Electric Bb Guns

Written by Johnny Kitchens
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Though they are still called electric BB guns by many people, the preferred term in the Airsoft community is AEG (or automatic electric gun). Most people consider BB guns to be toys for children, while Airsoft guns are lifelike replicas of real-world firearms. While this distinction may seem to be quibbling (considering Airsoft guns shoot plastic BBs at relatively low velocities), the fact remains that many Airsoft guns are hyper-realistic and complex machines.

The distinction becomes readily apparent when you consider the wealth of tactical accessories available for Airsoft guns. What child's BB gun can be upgraded with a laser sight, a collapsible stock, and a silencer? Plus, how many children's BB guns sell for hundreds of dollars? The answer is few to none. Some Airsoft guns, in fact, cost upwards of a couple of thousand dollars for solid steel and wood replicas--though few even in the Airsoft community will spend so much.

AEGs are arguably responsible for the literal explosion of interest in Airsoft that has taken place worldwide in the last several years. Until the development of the modern AEG by Tokyo-Marui in the early 1990s, the premier Airsoft guns were powered by external gas canisters that had to be carried around. The AEG, with its onboard motor and battery, allowed the guns to pursue full realism and to achieve ridiculous firing rates.

How Much to Spend on an AEG?

Your price will depend on the quality you want. You can find AEGs priced between 50 and 80 dollars that are serviceable models--if not highly accurate or powerful. If you want a competition-grade AEG, you will probably need to spend at least 150 to 250 dollars. If you are after a competition-grade AEG that has the heft of a real-world firearm and the power to give you a tactical advantage, you will probably be spending between 300 and 500 dollars, at least.

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