February 18, 2013

Air Zone Double Barrel Blaster Review

Another new blaster has appeared in the Air Zone line at Toys R Us. It's a rebranded Lanard blaster, firing oversized darts. They call it the Double Barrel Blaster. What do I call it? Something that with some modding, could operate better - with even MORE modding, could even be a primary.

More after the jump!



Our new shotgun uses near-mongo size darts; the darts measure ~15/16" in diameter in the package I bought. The tips are rubber flaps that come together in a conical shape - the tip itself is hollow.

As for the blaster, it has similar internals to the Lanard Tri-Barrel Ball Blaster, just adapted for two barrels instead of one. If we open it up...

...we see a single plunger tube on the inside. When you prime the blaster, this happens:

You then have to push the handle back in to deactivate the priming safety so you can fire the blaster.
Take the plunger/barrel assembly out, and disassemble further!

Finally, we take the plunger out. It's hard to see (my fault in picture taking), but you can see the rotation track molded onto the side of the plunger tube. Each time you prime the blaster, the tube makes half a turn in order to switch barrels. Note that in the Lanard Tri-Barrel, an extension spring powers the blaster; here they have used a compression spring (one that fully compresses, by the way).

Doing a rough estimate, I'm seeing about 49ml in displacement. Larger than a Stampede, but still smaller than a Longshot. Not shoddy by any means.

Now, for performance! Does our new toy live up to its claims of firing those large darts 30 ft? Er....no.

My camera's only sitting 15 ft. away in the video, and I'm firing flat. Firing angled, the 30 ft. claim is still a bit generous. The main problem seems to be the darts - with almost no weight to them, they just don't go straight OR far. Imagine firing stefans that don't have any weight in the front, and you'll understand what I mean.
Luckily, the blaster came with 6 darts. I'll experiment with them to see if that helps.

Another issue? The darts just don't go that far back into the actual barrel - which, by the way, has quite a bit of dead space between it and the plunger tube.

Easy way to boost ranges? Take out the small rubber air restrictors. I used needle-nose pliers to pull them out the front, between the plastic "arms" supporting the dart peg.

That small change alone did wonders; now the blaster is firing 25' flat, if not more. These were blocking a TON of air. With the ARs, this is just a beefy novelty. Without them, the blaster shows itself as a legitimate platform for future modification and war use.

With this new information, I would now recommend buying the blaster if you see it. It's got power; you just need to pull out the ARs to see it. And at $13, it's a bargain.

2 comments:

  1. Great article. Do you have any suggestions for mounting the extra darts to the blaster itself, instead of carrying them around in a pocket or such?

    Thanks!

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  2. I just picked this up at a Moons near me, but it's the Lanard Boomstick version. Mine did not come with the ARs, but I'm still getting the same anemic performance you reported initially.

    Maybe they were removed in an update, but that doesn't explain the performance difference. Any ideas?

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