Firepower, man! Airsoft FPS Guide


Players, especially newcomers, often strive to get a rifle that shoots from the highest leg to the second. However, all the SPF in the world will be of no use to you if your terrain does not allow you to start the weapon because it shoots too hard. Different factors in the game can determine the maximum firepower you actually have, which can make the difference between a good and a bad purchase.

What happened to the FPS?

The standard measurement at first glance of the number of guns in the airsoft world is quite simple: just load the gun at approx. 0.20 g bullets and watch how fast they fly away. In general, the number of guns used in North America’s battlefields is limited to 350 pounds per second, although some locations allow warmer guns and others require less than 350 pounds per second. Meanwhile, in open fields in North America it is generally allowed to shoot 450, 500 or even 550 frames per second. However, these high fire tolerances generally have a certain minimum response distance, which increases the proximity of the gun to the maximum limit of the FPS range.

Gun shooting Buying a gun is the first question that comes to mind: Do I intend to use this weapon for CQB, open fields or both? Understand that this is all well and good, but if you order from abroad, there is another factor you might want to consider not spending your hard-earned money on an unnecessary purchase: customs clearance. Depending on where you live, your country has certain laws about what is and what is not a controlled weapon. I’m Canadian, so of course I have a pretty stupid set of restrictions on the airsoft rifles I can and cannot bring into my country.

In my case, the only airsoft weapons acceptable for import are those that fire between 366 FPS and 500 FPS. Anyone below or above and my airsoft gun is classified as a dangerous bureaucratic firearms and weapons law as far as the eye can see. This is likely to lead to the destruction of the border or the return of the border to the shipper, wasting their money. Of course, once they are in Canada, our airsoft rifles can shoot with any SPF as long as there are BB’s with less than 5.7 joules of power behind them, which means they can legally have a lot more or less import restrictions, but these Canadian rifles are laws for you. You’re weird, but in this case I’m not complaining! However, this shows that your legal import restrictions may differ from your legal practices.

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In this context, if you’re wondering why Tokyo Marui’s weapons tend to have a fairly low FPS rating compared to other weapons on the market, Tokyo Marui’s FPS country limits – Tokyo Marui’s weapons are destined for the Japanese market, where weapons are limited to 325 FPS.

Joley Although, what is it?

Remember I told you the SPF is about measuring how many rifles you have? Well, airsoft is a competitive sport, and of course competitive players like to look for ways to give themselves an edge. From an Airsoft point of view, this means shooting with the hottest weapons, with modifications and especially with heavier pellets that fly through the air in a more predictable way. For those of you who know nothing about heavy BB and physics, the heavy BB flies slower because although the weight of your bullet has increased, your gun still gives it the same strength as it fires from the barrel. The result is a ball that moves slower and does not hit less hard, but is less exposed to air resistance or gusts of wind. You’d think so: I’m just using heavier balls to lower my SPA, and it’s all good!

Joule's Formula

Although it may be twenty years old, its current owners and players tend to have at least a superficial understanding of ballistic physics. Nowadays nobody uses 0.20 g of BB anymore. Therefore, each field will contain a handy table of Joule ratings for all types of BB sizes to ensure a fair comparison between the different weights used. So the true measure of heat is Joley, the unit of strength, not the SFP. Wait a minute, ladies and gentlemen, because we’re gonna do some accounting. In fact, I’m going to do some calculations, and you’re going to look at this nice diagram so you don’t have to turn off the calculator.


K (Jouli) = Weight (2e-5 – 4.5 – 5 kg) moved in an MPS square (recalculated from FPS).

SFP / Joley








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What you see in front of you is a simple diagram like you’ll find on any Airsoft field in your area, which isn’t just a bunch of plastic catapult friends in the woods or on private property. Among the different weights of BB are the Joule ratings, which correspond to the fact that BB moves with the SPF frequency of that line. As you can see, some of them are green! On my home field the field has a limit of 500 FPS (with 0.20g BB’s), and moving 0.20g BB at this speed has a force of 2.32 joules. So if you use heavier balls, you have a lower FPS limit, so your shots remain under 2.32 joules in power. Green indicates the acceptable FPS values for each BB weight, while a weapon firing BB in an FPS/weight combination giving more than 2.32 joules of force is marked in red and is not allowed in the field. Special attention should be paid to black spots caused by using the rifle fire at 6.04j – if the rifle fires .43g bullets at 550 FPS, and the RCMP checks your weapons for any reason, you could be in very hot water.

Of course, if you control gas guns, there’s an additional complication you may need to consider

Crawling Joel

Joule creep Joule creep is not a term for someone who is too obsessed with the joule of their weapon, although if you want to try to make this a thing in your local airsoft community, good luck to you. Joule drift is actually a term that refers to special circumstances that usually occur with gas guns. Unlike the AEG, which simply spits out the VV through an electrically-operated pneumatic piston, gas cannons press their VV with an excessive burst of air. You may have noticed that every time you fire a gas gun, there’s a big burst of air coming out of the barrel. Back to physics: A heavier object needs more energy to move. This means, in particular, that the heavier bullet is accelerated more slowly in the course of the gas gun, i.e. it remains in the course longer, and the explosive forces of the compressed gas will push it to a standstill. When the BB finally comes out of the barrel, it is pushed with a greater total force than the lighter BB, which accelerates faster and whose gas has carried it for a shorter period of time.

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Joule’s slide is especially remarkable when players time their gas guns with 0.20 g BB, and then use a higher weight in real games. They can end up with a rifle that goes a little further and sticks a little harder than expected – and when the rifle is retested by the jury, it turns out that his BB has more joules than allowed. However, Joule slip is usually only a problem when firing from the minimum range of the FOD or the boundary range of the FOD.

Airsoft FPSFinal Reflection Guide

There’s a lot to consider when it comes to the SPF of your weapon! Before you buy an Airsoft gun, you should know that the FPS limits your location. If you shop outside your country, you must also be aware of the FPS restrictions that your country may impose and the customs that apply in your country. Finally, if you use a gas gun, you may need to be careful with the weight of the marbles you use, even in games. Thank you for visiting! For great products and more information about the game, check out our Airsoft and Airsoft Upurchase guides!

CS William Bio-Img

C.S. Wilhelm is a 28-year-old ex-military who has been playing Airsoft regularly in the forests of Canada’s West Coast for over a year. What’s less interesting is that he’s also a big nerd. C.S. Wilhelm has a degree in Creative Writing and English. He was editor of the magazine Portal and is currently studying information technology.



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