The Merkel Helix Speedster appears to be an innovative solution to the problem of a thumbhole-stocked straight-pull rifle, but does the reality match up? Stuart Wilson finds out
Itching to get out at the bucks? Let us fuel your anticipation with this roebuck highlight from two years ago…
Designed to work perfectly in conjunction with the Helix’s straight-pull action, the Speedster is a thumbhole stock with a completely open top
Merkel has opened a new showroom of sporting rifles and shotguns at W Horton & Sons on Loveday Street in Birmingham’s historical Gun Quarter.
Merkel, based in the city of Suhl, Germany, has been making high-quality sporting guns since the 17th century. The company has a worldwide reputation for its unique engravings, along with a training school for engravers and a gun-making ‘technical school’.
The RX Helix manifesto states: “Hunting has moved on in the 21st century. It has become faster, more versatile and more exciting. This demands better gun ergonomics: ideal combination of responsiveness, speed and accuracy.”
I have to admit that until for most of my life I had never shot a Merkel rifle. It was a make that had eluded me, with none of my shooting companions having one in the cupboard. It wasn’t until testing a number of straight-pulls with Tim Pilbeam that I finally got my hands on one.
Merkel has been a well-known name in shotgunning circles for some time, but in recent years the German manufacturer has become famous for producing the world’s most affordable classic double rifle – not to mention drillings, and the firm’s popular single-shot rifle.
Having made a name for itself in the custom rifle world, Bergara is branching out. And the all new ‘semi custom’ switch barrel BX11 is definitely one to watch, says Tim Pilbeam
The Merkel brand may not be well known in the UK, but this is certainly not the case in Europe. They also enjoy a loyal following in the US, thanks mainly to their impressive range of shotguns. Based in Suhl,…