|Creation date||July 03, 2013|
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Until very recently the BFG market has been dominated by the Dynatec brand of BFGs. They are a great novelty and a sometimes a very useful tool in skirmishes. BFGs generally come in two types; Impact and Timed. SWAT have been making efforts to produce great BFGs however, with this quality comes a price. The OhShiBoom Shock is an impact grenade which has recently hit the market at a price and quality that I needed to see for myself!
For those who don't know, BFGs are Blank Firing Grenades that detonate a blank when the firing pin is triggered. The police and military have been using similar devices for training however, the airsoft versions are more practical for skirmishes as they will be used on "live" targets. In the current market, a BFG will sell brand new for anything between £85 and £110 depending on the make and model.
The OhShiBoom Shock can be bought directly through OhShiBoom or through other retailers such as SOCOM Tactical. They retail for £65 which is about £20 cheaper than the RRP for SWAT BFGx's and nearly £30 cheaper than the VTG timed grenade. The grenade itself weighs in around 460g which is noticeably lighter than the VTG or BFGx. There were no specific details for the BFGx so it was hard for a comparison based on specs.
The OhShiBoom is packaged very well and comes in a cardboard tube that is foam lined and a very snug fit. Arguably, the packaging is far more snug than the SWAT packaging which could be seen as a pro given the grenade is well cushioned and wont jump about in the packaging in transit. The grenade comes with a pin (as you'd expect) and a very easy to read instruction manual. The manual is a bit of a novelty for me because it reads almost as if they were instructing you as a friend as opposed to either and idiot or a formal customer. The manual is very informative and doesn't waste any time, within the first page you will work out all the does and don'ts with this BFG. I should say now (even being a man), I strongly recommend you read the manual BEFORE you play with the grenade. It is very easy to use once you know how however, brute force and ignorance can damage the firing mechanism!
The OhShiBoom Shock has three noticeable parts to the grenade: The pin, the main body and the lower body. The pin does what all pins in grenades do however, the novel design splits the body into two and has the lower body (which houses the blank) made of hardened polished steel and the main body (which houses the firing mechanism) made of anodised black aluminium. The main body as you can see from the photos the main body has a thin silver part and a black knurled thick part. The silver thin part is the impact sensitive detonator, when it is released the firing pin is read to fire at the drop of a hat (so to speak).
The design itself is very appealing and OhShiBoom had the forethought to knurl the main body so the grenade is secure in your hand. The anodised black finish doesnt wear of easily and even after 25 blanks, I still haven't put a scratch on it! Replacing the blank only requires unscrewing the lower body from the main body. The placement for the 9mm blank is counter sunk which allows the entire unit to sit very close and tightly.
In terms of performance, I haven't been able to do a metric comparison against the BFGx and the OhShiBoom. Instead I have been testing the grenade as much as possible and commenting on stuff like noise output, sensitivity and convenience. I've now had the OhShiBoom for 3 weeks and used them in 5 games however, the games have been limited to Zed Adventures: The Mall due to time and accessibility. In future, I would like to try on woodland but impacts are notorious for poor performance on soft ground.
Testing the OhShiBoom at The Mall showed some really promising performance. They were quite evidently louder using 9mm than the BFGx on 9mm. The increase in noise wasn't deafening but was definitely more notable. The grenades themselves were adequately sensitive with detonations being trigged as low as boot height (about 6" off the ground) onto marble. In carpeted rooms, the detonation needed a slightly larger drop height. The grenade could also be skimmed across the floor kind of like curling but with the intention of hitting a wall or a curb for detonation. I did find that the impact of the drop did affect the consistency of the detonation. On the shorter drops, they would sometimes mis-fire or fail to fire completely given an ankle height drop or less.
The priming of the grenade is very easy, at the beginning of the day, use a coin to press the pin back into the body then push the silver and black part of the main body together and secure them with the pin. After this, you can simply re-prime the grenade off the spent blank. Its very easy and with a little practice you can get it reloaded (pin, blank and all) in about 30 seconds. At one point after a little practice, I was able to clear 3 consecutive rooms with the same grenade in the space of 2 minutes, reloading as I moved to the next door way! Although it's not possible at the moment, I am hoping to produce some game play footage of the OhShiBoom in action!
At the moment, the OhShiBoom has no accessories. However, last time talk I talked to the guys they had a good set of ideas for extras (i.e. paint jobs, different calibre bottoms and preloaded bottoms). Once OhShiBoom get these out on the market, they'll have a really useful and really appealing design to just about everyone! Different colours will definitely attract a spectrum of people whilst the preloaded bottoms would allow operators to reload in a matter of seconds. The different calibre bottoms would open their BFG to sites that may not allow 9mm blanks.
The only problems I have found with the OhShiBoom are related to the nature of impact grenades and the pin for the grenade. The impact is still not sensitive enough to go off on soft surfaces (as one might expect from an impact) which makes it solely suitable for CQB or FIBUA but not woodland. I also found about about 30-35 uses, the pin started to degrade slightly which made the pin pull very difficult at times. My suggestion would be a better quality split pin but theres nothing that can be done about the nature of impacts short of making them unstable in the operators hand!
Over all, for the cost I am very impressed. The OhShiBoom Shock is a new and pleasing design that is lightweight. Usually the lightweight design would be a con due to the impact detonation however, this didn't seem to cause problems in regards to performance. The OhShiBoom Shock was capable of detonation from ankle height as well an extremely quick and easy re-prime. Its a very convenient BFG at a competitive price that might make other manufacturers rethink their RRP when they realise the OhShiBoom is a serious contender in the market!