Wednesday, February 26, 2014

[Update] Alex's Modding Corner Update

[Alex] Hey Squaddies. Today I thought I'd do a bit of a recap on what I've been up to lately.

Last fortnight I was on break from work, and I took some time to do some modding. Here's the short list:

 - Basic mods on Tom's Hammershot
 - Basic mods on Tom's Heartbreaker bow
 - Basic mods to my MEGA Magnus
 - Fixed / reinforced my modded Zombiestrike Sidestrike
 - Started work on my "Longunov MK II" (A Longshot / Longstrike shell merger, Longshot internals)
 - Built a Nerf Tactical Shield / Barrier (pics near the end)
 - Bought my own Hammershot and did Basic mods (plus a little extra, at the end)

A quick run down on Tom's blasters:

Tom had a U.S spec Hammershot with a strong spring. I added a bit of plastic to compress the spring for some extra oomph. Removing the air restrictor now means the cocking hammer SNAPS back into place when fired without slowing down, meaning maximum firing potential and more reliable priming / "fanning" slam-fire. It feels MUCH more comfortable and "beefy" to use. I also added a small O-ring in front of the barrel cylinder to improve the plunger tube air seal.

The Heartbreaker bow out of the box was a bit average, but after adding an extra spring, removing the air restrictor and inserting some 17/32" brass barrel, it now packs a punch. It's not *amazing* firepower, but for the Nerf Wars that we play at it will certainly be able to keep up...besides, who DOESN'T like using a bow? :P

The Magnus is by far the superior MEGA blaster compared to the Centurion. Very little goes wrong and has much more consistent firepower. But I find the MEGA darts tend to stray off to the sides a bit too much. I added some weight from cut down inf0rm3r .50cal dart tip stems and inserted them inside the MEGA dart heads through the whistler holes. Then in the Magnus I removed all the safety locks and added a stock Stampede spring. Now not only does the Magnus pack a punch, but with much better reliability and accuracy too!

The Zombiestrike Sidestrike is a great alternative to the Firestrike / Nitefinder, and mine has been modded with an OMW 7kg Strongarm spring and a brass barrel inserted. But there is a weakness in the priming handle; the metal bar that pushes the plunger rod back tends to snap off according to other users on forums / modding Facebook pages. Upon inspecting mine, it had *started* to break, so I caught it just in time. I reinforced the metal bar mounts with epoxy putty, I inserted a second rod next to it and braced the two together with some plastic. I then put more putty into the plunger rod to reinforce that. If you own or plan on getting a Sidestrike - you SHOULD / MUST reinforce it because even with the stock spring it has a tendency to break ):

I will discuss more about my Longunov MK II project another time when it is completed and I have some pics to show for it, but for now know this: my original Longunov I made was my first major modding project and has lasted me for as long as I have Nerf'ed, and has won me many battles :P however it is a bit worn and my "newbie" job is showing its age. Time for a refreshed, "cleaner" look with some performance upgrades ;)

If you have read this far without skipping - thank you, and I hope you enjoyed the modding reading :) and if you are a modder yourself I hope this info helps, and feel free to ask in a comment here / message me on Facebook if you want to know more about the above mods I did :)

Now... onto the main project I undertook during my holidays: the Nerf Tactical Riot Shield / Barrier!

The idea behind why I made this shield is to combat the growing presence of semi-auto blasters (Stryfe, Rayven) and full-auto blasters (Rapidstrike in particular).

In our local Nerf group we have had shields before with decent success, but nothing "large" size. We have put in restrictions on using larger shields, but no one in our group has actually bought or made one - until now.

But not only did I want to make something to test the larger shield waters, but I wanted to take it a step further...

Made out of a plastic sheet base from a pet cage, this has been reinforced with tripod leg sections to keep it rigid and to attach a gutted tripod to it. Now I am able to carry it as a shield *and* deploy it as a barrier!

The shield itself is quite large, using Nerf streamline tips to cover the ends of the bolts (both sides) and the streamline dart foam around the edges for safety. I'm thinking of putting something like a Nerf logo or name tag on the front... all that black empty space needs filling methinks :P

I also put two tactical rails from a Vulcan barrel onto either side of the perspex visor - currently I am using two Barrel Break dart holders, but I plan on getting some SlyDev thick dart holders and clip/mag holders instead :P This way when used in barrier mode, it can act as a miniature reloading station for myself or team mates (or lucky enemies who get to it xD)

Last on my Mods list is my new Hammershot I got today. At first I wasn't a huge fan of the Hammershot, preferring the Strongarm overall. But after modding Tom's and seeing not just the performance improvement but also the increased comfort of using it, I simply had to have one - and will work well with the shield to boot :P

But unlike Tom's which was a U.S spec one, mine was a weaker Aussie one. After doing all the same mods I did to Tom's, mine was still a little lackluster in range, and it wasn't accepting my custom full-length Xplorer Xtip darts which work well in medium level modded blasters. So I went a step further and copied something similar to what I did to my Zombiestrike Crossfire Bow...

I added some 17/32" brass about 1/2cm long into the front of the barrels. I've heard people have little to no success doing *full* brass barrel inserts into Spectres / Strongarms, but in this case I've found it has worked very well. It now accepts my custom Xtip darts, it gets increased range and accuracy and now holds up against my OMW Strongarm very well :P

I hope you have enjoyed this post, and keep your eyes peeled for the Crossfire Bow review and mod guide coming soon! Thanks for reading :)