Softair Guns

Written by Johnny Kitchens
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In the very early days of Airsoft, the guns were referred to as Soft Air guns or Replisoft guns. The soft part is important because, unlike other toy guns that shoot little metal BBs, Airsoft guns are designed to shoot little plastic BBs that weigh a fraction of a gram. The lightweight ammunition allowed for teams of Airsoft players to shoot each other at relatively close ranges without fear of causing real damage because of the soft impact from the plastic BBs.

Entry-level Airsoft guns are almost always simple, spring-operated pistols called springers. These guns are quite inexpensive because they do not require many internal mechanisms. They are also good for beginners because they are easy to operate and they require very little maintenance. The trade-off is that these guns are not very powerful or very accurate. Beginners and children do not need extreme accuracy or power, however, so springers make a nice fit.

The middle range of Airsoft guns is inhabited by the gas-powered types. These guns use pressurized gas to fire BBs and can also use the gas to produce realistic blow-back actions. Gas pistols are quite a bit more powerful than springer pistols and far more accurate. These guns tend to look and feel more realistic than do springers, as well. The drawback for beginners is that gas pistols also require more maintenance in order to keep the seals and valves in proper working order.

The Premier Soft Air Guns

By far, the most popular guns for use in competitions are the AEGs. (AEG stands for automatic electric gun.) These guns are usually replicas of real-world machine guns, sub-machine guns, and assault rifles. They are capable of semi-automatic and fully automatic firing and can represent a real advantage on the battlefield. With the addition of tactical gear like laser sights, precision barrels, and silencers, they can become truly formidable.

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