Monday, 30 September 2013

Airsoft Arms and Equipment: New Toys

As part and parcel of the general overhaul of airsoft equipment I’ve been embarking on recently I have been getting rid of a number of my Chinese made guns and replacing them with a smaller number of better made Japanese, Taiwanese and Hong Kong made models

The other day I posted about the King Arms Thompson M1A1 I recently acquired and today it’s the turn of another recently purchased gun to have a moment in the spotlight, the G and P MOE CQB M4 variant. Hardly a catchy, ‘just rolls off the tongue’ kind of a title but it nevertheless describes what’s hiding inside the box pretty well

Made in Hong Kong by G and P this is a shortened version [by about 11cms] of their M4 carbine and comes customised with lashings of MOE, or Magpul Original Equipment. Virtually everything dark earth on the outside of this gun is made by Magpul. Available in a variety of shades I decided to plump for the dark earth model to match my multi-cam and tan coloured Warrior webbing, and because I already own a number of dark earth PMag style magazines

As with the Thompson I posted about the other day, I’d been planning on getting a ‘Magpuled up’ M4 for sometime and a few weeks ago decided that the time was right to do so before getting hold of them started to become a bit tricky now that Magpul have pulled out of supplying gear to the airsoft market

As I hope you’ll be able to tell from the photos, she’s a little beauty with decent range out to 40 plus yards and a respectable rate of fire

The fire selector switch has a very positive feel to it and functions perfectly, as does the incredibly solid Mbus rear sight which comes fitted with an extremely powerful spring loaded mechanism! It comes with two changeable sighting holes and is fully adjustable for windage and elevation

The cover on what would be the shell casing ejection port on a real steel weapon flips up but doesn't actually close, it is permanently open and aesthetically might not be to everyone's taste

Surprise, surprise [not]! The cosmetic ejection port hides the adjustable hop mechanism, accessed by pulling back on the bolt release lever at the rear of the upper receiver

Since taking this photo I've added an ASAP to the rear of the receiver to facilitate the use of a single point sling but have decided to keep the Warrior sling attachment on as well

As you can see here the battery fits in the stock tube making for a very tidy looking job as well as adding a little bit more weight to the rear of the gun. The Magpul stock is a little fiddly to get on and off but with practice and the aid of a long shafted, flat head screwdriver all is well!

It's certainly worth mentioning that the gun comes wired with a Deans connector so you may have to adapt some batteries or buy some new ones to use with it. You could always put a Tamiya connector on there but why would you when the DC is more efficient, not to mention smaller? There's just about enough room in there for the small Lipo you can see above but a stick battery might be preferable

The gun comes packaged with a single 120 round Pmag which works perfectly well, as do the 360 round King Arms Pmags pictured above.....

.....and the 75 round Beta Project mags pictured here

These Green Label 75 round Pmags on the other hand are a little loose in the mag well and don't feed all that reliably unless they are held forward as you're shooting

The addition of a self adhesive Velcro spot, preferably in a matching shade if you happen to be anal about such things, will soon have that sorted out

All in all, I'm very pleased with my new toy and am looking forward to taking her out on the field. Thank you to Firesupport for supplying the gun and kindly sorting one of my batteries out with a DC!

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Airsoft Arms and Equipment: New Toys

Airsoft and I haven't fallen out, but suffice to say skirmishing has been placed on the back burner for a little time lately while I immerse myself in one or two other shooting related hobbies that are totally new to me

I've also reached the stage with airsoft where I've decided to pare down the amount of guns and gear I've stockpiled over the years, partly because I need some cash to inject into the above mentioned new interests, partly because I need to free up some space in Dad's Den, and partly because I simply don't love it enough to want to keep it any longer

Leaving aside my WW2 German replica uniforms, which I don't intend ridding myself of anytime soon, I've decided to concentrate on two 'modern' looks, namely German Flecktarn [woodland pattern] and the ubiquitous [at least in airsoft skirmishing circles] multi-cam teamed with Warrior webbing and other accessories from quality manufacturers like Blackhawk, IMI and Magpul

Consequently, I now have a number of black, plastic bin liners up in the loft, stuffed with clothing, bits of webbing and other sundry items waiting until I can find the time to upload it onto ebay or take it along to the next Arms Fair

It's a similar story with guns. I've decided to jettison all my Chinese clones and limit myself to guns I really, really love, made by companies in HK, Taiwan and Japan. Which brings me on to the real reason for this post, one of the new guns I've just bought to replace the half dozen China types I parted company with recently

So, here it is. The King Arms Thompson M1A1 [military version]. It's an iconic WW2 gun and I've wanted one for quite a while. It comes with a single 60 round magazine so when I bought it I also purchased a box set of 5 King Arms mid cap magazines holding 110 rounds each

Whenever I play a WW2 game I always portray a German soldier, so this will be a 'captured' weapon, hence the addition of the MP40 leather strap which is a perfect fit and a darn sight easier to put on than the webbing sling designed for the gun

The 'wooden' furniture is actually made of plastic but, if you can live with the fairly obvious mold lines when up close, it looks pretty respectable from a distance. You can get real wood kits for it and I'll more than likely do that at some point

The magazines [made of ABS] are absolutely solid when engaged in the receiver. We're talking zero wobble!

Five 110 round magazines, in addition to the 60 round low cap mag packaged with the gun, and pictured below, will give you the 600 rounds you're permitted to take on to the field at any one time in a lot of WW2 themed games

There's plenty of room in the battery compartment which is very easily accessible by means of a swivel plate at the rear of the stock, but.....'s worth mentioning that the battery connector is a large Tamiya connector rather than a small one. At the moment I'm using the adapter lead that came with my battery charger and a lipo battery. I don't actually have any batteries with large connectors on them! Out of the box, the gun shoots at over 400 FPS with .20 gram BBs so I will need to get the spring changed. When I do, I will get a Deans connector spliced onto the battery lead at the same time!

All in all it's a cracking little gun with good range, a respectable rate of fire and decent build quality, and I picked it up brand new for a penny shy of £100. Can't grumble!

Friday, 27 September 2013

Beau Geste Digest

Well, it certainly feels like a long time since I last put together a post about the latest offerings from Ana and the team across the pond in Argentina. There are some cracking sets here so dive right in and take a look

Hello to All,

We had a GREAT time in Chicago this year. It was a wonderful show. I wish you could all be there.
I didn't want to keep you waiting for the pictures of the new sets, so I'm including them all in this newsletter. I'll feature a different newsletter for each with the historical background and comments when I come back home, and will post pictures for the show. But as this might take a few more weeks and I didn't want to keep you waiting, here are the new released sets.
365 - French Foreign Legion, Campaign Dress, 1907

366 - French Foreign Legion Marching, Campaign Dress, 1907

367 - French Foreign Legion Band, 1907
368 - Indore Military Band, Retainers Review, Delhi Durbar 1903

369 - Indore Infantry, Retainers Review, Delhi Durbar 1903

370 - Escort Guards from Kotah, group right, Delhi Durbar, 1903

371 - Escort Guards from Kotah, group left, Delhi Durbar, 1903

372 - Children's Band from Kotah, Delhi Durbar, 1903

373 - Elephant of the Maharaja of Kotah, Delhi Durbar 1903

373-372-371-370 - The Kotah Group, Delhi Durbar 1903
I will re-take a few of the images when I'm back home, since I took the pictures in a rush before leaving Buenos Aires and some of them are not as neat and colorful as I'd like them to be. 
I'll be working on the official newsletters around the end of October. I just didn't want the Durbar collectors waitng to see the new elephant for so long. 
The collectors that saw them in person at the show had the advantage of buying the new sets there or place their orders, and it didn't sound fair for all of you who couldn't attend.
I'll be in touch. I hope you like them.
Ana Donzino

Happy hunting!

Thursday, 26 September 2013

First Legion: September Update

Hello again, First Legion fans, what a treat for all of us this month is what with two posts and two batches of fine toy soldiery to feast our eyes on. No need to pad this out in any way, shape or form so let's great straight to it. Here, in chronological order, are the new releases

First up, a handful of 'new' figures for The Crusades range. If, like me, you're looking at them and thinking 'they look a little familiar', then you're right, they do and the reason why is perfectly straight forward. The poses are exactly the same as previously released figures, released now with a new lick of paint

Next in line, a host of English archers for their Agincourt range and a group of dismounted French knights and men-at-arms for them to stick their bow fingers up at

From the High Middle Ages we travel forward in time several hundred years for the next release, two long awaited mounted personality figures for their American Wars of Independence series

The penultimate images in this post feature a handful of German Fallschirmjagers for the expanding Normandy range, and very nice they are too

Last, but by no means least, the company have announced the production of yet another new range

For this month’s “sneak peek” we are pleased to present our rendition of “The Great War.” The initial focus will be the Battle of the Somme in 1916, one of the bloodiest battles in human history, where nearly 1,000,000 men were casualties

We will start with Germans, British, French and from there we will expand to cover not only the early war and late war, but also the Eastern Front and North Africa. As with all of our figure ranges, we will endeavour to create a comprehensive range of truly stunning figures and models. So please take a look at some of the first products for the new range!

Well, that's all folks! As always, further details are available on the company website. Happy hunting!