Heavy weapons prototype special

Anti-Tank, Area effect, Area-effect, Cold War, LAW, PIAT, SMBL 2" mortar, War on Terror, Weapons, WWII

Nothing too in-depth today, just a short video showing off some of the prototypes we’ve been working on for over a year…

All of these are now available to order by email, we will be putting up pictures of the finished articles in the next few weeks.

If these products are of interest to you, please do get in touch at: enquiries.vintageairsoft@gmail.com or join us on our Facebook page. Don’t forget you can buy many of our complete products via Etsy.

 

M72 Trigger mechanism housing

Anti-Tank, Cold War, Custom builds, LAW, War on Terror, Weapons

Yesterday and today I have been working on the trigger mechanism housing for the M72 rocket launcher.

DSCF5051

I started off by heating the plastic on my home-built vacuum former heater, which was very effective except for the outside 10cm of the plastic which was frustrating as this was exactly where the edge of my mould sat at both sides! If I had been switched on instead of enjoying the exotic fumes produced in my under-ventilated workshop I would have moved the mould so that it sat diagonally rather than straight but what’s done is done!

DSCF5053

After a few false starts I got the plastic soft enough to work and formed the rough shape. However either the seal wasn’t good enough, the suction too weak or the mould not being well ventilated enough to pull in the plastic onto the details.

DSCF5058

As a result I spent this afternoon with a heat gun and a short plank pushing the plastic onto the form.

DSCF5079

Looking a bit tidier now though I say so myself!

In future I’m seriously considering just building this part from fibreglass like the original, I doubt it would take as long and it can’t be more unpleasant fumes-wise!

*DISCLAIMER* Don’t try this at home, parts of this build are not good for your health and come with a fire risk built in.

The Vacuum former project

Cold War, Tools, War on Terror

Hello all!

I’m going to do a post on the vacuum former I have been building for the LAW project. In the longer run I’m not entirely sure what this will be used for as very few gun projects of mine have much (if any) plastic in at all. However it seemed like the sort of thing that I should have just in case. I suppose in the longer run I could use this to make custom holsters, battery cages or who knows what (If you have any projects in mind drop us a line!)

_DSF4940

If you are unfamiliar with what a vacuum former actually is, it allows you to form simple three-dimensional shapes in plastic sheeting. There are two basic stages:

1. Heat the plastic sheet (I shall be using an IR heater unit) until slightly floppy

2. Place sheet on top of forming table (flat surface full of holes) and mould. A vacuum is created under the table and the higher pressure in the room pushes the plastic sheet hard against the mould and table.

 

This is going to be used to make the trigger mechanism housing on the LAW.

As you can see, this surface is covered in small holes where the air is extracted, I used a piece of MDF pegboard for this:

_DSF4942

In future models I would also add bracing struts under this board as it does seem to flex a little when the air is extracted!

_DSF4943The air is extracted through a tube in the side, although it isn’t greatly pretty it provides a very satisfactory seal. This is attached to a vacuum cleaner to provide the suction.

_DSF4972

 

I ran a test to see if the suction worked on a bit of plastic bin bag, I shot a short video of it sucking the air out which I think looks rather cool!

I will also be doing a post on the heater unit once that is finished.

As ever, if this post has inspired you let me know! You can contact me as ever via email at enquiries.vintageairsoft@gmail.com.

LAW M72 update

Anti-Tank, Cold War, Custom builds, LAW, War on Terror, Weapons

I’ve been working quite hard on the LAW rocket launcher this month so far, with lots of plastic work!

I had the fortune to find two pieces of pipe which had corresponding inside and outside diameters, allowing one piece to slide snugly inside the other. My client had a model of an earlier type of LAW and had sent me the trigger mechanism housing from it (in green below) to work from.

_DSF4839

 

I created a wooden mould from photographs of the A7 in order to be able to form this complex shape. My initial idea was to build a vacuum former but before going to the expense of doing that I thought I’d have a go at forming with a heat gun…
_DSF4842

_DSF4846

Pushing the plastic into the former.

_DSF4849

 

My second attempt, getting the sharp edge in front of the trigger is pretty well impossible with this technique without splitting the plastic or creating a crease so it looks like I’ll have to build a vacuum former after all!

I also ran some tests on nerf balls to see how they performed ballistically. When put in the end of the 50mm bore tube I was planning on using for the barrel it barely fell out the end when the grenade was actuated. I then tried a smaller bore pipe which sat just around the end of the nerf ball. This produced a much better effect, shooting it maybe 10 yards.

I decided that a slightly different approach was needed. I have been playing with the idea of expanding foam rockets as an inexpensive, disposable missile system. I made a mould up from some plastic tubing…

_DSF4850

The three components: the body tube (top), nosecone former (bottom right) and the backcap (left). I have inserted the tail fins into slots at the top. I am yet to make a rocket from it yet however! I think that this will produce a more ballistically viable rocket that will also be cheap to reproduce if lost.

LAW M72 trigger mechanism

Anti-Tank, Cold War, Custom builds, LAW, Products, War on Terror

Video giving a behind-the-scenes view of a bit of R&D at Vintage Airsoft. Although it doesn’t look much yet, a far more polished version of this unit will feature in a custom-built LAW M72A7. Apologies in advance for referring to it as ‘L72’ in the video repeatedly!