TM MP5 RAS

TM
MP5 RAS

by
Arnie images taken
with the kind help of Jeremy Morrison

Stock
Specifications
FPS
83.6m/s
(stock fps may vary)
Length: 502mm
/ 732mm
Barrel
Length:
 ?
Weight: 2300g

Ammo
capacity:

50
rounds (200/240 hicap)


Its been
a busy week here, so what better to sit down and write up the latest delivery?
Those kind folks at CombatClub
(CC) sent
me a small surprise, yup one of those darn ParcelForce couriers! ^_^

Now you’ll
have to forgive me here, because I’m going to go off on several tangents
in the course of this review, but hopefully you’ll find it entertaining,
and I’ve given you fair warning so you can at least skip the ‘tangenty’
bits.

Now there
are several ways I can write this review.

– I
can either write it assuming that you have all used a TM MP5, and just
list the differences.
– I can take the MP5 for what it is, and review it in great length.
– I can compare and contrast it to other variants that are available.

Well I thought
I’d combine the last two options. If I just talked about what TM had done
new on this model, it’d be a bit boring, I mean if we wanted to write
the Reader’s Digest version, we could just write a basic AEG review, and
then tell you that all AEGs are basically the same except for the range,
rate of fire, and their shape and size.. but that’d be boring.

It’s
also worth noting, that I’m going to review this as an Airsoft replica,
not as a replica of a real armament. I haven’t ever owned a real MP5,
so it’d be silly comparing it to something I have no experience with.
This is a replica intended for skirmishing (and collecting to some extent)
so we’ll merit it on that basis.

Tangent
#1
Packaging: CC
wrapped the parcel up well, sadly UK customs opened it all up again to
inspect it when it got here (and charged me £37 for the privilege),
but that’s just life.

They
did a couple of clever things, the TM box lid was turned inside out and
refolded so that all the markings were on the inside, and then they re
boxed the box in some more cardboard. This meant that after a good few
hours abuse at Heathrow the original TM box was still in good nick. I
know it’s not that important to all of you, but I prefer to get my goods
in good nick, and a box that looks like it hasn’t been run over by a truck
(there’s more chance that the AEG survives the transit this way you see).

In
the box:
Opening the box, the first thing I thought was
that TM had fiddled us and put the half length MP5 mags in with the RAS,
but thankfully the rifle merely sports one of TM’s cardboard cutout ‘you
can have this here as an accessory’ models.

So what’s
in the box? – well more than I expected actually. You get the MP5 RAS
(doh!), a cleaning rod, full length TM MP5 standard mag, standard mag
loading rod, and your complimentary TM approved BBs (I have about 30 bags
of these little things.. they’ll be worth some money someday), a PDW QD
flash hider, two TM red safety caps, one for the QD attachment, and one
for the PDQ flash hider, oh and one of those rather cute ‘hop-up’ labels.

Strangely TM saw
fit to ship the RAS with it’s stock folded out, meaning it comes in a
full length box, but I suppose that it’s packaged up better like that.

First
looks:
Well it looks gorgeous for an MP5 – and lets face
it your either an HK lover or you just hate them. To be honest I’m rather
indifferent about them, but they grow on you, and this one has. Just watch
a few reruns of Raw Deal, and you’ll see what I mean. ^_^ (edit:
we sat and watched Raw Deal last night, curious point of note the
MP5 Arnold uses changes through the film from an original grip, to the
more modern one several times. Yup never sit Airsofters in front of a
movie with guns in it..)

The TM
MP5 RAS comes fitted with TM’s latest ProScope II reddot (an Aimpoint
replica), a new style folding stock (that looks remarkably like
the TM MP5 PDW version), a new scope mount, RAS grip (with two armour
covers and a vertical grip), and a QD muzzle with PDW flashhider.

Internally,
the new MP5 boasts erm.. well it’s just a normal MP5 really. The only
major difference is that TM have strengthened the cocking tube.

Stock
specifications:

The specs listed for the rifle are:

Gear
Box – Version 2
Motor – EG700
Magazine – 50 Rounds (low cap)
Length – 502mm folded / 732mm unfolded
Height – 229.5mm
Weight – 2300g
Muzzle Velocity – 83.6m/s
Battery type- Mini ( Not Included in the box)
Package includes ( AEG, Manual, Magazine, Loader, Cleaning Rod, 200 pcs
0.25 BBs, two safety caps, PDW flashhider)

The
MP5 itself:

The receiver is that found on the TMMP5A4 is made of very good quality
‘black’ plastic, and internally features the normal MP5 gearbox and EG700
motor. The receiver is not to be confused with that on the MP5-PDW or
the MP5k, which have cut down gearboxes to allow a stick battery to go
in it.

Externally
the fire selector gives you (from the top) fullauto fire, single shot,
and safe. As is typical, with ‘safe’ selected the trigger cannot be physically
moved backwards.

You’ll
find a a full length low-cap (standard mag) in the box – to be honest
I’d prefer if it came with a 200 round hi-cap, but lo-caps do have their
place in skirmishing so it’s not a complete waste. I just don’t use them
that much, that’s all – the same may not be true for you.

On the
left side of the receiver/magwell you’ll find a metal clip. I have yet
to find out exactly what it fits to, but I gather that on the real steel
it is for the military slings.

Trademarks
on the replica are up their normal TM standard, with only the TM *****
and ASGK **** logos additional to what you’d find on the original HK.

Barrel
wobble?
There is no perceivable barrel wobble on
this model. There’s good reasons for this, as not only is the front
cocking tube fitted very flush to the receiver, but Marui have inserted
a metal sleeve inside the tube, to enhance rigidity.

The
metal sleeve can’t be more than 1mm thick but it certainly does
it’s job. In the inserted photo you can just see the edge of the
metal pipe inside the cocking tube (towards the top of the hole
that the cocking handle slides in). Because of the additional part
the front section seems a lot more sturdy and rigid than any other
previous TM MP5.

The
Muzzle:
The MP5 RAS some with the standard HK three
lug muzzle, and a PDW style flashhider. To attach anything to the
three lug system, simply slide it on turn it 60degrees and flip
the catch on the accessory to lock it on.

The
tip of the muzzle also apparently unthreads (clockwise) to show
the standard TM 14mm thread. I say ‘apparently’ as it says so in
the manual, and it sure looks like it does come off, but I can’t
get the blighter off at all.

Now
my hands have been compared to that of a yeti, and my other half
has complained in the past that the bathroom taps really don’t need
to be closed as tightly as I leave them, as she doesn’t usually
carry the much need 3 foot spanner to untighten them again – and
I still can’t get it unthreaded. I don’t know what the workshop
elves & pixies at TM used to tighten it up, but it’s surely
a device not of this Earth.

The
QD silencer Tangent
(yup I’d get it in somewhere):
Now the
great thing about this MP5, was that I could actually fit my Guarder
MP5 silencer on it. Pleas folks take it from me, if you buy an MP5
RAS, get the Guarder
MP5 QD (quick detachable) silencer at the same time, sell your granny
or a spare kidney if you have to, honest – it’s worth it. It fits
like a glove, and has about 2mm play at the end (it’s a very good
fit), more than that it looks great!

I
tried to fit the same silencer to my CA MP5 many moons ago, as it
came with a spare QD muzzle. Unsurprisingly, the CA muzzle is merely
for show, and is not even close to the right dimensions (plus it
looked like it had been carved out of PlayDough).
The fact that the CA MP5 muzzle needed to be removed with the use
of a hammer, two bags of sand, a pulley, the lounge sofa and 6 meters
of rope is an aside that I won’t begin to get into here…

The
Scope:
Okay well this scope the ‘TM Proscope II’
looks great, but sadly it’s plastic, including the optical lenses.
It performs really well, but you’ll have to buy two LR44 batteries
to power it (they don’t come with it in the box) – I picked up 2
from my local electronics store for about £1 each. If you
decide to order this rifle from new, you might want to think about
getting two batteries shipped with it to spare you the effort of
having to get them yourself, here in the UK they are quite common,
so not too difficult to find.

To
fit the batteries, unscrew the forward cap, of that strange pipe
looking thing slung on the top of the scope, and place the two batteries
in the pipe with the flat sides (+) pointing towards the front of
the scope.

The
build quality and looks of the scope are really great, but being
plastic, it won’t stand up to huge amounts of abuse. It’s a 1x zoom
scope (i.e. zero magnification), which is to be expected as it’s
a reddot. The only major let down (in my view) here was that the
reddot has 3 brightness settings and an ‘off’ position, this off
position is marked out with a sticker stuck on the back of the dial.
Not a huge complaint really, but it’d look a heck of a lot better
if they had painted in the markings like the fireselect switch.
The even bigger downside is that eventually this sticker will go
walkies and you’ll have to be doubly sure that you turn your scope
off to prevent flattening the batteries.


TM
recommend that you use setting ‘1’ for night use, ‘2’ for daylight,
and ‘3’ for direct sun. I’d recommend that you use the lowest light
setting you can get away with, and a re comfortable using. That
way the batteries will last longer.

As
the lenses are plastic I highly recommend that you fit protective
lense caps to this scope, as close range fire will almost certainly
smash the outer lense, much like the original TM P90. If you are
feeling particularly loaded you could buy some real
Aimpoint scope caps
as they should fit.

FreedomArt
make some RIS mounted protectors for scopes (image to the left from
AirsoftCanada
– I can’t find an image of the things anywhere else in the world).
I can’t find them myself anywhere, but AirsoftCanada
ran a story about them not so long ago here
(post on 9:24 PM – May 10, 2002) . What looks like a sensible idea
to me, is to detach the low mount, turn it around, and turn the
scope around again. That way you’ll have some RIS rail in front
of the scope to mount a protector on.


You’ll come across a rather odd issue the first time you look through
the scope, as the centre of your viewpoint looks straight over the
MP5’s stock foresight. This means that the foresight ring pokes
up into the bottom half of your sight picture. Sadly a few mill
higher and you wouldn’t see it, and a few mill lower and you’d actually
be able to us the stock sight and look through from the backsight
to the foresight through the scope.


The
scope is based on an Aimpoint
CompC reddot scope
. The only discernable difference is that
TM haven’t put the ‘Aimpoint’ lettering on the left side of the
scope, which is a bit of a pity. I mean if you are going to copies
someone’s design to such an extent why not at least put their name
on it?

Thankfully
I’m glad to say that the TM replica works identically to the Aimpoint,
if a little ‘cheaper’. There are two dials on the scope, one on
the top for height adjustment (turn anti clockwise to raise the
grouping), and one for on the side for ‘wind’ (turn anti-clockwise
to move the grouping right). Basically you should turn the dials
anticlockwise to move the grouping in a positive axis direction.
If you want to try the scope out, you can find a funky
3d demo thingymawotsit here
.

There’s
also a rather comedy diagram in the manual that basically explains
that you will get parallax between the scope and the grouping, but
to be honest I’d hope that most people would understand that right
away.

Scope
ring and lowmount rail:

The scope comes fitted to the lowmount rail with it’s own scope
ring. This scope mount ring comes in two parts, and is simply bolted
around both the scope and mount and held together with two allen
key headed bolts it’s a simple and effective design.

The
lowmount is an ingenious (yet not that original design). When I
first saw the first promo pictures of the RAS, I thought that the
scope mount was bolted to the frame/receiver. This isn’t the case.
The scope mount comes in two halves with the lower half of the scope
mount is bolted to the top half. As the two halves come together
they pinch and grip the upper receiver’s mounting points.

If
you look closely in the photos you’ll see that TM have greased and
sprayed the mounts before shipment, which is a welcome sign of good
quality control.

Scope
addendum:

Humorously TM have got their own illustrations wrong. If you check
the box it comes in, you’ll find that the illustration for the scope
is shown, as looking at it over the backsight. Look closely and
you’ll see that the adjustment knobs and battery back area are on
the wrong side of the scope. Doh!

One
issue that crops up combining the lowmount and the reddot is that
with the scope being mounted as low as it is, the front sight protrudes
into the sight picture thus reducing the useful image picture.

The
annoying thing is that is that if TM had mounted the scope a few
mill lower, you’d be able to look through the scope using the stock
metal sights. If they’d mounted it a few mill higher you’d be able
to use the fixed sights and look under the scope (assuming the scope
ring had a hollow base).

The
stock:

Oh dear,
this part really was the only really disappointing piece of the
rifle. Everyone thought that TM had fitted their PDW stock to the
end cap. Well the hinge my well be similar but the stock itself
doesn’t look like it. Sadly this stock is made of moulded plastic,
constructed from two halves bolted/glued together, meaning that
it’s hollow.

Now
this has good and bad points. Even though it’s hollow the stock
is very strong – I swung the MP5 around on the stock to see if it’d
flex, warp or snap at all, and there wasn’t a creak. I just really
don’t like the hollow feel to it at all. It’s very difficult to
say what the long term longevity of the stock is, suffice to say
it’ll probably hold up to average skirmishing.

The
other advantage to this hollow composition is that it’s very light,
which adds to the balance of the whole replica.

I
would be interested to know if the new model PDWs from TM come with
the same stock, as the last ones that I used myself came with a
solid polymer stock, that you could beat an elephant to death with.

The
MP5 RAS stock is definitely not designed up to the same standard,
which is a shame. I have heard from more than a few people that
TM’s PDW stocks were made for them by the same people that make
the real steel versions. In the original PDW’s case this is quite
believable, however this is certainly not the case with the RAS’s
stock.

It
looks great, but it’s the weak point of the rifle in my opinion
– I can see 3rd parties releasing replacement folding stock parts
for this in the near future (Smokie’s maybe?).

To
unfold the stock you just lift it and twist it away from the body
of the rifle until it clicks into place. To fold it back, you simply
do the same.

There
are three minor downsides to the stock – it’s not that comfy, as
it’s unpadded, and when folded it rests against the right RIS armour
plate and obstructs the right hand fireselect switch (it will also
get in the way of a double mag clamp).

RAS
grip:
Much as with the rest of this rifle, the grip
looks great, and comes with a RIS vertical grip fitted to it the
bottom rail. The vertical grip is of course detachable from the
rails, but comes attached in the box. The grip has three rails in
total fitted to it, one either side, and one below. The left and
right rails come with RAS armour fitted to them – again it comes
fitted in the box, but can easily be removed and swapped around.

The
battery for the MP5RAS fits inside the grip, and there is only room
for a mini 8.4 600mAh Nicad pack, this has some further ramifications,
but I’ll get into those slightly later on in this review.

The
only disappointment in the grip is it’s build – the ‘U’ shaped piece
that makes up the grip is metal, but for some reason (most probably
budgetary) the RAS rails are plastic. Thankfully they are only bolted
on, so they can always be detached and replaced with some metal
ones in the future. Again I’m fairly sure some 3rd party manufacturers
will spring in here, as G&P have already made and released a
complete copy of the grip section to make your own MP5 RAS.

Vertical
grip:
TM’s vertical grip is well built, that said,
there’s not much that can go wrong with it as it’s so simple. To
fit the grip, unwind the knob on the bottom (anticlockwise), and
slide it onto the rail. Look through the hole at the top of the
grip and move it along until you can see that the hole is aligned
with a gap in the rails. Now do the wheel on the bottom of the grip
up tight. Finger tight should be good enough, but if you want to
ensure that it’ll never fall off, use a large screwdriver or coin
to get a bit more leverage. Just remember it’s plastic, so don’t
over tighten it and blame me.

As
I’ve got a Guarder vertical grip I thought I’d compare the two.
In the photo the TM grip is to the left, and the Guarder one is
to the right. As you can see the Guarder grip is a lot chubbier
and rounded. It’s difficult to compare quality on plastic, but I’d
say that the Guarder version wins out slightly.

Now
here’s the strange thing – the Guarder grip is very tight (it slides
on with some persuasion) to get onto the TM RAS rails, which I take
to assume that TM have made their plastic rails ever so slightly
wider.

Battery:
Unfortunately you are limited to the standard 8.4v 600mAh mini battery
as it’s the only one that I know fits in the grip. The split twin
types that are available for the ClassicArmy M4 don’t fit, and I
emailed several dealers yesterday to see what they had available
for it, and they all came back telling me that the 8.4v 600mAh is
the only one that will fit.

Some
questions I’ve been asked:
I’ve
been asked a few questions about this rifle by a few folks, so I thought
it best to bung them in here.

Does
it shoot any different from a standard A5?
Well it’s a TM replica,
so limited in power (under ASGK legislation). As such the power is almost
identical. Muzzle velocity is 83.6m/s (275FPS) and it uses an EG700 motor.

The stock
MP5A5 is quoted as shooting 80.46m/s (264.66 FPS) and the MP5 A4 is quoted
as 82.56m/s (271.59FPS) So it will shoot the same as any other full barrelled
(un silenced) TM MP5 replica.

How
comfortable is the forward grip compared to the MP5K’s?
I’d say
that it’s pretty much on par with the K in terms of ‘comfyness’. I had
no complaints about it

How
well could pressure switches (eg taclight, lasers) be attached to the
front grip?
If you like gaffer tape, PVC electrical tape or elastic
bands, then it’s not a problem. But seriously I found it easy enough to
quickly fit my CA laser unit to the RAS and elastic band the pressure
switch to the grip.

When
the front grip is removed, does it look as if the RIS rails would make
it difficult / painful to hold?
AS the rails are plastic, they
are quick comfy to hold. Don’t forget that you get two RAS armour panels
with this replica. So if you plan to use it without a vertical grip you
might want to place one of them on the lower rail if you have delicate
pinkies. ^_^

Does
the front sight post obscure the scope picture if a magnified scope (eg
4×40) is used (rather than the propoint)?
As you can see from
this image scanned in from the TM manual, you can fit larger scopes. The
ones shown are the (rather overpriced) TM scopes. BUT, there’s not much
room, you will need to remove the backsight, which looks bad, and the
scope picture will have the foresight right in the middle of it.

Future
MP5 RAS owners looking to fit a large scope might want to look into getting
a replacement foresight part (MP-51) the figure ‘8’ foresight, and cutting
the top loop off it. With a small amount of cutting and filing it’s look
quite good.

Is
the scope any good?
It’s rather a subjective opinion that really.
As far as I know this is the only replica available of the propoint, so
that’s its real advantage. It’s certainly good enough for skirmish, as
the sight picture is good, and the ‘reddot’ brightness is very impressive.
My personal choice would be to go for a metal and glass Walther reddot,
but that’s just me.

How
susceptible will the scope be to being buggered by a BB smashing the front
lens ( ala P90s)?
These scopes will almost certainly break or
smash if fired directly at with AEGs. I’m not going to try it with this
one, but I’d put money on it the lense is plastic after all. My advice
would be to get some lense caps to protect it, or to mount a piece of
clear plastic vertically onto a RIS attachment in front of the scope.

MP5
RAS + CAW mini Moscart launcher == Ultimate CQB weapon?
Hmm I’d
say so. We really need to figure a way to fit at least 1200mAh of battery
somewhere in there though.

Is
it better than a P90?
Well on paper the P90 carries more rounds,
and has a longer inner barrel. Off the paper the P90 can be modified to
take a much larger battery, but then again, so can the MP5 RAS if you
sling a Guarder
LTH
on it. It’s a close call, but I’d prefer the MP5 RAS over
the original P90, as it’s more conventional, but that’s just my personal
opinion.

Is
it worth the RRP (roughly £280 in the UK)?
The TM MP5 RAS
is certainly a very complete rifle, separately the scope sells for 90USD,
and the rail mount goes for about 30USD. If you want a rifle that’s suited
to urban use, the MP5 is quite hard to beat.

Conclusion
TM’s MP5 RAS came out of the blue, and is really a marketing
tool for TM’s new grip and scope. What this replica wins out
on is looks, it’s hard to beat, as everything is built to such
a high standard. The RAS’s main downside is practicality as
the mini battery option leaves little room for higher power
upgrades, and 600mAh is only good enough for 5-6 hicaps on an
MP5 200 round mag. There are alternative solutions, and the
Guarder
LTH
seems to be a very viable upgrade for anyone that
really needs a huge battery.

The
main downsides are that the scope is liable to being shattered,
the minimal battery size, and the plastic nature of the RIS
rails and the stock.

The
upsides are that it looks great, the folding stock is functional
(if a little unpadded), and if you sling a CAWS mini launcher
under it, you would be hard pressed to find a better CQB rifle.

If
you wanted this rifle to be perfect, it’d need a more solid
stock, metal RIS rails on the grip and a glass lense on the
front of the scope. You have to remember that if TM did these
‘upgrades’ it’d add another 50-100USD on the RRP.

My
advice is to buy this replica, put a Guarder silencer on it,
a cheap scope cap, and a CAW mini launcher. If the stock worries
you, I’d fill it with expanding faom style resin. The battery
capacity may be an issue to some, but not to all.

I
was never really a fan of MP5s, but this little beggar won me
over, it’s more than I’d expect from TM, sure it could have
been done before with aftermarket parts, but TM have obviously
put some time and energy into it’s design and build. It’s just
a shame that they were running on a tight budget. ^_^

Upgrade
Potential

5/10
lots to stick on the outside and cosmetic, but little in terms
of power upgrades can be done, due to the mini battery.

Build
Quality

9/10
It’s built really well, and only gets one knocked off the total
for using plastic too much.

Value
for Money

8/10
given that the parts to buy the RAS grip, scope and mount come
to 150USD on their own the TM MP5 RAS is a bundle that most
will find appealing

Overall
Potential

7/10
It’s a bit harsh, but this really is only a CQB weapon, and
the limited battery is the only real downside and cause of it’s
limited use.

External
Links:

Site
links:

TBA

Comment
on this review in the forums


Last modified:
Wednesday, May 9, 2001 9:37 AM copyright 2001 ArniesAirsoft




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