Army M4a1 preview
by Charlie Omega (firstname.lastname@example.org)
M4A1 is probably one of the most popular Airsoft guns around, and is usually
always out of stock at the local retailers (be it UK or HK). This gun has
101 accessories to bolt onto it from scopes to M203’s to RIS systems to
Folding stocks – its just so very customisable.
I have 2 M4A1’s – one
is a fully upgraded reliable and never let me down type M4 with a 9.6v horseshoe
battery, the other is a project gun – painted, stock changed and so forth.
I have always stayed
away from metal bodies because I have heard from a lot of reliable sources
that they are more hassle then they are worth, I mean add the custom battery,
a nice spray of black paint on the receiver and no one can tell the difference
unless they actually hold it, even then it is hard. So when I heard about
6 months ago about this amazing ultimate M4 that could take 12v batteries
and had a hicap and full metal body as standard being made by Classic
Army, I was excited yet dubious about the whole thing.
Army have never been my favourite AEG manufacturers because of their
rather shoddy job on the MP5 range… now some will argue their out of the
box CA MP5’s were great ! But having seen over a dozen of these just strip/break/stop
working after just 2 hicaps (sometime’s less) I was not convinced.. then
I saw that nice shiny poster CA
released of their Armalite range and my love for the M4/M16 range made me
pre-order it. The way I figured if its not a great gun internally it is
still full metal and I could always move my TM gearbox over or use it for
spares – It is after all only $20 more then the TM one for a FULL metal
/ upgraded / yadda yadda M4. So after waiting for nearly 3 months and several
delays in the release I just went and bought myself a AK with the pre-order
cash that was with the retailer.
Then about 2 weeks ago
the news breaks that CA
are going to be releasing the M4 series at the end of May ! Could it be possible
? WGC seem
to think so, for the first time (that I am aware off) they are taking pre-orders
– time to reserve one !
Come end of may and
guess what.. theres a delay, oh well this was expected.. lets see what I
can order instead, but then WGC
email me and let me know that they WILL be getting in CA M4’s VERY VERY
soon, in 2 weeks.. well today is the 14th of June 02 and It has just been
delivered to my doorstep. WGC (wargamersclub) made sure that my M4 was shipped
to me the day they got it, and because of this, I will probably be one of
the first people in the UK to actually own one of these.
Also worth a mention
is that I am pretty much expecting the gun to strip after a few rounds because
past history.. this might not be a good thing, but CA should be aware of
it – that most buyers of CA
guns do actually have in the back of their mind that they are going to have
to put in atleast some more money into the gun after the initial purchase.
Me ? I have a spare TM gearbox I can always swap around – not one of the
best beginner buys.
how is it? So enough of that, lets get into what you really
want to know.. How is the blooming Classic
Army M4 ?!? Well…. here we go :)
I must say that CA have lived up to the rumors and the talk about their
M4 range.. it is well.. awful. When you pick it up you think that
it is going to fall apart in your hands and the entire thing is very shaky.
Okay.. nevermind I sit down and tighten everything I can and its starting
to feel more sturdy. Off with the foregrip to put in the M4 custom battery
I have for my normal M4’s but … shock.. horror.. IT DOESNT FIT ?! The
gun has no TM style fuse box (but it does have a fuse) but the outer barrel
is so large that the battery refuses to fit, ah well luckily I have a mini
battery lying about. After struggling for around 15 minutes it just about
fits – in the top half of the foregrip. Yay… time to load up the hicap
that comes with the gun as standard and fire it and chrono it.. about 3-4
short bursts later the fully charged mini 600 mAH battery is flat. Charge
it up again.. same thing happens, could be just the battery but it seems
to work fine on a stock TM P90.
receiver: The receiver, well the selector switch on it seems
like it is going to fall off any moment and the hop adjuster is OPEN behind
the dust cover the bolt cover (the thing which moves back :D) is permanently
open so once the dust cover opens up the hopup adjuster is right there..
not good for crawling about etc. The markings on the metal body are the
same as the ones CA sell on their own, this is one of the few things actually
METAL on the gun.. yes the full metal M4 has a plastic stock and foregrip.
Sounds and feels an awful lot like a cheap M4 with a metal body.
Lets see.. what else
is wrong with the gun, the Foregrip feels awfully loose when handling it
and seems a bit larger then the TM ones as well.. the stock is wobbly and
the barrel seems to come wobbly out of the box as well.
It functions quite nicely
when it does actually fire.. this gun unlike the TM ones comes with a hicap,
when actually putting the hicap into the gun its not a smooth action like
those of the TM guns but a very slight struggle. It fires like a upgraded
gun and sounds very nice. ROF is excellent with a 9.6 (held externally since
it wont fit in the damn foregrip !) and no problems yet after 4 hicaps worth
of BB’s thru it.. surprising.
Overall this replica is well.. disappointing, however I think after some
modifications and messing around with it like any other gun it should be
quite good. It clocked in at 338, 342 and 339 respectively but it just drains
the batteries too fast, since you cant fit the 9.6v custom in there you
are going to have to wait for the 12v custom batteries that are being planned
for this gun.
Another noticeable point
of this replica is the “FOR AGES 18 YEARS and OLDER” Warning label
on the box – I am not too sure if this is on the CA MP5 Range as well, the
manual that comes with it is quite nice as well, printed on nice shiny thick
I will be using it to
skirmish this weekend if I can figure out how to actually perhaps fit in
a larger battery inside and will update this review accordingly and will
probably be opening up the inside as well, if the MP5 CA range is anything
to by – it should have stripped by then :).So check back soon !
Charlie Omega (email@example.com)
fixes for barrel wobble and battery installation issues – WGC
have kindly written an article covering a few of the problems cited above. Please
do read the full article.
Wednesday, May 9, 2001 9:37 AM. Copyright 2001 ArniesAirsoft