As someone who is not a real fan of the AR platform rifles, and getting to use one at work all the time, this review is going to be as harsh as I can possibly make it. First off, I won the gun in a raffle that was held by Herald from Edmonton Airsoft Regiment, which was held at the same time as his IPSC shoot. By the way, that was an amazing event, and I hope there is another one in December. Good job Herald.
Ok, now on the gun. It comes in a rather standard cardboard box with a black image of the KJW M4 on the front. The left has: KJ Works M4 Carbine Designed by Tanio Koba. With ďGas Blow BackĒ in the top right corner of the box. Inside, there is the wonderful standard form cut Styrofoam that holds everything. In the box you get the gun itself, two, yes I said TWO, magazines, small box of BBs, loading tool, and standard literature.
Ok, enough boring standard stuff. Letís look at this wonderful new toy. Upon picking up the gun, the metal upper receiver adds a decent heft. Though, the feeling of the lower receiver seems to make it all for not. The clear plastic has a bit of a weak feel to it. But, I have not gamed this particular gun as it is a wee bit cold outside and gas guns obvious donít work that well in the cold. On that note, Iíve noticed that rapid semi automatic fire of a full magazine causes the magazines to get rather cold. Yet, from what I could see, the rifle did not suffer any major cool down effects.
The front stock of the rifle is made of standard ABS plastic. They are a little shiny and weak feeling, but are good for what they do. This rifle is supposedly completely interchangeable with TM parts. The only TM parts I have for it are the Knightís Pro Silencer and my old RIS off my SR16. Unfortunately, this RIS will not bolt onto the existing barrel as it is missing the flanges at the base near the receiver. The barrel contains 14mm CCW threads, making threading suppressors on to it very simple. The only problem was, unlike every other airsoft gun with threaded barrels, the flash hider is strictly held on by the grub screw. Under the flash suppressor, there is a brass thread protector. So I warn you to watch, and keep that grub screw tight. Or you are going to lose your wonderful flash suppressor that makes your AR so pretty. So I put my old one I had laying around onto it. Problem solved, AR still looks ARish.
The carry handle, front sight, upper receiver, outer barrel, and buffer tube are all metal. As I said above, the new Canadian legal smoked plastic lower receiver is a little fragile feeling. As I do not know if it will be at all possible to get the metal lower receiver that the rest of the world is allowed, I will not tempt fate and treat it as if it were a real rifle. Though, I must digress, the plastic isnít clear and doesnít look as absolutely horrid as some people think.
The body pins are not locked into the gun like the ones that came with my metal body I got from Huang last year. But, they are very difficult to even push through to allow you to open the receiver. So, the fear of them sliding out prematurely is easily taken care of. As I do not have a spare set of locking take down pins, I canít say for certain that they will fit.
The body itself is very easy to split apart. Much like its real steel counterpart it is based on. Just apply a ton of force to the real take down pin, pull it out, and split the upper receiver from the lower. To pull out the bolt, pull back the cocking handle and the whole bolt assembly follows. I am not sure why there is a large rod in place of the gas key, but itís there.
The gun itself is as close to real as you are going to get. You can run standard function tests on it, stoppage drills, everything. The working forward assist does come in useful. If you ride the cocking handle forward, the bolt will not always fully engage causing a ďbolt partially forwardĒ stoppage. Do your tap, rack, forward assist, bang drill and youíre set. Though, after firing four full magazines back to back, through this gun, I failed to receive a failure.
Iíve been running this gun on propane filled using the AI Propane adapter, and two drops of 10 weight silicone oil. Other than the minor cooling of the magazines on fast repeat firing, I have yet to have anything crack (yes, I am well away 128 rounds is still way too low to have a mass failure). The bolt lock always engages, the trigger is standard two stage military, and the recoil is very crisp. To top it all off, the gun is loud. I have shot it with a suppressor, but have not noticed any difference on the shooting end. I will hopefully find that out in late May or June when I get to really test this beast in a game.
The magazines are full metal and very durable feeling. I donít intend to drop them onto cement or concrete to test this out, as I have a bad track record with magazines hitting such surfaces. The magazines come with a blank fire lock out. This is basically a little tab you pull down and lock into a detent at the bottom of its groove. This allows you to shoot the rifle with the magazine in, and not have to worry about holding the bolt release or re-cocking the rifle after every shot. Itís a good idea, but in my opinion, a little worrisome with the plastic bolt. The magazines also have a total capacity of 32 rounds. Meaning you now have to start thinking like a real soldier and counting your shots. No spray and pray crap here ladies and gents. An upside to these magazines, is that like all GBBs I have played with previously, they reliably feed all 32 BBs into the gun, and push the bolt release/stop every time. The magazines are based on the old Canadian THERMOLD magazines. Due to which, they are thicker and may not fit some smaller magazine pouches. I have tested them in my Guarder double magazine pouches, as well as in my real HSGI Wasatch vest. Both sets of pouches will hold two magazines snuggly. The other and probably most important thing about these magazines is that they have metal feed lips. And in the complete off chance that you manage to break them, they can be removed and replaced.
The last part I will look at is the hop up. Itís a new design, and completely different from the TM ones. The hop up wheel is still in the ejection port. Itís just above the bolt. It is hard to move, and refuses to back off after firing. So far, with the little Iíve fired, I have not had any problem with it. The accuracy is spot on at 25 feet. Or, as spot on as shooting a smooth sphere down a smooth brass barrel can be. I do plan on putting a M4 length 6.03mm tight bore barrel in as soon as the season comes around again. Until then, I will stick to the M733 inner barrel that is currently installed. Or so I have read in other reviews. I havenít had a chance to take off the portion of the barrel in front of the flash hider yet.
That about sums up everything I can think of for this new GBBR by KJ Works/Tanio Koba. As I havenít had a real chance to field it outside of the shooting range in my garage, I cannot say how well it holds up in the field. Though, I am sure someone on Arnies has posted, as they have much nicer weather in other parts of the world. I have yet to chronograph this GBBR, but from preliminary testing in my afore mentioned garage, at around 25 feet, every BB that hit the BB trap (using a Savage Arms steel pellet trap and BB Bastard .20g) they shattered. This leads me to think I should turn my hop up on, and maybe some .25g BBs for games. If you have any questions, please feel free to pm and ask.
- Plastic lower receiver feels a little fragile
- Elastic return buffer around cocking handle and bolt
¨- Bolt is plastic. Longevity in question
- Flash suppressor not threaded onto barrel. Sits on top of brass thread protector and is held on by small grub screw.
- Magazines are bulky and only hold 32 rounds
- Unable to change base plate of magazines if you want to put on Ranger Pulls
- Front Stocks is standard ABS. Feel weak
- Upper is heavy and metal
- Carry handle is all metal, and screws were tightened to beyond hand loosening
- Trigger Mechanism is close to the real steel
- 5 position collapsible stock has minimal wobble.
- Metal outer barrel
- Bolt Carrier is metal
- Working forward assist
- Working bolt lock
- Easy to use hop up adjustment
- Robust Magazines. Feel like they can take a lickin' and keep on tickin'. All metal
- Magazines are real capacity
- Magazines feed all 32 rounds flawlessly
- Suppressor ready with 14mm CCW
- Stock was immediately interchangeable to have VLTOR and MOE stocks fit with minimal wobble
- 5 Position LE style stock comes with gun
- Gun comes with 2 magazines, barrel tool, front sight tool, new speed loader for magazines.