Wednesday, 22 September 2010

New Stuff

Double Eagle Benelli M4 Shotgun

For a while I had a hankering for a shotgun. Now whenever I've seen shotguns in action on the airsoft field, they never seem to be very effective so I didn't want to spend upwards of £150 on something that can only really be described as a whim purchase. Again, the Chinese come to my rescue in the form of the range of shotguns produced by Double Eagle. The one I really wanted was the shorter barrelled version, but in the end, and as result of the complete lack of stock of these guns, I went for the DE M56DL Tactical M4 Full length from Airsoft World.

Rather than re-type what I have already said about this gun, I'll post the review that I did for the Airsoft World website...

I bought this shotgun, the DE M56DL Tactical M4 Full length from Airsoft World. I ordered it on the Thursday morning, paid the extra for Saturday delivery and it duly arrived Saturday morning. When I opened the box I was very surprised with the quality of this fifty quid gun. It's sturdy and feels well made and solid with rubberised grip surfaces. The gun comes with a single cartridge, a pistol-mag style speedloader, a bag of cheap yellow ammo, two point sling and a small allen key (which seems to be for adjusting the nearsight). I took it out of the box and had a go straight away. It's a good sized gun, I'm six two and it feels big for me. The extending stock would help smaller folk, but it would still be bulky and just to reiterate, feels more expensive than the price tag suggests.

The pump action is pretty stiff, and it makes a solid noise when fired with no rattles from the internals. The gun fires three rounds each time and holds a single 30 round cartridge in the compartment just in front of the trigger guard and can keep a spare in the hollow in the pistol grip, but I'm not sure I'd trust it to stay in there. My only complaint, and it was something mentioned in the description text on the website, is that the stock tube does come loose, which it did almost immediately. This requires a really long 4mm allen key (about six inches, which I'm still trying to source) to do it up. A minor gripe, but still a bit of a pain if you don't have the right tool for the job. I'm going to threadlock it too when I find an allen key to tighten it up again. My only other problem is finding somewhere with the spare cartridges in stock, then I'm taking it out for a go at a skirmish. Considering the price paid for this gun, approximately a third of the cost of a comparable Marui item, it's a brilliant bargain. I may even buy the short barrelled version as well sometime.

What I would add to this is that when the stock comes loose (which in my experience is as soon as you take it out of the box) you will need the aforementioned really-fucking-long 4mm allen key. Six inches is the bare minimum length and don't think, like I did, that you have a socket screwdriver or similar because the inner diameter of the stock tube is too small to take socket screwdrivers or the adaptors that are usually found on the ends of them. After a lot of trial and error, I found a suitable allen key made by specialist cycle tool manufacturer Fat Spanner. This allen key has approximately six inches of exposed shaft and is just long enough. A bit pricey at £4.50 for a tool you may only use a couple of times, but always worth having the right tool for the job. I eventually bought one from Bunney's Bikes in Nottingham.

Last night, as you can see from the picture, I set it up in full tactical mode with the Aimpoint from my M4 and a torch and torch mount. The torch I've had for a while, the remote switch is a Spiderfire item and the mount was a cheap one off eBay. Looks pretty good like this.

Blackhawk Crossdraw Vest

I've wanted a Blackhawk vest for a while. Not something I was desperate for, but from watching Stargate and Blackhawk Down, I quite fancied owning a DOAV (Delta Operators Assault Vest) at some point. I'm still on the lookout for a DOAV as they don't seem to come up for sale very often. In the mean time, I'll settle for this crossdraw vest that I bought off the UKAZ forum recently. Not used it yet but I have tried it on and it's pretty comfy. It needs a bit of adjustment, of which there is plenty. Velcro adjusters on the shoulders and drawstring adjusters at the sides of the rear panel and I imagine that this would fit most people.

I'll write some more about this on the future when I've had more of a play with it, until then, enjoy the picture.

Ares M16 85 round magazines

I promised to take a couple of mates airsofting for the first time recently. I had guns to lend but not enough magazines so I bought a box of these Ares plastic 85 round mags. The three problems I ran into are thus:

1. They are a bit fatter than metal mags and asa a result, are a bit of a tight fit in both the Classic Army and Guarder receivers of my two Colt rifles. I dare say they'll wear down with use, but at present, it's a bit of a squeeze getting them to seat properly and then less than graceful trying to get them out again. Low speed, high drag.

2. They don't feed very well, at least the couple of times I used them over the course of a days skirmishing at Urban Assault, I had a couple of feed issues which resulted in me ditching the mag and going to the next available metal one.

3. They re described as black, the label on the box says black. They are mid- to dark grey at best.

Complaints aside, a bit of silicon spray will probably fix the feed issues, grey is nearly black and I'll just have to fight with them whenever I use them, and to be fair, they'll always be the last mags to be used. For £45 including postage from Zero One you can't complain too much if they don't last forever either.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Holster Bad-Assery

I've just found a link to Andrews Leather over at the Zombie Hunters Forum. Not only do they make a brain-blistering array of leather holsters, but they also have excellent 70s cop show style guys modelling their wares. My personal favourite - the Firepower rig, designed specifically for "narcs who wished to make a good first impression on their customers".

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Airsoft International Magazine

I very rarely criticise Airsoft International magazine. Yes, it is not the most accurate or informative publication in the world, but it supports Airsoft in this country and is only £4 a month so I can put up with a lot from it, hell, I've even learnt stuff from it on occasion, so generally, good job AI.

Unfortunately, in this month's edition there is an artice about British Commandos of world war 2. In this article, the word 'Catalyst' is printed as 'Cartelist'. Typos are expected in magazines, newspapers and websites. The hopeless inability to spell, in a national or in this case international magazine, is pretty unforgiveable.

C-, could try harder.