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I’ve seen a lot of airsoft players who don’t understand the meaning of “muzzle control” or think it’s OK to not wear lower face protection at longer games. They can make the game less safe for themselves and others by following less-than-safe practices while on the field. To keep you from being “one of those guys”, here are 10 rules to make your airsoft games safer (these are adapted from the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s “Firearm Safety — 10 rules of Safe Gun Handling”).
Only Point Your Muzzle At What You Intend To Shoot:
Practicing good muzzle control will prevent others from being injured and will lower the amount of friendly fire.
Keep Your Airsoft Gun Unloaded When Not In-Game:
Wait until you’re on the field and everyone has eye pro on before loading your gun. When you leave the field (even just to go grab something from the staging area), eject the magazine and fire several shots at the ground to clear the gun.
Don’t Rely On The “Safety”:
Airsoft guns use a series of safety systems (both mechanical and electrical) to prevent accidental firing. But they are in no way fool proof. Always treat your airsoft gun as if it is loaded and ready to fire. Be sure to practice Rule 1 at all times when your gun is loaded or unloaded.
Be Sure Of Your Target And Beyond:
This is one of the most repeated gun safety rules you’ll hear. Identify what is beyond your target every time you fire. This will prevent friendly fire and allow you to have better battlefield awareness.
Use Good BBs:
Cheap BBs have been known to shatter on impact, resulting in plastic shrapnel flying in all directions. Using quality BBs is safer for you, your teammates, and your gun.
If Your Gun Fails To Fire, Take Precautions:
If your airsoft gun fails to function as it should and you can’t correct the issue in-game, unload the mag, try to clear the gun (or unplug the battery), and use a secondary weapon. If you don’t have a secondary, you can still support your team by being a spotter and doing recon. After the game, take the gun back to staging, unplug the battery, and attempt repairs in a safe place.
Always Wear Eye Pro and Face Pro:
If you aren’t doing this, don’t play airsoft. Eye and Face Pro are vital to keeping you safe during games. Eyes, teeth, and BB-clogged ear canals aren’t easy to fix. Buy a pair of inexpensive goggles for $15 and a $10 metal mesh face mask and you’re good to go.
(Note: Metal mesh masks may need some custom modification to fit properly with your goggles. Check out this video for tips on how to do this.)
Clear and Clean Your Airsoft Barrel:
After each scenario at a game, clear your airsoft gun by firing at the ground a few times with the mag out to clear any BBs still in the hop up. This prevents a suprise BB from flying around after you’re in the staging area. When you get home, clean the inner barrel. This will prevent jams, and increase accuracy so you hit what you aim at. HERE is my inner barrel cleaning guide to get you started.
Don’t Alter Airsoft Guns Without Tech Experience:
If you try to upgrade your airsoft gun without proper experience, you not only risk breaking the gun, you also may make it a part spewing, overpowered death machine (that was not meant to sound cool in any way). Spend the time to learn how to upgrade airsoft guns properly and talk to professional airsoft techs to figure out what the best upgrades are. (Check out my “To Tech Or Not To Tech Post” to determine whether tech work is for you.)
Learn How Airsoft Guns Work And Why:
Learning how airsoft guns work allows you to understand the reason things go wrong with your gun, and direct you to make informed decisions about upgrading. It will also keep you safer on the field because you’ll have the knowledge to correct issues and prevent them in the future. HERE is a great Version 2 (M4, M16, etc.) gearbox guide that will also give you the basics of Version 3 (AK, G36C, etc.) operation.
If you have more thoughts on airsoft safety, let me know in the comments. Be sure to share this post if you’re a fan of airsoft safety and AirsoftWarrior.net!