The Copykat NERF Scout

On my way back to the car after seeing a customer, I passed by one of those shops which I used to go once a month years ago. And after a brief looksee, my heart jumped.....

For you see, stacked on the shelf, was boxes and boxes of the copykat NERF Scout. I suppose the term copykat fits because this did not have a NERF logo. But I would also like to coin the term, it has been 'Ertl-ed' (er-tael-ed) but not many people would understand what I meant. The term came from the name ERTL, which is a company famous for producing Star Trek plastic model kits. Even in the late 80's it was famous for that. But what many complained was that the plastic kits produced, especially the Star Trek Enterprise NCC-1701-A ship was very inaccurate. Sure, from far it looks like it but when you go closer, it was a different World altogether. So, the term ERTL means, "It looks like it but its not it". I would also like to use the term Lingam but since it does not make noise, it failed.

Just like the original Scout, the shape is there. But if you look closer, there are a lot of close calls. I suppose this is the Chinese way of escaping copyright. But to tell you the truth, apart from the garish colour scheme, the gun actually feels much more comfortable to hold. However, shooting darts is another matter which I will tell you why later on.

Here is a brief look. You have the original toy on the top while the copykat is at the bottom. Let's start with the slide. It looks much bigger and well, chunky. And not only that, the 'ventilation' holes near the business is is very bad. The original was not that nice either. However, if they did 5 vertical slots instead, it would look very nice. And as for the rear of the grip, those funky triangles are really too much. A kid playing with it too long would suffer more on their thumbs and forefinger. As for the bottom area near the trigger, as far as the two rectangle boxes are concerned, I don't really give much bother but its crudely molded and even longer. But if you look closely, its like schematic symbol for a loudspeaker. what I hate were the two rectangle slots near the barrel end. Although the original has only one, two just made it nicer but in this case, it was very badly done. Just above the grip where near you thumb, is a small dimple which is nice compared to the original which looked more like an oversized screw head.

The front end of the barrel is really off. For a gun this size, a barrel that juts out about 3mm is OK. But not a finned garden hose. Here, you can see how much difference the bigger slide looked.
Maybe its brutish but again, for a gun this size, it would be a tad smaller just like the original.

Now, here is the actual difference. The copykat is fatter and not only that, the grip looks much longer too. Which is good if you're thinking of stuffing things into it, of course.

But when you grip it with your hand, the copykat feels better. On the original, when I grip it, my forefinger tend to touch my thumb. But on the copykat, its not. Because its thicker, the trigger now feels 'right' compared to the original where you feel as if you're squeezing the gun with your thumb and forefinger.

And how well does it adapt to original NERF parts? Well, let me tell you this: It does not.
Everything on the copykat is 3mm to 4mm bigger and so, the scope above fits after I mashed it in. But it won't go all the way in, though.

Compared to the original where it just slides in with a click. But one good thing about the copykat is that you would have no problem about the scopes falling off since its literally wedged tight in there. Hasbro has it planned all along as the Scout was produced years before the yellow scope and it still fits. But that is the only thing good about it. As for using original darts, forget it. It has a maximum shooting range of 3 feet as the barrel is, yes, 2mm bigger. I am not going to use its darts as I know it would fit. Then again, with gun, its not about shooting.....

I just don't know where Krsitine got that look from. But its scary. She was holding on to the gun like glue until she found out about its firing range. So, for the rest of the night, she tried to swap it with Kaelynn's original Nerf...... sneaky.

So, there you have it. A copykat Scout. If you're not into Nerf fights but just as a cosplay item, its OK. Then again, you can't ask much from a RM7.00 toy compared to a RM70.00 original (OK, I got this from eBay long ago and I think it was that much.)

Green Laser Pointer

Wheeeee...........! I got a green laser pointer! And it costs less than what is being sold here. I think its about RM40-odd plus postage, of course. Here, I think it costs much much more. But then, who cares?

The reason I got this was during MITF where I was shown one and when I tested it, I loved it. The reason why is that compared to the red laser, the further the target is, the harder it is to see and sometimes, for certain people involved, this also means loss of valuable seconds trying to look for the red dot. The only saving grace is that red dots looks cool in movies.

So, when I pointed the pointed to a wall some 100metres away, it is still bright and looks very, well, prominent. And so, I wanted to have one, at the cheapest cost if possible. And I got it today.

A lot has to be said about the packaging and luckily,
it was not bent since the whole 'pen' is made of metal

It accepts two AAA batteries. For a hand-held device,
anything that takes more than a AAA feels very bulky.
And so, you twist it open and in the two pieces, one is
for the batteries while the other piece holds the main
circuitry for the green laser. Just like during the old
days, with the red lasers, they just mounted all the
electronics into a circuit board and shoved it into the
pen or tube.

Initially, when I inserted the batteries, it did not work,
even when I reversed the polarities. And so, after some
minutes of trying, I decided to sacrifice a paper clip......

This was because I used the Nokia 5800's camera light
and what I thought was the connector being too deep
and not able to make contact with the battery's end
cap, I folded the paper clip into a makeshift connector
until I can find a spring back home. But it still did not
work. Strange.

Only when I came back home did I realise the mistake.
One, the batteries I 'borrowed' were weak. And two, it
needs time for the circuit to generate more power to
pump the green laser out, which is about 4 seconds. So,
I took some 'new' batteries and tried it again. No more
1/2 seconds clicks like the red laser pointer.

Once the laser 'warms' up, its very bright

Laser light bending in a bottle of H2O. By this time,
the batteries are very weak. And if I really put in a
fresh pair, I would say, the light is brighter.

So, when I have the time and opportunity, I will try to borrow a telescope to see how far it can go (yeah, stupid ol' curious me) provided the pointer is still working by then. Ha ha ha.