If you have been reading my ongoing series article about my first airsoft event, you’ll learn that I had to get a loadout together very quickly and within a budget. I had to do a lot of asking throughout the office, because I looked online, and couldn’t find a loadout for beginners, or a comprehensive loadout of any kind. Most of the recommended loadouts I found were high-dollar items. When you have two weeks, and have to save as much as possible, going after the high-end stuff isn’t really an option. So, we ran through the AirRattle warehouse after hours, and here’s what I ended up buying.
There are links to each of the products that I used, as well as like products in different colors. Since we were on the tan team, all of my gear was tan. I plan on setting up full loadouts which include tan, black, and green so I’m ready for any event.
Airsoft Guns, Magazines, and Accessories
This gun, for a primary, is great! It’s extremely accurate and versatile. Even before I went to Blacksheep, I did some test firing. I was able to unload a magazine into the center cap of my car’s wheel from about 30 feet away. I’m sure that a few missed, but I could hear the plink of the BBs hitting the thin aluminum to tell me I was on-target.
I’ve always been fascinated with Desert Eagles. I love my airsoft gun, but I found out the hard way that in a 24-hour event, you’ll want something lighter. It will still be my first love, but it’s going to stay in the gear bag as my backup for longer events, going forward.
This was a purchase made in anticipation of how useful it would be in a reflex shooting environment. Unless you’re in some kind of support role, reflex shooting is about all you do.
I realize that there are tactical advantages to flashlights beyond just being able to see without falling. Unfortunately, I only bought one flashlight, so I wasn’t able to use the full effects of it. I’m planning on getting two for my full loadout.
To be quite honest, I got these based on the recommendation of my coworkers and the owner of the company. I’ve been very pleased with its overall performance. I got two, anticipating it needing changed, based on everything that I’ve read on the internet. I was very surprised when one 1600mAh battery took me through more than 2600 shots throughout the full 24-hour event.
Going with a less expensive magazine caused me a little bit of concern at first. I’ve heard stories about misfeeds and non-feeding magazines, even with the high end models. My mind wasn’t officially put at ease until after the event was over. I bought a box of eight – just in case. Out of those 8, not one of them had any firing issues. They usually stop feeding when there are two to five BBs left in the magazine, so we see very little waste.
Since the DE was going to be used only as a side arm in emergency situations, I didn’t see the need to bring more than two. In case you were wondering, these magazines are really hard to find. We got more in stock the week before the event, so I lucked out.
The use for this item was twofold. First of all, my AEG had fixed sights. When I put the reflex sight on my top rail, the green dot ended up squarely on the existing sight, which did little good. Secondly, since I needed goggles big enough to account for my glasses, there’s more bulk there. Because of this, I couldn’t get my face close enough to the gun to look through the sight. The rail riser was just what I needed to take care of both of these issues.
Before even deciding I wanted to buy a sling, I got a change to use all three on different airsoft guns. I have decided that unless I’m going into a support role, I’m not going to use a two-point at all. I liked the movability of the one-point sling, but the three point was a great mix of stability and mobility.
Gear and Clothing
Though many people told me I should get full finger gloves, I opted not to, only because of my giant meat hooks. I know that any full finger gloves I’ve ever used makes it impossible for me to handle anything. They have padded palms and plastic on the back to help absorb blows from BBs flying at you.
We were part of Bravo Company, and opted for multicam as our uniform option. It’s really comfortable and highly protective against BB shots, to keep you from welting up.
I was initially hoping to get boots with speed laces, as that’s what I’m used to wearing from when I was in the Air Force. After getting side-zip boots, I’m never going back!
This chest rig had all of the pockets and pouches I could ask for, and the price was right. I really liked having the elastic straps to hold magazines in place, as opposed to having a full flap on top. This feature made everything in those pouches extremely accessible. Also, the big flap in front is good for a bag of BBs and some trail mix.
I had to get a huge holster to carry my huge sidearm. It’s very secure, so the gun didn’t even try to slip out at all, even during my combat roll. Let’s be honest; that could have been a train wreck.
Many of you may think that my budget may have been blown by going with Dye. The thing is, since I wear glasses, Dye is the only brand to go with. Not to mention that Aaron said it best when he said, “If you’re going to spend a lot of money, spend a lot of money to protect your eyes.”
I initially bought the shemagh for full face protection, but quickly realized that it would offer much there. I used the shemagh as a neck wrap. Basically, I would tie it like a bandit facemask; wrapped around the back, and tying it underneath the main triangle of fabric in the front. I then just pulled it down around my neck.
This purchase was based on price alone, but I really like how the whole setup works. In addition to having MOLLE webbing, it has retainers for your hydration tube and extra storage, as well.
This was the first time I needed to use a hydration bladder. It has a mechanism to stop the flow of water, and once you pull that open, you bite on the end of the tube, and suck water through. I found it much easier to remove the rubber end on the tube, and just use the stopping mechanism. Priming the tube while using the rubber end is hard enough. I found keeping the water in the tube while trying to close it next to impossible. Once I figured out that little trick, though, I was golden.
I didn’t realize until the morning that we were rolling out that I hadn’t grabbed a gun bag yet. This one fit the bill quite nicely. It is big enough to hold my M4, Desert Eagle, and all of my magazines that I had bought. The only unfortunate part was that Aaron had the same gun bag, and we had accidently grabbed the wrong bag on more than one occasion.
This is the item that I opted for, as opposed to the shemagh. I was looking at coverage and actual protection, and this would be the overall winner. It’s adjustable to fit even my big noggin, and far more comfortable – even in long-term situations – than I had really thought was possible.
Play Awesome! – Tensai