Here’s a look at a gun that’s a little outside the ordinary here at The Truth About Guns: the airsoft WG M84, a copy of sorts of the Beretta Model 84.
For many years I scoffed at airsoft as a training tool.
And then I started taking some force-on-force coursework – reality based training that helps people learn how to handle the body’s physiological responses to fear and the subsequent adrenaline dump.
I soon discovered that airsoft is an affordable, safer alternative to Simunitions. There’s still plenty of pain penalty for screwing up when using the right airsoft guns – including this M84. The unpleasant sting of getting hit ensures the proper fear-based reactions from the sympathetic nervous systems and the adrenal-cortical systems in participants. At the same time airsoft guns aren’t hundreds of dollars and feeding them doesn’t cost a king’s ransom.
After a number of our GSL Defense Training instructor team had attended a host of force-on-force courses across the midwest and beyond, we launched our own last year. Part of that involved buying a large number of airsoft guns.
We saw at other schools some of the problems with “green gas” guns. Leaky seals meant frequent refills, even with guns costing $150 or more, so we opted for CO2 cartridge guns. We bought dozens and dozens of guns and accessories. We have gotten lots of surprises with both performance and reliability of the various gun models, both good and bad.
Ironically, the handgun that was the most affordable – the WG M84 – has proven itself head and shoulders the best gun in our collection.
Based upon the Beretta Model 84 .380 pistol, this M84 features all-metal construction except for the plastic, slide-on grip panels. It has a safety (which frankly we don’t use) and runs on CO2 cartridges. We paid about $35 each for them from Airsoft Megastore, and currently, they are going for about $50-55 online.
When mated up with a DeSantis Pocket-Tuk inside-the-waistband holster (including left-hand availability) ($19.99 at Midway USA) and it makes a great CCW piece for training exercises.
The literature and promotional materials rate the M84 as shooting at 550fps. I don’t have a chrono, but I wouldn’t dispute the rating. It’s significantly hotter (higher velocity) than guns rated at 400-450 fps.
How powerful is it? Don’t shoot your Weber grill with it or you’ll have a spot of missing paint and a new dimple. It breaks wine and beer bottles when you hit them head-on. And have Band-aids handy if you hit exposed skin at 30′ or less. I don’t recommend having a vehicle downrange within 20 yards of these guns, either.
As for accuracy, they won’t compete at the Olympics, but for minute-of-aggressor, they work well. Hitting a clay pigeon at 30′ is not difficult.
It’s not a “blowback” pistol – the slide does not reciprocate as with some of the higher-end airsoft guns.
We have over two dozen M84s, and about twenty are in service for our classes. They see modest use – usually about sixty pellets per class, and several classes per year. The seals have been impressive. Most of the guns held charge over the winter and we get two to three classes of use on a single CO2 cartridge.
Guns far pricier have crashed and burned during our classes, usually because of a failure of seals. Unlike the guns with the CO2 cartridge in the removable magazine, this gun seats the cartridge in the grip and that seems to work much better. These M84s have been problem free for us, and I suspect they will provide good service for you as well if you’re looking to acquire an airsoft pistol that works reliably and shoots well.
Manufacturer: Win Gun / WG
Gas: 12 gram CO2 cartridge.
Caliber / BB: 6mm Airsoft
Firing Mode: Semi-Automatic.
Action: Non Blowback.
Hopup: Yes, integrated fixed hopup.
Muzzle Velocity: 450~550+ FPS. Measured with 0.20g bb.
Package Includes: Gas Pistol, Magazine, Manual, Adjustment tool and small pack of bb.
Magazine Capacity: 15 rounds. (One Magazine included.)
Current Street Price: About $50-60
Ratings (out of five stars):
Reliability: * * * * *
It works just like it’s supposed to. Point, press trigger, pop and repeat.
Ergonomics (carry): * * * * *
It feels like a Beretta Model 84, in both size and heft thanks to the all-metal construction. Affordable holsters are readily available, including for Southpaws. Unlike all-plastic models, the heft lends to the realism of using it in FoF training.
Ergonomics (shooting): * * * *
It’s fun a to shoot DAO pistol. It handles and shoots well, as one would expect.
Customize This: *
Not sure this is something people do to airsoft pistols, aside from possibly using a rail to mount accessories. No rails for accessories on the M84. No “hop up” adjustment as it comes pre-set.
Overall: * * * *
We bought nearly a dozen different models/brands/types of airsoft guns and this one – the most affordable of all – has performed the best and given the best service. How ironic.