All You Need to Know About BB Guns

What are BB guns?

BB guns nowadays are usually 1:1 replica of real life gun models, with similar mechanism, weight and handling. What we refer to as BB guns are the ones which shoot 4.5mm steel BBs’. They are ideal for doing target practice in your backyard or in the wilderness. It would be a great deal of fun to shoot some empty cans and targets alike and eat marshmallows with your friends and family when you go camping. Most BB guns are powered by co2, which makes them powerful and very realistic. It's always a very good idea to wear eye protection while shooting BB guns.

What are BB guns used for?

A lot of people use BB guns for target shooting. It is a fun activity to do when you are going camping, hiking or into wilderness in general. When you're in the woods you can set up some cans as targets and improve your shooting skills. In fact, BB guns were widely used in military and paramilitary training because many BB guns offer realistic handling and blowback action. Besides, BB guns and their ammo are usually much cheaper than live firearms. In terms of safety, due to the fact that the mechanism of BB guns does not involve the use of gunpowder, the projectile would do a lot less damage when something goes wrong. Sometimes, people also like to buy BB guns for the sole purpose of collecting and keeping it as a decoration in their house, since BB guns usually don’t require a licence while resemble the look of firearms, sometimes very rare ones. People also use BB guns as a practicing pistol/rifle before they move on to real guns and get a license. It is good for beginners to learn gun safety, tactics, and do target practice on BB guns before they move on to real guns or while they are acquiring their gun license. Also, it is way cheaper to shoot bb guns compared to actual firearm plus there is not as many restrictions for bb guns compared to actual guns. Its much safer to have a bb gun compare to have an actual firearm since there’s more restrictions, rules and regulation to follow for firearms.

How loud are BB guns?

BB guns are powered by CO2 canisters and they are nowhere near to real guns when it comes to the noise. It would be fair to say that they would make enough sound for your shooting experience but won’t disturb your neighbours as much as a leaf blower.

What are the different types of BB guns?

Usually most of the BB guns fall into 2 categories: Blowback and Non-blowback. Blowback means the gun has a moving slide/upper mechanism. Non-blowback has a fixed slide. Blowback ones are more realistic, however, they are usually less powerful since some of the co2 pressure is consumed toward the slide blowback feature and they consume more gas compared to non-blowback ones. Majority of consumers prefer to have the blowback feature since they are more realistic and good for target practice due to the fact that they replicate actual firearms and it provides a better feeling when you shoot them.

How Much do BB guns cost?

BB guns generally start from $90 and go up to $500. A good BB gun with blowback costs an average of around $200 and that’s a sweet spot to look for if you are considering buying one. The cost varies on the model, make and if the one you’re looking at is licensed it will be more expensive since they are licensed by actual firearm manufacturers. One of the most popular brand for the most realistic bb guns is Umarex, because their products have fairly good price tag and they have a lot of options to choose from. Another competitive advantage Umarex has is warranty on their products. Also many of their BB guns are licenced which not only make them more cooler but also more realistic.

Blowback VS. Non-Blowback

Usually BB guns are categorised in 2 different types, blowback and non-blowback. The guns having blowback use more Co2 gas than non-blowback.

The guns having non-blowback usually have a higher feet per second but the feeling of having blowback is a game changer when you shoot. You can disassemble and reassemble full blowback pistols the same as an actual gun which is a lot of fun and sometimes it's required to maintain and oil the internal, however you won't be able to do that with non-blowback pistols.

What is the best BB gun to buy?

Let me provide some recommendation based on my personal experience and the feedback we get from our customers. In the first part I will provide recommendation and feedback for top 3 blowback and the second part will be non-blowback ones.

Blowback Section:

1. Fully blowback 1911: Starting with the most popular 1911 full metal with blowback and powered by CO2 which shoot approx. 300 - 410 fps. It is the experts choice and renowned for accuracy and power. The 1911 BB gun is an exact replica of real 1911 with features like full blowback, full magazine and semi-automatic fire mode. It has a full metal body. The metal slide has got the perfect weight on it like the real deal and the mechanism gives a realistic experience. The 1911 is a top of the line BB gun in terms of realistic feel, weight, accuracy and safety design. This gun is top-rated as it is one of the most reliable guns, and works perfectly fine after years of use. The full magazine provides the flexibility to clean the gun in and out and maintain it for long term use as well as realism in target practice or tactical training.

1911 also comes in tactical version and can be found in few different colours where there is an option to attached flashlight, laser or any other attachments under the barrel. One of my favourite features of the 1911 BB gun is the universal magazine, most of the different 1911 BB Gun models take just one type of standard magazine no matter the pistol is made by KWC, Umarex or Cybergun, the magazine is the same and its fairly easy to find spare magazines and after-market parts for 1911. There is a lot of customization that can be done to classic 1911 such as changing pistol grips and others.

2. Glock 17 Gen 4: You cannot go wrong with the Umarex Glock 17 Gen 4. It is a nice and compact handgun with incomparable blowback and shoots in semi-automatic mode. The accuracy of this Glock is top notch which makes it great for target practising. Glocks in general are very popular all over the world and when it comes to BB guns it’s probably the most popular and the best-selling replica you can find on the market. The Umarex Glocks 17 generation 4 BB Gun is officially licence by Glock, which means it has actual Glock marking on it and the quality and the feeling is approximately the same as actual Glock. According to my personal experience with Glock 17 by Umraex it is probably the best BB gun I ever own. Its accurate, its realistic feeling and the shooting experience is by far the best. Glock 17 comes with full magazine where you put bbs and Co2, however I do sometimes find it a bit hard to load BBs in the magazine because the opening on it is fairly small.

3. KWC PT92: you are looking for fun this might be the best option for you. PT92 is fully and semi-automatic, fully functional blowback, real weight, it’s fully strippable so it is a lot of fun to disassemble and reassemble it. It comes with full magazine and its fairly easy to load BBs and Co2. However, its not very accurate on fully automatic mode that’s why I would recommend using semi auto for target practicing. The quality of the PT92 speak for itself, its very well made and the features it comes with especially fully auto is hard be found elsewhere. It consumes a lot of Co2 since its very heavy and have full blowback, it still will shoot around 385-410 FPS. I highly recommend getting at least an extra magazine since it will keep the fun time rolling. It is also very easy to get hands on extra magazine and after-market parts. It also has rail system under the barrel perfect for attachment such as flashlights or laser.

Non-Blowback Section: as mentioned above non-blowback pistols are more economical friendly, cost less and provide higher FPS.

Glock 19: Glock 19 is one of all time best-selling pistol, it’s realistic, feels great when you shoot and fit perfectly in hand, Glock 19 shoot 410 FPS and one Co2 is good enough for approximately 75-100 shots. It’s licensed by actual Glock so you can expect very high-quality replica. the magazine holds 15 bbs and don’t worry its very cheap and easy to find extra magazine. It is fairly easy to load the bbs into the Glock 19, also I love the built in Hex key system, so you don’t need to prepare and look for your Hex key when you are doing target practice in the woods. This replica is very accurate, and it have zero jamming issues as of now. I always get very positive feedback from customers on Glock 19, people love the compactness and the FPS. It comes with rail under the barrel which is perfect for a laser or a flashlight. However, a lot of people hate the trigger safety which seems very cheap and often go to safety when you shoot, other than that it’s a sweet replica you can get your hands on.

Dan Wesson Revolver: you can never be disappointed with Dan Wesson revolver. They come in 2.5 inch, 4 inch, 6 inch and 8 inch barrel length. The Dan Wessons have very fancy looks but at the same time it’s very accurate and well made. The loading mechanism is totally different since you load the bbs inside the bullet-shaped cartridges which makes it look and feel very realistic. It’s also fairly easy and less expensive to buy extra cartridges. However, the co2 goes inside the gun which means you have to use silicon oil on top on co2 from time to time so it will prevent the BB gun from leaking. If you are going to practice shooting in your back yard or garage make sure choose 2.5- or 4-inch barrel length, However, for outdoor shooting any barrel length will be ideal, with 6 inch or 8 inch you will get very good accuracy and higher FPS. Co2 consumption of Dan Wesson revolver is fantastic not only its good on gas but also its fun to load.

HK USP: USP is a legendary pistol. It comes with full drop magazine which is the best-selling part since you don’t have to worry about replacing the gun if it leaks. Also, the magazine holds 22 rounds of steel bbs and co2 which is fairly good for steel bb guns. HK USP shoot around 400 FPS, one co2 can last between 70-100 shots. This BB gun is officially licensed by HK which makes it looks very attractive and high quality. USP has one of the best safety features, However the magazine release can be very annoying since it’s too close to the trigger and makes it very easy to eject magazine by accident. On the other hand, it’s very hard to find extra magazines since you have to special order from Umarex which can take some time.

How long one Co2 last ?

It really depends on the gun model. If the gun has full metal blowback it will be good for 35-50 shots each cartridge or if its non-blowback you can expect to shoot up to 100 rounds. Another major factor that impacts the lifespan of co2 is weather. In very cold weather Co2 will offer less shots since the pressure is somewhat affected by the temperature and the weather has a huge impact on the usage. If it’s nice and sunny one co2 can last way longer than when its negative weather.

What is the best full-auto BB gun?

If you want more fun, I highly recommend PT92 which looks like a Beretta, powered by Co2. This is the only handgun which can do both full and semi auto and it is all metal body. The power is incredible, it can empty the whole clip in less than 2 seconds on full auto mode. This gun provides 3 features - full auto, semi auto and safety mode. On semi auto, it has very good accuracy. PT92 is an all-metal gun which weighs approximately 2.5 pounds.

Are BB guns legal?

As per the government of Canada, BB guns are 100% legal to buy and sell to any person above the age of 18. One does not need a license or any kind of paperwork to buy a BB gun. They are legal to buy and sell in any province of Canada. The velocity on a BB gun should be below 500 fps. It is advised not to take a BB gun out in public or carry it with you around the city. It is dangerous if you point a BB gun to someone or shoot people or animals.

What to look for when you buy your first BB gun?

There are so many options to choose when it comes to BB guns, there are so many good brands, some very good quality brands that we recommend are Umarex, KWC, Crosman, ASG, Air venturi and others. If you want high feet-per-second go with non-blowback and the BB gun will cost you under 150$, also you will be able to get more shots out of one co2. If you want realism, always choose a full blowback since you will have a lot of fun with your new toy. Always make sure you buy pistol with full magazine where the co2 and bbs goes into the mag not into the bb guns directly, the reason why it's very important because in case if the magazine start to leak you can buy a new magazine, but if the co2 goes into the gun and it start to leak you will have to replace the entire bb gun. Another benefit of having a full magazine is that if it gets jammed you can clean the magazine and take out bbs manually while if the bbs goes into the gun itself you won't be able to do that.