Now, if you’re relatively new to the YouTube side of airsoft, you can be forgiven for not knowing who Novritsch is, or why this is even worth writing about. If you do, you can skip ahead a little.
Novritsch is arguably the worlds most famous airsofter. He grew in popularity with the release of his highly-satisfying airsoft sniper POV videos. Arguably one of the first “proper” airsoft YouTubers, he quickly grew in popularity and today has over 3.7m subscribers.
but, ever the businessman, Novritsch hasn’t stopped there. He has since released a number of “high end” airsoft RIFs and parts marketed at making you as good of a sniper as he is.
What is the Full Thrust Sniping System?
Now, if it weren’t the middle of July, you could be forgiven for thinking that this was the latest in airsoft April Fools.
Found on the shelf next to Will Greenwood’s “Deep Penetration” gear range.
The Full Thrust system is an “innovative” and proprietary airsoft system that boasts huge airsoft sniping improvements and replaces the vast majority of your sniper rifle internals with new parts.
Most notably, the system uses new 6.44mm 0.58g BBs.
It uses bigger balls.
This Edison-level innovation touts the following improvements:
- More Range
- Better Accuracy
- More Stability in the Wind
- Less Injuries…wtf?
Now, before I go into each of these benefits and look at them with an objective eye, I would like to publish the following…
Any innovation in airsoft is good. Innovation in this sports means we evolve and it means we grow. This guy is trying to innovate in airsoft harder than I am.
But, Novritsch has a reputation for being a little less than honest when it comes to marketing his other products, so I think it is worth taking a deeper look into this and understanding the veracity of the claims
1. More Range?
Novritsch claims that the BBs get more range because they’re both heavier and slower.
Air resistance increases exponentially with the projectile’s speed. The heavier 0.58g BB leaves your muzzle with the same energy, but slower, which leads to less air resistance. This is why it keeps speed and the kinetic energy much longer which leads to a drastic increase in effective range.Full Thrust VSR-10 product page
But surely the benefits of “less air resistance” by being slower are out-weighed by the fact that you increase air resistance with more surface area (i.e a bigger BB)
First things first, basic physics. We will assume for this that both BBs are fired at the same muzzle energy 2.3 joules.
Does a bigger and heavier BB mean greater range from your airsoft sniper rifle?
A quick bit of maths shows that a 0.4g 6mm BB (typical sniper weight) travelling with 2.3joules of energy (352fps) fired exactly horizontally, with no hop-up and from 1.5m high will travel 59.2 meters before hitting the ground.
The same equation but taking into account the larger surface area of the Full Thrust BB, the greater mass and the slower muzzle velocity gives me just a range of 50.7 meters.
The basic numbers don’t seem to make sense here.
More consistent hop-up?
The next claim to backup moar range is that you get a more consistent “Magnus Effect” (read: hop-up for those of us that don’t need to bamboozle with science words) by the fact that the BB can spin for longer, due to it being heavier and bigger.
This doesn’t sound too far-fetched. At this point, a BB is essentially a tiny little flywheel. The more mass it has, the further away from its spinning axis, the longer it can conserve that energy.
Let’s talk about the Moment of Inertia, that is, the force required to make the BB spin. For our purposes, we’ll use it for understanding how hard it is to stop spinning.
The 6mm 0.4g BB has a Mass Moment of Inertia of 0.0000000024kg/m2
The 6.44mm 0.58g has a blah Moment of Inertia of 0.000000004009kg/m2
That’s almost 65% more energy required to get the BB to stop spinning (and therefore stop hopping).
And that seems to add a bit of logic to the “more consistent, longer hop-up” claim… if we completely ignore that it also takes 65% more energy to apply that much hop-up in the first place.
I’m not a physician, nor a physicist.
Accuracy of an airsoft sniper rifle is affected by a number of things.
- BB Quality – Will his BBs be as consistent as BBs make by the millions by the top manufacturers in tried and tested sizes and manufacturing processes?
- Hop-up Consistency – You get a brand-new hop-up with this kit. See above.
- Barrel Quality – See above.
- Wind – Novritch doesn’t control the wind.
The manufacturing process of the above parts (all included in the pack except the wind) would have to be as good, if not better, than the INDUSTRY LEADING parts manufacturers such as Laylax and Action Army to be competitive. Only time will on that front.
Better Stability in the Wind
The wind is the biggest factor here. The claim is that the heavier weight will negate wind affects better. This is tried and testing by airsofters using heavier BBs in their weapons.
But this works because the wind-resistance on the BB stays the same due to the size. The increased mass is matched by the increased surface area. I don’t think enough to make a big enough difference. But, once again, there’s a graphic on the website that says it does, so it must be true.
The equations to run are the same as the initial “greater range” claim.
I’m not even going to go into this one. Do we honestly think this is worth talking about? Are sites going to allow you to use a 2.3j sniper rifle without a minimum engagement distance because a YouTuber shot at some BBs at some clay?
Problems with more than just the claims
There are a few more problems than just the claims that are made. Yes the numbers don’t add up, but those could just be my calculations, I could have fundamentally miss-understood a basic principle of physics. I could have been biased by my blind hatred. Anything…
2-4 Joule Testing
The Deep Thrust has been tested with muzzle energies from 2-4 joules and that’s great. Except, if you’re in the UK as most of my readers, our FPS limits stop at 2.5 Joules. Us UK players looking to use this are dabbling in only the first 0.5joules of its “effectiveness”.
All of its marketed “brilliance” might only be apparent in those upper joule ranges.
Airsoft Site insurance in the UK is a little finicky and insurers put rather tight regulations on some sites to ensure that liability is at the absolute minimum, just look at the controversy surrounding the 40 Mike airsoft grenade or TAG Rounds.
Many site owners are claiming that their insurance is limited to 6mm projectiles. the Full Thrust would be banned at those sites.
As I said at the very beginning. Novritsch is a smooth businessman. He knows what he’s doing. By opting into the Full Thrust system, you’re Full Fucked into only buying his proprietary 6.44mm BBs and magazines until someone else comes out with them (unlikely based on the size of the market).
If the quality drops in those BBs, you’re stuffed.
If the price gets hiked in those BBs, you’re buggered.
If they become rarer than a reliable WE Pistol, you’re rogered.
etc, etc, etc.
I’m not saying that’s likely, but is it worth it?
What’s the verdict?
Whilst I don’t doubt that there are some benefits to the Full Thrust system – The Bio BBs and the Top-Dead-Center hop-up are nice additions – I don’t think there’s enough benefit in the system (at UK Joule Limits at least) to be worth the investment.
I don’t think the claims that Novritsch is making about this system are false. I think it’s a huge amount of effort to go through for a bad-product (although I’ve seen companies to more with less). but in the UK, with our limits, there’s no way it’s going to be any more effective than a heavier weight BB (0.45g) in a well tuned 6mm rifle.
Do not buy the Full Thrust system thinking it’s going to make you the next Novritsch, or make you able to snipe across the map at 100+ meters.
If you do, set your expectations accordingly. It may be a good way of getting an accurate and reliable sniper-rifle for a fraction of the cost of traditional means. As long as you’re aware of the potential future dangers of being lock-in.
I think it will be a rousing success with hundreds of people buying them very quickly. Those hundreds will turn out to be reviewers, and we’ll see how it takes off after that.
What are your thoughts? Free free to shout at me in the comments.