Following Amoebas venture into the world of Airsoft Sniper Rifles, I thought I’d take the dive and pick one of their new Amoeba Striker AS01 rifles and and see how they fair. I’ve had the gun a month now and have already painted some of the parts, gave it a clean etc. So i bring you the Amoeba Striker AS01 Review
I purchased the rifle from Mad Dog Airsoft specifically to write this Amoeba Striker AS01 Review, they gave me a great deal on the gun with an additional mag. It arrived in the usual standard airsoft packaging so we can skip over this part. Here is an image of how the Amoeba Striker AS01 currently looks:
Upon picking the rifle up, it was nice to see it wasn’t incredibly and plastic feeling like the VSR 10 rifles are. It had a small bit of weight to it and it felt good to shoulder. The magazines that come with the rifle hold circa 40 rounds, they are a bit still in the gun at first but this does loosen up once you start using it.
Cocking the rifle was easy and it really does have a short bolt pull, my particular rifle came with a stock spring around 400fps. The bolt is a bit stiff to start, but you really don’t notice like you would on say a VSR 10, due the short bolt pull.
Another feature of the Striker AS01 is the cocking indicator….it actually works! I know some of the L96 based rifles (APS-2) had the ability to do this too with some tinkering. I think it’s a great idea and certainly adds another safety feature.
The hop up is adjusted from above with the included alan key, Amoeba actually store the tools in the grip which is a handy feature. I’ll cover the hop unit later in this review.
At the end of the barrel there is a 23mm CW thread, Amoeba will be releasing a Suppressor adapter and different flash hiders later down the line.
Now unto the performance of the gun, keep in mind these rifles are cheap, around £160 in the UK at the time of this review.
First thing I did was put the Striker through my chronograph on .2’s. The chronograph I used is an Xcortech 3200. I took 10 shots using blaster .2s with the following results:
For a stock rifle that is damn impressive, one of the reasons for this consistency is how good everything meshes together, as I mentioned early the bolt pull is a little stiff which is because everything just fits snugly.
The hop unit is TDC, which essentially means that it is adjusted from the top by way of a small grub screw. Having tested the hop unit on .36’s and Geoff’s .4s it can happily hop both, which again for a stock gun is good. I’ll cover more on the hop unit in the next section.
The range on this is 60m easily, it’s accurate at this range and the rounds reach their target with a reasonable amount of speed. Range could be more than 60m once everything is broken in and with a higher FPS spring, however I can test this currently.
The hop unit kept it setting well thanks to the TDC and it was
easy to adjust, albeit you do have to remove the scope so I would suggest you dial the hop in first then go about zeroing your chosen optic.
Taking the Amoeba Striker AS01 apart is easy….I mean…..really easy. Ares in the past have been known to be a pain to work on and the quality of their items questionable (I’m looking at you Tar21…), However this does not seem to be the case with the SR01 and you’ll see why below.
Firstly we’ll have a look at the hop unit and barrel assembly, to do this well need to:
Remove the bipod lug
The small bolt at the start of the grip
The bolt that adjusts the hop
Magazine feed tube, you need to use a flat had screw driver for this.
Once you’ve done this you can slide the forward grip off, unscrew the outer barrel to reveal the hop chamber and barrel.
Once you have access to the hop unit, you’ll need to unscrew 4 screws in order to split the hop shell apart and access the bucking.
The Amoeba Striker AS01 use this nice orange coloured bucking which actually works really well at the current FPS and gives a great air seal. No real need to change this out unless you’re planning on doing Rhop/Sugru, even then I’d suggest using this as the bucking.
To access the hop arm you’ll need to poke out the retailing pin and then turn the unit upside down.
One thing that I’ll mention on the hop arm is although it can lift heavy ammo quite well, the tolerances are a bit slack so there is some sideways movement, this can be resolved by adding an AEG shim or two either side, same as you would do in a VSR 10 hop unit.
For the hop unit and barrel that’s it really, I would suggest making some barrel spacers as a cheap DIY mod, do the shimming on the hop arm and you’ll be good to go. The stock barrel is of an OK quality, if memory serves is a 550mm 6.03 VSR cut Bridged. Give it a few laps of polish and a good clean and it’ll be fine stock, if you do upgrade I’d suggest an EdGi 6.01 if you have the funds, or Action Army, PDI (you’ll need to widen the hop window) or Laylax.
To access the cylinder, you’ll need to ensure the gun isn’t cocked (check the cocking indicator :p ). Then you’ll want to push the pin out as shown in the picture
Once you’ve pushed the pin out you’ll be able to slide the entire cylinder out, to access the cylinder use some needle nosed pliers and unscrew the cylinder head and you’ll be greeted with the below:
The internals seem to be made out of a decent quality metal; there is a dampening pad on the cylinder head which is a nice bonus. Overall I was impressed the pieces.
As for the trigger, I’ve taken this apart once and don’t want to do it again as it’s a pain in the ass. I will say however the components do look strong enough to handle a 500fps spring, though I’d suggest getting s lightly weaker spring and using a tighter barrel. Normally I wouldn’t say this, but on this rifle there’s next to no Joule Creep, so no need for the heavier spring.
Reassembly is the exact same process in reverse, when putting the cylinder in the receiver, you’ll need to use something long to push the sear down so the cylinder can slide in.
As you have the gun open I’d suggest cleaning any existing grease off (there was only a small amount), then lube everything up and you’re good to go.
As for parts compatibility, there were many claims being thrown around about it being hugely VSR compatible, I’m sorry to say it isn’t.
VSR barrels work, as do VSR hops. The bolt handle is not compatible, normal VSR bolt handles have about 7mm of extra length at the front which doesn’t allow it to be installed. You could certainly sand a VSR bolt handle to fit, but the fancy Amoeba Striker SR01 Bolt handles will not fit on VSR 10 based rifles.
Amoeba Striker AS01 Review, Final Thoughts:
Overall for the price I’m happy with the Amoeba Striker AS01, it’s a good platform, that’s been well thought out. It performs well out of the box, the fact it takes VSR buckings and barrels is a nice bonus. For a first sniper rifle, a project or as something different to try and stand out from the crowd I’d certainly recommend it.
That being said, will it perform as good as a true VSR based platform?….. Unlikely. The cylinder volume is tiny, mixed with the huge barrel and current unavailability of upgrade parts, you won’t be able to take advantage of Joule Creep (not that I’m saying people should).
If you were to cut it down into a scout rifle and run a smaller length barrel, I certainly think some interested things can be done; hopefully no one will beat me to it.
UPDATE 1 12/11/2016:
Following some question from the community in regards to the AEG Shim mod for the hop unit, internals, barrel etc I’m adding the additional information below, enjoy 🙂
There is a small amount of play left/right on the hop arm, a quick and easy way to resolve this is to add AEG shims either side of the hop arm.
I had some basic SHS shims laying around so I used them and they fit perfectly.
It’s as easy at that! This will help your grouping at range and alleviate the left/right deviation 🙂
Amoeba Striker AS01 Internals/Upgrade tips:
There are no current aftermarket upgrades at the tiem of writing this Amoeba Striker AS01 Review.
The hop unit, in my opinion it’s perfectly fine as it as and works well, albeit do the mod below. I haven’t got any .43’s to test but it has no issues with .4s. The stock barrel is adequate and there’s no urgency to change, if you plan on upgrading the rifle then I’d suggest a 6.01mm. The reason for this is the cylinder volume is quite small so it’s not suited to longer barrels or wider bore barrels, a shorter tighter barrel would yield better results and work more efficiently with the available cylinder volume.
Length wise you’d have to stick with the stock length, unless you planned on shortening the outer barrel and turning the gun into a scout rifle. In which case I’d say go 430mm.EdGi/PID would be good choices.
The stock internals do appear like they could handle 450 fps, possibly 500fps. However being such a new rifle only time will tell really. An M135 Spring should give 495, a friend has actually already tested an AIP m135 with good results.
The outer barrel including the threaded receiver end is circa 560mm.
A decent upgrade from stock would be an EdGi 6.01mm (5.98mm if you can get very high quality BB’s like Geoffs). If you get a bridged barrel I would recommend using a flat hopped TM bucking and making a Sugru patch. If you get an open ended cut barrel, then MapleLeaf buckings are great upgrades.
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