Congratulations, you’ve decided to start airsofting. Welcome to the squad! But where do you start when it comes to kit?
The sheer amount of apparel, guns and equipment for airsoft can appear daunting to new players. In the long term, the gear you need will depend on which sites you visit and which role you play. But for first-timers, there are a number of essentials you need to pick up.
Airsoft Gear Basics
Basic combat apparel
Don’t turn up to airsoft in trackies and trainers. The first thing you’re going to need is a Battle Dress Uniform (BDU) and a decent pair of outdoor boots. Airsofting is a physically demanding outdoor sport that demands rugged and hard wearing clothes.
Airsofting requires you to carry a lot of stuff around. Waterbottles, spare ammo and side arms to name just a few. We recommend you pick up a chest rig to store your essentials in. A chest rig provides protection and storage no matter which BDU you’re wearing. A chest rig gives you easy access to everything you need without the need for a backpack.
Airsofting can be pretty hard on your body. You’ll often find yourself diving for cover and crawling through the undergrowth. Or you’ll be going building to building in fast-paced CQB skirmishes that result in you getting shot in face. Whichever skirmish you’re running, protective gear is essential. We covered eyewear and face masks in our last blog, but you should also pick up knee/shin and elbow pads for general use and chest protection for CQB skirmishes.
No matter what time of year you’re skirmishing, you’re going to need to remain hydrated. Airsoft is a physically demanding activity, so staying hydrated is essential. As part of your standard loadout, you should include a personal water carrier. There are many options available, from the standard canteen to reservoirs that fit neatly into backpacks.
Guns & ammo
Now for the fun stuff! The first gun you should buy is… one that you’ve used before, or one similar. That’s right, don’t just go out and buy an airsoft gun. Rent one to start with or borrow one from a mate and get a feel for what you like. Your squad role will also determine which gun you’re going to need. You’re going to be a pretty poor sniper if you went out and bought a Spas 12.
Once you’ve established your preferences and play style, then it’s worth investing in a high quality firearm and sidearm and upgrading it as you go.
Regardless of which firearm you go for, you’re going to need something to fire at people. Bbs are your lifeblood. If you run out, you’re going to be in trouble. For the best range and accuracy, we recommend Proball bbs. Depending on your firearm, you’ll more than likely need gas to stay live in the field.
Once you’ve established your preferred regular role, we recommend you pick up a few extra pieces of equipment to be more effective. For example, tactical stands for sniper rifles and ghillie suits making sniping a breeze outdoors.
- Weight is the enemy when you’re in the field. When choosing your loadout, remember that you’re going to have to carry everything around all day. Bring everything you need, but only what you need.
- Get advice from regular players and friends about what you need at your local site.
- Before settling on your firearms, try lots of roles to really get a feel for airsofting and which position you prefer.