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Cal’s top 5 Airsoft Questions straight from Customer Services

Hey everyone!

My names Cal, and I work in the Customer Services department at Patrol Base. Chances are, that if you've called in you may have spoken to me! I deal with everything in Customer Services day to day, from answering phones and emails, to taking orders over the phone! You may have also seen me in my Feature Friday post: Feature Friday - Cal.

In this blog I'm going to be listing my most commonly asked Airsoft questions I get over the phone and by email, below are my answers!

How do I get a non-two tone gun?

In order to buy a non two-tone Airsoft gun you'll need to provide us with with proof that you have a justifiable reason to make the purchase. By law (Violent Crimes Reduction Act, 2006) we cannot sell you a Realistic Imitation Firearm without being able to prove that you have a justifiable reason for purchase.

An Airsoft defence proves to us that you have a legitimate reason for purchasing an Airsoft replica.

When selling an Airsoft replica we have to be able to verify and prove that you have a good reason for doing so. This can come in the form of a Site Membership, Government Recognised defence (Such as UKARA), or being part of a Reenactment society, being a museum curator, or part of a TV / Film production team.

Most commonly, Airsoft players will fall under the Site Membership and Government Recognised Defence category.

For more information on what constitutes as an Airsoft Defence, please see our page What is a UKARA or Airsoft defence?

What is the difference between a Li-Po and Ni-Mh battery?

Li-Po batteries use what is known as Lithium-ion charging technology, whereas Ni-MH's use a nickel-based tech.

Ni-Mh batteries

You will often find that some Airsoft guns often come with a Ni-MH battery included, this is because typically Ni-MH's are a lot safer and easier to use, so they're a good choice for beginners as they require much less maintenance / care when using & charging.

The downside of using a Ni-MH battery is their drain rate during use, if you imagine a long slope and you are starting at the top, throughout the duration of use the battery will slowly deplete in power which will be noticeable by ear as your gun will begin to "whine", and as you get further down the slope the power will become more and more sluggish, until it fully drains.

Not to worry though, as there's no harm in draining a Ni-MH battery.

Once you are home & have access to a Ni-MH charger, pop it on for around 2 hours and you're good to go for your next skirmish.

Li-Po batteries

Li-Po batteries are the more popular choice with most Airsofters, simply due to their consistency & ability to last a full game day! (subject to mAh)

As Li-Po use a different battery technology to Ni-MH's they don't constantly lose their power, in fact they will retain their power until the last 10-15 minutes of use.

The reason Li-Po are typically considered more "dangerous" is because they are susceptible to combustion, but ONLY if they are mistreated. You can easily avoid any issues by ensuring that the battery is never charged with a Ni-MH charger, and never physically damaged, pierced or punctured.

One more important thing to note with Li-Po is when you're using them, and you start to hear the gun slow down, take the battery out and swap it for another one. Put the low charge battery on to charge with a Li-Po charger when you're home while using a Li-Po safe charging bag.

If you continue to use the battery when it's running low you may drain it beyond it's minimum voltage, if this does happen your battery may no longer charge and may unfortunately be unrecoverable.

Why is my gas Airsoft pistol venting gas when I fire?


When you fill your magazine with gas, it goes from a liquid (inside the canister) to a gas (inside the magazine) during this transition, it undergoes a rapid cooling process which you may witness as gas quickly evaporates on nearby surfaces.

After you've filled it for a good 10 - 15 seconds, the gas inside will be very cold & if you are to load it straight into your pistol you may get 2 - 5 shots until the pressure reduces completely, you may even notice venting from the barrel, or from the sides of the slide & onto your hand (Be careful! this may result in freeze burn).

The best way to combat this is fill your magazine, and leave it in a room temperature condition for a while to warm up, or if you want to use a hair dryer held 30cm away for 20 seconds, this would speed up the process & heat the gas up which will increase pressure, thus giving you better consistency.

Do note that with each shot, the gas will get colder. We advise leaving a second between each shot as if you try to fire in quick successions you will notice a rapid depletion in pressure.
In short, keep your magazines warm.

As a storage tip, we recommend that you always keep gas in your magazines! A great product for this is: Abbey Predator Maintenance Gas 144A 270ml.  Just simply give a short blast of the gas into your mag of around half a second, and put into storage.

What is the best beginner Airsoft Rifle?

There's an abundance of choice when it comes to getting your first AEG / Beginner rifle, but it solely depends on your play-style & what you like the look and feel of. For this example though we'll be looking at the best AR / M4 variant.

The G&G CM16 Raider

Manufactured by G&G & rocking in at £148.25 it's fair to say this rifle dominates the starter rifle category.

Presenting itself in a clean and modern M4 platform it's easily considered one of the most versatile and adaptable platforms out there, and has been for quite a long time.

The replica has some great key features, such as:

  • A 4 point RIS rail hand guard for attaching accessories such as lights, lasers and grips
  • A full upper receiver length RIS rail for the addition of scopes and red dot sights
  • A 5 position crane stock with great battery storage

All these features make it the perfect go to platform for anyone who isn't quite sure what they want just yet, but want something they can change and alter to fit their dream load out.

What is a hop-up in Airsoft, and how does it work?

The hop up is a small piece of rubber that sits in a unit which surrounds the inner barrel, when a BB passes through the inner barrel the hop up rubber lightly makes contact with the BB and adds backspin (otherwise known as the Magnus effect) to the BB which after around 25m will cause it to curve slightly upwards, which is helpful when shooting at ranges of 30m+.

The effect of the hop up can vary depending on how much you've applied, and what weight BB you're using.

In most platforms you can access the hop up adjustment (M4 for example) by pulling back the charging handle which will expose the mock ejection port, and you should be able to see a small cog like wheel, this is your hop up adjustment. The wheel will turn left & right, the best way to understand which way is less & more is to turn it > fire > see if the BB's goes up or down > turn again accordingly until you're comfortable with where the BB's are landing.

If you've set your hop to a good range with 0.20g BB's and you switch to 0.25g BB's you may notice the hop might not be as effective, in which case it will need adjusting again.

Should you need any more help please feel free to get in touch with us via our Contact Us page on our website.

Written by PatrolBase Cal, who has written a total of 1 posts.

Cal works in the customer services department. Chances are, if you've called about an order, or to buy something over the phone then you've probably talked to him.

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