Welcome new user.
In airsoft, like in almost everything else in life you will find that cost can reflect quality.
Today’s airsoft guns are nothing more than a motor driven gear set that cranks back a piston which is then released to push and compress air in a cylinder which is then directed out the nozzle to propel the BB down the barrel. How you want it to look is up to you.
As an addendum to that statement you may wish to consider a few of the following points.
1. Cost, is the airsoft gun you desire in your price range? Is it in your price range in the future if you save. Is it the brand you want? Its not just about the looks of the gun, each and every company has their own little take and twist. An example of this is that ICS M4 have a different threading on the upper receiver than that of say a Classic Army M4. Taking that into consideration you would be limited to front ends made specifically for ICS guns if you choose to change out your front end eventually. Unless however you choose to purchase a rethreading tool to change the threading of your upper receiver. Which brings me to my next point.
2. Cost + availability or parts and your own ability to do upgrades. So you have chosen your airsoft gun. Now you want to do some modifications and upgrades. Do you know what you’re looking for in terms of compatible parts? Do you know where to acquire them easily and do you have the know how to do the work yourself or are in a situation where you know someone who can do it for you. If your not mechanically inclined and do not have access to an airsoft gun doc, I would recommend that you purchase something that has already been preupgraded or at least something that has already had the standard preventative maintenance performed on it be it used or new. Preventative upgrades are simple upgrades that will keep the airsoft gun running longer (maybe not forever but defiantly longer). Most airsoft guns come with nylon bushings; the bushings are what help hold the gears in the mechbox. Most people believe that under heavy stress they bushings can melt and warp, it is recommended that they be replaced with metal bushings. Another example of a preventative maintenance upgrade would be a spring guide. A tokyo marui M4 comes with its stock plastic TM V2 spring guide, while this maybe all fine and dandy for the time being with its stock spring, attempting to run a spring with to high a strength rating may cause that spring guide to break. Over time even with its stock spring the spring guide can weaken. It is suggested that this be an item that you do replace if performing preventative maintenance, usually with something along the lines of a bearing spring guide.
3. Is it available in Canada through one of our retailers? It’s a well known fact that attempting to import an airsoft gun from outside of Canada is equal to that of tossing your money in the toilet, lighting the toilet on fire and then pushing it out of the back of a moving school bus. It may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but now you are out a bunch of money and you also ruined a perfectly good toilet.
4. Magazines, you have your airsoft gun and you only have one magazine well that’s all fine and dandy but I’m certain there may come a day where you will require more than one magazine. You may wish to look into the different brands and manufactures out there to see what is compatible with what and how much it costs.
5. Other. You may wish to consider cost and availability of other items you may want in the future and their availability. For example lets say you bought some form of armalite variant and wanted to go the SR 47 look. Well unfortunately at this time do the Canadian law you would be unable to bring the parts in required since they are prohibited, even if it were possible it is en extremely rare mod to find and even more expensive to buy. Another example would be an under barrel grenade launcher. Hope you can find someone in Canada because importing is a no no. Other things you may wish to consider are the cost of a sling, maybe some gear and optics.
For your consideration here are a few brands that I would recommend.
Tokyo Marui - Best for internals, quality control on assembly is higher than most.
Classic Army - Best for externals, metal bodies/recievers
Jing Gong - Originally a low end company that has slowly crawled up the ladder to produce semi decent airsoft guns. Products are apparently clones of TM.
Each brand has their own specific take on airsoft guns, quality varies with each company.
"Its only a little bit on fire"
Last edited by TokyoSeven; January 8th, 2009 at 18:19..