16 Jul Facts about GBBRs Myths Revealed
Facts about GBBRs Myths Revealed
Today we’re going to cover some very important input regarding GBBRs. Today we’ll get to reveal the facts behind the myths of Gas Blowback Rifles.
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For starters when we were running AEGs a while ago and wanted to look into GBBRs, we always got quite an amount of negative input from people regarding these Airsoft systems.
We knew there were cool pros involved, but the negatives were always somewhat overwhelming and kind of a deal breaker. Over time we eventually decided to still take our shot at one to see where it would take us. And a long story short we now both have one and also a lot of our buddies got one as well with no complains whatsoever.
Above that, we recently watched a video from Anvil Airsoft TV which is another Youtube channel based in the UK that focuses on bringing facts about Airsoft. Now in that video, the guy behind AATV, called Tom Hibberd, recently invited a man called Gaz Perkins who has many years of experience with GBBRs. And what they did was, they basically sat together to have a live stream about the myths surrounding these guns.
To put it in short, we were impressed by the insights that came out of that video and some of the mistakes people make when using GBBRs. Yes, us included!
Now, this video we’re talking about is about an hour long and for that we decided to bring you guys a compressed version of it and give some of our thoughts on the things that came out of it as well.
So that hopefully we can get rid of the bad image GBBRs have nowadays. Because they deserve to be more present in the fields.
If you would like to watch this full stream from AATV, you can watch it by clicking on the thumbnail.
So without any further ado, lets’ start with the first myth.
“GBBRs can’t be used during winter”
This is something that is generally being told quite often and mostly a deal breaker for most. But according to Gaz his experience that used to be very true in the past and the more modern systems actually don’t have that many problems with that.
Also beside the usual claim of the system not being able to perform in cold weather, it mostly has to do with the person holding the rifle. And to quote Gaz on this “These days when people say they don’t work in the winter, what they mean is I can’t use them in the winter”.
How to run it during winter?
To be more clear on this, you firstly want to use higher power gas for them in the winter. But also the way you operate a GBBR decides whether or not you can run it during winter. This is something we can totally agree upon, since you simply don’t run a GBBR like you would run an AEG for example. You treat it more like a rifle then like an Airsoft gun.
The thing is, if you think that spraying and praying is the way to go with a GBBR then that’s actually the reason for them failing on you in colder temperatures. A GBBR user is someone that knows where every shot is going. Meaning they know the zero of their optic and they know their effective range. So, spraying a target is a no-go.
Don’t heat your mags!
Also something that we didn’t know, but is actually very logical is to get rid of the trick to continuously heat up your magazines during winter. This is because the first time shooting a heated mag that was already filled with gas is fine, but once you have to refill it, you’re actually bringing cold gas into a warm magazine. Which means the gas you’re putting inside expands too fast and you cannot get the required amount of gas in there. And that means, not enough gas to fully shoot your mag empty.
Now, here we think he certainly made some valid points you have to take in mind when running a GBBR during winter. But of course these guys were talking about winters in the UK which are probably not the most extreme cold climate conditions. So, keeping in mind on how cold your winter gets wherever you are from, is probably a smart thing to take into count in general.
Loading a gas magazine
This one might sound simple, but apparently we have all been filling our gas magazines wrong all along. And this doesn’t only count for rifles, it’s also applicable for pistols of course.
For most of us filling a gas mag is just like holding the bottle until the magazine is full. Well, the thing is that this is in fact not the right way to do it.
This is because 1, you can overload a gas magazine and that way it won’t have the proper gas/liquid ratio to function properly and 2, holding a gas-can long into your mag makes it freeze your inlet valve hole and gas will usually burst out.
What you want to do instead is filling your mags in bursts of 1 second long. For pistols you want to do that 4 times and for rifles you want to do it 6 to 8 times.
“GBBRs are more inconsistent compared to AEGs”
This apparently comes from earlier systems and has more to do with how you use it rather than the system itself.
For this Gaz recommends to use good quality heavier ammunition. Meaning 0,28g and 0,30g for outdoor and 0,25g for indoor usage.
Now, we’ve had some guys recommending us to go to 0,32 even. But we like to keep the fps output above 280 fps so people cannot simply dodge our BBs. And since your fps output and BB weight are correlated, you have to keep that in mind. So, we agree with him regarding those weights.
The opposite of the Myth
Furthermore, he also mentioned that you supposedly can get more effective range out of a GBBR because the system delivers gas to the projectile in a different way than an AEG. Above that, people that use GBBRs maintain their guns more often and thus have cleaner barrels that shoot more consistent. And on that we fully agree as well. AEGs can be complex to take apart and most people just neglect them entirely until something doesn’t work anymore. And that is not how you treat a gun, guys!
How about fps drops?
Something they did forget to talk about considering “inconsistency” are the fps drops gas blowback guns have. Which is one of those things a lot of people immediately jump on when they’re talking about GBBRs versus the other systems.
In our experience thus far with GBBRs, we have to say yes they have some fps drops when going through that magazine, but this actually doesn’t have that big of an impact on the performance at all. After all you only have 30 to 40 rounds to shoot with.
Even if you would get drops of 15 fps over a whole mag, it doesn’t have that big of an impact on the whole performance. It’s not something that will decide the outcome of your battle at all. Tactics and proper techniques are a far more important things than having that perfect fps output with every single shot.
To put it in perspective, do you think a real firearm doesn’t have any fps differences with each shot? Of course it has, nothing is perfect guys! What actually makes the real difference is training. It’s as simple as that!
“Soft BBs are bad for GBBRs”
Yes they are. You don’t want to use softer or more brittle BBs since they can shatter in the barrel. This is also because the energy is transferred in more aggressive way with GBBRs.
We personally haven’t had one shattering or jamming yet, but we only use quality BBs. Since good ammo is as important as having a good gun and being a good shooter. And for the guys stating that it’s the fault of Bio BBs, that’s absolutely not true, we only use Bio ones and as said no problems whatsoever.
“GBBRs are maintenance intensive”
According to Gaz himself, No! In fact, he said that he doesn’t like cleaning at all and usually postpones it as much as he can.
Now, the recommended thing to do is to clean a GBBR after every skirmish. As said, it is a recommendation, but in overall you want to clean it once the bolt starts moving slower. Meaning when you feel a bigger friction when pulling the charging handle back. Which is basically the same thing we recommend in our pistol cleaning video guide but with the slide instead of the bolt.
We even heard of guys only doing an annual cleaning of their GBBRs, but of course that also depends on how dirty you’re willing to get in the field.
How big of an undertaken is it?
Another thing is that although it can be more frequently needed than with AEGs, it’s not like a huge undertaking to do. It’s as simple as opening the gun, taking the bolt out, wiping the dirt off, getting oil on it, wiping it again and back into the gun. And that’s basically it, for an AEG we don’t even want to start taking it apart.
Gas magazine tips
Another tip is to always leave gas inside your gas magazines and to never leave CO2 cartridges inside CO2 mags. This because a gas mag without gas in it, will dry out the O-rings and will start to leak. While the constant pressure of a CO2 cartridge shapes that mag to that particular cartridge and the ones from other brands have other dimensions and will leak as well. We personally fully fill our gas magazines after each event for storage, so we avoid leaks and our mags are instant ready for next time.
The next thing he mentioned, which we didn’t know, is to never press the magazine release valve. Because apparently pressing that valve often without pressure above it damages the O-rings. Instead you rather want to fire out all the gas.
By the way, the recommended lube by Gaz is white lithium grease. He just sprays it onto his finger and wipes it on the bolt that way. We never tried it, but it might be a good and cheap thing to try if you’re looking for a good lubricant.
“GBBRs are fragile”
According to Gaz, back in the days there were some fragility problems with GBBRs, but now they’re pretty solid systems. And in general they can withstand more than most AEGs. This is because they have thicker metal receivers since they don’t need the fitment of a gearbox. We can also add that they have lesser parts and thus there are lesser things to start malfunctioning.
Gaz also mentioned that you don’t want to run with your buttstock underneath your armpit since the back end of the receiver is a weak-point even for real rifles. And that is indeed one of the things that are most commonly broken with Airsoft guns. So, also a good tip to keep into mind.
“GBBRs can take real rifle parts”
Some brands or models can take more than others, but yes they can. This also provides way more options for custom builds as well. So, if you have a special build in mind that will most likely be possible with a GBBR platform. Above that, apparently some firearm parts are actually cheaper than the Airsoft versions because gun manufacturers produce in much larger quantities.
So yeah only thing we can add to that is to quote Star Lord “I’m gonna make some weird sh*t”.
“GBBRs are much more expensive to run”
Here Gaz mentioned this is something that depends on the system. The initial purchase is generally more expensive than an AEG. The price of the gun is about the same as a high-end AEG and the magazines are expensive as well. But, and we can acknowledge that, you’re not using lots of ammo and the parts are mostly also cheaper than AEG parts.
Also a thing we would like to add is that people usually upgrade their AEG in such a way they become equally or even more expensive than having a GBBR and everything that comes with it. So yet another point, to put it a bit into perspective.
Get proper pouches!
Another point Gaz made is that you do need to consider getting good pouches for your gas magazines, don’t run them in your pockets because if you drop them on hard surfaces that’s not a good thing. So guys, get decent reliable gear like the stuff we sell on our shop. We have plenty of pouches to choose from.
“Out of the box GBBRs are not good”
A good thing Gaz mentioned here, and that doesn’t only count for GBBRs, is to run a new gun a few Months before doing all those fancy upgrades. This makes sure parts are bedded in and over a small period of time most Airsoft guns will start shooting great. If you’re not content after that, you can still decide to put some money into them.
And that is exactly the same thing as we have been saying here over our channel. We ran our TM AEGs for a year and they were awesome from the box and only after that we decided to make a few improvements on them.
“Only HPA tapped GBBR are good”
Here Gaz said that that certainly used to be the case, because of GBBRs struggling in colder weather back in the days. But nowadays there just doesn’t seem to be an excuse to HPA tap them. And as he mentioned it, you’re actually taking away a major part for which GBBRs are designed for and that is increasing the realism.
Changing from an AEG to a GBBR
Here we have to say, that Gaz said it in very neat way actually. He mentioned that you’re not changing just the rifle, you’re changing your entire Airsoft lifestyle.
And if we think about it, that is very true. We for example first started with lowering our mag capacities to real caps with our AEGs to see whether we could compete like this. For us it worked out really well, it was just a switch in mindset to keep that ammo count into mind.
But in order to get this done, we required a much more deliberate approach on the situations like decisions of taking a shot or not or closing in or utilizing a different tactic for example. And all that stuff together actually makes you a much better shooter and tactician, just as we told you guys in our video about using low-caps.
Usage of a GBBR
Now here we cannot agree more on what Gaz stated in the AATV stream. A GBBR is something you treat as a firearm, you don’t load it as an AEG, you don’t shoot it as an AEG and you don’t aim it as an AEG.
For example just the aiming part, the shooting part and the control of it is way different. If it’s not properly shouldered you will bounce it all over the place and you won’t hit a single thing. And that’s probably also one of the things a large amount of people do wrong when using a GBBR for the first time. They still consider it too much of a toy rather than approaching it as a firearm or at least a training rifle.
Now the reasons told here also gives you an idea on why they’re so ideal for training purposes. Since they allow you to do force on force with them in a very realistic way. Also doing force on force with a firearm won’t end up very pretty.
Dropping GBB Magazines
Well, it’s not the smartest thing to do, but these things happen. We for example have Magpuls attached to ours to at least provide some cushioning when they drop.
What you can do if you have a leaking mag and this is not something that was mentioned in the stream, but we would like to share it with you. Whether it’s a rifle or pistol mag, it doesn’t matter, just take out the O-rings and let them soak in some silicone oil for about 24 hours. This will make them soak up the oil and once you reinstall them that can take care of it in most cases.
If you still have leakages, you best replace the O-rings if that’s where the problem comes from at least.
A last important message we would like to say that Gaz has shared in the stream is that the bad reputation of GBBRs mainly came from problems these guns used to have.
Like their poor performances in cold weather and their technical limitations. But also a very big part of that and apparently that part is 90% comes from a company called RA-tech. Which supposedly just made garbage parts and that only made the problems worse instead of solving them. Which is obviously something nobody wants.
Thanks for reading our blog
“Facts about GBBRs Myths Revealed“
So guys, that’s a compressed version of the things that were mentioned in the AATV stream with some of our own experiences added to that. We hope you learned some stuff watching this compressed version, even if you’re not a GBBR user.
We at least did and hopefully we can give some of you guys that were still doubting about getting one, that little push to “just do it!”
We ourselves enjoy ours a lot and going back to our lawnmowers is a pretty hard thing to do now. We would like to thank AATV for providing us and the community this insightful information. To see the entire stream and more videos on Airsoft facts, visit their channel called Airsoft Anvil TV.
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