Tippmann A-5 with flatline and/or All american 12 inch and Tipp. Werks 12 inch
Low preassure kit with Ergo reg (set to 400 psi) and 68 cu. in. Nitro
Respnse trigger upgraded
Steel remote hose with 1/4 turn on/off
Draxxus or PMI
Not the best accuracy
Alot of people are going to be displeased with this review because I wont have the best things to say about this barrel.
I anticipated this barrels arrival to the store where I work for some time. Finally got there about three/four weeks ago. Immediatly I just had to hook it up and go shoot it at my building. I put it on a 98 and had fun. I chrono all barrels before i test them and shoot with compressed air as to get the best results possible. I tested again on A-5 a few days later, results did not change between the gun enough to be worth noting.
First Test: Accuracy.
I used draxxus paint first off, then PMI's and tested the accuracy without the back spin on. Wasnt very happy after hearing this was supposed to be a strong point. Now granted it wasnt horrible and it was more than usable but it reminded me of shooting with a spyder stock barrel. The shots were inconsistant enough the getting tight groups, just wansnt happening. Mind you, im not setting up little perfect 12"x12" targets and all that, I shoot at two dumpster a wood pallet a gargbage can, some telephone poles and a wall. I have to say Im a good shoot and with target like that, if I wasnt going to get tight, consistant groups, hittin a person would be tough enough that I would change my barrel to my Werks or All american and move closer.
Second: The Spin.
Then, naturally, i click it out to the first position. Not much difference. In fact I didnt see much of a difference at all until about position 3-5. It was getting at this point to within the same range limitation's as flatling. HOWEVER, it is supposd to be more accurate than a flatline at the same range. Using a flatline for 3 years, I can tell you now this was not so. I can get more consistant groupings with a properly set up flatline A-5.
On the max back spin setting this thing gets some killer range, I was very impressed with that, but its lack off accuracy and irregular shooting pattern make it very undesirable. When the ball came within max standard paintball range, it dropped to within about a foot to 8 inches off the ground with the gun level. Im 5' 6" so me holding a gun plum level is at about 5 feet off the ground. It would then kick back up to over an 8 foot arc and then cost down again. These results were typical between position 7 to 8. Again, the range was great but the eradic trajectory and inaccurcy means the last to click will probably never be used for more than cover fire that can reach. Woods ball people rarley have 300 or so feet of open ground to shoot across, and with bushes in the way, you wont make the shot at level 8. I play back/captain for my scenario team, so i was happy to hear that this was supposed to get more range than the flatlline, it just didnt live up to what I've come to expect a barrel should . I give it about a 4 for this aspect.
Third Test: The Curve.
This, i was very impressed with. The ability to curve the paintballs is nothing new if you've had a Flatline, but the ability to adjust said curve and make it either steep or long is wonderfull. I am a big fan of the curve ball with the flatline and use it to my advantage as much as I can, which is still one big reason I use the flatline. The APEX takes that to a whole new, unseen level. If you use this barrel not for the range, but just the curve its almost worth the 140 bucks. A 10 all the way for that.
Fourth Test: Squeaky Clean.
Ok, not really a test but a mishap. A paintball or two managed to accomplish the inevitable and break. Not fun. Squeegie it out! Not a change. Any form of a good cleaning while in a game is just not going to happen. I had to use a pull through on the barrel, which cleared fine, but the tip just didnt budge until i ran it under the tap. That to me is just unacceptable. I give this a 4 as you can clean it to a degree that you can finish your battle, but not anywhere as close as you can with a normal, straight barrel.
Averaged together, this get a 5.5. But I am going to give it a 7. Why? Because I beleive its inovative, a wicked good idea and I like the curve. I beleive that its a new product and has the common mishaps of new products that have not been widley field tested. Once more news starts getting back to BT you'll see more improvments made to this barrel.
It is an awesome idea and I am stocked somthing like this is getting onto the market, i just honestly believe it needs more testing and more time to be truly great. I would recomend buying/testing it for your self and if you personally can deal with complications than go for it. But based on it being functional and worth the money, I cannot say it is and I still tell people looking for the range to with a flatline if they can. I will test again when the weather change, when its not so windy etc. And if any changes occur I will adjust this review accordingly. But until then, I do not believe this barrel is at the place where it is worth the money and the time needed to learn its complicated patterns.
If you think the accuracy is a problem you should try modding it onto another barrel. It is a very simple mod which you only need electric tape and a couple o-rings for. You can find instructions on the BT-Warrior forum in the BT-4 upgrades/modifications section. A link to the forum is on btpaintball.com