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A study in airsoft ammunition (primarily BB Bastards)

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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:26   #1
CDN_Stalker
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A study in airsoft ammunition (primarily BB Bastards)

Last month I started rebuilding my CA M24 with different parts (thanks Dracheous) and have since been trying to milk the best combination out of it since, as well as huge amounts of fine tweaking, shooting and chronying (my new F1 Chrony, the standard of airsoft games) and I've also used BB Bastards pretty much all year 2007 (0.28g BBs, increased brush penetration over 0.25g!!!!) and during my diagnostics on my M24, I started recording info I'd get (about 1/4 of the time). Since Scarecrow, the head Bastard, gave me and a very few select others, his new batch of 0.30g BBs (bag each of 1000 BBs) to test out, I've actually taken it further than I thought I would, as you'll see.

This is a review, but largely a huge pile of info (aka. make this a sticky somewhere)regarding BBs we use in games, why BBs react in different ways and where quality lies in which brands and such. While Scarecrow has supplied me with a bag of each, 0.20g, 0.25g, 0.28g, and his new 0.30g Little Bastards to support my diagnostics as well as help him understand his products (ways to make better or keep as they are), I'm wanting to test other brands of BBs as well, no matter the weight (as long as in the catagory of the above that he sells) to cross reference and compare the Bastards to what else is out there. *****If anyone wants to help me in this, and are willing to donate a small amount of BBs that you use, PM me for my address, all I ask is a bag of 50-100 BBs be dropped in an envelope and sent via a postage stamp (if a full bag, I'll pay Xpress Post shipping).

Anyways, I'll start by posting my post from my first test, velocity droppage vs. increase in BB weight, then add more with a new post (will edit in some areas, but want to keep bringing this to people attention, because it's useful to everyone).

Oh ya, figured I'd say, I'm running my tests with my CA M24 (mind of it's own for velocity on any given night) and my uber consistant TM MK23 springer. All tests are done (unless specified) in my basement, if shots are taken at a target posted, it's at 30ft measured (1" at 30ft could be 12" or more at 100ft in case you are wondering).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stalker

Anyways, I got a bag of the new BB Bastard 0.30g BBs last night (thanks a tonne Testtube, my local Bastard, and Scarecrow, the head Bastard), and have some interesting info. As many know, they come in small (apparently custom made size, Scarecrow thinking about snipers and how little we carry and how little space we have to carry it) bags of 1000 count.

Anyways, Last night when Testie was over (and Hazard, lots of gun work going on), I set about chronying the new 0.30g Bastards. I used 0.20g Bastards to set a reference point because of all the M24 work I've been doing the past week (BTW, wrap your hop up rubber in plumber's teflon tape before you insert into your hop up unit, this eliminates any air leak under the rubber itself, as well as any chance of ballooning.......... rough estimates look like I gained a 20-30fps increase from my particular setup). Unfortunately the only BB I had to compare the Bastards to were the stock of SIIS 0.30g. Check out the interesting numbers I got:

Bastard 0.20g BBs:

508.4
508.4
506.6
511.9
Average: 508.0fps

Deviation: 5.3fps

SIIS 0.30g BBs

439.8
437.2
442.9
432.3
Average: 438.0

Deviation: 10.6fps

Bastard 0.30g BBs

458.7
458.0
455.6
453.2
Average: 456.4

Deviation: 5.5fps

So, just those rough tests of a small portion shows that the Bastards are MUCH better made, a larger size, better consistancy. And, to give Scarecrow a little poke, my general rule of thumb regarding rough fps drop per BB weight............... (why can't I remember or find the damn info, something along the lines of a drop of ~10fps per 0.02g increase in BB weight.......... Crap!!!!).
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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:30   #2
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Ok, here's the new stuff, first part is cutting open three BBs of each weight to take a pic.



Notice that the lighter BBs have a larger bubble (or two) inside them, and the heavier ones the bubble either gets smaller or dissipates into dozens of tiny ones. Is because more material is packed into the BB. Bubbles (large ones anyways) are bad to have in BBs, mainly because they often rarely sit in the middle, causing a slight wobbling of the BB in flight as it spins (hop up). This is one reason, besides the effects of the variable air density which will cause yawing (moving the BB to the side), or causing the lift generated by hop up to cause a rolling action to one side to occur on the BB (pilots can understand that, if one wing generates more lift than the other, the plane will roll towards the side that has less lift), and because of that 0.20g BBs should never be used outdoors.

Last edited by CDN_Stalker; February 1st, 2008 at 11:18..
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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:35   #3
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Next is some pics of targets I shot on two different nights this week, with my CA M24 using 0.30g Bastards, and a clean barrel dry swab run through before testing, and chronying after. Notice how it decides how it's gonna shoot based upon the night. Both targets were five shots each bull, aiming dead center, bench rested.



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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:40   #4
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great info. i have a question regarding Bastard BB's. im getting a TM M14. While i keep it stock, should i use .25 bastards or .28s? that being said, i do play outdoors.
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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:45   #5
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This is good stuff, i bought my first sniper tonight, and am eagerly waiting to see what the summer season will bring, keep up the good work stalker, Ill be keeping an eye out for your posts!
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Old January 31st, 2008, 20:45   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DONSTER 125 View Post
great info. i have a question regarding Bastard BB's. im getting a TM M14. While i keep it stock, should i use .25 bastards or .28s? that being said, i do play outdoors.
Flat out, 0.28g, more accurate, greater effective range, better brush penetration and more resistive to air density changes.

Am composing my chrony results from tonight's batch of testing run through my MK23 springer as I reply to your question.

Last edited by CDN_Stalker; February 1st, 2008 at 11:19..
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Old January 31st, 2008, 21:02   #7
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Next is chrony results from my MK23 springer, 10 shots of each BB weight tested. Quite interesting if you ask me! (I'll add that two nights ago I WASHED my 0.30g Bastards in dishsoap and warm water.......... including the bag. Why? Hop up puts a backspin on BBs by friction, and if each BB has a slight oily coating on it........all do, be it oil or graphite....... that reduces the amount of friction the hop up rubber can put on the BB, making you dial in more hop up to counter act it, putting a larger mass of obstruction into the BBs path down the barrel. This causes more inconsistancy and less accuracy. Mind you, I don't overly recommend this for AEG use, only bolt action will benefit from this, but I'd like to hear from AEG users that are willing to run dry BBs through their guns what they think. I've posted the BB washing thing on the Snipers Perch at www.airsoftretreat.com last year, and LOTS of bolt action users have found increased performance from washing their BBs. Nutshell, washed BBs allow you to run at lower hop up settings, reducing the 'blockage' of the BB's path, increasing everything including fps by a bit).

Ok, here's my results form tonight, chronying my TM MK23 springer with all the little Bastards.

0.20g

215.0
217.6
219.4
216.9
211.2
219.9
218.4
217.2
217.1
216.2

Mean: 216.9fps
Variance: 8.7fps

0.25g

198.3
199.1
198.8
201.1
199.1
199.5
201.0
197.6
201.0
201.0

Mean: 199.7fps
Variance: 3.5fps

0.28g

182.2
181.9
182.8
183.2
179.6
182.8
181.2
181.1
181.9
180.3

Mean: 181fps
Variance: 3.6fps

0.30g

183.0
178.7
180.3
181.7
180.9
181.4
179.3
181.0
181.7
181.7

Mean: 181.0
Variance: 3.7fps

Droppage, we have:

17.2fps decrease in velocity for a 0.05g increase in weight from 0.20g to 0.25g

18.0fps decrease in velocity for a 0.03g crease from 0.25g to 0.28g

and what confuses me, a 0.7fps decrease in velocity for a 0.02g increase from 0.28g to 0.30g, kinda shuts down (in this case) my rough rule of thumb:

"Estimate roughly a 10fps decrease in velocity for every 0.02g increase in BB weight." At least it works for AEGs, I assume because of the variable hop up unit. My springer has a fixed hop up unit that you can't set for BB weight changes.

As you can see, the consistancy between all the BBs fired through the most consistant gun I have is very tight, more so between the 0.25g and the 0.30g, less than 4fps difference which is extrememly damned good! Scarecrow has an extremely impressive product here!!! If he can get airsoft snipers across the continent (and beyond I'd like to see) 0.33g or 0.34g BBs as consistant as this, he will corner an almost non-existing market and will make tonnes of cash (I hope he shares ) In a lot of cases, 0.36g are only made by Straight, and really suck for size and consistancy between them, often varying by 0.1mm in some samples I've seen measured. And heavy BBs are crutial for long range shots with 'field limit' guns (between 450fps and 550fps with 0.20g BBs), and even more so if there is any wind at all.

Last edited by CDN_Stalker; January 31st, 2008 at 21:07..
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Old February 1st, 2008, 01:46   #8
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So when does production start on 8mm's? Cause my mossberg is thirsty.
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Old February 1st, 2008, 02:20   #9
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Wow Stalker, friggin good information.
I'll be switching to .28 bastards as soon as my 25s run out.

Also, please don't take this as shitting on your work, but deviation (or at least error on your average) is the highest measurement minus the lowest, divided by the number of measurements when you have 10 or less shots per condition. The actual formula is a bit more complicated, but that's a reasonable approximation.

Like I offered once before, if you want a hand doing data analysis, including generating equations (more accurate than excel can do) and simulating different variables, I have been doing a lot of this in labs and a data course, and to a point, enjoy doing some of it.
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Old February 1st, 2008, 10:51   #10
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Thanks man. Still looking where I put the word deviation in my posts though (EDIT, found them in the post I did last year, oh well). Lol

Honestly I hate formulas and equations, useless unless they interest people. As always, I put everything into extremely basic terms in order to benefit the entire community. Last thing I want is to look like an egghead. Lol

Last edited by CDN_Stalker; February 1st, 2008 at 11:08..
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Old February 1st, 2008, 10:57   #11
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this is amazing stalker
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Old February 1st, 2008, 11:07   #12
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Good job seems I'll be swaping out my .20's for .28's
and I think I'm going to wash a bag and see how that flys.
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Thanks Hectic,
While your posts are sometimes a difficult read, you sure are helpfull
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Old February 1st, 2008, 12:07   #13
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A little insight - .28 to .30 involves the addition of certain materials (trade secret) to increase the BB weight WITHOUT using compression. Since Stalker has let my cat out of its bag a little (no worries, its worth it to have a good series of tests like this) I can address this a little bit. In .20 to .28 you can use straight bb substrate material (polar bear snot) to gain weight - that however hits a wall at .28 where you are basically faced with a choice - compress your product or use an additive. Compression is bad because after a certain point it it causes the product to become brittle and shatter on impact - which is a safety hazard. It also has a negative effect on spherical balance, causing the material to redistribute unevenly (I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions as to why this is important). Keep in mind there is no direction in which to load a BB - it has to pass through the hopup in whatever position it comes up out of the mag in, hence spherical balance and distribution is critical to consistency - and there is where my primary investment in my product is and is probably the hardest thing to replicate.

Anyways, Stalker is right on the money so far - I've not given him any proprietary information for his testing, which is interesting to watch because he's seeing the results and behaviour of engineering decisions made to make a better more consistent product and his tests bear this out.
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Old February 1st, 2008, 12:55   #14
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Ya, Scarecrow has told me nothing, I've just found similar results in the past with better (and worse) BBs, namely the air bubble inside (never been much of a secret, I learned of it years ago when reading up on airsoft). Like I pointed out, better and heavier BBs tend to have very small bubbles in the center of the BB, where others have a single BB that is often offset to one side (large exaggeration, but picture trying to throw a half filled frozen water balloon at a target far away (say 40ft), then just drop it down to how a BB with a large bubble closer to one side will react when spinning because of hop up).
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Old February 1st, 2008, 13:28   #15
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Might as well point it out on here, I posted a link to this thread on airsoft retreat, and there's a discussion going on. Scarecrow, feel like selling Bastards down south?

http://www.airsoftretreat.com/forums...2976#msg572976
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