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Clean, or dirty? It comes up in debate on the Systema PTW Forum Facebook page all too often for it to be something which doesn’t polarise opinion. Belief in the hard-use look or its antithesis is strongly held. Ever heard anyone say, “Yeah, I like a mix. I keep one clean and one dirty.” No.

I prefer the hard-use look. Why? Blasters are signature pieces. I want them to age and mature like quality leather – imbued with the character only my particular narrative can impart. If that means they get a few scrapes along the way, great. It all adds to the story.

This, of course, is sacrilege to the aficionados of clean. My friend Lyle’s guns are absolutely pristine, even though he plays regularly and aggressively in an environment of hard knocks (indoor CQB). Mind you, his post-game ritual is a masterclass of microfibre cloths and polishing compounds. And, for all you clean freaks, I do promise to follow this blog at a later date with Lyle’s methods, if he’ll allow me.

Now, I really must stop talking in absolutes, because there are always exceptions. A couple of days ago I said Krylon is wrong on civilian builds. However, Stu of Project PTW reminded me of the free-solo blaster which influenced this piece.

Before he was famous, before he became a Mil Done Right whore, Stu liked his free-solo builds – which is why so many of his customers hand him the keys and say over to you with their civilian build projects.

Stu also likes his wear and tear as can be seen from the pics of what was Stu’s personal build. Except…the wear and tear in the pics is a Krylon weathering job. Now that’s just cheating!

So – clean

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Or, dirty?

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The Stickman pic which inspired Stu’s Krylon job.

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