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Old July 6th, 2010, 12:14   #18
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Originally Posted by sewktbk View Post
You know how ignorant your comment sounds? i dare you to defend your point with valid arguments and sound intelligent or responsible. And don't give me the few extra dollars reason, you'll sound even worst...
I don't think the question is an unreasonable one, as there are a lot of subtle reasons including the environment for moving to eco friendly BB products. People rightly question why the eco based product are more expensive.

Most eco friendly BB products use an eclectic mix of biologically activateable ingredients, including PLA, a corn based polymer. Additional binders and enzymes are added to the mix to accelerate the breakdown once it begins. Mineral powder is added for weight in many products as its ecologically neutral, as opposed to powdered metals which are added to styrene to get it past .30g (thats why most +.30g products have odd colors and behave like crayons, shedding surface material - the styrene bonding is compromised once the ratios get higher).

Now, you can't just throw out millions of dollars of injection molding equipment for BBs and modification is expensive as hell as well, so the mix for the eco based products have to, for all intents and purposes, behave like styrene slurry. Styrene is cheap and plentiful having been used in industrial processes and products for decades - and styrene is a relatively pure, homogeneous product.

Eco based PLA mixes are compounds, mixed by chemists in precise ratios in order to mimic the stability of styrene based products, but retain the characteristics of a eco based BB. This has a cost, and there in lies the difference between the two products.

This is also why silica's are, for instance, relatively inexpensive - its a homogeneous 99% pure chemistry - no complex mixing required. There are other materials coming onto the market for airsoft that are biologically activated, or, bio-neutral, and cost will be based on the cost of the base material plus the processes to create a 6mm BB - not all of them are injection molding.

Incidently, in regards to PLA, its very expensive right now because it is in high demand, and its availability is governed by a finite crop based source. Also there are jurisdictions all over the world that are mandating the replacement of styrene for PLA in food packaging. So, the availability of PLA is an issue.

Most BB vendors aren't very forthcoming about the materials makeup of the older product. Customers are generally unaware or uneducated in what those products consist of and their impact on the environment, but also on the later land use and possible repercussions. As it stands now, there are no remediation laws in Ontario governing styrene, but I would say in about a 24 month timeframe, you're going to see major revisions at the provincial level.

Originally Posted by Thanh View Post
Some people honestly don't give two shits about the planet.
Or, they are simply ignorant of the issues. The only reason I know any of this stuff is that it is my business to know it.
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