February 20th, 2009
Real Steel History
The CASV was designed by VLTOR (http://www.vltor.com) for the Navy Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) group. It has a full length upper rail making for a very rigid mounting platform and an easily removable bottom section allowing for installation of the M203 grenade launcher. The entire system is designed to be installed quickly and without the need for a gunsmith.
Proud Version for Airsoft
All of the features on the real steel piece carry over to the airsoft version. CASV replicas are available from several manufactures at prices ranging from $80 to $250 USD. The one I have today was made by Proud and came with a nice outer barrel set. Once installed it looks very reminiscent of the SIR system. The CASV is available in three colors standard black, tan and OD.
1) Remove the hand guards or existing rail system to expose outer barrel.
2) Pull back the delta ring and slide into the slot on the CASV.
3) Install the clamping bar on the upper receiver.
4) Install lower portion of the hand guard.
5) Install side and bottom rail portions as desired.
Rail System Features
The full length top rail makes for a very rigid system. It also allows for a wide variety of scopes and optics to be installed anywhere on the rail. The CASV uses a modular accessory rail system that allows for a rails to be put on the bottom, side or at a 45° angle. Each rail segment can be installed up and down the length or the system by the use of a few hex head screws.
The 45° angle is especially cool and useful because it allows a light or laser with a tail switch to be turned on very easily.
As on the real steel piece the lower section can be removed so an M203 can be installed, but for airsoft the feature can be used for something much better. The installation and removal of the battery. Merely push the two front tabs together and the entire lower section swings down allowing for easy access to the battery.
Now that all that info is out of the way I can get on to what I think of the CASV, and that is that I absolutely love it. Given the wide variety of options and the cost of other rail systems I don’t see the price as either very high or very low. It does have a few problems though, First it adds significant weight, as with all RIS systems, to the front of the gun. Second, unless you have low mount optic you will not be able to co-witness the iron sights. If you use an Aimpoint with a tall mount or an Eotech then the must be removed before you can use the iron sights.
Summary and Score
- Looks very cool
- Very rigid system
- Easy installation
- Easy access to battery
- Wide variety of mounting points for optics and accessories
- In use by few military units
- Weight (to me this is a very small negative)
- Certain optics cannot co-witness iron sights
- No Trades
Thanks to Aspen d’Gray for the photos. All Copyrights held by their respective owners.