Airsoft is a game that puts your expertise and creativity to the test. Besides honing your shooting skills and efficiency on the battlefield, you also need to have a deep understanding of how your airsoft gun works. Interestingly, one way to improve your game is to increase the FPS of your weapon, but how can you make it happen?
Here are various ways you can increase the FPS of your airsoft gun:
- Adjust the barrel.
- Ensure the air seal is good.
- Enhance the spring.
- Upgrade the hop-up bucking.
- Use a non-ported cylinder.
Since airsoft is a game of dexterity, many players opt to increase the FPS of their weapon to improve accuracy, range, and make it more comfortable to use. If you’re an airsoft enthusiast looking for a way to increase the FPS of your airsoft gun, read on. In this article, I’ll discuss 5 ways you can achieve an increased FPS.
You might also be interested in the article on how to measure the FPS of an airsoft gun for free.
1. Adjust the Barrel
Adjusting the inner barrel of your airsoft gun is one of the simplest ways to increase its FPS. A typical airsoft gun has a barrel of 6.10 mm, which could be changed into a different size.
You can replace the standard design with a narrower inner barrel by installing a tight bore to increase FPS. A narrower barrel allows higher pressure to pass through, resulting in a higher FPS.
However, be mindful that the thinner the inner barrel of your weapon, the more likely it’s to get jammed.
If you’re planning to change the inner barrel of your airsoft gun, here’s an instructional video from The Airsoft Traveler:
Best Tight-Bore Inner Barrels
Interestingly, there are tons of tight-bore inner barrels available in the market for your airsoft gun.
Here are some high-quality barrels on Amazon.com that you should consider using in your airsoft gun:
- Evike Angel Custom G2 Inner Barrel: This is a high-quality inner barrel you can use for your airsoft gun. It has an inner diameter of 6.01 mm, which is relatively narrower than the standard size. It’s also made from 100% pure SUS304 stainless steel, making it incredibly durable.
- PDI 6.01 Inner Barrel: The PDI tight bore showcases a 6.01 mm inner barrel perfect for short-range weapons, such as pistols. This barrel also uses SUS304 material, making it heat-resistant and durable.
2. Ensure the Air Seal Is Good
Air is an essential factor for an airsoft gun to shoot bullets. That’s why it’s necessary to always check whether your weapon has leaks, especially if you’re experiencing low FPS.
An airsoft gun that has leaks won’t shoot as hard as those that are perfectly sealed. Ensuring a good air seal in your airsoft gun would have a significant impact on its FPS.
Here are tips on how to fix air leaks in your airsoft gun:
Check the Cylinder and Cylinder Head
You can do this by submerging your pistol underwater while putting your finger on the end of the end. If bubbles appear, the cylinder might have air leaks.
To fix this, you can use Teflon tape around the cylinder head until it’s sealed completely.
Check the Cylinder Head and the Air Nozzle
Unlike the cylinder and head connection, the head and air nozzle in standard airsoft guns usually have poor air seal quality. A bad air seal would have air flowing out of the air nozzle once you blow air in the cylinder.
If you’re looking for an excellent air seal, very minimal to no air should flow out of the nozzle.
Check the Nozzle and Hop-Up
Sealing air between the nozzle and hop-up is relatively difficult, but ensuring a good air seal in this connection could give a decent increase in your weapon’s FPS.
To do this, make sure the air nozzle and hop-up rubber have a good contact by checking whether air is flowing out. You should shim the hop-up to make it fit perfectly with the nozzle, cutting out airflow.
Check the Hop-Up Housing
One of the most common causes of air leaks in airsoft guns is in the hop-up unit housing. Most standard airsoft designs have an extensive hop-up unit housing, resulting in a loose-fit rubber and barrel connection. This design allows air to flow out between the rubber and barrel freely. Thankfully, applying sufficient Teflon tape around the rubber is enough to fix this air leak.
3. Enhance the Spring
If you’re looking for an easy and efficient way to increase the FPS of your airsoft gun, you should consider changing the spring.
Changing the mainspring gives a significant FPS boost to your airsoft gun, but doing so would also require you to adjust other parts of your weapon.
The key to higher FPS is to switch to a stronger spring. The stiffer the spring, the more powerful it can be.
M110 or M130 springs are your best choice for higher FPS. However, such powerful springs are not compatible with some of your gun’s standard parts. That’s why you should also replace them with sturdier components to prevent damage.
Here are the parts you should replace along with the spring:
- Spring guide: The spring guide helps the spring handle the pressure every time it expands and contracts. Adjusting it would make it compatible with the more powerful tension brought by the sturdier springs.
- Piston head: Standard designs of airsoft guns usually include plastic piston heads, which isn’t the best choice if you’re to upgrade your springs. The piston head is responsible for bringing air from the cylinder to the air nozzle, making it prone to breakage. Switching to a metal equivalent is a great way to prevent your piston head from breaking even after upgrading your spring.
- Motor: The motor is an essential part of your airsoft gun, mainly because it converts electrical energy into mechanical energy. Changing the springs of your airsoft gun could make it incompatible with the motor, and the replica might require a more robust model to do the job. This means you also need to upgrade the motor along with the main spring.
- Battery: Choosing the best battery for your airsoft design is essential to make it last longer in the field without compromising power. Switching to a more powerful motor and spring would also require a more efficient battery pack to power your airsoft gun.
Upgrading the spring is definitely a sure way to increase FPS, but you should remember that this procedure is costly.
If you’ve already decided to replace your weapon’s spring, watch this instructional video on how to change the spring of an airsoft rifle from AirsoftEire:
4. Upgrade the Hop-Up Bucking
Another way to increase the FPS in your airsoft gun is to upgrade the hop-up, which serves a vital role in the overall efficiency of your airsoft gun.
The hop-up provides a backspin motion to your BBs. This backspin motion is responsible for keeping your BBs steady when fired and allows them to glide towards the target. While range and accuracy are the main benefits of upgrading the hop-up, performing adjustments could give your airsoft gun a decent increase in FPS.
Interestingly, not all hop-ups are the same. Different types of hop-ups vary in efficiency, durability, and cost.
Here are the 3 types of hop-ups you can use on your airsoft gun:
From the name itself, the standard hop is the most common hop-up found in airsoft guns. This hop-up is very easy to tweak and adjust because of its simple design – having an arm attached to a nub. If you want to increase or decrease the pressure placed on the BBs, you can easily adjust the arm to achieve the ideal pressure you’re looking for.
The flat hop is somehow similar to the standard hop but with a few adjustments. It’s easily distinguished for having a longer nub, allowing it to have contact with the BBs longer. This small change in the nub significantly decreases wobble and provides a stronger backspin to the BBs.
The R hop is an exceptional version of the standard hop. Unlike the traditional designs, it’s tough to install, especially if you’re a newbie in airsoft. But once you manage to install this hop-up properly, you’d see significant improvements in your overall performance.
Here’s an informative video on how to replace the hop-up bucking from Airsoft Extreme:
5. Use a Non-Ported Cylinder
The cylinder is an essential part of your airsoft gun, which compresses the air before passing through the barrel.
Standard designs often include ported cylinders connected to the barrel. This is to prevent over-compressing air, which would affect your weapon’s overall efficiency.
Switching to a non-ported cylinder is a great way to boost your airsoft gun’s FPS. However, be mindful that doing so requires adjusting to a compatible barrel.
Using a non-ported cylinder eliminates your weapon’s defense against over-compressing air, which might not end well if your barrel isn’t large enough.
How Much FPS Is Ideal?
While airsoft guns vary from 100 to 500 FPS, there’s no exact answer to how much is best. However, it’s often considered that the ideal FPS for close-ranged battles is 300, while 400 FPS could work better in an outdoor field.
Moreover, FPS depends on your local field’s rules. Your local airsoft field is to decide what’s considered legal for use. That’s why adjusting the FPS depends on your preference and the accepted FPS in your local field.
Safety Measures in Airsoft
Despite being a replica, an airsoft gun still packs a punch, especially in high FPS. The primary reason behind the FPS limits in airsoft fields is the safety of the participants.
Getting hit by an airsoft gun with 300 to 400 FPS would hurt a little. This means airsoft guns with more than 500 FPS could cause minor to serious injuries to the participant.
That’s why FPS limit is crucial in every airsoft field to prevent injuries like this:
Does FPS Affect Range and Accuracy?
One of the most common reasons players want to increase FPS is that it’s known to improve range and accuracy. Although this is true, it’s not the main factor needed to enhance these features.
When it comes to range and accuracy, increasing FPS would come into play if you upgrade your weapon’s hop-up or barrel.
Furthermore, a high FPS design will improve range and accuracy by making the BB more stable and travel faster.
By traveling faster, it would have more resistance to the wind.
If you’re planning to play outdoors and the weather is windy, using an airsoft gun with high FPS is essential to have better accuracy. High FPS airsoft guns are capable of using heavier BBs, which work well under windy conditions compared to their lighter counterparts.
Besides FPS, here are the essential factors to improve range and accuracy:
- Hop-up: It’s responsible for giving the BB a backspin. Adjusting this component helps in increasing the airsoft gun’s maximum range.
- BB weight: A heavy BB is less likely to be affected by wind, making it more accurate even on long-distance travel.
- Barrel: A smoother bore will allow BBs to pass through with less resistance, losing less energy as they leave.
Increasing the FPS of your airsoft gun is an excellent way to improve its performance.
Upgrading the spring is one of the most common ways to significantly improve your gun’s FPS. But adjusting the barrel, hop-up, cylinder, as well as ensuring a good air seal, could also work wonders in giving it a slight boost.
Increasing your airsoft gun’s FPS might be a costly procedure as it requires you to buy new parts. In addition to this, you have to be knowledgeable of the different parts of your weapon to make sure it would still work correctly after tinkering.