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New person questions

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New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 14:09

So I am completely new to airsoft. I saw the public events scheduled on the calendar and I thought that would be a good way to try the sport out. That leaves me with a couple questions.

Question 1: What range should I look for in an airsoft gun.

Question 2: Will one of the starter kits that you can find at sporting goods stores be good enough to try it out, or will it leave me running around as a wonderfully defenseless target?

Question 3:What should I look for in a face mask / goggles?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 15:14

ApexX - Welcome! I'll give you my answers, I'm sure others will chime in with their opinions as well.

1. For range I'm going to assume you mean shot distance, I'm not sure if you mean price range, if so I can go into that as well. For shot distance, it really varies based on the gun you buy. Other factors will come into play as well. Those being the hop up, the weight and quality of the round, the inner barrel diameter, etc. Most of our AEG guns would be considered reasonably accurate to at least 200 feet, some further depending on how they are set up. Pistols will have a shorter general range. Sniper rifles do not generally have a great range increase compared to an AEG, and I would discourage trying to go the sniper route right off the bat. That position takes a special type of person and those guys usually spend a boat load on the equipment and upgrades.

2. It depends on how serious you are about getting into the sport. Generally speaking, you get what you pay for. If you go cheap, don't expect it to last long, or perform to the level of the higher end equipment. So many of us have bought cheap equipment to begin with and regret it because we ended up throwing it away, or its sitting in a gear box somewhere not being used. So it's good that you are asking these questions. If you're looking for a quality gun that will work great out of the box, but also not be insanely priced, I will recommend the KWA CQR series. KWA makes excellent products with some of the beefiest gearboxes on the market. Most KWA's run $300-$400. The CQR uses the same internals as the higher priced versions, but it costs around $190. The CQR is also a gun that isn't going to need any upgrading to be a great gun for field or CQB use. I believe every member of my team owns at least 1 KWA gun. So if you're looking to stay on budget but want quality, that would be my top recommendation for a gun.

2a - As for ammo. If they sell it at Walmart, don't buy it. There are local stores which sell airsoft equipment. 400FPS is close (north Denver) and they sell Elite Force BB's, which is what most of my team members use. Bioval is another good brand. Please get biodegradable ammo when you purchase.

2b - As for camouflage. Look at the environment you will be in, and choose what will conceal you the best. Almost all big events allow the military issued camo for their events. The most common you will see, are ACU, Woodland, DCU, and Multicam. You can occasionally find cheap camo at surplus stores, or check on eBay.

3. For goggles, look for something that is ANSI rated. This will offer you protection from breaking on a high velocity impact. Most places require "full-seal" meaning the goggles will make a seal against your skin when wearing them. Fogging is another huge issue with goggles. To avoid this, the easiest routes are to get a thermal lens, or to get goggles with a fan built in. Don't get a metal mesh mask. Fragments of bb's can break off and pass through the mesh. Here is an example of fan goggles: http://asiaairsoft.com/index_eproduct_view.php?products_id=826

3a. For a mask. Mesh is the standard for the mask. Some people wear masks, some don't. I have been lately, but they don't offer 100% protection, so don't expect them to. Just yesterday I received two face welts from rounds that hit in between where my mask was and where my goggles were. But... you can find masks for fairly cheap: http://www.amazon.com/Amico-Airsoft-Guard-Protector-Olive/dp/B00ACD91O6/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1375737157&sr=8-2&keywords=airsoft+mesh+mask

If you have other questions, please ask. This is a great group of guys and we're here to help. Especially to help people from making some of the same gear mistakes we have made in the past.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 16:47

Cool thank you for the advice it is really helpful. I will definetly check out the KWA CQR series that you recommended. And thank you for the tip about the biodegradable ammo.

This brings up more questions on my part though.

1: Do you have any particular brand of facemask you would recomend.

2: If I do get really into airsoft how do you go about joining a team. All the ones I have seen have been comprised of hardcore Milsim people. While that looks really fun they understandably have try outs and not that often.

3: At the local events do you just show up get assigned to a team and then run around shooting at the other team, or is their a a sight up sheet somewhere that I have yet to find.

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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 16:47

Sign not sight

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 17:02

1. Not really. Both of the masks I have are on the cheaper end. One is similar to the one linked. The other that I own is this model: http://www.ebairsoft.com/strike-metal-mesh-half-face-mask-p-4232.html

2. There are several teams. Some are milsim, and some are just a bunch of backyard airsofters that call themselves a "team." I will use the Boulder Brigade as an example. We are milsim oriented. We train together at least once a month, and typically participate in a game at least once a month. We also participate in national level events such as those held by Operation Lion Claws, American Milsim and Operation Blacksheep Milsim.

With our team we are currently accepting applications. There is an interview process, testing, and an observation period prior to being accepted onto the team. You can apply to the team at: http://apply.boulderairsoft.com

3. Local events differ on team assignment. If you are assigned a team ahead of time, and if there is a required uniform, that will be made clear in the event ahead of time. Otherwise it is assigned on arriving. Some coordinate through Facebook, some through Forums, some through Eventbrite or Ticketbud. If you join the Boulder Airsoft Facebook page we post our events there (which are typicall free, unless the venue charges an admission fee.) Other events should list the admission price prior to signing up.

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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 17:23

Hmm are their any exceptions to the 18 years old rule? I will be 18 within a few months. I would definetly be able to attend the practices if I made it in.

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 17:25

There have been. It is evaluated on a case by case basis.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 17:28

Ok cool ill look into that.

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 17:42

Ok, and I just received an email from other person that our application file isn't displaying. If you have trouble with it, I am already looking into it. I'll post up regarding the status of it. If I can't get it working in a timely manner, I'll also provide an alternate method.
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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 18:05

Update: I experienced the same problem as the user that reported it. Clearing my browser cache, and doing a computer reboot resolved my problem. If you have an issue, try that, otherwise I am currently building a backup system that will be online shortly.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 19:23

Ok it'll be about a week before I can get the airsoft rifle ect. And then ill attend the next public match I can find before I apply. What dose the testing proses consist of? Tests for fitness, accuracy, and overall performance in an airsoft battle?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 19:31

The interview process is handled by one of our Squad Leaders who manages the application process for anyone who applies to the team. Questions are generally character based, some are situational pertaining to the sport and some are problem solving related.

The test involved is given to all applicants and it pertains to policies and procedures of the team. All applicants are granted access to the necessary information to study and review well in advance of this test.

Other on field evaluations occur during an observational period before a decision is made.

Generally the Squad Leader managing applicants will solicit feedback and opinions from team members concerning the applicant, and a decision will be made that will require approval up the chain of command within the team prior to acceptance.

We do have certain levels of proficiency regarding performance expected from team members, however, this is not evaluated until after an applicant is accepted and in training. The team provides training to its new members. New members are subject to a 4 month probationary period in which they demonstrate they are able to perform to an acceptable level with the team.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 20:00

Sounds good to me.

Will the bb's tend to spin left/right at the edge of their maximum range or do they just drop?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 20:11

Wind can effect the trajectory of a shot. As can the barrel being misaligned, or a worn hop-up bucking. With cheapo ammo, it may not be balanced/polished and its anyones guess what it will do.

If conditions are perfect, as is the gear, typically the round will just drop.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 20:17

Ok good. What is the most common twist ratio for the barrels that are rifled?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 20:23

Most airsoft barrels are not rifled as they use a "hop-up" system that puts a backspin on the BB.  They pass down a tight, smooth bore barrel with that backspin which assists in its stable flight to target.

There is a company that makes rifled barrels for airsoft, but I don't have any experience with the company or the product.

There are a variety of barrel diameter's, meaning how much room there is (diameter) inside the barrel. You can get a 6.00 or 6.01 barrel, but you have to be very careful with ammo selection or you will have jamming. The most common barrels are in the 6.03 to 6.05 range. I would say most people probably have a 6.03 in their guns.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 20:25

Cool thanks

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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 21:35

Is it better to go with heavier or lighter bb's. also how many do you usually go through in a match?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 21:51

The standard for most is .20

Most people with higher end, or upgraded guns you will find using .25 to .30. However, this is a person to person and gun to gun preference. Different guns perform differently with different weight ammo.

As an example the Magpul PTS ACR's hop up will only effectively work in the weight range of .20 to .25

However, the KWA guns with the 2GX gearboxes perform best using .25 to .30

If your gun is shooting a lower velocity, you can go with a lower weight to maximum your range and accuracy. Because if it's already a slower velocity, increasing weight will only slow it down more.

As an example, if you're shooting 400 feet per second with .20's, you could expect the following velocities with heavier BB's
.23: 372
.25: 357
.28: 337
.30: 326

Snipers often use heavier rounds for longer range stability, and their guns also generally fire in the ballpark of 500FPS using a .20. Finding them using a .36 to .40 is not uncommon.

The amount of ammunition you go through will vary depending on the place, and your assignment. This past Sunday was a more close quarters type of location, and I also did a lot of suppression fire. I would estimate I went through around 1,500 BB's by the time I left.

There will be days I will go through only a few hundred. There will be large scale events where I may go through a few thousand.

Most places sell BB's by the bag or bottle in quantities of 4,000-5,000. Grabbing a bag will hold you over for a bit, but it never hurts to have another bag on standby. I know some of us have in the more than 20,000 on standby as we'll buy a few at once so we don't have to order again for a while.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 22:06

Ok so ill get a variety and see what works best.

Are the iron sights on the KWA guns any good or do they need a separate set of optics?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 22:12

Iron sights are fine on the KWA's. Most people will put some type of optic on their gun as there is faster sight acquisition. I would say take a look at a few that others have before you decide on one. There are a wide range of optics to choose from.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 22:14

Ok sounds good.

Thank you again for all the advice.

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 22:19

Not a problem. It's good to ask questions and get things figured out.
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Re: New person questions

Post by ApexX on August 5th 2013, 22:25

Are their any particular events coming up that you would suggest over others?

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Re: New person questions

Post by Twitch on August 5th 2013, 22:32

Start with something small. When we're doing public games they are usually on the smaller scale and are posted here and on our Facebook page.

There are also events regularly held at other venues as well. There is a small field that is good for starters out at Tactical Airsoft in Boulder.

For now, avoid anything with "Operation" in the title until you get yourself adjusted and squared away with gear. Those are typically the more intense Milsim events. Don't get me wrong, they can be fun, but you want to go into them knowing what you're doing, and being prepared. Our team trains all year with the emphasis on specific Operation events coming up that we are attending.

While I'm thinking of it, a key piece of gear to get is a hydration pack (Camelback type system.) Most of us use a MOLLE system that can attach to our tactical vests. A 3 liter system is good. You always want to have water on you. When in the field you should be drinking 8 to 12 ounces per hour (often more during heavy extertion.)

If you want gear idea pictures we have a bunch of pictures at http://photos.boulderairsoft.com
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