So, it’s been a while since I last managed to get time to sit down and do an actual blog post, but it’s happened and this time I wanted to give my thoughts on an item, or rather group of items that I’ve been keeping my eye on for a while now…..The TNT APS-x series of buckings and barrels.
What are they I hear you ask, well they are some newish parts that are designed to help increase the range of any given gun they are put into.
TNT airsoft kindly sent me the below items:
TNT APS-x 300mm barrel
TNT VSR bucking
TNT AEG bucking
As I’m currently running my Silverback SRS in the Gspec format, the guys kindly sent me a custom 300mm length barrel which I was extremely happy about, until now I’ve been running either the covert 16″ outer barrel with 6.05 x 420mm PDI barrel or the gspec with the Maple Leaf Crazy Jet barrel.
Initial Thoughts on the TNT APS-x:
The items all came well packaged and I especially liked the presentation of the inner barrel, nice solid packaging rather than just coming in a bag, which sadly the PDI barrels come in.
The buckings and nubs came in standard plastic bags, normally the retail packaging is different, but as these were test items, nothing fancy was needed and I’m not picky.
The barrel is nickle plated and treated brass and has was can only be described as a “Dual Bore” / “Extended Crowning” kind of style to it. The quality looks and feels great and there were no burrs or machine marks anywhere to be found.
The hop window is huge and is definitely suited to buckings with a longer contact patch or even an rhop, due to the rear step at the back of the hop window, long nubs such as Modify, TNT, Mnubs etc all fit and work very well.
The crowning/dual bore effect looks well done and reminds me a little of the Tanio koba barrels of old. They are rare to see nowadays, but in sub 1J rifles they were incredible barrels and worked extremely well.
Installation of the TNT APS-x:
Installation was the same as any other inner barrel really, I’m running fast hops in both this setup and the Crazy Jet I had in previous to the TNT barrel.
The bucking fits on nicely and has a nice snugg fit, with everything lining up as it should. The seal was ok, it wasn’t perfect, however I hadn’t really taken the time to do the usual oring/Ptfe mods as the rifle is constantly being taken apart.
That said, it was certainly better than some of the other aftermarket buckings I’ve used with the SRS.
In an AEG I imagine that any hop chamber will be fine, however when using the TNT bucking, the stock SRS chamber adjustment doesn’t work as well as it could due to the narrow patch inside the bucking, it’s very easy to encounter hooking. The bucking is design for a flat style nub which comes included, alternatively any other flat nub should work well and distribute the pressure evenly.
So initially I tested the set up with the TNT bucking and the included flat nub, however I found that even on max hop the bucking was unable to effectively lift 48’s past about 65m.
While the design of the patch is good, I do feel that it is more suited to lower powered AEG’s and lighter ammo, possibly 400 fps and 36’s. The bucking simply doesn’t have enough contact with the BB to be able to lift the much heavier 48’s.
When using a weaker spring and 36’s the rifle fired well and the flight patch was extremely flat, without the usual “flick” that you get with other buckings.
I would more than happily use these buckings in my AEG’s/lower power rifles with .36’s or below.
Now, following the slight issues above, I decided to run the barrel with the Stalker Nub and TruHop bucking that I was using with the Maple Leaf Crazy Jet.
One word comes to mind with the barrel and that is simply “Impressed”.
Why am I impressed? In my setup up, the addition of the TNT barrel increased my effective range. Now what I mean by that is how confident I am my rifle can hit targets at a set range, as an example, if I can hit something 8/10 then I would consider that effective. at that given range, this drops of usually once you’re past the 80/85m mark. Based on UK limits and the considerable amount of rifles I’ve built, I would consider anything past 85m as the “luck zone”.
To me the “Luck Zone” is the area between your effective range and maximum range. It’s the area where with practice, good conditions and luck allows you to place shots on target with some degree of confidence. With the UK limits of 2.3J, 85m is a respectable range to achieve, especially with a high degree of consistency.
With the Maple Leaf set up I was pretty consistent at the 80/85m mark, able to lands hits beyond that with an ok consistency.
Using the TNT barrel, Tru-hop bucking, Stalker Nub, FAST Hop chamber, with the rifle set to 2.16J on 48’s I was easily able to hit targets flat out to 85+, with minimal overhop I could engage further and still be relatively confident.
So while I wouldn’t say it gave me a huge increase in overall range, it certainly increased my effective range and my confidence in hitting targets beyond what I was consider the “luck Zone”.
One thing to note is that due to the larger bore of the TNT barrel along the last 25% of it’s length, I did see a minor drop in joules VS the Maple Leaf Crazy Jet, .15 joules was the loss. However this could be due to the time taken to assemble/weather etc
My final thoughts are that the TNT APS-x barrels work very very well, especially in gas rifles or rifles that have a larger air volume , which the Silverback SRS certainly does have.
I’m eager to try the TNT buckings in my 1J VSR and Mk23, to see how it fairs against other popular buckings. I also have a mancraft VSR which I will try the TNT barrel in at some point too as it also has a large air volume.
Due to the nature of Gas rifles, I believe these will excel in some of the GBBR’s out there and certainly help get rounds further downrange before any kind of drop off.
Overall I think the TNT barrels are definitely something worth looking and in my opinion the design does appear to yield positive results in my set up.