In this blog post I'm going to be discussing a post which was recently made on the UK Airsoft Community group page. There's been a few threads going around like 'What is the thing you hate most about Airsoft', and 'What do you hate most about Airsoft Players', and other meme worthy threads, but one which caught my attention was the post about people's biggest pet peeves with Airsoft retailers. What's quite interesting is that quite a few people had the same gripes, but what I found most interesting is that the thing that people hate the most is not even something retailers can really control. Hopefully this will be interesting to some, and go towards explaining exactly what causes the problems we have.
Nowadays there's a hell of a lot of Airsoft sellers online now so it's hard to keep track of every single product across every single website. We try to do our best to keep an eye on our best selling products and ranges, but sometimes less popular products slip through the net.
Another reason can be people comparing prices to shops from outside the EU, such as from America. Sure, the prices look cheaper at face value, but once you've paid import duty, the postage services handling charges (literally the worst thing known to man), and postage then the item will usually be the same price, or in most cases much more expensive. If you're buying a product from a UK company the chances are they've gone through the hassle of importing it, paid the import duty, and then have to pay tax on the sale itself again. Prices in the UK can look higher, but that's because the cost of the product is drastically higher due to import costs.
So what are Patrol Base Doing?Here at Patrol Base we handle all the importing and duties so you don't have to. Why would you want to go through the stress of importing something and waiting, isn't the extra few quid fair enough for the returns, support and time benefits?
Sometimes pricing can vary a lot between UK shops and shops within the EU. This is typically down to costs over getting it across here, and the exchange rate at which the products were purchased. Sometimes the price of currency can fluctuate wildly (Especially with politics the way it is at the moment), so some things can become cheaper or more expensive overnight. We attempt to keep our prices as reasonable as possible, but sometimes we can get stung by the exchange rate.
This isn't as much as of a big thing as it was a few years ago, or something which is exclusive to Airsoft, but be careful when you're buying online. There are a lot of easy one push button retail website packages available now, so people can start up a business and advertise all the stock they want with little or no cost and simply drop ship it from a distributor. When selling as a non-vat registered company you pay the VAT up front, and any money after that is profit, when selling as a VAT registered company you pay on the total cost of the sale instead, meaning you save about 8-10% as non-vat company, allowing you to reduce your prices whilst still earning the same money.
Of course, the offshoot of that is you might not get that extra quality of service. Sure you can save yourself a bit of cash, but will you really get the service, aftermarket support and warranty you would with a larger retailer? Possibly not, worst case they're drop-shipping from their house and won't accept returns, or at absolute worse just run off with your money.
Don't get me wrong, some of the upcoming business offer good service, but for an extra £5-£10 is it worth the risk? Always try find out if a company has a physical location before buying or a number you can call, and look at how good their descriptions are, it's usually a good sign they're more legitimate.
An FPS variance issue is quite a complicated issue when it comes to gas guns. There's a huge array of things which can affect the power of a replica, from gas type, to gas temperature and how well lubricated the pistol itself is.
Gas temperature is the main problem, a pistol which fires at 340 fps at 12°c may drop off a cliff when it comes to lower temperatures in the colder months of the year. Most Airsoft replicas are designed in Taiwan and other warmer country and fire a lot more consistent in warmer temperature, when they get over here to the sunny UK they can't quite handle the lower temperatures. You'll usually find temperature is a huge problem with the heavier slided pistols.
So what are Patrol Base Doing?
To allow you to make a more informed decision we also list the ambient temperature of the room when the pistol was last tested, allowing you to get a rough idea of the temperatures at which the pistol will operate.
All our tests are done on our range shop, which has no heating and is usually colder than it is outside, so our results when it comes to fps are usually quite accurate to outdoor play.
Some retailers can have a huge problem with this due to FPS being wildly variant between batches of weapons, this is typically due to where the replicas were bought as some country have lower and higher fps limits than us. We try to update all our descriptions as soon as an FPS change is brought up during weapons testing which is how we're able to avoid this problem quite well, but other shops may not have the ability to test every single weapon before it leave the door.
We had it where one batch of guns came in originally at 340fps, then the next batch came in at around 270fps and we had to upgrade all the springs. Luckily we're big enough to handle this, but some smaller shops, or shops who drop ship might not spot this.
So what are Patrol Base Doing?
If we have a weapon that chronos differently to what it says on the website we'll test another gun, if that chrono's the same we'll then hold the order and get in contact with the customer. If the customer wants an upgrade, downgrade or even a refund we'll happily sort that out, and we also update the description on the website.
If the gun is hot (eg, over 350fps on full auto), we'll always offer the downgrade if possible.
If you're concerned always check for the testing sheet we supply with our guns, which will list the FPS ratings of the weapon on our warehouse testing range.
So what are Patrol Base Doing?
We have spent a long time trying various couriers who will accept RIF, and are constantly working to improve the service, and feel at the moment our courier is the best balance between cost and reliability.
Our delivery prices are all very close to how much it costs us to send a package, and we make almost no money on delivery when you factor in the postage costs, packaging, and more.
There's only a certain amount of distributors for products who bring stuff in, and again, there's only a certain amount of stuff produced because there's only a small amount of factory to produce the stuff.
In Airsoft, demand is way higher than the supply.
If something is out of stock, it's probably because we can't get it back in even if we wanted because there isn't a big enough supply. And on the flip-side, if we do get an extremely popular Airsoft product back in then it usually sells out very quick.
There's a few problems to deal with:
So what are Patrol Base Doing?
We have identified this as a problem, and in attempt to make it easier for you we have had a special email back in stock feature we had developed for our platform, allowing you can see exactly when something you want comes back into stock. Once a product goes out of stock you can press the 'notify me' button, and when the product comes back into stock you will automatically be emailed. You can track as many products as you want, and you'll never miss a product again.
If you're after something specific, call us, and we can try order one in for you (if they're available with our suppliers). You can get in contact with us via our Contact Us Page.
We're also working on new systems to handle stock, so the stock levels will be more accurate, and accident proof which should lower any stock issues. We are also developing new cutting edge bespoke packing system along with 3rd party developers to speed the process up and make it more accurate.
Hopefully this has answered some of the main questions you have when it comes to Airsoft. These problems aren't just universal to any one Airsoft retailer, they're the same across the board. We're all trying our best to make the experience as seamless as possible, so we only ask that you understand why things the way they are, and we're not just trying to mug you off 🙂
Do you have any more pet peeves? Let us know in the comments below and we can have a look into it for you!
ASG has done it again, they've brought out another Airsoft replica and hit the nail on the head. Their latest weapon is the ASG HERA ARMS CQR AR15 Mil-spec SSS Edition, available in both Black and Dual Tone Tan.
You might have spotted it if you follow the real steel market, or seen it in modern games with modern day and futuristic weapons, and if you know what it is, you know you have to have one. ASG have really pulled out all the stops with this one, and have partnered with ICS and HERA Arms to put together not only a unique Airsoft replica but a rifle that's ultra-realistic, with some of the highest quality on the market today.
What are you waiting for? They're on pre-order right now!
This Airsoft replica truly stands out from the crowd and is built from high-quality alloys and materials, with an alloy handguard, outer barrel, receiver and internals, and comes with a Polymer Stock, Magazine, Foregrip, and Flip-up iron sights. The rifle features a high-quality finish, as customers have come to expect nothing less of an ASG rifle, and is finished with all the official licences and trades.
The Handguard, Stock, and Front grip are all built from the original OEM CAD designs provided by HERA ARMS for added realism and have been modified by ICS to fit and work with an Airsoft AEG. The handguard has been slightly modified to fit an Airsoft Receiver, the front grip is essentially exactly the same as it connects to 20mm RIS / RAS Rails, and the stock has been modified to fit an Airsoft Buffer tube, and have space for an AEG motor.
If you're still on the fence at this point then why not take a look at the excellent internals as well? The weapon features ICS's split gearbox design, making the weapon a treat to work on, but also features their SSS Gearbox MOSFET system which allows for a range of advanced settings for the rifle. The SSS system allows for pre-cocking for a faster first shot, burst and full auto modes, for battery protection, and for ICS's own SSS Self diagnostic system which protects the gun should it begin to fail, as well as allow the tech to quickly diagnose any problems.
If you want to check out the rifle now you can check it out at the links below:
Are you looking forward to getting your hands on one, or is it not for you? Let us know in the comments below!
In this blog, I'm going to be talking about quite an interesting subject. It's something that we get asked quite a lot, especially when people are starting out or making the transition from playing with BB guns and are wanting to start collecting Airsoft replicas: what can we get that will allow people to start playing when they're on a strict budget?
Instead of reeling off the top ten guns for beginners in 2019, we've decided to do something a little different. We talked to all our staff members and gave them a £250 limit to put together a loadout they would be comfortable starting Airsoft with if they were suddenly a new player again. Hopefully, this will give new players ideas on what they can get for their money.
Each staff member has picked what they would use for their beginner loadout, including all the things they need to start playing. Of course, with a £250 limit, there is always room for improvement, but these load-outs give a great solid base to start expanding on at a later date.
As we had hoped, each loadout turned out slightly different, as all of us have different ideas of what we want from our kit; knowledge which we will now try to pass on to yourselves.
Over the next month, we'll release a series of blog posts describing each staff members choices, and why they picked them.
My priority for this loadout is value for money – I really despise spending money where I don’t need to, but I will pay the extra if it offers extra tangible value.
I picked this replica as it has a long history, a good name behind it and a proven track record of lasting a long time. Pretty much every Airsoft site I’ve been to in the UK uses the G&G Raider as their rental guns for a few simple reasons; they’re amazingly priced for what you get, they last a long time (even in the hands of beginners) and the internal components are far better quality than you would get from something else in the same price bracket. The set comes with the Rifle, a magazine, and unjamming rod, so you'll need to buy a battery separately.
Find out more about the G&G Combat Machine CM16 Raider >
An obvious choice! You will ALWAYS need BBS as long as you are an Airsofter, so you might as well save money on them when you buy them. Ideally I would have liked 0.25g rounds or heavier to improve groups and flight path, however, rules are rules and I must stick to a budget!The bundle can be added further down the main page, and you buy three get one half-price!
Find out more about the ASG 0.20g Blaster 6mm BB >
I chose this multipack of magazines for a very childish reason… I love reloading! Airsofting is all about dressing the part and getting immersed in the action for me.
These Polymer low-caps for some reason feed better than any other mags I have tried, and they make an amazing ‘CLACK’ noise when you slap them into the Magwell, and as they’re only 85rnds per mag, I get to reload more often than my high-cap using brethren.
Find out more about the ASG Armalite M4 Low-Cap Magazine 85Rd x10 Multipack >
I must admit that the addition of the grip was burning the last of the budget. However, a well-placed foregrip will reduce the amount of stress on your wrists.It sounds like a weak-sauce right now, but after an eight-hour skirmish you’ll feel the burn and thank yourself for adding that ergonomic grip.
The grip mounts to the rifle on the bottom of the railed handguard as it is compatible with 20mm RIS / RAS rails.
Find out more about the Big Dragon - 20mm RIS / RAS Foregrip Short >
This rig is cheap and cheerful, gets the job done and gives your body freedom of movement as it is a harness style chest rig.
Ideally, I would pick a big fancy plate carrier because that’s what I think looks cool, but sometimes that's just overkill.
For the purpose of the budget I’ve chosen something that’s going to get the job done and let me carry more mags for tactical mag-flips.
Find out more about the Viper Tactical - Special Ops Chest Rig >
Find out more about the VP Racing - 9.6v 1600mAh Ni-Mh Crane Stock Battery >
Find out more about the ASG - Intelligent Auto-stop Charger NiMh >
So, let's tally together everything in the basket to make sure we're on budget:
Making the grand total:
Technically, we are over budget by 2p, but I'm sure you'll forgive me!
So there you have it! That's the loadout that I would go for if I were to need a brand new beginner loadout (should my kit suddenly vanish!)
This loadout is perfect for anyone looking to get into playing Airsoft, be it CQB or outdoor gameplay. The gun itself is a great all-rounder, being small enough for tight spaces, with enough range and accuracy for outdoor games. If anyone is seriously stressed about the 2p over you could swap out the 9.6v Ni-Mh for an 8.4v Ni-Mh at a loss of some performance, but for 2p, it's not worth downgrading.
The kit has everything you need, so if you're looking for a brilliant starter package, there is your best bet.
The next blog will be published shortly and will be a look into another member of staff's choices for their Airsoft beginner loadout.
In the meantime: What would your ideal loadout for under £250 be? Let us know in the comments below and you never know, we might just feature your loadout too!
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