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LAND WARRIOR FIREARMS RFD Suppliers of firearms, shotguns, cartridges and ammunition. Visit or speak to the team on 0131 654 2452 for further details.






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M E C H A N I X G L O V E S | W AT E R P R O O F S | H O P TA S T I C | A I R S O F T D O V E R | G 1 9 X

Editor: Nigel Streeter Graphic Design: Havoc Design Ad Design: Havoc Design Publisher: Nigel Streeter Cover Photo: ASG Evo Owners Group Competition Winner, Dylan Watcyns, curtesy Georaga. UK 13-issue subscription rate: £46.50 UK 6-issue subscription rate: £24.00 For overseas prices email:

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©Calibre Publishing Limited 2018 All rights are reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the express permission of the publisher in writing. The opinion of the writers do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher. The editor reserves the right to edit submissions prior to print. Distributed by Intermedia Brand Marketing Ltd.


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LETTER , IDEA OR QUESTION? Got something to say? A question for our experts? An article or article idea? Drop us a line and let us know. Either email the Editor:, write to us at the Calibre Publishing address above, or talk to us on Twitter or Facebook.

Contents DECEMBER 2018

CONTENTS XMAS 2018 6 NEWS 8 ROGUE’S GALLERY Airsoft Action readers doing what they do best! 12 ARMOURY: KRYTAC VECTOR Through all its trials and tribulations, the Kriss Vector has continued to appear in new forms and now Scott Allan has got his hands on the latest iteration from Krytac. 16 ARMOURY: ICS H&K MP5 Airsoft manufacturers have rediscovered the humble “9mm” with some funky “SMG-style” RIFs hitting the market - but Bill still has a soft spot for the “daddy” of them all, the venerable H&K MP5! 20 EVENT: OP GAOL HOUSE Phil Bucknall heads to The Gaol in Rutland, where he reports from the latest game in aid of Pilgrim Bandits. 26 EVENT: PRACTICAL SHOOTING SHOW Calibre Shooting’s Andy Nightingale reports from the first show of its kind in the UK, as Practical Shooting finds a place on the annual show calendar. 30 KIT: WATERPROOFS Bill makes the case for spending your hard-earned cash on something that will see you through the harshest conditions. 34 FEATURE: LADIES AIRSOFT KIT Following last month’s feature on ladies protective gear for Airsoft, this month Femme Fatale runs through some of the tactical trousers - both unisex and women’s cuts - that work for her. 40 SITE: SPARTAN CQB With a lack of sites in the South West, Craig Walton heads to Chippenham to check out the opening of a new CQB site.

46 REEL STEEL: RED DAWN In a new series, Bill takes a look at iconic movies that have influenced airsoft games and probably airsoft itself and how, with a bit of searching, all the weapons from the “Big Screen” can be found in “6mm” form! 50 FEATURE: HOPTASTIC! The guys from Airsoft Action TV put three different hop units to the test, to see if they really make a difference or is it all just stuff and nonsense? 53 KIT: MECHANIX GLOVES Phil B needed to replace his trusty old gloves and turned to a manufacturer known for producing good value, reliable handwear. 54 INTERNATIONAL: OP STARBURST Georaga goes International in this issue of AA, as he trips over to the Lonestar State for Operation Starburst, a United States MilSim with a bang …many bangs actually! 58 SITE: AIRSOFT DOVER Dedicated CQB sites are cropping up in the most unlikely places, offering some superb play and unique sites. This month Bill visits not only his newest local site but also a new shop just down the road… 62 FEATURE: DUST MONKEY TUTORIAL In this tutorial Dust Monkey explains how you can add a superb “weathered” effect to your tactical gear. 64 FEATURE: PROJECT G19X What happens if the airsoft gun you want isn’t available? Phil Bucknall asked himself the same question – and decided to build one himself. 68 KIT: AKU BOOTS UPDATE Bill has been involved with the development story of the AKU

“Pilgrim” collection of military boots since they first appeared and now brings us his take on the very latest model. 72 SPEEDSOFT: GEAR & GAMEPLAY Ending his look at Speedsoft, Frenchie turns his attention to what to wear and how the game is played. 76 ARMOURY: SECUTOR BELLUM Angelo DV has reviewed many Secutor products and here he takes a look at their latest offering. 78 KIT: TRAINING PLATES Plate carriers tend to sag without plates but wearing steel plates to play can get very heavy. Phil Bucknall has found an alternative, lightweight solution. 81 COMPETITION: NUPROL Yet another chance to win something special from our friends at NUPROL! 82 THE LAST POST: PRINT IS DEAD… Following a recent post on Airsoft Nation, Frenchie picks up on some of the points (and a few of the rants) made… 84 AIRSOFT ACTION STOCKISTS Where to buy your copy of The Players’ Choice Best Airsoft Magazine before it goes on sale in newsagents. 86 SITE DIRECTORY & PRACTICAL PISTOL CLUBS Looking for a skirmish site, or your local Action Air Club? Then we may have the answer, with pages of sites and clubs throughout the UK.

s w e N t f o s Air If you are a serving member or veteran of HM Armed Forces, did you know that there is a scheme that can save you money when shopping? Defence Discount Service provides discounts both online and on the high street for members of the Armed Forces, Veterans and Armed Forces Community. It is the only official MOD discount service across the UK. Defence Discount Service is home of the Defence Privilege Card, the vetted discount card that can be used in stores, restaurants and venues to obtain armed forces discounts. This discount card allows Veterans and the Armed Forces Community to have a card that can allow them to receive military discounts.

WHO QUALIFIES? • Serving Armed Forces • Reserve Forces • Spouses/Partners of serving personnel • HM Armed Forces Veterans (ex-serving) • MoD Civil Servants • Bereaved Family Members • War/Service Widow(er)s • Cadet Forces (over 16) • NATO Personnel in the UK To find out more or to apply for your Defence Discount Service card, visit or contact us using the details below. CONTACT US Email – Twitter - @discounts_mod Instagram - @discounts_mod Facebook - @defencediscountservicet

NORTHERN SHOOTING SHOW Last year’s 2000sqm indoor area and huge outdoor area had great feedback and introduced airsoft to the wider real steel community, along with being a one stop shop for airsofters with their favourite brands and retailers being in one place, including the ability to see companies that don’t normally exhibit at airsoft shows. There are many new exhibitors joining the list this year too who are keen to get involved. This year there are even more opportunities to “have a go” and enter competitions on our interactive ranges. Make sure you have a go on the extended CQB Hostage Rescue areas run by Calibre Shooting and watch the demos. Amateurs will be given a safety brief and lesson about room clearance and tactics then given body armour and safety kit and weapons and let loose to see if they can take out the terrorists and bring back the hostage.


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For experienced players you can bring your own kit or borrow it on the day. Beware though, the action will be ramped up for you! Join in the huge 3-Gun competition or watch from the viewing area letting visitors get up close to this exciting fast-paced discipline. An Early Bird ticket includes FREE booking, FREE parking and FREE show guide, making the day out a bargain! Visitors will also have access to the rest of the show where we have 260 shooting-related exhibitors attending. See all the latest real steel firearms, from .22 “Tactical Semi- Autos”, to .50 Cal, plus all the latest tactical clothing. Clubs, Societies and Associations will be on hand to answer any questions and provide information to anyone looking to get into the sport of shooting. To book online go to; www.



Airsoft News

BLACK FRIDAY AT TACTREE It ís coming to that time of year again The Black Friday Sale is soon approaching. Expect a whole week of amazing offers and free giveaways at TacTree. Youíll be able save up to 20% off you entire order plus get free gifts of exclusive designs, ONLY available at TacTree. Prepare for the winter with 20% off the latest 5.11, Maxpedition, Condor, Mechanix and Viper Tactical gear. Stay up to date with the latest sale information and gift reveal on the TacTree Facebook page or sign up to our mailing list at


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This particular group of young airsoft enthusiasts were reenacting a scenario from the real life “Battle Of Khe Sanh” of the Vietnam War. The pictures were taken in swamp lands in Northern Illinois, USA, which roughly resembles the conditions soldiers would have likely encountered. Eye protection was not necessary as the photos were not taken during an active game. All weapons used were checked to be clear.

Information Fancy seeing yourself in Airsoft Action? Send in your photos via email ( or share on our Facebook page (/AirsoftAction), plus a few words describing what’s going on in the image.

Photography by Samantha Skadeland.



KRISS VECTOR LIMITED EDITION THROUGH ALL ITS TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS, THE KRISS VECTOR HAS CONTINUED TO APPEAR IN NEW FORMS AND NOW SCOTT ALLAN HAS GOT HIS HANDS ON THE LATEST ITERATION FROM KRYTAC. IT HAS BEEN 5 YEARS SINCE THE AIRSOFT KRISS VECTOR hit the market, since then we’ve seen legal battles, knock offs and an electric version. But now we have something new! Well, new-ish. The Limited Edition KRISS Vector. If you haven’t heard of the KRISS Vector by now you have probably been hiding in a Taliban cave somewhere. It’s been likened to a nail gun on more than one occasion and has been seen in dozens of movies, including the recent (and horrifically bad) “The Predator”.

What ever happened to the Gas Blow Back version? A lot of the readers out there may well have forgotten all about the original Vector made back in 2012. It was really awesome! I had one until recently when I was persuaded to part with it for a profitable price (it was No 11). Built back in the day in a partnership between KWA and KRISS, in my opinion it was (and still is) one of the best gas blow back SMGs ever made but Kriss and KWA had some kind of weird fall out about something and production stopped completely. Kriss launched Krytac a couple of years later as their Airsoft brand and started their very own factory in Taiwan, with former KWA USA Allen Lau at its head – and what Allen doesn’t know about Airsoft guns isn’t worth knowing. Normally trademarks are an optional extra in Airsoft and often the trademarks are wrong with the item they are on too. The Vector is very different, it was built with not only just trademarks but actually by KRISS Arms in every part of the design phase, right the way through to the end product. KWA built the original GBB version under the watchful eye of KRISS but now with their own factory KRISS Arms have full control. If only more firearms manufacturers put in this level of effort we would have a massive range of top end, fully endorsed products instead of overpriced underperforming Airsoft guns.


So what is so special about this Vector and why does it look so weird? Well, the real steel KRISS SMG is designed entirely to defeat muzzle climb, a pretty impressive claim I think you will agree. This is achieved via their patented delayed blowback KRISS Super V System. In essence it is a simple yet genius design, redirecting the bolt off-axis down behind the magazine (which is why it has a unique body design). Because the bolt travels down toward the 12

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ground at around 30 degrees it redirects the recoil and the muzzle climb. I’ve fired the 45 and 9mm version courtesy of KRISS quite a few times and it does climb a little due to the insane rate of fire but it isn’t as savage as you would think.


Strangely, the finish on the new electric version is quite different from the original GBB version that was modelled on the Gen 1 Vector. The new AEGs are based off the Gen 2 real version so there are a few differences. I hadn’t really noticed it so much until the I compared the Gas and the Electric versions side by side; the Gen 2 is smoother all round. I’m not sure if I like the slightly rougher original better or not. The first thing you notice with a Vector when you pick it up is the overall size and weight, coming in at 3.1kg. The airsoft magazine issued is the extended magazine style and it holds 100 BBs.

fashionable straight design, this is thought to allow faster shooting. Markings around the fire selector have been changed to the updated type with them being moulded recesses in the receiver and then coloured, they do look a good bit sharper. Finally is the new designed side folding stock, that I don’t really feel is a marked improvement over the original personally. Once I had the SKAN chronograph testing out of the way I wanted to try some heavier BBs to see how good the hop was on the now longer barrel. I opted for Nuprol RZR 0.30s and was happy when I saw that it hopped up after a little adjustment. Spending a little time I got it dialled in perfectly, it was a bit of a windy day but I was punching out comfortable 35-40. With still conditions I don’t see this struggling against any AEG at all. So the performance is much the same as the standard electric. Could you improve on it? Well MOSFETs are still a little bit bit of a sticking point for me. Too many manufacturers chuck them in thinking they’re putting an upgrade into a rifle but really, in my eyes its something to go wrong and doesn’t really offer anything for performance.

“I’VE FIRED THE 45 AND 9MM VERSION COURTESY OF KRISS QUITE A FEW TIMES AND IT DOES CLIMB A LITTLE DUE TO THE INSANE RATE OF FIRE BUT IT ISN’T AS SAVAGE AS YOU WOULD THINK. ” There are also high capacity magazines available for those more trigger-happy players. The biggest bonus of the Electric magazines over the Gas is the weight saving. The extended GBB magazine weighed a ton, 4 or 5 of those in a rig was quite a bit and if you dropped one you were almost certainly going to damage the feed lips. The new polymer versions are very hardy and light - and much cheaper than the GBB type. As the bodywork hasn’t changed from the standard electric version it is as solid as you would expect, the new design folding stock is rigid and doesn’t flex or wobble despite its slim line design. Admittedly, I doubt I would ever fold it for any other reason than for storage, as it is fairly compact as it is. Each Vector comes with removable folding Defiance (a KRISS brand) top sights, a 20mm top rail, 20mm side rail. The “Limited Edition” part is not only the serial number but the front rail extension, longer inner and outer barrel as well is the different designed stock.


For a start each unit is individually serial numbered and only 3,000 of these will ever be made worldwide, once they are gone they are gone forever. The MLOK hand guard is to the real steel specification so that all the MLOK accessories will stay in place once attached. There is the extended battery cover on the pistol grip so longer game time. The trigger is the newer and more

The Vector does definitely perform very well but it doesn’t have an active braking MOSFET that gives you that snappy trigger you get on a Systema. Why didn’t Krytac add an Active Brake MOSFET? It makes sense because they really hammer the life of your motor. Much like a sportbike requires a more regular service than a bog standard diesel Transit van, tuning and performance creates wear and tear. You want a gun that never breaks? Buy a Marui and do nothing to it and it’ll last a very long time. You want something super tricked up, high speed and a super snappy trigger? Expect parts to wear out quicker. Sadly the consumer wants their cake and to eat it, so the manufacturer has to protect the customer from getting a bad reputation so they make a trade off.

IN USE Storing the magazines is a little bit of a fudge, there are a few real steel companies who make rigs, such as Head on Tactical and they really are brilliant quality. I found the longer length easier to work with than the standard version but then I’ve always preferred slightly longer rifles, I don’t really play much CQB other than Stirling Catterick games and you die or kill within seconds, so length doesn’t come into it too much. The magazine changes are still a bit cumbersome compared to an M4, there are after-market releases


features Overall Length: 818 mm (32.2”) - 865 mm (34.1”)

“THE VECTOR DOES DEFINITELY PERFORM VERY WELL BUT IT DOESN’T HAVE AN ACTIVE BRAKING MOSFET THAT GIVES YOU THAT SNAPPY TRIGGER YOU GET ON A SYSTEMA.” that can be put in place but I’ve never tried them yet. The bigger battery compartment isn’t that much bigger either, so I ended up using the battery I had in the shorter version anyway. The stock I liked more than I thought I would but I kept it at the minimum length. Up front I had a PTS FORTIS MLOK grip that I’ve always found good and for optics the Vortex Spitfire Prism Scope – it’s an amazing piece of kit that needs to be seen to be believed.

Overall Height: 180 mm (7.1”) Weight: 3.1 kg (6.8 lbs) Inner Barrel Length: 280 mm Inner Barrel Diameter: 6.05 mm Rate of Fire: 24+ RPS Velocity: 340fps/1.07J on Blaster 0.20g BBs (SKAN Chronograph)

EXTERNAL FEATURES KRISS Vector GEN II (2017) receiver KRISS Vector ambidextrous folding/sliding stock KRISS Vector M-Lok hand guard DEFIANCE® flip-up front and rear sight Ambidextrous fire selector Semi, two-round burst, and full auto fire modes Ambidextrous safety Piston reset on safe KRISS Vector GEN II pivoting trigger

MIL-STD 1913 picatinny top and bottom rail


CONCLUSION With a RRP of £600 it is a whopping £160 more than the standard Vector and that is a real shame putting it out of many player’s price range. Aftermarket front ends/rails do go for around £100 quite often and the stock, well it’s just swapping one for another so shouldn’t cost any more. That leaves £60 extra for the replacement trigger, slightly different markings, longer barrel and that’s it. Given the EVO that is a comparable AEG has a much higher spec on paper, is also fully licensed, has mag detection, an Active Brake MOSFET, it’s manufactured in Europe and it’s still almost £250 cheaper! Granted, the only real difference is the Limited Edition factor and it is really nice - but £250 is just that. I really do think the Vector is one of the most solid performing SMG’s I’ve ever seen for its size and I like it’s boxy weirdness a little better than the EVO but that is purely aesthetics. I just find £160 on top of the regular Vector a little much to swallow, maybe £525ish would’ve been a nicer price but I’d still like to see an Active Brake MOSFET in there soon. AA


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Vector Mechbox with solid steel bushing Integrated FET system Electronic trigger Quick spring change Padded cylinder head Relief-cut cylinder window Adjustable rotary hop-up Temperature and wear resistant hop-up bucking KRYTAC 30K high-torque, short type mot RRP £600



ISNT EVERYTHING IT SEEMS LIKE A LOT OF AIRSOFT MANUFACTURERS HAVE RECENTLY REDISCOVERED THE HUMBLE “9MM” WITH SOME FUNKY “SMG-STYLE” RIFS HITTING THE MARKET - BUT BILL STILL HAS A SOFT SPOT FOR THE “DADDY” OF THEM ALL, THE VENERABLE H&K MP5! NEARLY FIFTEEN YEARS AGO I had the chance to go and live in the USA and spent four extremely happy years living and playing airsoft in Florida. Back then the Star SLR was still a “WIP” and the L85 was eagerly awaited, so what was a “Brit Abroad” to do? Whilst all of my American friends were more than happy with their woodland camo and ALICE gear - and some great “M4s and M16s” - I was intent on retaining my British gear. This was easy when it came to kit, as I simply continued to wear my S95 DPM and Arktis rig but what to choose as my AEG? My choice gradually whittled down to the diminutive “Maschinenpistole 5”, or MP5 as we all know it. Carried by the SAS at the Embassy siege, back in those days it was viewed as being very “Brit SF” although actually, it was the natural AEG choice for use among the crowded mangroves and palmettos of coastal Florida and I still have a very soft spot for it even today! So what makes this little SMG such a “must have” for any airsofter? The simple reason is that it has been used by military and police forces worldwide, has appeared in the hands of most screen “action heroes” and, of course, was the firearm carried by the SAS on that fateful day on May 5th 1980 when they stormed the Iranian Embassy. It’s been used by the USN SEAL Teams, GSG-9 and virtually every special operations unit in the western world and even today we see the MP5 in the hands of our firearms trained police officers. The fact is that the little MP5 in all its various guises still ticks almost every box you can imagine and that’s probably why it still ranks as a “first


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purchase” for many new airsofters. Spare parts, upgrade parts, magazines and a whole host of accessories means that your MP5 can be as individual as you are, so when it comes to airsoft SMGs, in my mind the MP5 is truly the “daddy”!


During the early to mid-1960s it became apparent to security forces worldwide that the rise in terrorist atrocities was a trend that they had to counter and for this reason many police and military units started the hunt for a lightweight, accurate, pistol calibre sub-machinegun (SMG). The Germans of course had a bit of a history with SMGs and “machine pistols” and two companies, Carl Walther Waffenfabrik in Ulm-an-Donau and Heckler and Koch (H&K) GmBH in Obendorf-am-Necker were at the forefront of the development process. Initially the Walther MPL and MPK (basically a long and short version of the same firearm) seemed to have the edge as the design was already finalised in 1963. In 1964 though, the first designs of the MP5 from H&K started filtering through …and the rest, as they say, is history. H&K looked at the successful G3 rifle designs and then adapted things so make use of the 9×19mm Parabellum pistol cartridge. The MP5 was created within this group of firearms and was initially known as the HK54. First created in 1964, the H&K MP5 was developed as a pistol-calibre, blowback operated roller-locked member of the H&K weapons system and in 1966 it was officially adopted by the German Federal Police, border guard and army special forces.



In repeated and exhaustive testing the MP5 has proven capable of firing more than 30,000 rounds without a single stoppage or parts failure and it is not uncommon to find MP5s still serving with in excess of 500,000 rounds through the original barrel and receiver! Still regarded of as one of the most reliable and effective submachine guns in the world after nearly fifty years, the MP5 has become the choice of the worlds’ most famous elite anti-terrorist, special operations and special law enforcement organisations. While more modern submachine guns have been designed since the introduction of the MP5 it is still the user’s choice when lives are at stake.


Much like its real-world counterpart, the ICS MP5 (the MX5 in ICS-speak) is not a new model, which means that as a replica it’s been around for a while and has had all the “quirks” ironed out, not that it had many to start with! Of all the ICS models, I have to say that the suppressed “SD6” is still my favourite of the bunch (it just screams “Night Ops” to me!) but whichever variant you choose of the eighteen (yup, EIGHTEEN if you total up Proline and Sportline models!) that ICS offer, you’ll be sure of getting a solidly performing AEG. When it comes to the “Proline SD6” the entire upper assembly is of a pressed metal finish - just like a real MP5. In addition to the reinforced fibre frame (which incorporates the pistol grip), everything is finished to an extremely high standard. Going right down to the legend “Kal.9mmx19” on the left-hand side above the magwell and an individual serial number, this replica looks extremely real with just a small “6mm BB/ICS Airsoft” notation appearing on the magwell on the right. Internally you get exactly what you’d expect from an ICS AEG and that’s a V2 reinforced gearbox, ICS’s own Long Type motor with heat sink and some very, very tidy wiring. ICS have pretty much always produced great quality internals and the MP5 models are no exception. If you’ve ever used an MP5 AEG then everything on the ICS is going to seem simple and intuitive as all the controls are exactly as you’ll find them on any of the airsoft (or indeed real) variants;

the fully ambidextrous fire selector has the “bullet” pictograms to show “safe, semi, and auto” and the magazine release it where it always is, namely directly in front of the trigger guard. The battery compartment on the “supressed” version is still in exactly the same place as you’ll find it on most MP5 replicas, tucked away neatly under the barrel. To access this with the “SD” you need to release the small retaining lugs (L and R, easily lost so be careful!) on the upper part of the ribbed handguard which then slides forward neatly. For an SMG the battery compartment is pleasingly



roomy meaning you can fit a good-sized battery that will keep you in the game all day long. Sights are simple too with an enclosed post at the sharp end and a fully adjustable dioptre at the rear. The sliding stock is essentially a two-position affair, either open, half-open or closed but this is true of the real thing as well so you can’t knock the replica in this respect. Using .20g BBs the MP5 gave a mean chronograph reading of 0.92 Joule/315fps which was very consistent and obviously perfectly site-friendly. Setting the fire selector to semi-auto and easing the trigger sends BBs downrange with an extremely satisfying “pffft”. For something with a relatively short inner barrel the MP5 is quite astonishingly accurate, hitting sandbag targets easily at 30m. Switching things to full-auto will undoubtedly put a smile on your face, as the ICS does really whir away, sending BBs to target with alacrity! Overall the ICS H&K MP5s are still a really tremendous replica and I can see it comfortably acting as your main (make that only) AEG if you’re getting started or strapped for cash. It’s not an expensive replica either as you can expect to pay under £200 for the SD6 with a pair of 230BB metal mags included (and spare mags are relatively inexpensive too!) and you are getting an absolutely tremendous amount for your money. The ICS MP5s look great, are superbly finished and put together and function flawlessly. They’ve been around for a while, have been tweaked and refined and offer superb value for money. With all that said what you get from an ICS MP5 is a RIF that will be a trusted companion for the majority of your “airsoft life” if you look after it, and that, my fellow shooters, is all we can ask of any AEG! My thanks as always go to for the loan of the test sample. Please do check them out for any and all of your ICS Airsoft needs and much, much more!

Tech Specs Weight: 2230g Length: 600 mm/740.5mm (stock extended) Materials: Alloy and Polymer Colour: Black Gearbox: V2 Gearbox Motor: ICS Long Type Muzzle Velocity: 0.92 Joule/315 FPS


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3000pcs per bottle | 6mm | Precision Airsoft BB |



PHIL BUCKNALL HEADS TO THE GAOL IN RUTLAND, WHERE HE REPORTS FROM THE LATEST GAME IN AID OF PILGRIM BANDITS. OCTOBER THE 6TH SAW ME driving cross country at an ungodly hour and through some pretty crappy weather to get to The Gaol in Oakham. For those who have never been before it is an ACTUAL gaol as well; obviously no longer in use as a prison but it does represent a pretty unique gaming arena with a mix of outdoors, CQB and indoor areas to fight through. The reason for the early start was the second instalment of the Pilgrim Bandits Invitational games run by John Turrell of JTAC Custom; the first was held at Humber Airsoft earlier in the year in glorious sunshine in an old quarry with a FOB constructed out of HESCO barriers, so it was quite the contrast to the second game. Once I’d managed to find the place - which wasn’t as easy as I thought given its rather unique construction - but it was reassuring to see a good number of players already there and setting up, both from the Pilgrims side (wearing camo) and the Bandits (non-camo


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wearing) in the ample and heated safe zone. In fact 60 out of the 80 that booked in made it to the day, so it was a good turn out for a site that is quite compact. The comforting smell of bacon wafted through the area too as there is catering on site for breakfast and also lunch with hot and cold drinks available throughout the day, as well as snacks. I was here with the Pilgrims side and it was really nice to see so many players from the first game back for more of the same and to raise money for the Pilgrim Bandits Charity; a very worthwhile cause and to bolster the money raised by the game there were patches, mugs and coasters to buy to commemorate the game as well as two raffles - a free one that all players were entered into and another one with some pretty nice prizes on offer. The free draw was for a rather nice custom pistol from Pew Pew Hub and Elite Shooting Centre and a Nuprol Raven 1911. Both of which went to



very happy recipients judging by the smiles on their faces as they collected their prizes! The other prizes included a KWA Ronin AEG, training plates, a Fabarms shotgun, WE Glock, Raven 17 and a £50 JTAC gift card so it was well worth entering for only a fiver a go. I’m sure those that won will agree that it was a more than worthwhile investment too.

of the block and courtyard from the Bandits, with falling back to regen until it was taken out of play and then dead was dead. The game kicked off and immediately there was the sound of contact from various locations. Firstly it made me realise how many ways around the site there were and secondly, I realised I really am getting old as I was a good ways behind the action but not out of

Once the prizes were given out the briefings started with Justin, the operator of the Gaol Events, covering some basic admin about the site and pyros before we moved off to one of the courtyard areas, which was surrounded by bloody huge fences and lots of obstacles, including cars and vans as well as barricades to play around. During the first game briefing it was clear that the Pilgrims were at a numbers disadvantage to the Bandits but we didn’t let that put us off. Rather than a disadvantage; it was more of a “target rich environment” with plenty of opportunities to get some kills. The first game was a timed one involving the defence

it completely and whether I was ready or not, I soon found myself in some furious fighting on two, sometimes three, fronts. Players were dropping around me and before I knew it and during a reload I got hit from behind by a rather sneaky Bandit. God knows how they managed to get behind us but they did and the remainder of the players with me soon fell. It was only then that I really noticed that the guys who had just rolled over us were all wearing kilts. Yep, it was freezing cold, raining and pretty unpleasant and yet there they were running around in kilts without a care in the world. I’m just exceptionally grateful that it wasn’t windy too! Even outnumbered we managed to hold off for longer than



was expected; the exact time eludes me now I’m afraid but it was over forty minutes and I do know that when it was reversed later in the day we still beat those dirty Bandits. The power of being “the good guys” obviously... The next few games involved numerous objectives but the common thread was the intensity and duration of the firefights and the constant ebb and flow of the battle as it moved all over the site, from exercise yards to courtyards and through cell blocks and hallways. All day long the game play was fair and there was sportsmanship aplenty on display and no one complained about the weather at all! It was great to see smaller teams within the larger team on both sides working cohesively to secure the objectives and also the banter between both sides. All of it adding to the overall experience. At this point I have to say that Justin runs a very tight ship and his Marshalls were exemplary. They kept a watchful eye on the action without being obtrusive and still managed to keep the games flowing with the odd little titbit of information for whomever needed it at the opportune moment. For me the highlight of the day was clearing the buildings. I’ve never seen inside a prison apart from on TV, let alone being in one so it was quite a surreal experience to be walking through one M4 in hands lobbing thermobaric grenades around as we cleared the blocks cell by cell. The layout of the cells and corridors made it quite a challenge to clear but working in small squads seemed to be the best way to do it and there was a real sense of achievement when the four-man squad I was in made it from one end to the other without getting bumped once. I do remember clearing a cell and hearing my team mates getting hit in a different part of the prison, so I took refuge in the en-suite to the cell I was in. I saw several Bandits go past and with pistol drawn I waited for a few minutes before surfacing again - it was deathly quiet and

a little spooky too. As I was working my way back out checking for Bandits I nearly had a heart attack as I entered a cell to find my mate in there. He also nearly had a heart attack and once our pulses returned to the low hundreds we exited and carried on. It really is a strange place to play an Airsoft game and even with all the locks removed from the doors and it not being a high security prison it made me think that I definitely want to stay on the right side of the law. Saying that, the actual cells were bigger and more modern than my old room in halls at Uni! The end of the day came round and players retreated to the Safe Zone to pack up and I think it’s fair to say that everyone had a great day in a unique game site. Although who won isn’t important in the grand scheme of things, in this wonderful game based on honour and sportsmanship I am happy to report that the Pilgrims held out and won - “hands down” and “battered them all day” being a couple of choice quotes from the head honcho Mr Reffin. Of course, the real winner was the charity for whom the day was run. The Pilgrim Bandits do a lot of good work for ex-members of the special forces and through game fees, the raffle, donations and sales of merchandise a grand total of £1,200 was raised for them and I hear from John that once everything comes in he expects that number to be closer to £1,500 which is absolutely fantastic and will enable them to carry on with the stellar work they do. All that remains for me to do now is to say the many many thank yous for making the day not only happen but also for raising such a great amount for a very worthwhile cause… So thank you, in no particular order, to John Turrell without whom this game wouldn’t even have happened; Justin Reffin and Charlotte of The Gaol Events for the use of the site; BritKitUSA for help with the patches; Ian “Snoopy Snaps” Bell and Sam for doing the photos and also for allowing me to use them in this article; Tactical Gear Co. for the training plates; Finchy Finch for his donation from sale of patches on the day; Pew Pew Hub and Elite Shooting Centre for the Pistol; JTAC Custom for the Ronin and Carl Cooke for the paracord wrist bands. If I have missed anyone off then I apologise profusely but thank you! Also, a big thank you to the players and I look forward to seeing you at the next instalment - fingers crossed it’ll either be a lot drier or it’ll be entirely indoors. I’m getting too old for this running around in all weathers malarkey now. I think the final word should go to John who organised the event. I asked him for a few words and when he replied in jest I warned him I would use it and true to my word... John’s final words on the day were “Potato, vibrator, boobicles!” Can’t say fairer than that really! Until the next one...stay safe and have fun. AA



THE FIRST BRITISH PRACTICAL SHOOTING SHOW CALIBRE SHOOTING’S ANDY NIGHTINGALE REPORTS FROM THE FIRST SHOW OF ITS KIND IN THE UK, AS PRACTICAL SHOOTING FINDS A PLACE ON THE ANNUAL SHOW CALENDAR. AS THE YEAR SLOWLY DRAWS TO A CLOSE, all the major shooting shows within the UK have been and gone …or so I thought! Airsoft Action’s big gun, Nige, had sent me an email asking would I be interested in attending a Practical Shooting Show down in Exeter. Not one to pass up on being an exhibitor with Calibre Shooting, I jumped at the chance as this was no ordinary invitation. The Practical Shooting Show was intended to fill a gap in the world of shooting shows. Here there was to be no hunting, no plinking, no dogs, no archery and no skirmishing. It was to be Practical only - and Practical it was! The show was the brainchild of Target Sports Centre and The Tunnel in Devon and it was up to events manager Mike Darby and his staff to see it ran smoothly. Located at the Westpoint Centre on the outskirts of Exeter, this was promising to be a great event and not one that was going to disappoint. The show wasn’t going to as big as The British Shooting Show or The Northern Shooting Show, as they cater for all types of shooting. This was the first specially structured show in the UK purely for the Practical Shooting community and not just for airsoft but shotgun and firearms too. After packing the Calibre Shooting stand the night before I set off from Wakefield with my trusty sidekick Tyke and headed off for the sunny south. There we were to meet up with AA’s very own Bill and head of AA Nige but unfortunately Bill was not feeling too good and gave the show a miss. Upon arrival at Westpoint Centre we were given our Exhibitor passes and shown our pitch. It was all hands to the pump to get the stand up and dressed as we were both feeling the need for a beer and an early night. Once sorted we had a good look around at the other exhibitors stands, before the public were let loose, just to get a feel for the place. With the show being situated inside in a covered hall the weather outside would make no difference, in fact it threw it down on the Saturday morning. All I can say is WOW! There were some big names in the world of Practical Shooting on site. With over 40 trade stands for the public to view from the likes of 5.11, First Tactical, Remington and Elite Custom Pistols there 26

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“THERE WERE ALSO PRACTICAL SHOTGUN CLUBS ON HAND SUCH AS ROSSENDALE RAPID FIRE TO GIVE ADVICE AND GUIDANCE TO THOSE WANTING TO GET INTO THE PRACTICAL SHOTGUN SCENE. I’M NOT ONE FOR SHOTGUNS BUT AFTER SEEING SOME AMAZING SEMI-AUTO SHOTGUNS I THINK I MAY HAVE TO CONVINCE THE WIFE I NEED ONE!” was plenty to see and talk about. Red Wolf was on site with a selection of guns, sights, grips and consumables, all of which were specifically chosen for the show in relation to practical Shooting. Mike Cripps of Elite Custom Pistols had a fantastic display of Custom built TM Hi Cappa Pistols that he has built with Practical Pistol in mind and if you had the cash you could take one away with you, as well as sound advice from this former reel steel World Champion practical shooter. Calibre Innovations were also displaying their wares with a lot of interest in Newbold self-sealing targets. Although these targets are intended for the firearms shooter, they fair pretty well for the airsofter as well. Made from a soft pliable polymer material that seals itself when shot, this system is now finding favour with all shooters, including airsofters. The targets are light enough to react with GBB and AEG guns with no ricochet at all. There is plenty of designs to choose from including a full set of playing card suits, Ducks, circles and traditional pepper popper targets. They even have bracket set that enables you to construct an A-frame for a plate rack stand. The system consists of an adjustable angle base that can be mounted using screws on the target itself, or you can simply use one of their free-standing targets. Because this target system is made of polymer it is well suited to life outdoors. Roundhouse Firearms Training we’re present along with a photo booth for you to take home a souvenir picture of your visit to the show. Practical Shotgun got a great welcome as the public descended upon their stands to ask all the questions on how to get involved, and for those that are already in the know there was opportunity to view the latest lines of shotgun and accessories as well as the opportunity to purchase. There were also Practical Shotgun clubs on hand such as Rossendale Rapid Fire to give advice and guidance to those wanting to get into the Practical Shotgun scene. I’m not one for Shotguns but after seeing some amazing semi-auto shotguns I think I may have to convince the wife I NEED one! If you don’t hold a shotgun or firearms Certificate and wanted to get into Practical Shooting, then Mark Farrar was on hand with Multi-gun Syndicate UK. Mark gave everyone that attended the show a chance to have a go at 3-gun shooting involving pistols, rifles and shotgun, all in airsoft form of course, proving that you don’t have to go all out to have a great experience and enjoy the practical shooting scene. Calibre Shooting was taking things to the next level with a chance for the public to get involved with Tactical Training and also had the MantisX Firearms Training System up and running for the public to try out. This seemed to sort out the men from the boys

with plenty of interest for gaining some professional training and coaching practice. As for firearms, there were plenty to choose from such as Marlin, Smith & Wesson, Calibre Innovations, Accuracy Intonational and Sig to name but a few. There was a plethora of long barrel pistols on show also, including multiple 1911s, Sig Saur and Walter semi-autos chambered in .22 rimfire. As for practical/tactical rifles, the mind just boggles at how many rim fire M4-type platforms are available for those with a FAC to walk away with. If you do hold a FAC then there was plenty of reloading equipment and rounds to hand as well as cases, boxes, toolkits, sights, magazines and apparel to purchase on the day.

As always and as expected, Pilgrim Bandits was present in the guise of Terry Arnett. The Pilgrims are supported by Airsoft Action for their fantastic charity work. Also with Pilgrim Bandits was none other than Ex-22 SAS legend Rusty Firmin. Rusty was one of the assault team members during the Iranian embassy siege way back in 1980 and can be seen entering the building without wearing his gloves. Rusty, also the advisor for the movie “6 Days”, showed




us he still has what it takes as he took up the MantisX Firearms Training System challenge with Calibre Shooting. There was book signing and Pilgrim Bandits items on sale to raise much needed funds for this great charity.

If you are into air-gunning there was something there for you also. Quite a few of the exhibitors had a modest display of pellet and bb handguns on display, in the form of 4.5mm calibre. Accessories and consumables for these were also available, as was advice as to how you can get involved with practical air-gunning. As for myself I would have liked to have seen more of the 4.5mm hardware on show as there is a massive gap related to practical shooting that can be filled within the airgun community. As the doors opened on the Saturday and the crowds started to flow into the hall every trade stand was busy from the get go. The feedback from the exhibitors was one that did the show organisers proud. It’s normal for hundreds of visitors to walk past a stand without any interest at the big shooting shows, however,

with this being dedicated solely to practical shooting, all of the visitors were either interested in or involved with the practical side of shooting and were greeted with nothing else but practical hardware and information at every stand. As an exhibitor this was one of the busiest events I have attended in relation to just one discipline of shooting. Non-stop questions and interest, not just on my stand but on all the stands. So what’s next? Well, the organisers tell us that there will be another show next year, dates and venue to be arranged but most probably it will be held in the Midlands to give a wider audience the chance to travel to this great show. As this was the first show that the staff at the Tunnel and Target Shooting Sports Centre had organised and hosted, they informed me that they have learned a lot in the sense of logistics and have gained valuable feedback from all the exhibitors and now have a greater understanding of how to improve next year’s event. With that said, I think they can give themselves a huge pat on the back as the show was a complete success. As an exhibitor Calibre Shooting will be back next year to support this great event and as a contributor to Airsoft Action magazine, I think I can safely say AA will definitely be back on site. WELL DONE Practical Shooting Show. AA




I DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU but recently I’ve been pulling my shell (read waterproof) gear out of storage and giving it some seasonal care and maintenance and it struck me again that this is a side of the game that some will sadly neglect! Airsoft is a “money pit”. There, I’ve said it! Whilst playing airsoft may not necessarily be the most expensive pastime out there (I know guys that drop literally thousands on their mountain bikes!) it still adds up. Quite apart from regular site and event fees, a decent AEG will still cost you over a hundred pounds even at “entry level” and once you start dressing that up with optics and accessories and adding a few extra mags and a spare battery suddenly you’re well into triple figures! Then there’s your pistol, holster and gas, along with a basic uniform and some form of load 30

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“BUY THE VERY BEST YOU CAN AFFORD. OKAY, DO YOUR HOMEWORK FIRST BUT DON’T SCRIMP ON WET WEATHER GEAR AS YOU WILL REGRET IT.” carrying gear… of course you can’t go out and play without decent eyepro… things start to add up, don’t they? And yet, here I am harping on about waterproof gear again, just another expense to add to the list. But - and this is an absolutely HUGE “but” - what happens when the weather turns

bad? The fact is that you can have the very best of everything but if you can’t stay out in the elements to play then what’s the point? In reality and this is my opinion I stress, after your RIF the best thing you can spend your money on is some decent wet-weather gear! In the UK we are faced with, shall we call it “indifferent” weather year-round and although we don’t need to contend with the conditions encountered by our friends who live in places where the snow falls hard and temperatures fall WAY below freezing, we do need to be prepared for rain… lots of rain… The fact of the matter is that this kit comes at a price; bottom line, good waterproof clothing does not come cheap! I will probably be accused yet again of being somehow “elitist” in this view, certainly when it comes to some of the garments I’ve chosen to recommend to you here but the fact is that it’s expensive for a reason, namely, because it performs. Personally, I’m not quite sure why looking at good kit should be classed as “elitist”, as literally thousands of outdoor pursuits folk buy this type of clothing each and every year and there are numerous “outdoor shops” that sell to them all around the country. My advice to you? Buy the very best you can afford. Okay, do your homework first but don’t scrimp on wet weather gear as you will regret it.


With any waterproof (and by this I mean waterproof and windproof) there are really three keywords that you need to look out for, and these are: • Waterproof • Breathable • Durable The key to getting a great performance jacket or pant is the balance of these keywords; if you take a bin bag that is certainly waterproof but is not particularly durable and certainly not breathable in any way. Alternatively, if you take a base layer top, THAT is extremely breathable - but not waterproof and again,




not very durable. I’m giving these examples to illustrate what a delicate balancing act this is, even before you start to contend with making things hard-wearing! GORE-TEX is still by far the best known of the durably waterproof and breathable technologies and the guys that use GORE-TEX have had many, many years of experience of working with the different fabric/membrane mixes. It’s by no means the only technology out there to look at though, as there are others that are constantly looking to steal the crown! If you’re wanting to get into the meat of things you need to start looking for things like a high hydrostatic head (10m plus!) and a high level of moisture vapour transmission (MVTR). Anyone can make something waterproof and anyone can make something extremely breathable, but can they balance the two aspects to keep you comfortable inside your clothing system when the conditions outside are total crap - and can they make a garment that’s going to stand up to being worn under a plate carrier for hours on end? Think about it… Also, are they any good at design? Is the hood big enough to accommodate a helmet and has it been designed to work with one when it’s being worn? Where are the pockets? Where are the adjusters? If the drawcord for the jacket hem is hidden inside the pockets and those pockets are under your plate carrier… well, I guess you can see where I’m headed with this! Many so-called “tactical” jackets are nothing more than mountaineering models replicated in (choose your fave tacticool colour here) and pumped out into the market. If you look at the issue UK MTP waterproofs for instance, the pockets are all but unusable once you put a plate carrier on; don’t knock MOD procurement though, as the design they chose to adopt is replicated throughout the tactical clothing industry, so it MUST be right… 32

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Okay, into the meat of it! I’ve set the groundwork, so what brands should you be looking at? Let’s get ARC’TERYX LEAF out of the way first shall we? Bottom line is that ARC’TERYX are a very, very well respected outdoor, ski and mountaineering brand and LEAF is simply the program they’ve put in place to support the so-called “professional user”. ARC’TERYX is the brand “de rigeur” of the “operator set” and although I have huge respect for the brand I’m going to say that in today’s market they do seem a tad “pricey”. That said, they do make some absolutely righteous gear, and although the feature set is a bit fussy in some of their older garments, the newer ALPHA Jackets for instance are a lightweight (420g) and packable waterproof, a windproof/breathable design that is comfortable to wear during fast travel under inclement conditions. N40p-X GORE-TEX 3L fabric responds rapidly with a greatly enhanced rate of breathability to transfer moisture vapour away from the body and regulate temperature. Media ports, matte zippers and compatibility with insertion and extraction equipment add to the jacket’s operational function. However, expect to pay £500 plus for one of these - and that’s before you get to over-trousers! With that in mind let’s look at a couple of alternatives! At just 430g the CLAW GEAR Melierax is a lightweight and versatile hardshell jacket engineered to protect you from wind, rain and snow. It’s been designed from the ground up to offer the very highest levels of protection in truly adverse weather conditions. The cut is modern and ergonomic and the design is excellent offering high levels of movement and mobility to work in harmony with the users body contours; if purchased over-sized it can even be worn over body armour! The hood is fully adjustable and helmet compatible. Both sleeves feature a sleeve pocket and a hook & loop mounting panel for name tapes and unit/morale patches. Large front pockets allow easy access even when wearing chest rigs or backpacks and there’s a neat inner pocket for keeping small essentials safe. The Euro price for the Melierax is €299.90 which is absolutely spot on for this level of performance and offers great value for money, although there’s yet to be a matching overtrouser. Also worth a look is the new Dakota MKII from TASMANIAN TIGER which I’ve been testing recently and which came to the Alps with me this summer. This simple yet effective jacket is made from waterproof and breathable three-layer T-Vent and weighs in at 530g. In terms of features you get a two-way adjustable hood with reinforced brim, seamless shoulders to avoid chafing under a pack strap, and thermo-fusion pit zips for increased core ventilation. It has ergonomically shaped raglan sleeves and adjustable cuff tabs with hook-and-loop closure. The water repellent two-way front zip affords inner wind protection and there’s also an E/stringadjustable hem. In terms of pockets it’s straightforward with just a “Napoleon” pocket with thermo fusion zip and front pockets with water repellent thermo-fusion zips. This sells for iro €300 and is absolutely spot-on for the money; if you need a matching overtrouser then the Dakota pants will set you back iro €240 and are comfortable to wear all day long! Although the Melierax and Dakota have been with me for a while now and I’ve been testing the heck out of them both at home and abroad, my personal benchmark for high-performance shell gear is still UF PRO. The team at UF PRO certainly know what goes into a great garment, not only in terms of innovative design and practical functionality, but also in terms of high technology, and high performance fabrics. Through strategic alliances with other companies such as W L Gore & Associates, Schoeller, Carinthia (G Loft), D30, and Cocona they have access to many of the finest fabric technologies available to the tactical user on the market. With their superb, cutting edge Monsoon SmallPac waterproof shell jacket and pant they show that they mean business from the very outset. This is a fully specified and featured 2.5 and 3 Layer GORE-TEX jacket that offers the user full protection from even the worst of the elements, be it rain, sleet, or snow. In terms of features the jacket is ergonomic and minimalist; there is an upper



arm pocket, reinforcement in the shoulder and buckle area, and sleeve width adjustment. It comes in a very useful stowaway pouch with MOLLE straps; the Monsoon SmallPac jacket can easily be stowed away into this small pouch, which can be looped to any gear with a MOLLE system. This is how you can always find

space for the jacket, no matter what gear you carry or the size of your backpack. The jacket also benefits from some of UF PROs own “in house” innovations as it incorporates their excellent HOOD/ HARNESS system for precise fit around the head, letting the hood move perfectly wherever you look. When you add the excellent SmallPac pants this a suit designed for the professional, but unlike other manufacturers, UF PRO have not loaded the price up to make if off putting to potential buyers. They’ve kept the price sensible but without cutting any corners. When I bought my original suit the jackets retailed for €256.00 and the pant for €243.00, which is absolutely bang on for the performance and durability of the fabrics and components which allied with first rate quality control, gives a suit that will last you a lifetime! I’ve been using all three jacket models on and off on pretty much a daily basis and I have to report that the performance of all of them has indeed been excellent, even in the heaviest, wind-driven downpours. Although the face fabrics are light, soft and very quiet for hardshells they are also also extremely durable; they’ve been used regularly in the woods and I even had the Melierax covered in mud when I took a tumble on a wet, flinty chalk path (much to the amusement of my mates!). When I got home and wiped it down it looked as good as new with absolutely no damage apparent. I hope this has given you some valuable information to help you make a decision of your own choice of waterproof but the bottom line is this… (and I’ll say it again) do your homework, buy right and buy once! A decent set of waterproofs will probably be the most expensive bit of kit you buy for airsoft after your RIF, so take your time! AA






FOLLOWING ON LAST MONTH’S FEATURE ON LADIES PROTECTIVE GEAR FOR AIRSOFT, THIS MONTH FEMME FATALE RUNS THROUGH SOME OF THE TACTICAL TROUSERS - BOTH UNISEX AND WOMEN’S CUTS - THAT WORK FOR HER. UNFORTUNATELY, THERE AREN’T a lot of female tactical trousers out there and this list is a culmination of over four years of trial and error - but I’ve finally found 4 pairs that not only give great fit but can stand up to the stresses of the sport.


Firstly, let’s start off with the Viper Unisex Elite Pants! I first used these pants all the way back in 2015, when I was looking for a pair of adjustable trousers in Multicam that had built in knee pads, that were also under £60 and at just under £40 these fitted the bill perfectly. They are made from a mix of Polyester ripstop and cotton which is not only comfortable but is quick wicking and feels strong/durable. The most important factor for me is (of course) the fit and as they are made in sizes 28”, all the way up to a 42” inch waist, they are really inclusive of different sizes. I chose the 28” waist (my waist actually measures 29” but they have a little give) and I was pleasantly surprised when I first tried them on as they fitted me really well, not only around the waist but they didn’t look baggy around the bum or knees. This is because they have some great features that make them completely adjustable, including a Velcro/zipped fly, elasticated waist adjustment, internal kneepad adjusters, a velcro knee retention strap and an adjustable velcro ankle fastener. 34

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As I’ve said, Viper Elite pants have built in neoprene lined ABS removable knee pads, which are easy to take out and pop back in and even have Velcro to keep them in place. After a while the velcro does get a bit worn so they have a tendency to pop out but this is easily replaceable. In regards to aesthetics, the Viper V Camouflage is very a crisp and colour-saturated camo similar to BTP/MTP. The trousers also have a plethora of pockets for storage, ranging from the two front hand pockets that house the internal knee pad adjusters, two back pockets, two expandable thigh pockets, two expandable cargo pockets and lastly, two ankle utility pockets making them a practical and useful piece of kit to wear on the field. The Viper Elite Pants are available from Military 1st and of course Viper themselves, for around £40.


Next up we have the Emerson G3 unisex combat pants, which are a budget version of the well-known Crye Precision combat pant design. They are constructed from a poly/cotton blend fabric, are fully adjustable at the waist, knees and at the legs by velcro tabs. I found these at the end of 2015 when my Viper Elite Pants were damaged in an airsoft accident and I needed a new pair of tactical trousers with knee pads to protect my knees from scuffs and what not during games. The detachable knee pads are made from a rubbery material that has is easy manipulated but still offers the level of protection airsofters need in the field. I prefer these kneepads to the plastic versions as they mould to the knees better. They also have a load of pockets to keep all your gubbins in, including two front pockets, two rear-zip pockets, two velcro tab cargo pockets with a small pocket inside, two velcro tab small pockets on upper legs and lastly, two velcro tab small pockets on bottom legs. They’re a unisex size but because they are a brand from Asia the sizing is a little bit smaller than UK and US sizing. I chose a 30” waist and they were comfortable around the waist thanks to the low-profile waist adjustment system and didn’t look baggy around the knees. They are a bit shorter on the legs than most brands of trousers which for me isn’t a problem (being 5’4”) but for ladies taller than me it could be a bit of an “ankle flasher” situation. The knee pad adjusters mean that the kneepads are always in the right place.

They’re available in sizes 30 - 38W from Army Panda for between $53-55 depending on what camo option (which is around £41 at the current exchange) and in SO many camo options (which is my favourite thing about these)! They’re available in MultiCam, black MultiCam, US woodland, grey, MultiCam Arid, MR, AOR2 and A-Tacs FG so there are loads of options no matter what loadout you decide to run.


Next up is the Helikon-Tex Women’s Urban Tactical Pants, which are a pair of durable, lightweight field trousers that have a specific women’s cut. First things first, with these trousers it is really important to measure your body and check the sizing. In mens/unisex combat trousers I would usually wear a 28” waist, 32” leg and they do the trick but as these are an extremely fitted pair of trousers I had to measure my waist and hips to make sure I had the correct size. I’m a size 8/10 in most jeans/trousers etc. and worked out my size to be a 30” waist. I was very impressed with the feel of the material, it doesn’t feel or look cheap - has a little stretch to it and is a durable 2-way rip stop blend fabric - perfect for the field. Looking at the overall construction of the garment it was solid and with this I threw them on to check out the fit. These are designed specifically to fit the anatomy of the female form and have a classic jean neck shape to prevent the trousers from slipping down. I am very happy with the fit, they are comfy and not too restrictive. After putting these through their paces off the field with squats, running during my daily fitness routine for most activities, especially for range days the size is perfect. However, if I were to wear these for an Airsoft game I would probably opt for a size bigger because I like my trousers to be a little looser to enable a better range of movement, especially when I’m crawling under/climbing over or through obstacles to get those kills on the field. The trousers are very fitted around the waist, hips, buttocks and thigh areas and loosen up around the knees. The length of the trousers is 34” no matter what size you opt for and this is to give the user greater freedom in choosing their leg length - just fold them up and you’re good to go.



They feature a elasticated waist and zip/velcro fastening which gives them a little movement around the waist and keeps them securely fastened. There are 7 wide belt loops which are perfect for loadout belts for holsters, mags etc. I feel pretty confident when I say that it is unlikely that you would need a belt to keep them up as they are very form-fitting. They also come equipped with 12 pockets - two front pockets with strengthened edges, two wide back pockets, two slim back pockets for accessories, two angled internal waistband pockets, two zipped thigh cargo pockets and two velcro thigh pockets. The women’s UTP come in 4 colours - shadow, black, khaki and olive drab. Lastly, let’s talk prices. The shadow colour-way is available from Military 1st for £53.00 with free shipping.


Lastly, the First Tactical Specialist Tactical Pants. These are a durable pair of tactical trousers that are made specifically for women in the field, whether that be the range, airsoft, outdoor activities and even first response work. The pants are made from a double ripstop poly/cotton blend fabric that has the Teflon® Shield+ stain repellent finish to keep them looking fresh even in harsh conditions, this combination gives the end user sturdiness and functionality. My favourite thing about the First Tactical range of trousers is the feel of the fabric used – as soon as you get them out of the packaging, it feels smooth, sturdy, tough and ready for any task. With regard to the construction of the pants, from my experience First Tactical always do a fab job. The running gusset construction gives the user full motion ability, whilst the triple needle stitching at critical seams keeps the pants going strong and together even after harsh use. The pants have double layered knees for durability and internal knee pad access that can be used with the First Tactical knee pads (to be purchased separately). The pants have a multitude of pockets including two back pockets, two front pockets, two front slit pockets (for mobile phones and magazines) and two organiser pockets (that can hold M4

magazines) with laminated pocket flaps. The pocket flaps are laminated to make sure they stay down and that the pants have a professional look even after being worn, they fasten with hook & loop Velcro and can be tucked in for quick access functionality. The Specialist Tactical Pants are available in the UK, in US sizes 2, all the way up to a size 20, in both a regular and tall leg – it is worth noting that the sizes on their website are American sizes but they do have a size chart for reference. I usually wear a UK 8 so opted for the US 4 with the regular leg. Looking at the fit, the pants have the First Tactical Advanced Women’s Fit which is designed and constructed uniquely for a woman’s shape – it has contoured cut curves that give a better fit around the hips, buttocks and upper leg to allow for optimal freedom of movement – they aren’t too tight but give the movement you need for strenuous activity without being baggy. As they are a women’s fit the waistband on the pants sits just above my hips rather than on my waist unlike most tactical trousers – which is much comfier. Overall, I’m really happy with the fit! The pants are available in limited colours – navy, black and khaki. This is my only complaint about them, that they aren’t available in the same range of colours like the men’s trousers are. I would absolutely LOVE a pair of these in Olive Drab Green! As for price, the pants retail at £44.95. Overall, I really like them – they are a sturdy, durable and fitted alternative to traditional BDU trousers. They fit well and are a reasonable price, but I would love to see them in more colours! Of course there are other trousers out there that are made in a specific female cut, plus unisex cuts that will also work for many of the ladies out there, these are just four of the best that I’ve tried over my time in airsoft. It is my hope for the future that more companies will make tactical clothing for women! AA



SPARTAN AIRSOFT CQB WITH A LACK OF SITES IN THE SOUTH WEST, CRAIG WALTON HEADS TO CHIPPENHAM TO CHECK OUT THE OPENING OF A NEW CQB SITE. IF, LIKE MYSELF, you live in the Southwest of England, you may have also noticed a lack of Airsoft sites in the area - well certainly compared to the Midlands with multiple CQB and Woodland sites advertising each week spaces and game days on Facebook. I have always felt that there’s a lack of variety when it comes to playing in the Southwest. So you can imagine my joy as I heard on the rumour mill of a new site opening up not far from me and even better, that it was a CQB site! As soon as it was confirmed and an opening day set, I booked my space along with my team mates and headed over to see what this new place had to offer. For most airsofters here in the Southwest the name “Spartan Airsoft” will mean their cracking woodland site located a stone’s throw away from Bristol Airport, however, they have now acquired a cool CQB venue in Chippenham, located at the former Wiltshire College site. It’s an impressive building sporting over 90,000 square feet with 3 floors, 5 staircases, an open cafeteria (complete with a kitchen to fight through), classrooms, sports halls, long corridors, walls with holes in allowing movement without having to use a corridor and, not forgetting, an amphitheatre. The only set back… It could be gone by Christmas! The site is scheduled for development so it’s only there for as long as it takes to get the plans finalised and the builders in. Finding the site was easy. The postcode (unlike a lot of sites) actually goes straight to the place it’s meant to. This allows for a stress-free journey and with ample parking outside, plenty of space get your kit out. As you walk through the front door you’ll be greeted by the friendly staff from Spartan and you’ll sign the usual waiver and pay your fee for the day, whether you’re renting or walk on. The kit rooms are a good size with some tables and chairs to use, one thing to note though, is that this building has no electricity it can be a bit dark, however, I always have a head torch in my kit so this was not a problem.


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Once I’d dropped my kit in the room and popped my eye pro on, me and the team went for a walk of the site… and it’s big! The Spartan team have done a great job breaking up the large rooms with extra barricades. The cafeteria, for example, would be a big open area that would be very hard to move in had it not been for the extra desks and cover they have put in place. There are long winding hallways with multiple doors, some leading to a giant room or sports halls and others lead into a broom cupboard. Some walls have been knocked through to allow better movement and bring a new dynamic into a room. Some rooms around the back of the amphitheatre on the second floor allow you to shoot into the first floor room from the windows. There’s plenty to keep everyone on their toes. Once I’d made it back (after getting lost once or twice) and got my gear together, we were all called into the cafeteria for the safety brief, game rules were pretty standard and with that done and all questions answered we were taped up into teams red or yellow and briefed on the first game. A simple team death match warm up to get familiar with the site. Once that was done and a quick reload we were back out for the first of the day’s scenarios. One thing the Spartan team are very good at is variety. In all the years I’ve been going to their woodland site I think I’ve only played the same scenario game three times. In this case one team had a VIP and it was their task to get him as far though the site as possible without losing him, if they did lose him then they would have 20minutes to get him back or it would be game over and the time recorded. After this it would be reversed and whichever team got him the furthest would win …providing they had him at the end of the round. If both teams lost him then it would be down to fastest time as to which team grabbed him quickest. We were told we would be hunting for the VIP first, so as a team decided rather than set up a block and wait for them to come to us we were going to try and grab him quick and then fall back with him until the time limit was up.


Game on! Our team split in two, each with a different staircase to get to as we knew we’d have to be on the ground floor first. I had gone with the group going for the furthest staircase in a bid to cut them off from the cafeteria, extra rooms and exits that would allow them valuable meters. By the time we’d got to the stairs and made our way down the opposition were already at the bottom, resulting in an intense plastic exchange. Credit to the players that day, I don’t think I saw any bad hit-taking for the whole day and there was a great standard of play all round. Once we’d managed to get a foothold on the bottom of the stairs we started to push into the smaller side rooms to get better angles. We began to get the upper hand, of course by the point this had begun to happen I’d probably made the trip to respawn and back somewhere in the high teens, along with everyone else. It’s an intense site! Speed and aggression will win the day and give you a nice “dot to dot” to do later when you get home. On my next trip back to respawn I was surprised to see their VIP stood next to our marshal. It turns out his party had been cut off and the other half of our team had taken him from the cafeteria. He was our guest for the next 20 minutes, despite the yellow’s best attempts, they could not break through to get him back. Game Over. Quick reload and it was our turn to escort him as far as possible, although it was mentioned that all we had to do was have position of him by the end of the time limit and we’d win anyway. That idea was quickly scrapped as that would involve sitting around and it was clear no one on the team fancied waiting around. We’d decided to try and do the same as the yellows had done last game by getting to the staircase that we had previously been stuck on. We also planned that we would secure the canteen and the far staircase so we could move him safely without getting cut off from the rest of our team. Game on and the first stair case didn’t go to plan. The yellows, much like we had the previous round, secured the stairs and used it to pin us in our starting wing. At the same time they had also secured the cafeteria. It was clear this was about to become a very hard game. Minute by minute, we fought for every inch of ground until we could make a break through the kitchen, allowing us to start the fight for the cafeteria and get a foothold on the bottom of the stairs. We managed to get up the first staircase, which allowed those on the ground floor free access without worrying about being shot from behind but now the hard part began …the cafeteria!

With all the barricades they were heavily dug in. Being closer to their respawn they had an advantage over us, thankfully a lot of us were carrying grenades, those little balls of explosive goodness helped clear the room. Once we’d gotten more organised and began assaulting together we managed to push them out of the cafeteria and onto the second staircase, where there was a stalemate until game over. Success, we’d managed to get our VIP to the cafeteria and hold him there until the end of the game. Lunch time was called and the usual offerings were available: burgers, bacon, eggs, cold drinks and confectionary. Once lunch was over we got straight into the next games, which consisted of a rolling defence style game in a different section of the site. The attacking team were to clear the middle floor and then the bottom floor, defenders had 1 life upstairs and 1 life downstairs, while attackers had unlimited lives from their spawn point. Any defenders left alive after the attackers had declared the game zone clear would add an extra minute onto the final time, fastest time wins. This part of the site was full of little rooms and winding corridors, the temporary walls in some of the rooms had holes cut out for shooting through, while others had holes cut out big enough to move through, making it a very interesting area of play for everyone and a lot of fun. When we defended the site there were two of my team alive in a room on the second floor. Two more minutes on their time. The final pair of games for the day involved the whole site and 3 small cases. The attacking team started from one end of the site and had to capture all 3 cases which were hidden with



one of three units of the defending team in different sections of the college. Their ultimate goal was to deliver them together to a pre-determined extraction point. Splitting the defenders into three units and limiting their movements stopped the game from being about who held the stairs. This was by far my favourite of the day, as it allowed the whole site to be used, whilst still giving the challenge that even a small amount of players can present a stiff competition.

After the final game was over I chatted to a few of the other players in the safe zone to see how they’d found the site’s first day and everyone had enjoyed it. For some this was also their first taste of CQB and were eager to get back on the next game day and do it again. It’s a shame that such a good site will only be around for a short time but there’s hope that further development sites may come up for the Spartan team in the future, allowing us in the South West some new places to play. But as for Spartan Airsoft CQB at Wiltshire College you’d better be quick because once it’s gone, it really will be gone.

For more information, head over to their website: www., or their Facebook page: www.facebook. com/spartanairsoftcqbuk





IN A NEW SERIES OF ARTICLES, BILL TAKES A LOOK AT SOME ICONIC MOVIES THAT HAVE INFLUENCED AIRSOFT GAMES AND PROBABLY AIRSOFT ITSELF AND HOW, WITH A BIT OF SEARCHING, ALL THE WEAPONS FROM THE “BIG SCREEN” CAN BE FOUND IN “6MM” FORM! OVER THE YEARS, movies (and for certain I can add TV series to this too) have influenced the airsoft world, not just in terms of the RIFs that we use but also in relation to the scenarios that we play! I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s and for me this was a golden time for “action movies” and “action heroes” and I will openly admit that when I was actively running games, I would look to those same movies for inspiration when it came to writing scenarios. I’m absolutely certain that many of you will have played some form of “FilmSim”, whether it be a scenario that is loosely based on something from the flicks, or something that directly takes a lead from a box-office movie. Probably one of the most-played scenarios is that of “Blackhawk Down” but if you delve even further back in time, then there’s inspiration everywhere! To start this new series I’m going to look at a firm favourite amongst the older members of the Airsoft Action crew and that’s the original 1984 version of “Red Dawn”, produced by United Artists and Valkyrie Films. Running to 114 minutes the movie was


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shot on a budget of US$4,200,000 (estimated), took US$8,230,381 on the weekend in August 1984 when it was released and went on to gross US$38,376,497 (source - not bad for a movie about a bunch of kids with AKs! The premise of “Red Dawn” was an imaginary invasion of the USA by the Soviet Union and its Cuban and Nicaraguan allies and of course, you must remember that in 1984 we were all still in the grip of “The Cold War” and that the dreaded “Reds under the Bed” were still the big, bad enemy that everyone feared. At the time I first saw the movie I remember feeling inspired by the actions of the young “guerrillas” who fought both hardship and the aggressor with equal verve and if I think it about it more deeply, it was partly this that drove my personal love of outdoor pursuits and firearms. The influences that “form us” are wide and disparate and now I look back on the movie with some nostalgia and realise just how tongue-in-cheek it really was! “Red Dawn” starred, in the main, a bunch of youngsters who at the time were barely known: Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, Jennifer Grey, Lea Thompson and C Thomas Howell would all go on to become stars in their own right but at the time of the movie they were the same age as many of you that are reading this and their youthful nature certainly helped to make the film seem “real”. I’m certain at the time that many youngsters who saw the movie said “Yeah, that could be me…” The premise for the movie reads just like a good airsoft scenario (and I quote directly here): “The United States has gradually become strategically isolated after several European nations (except the United Kingdom) withdraw from NATO. At the same time, the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact partners aggressively expand their sphere of influence. In addition, the Ukrainian wheat harvest fails while a communist coup d’état occurs in Mexico. From out of the sky, Soviet, Nicaraguan, and Cuban troops begin landing on the football field of a Colorado high school. In a


few seconds the paratroopers have attacked the school and sent a group of teenagers fleeing into the mountains. Armed only with hunting rifles, pistols, and bows and arrows, the teens struggle to survive the bitter winter and the Soviet K.G.B. patrols hunting for them. Eventually, trouble arises when they kill a group of Soviet soldiers on patrol in the highlands. Soon they will wage their own guerrilla warfare against the invading Soviet troops under the banner of “Wolverines!”” (Derek O’Cain) Although set against a backdrop of WWIII this plays second fiddle to the story which follows a group of high school students who take to the hills and mountains of Colorado, embarking on a reign of guerrilla warfare when their home town is invaded and taking the fight to the invaders as best they can. Calling themselves the “Wolverines” after their high school mascot, they start with personal defence and hunting weapons, gradually using their knowledge of the ground and their hunting skills to outwit and overcome the “Soviets”, building their armoury as they do so. Into their midst comes downed US aviator Lt. Col. Andrew Tanner, who assists the “Wolverines” in organising raids against the “Soviets”, turning them from somewhat of a rabble into a more effective fighting unit. After being hunted in the mountains, where once again their guerrilla tactics come to the fore, stark reality comes into the final part of the movie, as one by one the “Wolverines” pay the ultimate price for their resistance. The movie ends though with a ray of hope: an American flag flutters in the breeze over “Partisan Rock” where a plaque bears the legend: “In the early days of World War III, guerrillas – mostly children – placed the names of their lost upon this rock. They fought here alone and gave up their lives, so that this nation shall not perish from the earth.”



It’s a storyline that could have easily been written for an airsoft game and I for one would absolutely love to have a crack at playing this out! The “Wolverines” start the movie armed simply with weapons such as the vintage Colt SAA and S&W Model 19 revolvers, along with both Winchester and Remington Shotguns. In terms of rifles, to start with it’s the Marlin lever action and the Ruger Model 77 bolt-action that get put to “hunting use”. Simply put, the kids pick up what they can and use it to their best ability until they can get their hands on military-grade firepower. In airsoft terms then, this is immediately “doable” as the Colt SAA “Peacemaker” has become more widely available thanks to Umarex, although there are some great Tanakas still about, whilst the “Model 19” is available from Tokyo Marui. Fundamentally though, any airsoft revolver would foot the bill for this nicely, so here you can widen your search to the likes of ASG with their excellent “Dan Wesson” models. A&K do a super “under lever Winchester” which would stand in well for the Marlin and of course any “hunting style” bolt-action rifle like the ASG “Varmint”, the KJ M700 “Takedown”, or indeed the Marui VSR-10 would be ideal. Shotguns are also easy to source, especially the Remington as there seems to be a huge choice in this respect. If you really want to have a “Wolverine” shottie though, then the S&T “Sawn Off” that I reviewed in last month’s issue is the spitting image of that used by “Robert” (C. Thomas Howell) in the movie. As things progress the “Wolverines” gradually build up their armoury of captured military weapons, often by taking them from the bodies of their slain enemies. The “AKM” appears to be the “weapon of choice” for the kids, although in reality those used in the movie were actually Egyptian Maadi MISR models, to get around the legalities of US import! Similarly, several AKS-74 rifles are used by Soviet paratroopers in the film and again those were actually Maadi ARMs that were very cleverly fitted with


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bakelite plastic magazines, skeleton stocks, and custom-made muzzle brakes that resemble that of the AK-74! Again, to conform to legalities, when the “Wolverines”, including Erica Mason (Lea Thompson), Toni Mason (Jennifer Grey) and Jed (Patrick Swayze) use the “RPK” which is actually a modified Finnish Valmet M78 LMG, the “RPK” is seen fitted with both a “curved bakelite” magazine as well as a drum magazine. At the time of filming, there were no authentic DShK or Goryunov machine guns available for use in movies, so the armourers mocked them up from M60s; these are seen mostly from a distance, from the front, or covered in “snow camo” cloths. In fact when it comes to “Soviet” weapons, due to import problems and the fact that it was still the back end of the Cold War, most were “improvised”, even down to tanks and the “HIND” helicopter! When it comes to replicating the “military” weapons used by the “Wolverines” then we really are well covered in airsoft form. AKM, AKMS, AK-74, and AKS-74 variants are widely available from the likes of TM, G&G, CYMA, ICS, CA, LCT, E&L, GHK, WE… I could go on and on here but the fact is that we have “AKs” aplenty to choose from! The same is now true for the RPK but the thing that strikes me most, is that in 2018 we probably have access to more accurate replicas of the real rifles and LMGs than they did when they made the movie in 1984! Sadly the DShK and Goryunov machine guns are still in the realms of “airsoft customs” but I know of at least two “Dushkas” that have graced games, so who’s to say there’s not more out there! If you’ve not seen the original of “Red Dawn” then I would strongly urge you to do so. Some aspects of it will now seem a bit “cheesy” but overall it’s a good story, well played out and one that offers an insight to the time when it was made. I would love to play in a “Red Dawn” game where armed initially only with pistols, shotguns and “hunting rifles” we played against the might of the “Soviets”, using stealth and guile to gradually build our guerrilla armoury in order to battle the aggressor. Would you be up for that? Would you stand beside me and scream out “Wolverines!”, even though the odds were stacked against you? I’m betting you would! AA





YOU HEAR A LOT ABOUT HOPS on the internet and, quite frankly, it can be baffling. It’s difficult to separate fact from fiction and cut through the waffle. On Airsoft Action TV we had received lots of requests to test hop units, so one fine day we set off to our secret test site at the Vault Airsoft Store to find out what all the noise was about!

WHAT’S A HOP? To cut a long story very short, a hop unit puts back spin onto a BB to generate lift and get it flying for longer. This is the same principle that works for golf balls and tennis balls; if you want to understand the physics go and Google “The Magnus Effect”. All we really need to know for this article is that more backspin equals more lift.

TEST PARAMETERS Seeing as we already have lots of data gathered with our LCT AKs, we decided to stick with those. We took both Gadge’s AKMS and Tom’s AKS-74. These are identical internally and both have stock gearboxes. The stock barrels in both are the same length and are a decent quality 6.02mm diameter tight bore and made of brass. Both guns chrono at around 1.1J with a 0.20g BB when the hop is set correctly. We’ve shot both against each other and they get the same


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maximum and effective range. This was important as the AKMS would represent a stock gun, whilst the AKS-74 would receive our upgraded hops. The plan was once again to test maximum range and then once we had established that, use our existing protocol to test the effective range. We define “effective range” as the ability to make 5 out of 10 hits, we chose this number as the average human has a .25 second reaction time and you should be able to eliminate your target before they duck away! To minimise the variables we decided to use the most accurate BBs from before. For our upgraded hops we put a flat hop into the AKS-74 and would then switch out to a Red Hornet RHop lapped steel 6.02mm Barrel.


We had already done a lot of shooting with a stock hopped LCT AK but we needed to make sure that the results from our previous tests were still valid. We loaded up Gadge’s AKMS with ASG 0.28g Devil Blaster BBs and let rip. The BBs got out to around 55m and Chrono’d at 0.8J. The effective range was once again 45-50m. We needed to use a lot of hop in order to lift the heavy BBs and this was reducing the muzzle energy by quite some margin. This confirmed our prior


tests and gave us confidence that we would be able to make direct comparisons with the other two hop types.


For the flat hop trial we took the setup out of one of Tom’s other LCT AK’s. This is the AK104 that we have used previously in Airsoft Action for BB and accuracy trials. This has the classic combination of a Prometheus Purple bucking and a Firefly nub. In order to flat hop your Airsoft gun the bumps and features on the inside of the bucking are removed. This means that the bucking can be installed on the barrel rotated 90 degrees from its normal position. A special oversized hop Nub is then used to create the bulge that spins the BB. This creates a larger contact patch than the stock hop, it allows the user to apply the same or more backspin whilst robbing the BB of less energy than the conventional system. It is best suited to heavier BBs as it can over-hop light BBs. Compared to an RHop it is much easier to install and there are now barrels with extra cuts that allow the hop rubber to be rotated without having to modify it. Some degree of care is needed when using them. It is possible to apply so much hop that you can create a jam and possibly damaging the gearbox! Tom loaded the same BBs as before and fired down the range. The first thing that was apparent was that much less hop was needed; the 0.28g Devil Blasters only needed 50% compared the 80% that Gadge had on with the stock hop unit. When we chrono’d we got a reading of 1J so we had recovered nearly all the energy that we were losing previously. When firing it was quickly apparent that the BBs were travelling further than before, they were landing between 60m and 65m away. The gun was also shooting flatter making it easier to make hits. We estimated that the effective range of the LCT AK was now 55m with hits possible all the way out to the maximum range. This was a substantial improvement over the stock gun!


We had very kindly been sent a hand lapped steel 6.02 diameter barrel with a pre-installed RHop by Red Hornet. Tom set to work fitting this to his AKS-74. With an RHop, the window in the barrel is filled with a specially cut and shaped patch. Normally these are made of silicon rubber and need to be an exact fit to work correctly. Neither of us has the patience to do this task so when we were offered the barrel for testing we jumped at the chance. It has also been hand-polished to a very fine finish. This should eliminate any inconsistencies in the barrel and theoretically make for a straighter shooting gun. RHops, like flat hops, need a modified hop rubber and a special nub, luckily we were able to re-use the Prometheus Purple bucking and Firefly nub from the flat hop test. The Rhop setup allows the hop unit to cradle the BB as it applies backspin, this creates a very constant effect from shot to shot. It also means that very little energy is lost in the process of shooting and there is very little hop needed to produce a lot of spin. When we set the gun up for maximum range we found we only needed to use about 20% of the hop adjustment to lift the 0.28g Devil Blasters and when chrono’d the LCT was doing 1.12J. This would be a problem with lighter ammo so we suggest that if you do RHop an AEG that you stick to 0.28g BBs or heaver.

It was time to put the Red Hornet RHop and barrel to the test and Tom sent some BBs downrange. Gadge (who was recording the results) kept moving further and further away and this time the LCT was shooting out to 70m with a very flat trajectory. We have to admit that we were quite surprised at just how far the BBs were going. This was a combination of managing to keep virtually all the energy the AEG was putting out and the amount of backspin that the hop unit was able to put on the ammo. We next tested for effective range and found that the Rhop was able to make consistent hits out to 60-65m. At 10m it was easily shooting less than 1-inch groups! A big thanks to Red Hornet for the loan of the test barrel, Tom was so impressed that he’ll be buying this one! TEST RESULTS HOP MAX RANGE Stock 55m Flat 65m 70m RHop



If we are quite honest, we didn’t expect to get as good results as we did from either the flat hop or the RHop setups! We thought that we would get a few metres extra and some additional accuracy from an increased ability to lift heavier BBs. As with our tests on BBs we still haven’t had to open up the gearboxes or put any additional stress on the system. The flat hop is substantially cheaper than an RHop installation and would be recommended for most home gun techs as it is a much simpler process. Rhops are notoriously hard to install and need a lot of trial fitting making them much more expensive. The results though are remarkable. They are probably better suited to the sniper and DMR player using quality heavy ammo, though can be used in an AEG, HPA, or GBBR at lower powers. For our next round of testing we are going to stretch the legs of the RHop barrel with some heavier ammo and see what we can do with it. We will also be sourcing a DMR so we can see the results with higher power levels. To see the video of this test on Airsoft Action TV, visit: www. AA




MECHANIX HIGH DEX 0.5MM GLOVES GLOVES ARE A VERY PERSONAL THING. We all have our favourites and the vast array available in the market suggest that our demand for variety isn’t abating. Many moons ago, Nomex pilot gloves were the go-to glove for any discerning airsoft player and for good reason. They were light, quite thin but still provided a modicum of protection for your hands. They weren’t perfect though but there genuinely wasn’t a huge amount of choice out there. Fast forward to 2018 and I found myself needing a new pair of gloves following the demise - after about 8 years of use and abuse and multiple washes - of my trusty Hatch Operator gloves. These were perfect for me as they offered good protection to the palm and fingers with kangaroo leather (if I remember correctly) covering the contact points; a padded section over the knuckles and a generally really well put together feel about them. They fitted really well and most importantly; I didn’t lose the tactility and manual dexterity I want from gloves when I’m using them for airsoft. I absolutely hate it when I lose the sensation of touch because the gloves are too thick. Even grabbing a fresh mag is infinitely more difficult if you lose that connection between fingers and what you need to pick up and any fine movement or articulation is just nigh on impossible like adjusting a radio or hop unit or trying to load BB’s into magazines. I’ve seen several reviews online for other gloves that headlined their protective qualities whilst being really thin and yet the reviewers have reported that they fall apart after only a few games. I guess in real world applications where they’d be replaced every few missions that’s less of an issue but in airsoft where we need our kit to have a modicum of longevity or it becomes cost prohibitive it presents a serious issue. That brings me on to Mechanix gloves. I’m sure that if you haven’t used a pair or even seen them you will have heard of or know someone who uses a pair. Mechanix offer a good product at a realistic price and they have quite a range in a variety of colours, camo patterns and models offering a bare bones basic glove to ones incorporating more protection for the wearer. When my Hatch gloves started to give up the ghost I got a pair of the Mechanix M-PACT gloves and they are really good. They offer more than enough protection to your hand with a construction that holds up to the abuse they get. As good as they are they still feel quite thick, so I was keen to get a pair of the High Dexterity gloves to try out. I’ve had my pair for a few months and am genuinely impressed. I can tell I am wearing gloves but the 0.5mm material used to make the palms and fingers really does mean that high dexterity functions are a breeze and the glove doesn’t hinder you at all. Added to that the gloves are contoured to the natural curvature of the hand to improve dexterity whilst wearing them. I don’t have big hands but have a pair of large and they fit absolutely fine. I think the mediums would’ve been a little restrictive so be aware of that if you buy a pair as they are tight on the hand without being uncomfortable due to the stretch of the TekDry fabric back which also aids with cooling. They are secure once on thanks to the easy to grab and adjust velcro closure system. There’s also have a loop on each glove at the wrist so you can stow them on a karabiner on your plate carrier when not

wearing them - a nice touch. Having used them a few times now in various conditions from warm and sunny to downright abysmal they really do perform as advertised. These are probably the thinnest gloves I’ve had but at around the £22 mark for a pair they are considerably cheaper than a lot of the alternatives out there so if they do turn out to less durable than expected I won’t feel too let down but I am hopeful they will perform as well as my M-PACT ones and my venerable Hatch Operators. If you are looking for a glove that gives you the best feel then you’d do well to try a pair of these.





GEORAGA GOES INTERNATIONAL IN THIS ISSUE OF AA, AS HE TRIPS OVER TO THE LONESTAR STATE FOR OPERATION STARBURST, A UNITED STATES MILSIM WITH A BANG …MANY BANGS ACTUALLY! I’VE BEEN FIGHTING MORE THAN JET LAG on my trip to Texas and as I write this on the airplane home I’m truly feeling the effects of my first American airsoft experience… The word “aching” ranks pretty low when I think about the painful, pitiful, pathetic pile of podge that resembles my body, slouching in this rather small, uncomfortable, middle-of-the-row seat. The current discomfort is worth it though because I was able to play in Third Coast Airsoft’s 2.5 day MilSim event, held at an incredible training facility in Fort Hood, Texas. The event was sponsored by Airsoft Junkiez, Doomsday Airsoft and Tacticool Imaging who were all in attendance and gave out goodies at the raffle at the end but before I go too much further, I just want to give a big thanks and shoutout to Brian and Eric from Tacticool Imaging, who came through at the last minute and allowed myself and FierceFox to use their spare weapons, as the guns we were supposed to be borrowing were unfortunately hundreds of miles away back in Georgia. Another thanks to Joel from TCA who sorted us out with some mid-caps and then a final thanks to FierceFox herself who organised the whole trip with the TCA crew. The weekend event runs predominantly over the Saturday and Sunday, although there’s a Tier One exercise both on Friday and Saturday night. Fort Hood’s training facility is huge; it spreads far and wide and consists of a mixture of environments from light woodland, to small towns with multi-storey buildings to a city block, complete with ruins and burnt-out busses and vehicles. As Fort Hood is an active Army base, we also witnessed the awe-striking sight of military convoys barrelling up and down the nearby roads in Humvees and Armoured Multi-Purpose Vehicles (AMPVs), as explosions from nearby weapon tests bellowed and boomed in the distance. Immersion was definitely a factor.


For those of us that don’t keep up to date with all the MilSims overseas, Third Coast Airsoft have been running operations for 10 years over in the US. Sal, their Chief of Staff and Active Duty US Military Officer (US Army), gave me the low down.


december 2018


“We started with Operation Starburst in March of 2009 in Corpus Christi, Texas, as a community organization with Community Chapters spread over 5 US States. Being that they all bordered the Gulf of Mexico, Gabe “Godfather” Leal, suggested Third Coast Airsoft as the name [...] With most of the founding members either serving in the military, law enforcement/first responders, reserve military, or military veterans, and being interested in airsoft/milsim, we all liked the idea of bringing something from our experiences to the sport. Some events we raised donations for charity, food for the foodbanks, toys and school supplies for children, a couple of times we even raised funds for a player who was in need. We keep doing it because it brings the airsoft family together.”


In the standard way, it was tan versus green; the Western Empire versus the Eastern Empire. To this point, the overall successful campaign score was tan 4-5 green and as the TCA staff and platoon commanders ordered their soldiers into formation, you could sense the readiness of the players, transforming from a loud rabble of 200 unrested renegades, to a silent, structured, stable, squad of soldiers. Safety briefings were delivered straight after registration in a specifically set up situation room at the gas station, so after Sal reiterated a few safety points and briefed us on starting locations, the American flag was raised, their national anthem was played and the Americans of the two opposing sides all saluted before we moved out to begin the game. Following orders, we pre-deployed with Eastern Empire’s Airborne unit and made our way to one of the landing beaches up the road, by some of the morning’s objectives. What we didn’t expect, was to turn up and come face to face with an opposing force at the end of the road… just as game on was called. Myself, FierceFox, Brian and Eric, darted to the furthest of this small huddle of buildings in order to search for intel as the rest of our squad set up a perimeter to block the opposing forces. If you haven’t played a MilSim before, you may not have ever needed to breach and clear buildings but that rush of entering an unknown space and moving quickly and concisely through it as a team, round the corners, up the stairs, up the ladders and into the lofts, all while incoming combatants are pressing down… all I can say is

“MILITARY CONVOYS BARRELLING UP AND DOWN THE NEARBY ROADS IN HUMVEES AND ARMOURED MULTIPURPOSE VEHICLES (AMPVS), AS EXPLOSIONS FROM NEARBY WEAPON TESTS BELLOWED AND BOOMED IN THE DISTANCE. IMMERSION WAS DEFINITELY A FACTOR.” that it really gets the adrenaline going, even if the buildings turn out to be clear. As we moved from one side of the development to the other, a flurry of bbs started showering the ground near us and as we looked toward the rear of the settlement, we saw tan reinforcements coming in on the flank. The four of us sprinted to the closest building; it was surrounded by a solid wooden fence that had one gap in the rear pointing towards the tree line. What was a moment of instinct turned out to be the makings of a very solid stronghold for the rest of the morning. With Sergeants Weiner and Pip (doesn’t that sound like an 80s cop show?) having captured objective Jessica in the largest building, they then proceeded to provide Overwatch capabilities to us and the rest of the squad. Our position gave us superior angles on the majority of the incoming forces, able to stifle progression, defend from cover, spot and report movement and provide suppressive fire. All seemed to be going well, until suddenly from the hole in the fence I spot some tan players climbing through the tree line. “OVERWATCH!!!” I yelled as an invisible LMG opened up on my location. I saw it in slow motion as I pulled a full Matrix and threw my body back against the floor, out of the way, as a stream of bbs flew through the air like a furious swarm of killer bees on attack after someone accidentally knocked their nest down. Lucky for me, I full on Neo’d out of the way and the guys on the roof of Jessica building immediately lit the tree line up in return. Gameplay was good. Steady and slow at times, which is to be expected from a MilSim but not all without issue. At one point, I saw an older player charge overwatch; I called it out and they showered him with bbs. The guy moved really slowly, was completely covered and still wouldn’t take his hits. What was weirder, is that he then complained at the guys on the roof,



get the tactical advantage PATROL GLOVE



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Colours: V-Cam, Titanium, Coyote, Black, Green Sizes: S-XXL SRP

Colours: V-Cam, Titanium, Coyote, Black, Green Sizes: S-XXL

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Colours: V-Cam, Coyote, Black, Green Sizes: S-XXL SRP





claiming that “you guys aren’t playing fair”. It was such an odd moment to witness; he clearly couldn’t comprehend that he was shooting upwards, against gravity, against the wind and that his bbs weren’t reaching the top of the 40ft building. What was even odder, is that about 30minutes later, this man started walking around without a dead rag, telling us all on both teams that there was a cease fire and that there was an admin reset. It led to about 20minutes of utter confusion as tan players all left their tactical spots and came together as our command continued to tell us to shoot because the admin told us there was no cease fire. Very weird…


“Third Coast Tier One Missions are lane based training exercises to teach platoon-size and smaller units on one or more collective tasks. Like all training, the goal of a Tier One is to ensure players, leaders, and squads build on teamwork under stress. In Tier One missions, players get the chance at a simulated real-life situation of what some of the Armed Forces go through while in training or being in contact. Players will have and be trained on the use of explosives, movement to contact, and react to contact battle drills. The missions would be stressful, and will keep you on your toes. Tier One missions can consist sometimes of Search and Rescue, Route Clearance, HVT raids, Bomb Defusal, Move to Contacts, Near and Far Ambushes, Tactical Air Strikes employment, IED/VBIED identification/reaction, Tactical Insertions, and much more.” - Sal Our mission on Saturday night was to extract an Ambassador and his wife from hostile territory. Blue team would be air dropped into the area and would call for Gold team if they needed backup. Gold team would then infiltrate the area and fight through any opposing OpFor combatants, link up with Blue team and escort them safely from the area. It was intense. The staff made sure that all 26 players were equipped with the skills and knowledge to adapt to the obstacles that OpFor threw at us and as we made our way around the darkness, there were vehicle fires and tracer rounds flying through the air which really added to the immersion of the whole thing. It was very clear that this was set up for players with varying levels of experience. Gold team definitely had opportunities to

“OVERWATCH!!!” I YELLED AS AN INVISIBLE LMG OPENED UP ON MY LOCATION. I SAW IT IN SLOW MOTION AS I PULLED A FULL MATRIX AND THREW MY BODY BACK AGAINST THE FLOOR, OUT OF THE WAY, AS A STREAM OF BBS FLEW THROUGH THE AIR LIKE A FURIOUS SWARM OF KILLER BEES ON ATTACK AFTER SOMEONE ACCIDENTALLY KNOCKED THEIR NEST DOWN.” learn as they repeated mistakes time and time again and suffered consequences like RPG fire every time they bunched up. What was great though is that the Staff were there to guide those that needed help and gave some really good feedback at the end on things that could be done to improve. I was fortunate to have had more experience than many in Gold though and as a result, I was awarded a TCA patch from Kraut (one of the staff trainers) for keeping my cool, taking command and leading under pressure. I will point out that I wasn’t in command though… maybe I’ll try that next time.


After one incredibly warlike finale where both forces pushed to secure the Mosque in the centre of town, the event ended with a walk across the whole site, letting off smokes and grenades as players travelled in memory of fallen soldiers. In fact, again, I’ll let Sal explain. “Deborah Campbell had the idea during our event design, a final march, a tribute to those military Service-members that paid the ultimate sacrifice. For some of the Veterans on the staff who had seen combat over the last 17 years, October is a time for reflection as we have lost friends and brothers/sisters in arms, it is also the anniversary of several military operations that we grew up remembering (The Beirut Marine Barracks Bombing, the Invasion of Grenada, Desert Shield, Mogadishu, Operation Enduring Freedom to name a few). The concept of the Memorial Mile was to pay a tribute to those heroes, to let them know the community remembers them.” So, in the end, the Western Empire won, making the series score 5-5. That means next year, tie breaker! To the Third Coast guys and everyone else that was there, I hope we get to come and play some of your other events because you run a great weekend! AA


site report AIRSOFT DOVER


DEDICATED CQB SITES ARE SEEING AN UPSURGE AT THE MOMENT, CROPPING UP IN THE MOST UNLIKELY PLACES AND OFFERING SOME SUPERB PLAY AND UNIQUE SITES. THIS MONTH BILL VISITS NOT ONLY HIS NEWEST LOCAL SITE BUT ALSO A NEW SHOP JUST DOWN THE ROAD… IF YOU ASK ME WHAT TYPE OF SITE I really enjoy the most when it comes to airsoft, then I’d have to say that it’s a fast and furious, in your face type of place where the action just keeps on coming! For me I love to be engaged and even on a woodland site I’ll be listening for the firefights and heading in that direction! I do like a good Battlesim or MilSim where the ROE are fixed and there are missions to achieve but I’ll be the very first to admit that I’m not a “sneaky beaky” type. I build my personal RIFs with “direct action” in mind and if I look through my collection there are more SBRs in there than anything else. Over the years I’ve got my airsoft “fix” on everything from tiny urban fields up to sprawling training areas but I have to say, and again this is purely personal, that the most fun has always been that little site where the play is right in your face. Sadly as I write this article we’ve just played the very last game at the Darkwater Airsoft site that’s twenty minutes down the road from me (more on this another time…) and as much as I don’t mind travelling to find the right game, it makes life so much easier for a regular run-out to have a site on your doorstep, doesn’t it? If I want to go and have a bit of a game, or simply go to test and chrono a new build then the “local” site is my first stop. Added to that is the “community feel” that you get when you attend a site regularly, the banter and the connections that you make over time; to me that’s what makes a great local site as much as the gameplay itself.


december 2018

site report AIRSOFT DOVER

Luckily for me and for players in my area, from the ashes a Phoenix has arisen and I’ve been very pleased to see that TripleA Airsoft CQB has now opened its doors for business in my home town of Dover! Poor old Dover has been in the doldrums for quite some time and although many of you will know it as “The Gateway to Europe” the town has had some pretty bad press over recent years, in fact being voted “#1 worst town to live” in the 2017 iLiveHere poll! Luckily for all of us who do live in and around the town, great things are happening and regeneration is slowly but surely taking place. There is a new retail/entertainment area that has recently opened and various initiatives are gradually coming to fruition to make it a better place to live, work and have fun. Fronted up by Boomer who was the thoroughly entertaining and very able head marshal at the Darkwater “Darksite” and will be well-known to some of you, TripleA Airsoft has opened in the very heart of the town and is now offering some great airsoft games for those of you that, like me, enjoy their airsoft up close and personal.


“In the heart of the town? Right…” I hear you say but this is truly the fact of the matter, as Boomer and his crew have gained access to one of the top floors of a multi-story car park attached to a retail complex right in the middle of the town! Don’t ask me how he did it but now while shoppers go about their business around and below you, you can be getting your CQB on! The game area itself is not huge, roughly 80m x 20m (the space once accommodated 44 cars) but M’sieur Booms and his team have made an enormous effort to make it an area that plays extremely well. Along both sides of the floor in play they’ve built a whole host of “rooms”, both standalone and interlinked that prove a real challenge to negotiate. Sensibly he ran a test game before opening to the public and I believe that many of us commented on the open nature of the centre ground when we first saw it.

That has now been addressed and when I visited for the first day of “proper play” more barriers and even an old van had been added in the middle ground to make things “flow” better, with more to come. It actually brings a bit of a shiver when you walk up the ramp from the Safe Zone (it’s a car park, you can set up right next to your car!) to the game area. If you think about movies and TV series how often does the final showdown take place in an old factory or a multi-storey? From the outset you feel as if you’re now part of something like this - and it’s a GREAT feeling! Boomer is a past-master at safety briefings and he has this down to a fine artform, so once you arrive, check in and chrono (the site is VERY strictly 350fps on a .20g MAX), things run pretty darn slickly. Even with “first day nerves” things went smoothly and you’re soon on the game area getting BBs downrange. The site is run on “semi-only” which means accurate shots and a nod towards limited ammo (this isn’t enforced!) are the order of the day but with some fun “warmer-uppers” you soon get your eye in. The mix of games juggles between “fun” and “tactical” so whatever style takes your fancy you can have at it; if you fancy sitting out a particular game the Safe Zone is only a few steps away and you’ll soon be back on for the next session anyway. One thing that you fill find at TripleA is a distinct lack of “BS”! As hard as you will be encouraged to play, Boomer has a 100% “Zero Tolerance” for lack of courtesy, consistent non-hit taking and any kind of physical or verbal abuse. Sadly on the opening day a player was asked to leave and as much of a downer this is, it illustrated to me that this site will be run properly for the enjoyment of all players, not just for “the chosen few”. Trust me, making this decision is harder than it sounds but sometimes a line must be drawn and players must understand that stepping over it will result in a ban… Given the size of the game area and the intensity it engenders you can sign up to play all day, or for a morning or an afternoon session. The morning “Session 1” starts at 09:00 and runs to 13:00, whilst “Session 2” kicks off at 14:00 and plays through until 18:00.


site report AIRSOFT DOVER


Hire packages are available per “session”, with discounts available if you sign on for the entire day; all hire packages must be booked at least 24 hours before game days first session and secured with a £10 deposit. If you have your own kit then you can just pay as normal at a rate of £15 per “session” (pre-booked, walk on is £20), again with a discount if you decide to stay all day. It’s basically a “pick and mix” airsoft menu which allows superb flexibility if your time is limited. Props and sets for the game sessions are just that and cannot be expected to relate to any “building standards” and as such TripleA Airsoft asks “you do not climb, move, push, or hang off said articles. Due to the nature of building materials used, we would advise you wear gloves and protective equipment. Protective equipment being Full -Face protection, knee pads, elbow pads, gloves, hat/or helmet and boots with ankle support; Full- Face sealed eye and face protection to a minimum of European ballistic safety standards (W166 CE)”. It’s also compulsory for all players under 18 years old to wear full-face.

The shop at present is really gearing up, although most of your needs from RIFs to gas, BBs to DPM, and batteries to optics can be accommodated in a friendly and knowledgeable atmosphere. On the walls are new AEGs and examples of Marcus’ custom work to drool over and he’s even offering a service for players to sell their old RIF in order to fund a new one. The shop does have a great basement area which is in the process of being tidied and made good which in time will host a test range, along with becoming an area where workshops can be run in order to educate newer players about all aspects of airsoft. All in all things are really looking up for Dover when it comes to airsoft and I’ll be reporting back as things progress. With a new venue and a new shop I feel that the local “community” now has a real focus where we can meet, play and discuss things, and if you happen to find yourself in our neck of the woods then I’m certain that you’ll be assured of a very warm welcome! You’ll find “All Ages Airsoft” shop at 32 London Rd, Dover, CT17 0SS, and for more information on TripleA Airsoft just visit their Facebook page


In addition to the new site opening there is also a great new shop in town as well in the form of “All Ages Airsoft” and at present the hire side of things on site at TripleA is being ably looked after by the shop owner, Marcus, who offers a comprehensive range of AEGs, shotguns, and pistols. Although the shop itself, which boasts a real “High Street” location, is currently small and “fledgling” as Marcus builds up his portfolio of brands. You can pick up most things NUPROL already and if you want some bespoke custom work done, then Marcus is your man! He, like Boomer with the site, is no stranger to the world of airsoft having been one of the early “techs” at Wolf Armouries. He’s now returned to the airsoft world after a hiatus and I’ve already spent a few happy afternoons with him in the shop yarning on about the “bad old days” over a very good cup of coffee - and I look forward to many more!



IN THIS TUTORIAL DUST MONKEY EXPLAINS HOW YOU CAN ADD A SUPERB “WEATHERED” EFFECT TO YOUR TACTICAL GEAR. OVER THE LAST FEW YEARS there has been an ever-growing increase in themed airsoft events based in someway or form on the Post-Apocalyptic genre, from games based off games like “The Division”, “Metro 2033” and “Fallout”, right through to 3-day long, Mad Max style immersive games. With that has seen an increase in airsofters putting together kit specifically for those events, with a need for that kit to fit the game its for. A big part of that is “weathering” the kit - making it look like its been used and abused for extended periods of time. Even some regular airsofters now look to weather their kit, gun and all to give their loadout that mid-battle look, rather than everything pristine. Because, let’s be honest, think of any war film, they always look cooler dirty and worn-looking compared to the start of the film all pristine and clean. With that in mind and being asked several times a week if I had any tips for weathering gear, I thought why not put pen to paper and do a really quick and easy technique for weathering military kit!


You will need the following: a black spray paint, a tan spray


xmas 2018

paint and a khaki spray paint. (unless you don’t want a used and abused dry arid landscape look, in which case swap out the tans for browns). Personally, my favourite sprays are Krylon but they are not that cheap so by all means experiment. You will also need some material for wiping away excess paint, a course sanding brick and a wire brush. Step one, attack the item in question with the wire brush, this helps break down the material which does two things. One, it looks like its been through some action and two, it helps add depth once you start attacking it with paint. Now for this, think about where on the item wear would happen, cuffs, elbows, edges, pockets etc. Don’t just attack the entire item as no item in the world wears over its entirety. Once that stage is done I usually go over any raised edges (if it’s a plate carrier) with the course sanding brick to give them the look of being dragged, rubbed against cover etc. It is now time to bust out the black spray. One of the reasons I like Krylon, is the spray itself is quite concentrated compared to many sprays that have more of an obtuse angle for the paint to come out. So with the black you now go over the edging, spaying


at about a foot away from the item in question. You want to get the neck line and edges lightly and before the paint dries rub it in with the material you have to hand. This gives the look of ingrained dirt, its important not to go too heavy with the black or you end up with just a thick black line of paint. Keeping it fine and rubbing it in creates a much more natural looking “dirty gear” look. With that stage done its now time for the tan spray. With this you to want to focus on areas that dust or sand would build up, so the edges of mag pouches, molle, buckles etc. Again, as you spray and before the paint dries really rub and wipe with the rag of material so the paint is forced into the fibers and isn’t just sat on top of the material. As with the black, maintain a minimum of one foot from the can to the material so not to clog paint onto any one area. At this point it should look very different to how you started. The khaki is there to add depth to the tan so the process is the same as before. It is, however, an additional step so depending on the look you want you might decide not to bother. When this is all done essentially your item is finished and weathered. Of course, “finished” is a false term as you might decide to add stencils, some dried blood weathering, some burn weathering… anything you feel like. Most of my finished loadouts represent hundreds of hours of work but with this technique you can transform a loadout from brand new to battle used in only a few hours. So there it is, I’m off back to the workshop to finish attacking more Russian kit for a themed event in Feb 2019.



WHAT HAPPENS IF THE AIRSOFT GUN YOU WANT ISN’T AVAILABLE? PHIL BUCKNALL ASKED HIMSELF THE SAME QUESTION – AND DECIDED TO BUILD ONE HIMSELF. SOMETIMES WHEN I’M BROWSING through forums or social media I see something that makes me think “If I bought that; what would I do with it?” More often than not that is as far as it goes but recently I’ve been thinking about doing the newest release from Glock - the G19X. No one makes one in the airsoft arena but maybe with there now being a fully licensed version of the Clock available through Umarex, perhaps they will bring one out. As it isn’t a variant that you can buy I wanted to get a G19 and make a tactical version to tide me over until such times as I can get my grubby mitts on a proper replica. This brings me back to where I started the article, as I had seen a rather battered-looking WE G19 for sale - so I bought it. When I went to pick it up it was immediately evident that it used to be a two tone “IF” that had been sprayed black by its previous owner (this wasn’t clear in the photos posted online, however, so I managed to negotiate a better price for the pistol because of that). Its action was a little sluggish 64

xmas 2018

and the BB follower in the mag had cracked but it fired and cycled okay (if not brilliantly) but the price was good and I knew I could call on some old friends to help me realise my vision for this little gun. Originally the plan was to try to do this on a budget, a low budget, but that soon went out the window in favour of just “doing it” and not worrying overtly about the cost (without letting it get ridiculous). As such, I didn’t go for any internal upgrades as the standard parts in the WE Glocks are actually pretty good and dependable. My aim was to make it look good and still function as a skirmish-able side arm. The vision I had centred around getting the right colour as used on the G19X and getting that done in Cerakote, as I have had several rifles and pistols over the years coated in this exceedingly durable firearms paint and I also knew it would be an exact match as well as very resistant to scratches or dings. After that I wanted it to have a reddot scope in the form of the increasingly popular RMR

feature PROJECT G19X

scope; a threaded outer barrel for use with my Xcortech mini tracer unit and, finally, extensions on the magazines to give me a better grip as I’ve always found the G19 grip to be a little short for me. First things first came the strip down, which is where I found the broken magazine follower and some “sticky” internal parts so thanks to fellow contributor and friend, Bill Pryce -Thomas and WE Europe, I got those ordered. In the meantime, I boxed the slide, frame and mag release up and got them sent off to another good friend Mark Dunsford, owner of High Calibre Coatings and a dab hand with the spray gun thanks to his factory training from the manufacturers of Cerakote. For those of you not familiar with Cerakote, it is a firearms coating/paint that can be applied to most materials and certainly all of the common ones you’d come across in Airsoft gun construction. The process involves stripping the gun down to the parts that you want painting (Mark can do this for you if you feel uncomfortable doing it yourself I believe). The parts are then lightly sand-blasted to remove any finish and to both provide a nice clean surface and key it so the paint can stick to it better. The actual prep work is quite a bit more involved than I have outlined here and involves several steps but the end result is a surface which is easy to paint. Once the parts are ready then the spraying can begin. The sprayed items are then cured in an oven. The exact curing time and temp depends on the material that’s been painted but it will not damage your pride and joy. Add to that, Cerakote is not a thick paint, in fact I have been told it is only a few microns thick when done properly but is exceedingly resistant to damage, whether that is from wear or oil. This also means that the painted parts won’t be tight fit when you put everything back together, as can be the case with home done spray jobs (or the god-awful paint that’s more often than not used in two tone paint finishes). Mark told me he would get them turned around in short order once the paint had arrived from the US. Apparently (and contrary to my belief) it isn’t a commonly-used colour, which really surprised me actually given the prevalence of tan/FDE/brown guns not just in Airsoft but also being issued to real world units and militaries. With the internal parts sorted and the new paint scheme in hand it was time to trawl various online webshops to find the other parts I needed to complete the transformation from ugly duckling to beautiful swan. As I mentioned earlier, I didn’t want to spend a fortune on this as it wouldn’t be my main go-to pistol, so it was always going to be a clone RMR as a real one is just too much and way out of whack for this project. Finding a clone RMR wasn’t a problem and it also solved another problem. Mounting it! Most of the clone RMRs come with a Glock mounting plate, which bolts onto the original slide in place of the iron rear sight. By doing it this way I probably saved at least £200 on a dedicated slide with RMR cutouts and a new blowback engine. It also means that I can switch between iron or reddot with comparative ease simply by undoing one screw. I know that the clone optics can be dubious in quality and functionality and the RMR I got was no exception sadly, but it zeros to some extent and holds it without get knocked off from the blowback of the slide. If I’m honest though, the sight is mainly there for looks and that it delivers in spades so for the princely sum of £25 it was an okay investment. As the pistol grip isn’t that long I opted for some Magazine extension base plates, which I managed to get from EhobbyAsia for about $11 a piece. A little more than I wanted to spend but I couldn’t find any in the UK. I also got the threaded muzzle protector from Redwolf Airsoft - a really nice Airsoft Surgeon piece that not only does what it’s supposed to but also looks pretty nice too. It also came with a small O-ring which stops it working loose when the gun is fired. This sits on the muzzle extension I DID find in the UK and it threads neatly and easily into the WE outer barrel, giving the option of using the pistol suppressed or not but the overall look is of a pretty “tacticool” little handgun. I’m happy to report that when used with the Xcortech XT301 mini tracer unit the slide still cycled fully every time, even with the extra weight. Tactical AND tracer rounds too! What’s not to love?? To finish it off I stuck a clone Surefire XC1 mini torch onto the rail. I went for this option as it sits flush with the end of the muzzle (before the threaded adaptor was put on anyway) and is nice and unobtrusive yet packs quite the punch for its size whilst being easy to operate with your supporting hand.

“I’M HAPPY TO REPORT THAT WHEN USED WITH THE XCORTECH XT301 MINI TRACER UNIT THE SLIDE STILL CYCLED FULLY EVERY TIME, EVEN WITH THE EXTRA WEIGHT. TACTICAL AND TRACER ROUNDS TOO! WHAT’S NOT TO LOVE??” With a couple of extra magazines sourced from the guys at Defcon Airsoft - like I said in last month’s article, that shop is proving to be my kryptonite, as I can’t seem to go in without buying something - I sat back and waited for all the parts to arrive so I could get it back together and see if the image I had in my head had been realised. A few days later a box arrived. I knew what was in it as it was the same one I’d used to send the frame and slide to Mark. On opening and ripping through the protective wrapping I was gobsmacked by the finish achieved!


feature PROJECT G19X

Remember this was an old two tone WE pistol that had seen some use and had also been painted black at some point by the previous owner too, so pretty much any finish would’ve been an improvement but HIgh Calibre Coatings had knocked it out of the park. The paint was beautiful and so smooth. All the “trademarks” were still fully visible and crisp. No loss of definition at all! About the same time a little parcel arrived from Bill with the inner parts I needed so I sat down one evening with a nice glass of wine; a tray full of parts and accessories and for once the

exploded diagram to guide me. Luckily assembly went without a hitch and with the new parts it cycled really crisply and looked the canines danglies too! I just need to source a holster for it or make one, so I can use it as it is in games. Personally, I think that I managed to get the look I was aiming for even if it is just a pimped up G19 but it looks considerably better than when I got it, although I concede it is a ways off being a G19X. Until such time as one of the big players (I’m talking to you Marui and VFC) make one, I’m happy with this one...and maybe one of the TM G19s when they’re released. AA



AKU “PILGRIM” UPDATE THE AKU “PILGRIM” COLLECTION OF MILITARY BOOTS HAVE BECOME A FIRM FAVOURITE FOR MANY AIRSOFT PLAYERS, ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO TAKE THEIR MILSIM SERIOUSLY! BILL HAS BEEN INVOLVED WITH THE DEVELOPMENT STORY SINCE THEY FIRST APPEARED AND NOW BRINGS US HIS TAKE ON THE VERY LATEST MODEL. IT’S BEEN MY GREAT PLEASURE to have been involved with the AKU military boot story right from the very beginning, as I’ve known Trekitt Mountain Sports for many years and a chance meeting with them several years ago at one of the outdoor trade shows led to them letting me into the then-secret news that a new AKU military boot model was on the way. Originally exclusive to Trekitt and developed from the hugely successful AKU Navy SEAL, the original Pilgrim boot offered the same unparalleled breathability and quick drying features but with added impact absorption and weatherproofness. AKU and Trekitt went back to the real military end users of the SEAL boot and took on board their comments in relation to stability, grip, shock absorption and overall fit - and the rest, as they say, is history! But where did this boot “suddenly” appear from? AKU are an Italian company, founded by Galliano Bordin, which grew from a small boot workshop into a major player in the outdoor footwear industry. AKU has more than thirty years’ experience in the design and production of high-quality trekking and outdoor footwear and with their “Navy SEAL Boot” they entered the military sphere. 68

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The AKU collection ranges from mountaineering boots to active performance footwear and behind each model lies a genuine love for manufacturing, built on the age-old tradition of Italian workmanship. Research into new technologies, together with the design and production of the AKU trekking and outdoor footwear collection, takes place at the production plant in Montebelluna, Italy in the province of Treviso, famous for its outdoor and sports footwear. The second production facility is in Cluji Napoca, in Romania. Ongoing investments in materials research, technological designs, and production craftsmanship have made AKU a market leader in comfort and fit for all applications of outdoor footwear. And why “Pilgrim”? Well, inscribed on the base of the clock at Stirling Lines in Hereford is a verse from The Golden Road to Samarkand by James Elroy Flecker:

“We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go Always a little further: it may be Beyond that last blue mountain barred with snow Across that angry or that glimmering sea ...”


The world over, an SAS trooper, whether serving with the UK Special Air Service, the ASASR, NZSAS or former Rhodesian SAS are referred to as “Pilgrims” and, for those that fail to “Beat the Clock”, their memories are immortalised on that very same clock…


Originally there were two boot models in the “Pilgrim” line that immediately impressed all that had chance to wear them: • Pilgrim DS – Available in either Desert Beige or Black the DS dose not benefit from a waterproof lining but is highly breathable • Pilgrim – Available in MTP Forest or Black this boot has a Gore Tex lining and is both fully waterproof and very breathable The DS model is perfect for demanding duties in hot climates, where ultimate breathability and quick drying are critical. The uppers are made from AIR8000, making the Pilgrim DS more breathable than traditionally constructed fabric boots! AIR8000 is a unique technological solution utilised by AKU for engineering a breathable upper with the correct thermal balance. Laboratory tests confirm that AIR8000 offers far greater breathability than a traditional fabric over a period of 24 hours. The GTX model is perfect for any situation that demands total waterproofness and enhanced breathability. With a 3D fully taped Gore Tex booty lining and AIR8000 uppers the Pilgrim GTX is 30% more breathable than conventional Gore Tex lined boots! The insole is made according to AKU’s Internal Midsole System (IMS) where it perfectly captures the shape of the underfoot, preventing the foot from slipping back and forth and from side to side in heavy use. At the same time it guarantees shock absorption. The IMS is designed to reduce injury and enhance impact absorption when load-carrying over uneven ground. Featuring 3mm of EVA cushioning above the 3D midsole it ensures that your foot is directly in contact with the cushioning rather than a hard midsole. A 5mm EVA forefoot, and a 17mm EVA heel cushioning take care of impact forces from hard ground. Developed with a new last for improved forefoot width and secure heel grip the Pilgrim was, and still is, definitely capable of long tours and extended duties. The heavier duty Vibram outsole features deeper lugs for improved grip on a variety of terrain and has a built-in rocker to produce a stable and progressive walking platform. Increased ankle height provides stability and support and the new sole unit with a deeper tread provides traction on varying terrain. As an industry leader each sole from Vibram has been specifically designed to offer maximum performance, comfort and durability to even the most demanding user.


The original design team for the “Pilgrim” worked with AKU and some of the best names in the business, such as Gore and Vibram, to create a thoroughly outstanding technical boot which makes use of some of the most advanced technologies available today. They took their experience of the SEAL boot, spoke to professional end users, listened to them and created a couple of outstanding boot models which built upon a tried and tested design and elevated it to the next level! But, of course, technology moves on apace and I’ve recently received the very latest models to test. The Pilgrim GTX FG Combat employs AKU’s AIR8000 protective fabric, proven to be eleven times more breathable than traditional textiles. The Gore-Tex Extended Comfort membrane provides excellent breathability, waterproofness and quick dry functionality. For the Pilgrim GTX FG Combat the AIR8000 construction uses a perforated EVA padding which cannot absorb water, so the overall result is that this boot, with the Gore-Tex Extended Comfort membrane, actually dries faster than a boot without a waterproof membrane. AKU’s exclusive Internal Midsole System (IMS) technology couples its traditional nylon support structure with a layer of microporous material. Designed for high intensity combat situations, the Pilgrim GTX FG Combat is lightweight, agile, yet stable, and waterproof. Suitable for walking and running whilst carrying loads up to 45kg, it’s also flexible enough to be used for driving and trekking over rubble, rock and fields. These boots have been designed with every user’s need catered for. The collar features high abrasion resistance

“AND WHY “PILGRIM”? WELL, INSCRIBED ON THE BASE OF THE CLOCK AT STIRLING LINES IN HEREFORD IS A VERSE FROM THE GOLDEN ROAD TO SAMARKAND BY JAMES ELROY FLECKER: “WE ARE THE PILGRIMS, MASTER; WE SHALL GO ALWAYS A LITTLE FURTHER: IT MAY BE BEYOND THAT LAST BLUE MOUNTAIN BARRED WITH SNOW ACROSS THAT ANGRY OR THAT GLIMMERING SEA ...”” with an anatomical design to avoid hitting pressure points and even the laces are made from high breakage resistant threads. The padding is soft and comfortable for day long wear and the boots can even be worn straight out of the box with no break-in required. What I can tell you now, is that the test boots I received are



obviously manufactured to very, very high standards and that the initial feel is one of genuinely high quality. The fit out of the box is also very, very good indeed, even taking into account differing foot shapes amongst my friends who have tried them on. In my opinion the “Pilgrims” are a hugely capable boot designed for purpose and what you can have now are the very latest, “next generation” boots suitable for all conditions with assurance of a consistent fit wherever you are. AKU’s brand new Pilgrim GTX FG Combat High Liability boot will be issued to British soldiers prior to deployment and will also be available on general sale via outdoor retailers. For all of you dedicated “Pilgrim Users” out there this is great news and if you’ve yet to try a pair out then I’d recommend you do so at your earliest convenience! For more information on the very latest AKU Military Boots please do visit and for stockist information please call 01250 873863 or email



ENDING HIS LOOK AT SPEEDSOFT, FRENCHIE TURNS HIS ATTENTION TO WHAT TO WEAR AND HOW THE GAME IS PLAYED. OVER THE LAST TWO ISSUES, with the able assistance of Harry McSwain (Haribo 57) of Steel City Airsoft (SCA), we’ve taken a look at the rise of speedsoft in the UK, it’s genesis and the relationship some of its adherents have to “traditional” airsoft. In this final piece we’ll turn our attention to the gear and the game. How does the gear used in Speedsoft differ from that used for skirmishing and how is the game itself played? As you might expect, some things are similar, others not so much. I am indebted to Harry once more for his willing assistance and patience in answering the various questions of this long-time skirmisher! AA: What gear do you wear? Obviously a fully loaded plate carrier would slow you down a bit! HM: “In terms of gear, I’d say the majority of speedsofters will purchase a paintball mask straight off the bat. It gives us full facial protection as well as being incredibly lightweight, comfortable


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and depending on what mask, a very good field of view, the only thing you really need to accompany a paintball mask is a hat of some variety. Having a paintball mask, in my opinion makes your responses much faster, unlike helmet rigs which have many different attachments piled on, making your head movement more sluggish and slower because of the added weight. Another piece or pieces of equipment that are adopted by speedsofters are neoprene knee pads and/or arm pads. These make crawling and kneeling down comfortable, not to mention acting as a large layer of protection when sliding into cover. Anything else a player might wear such as tops, trousers or overalls is completely up to the player. I personally have custom made paintball jerseys from Anthrax Paintball for SCA and I combo them with some Planet Eclipse Paintball pants or shorts and knee-high socks depending on the weather.” AA: Ok, so you’re looking suitably sporty, what about the guns? This is still airsoft after all!

speedsoft GEAR & GAMEPLAY

HM: “When it comes to guns in Speedsoft, there is a plethora of various types of guns used. Most speedsofters will adopt a pistol as their first gun, as it’s lightweight, easy to use and allows you to really press up on corners and angles giving you the strategic advantage. I started off with a WE Dragon, which is cheap Hi-Capa and it works well. TM Hi-Capas are by far the best pistol in Airsoft in terms of practicality, 30/50 round mags, small, accurate and can be tailored uniquely to the player. TM Hi-Capas have a large assortment of custom parts and upgrades from various companies such as Airsoft Masterpiece and Cow Cow Tech. The parts that these companies sell allows the player to have a truly unique and personal pistol. I firmly believe that if you have a gun that you have customised and built yourself, you form a bond with it and in turn, perform better with it rather than a stock gun. I’ve had a good few Hi-Capa builds myself and some are known across the world such as my, now sold, Custom 4.3 TM Hi-Capa named “CHANEL” and I really do regret letting her go because she was the best gun I have ever owned. Pistols are by far one of the best guns to pick up to start Speedsoft but if you feel you are more of a rifle player, you can pick one of them up instead. “Rifles have an essential role in SpeedQB/Sup-Airsoft play. Rifle players have the accuracy at range allowing them to pick off targets from distance with ease. Most Speedsoft players will look to upgrade their rifles as it does give you an advantage over someone with a stock gun and one of the best upgrades you can give a rifle is an HPA engine. HPA engines are one of the biggest stereotypes of Speedsofters and its true because speedsofters are always looking to have the fastest trigger response to get those shots onto someone before they’ve even pulled their trigger. HPA is practically the norm in the states and is starting to get a much bigger presence here in the UK. Sup-Airsoft players however are also moving to highly upgraded AEGs using high-speed setups such as DSGs (Dual Sector Gears) as wearing a backpack to carry your HPA tank can restrict movement and subconsciously you will hold back on throwing yourself onto it as you don’t want to damage it.” AA: Ok, so like the game, high speed gear rules. No surprise there. Moving onto the game play itself, how do you organise that? Presumably it needs to be clearly scored and carefully refereed? What’s the underlying premise for Speedsoft games? HM: “Speedsoft games such as SpeedQB and Sup-Airsoft are both round-based, single life elimination games, both are extremely similar except the location and objective. The base rules for both games are: - Teams of 5 players go against one another - All players start at a break wall or bunker with guns touching the wall before game on - When game on is called players breakout from starting positions and move across/into the field - Hit anywhere on the body means you are out. These are just the base rules for both game types, but I’ll go into specifics about each one… SpeedQB - PLAYED ON A SYMMETRICAL ARENA - One match is 3 rounds long - One round is 4 minutes long - A team wins by winning 2 of the 3 rounds - If a team wins first 2 rounds, the 3rd won’t be required - Players must retrieve a flag located in the centre of the arena or the “X” and hang that flag on the opposing team’s breakout wall. - Points are awarded for various acts: 5pts for a player eliminated, 25pts to pick up the flag first & 50pts for hanging the flag and finishing the round. Max points earned in one round is 100pts. - Semi auto ONLY

- 350 FPS on 0.20g BBs - NO MED (Minimum Engagement distance) - Knife kills count - No surrender or “bang bang” kills - Gun hits DO NOT count - All guns allowed - Rifles: mid cap mags (150 round capacity) only - Pistols: 50 round extended mags are legal - Shotguns: Shell fed or M4 magazine (150 round capacity) - No limit on total amounts of magazines/shells carried - Refs have the final decision and can pull players from the field - FOUL = not calling your hit (accidental or blatant) - 1st offence: team loses round automatically and lose all points for that round and player is marked with a wristband. - 2nd offence by same player: Team loses that round automatically, loses all points for the round. Player is marked on wristband and pulled from the rest of the match. The affected team plays one man short, no substitutions for rest of the match - 3rd offence by same player: Team loses that round automatically, loses all points for the round. Player is marked on wristband and pulled from rest of the event/tournament. The affected team plays one man short for the remaining matches - Early launch/breakout: 25 points deducted from total score of the round SUP-AIRSOFT - PLAYED ON A SUP-AIR FIELD (PAINTBALL INFLATABLES) - Each match is played with a timer of 10 minutes long - One round can last the full 10 minutes. - Rounds are finished when a player touches the opponents breakout bunker - Teams win matches by gaining as many round wins within the 10-minute game time. - If a team wins 3 rounds in a row they are awarded a “mercy win” and win the match automatically - Semi auto ONLY - 350 FPS on 0.20g BBs - NO MED (Minimum Engagement distance) - Knife kills DO NOT count - No surrender or “bang bang” kills - Gun hits DO count - All guns allowed - Rifles: mid cap mags (150 round capacity) only


speedsoft GEAR & GAMEPLAY

- Pistols: 50 round extended mags are legal - Shotguns: Shell fed or M4 magazine (150 round capacity) - No limit on total amounts of magazines/shells carried - Refs have the final decision and can pull players from the field - FOUL = not calling your hit (accidental or blatant) - 1st offence: team loses round automatically, and player is marked with a wristband. - 2nd offence by same player: Team loses that round automatically, Player is marked on wristband and pulled from the rest of the match. The affected team plays one man short, no substitutions for rest of the match - 3rd offence by same player: Team loses that round automatically, Player is marked on wristband and pulled from rest of the event/ tournament. The affected team plays one man short for the remaining matches.”

SOME FINAL THOUGHTS: Is speedball the future of airsoft? Almost certainly not and I doubt that there is a Speedsofter who would suggest it was. Does it sound the death knell of skirmish airsoft? No, the two are so different that they are perfectly legitimate stable mates. The requirements of speedsoft are such that it is unlikely that existing sites, especially woodland sites, would find it easy to transition from one to the other, nor I suspect would they wish to. The emergence of a properly competitive pastime based on the use of airsoft equipment is arguably long overdue. It will offer those interested in airsoft an alternative outlet for their enthusiasm without detracting from the attractions inherent in skirmishing. No doubt some players will do both, speaking for myself if I didn’t know with absolute certainty that I would land myself in hospital trying to compete against 20-year olds, I would be straight into speedsoft. Any airsofter who has tried practical shooting events based on the use of their airsoft guns will know that it takes very little for that competitive urge to emerge. Speedsoft is arguably a better outlet for that than skirmishing. I’ll finish this by thanking Harry one more time and falling back on my very limited French – “Vive la difference!” AA







AS MANY OF THE PEOPLE WHO FOLLOW MY REVIEWS either on line or in Airsoft Action will know, I have tested and reviewed all of the Secutor products since they emerged onto the UK Airsoft scene. Now in my humble opinion their first product, the Rudis (which was a 1911 variant) was a great pistol, with the OEM being KJW. However, since then their products have been very hit and miss; the gas shotgun didn’t work very well and was plagued with problems, as was the Gladius pistol but the springer shotgun wasn’t too bad, if a touch pricey. Recently I was contacted by Lee from Extreme Airsoft regarding testing and reviewing the latest Secutor offering, which is the “Bellum”. Following on with their distinctly Roman/Latin theme, “Bellum” is Latin for war which I guess fits in with the whole theme of Roman war. So I as I’ve reviewed all their other products, I thought it made sense to take a look, have a read and see what I thought of it.


One thing I do really like about Secutor products is they are always very well packaged and come with a few extra goodies in the box and the thing I noticed straight away when I got the pistol out was its weight. I have owned a couple of M9 variants over the years and they have all seemed to have a bit of weight about them and this is no different. If I’m really honest I am a great fan of the M9, albeit they seemed to be designed for larger hands which I don’t have but I do like them. Also in the box was the allen key to secure the CO2 bulb in (yes it’s CO2) and a smaller allen key to adjust the hop (more on that later), plus a power down nozzle for the warmer climates. I like these little touches as do many others, anyway let’s take a closer look at this pistol…


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I know this pistol is highly likely to be a KJW product and that became more apparent the closer I looked. The one I was sent was finished in a really nice bronze colour that really jumps out at you and the finish is very nice indeed. In fact everything about this pistol feels quality, there’s a little bit of play in the slide which you get with most pistols and the mag does rattle a touch in the magwell but overall the appearance is very nice. It feels great in the hand, even small ones like mine and you kind of know this is well put together. I then moved on to stripping the pistol, which is something I like to do because let’s face it, what’s the point in a product looking good if the internals are rubbish and it doesn’t perform. One really frustrating thing I have found with other M9s out there is the lack of an adjustable hop, I know WE have now changed that with recent models, as have TM. The Bellum you will be happy to know does have an adjustable hop, which is accessed via a small hole in the bottom of the hop unit. The little allen key that I referred to earlier is what you use to adjust it which is very straightforward. The other parts of the pistol internally are very well put together, with a very sturdy-looking nozzle and outer barrel set up. The safety has a very reassuring clunk to it when applied and the slide rails were nice and clean and served their purpose. I reassembled the pistol quickly because I was dying to move onto the shooting test.


With the CO2 bulb installed, which was very easy and the traditional style of install (unlike the Krypton Factor Gladius mags), I was ready to go. The BBs I was using were Geoffs 0.25s and after a



couple of test shots to set the hop (which stayed exactly where I set it throughout all the testing) I was ready to put it through its paces. I was at a game at Swynnerton Army base that weekend so it would be great to test the range and accuracy. Once the hop rubber had settled down I was getting a good 50+ metres from each shot and they were straight, very straight. I also passed it round some of the other players there who were all equally impressed. One thing you notice straight away is the sound it makes, traditionally CO2 pistols have a real crack to each shot but the Bellum has more of a subtle “pop” and a nice thump of recoil. As the Bellum comes with the usual threaded outer barrel, which Secutor always seem to do with their pistols, you could attach a silencer for that Spec Ops effect and this look is completed with an under barrel rail to attach a torch or laser module. The more I fired it the more I wanted it, the heavyweight feel along with the great noise it makes is really quite addictive. The accuracy was good too at 10-15 metres with a couple of inches between shots. On the chrono test with the highpower nozzle I got an average of 342fps over six shots but it wasn’t exactly warm when it was tested so you will probably need to fit the low power nozzle in the warmer months to keep it site legal.


If you like an M9 and you like the feel of a heavyweight pistol, then this is for you. Great sound with great range and decent accuracy makes this a triumph for Secutor, perhaps a hint to them about speaking to KJW more for future products. Would I have one? Yes, I already have (big grin)! Many thanks to Chris and Lee from Extreme Airsoft for supply of the test pistol and to Rich Stevenson from Rhino for being my model in the pictures. ENJOY! AA



TRIDENT GEAR CO. TRAINING PLATES PLATE CARRIERS TEND TO SAG WITHOUT PLATES BUT WEARING STEEL PLATES TO PLAY CAN GET VERY HEAVY. PHIL BUCKNALL HAS FOUND AN ALTERNATIVE, LIGHTWEIGHT SOLUTION. Like many of you, I use a plate carrier as my main method of keeping all of my kit in order and lumping it around when I’m playing. I have my favourite ones and have recently switched from a selection of three different ones from different manufacturers, to the DCS from Warrior Assault Systems after a recommendation from a good friend (thanks Simon; my wallet hates you but my back loves you!). I now have a couple of them but when I got the first I noticed it didn’t sit amazingly well when loaded up with mags, radio, dangler pouch and a holster. I also found it sagged quite heavily, making it uncomfortable to wear and hard to draw mags from. Once again Simon recommend I got some training plates, as they would make a world of difference - so he said anyway. He also told me to get the Trident Gear Co. ones as they are made by Airsofters who not only love a MilSim style game but the majority of them have also served and so understand the importance of kit working 100% all of the time. I checked them out on Facebook and started to message them about which ones would work for me and what size I’d need. I’m delighted to say 78

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that they were prompt and very professional in their replies and suggested the lightweight ones at only one kilo per plate and the medium size as its cut will fit perfectly in the plate pocket on the DCS - I understand this is the size that fits the ever popular JPC plate carrier too. When I ordered via PayPal they only had the option of the lightweight plates or heavyweight ones. The heavy ones come in at two and a half kilos EACH, and whilst that is still some way off the weight of a real SAPI plate it was a bridge too far for me. You might be different of course and it is worth noting that the range has increased but I’ll get into that a little more later on. A few days later my lightweight plates arrived and I got them out and into the DCS in short order. They fitted perfectly! They’re neither too tight nor too loose but fill the pocket with enough room to make fitting them easy without them moving about when you’re charging around. These plates are made from a rubber mulch and the edges are protected with a very durable cloth tape to make it easier to slide in and out of the plate carrier without damaging it and also to protect the edges of the plates


from wear and tear. Whilst they are flat in construction once they are in the plate carrier and after a couple of uses you find they do start to conform to your body and they are not in the least bit uncomfortable, even on their first outing. The first time I used them I did get some strange looks as I have a bad back and so most people would think that lightening the load would be the order of the day not increasing it but, and I don’t know if I can fully explain it, having the plates in the DCS made it easier to wear and the distributed weight seemed more evenly spread. After an hour I actually forgot I’d got the extra two kilos of weight on me and after a few outings now they aren’t even an issue for a normal day’s play. It’s only if there’s a lot of up and down hills that I even notice the extra weight, although that could just be my general lack of fitness more than the trident gear plates if I’m being brutally honest. I didn’t get them to be more ally or to be a tough nut and that’s why I got the lightest ones they do. I got them to make the kit I use work better and for that, they are bang on the money. As I said; I’ve been using them for a few months now and they still look as good as they did when I got them, there’s no loose pieces in the rubber and the tape is looking as fresh as it was when I got them out of the packaging. They have kind of shifted in shape a little due to their malleability to fit me better as I was told they would, which is a good thing and makes the plate carrier even more comfortable to use and maneuvering less cumbersome. Going back to my earlier point; the range was limited when I got mine but the guys have not rested on their laurels and have been hard at work both increasing the range and looking for new materials to make them out of to offer better performance. I recently received a very heavy package and from the shape of it, it wouldn’t take a genius to guess that it contained plates... lots of plates! I now have a set of the trial Heavy plates as well as prototypes for the foam and slim plates to review and cover which will be in a later issue and also on AATV, so stay tuned. Aaron Palmer, the director at Trident Gear Co., gave me a brief description of the plates coming from Trident shortly to complement the light and heavy ones, which I have reproduced below: Slim Plates – These plates are about half the thickness of the 1st gen plates and weigh in at around 500g depending on the size ordered. The slim plates are aimed at those players that would like to fill their carriers to gain the advantages of a sturdier carrier platform without the added weight of heavier plates and the lack of rigidity in using foam plates. Foam Plates – the foam plates are made from a strong durable foam rubber and will initially only come in one: size 300mm x 250mm to fit warrior assault systems and other compatible carriers. Other sizes will be added over the months after the initial release. These plates will again be semi-rigid but have flex to allow comfort when in use. They are also manufactured with a multicurve design to mimic real steel plates without the weight. Rigid Hard Plates – Trident Gear Co will also have a hard rigid multicurve plate that’s being launched in the coming months, which will be available in multiple weights. Again initially these plates will be available in the 300mm x 250mm size with all other SAPI sizes following shortly after. This is great news for those of you who want to fill your armour carrier but are stuck with what to put in it or have tried lightweight foam previously and been disappointed. Trident offer several shapes and sizes and can tailor most plates to any size and fit upon request. They are also exploring options to add customized logos, so these can be personally branded to you and your teams. Based on my own observations and experiences, I think it’s safe to say that we are going to see more and more people using one

“WHILST THEY ARE FLAT IN CONSTRUCTION ONCE THEY ARE IN THE PLATE CARRIER AND AFTER A COUPLE OF USES YOU FIND THEY DO START TO CONFORM TO YOUR BODY AND THEY ARE NOT IN THE LEAST BIT UNCOMFORTABLE, EVEN ON THEIR FIRST OUTING.” or other iterations of the Trident Gear Co. plates over the next few months and I look forward to seeing where these guys go next. For pricing and size information as well as the new range of merchandise, check out their website at or on Facebook under Task Force Trident - TFT Stay safe people and have fun! AA



competition RAVEN PISTOLS

Win One of Three Hydro-Dip Raven Pistols! THE ANSWERS ARE:

1 2 3 4 Be one of the first people to own one of the new hydro-dip Raven pistols – FOR FREE! This month, curtesy of RAVEN AIRSOFT, we are giving away a 1911, an EU17 and an EU18 all resplendent in the stunning new hydro-dip finish.

5 Name:.................................................................................................

When we spoke to Rosco at NUPROL, this is what he told us about these stunning -looking pistols:


“These are fresh off the production line and straight from Raven to you, the new Range of Hydro dip Ravens.


Launched by Raven at the beginning the month, they are now available at all Raven stockists where Hydro dip is available on all current models in full camo, green slide and camo frame and tan slide with camo frame. Thanks to Raven and Airsoft Action, you have the opportunity to be one of the first lucky owners of one of these new models, which are an exciting line of something different and we look forward to seeing which ones are the player’s favourites.

Hope you enjoy and good luck!”

To be in with a chance of winning, identify the five differences between the before and after photos and get your entries in before the closing date. Don’t forget to include a contact number and let us know which pistol you would prefer to win.

Calibre Publishing would like to keep you informed of other offers and publications. n Please tick here if you would NOT like to be contacted by post or email.

Post your entries to: RAVEN HYDRO DIP Competition, Airsoft Action, Calibre Publishing, Wyche Innovation Centre, Walwyn Road, Malvern, Worcs, WR13 6PL, or email to: competition@airsoft-action. with “RAVEN HYDRO DIP Competition” in the subject line. You can also enter online, via the Airsoft Action website ( Entries received after midnight on 12th December 2018 will not be valid. One entry per person. Entrants must be at least 18 years old. The winners will be the first three randomly drawn from all the correct entries. Incomplete or illegible entries will be discarded. GDPR: By entering this competition you are giving explicit consent for Calibre Publishing Ltd. to retain personally identifiable information for the purposes of contacting the winner of this competition. All entries will be destroyed after the closing date. Calibre Publishing would like to keep you informed of other offers and publications. Please tick here if you would NOT like to be contacted by post or email n




FOLLOWING A RECENT POST ON AIRSOFT NATION, FRENCHIE PICKS UP ON SOME OF THE POINTS (AND A FEW OF THE RANTS) MADE… RECENTLY AIRSOFT NATION asked their subscribers if they read airsoft magazines and if so which ones? Did they have a preference and why? Actually, they may not have asked for all that information but the internet being the internet, they got it regardless! The responses fell broadly into two categories: “Yes, I read X” and “No, I bloody don’t!” followed by something of a rant. So if nothing else, we know that players (maybe, it’s the internet, who really knows) have strong opinions on our monthly strivings. It was, err… instructional. Top of the list of hates was advertising and I get that. Unfortunately, the simple truth is that the cover price of a magazine doesn’t go far enough to cover the costs associated with production; printing, editing, contributions. I have written for both of the UK’s airsoft magazines and I know exactly what they pay contributors – it varies between publications, however, it is a cost that has to be borne - unless you are content to repeat content (more on that later). So, like it or loathe it, advertising is an unavoidable necessity, the best we can hope for is that the advertisements will be interesting, sometimes they are, sometimes they aren’t. Content. Ah… content! There were a few disparaging remarks about content and some fabulous conspiracy-theory based ideas


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on display. I do not claim to know all my fellow writers well, I know some of them reasonably well and have known them for many years. As far as I am concerned they all do their very best to produce content that is interesting and original, doing that month after month is a job, believe me and we all have good months and bad months. Overall - and I am going to blow Airsoft Action’s trumpet here - I think we/they succeed with varied content that covers matters of interest to airsofters. The best criticism was that when reviewing guns we were all in the grip of “Big Airsoft” and that only good reviews got through. I read that, coughed violently and put my teeth back in. Big Airsoft? An industry that has struggled in the past to organise a drinksbased event in an alcohol-production facility? THAT Big Airsoft?! Get to…..! Ok, most reviews are favourable, that is true. The reason for that is most guns are, well, fairly good. The lack of technological development is something that has pained me for years – no HPA isn’t new, it’s very old – and that vast majority of guns are based on technology that is at least 20 years old. The details have changed – alloy instead of plastic, steel instead of aluminium gears, better hop units, more consistent production values – in short, a maturing industry. So it is very, very rare to actually have a


company release a dog. I speak only for myself but I would love to get a genuine disaster to review, just to mix things up a bit. Once I reviewed four 1911 derivatives on four successive months. I’m sure you can imagine just how challenging it was to find something different to say in that situation. So no, no one is telling a reviewer what to write, how to write it and what the conclusion will be. Gear is just generally good. If that makes it a little dull at times it’s not the fault of the reviewer, they’re all trying their damnedest. Repetition. This regrettably is unavoidable, partly because of the lack of innovation mentioned above and partly because we are a niche pastime. Finding similar articles cropping up over an extended period is inevitable when a subject has a limited number of angles from which it can be approached. With a complete lack of scientific evidence but based on experience, I reckon that airsoft has a churn rate of about three years, by which I mean that players may spend three years in the game and then for various reasons, move on. If I’m correct about this, it is inevitable that players who have been involved for longer than that are going to see “Starter gear to get you going!” articles a few times. In part this is because they are relevant to a new audience and partly because there are some changes in gear; good value guns are released which make better starter weapons, better, cheaper tactical kit comes to market. The goalposts if you like, have moved. I fully understand why some readers might find that frustrating but a magazine has to appeal to a broad church. The other criticism that was made - and this one I have real sympathy with - is the repeating of previously published content. I struggle to think of a good reason to do that, even at the price of having to rework a piece on an older gun as “looking back at classic airsoft” piece. I’ve done a few of those in my time but they have always been new works, NOT re-treads. Where an article is simply reprinted without changes after a couple of years simply for lack of new content (if that’s the reason) I agree with the readers who get irritated by this; I don’t think that is a valuable use of your money. I don’t have current distribution numbers for the UK’s two magazines, I am going to take a guess at somewhere in the region of 6,000 print editions sold. If - and this is another educated guess - the playing population is still in the region of 10-15 thousand then a third of players still feel it is worth their time and money to buy a physical magazine dedicated to their interests. More will

subscribe online, usually because it suits them better, or they find it hard to find places to buy the magazine. So, for all the vociferous criticism from a very small minority, the magazines are still relevant and attractive to many players. This reach means that magazines can (emphasis on can, not do) find it easier to obtain review samples, cover events and generally offer good, wide-ranging coverage of the UK airsoft scene. To do that costs money and takes time, there is no escaping that unfortunately therefore we may be able to reach or cover gear or events that individual commentators simply cannot. It is not my intention to debate the whole print versus online argument; at present the market seems to support both and to be comfortable with both. That may change in the future (God knows, online publishing is cheaper!) but there is still a cachet to actually producing a physical product and it carries a little more weight for it. To those who complain about the content, don’t bump your gums – if you think you can do better then do better! None of us were born with a typewriter clutched in our hands, we practiced and improved and got to where we are now. Personally, writing for the magazines has led me to write as a profession – I spent many years meeting deadlines, learning better ways to use language and finding way to try and make really, really boring stuff interesting. There is no reason you can’t if that is what you want, it’s not just the game that needs new blood. Is print dead? Not yet it ain’t! AA


Proudly supporting UK Airsoft Companies! Airsoft Zone Unit 2, Detection House Brooklands Approach Romford, Essex. 01708 733275

Land Warrior Airsoft 44/1 Hardengreen Bus. Prk Hardengreen Lane Dalkeith, EH22 3NX 0131 654 2452

The Mill CQB Unit S2 Mill 1 Swan Meadow Ind. Est. Swan Meadow Rd. Wigan 0161 727 8863

Eton Guns 103 High Street Eton, Nr. Windsor SL4 6AF 01753 800009

No Limits Airsoft Unit 4, King Street Gateshead NE8 2YP 0191 441 4574

DTW Airsoft A3 Moorside Business Prk Colchester Essex, CO1 2ZF 01206 790046

Surplus Store Unit 2, Access House Stephenson Way Three Bridges, RH10 1TN 01293 525880

Anzio Camp Blackshaw Moor Nr. Leek, Staffs. ST13 8TL 0161 727 8863

JD Airsoft Unit 5, Virage Park Green Lane, Cannock WS11 0NH 0845 600 5144

Invicta Battlefield Airsoft Pook Hill Wood Farm Wilden Park Road, Staplehurst, TN12 0HP 07876 263290

Johnsons of Leeds 2, Vulcan Foundry Haigh Park Road Leeds, LS10 1RT 0113 277 5237

TacTree Unit 3, Stag Business Park Donnington Wood Telford, TF2 7NA 01952 565670

Sell Airsoft Action in your shop or on your site and get a FREE ADVERT on these pages! Contact Nige on 01684 878003 or by email: for details.

Buy Airsoft Action from any of these shops or sites - and get your copy before it goes on sale on the High Street! Combat-UK 13-15 Market Place Stevenage Herts, SG1 1DH 01438 362922

Unit 8, Winston Avenue Croft Leicestershire LE9 3GQ 01455 285605

308 Sniper 66 High Street Chatham Kent, ME4 4DS 01634 921278

Socom Tactical 70 Reading Road South Fleet Hampshire, GU52 7SD 01252 616 868

Eagle6 Airsoft Sutterton Enterprise Park Sutterton, PE20 2JA 01205 460385 07944 904604

Airsoft Plantation Goatsmoor Lane Stock, Billericay Essex, CM4 9RS 07771 556395

MidWales Airsoft Unit 3, Severnside Shopping Centre Newtown, SY16 1AA 01686 627594

The Vault Airsoft Store Brook Garden Centre Whittington Way Old Whittington Chesterfield, S41 9AG 01246 260860

Allsorts Airsoft 9 Arundel Road Littlehampton BN17 7BY 01903 714688

Red Alert Airsoft Hartshill Copse Burdens Heath Bucklebury, RG7 6SX 07941 087070

Looking for somewhere to buy Airsoft Action? Your local Newsagent sold out? Then why not visit any of the fine airsoft companies listed here? They all keep Airsoft Action in stock and while you are there, don’t forget to have a good browse round to see what else they can tempt you with...













Email to add or change a site listing

ABER AIRSOFT – THE BUNKER Allt-lywd Wood Farm, outside Llanrhystud, nr. Aberystwyth, Wales. Tel: 07511554740


Porkellis Moor near Helston, Cornwall, TR13 0


Goatsmoor Lane, Billericay, CM4 9RS Tel: 07534 636289 / 07771 556395 Email:

AIRSOFT SKIRMISH ACE AIRSOFT WAR GAMES Tong Wood, Newport Road Wolverhampton TF11 8PN Tel: 07786 192832

Stoulton, WR7 4QW Tel: 07764 587410


Hellingly, East Sussex, BN27 4HL Tel: 0844 2570433

AMBUSH ADVENTURES – CHOBHAM Chobham, Surrey, GU24 8SL Tel: 01252 315225

AIRBORNE 101 AIRSOFT CLUB Downpatrick, Co. Down, BT30 Tel: 07718 032541

AIRSOFT ASYLUM North Lanarksire, ML7 5


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Shafton, Barnsley, S72 8RE Tel: 07779 236166

BATTLETEC AIRSOFT La Couture, Guernsey, GY1 2 Tel: 07781 104068


New Forest National Park, SP5 2DW Tel: 01252 315225

BETTER BATTLES Ravenshead, Notts, NG15 9DH Tel: 07967 940043

AIRSOFT SKIRMISH CQB Studley, B80 7LY Tel: 07764 587410

APOCALYPSE AIRSOFT Sittingbourne, Kent, ME9 7QP Tel: 07872 348 576

ACE COMBAT Kent, TN12 7DG Tel: 01303 814803


ALL ARMS AIRSOFT Near Trawden, BB8 8SN Tel: 07909 683464


ARENA AIRSOFT Grimsby, DN31 3JD Tel: 07752 404060


Halkyn Wood, North Wales CH8 8DF

Sawbridgeworth, Herts, CM23 4BJ Tel: 07732 184957



Le Mont de Rozel, Jersey, JE3 5 Tel: 01534 733697

Rowlands Castle, Hamps PO9 6DP Tel: 07534 465589

BLACKDAGGER AIRSOFT Grasscroft Wood, Barlow Lees Lane, Dronfield, S18 7UR

BORDERLINE AIRSOFT 51 Green Road, Ballyclare, Co. Antrim Northern Ireland, BT39 9PH Tel: 028 9303 7030 or 07729219341

BRAVO 2-2 AIRSOFT Leisure Lakes, Mere Brow, Southport PR46JX Tel: 07790 715059



Bristol, BS1 2HQ Tel: 07776 288826


Sheffield, S2 5TR Tel: 07795 631331


Brimington, Chesterfield S43 1DQ

CLOSE ACTION AIRSOFT Corby, NN17 3BB Tel: 07740 165787


Charlton, SE7 8NJ Tel: 0870 7549653


Runham Woods, Lenham ME17 1NQ Tel: 07786 448608 Email:


Longhope, Gloucestershire, GL17 0PH Tel: 07597 938011

CERBERUS AIRSOFT – THE COMPLEX Horsforth, Leeds LS18 4RP Tel: 07891 469492

CERBERUS AIRSOFT – THE OUTPOST (WOODLAND) HPC, York Road, Flaxby, Harrogate, North Yorkshire HG5 0XJ Tel: 07891 469492


Bolton Wood Quarry, Bolton Hall Road Bradford, West Yorkshire BD2 1BQ Tel: 07891 469492

CERBERUS AIRSOFT – RIVOCK EDGE Keighley, BD20 0LS Tel: 07891 469492



Off Badger Lane, Hipperholme, Halifax, West Yorkshire HX3 8PL Tel: 07891 469492



Bourton Woods, On the B4479, Blockley Near Bourton-on-the-hill Tel: 07724629140


Dumfries, DG12

Combat Street, Felthorpe, Norwich, Norfolk, NR10 4DR. Tel: 07748 023832




Just off the A11 outside Thetford Norfolk follow signs for Combat Paintball Tel: 07703 045849


38 Full Street, Derby DE1 3AF Tel: 01332 493258 Email:


Middle Wildpark Farm, Wildpark Lane, Brailsford, Ashbourne DE6 3BN Tel: 01332 493258 Email:

Ellough Lark Raceway, Benacre Road, Ellough, Norfolk Tel: 07455 906132

Mobile: 07947 558433 Email: DARKWATER AFTER DARK C.Q.B, (Battlezone Building), Britannia Lane, Kingsnorth, Ashford, TN23 3NA DARKWATER SITE Dering Wood, Church Lane, Shadoxhurst, Ashford TN26 1LZ


Skelmersdale, Lancs WN8 8UT Tel: 07986 053076


Portsmouth PO6 3LS Tel: 02392 655636

COMBAT SOUTH WOODLAND Fareham, PO17 5ND Tel: 02392 655636

CONTACT! FIGHT SCHOOL Kelvedon Hatch, Essex, CM14 5 Tel: 01438 368177


Houston, Renfrewshire PA6 7BP Tel: 07853 195290

Unit 8, Winston Ave, Croft, Leic. LE9 3GQ Tel: 01455 285605


Bexley, Greater London, DA5 1NX Tel: 07968 448475

EXPERIENCE AIRSOFT Swindon, Wiltshire, SN5 0AN Tel: 01380 728982


Lewisham, SE13 5SU Tel: 07973 240177


St Andrews, KY10 3XL

FINMERE AIRSOFT Buckingham, MK18 4JT Tel: 07976 184897

FIREBALL SQUADRON Sutton Coldfield, B75 5SA Tel: 07582 684533



Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 4SE TEL 01293 852 314

Blackshaw Moor, Nr Leek, Staffordshire ST13 8TL Tel: 0161 727 8863


Brentwood, Essex, CM15 0LA Tel: 07703 530189


Doddington, Kent, ME9 0JS Tel: 07960 532613

Caerwent Training Area, South Wales, NP26 5XL Tel: 07921 336360



Truro, Cornwall, TR2 4HF. Tel: 0773 153 1113


Colchester, Essex CO1 2ZF Tel: 01206 790046

CROSSFIRE WOODS – PRESTON Moss Lane East, Preston PR4 3SP 0161 727 8863



Stealth Woods, Dob Park, Norwood Bottom Road, Otley LS21 2NA Tel: 0161 727 8863



Unit S2 Mill 1, Swan Meadow Industrial Estate, Swan Meadow Road, Wigan Tel: 0161 727 8863




THE OUTPOST – KIDDERMINSTER Drakelow Tunnels, Kingsford Country Park, Near Kinver, Kidderminster DY11 5SA Tel: 0161 727 8863

GASS AIRSOFT – PIDDINGTON Piddington, Oxfordshire, OX25 1 Tel: 07907 788970/


Wilden Park Road, Staplehurst, Kent TN12 0HP Tel: 01622 831788 / 07876 263290

MILSIM UK Checkley, Staffordshire, ST10 4NS Tel: 07523 916607


Leicester, LE9 9FP


Uplands Coppice, Off B4363, Bridgnorth, Shropshire WV16 5LS Tel: 0161 727 8863



Bravo One Birmingham, 93–99 Holloway Head, B1 1QP Tel: 0121 643 2477

Stealth Woods, Dob Park, Norwood Bottom Road, Otley LS21 2NA Tel: 0161 727 8863



Co. Armagh, BT60 1NE Tel: 07772 919974



Bull Ring Farm Rd, Leamington Spa CV33 9HJ Tel: 0161 727 8863




THE ARMOURY – WREXHAM Oak Road, Wrexham, Denbighshire LL13 9RG Tel: 0161 727 8863


Guisborough, TS7 0PG Tel: 07525 435696

Cavenham Road, Tuddenham, Bury St Edmunds IP28 6DF Tel: 07711 774461 (Doug) or 07711 774401 (Josh)


1 Jugglers Ln, Yatesbury, Calne, Wiltshire SN11 8YA Tel: 0161 727 8863

GROUND ZERO WOODLAND Ringwood, Hampshire BH24 2DF


Farcet, Peterborough, PE7 3DH Tel: 01733 247171


Annacloy, Downpatrick, BT30 8JJ Tel: 07730 586926

GASS AIRSOFT – PENN Penn Bottom, Bucks, HP10 Tel: 07907 788970


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Near Shorwell, Isle of Wight, PO30 Tel: 07964 751047

Edinburgh, EH14 4



Gorebridge, Midlothian, EH23 4LG Tel: 0131 654 2452


Saxillby, LN1 2JW Tel: 07775 877057

LAGAN AIRSOFT CLUB 17G Stationview, Dunmurry, Belfast BT170AE Tel: 07733128484


Haigh Park Road, Stourton, Leeds LS10 1RX Tel: 0113 277 7707 / 07968 258952


The Grange, Frogmore Grange, Balsall Common, Coventry CV7 7FP Tel: 01676 532 384


The Welsh Drive, Fleet Road (A327), Eversley, Hants RG27 0PY Tel: 07711 774461 (Doug) or 07711 774401 (Josh)


Wolverhampton, WV10 7HU Tel: 08000 354490/


Cilyrychen Quarry, Llandybie, Ammanford, Camarthenshire, SA18 3JG Tel: 01269 850404


HOMELAND TACTICAL AIRSOFT Spanby, Lincs, NG34 0AT/ Tel: 07971 560249


North Lincolnshire, DN21 Tel: 07792 680297

Manby, Lincolnshire, LN11 8HE Tel: 07955 487983

MATLOCK COMBAT GAMES Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 5FW Tel: 07974 507166


Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 Tel: 07793 404346

Fenwick, Ayrshire, KA3 6AY Tel: 07904 998250

NO LIMITS AIRSOFT Unit 4, King Street, Gatehead, NE8 2YP Tel: 07464 482410/ 0191 441 4574

NORTHERN ALLIANCE AIRSOFT Thirsk, North Yorkshire, YO7 3LQ Tel: 01845 565465

NORTHFLEET CQB Northfleet, Kent, DA11 9AA Tel: 07968 448475

NPF AIRSOFT, NPF BASSETTS POLE Trickley Coppice, London Road, Bassetts Pole, Sutton Coldfield, B75 5SA Tel: 0121 323 1000



Hetton, Sunderland, DH5 0 Tel: 07983 333521



Cornwall, EX23 9JL : Tel: 01288 331748

Abbey Cwm-hir, Midwales, LD1 6PG 01686 627594


Wrightington, WN6 9PL Tel: 01942 514724

Durham, DL4 2ER Tel: 01642 281220

OBAN AIRSOFT – ILL ARGYLL Argyll and Bute, PA37 1 Tel: 07967 710185






Tean, Staffordshire, ST10 4JT Tel: 07964 990831

Anglesey, LL71 8VW www.ottairsoft. / Tel: 07895 478634

PATHFINDER GROUP AIRSOFT MILITARY SIMULATION Former RAF Camp Sopley/Merryfield Park, Hants, BH23/ Tel: 02380 899369


Welbeck Airsoft, Academy, Budby Road, Notts NG20 9JX Tel: 07956 587213 / 01623 812483


Rochester, Kent, ME1 1 HQ Tel: 01634 829063/


High Bonnybridge, FK1 3AD Tel: 07767 203979/

PREDATOR COMBAT GAMES Ballynahinch, BT24 8NF Tel: 02897565651 / 07825169631


Suffolk, IP8 4 / Tel: 01473 831563

RAW WAR AIRSOFT CUMBRIA Wigton, Cumbria CA7 3SZ Tel: 01900 85645


Chislehurst, Bromley BR7 6SD Tel: 07956 522691/01727846069


Red1 CQB. Kings Langley, WD4 8RN Tel: 07956 522691/01727846069


Shotts, North Lanarkshire, ML7 5AB Tel: 07974 026517

Co. Londonderry, BT45 8NA Tel: 07713 273102


Holbrook Coppice, Buidwas Bank (A4169), Buildwas, Telford, Shropshire, TF8 Tel: 07786 192832/


Billericay, Essex, CM11 2TX Tel: 01277 657777




Boathouse lane, South Wirral, Cheshire, CH64 3TB Tel: 07703 177756

Hemel Hemstead, Herts, HP2 7QB Tel: 07894 059794


Exeter, Devon, EX4 5/ Tel: 01548 580025


Reynoldston, Swansea SA3 1AS Tel: 01792 473336

TACTICAL WARFARE AIRSOFT Warlingham, Surrey, CR6 9PL Tel: 020 8665 1299

Farr, Inverness IV2 6XB Tel: 07848 448408


Newgate Street, Hertfordshire. SG13 8NH Tel: 07841 713356

Browndown Road, Lee-On-Solent PO13 9UG Tel: 07533 434203

Petworth, West Sussex, GU28 0LR Tel: 07766 770830

Cowbridge, S Glamorgan, CF71 Tel: 02920 593900

Wareham, Dorset, BH20 7EU Tel: 07984 656947

SPEC OPS AIRSOFT– THE ROCK Portland, Dorset, DT5 2EG Tel: 07984 656947

Aberystwyth Tel: 07841 462806


Glasgow, G45 9SB Tel: 0161 727 8863


Mold, CH7 4 Tel: 07840 001975





Coventry, CV3 6NX Tel: 07831 429407

Rugeley, Staffordshire, WS15 4LD Tel: 07515 937633



Slinfold, RH12 Tel: 020 8150 9284


Portsmouth, Hants, PO17 6AR Tel: 07590 818881


Linch, West Sussex, GU30 7 Tel: 07590 818881

ULTIMATE WARGAMES – FAWKHAM Fawkham, Kent, DA3 8NY Tel: 01268 796130

Oxted, Surrey, RH8 0RH



Weir Mill, Viaduct Street, Chestergate, Stockport, Cheshire, SK5 7JP Tel: 07428 024874



Macclesfield, SK10 4SZ Tel: 07428 024874



Chipping Warden, OX17 1LZ Tel: 07751 586781

Cambridge, CB24 8RL Tel: 07751 586781 /


Lundholm Road, Stevenston, Ayrshire, KA20 3LN

Ramsey, Cambridgeshire, PE26 1 Tel: 01733 247171


Welwyn, Hertfordshire, AL6 0UN



F O B (Woodland), Hollington Road, Upper Tean, Staffordshire, ST10 4JT On site parking, HPA Top ups, covered safe zone, male & female toilets, hot lunch included, free tea and coffee available all day. Site memberships. Tel: Paul – 07861427553 Email:

Luxulyan, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL305FA Tel: 01726 858613 or 07590 030887 Food & drinks available on site


Co Tyrone, BT71 4DY  Tel: 07922 377131 Facebook: search ‘Torrent Warfare’



Email to add or change a site listing


WEST MIDLANDS AIRSOFT High Command (CQB), Doulton Trading Estate, Doulton Road, Rowley Regis B65 8JQ On site parking, HPA top-ups, secure safe zone, male & female toilets, hot lunch included, free tea and coffee available all day. Site memberships. Tel: Paul – 07861427553 Email:

WORTHING AIRSOFT Arundel Road, Worthing Tel: 07877 210898


The Grange, Frog Lane, Balsall Common, West Midlands, CV7 7FP Tel: 01676 532384 Facebook: A.I.P.S.C Every Monday night 7pm– 9pm (except bank holidays). £5 or £10 with pistol and shooting rig hire. UKPSA-qualified coaches. UKPSA-qualified Range Officers.



Dunstable, LU6 2EE Tel: 01494 881430

XSITE AIRSOFT – LANE END High Wycombe, HP14 3NP Tel: 01494 881430


xmas 2018

StrikeForce CQB, Morelands Trading Estate, Bristol Road, Gloucester GL1 5RZ Facebook: Double-Tap-Practical-Shooting-Club979585958732937/?ref=hl


24 Scarrots lane Newport Isle of Wight PO30 2JD 07964 751047 Open five nights a week 7pm-10pm Facebook:@fpsiow


MOD-approved gun club PP, IDPA, IPAS, IPSC, 3GUN UKPSA Coaches UKPSA-qualified Range Officers Equipment hire available


The Penthouse, Colne Valley Business Park, Manchester Road, Linthwaite, Huddersfield HD7 5QG Tel: 01484 840554

XSITE PRACTICAL SHOOTING Fryers Farm Lane, High Wycombe, Bucks HP14 3NP Tel: 01494 881430


Action Air IPSC Club Based at The Tunnel Target Sports Centre near Charmouth The Tunnel, Axminster Road, Charmouth, Dorset DT6 6BY Contact:


Wethersfield Village Hall, Braintree Rd (B1053), Wethersfield, Braintree CM7 4EB. Open Thursday & Friday evenings. Set-up from 6:30pm. Club shooting commences by 7:30pm. Pack-up starts at 9:30pm if you can stay to help. Contact via FB or 07939557029. Indoors. Club offers Action Air plus 2 & 3 Gun training and events.

Airsoft Action - Xmas 2018  

Welcome to Airsoft Action Issue 95 and the freshest, widest variety of news, reviews, features and articles of any airsoft magazine. In this...

Airsoft Action - Xmas 2018  

Welcome to Airsoft Action Issue 95 and the freshest, widest variety of news, reviews, features and articles of any airsoft magazine. In this...