Every Airsoft player has a story. See me in that picture below? Yup, this is (part of) my story as a beginning Airsoft player.
That was me in March 2010. Picture was taken by player “six4” during a game at Bigfoot Field in Mission, BC.
(Continue reading after the break.)
I started playing Airsoft in December 2009 after getting age verified by “optix,” also known as Julian (the same Julian that now runs the Airsoft Gear store and events). At his urging, I ended up getting ready to actually get out and play with the club that Julian was running at the time, instead of sitting around and playing with guns in my room like I had initially intended. I remember reading the advise of some more senior players on Op-For club forums stating that a new player should NEVER start playing with a non-AEG. So, I convinced myself to pick up a cheap AEG for the purposes of starting to play – a cheap, used, clearsoft-painted-black Aftermath Broxa MP5 (displayed in the inset picture because I thought it was the coolest thing in the world at that time) because MP5’s kicked ass in video games… Worst waste of money in Airsoft for myself to this day – it broke within the first game on my first game day.
At that same point in time, people in Canada were really starting to get excited about KWA with the recent release of CanSoft and the new availability of legit KWA GBB pistols with the clear lower frames. Capital Airsoft had this really great deal on at the time, so I bought myself a KWA USP .45 Full-size (or KP45) with the NS2 gas system. Pretty frigging cool – so cool in fact that I ended up buying a second Cansoft KWA USP to match the first.
Rewind a bit to early 2010 – I had sold my first JG G3 (pictured below), complete with crazy creaky body and picked up a JG HK416 Gen 2.
Knowing next to nothing about the slightly higher-end guns you could pick up for “low” prices then, I figured I’d be okay with JG quality as compared to a Systema PTW. Plus, the JG HK416 Gen 2 had a metal body that wouldn’t creak or wobble and it had trademarks!!!!!!!!! Awesome, right?
Boy, was I wrong. Turned out that the used JG HK416 Gen 2 (seen under this paragraph) that I picked up more problems that I had hoped for. At that time, I was completely unfamiliar with opening up an AEG gearbox… turns out that all the major problems I had with that JG HK416 originated from there. I’m not saying that the JG HK416 was bad or anything – it’s not that bad of a gun for the comparable value (that is, value in Hong Kong) it carries as compared to some of the other guns on the market at that price point… it’s just that the Heckler-Koch G3 pattern had won itself a special place in my heart. I got my first AEG kill with that creaky old JG G3, after all!
So seeing as how I had dumped a “large amount” of money into the JG HK416 (“large amount” is nothing compared to what I have currently invested in Airsoft), I figured I’d pick up another AEG as a back up as that’s what most of the more seasoned players I was playing with had with them at the field every game day. Hmmmmmmmm, so I liked G3’s. I just couldn’t stand the flex in the JG plastic receiver. Who makes a metal-bodied, full size G3? Oh, that’s right – Classic Army (see below), welcome to my little family of AEG’s… have we met before?
Mhmm, Classic Army sounds like a good brand name, so they must be good! Yeah, sort of. Externally, I loved that good old CA G3 (sketchy cell phone picture is under this block of text). I slept with that gun when I first got it! Internally, uh, well, that was a different story – I went through more gear sets and pistons than I have on any of my guns since then. I forced myself to take apart a V2 gearbox and reassemble it in order to keep my Airsoft budget down so I could actually still afford to eat. Note to self, a student’s income, or lack thereof, is not something that is conducive to catching the Airsoft bug. After weeks of heartache and greasy hands, I finally had a working G3 that seemed to get the job done without exploding every couple hundred rounds – great!
The picture you see above was taken shortly before I sold it. But, before I did offload that CA G3, I discovered the Element H Hop… I swear, that little H-shaped nubs changed my whole take on guns – work the hop up to make it shoot further and more accurately and everything else is built around that. All those hours sitting and asking the same noob questions to my gun tech(s) about how to make Airsoft guns shoot better finally sunk in. I had finally figured out one of the ways that the other guys were experiencing with their highly tuned DMR’s and the like (at the expense of my grades at university).
Yeah, those were the days – working on my guns instead of doing what I should have been…
Oh wait, I still do that.