DavidKEasley
Apr 22, 2016 · 5 min read

6 Things to Consider before Buying an Airsoft Gun

(Image Credit)

Buying a great airsoft gun is probably the most important part of being successful in pursuing this sport. Further, having a long gun is crucial to an airsoft battle. Some may be of the opinion that pistols and grenades are sufficient, but no one can deny that long guns are the preferred weapon for airsoft warriors.

Mentioned ahead are a few tips that will help you choose a gun that’s just right for you:

1.Think Long Range

You want to go for a gun that not only fits your budget, but also makes you feel like you’re sufficiently equipped and ready to take on your enemies. Only an accurate gun will make you feel that empowered. Your goal is to hit the enemy, for which you may have to shoot at long range (unless you don’t mind getting “killed” and exiting the game as soon as you start). Herein lies the importance of an adjustable hop-up. It puts the backspin on the BBs and makes them aim for targets at longer distances in a straight line. Ensure that you go for an adjustable hop-up because each BB needs different settings.

2.Get the Power

Most novice airsoft warriors assume that power should be the primary factor to decide the competence of the gun. They couldn’t be more wrong! While it is nice to be able to hit an enemy 100 yards away, the likelihood of such a thing actually happening is extremely rare. Further, there is no need to lose sleep over upgrades before you actually have a gun. You don’t need 400 f.p.s. when you’re starting out. A gun that can handle BBs between 0.20-gram and 0.25-gram should suffice.

3.Sights or Scopes?

So you find scopes to be uber-cool and think they’re a must-have in your arsenal? You may want to rethink that. The truth is, sometimes scopes can loosen during maneuvers and getting them back on target can take time. Go for a red dot sight instead as they are quick on target and a lot more affordable than a scope. You can spend the remaining money on getting your hands on some cool airsoft accessories, gear, BBs, and game time. Pick a dot sight with the largest optical diameter you can afford to reduce the target acquisition time. Alternatively, stick to open sights.

4.Figure Out Your Strategy

Your strategy should depend on your situation. New players, typically, go for the ‘spray and pray’ ploy. It is the most popular one and that’s what they see in the movies. However, upon realizing that this tactic isn’t really effective, they start devising better alternative strategies. Of course, this comes from practice as only practice teaches you when to be quick and bold, and when to stay silent and stealthy. Similarly, a newbie will barely be able to hold on to a magazine that holds 300 BBs; whereas a seasoned player will probably make the same magazine last longer.

5.Spring, Gas or Electrical?

This is where you need to pay attention. There are three main airsoft powerplants:

• Spring-powered Guns

Spring-powered airsoft guns aren’t very popular among gamers. The only exceptions are shotguns and sniper rifles. This is because spring-powered assault rifles and sub-machine guns are made of cheap materials and tend be low in quality. They are also dreary to use, especially against players with more sophisticated guns such as AEGs.

However, they are extremely reliable during close-quartered games. Even though the rate of firing with them is slower, you will not have to reload frequently. You can definitely use these guns as primary or backup weapons. Further, they are easy to work with despite their weak structure and the lack of range.

Spring-powered guns will prove to be helpful and affordable for novices. There are several full-size spring airsoft rifles as well as pistols available, which are great for easing into this sport. You also have the option of going for ultra grade spring airsoft pistols, which are heavier and stronger.

• Gas-powered Guns

These guns perform well, but can be expensive to buy, use and maintain. You will have to shell out big bucks on not only the gun, but also on the magazines and the gas (propane, green gas or CO2) to power them. Maintenance can be expensive if a part breaks or becomes defective. Also, they do not perform as well in certain weather conditions, thereby bringing their reliability into question.

Gas-powered airsoft guns are usually used only once a round and saved as a sidearm or secondary weapon. The gas doesn’t last long, which means many a time, your shots may be inconsistent.

• Automatic Electrical Guns

Automatic electrical guns;or AEGs are considered to be the most accurate and reliable operating systems for airsoft guns. They come with a hop-up system that allows you to lay down a consistently accurate line of fire until your clip runs out.

They work on batteries, which are rechargeable and can power the mechanical gearbox inside a gun. The batteries take anywhere between 5 and 8 hours to charge the first time, but charging them for 3 to 5 hours should suffice later on. They tend to slow down as they lose power, which is why most gamers shoot the weapon on semi-automatic mode rather than on automatic.

These guns operate optimally under all weather conditions. The best thing about them is that they do not require much maintenance. However, when they do require maintenance, they can be very difficult to work on.

6.Metal Trumps Plastic

Both, metal and plastic body guns work well for airsoft gamers. While neither is breakable, the metal-bodied guns do end up bending and denting with use despite being tougher than plastic. Further, there are guns that start out with a plastic body, but can be modified into a metal body at a later stage.

Conclusion

Accuracy, power and operation system are the biggest factors to look out for when buying an airsoft gun. Even though you aren’t able to afford a fully automatic M-16 with an LED light, a scope and a laser right now, you can work around cheaper models first, master using them, and then move on to the big guns (literally, in this case). For the time being, bear the above considerations in mind when picking your airsoft gun and you’ll understand the intricacies of playing this sport to make a better decision about your next one.

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