Tokyo Marui SCAR-H: Dat Hop-up

photo 1

I’ve long been a fan of the SCAR-H platform, but my experiences with the VFC SCAR-H and its consistent feeding issues, along with the poor build quality of the proprietary hop-up, eventually drove me to finally put down the cash for Tokyo Marui’s version.

The TM SCAR-H lives up to the Tokyo Marui reputation for excellent performance right out of the box; 150 foot shots are easy as pie to make (with a maximum effective range of 150-170 feet), with great consistency from shot to shot. And this is all with 0.25g BBs, and at a paltry 300fps. The recoil of the platform is not as strong as the KWA ERG platform (or even TM’s M4 Recoil Shock series), but is still strong enough to give the gun a pleasant bump against your shoulder with every trigger pull. The bolt release function is always fun to have, and I’ve grown used to bolt lock functions on my other AEGs so I’m used to hitting that paddle.

Anyway, I did have a 407mm 6.03 Prometheus barrel lying around, and I’ve been a fan of the look of the longer 16″ barrel on the SCAR-H that can be achieved via the included barrel extension. Thus I set to work opening the SCAR up to install the Prometheus barrel and perhaps get to the bottom of what makes Tokyo Marui hop-ups so great.

CONCLUSION: Tokyo Marui hop-ups are made of crushed unicorn bones and fairy dust, forged together in the fires of Mount Doom by the dark lord Sauron.

More pics of my (not-so-simple) walk into Mordor after the break.

That's a lot of screwing.

That’s a lot of screwing.

First things first – getting to the hop up. I followed this guide that was very easy to follow. Thanks, Echigoya!

The TM SCAR-H isn’t your average version 2 M4, where all you need to do is pop the front receiver pin and slide the upper receiver off to get to the hop. No, you need to unscrew eleven screws just to get the upper receiver off, and then you have a further five screws to remove to separate the hop-up from the metal block that it’s housed in. That’s sixteen screws altogether – better make sure you don’t lose any. The takedown also requires the use of a Torx head as well as several hex keys of varying size, so a precision screwdriver/bit set is a must (and really, anyone looking to do any of their own gunsmithing should have a set).

The takedown is still very simple, though, despite all the screwdriver turning. After undoing all the screws, the upper receiver slides right off, revealing the hop-up unit that is set into a larger (metal) block that sets it against the receiver.

photo 4

After finally making it to the hop-up unit itself, you’re greeted with the above. The two larger pieces are the drum portion of the hop (the first one sets the hop against the nozzle, and the second one is the actual drum portion that you turn). The pieces to the right are the hop-up arm itself, the hop-up nub holder (for lack of a better term), and the hop-up nub itself. Installing the Prometheus barrel is as simple as any other standard hop-up, and involves removing the barrel clip holding the barrel in place, sliding out the stock barrel, and inserting the new one. The hop-up rubber is a standard-looking black one and could easily be mistaken for a much cheaper and lesser quality one, although I’m sure in reality it’s made by the Elven blacksmiths of Rivendell under the light of a full moon.

photo 2

L to R: hop-up drum, hop-up arm, hop-up nub holder, hop-up nub

Above is a closer look at the magic. The most obvious change from a “standard” V2 hop-up is the fact that the hop-up arm comes in two parts – the arm itself and a separate part that holds the nub. The separate part nub holder is flat where it meets the hop-up arm, and I believe this is so that it applies even pressure on the nub, which in turn applies even pressure on the rubber, and thus provides a more stable hop-up to the BB. Combined with the drum hop (which I find to be more precise and stable than wheeled hop up units), this results in a very stable hop-up unit. The drum itself is very stiff and holds adjustments solidly.

The one thing that became very clear to me during the entire process was the very tight tolerances involved in the build quality of each and every part. Every part mates together with other parts so seamlessly and cleanly. There is zero wobble or looseness in any of the bits. Everything fits together perfectly, and I think this goes a long way towards producing that famed Tokyo Marui performance that everyone raves about. One might argue that the TM SCAR-H is over-engineered, but the resulting performance compared to other companies’ offerings (and in particular compared to the easier-to-takedown VFC SCAR-H) speaks for itself.

The tighter 6.03 bore of the Prometheus barrel resulted in a roughly 30fps boost, bumping me up 330fps. Down the road I may or may not look into changing up the gears and motor to accommodate a stronger spring and kick up the fps to the 400fps level (I know Juicy is looking into this upgrade path), but for now I’m entirely happy keeping the entire thing stock. I’m pretty hesitant to mess with a platform I’m not 100% familiar with, and I don’t want to lose any of that fabled Tokyo Marui reliability. I guess time will tell what upgrades (if any) I’ll be doing to the platform in the future.

BONUS:

so pretty.

so pretty.

A quick peek at my current external setup (this was before the inner barrel upgrade, hence the short CQB length outer barrel). More on the external setup is to come once I get a certain optic in the mail (thanks in advance, Stealth, if you’re reading this!).

 

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14 responses to “Tokyo Marui SCAR-H: Dat Hop-up

  • Anonymous

    Damn that’s nice.

  • anonymous

    Absolutely agree with you on the garbage hop-up chamber for the VFC/Dboys SCAR-H. It’s simply a terrible design. Though the TM might be more difficult to access, it would be hard to design something as bad as the VFC version.

    • dizzy

      I think the terrible design is due mostly to the fact that the VFC hop unit is designed to facilitate the realistic take down of the VFC SCAR (whereby the lower receiver swings right out after popping the front receiver pin). Thus the VFC hop is open ended at the bottom to allow the air nozzle to swing down and away from the hop unit when removing the receiver.

      This would’ve been fine had the build quality been even average – instead they used soft-as-hell plastic for the hop. I broke a total of four or five VFC hop units simply by turning the hop wheel too much either way and snapping the wheel right off the hop unit thanks to the soft plastic. Sigh.

      It’s a shame, but on the plus side it led to me buying the TM version, so all’s well that ends well I guess.

      Thanks for reading 🙂

  • TM SCAR-H: External Setup | Overhoppers

    […] I guess be the longer barrel length. I like the look of the longer barrel on the SCAR-H and the longer 407mm Prometheus barrel I installed gave me an excuse to use the outer barrel extension that TM included in the box. I can still use […]

  • Anonymous

    FWIW, you only need to take out nine screws to get the upper off and the hop out. Four rearmost, top rear, and the torx screws on each side. You do not need to take that entire block off.

    • dizzy

      Really? When I took it apart the first time I thought the hop was set into that block and it needed to be taken apart. Hmm. Will make a note of this and try it again next time I have to get to the hop, and will update the article accordingly.

      Cheers, and thanks for the tip!

  • Danny Atherden

    Hey Dizzy, I’m looking at making the same upgrade to my TM Scar H, did you notice an increase in range/accuracy without losing any of the Marui magic?

    • dizzy

      Hi Danny,

      I gamed the SCAR with the Prometheus barrel and noticed only a negligible increase in range. Accuracy however was noticeably improved, with my groupings being smaller and semi-auto fire being more consistent from shot to shot.

      It’s worth noting that I kept the stock Marui hop rubber as I didn’t want to lose any of the Marui magic.

      I have a PDI 6.05 barrel that I think is probably the best inner barrel I’ve ever used, so I think I might toss that in the SCAR next and see what happens.

      Thanks for reading! 🙂

      • simon

        Hi dizzy

        First of all thanks for review. It is really helpful especially I am looking to upgrade my scar h.

        Prometheus 6.03 and 6.05 are always my prime.choices for upgrade depending on the barrel length.

        I am just wondering does the recoil affect the accuracy at all throught your experience? Just worry that if I install a 6.03, that may increase the bb bounce within the barrel as it is tightbore and jeopardize the accuracy.

        May I ask how is the 6.05 works out at the end? Please advise.

        Thanks

        Simon

      • dizzy

        Hi Simon,

        The recoil does affect accuracy somewhat for the first few times I gamed the rifle and was still unused to having recoil. Once I learned to actively manage it (via actually shouldering the rifle, adjusting my grip particularly on my left hand) the recoil became less of an issue with regards to accuracy.

        I ended up using a 6.03 Prometheus barrel that was r-hopped by a friend, and it works very well. 200ft shots easy. My only concern is the low FPS of the AEG combined with the 0.28 BBs I’m using means the BB is travelling around 220 FPS or so when it hits the target – and I don’t blame some people for not calling their hits due to not feeling it. 😦

        Anyway, let me know what you do with your SCAR-H. 🙂

        Cheers

        Dizzy

      • simon

        Hi Dizzy

        I had a lovely game with my scar last week and over thousands of bbs were fired over 5 games. It was a brillant test to the rifle and my current setting.

        After my previous msg on barrel issues I decided to change my existing 300mm brass barrel to 455mm prometheus 6.05 tightbore, 18inch barrel. I used 0.23 g bbs and the fps reduced to 265 which is around 0.75 joules. I was kind of surprise by such a reduction as I thought tighter barrel would give a high fps.

        I consulted my friend who had a good understanding of gunsmithing and he told me that the original capacity of the gas cylinder itself is not sufficient enough to push the bbs, and may result lowering the fps.
        However the 6.05 barrel gave me a very consistance shot of 0.75j thoughout with excellent accuracy in 30metres (top gas bottle with 90% hit rate); she can get a good hit on target 40 metres away but my opposition can only feeling a tiny punch.

        The oppositions were surprised by the marui magic. But the grouping turned ugly at 45 to 50metres. As you mentioned about your scar can get a hit as far as 200ft which is around 60m with 0.28, I am wondering which barrel length and setting you are using to maximize the effective distance.

        Nice to have someone out there lovely using marui scar, proves to be a rare platform to be used our community, and willing to share their thoughts as there are many interesting topics to go around the class.

        Thanks

  • BOWEN

    hey dizzy, im looking to buy the same scar H that you having, the only problem is the range, since i will pay 800+ for it, i hope that the TM scar can shoot the same range as my other AEGs(VFC SCAR, G&G scar L).

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