The William Powell â€˜Gun Room Guysâ€™ Rick Bond and Daniel Todd take a detailed look at the new William Powell Perseus, the latest over and under shotgun to join the range.
Name:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â The Perseus
Calibre:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 12 or 20
Barrels:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 28â€ or 30â€ with 5 Multi-chokes
Stock:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Highly figured walnut
Action:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Rizziniâ€™s O/U boxlock action
Price: Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£1795
Tuesday 19th June 2012 was a very exciting time for us here in the Gun Room, as it was the morning the new William Powell Perseus arrived. The Perseus is our brand new entry level Over and Under which joins the other two O/Us in our range; The Phoenix and The Pegasus. All three guns are built by Battista Rizzini in Marcheno, Italy. When we started unpacking the guns we were extremely pleased. The stocks looked fantastic, all highly figured and beautifully finished and the half-pistol grips looked and handled great. The engraving was better than we remembered from the prototype and the woodcock underneath is a tasteful additional touch. So they look brilliant, but how do they shoot?
The official launch of the Perseus was at our â€˜Try and Buy dayâ€™ on 22nd and 23rd June at Hexton Estate in Hertfordshire. It was a great event with plenty of people visiting us to try the various models in our range and this was our chance to put the Perseus through its paces on a short simulated game drive. The first thing I noticed was the balance. It sits perfectly between your hands which makes it feel lively and easy to mount. Once you have mounted the gun, itâ€™s stock dimensions become apparent. So many modern O/Us are built with outdated flat stock measurements. This gun is different. The drop is nice and high at 1 Â½â€ x 2 1/8â€ meaning you can see over the top lever and along the top rib nicely, perfect for driven game. The half-pistol grip is so comfortable, it really does have the feel of a much higher end gun.
As the clays started coming and the barrels got hotter, I really settled into the gun. Rizziniâ€™s smooth and reliable action felt beautiful every time you open and close the gun. When you close it, it doesnâ€™t clunk shut like an old gate! Rizzini uses this particular action for a lot of their guns (even guns costing 5 times the cost of this one) and itâ€™s easy to see why. It really is well designed and the reliability speaks for itself. The trigger mechanism works beautifully, perfectly weighted and astonishingly crisp. The barrels are good and come in either 28â€ or 30â€. All are fitted with a set of 5 multi-chokes and narrow game rib. The gun Iâ€™m shooting has 30â€ barrels which are probably the most popular choice. They are bored very well and they blacking is top quality. My only criticism would be the ventilated top rib. I much prefer a solid top rib but then that would add to the cost.
Sizing it up
All of the Perseus guns we have in stock come with 14 Â½â€œ length of pull and as an added bonus they come with an extended wooden pad which can be fitted to lengthen the stock to 15â€. This gives you the option of having a stock length which can be easily adjusted to fit you and can give you up half of an inch of variation in length. The 15â€ stock perfectly balances the 30â€ barrelled guns and for an average 6ft man would fit nicely. All guns are cast off (right handed) 1/8â€. This gives sufficient cast for the majority of right handed shots but also allows for any alteration, be it more right handed cast or cast on for left handed shots. The average weight of the 12 bore is 7lbs 7oz which is virtually the same as the Phoenix and Pegasus. Weâ€™ve found this weight makes the gun really handle well, helps a controlled swing and also is heavy enough to reduce a sufficient amount of recoil. The 20 bore Perseus weighs in at a pound lighter at 6lbs 6oz and is built on a true 20 bore action. We feel that with the measurements we have built these guns to creates the ideal fit for the majority of shots. We hope that it will result in a nicely fitting â€˜off the shelf gunâ€™ that breaks the mould of very standard measurements which has historically been done by leading manufacturers.
The Perseus is fresh, exciting and a good looking gun ready to shake up the slightly stale over and under market. We firmly believe in its credentials and not only is it a competitor to the Beretta and Browningâ€™s of this world but itâ€™s pushing ahead, in looks, build quality, handling and value for money. If youâ€™re tired of the same old over an unders and are looking for something unique then the Perseus couldnâ€™t be more suited to you. If we didnâ€™t believe in this gun we wouldnâ€™t have put the William Powell name on it!
- Available in 12b and 20b
- Highly figured walnut stock
- Set of multichokes
- 28â€ and 30â€ chrome lined barrels
- Fantastic value for money
- Extendable Â½â€ wooden pad
- Great reliability and build quality
â€œAt first I was dubious as to what kind of gun Rizzini could produce for us for that price, but I can gladly say Iâ€™ve been proved severely wrong. The Perseus is a truly great gun for the money without compromising on build quality or looks. It combines the excellence of Italian gun making with the class and style of an English design. I have no doubt it will feature on many a days shooting this season.
â€œThe Perseus in my opinion is a fantastic success. It really does offer something different to most of the other guns on the market at this price. When you take into account itâ€™s looks, quality and reliability it really does represent fantastic value for money. I predict that this gun will be a massive hit.â€
For more information about the Perseus please get in touch with Rick or Dan in the William Powell Gun Room on 01295 701701 or visit www.williampowell.com