M92F Military Model
M92F Military (KSC) Gosh! First it was the Glock craze and now everyone seems to be coming out with a 92F variant. Worse yet, two of the latest models hitting the market these couple months came from the same manufacturer! And for this, we praise Tokyo Marui. Their new gas blow back M9 is quite a performer that is great for first time airsofters (thanks to its economical price) as well as long time veterans (thanks to its power and high capacity). At 740g, the M9 is not as heavy as the WA offerings but does offer enough heft to make it realistic to hold. Overall construction is of high quality ABS plastic with a matt surface effect. At first glance, the M9 looks every bit as good as the WA Perfect Version Beretta with none of that plastic shine. Closer inspection however revealed where the sacrifices were made for its lower price.
While we found the fit and finish to be very good, we noticed several moulding seams on the gun that, while very light and not easy to spot, did not escape the critic's eye. Examples include a thin seam line running the length of the barrel though it is almost flush with the top of the slide so you don't notice it until you pull the slide back. Another seam we spotted ran down the cross section of the lower frame, running the length of the trigger guard and ending at the grip. While these lines were too light to be photographed, they did take away slightly from the pistol's otherwise authentic look.
As a comparison, we were almost unable to identify any seams on the WA Perfect Version Berettas. Metal parts on Marui's M9 include the slide lock, safety, disassembly lever, hammer, magazine, slide guide rod. The magazine release and sights are plastic while the trigger is composed of a metal/plastic material. Fixed hop-up is built into the barrel which we found adequate for 0.2g BBs.
Sights are quite good but are not colored in with the red dots like the WA's. However an indentation is already present on the front sight and a quick do-it-yourself dab of paint puts you back into business.
Basic operation is similar to all other gas blowback weapons but overall feel is less tactile than the WA Berettas. However, our test gun makes up for this in other ways, namely being able to take HFC22 right out of the box to give over 0.9J of power. We were also impressed with its efficient use of HFC134a, beating out all other GBBs in it's class in terms of power. Blowback is very fast with HFC22 and the M9's report is a short "BAAP". The magazine holds 25 rounds and the lip on the BB storage shaft is quite tight so we were not able to simply just "pour" BBs in. Instead we had to load BBs one by one which for some of you I understand adds realism! For me, I found this annoying.
Operation of the safety switch brings to light another difference from the standard-setting WAs.
With the M9 cocked, turning the safety on simply disconnects the trigger from firing, whereas on WAs a similar move would decock the hammer and return the trigger to the full forward position. Pulling the bolt back reveals yet another difference; Marui's M9 nozzle design does not incorporate the 3-petal nozzle valve design common on most other GBBs.
Instead, there is a gaping large diameter nozzle which may explain the power that this M9 is able to generate (thanks to the increased flow of gas without the petals in the way). Disassembling the M9 is amazingly easy; with a simple push of the disassembly lever, the slide comes right off the frame. Ressembly is just as easy and you do not need to work and coax the lever back up into place like some of the other GBBs on the market. Shooting the M9 is quite fun with strong blowback and loud report. The cycle time is so short that you can literally pump out 4 to 5 rounds a second if your fingers work fast enough. One full charge of gas can last over 40 rounds on a warm day.
Overall we found the M9 to be quite fun to shoot, especially in rapid fire mode thanks to it's extremely short cycle time and strong blowback. Accuracy was decent with 1.5 inch groupings from 12 feet with a maximum kill range of about 50 to 60 feet. Maximum travel distance measured approximately 80 feet. In our tests, the only thin. The only problem we had with the M9 in our tests was having the right side safety lever fly loose after some heavy repeat firing. A quick twist with a hex wrench secures the lever tightly back on and it would be wise for buyers to tighten the screw immediately before first time use.
With a no frills design approach, the new M9 promises good bang for the buck (literally). As one of the lowest priced Japanese made gas blow backs on the market, it is very attractive as a backup weapon for those unwilling to risk losing an expensive WA instead. If you're a collector, pass for the WA Nickel plated Beretta which shows exemplary craftsmanship. If you're a serious skirmisher where details are less important but power and economics are first priorities, then this M9 is for you!
If you're interested in getting one for yourself, click here ! Written by Redwolf
(Photos by RedWolf)
November 12, 1999