op­ti­cal sight not only more ac­cu­rate to shoot with, but also much faster to get on to the tar­gets. Now, it’s true that you don’t need the high­est stan­dard of ac­cu­racy to clang a one-foot square steel plate at 10 yards, but when you’re shoot­ing as fast as you can, any ad­van­tage is very wel­come. How­ever, he still en­joyed shoot­ing with open sights, so he made a plan to carry both pis­tols to the com­pe­ti­tions. This would al­low him to de­cide on the day which one he’d use.

To keep them safe in trans­port, he chose a stal­wart of the movie in­dus­try which is the Pel­i­case, one of the tough­est cases you can buy. In­side he cre­ated pock­ets for the pis­tols, mag­a­zines, lu­bri­cant and plenty of pel­lets. This was on two

“Nige found the op­ti­cal sight not only more ac­cu­rate to shoot with, but also much faster”

lev­els, and the com­bi­na­tion of a tough case and high den­sity foam en­sured that even if you dropped the case onto con­crete, no harm could be­fall the con­tents. Bet­ter than that, it sim­ply looks great. James Bond would be proud to open this as he set off on his next mis­sion. It also means that you pick up the case, your hol­ster and some CO2 and you’re ready to com­pete. He re- em­ployed one of the pis­tol cases sup­plied for the CP88s to carry capsules, keep­ing them clean and safe. If ever some­thing looked pro­fes­sional at an air- pis­tol com­pe­ti­tion, then surely this was it.

When I stopped com­pet­ing in IPAS, so did he. He went back to his great love of field tar­get shoot­ing and wouldn’t you know it, was busy mod­i­fy­ing a Wal­ter LG300 with a new reg­u­la­tor, a ti­ta­nium reser­voir and a stock, cus­tom- fit­ted to his body. In no time, the stan­dard gun was un­recog­nis­able and, of course, it lives in a cus­tom- fit­ted Pel­i­case, with all its ac­ces­sories. Beau­ti­ful!

I asked him re­cently what he planned to do with the pis­tols and he said he’d sell them. I was sur­prised that af­ter all the love, care and money he’d lav­ished upon them he wasn’t more at­tached, but no. He’s moved on and they’re up for sale, so if you’re in­ter­ested, send me an email at [email protected] and I’ll put you in touch.

ABOVE: A place for ev­ery­thing and ev­ery­thing in its place

LEFT: Ul­tra- care­ful ma­chin­ing was needed to cut this scope rail

BELOW LEFT: The lower level holds the stan­dard CP88 BELOW RIGHT: The Pel­i­case is one of the tough­est you can buy

TOP: You can see just how thick the foam pad­ding is here ABOVE IN­SET: Find­ing th­ese smart wooden grips took a lot of time and ef­fort

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.