Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Inari

Tokyo Marui M9A1

Recommended Posts

37761F6419FC4786BF799DA14B6D6DF5-0000358496-0003058257-00500L-9D0826B815C34490BC9C64C3CFE45690.jpgCB4DD5112BEE49448A6D31A1C9916133-0000358496-0003058186-00500L-ABC6EADD0D124280898C9BCB0DCFFFF9.jpg

 

Skin Deep/At a Glance:

FPS: Circa 280 w/0.20g BB, depending on weather

WEIGHT: A reasonable 0.73kg

ACCURACY: Equal to Marui 1911/Hi-Capa/PX4

CONSISTENCY: Provided you don't shoot too fast, it's perfect

RELIABILITY: Pull this from your holster and this will do the job, everytime!

ECONOMY: By the time it lands you're looking at €200. Running costs are negligible, and considering how long this will last it's money well spent.

 

 

In-Depth:

The M9A1 is one of the latest pistols released from Tokyo Marui, and is easily one of the most anticipated - it marks a seminal moment in their history; they updated one of their designs, using everything they've learned since they released their first M9 pistol, quite a ways back. Being a huge fan of the Beretta M9, I for one couldn't believe it and so the moment it was released I'd put in my order from WGC Shop. So what's the fuss about?

 

Well, as I've said already I've had this pistol from pretty much the moment it came out, and have held off doing a review until such a time as I had sufficiently put it through its paces - what's the point in merely giving initial impressions? I figured I'd wait until I could tell you what it's like to use it :)

 

Some basic history for those who aren't aware - the original Marui M9, is one of the oldest pistol designs around. It had a fixed hop up which lent itself perfectly to shooting straight for circa 20 meters, and then dropping dead all of a sudden. TM's original offering for the M9 was a light-weight plastic gun that relied solely on the magazine to add weight and substance to the pistol, giving it a rather hollow feeling. Of course the clones offered metal bodies for more substance, as well as using a small grub screw to create an adjustable hop up, which in a rather rare situation made them more attractive to some people. The problem was of course that green gas + metal slides doesn't really get on too well, especially in the cold. With the advent of KJW's Co2 M9, pretty much all others became obsolete - you got proper feedback for the first time, as well as an unmerciful bang. Of course KSC had already come out with their own M9, which was vastly superior to all other green gas versions featuring a functioning decocker, as well as far more accurate weight distribution and better balance. Its downfall was simply that the magazines were stupidly expensive (€50 each), as well as the not-so-good ball-bearing hop up.

 

It was in drastic need of a redesign. Many speculated that it would happen, though when TM released a 15th Anniversary Biohazard Samurai Edge (Chris Redfield edition), it seemed like that day had come. It had been rumoured to have adjustable hop up...it didn't. All hope seemed lost. Then all of a sudden Tokyo Marui redesigned their website, announced a GBB MP7 and released a revised M9A1. Godzilla was smiling, apparently (Sorry...couldn't resist :D)!

 

So what's changed since then? The M9A1 is still plastic; that hasn't changed. What has changed however is that TM have taken what they've learned from the PX-4 and put in a functioning ambidextrous de-cocker; when you flick the gun onto safe, the hammer drops. For any fans of the M9 this is an important feature to replicate, as well as being far more practical. On top of that they've had a go at fixing the weight distribution and balance of the pistol, using the same technique they use with their 1911's i.e. via the addition of weights in the grips, however they have also added a weight on the inner barrel. It works, exceedingly well. The gun feels as good with the magazine out as it does with the mag in.

It also now has the lower picatinny rial indicative of the M9A1, which enables you to add any lasers or torches etc if you are so inclined. The plastic rail is durable, so no problems there.

 

 

775656430A7841379DB11FAD2058FCBC-0000358496-0003058246-00500L-D518D4E0D93846909BE2E5A28BCDE9DD.jpg37193856A9EC4FFE8A30193423B6B620-0000358496-0003058256-00500L-A626BF71001846A49982D522BA300FA4.jpg79A208E031C64676B546F3683A3D62F2-0000358496-0003058247-00500L-E974E99B2CBC4A1BAD4219CA47FEDE31.jpg

Marui M9A1 seen with White-Dot front & rear sights, adjustable hop up (requires partial disassembly) and the pistol field stripped (note grey weight added around inner barrel)

 

So it's now better balanced, better functioning, and if you're a fan of the M9A1 over the traditional M9, then it is better looking as well (especially given the markings engraved into the plastic - this pistol looks very good), but all of that is purely an ancillary bonus; it is only when you strip the pistol do you really see it. You now have the impressive Tokyo Marui adjustable-wheel hop up in the body of an M9A1. It might sound like hokum, but it means that this pistol will now be more accurate than your rifle. You point, you shoot, and you hit...that's all there is to it. There is no skill involved...this pistol does all of the work for you, and it is a work horse.

 

It is important to remember that Tokyo Marui are a Japanese company, and are forced to design their guns with the 1 joule limit in mind. Since they are working under restrictions, they innovate like no other. They invented the hop up system, and no one does it quite like they do. The quality of materials they use is what sets TM apart from the rest; high quality brass barrels for range, soft hop up rubbers sourced exclusively for performance at one joule. For sidearms in Ireland, you really shouldn't look any further than TM.

 

FD2E715C96F143009D529BAEA629043F-0000358496-0003058255-00500L-5CBFB9213F58461A8108103A23C8E199.jpgC71AB94A8B4A4ED885DB215B9D7BEEA5-0000358496-0003058254-00500L-A5D42A216C524881B8D908BAB4CBB5A3.jpgBD9E74CA8A1A4D689C21146859CEE924-0000358496-0003058253-00500L-90B669758E23402EAE7B360906EBEA8D.jpg

Note Marui's realistic imitation trademarks :D They're a nice touch, look realistic and are completely inoffensive

 

It all sounds fantastic, right? Well it is, but don't get me wrong it is not all roses. Thanks to the plastic slide it is economic on the green gas magazines, but it does still suffer from the fatal flaw of the M9-style green gas magazines; shallow gas reservoir. Rapid shots cause the pressure to drop pretty quickly, rendering your gun useless unless you have another magazine to slap in. Even though the plastic is a necessary evil, it is still an evil aspect - try as you might, plastic does not feel like metal, and it can be a large obstacle to overcome. KSC's M9 feels infinitely better than TM's, although there is no doubting that the Tokyo Marui M9A1 beats it around the park every day of the week in performance...sometimes it's not all about how it shoots.

 

Propellant-wise, TM's are only rated for 134a. However I've been running it off of green gas without a single issue. Remember it's designed for 134a in Japan, where 15* C is considered cool, and 35* C is a summers day...we're in Ireland where 15* C causes everyone to strip into summer clothes and go to the beach. Green gas is fine, though when it gets in to the teens (temperature) use with caution, as the pressure is greater which causes more stress on the gun, and at the time of writing there are no aftermarket parts. Due to the plastic slide you get excellent performance from the gas, easily emptying the full load of BB's (especially when using the TM mags). When it is colder, you need to be a little more conservative - rapid shots drop the pressure quickly, so if you're fast on the trigger make sure you have spare magazines to compensate for cool down.

 

Which brings me beautifully onto another excellent point of the TM M9A1 - it uses the same magazines as previous TM-system M9's (e.g. WE, HK3P, KJW, HFC etc) which are very easy to come by. I have personally used this gun on TM magazines, KJW magazines, HK3P mags, WE mags and HFC mags. TM perform the best, then KJW, followed by WE/HK3P. HFC sucked, but I've never liked those anyway. If you have the spare monies go straight for the TM variants; better quality valves straight from the box. KJW do the job nicely, but can do with some TLC out of the box.

 

Now, with the above in mind comes the contradiction. One of the more disappointing things about this gun is the lack of a magazine redesign. Yes it's great that it is backwards compatible, especially considering I already had 11 M9 mags...but with the improvements they made to the P226 magazine, I kind of expected more. The thing to remember is that the magazines are smaller than a hi-capa which means they're more susceptible to cool down, so rapid-fire performance is not going to be as good, but it will still be better than the single stack 1911.

 

Accuracy is no surprise for any of those familiar with TM; this gun is a laser beam - it's on par with the PX4, but not as good as the Five SeveN (which still has my vote on most accurate). It is extremely consistent, though due to being green gas it does suffer cool down thus affecting consistency in rapid fire situations (pressure drop drastically reduces FPS, which can negatively impact on accuracy). In perfect circumstances this pistol is extremely consistent, but does take some getting used to for those coming from Co2, or larger capacity green gas guns (such as glock extended magazines etc).

 

Ergonomics of the gun are nice - if you're a fan of single-stack 1911's, then this will feel a little obese to you, but once you're used to it, it's a dream to hold and shoot. Weight balance and distribution is excellent, and thankfully it doesn't feel like plastic while holding it. Recoil is nonexistent - sure the slide moves, but you don't feel it at all. It looks great, but if you're a fan of the KJW Co2 M9 (which I am), you can't help but feel a little disappointed...though that fades immediately as you realise that this gun is a force to be reckoned with; the shots you can make are incredibly impressive.

 

So in summary - do you like the M9? Do you skirmish? Do you use a pistol? If yes, then buy the TM M9A1 and you will not regret it. If you don't skirmish, pick yourself up a KSC M9 as you'll not need to worry about its shortcomings, and can instead enjoy the enhanced feel of the metal body.

 

1E43BB6D8B92441CB29441ABE97518D2-0000358496-0003058185-00603L-3E76777C3C004504996D35E61D8C2F27.jpg

 

7574D2DE0F2A4A8484E7A529CC676F35-0000358496-0003058252-00500L-2DF753CA8F8546B89FE0AA6FE35633BD.jpg

06CC357C287440F7A0F435333251A8A4-0000358496-0003058251-00500L-44FD78CB1E5A48F18EE7A25047134382.jpg

51DECE763F50446F9A19F82D7A38ABEA-0000358496-0003058249-00500L-0914999A42EE476EBA5567D107505C80.jpg

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aye - I've bolted on a Micro Laser and Torch to act as a LAM unit. I like the look of it, for the most part, but it does look a little on the large side

 

As far as power goes, I forgot to add that 280-ish FPS is in Irish temperature, so will obviously be higher in the warmer parts of the world :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm with Volante on this one - I bet that using the old magazine design is limiting what the newer internals can do. I wish TM had found a way to update the magazine internally whilst still retaining backwards compatibility.

 

In fact to be honest I'd rather have an updated magazine without backwards compatibility than the same old magazine.

Edited by PureSilver
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I'm not mistaken...the glocks and m9's share the same output valve. I honesty dont see how it could affect the performance significantly. Looking at my tm xdm's mag...it looks like the valve between my g17 and xdm are interchangeable. If it warranted change...tm would have made it. Also, the m9a1 shoots harder than most tm gbbs out there with an old design mag. Why reinvent the wheel?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are there any other magazines that are compatible with this as sometimes TM mags can be hard to find?

Yup, as mentioned in the OP I've used it with:

HFC, KJW, WE and HK3P magazines :)

 

TM perform the best, followed by KJW and HK3P/WE (no difference between them), with HFC being the worst of the bunch

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting, I thought it was just going to be an external redesign of the old M9. The addition of the hop up is a plus, but the functional decocker is a surprise! To the OP, have you stripped down the guns fully to see what is compatible/not compatible between the old and new?

 

I've done that with the KSC USPs and M9s and found all the dimensional differences in their model lines (not much). I know that the internals will be the same, but if they manage to fit it into the same space as the old system, then there already is a bunch of full metal kits out there for it!

 

Case in point, I have one of the old style Brigadier slides on my KSC/KWA M9 PTP, I have seen nothing else like it around.

 

Thanks for the good review!

-Vu

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just picked one of these up from Wolf in an attempt to cure a hangover; I can happily say three things:

 

1: The TM M9A1 is an excellent hangover cure.

2: Inari has pretty much nailed it with the review - I've owned TM's old M9, and this is just leaps and bounds ahead. The heft with or without the mag is impressive, and it just overall looks better finished. Really is a far nicer feeling pistol now. The BBU Cylinder isn't as large as that of the XDM, so I don't really forsee issues with Green Gas - Time will tell of course but it seems plenty capable of hacking it.

3: Despite the old magazine, I can very quickly fire all 26 rounds on a fresh gas charge without suffering any noticeable cooldown at room temperature. Gas efficiency seems on a par with the old M9, despite the heavier slide.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having fired this in daylight now, another thing I can add is that shot placement seems exceptionally consistent - Firing a double tap with this leads to the BB's following almost exactly the same flight path out to a very impressive range, more so than my previous 1911's. I'm putting this down to the noticeable lack of muzzle flip. The trigger also has a really nice and obvious breaking point, both in SA and DA mode.

 

Another thing I'm impressed with is the ability to over-hop a .28; All the 1911's I've owned required a slight bend of the hop arm to give a lift to a .3 BB, whereas the M9A1 has hop to spare and will happily send a .28 or .3 on it's merry way.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Quick update - I'm about 1500 cycles into owning this thing, probably 1000 rounds fired and 500 dry-fires. All on Green Gas, all at room temperature of around 23-25 celsius. No alarming signs of wear, no visible damage, nada. Unless you're in a seriously hot country I can't see this thing dying on GG/Propane. It's the *fruitcage* *suitcase* tits, is what it is.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to add, like hwagan, I've put through well over 3,500 rds through this gun all on Green Gas (albeit in Irish temperatures) and there is literally no tells that the pistol has been used. Seriously; there is no wear on this beauty at all. If you're a fan of the M9, and want a skirmish-ready side arm that can be used as an effective primary (if you are so inclined...which I am), then this is the gun for you. I have absolutely zero reservations about recommending this gun.

 

Buy it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't had much luck finding a fitted holster for it; At the moment I'm using a Flyye Drop-leg. The IMI Roto holster for the 92/96 *looks* like it's designed to take the railed frame, but that's just going on the look of the holster.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Failing that, a SERPA and a Dremel! That would be my choice if I pick one of these up, my only two reservations are whether or not it will break on propane and whether or not I like the look of the railed frame...

Edited by Stuey

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Failing that, a SERPA and a Dremel! That would be my choice if I pick one of these up, my only two reservations are whether or not it will break on propane and whether or not I like the look of the railed frame...

 

Now why didn't I think of that?! Cheers for the link man, genius idea! My only slight concern would be the edges of the rail catching on the draw, but even then I guess it'd be easy enough to taper the edges.

 

Anyhow - No, no it won't break on Propane :P I'm at least 3000 trigger pulls in now after Sunday's game at the mall and it's still brand new on the inside. No signs of stress or undue wear, and the railed frame kinda grows on you.

Edited by hwagan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see...really considering this, I do love M9s! Do I love them more than my Deagle though...

 

Sounding good! One more question - does it have a metal insert to reinforce the slide lock notch? My Deagle doesn't and the slide stopped locking after year or so of use.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see...really considering this, I do love M9s! Do I love them more than my Deagle though...

 

Sounding good! One more question - does it have a metal insert to reinforce the slide lock notch? My Deagle doesn't and the slide stopped locking after year or so of use.

 

It'll be more efficient than the Deagle? :P

 

As for the metal insert, I'm *almost* certain it does - I'll confirm it 100% tonight, but I'm pretty sure every TM pistol since the G17 has had a reinforced notch. Like I said though, I'll confirm it tonight :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bah, too late to edit. Anyhow - Definitely has metal reinforcement on the slide catch area. The slide rails are in fact all metal, including the bit the slide catch catches.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and the use of session cookies.