Many beginner (and some advanced) airsoft players think that to give your BBs more distance, you need to adjust the FPS (feet per second) by getting more power out of your gun. However, that is not the case. When you are talking about distance, what you want to adjust is your Hop Up. Your hop up allows you to shoot at a greater distance. It also makes you shoot with more accuracy. Not all guns have it, but most do. Let’s take a look at how hop up works and how do to adjust it.
Hop-up: How it works
Hop up is a great option to have when you shoot airsoft pistols. It makes you shoot at a further distance without having to adjust your muzzle velocity. The hop up gives your BBs a backspin that counters the push and pulls of gravity. By creating a backspin, it will take longer for your BBs to actually start its descent and you might just hit your intended target. There is a nub inside your gun that compresses a rubber fitting in your barrel to create a tighter space and make your BB spin when shot out of your barrel. This will then start the Magnus Effect.
The Magnus Effect
The Magnus effect is the principle of creating a lift for our BBs to generate or increase your range. The backspin effect from the hop up creates a high-pressure area on one side and a low-pressure area on another. This motion makes the BB move in the area of the low-pressure area. In airsoft, this is used to make the ball travel upwards called the lift.
How To Adjust The Lift
You can generally adjust the amount of hop you have on your pistol. The hop up is located inside the pistol meaning you would have to remove your slide to access it. Once you have your slide open, there would be a gear that you can turn to adjust your hop-up. In some cases, there would be an indicator for which direction to add more hop-up. You can try to shoot your pistol and the trajectory it shoots.
Please note that every airsoft gun is built differently so the hop up adjustment will be different on every gun. Please consult with your gun’s manufacturer’s documentation to learn how to adjust your specific gun’s hop up settings.
When you have no hop-up, your BBs will start their descent sooner than you want them to. If on the other hand, you have too much hop, your BBs will start to curve up and you won’t be able to hit your target. It is an art finding the perfect balance to your hop up adjustment. When you do find it, you will be the most accurate shooter on your team. The heavier your BBs are the more lift you would need. That would require you to add more hop-up. Keep shooting and adjusting your hop-up until you get the right balance that you want.
Tips on Hop Up Adjustments
Hop-up is all about personal preference. You adjust it to how you want your pistol to shoot. Some people want the straightest possible trajectory, and some prefer t have a little lift to get the smallest additional range.
Make sure that when you are adjusting your hop up, you are in an empty space where you have permission to shoot your airsoft guns. Begin firing your gun downrange and watch your BBs perform.
If you find that for some reason, your hop-up is turned all the way up and your BBs are still not flying straight, then you might need to replace some parts of your hop-up. Go to your nearest airsoft store and have your hop-up checked if you need a new one.
As the Magnus effect requires friction to work, never, ever get your hop-up lubricated, or else it just wouldn’t work properly. Your accuracy and range will suffer.
Our Final Thoughts
Hop up can make or break your game if you know how to use it. It will take you a little time to figure the setting that you want, but it’s all going to be worth it in the end. Follow all the tips that we have given you with the hop-ups and you’ll do just fine. The hop up doesn’t normally increase the FPS, but there are some cases that it might. Ultimately, the hop up can affect your consistency in shooting, plus the range and accuracy of your airsoft pistol.