GBBR Magpul PTS Masada by CS Jordan

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Hey guys, its Jordan from the Customer Service department again. Today we are looking at the new PTS Masada gas blowback rifle. PTS is known for the “hi-end” and unique products. The Masada does not fall short to what we’ve come to expect form PTS.
 
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First off the gun feels great out of the box. The quality of the polymer and metal that was used in this build is phenomenal. It has the look of the classic Masada, but some how feels even better than their AEG version. There is no rattling from any parts on the gun, and it feels absolutely solid. Not only does the gun feel great, but it functions just as good. The bolt seems to be made of a lighter material allowing the rate of fire to be higher than the LM4. That being said, since it is made of a lighter material, the kick from the gun seems to be lighter as well. Out of the box, I think the gun performs better than the LM4. The gun comes pre-installed with a “cup seal mod” which allows for better gas efficiency out of the box. The magazine is pretty heavy and holds 2 rounds less than the LM4. The magazine seems to be my only issue with this gun. I feel is does not hold as much gas as the LM4 magazines and the BB’s tend to engage the bolt which causes it to lock. When using the LM4 magazines the gun cycled just fine and even felt a bit more “snappy”.
 
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If I were to run this model, I would prefer to run it at an outdoor field. I would first put a few different accessories on it. First I would change one thing internally and that would be adding a Maple Leaf bucking, to give me better range and performance. I would like to put a replica Specter LCAN on there to give me some magnification. Lastly I would throw Magpul MVG on there to give me better support while shooting and a Bravo PEQ 15 for the light and laser options.
 
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I don’t normally run gas blowback rifles when playing, mainly because I don’t own one. When I have used them they are a blast, and bring a unique feel and aspect to the game. That being said, I would love to run the PTS Masada at a game. The function and capability I would say fits my overall play style.
 
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Overall I am very impressed with the quality and performance of the gun. The gun shooting close to 400 fps out of the box and coming pre-installed with the “cup seal mod” I think the price tag of $420.00 is well worth it. The gun has a very unique look and feel and can bring a whole new look to any ones load out.

Product Spotlight – Ares Amoeba AM-013

Ares has been long known for their M4 AEGs and several other niche guns which they’ve produced over the years. Ares newer Amoeba line has introduced a line of airsoft guns with both unique designs and performance internal parts. Apart from their original CC series which was a handful of ultra compact M4 type weapons, the new Ares Amoeba AM-13 and AM-14 are more reminiscent of a weapon which has become so popular in current video games.

11074612_10207030556990198_252767689_nStarting from the front of the airsoft gun, Ares has fit a suppressor flush with inner diameter of the RIS, resulting in a very stable barrel extension. The RIS itself is a modular system which allows the user the freedom to choose which of 8 angles to attach accessories to, while remaining incredibly lightweight with a skeletonized design. In addition to the already very comfortable rail, Ares has created custom handstops for the AM-13 RIS which attach directly and create a perfect reference point for weapon manipulation. Placed on both top and bottom, these handstops will also provide users of the C-clamp grip comfortable points to rest their thumbs and pointing fingers. In addition to the handstops, every AM-13/AM-14 also includes Battlesight style iron sights which complete the look from popular games such as Call of Duty. 11075316_10207030556750192_1797523609_nThe receiver of the Amoeba has also been stylized, as well as changed for function. The receiver is a very thick polymer which feels like it could even be metal. Keeping in line with the PDW type weapon that the AM-13/14 is, the weight of this receiver Ares Amoeba unique receiver design allows for a several components that make the weapon much easier to use. The most notable of these features is the enhanced magazine release. Moving away from the tiny standard M4 magazine release to the Amoeba paddle release, reloading becomes ridiculously easy. From there, moving to the trigger guard, this enhanced trigger guard is bowed out for comfort, while also creating a spot under the guard itself for your middle finger. The spot under the trigger guard feels a lot like a spot for a high tang pistol grip, and is very comfortable while providing what feels like a more solid control point on the weapon. The pistol grip is also a very welcome change from a standard A2, as the texture feels like it improves control without being overly aggressive, and the grip is overall thinner, allowing for a full hand on the gun, as if it was a smaller framed handgun.

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The stock is one of the most notable features of the AM-13, as the stock is both a retractable wire style stock and will house a battery. Unlike other designs of PDW style stocks, the AM-13’s buttpad is very comfortable, and is large enough to make a good amount of positive contact with the shoulder, enabling the shooter to have a solid reference point and maintain control of the weapon. The battery compartment will easily fit a small type 7.4V LiPo battery, and the compartment itself is hidden and placed so that it is barely noticeable during use.

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A final element worth noting is that the Amoeba Series guns use the Ares Electronic Trigger System. The microswitch that the Amoeba Series uses responds with a crisp, clean break and has a very positive feel to it. In addition, each of these guns can be used on conjunction with the Ares Programming Unit to set the gun to a burst function.

This gun is definitely one of the most innovative new AEGs on the market, and presents a unique and interesting design with a host of features that make it a top level contender. The AM-13 shoots around 370-380 FPS, which is perfect for outdoor play, and wont break the bank sitting just shy of $300 at AirsoftGI.com.

Opinion Editorial – Airsoft/Firearms Cross Training for Practical and Competitive Shooting

In the past, we have talked about the effectiveness of training for practical and competition shooting with realistic airsoft replica firearms platforms. Now, hear an expert opinion on the matter from USPSA Grand Master and 3 Gun Competitor Chris Andersen:

Personally, I have been shooting competition matches seriously since mid-2014, and while I am not an experienced nor seasoned veteran, I have made some very interesting discoveries about the intersection between playing with airsoft guns and shooting competitively.

Pitfalls and Benefits

One extremely important thing to keep in mind is that in order for the skills trained with airsoft replicas to carry over into shooting, you must keep mind on form. Like lifting weights, if form is ignored you will benefit negligibly, or will end up with detrimental habits. For example, if you are practicing stance, but allow your stock to rise above your should while using an airsoft replica, your muscle memory will dictate similar actions upon your transition to competitive or tactical shooting with firearms. For this reason, I always concentrated on doing my best to ensure I would not fall into the pitfall of bad habits. Every shooter must be conscious of the nature of airsoft replicas when cross training– generally lighter triggers, occasionally more distinct trigger resets, lighter actions and recoil (pistols specifically), and of course the lack of flash and bang. These “negative” elements are not necessarily detrimental, however, if the shooter keeps in mind this difference, and are far outweighed by the positive elements reflected upon in this article.

I think it is extremely important, however, to say that anyone looking for a cheaper alternative to spending time and ammunition on the range has found it. With innovations like recoil systems/bolt stop mechanisms being developed by multiple manufacturers, the lack of recoil or feedback is no longer an issue . These recoil and bolt-stop systems require the user to develop proper stance & grip to mitigate muzzle movement and preserve sight picture. Magazine capacities can now also realistically reflect the amount of ammunition in a real magazine, with some even offering the option to hold a round count reflective of magazines used for competition. Last but not least, the cost of $12 for a bottle of 5000rds of mid weight BB’s is far more affordable than $300+ for 1000rds of .223 for practice. This is especially true, as many shooters do not have the financial ability to spend thousands on rounds for training. BBs offer a low-cost alternative for a system which can be instrumental in developing muscle memory.

 

New Product Spotlight – Revision Extreme Weather Goggles

Everyone is familiar with Revision Military. The Vermont-based, U.S. made brand is known for its high quality ANSI Z.87.1 Rated Optical Protection devices; otherwise known as goggles, sunglasses, and more recently their BATLSKIN project. Revision’s reputation as such a high-quality domestic brand would later carry on Revision’s Desert Locust Goggles to be the choice for the U.S. Army’s standard-issue eye protection, and to this day remains in the same position.

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Reputation aside, and all things taken into account (price, lenses, etc), I personally love Revision’s goggles. I’ve taken my goggles onto the range and onto the airsoft field for over 5 years now, with no plan to ever switch to another brand of eye protection. There is simply no other system I find as comfortable nor as well designed as Revision’s Desert Locust Goggles because of their fit, their protective ratings, and Revision’s dedication to QC and simply creating the best system out there to protect both users in the civilian market as well as on duty with LE/MIL.

Well, many people had heard that Revision Military would be bringing out a thermal lens in Q4 2014/Q1 2015, and I can proudly report that I, in fact, have a set of Revision’s Extreme Weather Goggles in my hands. While these goggles haven’t strayed from the crazy comfort that the Desert Locust Goggles nearly perfect, Revision has made some welcome changes to these new EW Goggles to ensure they will maintain visibility even in harsh conditions and disruptive environments.
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The most interesting feature added is definitely the thermal lens. Maintaining ballistic protection properties while finding a system to prevent fogging in weather like blizzards and tropics is by no means an easy task, but Revision has done so by using a very thin sheet of polycarbonate along with a rubber seal, much like we have seen in most paintball masks that have done the same. This thermal lens addition also still maintains an extremely low profile, rising only about 1mm above the normal lens surface. Second, a felt-lined foam layer has been added to the already godly-comfortable rubber seal, creating a more insulated space when the goggles seal with your face. I can also see this being a huge improvement in climates at which things like sweat and water will make goggles stick to your face without a fabric seal… OUCH.

All in all, these improvements are great for extreme weather, and guys playing out in the Midwest and North-East U.S. will likely find these features an absolute must. For California and desert  climate players, night games just got easier; I cannot tell you how many times my goggles have gone foggy on me on a sub-40 degree night out at Code Red or in Victorville for Op: Lion Claws Night Ops.

– J

New Product Spotlight – Slides with a Bite

If one thing has evolved in the last year within the firearms industry more than anything else, it’s been slide customization and frame work. So many companies now have their own way of cutting slides and stippling frames that it’s easy to find a company that can make your slide look cool and your frame handle like its glued to your hand. What’s not easy to find is a company with work as solid as ATEi guns.

Known first and foremost for their aggressive slide serrations, ATEi guns has a solid reputation for “turning good guns into combat systems”. ATEi guns has given JRAK Industries (the same geniuses behind Murder Oil for GBB Pistols) their Official License to begin producing a line of out-of-the-box customized pistols, Available now for Preorder in both Black and Dark Earth/Tan.

10967902_10206716277253401_1348958810_nTo start off with, these pistol feel crisp. The first thing I noticed about the function of the gun was that the slide returns to battery very quickly. Even though you would expect that to mean that the slide is extremely light (like the Tokyo Marui’s plastic slides), the whole gun jolts as the slide rams home with a very satisfying CLACK!

The second thing is that the trigger breaks cleanly and has a distinct reset which will never leave you guessing whether or not you are ready to fire again.

The Third feature is the trademark that comes with the name; of course the most obvious features of this gun are external. Being the ATEi is known for their slide work, the slide serrations show a high level of attention to detail, with every place important to the manipulation of the handgun fully covered in deep serrations. In addition to that, JRAK has gone the extra mile to create a mold that has out-of-the-box stippling which makes the gun feel like it just got back from a plastic surgeon with a soldering iron; this creates a pistol that doesn’t feel like your standard issue soap-bar-slippery polymer-framed handgun (say that three times fast).

10957215_10206716276493382_109208204_n10997107_10206716276933393_1553113751_nThe final thing that I think is really worth going into depth on is the fiber optic iron sights. JRAK went above and beyond the standard white three-dot sights that we find on so many modern pistol designs, and included two-color fiber optic dot sights on their Combat Pistols. These sights are bright, easy to use, and very much a welcome addition to any GBB Pistol out of the box.

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In conclusion, the JRAK Combat Pistol Series present a welcome change to the airsoft market. Hopefully other brands will follow in their footsteps, including phenomenal features for every gun out of the box, and seeking out brands which have more than earned recognition in the world of airsoft being used as both training tools and recreational toys.

– J.