It’s the perfect day. The sun is shining bright, it’s not unbearably hot out. You woke up on your day off from school or work, grabbed your gear and got the guys together for some simulated combat action. Once heavy into gameplay, Mother Nature seemed to have other plans for everyone and flipped on the rain switch which really ruins a good game of Airsoft. Or does it? Maybe you are thinking about pushing on and playing. Maybe it wasn’t the perfect day to start with and you really just want to play regardless. Most die-hard Airsofters that really want to get out there, don’t shy away from playing under inclimate weather conditions. Ok, it’s raining. You really want to play and may be wondering “Is it safe to play Airsoft in the rain?”
To be perfectly honest, yes! Airsoft guns regardless of the material they are made of, can take getting wet externally. You may have seen Airsoft replicas submerged in water and coming out firing without missing a beat. While I wouldn’t recommend it, I have seen it.
If you are wanting to engage in a game of Airsoft during wet weather, there are some advantages and disadvantages you may not have considered.
Advantages of Airsofting in the rain include…
- Rain provides an added element to the realism in gameplay. Real Soldiers in combat situations do not stop fighting simply because it rains. Provided there are no hazardous weather conditions (lightning, tornados, etc.), players can soldier on like their real counterparts.
- Rainy weather can transform terrain to your advantage. The once crunchy, noisy foliage becomes soggy, making it less noisy and easier to sneak up on unsuspecting players.
- Wet terrain tends to slow some players down. Losing one’s footing on wet structures and grounds surely can slow down some players. Slow players make for some easy sniper targets!
- Rain can cool off an otherwise hot day. While not necessarily the biggest advantage, for some a cooler temperature can extend how long they will continue to play.
Disadvantages of Airsofting in the rain include…
- Clothing and gear become wet. Socks, boots, and outerwear can become soggy. For some, wet clothing is very uncomfortable. Wet clothing can rub you the wrong way. Also, maneuvering in wet clothing and gear can tend to slow some players down.
- Terrain can be harder to navigate quickly. Just as this is an advantage for some players, it can be a disadvantage for others. Wet grass, muddy grounds, and wet structures can make it more challenging to maneuver as well as to get solid footing.
- There is always the potential for an Airsoft replica to malfunction. While not likely, it is certainly a possibility that you should consider. There are ways to help avoid some malfunctions like buying a quality made replica and keeping your batteries dry.
- High wind can accompany stormy weather. While water may have little to no effect on gameplay, wind can carry away Airsoft BB’s making it near impossible to hit what you are aiming for.
Advantages and disadvantages aside, there may be some other things you may have popped into your head as you pondered rainy day gameplay.
How Severe is the Weather?
This is a good thing to know since severe weather can cause serious injury, even death. The severity of weather may be dependant on several factors. Where you live can also play a part in how severe weather may become. Depending on where you live, severe weather may or may not be an issue. I currently live and play in South Florida. The weather here can be sunny on one side of the street and raining on the other. Also, weather in the subtropics can get fierce. A little rain, while you are out playing, is really nothing to worry about. However, if there is severe weather like lightning or tropical storm activity, you may want to strongly reconsider. I realize that tropical storm activity would probably be the extreme in severity alongside tornado activity, etc. Playing in the rain is ok, but reconsider if severe weather is coming your way.
Is the Airsoft Replica of Good Quality?
Typically a good Airsoft replica will be able to hold up in rain. Before playing in the rain, take a cursory look at the Airsoft replica you’ll be playing with. It never hurts however to check your replica. Is everything sealed or are their large openings that would let in water? If you find large areas that would allow water to get inside, you can always cover them up. Some players have been known to use plastic wrap on their replicas, batteries, and connectors to keep water out. Don’t worry about how it looks. After all, this is not a beauty contest. Another consideration, keep your batteries dry. A small plastic baggy can be used to cover your battery pack. A good, well made, Airsoft replica should serve you well. Shoddy or subpar cheap weapons may not fair as well.
A Little Planning Can Help
Plan ahead, be prepared. Planning ahead for inclimate weather is not only smart, but can leave you prepared for any situation. Here are some things you can do that will go a long way:
- Check your local weather for Hazardous or extreme weather conditions. Knowing how bad things may get beforehand will help you not get caught in the worst of weather.
- Know your weapon. Some Electric Replicas (AEG’s) can have trigger boards. There have been occasions where some players have reported shorted trigger boards.
- Take along a change of clothing and footwear for afterward. Soggy clothing and boots can be uncomfortable. Having a change of clothing and footwear on hand for on the way home can make after the game more pleasant.
- Take a basic rain poncho. If you don’t have one, you can easily fashion one from a black yard refuse sized garbage bag.
- You should also have on hand some household items you could use to seal and wrap your Replica with if need be. Some plastic wrap and electrical tape can be used to wrap your weapon or cover openings. A small plastic baggy can be used to cover your battery pack or keep your ammo dry.
- Take cover and play from a covered structure. Less exposure to the elements means less getting wet.
What to do After the Storm
It goes without saying, but even if you didn’t submerge your Airsoft weapon in water, you should wipe down your replica afterwards. Sometimes though, simply wiping down your Airsoft weapon after playing in the rain may not be enough. Depending on factors such as how heavy it rained, how wet your replica got, and if water got inside your weapon, it may be advisable to strip down your Airsoft replica to give it a proper cleaning. Also, if you own a metal weapon, you will want to keep it as dry as possible to keep it from rusting. A firearm cleaner/lubricant can help prevent metal Airsoft replicas from rusting. One tip, keep cleaners and lubricants off of your real wood stocks as they can wreak havoc on them. If you are using a rust preventative product on moving parts, make sure it includes a lubricant as part of the formula.
Is it safe to play Airsoft in the rain? Most Airsoft weapons would be ok to use during rainy gameplay. Forgoing the advantages or disadvantages as long as the weather is not severe or life-threatening, gameplay can continue. A good quality replica weapon can make a big difference. Being prepared with some additional gear can also help. Keeping your replica dry during play and drying afterward will reduce the chance of malfunction. Taking the extra step and giving your Airsoft replica a proper cleaning after playing in the rain, will ensure your Airsoft weapon will be ready for another battle.
See you out on the battlefield!