Salvimar Tomahawk Speargun

Salvimar Tomahawk Outdoors

The Salvimar Tomahawk is a revolutionary new speargun that was released by the Italian spearfishing equipment manufacturer in 2020 after years of testing and development. 

While it does borrow components from the tried and tested Salvimar Hero and Metal spearguns the Tomahawk has a unique rubber setup.

The hybrid inverted rollergun setup gives the Tomahawk a multi-step loading process and a lot more power.

Greater power in a comparatively smaller package built with proven components sounds like a winning recipe. But is it...?

We did a review of the Salvimar Tomahawk to find out which components it borrowed from other guns, where the design was improved and if it is any good in the water.

Let's dive in...

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About The Salvimar Tomahawk

Salvimar Tomahawk Black Background rear left

The Salvimar Tomahawk has the same ergonomic handle as the Salvimar Hero.

The Salvimar Tomahawk is a hybrid inverted roller design and currently the brand's flagship speargun.

We say hybrid since it is somewhere between a standard single rollergun which only has one pair of rubbers running from the bottom through the muzzle pulleys and an inverted roller that uses a pulley system with multiple rubbers on the underside of the speargun.

While it doesn't have the pulleys of an inverted roller speargun it does have 2 extra pairs of rubbers on the underside. This makes loading the speargun a two-step process and ads 35% more power than a standard single roller speargun.

The main pair of rubbers run through the muzzle pulley when tensioned like a standard roller gun while the two pairs of secondary rubbers stretch the length of the underside of the gun at full tension. More about the rubbers a bit later in this article.

If you've ever had the pleasure of holding or shooting a Salvimar Hero then you will immediately recognize many elements from that gun. The battle-proven Hero speargun serves as the base for the Tomahawk.
The spearguns share the same barrels, handles and trigger mechanisms. 

Apart from the obvious different rubber setup one other difference between the Hero and Tomahawk is the color scheme. Instead of the recognizable acid green and black the Tomahawk comes in a just as striking Crimson red and black.

It is not available in the Storm or Krypsis color schemes that are popular with the Hero and Metal spearguns but we will most likely see them release that in the future.


Let's get into the details:

The Tomahawk speargun easily stands out on the gun rack. The unique grip, bold colors and rubber setup even pique the interest of non-spearo's.

The anatomical grip comes supplied with a left and right-handed version. Changing between the two is as easy as loosening a screw. The same process allows you access to the stainless steel grip hook to which you can attach a tuna clip or line.

Tomahawk Speargun handle

The ergonomic grip is surprisingly comfortable in the hand and in our opinion does improve gun control due to the fact that your hand is in better contact with the grip.

There is a high-density rubber butt-pad/loading pad on the handle to make loading it less of a "pain". The load-assist that the Tomahawk comes with also helps a lot to tension this powerful speargun.

The Tomahawk has the same heavy metal trigger mechanism that was first featured in the Salvimar Metal speargun.

This tried and tested trigger mechanism is made from 17-4ph stainless steel and has been rated to hold loads of up to 350kg/770lbs. A tiny roller on the sear keeps this trigger buttery smooth even under very heavy loads. 

A screw on the underside of the trigger guard allows you to adjust the sensitivity of the trigger.

Salvimar Trigger Mechanism

The detailed trigger and many other components of the trigger mechanism is made through a process of metal injection molding(MIM). Salvimar does this work in-house and it allows them to create intricate and detailed designs.

The line release is fitted on the right-hand side of the trigger mechanism as standard but can be moved to the other side if you'd prefer that. It works as expected.

The safety button's position, behind the trigger where your fingers would naturally rest, makes is easy to activate and deactivate it with your thumb and forefinger.

For right-handed shooters a quick push with their thumbs will activate the safety and a push with the first knuckle of their index finger will deactivate it. Vice-versa for left-handers.

If you have ever lost an opportunity on a fish due to an engaged safety then you will appreciate the position of the safety and the fact that - with a little practice - you'll be able to feel whether the safety is engaged or not without taking your eyes off the target or changing your grip. 

Salvimar Flagship Speargun

Just in front of the handle is a mount made from Glass reinforced plastic. This is where the Secondary rubbers are attached when tensioned. The mount is predrilled and you could mount a reel or Action Camera attachment here.

The Salvimar Tomahawk Speargun comes in 8 different lengths:

Barrel Length

Spear Shaft Thickness




2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

22cm(8.6in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers, 18cm(7in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

24cm(9.4in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 20cm(7.8in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

27cm(10.6in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 23cm(9in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

30cm(11.8in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 26cm(10.2in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

33cm(13in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 28cm(11in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

35cm(13.8in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 31cm(12.2in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

38cm(15in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 34cm(13.4in) Long



2x16mm(5/8in) Black Rubbers,

41cm(16.1in) Long & 4x15mm(19/32in) Red Rubbers 37cm(14.5in) Long

The length listed above is barrel length, so you can add an extra ±20cm(8in) to get the total length of this Salvimar Speargun which includes the muzzle and handle but exclude the spear.
The spear overhang is another ±16cm(6.3in)

Unlike some of Salvimar's other spearguns the Tomahawk does not comes standard with a gun reel. It is ready to fit any of their reels but you will have to purchase that yourself.

Their new color matched vertical reel that can hold up to 70meters(226feet) of 1.5mm line comes highly recommended. 

The Tomahawk's barrel is an asymmetrical elliptical shape just like their Hero speargun. The top half of the barrel is slightly flatter than the bottom half.

A teflon coated rail runs the full length of the barrel and does not only reduce the friction against the shaft but also drastically reduce the noise common with other spearguns with metal rails. 

Salvimar Teflon Rail

The is barrel 45mm wide and 30mm high if you include the rails.

Even though the elliptical shape does help with swinging the gun from side to side, the trade-off is that the wider barrel is slightly slower to respond with up and down movements. A hardly noticeable effect. 

The real benefit of the elliptical shape barrel is the larger internal volume. 

To maximize the internal volume further the Tomahawk also uses two elliptical o-rings to seal the barrel instead of the usual bung plugs.

After using the same o-rings setup with great success in their other guns all the fears about getting water in the barrel has been completely calmed. This is a testament of Salvimar's clever designs, tight tolerances on their parts and the overall quality of their manufacturing and assembly.

The increased internal volume makes this speargun more buoyant and better balanced in the water than what it would have been without it. The lighter bearing-less muzzle design, short spear overhang all contribute to it as well. 

It is not common for shorter roller guns with aluminum barrels to be this well balanced with thick spears.

To strengthen and add rigidity, the aircraft-grade aluminum barrel has a thicker strip running the full length of the bottom of the barrel. To further strengthen the Tomahawk and help it to resist the strong loads, Salvimar also added blocks of Nylon resembling an "I-beam" on the inside of the barrel.

Tomahawk Muzzle Top

The muzzle of the Tomahawk is made from 30% glass filled Nylon and has bearing-less pulleys made from Delrin.

The pulleys can accommodate rubber bands with a diameter of up to 19mm. 

The V-shape muzzle is unique in that it allows you to insert a shaft with Shark-fins without having to pull back the wishbone. 

The line guides and channels in the muzzle make wrapping the line to keep the shaft in place instinctive and easy. 

On the bottom part of the muzzle is a stainless steel pin that acts as a guide for your reel line or as an anchor point for your muzzle bungee/shock cord if you're not using a reel.

Tomahawk Muzzle Bottom

The spear that comes with the Tomahawk is Salvimar's Pacific Shaft and is made from 17-4ph stainless steel. The spear has a Rockpoint tip and thicknesses vary from 7mm on the shorter guns to 8mm on the longer ones.(See the table above)

The 7.5mm and 8mm spear has 4 shark fins in total. 3 at the back of the shaft and one rest fin 2/3rds of the way to the end. The shark fins are Metal injection molded and then precision laser welded by a computer to the shaft. 

The shaft has a single bottom flopper that is quick and easy to tune.  

The Rubbers on the Salvimar Tomahawk is quite unique. There are 3 pairs of rubbers on the speargun. 2x pairs of red 15mm rubbers - the secondary rubbers - and then the main rubbers - 1x pair of Black  16mm rubbers.

Preload on the rubbers are approximately 20kg/44lbs. At rest there's 40% pretension/elongation on the main rubbers and 12% and 27% on the secondary rubbers. 

The main rubbers have a line of Dymax running through it to limit its elongation at 325% when at full load. The elongation of the secondary rubbers are 320% and 330%. 

When at full load both the perfectly tuned main rubbers on top and the secondary rubbers at the bottom stretch the full length of the speargun and both end just short of the rollers on the muzzle.

Each pair of bands contribute somewhere around 55kg/120lbs of power for a total of approximately 160kg/360lbs

How to load the Salvimar Tomahawk Speargun

  1. To load the speargun you first remove one pair of the secondary rubbers.
  2. Then using the supplied load assist, hook onto the wishbone and pull the main rubbers through the pulley and all the way back to the last shark-fin.   
  3. Feel free to use the rest-stop and all other shark-fins during the process to progress in increments. First pull the load assist all the way to the last shark fin and then the main rubbers.
  4. Once the main rubbers are tensioned flip the gun over and tension the pair of secondary rubbers that you removed in step one.   

When loading this speargun it is crucial to pull the wishbone all the way back to the very last shark fin.
Never-ever half load this gun.

Since the wishbone sits flush against the muzzle when unloaded(or after firing) anything that passes the muzzle after the wishbone will actually hit the wishbone.
If that is another shark fin then that can potentially cut your wishbone. At best it will deflect your shot and make you miss your intended target.
To play it safe we even recommend that you attach your shooting line to the first shark fin instead of the rear of the shaft.

Tomahawk Speargun by Salvimar

The most remarkable features of the Salvimar Tomahawk include:

  • Asymmetrical elliptical barrel made from Anodized aircraft-grade aluminum
  • Ergonomic grip with interchangeable left and right-hand molds
  • 35% more power than a standard single roller speargun
  • A V-shaped open muzzle made from 30% glass filled Nylon that allows you to load a Shark fin shaft without pulling back the Wishbone
  • Smooth Delrin pulleys with stainless steel axle
  • Teflon shaft guide/rail
  • Stainless Steel Trigger Mechanism that can hold loads of up to 350kg(771lbs)
  • Trigger sensitivity adjustment
  • Comes standard with load assist
  • 17-4ph Stainless steel Salvimar shaft with 3 or 4 shark fins and easy tune flopper. 
  • Dyneema Wishbones

What Others Are Saying

At the time of writing this article the speargun was still very new and we could not find many reviews of it online. Those we did find applauded the speargun's design, power and accuracy.

The shaft the speargun came with - Salvimar's Pacific shaft - does need some sanding on the shark fins to smoothen the rough edges according to some. 

The same goes for the hook on the load assist.  Some spearo's reported that the hook can chafe your shooting line if you are not careful.  

Both of these are luckily quick to fix with a little elbow grease.

The Dymax wishbone on the main rubbers arrived tied from the factory.
On our test gun the knots did slip through after the first couple of tensions. This was quick and easy to fix but something that you want to keep an eye on since if this happens your rubbers can detach from the gun and drop free.

Final Verdict

There's no denying that this is an impressive and beautiful speargun. 

The power system is unique. More powerful than a single roller and without the complexities and extra maintenance of a true inverted roller.

And since it is less complicated that a true inverted roller speargun it should also be more reliable.

Salvimar spent a lot of time testing and fine tuning this speargun so you know that it is reliable and that they extracted every single ounce of power from it. 

The line inside the rubbers to limit the stretch is unusual but proof of the thought that went into the design.

If you are recoil sensitive then this would be great for you since there's hardly any from the Tomahawk. But to think of it, if you are recoil sensitive then you might have a hard time loading this speargun even with the load-assist. 

For an Aluminum barrel speargun they are quite expensive but still nowhere close to the prices of similar wooden spearguns. On all other fronts, especially power and reliability, they also compare well with the production style wooden guns.

If you are hunting large reef species or pelagic fish and need that extra bit of power without going with a longer speargun then this is for you. 

In our opinion it is one of the best spearguns on the market for experienced spearo's looking for a powerful, accurate and reliable speargun.

Salvimar Tomahawk Outdoors

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About the Author Gerrie van Niekerk - Apnealogy

Gerrie is a passionate Freediver, Spearfisher, Digital Marketer, and author for the Apnealogy website. Gerrie is an SSI Level 1 certified Freediver who loves geeking out about freediving and spearfishing gear and lives for his family and adventure.

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