Do you wanna play airsoft. You’ve seen a couple gameplay videos and reviews. You’ve played a few games at your local field and you’re ready to get out of the rental scene. Question is, what gun do you get? When I started airsoft, my first rifle was an expensive bullpup rifle. I love it and still use it today, but it was not the best rifle to get into airsoft. I would have been better off with something more accessible to new players. This G&G M4 Raider Combat Machine review will help you learn about one of the best guns out there for beginners.
Starter Airsoft Gun Qualities
When you’re looking for a good airsoft rifle to start your career, you need a rifle that’s not too expensive. With a less expensive rifle, you can buy batteries and chargers as well as extra magazines. Also, if you find out airsoft isn’t your thing, you’re not out a lot of money for your purchase.
But you want inexpensive, not cheap. The Chinese rifles out there are at attractive price points but their build quality leaves something to be desired. The externals are that ABS plastic that feels like a toy. And their internals. They’re usually made of plastic as well. These rifles don’t last very long and won’t get you much on a resale when it’s time to upgrade. You also need a rifle that has some universality to them. Sure, that airsoft FAMAS looks great, but it takes special magazines. It probably has special internal parts that make repairing it a real pain.
Guay and Guay Armament is a Taiwanese company that started manufacturing tactical gear in 1986. They have a wide range of products for players of all skill levels and budgets. Whether you’re getting started or you’re looking for a new addition to your arsenal, G&G has something for you. The Combat Machine line is G&G’s attempt at creating a rifle that doesn’t sacrifice quality for the price. The CM 16 Raider is an airsoft Colt M4 Carbine that shares some of its features. If you’ve handled an AR-15, you’ll know where the safety switch and magazine release are. The CM 16 Raider is short-barreled, so it’s perfect for CQB engagements. You can find it in black and tan, so you can match it your preferred camouflage color.
- Strong polymer body
- Railed front end for full accessory integration
- Removable rear sight
- Upgrading or replacing parts is easy
- Many metal internals
- Adjustable crane stock
- Front triangle sight is fixed the outer barrel
- High 370-400 FPS means it may be unusable in CQB
- Should not use LiPo batteries without upgrades
- Front sling adapter is not very strong
CM 16 Raider Features and Benefits
Value Comes in the Box
When you buy the CM 16 Raider, you’ll also receive a 9.6-volt nickel-metal hydride battery, charger, and 450 rounds high-capacity magazine. It’s everything you need in the airsoft gun department to get out and play! The 9.6v NiMH battery is as high voltage as you’ll want to use in this rifle. The battery will still give you a respectable rate of fire on full auto. The 450 hi-cap mag is definitely all you need in a 10-minute semi-auto only game. If you need more than that, we need to talk about your trigger discipline.
While the visuals are rather plain, you’ll know you have a strong starter gun as soon as you handle your CM 16 Raider. Most of the gun is a polymer material, but it has a strong feel to it. You shouldn’t worry about cracking the body on an accidental drop. About the only thing that isn’t great externally is the front sling adapter, but there’s no reason you even have to use it. Get a single-point sling and attach it to the rear of the gun.
Great Performance and Internals
The trigger response on this airsoft gun is astounding for its price point. It’s not at all sluggish or heavy. BBs come flying out at around 370 feet per second. Some indoor fields won’t let you play at that muzzle velocity. You’re clear for outdoor play, though. Because it’s an airsoft M4, it will be easy to bring that FPS down. The M4 platform is the most common on the market and in use, so internal upgrades are easy to find. Veteran airsofters know their way around the M4 platform. They will be able to help you should your Raider stop working on the field. Unless you’ve had it opened up and worked on, you can expect your CM 16 to last a long time with regular maintenance.
Accessing this gun’s hop-up unit mid-game is pretty easy, too. Pull back on the charging handle to drop the dust cover that protects the hop-up. Then, follow the instructions included to rotate the dial in the right direction to add spin-up or -down to your BBs. G&G made sure the hop-up unit wouldn’t lose the position you set it in. The rifle will stay hopped for a while once you’ve adjusted it.
Accessory Integration and Aftermarket Externals
With its extensive rail integration system up front, adding accessories will be easy. There’s no need to buy a new RIS front-end or more rail segments for this rifle. If you place your preferred foregrip underneath the gun, you’ll still have room on the sides for lasers or lights. You need to remove the rear sight and you’re ready for an optic. While the front sight can get in the way of some optics, it can be co-witnessed to make aimed shots more accurate.
Don’t like the motor grip or the stock? Well, the CM 16 Raider is compatible with many other external parts. You can give your rifle a unique two-tone look with the right external parts without the pain of incompatibility. Its relatively low price point means you can actually afford these extras on the first shopping trip. The CM 16 Raider isn’t very nice to left-handed operators. But those lefty parts are out there and they will be compatible with the Raider.
Many qualities of the CM 16 Raider make it a great gun to practice your airsoft tech skills on. Chief among them is its price. If you want to learn how airsoft guns work firsthand but you’re afraid of breaking your equipment, the Raider is a good choice. If you happen to break it while you work, you won’t be out much cash.
There are also plentiful guides online on how to disassemble the CM 16 Raider, even down to its gearbox. You won’t be alone when you decide it’s time to upgrade the spring or motor. If you’re a teching veteran looking for something you can turn into a franken-gun, the Raider is a great choice for you, too.
If you frequent airsoft forums across the Internet, you’ll see the most frequent topic is which gun to buy as a starter. Almost every answer will be something from G&G’s Combat Machine line. The most notable difference among rifles in the Combat Machine line is the externals. They are completely cosmetic differences, though. You still get the same, beginner recommended internals across the CM line. We recommend the Raider because of its stock rail-integration system and its price point.
CM 16 Raider Alternatives
The Jing Gong M4A1 is a strong competitor for the best beginner gun. The plastic externals and RIS-less front end hold the JG M4A1 back, though. The internals leaves something to be desired, as well. G&G’s airsoft guns are all-around better than what JG has to offer. Still, you can’t go wrong with the price.
Star Rainbow Company’s SR-A1 RIS is another good alternative if you have anything keeping you from getting the Raider. It has many of the same features as the CM 16 Raider. However, SRC is not as well known as G&G. The CM 16 Raider has many more satisfied customers across many retailers. The SR-A1 comes in at 315 to 330 FPS, making it clear for indoor play out of the box. It’s not a great competitor for outdoor play. The battery packaged with it is an 8.4v NiMH, meaning it will have a lower rate of fire than the CM 16 Raider. It’s a little longer than the Raider as well if that’s one of your concerns.
The Lancer Tactical LT-19 10 has a very high muzzle velocity of 400 to 415 FPS, meaning you will not be using this gun indoors. It will take quite a bit of downgrading to make that happen. While the rail system looks fancy, it has some limitations holding it back. You only get three segments to attach accessories out of the box. The CM 16 Raider allows for any number of accessories without having to buy extra segments. The rail segments also have a chance to fall off of the rifle, meaning you may lose your accessory. The stock sights on the Raider are also higher quality than those of the LT-19. The build quality is that plastic toy-like material that feels cheap. You’re not going to want to drop the LT-19.
G&G M4 Raider Combat Machine Review Final Thoughts
When you consider all the features the G&G CM 16 Raider comes with stock, you’ll see it is the clear choice for a starter rifle. Its railed front end make attaching accessories easy. As an M4, you’ll meet a lot of people who can offer insight on how to upgrade or repair the airsoft gun. Finding replacement parts will be easy as well. Besides, so many people across the Internet can’t be wrong! The G&G CM 16 Raider is definitely a great buy for the beginning airsofter or techie.
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