Bingo Airsoftworks HPA Engine Review, Part 1 of 3 – Intro and PolarStar Fusion Engine


-I’m Rudy from Bingo
Airsoftworks, and I’m gonna
take this opportunity to
do a comparative review
between the three major HPA engines
that are available on the market today.
We have the PolarStar
Airsoft Fusion engine,
the Wolverine Airsoft
SMP and the Valken V12.
This video is gonna go into
details primarily about
the engines themselves.
I’m not gonna go into
overall shooting performance
or how far a gun can
shoot with one of these,
because honestly an HPA
engine is really just
an air delivery mechanism.
It has the advantages of
consistency, maintainability
and reliability, but
it’s just delivering air.
So if you have an AEG gun
that’s shooting really well
with an HPA system, it also
should shoot very well.
If you have one that
shoots poorly, an HPA isn’t
necessarily gonna make
it shoot any better,
because shooting performance
is largely based on
barrel, hop-up, bucking and bb.
So if you’ve got the
right combination and you
have that tuned in well,
your gun will shoot well
with any three of these engines.
And of course even as an AEG.
So again, my focus will be
about the engines themselves.
I’m gonna take an
opportunity to go through and
take each one apart so you’ll be able
to see some of the internals.
And I’ll just go over
some of the strengths
and weaknesses, in my opinion,
of each of these engines.
So for those of you that
own or plan on purchasing
one of these engines,
your mileage may vary.
You’re gonna probably have
a different experience,
but I just wanted to show
you what I’ve learned
working with these three.
Full disclosure, I’ve
actually installed quite a few
PolarStar Fusion engines,
several hundred engines
since it was released
over a couple years ago.
On the SMP, I’ve only
installed about half a dozen
myself since it was released
earlier this summer.
And for the V12 I’ve only done one install
since I just was able to get
my hands on one recently.
So I will start with the Fusion engine
and we’ll go from there.
Okay, first up I’m gonna talk about the
PolarStar Fusion engine.
I’m gonna go over some of
the advantages and then
go over some of the
disadvantages from my opinion
on the different engine platform.
The PolarStar Fusion engine actually,
or PolarStar Airsoft
actually builds guns with
the engine already installed.
You can get different AR
variants and AK variants.
And they sell the engines by themselves
for you to install in your own gun.
This is the V2 version
of their Fusion engine.
They have a V3, an M249,
an M240B, and they’re
about to release an M60 version as well.
So the engine is a direct replacement
for an existing gear box.
So it is actually very easy to swap out.
You just extract the current gear box,
drop this gear box in,
and for the majority of
the guns it’ll just work.
Straight pull one engine out,
put another engine in,
and you’re good to go.
The PolarStar engine actually
has a fire control unit
which is used to control all
the functions of the engine.
This fire control unit
attaches to this wire harness,
and it’s typically
placed in the buffer tube
or in the front hand guard.
You can control it by, you use this little
click and toggle switch
on the circuit board here,
and you can read the various settings
by looking at the LCD screen.
So an advantage is it’s got a very nice
fire control unit which
you can directly see
all the different settings that you have.
And there’s actually quite
a few different settings
that you would be able to control on the
way this gun behaves.
All the timings for
how the nozzle retracts
and goes forward and all
kinds of really interesting
things that you can do.
So that’s one of the
advantages of the PolarStar
platform is the FCU.
It actually also has a couple
of interesting modes on it.
Because it’s a forward bias nozzle,
meaning the nozzle when at rest is always
fully forward, it has two
different operating modes.
They have a mode called
“closed bolt” and “open bolt.”
Open bolt essentially
is a firing mode where
it will, when you pull the
trigger, it’ll retract,
load a bb, and then shoot
the bb, in that order.
Pull the trigger, a bb is
loaded, and then it’s shot.
Closed bolt does it in the opposite order.
The first thing that it’ll
do is shoot the bb, retract,
and then reload it.
And so there’s a bb sitting in your hop-up
until you pull the trigger again.
So on semi-auto, you
actually get instantaneous
trigger response when
you’re on closed bolt mode
because there’s always
a bb ready to be fired.
As soon as you pull the
trigger air shoots out
the nozzle and the bb
flies out of the gun.
It then re-chambers a round.
So absolutely instantaneous fire response.
And that’s an advantage because it’s using
a forward bias nozzle.
Excuse me, a forward bias
nozzle also allows you
to do couple other things.
Because it’s always inside the hop-up,
the nozzle prevents an bbs
from going into the hop-up
while it’s at rest.
When it needs to fire a
bb, it’ll chamber the round
and then shoot it.
Or in the case of open, uh closed bolt,
there’ll be one already there.
But the hop-up is always
blocked by the nozzle.
So this could prevent some double feeds
because there’s always
something preventing
bbs from entering the hop-up.
The forward nozzle also allows you to
do air seal test.
Because it’s all the way in the hop-up and
into the bucking, you can
check to see the air seal
by blowing down an inner barrel,
the inner barrel, and you
can see if you’ve got a
really good air seal or not.
If it’s a perfect seal, you
won’t get any leaks at all.
And you can test that because the nozzle
is always fully forward.
The design of the PolarStar Fusion engine
uses a poppet valve.
So it has solenoids, two
solenoids in this engine,
which are used to control
the poppet valve in this gun,
in this engine, excuse me.
Now because it has a poppet valve design,
it allows a much higher fps.
The fps range on the
PolarStar Fusion engine
can probably go close
to 700 FPS when you’re
running at 120 psi with the
appropiate barrel and bore.
You can get really high up there.
And the appropriate nozzle.
So the Fusion engine has a high max fps,
but it also requires different nozzles to
control the max fps.
The gun is designed, the
engine is designed to
operate between 80 and 120 psi,
and between those psi
ranges there are different
nozzle sizes, different colors
with different diameters,
inner diameters which
control the maximum fps.
So at the smallest inner
diameter, which is very
appropriate for CQB, at
120 psi your maximum fps
may be only 350, because
it’s very, very small.
If you put the largest
diameter nozzle at 120 psi,
your max fps will be closer to 500, 550.
So with any given nozzle
you can control your
fps window between 80 and 120 psi.
And you’ll get usually
about between 50 to 80 fps
variants between those two
pressure ranges as well.
So I guess it’d be considered
maybe a disadvantage
by having to require
different nozzles to give
you different fps windows to
work within the psi ranges
that the engine is designed to.
But it’s actually fortunately very easy to
change the nozzle on this engine.
In fact, when the engine
is inserted into a gun,
you can change the nozzle without
removing the engine.
You just have to remove
the two screws that
hold the front cylinder in place.
And I’m just gonna do it
here while it’s outside.
And you disassemble it
by taking these two screws off the front
and the front cylinder will just unscrew.
Again you can imagine this
is sitting inside of a gun.
You unscrew the front
cylinder, the nozzle pops out
and you can now re-lubricate
the nozzle as required
So it
So it’s very easy to maintain.
Its design allows you to change the nozzle
without actually removing
the engine from the gun.
Let’s see, also based on
the design of this engine
it allows different selector
plates to be attached.
It uses standard AEG selector plates.
So if you have a gun
that uses a V2 gear box,
you could put this engine
in it if you are able
to just swap the selector plate and
sometimes swap the trigger out.
The trigger’s also completely removable.
It uses standard AEG triggers.
So it’s, it allows you to go
into certain types of guns
as long as they’re based on a V2 gear box
and you have a compatible selector plate.
You can actually drop that in there.
It also supports what’s called
a “MILSON” air line routing.
Most guns have the air line
coming out of the pistol grip.
This one’s cut short because I use
an amped grip line on here.
But you can actually run
the air line out the bottom
of the engine or out
the back of the engine
if you want it to go
toward the buffer tube.
So, because it’s a custom gear box shell,
it allows you to do that.
You can run the air line out the back.
It’s also capable for
front and rear wiring.
The wire harness can out
the back of the engine
or you can move it up and come
out the front of the engine.
And they are cutaways
already on the engine already
which allow it to go forward or back.
So it’s very versatile that way as well.
Okay, let’s see, the
other part I did want to
show you here is just how
the poppet valve works.
And I’m gonna go ahead and
separate the upper engine,
upper cylinder, excuse me,
from the lower cylinder,
lower assembly.
You just disconnect the solenoids.
There’s again, I mentioned
there’s two solenoids
on this engine, and they
control the nozzle retracting
and the poppet valve.
When they’re energized
the poppet valve opens up
and allows air pressure
from in this cylinder
to shoot out the nozzle.
And let’s just take a
quick look at the actual
inner part here, the poppet cylinder.
You can disassemble this pretty quickly.
And you can see that
here’s the poppet valve.
And in fact I can take
the poppet valve right out
by just removing the locking o-ring,
this large o-ring which
holds the poppet valve
in place and the valve comes out.
And so what happens is
this little section moves
and it allows air to go
through the middle of this
and out the nozzle.
So that’s a poppet valve.
Okay, let’s talk about
some of the disadvantages
of the PolarStar Fusion engine.
Right off the bat, one of the strengths
is also one of its weaknesses.
Because the FCU has so
many different settings
on it and there are so many
aspects you can control
you can actually put
yourself in a position
where you’ve changed the settings and the
engine won’t work any longer.
So it adds a little bit of complexity.
If you don’t mess with
it, it should work fine.
But once you get access
to this and you are
able to start making all sorts of changes,
you could easily tweak
your engine to a point
where it doesn’t work properly.
So often you have to reset it back to its
default settings to get
it to work correctly.
So it could be a little
bit complex for some users.
Another disadvantage is the FCU continues
to drain the battery once it’s,
as long as i’s battery’s connected.
If you left a small LiPo
attached to it overnight,
it will completely drain
the LiPo and it will
be a dead battery.
So as a matter of
course, and it’s always a
good habit to just
disconnect your batteries
from the FCU and you
won’t have that issue.
You really shouldn’t keep your
batteries connected anyway.
But that is a disadvantage.
It will drain your battery.
It also doesn’t work well with
11 point one volt batteries.
I have another video
that shows if you hook up
an 11 one to this it’ll
overheat the voltage regulator
and the full auto won’t work properly.
So avoid using 11 ones
with the PolarStar FCU.
Because of it’s design
with the poppet valve
in that it has two other
solenoids it has to activate,
it potentially could be less air efficient
than some of the other
engines on the market.
This can be addressed by setting up your
Fusion engine to run at
the lowest operating psi.
Essentially you want
it to operate at around
70 to 80 psi and you
should have quite a bit
of efficiency on your shot.
So with a 90/4500 tank
you could get close to
6,000 shots out of that,
which isn’t too bad,
but at the higher psi’s,
when you go up to 120
you’re gonna get significantly fewer shots
out of that same tank of air.
A weak point of this design
is also the wire harness.
This wire harness which is used to connect
the FCU to the engine,
either to the back of the gun
or to the front, is a
weak point because it’s
easy to damage this.
Some steps have been taken
to make it a little more
durable by putting this webbing around it,
but the wires and the
connector, if this is
bent too much, bent too
sharply, you can break
the wires or break the connector and then
you have to replace this.
So a weakness is having this wire harness
exposed and having to deal with that.
One of the earlier-on
problems, it’s probably
not as prevalent now but
it used to be an issue
for some folk, is that
these solenoids can leak.
If you get dirt or debris
inside the solenoid
by having to go up through the air line,
it can foul up the
o-rings that are in here,
and you essentially have
to replace the solenoid.
It’s not as much of a
problem now that I’ve noticed
because I think PolarStar
has actually changed
their solenoids and the
QC from the factory’s
gotten better, whatever they’ve done.
So there’s not as many
leaky solenoids out there.
But that has been an issue in the past,
so you want to just be
aware that it’s not,
it’s not cheap to replace one of these.
So these can fail on you.
Compatibility with different guns.
I think I might have mentioned it earlier,
but it’s a V2 gear box design,
but each manufacturer of V2 gear box guns
has their own little tweak that they add.
And so sometimes this
Fusion will not sit properly
in the gun, and you may
have to do some tweaks
to make it align properly.
You’ll install it and the nozzle won’t be
lined up with the hop-up,
so all kinds of odd things
will start happening where the fire select
isn’t gonna interface with
the selector plate properly
or the safety doesn’t engage.
Again, it’s not the majority of guns.
Actually the majority
of guns will probably
work just fine.
It’s, there’s a small
percentage of them where
they’re a little off
spec and you have to deal
with that because you’re
replacing the gear box
with something that’s
not native to that gun.
You have to deal with
it and make adjustments
to the Fusion engine
and shim it or adjust it
so it fits properly in there.
Let’s see, and I guess one of the other
disadvantages, it’s the most expensive
engine on the market.
So of the three that I’m
gonna be discussing today,
this comes in with the highest price tag.
But there you have it,
the different advantages
and disadvantages of the
PolarStar Fusion engine
from my opinion.
Kind of focusing mostly
on how this is used
in its normal course of
use as an engine that
goes into a V2 or its target platform.
I specifically do a lot of customizations,
so I take this and use it
in a lot of custom installs.
And because, again, of
its design, these two
are separate parts, and
it has very convenient
mount points on this,
I can put this in a lot
of different platforms that aren’t V2 or
any other kind of gear box style.
Also there’s a lot of extra material here
which can be milled away
and cut to allow this
to fit in other areas that
normally a full V2 engine
won’t fit.
So, it’s pretty flexible
on extreme custom installs.
But that’s kind of what I’m
in the business of doing.
Next up I’ll talk about the Wolverine SMP.

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