Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Mod: Knock-off Stryfe with Blade 180s

With the relative scarcity of Stryfes in Australia since Kmart stopped stocking them, I wanted to try out other options. This knock-off Stryfe, sourced from Aliexpress, cost me about 25AUD shipped, about the same as the Stryfe when it was still available at retail here.
I was initially saving this post until after I completed the review, but honestly I might never get around to that. This post is a lot easier, and also a lot more relevant for all my intentions with it.
 While the blaster is natively compatible with Nerf mags, it is not perfect. The magwell is quite tight on Nerf mags, and causes a little scratching on them. The inner rims are also slightly too tall, and compress the feed lips of Nerf mags upon inserting or removing. These can all be solved by a little grinding to both sides of the magwell.
The stock mag release is tiny and difficult to use, so I extended it a little with a spare bit of plastic. It's still not in the best, as it's lower than most Nerf mag releases, but it's much better than stock.
I had some spare Blade 180s so decided to throw them in this blaster. Naturally some shell cutting was necessary. It should be noted that the upper part of the shell enclosing the flywheel cage is wider than the lower part of the shell, hence the apparent height difference in the motor endbells.
As I replaced the motor cover on my Stryfe with a BlasterTech one, I had a BSUK one lying around unused. Because of the width difference in the upper and lower shell parts, it doesn't fit perfectly around the motors, and a little grinding was necessary for a smooth fit.
As the knock-off Stryfe doesn't have the same extra shell around its battery bay, the space for a LiPo is much smaller. I can't use my Stryfe LiPo in it without some significant shell removal, which is a little unfortunate.
Overview of the internals, pretty standard semi-auto flywheeler. Chrono data can be found on a page here. With used Koosh, I was averaging around 110fps which is about on par with a similar spec Stryfe.

I'm reasonably happy with how the blaster turned out from the mod. It's roughly on par with a similar Stryfe, meaning that it could serve as a budget alternative to the increasingly expensive Stryfe (at least here in Australia). It of course has a number of drawbacks that prevent it from being a full replacement/substitute, including complete incompatability with Nerf and Nerf-compatible attachments, and apparent (unconfirmed) incompatability with Stryfe flywheel cages.

If you're after a cheap bunch of semi-auto flywheelers that don't need to do anything special, and can't get a hold of Stryfes for a comparable price, these knock-off Stryfes could work for you. They function just fine and have no issues (that I've come across at least), for sub-130fps or so performance. If you want anything beyond that, like higher muzzle velocity or compatability with aftermarket parts, it's probably better to just shell out the extra money for a proper Stryfe.

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