Pneumatic Pnews

Monday, March 20, 2006

Walther's Nighthawk

by Tex Force

The Walther Nighthawk is dressed for action!

Walther pedigree
If you're an action pistol shooter, you're probably already familiar with Walther's exotic Nighthawk tactical pistol (second gun down on page). At its heart is the Walther CP99 (fourth gun down), the CO2 version of the P99. This is Walther's popular law enforcement pistol and the current sidearm of the world's most famous secret agent - James Bond. The CO2 version is an 8-shot pistol that fires with each pull of the trigger.

Something special
When law enforcement and special operations agents go on really exotic missions, they outfit their weapons specifically for the force they expect to encounter. That's where the Nighthawk comes in. On top of the standard CP99, which is pretty edgy to start with, they added a compensator to deflect muzzle gasses away from the base of the pellet. The company says this gives you better accuracy, which is the only reason for a compensator. It's not a silencer; it's an accuracy enhancer. But there's more. On top of the slide, they mounted a red dot sight to make target acquisition is faster and more precise in all kinds of light. Once you get accustomed to using the dot sight, you'll never want to go back to open sights again. Lastly, a tactical flashlight is mounted on the left side of the special wraparound mount attached to the frame. The thumb switch is located where your thumb rests, so switching on is a breeze. And, yes, all this can be easily moved to the other side of the gun for left-handed operations.

Really a revolver
The slide of the Nighthawk springs forward to allow the loading of a special 8-shot rotary clip. The gun comes with three clips, plus they are available in packs of three if you want to keep on shooting. A single powerlet located in the grip provides enough power for at least 6 clips, and up to 8 IF you give the gun a chance to rest between bursts of fire.

Get a Speedloader to keep on keeping on
The ease with which this pistol can be loaded and shot puts pressure on your ability to load more rotary clips. Fortunately, there is a solution in the form of the Diabolo Speedloader. Diabolo is simply what the rest of the world calls a pellet, so this is really a pellet speedloader that loads 7 rotary clips in a minute or so. If you own a fast-shooting gun like the Nighthawk or any other gun that uses the Walther rotary clips, you'll want this accessory to keep up with the action. It uses the "pour and shake" type operation that releases you from handling individual pellets. Compasseco lists the guns that can use it, so there's no question if it will work for your gun.

Things to shoot
For targets, you'll want to shoot at things that tell you instantly when they've been hit. The Daisy Shatterblast target system (fourth item from the bottom of page) does that with a satisfying burst of the biodegradable non-toxic target disk! Four target holders can be stuck into the ground anywhere you want, to hold the disks in positions that can be changed in an instant. Order two systems to match the 8 shots in your gun, and be sure to stock up on replacement disks, too (third from bottom). For even faster action, tether small balloons on a 3-foot string and let them blow around the yard on a breezy day. The random action will challenge the best shooter's skills!

A remanufactured Nighthawk is an affordable choice for those on a budget.

Can you build a Nighthawk from a CP99?
This question comes up a lot. CP99 owners wonder whether they can buy all the accessories to turn their pistol into a Nighthawk. While it is possible to accessorize a CP99, the wraparound mount that holds all the sighting equipment is not available separately, so it's not possible to build a Nighthawk from scratch, however, there is another solution! Compasseco also sells a remanufactured Nighthawk at a great price. All it lacks is the tactical flashlight. Don't let the remanufactured part frighten you. Each pistol has been inspected and returned to new operational condition by factory-trained experts. Many of these guns are unfired and were simply returned because the customer wanted a different model!

The Walther Nighthawk is the most accessorized action pistol available on the market, and it even has the mounting points for a laser, at the owner's discretion. No other action air pistol comes close to what's in this package. If you are an action pistol shooter, this is your gun!


  • Bought one of the remanufactured Nighthawks and it is a typical nice Umarex job. The only problem with this gun is the length of pull and creep on this single stage trigger. It makes it difficult to get off accurate shots. Is it possibly due to the remanufacturing or are they all this way?

    By Blogger airgundoc, at 6:21 PM, March 31, 2006  

  • CWI,

    I think this weakness is inherent in the design. It seems to prevail in a lot of Umarex pistols. The best ones I have found are the S&W revolver and the M1911A1 Colt. Why this one pistol should be so much better is puzzling, but I suppose it relates to the design of the trigger linkage.

    I don't think the rebuilding process changed your trigger.


    By Anonymous Tex Force, at 4:07 AM, April 01, 2006  

  • I agree with you that the 1911A1 has a bit better(smoother)feel but I think it also has a shorter track. I think I'll experiment with the Walther to see if I can change the length of track. As it is now, it is hard to get off rapid shots.

    By Blogger airgundoc, at 7:00 PM, April 03, 2006  

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