As always, safety is our top priority–and that includes on the airsoft field and off. If you’re just getting into airsoft or have been playing for a while and want to brush up on safety rules–you’re in the right place!
We’re going to talk a little more about some safety tips and rules that can keep you, and those around you, nice and safe.
Let’s jump in!
1. Only Point Your Muzzle at Things You Intend to Shoot
This should be a duh! kinda rule but… you’d be amazed at the duh! kinda moments we’ve witnessed over the years. Even if you know your gun is unloaded, it’s good practice to always keep your muzzle pointed in a safe direction. It’ll become a habit you’re thankful for one day.
This also includes–and we can’t believe we have to say this, but we do–looking down the barrel. Do not look into the muzzle of your gun for any reason, even with eye protection on, okay?
This reduces instances of friendly fire and accidents.
2. Keep Your Airsoft Gun Unloaded When Not Playing
While there may be some reasons a real firearm would be loaded outside of the shooting range, there’s literally no reason for your airsoft gun to be loaded when you’re not on the field with eye protection on. Only load your gun once you’re on the field and everyone’s eye protection is on.
If you have to leave the field for any reason (even if just for a minute), remove your magazine and fire a few rounds at the ground or in a safe direction to make sure your gun is completely unloaded before stepping off the field.
Even though you know your gun is unloaded, treat it as if it can fire at any time. Better safe than sorry.
3. Don’t Count on the Safety
Even though your gun probably has a series of safety systems to prevent accidental discharges, they’re not fool-proof.
Don’t think your gun is safe to wave around just because your safety is on–remember, treat your gun as if it’s always loaded and ready to fire to make sure you don’t accidentally shoot a friend.
4. Know Your Target–And What’s Beyond It
Be 100% sure of what you’re aiming at, as well as what you might hit if you miss them. This is one of the most-repeated safety rules for a good reason. It will help you avoid friendly fire, prevent injuries, and give you better situational awareness.
5. Always Wear Eye, Ear, and Face Protection
Never, ever, ever set foot on the field without eye protection and ear protection on. Full face protection is best of all. Why?
Eyes and teeth are very painful and very expensive to repair–and airsoft BBs will have no problem causing catastrophic damage to them. Even if you’re not on the field, but run the risk of stray BBs, gear up with your protection.
Even though airsoft guns aren’t loud, you’ll still want to protect your ears, since getting a BB in the ear canal is a rather unpleasant experience, and can definitely ruin your day with a trip to urgent care to have it removed while the nurses laugh at you.
6. Know How Airsoft Guns Work
We’re not asking for expert-level knowledge, but a little know-how can go a long way towards helping you diagnose your issues when things go wrong and make informed decisions about upgrades.
So how does this keep you safe? Well, if you have some basic knowledge of your gun and repair skills, you can address potential safety issues on the field and prevent them from reoccurring.
That being said…
7. Don’t Alter Airsoft Guns without Technical Training
Okay, so we know we just told you to make sure you knew how to work on your own gun, but there are limits here.
Altering and upgrading your airsoft gun is best left to the professionals, lest you turn your airsoft plinker into a hyper-powered death-machine of doom–which is a lot less cool than it sounds when you send another player to the hospital.
You can learn about upgrading, but when it comes to wrenching on your gun, talk to a pro.
8. Properly Maintain Your Gun
Replacing worn-out parts, keeping your gun tuned up, and cleaning your gun can go a long way towards increasing the accuracy and reliability of your gun–and make it safer.
Clean your barrel after a day of shooting and inspect your gun before and after hitting the field, and don’t forget to always make sure your gun is fully unloaded before working on it.
9. Take Precaution When Your Gun Misfires
You expect that your gun will go pew when you pull the trigger, but what do you do when it… doesn’t?
Well, first off, you don’t look into the muzzle. Instead, try unloading the magazine, clearing the gun, or checking the battery, all while keeping the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
If that doesn’t work, fall back to your secondary gun, do recon, or serve as a spotter until the match has ended for you.
More serious repairs can be undertaken in the staging area–after you’ve completely unloaded your gun.
10. Use Quality BBs
The quality of your ammo matters, even if it is pretty much being thrown away (see why you can’t reuse BBs). High-quality BBs are less likely to shatter on impact and spray shrapnel in every direction or break and jam your gun, meaning that you and everyone else on the field will be just a little bit safer.
Good BBs can be a little more expensive, but it’s well worth it in the end.
There’s a lot of ways to get hurt playing airsoft, but there’s also a lot you can do to protect yourself and those around you while on the field.
Even if you take nothing else away from this, remember these safety rules:
- All airsoft guns should be treated as if they’re loaded.
- Never point your gun at anything you don’t want to shoot.
- Know your target and background.
- Always wear eye and ear protection.
Your teammates will be grateful for your safety-conscious mindset, and you’ll be glad that it wasn’t you who did something dumb and got yourself or another person hurt.
What safety tips did we miss? Any recommendations on BBs, eye protection, or other safety gear? Tell us all about it in the comments! Don’t forget to check out Orange Tip Tactical on Facebook.