This is what my memories of the weekend look like
So my weekend was pretty damn good. As much foretold, this last weekend was the Rejunion, an occasion where all the various current and former members of Teesside Airsoft are invited back to Middlesbrough to take part in a weekend of rad airsoft, socialising and catching up after all the work has been handed in.
The fun all started on Friday. I’d booked the day off work just so I could spend the whole day preparing for the airsoft. As part of this I picked up my M79 which I had ordered and the 9 shells for it, something I was so excited to use since I started airsofting.
The M79, or blooper, is an gun I’ve always loved in real life. The idea of a break action grenade launcher which was used as a primary in Vietnam is just odd. In airsoft, all grenade launchers act like giant, single shot scatter guns but their real value lies in scaring the shit out of players. The m79 is especially satisfying to use as you can easily slam shut the launcher closed, Terminator style. However, it is the size of a submachine gun and so can be a little awkward to carry as a secondary. There is another issue with the one I bought – due to the fact it is a Chinese clone of the King Arms design the build quality isn’t perfect. In particular, the wood is a horrible finish that will need stripping and restaining and there is a fair bit of wobble in the join. I’m looking to fix it by adding some washers into the hinge.
The grenades themselves have also proven to be difficult. I will be fair – I maybe should have invested a little more in them rather than grabbing them in bulk. The main concern is that the shells are a pain to reload, especially the 96rd shells. Worse, they do have trouble holding all the bbs and so I’ve had to use the old trick of using cling film to cover the end of the shell. They are also a pain as they keep firing the internal bearings out. It seems like a major design flaw and will end up with me having to keep rebuying the bearings to replace those used as extra rounds. One of the shells is actually an 8mm firing shell so useful as it allows you to make sure someone takes their hits. It has been dubbed the Russian Buster and was so named with the bottom being custom engraved.
After an evening spent eating fajitas, watching the Raid and playing with other people’s guns, we were up bright and early for a full game day at NAA. Despite the weather, we had a full day of excellent play.
I haven’t really written very much about the site which I think is a little wrong. Northern Airsoft Alliance is the best airsoft site in the north of England. They have perfectly understood the fact that airsoft isn’t just about milsim and so they run their game days skirmish style with short, high speed games. Their site is fantastic – it used to be a an old ammo dump for RAF Dishforth but now its a combination of CQB in the concrete ammo sheds and wooded area around it, speedball in a field of paintball barricades and a good old fashioned slogging match in the field full of trenches. There are easy ways between them and the staff are constantly working on improving the site. Since launch they have added an area with two vehicles in (perfect for VIP rescue missions) and they are working fixing up a section of super close quarters fighting. The marshalls (an excellent father and sons team) also left the grass long this time which helped to cut down on long range kills from nowhere and also turned the waterlogged trenches from the Somme into almost tunnels. There was an air of Vietnam on that side of the field, especially with 1911 in hand and a horde of guys in Tiger-stripe sneaking around.
In terms of games, there was a nice mixture of ideas from VIP rescue to what is effectively rush. The games where all played really well with the TSU guys proving to be an even match against each other. There was next to no cheating that wasn’t quickly spotted by the marshals and solved by a short chat. End of the day, damn good airsoft with damn good bros doing awesome stuff.
And then we all got really drunk at Saturgay and Sunday was therefore spent watching Korra and driving home. All in all, an excellent end to the year.
Of course, the kit I brought to the Rejunion really shows my evolution as an airsofter both in terms of weapons and the idea behind my loadouts. When I first started, the aim was to create a British Army impression – perfect kit, L85, smart looking. Basically what nearly everyone starts with. However, Ground Zero 2011 showed me the error with this – it was really hard for other TSU guys to spot me in crowd of people. I still really like wearing DPM (due to its price and comfort) and didn’t want to abandon it. The shirt also has both my TSU members patch and my Cool Guys Squad patch.
Recently, I also picked up a set of WW2 American Paratroopers kit to go with my M1 Garand and Thompson. The uniform is super comfortable and I’ve been wearing the jacket with my hoody every few days before term broke up. The trousers are also super comfortable even if they do have some ties on them that are constantly loose.
These have become my new go to trousers as can be seen in the pictures from Saturday. Alongside my DPM shirt, black baseball cap, knee pads and gloves, these form the kit I’ll be wearing mostly from now on. The plate carrier will be used for most games but for the Thompson, the satchel for the mags is perfect and lets me be as agile as I like, diving into cover and lying on my back shooting (I blame Max Payne for this). Airsoft has become less a hobby of reneacment and more about looking cool while doing cool things.
So that’s an update on all things airsoft. I’ll be going on some more trips later in the Summer and what with being the Chairman of TSU Airsoft next year, I’ll be looking forward to some great trips