Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Airsoft FAQs: What is Hop Up?

hop up airsoft gunMost serious airsoft players understand hop up and have formed their opinions as to its usefulness, but not all players have quite grasped the concept. Today’s installment of our new "Airsoft FAQs" series focuses on just that topic – what is hop up?

A hop up system in an airsoft gun is designed to increase the traveled distance and vertical accuracy of a pellet fired from an airsoft gun by adjusting its trajectory. Many airsoft players enjoy the ability to hit a target from longer distances than would be possible without a hop up system.

Put simply, a hop up system places backspin on a BB as it travels down the barrel to adjust the path it will follow when it exits the barrel. A small protrusion in the top of the barrel touches the BB as it passes, creating a controlled backspin. Backspin gives the BB lift, allowing it to counteract the effects of gravity for a longer period of time. This allows the BB to move along a more level path, increasing the distance it can travel. Generally speaking, vertical but not horizontal accuracy should be improved with the use of accurately adjusted hop up. Of course, in reality, many factors come into play with regard to accuracy, including the wind and the skill of the player.

Adjustable hop up allows the user to control the amount of backspin that is placed on a BB, but it is important to note that only those experienced with hop up should attempt to work with it. Usually hop up is adjusted by turning a wheel, which moves the protruding nub up or down to put more or less backspin on the BB. Hop up is an incremental adjustment, and adjusting it all the way to one side or the other can cause jamming and inadvertent damage to the gun’s internals. This is because the protruded piece can alter the shape of the BBs exit path too much. If you are not experienced working with this type of system, you may not want to take the risk by experimenting with your guns.

About the Author: Mike Zhang is the VP of Operations of Airsoft Megastore, the #1 fastest growing Airsoft retailer in the nation. Airsoft Megastore offers the latest airsoft guns and gear as well as a 125% low price guarantee on all new Airsoft guns and gear.

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