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Airsoft TTI Combat Master (JW3) by Army Armament – Comprehensive Review

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Intro

So you love airsoft, you love shooting guns and you’re a fan of the John Wick franchise. You need a reliable pistol for CQB action and you don’t mind looking like a total badass when eliminating your targets from one room to another. You are incredibly excited by the new Army Armament & Jag Precision licensed Combat Master release but you may have understandable doubts in regards to the quality of the pistol and its performance due to AA’s “budget replica” reputation. Well we are going to put these doubts to rest in this comprehensive review.

In this review we will go into depth covering all the minor and major features that make this pistol an absolute steal for its price!

First of all, a massive thank you to the team at Patrol Base for inviting us to their store and letting us get our hands on the Combat Master!

Without further ado, let’s get into the nitty gritty details! The Combat Master is based on the 2011 (Hi-Capa) variant of the legendary Colt 1911s which naturally means it features some of its trademarks like the beaver safety system; however, do not be fooled, this is no ordinary 1911! This pistol was built with competition shooting in mind, and every aspect is catered to optimal performance. Also, if you weren’t aware, this pistol is a licensed replica of the Taran Tactical Innovations – STI Combat Master 2011 featured in and built specifically for the John Wick 3 film.

AR First Impressions

Out of The Box

Pros 

  • Incredibly accurate and consistent at short distances (tested on 10m range with 0.25g) 
  • Metal slide with incredibly smooth cycle
  • Fixed inner barrel and hop-up unit to improve accuracy 
  • Enormous variety of aftermarket parts available as the pistol is compatible with Tokyo Marui
  • Beautiful finish and sturdy build

Cons

  • Dependant on one’s hand size, can be a bit bulky; might have to use your left thumb for slide release after reload
  • Although licensed, some trademarks are missing in the final product

Accuracy, Range and Gas Efficiency

Accuracy

In regards to the pistol’s accuracy, we had the chance to test it on Patrol Base indoor gun range which measures just under 10 metres. Although, it’s not a huge distance, we were able to consistently hit small targets with almost every shot – of course, some more than others. The iron sights were zeroed in at out of the box, which meant we literally loaded up the mag with both gas and BBs and we were joyfully hitting the targets in no time. 

Range

Unfortunately, at this moment in time we are unable to personally comment on the range of this pistol – however, follow this thread as this will most likely get updated in the near future. Based on our research and communication with other players – allegedly, the pistol effectively hits torso targets at 40m+ with 0.30g bbs.

Magazines and Gas Efficiency

Another great positive of this pistol is the fact that it is very gas efficient although the mags spit a little gas when being loaded. However this can be simply fixed with a rubber o-ring – you can find the instructions in the drawback section.

In order to test the efficiency, we filled the mag to its max capacity with green gas and shot until the pistol was unable to cycle properly and chamber the next BB. Magazines hold 30 BBs each time and we’ve managed to get just over 2 full mags of consistent performance – that is roughly 65 BBs altogether. Not bad! 

Hop - up

As per the modern airsoft standard, hop up is adjustable with a rotary wheel. The internal system is compatible with Tokyo Marui Hi-Capa line of products, therefore you can expect good results out of the box; and if you find yourself unsatisfied, you will be able to find many aftermarket parts.

What is special about this pistol is the fact that the barrel doesn’t drop down out of the way when the slide cycles. This means that both the hop-up unit and the precision inner barrel stay in the exact same spot in between shots – this leads to improved accuracy and precision when firing in quick succession.

Perfect for competition shooting!

How to access the hop-up?

In order to access the adjust the hop-up, as in every other 1911/Hi-Capa you will need to remove the slide. Follow the following instructions in order to do so –  first pull the slide back, keep it in that position whilst you push the slide lock “button” in from the right hand side and then pull the slide lock out from the left hand side. Make sure not to let go off the slide during this process as it might come off flying due to the tension in the spring! This might take some practice, be patient and I recommend using a pen or small screwdriver to push the button.

Generally, the disassembly is fairly easy but it might need a little practice, and as mentioned previously, you will need a tool to access the hop-up wheel. Therefore, I recommend sticking to the same weight of BBs throughout the game and making sure the hop up is dialled in before you start so you don’t have to fiddle with it during gametime.

Build

Trademarks and Features

Now, onto the most exciting part. This replica has most of trademarks and features of the real steel TTI STI Combat Master which is used in John Wick 3, You can find the “9×19” on the outer barrel, and Taran Tactical writing and logos around the frame. However, it also lacks certain signature trademarks such as the “2011” engraving, STI logo and “STI International”. Here’s a comparison to the real steel:

The pistol also features oversized mag release, ambidextrous safety levers and skeletonised trigger. It is a perfect platform to build an even more performance orientated pistol!

Barrel

As mentioned previously, the outer barrel does not move at all when the slide cycles; this is superb news, and a feature that other competitors simply lack. Underneath lays a 112m precision inner barrel. In addition, the outer barrel has a beautiful rose gold finish just like the real counterpart.

Construction

In regards to the materials used, the pistol is a mixture of alloy and polymer. The slide, upper frame and outer barrel are fully metal whilst the pistol grip naturally remains plastic; yet, this pretty big pistol feels lightweight at only 0.65kg without a mag.

Furthermore, the attention to detail is simply immaculate – for example, the pistol grips are hand stippled which simply adds that extra touch of quality and care. They are also customisable and will fit Hi-Capa 5.1 custom grips, so if you fancy changing it up, you’ve got a green light to do so!

Slide

As you can also see, the slide contains beautiful serrations in order to improve one’s grip when racking the slide. It also rocks a cut out on each side of the slide in order to decrease the slide’s weight and subsequently improve cycle smoothness and gas efficiency. 

Out of the box, the slide cycle is one of the smoothest I’ve seen! 

Trigger

The trigger is skeletonised in order to further decrease the weight of the pistol; as you can see, this pistol was specifically built with competition in mind. In regards to the trigger pull, it is short with no unnecessary travel, feels solid and incredibly snappy.

Iron Sights

This Combat Master replica comes with optic fibre sights with adjustable rear sights; we found that the iron sights were already zeroed in out of the box which is always a plus for a beginner!

Specs and features

FPS (Feet Per Second) – 315fps (± 10%) on Green Gas with 0.20g BBs
ROF (Rate of Fire) – N/A – Semi-Automatic
Effective Range – 40m
Recommended BB Weight – 0.25 – 0.32g
Hop-Up – Adjustable under the slide
Inner Barrel Length – 112mm
Powered by – Gas
Recommended Gas – Green Gas, Red Gas between 4-10°C, Black Gas below 4°C
Fire Modes – Safe/ Semi-Automatic
Construction
Metal: slide, frame, trigger, safety catch, ambidextrous thumb safety, hammer, beavertail grip safety, guide rod along other internal components
ABS Plastic: Pistol Grip
Weight – 650 without mag
Rail System – 20mm picatinny pistol rail
Price – £134.99

Drawbacks Summary

Although Army Armament has a reputation for building budget replicas; this is one of the best products they’ve so far produced. However, we always try to find room for improvement even though the pistol might seem perfect on first impression. 

As mentioned previously, the magazines spill gas when being loaded; this unfortunately seems to be plaguing many manufactures. It’s an easy DIY fix but it’d be nice if customers didn’t have to do that in the first place. In order to prevent any more spills, insert a rubber o-ring around the mag valve to stop the gas escaping. For the purpose of instruction, here’s a picture on how to do this from a previous pistol review which had  the exact same problem.

We also had an odd issue with the feed lip on one of the magazines; it simply broke off. However, no one was sure how or when – this might mean that the lip feed is a weak spot or potentially that we were unlucky and experienced a one off lemon magazine. It’s something to consider, and simply make sure to take care of the mags!

Airsoft Ranch Verdict

So a simple question arises – do we recommend it? Yes, this is a fantastic 2011 Hi-Capa platform with an authentic look and fantastic quality. The smooth slide action and fixed barrel is worth it alone, and the fact that it is a licensed replica from Taran Tactical Innovations makes this pistol absolutely epic. It feels great in one’s hand, it shoots accurately, internal and external quality are fantastic and it’s compatible with Tokyo Marui parts – perfect for a competitive CQB platform!

I hope you enjoyed this review and found it informative! Feel free to comment underneath with your own experiences of this pistol and give it a share on your social media! 

Peace out Ranchers!

Written by Kamil Turecki

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2 Comments

  1. Martyn 28th November 2019

    Do both the thumb safety’s actually work ,? On my TTI combat master the 1911 thumb safety works as on the 1911 but on the other side it clicks up but on my TTI COMBAT MASTER it fired as it feels like mine is not locking anything out but then I engage it on the other side as on a 1911 thumb satefy it locks ok so can be cocked and locked ok.

    Reply

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