SPECNA ARMS CORE BB REVIEW | GUNFIRE.COM

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog! Today I have another review for you in partnership with gunfire.com and this time we’ll be looking at the Specna Arms CORE BB range! Those of you who read the blog often will have probably seen my reviews on the SA-G11, SA-C09 and the SA-H08 from Specna Arms and now it’s time to turn our focus to their line of ammo. Gunfire sent over a few 1 kg bags of their 0.30g BBs for me to test, as most indoor CQB sites have ammo weight limits I tested these in the outdoor games I’ve played over the last couple of months in both my custom Krytac MKII CRB and my G&G Armament Black Orchid ARP9.


Whilst Specna Arms is, as a brand getting pretty well-known in the airsoft community thanks to their quality, well-priced replicas, their new BB line is still relatively new to players. Their mission is to give players excellent quality BBs that have a very good price to quantity ratio.

Although there’s not too much to say about the features of a BB, the diameter of the Specna Arms CORE™ BBs is 5.95 mm (+/- 0.005 mm) which is pretty standard along the board of BBs on the market and the difference in weight between each BB does not exceed 0.01g which is excellent. These combined means they’re an ideal choice of ammo for replicas with stock internal barrels and they can also be used in tuned replicas that are equipped with precision barrels. Each BB has a high-gloss polish which helps prevents issues with feeding from a variety of magazines and also helps achieve a stable spin on the BB by the Hop-Up system.


I tested the 0.30g Specna Arms CORE BBs in my upgraded Krytac MKII CRB with the PTS Syndicate Enhanced Polymer Magazines, after quickly adjusting the hop to help carry a heavier BB than I would usually use in this gun I was soon putting rounds down range. The only issue I had with using them in this rifle is, around the 12th magazine in, two of the BBs did get jammed in the barrel. I’ve not had this problem with this rifle/BBs since so whether it was a one-off or something to do with the custom internals I don’t know. It was easily solved with a jamming rod.


I also tested them in my G&G Armament Black Orchid ARP9, which has completely stock internals. For this, I used the G&G ARP9 mid capacity magazines and again adjusted the hop. The BBs fed really well in this rifle and I had no misfeeds or jams. 

The Specna Arms CORE BB’s are available in various weights and quantities. From 0.20g BBs all the way up to 0.30g and available in bags of 0.5kg and 1kg bags. At the time of writing this review, only the 0.5kg bag of 0.30g BBs were available from the GF website and they were priced at £3.21, which is a seriously good price! Overall, I’m pretty happy with the quality of them.

Post sponsored by Gunfire.com

OPERATION INVASION II

What happens when you get a couple of known Americans to visit Selby, in the UK for a weekend? 2 charities, 1 event and 200 players, across 2 days of fun… and Georaga and Kelly went to join in!!! 

Firstly, some congratulations are in order. Before I go into how this event ran and what was included, well done to the 1Legion Milsim team, who raised £2000 for ‘Pilgrim Bandits’, a charity here in the UK supporting our injured ex-forces and $2500 for ‘Veterans For Airsoft’ who provide all expenses paid airsoft experiences for ex-military over in the United States. Raising this amount of money for two excellent charities is a feat in itself and there should be a huge hat-tip to those that both organised the weekend, and to those that contributed to its success. Here at Airsoft Action, we’re big supporters of Pilgrim Bandits and are hugely thankful to the airsoft community for getting behind them as much as it has… so… additionally… a hat-tip to you too! 

Back to the start 

Right, so what prompted this weekend event? 1Legion Milsim are a team that span across the globe; what began in the US, 1Legion now have 2 factions in the US, 1 here in the UK and 1 in South Africa spanning about 41 players and around an additional 6 affiliate teams. 

Well last year, a couple of their team came over and played and this year, they wanted to come back, but with a difference. ‘INVASION 2’ saw two of the team’s leaders, Superfly and Sheep, come, train and spend time with some of the airsoft community here in the UK, while taking the opportunity to raise some money at the same time. 

The weekend consisted of some CQB training and an Open Day and tombola on the Saturday, followed by a full day battlesim style gameday on the Sunday. 

Picture the scene; it’s 5.30am on Saturday morning and I’m in London. I’m supposed to be attending some training that they’re running at the Halo Mill CQB site at 11am and it happens to be a 4.5 hour drive away. My car is packed with guns and gazebos and as I lug my sad, sluggish, sleepy backside to the driver’s seat, I shed a soft tear at the sight of the delays on route, knowing how slow this mammoth journey is about to be. I set off and… in fact, I’ll spare you the details of my inability to stop for a much-needed coffee… eventually I arrived on site at Patrol Base, with about an hour to spare and a very chirpy FierceFox to greet me and show me round. 

Saturday had two activities running across the two locations. Numero uno was an Open Day at Patrol Base, a very large, rustic feeling shop with some gorgeous timber floors (minus the occasional chipboard covered hole) supporting a huge array of guns on display around and in the middle of the room. It’s an odd thing to focus on but the shop was not what I’d imagined; it felt bright, warm and welcoming, with high ceilings and skylights flooding in the blazing sunlight. It was reminiscent of what you’d think a stereotypical Texas gun shop would look like back in the Wild West; wood everywhere, men with beards walking around in flannel shirts and cases of ‘shooters’ just waiting for that lone cowboy to walk in, collect a new rifle and head out hunting for deer in the wood by their ranch. 

As I came down the stairs from the shop, I wasn’t exactly met by a stallion waiting for me to ride it off into the sun but instead with the stand from HR4K, a badass apparel and coffee company (I didn’t get a chance to grab that god damn coffee I needed) which was run by Ben and Reg (his extremely friendly canine companion). He was joined in the car park by the ASG team Paul and Ben, who gave me a rundown of their latest releases and talked to me more about the 2018 updated EVO (for more info check out Tom and Gadge’s video on AirsoftActionTV’s YouTube); Gavin was on the Viper stand running a tombola with some very cool prizes and Trent from Nuprol was also in attendance showing off their impressive collection of goodies. 

PC: Georaga Airsoft

CQB Training 

After the 5minute drive to Halo Mill, I hoiked my jam-packed gun case up 2 flights of stairs… they chose not to warn me about this until I arrived… I could see why… and set up my kit to take part in their CQB training. Sheep, Superfly, Patriot and Fox, supported by Akey from their affiliate team JTF (several of the training group have served/are serving in the military/armed police); ran a series of drills designed to help less experienced players understand their own loadouts and how to transition from primary to secondary, to help more experienced players improve on their room clearing capabilities and show them how as individuals and teams, they’d be able to work alone and with others to increase their efficiency in airsoft for tight spaces. 

I hung around for both of the training sessions that day and saw two very different types of players come through. The first session in which I took part, consisted of many newer players and players that were experienced skirmishers but very few that were there in actual teams. That proved interesting due to the unfamiliarity of each other’s skills/experience/ habits and there were more than a few clunky moments. 

The afternoon session however, seemed to play host to a much more familiar line-up as Mutiny Airsoft joined the fray with their 9 players to learn some sharp breach and clear skills from Supe. It just went to show me that working with a regular group of people, practicing and trusting in each other can have a real benefit in your gameplay. 

PC: Georaga Airsoft

Sunday Funday 

Again, it was another early morning for me as I arrived at the Proving Grounds woodland site at 6.30am to set up the Airsoft Action stall. The plan was to be around chatting to people about the latest magazine releases, to represent the new logo and to sell and give out discount codes for our digital version… hoooowever, the printing company didn’t get the goodies to me on time before I was forced to leave London. Instead then, I took about 8 of my guns and displayed them as conversation starters. 

I was set up next to Terry and the Pilgrim Bandits stall, who gave a truly heartfelt thanks to the airsoft community for the sheer level of support they’ve seen, following an emotional few words from Supe and Sheep. It was a great reminder for me, that airsoft is more than “just a game”. Beyond the gameplay, beyond the bravado, there’s a real sense of kinship. Just look at the prizes that Fox and Patriot were donated for the raffle: ASG donated a Bren and a few other guns, Viper donated a whole loadout in titanium grey, Nuprol donated several guns including a Nomad Alpha, shotgun and pistols, HR4K donated a Crye Precision plate carrier, the Operator Box donated a month subscription, TheChairsofterShow donated a Raven pistol, LBX donated a bunch of their gear, Vortex donated a Sparc AR, Weapon762 donated a helmet setup, Enola Gaye and HopUp donated t-shirts. 

Sunday Gameplay - Kelly 

On Sunday 12th August 2018, I was invited up North to attend the 1Legion Milsim: Operation Invasion II at Halo Mill: The Proving Grounds, a woodland site in Selby, Yorkshire to once again play and this time it was for a charity game featuring some special guests from across the pond! 

The day started with players eagerly arriving on-site at around 8am, I arrived a little later but just in time for the safety brief and charity announcements. The safety brief was comprehensive and covered all the rules of the day from the FPS limits of the site, pyro rules to emergency procedures should one occur - the safety brief at Halo Mill: The Proving Grounds is always easy to follow so players know what is expected of them. During the charity announcements, players were reminded of why we had all gathered together for the day: to not only play an awesome game of airsoft but to welcome our friends 1 Legion members Superfly and Sheep and raise some cash for two charities that are close to the heart of the airsoft community - The Pilgrim Bandits, a charity that helps injured servicemen and women live their best life after life changing injuries and Veterans for Airsoft, a charity that provides all expenses paid airsoft experiences for veterans. 

PC: Stacey Deanne Photography

Let’s first chat about the site itself, The Proving Grounds is a large woodland site that features a number of structures centred around a large bridge structure in a dense fern forest. The facilities onsite include a covered safe zone that has room for almost 300 players, a food counter that serves hot food and snacks all day and a couple of portaloos (which is the only thing I dislike about the Proving Grounds). The game dubbed ‘Operation Invasion II’ had a battlesim structure to it - it was a constant game with rolling objectives which only stopped at lunch so everyone could get some grub. As someone who dabbles in MilSims and battlesims this was a game that was right up my alley, however I was in for a challenge - as someone who plays exclusively CQB for 9 months of the year, although it was fun to crawl through the brush and through trenches for a day, woodland does require an entirely different skill set to CQB making it a challenging day especially when snipers are king. 

PC: Stacey Deanne Photography

I jumped onto the banded team with the 1 Legion boys to start off my day and started to make my way to the first objective, and this is when I remembered why it’s so much harder to move through a woodland site than a CQB site - the snipers! As myself and my team mates sneakily moved from structure to structure rounds flew in from all directions but no one was to be seen. We used smoke to conceal our movement and gain more ground. Whichever part of the field you were on you faced strong resistance from the other side so it was an awesome tug of war all day to see who to take and control the different areas of the site. From crawling through the brush, to moving through the trenches and the villages it was an intense battle from both sides. 

PC: Stacey Deanne Photography

PC: Stacey Deanne Photography

The final battle of the day was definitely the highlight of the day for me. The final objective of the day was for the unbanded team to bring the VIPs - 2 players in fancy dress to the bridge (halfway through the day I had swapped sides to experience both sides of the gameplay). The bridge is by far my favourite part of the Proving Grounds site - it is enormous and offers an intense level of gameplay especially when all attention is focused on it. As our comrades approached the bridge with the VIPs, all hell broke loose. It was an intense firefight between both sides with players exploding into action from the brush to stop the VIPs entering the bridge and rounds ricocheting off every surface on the bridge. As myself and some teammates were taking out players from the first level of the bridge we heard a whizzing sound, as we looked down to where the noise had come to a thud we saw an explosion - a mortar which killed a bucket load of us. As we moved off the bridge to our respawn, our team mates flooded the bridge and alongside them? The VIPs, we ran back to our respawn and started to fight our way back to the bridge whilst our teammates defended the cargo on the bridge. It was intense, and an epic end to the day. 

Overall, it was a really enjoyable day full of great gameplay/sportsmanship from players and camaraderie. It was wonderful to catch up with friends, put faces to names that I’ve only seen on the internet and of course meet players from across the pond - it really was a pleasure to finally meet 1 Legion Superfly and Sheep. The amount raised by the community was fantastic and just shows how much of a difference we can make when we band together. A huge well done and thank you is in order to the lovely guys and gals who worked super hard on making this event happen. Hopefully it won’t be long until the next invasion.

PC: Stacey Deanne Photography


Shankster, G. & Hardwick, K. (2018). OPERATION: INVASION II. Airsoft Action. 80 (November), 70-73.

SMOKE THE RAINBOW | ENOLA GAYE NEW RELEASES!

EG25 MICRO SMOKE

As the use of smoke grenades has become more and more popular in airsoft, we have seen Enola Gaye – the worldwide leading manufacturer of pyrotechnics - release more products to satisfy airsofters needs for concealment and usually it’s the bigger, the better with players wanting to smoke out their competition and get the upper hand! So whenever the company releases a new product you would regularly get more than you would before! However this time EG has reverse engineered their famous WP40 to give the consumer a whole bunch less, but, why?

In game situations a thick smoke cover is what players strive for to give them a screen of cover, but there are situations where less is definitely more, and one thing I’ve found whilst working with the guys from EG is that when you need a smoke effect for a photographic shoot, you don’t always need the entire area smoked out. The new EG25 offers users a super compact unit – which is also absolutely adorable with being the size of a glue stick – that has a considerable output but for around 30 seconds. This gives photographers and players more than enough time to get the shot they’re after and means it clears relatively quickly meaning you can get on with the next shot even if it features another colour of smoke.


What I really, really like about the EG25 Micro Smokes is the size of them, we all know that anything in miniature size is cute – be it shower gel, deodorant, whatever the item is, it’s definitely cuter in miniature and these are no different! The size makes it easy to carry a load of them in a backpack or dump pouch without weighing you down too much. Whilst I was testing the range of smokes, they on average lasted around 26 seconds, had a good output and the smoke colour is true to the colour of their bigger counterparts. The time/output combined means the smoke clears quickly and easily from an area which means less time between shoots waiting for colours to clear.

The EG25 Micro Smokes are available in the full colour range (8 colours) and they use the Wire Pull igniter. They’re available as a single smoke or in packs of 10 from Enola Gaye dealers (some will even let you mix and match colours) and prices do vary but whilst I’ve been at events with the team, the prices have been super affordable. Check with your local EG stockist for deets!

Overall, I think EG has done a fab job with the EG25 Micro Smoke – from the size to the output and even price point they seem to have got it just right. I can see these becoming a staple in airsoft photographer’s kit in the near future. It’s also awesome to see the brand catering for a different aspect of the sport.

PINK SMOKE

Soon to be released to the UK market is something I have been waiting for, for almost 3 years! After adding black to their line of colours late 2016, Enola Gaye is yet again adding another colour to their already impressive line of smokes - PINK! YES! One sunny afternoon whilst attending the Midlands Airsoft Fair at the Gaol Events in Oakham I heard the shout ‘We don’t make pink smoke’ originate from a smiling face at the Enola Gaye booth – I turned my head and raised my sunglasses and shouted back ‘well you should’ and it has finally come to fruition!



Eventually we will see the pink smoke released in all smoke products including the EG25, EG18, EG18X and SD75 but we will see the pink WP40s released first, so whether you are a player that needs a heavy smoke screen that lasts for minutes or a photographer that wants just the right amount of smoke for ‘that shot’ Enola Gaye will have you covered. 

So what’s the colour like? Having a lot of experience with smoke grenade photoshoots it wouldn’t be unusual for us to use red smoke as it has quite a ‘pinky’ hue to it, ‘so surely it’s just red smoke? Red smoke looks pink’ you may be thinking but when you put a pink and red WP40 together, the red smoke looks far more orange and shows the pink to be a true fuchsia hue – it’s bright and the output is what we would expect for a WP40. Needless to say, I am absolutely in love with the colour and think it’ll be a big hit among photographers, street artists and airsofters alike.



Pink smoke was released in Canada late last year, in the US earlier this year, and it looks like the UK will be set to get them later this year/early 2019.

Hardwick, K. (2018). SMOKE THE RAINBOW. Airsoft Action. 80 (November), 24-25.

IN THE ARMOURY: TOKYO MARUI HK45!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog! I’ve been getting a lot of questions on social media lately regarding my go-to sidearm, and as some of you will have seen, recently I’ve swapped out my trusty M&P for something a little different. - the Tokyo Marui HK45! Today I’ll be going through the features and giving you my thoughts now I’ve ran it for a good few game days.

So let’s start with the pistol's construction! It has a fully branded polymer slide and frame - in compliance with Japanese laws - but has an alloy magazine and internals so it has a nice weight to It and it has the longevity of durable internals! It has a lower 20mm RIS/RAS rail made from a polymer that can be used for torches and lasers. It also features white dot highlighted sights, a finger ridged pistol grip for enhanced grip, ambidextrous magazine release, safety and slide release catch. The magazine has also has an extended base plate, which both serves as an ergonomic feature to help ensure the operator is correctly handling their HK45 whilst firing and it also makes it easier to remove magazines and place them in the weapon.


In regards to internals, the pistol has an adjustable hop-up unit which allows users to enhance the range and accuracy of their shots and also allows a range of BB weights to be used. It has a gas blowback system that means for every round fired the slide moves backwards to not only simulate recoil but also to load the next BB. The TM HK45 features an enhanced safety lever design, which can be set as a trigger disconnect to prevent accidental discharge, or be used to decock the hammer, so the hammer can be reset without having to discharge a round. As it is a really lightweight build, it is gas efficient.

With those out of the way, let’s look at the performance and usability. The hop-up is easy to adjust, and even in cold weather, the pistol is effective on green/red gas. The range out of the box is actually very, very good! When the hop is correctly adjusted the accuracy is also on point. It’s a very enjoyable pistol to use in the field. It fits into my hands well, although it is more comfortable when wielding it with both hands as I do have pretty small hands, the weight is nice and makes it feel very sturdy despite being constructed mostly of polymer. I am fully convinced of its durability as during a game day I did accidentally knock it off a waist height counter and it stood up to the unexpected test.


I brought my HK45 preowned and paid £115 for the HK45 itself and 3 magazines which is an absolute bargain! For a brand new HK45 with 1 magazine, you’d be looking at somewhere around £139.99 - which I think is very reasonable for TM.

Am I happy with it? Yes, I actually think it is one of the best airsoft pistols I have ever used - the range for an out of the box gun is excellent, it’s comfortable in my hand, accurate and is easy to adjust for different BB weights. It also just looks fucking cool.

PTS ENHANCED POLYMER BACK UP IRONSIGHTS REVIEW!

Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog! Today I’m back with another review on a product from my sponsors at PTS Syndicate! I’ve been using this particular product on various AEGs for the last 6 months so I feel like I’ve given them a good enough run to give a thorough review so, without further delay we’re going to look at the Enhanced Polymer Back-Up Iron Sights (EPBUIS)!


The EPBUIS are made from PTS EP series Dupont™ Zytel Reinforced Polymer meaning they are a lightweight and durable piece of furniture for any rifle set-up. They’ve been designed to be low-profile so that they don’t obstruct optics when retracted, feature aggressively textured surfaces on both sides of the sights to aid users in slip-free, positive manipulation even in adverse conditions that may affect grip such as cold and wet weather. They are also easily manipulated even whilst wearing gloves.

The rear sight has a small and large sliding aperture that can be switched for either close-range, fast, sight picture acquisition shooting or long-distance precision shooting. The dual apertures also feature a ribbed texture on the back and an over-moulded ledge on the front for easier manipulation and increased surface contact on the aperture plate allowing the user to control the product from either side. The windage adjustments can be found on the rear sight and the elevation adjustments can be found on the front sight.


Are they easy to install and use? The back sight was really easy to install onto my AEG - just unscrew the screw, slide on and tighten the screw. The front sight, however, needed a little more elbow grease - it was almost as if the front sight wasn’t quite wide enough to fit a 20mm rail so it needed a bit of convincing. A squirt of WD40 and a few hard taps got it into place. The aperture/windage and elevation are easy to adjust and the action of the sight flipping up is snappy and positive. Aesthetically, I think they look great as part of a rifle build. They also don't get in the way of my various optics when they're retracted which is a big positive!

They've lasted the last 6 months of games, being taken off and put on different rifles well and have only a few minor scratches and bumps to them so the durability is there, and this hasn't affected the texturing on the side of the product! They're also lightweight and don't weigh the builds down too much!

The Enhanced Polymer Back-Up Iron Sights retail for $44.95 from the PTS website, but if you’re in the UK they can be found at your local PTS dealer! Check with your local store!



Photography thanks to Stacey Deanne Photography
Post made possible thanks to our patrons: James Smith & Oskar Engström.
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