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Airsoft M14: The Complete Battlerifle


The airsoft M14 offers excellent range and high power

 

Between WWII and the Vietnam War, standard-issue rifles were about two things: range and power. Semi-automatic battle rifles were still a relatively fresh invention by the 1960s, with NATO and Warsaw Pact planners still orchestrating conventional warfare strategies around lessons learned from WWII. A new world war would be about weight of arms, fire and movement with the heaviest ground forces possible matched with overwhelming air power to suppress and destroy the enemy beyond arms reach. In the decades after WWII US small arms doctrine lead this mode of thought, developing and evolving famously heavy infantry weapons such as the M60, M2 Browning, and the mighty M14.

 

The M14 Rifle with OD Stock

 

The M14 is often glossed over as a footnote in the evolution of western small arms despite the platform having one of the longest service records in the history of the United States army. A full size "Battle Rifle" in every sense of the word, the M14 fires the powerful 7.62x51mm round and was an evolution of the famous M1 Garand. Seen without its 20 round box magazine it looks similar to the Garand, filling a similar role of long range firepower for the average GI at ranges up to 450 meters. It was outfitted with a full auto trigger and a modernized receiver, theoretically turning every rifleman into a light machine gunner for maximum flexibility.

 

 

The M14's service as a standard issue rifle in the US Army was actually very brief, with production only lasting 6 years (1959 - 1964) and active service lasting only to 1970. America's last true "battle rifle" it would would see itself replaced by the lighter and more modern M16 in barely a decade. The main problems with the M14 were enormous size and weight for a standard issue rifle (10.7 lbs full loaded and over 3 and half feet long) and a shift of away from full-power cartridges such as the 7.62x51mm and towards intermediate cartridges such as the M16s' 5.56x45mm and the AK47s' 7.62x39, allowing for more accurate burst fire and more ammunition to be carried per soldier.

 

M14 Battle Rifle with the classic stock

 

With the size and recoil of the M14, the gun proved unwieldy in full-auto, with many being permanently set to semi. Bipod and foregrip kits existed for the M14 to make it more usable as a LMG, but a small magazine size limited potential for a suppressive fire role. As Vietnam slowly manifested itself as a mobile war of long patrols and close-range fighting the smaller and lighter M16, despite its problems, would emerge as a more sensible alternative to the ungainly M14.

 

 

But the M14 was by no means a bad weapon: it just wasn't sensible to expect that your average combat infantryman to lug an M14 with a full load of ammunition in his kit and stay accurate, rested and combat effective for the duration of an operation. The M14 remained everything a battle rifle should be: powerful and accurate. Snipers during Vietnam found the M14 to be accurate at ranges in excess of 800 meters and by 1969 the M21 emerged to fill a brand new role in the US armed forces, the "Designated Marksman." Ever since, the M14/M21 platform has participated in every US war since Vietnam and continues to evolve to this day, most famously as the highly modernized M14 Enhanced Battle Rifle, or "Mk14 EBR."

 

The Airsoft M14: Looking at the Vpower M14

M14s in Airsoft often have the potential to fulfill similar roles to their real steel counterparts, albeit with substantially reduced weight. While not appearing to players as the most cutting edge design out there, overlooking the potential of the M14 AEG platform for long range accuracy and suppression is a mistake. While AK AEGs have the well-deserved reputation for being a excellent value with high power velocities and surprisingly long reach, it's rare that a variant under $200 is going to have the kind of tight groupings at ranges in excess of 80 feet that make for competitive play against middle-to-upper tier AEGs out there. That's where CYMA's airsoft M14s come in!

 

Airsoft M14 Muzzle Break and woodland camo helmet

 

CYMA's version 7 gearboxes deliver the best performance of any AEG under $200 on the market, and the Vpower M14s at AMS are the best variants you can find of these rifles anywhere. Both the full length and SOCOM Vpower M14s can out-reach any AEG under $200, delivering the tightest groupings you can find in this cost bracket. The CYMA Version 7 gearbox and its stock hop-up delivers hands-down the best backspin among any budget AEG in airsoft, but AMS's exclusive Vpower CYMA M14 rifles come with precision inner barrels to maximize these rifles' potential at medium to long range. It's rare that we recommend that players use BBs heavier than .20g in a sub-$200 AEG, but if you're using anything lighter than .25g BBs in a CYMA Vpower M14, you're missing out. The reach and groupings on these Battle Rifle AEGs outperform AEGs over double their price!

 

Airsoft M14 Bolt, Trigger, and Magazine

 

Another element that makes Vpower CYMA M14 AEGs distinct and superior to variants you might find at other Airsoft retailers is that the Vpower version 7 gearboxes are reinforced to ensure longer lifespans and rougher use. Our M14s deliver 400+ FPS performance in both the SOCOM and full-length variants for superb out-of-the-box performance without any need for internal upgrades.

Unfortunately neither of these variants come with RIS rails, so you'll have to pop on one of several affordable rail kits to rig up some optics. But if you get an M14, strongly consider it! Great range makes the CYMA M14 a performer for medium-long range suppression and a burst-fire designated marksman role, so seeing where your rounds are landing with definitely improve your combat effectiveness!

 

Airsoft M14 Stock

 

During gameplay Vpower CYMA M14s do their best when operating a role similar to how the real steel M14 was expected to operate: outdoors at or just behind the frontline. The impressive accuracy of the CYMA M14 matches well with its power and rate of fire so you are sure to hit any target around 75 feet with ease and consistency with 25g BBs. CYMA M14s all feature polymer or imitation wood stocks so weight is kept to a manageable 7.5 lbs for the full size and 7 lbs for the SOCOM. Players that are expecting more urban or CQB play should consider the SOCOM as it is a full 7 inches shorter than the full length while still outperforming everything in its price range and beyond!

 

Airsoft M14 Stock

 

If you're looking to get a full size AEG for under $200 and are interested in performance above all else, definitely buy an AMS exclusive Vpower CYMA M14 AEG. Offering excellent range, flat trajectories, high power, tight groupings, manageable weight and easily upgradable with affordable scope mount kits the CYMA full-length and SOCOM Vpower M14s are one of the best kept secrets in airsoft!

 

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