I was down at the Texas Airgun show put on by my friend and colleague from American Airgunner, Tom Gaylord, last summer. There was some shooting at this get together, but the stars of the event were the sellers tables, representing individuals, hobbyist showing their collections, small companies, and the big names. Eveyone was talking airguns and promoting their wares. As I cruised the tables I meet Michael Esch form -Mrodair, and looked at the products he had for sale. One that caught my eye was the Mrod-air P-12 bullpup, and the reason it caught my eye was that it meet my prime criteria for this type of gun, it needs to be light and easy to carry. And this one looked to be, and for this reason I wanted to use this gun in the field.
Let me say that right now there is a subset of the airgun market that only want bullpups. But many of the bullpup designs I’ve shot are chunky, provide poor shooter ergonomics and fit, and make me feel like I’m holding a fence post. Now I’m willing to give up my bias towards looks in the search for a compact gun, but not if that gun doesn’t perform to the same level as a traditional rifle design. But I reckon that since a bullpup is a reconfigured rifle, with same barrel length and performance specifications, the likely culprit if it doesn’t match the rifles performance is the trigger or the overall fit of the bullpup stock. At least standing at the gun show the fit of the stock seemed nice and the dimensions of the gun reasonable…. there are some design constraints such as housing the trigger mechanism, that have to be worked around.
The P-12 Is a single shot .22 caliber rifle. The stock is a plain beach with a light colored finish. The barrel is 18″ and the LOA is 28.5 and weighs in at 6.8 lb without a scope. The barrel incorporates an effective and light weight shroud. The air reservoir is Titanium, with a capacity of approximately 320 cc and fills to 200 BAR (2900 psi) using a proprietary fill probe. The onboard pressure gauge is situated at the muzzle end of the air reservoir.
The P-12 is well balanced, tucks comfortably to my shoulder, provides a good cheek weld and sight alignment. The pistol grip provides a good purchase and access to the trigger. The trigger is an adjustable two stage design, and the trigger blade is wide enough to comfortably engage the pad of the trigger finger. The more I shot the gun the more impressed I was with the trigger, again not the greatest in the world but right up there in the context of a bullpup.
There are several little things that impressed me with the P-12, such as the fill port cover that screw into the distal end of the reservoir and protects the manometer and the filling port. And while I’m not a fan of proprietary fill probes, the really clever thing with the P-12 probe is that it incorporates a quick fill connect right into the probe. As mentioned, the shroud on this gun is very effective making the gun whisper quiet.
I think this bullpup is a very shootable example of the breed, well made, solid performance, it offers the accuracy and power of a full sized sporter in a light and compact shooting platform. Bullpup fans like a bullpup for what it is…. as a practical hunter I like this gun for what it does!