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KWA EVE-4 First Impressions


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TLDR? Great on the outside, a bit crap on the inside.

 

Here's a quick 2 hours of ownership first impression......

 

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Right - to start. Packaging was fine - typical KWA fare from what I've seen of other guns in their Ronin lineup. A bag of accessories was also included which includes QD sling mounts, M-Lok rail sections, T-Handle Allen keys, and a KWA branded Speedloader. Nice touch. Being the ICE limited edition version, it also comes with a Ice-blue 120rd mid cap in the box.

 

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The gun is fitted with a really quite excellent M-Lok vertical grip along PTS Backup sights out of the box.

 

Externally, it's the best plastic I've seen on pretty much any airsoft gun. Think PTS EPS stock plastic quality, but the whole gun is made of it.

 

It really is very nice to pickup up and hold. That is, from the pistol grip forwards.

 

Where it falls down is the stock. Again, it's very high quality, but much like any other PDW-style stock it is limited in terms of storage capacity (which can be mitigated to a degree with an extension) and adjustability. It only has three positions, fully closed (thus useless), fully open (which is a bit wobbly), and somewhere in between which is still a touch too short for many.

 

If I keep this gun (more on that later), It'll get a buffer tube and a PTS EPS Stock - much like KWA's still unreleased EVE-9.

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The gun is well balanced otherwise, and the pistol grip (basically a PTS EPG) is an excellent fit for my hands.

 

The gun is largely ambidextrous, with fire controls, bolt and mag release on both sides. Problem is, the bolt release stopped working after the third time engaging it (and I was being gentle), so the bolt will not lock back. Disappointing to fail almost instantly. The charging handle, being up front does get in the way when holding the gun if you like to wrap your hand around the rail, but it can be easily switched to the other side to move it out of the way - so no biggie.

 

But what's it like to shoot?

 

I don't know really. I tested it briefly on a 7.4v LiPo, but the motor lacks torque and I could lock the box up quite easily. Performance was a laboured 14-15rps, trigger response not great at all. The gun sounded laboured generally and the gearbox loud (which I've heard is a trait of the v2.5 GB thus 'normal').

 

Ok, well, KWA themselves say it's good on 11.1v LiPos, so I switched to a 20c 1300maH 11.1v. It blew the fuse within 30 shots. *Sigh*. The trigger response was nice enough and I'm guessing a ROF of around 19-20RPS in the 10 seconds it functioned for.

 

Soooo.......I'm on the fence with this one. I could fix the niggles easily, swap out the motor and stock, probably sort the bolt release too - and the rest of the gun feels amazing in the hands otherwise.

 

But I can also send it back to the vendor before any more gremlins pop up.  

 

Hmmm.....watch this space.

 

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why would a gun that size have a v2.5, shouldn't it have waaaaay too much volume?

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17 minutes ago, strykerles said:

why would a gun that size have a v2.5, shouldn't it have waaaaay too much volume?

 

It's KWA's marketing-speak for 'proprietary gearbox'. It uses a standard V2 cylinder. Not related to anything fitted to an SR-25 style gun.

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Ok, fuse swapped. Out of the box it ships with a 20A fuse, I put a 25A in for now.

 

So - performance:

 

Chrono: 325-328fps, pretty consistent with 2-3fps variance.

ROF (Fully charged 7.4v 1200mAh 25c): A pretty disappointing 14.1 RPS and it didn't sound happy doing it.

ROF (Fully charged 11.1v 1300mAh 30c): A very surprising 23.4 RPS.

 

So, the motor is obviously wound for flat out speed (and volts) and not torque.

 

23 RPS is a bit spicy for my tastes, I would have preferred something more balanced, giving better performance on a 7.4v LiPo. So a motor swap it is i think.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, first game day ended bittersweet. It made it through one game before the smell and heat from the motor/grip made be throw it in the bag and grab a spare gun for fear of doing some serious damage. The gun also started to lockup as the heat/smell got worse, so I'm guessing the motor is just...well...shit. Curiously, the anti-arching diode is absent from the motor that KWA normally fits to all their other guns.

 

I had an intermittent low velocity issue as well, where one shot in 20 would be noticeably quieter and the BB drops well short. Initially I thought the hop-rubber needed bedding-in, but the sound change became more pronounced. So time to check the gearbox - the stock piston is largely an all-plastic rack from what I have seen with an un-ported lump of metal for a head (which might be part of the problem).

 

But the first 20-30mins of game play use were glorious even with the odd low velocity shot. The ergonomics, balance and feel were top notch, and it sounded great with a slight amount of over-volumising to give a nice, but not obnoxious 'pop'. It felt snappy, very 'pointable' and was very easy to put BB's on target.

 

Sooo...time to sort the gremlins and say bye bye to the warranty.

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The guns strip relatively easily - no harder than a standard M4, just with a few some extra screws. The mag release and ambi controls do not require removal for disassembly, they remain attached to the lower.

 

The upper slides off with a single pin removed at the front (M4 style), but you don't need to jiggle charging handles or dust covers, it's smooth and precise and the fit between the upper/lower is excellent. This is helped by the fact that the front pin lug on the upper is part of a metal trunion/outer barrel assembly.

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The lower receiver has a removable receiver stock mount/extension, and this screws into a co-molded metal threads in the lower - clever stuff. The entire back end of the lower is heavily reinforced and in places it around 5mm thick to support the stock. That, coupled with the fact that there is no rear receiver pin hole - which is a weak point on many guns, means that I would honestly place this well above any metal-bodied gun in a similar price bracket for durability.

 

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The hop unit is again decently made from plastic, the outer barrel on my example is nicely finished brass and I have no compulsion to replace it. The hop rubber is a split mound type, which to be fair worked well enough in the time I used it, but ultimately will be replaced with a ML/Omega combo.

 

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I'll cover the Gearbox internals another time - but it's a heavy beast of a thing and I have no doubt the shell it as tough you will ever need. The bolt release issue I had was rectified with a slight tweak of the mock-bolt - it is quite thin metal.

 

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I will be tackling the gearbox later, but based on a few videos I've seen for KWAs, the Piston and Piston head would be worth replacing from the outset.

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A quick look at the internals...

 

Well..... the switch isn't going to last long on 11.1v - there is clear indicators of burning/arching/pitting on the trigger shuttle already after ~30mins of use. Problem is - the switch is proprietary. It'll probably be easier to source a Gate Titan than try to find a replacement KWA switch here in blighty. Great.

 

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The switch is not a complete write-off yet,so I'm going to try clean it up and fit a simple Mosfet for now. KWA should of shipped the gun with one fitted - they are not exactly expensive these days.

 

The rest of the gearbox is fine. Gears seem tough, the shimming is a touch tight, but with the shell being so thick and less openings in it to test each gear individually, it'll be tricky to re-shim so I'll leave it as-is for now. The shell really is a chunky beast. I have no concerns about it's long term durability.

 

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There is a proprietary tappet and nozzle which is a characteristic of all KWA 2.5 guns. The Piston and Piston head are best described as mediocre so I've ordered replacements from @ak2m4 .

 

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There is so much potential for this gun - it is a few component choices short of truly excellent but ultimately penny-pinching by the manufacturer has let it down.

 

As-is, would I recommend it? Well, if you are confident at teching your own guns, then yes, I think I do.

 

But for a beginner player? - Good god no. And that's a real shame.

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@Speedbird_666 thanks for all the pictures and writeup, had my eye on this for a while and really love the looks and ergonomics, although give me the fixed stock version.  The PTS EPG integrated grip is nice and cheeky.  Do "standard" gearboxes fit btw?

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2 minutes ago, ak2m4 said:

@Speedbird_666 thanks for all the pictures and writeup, had my eye on this for a while and really love the looks and ergonomics, although give me the fixed stock version.  The PTS EPG integrated grip is nice and cheeky.  Do "standard" gearboxes fit btw?

 

The EVE-9 will come with a PTS EPS stock.

 

I doubt very much that anything other than the KWA 2.5 gearbox will fit as it's very much integrated into the structure of the body itself, shaped subtly differently to a standard V2,  and the ambi controls just will not work with anything else due to a proprietary selector plate.

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5 hours ago, Cridant said:

Hello, just wondering what 11.1 30c you managed to fit in the gun. Really appreciate if you can help.

 

Hello. Welcome to the forums.

 

I didn't manage to fit any of my LiPos properly inside the gun - I had to 3D print an extension (although Airtech make one)

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Hello, thanks for the welcome, literally signed up to ask haha.

Thanks, I guess I'll just have to pay out for the extension.  Keep up the good info, really helpful! 

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Posted (edited)

The gun has now been fully re-wired with Alphawire and a Mosfet added - found a simple (but slightly chunky) Acetech AceMOS plus unit lurking in my electronics box that I forgot I bought 3-4 years ago.

 

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Shimming has been tweaked on the Sector and Spur gear, and sounds a bit better than before. Left the bevel as-is.

 

The stock motor is shit - hands down the weakest link on the gun. I am able to lock the gun up on an 11.1v and it gets really frikkin hot after a few seconds of firing. So it's got speed, but not decent torque and definitely no efficiency.

 

Put an SHS 16TPA Hi-torque motor in - major over-spin/double shooting on an 11.1v. Switched to a 7.4v LiPo and it seems happy enough - trigger response roughly equal to the stock motor but without any lockups, around 16-17 RPS full auto and running pretty cool temperature-wise.

 

So now it's very usable as-is, but I want an even snappier trigger response, so the next step is a 22TPA motor on an 11.1v. Hoping to keep it around 17-18 RPS, but with the extra torque for semi-auto.

 

Edited by Speedbird_666
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