To ready the FX Royale 400 for shooting, connect a SCUBA tank or high pressure pump to the foster fitting and charge it to 3,000 psi. Next, load the magazine, the .177 version of which holds 16 pellets.
Now this is where life got interesting for Your Humble Correspondent. I looked at the magazine and decided that, since it looked a whole lot like the magazines for the Benjamin Marauder rifles, I already knew how to load it, right? WRONG
I was instantly reminded of that great scene in the movie Jeremiah Johnson in which Bear Claw Chris Lapp instructs Jeremiah in the errors of his ways: “Mountain’s got its own ways . . . Whatever you learned down in the flat will serve you no good up here.”
Likewise, the FX magazine has its own ways, and whatever you (or I) learned about the Marauder magazine will serve you no good.
Here’s the recipe for correctly loading the FX Royale Synthetic magazine: first, rotate the clear plastic face plate counter-clockwise as far as possible. Now, while holding the face plate in position, flip the magazine over so you’re looking at the back side. You’ll see that a port has opened in the back of the magazine. Load a pellet backwards (tail first) into the port. This will lock the spring and keep the inner wheel from turning. Now, flip the magazine over and load the rest of the pellets by dropping them nose-first into the magazine while rotating the transparent cover so that the hole in it opens each of the pellet “bays.” Once you have filled the magazine, rotate the transparent cover back to its original position. Pull the breech lever to the rear of the receiver to move the bolt back. Now slide the magazine into the breech from the right side.
Special note: when mounting a scope on the FX Royale Synthetic, you will need to use high scope mounts to provide clearance for the magazine and allow it to slide fully into the breech.
Now, press the breech lever full forward. This will cause the bolt probe to push a pellet out of the magazine and into the rifling of the barrel. Take aim, flick the safety off, and squeeze the trigger. At 14.4 ounces, the first stage came out of the trigger on the sample I tested. There is a tiny bit of creep to the trigger (I could feel a little movement as I continued to squeeze the trigger), and at 1 pound 4.5 ounces, the shot goes down range. The FX Royale 400 Synthetic launches .177 JSB Exact 8.44 grain pellets at 1094 FPS average and gets120 shots from 210 bar fill with about 20 fps spread.
The report is not dead quiet, but it is very, very subdued: phut. It’s the kind of report that will not disturb game and will not have the neighbors looking out the window wondering who’s shooting.
The accuracy of the FX Royale Synthetic is delightful. Airguns of Arizona claims their test have shown half-inch groups at 50 yards. I put enough pellets through the same hole at 35 yards to convince me that’s true.
So here’s the bottom line: the FX Royale 400 Synthetic delivers a whole lot of what most serious airgunners crave: a boatload of accuracy, a large number of shots per fill, an excellent trigger, and a supersize serving of airgunning fun.
SPECIAL NOTE: After I completed this review of the FX Royale 400 Synthetic, I found out from Airguns of the Arizona that the rifle they sent me does, indeed, have the new smooth-twist barrel. For more information about this technology, check out: http://www.airgunsofarizona.com/FX%20Main.html
Til next time, aim true and shoot straight.
– Jock Elliott