For those of you who really want to get into paintball and have the money to spend I would buy a barrel for this gun. I recommend a CP around 14 inch. The Stock barrel for this gun is only 8 1/2 inches long, so cheap balls curve (big balls, store brand).
The stock barrel is also quite loud due to the shortness of the barrel and limited space for the CO2 to get out. This makes it easy for your opponents to pick out your position, along with the neighboors who dont like noise.
However for those of you who play seldom, or dont have an outstanding paycheck the stock barrel will work fine, just buy Dusks (My recommended paintballs for this gun)
A double finger trigger may also help for rapidfire.
Durability, easy fit, accuracy (overall), no constant cleaning
Barrel, not ball on ball, bad rapidfire, fieldstripping, length
The Tippman Custom 98 is a great gun for the mediocre player. Its durability makes it so the owner only has to clean the gun one out of every 7 times, give or take. However little cleaning comes with a price. The Tippman 98 is very difficult to clean. DO NOT TRY TO FIELD STRIP, you might as well give up and come back another day. Its not worth loosing all the pieces, not to mention the gun could get shot by your opponent flinging bits and pieces into the air.
To clean you must unscrew 8 screws with an Alan wrench, taking more that 15 min. The cover comes off only to completely expose the entire inside of the gun. This makes it very easy for bolts and gizmoze to fall out of place. When something falls out it takes forever to find were it goes. Anyone who owns a 98 will have to become an excellent mechanic to find all the nooks and crannys to get the gun to work at its best.
The Tippman 98 is designed like a real gun. Unlike guns such as the Spyder Xtra which obviously looks like some kind of toy gun the Tippman looks real, so don't go and scare the neighbors with it! This design is also good due to it gives the shooter a nice easy feel to the gun and its handling.
The downside to the real gun looking design of the 98 Custom is the length of the overall gun, from the front handle to the trigger the gun is accurately quite long compared to your average paintball gun. This makes it hard to switch your grip on the gun with the CO2 attached. This is probably why the manufactures decided to make the barrel abnormally small.
The Custom 98's barrel is one of the guns key weaknesses, and what separates it from the higher, more professional market of paintball. The barrel is only 8 1/2 inches long so balls will curve. This becomes a problem as the paint does not end up ball on ball. This makes the Tippman very difficult to snipe down opponents. So a good technique is to shoot in quick bursts instead of going for finesse with a one shot kill.
To minimize paintball curve I highly recommend Dusk, by Diablo paintballs, they seem to fit the stock barrel the best. PMI's fit well too. Do not use Big Ball paintballs, or store brand. You will find that the gun is to rough on the paint and you gun performance will be lower. However if you have plenty of spending cash, no paintballs can match marballizers.
However the Tippman needs some getting used to and before you know it you will be able to anticipate the curve and aim accordingly. The gun isn't completely random. But there will always be a little more curve than ideal. So I would recommend getting a new barrel. (I would choose a 14 inch CP personally, Average price $50 at local stores)
The weight of a Tippman is a little on the heavy side. However it wont effect your game to much. It will take a little getting used to. All loaded up and ready to go it will weigh about 8 pounds give or take.
A good strategy for the Tippman is to shoot in bursts. This way when one of the balls curves off and misses you wont of given you position away with out having three or four other balls hurling at your opponent giving you better odds. This is not a finesse gun, you will have to shoot more paintballs than other competing guns, like the Spyder Xtra, but a few more paintballs I would gladly pay for a good win over you rival neighbors.
Also the gun comes with a stock one finger trigger, this makes it harder to completely unload, but helps novices learn when to shoot. They do make double triggers for the 98 custom, but it is not a must.
I never knew how good this gun is until I was introduced to the BE raptor from one of my friends. I quickly learned how well my gun was put together, the nice fit and accuracy (overall).
I would not recommend this gun to pro players looking for an upgrade from something like a cocker, and I would also not recommend this gun to people who have never shot a gun before, go in you backyard and shoot a few with your friends BE gun, get good with you accuracy and then buy the Tippman 98.
You will appreciate the guns feel, durability and accuracy much more than if it is what you start out with.
7 out of 10
Last edited on Thursday, April 15th, 2004 at 4:03 pm PST