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Old February 19, 2013, 02:33 PM   #1
Sabre9mm
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What is with the airsoft craze?

I just came across a posting on craigs list where a guy is selling *used* airsoft guns for hundreds of dollars apiece.

I know some of these guys spend a lot of money on them, and hundreds more in customization, why not just buy real guns?

Am I the only one that just does not get it?
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Old February 19, 2013, 02:53 PM   #2
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The advantage I see is that you can shoot them anywhere you want and not just at a range or way out in the country.
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Old February 19, 2013, 04:18 PM   #3
sigcurious
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why not just buy real guns?
Because shooting at other people with real guns for sport/fun/training is a very short lived and illegal endeavour.
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Old February 19, 2013, 04:41 PM   #4
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I guess Airsoft is becoming something like Paintball. If that's the case, then I see the trend continuing and Airsoft guns taking on a clique of their own, collector's status, premium makes and all.
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Old February 19, 2013, 05:42 PM   #5
Reinz
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Did you ever have BB gun wars as a Kid?

It sure was a heck of a lot of fun, but very dangerous.

No danger with airsoft.
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Old February 19, 2013, 06:31 PM   #6
Frank Ettin
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Originally Posted by Reinz
...No danger with airsoft.
Not exactly. They can sting, and getting hit the eye could do damage. Wear eye protection.

That said, the good ones the look and function like the real thing can be very useful training tools. Some instructors use them for Force-on-Force training (with appropriate safety gear). We use them with our beginner students before we take them on to the range for live fire exercises.

They are also fun.
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Old February 19, 2013, 06:38 PM   #7
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Plus, you can probably find ammo for the airsoft guns.
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Old February 19, 2013, 07:08 PM   #8
alex0535
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Always sort of preferred paintball more than airsoft.

Its a lot more intense. When you get hit by a paintball traveling 300 fps you know it.

I guess airsoft is a little bit more applicable to a simulated combat situation than paintball. Other people are really into it though. And some of the equipment that is made is pretty high dollar stuff.
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Old February 19, 2013, 07:24 PM   #9
cen
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My 12 y/o has at least 7 air soft guns, and some are very nice and expensive ($150). He has an AR model that if it didn't have the orange muzzle, I would swear its real. He just randomly shoots them in the yard and a targets. I'd much rather he get into paintball. An organized game is good exercise. Sure there's some danger involved though.
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Old February 19, 2013, 07:36 PM   #10
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I wouldn't call it that much of a craze here in the U.S.. But go to Europe or Japan and your eyes will be opened. It's a BIG deal there, and since they really can't own any guns, airsoft seems to have filled the gap. And you can easily spend $5,000 and up for the higher end stuff.

I have a 1:1 exact replica of my carry gun that cost me 50$. It's handy for doing drills or dry-firing around the house and doesn't worry the wife
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Old February 19, 2013, 07:39 PM   #11
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I just bought an Airsoft professional training rifle (M4 Carbine). It feels exactly like my real one, same sights, damn near same trigger pull etc. It allows me close range, quiet practice and is actually fairly accurate at close range. I liken it to about 65%-70% of the fun I get from a .22 AR 15 while allowing me to practice muscle memory habits such as mag release, handling, sight alignment, safety manipulation etc. I don't skirmish it is strictly a fun indoor range gun when I cannot get to the real range.

I own several relatively high end Airguns as well and they are another outlet for my shooting pleasure but different. The C02 pellet guns, although more accurate then say an airsoft are much louder.

All in all I finally took the plunge because I wanted to get some AR15 shooting in at home whenever the I fancied. I put up an appleseed target and go to town at 20-30 feet or so. It has scratched my itch nicely.

Make no mistake however, although much more accurate at close range then I expected they are no pellet guns.
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Old February 20, 2013, 01:56 AM   #12
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The craze has been going on since the mid 80's.

I prefer paintball as well, but if it brings people into the shooting fold, how bad can it be?
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Old February 20, 2013, 02:06 AM   #13
savagest
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I have a co2 powered one that looks like a Bereta. Very fun to shoot. Trigger feels a lot like a real gun. Great for training.
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Old February 20, 2013, 08:45 AM   #14
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Mine is perfect for chasing off that pesky woodpecker that bangs on my house once in awhile.
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Old February 20, 2013, 10:07 AM   #15
Glenn E. Meyer
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Great for FOF - but they can sting and break the skin if you get hosed real close up. I know.
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Old February 20, 2013, 01:14 PM   #16
Sabre9mm
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I guess I never considered their value as training tools.
I have just seen people spend beaucoup money on the things, and never really got the concept.
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Old February 20, 2013, 03:28 PM   #17
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I have just seen people spend beaucoup money on the things, and never really got the concept.
I have seen people spend way more money on Tippmann full-auto .22 scaled down replicas - starting at who knows, $13,000 a pop??? probably much more now. Compared to this, I can almost understand Airsoft.
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Old February 20, 2013, 03:53 PM   #18
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* my flame suit is on *
I don't get paintball or airsoft....

What is the first rule of GUN safety ?

call me old fashioned, but
IMO it just seems wrong.............
My son & friends play that stuff, and it really bothers me...

NONE of the Antis have taken up that cause...or even discussed it.

( maybe because they play it with their kids also ?)
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Old February 20, 2013, 04:17 PM   #19
Sabre9mm
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I am not apposed to kids playing with guns, I teach mine how to use the real ones. I figure it is safer to teach them to use and respect them than leave a blind fascination with a dangerous item.

I would have to be careful if I had real ones and air soft ones that looked and handled the same, it could lead to some misunderstandings for sure.


However I teach my kids with every gun, if it shoots anything, you always treat it as loaded. Considering with the airsoft there is chance of injury over say nerf... I would have to treat that a little more seriously.

I could see it being a media frenzy the first time a kid (or irresponsible adult) picked up the real one thinking it was the airsoft, and popped off one in the wrong place.

But then again, this is not the cause of the problem, just the effect.

So no flame from me, entitled to an opinion.
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Old February 20, 2013, 04:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
* my flame suit is on *
I don't get paintball or airsoft....

What is the first rule of GUN safety ?
I take it by this statement you also have a problem with MILES gear? I've done both MILES and paintball in the military. Paintball was more recreational, but both were military ran.

I played paintball as a kid. It's many times better than video games for kids growing up. It gets kids and adults alike outside, active, and training a skill that may eventually be useful. Paintball can help by training you to seek cover, recognize cover vs. concealment, recognize ambushes, use teamwork, etc. While there is a massive difference between incoming paint and bullets, you can still learn the basics of force on force tactics. Yeah, it's more lighthearted, but still can be quite educational on a basic level. Same can be said about airsoft.

Just like with a firearm, there are safety rules to be followed. With the correct gear and adherence to rules, there's very little risk. Same with any sport. I've yet to hear paintball blamed for a violent incident.

Of course, I was introduced to real guns (hunting) first. I knew the difference well before I ever touched a paintball gun. Think I was in the minority with the group I played with. Take that for what it's worth. I don't intend this to be flaming, but a look at the positive side of pointing a painball gun at your buddies in a controlled environment. I'll respectfully disagree, but invite you to a game if you're ever in my neck of the woods.
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Old February 20, 2013, 05:14 PM   #21
Tickling
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What is the first rule of GUN safety ?
Despite looking and feeling fairly realistic, here in the states (or most states anyway), airsoft guns are required to have a bright orange tip at the muzzle. So it would be hard to get them confused.. Unless you're the police, which is why I don't think they're a toy for young kids.
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Old February 20, 2013, 06:27 PM   #22
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Airsoft was used as training by APD until the great depression. I was impressed by the reality of the training scenarios. Getting shot with a .28gram heavyball will definitely encourage you to take cover next time.
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Old February 20, 2013, 06:44 PM   #23
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Actually the orange tip only applies to import, commercial sale, and transport in commerce. Once a private individual purchases the gun it's perfectly legal for them to remove the tip as far as Fed. law is concerned. I personally remove the tips on my guns and replace them with regular black flash hiders. That orange tip looks so goofy.

As for the cost of airsoft guns:
Most airsoft guns are infact quite a bit more complex mechanically than their real firearm counterparts. Also most airsoft manufacturers are pretty small operations so they just don't have the economy of scale that Colt or Ruger does. So for a good quality airsoft gun (not the cheap junk you see in walmart) it's no wonder that the price can run into the hundreds of dollars for a "toy". Pot metal helps keep costs down (and is perfectly fine for most airsoft guns) but aftermarket steel and aluminum replacement parts are readily available for most good guns at which point it's easy to match or even exceed the price of the real gun since it's now built pretty much just like a real gun.

Why would I spend so much on a "toy"? Well how often do i shoot my real rifle? Maybe once every 2 or 3 months just plinking targets at the range. i don't hunt. So the rest of the time it just sits by the bed in case of a home intruder that in all reality will probably never come. The airsoft guns however go to skirmishes every 2 or 3 weeks where they are run harder than most folks run their real guns. And are shot at home on a almost daily basis. So why wouldn't I spend more money on the airsoft replicas? They certainly see alot more use than the real ones.
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Old February 20, 2013, 08:12 PM   #24
alex0535
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Quote:
* my flame suit is on *
I don't get paintball or airsoft....

What is the first rule of GUN safety ?
As far as paintball, most consider it a "marker" more than a "gun" because it marks things with paint instead of using an explosive to drive a projectile. They are really big on paintball marker safety at places where it is played. When not on the field, barrels are to be plugged or sleeved. When on the field a face mask is to be worn at all times. They usually mandate a top speed of 280-300fps for your gun to be shooting for .

A paintball marker will put an eye out and they make a point of handling them safely on and off the field.
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Old February 21, 2013, 10:56 AM   #25
Skans
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Actually the orange tip only applies to import, commercial sale, and transport in commerce. Once a private individual purchases the gun it's perfectly legal for them to remove the tip as far as Fed. law is concerned. I personally remove the tips on my guns and replace them with regular black flash hiders. That orange tip looks so goofy.
I don't mind Airsoft guns (i.e. replica guns), but I have concerns about the orange tip. One one hand, it's good to help distinguish a real firearm from a replica. On the other hand, I can see where thugs could start painting the tips of their real guns orange so they can openly carry them around without anyone questioning.
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