What is Hop Up?
Hop-up pertains to a system in an airsoft gun to increase the distance traveled by the pellet. Through a backspin on the gun’s hop-up system, pellets can be controlled in terms of its trajectory and distance. Having a gun with adjustable “hop-up” means one can increase the vertical accuracy of the pellets. It also means that the pellets could travel much farther with the hop-up system in place.
The hop-up system works through a backspin placed on the pellet as it travels through the barrel. This backspin or “up-spin” as some people call it, will aid the pellet as it travels through the air. And since there is an “up-spin”, resistance from the air and gravity will be reduced, resulting in longer distance traveled by the pellet. The whole hop-up system could be related to various laws in physics. If the pellet was to travel without an “up-spin”, the only determining factor for the distance it will travel is FPS or feet per second. Whereas if a spin is involved, there is less pressure on the pellet and so it can travel much farther.
But aside from distance, the hop-up system also increases accuracy. That is why many prefer to buy airsoft guns with an adjustable hop-up. Many also say that only vertical accuracy may be improved with adjusting hop-ups and it may take time for one to take advantage of this feature. Some people advise also that only experts should make adjustments on their airsoft guns to prevent possible damage. Though hop-up adjustments may be done by just turning some wheel incrementally, it may also end up jamming the whole system.
Knowing that your pellets could travel longer distances and could shoot the target with greater accuracy will surely boost a player’s confidence. But one must not rely on the hop-up system all too much, because it still requires skill to play the sport.