Any, including Brass Eagle Monster Balls (low end paint)
Low, competitive cost
Large return on investment
Cannot be modified (ceramic material should not be cut down, not really a weakness)
I am new to paintball, so I speak to other new or perspective players about the Tippmann Custom 98 and the J&J ceramic barrel.
When I bought my 98, I knew ahead of time from reviews that the barrel should be upgraded. I brought the marker to my first game completely stock, and I soon found out why.
The 98 stock barrel shredded nearly 2 out of every 3 Brass Eagle Monster balls fired through it at 260-285FPS. True, it is lower end paint, but I was completely unable to play with the stock barrel. I borrowed a J&J barrel from a veteran, and went on to have a great afternoon without a single barrel break.
:) The J&J barrel is available from many, many vendors, so the pricing is competitive. It is ceramic, so I would stay away from used versions since I've heard about chipping and cracking of the ceramic coating, I cannot speak to this firsthand..
:) The barrel is available in a variety of lengths to suit may styles of play. I play woods ball only, so I chose a 14" model as a balance between maneuverability and accuracy, and I could not be happier. The barrel delivers accurately to the aim point well beyond 40 feet, using BE Monster balls.
:) After my first experience with the stock barrel, I also bought a case of RPS All Star paint, which I hoped would be less picky about my stock barrel. The J&J fired the premium paint as consistently and reliably as the low end paint, so I found no reason to fire 2.5 cent balls over 1.5 cent balls. I played out the rest of the day with the Monster balls.
:) In reply to other posts, I do not feel that the barrel is brittle or damages easily. Threading the barrel should be done with care, and the "chalk board" sound is simply due to the ceramic material the barrel is made of. I treat my equipment like a long-term investment, so I can't comment on what happens when you bang it around "like an ape".
:| I have heard from veteran players that the barrel cannot be cut down, even by professionals. One guy took the barrel to a machine shop and was told that there was a risk of cracking the ceramic barrel. (It has been brought to my attention that the barrel is aluminum with a ceramic coating- nonetheless, a professional machinist said cutting the barrel may damage the ceramic component.) Personally, I don't consider this a weakness, since it's available in so many lengths, though it should be kept in mind for those who may want to shorten the barrel.
I would highly recommend this barrel as an upgrade for the Custom 98.
:) It is relatively low cost and delivers the same performance as costlier upgrades.
:) It is available in various lengths to suit different styles of play.
:) It is extremely accurate, even with low end paint.
:| It should not be cut down.
I would give it a 10, but I do not have enough experience to say there's nothing better (therefore a 9).
I have downgraded by 1 since I have heard it cannot be modified.
8 out of 10
Last edited on Tuesday, May 9th, 2006 at 8:19 am PST
uh you mean 285 fps not psi lol, and barrels dont shred paint your bolt does. I used the stock barrel for a while before I upgraded and its actually not that bad. I mean its not 100% perfect but it gets the job done.
quote:Originally posted by JIMMYJIM989 uh you mean 285 fps not psi lol, and barrels dont shred paint your bolt does. I used the stock barrel for a while before I upgraded and its actually not that bad. I mean its not 100% perfect but it gets the job done.
Yes, you're right I did mean FPS, thanks for the comment. As for the barrel not shredding paint... The bolt, so I've heard, "chops" paint if the trigger is pulled before the ball is completely fed into the chamber. When I said "shred" paint, I meant that the barrel was not a good fit or had imperfections and destroyed the ball as it passed through the barrel. It sounds like you got a good stock barrel. If you feel that it's my bolt, not my barrel, why does a barrel upgrade fix the problem? Let me know what you think.
quote:Originally posted by karchomatic
When I said "shred" paint, I meant that the barrel was not a good fit or had imperfections and destroyed the ball as it passed through the barrel.
Normally, it is the bolt, or rather the timing of the bolt movement and position of the ball relative to the bolt (i.e., bolt strikes ball when not chambered properly, causing the bolt to slice the ball faster than Chevy Chase on speed).
However, I've seen the same thing you describe with a cheapo barrel I mistakenly picked up on a sale for my Spyder: poorly finished port holes showing "flash", or small shards of metal caused by drilling of the holes with inadequate clean-up afterwards. This barrel actually shredded the balls. Proved by swapping out the barrel (not the bolt) and shredding going away. Go figure.....
Moral? You get what you pay for (in this case, a crappy barrel for $10).