Airsoft Buying Guide and BB Gun Information

AIRSOFT GUN LAWS

ARE BB GUNS LEGAL IN THE UK?

On the whole, BB guns are completely legal in the UK although there are certain requirements that must be met for an individual to own a BB gun. These requirements are as follows:

  • It is illegal to buy or sell a BB gun to anyone under the age of 18 in the UK.
  • It is legal for an under 18-year-old to own a BB gun – providing they did not purchase it themselves and it is used under supervision only.
  • Most people should buy a two-tone weapon to stay legal, however, exclusions are made for people who wish to buy a complete black weapon called a realistic imitation firearm.
  • Those excluded from two-tone laws are film crews, crown servants, museum staff, historical re-enactors or UKARA and insured skirmish site members.

IS AIRSOFT LEGAL IN THE UK?

There are various rules and regulations surrounding airsoft in the UK, but the bottom line is, yes, airsoft is completely legal in the UK. The laws surround how powerful the weapons can be, what colours the guns must be and where weapons can be carried publicly.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF AIRSOFT GUN?

You have three types of airsoft gun:

GAS GUNS

Powered by Co2 or green gas offering realistic blowback upon firing

ELECTRIC GUNS/AEG

Referred to as AEG (Automatic Electric Guns) fire BB pellets automatically through a battery powered mechanis

SPRING GUNS

These require manual loading and fire single shot BBs

Those are the different ways of powering the airsoft gun, however, the weapon itself can come in various forms and designs. These include but are not limited to:

  • Assault rifles
  • Machine guns
  • Pistols
  • Sniper rifles
  • Shotguns
  • Grenade launchers

HOW TO IMPROVE AIRSOFT GUN ACCURACY?

To improve the accuracy of your airsoft gun you could add accessories like improved sights or a foregrip to improve stability in your hands. Ultimately the accuracy will depend on the quality of the weapon and the distance of your target. One thing you can do is to perform a hop up adjustment or adjust the FPS of the weapon itself.

HOW TO ADJUST HOP UP?

Adjusting the hop up is gun dependent, so you will need to find a solution which is specific to your gun model. The key thing to discover is how much hop up your gun needs, too much and it may not travel as far as it could do. Hop up dials and sliders are often located under a panel cover and this dial will need to be switched upwards or downwards depending upon how much backspin is currently being put onto your BBs.

HOW TO LOWER FPS ON AEG?

Most skirmish sites will set an FPS limit for AEGs for safety and insurance reasons. To lower your FPS you can purchase a new shorter and lower powered spring which will need to be fitted by a field technician or a licensed retailer like Just BB Guns. Alternatively installing a shorter barrel inside may have the same desired effect.

BB GUNS SAFETY INFORMATION

Below is a range of BB gun safety information on usage,

ARE BB GUNS SAFE?

BB guns are not designed to cause injury and to be dangerous, however, they can be dangerous if they are not used correctly. If you follow the safety instructions and safety information, they are considered safe and easy to use with no harm caused.

If you have any more questions or queries with regards to the safety of your gun, then please do not hesitate to contact us. You should also be sure to read all the information that you will receive with your BB or airsoft gun before use.

BB PELLET SAFETY INFORMATION

BB pellet safety information is as crucial as that of BB guns. Pellets, when used incorrectly, can cause damage to people under fire and the shooter. Here are various common questions asked about bb pellets and how to play airsoft safely.

IS AIRSOFT SAFE?

Airsoft is generally safe. There are certain rules you should follow to keep airsoft safe though. The BB pellets are typically harmless and the games are designed for fun and not to injure anyone. The following safety tips keep airsoft safe:

Treat all guns as if they are loaded and never assume that a gun is not loaded.
Never point your BB gun at anyone even if you think that it is not loaded!
Do not fire at a target unless you know everything surrounding the target is clear. Do not shoot if there is a possibility that someone is near to the target you might miss!
Keep your finger off of the trigger until you are ready to fire.
You should wear protective eyewear/goggles at all times. We would also recommend wearing a protective mask to avoid any injury.
Do not carry your BB gun in a public place. Now that BB guns are made to look more and more realistic they can often be mistaken for real guns. This makes them potentially dangerous! If someone (including and especially the police) thinks you have a real gun you could be putting yourself and others in danger.
Do not alter the colour of your BB gun. It is fluorescent orange for a reason! It is important that the Police can recognize a BB gun from a real gun.
Always check to make sure the gun is not loaded. Point the gun away from people and animals and squeeze the trigger (again, avoid pointing it at things that it might ricochet off).
Do not carry a loaded BB gun when climbing over fences or up trees or even when jumping. Doing so could cause the gun-fire unexpectedly
Take care of your gun. A damaged or dirty gun is more likely to be dangerous and cause injury.

WHAT IS THE AIRSOFT FPS LIMIT IN THE UK?

Whichever skirmish site you play airsoft at will have it’s own enforced airsoft FPS limit, however, there is a legal nationwide limit. The airsoft FPS limit in the UK is 1.3 joules for fully automatic weapons and 2.5 joules for semi-automatic and single shot guns.

This would mean for a standard 0.20g BB pellet, the FPS limit would be 519 fps for a single shot weapon and 374 fps for an automatic gun. The following calculations break down the airsoft FPS limit UK wide.

swat police officer airsoft buying guide

GENERAL FAQs

How does a spring airsoft gun work?

Spring airsoft guns require the user to cock the weapon, arming the gun with the BB pellet into the chamber. Spring airsoft guns can be simple pistols with a low range up to 350 FPS, or the more expensive spring loaded sniper rifles can shoot up to 500 FPS. The pellets are individually loaded from a magazine or clip into the barrel chamber manually by the shooter cocking the weapon. The spring within the barrel pulls back once cocked, then pushes the BB pellet out at high speed once the trigger has been squeezed.

How do gas airsoft guns work?

A magazine is inserted into the weapon which is loaded with a compressed gas canister and a specific amount of BB pellets. The amount of BBs will depend upon the size of the magazine which you are using. As the shooter pulls the trigger, the mechanism lowers the hammer onto the gas canister for a short second which releases a small amount of pressure into the chamber of the gun. This then fires the BB pellet from the chamber at high speed.

What’s the difference between Co2 and green gas airsoft guns?

Co2 ultimately has a more pressurised system in comparison to green gas meaning the Co2 guns are often more powerful and offer a higher FPS. This however, does mean the Co2 alternatives are often more expensive overall, in terms of weapons and gas canisters. Some weapons will accept both green gas and Co2 but if they do not state that on the instructions it is important to use the correct gas stated. If the wrong gas is used the higher pressure can cause internal gun damage and is not worth the risk.

How do electric BB guns work?

A battery powered motor sits inside the gun, typically in the handle compartment, and this spins the gears inside once the trigger has been activated. These gears pull back the chamber piston which keeps firing back and forth whilst propelling bb pellets out of and shooting at enemies.

How airsoft shotguns work

Airsoft shotguns still have the standard shell cartridge style ammunition, which may cause you to wonder how airsoft shotguns work. There are two types of airsoft shotgun

How do airsoft grenade launchers work?

Airsoft grenade launchers fire off a grenade filled with gas and pellets to scatter a squad of opponents rapidly. They work by initially loading the 40mm grenade up with a an external gas cannister and then slotting in the required amount of BB pellets, typically up to around 24 BBs. The launcher itself then fires the grenade quite a distance through a gas propelled system.

What are airsoft pellets made of?

Airsoft BB pellets are made of plastic in a variety of colours and sizes, the size tends to differ depending upon the skirmish site you are playing at. The BB pellets are typically made overseas, however, those bought from Taiwan and Japan are typically better standard, such as the Bulldog BB pellets. They are small 6mm plastic spherical pellets and typically weigh around 0.20g, being the skirmish standard. The airsoft pellets can weigh from 0.12g to 0.48g commonly used in sniper rifles.

Can you reuse BB pellets?

One rule of BB gun safety that is too often overlooked is that you should always use new ammo and BB pellets in your BB gun. It does not matter if it is expensive. Not loading your gun with new ammo is extremely dangerous and can degrade your gun over time, or break it as old BB pellets can break apart within the weapon.

Can BB pellets ricochet?

A BB bullet can easily ricochet. Be aware of the type of surface you are shooting at. BB pellets ricochet more easily off of certain surfaces. The most dangerous surfaces to fire your BB pellets at are: flat surfaces, hard surfaces and water. You should also make sure that the target you are firing at is not at an angle.

How far does a BB gun shoot?

  • 0.18g BB pellets are limited to 547 fps for single shot weapons and 394 fps for fully automatic.
  • 0.20g BB pellets are limited to  510 fps for single shot weapons and 374 fps for fully automatic.
  • 0.25g BB pellets are limited to  464 fps for single shot weapons and 334 fps for fully automatic.
  • 0.30g BB pellets are limited to  423 fps for single shot weapons and 305 fps for fully automatic.
  • 0.35g BB pellets are limited to  392 fps for single shot weapons and 283 fps for fully automatic.
  • 0.40g BB pellets are limited to  367 fps for single shot weapons and 265 fps for fully automatic.

Airsoft accessories and attachments

Airsoft has a lot of accessories and gun attachments, below is a brief list of some accessories you can get for your next skirmish.

  • BB speedloaders
  • Masks and balaclavas
  • Safety goggles
  • Airsoft gloves
  • Extra magazines
  • Airsoft grenades
  • Airsoft smoke grenades
  • Silencers and barrel extensions
  • Chargers and batteries
  • Tripods and bipods
  • Cases and protective bags
  • Improved sights and scopes
  • Foregrips
  • Slings

See our complete accessories for every item on this list and more from Just BB Guns. Upgrade your loadout ready for your next skirmish here.

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